[The war] left such deep scars in so many - in such a profound way. And I would say that’s why it was just really moving because so many women and men - has - lost their lives just for us to be able to have celebrated the independence.

So you know, I was asked a question once, you know, you don’t think that it happened really fast, since the peace agreement? And I was like, are you serious? Are you kidding me? I mean, this has just been such a long journey. And to be able to finally say, you know, we can celebrate this independence, so much bloodshed has taken place.

And I would say that’s why, you know, so many people have turned out - not just 50 or 60 or 70 percent. I mean literally, almost 100 percent, 90-something percent people said enough is enough; no more war, no more bloodshed. We need to rebuild, you know, our new country. And so that’s why it’s just really touching.

And so that’s why it’s just really touching.

—  Super Model Alek Wek on the South Sudan’s recent declaration of Independence. 
There are plenty of gun owners who favor further restrictions. There are plenty of non-gun owners who are concerned about further restrictions. I think sometimes there’s tendency to think that everybody is either on one side or the other, depending on whether they have guns or not. And that’s not the case at all.
—  Michael Dimock, Director of the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, chats with Neal Conan on NPR’s Talk of the Nation about the latest gun control opinion numbers. Listen to the full interview here.
It’s been an honor talking to you every day. I counted them up… 5,000 hours. There is still so much to talk about, but that’s gonna have to be enough. So, in a minute or so, I will go back to where I started in public radio. I will be one of you.

-Neal Conan, signing off of Talk of the Nation during it’s final broadcast on June 27, 2013

If you missed it, catch the final broadcast here:

  • Listen

Audio Postcard 5 Airwaves

Radio waves streaming in from across the ocean, telegraph poles flying by. Americana in my head. For several years now, I’ve been listening to Neal Conan’s Talk of the Nation on NPR almost every day. His aged tranquil voice filling my room with long-form stories allowing for pauses, geeking it out with the Political Junkie and Science Friday. Today he signed off for the last time, leaving more than a two hour gap on my highways.

Go and tell me the stories behind everything that happened in the world today. Explain why it happened, and how it affects our lives. Do it every day. Tell me what’s important, and don’t waste my time with stupid stuff.

- Neal Conan, signing off on NPR’s Talk of the Nation after more than 11 years at the helm of the program and after more than 35 years with NPR News.

Portland OPB listener demands donation back after hearing of 'Talk of the Nation' cancellation

UPDATE (10:21 AM): Former host reportedly in Portland, on hunger strike after cancellation

UPDATE (10:52 AM): 'Armed and dangerous’ Neal Conan takes over OPB newsroom, starts taking listener calls

UPDATE (11:07 AM): Obama administration calls for peaceful end to Neal Conan standoff

UPDATE (7:59 PM): Science Friday’s Ira Flato penetrates OBP studios, ends hours-long standoff with heavily armed Neal Conan

NPR To Discontinue Talk Of The Nation

NPR announced Friday morning [March 29] that it will no longer produce the Monday-to-Thursday call-in show Talk of the Nation.

It will be replaced by Here and Now, a show produced in partnership with member station WBUR in Boston. Reported stories will be part of the show’s format.

Neal Conan, Talk of the Nation’s host, will depart after more than three decades with the network. His past positions include stints as bureau chief in New York and London, and as NPR’s foreign editor, managing editor, and news director.

NPR executives said public radio has a glut of vibrant call-in shows involving national issues — and that they sought a news magazine with a mix of interviews and prepared stories to bridge the hours between Morning Edition and All Things Considered… More

See this guy? I consider him a friend and role model although I will probably never meet him. I’ve been lucky enough to be stuck in the car just as Neal Conan’s show, Talk of the Nation, was on. Today I got to keep company with this fellow for the last time (but surely not!).

Many have extolled the virtues of this man and his show. Topics may not have been immediately relatable, but by mid way through the show, you had to care about this thing you may not have even known existed. Not only did Mr. Conan ALWAYS seem to be the smartest man in the world, but he seemed to be the most caring and friendly. Talk about a role model…

On the season finale of Mad Men, Don Draper described a Hershey Bar’s wrapper as looking like what was inside. If you know Mr. Conan from the radio, I think you’ll agree that his “wrapper” also looks like what’s inside: smart, kind, empathetic, sympathetic, funny, clever, and, yes, pretty sweet, too.

I have lost so much respect for NPR. and I will echo that guy with the grey beard: please don’t waste my time with stupid stuff.

All the best, Neal. Please don’t stay away too long. We will need you to talk us through it all.

Oh, Neal Conan is leaving NPR. This makes me a sad consumer of American public radio. Also Talk of the Nation is being taken off the air? Why would you do that ever