This American Life
Three stories of people who hatched plans in the hopes of making their dreams come true, but were snapped back to reality by unpleasant outcomes: an elementary school student tries to solve a common childhood problem; a rancher resuscitates a beloved pet, which later turns on him; people team to give an unknown rock band the greatest night of its life.
Four stories explore the costs of stubbornness: a man refuses to acknowledge some important events in his wife's life; a 14-year-old boy decides he will never, ever fall in love; a politician attempts to win an election without telling a single lie; a man who continues doing a job during an emergency when most people would probably stop.
Stories where the faithful and the not-so-faithful cross paths, and where unexpected things happen when people try to get closer to God through pictures: hundreds of Polaroid camera-toting believers gather in the Mojave Desert each month hoping to see God. And an artist, his Jesus model, the model's atheist girlfriend, and her religious father face off on The Last Supper.
G.J. Echternkamp started filming his own family as an act of revenge against his stepfather, and most of this episode is devoted to his footage, which is funny and stunningly honest. Also in this episode: an animated short by Chris Ware.
What do you do if you‘re unhappy with where you are in life? Some people simply will themselves to the next stage. A widow, an ambitious first-time screenplay writer, and a 13-year-old girl all charge forward into their futures with mixed results.
Three stories of the unexpected consequences of trying new things: scientists accidentally discover a way to erase memories and later get surprising requests from people who want their own minds wiped clean; pig researchers accidentally create more problems with every improvement they make; two owners of a Chicago hot dog stand try some novel business practices that unwittingly unleash raw human emotion that would probably be better penned up.
Compelling true stories from all walks of life.
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