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August 26, 2005

Not What I Signed Up For

Stories about being sucked into something against your will. In one story, a 9/11 widow finds herself having to comfort another distraught woman on national TV. And in a story by Nick Hornby, a boy is forced to play soccer to save his nation.

Prologue

Todd Bachmann tells about the time he offered to help out a Catholic charity and ended up getting bamboozled by a nun. (5 minutes)

The Double Whammy

Marian Fontana's husband was a Brooklyn firefighter who was killed on September 11, 2001. Afterwards, she started an organization, fighting to keep her husband's fire station open, and to help victims' families. She talked to reporters about these things and made appearances on TV. So that's what she thought she was going to do when she agreed to go on a show she thought was called "E! Online." Marian Fontana's book is A Widow's Walk: A Memoir of 9/11. (26 minutes)

Small Fish, Smaller Pond

Nick Hornby's new story about a country so tiny, it's just a field, a few houses, a shop, and a café. There, a boy whose mom happens to be president of this minuscule nation is called upon to show his patriotism by playing on the national soccer team. Nick Hornby is the author of a number of books, including High Fidelity, About a Boy, and A Long Way Down. This story is part of a larger collection of stories for young people called Noisy Outlaws, Unfriendly Blobs, and Some Other Thing That Aren't As Scary, Maybe, Depending on How You Feel About Lost Lands, Stray Cellphones, Creatures from the Sky, Parents Who Disappear in Peru, a Man Named Lars Farf, and One Other Story We Couldn't Quite Finish so Maybe You Could Help Us Out, which is a fundraiser for the literacy group 826NYC. (25 minutes)

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