Beat Radio how-to from 1998

Back in 1998, I volunteered to help out with Beat Radio, a dance music radio station with an interesting history. It started in Minneapolis as a pirate radio station on 97.7 FM, until the FCC showed up one day to seize the equipment. Then later, a network of radio stations was looking for a buyer and needed content, so the Beat Radio guy got me and a bunch of other folks to volunteer to help fill the network's airwaves with dance music. For more on the history, check out

My tiny part in this adventure involved learning how to run the board at the radio station and becoming a radio DJ. Yesterday, while unpacking boxes at our new apartment, I found my notes from my 1998 training on how things work, mostly focused on Beat Radio's original Sunday night schedule. After Beat Radio relinquished most of its control over the former Radio AAHS Network, the network hired a few of us directly to do whatever we wanted. I filled my time with Radparker Radio. A bit later, the stations were finally sold to the "Catholic Family Radio Network" and our time came to a close. I was invited to continue on as a board op for the religious network, but I declined.

Dog Found at Loyola Beach

Bark Bark Club reports: FOUND DOG! This pretty girl was found on Thursday 6/16 around 5 pm at Loyola Beach near Albion. She had on a red harness with no tags, is very well behaved, and seems to have had puppies at some point. If you know anything about her, please contact Dan at (616) 291-6808 or by email at

Here's two other pets found recently, more information at EdgeVille Buzz.

Bluetooth at Home

Few statements can be considered more exciting than the following: Finally, I have a use for bluetooth at home!

OK, I'm lying, but still.... We stumbled across a very simple and satisfying solution to an annoying problem. In our new apartment, we have fairly poor cell reception. Believe it or not, with Verizon, not with AT&T. The phones work, but calls drop pretty regularly if you're not actually near a window.

A friend of ours has AT&T and mentioned buying a microcell to solve that problem -- but that's kind of expensive and it irritates me that I have to pay so much to solve the cell provider's issue. So, here's what we stumbled upon instead: The Cobra PhoneLynx Bluetooth Cell to Home Phone Connection System.

What does it do? It connects to your fancy smartphone over Bluetooth, and then it connects to whatever regular telephones you have. We've got ours connected to a cordless phone system with two phones and two base stations. When we're at home, we drop our iPhones into their chargers, conveniently located by the window, where they get great reception. Then, if a cell phone rings, the house phone rings. The house phone is thus an extension for your iPhone. Since the cell phones remain near the window, reception is always great. And the thing supports two phones/two bluetooth connections. Caller ID tells us if phone #1 or phone #2 is ringing.

Wasn't sure if we'd find this all that useful, but it turned out to be a life-saver that we use every day.

And when you pick up one of the cordless phones, you get a dial tone. Dial like normal, and your call goes out over your cell phone.

Alive in Rogers Park

Well, we found our fabulous new dream apartment, right here in good ole Rogers Park. Have already connected with a couple of neighbors online and at the corner bar -- and they seem ecstatic that we're replacing the college kids who had a drum set. (There's a diaper-wearing story to be told over beers sometime.) More on how we got that apartment later, but for now, here's a picture of our fabulous new, huge patio.

You can't really tell, but I had just spent a couple of hours sweeping up all the dirt and detritus, followed by a good hosing down. Confirmed: the drain works. Can't wait to load this up with chairs and be able to sit out here drinking wine after dark.

And the deck above it is ours, too.