Our short Double Blasted tells the story of a man who survived not one, but TWO atomic bomb blasts--first in Hiroshima, and then in Nagasaki--in 1945. After hearing the podcast, the wonderful folks at WNYC's Archives pointed us to two surreal-sounding broadcasts that aired in New York City five years after the bombings in Japan, as part of a radio series called Plan for Survival.
The series was aimed at helping New Yorkers understand what to do in case of a nuclear attack, and it's full of colorful descriptions (the roar of an atomic bomb is described as sounding like "1000 blockbusters exploding all around you"), and oddly obvious bits of advice (if an atom bomb goes off, you shouldn't "continue cutting grass"). The series also contains some outdated language and thinking -- scientifically and politically -- so bear that in mind if you listen.
This particular episode (about 14 minutes long), begins by asking people all over the state what they'd do if a nuclear bomb went off near them (their answers seem to bolster the case that New Yorkers had a thing or two to learn about Civil Defense...), and goes on to describe a traveling exhibit that featured a "very impressive colored photograph of New York City as it would look after an atomic bombing attack" (if anybody knows if that photo still exists somewhere...please let me know in the comments section, I'd be really curious to see it):
You can read more, and listen to another episode of Plan for Survival, at Annotations: The NEH Preservation Project.
Thanks to Emily Vinson from WNYC's Archives for discovering this series of broadcasts. And thanks to our fabulous intern Daisy Rosario for helping to put this post together.