OPINION

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Whatever happened to CB radios?

Apr 5, 2022, 3:57 PM

Trucker uses CB radio. CW McCall sang trucker songs....

Sherman Peterman of Abbeville, Ala., on his CB microphone while at an Albany, Georgia truck stop on Dec. 11, 1989. Photo credit: Elliot Minor, AP Photo.

Editor’s note: This is an editorial piece. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

SALT LAKE CITY — We should have known. Way back in 1977, America got a brief glimpse of what social media would do to society.

Because in 1977 every American who had 75 bucks bought a CB radio.

They mounted it under the dash. Ostensibly you could monitor traffic conditions on the road ahead, the way truckers did on Channel 19.

Now if you don’t know, a CB radio has something Americans never had in their car before.

A microphone.

Press the key and you could broadcast to everybody on the highway.

So what did we have to say when almost every American was given the ability to broadcast?

Gibberish. Nonsense. We all started speaking nothin’ but trucker CB Slang.

Conversations, even at the dinner table were littered with references.

References like “yeah good buddy I’m takin Ike to Salty, eyeballin’ Evil Knievel at the taco stand. 10-4 goodbuddy.”

Which means “I’m taking I-80 to Salt Lake, watching for motorcycle cops–Evil Knievels– at the border station.” And 10-4 means… you know what? Forget it.

The important part is everybody used that fake trucker accent.

This got so out of hand that the number one song of the year was a little ditty about CB radio slang called “Convoy”.

What?

CW McCall sang trucker songs, including this accidental hit called “Convoy” which every person in America could sing word-for-word.

So what happened to CB radios?

The CB airwaves got overcrowded with idiocy, just like social media. We should have known.

Truckers scattered to other channels and people realized “why am I listening to this nonsense when there’s good music on the radio?”

So CBs went away, as did CW McCall, who died over the weekend at the age of 93.

Gone to the great big choke n puke in the sky. That’s CB slang for a truck stop.

Other Minutes of News:

Listen to Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News every weekday from 3 to 7 p.m. for more of his “My Minute of News.” And check out the podcast below.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Opinion

possible new jazz arena shown in rendering of downtown salt lake...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: How to make a billionaire wealthier

Billionaire and Jazz owner Ryan Smith teased at a possible new arena recently. Will he pay for it, or have the state do it for him?

2 days ago

"Scrambled" is a good movie you'll want to see just for Leah McKendrick....

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show Review: ‘Scrambled’ actress Leah McKendrick was a joy to watch

Actress Leah McKendrick leaves you wanting more of her after watching "Scrambled". It's a good story about "writing what you know."

27 days ago

"The Promised Land" movie is packed with good storytelling and a fun main character....

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show Review: ‘The Promised Land’ is good storytelling with a side of Mads Mikkelsen

Good storytelling and Mads Mikkelsen make for "Promised Land" being a movie you'll want to see as soon as you can.

28 days ago

holiday shoppers get ready to start spending at city creek mall...

Amanda Dickson

Dickson: All I want for Christmas is to control my holiday spending!

Amanda Dickson wants to start doing a better job of controlling her holiday spending -- putting the emphasis on people rather than stuff.

3 months ago

KSL Movie Show co-host Steve Salles says "Maestro" is a fine picture you won't want to miss....

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show review: ‘Maestro’ shows a renown composer, flaws and all, exquisitely

Don't miss this movie review of Bradley Cooper's portrayal of Leonard Bernstein. "Maestro" is and exquisite and real must-see picture.

3 months ago

Image of Utah's Morning News host Amanda Dickson and colleague Kate Davis, who says she is grateful...

Amanda Dickson

Dickson: Social media and the importance of the radio community

Unlike social media, radio is one of the few experiences that offers everybody listening the same information at the same time.

3 months ago

Sponsored Articles

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Whatever happened to CB radios?