Selected Shorts: Objects of Desire

by Hannah

This week’s Selected Shorts features two stories that explore the place of objects in our lives: “Counting the Ways” by Susan Perabo, performed by Robert Sean Leonard, and “The Pony Problem” by Sloane Crosley, read by Kirsten Vangsness. Robert Sean Leonard joined me as co-host for this show, and  had many interesting things to say about “Counting the Ways,” which follows a young couple who purchase something wild: a dress worn by Princess Diana. After Diana’s death, the dress begins to alter their marriage, and their lives. It was great to peek behind the curtain with Robert Sean Leonard and hear what it’s like to perform a story for Selected Shorts on stage. In our extended interview, we talk about the magic of reading work aloud, Robert’s favorite novel (Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer) and how books allow us to “swim around inside the soul of another person.” To hear the full program, including the readings of these two stories, as well as a personal introduction by Sloane Crosley for her piece, “The Pony Problem,” go to the Selected Shorts website or WNYC to download a free podcast, or listen the old-fashioned way, on your local public radio station. For my extended interview with Robert Sean Leonard, simply click on the link below (best enjoyed after listening to the stories, as there are a few spoilers in our chat).
Robert Sean Leonard on talismans & swimming inside another person’s soul: