When he was just a kid, Davy Rothbart and his family visited the most famous neighbor in America—Mr. Rogers—at his summer cottage on Nantucket.
Ira reports on a week he spent on the set of the TV show M*A*S*H in 1979, supposedly to do a story about the program for National Public Radio. He was 20 years old.
Adam Davidson reads from his high school diaries.
Host Ira Glass talks with Bennett Miller and Matt Futterman about a campaign for student government that changed the way student elections were done in Mamaroneck High School back in 1985. Futterman, in the waning days of his campaign, tried a radical tactic: A TV ad.
Dirty political attacks go back to the very beginning of the American Republic. What's different today, says historian Richard Norton Smith, is that television and the other electronic media have made our contact with the candidates so intimate.
There's a TV ad so popular in Canada right now that people chant it in bars, stand and cheer it in theaters and at hockey stadiums. The ad taps into our desire to be part of a mob...and provides a safe way to do it, without fear.
What happens when a crowd converges over something they strongly believe in, for weeks, and months, in front of television cameras that never go away? To what degree does that change the character of being in a crowd? A few days before Elian Gonzalez was seized by Federal authorities, reporter Alix Spiegel went to the lawn of his home, where activists camped out 24 hours a day.
At one grain elevator on the outskirts of Lincoln, Nebraska, during the slow months, the five burly men who load corn, soybeans, wheat and milo onto trains spend their work hours watching soap operas.
Sean Cole explains why he decided that he would speak with a British accent—morning, noon and night—from the age of sixteen until he was eighteen...and how he believed the lie that he was British must be true.
What do cats want to see on television? Steve Malarky, creator of the world's best-selling home video for cats, tells all. And—in the interest of equal time—a cashier who works at a chain store that sells pet products rants about the absurdity of the items she's ringing up every day: St.
No radio program about caregivers in a hospital would be complete without a few words about the caregiver that is the most omnipresent...in every room, in the waiting rooms, at the nurses' stations. It's television.
This American Life host Ira Glass and producer Susan Burton spent a week in August recording a suburban Chicago youth group at every stage of their very first mission trip. The teenagers were from Covenant Presbyterian Church in Chicago.
What happens when a chicken crosses the thin yellow line that divides the animals we eat from the animals we keep as pets. Jonathan Gold, food writer for Gourmet magazine, tells how he accidentally came to adopt a chicken, and what happened to his opinion of chickens afterwards.
What does it mean to talk like a real Southerner—and why a multimillion industry can't seem to figure it out. Southern expatriate Mark Schone dissects Southern accents as they're portrayed in movies and TV shows.
A story that takes place at the crossroads where art meets commerce—a place where we can ask the question: Is the art of commerce better than the art of art? Writer (and occasional screenwriter) Sandra Tsing Loh accompanies a Hollywood screenwriter as he tries to sell a movie idea—a comedy in the style of Liar Liar. (19 minutes)
In this special half-hour story produced by Jay Allison as part of his Life Stories series, Dan Gediman tracks down the original Zoom cast members to find out what his life would've been like if he had achieved his childhood dream of being on Zoom.
Robert Krulwich's stories, on NPR, CBS and ABC, are neither wacky nor pompously serious. He explains, though, that if you try to occupy the territory between wacky and serious, there are dangers.
A Hollywood TV producer tries to convince a church of evangelical Christians to sell out a member of their own congregation. Matt Malloy reads. He was one of the stars of the acclaimed independent film In the Company of Men.Also in this act: Dickens vs.
How an audience of children derailed Late Night with Conan O'Brien.
Karl T. Wright's and Wendy Miller's game show wedding.
John Connors has very mixed emotions about attending a convention for viewers of the TV program Dark Shadows.
Or is that "Ooting?" 90210 expert Danny Drennan on the pro-Canadian bias in the hit TV show Beverly Hills 90210 now that Canadian Jason Priestly is not just a star of the show, but a producer and director as well.
Dishwasher Pete on Letterman.
New York writer Camden Joy tells what happened when in a greasy spoon restaurant filled with cabbies and club kids when Frank's film The Manchurian Candidate came on television. The whole place got silent, watched the film, and choked up.