Radio Want-Ad Shows Plug Listeners Into Bygone Era

by Jeannie Nuss, The Associated Press  on Wednesday, Sep. 4, 2013 7:24 am  

"Hey, let me give you a phone number," he said. "I had a lady calling looking for some tomatoes and squash and some other things as well."

Deal said she never heard from the other caller, but that doesn't take away from her experience. The combination of things people are trying to acquire or get rid of is intriguing on its own.

On a recent show, in less than two minutes, callers hocked tomatoes, cantaloupes, watermelons, chickens, baby ducks, rabbits, a clarinet, a 9 mm pistol and an offer to haul trash and hay. The clarinet, gun and offer for trash and hay-hauling came on the same call.

After listening for a few minutes, visitors to this part of the world learn that people here know how to farm and shoot guns. They figure out that manners still matter here as callers and hosts thank each other. And they hear the importance of religion in everyday life as callers wish folks a blessed day.

"Everybody thinks that it's just people out there selling product," said Vance Harrison, president of the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters. "But I think it's also more of a barometer of what's going on."

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