Kurt Braunohler and his girlfriend had been together for thirteen years, and they were still only 30. They wondered why they had never considered marriage, and realized that they needed to sleep with other people before they tied the knot.
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Kim Jong-Il loved movies, but hated all the movies made in North Korea. So he kidnapped a famous South Korean director and his ex-wife—a South Korean film star—locked them up in a villa in North Korea, and forced them to make movies for him. Nancy Updike tells the story.
Carmen Maria Machado tells the story of being stuck in an abusive relationship as a “Choose Your Own Adventure” tale. This chapter of Carmen’s memoir, “In The Dream House,” was read for us by actor Zoë Winters.
Couples therapist Esther Perel talks to Ira about the very particular ways she’s seeing lockdown impact couples around the world. Listen to season three of her podcast, “Where Should We Begin: Couples Under Lockdown.” (13 minutes)
In her forties, Jill Ciment wrote about the love of her life.
Ira goes to a crowded singles bar where it wasn’t hard to find serial ghosters — people who kiss and disappear. (8 minutes)
Comedian Will Weldon’s ex-wife made a movie loosely based on their marriage. Producer Elna Baker watches the film with Will as he revisits his break-up.
Heather and her girlfriend lived with a cat named Sid. The girlfriend showed all sorts of affection toward Sid that she never showed toward Heather.
We turn now to one of the loneliest experiences a person can have: marriage. Ira listens to two people trying to break through what’s going wrong in their marriage, an excerpt from a new podcast in which real couples have a real therapy session with a real therapist, Esther Perel.
Ira talks to producer Sean Cole about a video he found of the rap duo Run the Jewels—giving advice to teenage girls.
Sean continues his story about Rookie Magazine's Ask A Grown, and goes through some particularly interesting moments of advice from famous people to regular teen girls. Watch more videos from Ask A Grown. (14 1/2 minutes) Ira's Ask A Grown Video
Producer Stephanie Foo talks to veteran Michael Pitre, who had to change the way he talked about his experiences in the military after he realized the effect it was having on people.
There are young single men and women at the camps, and there’s some flirting for sure. But usually it doesn’t seem to go very far.
Host Ira Glass interviews author Alain de Botton about why so many of us choose the wrong spouses. Botton is the author of the new novel The Course of Love.
Comedian Kurt Braunohler makes a wrong choice, for his own amusement.
We close the show with one more excerpt from Lindy West’s book, Shrill.
Lori Gottlieb's story from the prologue continues. One complication led to another and before long, the writer seemed to be lying to her.
A group called Improv Everywhere decides that an unknown band, Ghosts of Pasha, playing their first ever tour in New York, ought to think they're a smash hit. So they study the band's music and then crowd the performance, pretending to be hard-core fans.
Musician David Berkeley has gotten a lot of requests in his life, but none quite like the offer his agent got last year. A fan wanted Berkeley to come to his house and help save his relationship by serenading the troubled couple with a personal concert.
Ira talks to Rachel Rosenthal, who spent years trying to figure out who had stolen her identity. She was closing bank account after bank account, getting more and more paranoid, until she realized she knew exactly who the thief was.
Ira’s conversation with Rachel Rosenthal continues. She tells the story of why it took her so long to break up with her boyfriend, even after she figured out that he had stolen from her.
A short story by Lydia Davis about trying to calculate the cost of a love affair. The story is read by actor Matt Malloy.
We have an update on a man in his 70s who planned to propose to a woman. We first spoke with him for time in our episode The Heart Wants What the Heart Wants.
Ira talks to a man in his 70s who’s about to travel across the country to tell a woman he loves how he really feels, despite some very real signs that doing so might be a bad idea.