Madwoman Out of the Attic

a feminist trudging forward in a patriarchal world

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Addicted to NPR

I discovered NPR about a year ago, and it has enriched my life more than I could ever have imagined. I love its thoughtful stories, great interviews, fascinating discussions with world leaders.... everything about it. (Except Prarie Home Companion and Car Talk. I can do without those.)

The day I first discovered it, I happened upon a radio documentary called "My Lobotomy," the story of a man who was lobotomized when he was a boy because he was a bit of a handful. In this radio documentary, he discusses this with his father for the first time, the father who arranged for him to undergo the infamous icepick lobotomy. In the story, his voice pulses with emotion and pain as he talks to his aged father about this decision - so strinking since lobotomies often turned people into emotional zombies.

Ever since hearing that story, I've listened to NPR every moment I'm in my car, and even for several hours when I'm at home - a total of about 6 hours a day. I hardly watch TV anymore, since the radio is so much more interesting.

My favorite shows:
Speaking of Faith
This I Believe
Talk of the Nation
Film Week
Morning Edition
The Splendid Table
The Writer's Almanac



Blogger john.white said...

Enjoying "A Prairie Home Companion" is one of the benchmarks for becoming old. Unfortunately, I've passed that benchmark, though I'm not a dedicated listener.

I would suggest "This American Life" as one of the top NPR shows. And you can even get it by podcast.

For shows not available that way, I'd point to "Fresh Air with Terry Gross."

1/30/2007 11:40 PM  
Blogger jana said...

I listen to NPR on podcasts, rather than on the radio. I'm totally addicted to the Writer's Almanac and I'm getting more and more enamored of Speaking of Faith. I've downloaded a few episodes of TAL, and I'm looking forward to listening to them.

Podcasts are such a great way to make mundane jobs (washing dishes, folding laundry) enjoyable...

1/31/2007 8:02 AM  
Blogger amelia said...

npr. i can't even describe how much i love it.

i second the nomination of this american life. some episodes you should find if you can:

testosterone. all about testosterone and how it shapes identity. surprising.

act V. (as in act five) about a prison production of hamlet. a high security prison, where most of the inmates involved are guilty of hamlet's contemplated crimes and claudius's actual crimes.

time to save the world. one of the first episodes that had me riveted with its story about prank calls that turned into a lifeline.

just a few to start with. you can download them for a dollar each on iTunes.

if you're only listening to kpcc at this point (they're at 89.3) i suggest you check out kcrw, also. in the afternoons, kcrw has better talk programing with local programs addressing the arts, literature, and politics (i hate kpcc's afternoon programing). and in the mornings, from nine til noon, they have great music. i've found a lot of good new stuff through morning becomes eclectic (their morning music show).

also don't miss "wait, wait" on kpcc on saturdays at 11. hilarious. one of the funniest hours of entertainment anywhere.

i really could go on and on but i'll stop now.

1/31/2007 2:19 PM  
Blogger journeygal said...

I don't think I've ever listened to NPR. What's the station number in Orange County? (Amelia, I saw your 89.3 reference, is that NPR?)

I really like KPFK. They have a program called "Uprising" from 8-9 every morning that I listen to on the way to work and an excellent world news program on the way home in the evening.

2/01/2007 9:05 AM  
Blogger amelia said...

the two NPR stations in LA/OC are KCRW 89.9 and KPCC 89.3. they're both really great. KCRW does both talk and music (talk from 5 to 9 a.m.; music from 9 to noon; talk from noon to 8 p.m.; then music). KPCC is all talk. KCRW's local shows are, in my opinion, better than KPCC's. If you're interested in films, KPCC does an hour of film reviews every Friday (11 to noon), which i imagine you could listen to through their website later in the day.

you can also sign up for a bunch of different NPR (National Public Radio) and PRI (Public Radio International) podcasts for free through iTunes.

2/01/2007 1:14 PM  
Blogger amelia said...

one other thing--if you find yourself listening to NPR/PRI either through radio, internet, or podcast, please consider contributing even if you can only afford a little.

2/01/2007 1:15 PM  
Blogger Seymour Glass said...

really? only last year? i'm so sorry for all your years of NPR-less existence. that's some serious deprivation.

now, a couple other good shows: This American Life and All Things Considered are two of my favorites (in addition to The World).

and i happen to really enjoy Car Talk, but maybe you have to be familiar with auto mechanics to really appreciate the show.

2/03/2007 10:15 AM  
Blogger Caroline said...

Everyone, you're right about This American Life. I've only listened to it a couple of times - somehow I'm never in my car when its on - but I've really liked it. I'm going to find out when its on and make more of a point to listen to it.

Amy,I've now got that other NPR station programmed into my car. I listened to it today when that damn Car Talk show was on (sorry Rob). Much more enjoyable.

Amy, I'm already a dedicated contributor. I hate those pledge drives more than anything, but I guess they are necessary.

Rob, good point about All Things Considered. I forgot to list that one.

2/03/2007 9:53 PM  
Anonymous seekingcrb said...

I've been listening to NPR for years. With the advent of podcasts, I have found that I am listening to more programs that are based in other cities that aren't broadcast on my local station. Speaking of Faith has been one of my favorites for some time. Out of Boston try "On Point" with Tom Ashbrook, from San Francisco "Forum", from North or South Carolina (it's new) "The Story" with Dick Gordon who used to do a show out of Boston. There are so many that you wouldn't hear unless you live in those areas or unless you search the internet. Go to the NPR website and look at "Other" programs. Many are produced by APM, American Public Media. That's another place to go. Just wanted to share some of my favorites!

4/30/2007 11:55 AM  
Blogger john.white said...

This American Life is available via podcast now.

I also like "Morning Stories" out of Boston.

5/01/2007 1:58 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home