Recently in Aha Moments

Aha Moment: Aladdin, Iago… and Owen

Friday, August 08, 2014

When Owen Suskind was three years old, he was diagnosed with regressive autism. Doctors told his parents, Ron and Cornelia, that he might never speak again. But Ron found a way to con...

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Aha Moment: Mary Karr's "Entering the Kingdom"

Friday, May 09, 2014

Ten years ago, Beth Greenspan put a poem in her wallet that she’s carried ever since. Her son was just on the verge of adolescence, and she was wistful. “I noticed that his wrists w...

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Aha Moment: Matisyahu

Friday, April 25, 2014

In the mid-2000s, Matisyahu perfected a chart-topping blend of reggae and Hasidic Judaism. His shows were packed with young Orthodox men as well as dreadlocked hippies. Matisyahu, f...


Aha Moment: I Am Hamlet

Friday, April 04, 2014

As a teenager, Jeff House watched Christopher Plummer play Hamlet on TV with his big sister, who was enthralled; House was nonplussed. “The language didn't make sense,” he remembers....

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Aha Moment: Madonna’s “Live to Tell”

Friday, March 14, 2014

Holly Welker was already doubting her Mormon faith when she went on her mission to Taiwan. She found herself in a strange city with few friends, suffering from a crisis of faith as ...

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Opening Day Inspiration: Dennis Quaid Changed My Life

Friday, February 28, 2014

The Rookie is bigger than baseball. Hear the true story of a thespian's midlife turnaround, inspired by the springtime classic.


Aha Moment: Shirley Valentine’s Liberating Fling

Friday, January 31, 2014

Sarah Longley moved to the US from Britain as a young teenager and met her husband at age 23. Soon after they married, she realized the relationship was not going to work, but was r...

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Carl Zimmer on Giant Sandworms

Friday, January 24, 2014

The science writer Carl Zimmer was 10 years old when his family moved to rural New Jersey. He quickly made a new friend whose father was the prolific science fiction illustrator J...

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Aha Moment: The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax

Friday, January 17, 2014

Maureen Sestito listens to the show on WHYY from Lansdale, Pennsylvania. Years ago, she was working as a nurse when a colleague suddenly died of a brain tumor — like Maureen, she wa...

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Aha Moment: The Dream Syndicate

Friday, January 03, 2014

For 20 years, Sam Coomes has led the band Quasi along with the drummer Janet Weiss, carrying the torch for a punk music that’s relevant, funny, and hard-hitting well into middle age....


Aha Moment: Kenneth Goldsmith & John Cage

Friday, August 09, 2013

Kenneth Goldsmith trained as a visual artist at the Rhode Island School of Design.  In the 1980s, his work became wildly popular with collectors and was shown at some of the best ga...

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Aha Moment: Maurice

Friday, May 24, 2013

Growing up in the 1970s and '80s, Brian Sloan remembers two types of gay characters in TV and movies: flamboyant decorators, and victims of AIDS. “There was no in-between. And there w...

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Aha Moment: Mary Karr's "Entering the Kingdom"

Friday, May 10, 2013

Ten years ago, Beth Greenspan put a poem in her wallet that she’s carried ever since. Her son was just on the verge of adolescence, and she was wistful. “I noticed that his wrists w...

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Aha Moment: Winslow Homer

Friday, March 22, 2013

Steve Mumford traveled to Iraq several times to chronicle the war as a painter and illustrator. He was riding in a tank during a mission in Baquba when “the vehicle I was in was hit w...

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Aha Moment: Sandra Bernhard

Friday, March 01, 2013

Sandra Bernhard was only eight when she saw a touring production of Hello, Dolly! starring Carol Channing. “Right from the get-go," she remembers, "I assumed I should be a part of th...

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Aha Moment: Gentleman's Agreement

Friday, February 22, 2013

Listener Susan Evans grew up in rural Louisiana during the 1950s and '60s. Her first year of high school was also the first year of federally enforced integration in her town — and th...

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Aha Moment: La Forza del Destino

Friday, January 25, 2013

As a kid, Steve Call struggled with school. “At the end of each school year, my mother would go and beg the teacher to pass me on to the next grade,” he remembers, “because I never did learn to read in elementary school.” Call had dyslexia, and although he had ...

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Aha Moment: Finding Nemo

Friday, January 04, 2013

Kiki Kienstra had a good job teaching kindergarten, a nice apartment, and a community of friends. “I didn’t have a big need for change,” she remembers. “You know, everything was fine,...


Aha Moment: Jon Ronson on Kurt Vonnegut

Friday, December 07, 2012

Kurt Vonnegut is a serious writer who holds a special place in the hearts of teenagers. Jon Ronson got hooked on Vonnegut when he was 15. For his long train rides from Cardiff, Wales,...

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Aha Moment: Lee Ann Womack

Friday, October 26, 2012

Mary Miller fell in love with a man who made his fortune flipping houses.  When the relationship ended, Mary wasn’t just heartbroken — she wanted to beat him at his own game.On the ...

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