I tune into Newstalk 106-108 expecting to hear one of the biggest voices in Irish media.
George Hook, I am your fan. You have magnificent presence, excellent good manners and an intelligent turn of mind whenever you are running your radio programme.
Instead of George, I find another enormous voice, Kevin Myers. Kevin is a writer with a huge personality. A fine prose warrior, a powerful broadcaster (meaning one-way expresser of opinion), a slayer of holy cows whenever he is read.
As a radio host I find him hesitant, limp and awkward. It’s the first time I’ve heard him run a radio programme. I expect he’ll grow in confidence and fluency, but for me Kevin serves to highlight how superb George is.
Who should pop up with a comment texted in to the show but J L Pagano. J L P wondered whether he was suffering with concussion, as if he’d woken in a dream… It was good to hear JLP’s name, and disappointing to hear Kevin respond by wondering whether "Pagano" was Italian for rustic.
Up until the surprising discovery that George had been substituted, I’d been finding it hard to understand how I’d ever been able to have a flow of opinions and give expression to them. Suddenly I had an opinion about Kevin and a flow of confidence to support it. The day got better.
And I’m left wondering what others thought of Kevin Myers instead of George Hook?