Russell James' Blog

I must say, I feel terrible for neglecting the blog for the past few months. I shall be aiming to blog somewhat more over the coming few months as I find myself having more inspiration as, no doubt, more things infuriate me.
Last week, I ventured off to my favourite place in the world for Warren’s birthday. Ever since I was a wee lad, London has been the place I adored, and aspire to live and work in. I just adore it there. Even if I am just lying in my hotel room watching telly, the fact I know that I can get out of the hotel, hop on a random train and be taken to the centre of the most amazing city, just fills me with joy.
But no matter what happens, the most horrible part of every holiday is the return home. But for some reason, this return home was beyond horrible. Why? Because I had to return to Ireland in mid-2010 where the idea of social-standards, social-justice, logic, decency, and manners seem to be void from everyday life.
Today I made my first journey into Dublin City since my brief trip to London and I hated everything I seen. As I walked onto my train this morning, this, ahem, woman who looked as if she was “a little under the influence” of something or other, walked RIGHT into me as if I didn’t exist. Then as soon as I got into town, it was a return to junkie city. Everywhere I looked, all I could see is junkies walking the streets, and if it isn’t junkies, it’s people who will more than likely beat the living shite out of you. And that is not me being snobby, speak to so many people in the city, and the majority will feel the same. Something I hate to do is generalize, which i hope I am not doing, but it is very annoying to be feeling so unsafe in your home city.
I don’t think there is much need to dwell on what we know already, and me to tell more tales. Social-standards and social-justice is out the window in this country, especially in this city. The people don’t own the streets anymore, they are the possession of the people who don’t work 9-5, who pay taxes, and who quite frankly are suffering the most in this time of economic (and, in my view, political) instability. I don’t know what happened, but for some reason, we just let people walk all over us, and now all of a sudden, Dublin is their city. Imagine walking through Times Sqaure or Oxford Circus and seeing the sights we see on O’Connell Street? Horrible, just horrible.
Then we’ll move onto politics. I have tweeted in the last few days on the issues regarding Brian Cowan’s apparent drunk interview, amongst other alcohol and political related matters. My crazy theory on this all is, in my view, if I was in the midst of a crisis, when many people depended on the work which I do, i would cut my social life If I have work the next day, I tend to avoid going out. So how come, politicians who have such a massive task at the moment trying to sort this country out, can find the time to have a few drinks so frequently. I was in the Dail bar one time, and I was amazed to see how many members of the leading party were in the bar, compared to oppositions. How can anyone, voters or colleagues, of these people actually feel confident that they are honestly trying to find something to improve this mess of a country. Would David Cameron be doing this? I doubt it- and if he did, would it be as public, and to a bigger degree, would it be talked about as if it was something in the way of his leadership.
I am quite tired now, not just of the way things are in Ireland, but physically. I want to talk more along the lines of particular things, but there isn’t enough hours in the day to do that. I also don’t want to seem like someone against Ireland. I do like this country, but I don’t like what it is becoming, nor do I like how its being run into the ground by particular people. The same party in power at the moment over-seen the biggest growth in Irish history, and obviously must be commended, but at this moment, they are not doing the country any justice. I don’t intend on being offensive against anyone, nor generalise anyone, just to reiterate.
And that ladies and gentlemen, is my two cents.

I must say, I feel terrible for neglecting the blog for the past few months. I shall be aiming to blog somewhat more over the coming few months as I find myself having more inspiration as, no doubt, more things infuriate me.
Last week, I ventured off to my favourite place in the world for Warren’s birthday. Ever since I was a wee lad, London has been the place I adored, and aspire to live and work in. I just adore it there. Even if I am just lying in my hotel room watching telly, the fact I know that I can get out of the hotel, hop on a random train and be taken to the centre of the most amazing city, just fills me with joy.
But no matter what happens, the most horrible part of every holiday is the return home. But for some reason, this return home was beyond horrible. Why? Because I had to return to Ireland in mid-2010 where the idea of social-standards, social-justice, logic, decency, and manners seem to be void from everyday life.
Today I made my first journey into Dublin City since my brief trip to London and I hated everything I seen. As I walked onto my train this morning, this, ahem, woman who looked as if she was “a little under the influence” of something or other, walked RIGHT into me as if I didn’t exist. Then as soon as I got into town, it was a return to junkie city. Everywhere I looked, all I could see is junkies walking the streets, and if it isn’t junkies, it’s people who will more than likely beat the living shite out of you. And that is not me being snobby, speak to so many people in the city, and the majority will feel the same. Something I hate to do is generalize, which i hope I am not doing, but it is very annoying to be feeling so unsafe in your home city.
I don’t think there is much need to dwell on what we know already, and me to tell more tales. Social-standards and social-justice is out the window in this country, especially in this city. The people don’t own the streets anymore, they are the possession of the people who don’t work 9-5, who pay taxes, and who quite frankly are suffering the most in this time of economic (and, in my view, political) instability. I don’t know what happened, but for some reason, we just let people walk all over us, and now all of a sudden, Dublin is their city. Imagine walking through Times Sqaure or Oxford Circus and seeing the sights we see on O’Connell Street? Horrible, just horrible.
Then we’ll move onto politics. I have tweeted in the last few days on the issues regarding Brian Cowan’s apparent drunk interview, amongst other alcohol and political related matters. My crazy theory on this all is, in my view, if I was in the midst of a crisis, when many people depended on the work which I do, i would cut my social life If I have work the next day, I tend to avoid going out. So how come, politicians who have such a massive task at the moment trying to sort this country out, can find the time to have a few drinks so frequently. I was in the Dail bar one time, and I was amazed to see how many members of the leading party were in the bar, compared to oppositions. How can anyone, voters or colleagues, of these people actually feel confident that they are honestly trying to find something to improve this mess of a country. Would David Cameron be doing this? I doubt it- and if he did, would it be as public, and to a bigger degree, would it be talked about as if it was something in the way of his leadership.
I am quite tired now, not just of the way things are in Ireland, but physically. I want to talk more along the lines of particular things, but there isn’t enough hours in the day to do that. I also don’t want to seem like someone against Ireland. I do like this country, but I don’t like what it is becoming, nor do I like how its being run into the ground by particular people. The same party in power at the moment over-seen the biggest growth in Irish history, and obviously must be commended, but at this moment, they are not doing the country any justice. I don’t intend on being offensive against anyone, nor generalise anyone, just to reiterate.
And that ladies and gentlemen, is my two cents.

In February 2010, I got a Tweet from a fantastic broadcaster, one Mr. Brian McColl, who helps me so much advance myself and so many others in their radio career. The tweet informed me that Ireland’s first radio station targeted for the LGBT Community was seeking volunteers for its initial 10 day run in June, during the Pride Festival. I couldn’t turn down this opportunity.

Think about it; a radio station where the presenters could be open about who they are, what they are, and the life they lead. Not only that, a station where listeners from both the straight and gay communities can unite under one rainbow coloured umbrella. A station where listeners could talk about their love life openly, and not feel embarrassed or censored because they just happen to be in love with another human being who happens to be of the same gender as them.

How fantastic is it to think that in Ireland in 2010 this can happen. When I was born in 1991, it was illegal to be what I am. 2 years later, this changed.  Ireland is no haven for homosexuals, by any stretch of the imagination. But to think that today, homosexuals can broadcast in a comfy position beside the two RTE stations, was something that was unimaginable back in 1993.

On the 21st April, on the same day which I won my Student Media Award, I got news that I would be part of the

Dan, Maria, Myself, Damien

Breakfast show team on Open FM. I was in shock! Before I won this award, my Programme Director had the confidence in me that I could do a Breakfast radio show! Teamed up with me was another three radio people like myself. Damien, Dan and Maria. Instantly, just by talking to them, I knew this project was going to be exciting. We had a similar vision, but were so diverse in what we knew and loved about radio, it was to create a great mix of these. The show’s ideas went in so many different directions- at times it was sounding very magaziney, other times very music based, and other times very talk orientated. Eventually, we found a perfect blend of what we wanted, and more importantly, what the station wanted.

Following three weeks of meeting on an almost daily basis, our show finally went on air on Monday 14th June. Instantly it was a hit with the rest of the station, and with the listeners. We hit the nail on the head in terms of a decent show. By the end of the first week, our opening links started bordering 10 minutes, something that is unheard of on most radio stations in Ireland. What is even better, they weren’t 10 minutes of drivel, they were entertaining and interesting and easy to follow! We had guests in every week, who made the show more exciting. We developed our own weird ways of doing things, and our own mannerisms on air. We loved them and more importantly the listeners loved them.

Within the first week, I knew the show was achieving what we set out to do. We got a winner of one of the prizes on the line one day. She wasn’t feeling the best, but when we asked her about her activities for the rest of the day, she responded “I’m just going to stay at home being looked after by my girlfriend”. I never heard someone who is a lady talk openly about her “girlfriend” before without it being corrected as “partner”. I knew right there and then, that we were on the right track. We aimed for openness, and we got it.

But now, on the 14th July 2010, it all comes to an end. This baby which I have raised along with its other surrogate parents, Damien, Dan, Maria Warren and Liam, is finally leaving home, but only to possibly never return again. I wouldn’t mind if I felt that The Breakfast Booster was a show which could only be done on Open FM. However, i feel it could be easily brought onto any radio station, with a few little changes here and there. My team and I broadcast to the same potential audience as all the Dublin stations did. We may not of gotten half as many listeners but we still could reach them if they wanted to tune in. We had a challenge set to us, and we met it, and won it. The heartbreaking thing about finishing up on this show is just this. The Breakfast Booster has so much potential still, but I can only pray that someone will see this potential and give it a chance to live another day.

At some of the intermediate meetings, our station manager, Sam, would often ask us to introduce ourselves with our names, our position in the station, and give one line of what we have learned so far, or sometimes, what have we achieved so far, or what have we gained so far. So far is now turned to the entire process. What have I gained from this entire process, I ask myself?

Live from Dublin Pride 2010

Firstly, in professional terms, I have gained the most valuable commodity to anyone who wants to make it in the radio industry- experience. Each week I broadcast for 10 hours, and worked hard on the show for almost 35 hours a week. i lived my dream. All I want to do is be on radio. My dream job is to be the Radio 1 Breakfast Show host in the UK. This came so close to it, because in essence, I am on a radio station broadcasting. Just like Chris Moyles, Chris Evans, Colm & Jim Jim, Morning Ireland, The Strawberry Alarm Clock, I was in front of a microphone, attempting to entertain, inform and enlighten people. I also became the first voice to broadcast on a moving live outside broadcast in Ireland. How amazing is that!

The other major thing I gained from it was friendships. I met my boyfriend, Warren, at Open FM. The boy has changed

Some of the crew on Pride Day

my life so far, in such a little amount of time. He had made me beyond happy, has made every single day a joy to be on planet earth, and has been just a total rock to me, in good times and bad. I also made great friends. Maria, Damien and Dan have been my family for so many weeks. We have had so many good memories compressed into a short amount of time, and I hope we will be friends for a long time to come. Then there is the countless others whom there is far too many to mention who have made my day as each hour passed.

Open FM. You have been fantastic. Thank you for giving me one of the best months of my life, if not the best. I lived my dream, and have become hungry for more. Love you all xx

Photo credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

Reading is not an activity I do very often. In fact, I can possibly count the books which I have read in the past few years on all the digits on my body (that is less than 20 in case you are wondering). I tend to read books which appeal to my interests directly; ones which tick all the boxes which will stimulate my mind. These boxes to be ticked can include: radio, radio, radio, radio,comedy, radio, satire, radio, and sometimes television. This had meant the Ross O’Carroll-Kelly books have been my Twilight over the past number of years due to this lack of interest in literature. Why? It rips the piss out of the south side of the city, and as a northsider who secretly would rather live in another part of the city (as I am deeply unhappy with where I live), this makes me laugh. The fact is I know many people from over the years who could be casted as cameos rather than actors if they were ever to create a television version of the series. Read the rest of this entry »

Last night as I was tweeting on my iPhone something to @skynews, it decided to auto-correct the spelling, as it does, and ended up look like I typed @slyness. After all that has happened over the past week or so with the UK election taking place, I couldn’t help but laugh. Sky News is the first choice that myself, and millions of other people think of as their first choice. For example, “Michael Jackson has died”, says Twitter. That instantly means, “QUICK! TURN ON SKY NEWS!”. This is the effect it has had on so many people’s lives. However, we mustn’t forget who owns Sky News; one Rupert Murdoch. The one Rupert Murdoch who also owns Fox News. Read the rest of this entry »

Six months ago, a massive change in my little old life took place. I made the huge transition away from the dull, mundane and troublesome world of secondary school. It wasn’t as smooth a change which I had always wanted. The day of my Leaving Cert results was Wednesday 12th August 2009. I look this as an omen. A majority of good things in my life have happened on the 12th of a month; I was born on the 12th April, I was due to be born on the 12th May, I started working in M&S on the 12th June, and when I was younger I met Dick and Dom (off of the bungalow in the early noughties!) on the 12th March. So this to me meant that the 12th August was going to be a good day. However, with my expectations set so high, I couldn’t of helped but feel upset, nay, devastated when I opened the envelope and seen a majority of C2 grades. It was like trying to count a fistful of one cent coins in the hope you have a Euro, but you know in your heart you don’t. Read the rest of this entry »

My Store Manager insisted he got this photo printed and put on display!

This has been nothing but a surreal week in my world.  It started off as normal really, with the usual mix of lectures, and not attending them, and dossing around college having a damn good time. The highlight would of had to be Wednesday night though, for numerous reasons.

The National Student Media Awards were held at the Mansion House on Wednesday evening, and as you may or may not of known, I was nominated for “Radio DJ of the Year”, which was a total thrill and honour for me to get! The feeling of being shortlisted was nothing but amazing; I seen it as one of the best seven student radio folk in this country. A few weeks later, the list of nominee’s were released, which put me then as one of the best five DJ’s in the country. Even better! Being nominated then lead onto to the fact I had to attend the award ceremony which as a total lover of getting all dolled up and having a night out in town, was a total bonus! I adore anything like that; mainly because it beats the idea of going to a local pub and drinking yourself to death, then wolfing down the traditional chipper or Chinese on the way home, depending on the mood of the evening. Read the rest of this entry »

“And now on BBC One, live and uninterrupted David Dimbleby is unable to present the overnight coverage of the election results, so in his place here is Gok Wan”

No boys and girls, that doesn’t mean my pass of 63% in LG116 Introduction To Politics has managed to allow me present the most comprehensive coverage of the British General Election that has been seen in the history of broadcasting…or at least I live and hope it will be to that effect! It doesn’t mean that anything has happened to the great political broadcasters that the BBC has created and shaped, including the aforementioned Dimbleby, Nick Robinson, Jeremy Vine and Andrew Marr, just to name a few. But I cannot help but find this election is going down the lines of appealing to popular culture, in order to attract more votes. Whether I approve of it or not though is another matter.

Read the rest of this entry »

Russell James

Top Clicks

  • None
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.