535: Origin Story 2014

535: Origin Story 2014

Sep 19, 2014
This week we bring you little-known and surprising stories of how all sorts of institutions began. An updated version of a 2009 episode.
  • Host Ira Glass talks to business professor Pino Audia and Fast Company magazine columnist Dan Heath about corporate creation myths, and why so many of them involve garages. (7 minutes)Business

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  • Producer Sarah Koenig tells the story of her father, Julian Koenig, the legendary advertising copywriter whose work includes the slogan "Timex takes a licking and keeps on ticking" and Volkswagen's "Think Small" ads. For years Sarah has heard her dad accuse a former partner of stealing some of his best ideas, but until recently she never paid much attention. Then she started asking her dad for details of this fight for his legacy, and what she learned surprised her. Sarah is the host of our new spinoff podcast, Serial. (20 minutes)Advertising/Marketing

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  • Producer Sean Cole visits Chad's Trading Post in Southampton, Massachussetts. One person who works there wears a shirt that says "Chad's Brother;" other shirts say "Chad's Best Friend," "Chad's Cousin," and "Chad's Father." Pictures of Chad are everywhere. Chad's dead. The family explains. (14 minutes)

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  • Peter Sagal, host of NPR's Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me, tells Ira the origin story of one of the worst movie sequels ever made. (5 minutes)Film/Film MakingFunny

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  • Reporter Mary Wiltenburg tells the story of a little boy stymied by the question "Where do you come from?" More of Mary's reporting on this story is at the Christian Science Monitor. (8 minutes)
    Song:
    • "Dear John", John Lennon

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