Writer Starlee Kine on what makes the perfect break-up song and whether really sad music can actually make you feel better. Plus, an eight-year-old author of a book about divorce, and other stories from the heart of heartbreak.
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Break-Up Song Contest Winners
In the wake of a break-up, writer Starlee Kine finds so much comfort in break-up songs that she decides to try and write one herself—even though she has no musical ability whatsoever. For some help, she goes to a rather surprising expert on the subject: Phil Collins. (29 minutes)
Starlee was assisted in her efforts by musicians Joe McGinty and Julia Greenberg, who co-wrote the song featured in this story. Joe's album Kiss Me, Stupid with his band Baby Steps includes "This Song Is Three Days Old," also heard in Starlee's story. He is the co-author with Hally McGehean of the musical “Upping My Numbers.” Julia writes songs and composes musical theater in Brooklyn. For more stories by Starlee, check out her podcast Mystery Show.
Eight-year-old Betsy Walter goes on a campaign to understand her parents' divorce. A campaign that takes her to school guidance counselors, children's book authors, and the mayor of New York City. (10 minutes)
The interview with Betsy first aired on NPR's All Things Considered—in 1987, when a young Ira Glass was a producer there.
Let No Court Put Asunder
Ira talks with divorce mediator Barry Berkman about why it's bad when the justice system gets involved in a break-up. Barry specializes in matrimonial law and is a member of The New York Association of Collaborative Professionals, which he helped found. (8 minutes)
Divorce Is Rrruuffff!
What divorce looks like from the dog's point of view. This monologue was performed by Merrill Markoe and recorded at Un-Cabaret in Los Angeles. Merrill's most recent book of essays is Cool, Calm and Contentious.(5 minutes)