A lot can happen in 7 minutes...

Storyteller Aaron Calafato uses 7 minute vignettes to share his memories, explore his psyche and attempt to make sense of the world.

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All Episodes

Taco Bell: An American Portrait

7 Minute Stories | E:109
A story about Taco Bell and suburban youth.
Listen to Taco Bell: An American Portrait

Mumford's Son (7MS Classic)

7 Minute Stories
This is what happens when you combine the most important performance of my life and a chance intersection with Mumford & Sons...
Listen to Mumford's Son (7MS Classic)

A Farewell Address

7 Minute Stories
Someone has to say farewell, and then, all we’ll have left is each other....
Listen to A Farewell Address

Scary Stories

7 Minute Stories | E:Episode 106
To celebrate Halloween, I recite two of my favorite tales from the classic Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.
Listen to Scary Stories

The Spaceflight

7 Minute Stories | E:105
On May 22, 2053, two childhood friends embark on an improbable galactic journey.
Listen to The Spaceflight

How To Get A Park Bench

7 Minute Stories | E:104
My fiancé Cori and I become obsessed with dedicating a park bench to ourselves, but neither us of expected this outcome.
Listen to How To Get A Park Bench

Who is James Park?

7 Minute Stories | E:103
An empty park bench and a mysterious man help me uncover a secret about my humanity.
Listen to Who is James Park?

A Mental Health Conversation

7 Minute Stories | E:102
In this episode I give a special thanks and some audience shout-outs.
Listen to A Mental Health Conversation

The Confession

7 Minute Stories | E:101
here is something I haven’t told you about myself. In fact, I’ve been hiding it for nearly 30 years…
Listen to The Confession

7 Questions in 7 Minutes

7 Minute Stories | E:100
To celebrate 100 episodes, Aaron answers 7 listener submitted questions in 7 minutes.
Listen to 7 Questions in 7 Minutes

A Conversation with TJ Duke

7 Minute Stories | E:99
In this special episode, I talk with TJ Duke (Musician and Cloud Nothings Bassist) about his musical process, our latest 7MS collaboration and creating during COVID19.
Listen to A Conversation with TJ Duke

The Legend of Ali

7 Minute Stories | E:98
What do a mysterious deer, a legendary wiffle ball tournament and a Joni Mitchell song have in common? As it turns out, everything.
Listen to The Legend of Ali

Sonny Corinthos

7 Minute Stories | E:97
The story of how a one of a kind soap star inadvertently solidified one of the most important relationships of my life.
Listen to Sonny Corinthos

The Apartment

7 Minute Stories | E:96
I knew something was wrong when we arrived at our new apartment, but I could never imagine what would happen next.
Listen to The Apartment

Summer Break

7 Minute Stories
An announcement about the 7 Minute Stories schedule, plus exciting news and updates!
Listen to Summer Break

Field of Dreams

7 Minute Stories | E:95
A story about a father and son, a baseball game in Cleveland and the meaning of America’s Pastime.
Listen to Field of Dreams

Break on Through to the Other Side

7 Minute Stories | E:94
A harrowing story about how destroying my own basement plumbing brought me closer to the ghosts of our ancestors.
Listen to Break on Through to the Other Side

An Act of God, written by Meg Jakary

7 Minute Stories | E:93
During a global pandemic, a trip to the store to buy toilette paper requires divine intervention.
Listen to An Act of God, written by Meg Jakary

The Bronx is Burning

7 Minute Stories | E:92
One of my first real acting gigs was for a 2007 ESPN Mini-Series titled, appropriately, The Bronx is Burning. Well, this story takes you behind the scenes of that very acting gig gone awry.
Listen to The Bronx is Burning

The Gettysburg Address, Common People & Heart-Soul Agreement

7 Minute Stories | E:91
This episode is a multimedia story in three parts
Listen to The Gettysburg Address, Common People & Heart-Soul Agreement

7 Minutes of Reflection

7 Minute Stories
I was racking my brain trying to figure out what episode I should put out today considering where we are in America...So, I figured something we could offer would be 7 minutes of reflection.
Listen to 7 Minutes of Reflection

The Gun (7ms Team Favorite)

7 Minute Stories
When I was 13 years old I went to visit a new friend. Before going out to play in the woods he took out a gun. What happened next felt like life and death …
Listen to The Gun (7ms Team Favorite)

The D-Day Prayer

7 Minute Stories | E:88
In honor of Memorial Day, and in an effort to pay tribute to those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice, this episode I recite FDR’s D-Day Prayer.
Listen to The D-Day Prayer

Surprise Music Episode

7 Minute Stories | E:87
First, audio producer Ken Wendt discusses how he's taken some of the strange noises Aaron Calalafato makes when telling stories, and turned them into music.
Listen to Surprise Music Episode

The Potato Bar

7 Minute Stories | E:86
Little did I know that a delicious potato bar would be the setting for one of the most formative experiences in my high school career.
Listen to The Potato Bar

Stories in a Box (7MS Team Pick)

7 Minute Stories | E:85
My grandfather taught me much of what I know about the art of storytelling. Years after his death, I discovered he’d kept stories of his own hidden away. In this episode, we find out why...
Listen to Stories in a Box (7MS Team Pick)

Rooster: A Guest Story by C.W. Schultz

7 Minute Stories | E:84
A trip to the Philippines, 30 plus hours of insomnia and a merciless rooster. What happens next, only writer C.W. Schultz can tell you in this special guest episode of 7 Minute Stories.
Listen to Rooster: A Guest Story by C.W. Schultz

Growing Up in the Rearview (Remastered)

7 Minute Stories | E:83
This is one of the first 7 minute stories I ever told. It’s also one of the most personal...
Listen to Growing Up in the Rearview (Remastered)

Life in a House

7 Minute Stories | E:81
I had 7 minutes before I needed to come inside and put my kids to bed. Just enough time to discover something incredible radiating from inside of my house.
Listen to Life in a House

The Time Capsule

7 Minute Stories
While cleaning my garage this past weekend, I discovered a box of essays that I wrote as a child. This episode, I’ll recite a few of them for the first time in decades.
Listen to The Time Capsule

Stop and Smell the Roses

7 Minute Stories | E:79
A memory of the ocean, a hot cup of coffee and peculiar rodent named Jerry help me attain a brief moment of enlightenment.
Listen to Stop and Smell the Roses

7ms Classic: The Amish (COVID-19 Intro)

7 Minute Stories | E:78
In this episode Cori and I address the COVID-19 Pandemic and how the 7 Minute Story team is approaching it. Then, we feature a classic episode called The Amish.
Listen to 7ms Classic: The Amish (COVID-19 Intro)

Pale Blue Dot (Classic Story Remix)

7 Minute Stories | E:77
After receiving some unexpected inspiration from the late, great Carl Sagan, I’m compelled to share it with one of the most important people in the galaxy…
Listen to Pale Blue Dot (Classic Story Remix)

Something's Lost but Something's Gained OR The Legend of Ali and the Wiffle Ball

7 Minute Stories | E:76
A legendary wiffle ball tournament and an unexpected misfortune merge into one of the most memorable days of my life.
Listen to Something's Lost but Something's Gained OR The Legend of Ali and the Wiffle Ball

Japan: A Guest Story by Anthony Vorndran

7 Minute Stories | E:75
In this episode, Anthony Vorndran recalls a life-changing trip to Japan. The only things standing in his way? North Korean ballistic missiles, a WIFI outage and not speaking a word of Japanese.
Listen to Japan: A Guest Story by Anthony Vorndran

Rage on the Turnpike

7 Minute Stories
On a hot summer day in 2008, a traffic jam on the Jersey Turnpike turns into a violent encounter.
Listen to Rage on the Turnpike

Larry King and the Pretzel Rods

7 Minute Stories
An unexpected visit to my grandmother’s old house triggers a vivid memory that shaped the way I look at the world.
Listen to Larry King and the Pretzel Rods

Special Guest: Nina Turner

7 Minute Stories | E:72
Nina Turner is a former Ohio State Senator and the current Co-Chair of the 2020 Bernie Sanders Campaign. In 2016, I interviewed Nina and our conversation has stuck with me. It was emotional, authentic and refreshing. This guest episode features 7 “very real” minutes from our talk.
Listen to Special Guest: Nina Turner

The Rookie of the Year

7 Minute Stories | E:71
A story about my father, our broken family, America’s pastime and how an iconic 90s film and its star became a reoccurring motif in my life.
Listen to The Rookie of the Year

The Interview

7 Minute Stories | E:70
In 2009, things were at an all-time low. Then, I had an interview with the potential to change everything…
Listen to The Interview

Heard it Through the Grapevine

7 Minute Stories | E:69
The possibility of rock immortality hinges on my band’s performance at a very special high school talent show.
Listen to Heard it Through the Grapevine

The Spotlight or A Love Letter to Richard Greenberg

7 Minute Stories | E:68
Jealousy and rage get the better of me when I’m not given the lead role in a College Theatre production. Luckily, the work of playwright Richard Greenberg offers me some redemption…
Listen to The Spotlight or A Love Letter to Richard Greenberg

The Last Story of the Year

7 Minute Stories | E:67
In this last episode of 2019 , I give a special thanks to our 7 Minute Story team and audience. Then, we round out the year with a replay of the very first story of this series called "The Cruise."
Listen to The Last Story of the Year

A Christmas Story With No Author

7 Minute Stories
Every Christmas Eve, I listen to a beautiful story recited and made famous by radio legend Paul Harvey. It’s called “The Man & the Birds”, and ironically, nobody has been able to find the original author. This holiday season, I’d like to read it to you…
Listen to A Christmas Story With No Author

The Yoga Class

7 Minute Stories | E:65
In 2008, I reluctantly attended my first yoga class in New York City. Ten years later, it’s an experience I can’t seem to forget.
Listen to The Yoga Class

Guest Storyteller: Mr. Klaus

7 Minute Stories | E:64
To usher in the Christmas season, I wanted to share a guest story from a man who is the closest thing to the real Santa you’ll ever come across. His name is Mark Klaus.
Listen to Guest Storyteller: Mr. Klaus

A Thanksgiving to Remember

7 Minute Stories | E:63
Hosting at my house for the first time triggers a poignant memory of Thanksgiving past.
Listen to A Thanksgiving to Remember

(Flashback Episode) The Perfect Day

7 Minute Stories | E:62
The Perfect Day was one of the earliest episodes of our podcast series (Episode 9). It’s also one of my personal favorites.
Listen to (Flashback Episode) The Perfect Day

The Bus Ride

7 Minute Stories | E:61
A deeply personal story about a challenging time in my life, taking the city bus and the life lessons I learned along the ride.
Listen to The Bus Ride

Special Guest: Matt Fish

7 Minute Stories | E:60
A conversation about my love of grilled cheese sparks restaurant entrepreneur Matt Fish to talk about his inspiration for the popular MELT bar and grilled.
Listen to Special Guest: Matt Fish

Halloween Special: The House in the Woods

7 Minute Stories | E:59
I was always skeptical of ghosts, but living in this house made me question everything.
Listen to Halloween Special: The House in the Woods

Me, Cameron Crowe and the Myth of Elizabethtown

7 Minute Stories | E:58
In pursuit of my dream, I drove down to Louisville, KY to audition for a Cameron Crowe film. What transpired became a story of mythic proportions.
Listen to Me, Cameron Crowe and the Myth of Elizabethtown

Special Guest: Bill Squire

7 Minute Stories | E:57
In 2018, I did an interview with comedian and radio personality Bill Squire. In this 7 minute segment from that conversation, we discuss how comedy can be a vital platform to explore racism in America.
Listen to Special Guest: Bill Squire

Fan Favorite (Episode 16 - Lady of Maine)

7 Minute Stories
Please enjoy this fan favorite from early on in the 7 minute Story podcast series!
Listen to Fan Favorite (Episode 16 - Lady of Maine)

Sunday Sauce

7 Minute Stories | E:55
A tasty Italian-American tradition triggers an identity crisis.
Listen to Sunday Sauce

Dream until your dream comes true

7 Minute Stories | E:54
A story that starts with a dream of becoming an actor in New York City, and ends with a surprise twist involving an unexpected guardian angel.
Listen to Dream until your dream comes true

My Way on the Highway

7 Minute Stories | E:53
A story spanning three generations, guided by the sounds of Frank Sinatra and Eric Clapton, all culminating with an emotional tirade at a local coffee establishment.
Listen to My Way on the Highway

Guest Storyteller: Dennis Kucinich

7 Minute Stories | E:52
In 2018, Dennis Kucinich was running to become the next Governor of Ohio. During that busy campaign, I sat down with him for an interview. This special episode of 7ms features the most compelling 7 minutes from that conversation.
Listen to Guest Storyteller: Dennis Kucinich

Barnes & Noble: A Love Story

7 Minute Stories | E:51
Why do the places where we spend our time mean so much to us? In this story, I explain how a trip to a local Barnes & Noble with my girlfriend became a launching pad for our love story.
Listen to Barnes & Noble: A Love Story

Special 50th Episode

7 Minute Stories | E:50
This episode breaks format a bit & features a 21 minute conversation between my girlfriend & life partner Cori Birce and I.
Listen to Special 50th Episode

Jump on the Roof

7 Minute Stories | E:49
This story is about an intriguing man named Ernie. I met him in the summer of 2000 while working a summer job. Our chance meeting gave me insight into his tragic past, helped me overcome a secret fear and would ultimately impact both our lives forever.
Listen to Jump on the Roof

Me, Paul Harvey and the Farmer

7 Minute Stories | S:1 E:48
After a turbulent few weeks in America, I took a long drive to search for answers. What I discovered rejuvenated my faith in mankind.
Listen to Me, Paul Harvey and the Farmer

That's Not My Friend Anymore

7 Minute Stories | E:47
Standing over a friend’s casket triggers an internal struggle about consciousness and the soul.
Listen to That's Not My Friend Anymore

Remember His Face

7 Minute Stories | E:46
After crossing paths with a homeless man, a chance conversation leaves us both changed forever.
Listen to Remember His Face

Special Guest: okPANTS

7 Minute Stories | E:45
During this 7 minute segment, the artist & creative okPANTS, talks about what motivates him to make a life out of making art.
Listen to Special Guest: okPANTS

Where do the memories go?

7 Minute Stories | E:44
Where do our memories go after we die? To navigate this question, I explore two very personal memories and then speculate where they may exist outside my own brain. 
Listen to Where do the memories go?

Stories in a Box

7 Minute Stories | E:43
A drawer full of written stories reveal something about my grandfather I never knew…
Listen to Stories in a Box

Guest Storyteller: Van Jones

7 Minute Stories | E:42
For this special 4th of July episode, I’d like to share a 7 minute segment from an interview I did with Van Jones in 2017. I thought it was compelling because the crux of our conversation still speaks to the current state of division we find ourselves in as Americans.
Listen to Guest Storyteller: Van Jones

The Crayon Emergency

7 Minute Stories
The story of how boy’s curiosity and love of crayons ended in a medical mystery that bewildered an entire emergency room.
Listen to The Crayon Emergency

Guest Storyteller: Nina Domingue

7 Minute Stories | E:40
In this 7 minute segment I talk with actor, director, playwright & educator Nina Domingue. In it, Nina investigates how the beginning of her artistic journey triggered an experience of self-discovery.
Listen to Guest Storyteller: Nina Domingue

The Lockout

7 Minute Stories | E:39
One moment is was a beautiful Fall day, the next, my two-year-old daughter was trapped inside our house. It was a day that would defy logic and define me as a father…
Listen to The Lockout

Special Delivery

7 Minute Stories | E:38
A wasp attack, the morning of 9/11 and an anthrax scare. This was just my first few weeks of college and my initiation into the real world... 
Listen to Special Delivery

TCBY: A Love Story

7 Minute Stories | E:37
The story of how my journey to find a rare frozen yogurt flavor gave me another chance at love.
Listen to TCBY: A Love Story

Guest Storyteller: Shannon Cason

7 Minute Stories | E:36
This episode features the first official guest to the 7ms Podcast. During this 7 minute segment I talk with fellow storyteller Shannon Cason. We dive into Shannon’s creative process, what inspires some of his stories and something we hope the storytelling art form can adopt in future.
Listen to Guest Storyteller: Shannon Cason

Mumford's Son

7 Minute Stories | E:35
The tale of how a hazardous live storytelling performance and a chance intersection with a popular musical group taught me how to truly connect with my audience.
Listen to Mumford's Son

The Pale Blue Dot

7 Minute Stories | E:34
After finding out the Milky Way Galaxy and the Andromeda Galaxy are on a collision course, I nearly panicked. But then, after some serendipitous inspiration from the great Carl Sagan, I made a discovery I had to share with one of the most important people on earth...
Listen to The Pale Blue Dot

The Yellow Bird

7 Minute Stories | E:33
The story of how a little yellow bird taught me life lessons about mortality, perseverance and grace.
Listen to The Yellow Bird

The Backseat

7 Minute Stories | E:32
A broken family. The backseat of a car. No control. Sometimes, during a difficult transition, an unlikely hero will emerge to help you see it through.
Listen to The Backseat

The Hunter

7 Minute Stories | E:31
Thousands of years ago, humans explored uncharted terrain as hunters and gatherers. Now, in the year 2019, I come face to face with an equally daunting task…
Listen to The Hunter

Me and Gary V

7 Minute Stories | E:30
When I looked down at my phone, I saw that Gary Vaynerchuck's account liked one of my comments on Instagram. What happened next would send me into a spiral of excitement, regret and reflection. 
Listen to Me and Gary V

The Guitar God

7 Minute Stories | E:29
A quest to become the greatest rock guitar player on the planet all culminates into one life-altering audition.
Listen to The Guitar God

The Injury

7 Minute Stories | E:28
What started out as an exceptional day on the basketball court ended in a hilarious trip the to the emergency room... 
Listen to The Injury

We Are All Witnesses

7 Minute Stories | E:27
What started out as a heated religious debate between two kids on an elementary school playground, turned into an attack from an unusual suspect... 
Listen to We Are All Witnesses

Becoming Donatello

7 Minute Stories | E:26
It was 1990, I was 7 years old and I was anticipating the release of greatest film ever made: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Not only this, but I actually believed I was a turtle and had every intention to reveal my true identity to an elementary school crush...
Listen to Becoming Donatello

The Train Incident

7 Minute Stories | E:25
On a bright Fall day in 2009, what started out as usual train commute from Eatontown, New Jersey to Manhattan, transformed into a crime scene.
Listen to The Train Incident

Chinatown

7 Minute Stories | E:24
When I got a call from Jack Nicholson’s executive assistant at 1:00am in the morning, It felt like a “surreal” experience...
Listen to Chinatown

The Tryout

7 Minute Stories | E:23
Years of commitment and preparation led me to this moment. What started as a tryout for my middle school basketball team, transformed into an experience that would shape my entire career.
Listen to The Tryout

The Lineup

7 Minute Stories | E:22
When I was 10 years old I spent a summertime at a makeshift daycare. One afternoon there, while playing Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out on NES, I committed an unintentional crime which was followed by a memorable interrogation.
Listen to The Lineup

The Fish

7 Minute Stories | E:21
At the age of 5 I watched a BBC documentary about the life of fish in the ocean. Days later, I witnessed what I can only describe as a ghost appear in my bedroom. Both experiences united to form an existential crisis that would shape my future…
Listen to The Fish

The Night-Night Rules

7 Minute Stories | E:20
I don’t know if it was divine intervention or just coincidence, but whatever it was, it gave me the strength to make a promise to my daughter that I don’t intend on breaking…
Listen to The Night-Night Rules

The Gun

7 Minute Stories | E:19
When I was 13 years old I went to visit a new friend. Before going out to play in the woods he took out a gun. What happened next felt life and death…
Listen to The Gun

The Dream

7 Minute Stories | E:18
The night my grandfather slipped into a coma, he came to me in a profound dream…
Listen to The Dream

The Blizzard

7 Minute Stories | E:17
It was the early 90s and I was a pre-teen. I was in sitting in my grandparents car and the weather outside started to change in a way I had never seen. As we started our drive from Columbus to Cleveland I knew the odds were not in our favor…
Listen to The Blizzard

Lady of Maine

7 Minute Stories | E:16
How much do I love storytelling? Well, it was 2012 and I was booked to perform one of my monologues at a theater in Portland, Maine. The only catch was I had to drive nearly 16 hours and endure one of the most unsettling nights of my life.
Listen to Lady of Maine

Over the River

7 Minute Stories | E:15
I looked at the world differently when I was a child. But when did things change? I remember it was the mid 90s and I went to visit my grandmother in rural Ohio. Her only rule was that I didn’t ride my bike past the gray house…
Listen to Over the River

The Ice Cream Sandwich

7 Minute Stories | E:14
The second grade. An elementary lunch room. A purple silk shirt. A blossoming new love. History would be made as I courted an older woman for the first time…
Listen to The Ice Cream Sandwich

The Cherry Tree

7 Minute Stories | E:13
The myth of George Washington and the cherry tree made an big impression on my life. But as a young boy, when a police officer caught me vandalizing a house in my neighborhood, the impact of that myth would be put to the test.
Listen to The Cherry Tree

The Amish

7 Minute Stories | E:12
I sat at a traffic light and looked at the world falling apart around me. So, I turned my car around and drove until all I saw was corn fields and the Amish. I had found a new possibility. Maybe even a new home.
Listen to The Amish

The Phone Call

7 Minute Stories | E:11
I was 30 years old when my daughter was born. Shortly after, I received a phone call from my dad that forecast what the next 30 years may be like.
Listen to The Phone Call

The Fight

7 Minute Stories | E:10
When I was younger I fought a lot. This time, however, felt different than the rest. I was in over my head and would experience the true power, utility and lasting effect of violence.
Listen to The Fight

The Perfect Day

7 Minute Stories | E:9
I woke up and something was different. From the moment I opened my eyes it seemed like it would be one of those days where nothing could go wrong. Was I right? Or, was this all a dream?
Listen to The Perfect Day

The Nest

7 Minute Stories | E:8
It was the largest yellow jacket nest I've ever come across. It was man versus nature and I had to protect my home...
Listen to The Nest

Growing Up in the Rearview

7 Minute Stories | E:7
This episode explores the journey of driving my daughter home from the hospital after she was born and then through years of car rides looking into the rear-view mirror and seeing all the stages of her life.
Listen to Growing Up in the Rearview

Emails to My Dead Grandfather

7 Minute Stories | E:6
My grandfather and I were very close. One day, several years after he passed away, I saw that his gmail account profile was active. So, I decided to email him...
Listen to Emails to My Dead Grandfather

The Thirty-Five Year Train Ride

7 Minute Stories | E:5
For the last thirty five years I've heard the sound of a train out my window. It's seems that I've been following it my entire life.
Listen to The Thirty-Five Year Train Ride

The Summer of Peter Jennings

7 Minute Stories | E:4
A remixed version of a story Aaron did during the 2016 Presidential Election that is more relevant that ever.
Listen to The Summer of Peter Jennings

The Audition

7 Minute Stories | E:3
After getting off a train at Penn Station and taking in New York City for the first time, I began the odyssey of my first acting audition at the Actors Equity Center.
Listen to The Audition

The Car Accident and the Crucifix

7 Minute Stories | E:2
In episode two I explore a recent car accident I was involved in.
Listen to The Car Accident and the Crucifix

The Cruise

7 Minute Stories | E:1
Welcome to episode one of #7minutestories! A young man who is afraid of boats takes his first carnival cruise shortly after Hurricane Katrina rips through the Gulf coast.
Listen to The Cruise

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