FROM Ross Simonini
Episode 76: A Radio Wave In My Brain What is the position of acne-picking in contemporary literature? Otessa Moshfegh, author of Eileen and most recently the collection Homesick for Another World, writes descriptions of bodily functions that rival those of Louis CK. Moshfegh, who was raised in an immigrant family and trained in classical piano, pushes the sonic idiosyncrasies of English as she brings the reader into uncomfortable intimacy with her characters.
Episode 75: The Cool Gaze of Madame Realism Lynne Tillman writes art criticism starring a fictional character, “Madame Realism,” whose experience of art includes more than just the viewing of paintings. Here, Tillman takes the Organist on an expedition through the MoMA, and during a brief misunderstanding, along the sidewalk outside the MoMA…
Episode 74: It's Very Indian to Watch AbFab Tommy Pico’s first book is one long poem in the form of a text — call it an epic sext. But it doesn’t just chronicle Pico’s dalliances with "boys, burgers, and booze" — it rewrites the figure of the Indian, redefining what it means to be a Native American poet in the age of the Internet.
Episode 71: Everybody Loves a Winner The story of the guy who wrote a minor hit for a new label in 1961, watched everyone around him get famous singing his songs, and survived to write a great album about it all fifty years later.
Episode 70: A New Career in a New Town SNL’s Kyle Mooney on the art of crafting a three-dimensional bro impersonation and the ways in which the act of uploading a video to YouTube constitutes character development. Also: David J, the bassist of Bauhaus, follows a harmonica line from a jukebox playing "Groovin’ With Mr. Bloe” all the way into David Bowie’s afterlife.
Episode 69: The Testosterone Abyss The website Weird Dude Energy is singularly devoted to collecting the most inexplicable male behavior on the internet. It’s funny and weird, but if you study it carefully, it also raises some troubling and complicated questions: about contemporary masculinity and community—and about violence, misogyny, and Donald Trump.
Episode 65: Happy Golden Baby: A Conversation with Lil B and Steve Roggenbuck A conversation between the hyper-earnest and deeply irreverent rapper Lil B and the hyper- earnest and deeply irreverent poet Steve Roggenbuck.
Episode 60: Listening History: Graham Lambkin A guided tour through the musical development of Graham Lambkin, from early experiments in postpunk to the subtle art of moving cookware around in the rain.
Episode 58: The Six-Foot-Square Museum The Metropolitan Museum may have Queen Victoria’s bedroom and the Temple of Dendur, but Alex Kalman’s Mmuseumm in Lower Manhattan has Obama soap, Trump chocolate, and the curator’s grandmother’s closet. And it’s open 24 hours.
Cambodians and fried chicken, baby pureés, vegan baking tips Frank Shyong explains how Cambodians got into LA’s fried chicken game. Clara Polito shares vegan baking tips from her new book, and Leena Saini says boost the flavor of your baby’s food with spices. Martha Rose Shulman talks up a nifty kitchen gadget that will take your produce for a spin, and Jonathan Gold does lamb barbacoa at Maestro in Pasadena. Plus, a closer look at how bees make honey and wasps pollinate figs.
States allowed to strip federal funds from abortion clinics President Trump signed the law allowing states to block federal funding to family planning clinics that offer abortions. Critics say this could potentially devastate the health care network that low-income women rely on for birth control and other reproductive care.
Bassem Youssef and Sara Taksler on 'Tickling Giants' Known as the "Jon Stewart of Egypt," Bassem Youssef hosted a satirical news show that was the first of its kind in the Middle East. The show was immensely popular, until the military-backed government forced Youssef off the air and out of the country. Youssef and director Sara Taksler tell us about their documentary Tickling Giants, which profiles Youssef’s leap from heart surgeon to super star satirist.
Trump cuts protections for ICE detainees, and Alaska saves Obamacare With the crackdown on illegal immigration, jail space is becoming harder to find. So the Trump administration is cutting back some of the regulations on immigrant detention centers. Also, when it comes to healthcare, Alaska’s insurance marketplace was on the brink of implosion until the state came up with a plan to save Obamacare.