Tuesday, June 20, 2017


Softball season is in full swing. The weather hasn't been very cooperative but the games are scheduled into mid July. As a result, there haven't really been any food projects or any projects. Just fast dinners and late nights. Although I did get a grain mill I'm looking forward to taking for a test drive and I have begun to amass all the materials for the next part of the oven project. Maybe I get get started on that over the 4th of July weekend. Not sure. Kind of weather dependent. It would be nice if we could avoid rain for 3 days in a row that I had some time. So instead of any of that stuff, I'm going to yammer about satellite radio.

When we got the new mini van, it came with a few months of Sirius satellite radio. I thought it was alright, not amazing, but alright. My favorite channel is Comedy Central (Chanel 95) and the kids enjoy Hits One (1). As my subscription began to run out, that’s when the emails and postcards starting arriving. Sign up now for something like $240 a year. I’ll pass.  As the end of the subscription got even closer, I got a phone call. For $100 plus some taxes and fees, I thought I would be getting a basic subscription for a year that included being able to receive Sirius Radio over the internet. Turns out that wasn’t quite the case. For $100, I got a basic subscription that was just in the van. The internet access is an extra $4 a month, call it $50 a year.

I’m a little disappointed that I don’t have the internet options since I’m pretty sure I was told I would have it, but I have two main complaints about the service. First, while a bunch of it is “kind of commercial free,” a lot of it isn’t. Comedy Central isn’t. They play the same ads endlessly – debt relief, a pillow to stop snoring and shaving razors seem to be the ads of the moment. A lot of commercial free stations play ads for other stations. Personally, I don't care what Don Henley's favorite Beatles songs are, but I could tune in Friday to find out. Plus there’s the other crap. Take Hits One for example. They do a lot of pop culture news reports and they have their own Morning Zoo group but they also play segments about movie releases. I don’t believe getting your movie release information on air is free. Maybe it is, but I doubt it.  So it’s not commercial free even though it says it is.

My second complaint isn’t really a complaint a bout Sirius. It’s Comedy Central. First, they often play a made for them podcast called The Bonfire. If you like it, great. I don’t think it’s funny.  It's two stoner comedians (whose stand up is actually good) desperately trying to making fun of stuff they see online. And when that fails, they make fun of Corey Feldman’s band.  It also feels risky to play any of the comedy stations with the windows down. There are some topics and language that might not be appreciated being heard by a nearby car or pedestrian as you slowly drive through a parking lot. Ever hear KattWilliams or Eddie Griffen do stand up? About every 3rd word is not one I want blasting out of my car windows.

My current subscription ends in December. Not sure if I'll renew or not. Definitely not at full price. Two bucks a week seems borderline OK, $4.50 seems like too much. Weird how we draw the value lines on some things. I'll take the grain mill over the satellite radio every time.