Arrested Development

For anyone without kids who was wondering why their workplace was unusually noisy and full of empty chocolate wrappers today, it’s because the fourth Thursday in April every year is Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work Day, the holiday where people do that thing in the name. (For anyone who does have kids but still didn’t know what today was, you probably owe those kids some Happy Meals for forgetting them.) As seen in the classic Arrested Development episode “Not Without My Daughter,” Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work Day is usually a fun and harmless exercise during which kids are given the opportunity to see what their parents choose to do all day instead of spending time with their family.

The day was anything but fun and harmless at NPR’s office, though, as one of the daughters or sons involved actually shut down the NPR signal to a handful of stations on the west coast today for a little over a minute during Morning Edition. Alright, so that’s not too bad, but it almost certainly caused some people to freak out for a moment, which was probably pretty funny. This comes from Gawker, which got its hands on an internal NPR email that says a “junior journalist” managed to “press the exact sequence” of buttons during a recording booth demonstration and “perfectly timed live insert panel to insert studio 42 into the stream 1,” which is just a jumble of nonsense words that probably mean something to NPR employees.

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Either way, the point is that people at NPR took their kids to work today, and while learning about all the cool switches and knobs that make radio happen, one of those kids hit some stuff they weren’t supposed to and shut off the NPR signal for a small number of stations (NPR wouldn’t say how many). That’s either a funny mishap that could make for an amusing anecdote on an upcoming episode of This American Life, or it’s proof that our children have become puppets of conservative politicians and they’re trying to tear down public radio over its notorious liberal bias. It’s hard to say which one it is.