Growing up, my most important toys were my dolls. We talked constantly, but none of them made a sound. When I think of the recorded sounds of my early childhood, it's all on cassette: my beloved Teddy Ruxpin, my children's songbook with accompanying tape, the little shows, skits, and songs I recorded on my own. I loved the Fisher Price record player music box, where changing or flipping the colored plastic records determined what song played, but I didn't have one of my own. As I got older, memorable sounds came from games, like my Bop-It key chain. Or, above all, the game MALL MADNESS, which said things like "There is a clearance...at the...sunglasses boutique" from a little speaker box in the center where players swiped their play credit cards to score points (come to think of it, MALL MADNESS may be capitalism's greatest triumph in the indoctrination of a generation).
Remembering these and/or other toys (and the sounds they made) was a delightful part of researching and writing this, my first episode of Twenty Thousand Hertz. But the research didn't stop there. I walked down toy aisles and listened to the toys shout sweetly at me. We all know how far technology has come in the past few decades, but we (or at least, I) don't often think about how those advancements trickle down to change everything around us...even toys. Now I can't stop thinking about it!
I could go on at length about what an honor it is to contribute to 20k, a show that I have listened to and enjoyed for years, but if you get into the show's back catalog, you'll see that it speaks for itself. May I humbly suggest starting with today's episode, "Noise 'R' Us"? :D