Saluki Marooned by Robert P. Rickman

He is the only living person who is a character in the novel…and what a character!


It was his hobby, and his profession.  He ate, slept, and breathed...RADIO!  And he didn't let school get in the way of his education.

 

The Jet Saluki Marooned
This is Roger Ramjet from the 1960's cartoon series.

 

He bore a resemblance to this fellow, and he borrowed his name.

 

 

 

 

He was the student station manager of WSIU, a disc jockey at  student station WIDB and built his own radio station in his living room:  WRRP,  stands for Roger Ramjet Productions.

WRRP Salukii Marooned.
"Gutbombing it"... "Conversations"... "Bloopers" (before they became popular) and other programs were sent on tape to broadcasters and students all over the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Jet  in the 21st century Saluki Marooned
Roger Davis aka Roger Ramjet as he is today.

This is what the Jet looks like now.  And believe it or not, he is a college professor.

And so the story might end here.

Except.......

The Southern Illinois University  Radio and TV Department was one of the best in the country in 1971.  And people like Roger flocked to SIU from all over the nation.

In celebrating those times, the author of Saluki Marooned built a character based on SIU's Roger Ramjet and named him RONALD Ramjet.

Lentz  Saluki Marooned
"... I became aware of music trailing from the ceiling..."

In Chapter 4, 58-year-old Peter Federson, the main character in Saluki Marooned, is in Lentz Cafeteria, trapped in his 20-year-old body experiencing college life all...over...again...

" As I was about to take a timid bite out of my sandwich, I became aware of music trailing from the ceiling..."  (Start player-The jock is Professor Ramjet/Davis)

 

 

“WIDB Carbondale…is…together!”

“Ronald Ramjet on together Six, WIDB. Sunny today, high of 80.  Cool tonight, low of 50.  Right now, 78 degrees.  Now, from out of the past, 1970, Mungo Jerry, ‘In the Summer Time’!”

Ramjet had timed his wrap perfectly over the beginning of the song until the vocal began.  'In the Summer Time' was my favorite tune for decades, before the song wore grooves into my mind and I could no longer stand to listen to it.  But at this moment, 'In the Summer Time' sounded…brand new, as if I had never heard it before.  My BLT forgotten, I was aware of nothing around me but the music.

Marta in Saluki Marooned
"Groovin' to the music Peter?"

Until I spotted Marta dancing to the beat at the salad bar.  She swayed as she plucked mushrooms from the huge bowl and dropped them on her plate.  Then, her love beads bouncing, she danced toward my table as Mungo Jerry sang about how you can reach right up and touch the sky, in the summer time.  She sat down across from me with a lazy smile.

'Groovin’ to the music, Peter?'  The scent of saffron incense that clung to her dress made it nice to live once again in 1971…for a moment.'"

“Oh God, yes! This is….great!”  Everyone else in the cafeteria seemed to be grooving, too.  Some choreographer had the students eating their food, drinking their coffee, and smoking their cigarettes in time with the music, and a costume designer had made sure that everyone wore huge collars, super-wide lapels, the paisley-ist paisley, the highest unisex heels, and the shortest dresses.

Marta, meanwhile, ran over to another table, picked up some books and a bag, and brought them back.  She sat down, pulled out a pair of oversized granny glasses from the blue velvet bag—on which JOHNNIE WALKER was stitched in yellow thread—and picked up a mushroom from her plate.  When the song ended, I noticed Marta wasn’t eating the mushroom, but was scrutinizing it with one eye closed, like a jeweler examining a fine diamond. Click here to read all of Chapter Four.

In real life, back in 1972, ROGER (Ramjet) Davis was working on WIDB during a spring day and...something...went...wrong... 

Wright Hall, WIDB, Saluki Marooned
No, not that bad...but close. CLICK.

 

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