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Are they repeating parts of their show - or am I having massive Deja-vu?

Yesterdays show I KNOW I have heard the “first half” before.

It has been happening for a while now, but now it is starting to make me wonder - I have even some of the puzzlers I have remembered hearing before… are they repeating parts of he show (like the first part? or certain calls?)

This question has run across the forum before, a few months ago. The answer, according to the last thread regarding this, is yes, they are “recycling” some of their old clips. Apparently, they even had a caller talking about taking her Saturn back to the dealer to get it fixed. Good luck with that one.

Yep I guess they have been taking off lately … they they have enough shows to recycle through… it is funny on how much a person can actually remember, I can remember hearing a phone call from a year or so ago, … and still forget what I had for breakfast or where my car keys are!

Sometimes during fundraising they will play a different program with repeats too I’ve noticed. I usually find a different station when that’s going on. :slight_smile:

I’ve heard maybe one new show in the last two months. Even the opening monologue was recycled from a previous show, as they were talking about someone taking Polaroid photos (!) of the inside of a house. That one probably dates back at least 15 years.

What I do is, I wait until the first call. If it isn’t about a car built in the last ten years, I turn the radio off.

Sometimes during fundraising they will play a different program with repeats too I’ve noticed. I usually find a different station when that’s going on. :slight_smile:

Where I live CarTalk and Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me come one after the other. During pledge drives they announce that they will be running reruns of each show. It’s like they’re saying “Here’s a big pile of poo. Please give us some money.” I don’t see how offering something bad motivates contributions.

They mix and match the various modules of the show so you’re not necessarily hearing a rerun on an entire show, but multiple shows in a sort of collage. It’s not Scottish.

I also remember puzzlers that were presented earlier and callers from much earlier shows. I think I heard that one of the brothers had some sort of surgery last summer. These men are around my age (69). I just retired and perhaps they did as well.

Yeah, the tip off for me, as I don’t remember much anymore, is that I haven’t heard a car described in weeks that was less than 10 years old. I now listen specifically for the first one. I know times are hard, but please. If it is too much trouble to do the show, then they should simply retire it. Right now they are having their cake and eating it too.

I don’t think last week’s show was a repeat. It seemed new to me. I don’t recall hearing any of the calls before. The “puzzler” answer corresponded to last week’s question too. I do remember a prior show discussion between Tom and Ray about Muir Woods, but if I recall correctly, that prior discussion – while about the same topic – wasn’t the exact same discussion as was heard on last week’s Car Talk. I think Tom and Ray just decided to talk about it again, as it is a funny story, and the caller happened to live near Muir Woods.

I’m w/Tommy on Muir Woods. I live only a hour or two drive from that place, but I’ve never been there! If I’m going in that direction, there are more interesting places to see from my perspective. A trip to the black sand beach (watch out for sharks!) or a fun drive to the top of Mt Tam for example.

They do sometimes have repeats during the pledge drive, but those shows are specials. Tom and Ray mention the pledge drives during their discussion. And they usually don’t have the puzzler on those special shows.

The “puzzler” answer corresponded to last week’s question too.

It’s no big deal to provide a solution to “last week’s puzzler”. The show is constructed of modules. Listen to it on the website, and notice the intro and outro for each module. The show is taped (when it’s done at all) on Wednesday. The reason a show without commercials is done this way is so the modules can be mixed and matched. It’s less a radio show than them answering their voicemail. The producer selects the calls by the following criteria, among others:

Women who sound hot (notice they rarely try to spell the men’s names… it’s always “Sara with an ‘h’, right?”);
People with weird names;
Actual hard to solve problems;
Actual easy to solve problems;
Interesting backstories;
Familial or marital quandaries.

The show during pledge drives is the exact opposite of special, in my opinion.

I went back and listened to the Muir Woods segment, and I’m certain this is new. They actually mentioned that they haved talked about it before, and each time they talk about it Tommy - who is not enamoured by long walks in the woods apparently – increases the length of time of the walk he said they took! So that segment is not a repeat. And I don’t recall having heard any of the other segments either. I think last week’s show is 100% new.

Piter is correct that the show is arranged in segments – he calls them modules – making it possible to take segments from prior shows & mix and match them in w/current segments. I don’t think this is done, at least not very frequently. There is no need. It is easy to get people to talk about their cars. There’s no need for mixing and matching repeated segments. Tom and Ray need to take vacation etc though, and then they run repeats of an entire past show, possibly mixing and matching for the puzzler perhaps.

The main reason the show is in segments is because the local station sometimes takes out a segment and puts in something of their own in that 3 or 4 minute time slot, most often this is used on pledge weeks to remind folks to phone in and make a pledge. Remember that pledge weeks are on your local station schedule, and are not (generally) an NPR nation-wide scheduled event. While your own local station may be having a pledge week, many other stations throughout the country are broadcasting as usual, without pledge interruptions. Arranging NPR shows in segments — all NPR shows are done this way, not just Car Talk – makes it possible for the local station to delete a Car Talk segment, & insert their own message. You might not even notice it, since you would only know if Tom & Ray discussed the prior call, the one you didn’t hear. This still happens sometime in pledge week, and you probably wonder what they are talking about. This is why Car Talk has “special” shows for the local stations to run during pledge week. There is no puzzler answer or new question, and the calls don’t refer to each other. And Tom and Ray remind the listener it is pledge week. The pledge week shows might be repeated one year to the next.

I concur with Piter that the pledge week shows aren’t “special” in the sense “special” is usually used. By “special” I mean they are especially constructed to be run on pledge week, not that the content is especially interesting. If one prefers to listen to the regular version than the pledge week version, you can always listen to the regular one by listening to the show as posted on the website. That’s the nationwide version.

BTW, although pledge week is somewhat annoying, I always pledge my dough as much as I can afford on the first day. Then I usually pledge some more as the drive ends. I have no issue with providing money for the local station and NPR. As annoying as Pledge week is, the commercial stations and their persistant advertising spots, promotional spots, and traffic segments telling drivers to look out for that old matress left to the side of the road on the interstate, and repeating every 3 minutes, that is much more annoying than an occassional pledge week. NPR’s content and format is a compromise, but it is the right compromise in my opinion.

While I do appreciate the chance to bathe in the warm soup of concurrence, a lot of what you said is wrong.

“There’s no need for mixing and matching repeated segments.” Of course there is, or there wouldn’t be so many old segments currently aired.

“I don’t think this is done, at least not very frequently. There is no need. It is easy to get people to talk about their cars.”

True, but you still have to get three people in the studio at the same time in addition to the hosts to produce the show. One to work the phones, one to record, and one to look pretty.

“The main reason the show is in segments is because the local station sometimes takes out a segment and puts in something of their own in that 3 or 4 minute time slot,”

Not where I live. The show on the website is the show on the radio. The reason there’s a special show during pledge week is so the station can waste a lot of the hour asking for donations.

I contribute to NPR once a year, on April 15.

@piter: "I contribute to NPR once a year, on April 15.

Not any more. :slight_smile:

If you’re referencing the fact that Tax Day was April 18 this year, ok, but if you mean NPR no longer gets federal funding, I’d suggest you double-check that.

I was referencing all the screaming that was (past tense) going on about the federal funding. Right you are. I thought it went through. I don’t want to digress, so I’ll just shut up. Thanks.

Me too.