There are hidden treasures in the world, and I am convinced that I discovered a special one — NPR’s Saturday morning show “Car Talk” with Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers.
The iconic, award-winning, and purely funny radio program has been hosted by Tom and Ray, the Magliozzi brothers, or more commonly known as the Tappet Brothers, since the late 1970s. The radio show began as a feature program where mechanics from Boston talked about car repair. It began as a simple filler hour on radio, but once Tom Magliozzi was heard on air and his contagious laughter reached the listeners, it became much more than a car talk show. Tom Magliozzi was invited to return to the radio microphone soon after, and the second time included his brother Ray. And the rest, as they say, is history,
Eventually the brothers were given their own hour on air, and soon they had the public’s attention, rising as the third most popular hour on radio. This caught the eye of National Public Radio, and their traditional hour segment on Saturday mornings soon became an American tradition. Since then, “Car Talk” and the Magliozzi brothers have only grown in popularity.
As for me, I enjoy “Car Talk”, but I love Click and Clack! The past five years of Saturdays have been spent attempting to isolate two hours of radio enjoyment for myself; an hour for “Car Talk” and an hour for “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” the NPR news quiz.
Last week brought sad news for me and many other “Car Talk” lovers — Tom Magliozzi died on November 3rd due to complications of Alzheimer’s disease. His brother, Ray, got on the air solo, something I have never heard before. The show was completely dedicated to the memory of deceased half of the Click and Clack” team. The show is available on the “Car Talk” website.
I truly believe that “Car Talk” has made my life, and the lives of many other listeners, better because “Car Talk” brought laughter. Some might think that an hour spent listening to two men attempting to assist call-in listeners resolve their car troubles and giving the radio audience access to their -at-times-twisted wisdom is a waste of time.
Believe me, every hour spent listening to “Car Talk” and Click and Clack brightened my life. The brothers simply relished life, and made their listeners do the same. The laughter shared through that hour of radio easily brightened my entire day. Tom’s laugh was so contagious, and I think that is the thing I will miss the most every Saturday morning.
Click and Clack ended every radio segment with, “Well, you’ve wasted another perfectly good hour listening to ‘Car Talk’.” I am sure all listeners chuckled at this every week, and smiled, but I doubt any of them agreed with the statement. I know it wasn’t a waste for me. Waste implies nothing gained out of the experience. I gained lots of laughter, some wacky wisdom, and an appreciation of life through “Car Talk.” Well done, Tom. Thanks for every minute on “Car Talk.”