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For Whom the Cowbell Tolls

For Whom the Cowbell Tolls

Update: 2019-03-2970
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Description

When Nancy Holten was 8 years old her mom put her in a moving van. She fell asleep, woke up in Switzerland, and she's been there ever since. Nancy is big into animal rights, crystals, and various forms of natural and holistic healing. She’s also a viral sensation: the Dutch woman apparently so annoying, her Swiss town denied her citizenship. In this episode we go to the little village of Gipf-Oberfrick to meet Nancy, talk with the town, and ask the question: what does it mean and what does it take to belong to a place?


This episode was reported by Kelly Prime and was produced by Kelly Prime and Annie McEwen. 


Special thanks to reporter Anna Mayumi Kerber, the tireless fixer and translator for this story. Thanks also to Dominik Hangartner and to the very talented yodelers Ai Dineen and Gregory Corbino.








Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate










A tasty note from Latif: Towards the end of the story, I casually mentioned a place called Greg's Poutine in Toronto.  Turns out, it's actually called Smoke's Poutinerie. (Confused it with Greg's Ice Cream.) Go. It's delicious. 

Comments (7)

Mae Lee Arant

I understand that Nancy became intrusive in her stance rather than educational and encouraging in her animal rights stance but I also tire of media ( you radiolab) being superior in how you label vegetarians as self righteous and militant. Like it or not, animal cruelty is a huge problem in this world of factory farming and the truth is, most have chosen to ignore the issues animal cruelty, environmental destruction and the very real and legitimate moral question of eating meat because ribs and burgers because they taste good. We must take ownership of our choices and have reasonable conversation about these issues without the dismissive attacks against vegetarians by simply labeling them as self righteous; the truth is that they are irritating because they are right.

Apr 7th
Reply

Ryan Persaud

I love episodes that start off as some quirky human interest story but have a much bigger issue in mind. This was really great and I think, quite compassionate.

Apr 3rd
Reply

Wendy Bruder

it's so ~wonderful~ when people move to a new place and immediately start complaining about the place and trying to change it to suit THEIR needs. Not surprised she is vegan too.

Apr 2nd
Reply

Ryan Persaud

Wendy Bruder If nobody questioned anything on the basis of tradition, nothing would ever change. Not that I believe cowbells should be banned, but damn we need a bit of nuance

Apr 3rd
Reply

M F

Really takes an ideological turn at the end.

Mar 30th
Reply

Holls Balls

Spoiler alert: Crystals do not heal cancer.

Mar 29th
Reply

nono

Holls Balls Trust her, she's an "animal rights activist."

Apr 3rd
Reply
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For Whom the Cowbell Tolls

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