The story of how an understanding of Bible prophecy by the FBI could have prevented the tragedy at Waco at the Branch Davidians compound.
Host Ira Glass reads famous last words from Bing Crosby, Oscar Wilde, W.C. Fields, and talks about what we want from people's last words.
Writer Greil Marcus explains what rock fans use dead rock stars for.
We go through transcripts from those black box flight recorders recovered from airplane crashes to see what people say. One pilot declares "I love you" to someone, another is doing his job like always and suddenly says, "uh-oh." It's an interview with Malcolm McPherson, author of The Black Box: All-New Cockpit Voice Recorder Accounts of In-Flight Accidents.
Host Ira Glass talks with a guy who hit the road after his mother's death, hoping for some experience that would change him and shed light on what just happened. This never happens to him, or to most of us.
Ira with Lloyd Natoff, on killing chickens.
An Allen Ginsberg poem and Ira Glass.
Michael Lesy reads.
Ira with Clarence Hicks, who picks up dead animals for a living.
Ira with a girl gang member about the day she nearly died.
Kevin Kelly is interviewed.
Claudia Perez talks about how her 21-year-old brother was shot and the family thought he'd die.
Erika Yeomans sees a young man's photo in an art magazine and decides to track him down. Problem is: he's Dutch, he's a performance artist, and he's dead.
Jack Hitt reviews the strange case of William Kane, his mistress, his family, and fifteen vials of frozen sperm.
The late Ron Brown, the former U.S. Secretary of Commerce, could have had an easy life, but chose instead to take on stressful, difficult tasks.