Reviews

News in a Nutshell

RICHARD VAN CAMP

For anyone who feels a need to keep an eye on US politics, without losing sleep or monitoring the appalling Twitter feed of you-know-who, I can recommend the podcast Today Explained, from the “explanatory journalism website” Vox.com. Every weekday the host, Sean Rameswaram, interviews someone who knows whereof they speak about a current pressing subject. Recent illuminating casts have included The many scandals of Michael Cohen; Caught in the intellectual dark web; Which children matter?; Republicans’ plan for health care ¯\_("∕ )_/¯; Good news for Canadians who like milk… The invited guests who do the explaining are journalists, lawyers, economists, government workers and others whose job it is to know, and to put it within reach of us non-experts who want to know. As for the commercials that podcast hosts must crank out, endlessly and enthusiastically on every cast, Rameswaram is second to none. For a week or two last summer, for example, he did the daily commercial by phoning up his groovy mum and chatting with her about life and about Uber—unscripted, or so it seemed, and downright sweet.

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RICHARD VAN CAMP

Mary Schendlinger is a writer, editor, retired teacher of publishing and, as Eve Corbel, a maker of comics. She was Senior Editor of Geist for twenty-five years. She lives in Vancouver.


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