StoryCorps 481: Who Swept the Floors?

For our Labor Day podcast, we are revisiting the latest StoryCorps book, Callings: The Purpose and Passion of Work. Released in the spring of 2016, Callings features people talking about the significance of their work. For them, a job is not just a way to pay the bills; it also gives meaning to their life.

While we have presented stories from the book on the podcast in the past (StoryCorps 466: Callings, and StoryCorps 467: More Purpose and Passion), this time we are offering something different. In April 2016, StoryCorps founder Dave Isay sat down with John Hockenberry, host of WNYC’s The Takeaway, for a live event in front of an audience at WYNC’s The Greene Space in Manhattan.

John and Dave spoke about the doctor whose work ethic and humility inspired the book, Dr. Austin Chen ­­­(she also delivered Dave’s son), and over the course of the evening they were joined by others whose stories are featured in the book like Len Berk who spent years as an accountant before retiring and taking a job slicing lox at New York City’s famed Zabars. He talks about his continuing quest for the “perfect slice” of salmon, and paramedic Rowan Allen, there with Bryan Lindsay, a man whose life he helped save more than 25 years ago, discuss their relationship.

Special thanks to WNYC for hosting the event, and sharing the audio with us.

Click here to order Callings: The Purpose and Passion of Work.

Click here to check out our CD companion to Callings: The Purpose and Passion of Work.

Like the music in this episode? Support the artists:
Nic Bommarito — “KTM – Load Shedding”
Cranston — “Back to Wisconsin”
Dlay – “Quest to the Temple of the Sun”
Scott Holmes — “A Wee Tipple”
Minden — “Big Because”
Scott Holmes – “Rainbow Street”