The shark attack story, probably on the do-not-repeat list now, right?

ira glass closeup bw
Ira Glass is on the stage at the Troy Music Hall Saturday night. He's talking about this shark attack story that ran on This American Life. It's gruesome. A woman describes fighting off the shark, getting condescending medical attention, and the feeling as an infection took over her body. But that's not really what this is about. It's about what happened to a bunch of people who heard that shark story -- and what happened to a person in the audience in Troy (music up)...

Ira explains that a line of his narration -- a graphic description of the internal injuries caused by the shark attack -- prompted people around the country to pass out. Yes, actually lose consciousness. Because of something he said. One woman had been at the wheel of her car and only woke up after rear-ending another vehicle.

Ira's talking about how this must have been a small slice of the people listening, the improbability of all this ...(music fade out)

Then it happened. People start standing in the audience, stage-left. Someone has passed out. Ira Glass has just knocked out another person.

The paramedics came, the person got medical attention. And we heard today from the Troy Music Hall that he's doing fine. It was dehydration, and the warm room, and the story.

Act 2: Vasovagal response -- how words, yes, simple words -- can cause a person's blood pressure to precipitously drop...

The Troy Music Hall advertises on AOA.

photo: Stuart Mullenberg

Comments

He also called our esteemed governor a "****sucker," but, oddly, no one reported that...perhaps it got lost in the shark story shuffle.

That is the best, yes, the very best, pastiche of the This American Life narration style I have ever read.

I was walking around Delmar residential streets with my dog while listening to that particular story. Good thing I don't tend to pass out.

It was pretty warm in there. Yikes.

@AlbanySpy: Probably because -- as I recall -- it came in the context of a discussion about what the FCC allows to be said on the radio.

Dude's okay, so it's officially okay to think that was the funniest thing ever. I didn't think I'd ever get to hear "Is there a doctor in the house?" asked for real.

@AlbanySpy as stated in a previous reply, he was giving an example of censorship practices with the FCC. He was not being serious. And in case you're wondering, I was there.

The show was amazing. And what better way to illustrate the power of narrative. And I'm sticking with my theory that Ira has super powers - It's only a matter of time before he harnesses them for good.

Brilliant writing here, AOA. Ira would be proud.

Ha, yes - I second what Nicole said. Nice TAL format!

Oh my God... I looked this up after passing out myself while listening to this podcast in the subway the other day. This story!

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