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Prologue

Host Ira Glass talks about the infamous line in the band Van Halen's contract insisting that the groups' dressing room include a bowl of M&Ms with all the brown M&Ms removed. Ira used to think this request was just petulant rock-star behavior.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass point out that it's not enough this time of year that we eat millions of turkeys. Someone also went to the trouble to make up a song about turkeys getting the supernatural power to play baseball.

Act One: Dr. Phil

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.

Act Three: Radio On The Tv

Ira says a few words about what he learned from working on a television show himself and about what it's like to hear your name mentioned casually by a fictional character on a prime time drama.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass talks with producer Alex Blumberg and his parents about a bad dog they once had, and how nothing—not getting hit by cars, attacked by bigger dogs, or being shipped off to live on a farm—could stop this dog from coming home. "The Cat Came Back" is sung by Nedelle Torrisi.

Act Two: I Am Curious, Jello

About 20 years ago, a Los Angeles prosecutor named Michael Guarino thought he'd make a name for himself by taking the lead singer of the Dead Kennedys to court for obscenity. He was so sure of success, he didn't even bother to listen to the lyrics.

Act Two: Marine Life

Rob Miller is a first lieutenant in the Marine Corps commanding a weapons platoon in "Charlie Company" of the First Battalion, Eighth Marines. He led his men recently in the battle of Fallujah, and in a recent satellite phone call, he told This American Life contributing editor Jack Hitt (who also happens to be his uncle) what we never seem to hear elsewhere: Details of what it's like to fight house-to-house in urban warfare.

Act One: Crunk In The Trunk

David Segal of the Washington Post investigates the competitive world of db drag racing ("db" stands for "decibels"), where people customize their cars with stereos so loud that they can't actually be played—or listened to—at least not without risking a nose bleed.

Prologue

Fans of movie musicals might know about something called the "I Wish" number. In many movies and Broadway shows, it's the main character's first song, in which they express the hope that will set the story in motion.

Act Three: Chicken Diva

Yet another testimony to the power chickens have over our hearts and minds.  Jack Hitt reports on an opera about Chicken Little.  It's performed with dressed-up styrofoam balls, it's sung in Italian and, no kidding, able to make grown men cry.  The official website for the opera "Love's Fowl" by Susan Vitucci and Henry Krieger is http://www.pulcina.org.