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Quick hits

The Small Print

12:15pm Visiting a giant. remote and threatened Hawaiian island ecosystem: 'Offshore' Only a select few visit the distant Hawaiian island group, Papahanaumokuakea. It's a massive but remote conservation area, covering ten islands and almost one million square kilometres of the Pacific. Nathan and Alana Eagle recorded a visit there for the podcast 'Offshore'. And I didn't just enjoy it for the great bird sounds and the interviews with the dedicated conservation workers when you get there. I loved hearing about all the preparations they had to make before their trip (including freezing a complete set of new clothes!) . We share some of the episode 'Our Journey To The Last Wild Place' from the 'Offshore' podcast produced by Jessica Terrell and April Estrellon with field reporters Nathan and Alana Eagle. And that show's produced by Honolulu Civil Beat, a nonprofit community-supported news organisation.

12:25pm 'Judge John Hodgman': litigating domestic squabbles Next time you have a trivial disagreement don't just bicker and squabble about it, have it properly decided by a Minor Television Personality and self-certified 'fake internet judge'! That's the compelling appeal of 'Judge John Hodgman', a long-running show that involves the actor and writer John Hodgman adjudicating on real-life disputes that tend towards the minor and the mundane. So, how should you fold socks?! How many birthday-related events are too many? And is it ever OK to leave the dinner table before meal completion if you live with a particularly slow eater?! The props and the pomp of courtroom procedure- the sound of the gavel, the production of affidavits and evidence, the citing of precedents, and the pronouncements of regular court bailiff Jesse Thorn- are nicely undercut by the trivial nature of the disagreements themselves. And the judge's quick-witted remarks and his off-the-cuff logic sometimes, just sometimes, make you feel that you might have heard something approaching justice. Certainly the idea and the format's proved to be a winner- with 422 episodes and counting, spread over nearly 9 years- and the Judge also settles disputes in a weekly column in The New York Times Magazine. In 'Open House Arrest' (produced by Jennifer Marmor for Maximum Fun), Eric is doing something in Blockchain- nobody quite seems to know what!- but he's been sharing as many as 5 online real estate listings a day with his girlfriend Elena. Even worse, he drags her off to meet with real estate agents every time they go away on holiday! Elena has imposed a shared listings ban that Eric would like lifted so they can plan for a life together.
12:37pm Classical music mysteries: 'Case Notes' Black magic, theft, grave digging, gruesome crimes...some of our most famous classical composers led dark and interesting lives. It certainly wasn't all powdered wigs and harpsichord recitals for genteel society! And speaking of powdered wigs how did one of those end up in the place of Haydn's head in his coffin after his funeral? We share some of 'Haydn's Missing Head' from Case Notes hosted by Tim Lihoreau for Classic FM, and Case Notes recently won the award for Best True Crime podcast at the British Podcast Awards
12:48pm Digital downsizing? The 'Outside' podcast Instant messages, photos, entertainment, maps, games, calendars, emails, social media...even if you worry about using your smartphone too much, the idea of simply unplugging or ditching it altogether just isn't an option for most of us. So how can we strike the right balance between our tech usage and important stuff like interacting with our family, friends and the world around us when we're not looking at a screen? It's a topic the 'Outside Podcast' gets into in a new 4-part series called The Nature Cure. In the first episode Outside's editor Christopher Keyes speaks to digital minimalist Cal Newport, who wants us to radically re-imagine our relationship with technology. We play some of 'The Radically Simple Digital Diet We All Need' from the 'Outside' podcast hosted by Peter Frick-Wright and produced by Michael Roberts and Robbie Carver.
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