For the past 7 or 8 months, I've been listening to the NPR show Fresh Air, podcast style. The host, Terry Gross, drives me insane but she gets really great guests. She is such an incredibly bad and annoying interviewer. I wonder what an interview between her and Charlie Rose would be like.
Anyway, she is so in love with herself. She clearly thinks she is the best interviewer out there. Her phrasing, the way she says, "Fresh Air!" ... hell everything about her drives me nuts. Do you remember that lounge singer Nora Dunn used to play on Saturday Night Live? That is kind of how Gross does it.
But the guests are just so good.
Here are some of my favorite examples of some questions from recent podcasts. I listen to these on the way to and from work so obviously these aren't exact quotes. But the inanity of it all is still 100% intact.
Q: So you grew up in Gainsville. Isn't there a satellite campus of the Univ. of Florida there?
A: Um, yeah. The university is there in Gainsville.
Q: When your house was burned down in 1987 by arson, you and your family were inside when it started. Did you react by instinct? Did you run out? What was that like? Did you think before you ran out? Did you just simply run?
A: Yeah, the house was on fire so we ran out.
Cristian Mungiu: Director of the Romanian film 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days
Q: So because of the law that made both birth control and abortion illegal, it created a baby boom in Romania that began in 1966 and lasted for many years. You were born in 1968? Were you part of the Romanian baby boom?
A: Um, yeah. I was born 2 years after the baby boom started.
John Soluri: Writer of a book about the history of bananas.
He spent 30 minutes talking about how mass produced bananas aren't as good as they used to be because the old bananas have mostly died because of fungi and such. For 30 minutes he was talking about this, the history of the banana, and how today's bananas might die soon as well. 30 minutes he's talking about how today's bananas don't taste that great.
She then goes on to start describing some of the problems she has when she buys bananas these days at the supermarket and lists all of the things he just focused on. She asks, "So why do my bananas not taste good these days?" He is speechless.
Blake Nelson: Writer of Paranoid Park
Q: In an earlier book, you wrote from a girl's perspective. Let me read you this part. "He was on top of her. All she could think about was she should like him more but he was just this big weight grinding into her." How, I mean, um, how, you ... um, you are a guy! How did you write this part? How did you know about that feeling?
A: Um, you know. It's just life you know, I guess.
Stay tuned for the next Terry Gross installment sometime soon!
4 days ago