WPSU's This I Believe

Biweekly at 5:45 p.m. on Thursdays and at 9:00 p.m. on Sundays.

Tell us the personal philosophy and core values that guide your daily life, and hear stories from others.

This I Believe is based on the 1950s radio program of the same name and the media project (launched in 2005) from This I Believe, Inc. and Atlantic Public Media. WPSU-FM invites you, as a central Pennsylvania resident, whatever your background, to speak out.

Submit your essay.

Subscribe to WPSU's This I Believe podcast.

Go Ahead, Talk to Strangers

Jun 12, 2014
Fenchak
Kristin Fenchak

Sometimes I think we’re too closed off. We’re too afraid to smile at the mailman passing us on the sidewalk or to strike up a friendly conversation with the person next to us in the elevator. We opt instead to look down at our phones or up at the ceiling. I’ll admit it’s easy for me to get wrapped up in myself. But a chance encounter challenged me to take an interest in the lives of others.

I believe in talking to strangers.

I Believe in Retracing My Steps

May 29, 2014
Lucy Green
Lucy Bryan Green

I believe in retracing my steps—in ambling over the same gnarled roots, passing beneath the same thick tree limbs, hopping from boulder to boulder in the same spring-fed creek, over and over again. Since I moved to this Pennsylvania Valley nearly six years ago, I have crisscrossed the wild acres on the north side of Tussey Mountain too many times to count. I begin at the Shingletown Gap parking lot. From there, my feet carry me past a reservoir, into a grove of evergreens and rhododendrons, then west, over a log bridge.

I Live More on My Bicycle

May 15, 2014
Daisy Philtron
Emily Reddy

I believe that I live more when I ride my bicycle.  My bicycle opens doors that don't exist from the wheel of a car, or in the belly of a bus.  A trip to the grocery store becomes an adventure of balanced bags, shortcuts on bicycle paths, and smiles from drivers shaking their heads at the six bags of groceries strapped to the side of my bicycle.  A late night ride home from a friend's house showcases the stars.  Even better, a ride across the country, or across a continent, turns a mere month of living into a lifetime worth of adventures.

I Believe in Candy Crush Saga

May 1, 2014
Molly Munnell
Molly Munnell

As an active college student, I’m constantly bouncing like a ping pong ball from my dorm to class to the library and back again. I make lists of the multitude of things I need to do: take care of laundry, write a paper, go to a study group, grab dinner with friends. Sometimes my day doesn’t end until I crawl into bed at 3 AM. Stress can build up after weeks of this hectic lifestyle, and sometimes I feel like the running around will never end. But no matter how busy my day is, I always take a few minutes to relax before I go to sleep. Almost every night without fail, I curl up in bed, pull out my cell phone and continue my battle against brightly colored pieces of candy for the extent of five short lives. Yes, for those who might have guessed, I am indeed a proud player of the popular smartphone game Candy Crush Saga.  For those of you who aren’t familiar, Candy Crush Saga is a puzzle game that involves swapping and matching multicolored candy. It’s mostly mindless and yes, some would even say it’s a waste of time, but for me, it’s a lifesaver.

I Believe in Gratitude

Apr 18, 2014
Wagner This I Believe
Johanna Wagner

In the summer of 2012, I had a lot for which to be grateful. My husband and I were expecting our first child in early September. As an anxious mother-to-be I spent those early summer months devouring books, movies, articles and just about anything I could find about babies and those first crucial weeks. I was thrilled and terrified imagining what it would be like in a few short months. Never once did I think that I might not be there to experience it myself. 

I Believe in Cars

Apr 3, 2014
Hoffman
Kate Lao Shaffner

“Mitch, why are you such a knucklehead?” my dad says as he follows me out of our house and into the front yard. “Only a complete idiot would do something this stupid. Sometimes I wonder what goes on in that head of yours…” SLAM! My dad’s voice is suddenly cut off by the reassuring thunk of my car door. I jam the key into the ignition and start the engine. Before my dad even has a chance to finish his sentence, I’m turning out of the driveway, leaving him behind. I lift the clutch and hit the gas; first gear, I can feel the stress starting to melt away as the RPMs increase.

This I Believe: I Believe In Vinyl Records

Jun 28, 2012

I place the wide, flat disc on the turntable, close the dusty lid and press “start.” The guitar slowly fades in, followed by a loud bell. Finally, the drums break into a groove. Then, as Brad Delp of the band Boston starts to sing, I close my eyes and slip away.

I believe in vinyl records.

I believe in the soft, warm crackles and pops before every song. I believe in paging through the album artwork while the music plays. But, most of all, I believe in the happiness those spinning discs bring to my family.

This I Believe: I Believe In Bananagrams

Sep 8, 2011

“Take a letter. Okay, take another. Ha! Take a letter!” We all groan, looking at our Z’s ,K’s and Q’s seriously piling up. We exchange looks with each other that say, “Now how is this fair?” while my mom happily continues to build her ultimate crossword. When the tiles are finally gone, my mom throws her hands in the air and yells “WOOO HOOOO!” That was one of the many times that my mom had beaten our butts at Bananagrams, and the feeling of relief that the round of humiliation was over wasn’t unfamiliar. But then, of course, someone says, “Who's in for another round?

This I Believe: I Believe In Second Impressions

Apr 14, 2011

I was just shy of 17 the first time my brother Daniel introduced me to his girlfriend. Her name was Kristen, and I hated her immediately. But my brother loved her. Granted, I may not have known what love was, but in my teenage years, love meant a brother who would rather be with his girlfriend than with his siblings. Call it what you want *cough* jealously *cough*, but I wasn’t happy.

This I Believe: I Believe In Eating My Convictions

Mar 10, 2011
Essayist Lyndsie Wszola.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

I believe in eating my convictions. When I was twelve, I stopped eating meat because I liked animals and didn't want to hurt them. My grandmother saw this decision as a personal betrayal.  

This I Believe: I Believe In Eating My Convictions

Mar 10, 2011

I believe in eating my convictions. When I was twelve, I stopped eating meat because I liked animals and didn't want to hurt them. My grandmother saw this decision as a personal betrayal. 

Lyndsie Wszola is a Penn State student.

This I Believe: I Believe In Heavy Metal

Mar 11, 2010

I believe heavy metal.
 
When I was 12 years old I saw Metallica’s music video for the song, “One.” The video mixes gritty black and white band footage with excerpts from the film Johnny Got His Gun about a hospitalized soldier who lost his arms, legs, sight, hearing, and speech to a landmine. Over this footage, “One” goes from lament to unstoppable barrage.
 
I believed this song.
 

This I Believe: I Believe In Eating Local

May 25, 2009

This I Believe: I Believe In Public Radio

Apr 2, 2009

For many people, April 15 is TAX DAY! April 15 for me, however, has a different significance…

In 1982, I moved to a small mountain town in Colorado. I thought I’d found the perfect place to live. But there was one thing missing. No public radio. I used to spin the FM dial searching for the voice of the community.  All I would hear was canned music or talk programs packaged somewhere far away and made local only by the commercials injected.

This I Believe: I Believe In Slowing Down

Feb 5, 2009

On a rainy morning when I was ten, my neighbor Mr. Lovett invited me into his home for a woodworking project. Above his fireplace sat an ornate eagle carved by Mr. Lovett himself. Its wingspan was wider than I was tall. I remember wondering how long it took him to make that eagle.

Mr. Lovett guided my block of wood under the scroll saw until it morphed into the rough outline of a duck.

Pages