Mike Birbiglia: on tour

Oct 12, 2010

Regular This American Life contributor Mike Birbiglia is heading out on a 12-city tour, performing stories and reading from his new book Sleepwalk With Me (check out his interview on Fresh Air). It's called "The Painfully True Stories Tour," material from which will become a new one-man show My Girlfriend's Boyfriend (the title comes from a story Mike performed on our episode Somewhere Out There).

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First off, if you're in new York, Mike is doing a free reading TONIGHT 10/12, at Barnes and Noble on 66th and Broadway.

The rest of his tour dates are below. You can find tickets to all the shows here.

Wed Oct 13 - Boston, MA - Wilbur Theatre - 7:30 PM

Thu Oct 14 - Glenside, PA - Keswick Theatre - 8:00 PM

Fri Oct 15 - Washington, DC - Warner Theatre - 8:00 PM

Sat Oct 16 - Chicago, IL - Vic Theatre - 7:00 PM

Tue Oct 19 - San Francisco, CA - Palace of Fine Arts - 8:00 PM

Thu Oct 21 - Hollywood, CA - Avalon - 8:00 PM

Fri Oct 22 - Seattle, WA - Moore Theatre - 8:00 PM

Sat Oct 23 - Portland, OR - Aladdin Theater - 8:00 PM

Thu Nov 4 - Atlanta, GA - Variety Playhouse - 8:00 PM

Fri Nov 5 - Charlotte, NC - Knight Theater - 8:00 PM

Sat Nov 6 - Durham, NC - Carolina Theatre - 8:00 PM

Fri Nov 12 - Madison, WI - Barrymore Theatre - 8:00 PM


Ira Glass's cameo on The Simpsons

Sep 28, 2010

In case you missed the season premiere of The Simpsons this past weekend, here is Ira Glass' cameo:

Hey New Yorkers: check out Ira Glass in a charity spelling bee, this Thursday 9/30.

Sep 27, 2010

This Thursday, September 30th Ira Glass will participate in the Spelling Beast, a fundraiser for the students of 826 NYC (a great nonprofit that teaches kids writing skills). Fellow competitors Catherine Keener, Dave Eggers and Kristen Schaal will join Ira in bee, which is being judged by the creators of the musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.

You can get involved in several ways:

Purchase tickets to attend the event, at Canal Room.

Compete in the Spelling Beast yourself!

Or donate to a competitor's fund, which will help him or her bribe the judges.

- Your friends at This American Life

Ira Glass has a cameo in the season Premiere of The Simpsons!

Sep 21, 2010

Bart Simpson Alert! Ira Glass (or his voice, at least) will appear briefly in the season premiere of The Simpsons, this coming Sunday September 26th at 8PM/7PM Central. We're told the episode is titled "Elementary School Musical." Tune in!

David Rakoff reads from his new book!

Sep 16, 2010

This American Life iPhone app One of our regular contributors David Rakoff has a new book called Half Empty, and is coming to a city near you for a reading/Q&A/signing! You can hear him interviewed about the book on Fresh Air, here.

Tuesday, September 21—New York City
Barnes and Noble, Union Square - 33 East 17th Street

Wednesday, September 22—Baltimore
Enoch Pratt Free Library Central Library - 400 Cathedral Street

Thursday, September 23—Washington DC
Politics and Prose - 5015 Connecticut Ave NW

Monday, September 27—Columbus, OH
Thurber House Event - The Columbus Performing Center - 549 Franklin Ave

Tuesday, September 28—Chicago
Chicago Public Library - 400 S State Street

Wednesday, September 29—Minneapolis/St.Paul
Minnesota Public Radio Author Series - 480 Cedar Street, St. Paul

Friday, October 1—San Francisco
City Arts and Lectures - Herbst Theater - 401 Van Ness Ave

Thursday, October 7—Seattle
University Books - Town Hall - 1119 Eighth Ave (at Seneca Street)

Saturday, October 9—Portland, OR
Wordstock Festival

Wednesday, October 13—New York City
Three Lives - 154 West 10th Street

Thursday, October 14—Brooklyn
Greenlight Bookstore - 686 Fulton Street

Saturday, October 16—Boston
Boston Book Festival

Wednesday, October 20—New York City
Symphony Space - 2537 Broadway - in conversation with Sloane Crosley

Chicago Magazine includes This American Life on its "Top 40" List

Sep 2, 2010
We're #36 on Chicago Magazine's list of "Chicago's Top 40 Artistic Breakthroughs", which also includes our friend Chris Ware (interviewed in Episode 178: Superpowers, with a link to one of his comics) and our radio forefather Studs Terkel (some of whose stories you can hear in Episode 368: Who Do You Think You Are?). Plus Muddy Waters, Second City and Wilco. But no Oprah.

Please rate our iPhone app

Sep 1, 2010

Hello, users of the This American Life iPhone app. If you have a second, would you mind heading over to the iTunes store and giving it a rating? This American Life iPhone app And if you have more than a few seconds, please write a review. App ratings tend to skew to the negative, partly because you're prompted to write reviews when you uninstall an app, and we're hoping to get a more accurate picture of how it's working.

If you use the app but haven't updated to version 2, you really should. It includes cool new features like offline listening, background listening and marking episodes as heard. If you don't have the app, it's only three bucks to download.

If you'd like to send direct feedback about the This American Life iPhone app, email Please include what model of iPhone/iPod Touch you have, and what iOS you're running.

Thanks a lot!

Our audio player is now embeddable!

Aug 30, 2010

Is embeddable a word?

Anyway, you can now embed This American Life episodes on your blog or website, like how you can with YouTube videos. To get embed code, just click 'share' on the episode page or on the pop-up player. It'll look like this on your page:

Have fun, and thanks for spreading the word about the show!

Ira Glass answers 21 questions for New York Magazine

Aug 24, 2010
New York Magazine asked Ira 21 kind of random questions, in advance of a benefit show that he is doing in New York this weekend with Rachel Maddow and a bunch of other talented folks.

Friends with a Benefit

Aug 18, 2010

Ira writing here.

To everyone in or near New York: I'm going to be appearing onstage with Rachel Maddow on Sunday August 29th at Town Hall in New York City. It's part of a charity show to raise money for the American Bird Conservancy, one of the groups trying to restore the ecosystem of the Gulf in the wake of the BP oil spill.

It seems like it's going to be an amazing show of comedians and musicians, plus Rachel and me. I'll be interviewing her on stage. I have things I've wanted to ask her for years. I'm very very excited. I'm told she's also going to sing.

Other performers:

Mike Birbiglia (who has been on our radio show many times)
Tig Notaro (who's this standup comedian I just love, who's also on The Sarah Silverman Program)
Lucy Wainwright Roche (singer/songwriter)
Erin McKeown (singer/songwriter)
Michelle Collins (from VH1's Best Week Ever)
Gabe Delahaye (of Videogum)
Jamie Kilstein (from Citizen Radio)
Rob Lathan (Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, The Colbert Report, etc.)
Barkuna (that's a band)

The hosts are Christina Gausas and Scott Adsit. Adsit you may recognize from 30 Rock. Gausas was a regular on Conan O'Brien, and has done comedy lots of other places. They have a regular improv show together at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, probably the most sophisticated, funny improv show I've ever seen.

You can buy seats here.

One night only! Tickets are going fast.
Sunday August 29th
Town Hall
123 W. 43rd Street