Flying wingtip to wingtip, it was called... "The Shepherd"
December 25, 2009 12:14 AM   Subscribe

On December 24th, 1979, radio personality Alan Maitland started a tradition on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's program As It Happens. That Christmas Eve, Maitland read a Frederick Forsyth story that featured the unlikely meeting of a Vampire and a Mosquito. His telling has been re-aired every year since.

[Auto-play Audio Warning] Maitland, who died in 1999, was known as both Front Porch Al1 and Fireside Al2 for "tempting listeners to pull up a chair to the fire or on the porch (depending on the season) and listen." Here now for you listening pleasure (and only for a limited time!), is the As It Happens (re-?)podcast of Forsyth's The Shepherd. [Direct MP3]

1-Also included:
  • The Great Election in Missinaba County by Stephen Leacock
  • A Service of Love, by O. Henry (William Sydney Porter)
  • Tobermory, by Saki (Hector Hugh Munro)
  • Moonlight, by Guy de Maupassant
  • Town of the Little People, by Sholem Aleichem
  • Ambrose Bierce's An Occurence at Owl Creek Bridge
2-Also included:
  • Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Match Girl
  • Alexander Woollcott's Hoofbeats on a Wooden Bridge
  • George Elliot's The Mill on the Floss
  • Maksim Gorky's Christmas Phantoms
  • Eugene Field's Jest 'Fore Christmas
  • Entries from the diaries of Samuel Pepys
posted by Decimask (7 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite
Love it. Thanks for this first gift of Christmas Day. I've been a fan of Fireside (Frontporch) Al for almost my whole life. and The Shepherd is the best.
posted by salishsea at 12:18 AM on December 25, 2009

This was great. I remember Alan's 'The Age of Elegance' show too ... I'd sure love to hear some of those again ...
posted by woodblock100 at 1:38 AM on December 25, 2009

If you're running Safari, I wouldn't recommend clicking on either "Front Porch Al" or "Fireside Al" links. I got to the "Front Porch" page, at which point Safari started blinking like mad, Divx converter (a separate app) automatically opened (and refused to quit), and the page, when I clicked to close the tab, insisted on instantly reopening. Quitting and relaunching Safari just relaunched the page and led back to the problem again -- until I cleaned out my browsing history, caches, etc. Unpleasant.
posted by young_simba at 2:06 AM on December 25, 2009

I've listened to "The Shepherd" (and not just because of my last name/username) for almost 10 years running now on Christmas Eve. Thanks for posting this!
posted by Shepherd at 2:14 AM on December 25, 2009

Happy Christmas!
posted by Samuel Farrow at 6:47 AM on December 25, 2009

A family tradition in our houseful of pilots. Thank you.
posted by Sallyfur at 10:10 PM on December 26, 2009

I bookmarked this and only came round to listening to it today. Thank you very much.
posted by Cobalt at 8:56 PM on January 11, 2010

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