THE BOMBASTIC BROADCASTER Gerry Ryan passed away yesterday. He presented The Gerry Ryan Show on radio station RTÉ 2fm each weekday morning from 1988 until his death. To my American ears, Ryan sounded like a shock jock interested in sex, bodily functions, and food. Only Gerry could get away with asking his top-rated audience, "Would it be considered blasphemous if someone said on air that 'God is a bollocks'?" Gerry's topics of conversation would extend from my wife's office to the car journey home nearly every evening. As 30 minutes of "The Weekly Ryan" below proves, he was his own man. The tributes to Gerry filled more airtime with thoughtful reflections on his style and unique personality. I've enclosed George Hook's heartfelt condolences below. As news of Gerry's death started surfacing, the Irish twitterstream started filling with speculation and questions started arising about the length of time his employer was taking to formally confirm his passing. Hours later, after all next of kin were notified, the official announcement came from radio and television. I think that's the way it should be but others don't share my opinion. Some things should be kept out of the public eye as matters of respect. Not on Twitter. A few people I follow were outraged at the public speculation of a leaked iPhone prototype yet they didn't see any problem speculating about the unconfirmed death of a person. The back and forth clamouring for an official confirmation before it was time offered cynics more proof that Twitter is often opium for the masses.