American Public Media

APM: The Story

APM:  The Story


The Story with Dick Gordon brings the news home - through passionate points of view and personal experiences. The program brings together ordinary and extraordinary people to provide perspective on the issues which affect us all. Our goal is to inspire conversation, thinking and understanding. Produced at North Carolina Public Radio - WUNC.



The Final Show [11.22.2013]

Nov 22, 2013


In The Story’s final show, we check in with guests who came on the program at moments when their lives were in transition, we revisit one of the first times we saw a story doesn’t have to be dramatic to be memorable, and Dick gives his final thoughts on eight years of hosting the program.

The Opera Couple [11.21.2013]

Nov 21, 2013


Ailyn Perez and Stephen Costello are husband-and-wife opera singers. They talk with Dick about the peculiarity of their relationship, which includes competing to see who can hold the longest notes, and trying to get cast in the same productions so that they can spend time together. Also in this show, wildlife photographer Tim Laman tells Dick about his journey to photograph every species of the Birds of Paradise. It took him 8 years and 18 expeditions to do it, and there are still a few he was not able to capture. The feathers and colors are hard to believe.

After Innocence: Exoneration in America, Day 4 [11.20.2013]

Nov 20, 2013


Jennifer Thompson was a college student when she was raped. During the attack Jennifer tried to memorize what the man looked like so she could identify him later. Jennifer identified Ronald Cotton. Cotton served 11 years before he was exonerated. Also, Lamonte Armstrong was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of his elderly next door neighbor. He was exonerated last summer and is still trying to negotiate life in a world he was removed from for years.

Exonerated By DNA [3.27.2007]

Nov 19, 2013


Over the last 5 years, the state of Texas has proven 12 people innocent by DNA testing. This month, James Waller officially became part of that group when he was exonerated of raping a child in 1982. Also in this episode: a new documentary about the musician John Coltrane.

After Innocence: Exoneration in America, Day 3 [11.19.2013]

Nov 19, 2013


Jason Puracal was working in Nicaragua when he was wrongfully convicted of drug trafficking, money laundering, and organized crime.  He was sentenced to 22 years in one of the worst prisons in the country.  His sister Janis led the charge for his release. Also, a forensic DNA expert who has devoted himself to using new DNA technology to free the innocent.

After Innocence: Exoneration in America, Day 2 [11.18.2013]

Nov 18, 2013


After Innocence: Exoneration in America. Day 2. Guests includeScott Hornoff, a Rhode Island police officer convicted of murder in 1996. Since his exoneration he has been unable to find work in this country so he has become a private security consultant in Afghanistan. Also: Julie Baumer, convicted of child abuse for what later was determined to be “shaken baby syndrome”. She was exonerated.  And the man at the Innocence Project who receives thousands of letters from prisoners hoping to be freed.

Bryan Ferry's Jazz Age [11.15.2013]

Nov 15, 2013


Known as a vocalist for the 1970's rock band Roxy Music, Bryan Ferry strips some of his classics of vocals and reinvents them in the style of 1920's jazz. Tune in to hear Avalon with trumpet, banjo and bass sax. Also in this show: 99% Invisible explores a Philadelphia park that became a mecca for skaters.

Final Exit [11.14.2013]

Nov 14, 2013


The Final Exit Network says mentally competent adults have a basic human right to end their lives. Dick Gordon talks with one of the group's guides, Fran Schindler, about her own serious illness and decision to participate.

Bloods [7.13.2011]

Nov 14, 2013


"I think about Vietnam every day." Many veterans will say the same thing about their time as a soldier. In this oral history, we hear from five veterans, all African-Americans, who fought in Vietnam early on. They were interviewed by the journalist Wallace Terry for his book Bloods: An Oral History of the Vietnam War by Black Veterans. Music. Also in this episode: from swords to ploughsares. And a listener story about the song "In Bright Mansions Above."

To The Soundtrack Of A Violin [11.13.2013]

Nov 13, 2013


Dick speaks with Toby and Itzhak Perlman about their marriage of 46 years, and how they met at music camp and became friends listening to classical music on records.

Tony Schwartz: 30,000 Recordings Later [11.12.2013]

Nov 12, 2013


Say your movement is restricted to one zip code - you might get stir-crazy, feel restricted. Sound recordist Tony Schwartz knew there was enough in his NYC neighborhood to keep him recording an entire career. Also in this show: Dick speaks with record collector Ignacio Varchausky of Buenos Aires.

A Prisoner And A Guard From The Attica Prison Riots [11.11.2013]

Nov 11, 2013


Memories of the Attica Prison uprising of 1971.

Finding Sanctuary In A Home For Outcasts And Criminals [11.08.2013]

Nov 8, 2013


Guest host Phoebe Judge speaks with Neil White, who got sentenced to 18-months for check fraud. He expected a minimum-security prison, but instead found himself in a home for leprosy patients. Then, Phoebe meets some of the people at the Carville National Leprosarium. Also in this show: Booker T. Jones on the rules of the organ, the day he first stepped into Satellite Records, and just how “Green Onions” got on the radio.

Wolves And The Man Who Hunts Them [11.07.2013]

Nov 7, 2013


Carter Niemeyer has wrestled with wolves to relocate them and examined the scenes of livestock kills to determine if wolves were responsible. He is a wolfer.

Hearing For The First Time [11.06.2013]

Nov 6, 2013


Sarah Churman talks about how she was able to hear for the first time when she was 29 years old. Also in this show: Producer Marika Partridge shares music, stories and sounds her family gathered in during a world tour in 1968.

Light And Ice [11.05.2013]

Nov 5, 2013


Camille Seaman's Shinnecock Indian ancestors hunted whale in the Atlantic Ocean, and began to photograph the the wonder of icebergs through her camera lens.We also hear from Elaine Parker who worked at McMurdo Research Station in Antarctica.

Winning And Losing In Football's Forgotten Town [11.04.2013]

Nov 4, 2013


Dick speaks with a coach and quarterback from the legendary football program of Muck City, Fl.

Alexandra Fuller [11.01.2013]

Nov 1, 2013


Guest host Phoebe Judge speaks with writer Alexandra Fuller about growing up in Africa. She captures her fierce, resilient mother, whom she calls "dangerously imaginative." Fuller says Africa and her mother taught her self-reliance and tenacity.

Discovering Leonardo [10.31.2013]

Oct 31, 2013


Dick speaks with Dianne Dwyer Modestini, the art restorer who discovered a painting by Salvatore Mundi was actually a painting by Leonardo da Vinci. Also in this show: Photographer Christian Patterson on how he discovered evidence of Charles Starkweather's and Caril Ann Fugate's muder spree - 50 years later.

Disappearing America [10.30.2013]

Oct 30, 2013


Photographer David Plowden's passion for America's steel bridges, corn fields, boats and steam engines is almost tactile in his photos. He talks with Dick Gordon about what has stopped him from taking photos: namely, the feeling that the America he knew is gone, and with it, many of the people he photographed with such admiration.

What It Is Like To Go To War [10.29.2013]

Oct 29, 2013


Karl Marlantes was a young Marine lieutenent man when he was sent to Vietnam, and he did what he was trained to do: kill the enemy and survive. Also on this show: Musician Tom Irwin found a diary squirreled away in a cupboard in the family home, which inspired his latest CD.

The Pizza Purist And The Cutgirl [10.28.2013]

Oct 28, 2013


When other kids were out riding bikes, Anthony Mangieri was in his grandmother’s kitchen experimenting with ancient dough leavening methods. Now he makes some of the best pizzas in the country. Also in this show: A trip to the Capitol Pool Checkers Club where men with nicknames like the Hammer, the Pressure Man, and the Razor gather to play checkers; and how one woman stopped being a ring girl, and started treating the wounds of boxers.

Checkmate [10.25.2013]

Oct 25, 2013


Rojelio Garcia was a teenager in jail, playing chess behind bars, when he remembered the fifth grade teacher he used to spar against. He wrote a letter to the teacher, Paul Karrer, and eventually the two started playing chess, writing on pieces of paper and sending it over the mail. Soon it became clear that, for both of them, it was more than a game. Also in this show: Ron Carter, a jazz double bass player, has been recorded in more than 2,000 albums.

Knock Out Therapy [3.27.2009]

Oct 24, 2013


Stacy Nakell has one of the toughest jobs there is. She's a social worker. But she has an extra edge when she tells women that they can find the courage to stand up to a violent person in their lives. Stacy is a boxer in her off-hours. Also in this episode, Lucy Carnaghi about her favorite job, we couldn't resist. For a time, Lucy drove a horse-drawn carriage through the streets of Chicago. 

The Dung Sisters [07.08.09]

Oct 24, 2013


Anna Bliss and Linda Lehmann both lost their jobs last year. They went to unemployment support groups but found the groups to be all about networking, not helping one another get through the anxiety and sadness of being jobless.

So started the Dung Sisters—a small group of unemployed women who meet weekly to share their highs and lows as they try to lift themselves out of unemployment. 

James On His Own [07.15.09]

Oct 24, 2013


James Morrow had some problems growing up and ended up in foster care. That experience was a nightmare. He returned home to try living with his mother again, but ended up dropping out of high school. Shortly after, his family was evicted. For a time, James was living completely on his own - staying with a friend's family, avoiding both school and the state foster care program. That's when he met Dianne Reinhardt, an artisan baker who gave James a job. Also in the show: Life as a school resource officer.

Staying Afloat [8.5.2010]

Oct 24, 2013


 The recession has made new jobs few and far between, and applicants for entry-level positions can range in age from baby boomers to current college grads.  In 2008, Liam Daniel Pierce had an offer to intern at The New Yorker and a degree from an Ivy League school in hand. But then he got the news that his internship had been cut under new budget restraints. Undeterred, he moved to New York anyway and began a several month stretch of temp work and odd jobs. But this former college newspaper editor has more than a proficiency in Microsoft Word on his resume: he is a trained gondolier. Also in this episode, Deb Burgess operates what's thought to be the last pack station of its kind in the United States.  And every time the price of gold heads towards $1000 an ounce, Debra Graham is reminded of the adventure she had back in the 80s. It all began when she was unemployed and took out an ad offering a reward for information leading to a job.

One String Makes Big Music [10.24.2013]

Oct 24, 2013


Andrew Chin, a.k.a. Brushy One-String, has crafted a unique style playing a one-string guitar and singing in an utterly original voice. Also in this show: A sculptor recreates Rome’s Trevi Fountain - in cardboard.

A Tourist And Terrorists [12.2.2008]

Oct 23, 2013


Back in 1970, Rich Preyer was on a return flight from Europe when a group of terrorists boarded the plane. He and the other passengers narrowly escaped with their lives. In the years since, Rich has thought often about his chance encounter with a then-nascent militant Palestinian group. He talks with Dick Gordon about what it was like to find himself in the middle of an international terrorist incident long before the world was so familiar with terrorism. Also in this episode: a brush with fame, Michael Rosen meets Dave Brubeck.

The House Eudora Built [10.23.2013]

Oct 23, 2013


Host Dick Gordon visits the home of Pulitzer Prize winner Eudora Welty and finds piles of books, letters from other writers of her time, and a type writer.

Dark Eyeliner And Pringles [10.22.2013]

Oct 22, 2013


Dick speaks with Andrea Morales, a photographer who captured the lives of young people in a small town of Ohio. Also in this show: photographer Nina Berman; and the story of a photo of the Cincinnati River in 1848.

Fix A Well, Change The World [10.21.2013]

Oct 21, 2013


A bartender talks about working to bring clean water to people in Darfur. Also in this show: A visit with Cyro Baptista, a percussionist who plays with objects most people wouldn’t consider instruments.

The Fairy Tales Of The Brothers Grimm [10.18.2013]

Oct 18, 2013


Celebrating the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm.

Give My Poor Heart Ease [10.17.2013]

Oct 17, 2013


Bill Ferris grew up in Mississippi, going to church with his family's housekeeper and falling in love with the music and drama of the church. He discovered the blues and made recordings in the 60s and 70s that capture the roots of Mississippi blues.

Fishing Perfect [02.22.2010]

Oct 17, 2013


Rick Jackson takes his dad out fishing every year on his dad's birthday, February 22. One day, Rick took his father out, and they caught more bass, and bigger bass, than either one of them had ever seen. Rick's a serious fisherman and he couldn't make sense of it, until he realized that they were fishing on the anniversary of his younger brother's accidental death. Also in this show: Getting Home Again

Poetry From The Atomic City [10.16.2013]

Oct 16, 2013


Poet Kathleen Flenniken says her book “Plume” is an attempt to make sense of the pride and betrayal she feels from growing up near a Cold War nuclear plant. Also in this show: After World War II, Warsaw wasn’t restored. It was re-imagined.

Remembering Katyn [4.16.2010]

Oct 16, 2013


We remember the Katyn Massacre, the killing of over 20,000 Polish officers and intelligentsia at the start of World War II. Anna Wojtowicz’s father perished on that plane. Also in this episode, Bob Porto is a member of the Tea Party.

Uncle Charlie [10.15.2013]

Oct 15, 2013


Three-decades of photographs, depicting the tough life and descent of "Uncle Charlie." Plus, an eerie coincidence captured on film, and a story about distance on the highway.

Maxed Out On Everest [10.14.2013]

Oct 14, 2013


Hundreds of people are now attempting to climb Mt. Everest every year. National Geographic's Mark Jenkins says the mountain, once tackled only by professional climbers, has become accessible to anyone who can afford to pay to go up and down.  And as a result, the mountain is being ruined by garbage, human excrement, and even bodies of deceased climbers. Also in this show, we learn about a new kind of aircraft, the “Aeroscraft."  It’s a space-age looking machine that’s almost as big as a football field and able to carry 50 tons or more.

The Clues Behind Amelia Earhart’s Last Radio Transmission [10.11.2013]

Oct 11, 2013


Betty Brown was a teenager when she heard distress radio transmissions of the aviator Amelia Earhart. Decades later, what she heard became a key in the search for the famously disappeared pilot. Also today: One half of the legendary comedy duo Smothers Brothers on how to develop jokes and timing.

Where Are They Now? [10.11.2013]

Oct 11, 2013


In The Story’s final show, we check in with guests who came on the program at moments when their lives were in transition, we revisit one of the first times we saw a story doesn’t have to be dramatic to be memorable, and Dick gives his final thoughts on eight years of hosting the program.

BEST OF THE STORY: A House Divided [10.10.2013]

Oct 10, 2013


All this week, more of our most popular episodes from our eight year history. Mohammed El Kurd grew up in the East Jerusalem house where his family has lived for more than 50 years. In 2009, a group of Israeli settlers moved into a building on the property, claiming it as their own. Also: A trumpet was what got Jack Tueller through childhood, through World War II and was the reason he met his wife.

BEST OF THE STORY: Did The Beatles Steal A Song My Father Wrote? [10.09.2013]

Oct 9, 2013


When Michael Humphrey was growing up, he would sometimes hear his father telling strangers a story about how the Beatles stole the composition for “Lady Madonna” from him. Eventually, he looked into the story himself. ALSO TODAY: Jim Sadwith had written the script for his high school play based on J.D. Salinger’s classic “The Catcher and the Rye,” when he decided to look for the reclusive author to get permission to do the play; and Mark Hagerty tells host Dick Gordon how New York City shaped his father and about their special meeting place under Grand Central Station’s clock tower.

BEST OF THE STORY: Love At Ninety [10.08.2013]

Oct 8, 2013


Nate Kalichman was 90 and Paula Givan was 67 when they got married. They share their stories of finding love late in life and making plans. Also: Tending Monet’s Garden, and Judy Garland’s flight attendant on a cross-country flight.

BEST OF THE STORY: In a Classroom, Two Longtime Rivals Meet

Oct 7, 2013


Growing up, Yafinceio Harris and Michael Wilder were members of rival crews and came close to armed confrontation. They eventually had a meeting neither expected – in the classroom of a community college. Also in this show: A dreamy trip to Brazil, Argentina and France through the music of Dom la Nena.

BEST OF THE STORY: Mr. Ishiyama [10.04.2013]

Oct 4, 2013


Dana James and Patricia Coleman were newlyweds traveling across Asia on a tight budget when they met a friendly man who wanted to give them a generous present.  Also: Jacques Vroom used to have a pass to fly anywhere in the world aboard first class. And: A U.S. Air Force serviceman tells the story of dating a Japanese woman whose family distrusted Americans.

BEST OF THE STORY: Looking To Clean India’s Holy Ganges River [10.3.2013]

Oct 3, 2013


We continue listening back to some of the most memorable stories we’ve aired. Today, Producer Phoebe Judge visits the Ganges River, one of the holiest yet most polluted places in India, and meets people who want to clean it up. Also in this show: Arun Gandhi was 10 years old when he was beaten up and bullied because of the color of his skin. He wanted revenge, so his parents sent him to spend time with his grandfather Mahatma Gandhi; and for more than 25 years, few people have been allowed to enter the 1,600-square-mile Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Writer Henry Shukman tells the story of a family who returned there.

BEST OF THE STORY: Life On The Line [10.2.2013]

Oct 2, 2013


For years, Emma Pender and Rita Perry faced harsh conditions and physical injuries working at a chicken processing plant in North Carolina. But the money was too good to pass up living in a town where the jobs were few. Also in this show: When Jenny Brown was laid off from her job in Oregon, she was offered a job as a captain of a river ferry even though she had no experience in boats at all. And while she was happy she found the job, it wasn’t what she was looking for.

BEST OF THE STORY: Grizzly Bear Attack [10.1.2013]

Oct 1, 2013


Joe Williams was a 20-year-old looking for adventure at Montana’s Glacier National Park when he ran into a grizzly bear and it mauled him. Also in this show: On the weekend when the hurricane hit the shore, Mike Petro was in his home in Gulfport, Miss. He survived the storm by riding on the roofs of houses that were swept away by the storm surge; and when Miriam Novogrodsky was 8, her father decided to take the family on the only vacation it ever had: a three-week hitchhiking trip.

BEST OF THE STORY: Growing Up In The White House [9.28.2013]

Sep 30, 2013


Luci Baines Johnson was 16 when her father Lyndon Johnson was thrust into the presidency. When her family moved to the White House, she was fully aware of the tragic reason for their move. ALSO: Buddy Edgerton, a neighbor of the illustrator Norman Rockwell, tells the story of how Rockwell painted people in their small town into what became the most famous portraits of Americana; and John Hope Franklin, who as a young black man in Oklahoma was turned away from and the military, became one of the most respected chroniclers of African-American history.

A Pilgrimage For Annie Leibovitz [9.27.2013]

Sep 27, 2013


Photographer Annie Leibovitz on the project that saved her. She calls it “Pilgrimage.” Also in this show: Robert MacFarlane talks about walking the world's ancient paths; and organizer Laurie Jo Reynolds offered prison inmates in solitary cells to take photos and send them to them. The requests she got were remarkable.

After The Lebanese Civil War, An Apology [9.26.2013]

Sep 26, 2013


Assaad Chaftari had served as an intelligence official during the Lebanese Civil War. It was years later, when heard his son saying disparaging things about Muslims, that he decided to repent publicly for his actions during war. Also in this show: For more than 50 years, Wally Boot has been working for the Steinway piano company, helping to make the pianos that are shipped to the grandest concert halls in the world; and newly discovered recordings from  musicians Don McLean, Jerry Jeff Walker, Pete Seeger  and others at the tiny coffee house Caffe Lena.

After World War II, Only A Scarf As A Reminder [9.25.2013]

Sep 25, 2013


When Sheila Hutton was a seven-year-old girl growing up in England before the war, her parents shipped her away to the U.S. Six years later, when the war had ended and she’d become a teenager, she returned and had only a navy blue head scarf to recognize her mother. Also in this show: When Becky Cullinan’s husband was deployed to war for a third time, she wrote a list of things to not say to the spouse of a soldier; and when the U.S. led an invasion on the island of Grenada in 1983, an American medical student used his ham radio to send dispatches of the conflict to family and reporters.

Avoiding The American South, Then Finding It [9.24.2013]

Sep 24, 2013


For years, the writer Wilton Barnhardt avoided living in his home state of North Carolina or writing about it. But in his newest novel, he dives into the ups and downs of a prominent family from Charlotte, N.C. Also in this show: The song writer and banjo player Old Man Luedeke talks about the inspiration he draws from old country and Canada’s northwestern reaches of Yukon province.

From The Classroom To The Graduation Stage [9.23.2013]

Sep 23, 2013


Over the last 20 years the rate of students dropping out before graduation has steadily declined. But a stark figure remains: On average, about one million leave every year before graduation. Host Dick Gordon speaks with students and educators about traditional and new ways to help young people succeed. 

The Modern Midwife: Ina May Gaskin [9.20.2013]

Sep 20, 2013


Ina May Gaskin, the midwifery pioneer, on natural birth in America. Also in this show: Three daughters and one son tell the stories of growing up with their mothers’ kitchens in this story by the Kitchen Sisters producers, Nikki Silva and Davia Nelson.

For Accused Witches, A Last Resort [9.19.2013]

Sep 19, 2013


When Leo Igwe was a child in Nigeria, he saw his father get beaten for being accused of witchcraft. Igwe has made it his life’s work to help people accused of being witches and visits camps where they take refuge. Also in this show: For the last five years, photographer Murray Ballard has followed the practice of cryogenics and the people who choose to freeze themselves after death in the hopes that technology will allow them to come back to life.

A Couple's 'Edge Of the World' [9.18.2013]

Sep 18, 2013


Eight years ago, Karin Bergquist and Linford Detweiler moved to a brick farmhouse in rural Ohio. Their band Over the Rhine’s latest album is a love letter and an ode to the joys of home. Also in this show: Allen Dorough was cleaning out a barn when he found boxes full of illustrations by a black architect who’d been ahead of his time.

Your Dad’s Job Isn’t So Bad [9.17.2013]

Sep 17, 2013


As a young man, Bert Stratton resisted joining his family property rental company. Now that he has two grown sons of his own, he’s trying to convince them that it’s not so bad. Also in this show: Bob Stewart, whose arcade on the Jersey Shore was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy last fall, had just re-opened his business when a massive fire tore through the board walk, burning everything he had rebuilt; and after her parents died, Anya Yurchyshyn cleaned her mother’s house, and what she found completely changed her view of her father, her mother, and their relationship.

Fighting For A New Heart [9.16.2013]

Sep 16, 2013


Paul Corby is a 23-year old Pennsylvania man in need of a new heart, but he has not been placed on a transplant list. Paul is autistic and doctors have deemed him ineligible for the transplant list. Also in this show: Al Golub, a freelance photographer based near Yosemite National Park, has been photographing the nearby Rim Fire, even as it edges toward his own home; lobster wholesaler Joe Ciaramitaro on a monster lobster and one his workers dubbed the “Phantom of the Lobster;” and Jerry Howland, one of the founding teachers of the live homework help TV show “Extra Help,” on one caller he’ll never forget.

A Soldier's Eye: Rediscovered Photos From Vietnam (9.13.2013)

Sep 13, 2013


Charlie Haughey shot almost 2000 photographs of his fellow soldiers in Vietnam, but left the photo negatives untouched in a box for 45 years. Recently, a friend encouraged him to digitize the images and Charlie says he didn't sleep for days after revisiting the faces from his past.

Plus, at 91 years old, Henry Stone is still at work as a record producer. He remembers producing one of Ray Charles' earliest recordings, and hand-selling early R&B albums in barbershops.

Chef and The Farmer [9.12.2013]

Sep 12, 2013


A southern girl moves to New York City to become a chef and swears she’ll never look back. But now Vivian Howard is home in rural North Carolina, making southern staples fancy at her restaurant Chef and Farmer.

Night Raid [9.11.2013]

Sep 11, 2013


Combat photographer Louie Palu tells the story behind his portrait of a wounded Afghan soldier aboard a U.S. Army Medevac helicopter. The photo is being recognized by the Smithsonia's National Portrait Gallery. Also in this show: Danny Lewin was on the first plane to hit the World Trade Center in 2001. He’s often called the “first victim” of those attacks.  What many people don’t know is that Lewin developed the web technology that allowed millions of people to quickly access the same websites at the same time, as many did on September 11.

From The Military Base To The Marshlands: A Soldier Returns to Iraq [9.10.2013]

Sep 10, 2013


Helicopter pilot Carina Roselli faced enemy fire in Iraq. Recently, she returned as an environmental worker. Also in this show: In 1948, 28 Mexican citizens being flown by the U.S. to their native country perished in a plane crash in California. Woody Guthrie protested their anonymity and decades later historian Tim Hernandez set out to find their names.

Helping Kids Inside Syrian Refugee Camps [9.6.2013]

Sep 9, 2013


Helping kids inside Syrian refugee camps. Also in this show: Searching for the Little Prince’s baobab tree in Nigeria; performing the un-performable “Vexations” composition; and creating a new font for the old problem of dyslexia.

When Women Were Birds [9.6.2013]

Sep 5, 2013


Western writer Terry Tempest Williams spent 25 years sorting out the message her mother gave her when she left her three shelves of blank journals.

Dessa’s Parts of Speech [9.5.2013]

Sep 5, 2013


She uses just the one name, but don’t be fooled by that brevity. Dessa, a rapper from Minneapolis, has earned a following with her song-writing skills and her work with the hip hop collective Doomtree. Also in this show: In 1973, the American war against communism in Laos ended, leaving their Hmong allies behind; and in a room across from Carnegie Hall, the exuberant young piano phenom Lang Lang demonstrates how he approaches a Brahms Intermezzo.

The Cost of Truth (09.4.2013)

Sep 4, 2013


James Holzrichter became a reluctant whistleblower after finding evidence of misconduct by his employer, Northrop Grumman. He became a pariah in his field, and eventually found himself unemployed, homeless, and unable to protect his family. Also in this show, we honor a former guest, Lindy Linenberger, who survived the Great Depression and Dust Bowl. Lindy died this past summer at the age of 88.

Fighting For A Higher Minimum Wage (09.3.2013)

Sep 3, 2013


In today's show, we hear from a student who, with her classmates, successfully raised the minimum wage in San Jose, California; a golf league for Detroit detectives; a novelist who is teaching Chicago Police Officers to write fiction; and a 2004 conversation between Dick Gordon and the late Seamus Heaney. 

After Innocence: Jennifer Thompson & LaMonte Armstrong

Sep 2, 2013


Jennifer Thompson was a college student when she was raped. During the attack Jennifer tried to memorize what the man looked like so she could identify him later. Jennifer wrongly identified Ronald Cotton, and he served 11 years before he was exonerated.

Also, Lamonte Armstrong was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of his elderly next door neighbor. He was exonerated last summer and is still trying to negotiate life in a world he was removed from for years.

After Innocence: The Puracals & Greg Hampikian

Aug 30, 2013


Jason Puracal was working in Nicaragua when he was wrongfully convicted of drug trafficking, money laundering, and organized crime.  He was sentenced to 22 years in one of the worst prisons in the country.  His sister Janis led the charge for his release. Also, Greg Hampikian, a forensic expert who has devoted himself to using DNA technology to free the innocent.

After Innocence: Scott Hornoff & Julie Baumer

Aug 29, 2013


This is one episode in our four-part series "After Innocence: Exoneration in America." Guests include Scott Hornoff, a Rhode Island police officer convicted of murder in 1996. Since his exoneration he has been unable to find work in this country so he has become a private security consultant in Afghanistan. Also: Julie Baumer, convicted of child abuse for what later was determined to be “shaken baby syndrome”. She was exonerated. And the man at the Innocence Project who receives thousands of letters from prisoners hoping to be freed.

Marching On Washington: A Photographer, A Minister, A Student, A Ranger [8.28.2013]

Aug 28, 2013


This special edition of The Story revisits key moments from that seminal day 50 years ago, and the repercussions it had for people who were there: a minister, a photographer, a ranger, and a student turned activist remember it as one of the greatest moments of their lives. Also in this show: Artist Toni Scott has studied the narratives of American slaves and built life-size castings of people in her work Bloodlines.

Diary Of A Bad Year: A War Correspondent’s Dilemma [8.27.2013]

Aug 27, 2013


As friends and collegues were kidnapped and killed, Kelly McEvers continued to report for NPR in the Middle East during the Arab uprisings. She has made a documentary about a year there, and speaks with guest host Sean Cole.

Inside The Mind Of A CIA Analyst [8.26.2013]

Aug 26, 2013


Cindy Storer, one of the CIA analysts who tracked Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda before Sept. 11, talks about the reported chatter of terrorist attacks at U.S. embassies and the  world of intelligence gathering.  Also in this show: as a young black Haitian-American, Constantin Severe had enough run-ins with the police to be wary of them. But when he grew up to become a public defender, he learned to trust officers.

Holding It Down: The Poet And The Predator [8.23.2013]

Aug 23, 2013


When Lynn Hill retired from operating Predator drones for the U.S. Air Force, she closed that chapter of her life – until she started writing poetry about having one foot in the war and one foot at home. Also in this show: a Vietnam veteran turned Franciscan friar talks about war and the long journey of finding a place to work and feel at ease.

Susie Ray Originals

Aug 22, 2013


Susie Ray, a painter in London, recently opened a gallery where she displays her original copies – copies she’s made of Monet, Degas and others that are so close to the original, they’ve fooled art auction firms. Also in this show: performance artist Sara Juli handed out her life savings to an audience. They could give the cash back or walk out with it; Kate McGuire was driving home one day when she looked away from the road to her GPS unit. She didn’t see she was driving toward a parked car and a man standing beside it; and 30 years after the assassination of Benigno Aquino, one of the most prominent opponents of Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, Aquino's brother-in-law tells the story of what happened the day he was killed.

Lining Up Your Surfboard With The 38th Parallel [8.21.2013]

Aug 21, 2013


On a good surfers’ beach, usually everyone is in the water. But at 38th Parallel Beach –  near the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea – surfers sometimes see parades with tanks, soldiers and guns. Also in this show: contributor Scott Carrier goes to Hawaii to learn how to surf and test his theory that the music he associates with surfing is the true surf music; and when Matt Brooks and his wife Pam bought an 80-year-old wooden yacht named Dorade, people thought it was crazy they wanted to race it in weeks-long oceanic races. That was until it started winning.

My Summer At An Indian Call Center [8.20.2013]

Aug 20, 2013


Andrew Marantz, who traveled to India to work at a call center, details the reaction he got when he showed up, the accent workers are encouraged to use, and the classes offered to work there. Also in this show: When illustrator James Gulliver Hancock moved to New York City in 2009, he started to get familiar with the city by illustrating its buildings. He has compiled his sketches in the book, “All the Buildings in New York.”

Fire Ants Taking Over [8.17.2013]

Aug 19, 2013


After he and his girlfriend were swarmed by fire ants one day, writer Justin Nobel set off to figure out how they got to the U.S. and why they’re spreading farther north each year. Also in this show: In a patch of eastern Ecuador's Amazon rain forest, a researcher has been looking for treehopper insects that communicate using sound; and we have another nice piece from the Memory Palace, this one on what inspired one man to invent the telegraph.

President John F. Kennedy’s Last Exhibit [08.15.2013]

Aug 16, 2013


The night before he was killed, President John F. Kennedy spent the night surrounded by a one-of-a-kind collection of masterpiece artworks. A curator in Dallas has recreated that collection as a tribute. Also in this show: Gore Vidal, the late novelist, speaks with interviewer Studs Terkel in 1961 about John F. Kennedy and the great intellectuals of American history; when a would-be thief tried to get away with Voodoo Donut Kitchen’s prized Holy Donut, clerk Jay Boss Rubin sprung into action. What he didn’t know was the pursuit would take on a life of its own.

Stepping Into The Black: A Hotshot Firefighter’s View [8.15.2013]

Aug 15, 2013


As western forests continue to burn every summer, new technology is helping fight them. But Rick Cowell, a veteran hotshot firefighter, says the work has remained the same. Also in this show: producer Kenny Malone looks into the story behind a collection of salt shakers and a picture left behind in a Florida deposit box; how the rise of Hitler forced great physicists such as Max Born to flee Germany in the 1930s; and producer David Schulman goes on a search for digital sound that can compare to the acoustic sound of a Stradivarius violin.

Three Miles Under The Sea [8.14.2013]

Aug 14, 2013


Jon Copley dove more than three miles in the first manned mission to the deepest known hot water vents in the world. And even though the purpose was to study life there, he was captivated by what he saw on his way down – and back up. Also in this show: a whale washes up on the shore of Lubec, Maine, and people have different theories about the meaning of its arrival – and how to get rid of it; and author Jeanine Cummins reads from her novel The Crooked Branch.

Coming Out: A Basketball Coach Says He’s Gay [8.13.2013]

Aug 13, 2013


For 17 years, Anthony Nicodemo didn’t tell the high school where he coached basketball that he was gay. Earlier this year, he called for a meeting with players and parents and came out. ALSO: This July, Cody Dent managed to spoil a perfect game by Boston Red Sox minor league affiliate the Lowell Spinners. It’s kind of like the infamous 1978 day in which his father Bucky Dent spoiled a game for the Red Sox; and for years, a dozen friends in Natick, R.I., gathered on Friday nights in a cloud of cigarette smoke, holding cans full of pennies and a card deck for poker.

A Call To Register Voters In Mississippi, Again [8.12.2013]

Aug 12, 2013


In the 1960s, Hollis Watkins helped convince blacks in Mississippi that registering to vote was worth the risk. Now, he says he is concerned this year’s Supreme Court decision striking down part of the voting rights act will keep people from going to the polls. Also in this show: activists were fighting for equal access to schools and the voting booth, George Wallace gave a speech when he was inaugurated as Alabama governor: “Segregation now, segregation forever;” and two boys – one black and one white – make friends and music in this story by Clyde Edgerton.

A Family In Aleppo, Divided By War, Tries To Connect [8.9.2013]

Aug 9, 2013


Basel used to cross from the side of Aleppo that’s controlled by rebels to the side controlled by the regime. But now, he says, that one-mile stretch has become too dangerous. Also in this show: a country veterinarian gets a phone call at 3 a.m. in this short story by Ron Rash; and Sister Mary McCaffrey spent more than 50 years in a once-thriving convent in Hastings on Hudson, N.Y. But when she was 80, and the number of nuns there had declined, she had to find herself a new home.

Detroit, Unbroken Down [8.8.2013]

Aug 8, 2013


Photographer Dave Jordano got tired of the negative press about his native Detroit, so he set out to make portraits of creativity and humanity. Also in this show: An FBI investigator gives his theory of what happened to the union leader Jimmy Hoffa, who disappeared almost 40 years ago; and Charlie Rizzo shares the story of his lifelong journey with his father Matt Rizzo, who died in 1986 but remains a constant presence in Charlie's life.

Enemies Meet [8.7.2013]

Aug 7, 2013


Derrick Durr was laid off as one of Chicago’s violence interrupters earlier this year. He continues to do the work, without a paycheck. Recently, he coordinated a dinner for sixty young men in his neighborhood, many of them rivals. Also in this show: Walking along the Hudson River, guest host Sean Cole and his friend Malissa O’Donnell discovered a monument to two of his poetry heroes.

Walking With Bears [8.6.2013]

Aug 6, 2013


Biologist Lynn Rogers has been putting radio collars on bears and feeding them for years in Ely, Minn. Now, town residents are trying to get the license for his scientific project revoked. Also in this show: Writer Jo Ann Beard reads an essay from her book “The Boys of My Youth;” Booker T. Jones on the rules of the organ, the day he first stepped into Satellite Records, and just how “Green Onions” became a hit.

Finding Sanctuary In A Home For Outcasts And Criminals [8.5.2013]

Aug 5, 2013


Guest host Phoebe Judge speaks with Neil White, who got sentenced to 18-months for check fraud. He expected a minimum-security prison, but instead found himself in a home for leprosy patients. Then, Phoebe meets some of the people at the Carville National Leprosarium. Also in this show: A man named Thanatos roams the streets of Vancouver in a mask.

Grayson: The Baby Whale [8.2.2013]

Aug 2, 2013


Swimmer Lynne Cox meets a baby whale. Also in this show: The Purple Hotel is a Chicago landmark.

One String Makes Big Music [8.1.2013]

Aug 1, 2013


Andrew Chin, a.k.a. Brushy One-String, has crafted a unique style playing a one-string guitar and singing in an utterly original voice. Also in this show: A sculptor recreates Rome’s Trevi Fountain - in cardboard.

Journey To The Centroid Of The Country (7.30.2013)

Jul 31, 2013


Orion Magazine writer Jeremy Miller explores the exact center of the U.S. population, and finds that its movement has paralleled the country's westward expansion and development. Also in this show: An audio meditation on riding the bus to work every day; and artist Bo Gehring makes portraits with a slow moving camera set to music.

Mapping With Clicks [7.30.2013]

Jul 30, 2013


Brian Bushway became legally blind when he was 14 and learned to use a soft clicking sound to orient himself. He now teaches the technique, echolocation, to other blind people. Also in this show: Photographer George Steinmetz talks about his glider, and how he uses it to soar above deserts and vast wild spaces to capture the view from above.

Growing Up With Anne Frank [7.29.2013]

Jul 29, 2013


A childhood friend of Anne Frank remembers a vibrant, curious girl. Also in this show: Robert Macfarlane reads from his latest book, "The Old Ways: A Journey On Foot."

A Digital Detox From Wired Technology [7.26.2013]

Jul 26, 2013


When Levi Felix left his power job, he set out to travel the globe. He wound up learning how to help people disconnect from technology. Also in this show: One afternoon, Ed Rosenthal went for what he thought would be a short hike in the Mojave Desert and wound up lost; Margareta Claesson and her husband, noted physiologist Knut Schmidt-Nielsen, studied the camel and found the key to its survival is in its nose.

An American And Stalin’s Family [7.25.2013]

Jul 25, 2013


While reporting in Moscow during the Cold War, American journalist George Krimsky found himself entangled in the personal drama of the Stalin family. Also in this show: how the first and only women's professional baseball league came into existence during World War II; and how sound designers make sports sound exciting - even if they have to fake it.

Opening A Window: Getting Started As Labor Activists

Jul 24, 2013


Workers from a bankrupt window factory in Chicago have opened their own employee-owned cooperative. We look back at the 2008 worker lock-in of the Republic Windows and Doors factory. Also in this show: Host Dick Gordon speaks with two former Chicago factory workers about starting an employee-owned factory; and since the verdict of the Trayvon Martin case, playwright Nicole Anderson Cobb has been thinking about where we, as a country, are.

For Evangelical Pastor, A Road From Belief To Atheism

Jul 23, 2013


Jerry DeWitt spent most of his life working as an evangelical preacher in Louisiana. Two years ago, he realized he could no longer lead others to believe in something he didn’t. Also in this show: A group of students and professionals created a human-pedaled helicopter that can rise higher than 10 feet and hover for more than a minute.

Hunger Strike: A Protest Across California

Jul 22, 2013


Steven Czifra spent 10 years in prison – eight of them in solitary confinement. Also: Author Ron Rash reads his short story “Something Rich and Strange,” from his new collection, “Nothing Gold Can Stay;” and violinist Hilary Hahn, who learned to play Bach when she was four, still loves to play his compositions as a soloist – and with other musicians.