“You are live… Please do NOT swear”

Great advice for if you're ever on the radio.
Great advice for if you’re ever on the radio.

I’m a firm believer that you should never let the fear of failure or fear itself get in the way of trying new things. Sometimes, it’s all too easy not do something because the idea terrifies you or you’re worried you’ll make a laughing-stock of yourself. However, I always think it’s better to have tried and hated or failed at something than spend the rest of your life wondering, “What If?”

This doesn’t mean that you should accept everything that’s thrown at you. If you really, truly don’t want to do something – then don’t. I don’t want to climb a mountain as it’s too much like hard work and I’m not good with heights. I don’t want to go in a submarine as the thought of being underwater in a metal tube feels me with dread. What if something went wrong? How would I get out? I most certainly don’t want to go into space for much the same reason as I don’t want to go in a submarine. Plus, I’ve seen the film ‘Gravity’ which just confirmed all my worse fears about space travel.

But there are things that are offered to you that you know you probably would like to do really if you weren’t so worried and nervous about how they might turn out. This recently happened to me. A friend of mine is a DJ on our BBC local radio station and he asked me if I would come in and review the Sunday newspapers for his Sunday mid-morning show.

My first reaction was, “No bloody way!”. I don’t know about you but I hate the sound of my voice. I’m not sure if that’s because I have an awful voice or is because our own voices sound so different to our ears that we can’t reconcile the real voice from the one we’re used to hearing. Anyway, whatever the reason, I was going to say “No” as if I don’t like listening to my terrible voice, I’m sure no-one else would want to either. But, there again, it was to review the Sunday newspapers and I always like watching that bit on the TV news. In fact, I make a point of trying to catch it so, what the hell, I said “Yes.”

It’s at this juncture where I feel I must comment on my thought process. I decided to go onto live BBC local radio (for over an hour) to pass intelligent comments and make witty remarks on the Sunday newspapers because I like watching the paper review on the telly. It’s a bit like deciding to do a Charity Colour Fun Run because I like the idea of going to a Holi celebration. I really think it’s time I got myself a new thought process.

I also don’t listen to this radio station because, to be honest. local news doesn’t interest me. National and inter-national news – yes. Local news – no. It’s all cats stuck in trees and someone complaining there’s a pot-hole in their street. So, once again, my thought process for agreeing to do the paper review was flawed. But, once you’ve committed, you can’t back out. I did think about doing some prep for the show but that’s as far as it went – thinking about it. So, instead of listening to local radio or buying a local newspaper, I bought a marker pen and wrote “Do not swear” on the back of my hand which I thought was good advice.

And, as it turns out, it was because the only advice I got from the good old BBC was, “Don’t talk about Sir Cliff Richard and don’t swear.” Which, perhaps, says a lot about the BBC’s thought process.


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