627
October 6, 2017

Suitable for Children

This week we ask: who thought that would be good for a kid? Neil Drumming looks back at a toy he loved that, in retrospect, probably wouldn’t love him back. And we go to a museum that educates children but also scares the hell out of them.

Prologue

Ira remembers the time when his older sister, Randi, asked his mother where babies come from. (3 minutes)

Stars & Bars & Bars

Producer Neil Drumming talks with the rapper Breeze Brewin about a toy car they both loved playing with as kids: The General Lee from the hit TV show The Dukes of Hazzard. Breeze went on to record a song called “Generally” about The General Lee with his group the Juggaknots. (11 minutes)

Song:

“Waiting for the Robert E. Lee” by Dean Martin

The Questionnaire

Over the last few years, there’s been a flood of kids from Central America who’ve arrived in the United States by themselves. With no adults. And often, they have to navigate the immigration system on their own. One of the people who’s helped them is the writer Valeria Luiselli. She worked as a translator in immigration court, where her job was to ask children a series of forty questions. Her story is excerpted from her book Tell Me How It Ends. (17 minutes)

Rocket Boy

Paul Zimmer is eighty-three years old now, and he’s still haunted by something he saw in his teens. Something very few Americans have ever seen: The explosion of an atomic bomb. Paul’s essay originally appeared in The Georgia Review. It is read by actor John Conlee. (6 minutes)

Song:

“Kids” by Mikky Ekko