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Kristen Meinzer

Kristen Meinzer appears in the following:

Is 'O: A Presidential Novel' Any Good?

Monday, January 24, 2011

It’s likely you’ve heard about “O: A Presidential Novel.” The book is a fictional account of the Obama administration — the author, according to the publisher's website — "has been in the room with Obama and wishes to remain anonymous.” But buzz or no buzz, is “O” any good? Does it reveal anything juicy about Obama? And how is it similar or different from other fictional depictions of real, living presidents and administrations? Patrik Henry Bass, senior editor at Essence Magazine reviews the book.

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Movie Date: How 'No Strings Attached' Works in Real Life

Friday, January 21, 2011

Whenever Kristen and Rafer watch a movie together, they keep their opinions a secret from each other until the podcast. But that's hard when they bring along their friends, as they did with this weekend's big movie, "No Strings Attached," starring Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher. The friend Kristen brought is in a real "friends with benefits" situation and Kristen talks about how the movie's story compares with her real life.

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Movies: 'No Strings Attached,' 'The Way Back' and 'The Company Men'

Friday, January 21, 2011

We just collectively cringed at Ricky Gervais on the Golden Globes, and we’ll be watching the Academy Awards before we know it, on February 27th. In the meantime, we’re watching movies that probably won’t bring home any statuettes this time next year; but this weekends films may provide us with a little guilty pleasure.Takeaway Movie Date Podcast co-hosts Rafer Guzman and Kristen Meinzer talk about these new releases.

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Some Practical Wisdom for President Obama

Friday, January 21, 2011

We frequently hear terms like “common sense” and “street smarts.” But what about “practical wisdom”? A concept first identified by Aristotle, practical wisdom is something Swarthmore professors Barry Schwartz and Kenneth Sharpe believe needs a comeback. They insist that it could help our institutions and communities and our nation. But what is practical wisdom? And how might it help something like Obama’s presidency?

 

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A Culinary Journey from Africa to America

Friday, January 21, 2011

The U.S. slave trade took many things from the Africans who were forced into it: family, name, homeland, and, of course, freedom. But within that system of brutality, there were certain things that couldn’t be stolen from the slaves, including their taste memories, cooking techniques and agricultural practices. It’s through these food memories and techniques that Africans transformed the way Americans eat. Food historian Jessica Harris explores this part of the American story, and the people involved in it, in her new book “High on the Hog: A Culinary Journey from Africa to America.”

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Military Life: When the Men are Gone

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Military wife Siobhan Fallon has a new collection of loosely connected short stories that’s been getting rave reviews. It’s called “You Know When The Men Are Gone.” She explains the truth behind living as a military spouse. Her husband Major K.C. Evans is a graduate of West Point, he’s been married to Siobhan for seven years, and has been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan three times during their marriage.

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John F. Kennedy Inaugural Address Remembered

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fifty years ago today, the 35th president of the United States John F. Kennedy uttered the following words at his inaugural address: 

"The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it — and the glow from that fire can truly light the world. And so, my fellow Americans: Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country."

Why did JFK’s words strike a cord with so many? And how did his inauguration foreshadow what was ahead for the young president’s time in office?

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Creativity, Culture, and Misconceptions in Modern China

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

We hear a lot of negative messages about culture and creativity in modern China. We hear about censorship and a lack of free speech, about internet restrictions (no Facebook) and too many bribes. But when it comes to music, TV, communication, and creativity in general – are our perceptions of China totally off base? And for that matter, what are modern Chinese people’s perceptions of America and our culture?

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Is Technology Tearing Us Apart?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The typical U.S. teenager sends 3,500 text messages a month on portable digital devices, and American children send eight texts for every phone call they make or receive. This same generation grew up with Furbies and other robotic friends. While all this technology might seem harmless or even beneficial to the masses, Sherry Turkle argues that it carries risks. Sherry is an MIT professor and clinical psychologist, as well as the author of a new book is called “Alone Together: Why We Expect More From Technology and Less From Each Other.”

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Tamara Chalabi on Family, History, and Nation

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

When many of us hear the name Chalabi, we think of Ahmed Chalabi, the controversial Iraqi politician who advised the U.S. government to go to war. But his daughter Tamara Chalabi wants the world to know that the Chalabi name is bigger that just her father. Her new book, “Late for Tea at the Deer Palace,” brings her family tree to life, from the time of the Ottoman Empire to today’s post-war reconstruction period.

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Movie Stars Laugh and Squirm as Ricky Gervais Hosts Golden Globes

Monday, January 17, 2011

Ricky Gervais, why don't you host every awards show from now on? Every single one. I don't care if it's the Oscars or the Employee of the Month awards at Wal-Mart. I think it would make life a little sweeter, even if we were cringing the whole time.

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Acclaimed Novelist Carlos Fuentes on New Book, 'Destiny and Desire'

Monday, January 17, 2011

At 82 years old, Carlos Fuentes has worn many hats. He was the Mexican ambassador to France in the late ‘70s, but his passion has always been writing.  As a contemporary of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Fuentes returns to magical realism in his latest novel, “Destiny and Desire,” in which he reflects on the state of modern Mexico and its endemic violence.

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Fifty Years of the Military Industrial Complex

Monday, January 17, 2011

Today is the 50th anniversary of President Eisenhower’s farewell speech in which he warned, "In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarrented influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex." But what was the military industrial complex initially? And what has it become over time?

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Movie Date: Who Should Win The Golden Globes?

Friday, January 14, 2011

This Sunday, awards season officially kicks off with The 68th Annual Golden Globes. Will "The Social Network" beat "The King's Speech"? Can Natalie Portman trump Michelle Williams? Kristen and Rafer debate who they think will win and should win.

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What is a Chinese Mother?

Friday, January 14, 2011

Author, mother, and law professor Amy Chua is creating a firestorm with an essay published in this past weekend’s Wall Street Journal titled, "Why Chinese Mothers are Superior.” The essay, which was given its title by the Journal, included excerpts from her new book “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.” Both showcases Chua's strict parenting style — from forcing her daughters to practice the piano well into the night without bathroom breaks, to forbidding them to attend sleepovers.

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Golden Globes Preview: From Red Carpet to Acceptance Speech

Friday, January 14, 2011

This Sunday, awards season officially kicks off with The 68th Annual Golden Globe Awards, which will be broadcast at 8 p.m. eastern time on NBC. Also known as the happiest awards show in Hollywood, the Globes is an event where alcohol is served throughout the night, TV stars and movie stars mingle, and comedies and dramas are given equal recognition. But in addition to the misbehaving, winning, and losing, what else should we be keeping our eyes on at this year’s ceremony?

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How to Predict the Golden Globes Awards

Friday, January 14, 2011

When it comes to the Golden Globes, there are certain bets you can place that you're more or less guaranteed to win.

For example, want to bet that at least one person will stumble onto the stage with a drink in hand? Sure, especially if there's money on it. Want to wager that the camera will pan over to Jennifer Aniston whenever Brad Pitt is on stage? Well, that's a gimme.

But what about wagers that are less obvious — about winners and losers and predictors for the Oscars? I have some tips that might help you out.

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Why is Teen Dystopian Literature on the Rise?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

For decades, teenagers have enjoyed stories of darkness and dystopia — from social critiques like “The Lord of the Flies” to dystopian nightmares like “A Clockwork Orange.” But in the last year or two, the market for dystopian and apocalyptic young adult fiction has exploded with more books and darker stories than ever, and the year ahead promises the most books in this genre to date.What's behind this teen dystopian trend, and why is there so much demand for it?

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The Price of Everything

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Everyday, all of us spend money on things — things we need, and things we don’t. And in turn prices are put on those things. But where do those prices come from? How much has to do with supply and demand? And how much has to do with bigger forces at play? Finance writer Eduardo Porter has been researching these questions for years. His new book is called “The Price of Everything: Solving the Mystery of Why We Pay What We Do.” Porter joins us to talk about the nature of value in modern society, some of its mysteries and explanations.

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A Man's Mid-life Discovery: His Racial Background

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Michael Fosberg was raised in a working class Armenian American family led by his biological mother and adoptive father. When he was in his thirties, his parents decided to divorce. Michael responded to the split by going out in search of the long lost father he never knew and discovering that he was black.

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