Nov 17, 2000
The This American Life producers document one day in a Chicago diner called The Golden Apple, starting at 5 a.m. and going until 5 a.m. the next morning. We hear from the waitress who has worked the graveyard shift for over two decades, the regular customers who come every day, the couples working out their problems, various assorted drunks, and, of course, cops.
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Featuring stories from Radio Diaries producers Joe Richman and Wendy Dorr. And a story from Nancy Updike, funded with help from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting as part of a grant to Hearing Voices. This show lays out differently than most, and is best divided into two parts:
- In this act we hear several stories that happened during the daylight hours of the diner's operation. The first is from Nancy Updike, who talks with several early morning customers, including one guy who comes in mornings to play his accordion, and another who at the age of 8 was the youngest butcher in Illinois. We also hear from several regulars who come to the Golden Apple every day, more than once. Many of them are old and alone. They say the come for the coffee, and to talk to the waitresses. Reporter Susan Burton talks with two friends who used to be a couple. They stopped dating three years ago, but haven't stopped fighting about whose fault it was. An older lady who grew up in the neighborhood explains about her neighbors' feelings towards African-Americans and gays. (29 minutes)