The Takeaway Family Gets Bigger!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010 - 05:22 PM

(John Hockenberry)

I have a new baby.

He can’t talk. He can’t walk. He loves to eat and he wants to be a part of his much bigger family. This baby has three sisters and a brother, a mommy and daddy. Baby Ajax, who’s been here since December 4th, has got a strong signal, a very healthy set of lungs. Every cry is a message, and this new little guy has got a backlog of messages for his sisters, brothers and parents already.

It’s a little like The Takeaway. The Takeaway family has been around for a while but we’ve been nesting in this radio show for going on two years now and its time to break out. Our audience is growing and from all over the country people are trying to join this American conversation.

The Takeaway voice is kind of like that bouncing baby. People are finding us, on the air and elsewhere. Like a shrieking baby howling for attention, democracy’s passions howl bloody murder. There’s a real urgency to connecting. I’m always amazed at how much people want to interact and deliver their own clear thoughts to our conversations. We imagined that the audience would diminish after the wild ride of the financial meltdown and the electrifying presidential campaign of 2008. To the contrary, the passion, decibel level, and urgency have not diminished. Here with baby Ajax I’m the frenetic daddy trying any stuffed animal, baby bottle, folk song, lullaby, or peek-a-boo tactic to get the baby to sleep … to get the noise to stop.

But it’s just the opposite with the Takeaway baby. The primal howl of our listeners weighing in and throwing down is beautiful music to me. So with this redesigned website we hereby open the floodgates. We’re looking for a whole new set of voices and we welcome them. This new web identity is not a pacifier … it’s a BMX bike of democracy and civic engagement. The Takeaway is your canvas and your megaphone, your can of spray paint and your roman candle. The mere radio show is a rehearsal each morning of the real conversation in this nation that never stops.  

That new baby, noisy, growing, wide-eyed, has got everyone’s attention. That’s a baby for you. We’re live and kicking. You’ll want to hang around until the first steps. I’ll be here, on the radio and online. When I’m not burping or changing diapers, that is.

Uh oh… gotta go…. Baby needs me.

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Comments [5]

Chris from NJ

THANK YOU WNYC for finally moving this show to AM only in the morning. I will be so grateful on Jan 25 to wake up to the sounds of Morning Edition coming clearly through on the FM station... and I will start sending my donations in again this year. It's been a loooong 2 years of trying to hear it through the static of AM while this awful show has been on 6-7, but I'm just glad it's finally ending.

Jan. 16 2010 03:37 PM
Suzy Q

The only similarity between this show and a baby is the blaring annoyance in the early morning. Blech.

Jan. 16 2010 03:32 PM
mike r. in maine from MAINE

What Dimps said...congrats on the new kid and awesome show...

Jan. 13 2010 08:07 PM

"Babies are such a nice way to start people!"

Ajax is beautiful and the new site is bright and attractive. Congratulations to all concerned for both "productions". ;^>

Jan. 12 2010 09:41 PM
cls pdx

Handsome new web page! Handsome new Hockenberry!

Jan. 12 2010 07:54 PM

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