This week on Magic Lessons, Elizabeth Gilbert advises Colleen, an advertising executive in New York City, who dreams of being a storyteller but fears it's a frivolous pursuit. Colleen hopes to create a one-woman show, mining stories from her childhood growing up in an Irish Catholic family that ran and owned a bar. Liz calls up the writer Gary Shteyngart for additional expertise on the pain and relief that comes with telling family stories.
Special Guest: Gary Shteyngart is the award-winning author of the novels Super Sad True Love Story, Absurdistan, and The Russian Debutante’s Handbook. Born in Leningrad, his memoir, Little Failure is a candid and moving account of growing up as a Russian emigre in America. Find out more about him and his work at garyshteyngart.com.
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Chris brings the case against his sister-in-law, Jenna. For many years, their extended family has had kids and adults tables at holiday gatherings. Chris thinks that since the kids are all grown up, they should abandon the kids table. Jenna thinks the table should retain its sovereignty. Who's right? Who's wrong? Only one man can decide.
Special thanks to L. Anthony Sanner for suggesting this week's episode title!
Donald, his wife Jessie, and their son plan to attend a Star Wars fan convention that will comprise their family vacation this year. Donald and their son have been planning and executing costumes to wear for the event. Jessie says she shouldn't have to wear a costume, since she's not a big fan herself and she agreed to let the convention double as their family vacation in the first place. Will Jessie have more fun in costume? Or should she be allowed to opt out?