Trapped in Paradise – the DC Edition

Part travel blog, part philosophical musings. All tongue-in-cheek ridiculousness.

The (Radio) Gods Must Be Crazy


I had intended to make my first real blog post about the horrors of driving in Hawaii, but I soon realized that I’d have to write a dissertation in order to capture just how painful of an experience it is.  And I’ve lived in SoCal and the Deep South!  So I figure I’d better start small.

One listen to the radio – and spending at least an hour each day stuck in traffic affords plenty of opportunity to do so – reveals one of the many ongoing themes of Hawaii life: this place is way behind the rest of the world.  Some may be fine with that and consider it a part of the charm of living here.  I’ve even found myself thinking along those lines when I’m in a generous mood… and then I’ll turn on the radio to find something to sing to while I’m crawling along Nimitz highway, and upon hearing fucking Bruno Mars again any warm fuzzies of island life fizzle out like my afternoon plans.  (Confession: I actually don’t mind Bruno Mars – his music isn’t my cup of tea but I’d much rather listen to him than boring Jack Johnson, who was the “local boy who made it big in the music world so now we must play one of his songs every 20 minutes” the first time I lived in Hawaii.)  There are only a handful of Top 40 stations here, and I’m pretty sure they all have the same ten songs in their inventory.  It’s horrifying how often one can switch between two (or more!) stations and hear the same song being played.  The worst part?  The songs they play ad nauseum are the ones that were big on the radio for the rest of the world 3-6 months ago.  So if you’ve just come from a visit to the mainland, or if you regularly download the latest hits onto your phone or iPod, be prepared to be assaulted by the songs you’ve already heard played to death and have gotten sick of hearing.  Why am I still hearing “Blurred Lines” on the radio like it just came out yesterday?

Power 104.3 is by far the worst offender, in my opinion.  I’m pretty sure they have fewer songs than anyone else in their inventory, are shameless about playing the same artist several times in one hour, and have a terrible habit of picking one several-months-old, not-so-great-the-first-100-times song and playing it incessantly.  (Currently “Clarity” by Zedd, which I swear comes on every time I get in my car.)  They also do this annoying thing where they latch onto a song that came out ages ago – but not so long ago that people are nostalgic to hear it again.  A while back I was guaranteed to hear Akon’s “I Wanna Love You” at least once a day during my drive home.  Ugh.

The other station I listen most often to is Star 101.9, which is better about mixing up their music but not by much.  Being an alternative/90s station they generally have more of a selection, but they tend to get caught in the same trap of playing the same artists repeatedly (Third Eye Blind?  Come on, man.)  To switch it up, I’ve been listening to the dance station 95.9 even though I’ve never had a huge interest in EDM.  It’s been a nice change, to my surprise, and oddly enough I’ve found it kind of soothing to listen to while stuck in traffic.  Certainly more so than hearing “When I Was Your Man” for the umpteenth time.  The only problem is that they need to get a better broadcasting antenna or something, because the station cuts out almost as soon as I leave the Honolulu city limits.

Eh, oh well.  I suppose I could just download more music to listen to in the car, but when you’re stuck in traffic all the damn time you tend to wear out your playlists pretty quickly.  I guess the other alternative is to learn to like Island Music…


Author: Brit C

Aspiring author and travel enthusiast living in Washington DC. Stop by and say hi!

7 thoughts on “The (Radio) Gods Must Be Crazy

  1. Looking out the window at the 3 feet of blowing snow, feeling a constant draft on my toes, and seeing the -14 degrees registering on the temperature guage, I think I would be willing to put up with an hour of stale music to escape my island. I always found the commute to and from work with the music turned down so it acts more as white noise then melody was the best time for me to come up with ideas for stories. It didn’t matter what they played, my head was too busy to listen.

    • Yikes! I’ve been keeping up with the weather reports over the last few days, and it doesn’t sound fun. I hope this latest winter storm doesn’t last much longer, for your sake and for everyone else suffering through snow drifts and negative-degree wind chills. Stay safe!

  2. Ha! I love your rants and your blog. I literally have a two minute drive/five minute walk to work, so listening to the radio is kind of pointless for me, really. But, I can understand what you may be going through. 😀

    Great blog and I love your header title and picture paired together.

    Happy Blogging,

    • Thank you! I’ve been striving to make sure my rants stay more on the humorous side (as opposed to whiny and annoying, though I’m sure there will be days for that as well!) I’m following your blog too, as I’ve made it one of my resolutions to read more books. 🙂 Sending you warm weather vibes, hopefully the polar weather lets up soon!

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