553: Stuck In The Middle (2015)

553: Stuck In The Middle (2015)

Apr 3, 2015
Jan Brady is not the only one who hated being in the middle. This week we have stories about how it sucks to be in limbo or be the mediator, but we also hear from a man who absolutely loves being in that uncertain and boring middle most of us dread — on hold, listening to hold music.
Here is the hold music Opus No. 1 from Act One:

  • Rachel has two kids. Elias, age seven, is a vegetarian. Theo, age five, is not. But Elias wants Theo, and everyone else in the house, to be vegetarian too. So Rachel and her husband are in the middle of negotiating the desires of two very strong willed kids.

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  • Sara Corbett's father-in-law Dick is 81. And he's become obsessed with a limbo most of us hate – the music he hears whenever he's on hold. Sara is co-author of the book A House in the Sky.

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  • Mark Oppenheimer reports on agunah in the Orthodox Jewish community. An agunah is a woman whose husband refuses to give her a divorce – in Hebrew it means "chained wife." If you're an Orthodox Jew, strictly following Jewish law, the only real way to get divorced is if your husband agrees to hand you a piece of paper called a get. Without the get, women who want out of their marriages can stay chained to their husbands for years. In New York, a couple of rabbis were recently accused of using violence to force men to give their wives a get. Mark writes the Beliefs column for The New York Times.

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  • Brett Martin documents a previously unnoticed human phenomenon, one that involves airplanes...crying...and Reese Witherspoon. (11 minutes)

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