Fresh Air
Fresh Air
Jan 8, 2021
Remembering Nature Writer Barry Lopez
Play • 48 min
We remember the award-winning writer Barry Lopez, who wrote evocatively about nature, and in turn shed light on truths about the human experience. He died Christmas day at the age of 75. Lopez lived among the Arctic's Inuit people for five years, and raised a wolf pup for his book about the relationship between wolves and men.

Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews the new album by Chicago bassist Joshua Abrams. Then David Bianculli remarks on the live TV coverage of the insurrection led by Trump rioters on Wednesday.
On the Media
On the Media
WNYC Studios
OTM Presents: La Brega
This week, OTM presents stories from a new series hosted by our own Alana Casanova-Burgess, called "La Brega." Hear what that term means, how it's used, and what it represents. Also, how one of the most famous homebuilding teams in American history tried to export American suburbanism to Puerto Rico... as a bulwark against Cuban communism. 1. Alana [@AlanaLlama] explores the full meaning(s) of la brega, which has different translations depending on who you ask. According to scholar and professor emeritus at Princeton, Arcadio Diaz Quiñonez, the closest English word is " to grapple." Alana also speaks to Cheo Santiago [@adoptaunhoyo], creator of "Adopta Un Hoyo" (Adopt a Pothole), which encourages people to paint around and photograph potholes to alert other drivers. Because the roads are rarely fixed properly, the challenges of potholes and what people do to get around them is a metaphorical and literal brega in Puerto Rico. Listen. 2. Next, Alana turns to the boom and bust of Levittown, a suburb that was founded on the idea of bringing the American middle-class lifestyle to Puerto Rico during a time of great change on the island. Alana (herself the granddaughter of an early Levittown resident) explores what the presence of a Levittown in Puerto Rico tells us about the promises of the American Dream in Puerto Rico. Listen. Created by a team of Puerto Rican journalists, producers, musicians, and artists from the island and diaspora, "La Brega" uses narrative storytelling and investigative journalism to reflect and reveal how la brega has defined so many aspects of life in Puerto Rico. All episodes are out now, and available in English and Spanish. Listen to the full series: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher | Google Podcasts Music in this series comes from Balún and ÌFÉ
50 min
99% Invisible
99% Invisible
Roman Mars
432- The Batman and the Bridge Builder
Mark Bloschock is an engineer from Texas, and in the late 1970s he got a job with the Texas Department of Transportation renovating the Congress Avenue Bridge. The bridge was a simple concrete arch bridge that spans Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin. It needed to be rebuilt with more contemporary beams called “box beams.” The box beams sit below the road’s surface, and they needed to be spaced a certain distance apart. Bloschock and the other engineers decided that the gap should be somewhere between ¾ of an inch and an inch and a half, which didn’t seem like a particularly meaningful decision… until the bats moved in. A tale of bats and bridges and how the built environment and the natural environment don’t need to be at odds with one another. The Batman and the Bridge Builder Plus, we talk with Simon Doble, CEO of Solar Buddy. Light access (both day and night) is a basic need many people take for granted. SolarBuddy is an Australian charity uniting a global community with a big dream to gift six million solar lights to children living in energy poverty by 2030, to help them to study after dusk and improve their education outcomes. 99% Invisible’s Impact Design coverage is supported by Autodesk. The Autodesk Foundation supports the design and creation of innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing social and environmental challenges. Learn more about these efforts on Autodesk’s Redshift, which tells stories about the future of making across architecture, engineering, infrastructure and manufacturing.
33 min
The Weeds
The Weeds
Vox
All organizing is local
Author, researcher, and University of Pittsburgh professor of history Lara Putnam sits down with Matt to talk about the structure of local progressive political organization. They talk about the recent history of these movements in the wake of the 2016 election, the effect of these groups on downballot races in Pennsylvania and nationally, and look to the future of these groups in the Biden era. Resources: "Democrats are surging in special elections, and that's not what we've been used to in recent years" by Daniel Donner, Daily Kos (Sept. 27, 2017) "The Other Infrastructure Program: Progressive Organizing" by Lara Putnam, The American Prospect (Feb. 22, 2021) "Let's Organize—and Not Scapegoat Leaders" by Michael Podhorzer, The American Prospect (Feb. 17, 2021) "Organizing Power: Theda Skocpol and Caroline Tervo" Guest: Lara Putnam (@lara_putnam), UCIS Research Professor, University of Pittsburgh Host: Matt Yglesias (@mattyglesias), Slowboring.com Credits: Erikk Geannikis, Editor and Producer As the Biden administration gears up, we'll help you understand this unprecedented burst of policymaking. Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weeds-newsletter. The Weeds is a Vox Media Podcast Network production. Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a contribution to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts About Vox Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Follow Us: Vox.com Facebook group: The Weeds Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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