Jan. 14th, 2010

vanitashaze: Girl on a dark beach. (Default)
And yet I am quickly becoming addicted to Radiolab, a wonderful little radio show on WYNC 93.9 that's somewhere between geekdom and synesthesia. Every episode, they choose a topic - life after death, for instance, or numbers, or why we blink - and from that topic focus on a few elements in-depth, usually about three of these, and then leave it to the listeners to draw conclusions and connections between them. It's supposedly a scientific show, and they definitely have a scientific bend - most of the elements are approached from a scientific basis - but it also touches on psychology, philosophy, anthropology, spirituality, music, literature, art... the list goes on and on. (And, [livejournal.com profile] ticketsonmyself, they had They Might Be Giants on for a guest spot!) I'm not particularly scientific, and I always preferred a more humanistic / metaphysical / subjective explanation for things, but that has not deterred me at all, because this isn't a typical radio science show that only scientists can enjoy (or, you know, a high-school science class). This is how science should be taught - with humor, depth, care, debate, and above all, an endless good-natured curiosity about the way the world works and what our place in it is. (All the hosts are super easy on the ears, too.)

It is, needless to say, great. I want to move to New York just so I can listen to this on the radio every day. However, if - like me - you're unlucky enough to live out of radio reception, you can download the podcasts of the shows for free off their website, and listen to them whenever. They have the longer hour-shows - which I totally recommend, especially "Beyond Time" and the one on race - but they also have twenty-minute "shorts", which are great if you don't have the time to commit to listening to the former all the way through. (Word to the wise, though: Don't try to listen to either of them while doing something that requires motor concentration. They're fascinating, and you will get totally wrapped up in them and forget what you're doing. I almost got flattened by a mid-size compact this morning, doing just this.)

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vanitashaze

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