Asian Art Museum — The Dragon’s Gift – Sacred Arts of Bhutan

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In this edition of Radio Curious we would like to take you to the country of Bhutan, East of Mount Everest and bordered by India and Tibet. Bhutan is a mystical kingdom considered by many as The Last Shangri-La. We visit “The Dragon’s Gift: The Sacred Arts of Bhutan,” an exhibit which was displayed at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, California, in the spring of 2009.

We start in conversation with Therese Bartholomew, the curator of the exhibit who helps us to understand what inspired the exhibit and the trials and tribulations of transporting such valuable religious objects from monasteries at the top of Bhutanese mountains to the city of San Francisco.

We will also visit the exhibit itself and hear some of the ceremonies, meet the monks who have travelled with the exhibit and tour the museum docent Henny Tanugjaja.

Therese Bartholomew is the Curator Emeritus of Himalayan Arts at the Asian Art Museum San Francisco the book she recommends is “My Life and Lives, The Story of a Tibetan Incarnation” by Rato Khyongla Nawang Losang.  We visited with Therese Bartholomew from her home in San Francisco on the March 27, 2009 and began by asking her what makes Bhutan and Bhutanese arts so special?

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Dennis O’Brien- Protecting Outer Space for Humanity

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The 2018 International Astronomical Conference held in Bremen, Germany, during the first week of October, 2018, was attended by approximately 2000 people from over 100 counties from the planet earth.

One of the attendees is Dennis O’Brien, a retired Ukiah California, attorney. He was presenter at the International Astronomical Conference and is our guest on this edition of Radio Curious.

The paper O’Brien presented focuses on the future of space law.  He addressed potential issues as humanity goes into outer space, and concepts on how to structure a new treaty to protect humanity, while at the same time allowing for the development of outer space commerce.  For on-line information contact spacetreaty.com, or spacetreaty.org for O’Brien’s work.

Dennis O’Brien is a retired Ukiah, California attorney.  O’Brien attended the 2018 International Astronomical Conference held in Bremen, Germany, where he presented a paper addressing the future of space law, and how to protect humanity’s interests, while at the same time allowing for the development of outer space commerce.

The books Dennis O’Brien recommends are: “Stranger in a Strange Land,” by Robert A. Heinlein, and “The Foundation Novels,” by Issac Azimov.

This program was recorded on October 20, 2018.

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Philip Weiss – Cover-up of a Peace Corps Murder

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American Taboo, A Murder in Peace Corps

In this edition of Radio Curious, we take a look at murder and getting away with murder. In the small island kingdom of Tonga, an American Peace Corps Volunteer murdered another American Peace Corps volunteer in October 1976. “American Taboo, A Murder in Peace Corps,” by Philip Weiss, is a detailed story about the murder, how and why it happened, the legend that developed, the subsequent cover-up, and an interview with the murderer.

Philip Weiss recommends “McArthur and Southerland, The Good Years,” & “McArthur and Southerland, The Bitter Years,” both by Paul P. Rogers

Originally Broadcast: June 29, 2003

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Chikazawa, Owen and Krogh, Mary Ashley: Two Millennials “Bound for Nowhere”

Two bold millennial adventurers, born in 1988 and 1989, serendipitously parked their Volkswagon Westfalia Camper Van in a campsite adjacent to the Radio Curious Mobile Studio–also a Westfalia Camper Van–near Lone Pine, California. Lone Pine is at the eastern base Mt. Whitney, about 90 miles west of Death Valley.

Mary Ashley Krogh, who goes by MAK, and her husband, Owen Chikazawa have been on the road, “bound for nowhere“, since the end of April, 2016. They’re my guests on this edition of Radio Curious.

MAK and Owen live and work in Stanley. That’s the name for their camper van home, which provides about 18 square feet of living space. MAK and Owen, both graduates of Savannah College of Art & Design support themselves as designers and illustrators. MAK creates apparel graphic art, branding and graphic designs. Owen designs, illustrates and animates broadcast television and startup explanatory videos. As they foment and pursue their wanderlust bound for nowhere, they remotely focus on their clients’ goals and meet their needs.

MAK, Owen, and I visited in their home office, aka Stanley, at Tuttle Creek Campground, just outside Lone Pine, California, on March 17, 2017.

You can listen to the full interview here.

The books that Owen Chikazawa recommends are The Martian by Andy Weir and The 39 Steps by John Buchan. The book that MAK recommends is The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America by Erik Larson.

 

Slater, Linda: Death Valley: The Hottest Place on Earth, and the Driest and Lowest Place in North America

Death Valley, the hottest place on earth and the driest and lowest place in North America is a spectacularly beautiful 3.4 million acre National Park. 91% of this outdoor “classroom,” has been designated as a Wilderness and protected by Congress.

Our guest in this edition of Radio Curious is Linda Slater, a National Park Ranger for the past 30 years and currently the Chief of Interpretation at Death Valley National Park.

In this wildly beautiful and dangerously hot place is the lowest point in North America, at 282 feet below sea level. Death Valley, replete with rolling sand dunes, deep winding smooth marble canyons, spring-fed oases, and crusted barren salt flats averages 2 inches of rain per year.

We visited with Linda Slater on March 15, 2017, in the Radio Curious mobile studio. While parked next to a rock strewn area, so white that it appeared to be covered in snow, yet the outside temperature was 100 degrees, our conversation began with Linda Slater’s description of that white material.

You can listen to the full interview here.

The books Linda Slater recommends are: Death Valley and the Northern Mojave: A Visitor’s Guide by William C. Tweed and Lauren Davis, and Deserts – A Comprehensive Field Guide, to the Wildflowers, Birds, Reptiles, Insects, and Other Natural Wonders of North America’s Deserts, from Oregon to Mexico, by James A. MacMahon.

 

Dyer, Michael — The Life of Whalers in the 19th Century

Whaling in New Bedford, Massachusetts, the home of Herman Melville, author of “Moby Dick,” is our topic today.  Our guest is Michael Dyer, the senior historian at the New Bedford Whaling Museum.  The Whaling Museum reveals the lives of the largest mammals on earth.  The museum’s social history collection shares the monumental stories of those who spent their human lives whaling at sea between the New England coast and half way around the world, as well as their families who yearned for their return.  It explains how the seamen lived at sea, who they were, as well as the captains and owners of the sailing vessels and all those in between. It also explains the economics of the whale oil that lit and lubricated the industrial revolution.

In part one of our series on whaling I met with Mike Dyer at the New Bedford Whaling Museum on September 2, 2016.  To put matters it into perspective, we began with I asked him to describe the sperm whale.

In this program, part two of our visit with Mike Dyer, we began when he described the lives of the men who went to sea to hunt the whales.

The book Mike Dyer recommends is “Marine Mammals of the Northwestern Coast of North America,” by Charles Melville Scammon.

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Weiss, Andrew — Ellis Island: Ellis Island:  Those Who Arrived There, Why, and What Was it Like?

Our story this week is about Ellis Island and the people who arrived there when they first came to America. Between 1892 and 1956 about 12 million immigrants came to the United States and entered the country through Ellis Island, in the harbor of New York City. Who were these people? Where were they from?  What was their experience of getting to Ellis Island and what was it like for them once they arrived there?

In this archive edition of Radio Curious, we visit with Andrew Weiss, who I met in 1992 when he was the guide of a tour I took at Ellis Island.  At that time he also was a doctoral student at Columbia University and a teacher at Barnard College in New York City.  When Andrew Weiss and I visited in November of 1992 by phone from his home in New York City we began our conversation with a bit of the history of Ellis Island.

When this program was recorded in November 1992, the guests were not asked for a recommendation of a book.

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Massey, Orell — Racism in a Rural California Sheriff’s Department Part One

Our guest on this edition of Radio Curious is Deputy Sheriff Orell Massey—a black man, native of South Carolina and a 20 year veteran of the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department. He is also a 21 year veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps where he was assigned to the Embassy detail.  When I asked Sheriff Massey to be a guest on this program and share his experience as a black Deputy Sheriff, he asked:  “Are the people of Mendocino County ready to hear what I have to say?”   

In part one of our conversation, recorded on February 1, 2015, Deputy Orell Massey shares his experiences.  You may decide if you are ready to hear what he has to say.

In part two, Deputy Massey gives his personal response when asked, “what is it like to be the only black Deputy Sheriff ever in the history of Mendocino County?” Later he shares stories about his off duty life, his goals and aspirations.

Click here to listen to part one or on the media player below.

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Wilkerson, Isabel — America’s Great Migration: 1915-1970 Part Two

In the years between 1915 and 1970 almost six million black American citizens from the south migrated to northern and western cities seeking freedom and a better life. Our guest is Pulitzer Prize winner, Isabel Wilkerson author of “The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration.” Her book tells the untold experiences of the African-Americans who fled the south over three generations.

Wilkerson interviewed more than 1,000 people for her book. She is the first black woman to win the Pulitzer Prize and is a recipient of the George Polk Award and a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow. Her parents were part of the great migration, journeying from Georgia and southern Virginia to Washington D.C.

In part one she discussed what she called the “biggest untold story of the 20th century.”  In part two of our conversation, recorded from her home near Atlanta, Georgia, on September 28, 2012, Isabel Wilkerson describes the inspiration behind her narrative non-fiction story of the six million African-Americans who migrated from the south between 1915 and 1970.

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Pereda, Marcos — The New Cuba: Reflections, Stories and Song

Marcos Pereda, a native of Havana, Cuba, and a singer-songwriter who lives in Ukiah, California, is our guest in this edition of Radio Curious. The background music in this weeks program is a song titled “Center” that he wrote and then performed on his guitar in our studios.  Pereda returned from a two month visit in Havana on December 20, 2014; he traveled there to attend his mother’s funeral. 

In our visit, recorded on December 22, 2014, Pereda shares his music and songs, his thoughts and experiences about life in Cuba and in the United States, and his hopes for the new relationship between the the two nations.  We began our conversation when I asked him to tell us about his mother. 

Marcos Pereda’s email is: marcosinsonte@hotmail.com.

The book he recommends is “The Little Prince,” by Antoine St. Exupery.

Click here to listen to the program or on the media player below.

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