This is another rant about Perspectives on KQED radio.
This morning I heard a Perspective by Sandip Roy for the third time. The first one I heard a while ago when Kaavya Viswanathan was exposed as a filthy plagiarist for ripping off another crappy book for her own crappy book. Roy's editorial was a tongue-in-cheek discussion of how Indian American children are pushed hard by their parents to be overachievers, so it's no wonder Viswanathan cut corners to make a name for herself. It was basically an irony-soaked list of Indian-American stereotypes that was supposed to be funny for some reason.
Later, I heard another Sandip Roy Persepctive, this time making the point that Superman is an illegal immigrant, and giving a detailed account of all the things about Superman that would be illegal if the House immigration bill became law. In addition to not being very clever, this particular meme had already made the rounds among political blogs cartoonists several times over before Roy lent his own dreadful spin to the subject.
Today, Roy's blather was about how hot it is in Calcutta during the summer. That's it. Two minutes of "Summer in Calcutta is soooooo hot." "How hot is it?" "It's so hot that sometimes there are rolling blackouts!" A 120-second spiel about the weather. It was like a small talk nightmare, the kind of chatter you try to avoid at cocktail parties and business meetings, sustained for two minutes of public radio airtime and blessed by a $65.00 honorarium.
Roy is an abysmal commentator in a sea of abysmal commentators. His subjects are tired. He has nothing interesting to say about them. He's so excruciatingly smug that he always seems to be on the verge of chuckling at his own imaginary cleverness. The fact that I've heard him three times, that I heard him this morning on the second day of the month, and that KQED has a policy of one Perspective per person per month suggests that I can expect to hear from Roy about once a month during my morning commute.
And worse yet, apparently Roy is a professional journalist in his own right. According to his little post-Perspective blurb/disclaimer, he's some kind of editor and radio host. I always thought Perspectives was a means for the howling masses to get themselves some airtime without wrangling with an actual talk show host. Why can't Roy peddle his verbal wares on his own time? Why can't Perspectives be reserved, as it should be, for ten-year-old girls talking about how wouldn't it be great if boys and girls played together at recess?