By Will Hermes
Updated June 04, 1999 at 04:00 AM EDT

Since most public broadcasters deny the nation’s freshest non-music radio show a decent time slot, this two-CD anthology is a welcome keepsake. True, the open-heart-surgery-style storytelling (by David Sedaris, Sarah Vowell, host Ira Glass, and others) doesn’t pack the same sucker punch on disc or tape as when it hijacks your car radio. But the comic pathos in Lies, Sissies, and Fiascoes: The Best of This American Life still throbs; park on a side street, press PLAY, and you’ll laugh ’til you cry. B+