Since starting this website, I’ve considered different ways in which I could approach writing a blog. I’m not personally interested in the journaling/rambling style of blogging, so I had to think of an alternative. I always feel like people ask me what I’ve read recently and I always forget some books when I answer. I figure it might be fun for me to keep track of what I read, starting at the beginning of 2017. Most of my posts will just be thoughts about whatever book that I’ve most recently read, although some posts might just be on random topics. I will have to catch up a little as I’ve already read two books this year and I’m only starting to post now. It works, though, as the two books are closely related. The first is Robin Quivers: A Life, and the second is They Call me Baba Booey. Both are biographies of staff members from The Howard Stern Show.
I’ve been a Howard Stern fan since I first heard him, probably sometime in middle school or early high school when my mom would have been pissed that I was listening to the show. It’s important to note that my mom has always despised Howard Stern despite, I’m quite certain, never listening to a single minute of the show. That’s likely a reason that I’ve often found myself intensely trying to explain to non-fans that there is a lot more to Howard Stern and his show than meets the eyes and ears. Admittedly, his show has had moments where the parties involved are simply being as outrageous as possible –both for their own pleasure and to gleefully test boundaries. Still, any real Stern fan knows that he is actually a deeply introverted man who is quite different from the persona created over the years. He has always proudly maintained his faithfulness to whoever he has been in a relationship with. He divorced his wife, although they have remained amiable. During that time, he openly discussed his flaws, most notably his obsession with his work that would create a divide in any relationship. The truth about his divorce was much less exciting than most thought. He hadn’t been caught cheating with a stripper, he hadn’t beaten his wife, and he hadn’t raised horribly warped children. He was humanized to a lot of people when they accepted that he had grown apart from his spouse in the same way that a lot of decent people do when life happens. He has never been caught doing any of those horrible things, by the way.
One of the insights into Stern’s personality lies in his incredible loyalty to his friends and coworkers. Robin Quivers, his co-host and newswoman, and Gary Dell’Abate, his producer, have been with him for several decades. I’ve wanted, for years, to read the biographies that each one of them wrote. I recently got an Amazon gift card, so I decided it was the right time to finally pick up these books. Written in 1995 and 2010, both books are dated in some areas. Even so, both are interesting accounts of their crazy childhoods, how they came up in the radio business, and how they developed their relationships with Howard.
I’ll post my thoughts about their biographies in the next few days.