Saturday, April 25, 2009

mein kampf: me vs. this american life

People have told me that I would love This American Life and I've tried to listen to it, I have. Maybe I've just heard the wrong episodes but I haven't liked it yet. In fact I sorta downright hate it. But I'm willing to learn. I want to be wrong about this. Jona and I had this conversation today on a facebook photo I posted of Lauren's apartment.

Jona: (probably prompted by seeing Lauren's bookshelves) I think I love her.

Me: Yeah you'd love her! She has a masters in creative writing would just really like her.

Jona: I know I know! It's got nothing to do with her degree! She has a degree in my heart because we both love Ira Glass. That's really all it takes. Plus her status updates make me shoot liquids out of my mouth if I'm drinking when I read them.

Me: Ugh. Ira Glass.

Jona: You're dead to me.

Me: Seriously, why do all these people I love and share every other interest with love This American Life so much? I've listened to like nine episodes in hopes I'll eventually like it too but I am continually discouraged instead of inspired by it. Is my soul made out of tar or something? But I love cupcakes and bunny rabbits and Dan Savage!

Jona: Maybe if they did a story about you on TAL you would be able to figure out what's wrong with you...because there is definitely something wrong with you...I can't believe you don't GET IT!!! Maybe if you watched the dvds??


(At this point Jason jumped in -)

Jason: Ira Glass and TAL has taught me all about the mundane intricacies of the upper middle class white person. And Sarah Vowell. And Jonathan Goldstein (have you heard This Canadian Life? It's called Wiretap). And that other guy, and David Sedaris. Roll the dice, one of them is on next week's episode. It's about teens in Chicago who are still on MySpace. Oh, and how did David's picture lead to this Facefight?

Me: Okay. I will persevere. I love you guys too much to just write off TAL.


Lauren said...

I love everything about this post.

How about I make a list for you of all the good, funny ones, and when I come back, we'll listen to them while we eat pudding?

Yeah? Yeah?

PS, JONA I <3 you.

Laura Toepfer said...

Hey, if you hate it, you hate it.

I go through TAL phases where I LOVE it and then the pacing, tone, attitude gets to me and I can't listen to it any more for a while. Then I hear a snippet of something fascinating and I start up again.

It's the Essence du NPR that eventually gets me, I think. All the contributors seem of a certain age, urbanity, and ironic bent. Best in small doses, I think. Unless it makes you want to run screaming from the room. In which case, summaries from people who listen to it is the way to go, I'm thinking.

Anonymous said...

.m. and I looooove Dan Savage! We went and saw him speak at a distinguished lecturers series. He is equally as engaging in person as he is on paper.

Anonymous said...

"Hey, if you hate it, you hate it."

I agree. There's nothing "wrong" with you if you don't like it. A person is interested or disinterested in each thing in life individually. There are not (or should not be) packages of things for us to be interested in that we have to take or leave. Just because you like a, b, c, x, and y does not mean you are required to like z. I have no clout but I am giving advice anyway.

And when I say "z" I'm not talking about -Z-. I like -Z-.