There's something Fuzzy in the Icebox
There’s something fuzzy in the Icebox.
How’s that for an opening line? Usually, that line would be greeted with stunned silence, mostly for the ramifications of combining the words ‘fuzzy’ and ‘icebox’ in any sentence that does not deal with wild, un-shaved iceboxes roaming free on the plains of some distant planet. We’ve all been to fuzzy iceboxland, in college apartments, at the end of long weekends, or returning from vacation to find the fridge door just barely ajar (Yikes!). But in that grand tradition of American advertising, I am attempting to snatch hold of this otherwise groady image and transform it into something attractive, or at least interesting.
“There’s something fuzzy in the Icebox” is kind of the unofficial promotional slogan around the Icebox Radio Theater as we prepare our new website and gear up our first-ever membership campaign. The line was first uttered last spring when a few of us on the Icebox Board (yes, there is such a thing – we are a non-profit, after all) formed a membership committee to study the possibility of including a few more people in this little enterprise called radio drama. We asked, ‘What would entice someone to join a radio theater? Fanish-love? The need to create? Hatred and/or jealousy toward another radio theater? We kicked around a lot of ideas while burning through a few bags of pretzels and avoiding more important things, like work. But we could not come up with a clear idea. Then it hit us.
This is a community. That’s what the internet does, right? It allows people who live thousands of miles apart to get together every day (if they like) and slay monsters or share gossip or argue Kirk/Picard, Mac/PC, Freud/Jung – whatever! The internet allows us to connect. When the membership community came up with the idea of building an online community around the IBRT, I was filled with the warm fuzzys. After all, community was what the IBRT was all about back in 2004 when we first went before the microphones. The original idea was, “Hey! It’s cold outside! Maybe people would love to attend a community event, like a play written for them about their lives, from the comfort of their own living rooms?” Sure, nobody has sat down and listened to the radio like that in sixty years, but this is the digital age! All bets are off! Everything is new again. Muddy Waters and Spike Jones are right there on the virtual shelf next to Beyonce and Taylor Swift. We can do whatever we want, so long as we get a few people (a few very INTELLIGENT people) to tag along.
So, here we are. We have a spiffy new website, we have a membership system modeled after NPR’s (premiums at every membership level) and we aim to build a community that folks will think of as a second home. It will be a place called Icebox where Yens and Dougie are permanent fixtures at the Busy Bee Café, the Scoop Sisters are always there to unravel life’s mysteries, and if things get too out of hand, Dome Dog will drop from the sky and make everything right. And things WILL get out of hand for there are shadows and darkness in this land, and that chill you feel up your spine might not be because of the cold.
There’s something fuzzy in the Icebox; WARM and fuzzy, that is. The kettle’s hot. The fire’s roaring. No one’s sitting in that chair by the radio, except of course the cat perched on the arm as if waiting for you. That spot’s all yours. Let’s get comfortable. The show starts soon.