As one of the regular hosts of The Moth here in Chicago (the incomparable Brian Babylon being the other), I like to open the show with a Ken Nordine-inspired piece of word jazz that sets up the theme for the night. All of the stories are required to utilize the theme in the telling so I like to try and cover a multitude of angles tellers can approach. Here's an excerpt of an upcoming piece:
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When the world is crashing all around
Our ears and eyes
And our neighbors would poison us
For the can of Lima Beans in the back of the cupboard
When we stand in the middle
Of the deserted street
And see those who Life has battered
Leaving them crippled and damaged
We are, each one of us, faced with a choice.
Jeesh - that's dark. But I'm a pretty dark guy, so it fits.
Next week, we will be launching WBEZ's Day of Service. Hundreds of volunteers from around Chicago coming together with each other to help. To be "of service." To build paper mache Peace Totem Poles. To deep clean a Ronald McDonal House. To pack and sort donated food. To brighten up the day for a group of assisted living seniors. To paint murals. Under the guidance of the extraordinary Chicago Cares staff, our volunteers will be spending four days trying to make a small corner of a neighborhood in one city in the United States of the Planet Earth a little better.
At the end of four days, we will all meet at Schuba's for a complimentary pint of Goose Island Green Line and a very special edition of The Moth. If you are one of the volunteers, you get in for free and get a t-shirt, too. If not, you can grab tickets for $12.00 ($10 if you're a student). The theme for the June 1st Moth is "When I Helped" and, as I almost always guarantee the Moth audience, I can promise you at least one story that will make you laugh hard, one story that will blow your mind, and at least one story that makes you see how similar all we clever apes actually are.