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Holiday Gifts from TSOYA

Looking for holiday gifts? Want to get yourself a present?
Look no further than The Sound of Young America!

Above: our new Sound of Young America collection CDs. These are convenient, giftable, attractive, professionally-produced anthologies of Sound of Young America programs. Each CD contains four months of shows -- about 20 hours of programming. And each CD is only $9.

They're also available in sets -- the six CDs you see above contain every Sound of Young America program in the past two years. I've made sure there's a significant discount for sets, so you can pick up every show we've ever done for just $40. Or you can get all our 2005 shows or 2006 shows for $25.

These are MP3-CDs, which you can use in your computer, of course, but also in many DVD players, newish CD players, and car stereos. Or you can just burn them to audio CD or put them on your portable MP3 player -- only without all that boring downloading.

Sound of Young America t-shirts are only $16 post-paid. They're printed on lovely american apparel shirts (in the "cranberry" shade, if you were wondering), and are printed to last by BroPrints in Santa Cruz. Everyone who gets one tells me they love theirs... you or your giftee could be next. You should probably buy one. No more girl sizes (actually, I have one girls' XL, if anyone wants it let me know), but I do have S-XXL in men's.

And of course... SkyMaul! Thirteen reviews so far on Amazon, thirteen 5-star raves. Recently Mark Frauenfelder of wrote that the book "made me laugh until tears streamed down my face," and the Seattle Times called it "Bang-up hilarious... move over National Lampoon." I, of course, concur, and the dang thing's only ten bucks on Amazon. The unexpected (to them, not us) success of the book left Amazon sold out for a week or so, but they're back in stock just in time, and it should be available wherever new books are sold.

Or, shop from our AMAZON HOLIDAY STORE. A selection of items hand-picked by yours truly for your gifting needs, plus anything else Amazon sells. If you go through one of our links, we get a percentage of anything you buy in that purchase -- so buy a car or something, please.

Phone Cards for Veterans


I only very rarely advocate any cause (other than my own) on the website, but I thought for the holidays this might make a worthy exception.

My father is a disabled veteran and long-time veterans activist and advocate. His current project, The Jhai Foundation, works around the world on people-driven development projects based in reconciliation, and began by helping people in the regions of Laos he helped bomb while in the Navy in the 1960s.

He got his start in activism helping to found the west coast wing of Vietnam Veterans Against the War. He has been active with that group (now Veterans for Peace) and in veterans issues for the past 35 years.

Vets for Peace has teamed up with several other veterans' and peace groups to buy phone cards for injured and disabled veterans in Veterans Administration hospitals across the country. As you may know, VA budgets have been slashed over the past few years, and VA hospitals are unable to offer long-distance calls to their patients unless the patients pay, which can be quite difficult for folks living on a military pension.

No matter how you feel about the war, we can all agree that giving our injured vets a chance to call home for the holidays is a noble goal. A $20 donation means six vets get two hours of calls to their families. You can make a donation, or you can volunteer to help personally deliver the cards.

Kasper Hauser: Best Podcasts of 2006!


Congratulations to us!

The Kasper Hauser Comedy Podcast was selected as one of iTunes' "Best Podcasts of 2006!"

Other Sound of Young America favorites included in the list... Never Not Funny & Jonathan Coulton's Popular Science podcast.

Anyway, if you haven't subscribed to the KHCP already... subscribe now!

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a name!


Well, our big survey determined a very clear answer to the question of what we should name our new podcast. That answer was: none of the names we'd thought of so far.

Yes, you pretty much hated all of them.

Luckily, today, INSPIRADO STRUCK.

The Untitled Thorn/Morris Project is now:

Jordan, Jesse GO!

John Cleese & Robert MacNeil


This is from 1988, as Cleese is promoting A Fish Called Wanda.

Everyone is obsessed with the supposed English/American divide in humor... but Cleese addresses it quite well, to the extent it exists at all.

Added note: MacNeil has a stunningly beautiful voice, doesn't he?

Staying up on The Wire

Robert Chew (Proposition Joe), photographed for The Fader

The Wire is the best TV show ever made.

I've just started on season four (had to take a break for a few months after I finished season three, as the show had completely overwhelmed me). Many of you, watching on TV, are probably just finishing season four. Those of you who haven't watched it yet should rent or buy season one on DVD and get to it.

It's only been the past year or so that the show has gotten the attention it deserves, which is unfortunate. Luckily, HBO knew what it had and hung on. Hopefully they'll win some Emmys soon, because they deserve them.

Here are some extended interviews from The Fader's blog:

David Simon

Robert Chew (Prop Joe)

Anwan Glover (Slim Charles) & Felicia Pearson (Snoop)

Jay Landsman

and in the bonus category, here's an extensive interview with Simon in Slate, and a really wonderful one with Ed Burns on Fresh Air. Earlier this year, I talked about the show with writer/producer George Pelecanos.

Podcast: The College Years: Official Things with Todd Barry, 1-3-02


The College Years is a look deep into the vaults of The Sound of Young America. Take a journey with us every two weeks or so as we post a new program from our salad days.

This week, one of our first ever interviews, with Todd Barry. He gives Jordan acting advice (based on his performance in Pootie Tang). Todd is extraordinarily patient, and at one point starts questioning us. It is worth noting that we discuss Michael Winslow extensively.

We also name official things of The Sound of Young America, and visit with the Evil Computer Bent on World Domination.

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Season of Giving - Your Bonus Gift


As you may have heard on the show, this month is The Season of Giving for The Sound of Young America. The show is supported solely by donations that come directly from listeners. When I buy a microphone, or make stickers, or pay my hosting bill, it comes from money you've donated.

Periodically, I ask listeners to support the show through a small monthly donation. The monthly element not only makes it easy for you to donate, it also controls my fundraising costs and makes the show's revenue stable, so I know what to expect and how to plan for the future.

If you donate at the ten dollar a month level before the end of the month, we have a special thank you gift for you. Friend of the show (and "Daily Show" correspondent) John Hodgman has generously donated several copies of his bestselling and hilarious book The Areas of My Expertise. The books are signed and inscribed by John, and they're ready to go.

I also know that some listeners are uncomfortable using PayPal, or making monthly donations. If you'd like to make a one-time donation via credit card or PayPal to The Sound of Young America, click on the button below.

If you'd like to mail a check, our address is:

The Sound of Young America
720 S. Normandie Ave. #505
Los Angeles, CA 90005

Be sure to make it out to Jesse Thorn, not The Sound of Young America, or the bank will be very cross indeed.

And to all who already support the show, thank you very sincerely.

(New) Sincerely,



JUDGE JOHN HODGMAN, author and DECIDER informs us that a discussion in our most recent Thorn/Morris program was presaged by Gilbert & Sullivan many years ago. QUOTH THE JUDGE:

I have been rediscovering PIRATES OF PENZANCE in my efforts to become even more of a nerd, and I am reminded that there is a song in that frothy operetta specifically on the subjects of PIRATES BECOMING CATBURGLARS.

The song in question is "WITH CAT-LIKE TREAD UPON OUR PREY WE STEAL," performed above by the University of Iowa Summer Opera.



Murs - "LA"

Tim & Eric - "LA Guyz"

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