Maggie Watson

Barry Vogel, Esq.

Make It Easier For Your Loved Ones When You Die

A Graceful Farewell: Putting Your Affairs in Order

Putting your affairs in order before you die is the topic of this edition Radio Curious.  Our guest is Maggie Watson, a professional organizer who lives on the Mendocino Coast in northern California.  She is the author of “A Graceful Farewell: Putting Your Affairs in Order,” a collection of ideas and forms that make it easy to list what you own and where everything is.  In the course of our conversation Maggie Watson turned the microphones and began to ask me about estate planning, the documents which are useful for everyone to have and the differences between a will and a trust.  In my day job I am an attorney in Ukiah, California and devote a portion of my practice to estate planning.  Maggie Watson and I met in the studios of Radio Curious in early December 2006.

Maggie Watson recommends “Millionth Circle: How to Change Ourselves and the World – The Essential Guide to Women’s Circles,” by Jean Shinoda Bolend. Barry Vogel recommends “Jacobson’s Organ and The Remarkable Nature of Smell,” by Lyall Watson.

Originally Broadcast: December 6, 2006

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Keith Faulder and Steven Antler

A Lawsuit To Be District Attorney

After District Attorney Norm Vroman died in September 2006 after his name could not removed from the ballot, Keith Faulder, the interim DA appointed by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, sued Mendocino County seeking to void the November 8, 2006 general election for DA and to require that a special election be held.  Former Deputy District Attorney Meredith Lintott received the most votes in the June primary election and was also on the November 2006  ballot along with Vroman.  The California Court of Appeals upheld Faulder's claim which Lintott and the County appealed to the California Supreme Court.  This edition of Radio Curious discusses the history and status of this unique case in interviews with Faulder and Steve Antler, Lintott's attorney.

Keith Faulder recommends "Theodore Rex," by Edmund Morris.

Steven Antler recommends "October 1964," by David Halberstram.

Originally Broadcast: November 29, 2006

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Dr. Daniel J. Levitin

Music On The Brian

This Is Your Brain On Music:  The Science of a Human Obsession

The understanding of how we humans experience music and why it plays a unique role in our lives is this topic of two interviews with Dr. Daniel Levitin, author of “This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession,” recorded from his home in Montreal, Quebec, Canada in late October 2006.  Professor Levitin runs the Laboratory for Musical Perception, Cognition and Expertise at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.  He asserts that our brains are hardwired for music and therefore we are all more musically equipped than we think and that music is an obsession at the heart of human nature, perhaps even more fundamental to our species than language.  Professor Levitin believes that the music we end up liking meets our expectations of what we anticipate hearing just enough of the time that we feel rewarded, and the music that we like also violates those expectations just enough of the time that we’re intrigued. In the first interview Dr. Levitin begins by describing how the human brain learns to distinguish between music and language.  The second interview begins with a discussion of what happens when people listen to music they like.

Dr. Daniel J. Levitin recommends "Another Day in the Frontal Lobe," by Katrina Firlik, and "The Human Stain," by Philip Roth.

Originally Broadcast: November 1, 2006 November 8, 2006

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Michael Gurian

A Look at The Wonder of Boys, Ten Years Later

The Wonder of Boys, 10th Anniversary Edition

We explored the difficulties that boys have growing in American society ten years in a two part interview with Michael Gurian, author of “The Wonder of Boys: What Parents, Mentors and Educators can do to Shape Boys into Exceptional Men.”  A tenth anniversary edition of “The Wonder of Boys” was released in 2006, and I spoke with Michael Gurian about his ideas and thoughts of what has occurred in the past ten years in relation to boys.  The trend setting pressures of commercial advertising control the content distributed to boys and often are able to overwhelm the job of the parents to nurture to social development of children.  In this interview with Michael Gurian who lives in Spokane Washington and recorded in mid-October 2006, we discuss the effects of media on the developing boy; content of what boys listen to when they have earphones on; the substitution of what comes from the earphones for what a boy would get in a relationship with parents, grandparents, or other meaningful people in a boys life.

Michael Gurian recommends “The Collected Poems of Mary Oliver” by Mary Oliver..

Originally Broadcast: October 10, 2006

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  Dr. Eva Etzioni-Halevy

Israel:  The 11th Century B.C. and Now

The Song of Hannah, A Biblical Novel of Love, Temptation, and the Making of A Prophet

Eva Etzioni-Halevy, a retired professor of sociology at Bar-Ilan University Tel Aviv, Israel, is the author of  "The Song of Hannah, A Biblical Novel of Love, Temptation, and the Making of A Prophet," and the guest in this edition of Radio Curious.  The story takes place in Judea in the eleventh century B.C. when few people were literate.  In this interview with Eva Etzioni-Halevy recorded from her home in Tel Aviv, Israel, in late September 2006, she describes her interpretation of Hannah's life, loves and leadership, and her impressions of Israel several weeks after the summer 2006 war with Lebanon.  We began when I asked her to describe who Hannah was.

Dr. Eva Etzioni-Halevy recommends "Walking the Bible," by Bruce Feiler.

Originally Broadcast: September 27, 2006

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Holly Hollenbeck

Sex Lives of Wives

Sex Lives of Wives: Reigniting the Passion, True Confessions and Provocative Advise from Real Women

How to ignite sexual passion from a woman's perspective is the topic of this edition of Radio Curious as we talk with Holly Hollenbeck, a former attorney from Omaha, Nebraska.  Holly Hollenbeck is the author of "Sex Lives of Wives, Reigniting the Passion, True Confessions and Provocative Advice from Real Women."  She says her book is not so much directed at how to please your mate, but how to please yourself by pleasing your mate.  Take a look at, her website devoted to helping women find passion and inspiration in their long-term relationships.  I spoke with Holly Hollenbeck from her home in Nebraska in mid September 2006, and asked her to describe what motivated to write "Sex Lives of Wives."

Holly Hollenbeck recommends "Adults Only Travel: The Ultimate Guide to Romantic and Erotic Destination," by David West and Louis James.

Originally Broadcast: September 20, 2006

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Anthony Arthur

Changing America: Upton Sinclair Style

Radical Innocent: Upton Sinclair

Since I was young I have been intrigued by the work of Upton Sinclair.   I remember, as a boy hearing about Sinclair's books and efforts to change the world.  A close friend of my family was the writer for Sinclair's campaign newspaper when he ran for governor of California in 1934 and, although that was long before I was born, the stories rolled during his later visits.  Sinclair is perhaps best know for "The Jungle," published in 1906 which openly revealed the inhumane conditions of the Chicago stockyards and how the meatpacking industry operated, resulting in the passage of the pure food and drug laws within months after publication of "The Jungle." "Radical Innocent: Upton Sinclair," is a biography written by retired professor Anthony Arthur, released in June 2006, 100 years after the publication "The Jungle," and tells the story of Upton Sinclair's life and work.  Arthur weaves the strands of Sinclair's contentious public career and his often-troubled private life, which Sinclair at times willingly revealed, into a compelling personal narrative. Anthony Arthur rates integrity as Sinclair's greatest strength, and claims his eloquence in writing and speech along with his reputation for selflessness as the basis of a ground swell of support for Sinclair and his ideas.  When I spoke with Anthony Arthur at the end of August 2006 from his home near Los Angeles, California, Professor Arthur began by describing what attracted him to study and write about Upton Sinclair.                     

Anthony Arthur recommends "Seven Pillars of Wisdom: A Triumph," by T.E. Lawrence.

Originally Broadcast: September 6, 2006

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Paul Goldstein

The Artist's Right of Ownership

Errors and Omissions

Who owns the rights to a play, a song, or a work of art?  How important and fragile is the authorship?  These and other issues of intellectual property rights begin to be revealed in "Errors and Omissions," a novel by Stanford Law Professor Paul Goldstein.  "Errors and Omissions" follows the story of Michael Seeley as he locates a World War Two era Polish refugee who is the author of a screenplay that has the potential to make a huge amount of money not only from the movie rights, but also from the sale of associated paraphernalia.  Goldstein, who began writing fiction at the age of twelve, hopes now, fifty years later that readers of his first full length novel will carry away the sense of the fragility of authorship, when an artist creates a work out of thin air.  I spoke with Paul Goldstein from his office at Stanford University and began when by asking him to define intellectual property.

Paul Goldstein recommends "Aspects of the Novel," by E.M. Forster.

Originally Broadcast: August 9, 2006

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Martha McCabe

Culture and Racism

Praise At Midnight

Life, culture and racism are the topics of this edition of Radio Curious, in conversation with attorney/novelist Martha McCabe, author of "Praise at Midnight." Martha McCabe worked as a civil rights and criminal trial lawyer in deep east Texas from 1974 to 1985. Her goal was to pour the raw material from her personal experiences as a lawyer into her story. The deeper level into which she fell during the ten year period it took her to complete "Praise at Midnight," was the importance of consciousness and self awareness in avoiding the projection of one's own dark side on to other people and then killing them. She applies this to both local and international levels in her considerations. She and I have been associates, good friends and colleagues since 1969 when we met at the University of Santa Clara where I was a law student. When I spoke with Martha McCabe from her home in San Antonio, Texas on July 29, 2006, we began with her description of the culture of deep east Texas at the time she was living there, 1974 to 1985.

Martha McCabe recommends "Reading Lolita in Teheran" by Azar Nafisi and "Caballero: A Historical Novel" by Jovita Gonzalez and Eve Raleigh.

Originally Broadcast: August 2, 2006

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Dr. Steven Miles

A Blind Eye to Torture

Oath Betrayed: Torture, Medical Complicity, and the War on Terror

The silence of doctors, nurses and medics during the physical abuse of prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan and the information provided by physicians and psychologists to determine how much and what kind of mistreatment could be delivered to prisoners during interrogation is the topic of this edition of Radio Curious.  Our guest is Dr. Steven Miles is the author of "Oath Betrayed: Torture, Medical Complicity and the War On Terror," a book based in part on eyewitness accounts of actual victims of prison abuse and more than thirty-five thousand pages of documents, autopsy reports and medical records.  Dr. Miles is a professor at the University of Minnesota Medical School and its justify for Bioethics.  He is a recognized expert in medical ethics, human rights and international health care.  This interview with Dr. Steven Miles was recorded in mid-July 2006 from his office in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  We begin when I asked him about his motivation to write a book about the treatment people who are disarmed and imprisoned.

Steven Dr. Miles recommends "Bury The Chains: Profits and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire's Slaves," by Adam Hochchild.

Originally Broadcast: July 20, 2006

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Dr. Clotaire Rapaille

Understanding Our Collective Unconscious

The Culture Code, An Ingenious Way to Understand Why People Around The World Live and Buy As They Do

The collective unconscious may be defined as a cultural code, a set of imprinted concepts that control how members of different societies live. Dr. Clotaire Rapaille, a French born psychologist brings together the concepts of Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud in his development of the collective unconscious in the book, "The Culture Code, An Ingenious Way to Understand Why People Around The World Live and Buy As They Do."  Dr. Rapaille thrives on new ideas, which is part of the reason he chose to become American.  We visited by phone from his home in New York State the last week of June 2006, and asked him to describe the development of his ideas.

Dr. Clotaire Rapaille recommends "The DiVinci Code," by Dan Brown and "Straight From The Gut," by Jack Welsh.

Originally Broadcast: June 28, 2006 July 5, 2006

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Ken Rockwell

A View Through the Lens:  Photography and the Internet

With the help of a camera, especially a digital camera, and the internet we may now see portions of what other people have seen and sent our way or perhaps have made public.  Sometime soon I hope to present some visual images I think special in addition to the sound images you can hear here on the Radio Curious website.  In preparation for creating those images I found my way to an intriguing photography website called  This website has many references about cameras, how to choose and use them, and it also tells the story of a man who freely shares his knowledge and skills about photography.  After reading his website I invited Ken Rockwell to join us for a conversation about photography, cameras, websites and the use of the internet.  Ken Rockwell and I visited by phone in early May, 2006, from his home near San Diego, California.  For him, good photography narrows down to seeing better which he describes to be more of a feeling than an actual momentary vision.

Ken Rockwell recommends "Ten-Thousand Miles of America," by Richard A. Suleski, Jr..

Originally Broadcast: May 9, 2006

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Dr. Gene D. Cohen

Do We Get Smarter As We Age

The Mature Mind:  The Positive Power of the Aging Brain

Do people over a certain age necessarily loose mental acuity?  According to Dr. Gene Cohen, the answer is "no." Dr. Cohen, a psychiatrist and gerontologist has determined that certain genes are activated by experience as we age, allowing our personalities to grow and change.  The brain has reserves of strength and agility that compensate for the effects of aging on its other parts.  Dr. Cohen has found that the information processing justify in the 60 to 80 year old brain achieves it's greatest density and reach.   He explains these and other developing concepts in brain research in his book "The Mature Mind: The Positive Power of the Aging Brain."   I spoke with Dr. Cohen in March 2006 from his office in the justify on Aging, Health & Humanities, in Washington D.C., where he is the director.  We began our conversation with his description of the importance of the role of creativity.

Gene Cohen recommends "Tuesdays with Morrie: A Young Man, An Old Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson," by Mitch Albom.

Originally Broadcast: April 18, 2006

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Dr. Dan Gottlieb

A Struggle to Live

Letters to Sam:  A Grandfather's Lessons on Love, Loss and the Gifts of Life

For many of us, the desire to be known exceeds our desire to be loved.  Who we are as individuals, how we reckon with our personal abilities and disabilities the topic of this edition of Radio Curious: a conversation with my friend Dr. Dan Gottlieb.  Dan Gottlieb, a clinical psychologist who lives and works near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has been paralyzed from the neck down as a result of an automobile accident in 1979.  He's the host of "Voices in the Family," a weekly public radio program originating from WHYY in Philadelphia and the author of two articles a month in the Philadelphia Inquirer.  Because of his physical condition, Dan thought he may not live to see his young grandson Sam grow to be man.  When Sam was diagnosed with a severe form of autism several years ago, Dan decided to write a series of letters to his grandson.  The book, "Letters to Sam:  A Grandfather's Lessons on Love, Loss and the Gifts of Life," is a collection of intimate and compassionate letters sharing Dan thoughts, observations and experiences gained from his 27 years with quadriplegia and his professional life as a clinical psychologist.  You may learn more about Dan and his work at  Dr. Dan Gottlieb and I visited by phone from his home in near Philadelphia in mid April 2006.

Dr. Dan Gottlieb recommends "Eat, Pray and Love:  One Woman's Search for Everything, Across Italy, India and Indonesia," by Elizabeth Gilbert and "Life of Pi," by Yann Martel.

Originally Broadcast: April 12, 2006

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Temple Grandin, Ph.D.

What Autism Can Tell Us About Animals

Animals in Translation:  Using the Mysteries of Autism to Decode Animal Behavior

Do animals think?  The book, "Animals in Translation:  Using the Mysteries of Autism to Decode Animal Behavior," by Professor Temple Grandin gives us some clues.  Temple Grandin is a person with autism who teaches animal science at Colorado State University in Ft. Collins, Colorado.  Autistic people can often think the way animals think, putting autistic people in the perfect position to translate "animal talk."  Grandin explores the world of animals; their pain, fear, aggression, relationships and communication.  When I spoke with Professor Grandin from her office in Ft. Collins, Colorado, we began with her definition of autism.

Temple Grandin recommends "Our Inner Ape," by Frans De Waal.

Recorded March 21, 2006

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Sanford Elberg, Ph.D.

Microbiology and What It Does for Us

Microbiology, what it is and how it benefits society is the topic of this edition of Radio Curious.  Our guest is Dr. Sanford Elberg, a retired professor of microbiology and bacteriology and later the Dean of the Graduate School at the University of California at Berkeley.   One of his scientific successes was the development of a vaccine for brucellosis, a disease in farm animals causing the female to abort early in pregnancy.  This interview with Professor Elberg, who received a Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of California at Berkeley in 1930 was recorded at his home in Mendocino County, California in March 1998.  Dr. Elberg begins with a definition of microbiology and bacteriology.

Sanford Elberg recommends "The Plague Tales," by Ann Benson.

Originally Broadcast: March 30, 2006

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David Wexler, Ph.D.

Depression in Men

Is He Depressed or What?  What to Do When the Man You Love is Irritable, Moody, and Withdrawn

Depression often sets off different behaviors, sometimes recognized by others and not by the depressed person. Depression in men is the topic of this edition of Radio Curious, as we talk with David B. Wexler, Ph.D, who is the author of "Is He Depressed or What? What to Do When the Man you Love is Irritable, Moody and Withdrawn." Dr. Wexler, a clinical psychologist, discusses how to recognize when you or someone you love is depressed, how to talk about in respectful and successful ways, while taking care of yourself.  When I spoke with Dr. Wexler from his home in San Diego, California, we began by discussing different categories of depression and how the symptoms of depression in men are different from depression in women.

David Wexler, Ph.D. recommends "Dharma Punx," by Noah Levine.

Originally Broadcast: March 14, 2006

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Suzanne Braun Levine

What Will She Do Next?

Inventing the Rest of Our Lives: Women in Second Adulthood

Recent research of how the human brain works seems to indicate that at midlife women start to see the world differently.  Approximately 37 million American women now entering their fifties and sixties having fulfilled the prescribed roles of daughter, wife, mother, employee and are not ready to retire.   They want to experience more.  Suzanne Braun Levine, our guest in this edition of Radio Curious has been reporting on the lives of women like herself and is the author of "Inventing the Rest of Our Lives:  Women in Second Adulthood." She begins by discussing recent brain research and anthropological findings relative to women in their fifties and sixties.      

Suzanne Braun Levine recommends "Never Have Your Dog Stuffed: And Other Things I've Learned," by Alan Alda.

Originally Broadcast: March 7, 2006    

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Mike Tidwell

Destruction of Louisiana

Bayou Farewell, The Rich Life and Tragic Death of Louisiana's Cajun Coast

It is now known that the destruction to southern Louisiana that occurred as a result of hurricane Katrina in August 2005 was anticipated by some and should have been anticipated by others. In this interview recorded in April 2003, and first broadcast in February 2006, our guest Mike Tidwell, is the author of "Bayou Farewell:  The Rich Life and Tragic Death of Coastal Louisiana."  Tidwell describes how that vast marshland of coastal Louisiana, home to millions of migratory birds and the source of one-third of America's seafood, is literally washing out to sea.  The bayou region, 6000 square miles in size, remains the fastest disappearing landmass on earth. An acre of solid ground turns to water every 20 minutes.  An area the size of Manhattan Island washes away every ten months.

Mike Tidwell recommends "Oil Notes," by Rick Bass.

Originally Broadcast: February 28, 2006

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Neil Proto

Law As A Tool For Social Change

To A High Court: The Tumult and Choices that Led to United States v. SCRAP

Law a tool for social change is the subject of this edition of Radio Curious, and it's also reason why I decided to be an attorney.  Neil Proto, now a veteran Washington D.C. attorney, was a law student in the early 1970s in Washington D.C. and one of several law students in a group called SCRAP (Student';s Challenging Regulatory Agency Procedures) which sued the Interstate Commerce Commission of the United States and the nation's railroads for what they believed was a violation of the NEPA, the National Environmental Protection Act.   The regulations, which they successfully challenged, discouraged the movement of materials that could be recycled and encouraged the movement of raw materials.  The Federal court issued an injunction, ordered an environmental impact report be prepared and in the end the regulations were overturned.  The story is told in Neil Proto's book, "To A High Court: The Tumult and Choices that Led to United States v. SCRAP."  For the past 35 years, Neil Proto has been practicing and teaching law in the Nation's capital.   In this conversation, recorded in early February, 2006, we discuss the SCRPA lawsuit, importance of citizen involvement in the use of the law as a tool for social change and how court rulings in recent decades have made this involvement more difficult.

  Neil Proto recommends "The Prince of Our Disorder:  The Life of T.E. Lawrence," by John E. Mack..

Originally Broadcast: February 14, 2006

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Jack Cassell, M.D.

Urology, Good and Bad

Better Living Through Urology

Urinary tract diseases and their symptoms can affect all of us, men and women alike, whether we know it or not.  Sometimes we don't know it until it is too late.  More people die each year from prostate cancer than from breast cancer or colon cancer.  So education and prevention is perhaps our best medicine.  Dr. Jack Cassell, a Florida urologist, and author of "Better Living Through Urology:  21st Century Solutions to Age-Old Problems," discusses care of the urinary tract for men and women and how to avoid discomfort and disease that could be fatal.  In this interview we visit with Dr. Cassell from his office Florida and begin with his description of what urine is.

Jack Cassell recommends "Human Sexual Response," by William H. Masters and Virginia E. Johnson.

Originally Broadcast: February 7, 2006

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Mel Fiske

Radical Reporter

Radical: A Memoir of Wars, Communists & Work

Political philosophy and one's education, both formal and informal, can lead a person on unimagined paths that are woven into stories in that person's life.  The book, "Radical: A Memoir of Wars, Communists & Work," was written by Mel Fiske, our guest in this edition of Radio Curious.  Mel was radicalized after a 15,000 mile journey across America during the Depression.  That trip opened his eyes to a life he never knew existed growing up in New York City.

Mel Fiske recommends "Bayou Farewell," by Mike Tidwell.

Originally Broadcast: January 17, 2006

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Evan Schwartz

The Inventor's Juice

Juice, The Creative Fuel That Drives World-class Inventors

Albert Einstein suggests:  "To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old questions from anew angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance." 

Thomas Edison suggests:  "The inventor has a logical mind that sees analogies."

And Winston Churchill comments:  "Success consists of going from one failure to another without loss of enthusiasm."

The mind of an inventor works differently than the mind of a non-inventor.  What inspires the inventive mind?  What is different in the way an inventive mind perceives the world that is different from other minds?  What is the role of the role of invention in our society?  In this interview, recorded in January 2005, Evan Schwartz, author of "Juice, The Creative Fuel That Drives World-Class Inventors" discusses inventing and inventions.  According to Evan Schwartz, the creative energy of inventors, their "juice" gets applied to problems, products, companies and markers through the use of creativity patterns.  Invention is a set of strategic thinking strategies that can be learned, taught and practiced, just as with other skills, like cooking, acting or sailing.  He began our conversation by describing what differentiates an inventive mind from other types of minds.

Evan Schwartz recommends "Chronicles Volume One," by Bob Dylan.

Originally Broadcast: January 3, 2006

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