Before coming to Radiolab, Pat lived in Memphis and wrote magazine stories that addressed deep and profound questions like: Does a full beer bottle have a better chance of cracking your skull than an empty one? And: Do cows with names produce more milk? Serious, heavy stuff. He’s written for The New York Times Magazine and Popular Science, among others, and he's a former National Geographic explorer. But nothing quite compares to Radiolab. In the words of the great Lulu Miller, the stuff is “Miracle-Gro for the mind.” Pat agrees wholeheartedly. And he’s thrilled to be manufacturing it.
Check out a timeline of key moments in the history of the Heimlich maneuver, plus a list of celebrities who've been Heimliched.
In the 1970s, choking became national news: thousands were choking to death, leading to more accidental deaths than guns. Nobody knew what to do. Until a man named Henry Heimlich came along with a big idea.
When Barbara Harris was 37, she started wishing she could have a daughter. It was 1989, and by that time only two of her six sons were still at home. So she filled out all the paperwork, and later that summer got a call about an 8-month-old ...
Christopher Daniel Gay has broken out of jail more times than anyone else alive. He is the stuff of country songs and film rights. Reporter Ben Montgomery learned about him after Chris's most notorious getaway; he had fled prison and stolen a tractor trailer so he could visit his dying ...
What would it take to make you do something truly awful? One day, psychology professor David Buss headed to a friend's house for a party. But when he arrived, his friend--a mild-mannered fellow professor--wasn't there to greet him. As David explains to producer Pat Walters, his friend was upstairs in ...
When Pat Walters traveled to Romania with a few American reporters to teach some classes on narrative journalism to a group of Romanian writers, he had a coincidental run-in with a Radiolab regular. Sort of. Read more, and check out some of Pat's travel photos, here.
Later this week, Radiolab goes to northeastern Alabama in our new hour-long podcast. For more on that part of our country, and for one of the most honest American memoirs out there, pick up Rick Bragg's All Over but the Shoutin'.
Friday Night Lights -- This is one that's worth consuming in its original form.
We begin in the middle of a phone call with Lulu Miller, who tells us the story of a couple with a seemingly unsolvable problem. It's the 1970s, and Richard and Tucker are very much in love. They'd like to get married, but it's against the law. And that would have been the end of the story...except that Richard, worried about Tucker and frustrated that he couldn't legally provide for him, came up with a very unusual (but totally legal) solution.
Lulu says these moments, where one little switch can reframe reality, are a kind of duct tape for the ethereal sadness. It's a form of hope, where an imperfect workaround opens up a door and makes life a little bit better.
And that brings us to a man named Jim Eggers, who suffers from a problem that not only puts his life at risk--it jeopardizes the safety of everybody around him. Producer Pat Walters explains how Jim found a way to manage his anger with the help of a bird named Sadie. African Grey Parrot expert Irene Pepperberg helps us understand how this could work, and shares some insights from her work with a parrot named Alex.
Zelda Gamson tried for decades to stop smoking. But while one part of her wanted to quit, another part just didn't want to let go. So, how do you win a tug-of-war with yourself? We decided to ask one of the greatest negotiators of our time for some advice. Adam ...
In today's short, we get to know a man who struggles, and mostly fails, to contain his violent outbursts...until he meets a bird who can keep him in check.
Oops. In this hour of Radiolab, stories of unintended consequences--from a psychologist whose zeal to safeguard national security may have backfired, to a toxic lake that spawned new life.
Tales of lethargic farmers, zombie cockroaches, and even mind-controlled humans (kinda, maybe).