25. Radiolab Love

by 4linnea

Friend, I am going to share with you an obsession of mine that I hope will make your life better.  It is called Radiolab.  It’s a radio program in NYC that now is a podcast through iTunes.  I download each episode to my iPod and listen to them as I walk around campus.  I am finding that I walk slower and slower, the more interesting the subject matter.  The other day while listening and walking outside, I was making shocked faces and at one point said out loud, “oh my gosh!”  It’s waaay cool- I promise.  The talks are about anything interesting about human life- science, technology, philosophy, literature with music overlaid throughout.  The way they are presented is really interesting.  Intertwined with the 2 hosts are audio footage from the interviews with people previously recorded, sound effects and music.  While listening to it, you’ll become captured in the story and kind of forget everything around you (hence, why I was able to be actin’ a fool in public).

One of my favorite stories I’ve listened was from the beginning of this month called: In the Running.  This one’s about ultra-runner, Diane Van Deren.  She runs 50, 100, and 300-mile marathons!  She began running when she was diagnosed with epilepsy and whenever she’d feel a seizure coming on, she would grab her running shoes and run.  The seizure wouldn’t happen.  She would just keep running and running and running to the point where she was running for over 5 hours at a time.  Eventually, the seizures came back and Diane had to get part of her brain removed.  Doctors took out a kiwi-sized portion of her brain.  A kiwi!  Now, she has some difficulty with short-term memory ability as well as not being able to comprehend a map.  Now, in her marathons, if she isn’t sure if she’s going the right way, she’ll leave a pink ribbon so that she can turn around and go back to that point.  Also, the part of her brain taken out affects her sense of time.  In this way, she has an advantage in her ultra-marathons.  When others are complaining that it’s day 4 of the race, Diane had no idea.  She just runs and since there is no concept of how long she has been running, she doesn’t know that she should be getting tired.  This story is really, really interesting and inspiring and you should listen to it.

In these you could learn about anything from the molecular make-up found in everything, to a woman that smoked for 30 years, who quit cold turkey because she made an agreement with herself that if she ever smoked a cigarette again, she would have to give $5,000 to the KKK.  Each time she went to grab a cigarette, she couldn’t stand the thought of that organization having her money.  These radio shows are so well-done and put together in such a fascinating way that all you can do is listen and discuss out loud with yourself how cool the stuff you’re learning about is.

Another awesome thing I enjoy about radiolab, is that on occasion, for some episodes they’ll post an accompanying video.  These videos are always, always really great.  The most recent one, from April 18, accompanied the episode, Desperately Seeking Symmetry and it shows the symmetry in life.  Here it is:

Here’s another really cool one that went along with their episode called Words.  While you watch the video, you’ll find yourself internally saying the words and connecting them to the next image and then the next.  Brilliant.

Listen to this and you’ll start finding the interesting in the everyday.  Which is pretty great.

P.S. This post is dedicated to walking long distances and being able to entertain yourself on your journey.  Thanks technology for making portable playing devices, that’s pretty cool of you.

Over & Out

Currently listening to: Non Tiq- Quiet