(UPDATE: I’ve crossposted this to my Examiner.com site, so you can add your comments — and boost my revenue, since I get paid by the click over there…)
My husband’s alarm clock is set to RADIO, not BUZZER. On weekends, you knew it was time to finally shift yourself at the sound of Paul Harvey’s voice.
Listening and watching this classic “The Rest of the Story” over at Kate’s, it hits you: nobody writes like that anymore.
No one would dare. There’s no smuggness, no irony, no sarcasm. Just old fashioned storytelling magic, with its thrilling sleight of hand.
But today, goosebumps aren’t “cool”. Neither is patriotism or peans to hard work and dedication, and, in so many of his segments, anonymity.
Notice that most famous Paul Harvey device: not revealing the identity of the hero until the very end. Yes, it is a clever contrivance to hook you and keep you from changing the channel.
But it is something more. Whether he realized it or not, Harvey was teaching millions of listeners a valuable lesson, about doing the right thing whether you receive any recognition for it or not. Paul Harvey’s secret was… The Secret.
Sure, Harvey reveals the hero’s often surprising identity at the very end, but for the first three minutes, that hero could be anybody.
Maybe even you.