Dan Ariely

Photo by Yael Zur for Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization

How many times a day do you lie, cheat, or steal?

If you’re like most people, you might say, with some pride, you never lie, cheat or steal.

That’s a lie.

Psychology and behavioral economics professor Dan Ariely says we all do it. Thing is, we almost all do it just a little, not enough to ruin our self-image of being a good, honest person.

In his 2012 book The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty Ariely explained the science behind our misbehaviors.

So here now, from 2012, Dan Ariely.

Dan Ariely, who is 56 now, has taught at Duke University since 2008.

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Darlene Love

Photo by Montclair Film Festival

Success as a backup singer or studio musician can sometimes lead to a very successful solo career. But in the case of Darlene Love, it was a bumpy road, to say the least.

Even though she was one of the most popular and most in-demand backup singers of the 1960s, working with some of the biggest stars, her path to a solo career was littered with obstacles.

Not least of them was producer Phil Spector.

And by the way, even if you have not heard her music, you have probably seen Darlene Love in one of the l”Lethal Weapon” movies, alongside co-star Danny Glover.

As the 1990s were drawing to a close, Love wrote her autobiography. And that’s when I met her.

So here now, from 1998, Darlene Love.

Darlene Love is 82 now. She was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011.

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P.J. O’Rourke

Photo by Cato Institute.

Can you think of a subject that is drier and more boring than economics? After all, there is a reason that even it’s practitioners call it “the dismal science “.

But in the hands of satirist and journalist, P.J. O’Rourke, economics takes on a whole new brilliance.

And the title of his 1998 treatise on world economics, Eat The Rich, seems to have special resonance today.

Indeed, the ongoing debates over capitalism versus socialism is as powerful now as it was when I interviewed P.J. 25 years ago.

So here now, from 1998, P.J. O’Rourke.

P.J. O’Rourke died of cancer in 2022. He was 74.

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Dawn Steel

Have you ever seen the movie Flashdance? How about Top Gun, or Fatal Attraction?

Those movies, and many more, were made under the supervision of studio executive Dawn Steel.

Her name was appropriate, too, because a woman in the man’s world of Hollywood filmmaking had to be made of steel.

Dawn Steel’s 1993 memoir was called They Can Kill You But They Can’t Eat You. And that’s when I met her.

So here now, from 1993, Dawn Steel.

Dawn Steel succumbed to brain cancer in 1997 at age 51.

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David Frost

David Frost had a successful, decades long career as a television talk show host and interviewer, in both the UK and the US.

He interviewed thousands of VIPs, celebrities, and movers and shakers of all kinds.

But he may be best remembered for his 1977 series of interviews with former President Richard M. Nixon, who just three years earlier had resigned the presidency in disgrace after the Watergate scandal.

Frost paid Nixon some $600,000 for those interviews. But they paid off, big time, as they became a part of American television history, and helped restore some of Nixon’s credibility.

I met David Frost 30 years later, when he wrote a book called Frost/Nixon, a behind the scenes account of how the interviews came about, and what happened when the cameras stopped ruling.

So here now, from 2007, David Frost.

David Frost died in 2013. He was 74.

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Bob Edwards

Photo by Jared and Corin

This Sunday is National Radio Day, the annual commemoration of the contributions the radio industry has made.

Today, a look back at an interview I did about one of the legends of radio. And the person I interviewed was, and is, a stalwart figure in modern day radio.

For a dozen years the pioneering radio sports broadcaster Red Barber called in every Friday to NPR’s Morning Edition show, for an unscripted 4 minute talk with host Bob Edwards.

Listeners loved those segments. Even those listeners who seem to have little or no knowledge of baseball.

But Barber died in 1992.The following year, Bob Edwards wrote a memoir of those memorable conversations, a book he called Fridays With Red. And that’s when I met him.

So here now, from 1993, Bob Edwards

Bob Edwards, who is 76 now, left NPR in 2004. He currently hosts a podcast produced by AARP.

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Dorothy Height

Photo by Adrian Hood

A decades-long tradition continues this summer, with the 35th annual Black Family Reunion this month.

The event was started in 1989 by Dorothy Height, the longtime president of the National Council of Negro Women. It grew quickly, attracting millions across the country.

And from the reunions grew the Black Family Reunion Cookbook, first published in 1992.

But as you’ll hear in a moment, the cookbook was more than just a collection of recipes. It was an oral history of the African-American family.

So here now, from 1993, Dorothy Height.

Dorothy Height died in 2010. She was 98.

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Cathy Wilkerson

Photo by Thomas Good

The latter half of the 1960s was, to say the least, a turbulent time in America.

Anti war demonstrations were escalating, Civil rights and women’s rights movements were growing. As the government tried to control the chaos,it made many of its critics even more radical.

As the decade drew to a close violence and even bombings became It’s everyday occurrences .

One of those caught up in this maelstrom was the young Cathy Wilkerson. She joined the radical Weather Underground Organization sometimes known simply as Weatherman.

Wilkerson’s father owned a townhouse in New York’s Greenwich Village. She and other Weather underground members turned it into a bomb factory. On March 6, 1970, one of their bombs exploded in the basement, destroying the home and killing three people.

Wilkerson, and fellow Weatherman Kathy Boudin, escaped with their lives, and became fugitives from the FBI.

Wilkerson remained in hiding for a decade, before surrendering in 1980, and serving a few months in prison.

Ultimately she became a high school math teacher.

In 2007 she finally wrote her memoir, a book called Flying Close to The Sun. And that’s when I met her.

So here now, from 2007, Cathy Wilkerson.

Cathy Wilkerson is 78 now. She lives in New York.

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Salman Rushdie

Indian-born author Salman Rushdie was building a solid literary reputation in the 1980s. His novels won several prestigious awards.

But it was his fourth novel, The Satanic Verses, that earned him not accolades, but I death sentence, pronounced by Iran’s Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini

Rushdie spent the next several years essentially in hiding, with constant death threats hanging over him.

Gradually, however, he re-emerged in public, and by 2002 was again going on author tours. That’s when I first met him, as we talked about his non-fiction book Step Across This Line.

So here now from 2002 Salman Rushdie.

Salman Rushdie is 76 now/.

One year ago this weekend Rushdie was attacked on stage at a lecture in New York. He was seriously injured. His attacker was arrested and charged with attempted murder. The government of Iran has denied any involvement.

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Tracy Austin

Photo by Robbie Mendelson

To this day, no woman has ever done what Tracy Austin did at the US Open.

Austin won the US Open women’s singles title in 1979, when she was just 16, making her the youngest ever to win that title.

During her professional career, Austin won 30 tennis titles.

But by age 21, her career was all but ended by a series of injuries. That led to speculationand rumor about what was really going on with Tracy Austin.

In 1992 she set out to put those rumors to rest, and tell her story in her own words. Her book was called Beyond Center Court. And that’s when I met her.

So here now, from 1992, Tracy Austin.

Tracy Austin is 60 now. She works as a metwork TV tennis commentator.

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