Ian Shoales

StudioTulsa & Points-Of-View Commentator

Merle Kessler is a founding member of the legendary Duck’s Breath Mystery Theatre, Merle Kessler is a writer, humorist, and performer, best known perhaps by his pen name, Ian Shoales. As Ian Shoales he has been churning out cranky yet strangely humorous commentaries since 1979.

First heard on NPR’s All Things Considered, he has been featured on Morning Edition, ABC’s Nightline and the online magazine, Salon. In addition, his pieces have been published in the New York Times, LA Times, the San Francisco Examiner, USA Today, the Washington Post, and the Minneapolis Tribune, among other publications. Merle (as Ian Shoales) recently co-starred in, and co-wrote (with composer partner J. Raoul Brody) Slouching Towards Disneyland, a wild story of the history of the world. A new show, Why We Can't Have Nice Things, is in the works. He is a regular commentator for the weekly public radio program, Philosophy Talk.

The odd commentaries of Ian Shoales are a random feature of Public Radio Tulsa's daily arts and culture program StudioTulsa.

Experience the magic of Duck's Breath Mystery Theater. Read more about Ian and hear a sampling of his commentaries... 


9:13 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Two Spaces or Just One?

I confess to being a two-spacer myself. Do we really need the semicolon?

2:29 pm
Sun June 17, 2012

The Future of Book Signings

Wouldn't that turn the E-reader into a...book?

3:07 pm
Wed June 13, 2012


A television remake of "The Munsters"? Ian Shoales asks why the heck anyone would bother with such....

10:09 pm
Sat May 26, 2012

Cheez Whiz

Let us not surrender the memories of what it meant to us.

9:17 pm
Sun May 6, 2012

Flat is the New Up

An inexplicable catch phrase is drifting into everything.

8:55 am
Sat March 31, 2012

Moody Computers

 I don't know if I want a computer that knows my mood. I have ex-girlfriends for that.

4:35 pm
Mon March 19, 2012

Money & Banks

Easy money? Zombie money? Robot money from the future?

7:09 am
Wed March 14, 2012

iPod Backlash

People make little outfits for their iPod! I'll appear in public headphone-free. I gotta go.

3:11 pm
Fri March 9, 2012


America needs more edge. Things are too calm around here - people are too reasonable!