Looking Back

A few days ago I saw on my little Facebook memories thing that it had been a year since I left Open Mike with Mike Bianchi and went on a bit of a soul-searching mission.

It’s been a very interesting year for various reason and in a moment of nostalgic reflection I decided to write about it on here because I’ve always prided myself with welcoming you all into my life and being as real as possible with you.  I’ll try not to make this too sentimental, but you guys know me by now.

When I left Open Mike I’ll be honest, I was terrified that I had just thrown away everything that I had worked so hard to accomplish.  I had been co-hosting a morning drive radio show with an award-winning sports journalist in a top-40 market within my first few years in the radio industry…and then I walked away.

I went back to bartending.

Initially it was part-time bartending and part time producing brokered programming.  Eventually it was full-time bartending and a few hours here and there in radio.  This was nobodies fault but mine, but I was heading in the exact opposite direction of where I wanted to be heading.

I had bartended and waited tables before, during, in between and after college.  Don’t get me wrong, career servers work just as hard if not harder than most people to make a living.  I just knew it wasn’t the career path that I personally wanted to be in…and I had returned to it once again.

It was time for a change.

I wasn’t completely sure what I could do to finally get back on track, but thanks to all of you and your continued support I knew that I was meant to do this and had to find a way back.

Obviously you all know that I attempted to keep up regular podcasts, which ended up being very sporadic because of my topsy-turvy work schedule.  I did however continue to converse with you via social media and even in  person (like in the picture above) and that kept me going.

Over the course of the year post-Open Mike, I really did accomplish a lot on a personal level.  I literally turned my life upside down, shook it up and then started over.  I was on my own, working two jobs and trying to stay as relevant as possible on a daily basis.

Thanks to my incredible former boss and former co-workers, I was able to stay at least slightly relevant.

Getting the opportunity to fill in for the legend Mark Daniels on what seemed to be a regular basis was an enormous honor.  So was being invited to sit in with Mike Bianchi, the guy I kind of walked out on, when Doc or Steadman were out for various reasons.

To get the opportunity to continue to broadcast to the city I grew to love so much was a dream come true.

Twitter clowns and trolls may mock me on a regular basis for being “just a radio guy,” but they’ll never realize how much of an honor that is to me.  I love this career.  I love sharing my opinion and having conversations with the amazing listeners that I have had the privilege of gaining and getting to know.

I look forward to the opportunity to get to grow in my new/old hometown of Greenville and get to know and cherish the listeners here too, but without the Orlando sports talk listeners, and of course my amazing family and friends,  I’m not sure I would have ever gotten to this point in my life.

The last year of my life was easily the most difficult year I’ve ever had to find my way through, but boy am I glad I did it. I will always miss waking up and talking sports every morning, but I will never regret the decision I made to remember who I am.  That journey brought me to the greatest chapter yet.

I found my way back to the love of my life, the town I’ve always wanted to raise a family in and of course I found the radio industry unicorn…a full-time position!

Sure, for now I’m not really on the air, but great things are coming.

I have my own podcast page on ESPNUpstate.com that will be available soon as well as some blogs.  I will be covering my beloved South Carolina Gamecocks this fall, making my triumphant return to Williams-Brice Stadium for the first time in a LONG time.

So to wrap things up and stop boring you all with my sentimental dribble, I just have to reiterate what I wrote in a blog just over a month ago…

Thank you all for your continued support.

-Ditti

 

 

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