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13 12, 2019

Is The Tuba The Most Christmas-y Instrument Ever? (Cool Weird Awesome 192)

By |2019-12-13T05:54:49-05:00December 13th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

TubaChristmas is an annual concert tradition in which musicians gather to play festive music exclusively on tubas, baritone horns, sousaphones and and euphoniums. We'll explain how Christmas got so tuba-ey. Plus: Stan Freese got so into his tuba that he decorated the tree in his yard with the horns.

12 12, 2019

A More Eco-Friendly Way To De-Ice Roads Sounds Really Grape (Cool Weird Awesome 191)

By |2019-12-12T06:44:13-05:00December 12th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

Many communities put down road salt in winter. It can make the roads safer, but too much salt is bad for the environment and for the roads themselves. Scientists at Washington State University may have found a better way to take the ice off the roads: grapes. Plus: meet the creepiest instrument ever, a baby doll head theremin!

11 12, 2019

Sometimes Towns Just Have To Build Statues To Invasive Pests (Cool Weird Awesome 190)

By |2019-12-11T06:37:57-05:00December 11th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , |

Today marks one hundred years since the community of Enterprise, Alabama, put up a very special monument in the middle of town: a statue of a Greek woman holding a boll weevil, an invasive pest that had ruined the local cotton crop. Wait, what? Plus: meet the most destructive holiday force ever, Treezilla!

10 12, 2019

What Can Help Save Coral Reefs? The Sounds Of Coral Reefs (Cool Weird Awesome 189)

By |2019-12-10T07:03:01-05:00December 10th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , |

If you want a good party, you need the right soundtrack: researchers set up underwater loudspeakers in dead sections of the Great Barrier Reef, and playing sounds of healthy reefs attracted twice as many fish as areas where there was no sound. Plus: Pocatello, Idaho will give you something to smile about today. It's the law there.

9 12, 2019

Who Wants To Be The Garbage Collector Of Space? (Cool Weird Awesome 188)

By |2019-12-09T10:20:54-05:00December 9th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , |

There are tens of thousands of pieces of space debris orbiting the Earth. We've tried a few different ways to bring them back down over the years. Plus: in Huddleston, Virginia, a giant hay sculpture of a country music legend. Meet Will-hay Nelson!

6 12, 2019

Without The Washington Post We Wouldn’t Have Teddy Bears (Cool Weird Awesome 187)

By |2019-12-06T05:55:46-05:00December 6th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

Today in 1877 the Washington Post published its first edition. It brought us landmark coverage of Watergate, and John Philip Sousa named a march for it. But the Post's biggest achievement is helping to create the teddy bear. Plus: this weekend in Ashland, Nebraska, Santa Goes To Space!

5 12, 2019

The “World’s Smartest Chess Board” Is The Closest Thing To Wizard Chess We Have (Cool Weird Awesome 186)

By |2019-12-05T08:52:37-05:00December 5th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , |

The chessboard known as Square Off works if your opponent is nearby or not, because it can use Bluetooth technology to move the pieces for them on your board, and your pieces on theirs. Ron Weasley would be impressed. Plus: you haven't heard "Jingle Bells" until you've heard "Jingle Bells" played on a comb.

4 12, 2019

These Flexible High-Tech Casts Are Standing Up To Itchy Plaster (Cool Weird Awesome 185)

By |2019-12-04T06:24:49-05:00December 4th, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , |

There's a new medical startup called Cast 21, and, as startups do, they’re looking to disrupt those traditional plaster cast paradigms and make a cast so flexible that wearers could even go swimming. Plus: for National Cookie Day, we pay a virtual visit to the National Cookie Cutter HIstorical Museum in Joplin, Missouri.

3 12, 2019

How Oregon Trail Inspired A Generation To Learn About Dysentery (Cool Weird Awesome 184)

By |2019-12-03T06:22:31-05:00December 3rd, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

It was 48 years ago today that kids first got to play the video game Oregon Trail - the invention of three student teachers from Minnesota who ended up changing video game history without realizing it. Plus: a hospital in San Antonio, Texas marks the holiday season by sending all its December newborns home in red and white hats… and stockings!

2 12, 2019

When A Store Held A Drawing For A Baby (Cool Weird Awesome 183)

By |2019-12-02T06:34:00-05:00December 2nd, 2019|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

It was the giveaway to end all giveaways: 70 years ago almost to the day, a store in Oregon advertised a drawing for a baby. How the heck did this actually happen? Plus: it's December and a good way to enjoy the season is a little thing called ice bumper cars.

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