The rough times for public radio continue: Garrison Keillor is making headlines tonight by telling AARP's The Bulletin that he plans to retire from A Prairie Home Companion in 2013. But Lake Wobegon fans can take solace in that he left himself plenty of wiggle room. For starters, he'd have to have a replacement lined up. Still, he also told AP that he'll be 70 in 2013, "and that seems like a nice round number."
"The reason to retire is to try to avoid embarrassment," said Keillor, whose show had a guest host for the first time this year. "You ought to do it before people are dropping big hints." The head of Minnesota Public Radio isn't too concerned yet. "Garrison has been talking about things like this for the last couple of years and when Garrison says it, it doesn't necessarily mean anything more than that morning's musings," he tells a blog at the station. Instead of a fixed date, he predicts a gradual transition, with Keillor ceding more and more control over time. (Read more Garrison Keillor stories.)