A one-hour special for public radio where I gather elected officials, tax experts, and individual citizens to explore the grand experiment that is the U.S tax system.
First licensed in January 2015. Listen and download here.
Over a third of couples will pay a marriage penalty.
Aired on Marketplace on April 6th, 2015
The Diaper Wars
In the 1980′s, the world’s two largest diaper companies set out to destroy each other, in a patent battle known as the Diaper Wars. The court battles lasted seven years and cost millions of dollars. What did we get out of it? Better diapers — and one very messy lesson in patent law.
Aired on Life of the Law on February 10th, 2015
How one scientific mystery just might explain another.
Aired on WHYY’s The Pulse on March 19th, 2015
Sugar: Health’s latest public enemy
Sweet hysteria, or bitter truth? Is sugar really the biggest food enemy?
Aired on WHYY’s The Pulse on February 5th, 2015
Pregnant Pennsylvania inmates continued to be shackled, despite state law
In 2008 prison advocates and legislators alike banded together to outlaw the shackling of pregnant Pennsylvania prisoners. But it turns out, in Pennsylvania, there’s a difference between a practice being illegal, and a practice ending.
Aired on WHYY’s The Pulse on August 28th, 2014
Some cities and towns hadn’t reassessed property values in decades.
Aired on Marketplace on September 3rd, 2014
Getting the lead out of Philly’s housing
Lead paint may be a few thing of the past, but lead poisoning is still a real danger in large older cities like Philadelphia.
Aired on WHYY’s The Pulse on July 18th, 2014
Every year 4% of women prisoners enter prison pregnant. Then what happens? In this mini-doc for one of my favorite new podcasts, I follow 23-year-old Diana after she finds herself pregnant and in jail. We explore the variety of outcomes she could, and does, meet.
Aired on Life of the Law on December 17th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 15:38
Explain the Brain
Through the Mind Science Foundation, a little podcast that asks big questions about our minds.
A look and why and how retailers use cheap books as a selling point.
Aired on the Marketplace on May 8th, 2014.
Listen Here Running time 3:47
Despite “Blackfish,” SeaWorld generated more than $1 billion last year.
Aired on the Marketplace Morning Report on March 20th, 2014.
Listen Here Running time 2:36
Just about every major fashion house now has a short indie film, and they’re hiring top directors like Wes Anderson and Sofia Coppola.
Aired on Marketplace on March 11th, 2014.
Listen Here Running time 2:36
How far will businesses go to get you to mention them on social media?
Aired on Marketplace on February 13th, 2014.
Listen Here Running time 2:57
What the interest in selling body parts – like hair, breast milk, and eggs – says about our economy.
Aired on Marketplace on December 30th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 3:33
Every Monday night, a Manhattan Whole Foods fills with a unique breed of “buy-local” enthusiasts. They’re not there for the Brooklyn-made pickles or the Westchester apples. They come because they want to buy and sell bitcoins.
Aired on WNYC’s New Tech City on December 18th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 5:56
In signing up the young, it’s slow going
For Obamacare to work, the “young invincibles” need to sign up. And, so far, they’re not.
Aired on Marketplace Morning Report on November 15th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 2:19
Now that Twitter has to make money, can it keep innovating?
When a tech company like Twitter goes public, the pressure is on to make money and lots of ideas get tried out.
Aired on Marketplace Tech on November 6th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 1:12
Book awards push for a wider audience
Literary prizes like the Man Booker and National Book Award try to broaden their appeal.
Aired on Marketplace on October 14th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 2:08
As the online dating scene moves to mobile apps, Tinder is the first to really gain a following with women.
Aired on Marketplace on September 27th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 3:36
As Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visits the White House to talk about trade between India and the U.S., some American businesses are protesting what they see as India shutting out foreign firms.
Aired on Marketplace Morning Report on September 27th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 1:14
The federal Food and Drug Administration currently regulates medical devices. But what happens if that medical device is your smartphone?
Aired on Marketplace on September 25th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 1:23
When whistleblowers go to the media or lawyers, the results can be disastrous for an organization. These days, more and more corporations are turning to organizational ombudsmen to stop problems before things escalate.
Aired on Marketplace on September 23rd, 2013
Listen Here Running time 3:29
The co-creator of the Implicit Association Test and I discuss the unconscious racial prejudices of four-year-olds.
Aired on the September 2013 episode of The Organist, a podcast from The Believer magazine and KCRW.
Listen Here Running time 7:24
NASA wants to capture an asteroid and send astronauts to train on it for Mars. Congress is skeptical.
Aired on Marketplace on September 9th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 2:41
One reason kitchen supplies are harder to keep stocked? U.S. companies have cut about a million office support positions.
Aired on Marketplace on June 19th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 2:40
When a senior citizen falls to the ground, the resulting injury can cost tens of thousands of dollars. So health care professionals are working to eliminate the risk of falling down.
Aired on Marketplace Morning Report on May 17th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 2:09
Physicist Elena Aprile says the search for dark matter makes her feel like Michelangelo.
Aired on Studio 360 on May 10th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 6:27
For Distillations’ episode on beauty, I talk hair and makeup product chemistry in a studio interview with beauty historian Rachel Weingarten.
Aired on The Chemical Heritage Foundation’s podcast Distillations on April 30th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 5:37
Every month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics sends hundreds of workers out to stores to gather prices of about 80,000 goods and services. But a new computer program from MIT just combs through the Internet and grabs inflation data online.
Aired on Marketplace on April 18th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 3:17
Latino Neighborhoods: Improving Health Through Ethnic Pride?
As a group Latino Americans, especially those who live in Latino neighborhoods, are often found to outlive members of other ethnic groups of the same, or higher, socioeconomic status. I look into this health phenomenon sometimes called the “barrio advantage.”
Aired on PRI’s The World on April 3rd, 2013
Listen Here Running time 5:12
Millennials likely to take debt to their graves
A new study suggests Gen Y borrowers shows their repayment patterns don’t match up with past generations. (And that’s not a good thing.)
Aired on Marketplace on January 31st, 2013
Listen Here Running time 3:36
For some, freelance gigs trump full-time jobs
Hiring is down, and self-employment is up. I find two people who’ve found creative ways to work for themselves, with financial success.
Aired on Marketplace Money on January 4th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 5:10
As the number of contract jobs rise, recruiters want a piece of the action.
Aired on Marketplace on January 4th, 2013
Listen Here Running time 2:55
The Math Behind Holiday Packages
How do packages get from point A to point B when so many people buy gifts online? I visit a UPS distribution center to find out.
Aired on Marketplace on December 17th, 2012
Listen Here Running time 3:26
Gas Price Gouging
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, most New York drivers face multi-hour lines for gas, if they can even find an open station. A thriving black market for fuel has emerged to meet those needs.
Aired on Marketplace Morning Report on November 6th, 2012.
Listen Here Running time 1:26
I visit my local snack aisle, a flavor lab, and taste expert Barb Stuckey to discover the science and business behind bold new flavors.
Aired on the Marketplace Morning Report on October 9th, 2012.
Listen Here Running time 2:28
Let’s Talk About Sex
The Bronx ranks among the worst areas in the nation for teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. Yet teens in this borough engage in sex at the same rates as their peers in the rest of the nation, and they use condoms more. What’s going on here?
Aired on NPR’s Latino USA on August 31, 2012.
Listen Here Running time 5:41
The Bimusical Brain
People who grow up with two language systems seem to have a cognitive advantage over those of us who grew up with just one. What about people who grow up with two musical systems? Patrick Wong of Northwestern University studies the bimusical brain as a possible correlate of biculturalism.
Aired on PRI’s The World July 18th, 2012
Listen Here Running time 5:32
Babies as Parasites
Once they’re born, babies are adorable. But when they’re still inside you, they can have some pretty parasitic impacts. I take a look into the chemistry behind pregnancy’s greatest drawbacks.
Listen Here Running time 6:17
The Mind Science Foundation Podcast – Teens and Oxytocin
We’ve all been teens ourselves, so why do we have so much trouble relating to them? And why do we even bother relating to each other in the first place?
Teen brain researcher Abigail Baird and neuroeconomist Paul Zak walk us through their answers to those questions in this episode of the Mind Science Foundation’s podcast.
Link to iTunes here.
Breaking Down Memory
I unpack the implications of recent memory research with a live audience at Brooklyn’s Union Docs performance space.
Performed for the Radio Cabaret March 17th, 2012.
Listen Here Running time 5:45
Language, Money, and the Future
How much could the way we talk about the future affect our savings habits? A lot, says behavioral economist Keith Chen.
Aired on PRI’s The World October 24th, 2011.
Listen Here Running time 5:35
Fecal Sludge: Ghana’s Next Black Gold
A sewage revolution breaks ground in Ghana this summer. In the capitol city of Accra, sanitation engineers aim to turn human waste into a new profit source.
Listen Here Running time 5:18
Back in December 2009, Brooklyn make-up artist Jessica Jade Jacob needed a job. She had experience with sculpting movie special effects, so a friend asked her to take over her position on a special assignment. This piece follows the unexpected details of that job.
Listen Here Running time 5:58
The Tongue Map
A commentary piece on the science lesson that just won’t go away.
Listen Here Running time 3:07
This is part of my collaboration with the Brooklyn arts and lecture space, Observatory. The podcast covers February’s events at this Gowanus headquarters for all things art and science. We revisit February’s Retrofuturology exhibit, get acquainted with the Observatory members Wythe Marschall and Ethan Gould of the Hollow Earth Society, and ponder the lectures “The Secret History of the Ouija Board,” “Perceptions of Motion,” and “The Morton Skull Collection.”
Produced March 2011
Listen Here Running time 17:01
A Fish Tale
The death of one little blind fish helped this scientist see river evolution in a whole new way.
Listen Here Running time 5:30
A less scientific, more personal piece–an audio postcard from my move across the country this September. My boyfriend Bruce and I spent three weeks in a minivan traveling from Seattle, Washington to Brooklyn, New York. I collected sounds along the way.
Listen Here Running time 3:45
To the Moon!
What can we learn from studying the moon? And what’s the value of returning there? I talk with a local researcher and a NASA scientist about the future of moon exploration.
Listen Here Running time 4:08
Aired on KBCS in Seattle on August 19th, 2010 and on NHPR’s Word of Mouth on October 4th.
Once Upon a Crow…
Crows! Legends! Scientific explanations!
Listen Here Running time 5:37
Generics-First Policy For Anti-Psychotics Draws Controversy
Washington state needs to save money. So they’re asking doctors to turn to generic drugs first when prescribing for Medicaid patients. But critics say the state’s scrimping on the wrong group of people.
Aired May 6th 2010 on KUOW Seattle.
Reaching Seattle’s Hidden Population of Meth Users
A new study by the Seattle Counseling Service finds that women are often overlooked in methamphetamine treatment programs. The Service is trying to reach out a particularly ignored subset of meth users: lesbian, bisexual and transgender women.
Aired April 15th, 2010 on KUOW Seattle.
Seattle Sprouts Urban Farms
Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn calls 2010 “The Year of Urban Agriculture.” What does farming in the city look like?
Aired April 12th, 2010 on KUOW Seattle.
Pesky Parasite Devastates Vancouver Island Bees
Bees are disappearing from their hives, and the varroa mite is a possible suspect. How can beekeepers protect their honey-makers?
Aired March 16th, 2010 on KUOW Seattle.
Night Exhibit Closing
On the last week of Seattle Zoo’s Night Exhibit, zookeepers and the public pay their final respects.
Aired February 26th, 2010 on KUOW Seattle.