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52 EpisodesProduced by Neon Hum Media/ Sony Music EntertainmentWebsite

Welcome to the new normal. For so many of us around the globe, our lives have been forever changed by the coronavirus. And we will never be the same. On Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays for the foreseeable future, Neon Hum's Jonathan Hirsch will bring you stories of people who are far away...up clo… read more

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Introducing: The Sellout

October 26th, 2021


From Neon Hum Media and L.A. Taco, this is Smoke Screen: The Sellout, a podcast about a politician dogged by allegations of corruption, harassment …

Where Are They Now?

July 24th, 2020


It sometimes feels like we’re living in a time warp. Like we just went into lockdown. But it’s been four months – and the whole world is different …

Thank You Letter

July 22nd, 2020


Eleven-year-old Emerson Weber has something of a hobby: she loves to write letters. And one day, she decided to write one to the person who makes her …

A Good Death With Caitlin Doughty

July 20th, 2020


Caitlin Doughty wants you to reconsider your relationship with death. She’s a funeral director and “Death Positivity” advocate in Los Angeles. And she believes that facing your own mortality can be transformative, even …

Predicting A Pandemic With Ed Yong

July 17th, 2020


Science journalist Ed Yong covers the pandemic for The Atlantic. But he also saw it coming, writing a story two years ago predicting the issues that we’re seeing now in the U.S. He reflected on hindsight compared to …

The Show Must Go On

July 15th, 2020


As the pandemic shuttered stages across the country, playwright Qui Nguyen wanted to give schools a little bit of hope. He took his popular play, She …

Shut Out

July 13th, 2020


Something about these long hot days just feels off when there isn’t a baseball game on in the background. Games are about to start up again, but without any fans or most of the stadium staff. Today, we hear from a …

Voting Rights And Wrongs With Sam Levine

July 10th, 2020


American democracy is complicated, especially when it comes to voting. Sam Levine is a journalist covering voter rights at The Guardian. As the 2020 election approaches, Sam will help us understand what is going right …

Rubber Bullets

July 8th, 2020


Derrick Sanderlin was well-acquainted with the San Jose police department – he volunteered his time to train police on implicit bias. Then, he found …

Education: Should You Sue Your College?

July 3rd, 2020


As COVID settled over college campuses, most schools moved students’ education entirely online. It was a necessary move, designed to prevent the …

Education: Homeroom

July 1st, 2020


Teaching high school during a pandemic has been near impossible. Educators are in crisis mode. One English teacher in Flint, Michigan, has spent the …

Education: Pre-K In A Pandemic

June 29th, 2020


When stay-at-home orders hit, daycares and preschools across the country had to figure out new protocols. Some shut down. Some laid off staff. Some …

The Science Of Happiness With Laurie Santos

June 26th, 2020


Dr. Laurie Santos is something of an expert at being happy. Her class “Psychology and the Good Life” became the most popular class at Yale …

Deaf Anxiety

June 24th, 2020


Now that many of us are in isolation, we have to use technology to communicate with each other. But that technology isn’t always built with everyone …

On The Front Lines

June 22nd, 2020


For many of us, our weekly trip to the grocery store is the most dangerous outing of the week. The place we’re most likely to be exposed to coronavirus. Today on Telescope, we spend some time with two people who are …

Black Lives: Juneteenth With Soledad O'Brien

June 19th, 2020


Today is Juneteenth. It’s a holiday that marks the end of slavery in America, and for many it represents a second day of independence. As the mass …

Black Lives: Tik-Toking Your Wokeness

June 17th, 2020


Social media’s role during this moment -- as we face two pandemics in the name of COVID and racism -- is cyclical. It’s both impacting and being …

Black Lives: Two Pandemics

June 15th, 2020


Two activists share their journeys of leading anti-racism protests in response to the killing of George Floyd. KC Short -- an Army veteran based near San Diego -- quickly learned the ins and outs of organizing protests. …

Pride And Black Lives With Zach Stafford

June 5th, 2020


Zach Stafford rose like a comet through the media, going from Huffington Post blogger to Editor-In-Chief of The Advocate magazine in just a few short years. As a Black gay man, Zach’s identity has driven him to fight …

My Dad

June 3rd, 2020


Jonathan Hirsch and Seth Fischer tell the stories of their fathers. How their robust intellects fell to late-life mental illnesses. And how living in …

Olympians On Hold

June 1st, 2020


Olympic fencers Ysaora Thibus and Race Imboden were set to compete in the most important matches of their careers at the 2020 Summer Olympic Games in …

Ignoring The Experts With Joel Stein

May 29th, 2020


As we all prepare for summer, we’re trying to decide what is safe and what isn’t safe to do. Joel Stein has been reporting on wealth disparities, risk analysis, and whether or not we trust experts to tell us what to do …

Korean Baseball

May 27th, 2020


Live sports is one of the many things that’s halted during the pandemic. But recently ESPN the got rights to air South Korean baseball games. Dan Kurtz, a superfan, explains why the KBO is worth watching -- and why it …

Hot Tub Royalty

May 25th, 2020


During the coronavirus pandemic, most non-essential business have taken a hit. But there are always exceptions. And Todd Thornbury’s hot tub business in Southern California happens to be one of the more fascinating ones.

Slowing Down With Sam Sanders

May 22nd, 2020


When Sam Sanders isn’t hosting NPR's "It’s Been A Minute," he’s watching TV and movies, reading books, and doing research for interviews with high profile celebrities. In quarantine, all of it has gotten to be a bit …

Home School

May 20th, 2020


Layla Besson is a special education teacher, and a mother of three boys. She’s well-organized, resourceful – knows how to juggle. But then, the …


May 18th, 2020


Self-isolating has inevitably changed the dynamic of every household, but what are the particular nuances involved with quarantined roommates right …

Honeysuckle With Greyson Chance

May 15th, 2020


Singer-songwriter Greyson Chance was preparing for one of the most exciting moments of his career, which included a world tour and a new album. When the pandemic hit, he felt like all his momentum deflated. But Greyson …

Dad Diaries

May 13th, 2020


Scott Duvall and his family, from Athens, Georgia, have been sheltering in place since before the stay at home order came down from Governor Brian …

COVID Boyfriend

May 11th, 2020


As the host of the podcast "The Lonely Hour," Julia Bainbridge has been studying loneliness in American life since well before we began isolating …

The Big Picture With Nelufar Hedayat

May 8th, 2020


Nelufar Hedayat wants to change the world one small step at a time. As the correspondent for Doha Debates and host of the Course Correction podcast, she’s personally taking on some of the largest issues facing the …

This Will End

May 6th, 2020


In Los Angeles, Rabbi Rose Prevezer and is helping young people reimagine what Jewish life could look like for them. Now, as coronavirus forces us to …


May 4th, 2020


There have been more than 400 confirmed cases of COVID-19 among people in ICE custody, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement website. Five of those people who tested positive were at the South Texas ICE …

Truth And Lies With Bassem Youssef

May 1st, 2020


Nine years ago, Bassem Youssef skyrocketed to fame as Egypt’s most famous satirist – the “Jon Stewart of the Middle East." Three years later, he was forced to flee, with death threats hanging over his head. He’s stuck …

Getting Hitched On Nintendo Switch: An Animal Crossing Wedding

April 29th, 2020


“Animal Crossing” is one of the many Nintendo games blowing up right now during quarantine. Sharmin Asha and Nazmul Ahmed got obsessed with it -- …

Stranded At Sea

April 27th, 2020


Addison Proctor and his family left their lives behind to sail across the Pacfic, but the world shut down right as their trip began. Now, they are anchored off the coast of Florida, with hurricane season right around …

The Future Of Sports With Mina Kimes

April 24th, 2020


Sports in America and around the world are on hold, but that hasn’t stopped ESPN Daily host Mina Kimes. In the absence of the NBA playoffs and March …

Without Shelter

April 22nd, 2020


Theo Henderson has lived outside a recreation center in Los Angeles’ Chinatown for the past seven years. Since the outbreak started, Theo’s been trying to stay far away from anyone who might have coronavirus. But he’s …

Sober Together

April 20th, 2020


David and Jason are brothers. They describe themselves as opposites. David lives in Florida, has 4 kids and a partner. Jason, who is six years …

Tracking The Virus With Alexis Madrigal

April 17th, 2020


In early March, the Trump administration claimed that a million COVID tests were available, but nobody was keeping tabs on the results. Alexis …

Closing Shop

April 15th, 2020


In Charleston, West Virginia, Kin Ship Goods is more than a shop — it’s an institution. In the middle of March, as Covid-19 came closer and closer, West Virginia still hadn’t reported its first case. But Kin Ship’s …

A Life's Work, On Hold

April 13th, 2020


Dr. Anthony Lazzara dedicated his life to caring for destitute, sick children in a small village in Peru. But the coronavirus trapped him on the wrong continent, and now he is stuck, far away from the people who need …

Virtual Goodbye

April 10th, 2020


When Hue-Tam canceled her trip to Vietnam because of the coronavirus, she had no idea what she would miss.

Hue-Tam’s family is scattered around the …

Comedy On Lockdown

April 8th, 2020


Chris Garcia is a comedian and TV writer living in LA. Before COVID-19, he was performing standup in front of live audiences two to three nights a week. But now, he’s got to find more creative ways to test jokes -- like …

Doing Time

April 6th, 2020


Drew made a huge mistake, and he paid for that mistake. More than he'd ever imagined he would.

In May of 2019, he was arrested for a DUI and for …

Hollywood Story

April 3rd, 2020


After several years of working non-union gigs as a set dresser for TV shows, Thomas earns security and steady work after joining a union. But when coronavirus brings show production to a screeching halt, he and over …

Abortion Under Covid

April 1st, 2020


Dr. Alan Braid is an abortion doctor in San Antonio, Texas. His clinic is one of two that provides abortions in the city. Like all doctors these days during coronavirus, he has a new challenge. He doesn't have the …

Street Performer

March 30th, 2020


A local legend, the mysterious Pied Piper of Pasadena is a man who rocks out hard in his car, with the windows down, while playing songs on his recorder. He was a fixture in the lives of many Angelenos, inspiring …

Drive-In Concert

March 27th, 2020


After their residency was shut down because of coronavirus, a group of musicians found a clever way to still perform for an audience: they organized a "drive-in concert" in the parking lot of a Vons grocery store in the …

Imperfect Timing

March 25th, 2020


In this episode, we'll hear from Stacy. She and her husband have been trying to have kids for years which hasn't been easy. They're currently on their fourth round of IVF - a process that depends on perfectly timed …

The Last Flight

March 23rd, 2020


In the first episode of Telescope, we hear from Carmen Graterol, a Venezuelan living in Mexico City. On a planned trip to Caracas to visit family, …

Introducing Telescope: Life In The Time Of Corona

March 20th, 2020


For so many of us around the globe, our lives have been forever changed by the Coronavirus. And we will never be the same. 

And yet, locked away in …

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