The Story Collider

Story Collider, Inc.

Whether we wear a lab coat or haven't seen a test tube since grade school, science is shaping all of our lives. And that means we all have science stories to tell. Every year, we host dozens of live shows all over the country, featuring all kinds of storytellers - researchers, doctors, and engineers of course, but also patients, poets, comedians, cops, and more. Some of our stories are heartbreaking, others are hilarious, but they're all true and all very personal. Welcome to The Story Collider! read less
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Am I The Problem?: Stories from CZI's Rare As One Project
23-02-2024
Am I The Problem?: Stories from CZI's Rare As One Project
The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI)'s Rare As One Network brings together rare disease patients and advocates in their quest for cures. Both of this week’s stories are from Rare As One grantees who are sharing their stories and experiences navigating diagnoses and organizing their communities to accelerate research, identify treatments, and change the course of their diseases. Part 1: When Riley Blevins’ son gets diagnosed with a rare disease, it changes his life. Part 2: Heidi Wallis becomes completely obsessed with trying to fix her daughter. After spending years in the corporate world in media relations and corporate branding, a rare disease diagnosis for his first-born son changed -- and very well saved -- Riley Blevins' life. Today, he is the senior director of global community engagement of Cure HHT. Heidi is the Executive Director of the Association for Creatine Deficiencies and parent of four children, two of which have GAMT Deficiency- a rare brain creatine deficiency syndrome. Prior to working for ACD she was as a grant analyst and project manager in the Utah Public Health Newborn Screening program and served as an ACD volunteer board member. Heidi's vision is that one day all creatine deficiencies will be diagnosed at birth, through routine newborn screening, and will be treated with an effective and appropriate treatment before the onset of symptoms. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Love Story: Stories with a happily ever after
16-02-2024
Love Story: Stories with a happily ever after
In honor of Valentine’s Day, this week’s episode features two stories where love finds a way. Part 1: Scientist Bruce Hungate yearns to find someone who cares about the tiny details as much as he does. Part 2: Science reporter Ari Daniel and his wife are at odds when it comes to moving their family to Lebanon, but the pandemic changes things. Bruce Hungate conducts research on microbial ecology of global change from the cell to the planet. His research examines the imprint of the diversity of life on the cycling of elements, how ecosystems respond to and shape environmental change, and microbial ecology of the biosphere, from soils to hot springs to humans. Bruce is Director of the Center for Ecosystem Science and Society at Northern Arizona University, where he holds the Frances B McAllister Chair in Community, Culture, and the Environment, and is Regents Professor of Biological Sciences. He is an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow, Fellow of the Ecological Society of America, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, and member of the American Academy of Microbiology. Bruce plays classical piano and writes narrative non-fiction at the intersection of science, the environment, family, and people. He hopes to share ideas about ecology and to find humor, connection, and solutions in the face of global environmental change. Ari Daniel is a freelance contributor to NPR’s Science desk and other outlets. He has always been drawn to science and the natural world. As a graduate student, he trained gray seal pups (Halichoerus grypus) for his Master’s degree in animal behavior at the University of St. Andrews, and helped tag wild Norwegian killer whales (Orcinus orca) for his Ph.D. in biological oceanography at MIT and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. For more than a decade, as a science reporter and multimedia producer, Ari has interviewed a species he’s better equipped to understand — Homo sapiens. Over the years, Ari has reported across six continents on science topics ranging from astronomy to zooxanthellae. His radio pieces have aired on NPR, The World, Radiolab, Here & Now, and Living on Earth. Ari is also a Senior Producer at Story Collider. He formerly worked as a reporter for NPR’s Science desk where he covered global health and development. Before that, he was the Senior Digital Producer at NOVA where he helped oversee the production of the show’s digital video content. He is a co-recipient of the AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Gold Award for his radio stories on glaciers and climate change in Greenland and Iceland. In the fifth grade, he won the “Most Contagious Smile” award. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Peer Review: Stories about other people's opinions
09-02-2024
Peer Review: Stories about other people's opinions
In science, peer review plays a critical role in figuring out if research is good enough, robust enough. In this week’s episode, both of our storytellers find themselves looking for outside feedback on if they’re good enough. Part 1: At her NASA summer internship, Kirsten Siebach feels completely out of place among the Mars mission scientists. Part 2: Alison Spodek’s need to be seen as smart takes over her life. Kirsten Siebach is an Assistant Professor in the Rice University Department of Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences and calls herself a Martian Geologist. She is currently a member of the Science and Operations Teams for the Mars 2020 rover Perseverance and the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity, and previously worked on the science and engineering teams for the Phoenix Lander and the two Mars Exploration Rovers. She uses the images, chemistry, and other data that the rovers send back from Mars to study ancient environments on the Red Planet and compare them to ancient and modern environments on Earth. She received her bachelor’s degree in Earth and Planetary Science and Chemistry from Washington University in St. Louis and her Ph.D. in Geology from Caltech. Kirsten is actively engaged in science education and outreach and loves sharing the stories and images from Mars with students and the public. She has been interviewed in multiple documentaries and TV shows related to Mars exploration and has given over one hundred talks to students and interest groups around the world. Outside of professional interests, she loves travel and photography (on Earth as well as Mars), and enjoys swimming, hiking, and puzzles. Alison Spodek is a flamingo, majestically awkward in some circumstances, moderately graceful in others. A fierce competitor in her extended family’s daily Wordle competition, she is also an associate professor and chair of the chemistry department at Vassar College. There, her research focuses on the behaviors of all the most fun elements in the environment, particularly arsenic, mercury, lead, and uranium, but her real passion is helping people understand the world around them, particularly those who think they are “not good at science.” She lives in Beacon, NY with her husband, two kids, and a crotchety old dog. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Postpartum: Stories about postpartum depression
02-02-2024
Postpartum: Stories about postpartum depression
CDC research shows about 1 in 8 women with a recent live birth experience symptoms of postpartum depression. In this week’s episode, our storytellers share their experience with postpartum depression. Part 1: With a new kid and her husband moving to Iowa for a job, Angie Chatman’s mental health begins to suffer. Part 2: Anna Agniel’s romantic notions of married life with a child are broken when her husband relapses and her son is born with a cleft palate. Angie Chatman is a Pushcart Prize nominated writer, a voice over artist, and a WEBBY award-winning storyteller. She’s told for The Moth Radio Hour, World Channel/GBH’s Stories from the Stage, Fugitive Stories, and Story Collider. A Chicago native, Angie now lives in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood where she identifies as a married Mom to grown folks and a rescue dog, Lizzie. Anna Agniel, a storyteller since childhood, studied theatre, playwriting, and solo performance at SMU's Meadows School of the Arts. She toured her one-woman show, Slow Children Playing, around the country, and in 2019 founded her own business, Storiespeak, to encourage other people to write and tell their stories. Anna now works as the Senior Associate Director of Class and University Programs at Washington University in St. Louis, and she utilizes storytelling and creative producing skills both at work and at home with her three children. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Faith: Stories about religion and science
26-01-2024
Faith: Stories about religion and science
Throughout history, the relationship between faith and science has been complex – a delicate interplay between the spiritual and the empirical, where questions of existence, purpose, and the unknown have often intersected. In this week’s episode, our storytellers examine the delicate balance between religious convictions and the pursuit of empirical truths. Part 1: Comedian John Fugelsang doesn’t want to get married just to appease his Catholic parents. Part 2: When Chris Mustafa Gray’s daughter is born, his wife makes one rule that he must not indoctrinate their daughter with his new-found religious beliefs. John Fugelsang is a New York-based political commentator, comedian, TV and radio personality, performer, and writer. He was the host of America’s Funniest Home Videos and has appeared frequently on news commentary shows on CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, Fox News, and NPR. Recently, Fugelsang was the host of Current TV’s daily show, Viewpoint, where he analyzed the news and facilitated conversations about current affairs. Currently, he hosts a daily program called “Tell Me Everything” on the new SiriusXM Insight Channel. Cris Gray aka Papa Mustafa, is a multifaceted artist who transitions between the realms of humor and heartfelt narrative. With a background in comedy, he harnesses comedic timing and wit to craft tales that elicit both laughter and introspection. With a goal to connect with audiences on an emotional level, he attempts to weave stories that touch the soul, all while leaving a lingering smile on your face. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Failure: Stories about failing in science
19-01-2024
Failure: Stories about failing in science
In science, failure is as important as success. In this week’s episode, our storytellers share times when they failed at science or science failed them. Part 1: Samuel Scarpino is convinced that the paper he wrote about how hard it is to predict infectious diseases should win a Nobel Prize. Part 2: It’s grad student Moronke Harris’ turn with the deep-sea robot that no one can find, and she needs to conduct her research.. Samuel V. Scarpino, PhD, is the Director of AI + Life Sciences at Northeastern University and a Professor of the Practice in Health and Computer Sciences. He holds appointments in the Institute for Experiential AI and the Network Science, Global Resilience, and Roux Institutes. In recognition for his contributions to complex systems science, he was named an external Professor at the Santa Fe Institute in 2020. Prior to joining Northeastern, Scarpino was the Vice President of Pathogen Surveillance at The Rockefeller Foundation, Chief Strategy Officer at Dharma Platform (a social impact, technology startup), and co-founded a data science initiative called Global.health, which was backed by Google and The Rockefeller Foundation. Scarpino is a regular presence in the news, providing over 500 interviews to outlets such as Good Morning America, The Wall Street Journal, Vice News, The Atlantic, and NPR. He has authored more than 100 academic publications, which have been cited over 8,000 times. Scarpino’s work has appeared in journals such as Nature, Science, Nature Medicine, PNAS, Clinical Infectious Diseases, and Nature Physics. The New York Times, Wired, the Boston Globe, National Geographic, and numerous other venues have covered his research. Moronke Harris (moronkeharris.com) is a deep-sea explorer and oceanographer with experience in climate engineering, blue economy, and intergovernmental (Canada, USA, Russia, Japan, and the Republic of Korea), multi-vessel research expedition planning in the high seas. Currently completing a PhD in Oceanography at the University of Victoria (BC, Canada), her research focuses on the most unexplored areas of the ocean, containing the most potential for discovery. Moronke specializes in the alien world of seafloor superheated geysers: hydrothermal vent ecosystems 1000-4000 m under the ocean's surface. She has spent over 110 days of her life exploring Earth's final frontier. Beyond academic pursuits, she is the founder of ‘The Imaginative Scientist’ (linktr.ee/imaginativesci): a science communication and creative consulting brand blending traditional outreach and artistry to produce an audience-first approach that engages, invites, and inspires curiosity. Brand experience includes 50+ national and international speaking engagements, video production and content creation collaborations garnering 50,000+ views, and consultation for gallery installations, video game development, and film production. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Hallucinogenics: Stories about tripping
12-01-2024
Hallucinogenics: Stories about tripping
In this week’s episode, our storytellers delve into their personal encounters with psychedelics—moments where reality became a blur, perceptions began to shift, and the boundaries of consciousness expanded. Part 1: While tripping on acid, Michael Czajkowski goes into anaphylaxis. Part 2: Dust Cwaine sees their body differently while experimenting with magical mushrooms. Michael Czajkowski is an origami physicist, fashion redesigner, experimental science communicator and amateur bicycle pilot. Their research concerns materials that have been punctured, folded and otherwise damaged strategically so they will move in dramatic unusual and controllable ways. This research feeds into their greater goals, to connect tangible science with uncommon and underserved audiences. This is the focus of their work with Science for Georgia as Director of Advocacy. In their spare time, they like to maintain their social network: mikemingle.com Dust Cwaine (aka David Cutting) is a Singer-Songwriter and Drag Artist. They are a Non-Binary Aromantic, known for their bright and earthy creativity. Dust’s art centers itself in the political nature of queer identity, evoking a sense of belonging and togetherness with their presence in live spaces. Dust Cwaine started Drag in 2016, since their debut They have Produced and Hosted over 250 shows, and They have written 3 Drag musicals. In 2020 Dust began creating music and released a demo album of tracks they created while in quarantine aptly titled AMATUER and on September 23rd 2022 they released Their debut LP Arcana in collaboration with Josh Eastman of Helm Studios. Dust’s music carries inspiration from the alt rock insurgence of the late 90’s and early 2000’s, lyrically weaving earnesty with humor, for an emotional familiarity that is immediately disarming. Their live shows involve a blending of drag and music that intentionally try to break down the walls between the performer and the audience, Dust refers to this as community, where everybody has an equally important part to play. You can listen to Dust Cwaine’s music on any streaming service, visit their website dustcwaine.ca to learn more! You can also find them on Instagram at @unicornriverchild Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Fresh Start: Stories about new beginnings
29-12-2023
Fresh Start: Stories about new beginnings
As we say goodbye to 2023 and ring in the New Year, this week’s classic episode is all about the novel. Part 1: Feeling isolated in her new job as a particle accelerator operator at Fermilab, Cindy Joe finds comfort in the friendship of her unconventional pet. This story originally aired on July 27, 2018 in an episode titled “Loneliness: Stories about finding friends”. Part 2: Actor Gail Thomas is invited to take part in a study testing mushrooms as treatment for depression in cancer survivors. This story originally aired on Dec. 1, 2017 in an episode titled “Psychotropic Substances: Stories about altered states”. Cindy Joe is an engineering physicist at Fermilab, America’s particle physics and accelerator laboratory. She got her bachelor’s degree in physics and became a licensed senior nuclear reactor operator at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. After starting at Fermilab, she worked as a particle accelerator operator for seven years before taking her current role with several experiments studying neutrinos, tiny particles that might hold the answers to some of the universe’s biggest mysteries. Cindy is a frequent and deeply passionate contributor to Fermilab’s educational outreach programs and has spoken to audiences from elementary school students to members of Congress. Gail Thomas has several resumes: writer/actor/teacher/filmmaker/lawyer. She is a Moth StorySLAM winner and has performed with RISK!, Sideshow Goshko, the Liar Show. She teaches for the Story Studio. Voiceover credits include David Letterman, Beavis and Butthead and Angelo Rules. Her short comedy, My BFF, rated 95% funny on Funny or Die and audience favorite at New Filmmakers. As a speechwriter for the Tribeca Film Festival and the Gotham Awards, her words were uttered by Oscar winners and fancy people with great clothes. Gail is currently working on her fashion sense. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
A Child Is Born: Stories about labor and delivery
22-12-2023
A Child Is Born: Stories about labor and delivery
Happy Holidays! In this week’s classic episode, both stories explore the miracle of life. Part 1: An expert in oxytocin, the hormone released during birth, Bianca Jones Marlin is determined to have a natural birth — even as the hours of labor add up… This story originally aired on Nov. 9, 2018, in an episode titled “Pregnancy”. Part 2: Ed Pritchard inadvertently becomes a leatherback turtle midwife during his first field job. This story originally aired on Mar. 4, 2022, in an episode titled “Miracle of Life”. Bianca Jones Marlin is a neuroscientist and postdoctoral researcher at Columbia University. She holds a PhD in neuroscience from New York University, and dual bachelor degrees from St. John’s University, in biology and adolescent education. As a graduate student, with Dr. Robert Froemke, Dr. Marlin examined how the brain adapts to care for a newborn and how a baby’s cry can control adult behavior. Her research focused on the vital bond between parent and child, and studied the use of neurochemicals, such as the “love drug” oxytocin, as a treatment to strengthen fragile and broken parent-child relationships. Dr. Marlin is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Nobel Laureate Dr. Richard Axel, where she investigates transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, or how traumatic experiences in parents affect the brain structure of their offspring. Her research has been featured in Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, Scientific America and Discover Magazine’s “100 Top Stories of 2015.” She is the recipient of the 2016 Society for Neuroscience Donald B. Lindsley Award, which recognizes the most outstanding PhD thesis in the general area of behavioral neuroscience and was named a STAT Wunderkind in 2017. She is currently a Junior Fellow in the prestigious Simons Society of Fellows. A native New Yorker, Dr. Marlin lives in Manhattan with her scientist husband, Joseph, their daughter, Sage, and their cat Santiago Ramon y Cajal, who is named after the famed neuroanatomist. Her website is www.biancajonesmarlin.com A native of South Florida, Ed Pritchard has fostered a love for the marine environment since an early age. Ed holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from the University of Florida and a master’s degree in Marine Conservation from the University of Miami. As an Interpretive Programs Lead at Miami-Dade County’s Eco Division, Ed develops and leads immersive citizen engagement programs that promote awareness and foster stewardship of our local environment, with an emphasis placed on our marine and coastal resources. Ed’s ultimate goal is to use effective science communication and education initiatives to inspire the next generation of ocean stewards. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
DIY: Stories about doing science oneself
15-12-2023
DIY: Stories about doing science oneself
Science doesn’t always have to be in fancy labs with million dollar equipment and shiny beakers. Sometimes, science can be a bit more DIY. In this week’s episode, our storytellers take a hands-on approach to scientific discovery. Part 1: Brittany Ross gets inspired when her high school physics teacher assigns a physics video project where she has to demonstrate a law of physics out in the real world. Part 2: Nothing will get in the way of Greg Pandelis’s dreams to be a zoologist, except maybe a giant cliff. Brittany Ross grew up in Alaska, Scotland, South America, Texas, Chicago, and Hawaii. As a result, she is very normal...Brittany is an actress, writer, stand up, and producer. She performs stand up all over town, and is a well-known storyteller, having won The Moth several times. Aside from the Choco Krispies commercial that not only starred a 5-year-old Brittany, but probably changed ALL of your lives, Brittany is best known for playing Courtney in ABC’s, THE MIDDLE. She can also be seen in Huge in France, Like Father, The Rookie, and more. Greg Pandelis is the curator of the Amphibian and Reptile Diversity Research Center of UT Arlington, where he manages the largest scientific collection of preserved reptiles and amphibians in Texas, while also conducting his own research. Despite thoroughly enjoying studying dead things, Greg’s other passion lies in studying animals in the field; he has been on several field expeditions to Central America, South America, Europe, and Asia in pursuit of creepy crawly things of all sorts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Bringing My Whole Self: Stories about being yourself in science
08-12-2023
Bringing My Whole Self: Stories about being yourself in science
In this week’s episode, both of our storytellers strive to be their authentic selves in academia. Part 1: Raul Fernandez dreamed of going to university to study engineering. When he gets to Boston University, he feels unwelcome. Part 2: Cynthia Chapple was continually underestimated by her teachers and struggled with minimizing aspects of herself to be accepted. Dr. Raul Fernandez is a scholar-activist. As a Senior Lecturer at Boston University, he studies, writes, and teaches about inequities in education. As the Board Chair of Brookline for Racial Justice & Equity, he rallies his neighbors in the relentless pursuit of racial and economic justice. In the last few years alone, he researched and wrote a piece that helped topple a monument to white supremacy, created a film series that engaged thousands of participants in challenging dialogues, and trained thousands more in equitable policymaking at institutions in the US and abroad. Dr. Fernandez also served as a member of Brookline Select Board – the first Latinx person elected to that position. During his time there he created a working group to support public housing residents, a Racial Equity Advancement Fund, and a task force to reimagine public safety. He lives with his formidable partner Christina and their three kids in Brookline, and enjoys trips to "big park" and "tiny park" with his adorable toddler Maya. Cynthia Chapple is an innovative scientist, an advocate for black girls and women, and champion of equity. In keeping with this work, she is founder of Black Girls Do STEM, an organization offering exploration of STEM career pathways through hands-on engaging curriculum in the areas of Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics to middle and high school black girls to expose them to career pathways and empower them to become STEM professionals. Cynthia looks for more ways in which she can act as a conduit exposing young black girls to STEM industries and a diversity, equity and inclusion voice within the STEM workforce space to create welcoming policies, practices and cultures for Black people and women to thrive. As a Black woman in STEM this work is deeply personal and Cynthia draws upon her lived experiences as a result of her intersectional identities to offer ideas and solutions that truly foster belonging and give the opportunity for people to show up as their authentic selves. As a founder she sets strategic focus, foundational policies, practices and culture around the program design and student experience for Black Girls Do STEM. Subsequently she has launched CC Black Lab a research and manufacturing company of cosmetic products with the first brand being produced being Black Velvet SPA. Cynthia received her Bachelor of Chemistry Degree from Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis (IUPUI) and her Master of Science in Chemistry from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE). She subsequently spent five and a half years as a Research and Development Chemist in the manufacturing industry. She has been a member of both the American Chemical Society and the Society of Cosmetic Chemist for over 5 years combined. Cynthia’s superpower is leveraging her expertise and power to dream on behalf of Black liberation. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Shame: Stories about things we hide
10-11-2023
Shame: Stories about things we hide
In this week’s episode, both of our storytellers confront their secret shames and learn to accept themselves, warts and all. Part 1: Comedian Amy Veltman doesn’t want to acknowledge her embarrassing gastrointestinal issues. Part 2: Mike Lambert seeks a friend’s help to pick out new glasses, but his secret body dysmorphia threatens to undo him. Amy Veltman is a New York City comic who’s performed across the country. She was the producer and co-host of podcast, 2 Moms on The Couch, which, like her comedy, features her edgy take on motherhood, marriage, and being an outsider in an insider’s world. Amy's in the process of transforming the story she shared with The Story Collider into a one-woman show PSA: PELVIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT, which premieres in December, 2023. She hopes the show, featuring music, characters, and multimedia, will raise awareness of options available for women and men to address pelvic floor health issues. Visit www.amyveltman.com to see when PSA: PELVIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT is appearing near you or to inquire about bringing the show to your organization or theater. Mike Lambert is a writer and storyteller based in Studio City, California. He holds a BA in Theater from UCLA and, in an earlier incarnation, appeared in musicals and cabaret in New York and on tour. He has appeared as a stand-up comedian at the Original Improvisation in New York City and also worked as a joke writer for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Original story collections include Homo on the Range: Adventures at Oil Can Harry’s and Dear Mrs. Eddy: Letters from a Bad Christian Scientist. Mike currently works as the graduate advisor for the UCLA PhD Program in English. His credo: "If you don't like to read, for God's sake, surround yourself with people who do. It makes such a difference.". Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Politics: Stories about the political side of science
03-11-2023
Politics: Stories about the political side of science
While many people believe science and politics should be kept separate, politics is deeply ingrained in science. Be it through funding agendas, cultural lobbies or personal bias – politics can shape the science in many ways. In this week’s episode, both of our storytellers share tales about when politics and science meet. Part 1: Scientist Gretchen Goldman struggles to protect the data and integrity of science under the new Trump administration. Part 2: Journalist Liz Landau feels the wrath of the internet when she covers a study about women and their voting preferences. Dr. Gretchen Goldman is the Climate Change Research and Technology Director at the US Department of Transportation. Previously, Dr. Goldman served at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy as the Assistant Director for Environmental Science, Engineering, Policy, and Justice, where she led Federal efforts on scientific integrity, Indigenous Knowledge, climate and equity, air quality, and environmental justice. Dr. Goldman spent a decade as the Research Director for the Center for Science and Democracy at the Union of Concerned Scientists, where she led research and policy efforts on climate, environmental, and science policy decision-making. She has testified before Congress, sat on the board of 500 Women Scientists, and chaired the Air and Climate Public Advisory Committee for the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. In 2022, Dr. Goldman made the Georgia Tech alumni 40 Under 40 List and was named in Glamour Magazine’s Women of the Year in 2020. Dr. Goldman holds a PhD and MS in environmental engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a BS in atmospheric science from Cornell University. Elizabeth "Liz" Landau is an award-winning journalist and science communicator. She has contributed articles to the New York Times, Washington Post, WIRED, Smithsonian, Scientific American, Quanta, and other publications. In her work with NASA, she produces and edits podcasts, videos, and website stories about space. Liz holds a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Princeton University (magna cum laude) and a master’s in journalism from Columbia University. In her spare time, Liz enjoys songwriting and playing keyboard. Currently, she lives in Washington, D.C. Her favorite number is pi. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Paradoxical: Stories about thoughts we shouldn't have
27-10-2023
Paradoxical: Stories about thoughts we shouldn't have
We all have thoughts that can be seemingly absurd or self-contradictory. In this week’s episode, both of our storytellers reckon with their conflicting thoughts. Part 1: After surviving breast cancer, comedian Ophira Eisenberg hates the pink breast cancer awareness ribbon. Part 2: After the sudden death of his mom, Richard Kemeny feels numb to the world and his feelings. Ophira Eisenberg is a standup comic and host of NPR’s nationally syndicated comedy, trivia show Ask Me Another where she interviews and plays silly games with Sir Patrick Stewart, Taye Diggs, Awkwafina, Roxane Gay, Terry Crews, Jessica Walter, Josh Groban, Nick Kroll, Tony Hawk, George Takei, Sasha Velour, Ethan Hawke, Julia Stiles, Lewis Black, Uzo Aduba, Michael C. Hall and more. She also is a regular host and teller with The Moth and her stories have been featured on The Moth Radio Hour and in their best-selling books, including the most recent: Occasional Magic: True Stories About Defying the Impossible. Ophira’s own comedic memoir, Screw Everyone: Sleeping My Way to Monogamy was optioned for a feature film. She has appeared on Comedy Central, This Week At The Comedy Cellar, The New Yorker Festival, Kevin Hart’s LOL Network, HBO’s Girls, Gotham Live, The Late Late Show, The Today Show, and VH-1. Her comedy special Inside Joke is available on Amazon and iTunes. Richard Kemeny is a freelance science and travel writer based in London. His work has appeared in New Scientist, The Atlantic, Science, Hakai, the BBC and National Geographic. He used to produce The Economist's science and tech podcast, Babbage, and has reported from several countries for PRI's The World. He has received fellowships to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Marine Biological Laboratory, and used to work for a coral reef restoration foundation on the northern coast of Colombia. In his spare time he goes bouldering or thinks about cold water swimming. He is @rakemeny Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
Anxious Mind: Stories about troublesome worries
20-10-2023
Anxious Mind: Stories about troublesome worries
Anyone can feel anxious, but when anxiety starts impacting your life, it can be problematic. In this week’s episode, both of our storytellers confront their worries. Part 1: Devon Kodzis thought they had their anxiety under control until a routine doctor appointment. Part 2: Naturally anxious neuroscientist Tammy Spence becomes preoccupied with her dog’s health. Devon Kodzis has been called a joyful bumblebee. They have had job titles including animal trainer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, educator, and currently serve as the Dean of the Academic Incubator at Dallas College. They always have goggle-marks from swimming. Their passions include reading horror novels, hiking, and shouting at the television with their cats. Devon began storytelling at Dallas Comedy House in 2016 and have since produced and been featured in shows such as Gettin It', Truth in Comedy, Story Collider, Talking Dirty After Dark and Backyard Story Night. They have taught storytelling since 2017 and have had students living on every continent except for Antarctica. Tamara “Tammy” Spence is a neuroscientist and professional worrywart, earning a PhD in worry – for real. She would do almost anything in the name of science and education – including authorizing an entire class of medical students to observe an invasive procedure on herself that she could not bear to witness. Known as the “Brain Lady” for bringing buckets of preserved human brains to elementary schools as part of a Brain Awareness Campaign, she loves illuminating minds…one brain at a time. A proud aunt, she relishes the fact that her nephew considers Mr. Axon – his plush neuron – to be worthy of show and tell at his preschool. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices