The Kids Are All Right

Kids! What's the matter with kids today? Well, some kids in the little town of El Dorado Springs, down in the depths of southwest Missouri, turned out to be all right. I asked a friend of mine, Eric, an art teacher in that town, if his students would want to draw and design a new logo for our happy little radio station, KZSU.

Well, a couple of months later I got this big-ass box in the mail from him which turned out to be the pictures. I figured that there would be maybe 50 or 60 drawings from these kids, not knowing how many students Eric actually had. So I opened the box, and found 475 different drawings from kids aged 5-10 years old. What a fucking blast!

All I had told Eric was that the pictures had to have 90.1 FM KZSU somewhere on them, and the kids could draw whatever they wanted. I didn't expect such a huge response! They drew shit like I've never seen before: a two-headed cow with a boombox on its back; pirate ships; striped kitty cats; a drawing of KZSU right next to the First Church of God (talk about blasphemy; and some really bizarre drawing of a martian-like character standing on top of the KZSU building with some sort of flying fish around him, the planet Saturn hovering above him, and baby Saturn over to the side, all of which really had nothing to do with the radio station, except for the 90.1 FM plastered somewhere on them. Way to go!

If this wasn't enough, I finally went through and narrowed them down to the best 75 and hung them on a wall in the station. They were a big hit with the KZSU staff-- unlike many of the walls in our station the pictures remain undisturbed. I think everyone thinks they're so cool that no one would dare mess with them.

I wound up back in Missouri for the holidays and had the chance to visit Eric's school one day. He first informed me that he had asked the principal if it was okay for me to spend the day at school with him, and she had replied in a serious tone "Yes, it's okay, just as long as he doesn't have long hair or wear an earring". Two strikes already, and I wasn't even there yet!

We finally got to the school and of course I stood out like a red fucking thumb. So what? We met the assistant principal who was pretty cool and kinda joked about my hair and earring. We stayed away from the principal. All these little kids were asking me questions about KZSU and California, and one little girl asked Eric "Why does he have a devil pin on his jacket?"

[omitted: Detailed description of Coles sacrificing goat for little girl's educational benefit, and ensuing court trial with her parents. -ed.]

Where was I? Oh yeah, so anyway these kids were whispering, giggling, and talking about the big California radio station (yeah, right). Anyway, I brought some stickers from the station for them, answered their silly questions

Justin Dog

which really weren't that silly at all, and generally had a pretty good time. They wouldn't stop bugging me about when they would find out who won the contest. By the way, did I mention that this was a contest? Well, it was. They apparently bugged the shit out of my friend every day to find out who won, so I knew we had to pick a winner soon.

Back at KZSU, our usual Monday night staff meeting rolled around and I told everyone that we needed to pick the winners of this contest so that Eric could get a little relief from those kids. Several people helped choose the five best, one from each grade, and ten runners up. Some were pretty much unanimous; others took some decision making, but we finally picked some winners. I think the one that stands out as a possible new slogan for the station is "KZSU- Smile Don't Spit." Kind of brings a tear to the eye. There are some others that are so crazy that they beg to be mentioned: "KZSU It's so good it wakes the dead," "KZSU If you think I'm cute you should see my mom," "KZSU Having a bad day, trun on the rdio to KZSU. An avrg prison listens to KZSU 3,000,000 hours" (actual spelling), and one that was found later in a different pile: "KZSU Got the spinit for them". What the hell does that mean? It's still cool.

Anyway, winners were picked, and we sent them some T-shirts, crappy CDs, and a thank you card. I announced their names on the air and sent them a copy of the show. My friend Eric is going to hand out the prizes at an assembly and play the tape for them. And the kids will have done something, as they would say, "Rad and cool." We totally agree.

P.S. If you think I'm making this up, come down to the station and see for yourself. It's worth the trip.


The World Wide Web version of this guide allows you to click on any of the drawings done by the kids to get a slightly larger and better bit depth version of the same image.

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