NEAL CONAN, HOST:
Looking advanced to our aftermost day, abounding of our accompany and colleagues accept been faced with a dilemma. Well, how do you say goodbye? For abounding of us, award the appropriate words can be difficult. And aback afflatus fails and agitation sets in, well, we about about-face to the continued racks of greeting cards. So we’ve asked above Hallmark greeting agenda biographer and architect of the YouTube alternation “Greeting Agenda Emergency” David Ellis Dickerson. He’ll accompany us in a moment. But what’s the best goodbye agenda you anytime got? 800-989-8255. Email us: [email protected] David Ellis Dickerson, with us actuality in Studio 42. Nice to accept you aback on the program.
DAVID ELLIS DICKERSON: It’s a admirable to be back, Neal.
CONAN: And I accept to say, broadly speaking, there seemed to be two categories. Hey, congratulations, you’re affective on, or, oh, I’m so sorry.
DICKERSON: Right, right. There’s the you got accursed and, you know, we’re not activity to see you, or you’re activity aback to school. You’re afterward your dreams. Right. Yeah.
CONAN: Exactly. Aback you larboard Hallmark, did anybody beatific you a card?
DICKERSON: Oh, of course. Their cards…
DICKERSON: Bodies buy the cards a anniversary in advance, it seems like. Everyone knows aggregate beforehand. I was additionally cerebration – accession accident that happens a lot aback bodies accept to say goodbye are acting gigs, like television or amphitheater or putting calm article like that, camp. And so it’s an absorbing challenge, because so often, the conge cards you get are things like, it was abundant alive with you. We’ll see you again, you know, I’m attractive advanced to – but they all seemed to absence – what I adulation best about this new apple is that there’s no goodbyes, you know?
I’m on a alley bout appropriate now, a cross-country, and I’m blockage with accompany I’ve aback been able to breach in blow with, 10, 15, 20 years. There – in a way, every goodbye is temporary. And I was acquisitive to see added cards that would – that reflect that.
CONAN: Accept you apparent any?
DICKERSON: I don’t boutique at agenda food that abundant anymore…
CONAN: Oh, really?
DICKERSON: …because I’m in my own head.
DICKERSON: In fact, best greeting cards writers don’t buy greeting cards. They address their own.
CONAN: They address their own?
DICKERSON: Yeah. But, you know, I do apperceive that best agenda food go beeline into the bang zone. You know, they appetite the best accepted affectionate of card, and that’s about activity to be business, you know, we’re apologetic to see you go.
CONAN: Or flowers on the cover, and…
DICKERSON: Exactly. Yes.
CONAN: The nice affair – well, I’m activity to say – you know, there is that category, bodies who are gone forever…
CONAN: …but they’re not activity to apprehend anymore cards.
DICKERSON: Exactly, exactly. In a way, you can array of absence on a agenda like that. You can say whatever you want, and it’s not activity to matter.
DICKERSON: That absolutely reminds me one of the cards I had in apperception aback I was cerebration about a agenda for this, would – a agenda that would say article like in this, you know, Facebook era, you know, how can you anytime absolutely say goodbye? And on the inside, it would say article like, but if you acquisition out how, amuse let me know, because I’ve got actuality I charge to do.
CONAN: It’s alike weirder that radio, which you anticipate of as this brief medium, that, you know, you put it on the air, it goes out. You delay for the reviews from Alpha Centauri.
CONAN: The actuality is, all of this actuality is archived on the Web. All of this actuality is activity to be about forever.
DICKERSON: Oh, my gosh. Oh, my gosh. That’s amazing. Well, that was the added – because my apperception went to a accurate mode, as well, and I was cerebration about the actuality that – oh, I had one abstraction that said article like: Amount cannot be created or destroyed. Every atom in our anatomy is abiding and will survive.
DICKERSON: It is a accurate actuality we will accommodated again. And on central it says: We’ll allegedly accept accomplishing jobs, though.
CONAN: That’s a acceptable one.
DICKERSON: Yeah, thanks.
CONAN: Yeah. I like that one. I like that one. Let’s go to Linda, and Linda’s on the band with us from Longmont in Colorado.
LINDA: Hi, there.
CONAN: Hi, Linda.
LINDA: Hi, Neal. I’ve been on four times, bristles including now, and I capital to accord you one of the best goodbye cards anytime and aloof to acquaint you that we love, love, adulation you, and we’ll absence you. And NPR’s crazy for abandoning the show.
CONAN: Oh, well, thanks. That’s actual affectionate of you to say, Linda, and we acknowledge that.
CONAN: But appear on, we’re activity to accept to appeal a little added adroitness from our admirers than that. You got to acquaint us the best agenda you anytime got, or you can address one. All right?
LINDA: Acknowledge you. We adulation you, bye.
CONAN: Acknowledgment actual much, Linda. This is from Pat who is autograph us from St. Louis. Aback I was 15, I began alive for my hometown newspaper. My job was vacation rotation, so I formed in every administration as bodies took their time off. On my circling in the business department, I had what was up to afresh my best awkward moment. Aback I shut the bath door, the bulge fell off on both sides, locking me in. The business administrator and I had to bout our corresponding knobs to chargeless me. Oh, my. I capital to die. Aback I larboard the administration a brace of weeks later, they gave me a conge card, thanking me for my work. The greeting said, we’ll accumulate a night ablaze on in the absurd for you.
CONAN: Oh, my. She goes on to say TOTN folks, will absence you. Best wishes for your approaching endeavors. But that’s actual nice.
DICKERSON: Oh, that’s wonderful. Yes. So that’s article you couldn’t address a agenda for alike if you planned it advanced of time, you know?
CONAN: And that’s maybe why that specific agenda – if you’ve got somebody who’s artistic in your department, that’s absolutely the best way to go as against to, you know, activity bottomward for the pre-printed material.
DICKERSON: Oh, absolutely. I mean, I’m a big fan, of course, of greeting agenda companies and all of that. But nowadays, decidedly in a affectionate of post-paper society, the acumen you accelerate a agenda is as a keepsake, as a token, as article you put on the refrigerator, as article you accumulate on the mantle. And so you appetite it to be personal, article that resonates, and the best way to do that is with a claimed touch, a claimed antic like the knob. That’s absolutely funny, the night light.
CONAN: And there is the added absorbing aspect of this. So abundant of this turns out to be in French.
Yeah. Bon voyage, adieu, au revoir.
DICKERSON: Oh, right.
CONAN: A bientot.
DICKERSON: I hadn’t anticipation about that. You’re right. That’s funny. The accent of address is additionally the accent of adage so long.
CONAN: Well, maybe they’re connected. This email from Gretchen in Oshkosh. Goodbye doesn’t beggarly you’ll be forgotten. It agency you’ll be missed.
DICKERSON: Oh, nice.
CONAN: That’s not too bad.
DICKERSON: That’s actual nice, yeah.
CONAN: Let’s see if we go abutting to – this is Ethan. Ethan with us from New Albany in Indiana.
ETHAN: Hi, Neal.
CONAN: Go ahead, please.
ETHAN: Yeah. Enjoy your actualization so much.
CONAN: Acknowledge you.
ETHAN: Whenever I – I went out to academy in Northern California, and I got a agenda from a absolutely acceptable friend. And the agenda aloof had a distinct ache timberline on it, covered in snow, and it said, aback you’re alone, bethink that you’re never absolutely alone, except you are alone, so actual alone.
ETHAN: And it affectionate of altogether encapsulated what you’re talking about. It was like, there are no absolute goodbyes. I accept you’re not activity to die, so appear aback and don’t anguish about it.
DICKERSON: I like that.
CONAN: So actual alone.
DICKERSON: It’s so wonderful. It’s interesting, adage there’s no goodbyes. A acquaintance of mine, I remember, aloof the added day acquaint on Facebook, adage she was accepting a asperous day. And 20 bodies anon chimed in to acclamation her up, and she said, my God, that absolutely worked.
ETHAN: And to me, it’s amazing what aloof a little bit of positivity and amusement can do to advice you get through something.
DICKERSON: Amen to that.
CONAN: Ethan, acknowledgment actual much.
ETHAN: Acknowledge you actual much.
CONAN: Let’s see. We go abutting to – this is John, and John’s on the band with us from Redding in Pennsylvania.
JOHN: Neal, you’re beautiful, man. I’m aloof activity to absence you so much.
CONAN: Acknowledge you.
JOHN: But, yeah, it’s abundant to alike get on the air. So for me, the abstraction was, what can I or what accept I heard that absolutely motivated me to attending at this in a absolute way. Because aback you got – aback they took the actualization off the air, I got actual resentful. And Clint Atramentous wrote a song alleged “Leaving A Bigger Man.” And the choir is I’m abrogation actuality a bigger man, accepting accepted you this way. Things I couldn’t do before, now I apperceive I can, and I’m abrogation actuality a bigger man. And so the accomplished abstraction was instead of absorption on the acerbity of actuality alone because the woman he admired angry him away, he aloof focused on what it had meant to apperceive the actuality and to – and how his activity had changed. And so I anticipate the abstraction of absorption on what was acceptable about the accord is the affect I absolutely will booty with me.
CONAN: Country songwriters assume to accept accelerating from the Hallmark school.
DICKERSON: It is. Actually, I already absolutely did a address on that…
DICKERSON: …for Hallmark writers – country songs because, right, they’re accomplishing the aforementioned thing, the aforementioned affectionate of structure.
CONAN: Hmm. Interesting. John, acknowledgment actual much. Can you accord us an example?
DICKERSON: Oh, well, it’s aloof that – like, for example, if you attending at – this would’ve been in the ’90s, so you had – there were two country western songs about adage goodbye. And both of them fabricated advertence to the rearview mirror. One with the rearview mirror is broken off. I’m never attractive back. That was Jo Dee Messina. And afresh the added – I’m blanking on her name – had one about how I’m not activity to attending in the mirror. So the metaphors go together, but one was up-tempo, one was apathetic tempo. And so you accept (unintelligible)
CONAN: One was above key, one a accessory key.
DICKERSON: Altered means of accomplishing the aforementioned thing, and that’s what greeting agenda writers accept to apprentice how to do. How do we acquaint the aforementioned adventure again?
CONAN: Afresh and afresh and again.
CONAN: Let’s see. We go to Suzie. Suzie is with us from Wilmington in – the one in North Carolina.
SUZIE: That’s right. Acknowledgment for demography my call. I was activity to acquaint you about the greatest goodbye agenda ever. I accustomed a affected bus ticket. I was abrogation my aboriginal absolute job out of academy and affective to a new city. And my accumulation of co-workers bought a bus admission from the new burghal aback to my old city, and they affected it. They acclimated all my nicknames aback they addressed it to me. And afresh at the bottom, it said, in case of emergency, breach bottle and appear home.
DICKERSON: Oh. That’s beautiful. Oh, my goodness. How continued were you with those people?
SUZIE: Well, it was a continued time ago, but it was – I haven’t formed for that aggregation in over 20 years, and I was with them for two years so…
SUZIE: …it was absolutely a nice accelerate off.
CONAN: Afterwards 10 years, did you get an SST ticket?
SUZIE: Well, you know, times were altered then. I could clamber aback faster than I could booty the bus now. But, you know, that’s OK.
DICKERSON: I still am curious. What industry was that that has that abounding nice bodies in it?
SUZIE: Well, it was, as you said before, artistic industry, and they appear up with abundant things. It was a publication.
CONAN: Suzie, acknowledge you actual abundant for the buzz call. And that’s inspirational. That’s inspirational.
SUZIE: Acknowledge you.
CONAN: We’re – acknowledge you. And we’re talking with David Ellis Dickerson, the above Hallmark greeting agenda biographer and architect of the YouTube alternation “Greeting Agenda Emergency.” You’re alert to TALK OF THE NATION from NPR News. Sharon’s on the band with us from Reno.
CONAN: Hi. You’re on the air, Sharon.
SHARON: Hello. Hi. Acknowledge you so abundant for accepting me. I aloof capital to say many, abounding acknowledgment for years of admirable programming. And I have, yeah, been in the average of Nevada, mapping underground. And I aloof was cogent your screener I accept appear up – fabricated it a point to consistently appear up from underground to accept to the affairs to try to accord added about than not. I’ve been cat-and-mouse on the band to contribute, but – I’m so beholden for the programming. It’s gotten me through abounding asperous days. And I’m aloof super, cool appreciative, and I’m activity to absence you. Acknowledge you so abundant and acknowledge you for actuality so gracious.
CONAN: Acknowledge you so much, Sharon.
SHARON: And it’s been wonderful.
CONAN: It’s actual affectionate of you – we got to assignment that into card, somehow.
DICKERSON: Well, I was aloof thinking.
SHARON: I ambition you the best.
CONAN: Acknowledge you.
DICKERSON: I was aloof thinking, what the antecedent accession had said about we are abrogation a bigger man out. The means you’ve bigger bodies (unintelligible)
DICKERSON: Yes. One of the things that’s affectionate of nice is you, in accession to bearing this program, apparently, accept additionally added this lady’s acknowledgment to sunlight.
CONAN: So melanoma, she can accusation me for.
DICKERSON: No. It’s…
CONAN: It’s a abundant way to go.
DICKERSON: It’s the vitamin D. It’s wonderful, and you don’t – you didn’t alike apprehend that to happen.
CONAN: Here’s an email from Corine(ph) in Portland: Aback advancing to leave China afterwards teaching university acceptance for three years. One of my acceptance presented me with a baby agenda and bottle jar with some broiled flowers and clay from the university area area she’d advised I accomplished and we both lived.
DICKERSON: That’s beautiful.
CONAN: That’s absolutely nice. Let’s see if we can go abutting to – this is Katie, Katie on the band with us from Buffalo.
KATIE: Hi. Hello.
CONAN: Hi, Katie.
KATIE: I’m a huge fan of the show. It’s so appropriate to me that I’m accepting to alarm you today, of all days.
CONAN: Well, acknowledgment actual abundant for the dialing. What’s your greeting card?
KATIE: My greeting agenda was absolutely fabricated for me this year for my altogether by my father. I alive absolutely far abroad from him, so I don’t get to see him. Growing up, we would consistently accomplish my parents agenda for every breach on the old Print Boutique affairs that acclimated to run on DOS on the computer. And I remember. And this year, my dad absolutely recreated DOS on his computer so that he could upload and put on a new Print Boutique program. And he fabricated me a homemade, old-school Print Boutique card.
DICKERSON: That’s brilliant. Oh, my gosh.
KATIE: It was awesome. It was so thoughtful, and it was such a bequest to our childhood. It was aloof great.
CONAN: Who remembers MS-DOS?
DICKERSON: That’s amazing.
KATIE: I know.
DICKERSON: But what about that? We were aloof talking about how you can never say goodbye to people. We can’t say goodbye to anything. There’s allegedly – aggregate is accessible online appropriate now in some file, somewhere.
KATIE: As continued as you can do the computer magic, you can accomplish it appear for sure.
CONAN: Katie, acknowledge you actual much.
KATIE: Of course. Acknowledge you so much.
CONAN: Let’s go abutting to – this is James, and James is on the band with us from Orlando.
JAMES: Thanks, Neal, for abounding years of great, absorbing stories. I had a adult breach up with me, and I anticipation she was so accomplished aback she active the card, applaud, friends. The ball is over. So abounding years later, I begin out that was the dying words of Beethoven, I believe.
JAMES: Also, Neal, what will appear to the affair music? I biking a lot, and you were not in Orlando for abounding years. But then, you assuredly came, and I heard the affair music appear on and I said, I am acquainted in. So what will appear to the affair song? Will SCIENCE FRIDAY absorb it?
CONAN: I accept SCIENCE FRIDAY will absorb it because I apperceive Ira Flatow well, and he’s not activity to agency accession tune. But the – added than that, you know, maybe it’ll end up on a website somewhere. Who knows?
JAMES: Afresh you will alive on consistently in our hearts. Thanks.
CONAN: OK. Acknowledgment actual much. We acknowledge it. Let’s see…
DICKERSON: And allegedly for several years too.
CONAN: Probably. Keith is on the band with us from Fort Bragg in North Carolina.
KEITH: Hey. Listen, Neal. We adulation you so much, man. And I aloof appetite to let you know, man, I’m taping this so I can let my little grandkids apprehend that I talked to Neal, this acclaimed guy. He’s a reporter, and he always, he consistently fabricated sure, in way or the other, that he let atramentous folk listen. Your bequest is not (unintelligible). You got old commonwealth over there (unintelligible) and all that was activity on. Those atramentous association active their own country. And the aftermost time you did it, you said, area is the (unintelligible) from? You had this guy (unintelligible). And I said, well, Neal, you’re the greatest ever. And we adulation you, black, white, everybody, man. We’re activity to absence you. We’re activity to absence you so much. Man, I don’t alike appetite to alpha arrant on this phone, brother. We adulation you, man, and you booty affliction of yourself, Mr. Neal. OK, sir?
CONAN: I will do that, Keith. And I’m activity to adhere up or I’m activity to alpha crying.
KEITH: You’re the greatest, bro. You consistently fabricated abiding atramentous bodies listen. You somebody. You consistently fabricated abiding we knew that. Acknowledge you, sir. And we adulation you. Be acceptable now, OK?
CONAN: I’ll do my best.
CONAN: Bye-bye. So, David, afore we leave, we aloof accept about 30 abnormal left. Annihilation you appetite to leave us with?
DICKERSON: I had one added agenda that I capital to allocution about, that I anticipation of accomplishing for – that will be acceptable for a job. It would be – on the outside, it says, you’re leaving? That’s so uncalled for. If you capital a agglomeration of hugs, you could’ve aloof asked.
DICKERSON: Accepting said that, I absolutely wrote a agenda for you, Neal.
DICKERSON: As you could see, it has a little dog on the outside.
CONAN: It does.
DICKERSON: And it says, whatever abroad you’re accomplishing next, I already like it.
DICKERSON: Acknowledgment for accurate this a amusement too.
CONAN: David Ellis Dickerson, columnist of “House of Cards.” Acknowledge you so abundant for not aloof this appearance, but for all the others in the past.
DICKERSON: Acknowledge you for, you know, all those years. It’s been really, absolutely wonderful,.
CONAN: David Ellis Dickerson abutting us actuality in Studio 42. I assumption it’s SCIENCE FRIDAY tomorrow. I’m Neal Conan. It’s the TALK OF THE NATION from NPR News.
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Kind Words For A Farewell Card – kind words for a farewell card
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