Conversation

No longer on air.

The Conversation covers current events in politics, public affairs, culture and science. Host Ross Reynolds opens the phone for listeners to participate in spirited discussions on the issues of the day. 

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To find stories by The Conversation older than October 15, 2012, go to www2.kuow.org and select "The Conversation" from the show dropdown menu in the search function.

Bus Driver Love Stories

Aug 16, 2013
Flickr Photo/IMLS Digital Collections and Content

The tragic news of a bus driver being shot earlier this week  in downtown Seattle inspired us to ask listeners to share their stories about bus drivers; stories about nice bus drivers just doing their jobs and stories about heroic bus drivers that went above and beyond the call of duty.  Ross Reynolds talks to listeners about their best bus drivers.

FDA Defines “Gluten Free”

Aug 16, 2013
Flickr Photo/John Fischer

The "gluten free" label is turning up in more and more products – from bread to disposable plates. But the definition of gluten free varies by manufacturer, so the Food and Drug Administration is creating a standard definition.

Ross Reynolds talks to Judy Simon, a clinical dietitian and nutritionist at UW Medical Center's Roosevelt Clinic, about the FDA decision on "gluten free" labeling.

The Conversation News Quiz

Aug 16, 2013

Once again, we play Carl Kassel’s (secret) favorite news quiz! One lucky listener gets the chance to demonstrate his or her news knowledge. This week’s quiz covers everything from Hempfest to health care. Do you have what it takes?

Rob Sheffield On The Fascinating World Of Karaoke

Aug 16, 2013
Rob Sheffield's book "Turn Around Bright Eyes."

Karaoke fascinates some and leave other baffled. Rob Sheffield is in the former category. The Rolling Stone contributing editor has written a memoir about love and karaoke and he sits down to take Ross Reynolds into the fascinating and often strange world of karaoke. 

From The Streets To The Stores: Branding And Selling Marijuana

Aug 16, 2013

Jamen Shively is the former Microsoft Corporate strategy manager who would like to establish a national quality brand of marijuana. Former Mexican president Vicente Fox came to Seattle for a press conference Shively held on his new venture, Diego Pellicer, Inc. Ross Reynolds talks with the founder and CEO about branding and selling marijuana. 

Rules Of The Road

Aug 14, 2013
Stacey Sanner

Do pedestrians always have the right of way? Really? Always? Is it illegal to pass a city bus on the right? What is the speed limit in a neighborhood if no signs are posted? Ross Reynolds sits down with former Seattle traffic officer John Abraham to take listener questions about the rules of the road. 

Why Can't Congress Make Progress?

Aug 14, 2013
Flickr Photo/Jonathon Colman

This year’s Congress is the most unproductive in at least 60 years. In its first six months, the 113th Congress has passed only 22 bills through both the House and the Senate, and most of those were insignificant. Is the hold up just part of the democratic process? Or is it something else?

Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper says the push for transparency in recent years is making government and lawmakers less effective. His solution? Bring back closed-door meetings and earmarks. Ross Reynolds talks with Julien Zelizer, professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University about why transparency and the 24-hour news cycle can fuel partisan gridlock. 

Getting Fresh With Ross And Sheryl: What A Peach!

Aug 14, 2013
Courtesy of Sheryl Wiser

This week Ross Reynolds talks with Sheryl Wiser of Cascade Harvest about the ever complicated peach. How do you find a good one? She explains and then tells us what to do with our new plump and pretty peaches! From salsa to the grill, Sheryl sets us up for peach season. 

Does Fewer Kids Mean Less Kid Friendly? Raising Children In Jet City

Aug 13, 2013
Flickr Photo/Michael Hanscom

 Seattle has one of the lowest populations of children in the United States. What does it mean when a city goes from a playground for kids to a playground for the rich? Ross Reynolds talks with Ali Modarres, professor of urban geography at California State University and co-author of a new report on the Childless City. And listeners answer the questions: Do you think is a bad place to raise kids? Did you leave the city to raise your kids in Shoreline or Bellevue? 

Humans Look Forward To Turning Into Robots

Aug 13, 2013
Tali Sharot's book "The Optimism Bias"

  Are you optimistic about the future of science? A recent Pew Survey found that 71 percent of Americans believe artificial arms and legs will perform better than natural ones by 2050, and 69 percent believe there will be a cure for most forms of cancer by then.

Will most Americans be springing for artificial limbs in 40 years? Maybe not. But we are certainly optimistic about the possibility of it all. Ross Reynolds talks with Tali Sharot, research fellow in the department of cognitive, perceptual and brain sciences at University College London and the author of “The Optimism Bias: A Tour of the Irrationally Positive Brain.”

Health Department To Teens: 'Suck On This'

Aug 13, 2013
Courtesy of Suck on This Facebook page

  If you saw a teenager walking down the street wearing a neon t-shirt with the phrase “Suck on This” printed across the chest, your mind might not automatically think that they are trying to spread a message to other teens to stay away from tobacco. Teens taking part in an awareness campaign with the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department are saying "suck on this" and they aren't trying to offend anyone. Ross Reynolds talks about the new anti-tobacco campaign with a representative from the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department. 

Cutting Through Obamacare Rollout Confusion

Aug 13, 2013

 The pace of implementation for the Affordable Care Act, known by critics and the president himself as Obamacare, is picking up this fall. Starting October 1 you can start shopping for a health plan in Washington state's new insurance exchange called Healthplanfinder. Obamacare is supposed to be fully in place by early next year. But there’s still a lot of confusion. Ross Reynolds tries to cut through some of that confusion by talking with Washington state Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler and taking listener calls.

This Week In Fish

Aug 12, 2013
Flickr Photo/Ingrid Taylar

An eight-foot-long sturgeon was found dead in Lake Washington two weeks ago. That same weekend, a fisherman caught an exotic piranha-like fish in a lake near Marysville. What do these fishy events have to do with each other? Turns out they tell a story about marine conservation. Ross Reynolds talks with Tim Essington, an associate professor in Aquatic and Fishery Sciences at the University of Washington.

So You Want To Be A Clown?

Aug 12, 2013

You don’t have to run away to join the circus – this week a camp kicks off in Seattle where kids between the ages of eight and 21 can go and train to learn how to juggle, tumble, walk a tight rope and more. But not everyone can pull off a clown nose. Would-be clown Ben Sherrill recounts the story of how he tried – and failed – to become a clown.

Eli Hastings On “Clearly Now, The Rain”

Aug 12, 2013
Eli Hastings' book, "Clearly Now, the Rain."

Eli Hastings is the author of two memoirs and a team leader at the Pongo Teen Writing Project. Pongo is a nonprofit that works with troubled Seattle teens on how to express themselves through poetry and other forms of writing. He shares his story with Ross Reynolds.

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