OK, I’m repeating myself, but I really have to insist that you drop whatever it is you’re doing and go listen to an episode of This American Life called the “Giant Pool of Money,” which explains the subprime mortgage crisis in the stickiest possible terms. It’s journalism meets education meets entertainment. If the words “subprime” and “mortgage” and “education” make you antsy, let me offer reassurance. It is not a For Your Own Good experience. It’s a Don’t Want It To End experience.

The show explains the insanely complicated saga of the subprime crisis largely through the stories of 4 very interesting individuals. For instance, one of them — in his early 20s — made $75,000-$100,000 per MONTH bundling mortgages and spent most of the proceeds on bottles of Cristal at a NYC nightclub, so he could stay in elbow-rubbing distance of B-list celebs like Tara Reid. See, that wasn’t so painful, was it? 

It would almost be worth writing a sequel to Made to Stick that focuses purely on this one-hour show. So do me a favor and at least download this thing right now, even if you obstinately refuse to listen at the moment. For a one-hour investment, you’ll get to be Paul Krugman at the next cocktail party you attend…

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