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Animal Magnetism



First a story by the late, great Grace Paley, who was a strong supporter of SHORTS in our early days. We’ve featured many of her stories about family, friends and life’s joys and disappointments from her published collections including Enormous Changes at the Last Minute, Later the Same Day, and The Collected Stories. In “The Pale Pink Roast,” old lovers take stock of one another. The story is read by Linda Lavin, known for her television role on “Alice” and her many award-winning Broadway performances in works such as “The Last of the Red Hot Lovers,” “Broadway Bound” and “The Lyons.”

Israeli writer Etgar Keret made his name with dark surrealistic fiction and books with titles like The Bus Driver Who Wanted to Be God, The Nimrod Flipout, andThe Girl on the Fridge. But he’s said that parenthood gave him a different outlook on life, and his story “Breaking the Pig” is told from a child’s point of view. A young boy loves his piggy bank, but his father sees it as a lesson in fiscal responsibility. “Breaking the Pig,” is read by Campbell Scott, whose extensive career includes roles in the television series “Royal Pains” and “Damages,” and the films “Longtime Companion,” “Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle,” and “The Amazing Spider-Man”and “The Amazing Spider Man 2 among others.

Raymond Carver set the bar very high for short fiction in the 1980, with powerful works about ordinary lives and what lies just beneath the surface of them. In “Jerry and Molly and Sam,” a man on the verge of a mid-life crisis tries to get his life in order—starting with the dog. It’s read by Ana Gasteyer, a “SaturdayNight Live” alum who has also had roles on the television series “Suburgatory” and “Lady Dynamite.”

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