Thursday, April 23, 2009

Buy American (Radio)

It's a slice of U.S. Foreign Policy on Panama from the perspective of a Michigan woman who, as a schoolgirl, unwittingly penpal'ed with Manuel Noriega. It's domestic dental health-on-recession told by dentists treating an increased incidence of teeth grinding. It's the competitive selection of caucasian baby dolls over Latino, African American and Asian American baby dolls as chronicled by a former FAO Schwartz worker.

It's an American life. Maybe not yours, maybe not your friend's, but quite possibly your friend's friend's. We know well the rich narrative that is TAL from runs, bedtime, roadtrips and about everything in between. Its inspiration to look beyond the semi-trucks and strip malls of our landscape, or rather be curious about the idiosyncratic individuals behind the wheels, helps drive our desire to construct our own little narratives or at least maintain hope for illusory control.

That the host of a public radio program which so uniquely appreciates the diversity and doldrums of American cultures, should suffer funding problems is a sad -- and perhaps authentically American -- occurrence and commentary. Stephen Colbert's near-glowing reception of host Ira Glass cheers us. (Is it us projecting or does Colbert seem to especially enjoy the company of Ira?) Note: The clip is a mystique-spoiler for those who haven't seen the man behind the mic.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Ira Glass
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