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Act Two: Internet

In this show, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Ira and David Hauptschein explored this now utterly quaint question: Are people having experiences on the Internet they wouldn't have anywhere else? Several hundred listeners sent in samples of what they were finding on the Internet. A guy offers a girl a late-night tour of Microsoft...and this actually makes him seem hot.

Act One: Take My Break, Please

Charlie Brill and Mitzi McCall were a comedy duo back in the mid-1960s, playing clubs around Los Angeles, when their agent called to tell them he'd landed them the gig of a lifetime: They were going to be on The Ed Sullivan Show. The only problem was that their performance was a total fiasco, for a bunch of reasons, including one they never saw coming.

Act One: Repeat After Me

A story by regular contributor David Sedaris involving his sister Lisa, a secret, and her very understanding parrot. David read this story live, and it's on his CD Live at Carnegie Hall. The story is also published in his book Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass tells the story of Chris Sewell, who was living on the street and yet somehow managed to find $610,940 of lost money that belonged to the city of New York, hidden away on the Internet.

Act One: Losing It

If you're going to do a show about people who are lost, you pretty much have to include a story about adolescents. Jonathan Goldstein tells a story from his teenage years.

Act Two: Teacher Hit Me With A Ruler

Sarah Vowell tells the lost story behind a patriotic song, "The Battle Hymn of the Republic." An early version of the song celebrated an American terrorist. She's accompanied by Jon Langford and the band.

Act Three: I Found Your Letter

Davy Rothbart reads from letters, notes, scraps of paper and school papers, which have been lost by their original owners. He collects and publishes things like this in his magazine, Found Magazine.

Act One: The Chasm Between Comedy And Music

Why is it that karaoke machines only have songs on them? If what they do is take a version of a public performance and allow the rest of us to give our own interpretations of the material, why aren't there other options, like the "you talkin to me?" scene from Taxi Driver, or Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech. Jonathan Goldstein and producer Starlee Kine find out why when they go to a karaoke club that has, along with all the songs, comedy routines for people to perform.

Act One: The Rundown

The story of one girl's mission to bring people together everywhere by eliminating small talk forever. This American Life producer Starlee Kine has been going around lecturing audiences on the subject. She encourages them to switch to a new system she's invented, called The Rundown.

Act One: Pilgrim's Progress

Regular TAL contributor Sarah Vowell takes over the family Thanksgiving dinner by bringing everyone to New York. What results is a series of milestones and family firsts.

Act Two: Kodak Moments Of The Dead

The story of Tyler Cassity and how he's trying to remake one of our oldest rituals of commemoration.Tyler is one of the owners of a cemetery called Hollywood Forever, and he's been introducing 20th-Century technology to American funerals, which haven't changed much since the Civil War. At Hollywood Forever, the cost of a burial includes a video of your life: to be shown at your funeral, to be viewable at kiosks on the cemetery grounds, and to be posted—for eternity—on the Internet.

Act Three: Birthday Present

On a commemorative day, it can be hard to feel a real sense of the past and of how time has moved forward. Russell Banks has a story demonstrating what it might take to do just that.