This American Life

I am somewhat annoyed with myself that I've re-discovered This American Life. I should be listening to the news in French, (considering the rapidly approaching Language Proficiently Test I have to take and the reality that my french skills resemble a rusty, dilapidated attic). Instead, I find myself late to work because I am sitting in my car hoping to finish a story.

I am aware that NPR and This American Life are popular amongst people our age. (I assume I'm talking to a twentysomething crowd.) It is a cure for boredom for many post-undergraduate souls. Young minds fresh from school now realize they must "quit their pretentious things and punch the clock" can finally have their curiosity and need for learning appeased.

My mom used to listen to the show on her old, black radio while she cooked dinner. I would drag my 20 pound backpack to the kitchen table after school and unload my books and binders and folders and textbooks. As I studied Chemistry and my mom made curry, Ira Glass would fill the room with one of his stories. My mom and I talked the other day about how much she cooked when we were kids. I remarked on how awful I was at Chemistry. I blame, (and thank) Ira for both of those results.

I am going to recommend some stories for you to check out. Because I don't want to ruin the story for you, I'll list a potential mood/thought you may have with an episode that compliments your current state. It's like a wine and cheese pairing for the brain.

You are in a whimsical mood with a short attention span

You want to meet Javert's reincarnation.

You feel like watching a soap opera but don't out of principle.

You got drunk last night and may or may not have done something stupid.

You feel guilty for not recycling and giving a dollar to the homeless man you always see.

You feel like reading a book but you aren't sure what to read.

You find yourself interested in what history textbooks should (but won't) say about this time in your life.

You want to laugh at a dead baby joke. (a mild one)

You are discouraged and don't want to be encouraged.

You want to listen to Fleet Foxes, "Helplessness Blues" and would enjoy a slapstick commentary on politicians.

You are driving from portland to seattle and you want to laugh and cry in the same story. (This is a fairly subjective feeling, but work with me here.)

I hope this satisfies you for now. Thank you Arcade Fire and Eric Eddy for the idea behind one of my sentences. I'll be listening for more. Let me know of any you enjoy.

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