Major funding for Been There/Done That is provided by The Atlantic Philanthropies with additional funding by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.


Program Archive
May 2004

Raising the Bar
Life is so much better these days...medicines that work, reliable cars, instant communication. How come we're not happier than our grandparents? Writer Gregg Easterbrook says the answer may lie in our genes; literary critic Steve Almond laments the demise of a beloved candy bar; and we visit the neighborhood dive bars to drown our sorrows. We hear from a young lawyer who passed the bar and then passed on the law; and meet the woman who's advancing the stakes in the sport of competitive eating. Plus, Cecil B. De Mille---did he raise or lower the bar in Hollywood? All that and more on this Been There / Done That.

Links of the Week:


Ever thought twice about following the boss's orders? Or worried that your spouse wasn't in it for love alone? Loyalty: it tugs at us no matter where we are in life. This week on BEEN THERE/DONE THAT, Marty Goldensohn looks at loyalty -- in marriage, work, politics, and in the dog house. We explore the ugly side of pre-nups; the difficult life of whistleblowers; and the allegiance of our dogs and cats. We also tour an inner-city school where Principal Salome Thomas-El is dedicated to transforming students into readers, writers and chess champions. Music critic Tom Moon surveys Bonnie Raitt's long loyalty to the blues; and we hear from fans of "The Sound of Music" sing-a-longs -- in lederhosen and all! All this and more on this edition of Been There / Done That.

Links of the Week:

  • Read more about Salome Thomas-El, Principal of John F. Reynolds Elementary School
  • C. Fred Alford is author of "Whistleblowers: Broken Lives and Organizational Power."
  • The full story of "The Life and Times of Frank Hague," narrated by Malachy McCourt, is available by contacting David S. Cohen, Senior Research Associate at the New Jersey Historical Commission. Phone: (609) 984-3461 or email david.cohen@sos.state.nj.us.
  • Read more about commentator Fabienne Marsh
  • "The Sound of Music" sing-a-long may soon be in your area. To check our the schedule, visit Sing-a-long-a

Tom Moon's picks from Bonnie Raitt's career:

  • "Give It Up or Let It Go" - 1972
  • "Women be Wise" (with Sippie Wallace) - 2001 (Original Recording Remastered)
  • "Nick of Time" - 1989
  • "Angel from Montgomery" (with Jackson Browne and Bruce Hornsby) - 1995
  • "Fundamental Things" - 1998


The Elements
Did you know that the Wright Brothers beat out scientists from the Smithsonian and Alexander Graham Bell to develop the first airplane? Or that air conditioning was first used in a Brooklyn printing plant in 1902? Host Marty Goldensohn looks at the elements and how we harness them. It's wind, fire----and Heavy Metal music. James Tobin talks about his new book on how the Wright Brothers won the great race in flight. We learn the frigid history of air conditioning, find out how to build a fire from an actual boy scout, and watch movies with astrophysicist Neil Tyson to see if Hollywood gets its stars right. Also, the latest in hi-tech meteorological voodoo and a loud primer on Heavy Metal. All this and more in this archive edition of Been There/Done That.

Links of the Week:

  • James Tobin's book is "To Conquer the Air: The Wright Brothers and the Great Race for Flight" (Free Press, 2003).
  • Neil de Grasse Tyson is Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History
  • Marsha Ackerman wrote "Cool Comfort: America's Romance with Air Conditioning" (Smithsonian, 2002).
  • Ann Powers is Senior Curator at the Experience Music Project in Seattle. Her heavy metal picks include:
    - "Heartbreaker" from Led Zeppelin's new live CD set, "How the West Was Won"
    - Title track from Black Sabbath's "Paranoid"
    - "Eruption" from Van Halen's first ever album
    - "Girls, Girls, Girls" from Motley Crue
    - Title track from Metallica's "Master of Puppets"
    - "Somewhere I Belong" from Linkin Park's "Meteora" album
  • Dr. Jon Nese is a storm analyst with The Weather Channel.

Get Real
There "ain't nothin' like the real thing"-- til you check out the fakes. Host Marty Goldensohn talks to journalist Josh Davis and learns how lab-made diamonds might soon threaten the gem industry and outrace the silicon computer chip. We get a new take on Richard Nixon -- woeful media victim or first political media spinmaster? Also, indie jazz band Gutbucket spills its guts; and new real estate owners share their woes. Plus, Marty goes to Julliard to learn how to get real and act better. All that and more on this archive edition of Been There/Done That.

Links for this week:

  • Professor William Ian Miller teaches law at the University of Michigan Law School. He's author of "Faking It."
  • David Greenberg is author of "Nixon's Shadow: The History of an Image." He also writes the History Lesson column for Slate online magazine and teaches history and political science at Yale.
  • Lari Robling is author of "Endangered Recipes: Too Good to Be True" (Oct 2003). You can find recipes and more information about the book on her website. She's also a producer of WHYY's A Chef's Table with Jim Coleman.
  • Joshua Davis wrote about manufactured diamonds for Wired Magazine. You can read the article and others by Davis at his website.
  • Read about and hear lots of music from Gutbucket at their website.


Save It or Lose It
We hold onto things for dear life -- books, photos, buildings, money. Host Marty Goldensohn explores salvage and stockpiling with novelist Nicholson Baker, who's crusading to save America's newspaper archives; and architect George Thomas, who failed to rescue the historic Traymore Hotel in Atlantic City. We also hear the story of the infamous Collyer Brothers and their Harlem brownstone filled with 120 tons of stuff. Our money guru warns we're not banking enough for retirement; and cellphone camera users may be amassing too much. Plus, Marty preserves quinces with his mom. All that and more on this archive edition of Been There/Done That.

Links of the Week:

  • Betty Goldensohn's Quince Jam recipe.
  • Kelly Chessen is a crisis counselor at Drive Savers in California.
  • George Thomas spoke about architect William Price and the Traymore Hotel. For more information about this often-overlooked architect, check out Thomas' book, "William L. Price: Arts and Crafts to Modern Design."
  • Nicholson Baker is the author of "Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper." For a review and interview, check out The Atlantic Online.




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