Every once in a while, an old radio piece of mine comes back to buy me a cup of coffee. Today, it was “Dangling Woman,” which launched my all-but-invisible radio career in 2003–when I was falling in love with sound production and rapidly burning out on my life as an organizational change agent. The piece was broadcast last night on KZYX, the community radio station of Mendocino County in northern California. I wonder if they realize they licensed the piece twice before, in February 2004 and in September 2013. Somebody out there loves me. W00t.
I think everyone should have one or two all-but-invisible alternate careers. (I have had several.) It expands your idea of yourself: you are more than your job; more than the role you play in your family. You have another identity, with skills, and a community of kindred spirits.
I sped up my voice here, still not confident in my midwestern-Susan voice. The style of the piece is rooted in Joseph Conrad and his jungle-bound hearts of darkness. The title derives from Saul Bellow’s “Dangling Man,” which had a special meaning for me once upon a time. The gist of this fevered melodrama is that the overworked mind never rests and that, in real life, no one swoops to their destination.
All of this brings back lots of memories. Wine poured.