Sunday afternoon I spent five hours driving from Carpenter to Minneapolis, trying to find a radio station that would update me on the NFL scores. Naturally I tuned into AM radio, and while I was in South Dakota I was able to tune into ESPN Radio fairly clearly. But as soon as I hit Minnesota, I lost all signal.
For the next two or three hours, I continuously scanned through the AM dial, searching for a station with a football game or postgame show or even a news station that occasionally read the scores, but to no avail. I was able, however, to find two polka stations, at least five country stations, some sort of Money Talk station that I assume was a scam, several religious stations, a weather station, a rock station, and a station that wasn’t in English, Spanish, French, or any other language I recognized even a little. But no football stations on a Sunday?
As we got a little closer to Minneapolis, I was able to tune in WCCO. I never realized it before but that station is about 65% advertisements. KSTP eventually started to come in a little, and they were talking Minnesota sports, but the guy spent over an hour trying to crunch the numbers to justify a Vikings stadium… never gave me a score update.
As we approached Glencoe, which is just 29 miles from the outskirts of the metro area, I started to receive three very unusual radio stations between 670 and 780 AM, all football! One was The Score out of Chicago. One was a Denver station with the Broncos-Chiefs game. And one was from Cincinnati with the Bengals pregame. However, I still couldn’t tune in 1130 KFAN from right in the Twin Cities!
Finally, after getting all the way past the office in Chanhassen, KFAN started to tune in and I heard the Cowboys beat the Eagles, giving the Vikings a first-round bye.
This experience left me dissatisfied with my AM radio experience, and begged the following questions.
- Why do AM stations play music? The sound quality is terrible. That’s what FM is for!
- Why did we get stations from Denver, Cincinnati, and Chicago but not Minneapolis?
- Why does 570 WNAX out of Yankton never stop tuning in no matter where I go?
- How much longer until AM radio is done away with? It remind me of black-and-white TV.
There’s my first rant for 2010. What do you think?