3 Things: Noah Sheldon, BriTANicK, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez by Chris Duffy

Happy Saturday! Every week, I send out an email with my upcoming shows, one thing I think is great, one thing that made me laugh, and one thing I found interesting.

Upcoming Shows

EVERYWHERE:
You can listen to every episode of You're the Expert, my podcast where three comedians interview a scientist about their work and why it matters, on our website or wherever you get podcasts. Link

My wife Mollie's book comes out on February 5th. It's called "No Hard Feelings: The Secret Power of Embracing Emotions at Work." You can see more about it and pre-order here: Link

A few years ago, I visited a friend who writes for The Onion and while I was in the office, they had me pose for a stock image. So now, every couple years, an article gets reposted with my photo in it. This week, I've been getting a lot of texts congratulating me on my responsible life choices because of this headline: "Responsible Man Sets Aside Small Portion of Each Paycheck for Bank to Gamble With"

NEW YORK CITY:
Saturday, January 26 at the Brick Theater. I'm improvising with some of NYC's best at Carley Moseley's very fun show Monster Mash, where a chef makes a dish for the audience and then we all do a show inspired by it. Funny and delicious! Link

Tuesday, February 5 at Powerhouse Arena. Come join me in the audience for Mollie and Liz's official book release! They're going to have prizes, a station where you can make your own stress ball, and of course, they'll be reading from their newly published book. It's going to be great and it costs zero dollars. Link

As always, you can find my schedule with all upcoming dates online here.

This week’s list

GREAT:
Noah Sheldon is a photographer who's won accolades and had exhibitions all over the world. I'm most interested in his ongoing project "Work Is..." It's like if Studs Turkel had an eye for amazing short films (and lived in China). "The popular story of working life in China did not correspond very well with Noah's own encounters with Chinese workers and their workplace. 'Work is' sets out to catalogue the labor force of China in a more intimate and granular way, using voices and personal histories to color the notion of what it means to be working in modern China." A good place to start is his lovely short film about Wu Guo Jie, a woman who makes a living reselling styrofoam boxes. Styrofoam (h/t Jason Kottke)

 
FUNNY:
Brian McElhaney and Nick Kocher are two of the best sketch comedians in the country. They're currently writing for Saturday Night Live, but they've also written for How I Met Your MotherIt's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and so many other great shows and movies. Their sketch group is called BriTANicK and it's so funny. I first saw them at SF Sketchfest about five years ago and I was blown away. Since then, I've watched every video they put out. It's been awhile, since they've been busy with SNL, but they released a new video this week and it was worth the wait. The Mystery


INTERESTING:
She's been in Congress for less than a month, but she's already generated more media attention than most representatives get in their entire careers. Personally, I find Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to be inspiring and an exciting new voice in politics. But even if you disagree with her positions, I think it's important (and also interesting) to see the facts behind them. This op-ed about the economics of higher taxes from a Nobel Prize winning economist was very eye-opening for me. It's interesting that in debates over issues like this, no one ever stops and says "Um, actually both conservative and liberal experts agree this works. No one really disagrees on this except for pundits." The Economics of Soaking the Rich 


Thanks for reading! If you like these emails, please forward to a friend or come say hi at a live show. If you're reading this for the first time (maybe someone forwarded you this email?), you can subscribe here.

Have a great week,
Chris

3 Things: Jo Firestone, Austin Kleon, and Bianca Giaever by Chris Duffy

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Happy Saturday! Every week, I send out an email with my upcoming shows, one thing I think is great, one thing that made me laugh, and one thing I found interesting.

Upcoming Shows

EVERYWHERE:
This season of You're the Expert just wrapped up but you can listen to all of the episodes online or wherever you get podcasts. Link

My wife Mollie's book just got a great writeup in Time.  It's called "No Hard Feelings: The Secret Power of Embracing Emotions at Work" and it comes out exactly one month from today (February 5th). You can see more about it and pre-order here: Link

I'm still on a bit of a break from performing this week, but starting in February, I'll be on a national tour and I'm hoping to have all those dates official and announced in the next two weeks. As always, you'll be able to find my schedule with all upcoming dates online here.

This week’s list

GREAT:
This past week, Jo Firestone wrote about handling the death of a friend for The New York Times. The piece is funny, it's moving, and it's beautiful. "Accept the lasagna. Do not read that Joan Didion book." For anyone who's dealt with (or is currently dealing with) loss, Jo captures the confusing swirl of emotions perfectly. The world is a better place with Jo in it and I admire her as a comedian and a human. Tell Me One More Time What to Do About Grief

(Adina, who Jo's writing about, was an amazing writer as well and I strongly recommending pairing Jo's piece with Adina's essay "I Must Have Been That Man.")

 
FUNNY:
Austin Kleon is a visual artist and poet, but he's also become one of the leading voices writing about creativity. His bestselling books Steal Like An Artist and Show Your Work are excellent primers on creative life and his blog is full of small, useful tips and observations. While reading his year-end roundup, I stumbled across some of his posts about parenting, which made me laugh a lot. Especially the way he and his wife reacted when they discovered their son had draw in crayon all over their new expensive couch. I love it.Accidents Will Happen


INTERESTING:
In a perfect combination of all the themes in today's list (from childhood to loss to creativity), Bianca Giaever produced a fantastic audio episode of Frontline for kids about the global refugee crisis. Using real questions from kids in the U.S. and then getting answers from children growing up in one of the world's largest refugee camps in Kenya, her story manages to be funny and insightful. It cuts through the noise in a way that many pieces about migration unfortunately do not. And it's certainly worth listening to no matter what age you are. Muzamil's Day (After you listen, look at the accompanying photos and multimedia piece too.)


Thanks for reading! If you like these emails, please forward to a friend or come say hi at a live show. If you're reading this for the first time (maybe someone forwarded you this email?), you can subscribe here.

Happy New Year!
Chris

3 Things: Esmeralda Santiago, John McPhee, and Allison Keeley by Chris Duffy

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Happy Saturday! Every week, I send out an email with my upcoming shows, one thing I think is great, one thing that made me laugh, and one thing I found interesting.

Upcoming Shows

EVERYWHERE:
The newest episode of You're the Expert features neuroscientist Rebecca Brachman talking with comedians Wyatt Cenac, Maeve Higgins, and Negin Farsad. Link

My wife Mollie and her co-author Liz Fosslien wrote a book called "No Hard Feelings: The Secret Power of Embracing Emotions at Work." It's out in 2019 but available for pre-order now: Link

I'm taking a little bit of time off from live shows for the holidays, but I'll be back and touring in late January. Once I announce them, you'll be able to find my schedule with all upcoming dates online here.

This week’s list

GREAT:
Last week, I got to see my friend Antonia Cereijido interview the author Esmeralda Santiago for the 25th anniversary of her memoir When I Was Puerto Rican. Santiago is an amazing writer, incredibly charismatic, and has so much to say about identity, education, and language. If you haven't read her book, I highly recommend it. Antonia also asked Santiago about a more recent event in her life. Eight years ago, a stroke left her unable to read. For a lifelong writer and actor, it was devastating. But "Santiago realized that she had gone through this experience, in a way, before. When she moved to New York City from Puerto Rico, at 13 years old, she spoke no English. If she could learn a new language then, she would be able to learn again." You can hear her tell Antonia about that process and reclaiming written language on NPR's LatinoUSA.  Esmeralda Santiago Relearns How to Read

 
FUNNY:
John McPhee is one of my favorite writers. While he's certainly not a comedian, I think his nonfiction work has a great sense of humor. He tends to pick an extremely random topic (say, oranges) and then dive into an insane depth on it. A lot of the best comedians do the same thing, whether it's Jim Gaffigan obsessing about pie or Tig Notaro analyzing each and every vocal tic that goes into a "That's What She Said" joke. I finished McPhee's latest book, The Patch, and one section I particularly loved was about how desperately he wants to see a bear outside his house in New Jersey. Direct Eye Contact


INTERESTING:
Allison Keeley is a freelance journalist based in Mexico and she covered a wild story about the multi-million dollar world meteorite hunters for WIRED. "In the remote high plains of Peru, a red-hot chunk of rock plummeted from the heavens, making landfall with a tremendous blast. Half a world away, meteorite hunters like Robert Ward got word and rushed to get a piece of the action. Then things got weird." The Mad Scramble to Claim the World's Most Coveted Meteorite


Thanks for reading! If you like these emails, please forward to a friend or come say hi at a live show. If you're reading this for the first time (maybe someone forwarded you this email?), you can subscribe here.

We're almost done with 2018!
Chris