Retirement Musings

By Clint McElroy

Clint McElroy

I have an easy-peasy way to tell if someone is retired or not. If someone asks you, “How’s retirement?” they are not retired. If they were retired, they wouldn’t ask. They would know ...

It’s pretty cool.

Since recently retiring from my career as morning radio disc jockey, I get to sleep in past 4 a.m. I can have ESPN on the TV all morning long. I don’t have to wear pants.

Of course there are caveats: I still wake up at 5 a.m. You see, Mrs. McElroy has not retired yet, and still has to rise at an ungodly hour. She has vowed she will make all the noise she possibly can, yell at the dogs and generally fume and curse as crudely as possible as she prepares to head to her job ... for 12 more months.

Yes, I can have the TV on all morning long. But since I am “sleeping in,” I am also staying up later, so I am able to watch all the sports I want, no matter how late the ballgame runs. No more ducking out of Monday Night Football at halftime for this sleepy little buckaroo.

So, I don’t need to turn ESPN on in the morning. I don’t need highlights. I watched the actual game. The only other thing they have in the morning is the tally of what every player did during the National Anthem and I don’t care diddly about that.

My last day on the air at iHeartRadio was remarkable. My family of friends at WTCR, WBVB, WKEE and WVHU gave me a great send-off.  Over the course of the morning show, Cledus T. Judd and my amazing bestie Judy Eaton wrangled a procession of terrific people through the studio to say goodbye, drop off gifts or just hang out. Mayors, congressmen, restaurateurs, Star Trek geeks, softball players, actors, students, repo men, exterminators, singers, renegades, rebels and rogues. Mrs. McElroy was there. I got calls from all over as well. My son Travis called from Cincinnati and my son Griffin called from Austin. Firstborn Justin came and brought daughter-in-law Sydnee and granddaughter Charlie Gail.

There were voice messages, Twitter tweets and, man oh man, Facebook exploded! So many people posted wonderful things. I am still wading through them.

All of it means more to me than you know.

Being on the radio is just like conversations in real life. It is gratifying to find out that someone really listened. And apparently, you did. I thank you.

I love radio. It was and will continue to be a friend keeping me company, a comforter making me feel better, and a provocateur when I need my butt kicked into action. And it doesn’t matter if it comes to you out of your car dashboard or a transistor hidden under your pillow; it doesn’t matter if it comes via a satellite or downloaded in podcasting chunks on your computer. Radio is connection.

So why did I leave this medium that means so much to me?  Simple answer: I haven’t. I have been blessed with the opportunity to work with my kids, expanding on the podcasts “My Brother, My Brother, and Me” and “The Adventure Zone” with more episodes, live shows, graphic novels and other surprises that you will be hearing about very shortly.

I’m going to be traveling, writing and performing. I am also going to be continuing to hang out with you here on the back page of HQ.

I am going to still be hanging out here on the back page of HQ, aren’t I Mr. Houvouras????

You are still going to be able to see me on stages throughout the Tri-State and haunting the halls at Marshall University.

As a matter of fact, if you ask me, “How’s retirement?” I would probably say, “Not that much has changed.”

But I am taking a pretty firm stand on the whole no pants in the morning thing.

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