David Sedaris, on his mother's lung cancer.
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Contributor David Sedaris tells a story about discovering the possibilities—and pitfalls—of travel by hitchhiking.
The story of a book that changed a family's life, but only temporarily and not for the better. David Sedaris describes what happens when he finds a dirty book in the woods and shares it with his sisters.
David Sedaris tells a story about his mother who hated home movies, and how his brothers and sisters came to appreciate them. David's the author of several books, including When You Are Engulfed in Flames.
A story by regular contributor David Sedaris involving his sister Lisa, a secret, and her very understanding parrot. David read this story live, and it's on his CD Live at Carnegie Hall. The story is also published in his book Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim.
Writer David Sedaris remembers the days his mother and sister played armchair detective, and the odd crime wave that hit their own home. This story, titled "True Detective," appears in David's book Naked.
Writer David Sedaris on parents' dreams and children's nightmares.
David Sedaris, author of Me Talk Pretty One Day, explains how the most important moments of your life can happen in a car...and you can miss them.
David Sedaris tells a story from his boyhood, when a voice inside his head commanded him to lick every light switch and tap his forehead with his heel. It's from his book Naked.
How writer (and frequent This American Life contributor) David Sedaris and his family reacted when Sedaris's mother—a lifelong, unrepentant smoker—developed lung cancer. After a lifetime of barbed, funny remarks, no one in the family is prepared to talk about their feelings.
David Sedaris with a parable of the pressures on modern women, and how one woman — his sister — responded. David's father thought it was very important that his daughters be thin.
How David Sedaris became a Christmas writer — and how he started writing stories about the holiday that are so dark that sometimes it seems that he's trying to single handedly destroy Christmas. We hear from members of David's own family, and from David, all of whom insist that David loves Christmas.
One of the most powerful forces in a room can be the thing that is unspoken between people. Five writers—Scott Carrier, David Sedaris, Sarah Vowell, Brady Udall and Lan Samantha Chang—give us case examples: stories when they felt the presence of something unspoken.
David Sedaris comes from a big family, who for many years growing up, took annual vacations to the same beach house. In this story, David tells us about losing a sister last year, and how her death prompted a family reunion back at the beach.
Julia Sweeney reads this story. She's a former Saturday Night Live cast member and star of the sad and comic memoir of life with cancer, God Said, "Ha!," which played on Broadway.
David Rakoff tells the story of a contract between a son and his visiting mother. David Rakoff is the author of several books including Don't Get Too Comfortable.
When David Ellis Dickerson was 12, he got a new bike, and his father decided to use the occasion to teach David a lesson. But the lesson David learned wasn't the one his father intended.
David Beers explains the gorgeous, modern vision that drew his family, and tons of other families, to California, and then what happened after they arrived.
Lisa LaBorde has two daughters, and having grown up an only child, she can't understand why they fight all the time. Her idea of sisterhood is more like a scene from The Sound of Music. Wanting to create that kind of bond for her girls, Lisa decides to enlist the aid of science to see if she can turn these enemies into friends—in just one month.
Continuing from our prologue, host Ira Glass checks in with Lisa and her older daughter, Kennedy, to see how the experiment went. After a month, they've charted surprising results, learned that the girls aren't the only ones in the house who need to change, and found out just how much money it takes to get a twelve-year-old to play with a five-year-old.
David Rakoff takes us inside the world of a Greek family-owned ice cream parlour, and what he learned about the husband and wife and son who owned it...and what he didn't figure out until later.
The discovery of 30 century-old postcards written in old Yiddish by a distant family member challenges David Kestenbaum’s ideas about the unimportance of blood ties.
Josh Bearman continues his story by looking at how things got so bad for his mother and David in the first place.
Josh Bearman grew up in California with his dad, stepmom, and brother. But they're not his whole family.