an excerpt from my weblog which is private, so don't ask for the password!
radio killed the internet star monday 26 september 2005 11:07

something funny — “ good funny ” — happened today.

i got an email from my brother — which isn't that common, yet always delightful when it happens. it was so seanie. so understated, concise, brief, no wasted wanton word:

subject: radio
date: 26-sep-05 17.44
hello my family,
i will be on triple j tonight around 18.25!
i am programing 3 of my favorite songs,very cool eh!
love to all
sean xox
he had sent it via the new group page i set up on dot mac - the one that i set up, um ... yesterday! i don't know if he was being deliberately clever or accidentally lucky, but it means that the email went to the entire family. mum and dad, me, lou and mike, and sarah.

which is a great way to get in touch with us all ... as long as it is like, five weeks before something! i'm the only web junkie in the family, and mum is so far at the other extreme that every time she uses her imac she can't remember how to launch a web browser.

so, here was my brother, the most incredibly special person i have ever had the privilege of knowing — no! of having with me, so dearly and preciously in my life — secretly going on radio to talk about his greatest passion, and pretending to be giving us ample notice to tune in.

so, sean and his situation, indeed! it was such a beautiful, yet so clear juxtaposition: carrot and stick. carrots? twofold:

  • a delicious opportunity to spread his discerning gospel of independent music, and
  • getting to chat to rosie beaton — who i think he secretly fancies — not sexually of course, but his passion for music is so deep he feels a relatedness that is immediate when others do too.
stick? plain and obvious: the threat of being noticed, seen, observed, yet at once extant with a stranger. seanie is so lovably, pathologically, gorgeously shy, paranoid and easily embarrassed. (yep, fardie.) and being a fool on jjj in that universe is the most foolish folly of fooleries.

and i thought how wonderfully different we are.
we, of the same seed. we, of ilk unrecognisable.
this too, i saw so often at splendour.

i remember we were listening to the finn brothers, and sean remarked how they must be crazy ... that every time they work together, they realise they cannot, they fall out, their band implodes. split enz. crowded house. now this new duo. i saw his point. and i saw a different one too. for the finn brothers know, as i do, that the bond of brotherhood is greater than any trifling strife, no matter how evidently destructive in the moment it rears itself.

brotherhood can surmount.
yes, we are different, individual and unique. peas. pod. no way.

yet at splendour i was so moved to see how alike we are. a willingness to laugh, to experiment — to be trashy ! — to forget tomorrow, think just tonight and have that other beer (etc.).

for tomorrow we may die.

and every tomorrow we do die a little bit more. some days more, some days less, but we do. every day does lead closer to death, but that is very thing that makes every day precious.

so, now, here he is ... trembling at home … waiting for rosie’s call ... and i just know how deathly fearful he is ... so, i read the email but i did not call ... and that is the right thing to do, as a call would just fluster him more.

instead i deftly send some smses of encouragement.
and i do what he did not. would not. could not:
i rallied the troops. by 18.05 everyone knew, and were tuned in.

  • lou: siting in her barina at a campsite in bulli.
  • dad: jerry-rigging a cassette player (yes, cassettes!) to the fm radio by his bedside
  • mum: in the fourby somewhere between penrith pool and jamisontown, i am sure futzing with the dials, no idea how to work a car radio.
  • me: configuring my mp3 server and using a downloaded wetwire hack to bus the digital audio feed from realplayer, bypass the internal sound card to a separate virtual audio channel declared into existence by some api in coreaudio.
o! what a varied tribe we are.

and then! he came on air. a not altogether ignominious opening, although his sparsely spattered first minute was rich with missed cues and unconvincing / late "yeah.." s. nice work.

and i sat there listening, squirming with delight, beaming with pride. i cheered aloud!
and it came: the moment i had anticipated, yet a moment that he in his humility, had not.

the moment, when rosie saw through his goofy shyness, when she knew he was serious, he was passionate, he was discerning, he was eclectic. may he not be erudite in the defence of his choices, but his commitment — his passion! — to them still blazingly evident.

and my eyes brimmed with tears for the love of my brother.
i am so lucky to have one such as he.
the only one such as he.

i am so ever proud of him, for he is my hero.
seanie: for you this dedication and this podcast .