Sonic Sidebar

Mushroom music

Mushrooms have inspired scientists, chefs and even musicians. Mycologist Lawrence Millman says they’ve also inspired a few composers, including Vaclav Halek and John Cage.

A drawing of a carving by Charles Edenshaw in the late 1800s depicting the Haida myth of the origin of women. Fungus Man is paddling the canoe with Raven in the bow in search of female genitalia. (Courtesy of the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago)

The Haida First Nation people in British Columbia have a myth about the origin of humanity coming from "Fungus Man." And that myth contains plenty of truth.

maps and guides

Dave Eggers – the writer and founder of McSweeney’s – has been all over the world. Along the way, he developed his own personal code of travel ethics.

Life springs eternal

Even facing the bleakest outcomes that climate change might inflict on our planet, we have to have faith in a new future. That’s something writer Anne Lamott has been struggling with too.

forest

Claire Peaslee is a naturalist who lives in Point Reyes, California, a place decimated by recent forest fires that sits literally on top of the San Andreas Fault. Yet she finds hope there through pilgrimage.

deray on Twitter

Maybe you can do without social media, if your life is already pretty comfortable. But you know what? Some people can't wait for something better to come along. They need social media today. Like organizer DeRay Mckesson.

Mark's facebook ephemera

We shared our lives on Facebook, and in return, we got rampant privacy abuse. It might feel right to end our relationship, but as digital producer Mark Riechers discovered, that's more complicated than you might think.

Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin traced the history of feminist anger and power in their new book, “Unladylike: A Field Guide to Smashing the Patriarchy and Claiming Your Space.”

trains for the train sounds, Paris

Cities are full of music — but can cities also BE music? David Rothenberg gives us a tiny history of how composers have used cities to make music, beginning with Pierre Schaeffer’s “Musique concrète.”

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