Saturday, December 18, 2010

Episode 51: Animals Die, People Ponder

Oh, the holiday season...been busy with Christmas prep and finishing up work before break and being sick, so do excuse my lack of regularity in know how that goes, I'm sure.
I will admit that I listened to this episode a week or two ago and it's one of those that was interesting, so I'm just going to hit the high points that I really remember (and there's a few of them, so that definitely lets you know it was a pretty good show).

For the opening, Ira talks to a scholar about parchment and how it was used in books way back when in history. Having taken so many English classes, I thought I knew about parchment, yet it had never really registered parchment could come from animals. Found that quite interesting and pretty cool that I could relate it back to something I learned about in college (sometimes it feels like those things are few and far how proud I am when I can watch a street art video from somewhere that is Spanish speaking and pick up some of what they're saying...).

Next there's a fictional story about a guy who kills his boss. It's animal related, I promise. It seemed to get a little long but is an interesting tale. George Saunders is an interesting writer for sure.

Act three is the story that stuck out the most to me- the story of a guy who cleans up road kill in Chicago. Ira went out with him one day for another show and it was also used in this one. Let's just say this is the take away story for me this time around...I even retold it the next day to a coworker!

Act four is about a guy who rescues animals. And moving on...

Check this one out if you like animals...or really old literature (atleast the first 10 minutes).

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Episode 50: Shoulda Been Dead

Ok, Ira, you win. I see how you're trying to confuse me as I make my way through all of the episodes for this lovely show...Case in point: at the end of this episode, it is stated that it originally aired in 1995. Well, it certainly isn't listed on the 1995 list. Aye aye aye. So here's a rundown since I've not written one yet, evidentally...

Act one is a story about Kevin Kelly, the editor of Wired magazine at the point of airing, and what he does with the last 6 months he believes he has to live. After a visit to the spot where Jesus is believed to have been crucified, one which included sleeping at that very spot, he is given the message that he has 6 months left in life. He then moves back to his parent's home to spend time with them and then rides a bike from the west coast to New York, on a 5,000 mile trip. He survives the trip and then braces himself for the day that makes the 6 month mark. I could ruin it for you, but I'm not- so you have to listen. It's a very enlightening story- definitely make you think.

Act two is the reading of a script, telling the story of a man who is told he has tested positive for Aids. This is one of the best pieces I've heard on the show ever. Just really good and thoughtful.

Act three brings back one of my faves- my girl, Claudia Perez. It's pretty cool how TAL brought her back for a piece, as she was already in college at this point. I seriously want to know what she's up to today...she just seems so cool. Anyways, the short piece she put together this time around was about her brother and his take on his shooting and time in the ICU. This girl knows how to share parts of her life while being able to share more than just what is so personal- she can relate it to all of the world around her.

Acts four and five are short little bits that, honestly, I couldn't keep that much attention to. I think that the first three stories did the bulk of the work this time around- nothing wrong with that.

Episode 49: Animals

So this episode is one of the first few to air, almost a year earlier than this broadcast date, in January of 1996. You can read my thoughts on this episode, which I don't skimp on having a total distaste for here. And yes, I seriously did have to skip part of this episode to not get completely just freaked out. Still makes me shudder..ick.

Episode 48: Justice

January 1997 starts off to a slower start but eventually revs up some. This story covering different tales of justice from around the country (well, the world really).

Act one is about war crimes and Yugoslovia and it was just hard to follow for me. Eh...

Act two brings it up some, Scott Carrier reporting on a teen court in Tucson. The area teenagers figure out what their peers deserve as punishment for their crimes. They give surprisingly harsh and adult-like punishments, giving a view of how much these teenagers really are influenced by the adults in their lives. This was quite an interesting thing to hear from teens and gives me a little hope for those that come along in the future. I really dig this story- well done, Mr. Carrier.

Act three is all about an apology line that was set up for people to call in and do as it it suggests- make apologies. The tapes that were played were heartbreaking, particularly the tape from a 15 year old who had run away from home.

Not too shabby of a start to 1997...feels like the show was starting to hit its stride and I'm liking it...let's keep it going...only 13 years left to listen to!