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March 08, 1992|R.D.

We're back. You're listening to KNWA talk radio, the station for Neurotics With Attitude, and it's time for our call-in segment. Hello, you're on the air.

Hello? My name is--

No names, please. Share your angst.

I'm trapped in this relationship with a woman who's even more neurotic than I am. She's obsessed with the blues, says it reminds her of her roots back in Mississippi, and her sharecropper parents and 12 siblings, and a mule--

So what's the problem?

The problem is she was born in Beverly Hills, she's an only child and, as far as I know, the only pet she ever had was a Welsh corgi. And now she won't even talk to me unless I speak in a blues cadence. About anything. For instance, the other day I was concerned about our toaster--

The toaster?

Yeah, and so I went to her and, well, I'm embarrassed to even repeat what I had to say to get her to pay attention to me.

Hey, buddy, it's us, KNWA talk radio. Share your angst.

Well, okay. I sang: "The toaster's bad, it's burning all the doggone bread/I said the toaster's bad, it's burning all our doggone bread/If I don't get some breakfast, I believe I'll just lie down and be dead."

Well done.

She hated it. Said it was fine till the last line. I told her I'm tired of being some Southern "Sheherazade" having to tell a damn story about every little thing in our life. I want normal conversation!

Good. Anger is good. Let it out.

Then she says, "Oh, B.B. . . ." Darn it, my name is Ralph!

Please.

Sorry.

We have to break for this message.

Movie and film historian Peter Hay, author of "MGM: When the Lion Roars," will appear at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Beverly Hills Library, 444 N. Rexford Drive, Beverly Hills. Admission is free. Call (310) 288-2201.

Okay, we're back with our caller. Answer this, Mr. Bluesman. Is the situation all bad?

Not really. I kinda like when she gets into a romantic mood, and she says I'm her man, and then it just comes out naturally: "I got me a fine little woman, all the men love to watch her go by/I got me a fine little woman, all the men love to watch her go by/I tell you she's my cup of sugar, and a slice of sweet potato pie."

Excellent.

Yeah. I made that one up in a second. After that, everything was cool between us for a day. Then it all went downhill. I got promoted, I got a big raise and I thought I had found myself spiritually. All in two days.

Congratulations.

But how am I supposed to sing the blues about that? It's gotten to the point where I'm wishing for bad things to happen just so I can talk to her.

Hold that thought. First, these words.

Heidi Creve will share Jewish folklore with children ages 3 to 5 at 10 a.m. Monday at the Jewish Community Library, 6505 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. Admission is free. For reservations and information call (213) 852-1234, Ext. 3202.

Well, it looks like this to us, B.B.--

It's Ralph!

Whatever. You're a co-dependent. Tell her goodby.

I'm not equipped to say something like that.

Go right to the source. Listen to Bessie Smith or Billie Holiday or Blind Boy Fuller or Buddy Guy or John Lee Hooker--we could go on and on. Hear how they'd do it.

We'll find out how you're gonna handle it after these words.

"An Evening of Comedy and Wit," a benefit to raise funds for Women in Theatre, will be held at the Santa Monica Improv, 321 Santa Monica Blvd., at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $25 members, $35 non-members. Call (213) 465-5567 for reservations and information.

So what's it gonna be, Ralph?

The name is . . . B.B.! Listen up: "The thrill is gone, I believe there's no more zest/I said the thrill is gone, I believe there's no more zest/I'm gonna find a lonely quiet place, and give my aching heart and tongue some rest."

We hear ya.

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