WNPR

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 performer 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. When we're live in our New Haven studios call us at 203-776-9677, or email us anytime at colin@ctpublic.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 technical producer is Chion Wolf.

Are you looking for our Radio for the Deaf broadcasts? Those are all collected under our very special, and if you don't mind us saying very nice looking RFTD site.

Carlos Mejia / CT Public Radio

You probably know Larry Wilmore as the host of the Black on the Air podcast or of Comedy Central's The Nightly Show. Or maybe you know him as The Daily Show with Jon Stewart's Senior Black Correspondent. Or you could know Wilmore as the co-creator of Insecure and The Bernie Mac Show or as a writer on The Office and The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and In Living Color.

In any case, this hour, a conversation with Larry Wilmore recorded last week at The Mark Twain House & Museum as part of their Mark My Words series.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff / Creative Commons

It's lonely at the top.

President Trump has a lot of acquaintances but not many close friends, according to those who know him best. 

Family Equality / flickr creative commons

Kim Kardashian rose to fame as a friend of Paris Hilton. She has a sex tape. She's been the subject of any number of reality TV shows. Kardashian is, for many people, the very definition of "famous for being famous."

The Nose's charter includes a provision specifically requiring that we cover all things Kim Kardashian. But then, this week, we learned that she has the power to will presidential commutations into being. That's actually almost too much substance for The Nose to parse. Almost. But not quite.

popo.uw23 / flickr creative commons

Mike Pesca is one of our very favorite guests -- on any number of topics. And he's got a new book out: Upon Further Review: The Greatest What-Ifs in Sports History.

Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

Who's afraid of the Bix bad Beiderbecke?

Hartford has an amazing jazz history, and Colin has a lot of jazz musician friends. This hour, a little onstage jazz party.

Colin and the panel look to make jazz accessible to mere mortals. They talk about what makes jazz jazz, invite the audience to sing, and teach the audience to scat.

brownpau / Flickr

From the penny press, to yellow journalism, to supermarket tabloids and beyond, sensationalized news has been around for centuries. But while this style of reporting may have its critics, it may also serve as an important reflection of American culture and democracy.

This hour we speak with journalists and historians about the evolution and influence of tabloid journalism. We'll also discuss the alledged connection between President Trump and various tabloid publications, the true nature of which continues to unfold.

GUESTS:

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

There has been a lot of confusion about how many people died in Puerto Rico as the result of Hurricane Maria and its aftermath. Several publications reported last week that approximately five-thousand people may have died. They based their reports on a new study published in The New England Journal of Medicine that reflected more ambiguity than often reported.  

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Solo is the tenth feature-length, live-action Star Wars film. It is the fifth Star Wars prequel. It is the second Star Wars anthology film (following 2016's Rogue One), and it's the second Star Wars movie to come out in just the last six months (along with The Last Jedi).

It is, though, a number of Star Wars firsts too: It's the first Star Wars picture to have its director(s) fired midway through production. It's the first to star Woody Harrelson. It's the first Star Wars movie that may well lose money.

mslavick / flickr creative commons

We've been trying to push this show out for quite a while now. It's been a bit of a strain, and we got kind of backed up.

But, this hour, we let loose a long look at... constipation.

It should be a big relief for everyone involved.

zenilorac / flickr creative commons

Numbers are so fundamental to our understanding of the world around us that we maybe tend to think of them as an intrinsic part of the world around us. But they aren't. Humans invented numbers just as much as we invented all of language.

Willie Stark / Creative Commons

I have traveled to three foreign countries since President Trump was elected. While I have always been proud to be American, even as I criticize much in my country, I was humbled by what people thought of America in the countries I visited. They were puzzled by our health care system, and appalled by our guns and voter apathy. 

James Childs / flickr

Radiation is everywhere. It's emitted by our sun, by cat litter, by bananas and occasionally by nuclear bombs. It's even emitted by you, and by me, and by every living (and dead) person in the world. So why are we so scared of something so prevalent in our everyday lives?

Carole Raddato / flickr

Perhaps the most surprising thing about the Amazons of ancient Greek mythology is that they were not entirely mythical. While many of the deeds and details ascribed to these women warriors were imagined, the Amazons themselves were inspired by a real-life horse-riding tribe of nomads called the Scythians.

Frontiers Conferences / flickr

Siri, Alexa, Cortana, Google Assistant, etc. These are just the beginning of what experts believe will be a future filled with verbally interactive, digital and robotic assistants. And as we become more accustomed to interacting with machines, the machines are becoming more life-like.

Dan McKay / flickr creative commons

When I hear the word "diorama," the first thing I think of is Mr. Mack’s fifth grade class and painting hills and grass and clouds and a fence into a shoebox and making little cardboard cut outs of Lassie and the boy she loved. God, I hated that stuff.

The second thing I think of is a place like the Peabody Museum in New Haven and their incredibly, obsessively, over-the-toply detailed dioramas of the plant and wildlife of Connecticut.

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