2020 Index

Conversation #62 and a Bit: Adventrageous (November 29, 2020)

I found a leftover file from just about one year ago today. Things were just a little bit more upbeat and we spoke mostly about happier matters, like babies accidentally giving us concussions, tofurkeys, deep-frying chicken, vegan cheesecake with pecan pie topping, a mountain of side dishes, watching Die Hard and samurai films for Christmas, a deep dive into the early Columbo TV episodes, the Mad Max films, and other delights.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.


Conversation #62: It Can Happen (November 7, 2020)

CNN finally called the election for Biden. It could happen after all. Are we relieved? Not so much. Because lots of other things can happen, too, in this interregnum, a new time of monsters. We read from an essay by Marco Rosaire Rossi. Paul is very slightly relieved because America won’t be represented to the world by a malignant narcissist, but as for material improvements in our lives? That remains to be seen. Grace isn’t relieved at all. But at the same time, it’s a beautiful fall day, and the poor in spirit are blessed. Our souls glorify the Lord, whose mercy will bring down rulers from their thrones and lift up the humble. Even our neighbor with Trump signs and leaf blowers.

Paul recorded this episode on our deck using his old Sony PCM-D1 recorder, without a fuzzy “windjammer” to block the wind noise, since mice in our basement chewed up the old one. So there’s a lot of wind noise, although it could be mitigated a bit in post-processing. If you’d like to chip in a little money to help Paul buy a new dead kitten, the tip jar’s here.

The music clips are from the song “It Can Happen” by Yes, from their 1983 album 90125.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.


Conversation #61: The Pandemonicon (October 3, 2020)

All the pandemic demons come out to play as Grace and I get out of the house for a long walk up and down our road, which has an unusual amount of traffic for a Saturday. We talk about current events heading into fall, starting locally within our own home, with our most recent COVID-19 scare, and working our way out to stores, workplaces, communities, and our state, and eventually the things we’re least able to influence: presidential debates and electoral politics.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.


Conversation #60: Their Goal is to Troll (July 25, 2020)

It’s been a while, but we have a new recording space with new gear set up in my basement office. In this conversation Grace and I talk about COVID-19 and fascism. We also discuss how the politicization of potential treatments such as hydroxychloroquine and safety measures such as mask-wearing has made it impossible to talk about these things on their merits, but instead they have become shibboleths indicating which team’s jersey you are wearing. As usual, Grace tries to keep to the topic at hand, but I was a bit over-caffeinated, so one of the reasons this episode is late is that I felt the need to edit out most of my interruptions, digressions, and dick jokes. Podcast in haste, edit at leisure!

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.

This Week’s Music

This week’s music consists of clips from BT’s cover of “The Ghost in You,” originally by the Psychedelic Furs. The track comes from BT’s album These Hopeful Machines.


Conversation #59 and Three Quarters: Tanned, Rested, and Not Ready (June 14, 2020)

I found two forgotten recordings Grace and I made between episodes 59 and 60. This is the second, from June 14th, 2020, which is the day before I went back to work. In this one, Grace and I chat, interrupted occasionally by loudly complaining babies, chat about our life in lockdown, anxiety about going back to work, strategies some businesses have put in place to stay open, practical concerns about virus safety.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.


Conversation #59 and a Half: Life on Furlough (April 3, 2020)

I found two forgotten recordings Grace and I made between episodes 59 and 60. This is the first, from April 3rd, 2020. In this one, I (Paul) go for a walk and ramble about life early in our lockdown while the COVID-19 death count grows, getting furloughed from my job, trying to get unemployment from the over-burdened Michigan system, and what I think the pandemic will mean for the future of a country that is already, for many of us, a deliberately broken, gutted, and looted failed state.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.


Conversation #59: Rules for Ragnarok (March 29, 2020)

Grace and I took a walk and talked about Justin Bieber’s new album (what else is there?) Nah… it’s the COVID-19 pandemic, folks! Public health officials and the power they wield; trying to get our state and local officials, and my employer to respond appropriately and early enough to help; our lockdown story; RIP Paul’s job; how to quarantine your mail; how to handle grocery-shopping; what we’re planning, and what comes next.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.


Conversation #58: Pandemic Pandemonium and Socialist Distancing (March 15, 2018)

We’ve missed, ummm, 73 weeks and 3 days? Wow. And we’re not feeling very ready to do this – our podcast studio is a mess, so Paul tore apart the old setup and moved some gear into another room, but it isn’t as good a space for recording, and his 12-year-old computer and even older audio interfaces are showing their age. And after such a long hiatus, Paul is struggling to remember how, exactly, he used to do this. So the audio isn’t great today, but we have a lot to say! We’re on self-imposed lockdown at home during the global coronavirus pandemic. And as Hunter S. Thompson said, ‘when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.’ So we talk about social distancing, flattening the curve, just how bad and how strange things are likely to get, and how when top-down planning and organizing fails in a crisis, the people must organize from the grass roots up, to save lives.

Flattening the Curve

You can find the web site we mentioned, Flatten the Curve, here.

How to Listen

You can find the MP3 file here.

The Podcast feed is here.

The Podcast channel on YouTube is here.

This Week’s Music

This week’s opening music is Paul’s cover of Jules Shear’s song “Leave Town.” The closing song is Paul’s original, “I.O.U.”