August 4, 2017

Who You Gonna Call?

When everything goes wrong, one of the first things we think is, "Who do I call?" This week, stories of lucky people who have found the exact right person to ring up for help.

Bob Fass, courtesy Lost Footage Films


Guest host Sean Cole tells a story about how he found the very perfect person to call for things large and small, and how Sean might be his guru's perfect person, too. (10 minutes)

Act One

Fass Talker

Bob Fass has been a radio host on WBAI since 1963, often taking calls from strangers late at night. One night at 3 a.m. in 1971, a man called into his show facing a literally life-or-death dilemma. Sean Cole has the story. (23 minutes)

We received the audio from this story from the documentary Radio Unnameable. It's streaming on Amazon and iTunes, or you can buy the DVD with lots of extras. The archival recordings used in this segment, as well as other recordings and materials of Bob Fass and Radio Unnameable, are available at the Bob Fass Archive at the Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Columbia University.

Act Two

A Road By Any Other Name

Reporter Aaron Reiss found a woman that an entire community calls, in order to find out the names of the very streets they're walking on. She's the gatekeeper for a series of secret underground maps of New York City. This piece was co-reported by Jenny Ye. (6 minutes)