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It’s a mystery as old as that steak I once had at Ponderosa in the Ocean County Mall. Why the hell does my Rat Rock go all static on FM when I drive on a certain section of Hooper Ave?

All jokes aside, I have been driving on Hooper Avenue for over 20 years now. I know I cannot be the only one whose radio goes to sh*t little by little as I approach a certain section of roadway.

If you know you know!

If you listen to FM radio in your car (first of all, thank you!), and you drive north or south on Hooper Avenue between Ocean County College and the area of Target you no doubt have experienced this static on your radio. No matter the station, no matter the car, it seems. The strongest point of this static can be pinpointed to one 200-yard area where the radio goes completely static and is unlistenable! Why? Who’s to blame?

The suspects!

It doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to figure out that there are obvious suspects as to what entity is causing this audio atrocity. They are all in the area of the strong point of the static. The first is the good old Intermediate East School. Now, both my kids went to this school so I am well aware of how often my mornings would be disrupted during drop-offs, when my Soundgarden would turn into a Sound desert!

Honestly, could Intermediate East be housing some secret radio wave jamming device to stop their kids from picking up the sweet sounds of Rockin Robyn Lane on their FM Walkmans? Well, no. The kids have phones and would be streaming the Rat anyway.

What about that Bubble??? I never trusted that bubble. Just sitting there like a big white whale, waiting to gobble up the track and field team. Hmm. Could be…

Meanwhile, the other and more plausible suspect would be the Veolia Water Tower across the street.  Although I don’t blame Veolia, because this problem was there during the Suez days, all the way back to when United Water’s name was on that sucker.

Did you ever really look up at that thing? It’s got antennas all over it and what looks to be radar or sonar or some crap. That has to be it! They are using that tower to spy on aliens from faraway galaxies that may or may not be trying to steal some or all of Toms River’s precious water! (Shhhh, they don’t know that story).

Here’s a similar water tower in South Jersey. You can see what I mean…

ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer - Round Two

(Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images)

In the end..

Well whatever the case may be, the static on that stretch of Hooper Avenue seems to be here to stay. Just like the thirsty aliens. My advice? Take Old Freehold Road!


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