279: Auto Show
Dec 10, 2004
Stories about people who love their cars, for better or for worse.
- David Segal of the Washington Post investigates the competitive world of db drag racing ("db" stands for "decibels"), where people customize their cars with stereos so loud that they can't actually be played—or listened to—at least not without risking a nose bleed. (14 minutes)
- When Darren's car was stolen in Washington, D.C., he did what everyone does: He called the police and figured he'd never see the car again. But within a week, as he was driving his rental he spotted his stolen Toyota, and chased it, with some help from the nice lady at 9-1-1. Curtis Sittenfeld tells the story. Her novel is called Prep. (10 minutes)
- This American Life producer Sarah Koenig checks out competing sales techniques at a Chevy dealership on the south side of Chicago. It turns out the number two salesman thinks he's number one, and the number one salesman...is a grandmother, Yvonne Hawk. Her secret? Get them to call you "Mom." (11 minutes)
- People don't want to stop driving, no matter how old they get. This American Life producer Lisa Pollak talked with Rosyna Salerno, a 91-year-old widow, who recently gave up her license after she had a stroke. And Dan Neil, automotive critic for the Los Angeles Times, tells the story of Stirling Moss, the race car driver who, at 75, still holds the world record for completing a 1,000-mile race called the Mille Miglia. He did it by driving a Mercedes 100 miles per hour for ten hours. Dan got to take a drive with Moss in the famous car. (11 minutes)