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The Colin McEnroe Show

Weekdays at 1:00 pm and 8:00 pm

We’re asking the people who listen to describe what it sounds like to them. Josh Dobbin, our unofficial ombudsman and possibly most prolific commenter, is taking the first crack.

“The sublime and the ridiculous are often so nearly related, that it is difficult to class them separately.”
Thomas Paine

The Colin McEnroe Show endeavors to prove Paine correct, every weekday. While the topics are unpredictable from one day to the next (previous show topics include whistling, placebos, politics, the nature of divinity, Barbra Streisand, bedbugs, human hydration, dinosaurs, unreliable narrators, ugliness, and raccoons), what is always assured is that a thoughtful, smart, and interesting exploration and conversation with amazing guests will take place about something.

Colin McEnroe is an author, playwright, professor, columnist, and blogger, who is allergic to penicillin and enjoys photographing his dog wearing hats and publishing those photos to the internet. He heads up a team that includes three inquisitive producers (see below) plus the comedy performers Chion Wolf, who doubles as the show's technical producer.

You can stream us live or subscribe on most podcasting platforms. While we are live, call us at (860) 275-7266, or email us anytime at colin@wnpr.org. We're also on Twitter @wnprcolin. To reach us in the newsroom when we're not on air, call (860) 275-7272.

Contact producers:

The executive producer is Catie Talarski. The digital editor is Heather Brandon. The technical producer is Chion Wolf.

Kaz Vorpal / Creative Commons

Inauguration Day is here. In a few short days, President Obama will transfer what remains of his power to Donald Trump. Some are elated, others afraid.

Travis Wise / Creative Commons

The plane that crashed in a Pennsylvania field on 9/11 was likely headed for the U.S. Capitol. Had it hit its intended target and disabled - not killed -  multiple members of Congress, we wouldn't be able to look to the Constitution for answers on how to prevent the resulting chaos. It simply doesn't address it.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Music can be a powerful, transformative tool in the quest for social change. Protest songs are the songs associated with a particular movement. 

Earlier this month, Janelle Monáe and Wondaland produced the searing protest song "Hell You Talmbout." Nearly seven minutes long, it's a tribute to a long list of black men and women lost, and has been performed alongside protesters at Black Lives Matter rallies.

LIONSGATE

Damien Chazelle's big musical La La Land won a record seven awards at this year's Golden Globes. The New York Times says the movie "makes musicals matter again." Colin, on the other hand, calls it "a really terrific, creative, big budget Prius commercial." The Nose gets into it.

Spielberg At 70

Jan 12, 2017
David Torcivia / flickr creative commons

Jaws, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones. Schindler's List, Saving Private Ryan. Close Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. And the list goes on.

Steven Spielberg is very simply the most successful filmmaker in the history of filmmaking.

SS&SS / Flickr

It's been over 160 days since Donald Trump last gave a press conference. On Wednesday, as he holds his first as President-elect, questions abound regarding the type of president he'll be.

Certainly Trump's cabinet picks, promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and remarks on nuclear weapons will be among the many items asked about. But whether he gives clear, informed answers rather than the off-script, stream of consciousness he's become known for remains to be seen.

Paul Villavisanis / Creative Commons

Do you ever think about the people who make sure the medicine you're taking is safe for you to take? If your like most of us, probably not. 

U.K. Department for International Development / Creative Commons


  His followers were “impressionable voters” duped by “radical doctrines and quack remedies,” claimed The Washington Post. Now that Hitler actually had to operate within a government the “sober” politicians would “submerge” this movement, according to The New York Times and Christian Science Monitor. A “keen sense of dramatic instinct” was not enough. When it came to time to govern, his lack of “gravity” and “profundity of thought” would be exposed.

K Period Films

Kenneth Lonergan's Manchester by the Sea just won three awards at the New York Film Critics Circle Awards (which Colin attended, because he's a big fancypants) on Tuesday night. And it's nominated for five Golden Globes, including Best Picture -- Drama. So The Nose went to see what all the fuss is about.

IBT / Flickr

To say virtual reality is finally here is inaccurate -- it's been here for decades. What is finally here is the right combination of low cost, high powered computing necessary for the technology to shine. And with the stage set for a revolution in how we interact with the digital world, businesses and investors are taking notice.

Mike Grauer Jr. / Flickr Creative Commons

  Vin Baker was an Olympic basketball player and four-time NBA All Star. The journey from University of Hartford to professional basketball got him rich quick, but it was a lifestyle he couldn't keep up with.

Baker's struggle with alcoholism is well-documented, as is the fact he blew through $100 million. He lost his home and restaurant.

Donkey Hotey / Creative Commons

Molly McKew says the liberal world order of democratic values is unraveling. In its place, Vladimir Putin is building a new world order with the primary goal of weakening America and NATO. He's waging a quiet war of subversion rather than domination and we've been slow to catch on. Yet, we see it all around us in Americans loss of faith in its democratic institutions. Is a new Cold War what America needs? We're already in the war - whether we want it or not. 

The White House / flickr

While basketball didn't take up residence in the White House in January 2009, the game nonetheless played an outsized role in forming the man who did, according to Sports Illustrated's Alexander Wolff, author of The Audacity of Hoop: Basketball and the Age of Obama.

ABC Studios / Wikimedia Commons

Clive James called Dick Cavett one of the great intellectuals who shaped the 20th century. Cavett combined wit with serious discussion for ninety-minutes each night as host of  The Dick Cavett Show, welcoming a staggering roster of cultural icons that spanned the worlds of art, culture, literature, music, and politics: Groucho Marx, Laurence Olivier, Judy Garland, Bette Davis, Richard Burton, Orson Welles, Ray Charles, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Joni Mitchell, Noel Coward, Salvador Dali, Ingmar Bergman, Mel Brooks, Mort Sahl, Angela Davis, Marlon Brando, Katherine Hepburn, Carol Burnett...the list goes on. Even today, no one comes close - not even Stephen Colbert.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

For the third year in a row, "Big Al" Anderson and Jim Chapdelaine sing some songs and tell some stories as we usher out 2016. Anyone in the WNPR newsrooom who isn't still home for the holidays will become for one day only, the Dankosky Tabernacle Choir and sing their hearts out after such a tumultuous year.

DAVID SCHEEL / Flickr Creative Commons

The octopus has always been the stuff of spine-tingling legend, like that of the Kraken, the many-armed sea monster believed to drag ships to the bottom of the sea after dining on the crew. Or  Gertie the Pus, the giant Pacific octopus that lives under the Narrows Bridge connecting Tacoma, Washington to Gig Harbor.

Victor Frankowski / Flickr Creative Commons

Every year, an all-star panel of musicians and critics join the show to go through a painfully short list of the best jazz of the year. Will this year be vocalist-heavy? Any repeat winners, or any newcomers? Is there an overall sound to the year?

Hubble ESA / Creative Commons

Scientists say that the asteroid that exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia four years ago was a rare event, unlikely to happen more than every 100 -200 years. But a research in the scientific journal Nature said the earth should expect and plan to get hit by Chelyabinsk-sized asteroids more often -  maybe every decade or two! 

And we thought the election was rough. 

Lucasfilm Ltd.

Rogue One is the eighth live-action Star Wars movie. It's the first movie in the Star Wars anthology series, and its story happens between Star Wars Episodes III and IV, which is to say that it happens just before the very first Star Wars movie.

Confused yet? That's okay. We'll explain.

Phoebe Baker / flickr creative commons

Everybody knows the Boy Scouts. They're the scouts who don't sell cookies. (That's the Girl Scouts.) But for more than a century the Boy Scouts have been an organization devoted to, in their own words, keeping boys "physically fit, mentally awake, and morally straight."

Uptowner / Creative Commons

Donald Trump's election last month was the culmination of a venom-filled campaign that was nastier than almost any in recent memory. The mean-spirited comments tossed to voters eager to "lock her up" fell just shy of the malicious rhetoric coming from Thomas Jefferson's presidential campaign in 1796. Jefferson's hatchet-man called John Adams a "hideous hermaphroditical character, which has neither the force and firmness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman."

Wordpress / Flickr

  The way we listen to music has been changing for years: iPods replaced Walkmans, playlists replaced albums, and streaming services replaced shopping for music altogether. And as our listening habits have changed, so has the business of being a musician.

Wikipedia

The Voice of ​America is a U.S.- funded and independent source of news that airs in societies that don't have a free press. Last week, Congress decided to shift oversight from an independent board to one person chosen by the president. President Obama embraced the shift from an unwieldy part-time advisory board to a professional CEO. Do we trust Donald Trump, a man who has threatened to change libel laws to better control the U.S. press, with this responsibility?

Mike Maguire / flickr creative commons

In case you missed it, there was a major summit in Manhattan earlier this week, a meeting of the minds at Trump Tower: Kanye West went to see the President-elect.

AMProSoft / Flickr

If there's one thing we've never been good at, it's limiting ourselves. We eat too much junk food, watch too much T.V., and engage in all manner of self-indulgence. So why then, do we continue to adhere to the limitations of monogamy? If love is so grand, why not celebrate a lifestyle which encourages loving multiple partners?

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