90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Unexpected Meetings

Marilyn Monroe and Nikita Khrushchev. Mark Twain and Helen Keller.  Unexpected encounters of the famous and infamous.

This handout file photo shows President Richard Nixon, left, meeting with Elvis Presley on Dec. 21, 1970, in Washington. (AP/White House)

This handout file photo shows President Richard Nixon, left, meeting with Elvis Presley on Dec. 21, 1970, in Washington. (AP/White House)

People meet all the time.  But some meetings are more amazing to contemplate than others.  When Charlie Chaplin met Groucho Marx.  When Elvis met the Beatles.  When Proust met James Joyce.  When Princess Grace met Princess Diana.  When Marilyn Monroe met Frank Lloyd Wright.

My guest today has sewn together an incredible daisy chain of incredible meetings.  How they got together.  Who said what.  What Twain thought of Kipling.  Madonna of Martha Graham.  Sigmund Freud of Salvador Dali.

This hour, On Point:  Amazing meetings of the famous and infamous.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guest

Craig Brown, author of “Hello Goodbye Hello: A Circle of 101 Remarkable Meetings.”

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal “In August 1910, Gustav Mahler was having marital problems with his much younger wife, Alma, and the composer made an appointment with Sigmund Freud. The two men met in the Netherlands at Leiden, where they went for a long walk, during which Freud suggested that Alma had a father fixation. Among other points of friction in the marriage, Mahler had forbidden her to write music.”

CNN “When Elvis Presley wrote Richard Nixon a few days before December 21, 1970, he had an explicit goal in mind. ‘Sir, I can and will be of any service that I can to help the country out,’ wrote Presley. ‘I can and will do more good if I were made a Federal Agent at Large and I will help out by doing it my way though my communications with people of all ages.'”

Excerpt: “Hello Goodbye Hello: A Circle of 101 Remarkable Meetings”

Use the navigation bar at the bottom of this frame to reformat the excerpt to best suit your reading experience.

Playlist

“Blue Suede Shoes” by John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band

“Chelsea Hotel” by Leonard Cohen

“Prelude in C-Sharp Minor, Op. 3″ by Sergei Rachmaninoff

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Mar 31, 2015
Some of the hundreds of people who gathered outside the Indiana Statehouse on Saturday, March 28, 2015, for a rally against legislation signed Thursday by Gov. Mike Pence stand on the Statehouse's south steps during the 2-hour-long rally. (AP)

Indiana’s controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Critics call it anti-gay. Business leaders say bad for the economy. The governor’s not backing down. We’ll dive in.

Mar 31, 2015
Jazz icon Billie Holiday performs in New York City's Club Downbeat in February 1947.  (Library of Congress / Creative Commons)

A meditation on the life and music of Billie Holiday. The lady who sang the blues.

RECENT
SHOWS
Mar 30, 2015
Sweet Briar College, an all-women's liberal arts college in Virginia, announced in early 2015 that it would unexpectedly close its doors at the end of the school year. (Courtesy Sweet Brian College)

Fareed Zakaria weighs the value of a liberal arts education in our technology-driven time.

 
Mar 30, 2015
A stele and flowers laid in memory of the victims are placed in the area where the Germanwings jetliner crashed in the French Alps, in Le Vernet, France, Friday, March 27, 2015. The crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 into an Alpine mountain, which killed all 150 people aboard, has raised questions about the mental state of the co-pilot. (AP)

The pilot who crashed his plane in the Alps. What we know now. And what to do about pilots’ psychological health.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: March 27, 2015
Friday, Mar 27, 2015

More on the incessant email debate, plus some goats living their best lives and the sad allure of Manhattan’s shuttered Pommes Frites.

More »
1 Comment
 
Mobile Payments Offer Convenience If You Keep Your Email Safe
Thursday, Mar 26, 2015

Thinking about moving your wallet to your phone? You can! And maybe you should? But TechCrunch senior writer Josh Constine has a few things to tell you before you do.

More »
1 Comment
 
Using Technology To Get Your Kids Outside
Thursday, Mar 26, 2015

The latest and greatest — using apps to make natural exploration more fun for your kids.

More »
Comment