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I know it looks easy, especially in this photo from 1984 in the studios of WCOL, but I have often compared my radio career to the one where I made a living as a peace officer as the era when I worked for a living.
In my new book "Deputy in Disguise" I talk about how easy police work was compared to some of the stresses of working in a radio station.
I was recently reminded of this a few days ago when I sat down to lunch with a man who more than three decades ago was glad to see me leave a radio station, perhaps happier than I was to go. In the years since, John Potter, former WTVN program director and I seemed to have forgotten why we were mad at each other. Today he is a guy I am proud to know, and although our career paths took dramatically different directions from each other, (he stayed in broadcasting) I went looking for Oz, we found that we have way more in common than we knew once upon a time. We also learned that youth was no substitute for wisdom.
Those years as a DJ, and later as a radio talk-show host taught me humility, and in some respects...well, respect. Respect for the personalities who are able to remain in the tough world of broadcasting, to survive its changes and somehow come out the other side unscathed.
As much as I loved my nearly twenty years as a broadcaster I am glowingly happy that I walked away from it when I did. All of that came into focus when I looked across the lunch table at the Clarmont Restaurant into John's face and knew that he was looking back at a guy that after it was all over...we were better people to still know each other.
"Deputy in Disguise" is available at amazon.com, Barnes & Noble and Borders.