It’s been ten years. An entire decade. More than a third of my life, if you are gullible enough to believe my lies about my age. In reality, it is almost a quarter. That is a terrifying thought. A quarter of my existence has been spent waking up at horror o’clock in the morning to go talk shit about Lindsay Lohan and her ilk. I’ve loved every minute I’ve spent with Jo Stanley, Matt Tilley and Troy Ellis. The on-air part of working on the show has been magnificent. Insane belly laughs. Jo once described it as a daily chuckle club. So therapeutic. Given how much work we always put in to the show, the laughter, rather than salary, seemed like the real payment. There were tears, there was anger, there was frustration, there were interminable meetings that were so boring that they could have hypnotised chickens into crumbing and frying themselves, but inside the bubble of the studio, there was nothing but laughter.
It was a bubble. There was an insane kind of safety in knowing we were in a sound-proof room. While the songs played, or the commercials, or the traffic, or an interview that had been recorded days before, we would talk in a way that could never be broadcast, and certainly should never be overheard. Like a confessional of sorts, the safety of the sound-proof bubble provided us with an insulation against the entire world outside, even though we could see it through the glass walls. There was an unspoken agreement that what happened in that studio, stayed in that studio. To be honest, though, given our insane predilection for incomprehensible in-jokes, a lot of it is best left in there.
I’ll miss them, those hilarious fuckers. It’s not like any of us are dying, just the show. I’ll see them all again, and I might even see them at shit o’clock in the morning again. Just not every day of every week. Never again on the last evening of a long summer holiday will I receive a baroque text from Tilley detailing the number of days until the next holiday. Never again will I head off to another morning back at the giggly grind.
I had decided to make this my last year, before even consulting the rest of the team. It was with alarming synergy that a decision had been reached to bring the show to an end just as I had made up my mind to walk away. It won’t be so hard now, with all of us saying goodbye on the same day. I feel so conflicted about saying goodbye to breakfast. I don’t want to be excited about it, because I have loved it so much, but I keep thinking about being able to do more standup, more often, I think about never having to set that 4am alarm again, I think about having time to write, being able to go out for dinner -- look, I won’t bore you with the million and one things you all take for granted that we in brekky radio are denied or are incapable of; we are handsomely remunerated to make up for the massive pain in the arse that it is.
In spite of my sadness at saying a professional farewell to my friends, I feel like I am saying hello to an exciting new life. Whatever comes next, I will cherish the decade of dawns I spent in the company of Matt, Jo and Troy. They have been like family. No matter what happened, there they were, in the soundproof bubble, with love, and laughter, for ten years. Which is more than anybody has a right to ask for before the sun comes up.