Thursday, July 09, 2009

What's Jamming My Radar?

I haven't been writing as much in the last month so I've decided to share some of the things that are "jamming my radar", some great books, podcasts, etc.

On creative process. Two great podcasts with screenwriter Christopher McQuarrie (The Usual Suspects, Valkyrie). He's an amazing talker and storyteller. Both of these are great listens.

Christopher McQuarrie discussing the process of tackling a historical piece (Valkyrie), the struggle of authenticity, and the power of Tom Cruise.

Creative Screenwriting Magazine podcast with Christopher McQuarrie. Great stories about The Usual Suspects, filmmaking and Valkyrie.

WNYC's Radio Lab: Stochasticity
This hour, Radiolab examines Stochasticity, which is just a wonderfully slippery and smarty-pants word for randomness. How big a role does randomness play in our lives? Do we live in a world of magic and meaning or … is it all just chance and happenstance? To tackle this question, we look at the role chance and randomness play in sports, lottery tickets, and even the cells in our own body. Along the way, we talk to a woman suddenly consumed by a frenzied gambling addiction, two friends whose meeting seems purely providential, and some very noisy bacteria.

From "This American Life": Origin Story
TAL producer Sarah Koenig tells the story of her father, Julian Koenig, the legendary advertising copywriter whose work includes the slogan “Timex takes a licking and keeps on ticking” and Volkswagen’s “Think Small” ads. For years Sarah has heard her dad accuse a former partner of stealing some of his best ideas, but until recently she never paid much attention.Then she started asking her dad for details of this fight for his legacy, and what she learned surprised her. (20 minutes)

I won't go into reviews of each but they are all great reads. I actually read Clay Shirkey's book a while back but re-read the first four chapters last week. One of the better books on technology and social change. I was introduced to all of these books, and most of the non-fiction I read these days, by the KERA "Think" podcast hosted by Kris Boyd, still one of my favorite podcasts.

The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Bozo Sapiens: Why to Err is Humanby Michael Kaplan and Ellen Kaplan

The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us And What We Can Do About It by Joshua Cooper Ramo

Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations by Clay Shirky

Drunken History. A series that consists of historical events told by someone who is really drunk and edited together with theatrical reenactments. The idea of having really drunk people retell stories is brilliant. People loose the self consciousness they normally have when they're drunk. In some ways it feels like sitting with a funny, drunk friend as they prattle on. This is my favorite, the girl telling the story is really funny and and has a certain drunken charm about her.

1 comment:

DMC said...

drunken history: that was fantastic!