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Summer of Love: David Sedaris, “I Like Guys”

This week we’re discussing David Sedaris’s essay “I Like Guys,” about an early gay experience at summer camp and how much effort the young Sedaris spent trying to keep his sexuality under wraps. The piece comes from his book Naked, though you can also listen to him read it, for free, on an episode of This American Life. We talk about some of the controversies around Sedaris’s work, including this 2007 New Republic piece accusing him of fabricating details in his stories, and more recent dust-ups over his decision to write about the suicide of his sister.

Also this week: America’s favorite TV couples. Plus we answer a listener question about fighting with your romantic partner. How much bickering and annoyance should you tolerate in a relationship? At what point is it time to bail? If you want to ask us a love-related question, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter. But get them in soon, because the Summer of Love, sadly, won’t last forever.

Our episode this week is sponsored by a listener, Mike Prask, whose essay, “The Big Deal,” you can purchase as an Amazon single. The piece is about his daughter, who suffers from Rett Syndrome, a severe neurological condition that affects one in every 10,000 girls. All the proceeds from sales of the essay will be donated to The Rett Syndrome Research Trust. You can read more from Mike at his website, where he blogs regularly about his life and his daughter.

As always, we’re happy to hear what you think about the stuff we discussed on this week’s show. Email us, Tweet at us, leave a comment here on the episode post. And come check us out on Facebook, where we are still getting the hang of things, but are gradually posting more content, and where your likes and shares and whatnot will possibly help us find new listeners.

You can stream this week’s episode by clicking on the little player thingy below, or download the mp3 file to play on your favorite device. You can also visit us in the iTunes store, or wherever you normally get your podcasts, to download back episodes and subscribe (for free) so that you never miss another weekly installment.

Stream:

Download Summer of Love #3 (right-click, save-as)

Thanks for listening!

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Summer of Love: George Saunders, “The Barber’s Unhappiness”

This week we’re discussing the George Saunders story, “The Barber’s Unhappiness,” about a sad-sack guy with jacked-up toes who wants companionship but can’t seem to get out of his own way. We consider the story’s lessons about love and superficiality, and the line between generous and mean-spirited humor.

Also this week, we discuss the origins of computer dating, and how online dating just gives people new ways to be shallow. Plus America’s favorite wedding songs! And Tom talks about a woman he dated who isn’t his wife!

As always, we’re happy to hear what you think about the stuff we discussed on this week’s show. You can email us directly, hit us up on Twitter, or just leave a comment here on the site. Also: we’re now on Facebook! So come visit us over there, where we are slowly getting better about posting candid studio photos and links to stuff we’ve talked about on the show.

Stream the episode by clicking on the little player thingy below, or download the mp3 file to play on your favorite device. Or visit us in the iTunes store, or wherever you normally get your podcasts, where you can download back episodes and subscribe (for free) so that you never miss another weekly installment.

Stream:

Download Summer of Love #2 (right-click, save-as)

Thanks for listening!


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Summer of Love: Allan Gurganus, “Minor Heroism”

This week we’re debuting our new seasonal theme: the Summer of Love! We’ll be reading love-related stories and essays–and maybe even some poems–and discussing love from a variety of angles. Philosophy! Psychology! The comics page! Our own questionable decision-making! And so much more.

Speaking of the Summer of Love, if you’ve got a love-related question for us, send us an email, and we’ll answer your question on an upcoming episode. We can’t promise our advice will be good, but it will be … advice!

Anyway, on to this week’s show, in which we discuss Allan Gurganus’s story “Minor Heroism,” which originally appeared in the New Yorker in 1974. If you’re a New Yorker subscriber, you can read the story here. Though as with all our episodes, you don’t have to read the story to listen to the discussion. “Minor Heroism” was, reportedly, the first story featuring gay characters to be published in the New Yorker, and we talk this week about some of the seismic shifts that have occurred in gay rights and gay acceptance over the last few decades. Since our childhoods, there’s been a pretty amazing sea change, a realization we both had after the recent Supreme Court decision on gay marriage.

Also this week, we test our podcasting partnership by taking a relationship quick by Doctor Phil.

As always, we’re happy to hear what you think about the stuff we discussed on this week’s show. You can email us directly, hit us up on Twitter, or just leave a comment here on the site. Also: we’re now on Facebook! So come visit us over there, where we are slowly getting better about posting candid studio photos and links to stuff we’ve talked about on the show.

Stream the episode by clicking on the little player thingy below, or download the mp3 file to play on your favorite device. Or visit us in the iTunes store, or wherever you normally get your podcasts, where you can download back episodes and subscribe (for free) so that you never miss another weekly installment.

Stream:

Download Summer of Love #1 (right-click, save-as)

Thanks for listening!