Last week my radio station featured all chicks, all the time! Despite all of the gains women have made in the broadcasting biz, this is an exceedingly rare situation, except for the occasional stunt, which this was not.
We have a small on-air staff and it happened that the male members of it were on vacation at the same time. That left only women to fill stretched-out shifts each day. I hosted the morning show with regular morning team member Nicky Robertson as my cohost and newscaster, and then I went solo from 9 to noon. Leigh Robert’s show started earlier, at noon, and went on until 6 pm. That meant women hosted every live bit of business, all day long!
I’m from an era in radio when it was taboo to put two women on the air at the same time. Your Program Director would look you in the eye and tell you, a woman, that two women chatting on air was “too whiny” and a “tune-out factor”. My PD at a country station once came flying into the control room to admonish me because I had played songs from two female artists back to back. “It’s too hard on the ears!” he said, with no sense of irony. So to experience a week of estrogen laden broadcasting was a kick indeed. This doesn’t mean we were all “chicky” about our work. We were just what we were. Leigh and I both remember too well that not so long ago there was a bias against female broadcasters who now, a couple of decades later, may actually outnumber the males. So we got a particular kick out of being the anchors of the station for the week. I wouldn’t want it to be like that all the time. A balance is best. But it was fun to be the lead gender for just a little while!