This past week my beloved This American Life celebrated 500 episodes. I finally got to hear the milestone episode earlier this week while what else, working on some freeze ahead meals for back to school. I'm currently working my way back through all the archives. I'm currently in Year 2000 from archives dating to 1995.
After some thought and some re-listening here is my favorites. If you haven't listened, pick any linked below or just head to the general site. This week their main page has links to ALL 500 directly on the front page!
Thank you Ira for being a part of my week. Thank you for the many afternoons while wrapping up the school day I've been working my way back through all the old episodes. Thank you for bringing important, newsworthy stories as well as just those of human interest. If I were to ever get a tattoo, I'm fairly sure it would say, "IRA 4EVA."
My gotta listen list in no particular order of favorites:
Why TAL will make you laugh until you wet with tears or urine or maybe never eat calamari again- From Fear of Sleep-Act 1 Stranger in the Night, Doppelgangers
When listening will require you to pull over to the side of the road with the ugly cry in full force- Act 3 from Scene of the Crime- Our Man of Perpetual Sorrow, How to Rest in Peace, The Greatest Thing I Ever Saw on Stage
Dammit Mrs. Vinson, my parents already make me listen to NPR in the car, now in class too!
This is Not My Beautiful House
Giant Pool of Money
Trends with Benefits
Because Ira Glass has ball of steel to revisit each part of the Foxxconn expose that landed TAL in some rare negative press with a Retraction. Seeing him live the VERY week the story hit nationally in Durham cemented that Glass is a man of character, and yes very huge balls for not passing the buck.
The Psychopath Test- The book was good, but the final act guessing WHO would score the highest, priceless.
When TAL goes to the mat and can make a difference in someone's life Very Tough Love, 81 Words
Jenny McCarthy, you are an idiot of epic proportions. From Ruining It for the Rest of Us Act 1- Shots in the Dark
One for teachers. One for anyone who every wonders why you just can't walk away from the hardest job you will ever love. Two Steps Back
The one show I have re-listened to more than any other. Yes... it is about high school, BUT the two part Harper High School Episodes (Part 1, Part 2 ) moved me to my core. No other episodes have given a more intimate look in to the daily lives of average Americans, true stories of loss, hope, courage, and just why TAL is just that good.
Happy 500th TAL. I already want 500 more stories.