Confessions of a Car Talk Lackey

Staff Blog

Staff Blog | May 04, 2012

If you’ve ever wasted a perfectly good hour listening to Car Talk, you might have heard the names of certain interns at the end of the show.  It’s true, there are actually hard working lackeys at Car Talk Plaza – after all, someone has to do all the work around here!

One of those names, this past year, has been our uber-intern, the much adored Ariel Neidermeier. As Ariel finally escapes the clutches of our lousy program (she had to flee to Thailand to get away from us, but that’s another story), she wanted to take a moment to debunk certain myths about working at Car Talk Plaza. 

Here’s her report. Take it away, Ariel! 

Myth: As Car Talk interns, we get to hang out at the studio and hob nob with public radio celebrities.

Reality: If we’re not haggling over the last bagel, we’re picking crumbs out of Tom’s beard, which seems to eat more food than Tom does.

Exhibit A: Tommy's facial hair is a high-gravity zone for food particles.Myth: As Car Talk interns, we get to open letters full of praise from all of Tom and Ray’s fans.

Reality: We do get a TON of mail here at Car Talk Plaza. But it’s definitely not full of praise for the guys. We spend most of our time deciphering the hate letters using Urban Dictionary and adding to the Hate Mail department on our web site. 

One of the perks of the job is that we’ve learned a ton of new swear words....Myth: As Car Talk interns, we get to show adoring fans around the office.

Reality: Many listeners come by Car Talk Plaza, but they are definitely not fans of the guys. The last time an irate listener showed up with his attorney looking for Tom and Ray, we decided to start taking measures into our own hands. We’ve gotten really good at distracting and diverting angry listeners before they step foot through the door. 

"Click and Clack? Nope, never heard of 'em!"Myth: As Car Talk interns, we get tons of free Car Talk swag.

Reality: The last free thing we were offered was Ray’s old nose hair clippers. No kidding. Apparently, he finally switched over to a mechanical pair, which was definitely needed. (TMI? Sorry.) Other than that, we spend a good amount of time looking for cool stuff sent in with answers to the Puzzler. We’re still looking for that bocce ball set…

Hmm, what’s this?

Oh, it’s a handmade chain-mail bikini! Wait... is this for Tom or for Ray?Myth: As Car Talk interns, we get to hang out and take naps like the rest of the staff.

Reality: Riiiiight. In fact, we’re the only ones doing work around here! If it’s not one of the Dougs hogging the couch (and snoring louder than the jackhammers down in Harvard Square), it’s the ferocious Daisy, who is the real boss here at Car Talk Plaza. One of the many disadvantages of the job is having to take Daisy on her daily walk. 

Don’t be fooled by the picture, her bark is just as bad as her bite…Ariel, thanks for setting the record straight on what really goes on here at Car Talk Plaza. On behalf of everyone here at Dewey, Cheetham and Howe, we’d like to extend our sincere thanks for all your hard work. (Not that we’d know hard work, even if it came up and bit us in the ass, mind you.)

Happy Travels,

Doug, Carly, David, Doug, Connie, Catherine and Kira

P.S. By the way, because we well understand that having a besmirched resume that shows two years of time at Car Talk Plaza means you’ll never work in this town again, we’re pleased to offer our new Dewey, Cheetham and Howe Internet-scrubbing services. We’ll remove all on-line indications of your affiliation with our lousy show. Just send us a box of biscotti on the first of each month, for the next twelve months, and we’ll consider it even. Capiche?

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