Stuff You Should Know

By iHeartRadio

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Category: Society & Culture

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Subscribers: 53570
Reviews: 134


 May 10, 2021


 May 9, 2021

Robin Williams
 May 6, 2021
love chuck and Josh!

Dannielle
 Apr 25, 2021
Definitely one of the best podcasts out there. Suitable for the entire family.

Elske
 Mar 24, 2021
I like the show very much. But the ads are very annoying, too many!

Description

If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks, then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

Episode Date
How Monster Trucks Work
3147
If you’ve never seen a huge truck with gigantic tires do backflips or roll backward perched only on its two front tires, you haven’t lived yet. Chuck and Josh are here to ignite your interest. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 13, 2021
Short Stuff: Garter Snakes
743
Garter snakes aren’t scary, they’re pretty great! Learn all the reasons why in this episode! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 12, 2021
The Ivy League
3280
The Ivy League is technically a sports conference, but it's much more than that. Enjoy this special 3D episode with your earbuds on and learn all about these revered, elite universities. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 11, 2021
Introducing: Ephemeral Season 2
151
Hey, SYSK fans! We know you already love great podcasts, so here's another we think you'll enjoy - Ephemeral season 2. Check out the trailer and see for yourself. About Ephemeral: The best source on our cultural identity is not the official, historical record — ask any anthropologist, it’s the town dump. Ephemera — those things that were just barely saved, and in some cases not saved at all — emanate with secrets we can only glimpse and mysteries we can never completely answer. The stories may be unfamiliar, but the themes are universal; this is a looking glass, a window into our own fragile, material existence that begs the question, “How will I be remembered?” Listen to Ephemeral season 2 on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 10, 2021
Selects: How Snake Handlers Work
3600
Snake handling ranges from professional snake milkers for antivenin to religious handlers who tend to get bitten and sometimes die from it. Either way, it can be a dangerous business. Learn all about snake handling in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 08, 2021
How Uranium Mining Works
3318
Mining uranium is dangerous work. Not only does it involve mining, which is dangerous itself, uranium is also found alongside some very radioactive stuff. Learn the ins and outs of this thrilling endeavor in this episode of SYSK. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 06, 2021
Short Stuff: Squarer Than Wombat Poop
830
One of the cutest animals on the planet is also the only one that squeezes out cube-shaped poop. Find out why today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 05, 2021
The Appendix: No Respect
2932
The poor appendix. Despite findings that it serves a purpose, many people still cast it off as a second rate organ and the Rodney Dangerfield of organs. We aim to correct that notion. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 04, 2021
Selects: How Cave Dwellers Work
2644
You know the cavemen, a race of human cousins who lived exclusively in caves? They didn’t exist. Sure prehistoric hominids used caves sometimes but they lived in other places too. Luckily the time they spent in caves has given us a glance at their culture thanks to the protective environments of caves. Learn all about it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 01, 2021
How Corporate Taxes Work
3266
There are lots of reasons to tax corporations: as a check on their power, to help pay for infrastructure, as a wealth tax. But the biggest reason economists cite for why they've stuck around is that everyday people think companies should have to pay them too. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 29, 2021
Short Stuff: Ivar The Boneless
715
Was Ivar the Boneless a real Viking warrior? Probably. Did he really have no bones? Probably not. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 28, 2021
Truffles: Underground Treasures
2750
Truffles are rare, expensive and apparently delicious. Learn all about these earthy fungi today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 27, 2021
Selects: How Profiling Works
3326
At its base, criminal profiling is a legitimate investigatory tool. The Supreme Court has drawn a clear line that bans profiling when it includes race. So why do we still do it? Take a closer look with Josh and Chuck in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 24, 2021
How Stamp Collecting Works
3618
Over the last two centuries philatelists – stamp collectors – have learned just about everything there is to know about every stamp ever printed. You won’t by the end of this episode, but you might be interested enough to start yourself. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 22, 2021
Short Stuff: Madam C.J. Walker
841
Join us today as we dive into the story of the first female self-made millionaire, Madam C.J. Walker. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 21, 2021
Mechanical Bulls!
3070
Mechanical bulls are kind of weird, but they have certainly made a place in American pop culture over the years. Largely due to one movie, Urban Cowboy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 20, 2021
Selects: How Tupperware Works
2582
Tupperware won immediate design acclaim when it was released in 1947, but it took a pioneering female executive to make a line of plastic food storage into an icon of the American postwar boom. Learn about the surprisingly intriguing history of Tupperware, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 17, 2021
Hair Loss: The Pits
3751
Losing your hair is a situation that seems to be universally considered to absolutely stink. Unsurprisingly, humans have been trying all sorts of weird stuff to combat hair loss for millennia, but we’re only just now starting to get a handle on it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 15, 2021
Short Stuff: Palindromes
842
Chuck loves palindromes. So much that his very name is one. Oh wait... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 14, 2021
How the Electrical Grid Works
3787
The electrical grid that provides power to the US is one of those things you don’t give a second thought to until it stops working – then it’s tough to think about anything else. Learn why this engineering marvel is past its prime and how to update it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 13, 2021
Selects: The Unsolved Mystery Disappearance of the Sodder Children
2982
In 1945 a house fire took the lives of five children - except that their bodies were never found. In this classic episode, dive into the longstanding mystery of the odd circumstances surrounding the disappearance of the Sodder children. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 10, 2021
Muzak: Easy Listening Goodness
3475
Muzak got a bad reputation as bland garbage music. We aim to set the record straight. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 08, 2021
Short Stuff: Venus de Milo
723
Step into today's short stuff to learn all about the armless wonder! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 07, 2021
Havana Syndrome: ¿Qué Diablos?
2834
In 2016, diplomats at the American embassy in Cuba began suffering weird neurological symptoms after hearing strange noises. Some say it was a sonic attack using a secret weapon, but the Havana Syndrome remains a baffling scientific mystery to this day. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 06, 2021
Selects: How Circus Families Work
2985
Don't be confused - this one is about actual circus acts made of family members, not the controversial comic strip. Step right up to this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 03, 2021
How the Titanic Worked: Part Two
3249
After the Titanic sank recriminations and blame followed, sometimes ruining careers unjustifiably. As the decades wore on and she was found almost 2.5 miles down, history rehabilitated some people. The question still remains how to preserve the ship. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 01, 2021
Short Stuff: What's the oldest book?
771
In order to figure out what the oldest book is, one has to define what a book actually is. Listen in as we discuss this debatable topic. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 31, 2021
How the Titanic Worked: Part One
3164
When the Titanic set sail on her maiden voyage in April 1912, the world was divided into two types of people: those who considered her unsinkable and those who weren’t so sure about that. Both types were aboard when she went down with 1500 souls. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 30, 2021
Selects: What was the Philadelphia Experiment?
3229
The Philadelphia Experiment is a bad movie from the 1980s, and also the conpiracy theory that refuses to die, despite virtually zero evidence of its occurance. Learn all about this strange non-event in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 27, 2021
Space Junk, Ahoy!
3260
The orbits hundreds to thousands of miles above Earth are littered with garbage. Space garbage, sure, but it’s still garbage. Littering in space is bad enough but it poses practical problems too – like space junk crashing into satellites or astronauts. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 25, 2021
Short Stuff: Cellphones on Airplanes
845
Are we finally at the place where we can make cell phone calls on airplanes? PLEASE NO! Listen in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 24, 2021
What is biophilic design?
3346
Biophilic design is all about bringing the outside in. But it's also much more than that. Open your windows and have a listen! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 23, 2021
Selects: How Lighthouses Work
3038
People have been burning fires on cliffs as long as other people have used boats, but after the Age of Exploration, lighthouses took their unmistakable form and the great stories of the people who kept the lights around the world began. Learn all about them in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2021
The Texas City Disaster of 1947
2764
In 1947 the port town of Texas City, Texas became the site of the largest industrial disaster in American history. An enormous explosion blew ships out of the water, created a tidal wave that flooded the town, and killed hundreds of people instantly. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 18, 2021
Short Stuff: Brazilian Jars
972
In the 1970s big news was made when some underwater artifacts were found in a bay by Rio de Janeiro that would have rewritten history. Then it just kind of petered out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 17, 2021
The Parrot Episode
3406
If you think parrots are simply mimics that fly, you're wrong. Tune in and learn about these colorful friends today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 16, 2021
Selects: Please Listen to How Plasma Waste Convertors Work
2498
There is a way to not only sustainably get rid of our household waste, but also produce enough energy from it to power the process and even create electricity for the grid. The future is here. Learn all about it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 13, 2021
Karaoke: Tuesday Night Fever
3559
Listen in and learn all about the fascinating history of everybody's favorite pastime... karaoke! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 11, 2021
Short Stuff: Tooth Fairy: Not Real
833
Today we break down the history of everyone's favorite home invader, the tooth fairy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 10, 2021
Dragons: As Real as Mermaids
2712
Dragons are like mermaids in that they're not real. And that's about where the comparison ends. Learn all about dragons today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 09, 2021
Selects: Mermaids: Not a real thing
2805
Mermaids aren't real. That much we know. But the history and lore of these magical and sometimes menacing creatures of the sea is pretty interesting stuff. Learn all about these half women/half fish in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 06, 2021
Why is the Equal Rights Amendment still not ratified?
3285
The United States is one of only 28 countries in the world that doesn’t have equal protection for women under the law enshrined in its constitution. There was a moment in the 70s where it came very close, but then the conservative movement was born. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 04, 2021
Short Stuff: Dog Suicide Bridge
821
A bridge at the town of Dumbarton in Scotland has a terrible reputation as a site where dogs inexplicably leap to their death on the rocks 50 feet below. There is no shortage of theories why, but none fully explain it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 03, 2021
Is the Free Radical Theory of Aging Wrong?
3380
In the 1990s we thought we’d identified the root cause of aging: nasty molecules called free radicals that wreaked havoc on our cells. Even better, we’d figured out how to counteract them with loads of antioxidants. Then science started raising questions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 02, 2021
Selects: Bridges: Nature Abhors Them
3778
From prehistoric logs across streams to the 102-mile Kunshan Grand Bridge, nature works ceaselessly to take down spans. In this classic episode, learn about the fascinating ins and outs of bridge design and building and the mind-boggling challenges structural engineers face. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 27, 2021
How Bruce Lee Worked
3390
Bruce Lee may have introduced more Westerners to Asian culture than any person in history. And, because he died young just as he became an international superstar, he’s become a legend. Josh and Chuck try to uncover the man underneath. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 25, 2021
Short Stuff: The Body in the Cylinder
908
In 1945, residents of a Liverpool neighborhood found a desiccated body in a long cylinder they’d been using for years using as a bench. It launched a mystery that’s still alive today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 24, 2021
What Will Farming 4.0 Look Like?
3084
The human population is expected to increase by a couple billion people in the next 30 years and those who are paying attention are wondering exactly how we’ll feed all those extra mouths. Will going high tech or getting back to nature save us? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 23, 2021
Selects: How Chili Peppers Work
3466
Born and raised in South America, chilis were the earliest crop domesticated in the continent and among the first items brought back to Europe by Columbus. Today people are really, really into them. Find out all about 'em in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 20, 2021
How Blue Holes Work
2530
Geologists and biologists have recently realized that the planet’s oceans and coasts are littered with a unique type of ecosystem called blue holes, submerged sinkholes that were once dry caves. They are turning out to be weird and amazing places. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 18, 2021
Short Stuff: Freedom House Ambulance Services
1043
As part of Black History Month, we wanted to share the little known story of the Freedom House Ambulance Service. Listen in to learn all about this seminal group of EMTs. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 17, 2021
The Disappearance of Lars Mittank
2897
In 2014, a young German man walked into an airport in Bulgaria with a flight booked, then suddenly ran out leaving all his posessions behind, never to be heard from again. This is the story of Lars Mittank. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 16, 2021
Selects: Why Are So Many Disembodied Feet Washing Ashore In British Columbia?
2556
Between 2007 and 2016, 17 disembodied feet - still wearing shoes - have washed ashore between Washington and British Columbia. What's behind the sudden influx of Vancouver's mystery feet? Find out in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 13, 2021
How Housing Discrimination Works
3584
Owning a home in the US is a way to pass wealth down from one generation to the next and lift families into a comfortable life down the road. But there have been barriers to buying homes that Black Americans have faced from the time of slavery to today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 11, 2021
Short Stuff: How California Got Its Name
827
California is a pretty cool name. And the story about where it came from is even cooler. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 10, 2021
Sacagawea: Impressive Teen
3198
Sacagawea was only 16 when she joined the Corps of Discovery. That is one seriously impressive teenager. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 09, 2021
Selects: Earwax: Live With It
2533
Despite tons of people using cotton swabs each day to clean the earwax from their ears, cerumen (as earwax is clinically known) is actually quite beneficial to the health of your ears - and even kind of ingenious as your body's defense goes. Learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 06, 2021
The NAACP
3056
The NAACP has long been one of the most robust and effective non-profits in the USA. And while it has faded a bit from its glory days, it still remains a vital cog in the battle for equality. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 04, 2021
Short Stuff: Balloonfest
866
In 1986 Cleveland released more than a million helium balloons at once! It didn’t go at all according to plan! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 03, 2021
How Groundhog Day Works
3319
You know Groundhog Day – the holiday on February 2 when you wake up and have to go through the same day over and over again. It turns out the holiday has deep roots in a pagan past, and has survived in a surprisingly similar form. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 02, 2021
Selects: Maggots: Good For Healing Wounds, Turns Out
2630
Cultures around the world over the years have been inspired by, then repulsed, then inspired by maggots' ability to heal persistent wounds. We are in an inspired-by phase right now. Learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 30, 2021
How Hydropower Works
3407
Humans have been stealing energy from flowing water for at least two thousand years. It wasn’t until the advent of electricity that things really got cookin’. All we need to do now is to work out the harmful environmental impacts of this green energy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 28, 2021
Short Stuff: Vantablack
800
How black is vantablack? About as black as you could imagine. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 27, 2021
The KKK: Loathsome Cosplay Rednecks
3731
The history of the KKK is rooted in hatred and racism, and it still is today. Learn all about these loathsome rednecks today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 26, 2021
Selects: How Blimps Work
3115
After newsreels captured the Hindenburg erupting in fire in 1937, the promising development of airship aviation was cut short. Today companies and militaries are taking another look at blimps and the unique qualities that may revive them. Learn all about it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 23, 2021
Finding the Fenn Treasure
3249
In 2010 an eccentric art dealer hid a treasure chest with $2 million in valuables somewhere in the Rocky Mountains and published a poem with clues on where to find it. Hence began the most famous treasure hunt in modern times. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 21, 2021
Short Stuff: Necco
807
If you think Necco Wafers are the most disgusting candy on the planet, you are not alone. But it turns out there’s a rich history behind those chalky discs that make them fascinating, if horrible. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 20, 2021
What does a tire company know about food?
3060
The Michelin Guide is an institution. But why does the famous tire manufacturer even put this restaurant guide out? Listen in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 19, 2021
Selects: What Was the Deal With the Hatfields and McCoys?
2913
It was America's most famous family feud, but the history of the Hatfields vs the McCoys is fraught with bias and inaccuracies. Dig into a disagreement in 19th-century Appalachia that became a very big deal around the world, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 16, 2021
The Science of Cute
3509
If you took our advice and looked up baby beavers a few episodes back, you probably found them sooooo cute you couldn’t stand it. Or you just wanted to eat them up, which is weird if you think about it. Friend, prepare for the science on that! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 14, 2021
Short Stuff: Silverfish
649
Should you be afraid of these creepy little creatures you find in your basement? Only one way to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 13, 2021
Hell! Hell! Hell!
3741
What is Hell? It's complicated and depends on which religion you're talking about. We dive into this fiery mess and do our best to explain it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 12, 2021
Selects: How Skateboarding Works
3080
Skateboarding started out as something bored surfers did when the waves weren't breaking, but after a few improvements to the design, it took off like a rocket to become its own cultural phenomenon. Come gleam the cube with Josh and Chuck as you ollie over this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 09, 2021
The Wright Brothers
4145
Orville and Wilbur Wright were not trained professionals, but they were rigorous experimenters who ended up changing the world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 07, 2021
Short Stuff: Is It Theater or Theatre?
733
Have you ever noticed sometimes theaters – we mean, theatres – oh, forget it – places where you see movies or plays – are sometimes spelled two different ways? You can thank Noah Webster, author of the first American dictionary, for that. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 06, 2021
Space Weather - What's That?!
3240
Did you know space has weather? It’s true! In our solar system, tons – literal tons – of highly charged gas and magnetized particles spew from the surface constantly, causing all sorts of weird stuff here on Earth. So far, nothing too bad has happened. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 05, 2021
Selects: How Auto-Tune Works
3555
What began as a challenge to an oil engineer to make a terrible singer into a pitch-perfect one, Auto-Tune has become a ubiquitous (and, to many, obnoxious) part of the musical soundscape. Learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 02, 2021
La Dame de Fer (Eiffel Tower)
3229
The Eiffel Tower is one of the top destinations on Planet Earth. It turns out to be a pretty cool feat of engineering as well. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 31, 2020
Short Stuff: Ig-pay Atin-lay (Sorry)
833
Turns out we have little kids from the 19th century, the Three Stooges, and an odd musical composer named Arthur Fields to thank for pig latin. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 30, 2020
Theremins: World's First Electronic Music
3373
In 1919 a brilliant Russian scientist accidentally stumbled onto the first electronic musical instrument in history – the theremin – which you play not by strings, keys, or even percussion, but by moving your hand in the air around it. Prepare to science! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 29, 2020
SYSK Selects: Sugar: It Powers the Earth
3012
Since sugar spread from Polynesia a few thousand years ago, the world has been crazy for it. Insanely high prices, wars and even slavery couldn't undo world's need for a sugar fix. Today that fix is responsible for the obesity epidemic facing the West. Learn all about it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 26, 2020
The SYSK 2020 Holly Jolly Extravaganza!
2552
It's here again! Our annual ad-free holiday spectacular. So pour up a hot toddy, throw a log on the fire and listen with the whole family! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 24, 2020
Short Stuff: Chinese Food on Christmas
816
What started out as a tradition among Jewish people on the Lower East Side at the turn of the last century has become a full-blown American holiday custom. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 23, 2020
How Buffets Work
3754
Buffets are every kid’s dream – until they grow up enough to realize how gross communal spreads of food shared with strangers actually are. Then the dream is dashed, for most of us at least. Learn about the golden age of buffets and more right here! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 22, 2020
SYSK Selects: The Star Wars Holiday Special of 1978
3605
Long ago, in a galaxy not so far away, George Lucas allowed the Star Wars Holiday Special to be made. What happened on the night of November 17, 1978 can never be fully explained, but we make our best effort in our annual special edition of SYSK. May the force be with us all. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 19, 2020
Aspirin: The Wonder Drug
3156
Humans have been using a form of aspirin for pain relief since at least the Sumerians. But in recent years we’ve come to learn the wonder drug is indeed awe-inspiring, from preventing heart attacks to possibly protecting humans from cancer. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 17, 2020
Short Stuff: Modern Funerals
821
The way we deal with our dead has changed a lot over the past 50 years. Learn all about it in 12-15 minutes right here. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 16, 2020
Joseph Merrick, aka "The Elephant Man"
2957
Joseph Merrick was known as The Elephant Man because of his suffering from what we now know was Proteus Synrome. Learn all about this brave man in today's episode.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 15, 2020
SYSK Selects: What is a hangover, really?
2326
After a night of heavy boozing, many partygoers find themselves the victim of a hangover. But what exactly is a hangover, and what causes it? Join Chuck and Josh as they break down the science behind hangovers -- and how to avoid them, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 12, 2020
The Taliesin Massacre
2863
Everyone knows who Frank Lloyd Wright is, but did you know there was a grisly massacre at his home in 1914? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 10, 2020
Short Stuff: Cramming
856
Cramming is no way to study. Learn why in today's short stuff. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 09, 2020
How Class Action Lawsuits Work
3276
Class action lawsuits seem a little odd – a bunch of people get together for a sue-fest against somebody – but in the legal world they’re a practical way of handing huge wrongs. And! They keep justice just in their way. Learn all about them today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 08, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Chaos Theory Changed the Universe
3661
Since the age of Descartes, science has put all of its eggs in the basket of determinism, the idea that with accurate enough measurements any aspect of the universe could be predicted. But the universe, it turns out, is not so tidy. Explore the final frontier with Josh and Chuck in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 05, 2020
John Lennon and the FBI
2862
Did you know that Richard Nixon had a FBI case file open on Beatle John Lennon? Well he did! Why? Listen in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 03, 2020
Short Stuff: Pimento Cheese!
925
Pimento cheese was originally nothing like it is now: It was mass produced, it was made from cream cheese and it was conceived in New York. Today it’s something much better, thanks to the South! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 02, 2020
Cabbage Patch Kids: Must-Have Toy of the Century
3280
Surprisingly, Cabbage Patch Kids have turned up on SYSK almost as much as the Nazis or Seinfeld. It’s finally time to dive all the way into CPKs, from their controversial origins to the Christmas craze of ‘83 to their alter egos, Garbage Pail Kids. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 01, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Tea Works
3441
Legend has it that tea was discovered by a curious Chinese emperor after leaves blew into his boiled water. Now tea is the second only to water in popularity worldwide. And despite the varieties of tea, they all come from a single species of plant. Learn all about it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 28, 2020
Gobble Gobble: Turkeys!
3097
Turkeys are a very interesting bird as it turns out. Which may be why many people are leaving it off their Thanksgiving table this year. Learn all about them right now! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 26, 2020
Short Stuff: How Eyes In a Painting Follow You
776
Ever noticed how eyes in a painting sometimes follow you around the room? It’s weird! But it’s also fully explainable and Josh and Chuck do just that here. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 25, 2020
Patty Hearst: Brainwashed or Bandit?
3650
Patty Hearst was a young heiress living a quiet life studying art history at college when one Monday evening her home was invaded, she was kidnapped, and her life took a totally unforeseen turn that she would have trouble explaining for years to come. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 24, 2020
SYSK Selects: Whatever happened to acid rain?
2099
Along with the hole in the ozone layer, acid rain was one of the first international environmental threats. It's fallen to the wayside in the face of climate change, but we have yet to lick it. Join Chuck and Josh as they revive the 80s drumbeat in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 21, 2020
The Great War of the Worlds Panic Myth
3086
On Halloween 1938 young radio star Orson Welles scared the pants off of America with a fictional news bulletin claiming Martians had landed and were destroying the country. People across the nation ran wild with panic in the streets – or did they? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 19, 2020
Short Stuff: Squirrel Nuts
762
We know squirrels hide nuts. But it's actually more complex a system than you think. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 18, 2020
How Pain Works
3434
In recent decades we’ve come to understand that there’s a lot more to pain than: touch hot stove/feel burning hand. Pain is a far more sophisticated experience and, unfortunately, a system that can often go haywire, with terrible effects. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 17, 2020
SYSK Selects: Who Gets to Name Continents?
2806
America is named after Amerigo Vespucci, right? Maybe not. And who named Australia? Find out the unusually uncertain origins of the continents and other interesting stuff in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 14, 2020
How Macy's Thanksgiving Parade Works
3150
For almost a century, Macy’s department store has kicked off the holidays in America with a grand parade. And when you march thousands of clowns, lip synching celebrities, bands, and giant balloons through New York things get remarkable. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 12, 2020
Short Stuff: Plastic Pink Flamingos
834
Plastic flamingos started out as innocent yard art, transformed into folk art, and have become a (kind of mean) symbol of high campiness. There’s a lot to this particular plastic yard art. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 11, 2020
The Bay of Pigs Disaster
3254
The Bay of Pigs is one of the blackest of eyes on American foreign policy. Learn all about this dark spot of American history today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 10, 2020
SYSK Selects: Geysers: Nature's Innuendo
1962
The spectacular eruptions of steam and water we call geysers are only the tip of the proverbial iceberg, the result of thousands of years of specific natural conditions and physical processes. Learn the Stuff You Should Know about geysers in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 08, 2020
All the Gold In Fort Knox: Meh
3414
When Fort Knox was built in the 1930s to house America’s gold supply, it was billed as an impenetrable, impregnable, don’t-even-think-of-trying vault. But as the world has moved further away from gold, the stockpile’s lost a bit of its luster. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 05, 2020
Short Stuff: Fruit Flies, Why?
771
Have you ever wondered why we do so much scientific testing on fruit flies? Turns out they make better models for humans than you’d think. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 04, 2020
The Amazing Roberto Clemente
3058
Roberto Clemente was what’s called a “complete” baseball player – he could hit, run and, man could he throw, so it’s no surprise he was made a Hall of Famer. But he was also a humanitarian, a civil rights icon, and a fiercely proud son of Puerto Rico. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 03, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Ghosts Work
2913
According to a 2009 poll, more Americans believe in ghosts than don't. But what are ghosts exactly? If they do exist, what are they made of and why are they hanging around? In this classic episode airing for Halloween, Josh and Chuck explore both sides of the divide between belief and skepticism on the topic of ghosts and look at some pretty cool explanations for hauntings. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 31, 2020
SYSK’s Scare Your Pants Off (and Back On) Halloween Spooktacular
2514
It’s that time of year again! So turn down the lights, pull the sheets over your eyes and prepare to be thrilled and frightened with two great Halloween stories from Philip K. Dick and M.R. James. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 29, 2020
Short Stuff: Poe Toaster
900
For at least sixty years a mysterious person (or persons) showed up at Edgar Allen Poe’s grave to toast the master on his birthday. No one ever found out who this legendary figure was. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 28, 2020
A History of Nursing Homes
3435
In America, we've treated our senior citizens in very different ways over the years. Tune in to hear about how we've tackled compassionate care. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 27, 2020
Chuck Bryant On The Why I’m Voting Podcast
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Hey, SYSK listeners! We wanted to make sure you heard Chuck on iHeartRadio’s Why I’m Voting podcast. Check it out and don’t forget to vote on November 3rd!  If you want to change, preserve, or build a better America, there’s one easy way to make your voice heard: Vote. This year, iHeartRadio is teaming up with over 20 incredible celebrities (plus a handful of our most popular podcasters) to get the country excited to go vote, broadcasting the personal, emotional and heartfelt stories behind why showing up to the ballot box means so much-- not just as individuals, but for our entire nation. Thank you to our partners AXE, Knorr® & Seventh Generation Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 25, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Book Banning Works
2223
If you want to control the masses, control what they read. After all, books are seeds that germinate new points of view. As a result, the struggle against banning books is contentious and continual. Learn more about banning books in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 24, 2020
Beavers: Tail Slapping Fun
2780
Beavers are in fact, very busy. They're builders and solid family members, husbands and wives. Learn all about N America's largest rodent today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 22, 2020
Short Stuff: Haunted Real Estate
829
Do you have to disclose the notion that your house may be haunted upon sale? Listen in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 21, 2020
10 Voter Suppression Methods
3172
Voter suppression in the USA is as old as voting itself. Listen in to hear about 10 ways we stifle the vote. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 20, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Sushi Works
3418
Sushi grew out of a way to ferment fish a couple thousand years ago and in the late 20th century began to take the world by storm. What began as traditional, rigid food has come to evolve with new delicious innovations being added to the original canon. Learn all about it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 17, 2020
Porcupines: Little Stabby Cutie Pies
2708
We love animals. A lot. Especially underrated ones like the darling porcupine. Listen in today to learn all about these stabby little boogers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 15, 2020
Short Stuff: What is Latinx anyway?
835
We love to keep up with the current terminology for groups of people. Learn about the origin of Latinx today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 14, 2020
Wind Tunnels: More Important Than You Realize
3020
Without wind tunnels we may not have airplanes right now. Early aviationists built them to puzzle out how to get and stay airborne. But wind tunnels are used for so much more than flight – from microchips to wind turbines. Enjoy this breezy episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 13, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Bigfoot Works
2363
For centuries North American tribes have told stories of a hairy wild giant in the wilderness, and once Europeans arrived they claimed to see it, too. Chuck and Josh examine the claims of believers and the rebuttals of skeptics in this evenhanded episode from the SYSK archives. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 10, 2020
Printing press? Big deal!
3554
Was the printing press a big deal? You bet it was. One of the biggest. Learn all about the early history of printing today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 08, 2020
Short Stuff: Lying in State
761
After RBG passed away she had the honor of lying in state. Who decides this? Listen and you'll know. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 07, 2020
What's the deal with swing states?
3159
Swing states are all the rage once again this election season, but the makeup has changed a bit. Learn all about what makes a swing state a swing state right now. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 06, 2020
SYSK Selects: How the Electoral College Works
2785
When you vote in an American presidential election, you're not voting for your candidate - you're voting for a group of people you hope will in turn vote for your candidate. Listen in to learn more about the strange process for electing the president, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 03, 2020
Fallout Shelters: Probably Useless (Let’s Never Find Out)
3153
The advent of nuclear weapons and the Cold War kicked off a craze in the US for building rec rooms with foot-thick reinforced walls and outfitted with survival rations and board games. Would they work? Probably not. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 01, 2020
Short Stuff: That's A Head Scratcher
767
It’s actually really strange that scratching your head is a widely understood sign that you’re puzzling over something. No one’s exactly sure why we do that, so interesting theories abound! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 30, 2020
Conjugal Visits: Not exactly what you think
3119
After reaching their peak, conjugal prison visits are all but gone in the U.S. Learn all about these frisky visits in today's episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 29, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Rabies Works
2797
Rabies may have gotten a lot of attention in the U.S. in the 70s and 80s, but it's still an issue in developing countries. Learn all about this nasty virus in this classic episode. And stay away from raccoons and bats.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 26, 2020
At Long Last: Hawaiian Overthrow Episode
3370
By longstanding listener request, we look at how Hawaii was basically stolen by the United States in the 19th century. Rather than reverse this bit of geopolitical fraud, the US ended up making Hawaii a state instead. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 24, 2020
Short Stuff: Petticoat Rulers
815
Petticoat rulers were women who ran the show long before anyone thought they could. We’re talking mayors and entire city councils comprised of women in the Old West. What happened since then? Listen to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 23, 2020
How Sweepstakes Work
3402
Sweepstakes were invented as marketing tools to drum up interest for a product or sales. But winning them can be fun and as they’ve proliferated an entire subculture of people who enter hundreds of them a day. Enter the fascinating world of sweepstakes today! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 22, 2020
SYSK Selects: How White-collar Crime Works
3031
White-collar crime often involves fraud and other nonviolent acts. For most people, the term "white-collar crime" conjures up images of CEOs conniving their way to fortune. But what is it, really? Listen in as Josh and Chuck break down the facts in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 19, 2020
How Election Polling Works and Doesn't Work
3149
Election polling had a pretty good rep until 2016. But it turns out they weren't far off even then. It's really the media driving the narrative. Learn all about how election polling works today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 17, 2020
Short Stuff: Black Cowboys
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Most people don't realize that around a quarter of the cowboys found in the Old West during the golden age cattle driving were African American. Let's meet some of them, shall we? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 16, 2020
Origami: Folding Goodness
3157
Origami is an amazing art that consists of making folds in paper to create something beautiful. Learn all about it today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 15, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Porta-Potties Work
2744
Despite our lengthy history of evacuating our bowels and bladders, it wasn’t until the relatively recent 1940s that we began to construct portable, self-contained toilets to accept our waste. Dive into the world of porta-potties in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 12, 2020
Wetlands! Wetlands! Wetlands!
3058
It’s time to get jazzed up for some Earth science of the waterlogged variety. Join Chuck and Josh as they tour some of the most interesting ecosystems on the planet and learn why we need to stop destroying them post haste. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 10, 2020
Short Stuff: Streisand Effect
969
What does Barbra Streisand have to do with the internet? Listen and learn! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 09, 2020
Frances Perkins: Influential and Unknown
2768
Frances Perkins was an incredibly influential American yet is virtually unknown. What did she do? A lot! For instance, Social Security was her brainchild. And that's just the tip of the old iceberg. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 08, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Police Chases Work
1963
Entire TV shows are dedicated to them and Americans love to watch a live one, but police chases aren't as routine as they seem. While police assert chases are important tools, critics say cops engage in chases too often and too easily. Learn all about the what, how, and why in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 05, 2020
The Disturbing Disappearance of Tara Calico
2765
When Tara Calico mysteriously vanished in 1988, suspected to be the victim of foul play, her case may have gotten lost with the countless other missing person cases in the US, were it not for the discovery of an alarming Polaroid photo in a parking lot 1500 miles away. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 03, 2020
Short Stuff: More Phrase Origins
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We're back with another handful of phrase origins. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 02, 2020
How the Escape from Alcatraz Worked
3623
In 1962, three ordinary criminals transcended into folk heroes when they crawled out of their cells in Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary took to the water in a homemade raft and were never heard from again. Could they have possibly survived? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 01, 2020
SYSK Selects: Polyamory: When two just won't do
3001
In this classic episode of Stuff You Should Know, Josh and Chuck dive into the world of polyamory. Turns out polyamorists aren't aren't weirdos and deviants, they're just regular folks looking for love from more than one person. Learn all you ever needed to know about this unique, but not so modern arrangement. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 29, 2020
Blacksmiths? You got that right!
3347
Blacksmiths? You got that right. Learn all about this age old occupation in today's episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 27, 2020
Short Stuff: Carrots and Your Eyes
865
Join Chuck and Josh as they learn that one of the great childhood truths – that carrots help you see better in the dark was totally made up! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 26, 2020
How Sneezing Works
3266
Unless you have an arcane disorder from a lesion on a very specific spot on our medulla, the chances are you sneeze. Turns out most animals do it, even lizards! Learn the whys and hows of this most interesting involuntary reflex. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 25, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Panic Attacks Work
2388
Almost three percent of Americans suffer from a debilitating disorder that causes them to suffer intense fear seemingly without reason and science hasn’t yet figured out what causes it. Join Josh and Chuck in this classic episode as they get to the bottom of panic attacks. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 22, 2020
1-800-PODCAST
2830
Chuck and Josh dive into the wacky world of 800 and 900 phone numbers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 20, 2020
Short Stuff: The Great American Coin Shortage of 2020
861
In addition to all the lousy things that’s come out of the Coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. is also experiencing a coin shortage thanks to a stalled-out economic system that normally circulates coins. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 19, 2020
How Anti-Dieting Works
3170
There’s a movement afoot that says we should all stop thinking about our weight and just enjoy food. No, it doesn’t help you lose weight…No, it’s not a diet…No, - just listen to the episode, okay? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 18, 2020
SYSK Selects: How The Human Microbiome Project Works
2481
If it was possible to take a full scan of all of the DNA of every cell in and on your body the results would be startling: Only 1 percent would be human. The other 99 percent comprises all of the bacteria, fungi, viruses and other microbes you literally cannot live without. Learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 15, 2020
Olympic Torches: Remember Those?
2974
Back in the pre-pandemic days we had a sporting event called The Olympic Games. And at those games there was an opening ceremony that featured the lighting of a cauldron from a torch. Let's chat about that, eh? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 13, 2020
Short Stuff: The Return of Bill Gates!
1919
Our old pal Bill Gates is back for a very special short stuff where we talk all about Covid vaccines and therapeutics. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 12, 2020
Pirate Radio: Mavericks on the High Seas
3278
Pirate radio started out in England as a way to sidestep the regulations of Big Radio. While outlawed, it still exists today in the UK and America. Learn all about it today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 11, 2020
SYSK Selects: How The Moonwalk Works
2827
When Michael Jackson debuted the moonwalk in 1983 the world was enrapt. The dance goes back farther, to the 1930s, and pops up again in the 50s, before reappearing via mimes and West Coast poppers in the 70s. Follow the circuitous route of an iconic move in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 08, 2020
How Miniature Golf Works
3235
Playing miniature golf is a very fun thing to do and, you’re about to find, learning about its origin and history is very fun as well. Join Josh and Chuck as they tee off on the mini golf story! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 06, 2020
Short Stuff: Jigsaw Puzzles
1001
Who doesn't love a good puzzle? Tune in to learn a few facts and figures about jigsaw puzzles right now. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 05, 2020
Wasps: Not as cute as bees
3161
Wasps have a bad rap. Because their sting really hurts and they don't make honey like their cousins. But they are super cool and you shouldn't kill them. Listen and learn! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 04, 2020
SYSK Selects: How the Rosetta Stone Works
2571
Sometimes providence smiles on historians. Thus is the case with the Rosetta stone, an ancient Egyptian tablet that served as the key for unlocking hieroglyphics, lost to time for a millennia. In this classic episode, learn about the international intrigue, rivalry to translate it and the luck that led to the founding of Egyptology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 01, 2020
How Soap Works
3277
Soap is a miraculous substance – and mysterious too: we have no idea how humans first figured out to make it. We lived with soap for millennia before we thought to use it to wash ourselves with it, but once we did a love affair with cleanliness was born. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 30, 2020
Short Stuff: Habsburg Jaw
879
The Habsburg Jaw is the result of inbreeding. But what is it? Click play and learn! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 29, 2020
How Hurricanes Work
3524
Hurricanes are perhaps the most destructive force of nature we have to deal with here on Earth. When a mind-boggling number of factors all fall into place just right, the outcome can be an enormous system of storms that is as awesome as it is powerful. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 28, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Lobbying Works
3589
Lobbying is an entrenched part of American politics and one that many people think is breaking government. But petitioning the government is protected in the Constitution. How can this system be fixed? join Josh and Chuck as they explore the topic in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 25, 2020
Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Mobile Phones
3741
Today we deep dive on mobile phones, wonders of the modern world! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 23, 2020
Short Stuff: The Death of Billy the Kid
1053
Sure, together Young Guns and Young Guns II form an exhaustive biography of Billy the Kid’s life. But did you know they also contain misleading information? Billy the Kid may not have lived to 100 under an alias after all! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 22, 2020
How We Almost Got Rid of Polio
3063
For more than half of the 20th century parents in the industrialized world were freaked out by an unseen waster of youth, the poliovirus. It spread easily and could paralyze children for life or even kill them. Its effects were so horrible that humanity set about ridding if from the Earth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 21, 2020
SYSK Selects: How a Flea Circus Works
3008
If you've ever seen a flea circus, then count yourself among the few. It's a dying art, but back in the day they thrilled and delighted young and old alike. Learn all about the tiny big tops in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 18, 2020
Robber Barons!
4164
The robber barons were not a group of evil super villains. OR WERE THEY? Learn all about these titans of industry from the Gilded Age in today's episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 16, 2020
Short Stuff: Centralia Coal Fire
984
An old coal mine in Pennsylvania caught fire one day in the 60s and it’s been burning ever since. What’s crazy is this happens all the time. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 15, 2020
Flagpole Sitting: A Real Fad
3362
The 1920s were just absolutely nuts. People got into weird fads really intensely and one of the strangest of all was flagpole sitting. It’s just what it sounds like – sitting on top of a flagpole for as long as you can. One man sat above them all. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 14, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Landfills Work
2829
Well-planned landfills have only recently come into widespread use. Recently, waste managers have found that they work a little too well and now the landfill is being reinvented. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 11, 2020
Essential Oils: Nature's Cure?
3617
Essential oils are from plants and they can help the human body in a lot of ways. There are also many false medical claims. Learn all the ins and outs today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 09, 2020
Short Stuff: The @ Symbol
997
You know the at symbol? This thing: @? There’s a name for it, just not in English. We just call it the at symbol. But other countries – stand back! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 08, 2020
What was the KGB?
3329
The KGB was the notorious strong arm of the Kremlin. Run afoul and you died. Learn all about them today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 07, 2020
SYSK Selects: All We Know About Guessing
3717
Guessing is a weird thing. For millennia, it could have meant the difference between life and death. Now it's not as vital, but we still do it every day, whether behind the wheel of a car, or judging what another person might be feeling. In this classic episode, learn everything we know about the brain and how it manages this odd, very human act. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 04, 2020
Oh Yes, How Soil Works
3676
There is maybe nothing that sounds more boring than hearing two people talk about soil, but friend, prepare to be amazed at the details of what makes this amazing substance the life blood of Earth itself! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 02, 2020
Short Stuff: The Science of Funny Words
924
Why are some words funnier than others? Well, one man has sought to figure that out. We'll tell you all about him and his project in today's episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jul 01, 2020
Bruxism: Grinding Your Teeth Is the Pits
3255
Researchers have noticed that as incidence of anger increases so too has teeth grinding, known clinically as bruxism. That’s a problem because when people grind their teeth, especially when they’re sleeping, they can wear them down to nubs. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 30, 2020
SYSK Selects: Juggling: What the Heck
3202
There is a lot – A LOT – to juggling and Chuck and Josh go over the lion’s share of it in this classic episode. Delve into the deep history, physics, how-tos and different types of juggling in this surprisingly sweeping look at a putatively innocuous pastime. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 27, 2020
Matcha: That Ain't Just Tea
3089
Matcha is something else, healthy and delicious and all the rage. Learn all about this trendy beverage today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 25, 2020
Short Stuff: Nouns of assemblage... assemble!
767
A gaggle of geese. A murder of crows. Nouns of assemblage are awesome and we talk about them for about 12 minutes in today's Short Stuff installment. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 24, 2020
How Ultrasound Works
3241
Sure you know all about ultrasound. You can see pictures of little babies right there cozy in the womb just by waving a magic plastic stick over the mom’s tummy. And magic is basically right. Believe us. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 23, 2020
SYSK Selects: Research tips from SYSK
2943
People often ask us how we do our research. We're not going to disclose all of our secrets, but we'll give you some tips on how to root out the bad studies from the good ones. Learn all about shady studies and reporting in this classic episode! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 20, 2020
The Manhattan Grid
3083
Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 18, 2020
Short Stuff: Haint Blue
747
Haint Blue is a kind of robin's egg color that you might commonly find on porches of the low country of the Southeastern United States. But what does it have to do with ghouls and ghosts? Listen and learn! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 17, 2020
The War on Fat: The Seven Countries Study
3187
The Seven Countries Study was a fairly impressive, long-term study on the effects of fat in our diet, among other things. But it was very flawed and launched the misguided "War on fat." Learn all about today, then make up your own mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 16, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Flamethrowers Work
1679
Who first decided that it would be a great idea to shoot flame at other people from a distance? Josh and Chuck talk about the (very) early origins, history and technology of the flamethrower in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 13, 2020
Can You Eat A Tapeworm To Lose Weight?
2721
There’s a persistent insistence that you can ingest a tapeworm and as the parasite hijacks a lot of the calories you eat, the pounds will fall right off. In theory this could be true, but it’s also extremely dangerous. And has anyone ever really done it? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 11, 2020
Short Stuff: Foie Gras
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Foie gras means “fatty liver” in French, which makes sense because it’s made from the overripe livers of force-fed ducks and geese.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 10, 2020
How Project Star Gate Worked
3529
In yet another testament to how amazingly great the 70s were, in 1975 the US started a program that tried to harness the powers of clairvoyance to remotely spy on the Soviet Union. Since clairvoyance doesn’t seem to exist, it wasn’t super successful. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 09, 2020
SYSK Selects: How The Black Panther Party Worked
4258
The Black Panther Party was a complex political movement that was unfairly painted as a militant group who hated white people. Far from it, they were actually men and women trying to affect change in their community. Their history is one of the more interesting American stories, from the early stages of policing the police to their community service efforts to their inevitable fall. Learn all about the Black Panther Party in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 06, 2020
The Massacre at Tiananmen Square
4029
Tank Man. An indelible image burned in our brains. But what led to this extraordinary event? Chuck and Josh walk you through the days and weeks leading up to the massacre at Tiananmen Square, which is more of a cautionary tale than we realized. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 04, 2020
Short Stuff: Disappearing Dirty Dancing Lake
837
The lake from one of the all-time great movies (search your feelings, you’ll find that it’s true) is turning into a dried up mudhole. Turns out it has some unusual features. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 03, 2020
Heroin: The Drug
3461
We've covered a lot of drugs in our history, and today we tackle heroin, one of the most dangerous of all. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jun 02, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Jackhammers Work
2171
It’s likely that without the invention of the pneumatic jackhammer, the Industrial Revolution wouldn’t have hummed along quite so smoothly. Certainly a lot more trains would go around mountains than through them. Learn about this essential tool in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 30, 2020
How Narcolepsy Works
3463
Narcolepsy is one of those amazing rare disorders that everyone thinks they understand – people just fall asleep at random times, even in the middle of doing something. But there’s a lot more to it and – even better – we actually may be able to explain it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 28, 2020
Short Stuff: Lawn Darts
848
There was a time when kids had to look out for flying darts that could pierce their skulls when they played in the backyard. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 27, 2020
Hummingbirds: Ornery Helicopters of the Animal Kingdom
3112
If you didn’t already know how amazing hummingbirds are, prepare to learn. Not only do they count among their numbers the smallest bird species, they are also lightning fast and have the endurance of a marathoner and a telethoner put together. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 26, 2020
SYSK Selects: How The Enlightenment Works
2765
The Enlightenment stands as the moment the West withdrew from superstition and found its faith in reason. Did it shift too far? In this classic episode, learn about this massive shift in thinking which we are still sorting through and coming to understand today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 23, 2020
Josh Clark's Speech from Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020
619
Hi listeners, in case you haven't heard already, iHeartRadio just released a brand new podcast called Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020, where we collected speeches from notable folks all over and asked them to give their best advice, thoughts and words of wisdom to graduating seniors. In this episode of Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020, Josh Clark, co-host of the Stuff You Should Know podcast, divulges secrets to graduates that their parents and teachers may have neglected to tell them. If you'd like to hear the other speeches, including ones from John Legend, Bill & Melinda Gates, Tim Cook, Katie Couric, Ryan Seacrest, Abby Wambach, and more, just search "Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020" in your podcasting app of choice! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 22, 2020
How Bras Work
3468
Bras are loved and hated, sometimes at the same time. But as difficult and restrictive as they can be, they rescued women from a much cruel contraption: corsets. The question remains, though, do women need bras at all? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 21, 2020
Short Stuff: Mary Had A Little Lamb
910
Did you know the little nursery rhyme is controversial? It’s true: Two towns in New England can barely stand to see one another on the map (kind of). Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 20, 2020
How Spiritualism Works
3983
Something spooky was born on the American frontier in the mid-19th century: the idea that people’s personalities survive death and that some gifted individuals can communicate with them. It developed into a religion that some still practice today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 19, 2020
Chuck Bryant's Speech from Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020
441
Hi listeners, in case you haven't heard already, iHeartRadio just released a brand new podcast called Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020, where we collected speeches from notable folks all over and asked them to give their best advice, thoughts and words of wisdom to graduating seniors. In this episode, our very own Chuck Bryant reminds graduates to not let this season define them, reminding them the world believes in their ability to craft a better future for themselves. If you'd like to hear the other speeches, including ones from John Legend, Bill & Melinda Gates, Tim Cook, Katie Couric, Ryan Seacrest, Abby Wambach, and more, just search "Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020" in your podcasting app of choice! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 18, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Fire Works
2013
Creating fire was possibly the most important human discovery, but it's easy to take for granted. But. Josh and Chuck get to the bottom of the chemistry of fire in their quest to explain everything in the universe, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 16, 2020
How Peanut Butter Works
3694
No food is more all-American than peanut butter – 80 percent of homes in the country have a jar of it in the pantry right now. And while the rest of the world might find peanut butter peculiar, maybe even gross, the rest of the world is wrong. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 14, 2020
Short Stuff: Charley Horse
839
You know those terrible leg cramps that come out of nowhere? They may be named after a drunken baseball pitcher. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 13, 2020
How Herd Immunity Works
4095
Herd immunity is an epidemiological concept that if enough people are inoculated against a disease the rest of us won’t get it. It’s been useful in holding back diseases like polio and measles, but we have vaccines for them. We don’t have one for Covid-19. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 12, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Caving Works
3310
Entrances to the underworld have been places of wonder for eons, and humans have ventured into caves to sleep, hunt, create art and explore. Thanks to the hobby of caving, that tradition continues today. Get all this plus Chuck discussing his caving experience, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 09, 2020
Zippers: Humans’ Greatest Invention? No, But Still Good
3596
The zipper may be the most unsung invention we humans have ever come up with. Prior to zippers, everyone walked around like idiots with nothing but buttons to hold their clothes together. The zipper changed all that. The zipper changed everything. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 07, 2020
Short Stuff: Gibtown: Sideshow Central
902
There was a glorious time in American history when circus sideshow performers lived together in a small town in Florida. Learn about the fascinating history of Gibtown today! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 06, 2020
I'm Spartacus!
3505
Spartacus was a real dude. He led a slave revolt, and was pretty successful to boot. I'm Spartacus. You're Spartacus. We are all Spartacus. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 05, 2020
SYSK Selects: How do dogs perceive time?
1924
A dog that knows exactly when its owners will arrive home every day seems to have a human perception of time, but in fact, they perceive time very differently than we do. Find out more about how dogs view time in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
May 02, 2020
Agatha Christie: Queen of the Murder Mystery
3522
Agatha Christie was a great writer of murder mystery novels and is probably the best selling author of all time. Listen in today to learn her story. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 30, 2020
Short Stuff: Mullets: 'Nuff Said
890
Business in the front, you know the rest. Listen in as we discuss the lifestyle choice that is the mullet. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 29, 2020
How Existential Risks Work
3650
An existential risk is a special kind of threat that are different from other types of risks in that if one of them ever befalls us, it would spell the permanent end of humanity. It just so happens we seem to be headed for just such a kind of catastrophe. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 28, 2020
SYSK Selects: How the U.S. Postal Service Works
3044
Back when this episode aired, the USPS was teetering on the edge of going under and there were a lot of plans on the table to save it. With the USPS again at risk now for different reasons, join Chuck and Josh as they explore the history and future of the postal service in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 25, 2020
How the Voyager Golden Records Work
4148
As part of a super 70s push to get Earth to a seat at the table of the Galactic Federation (in case there is, in fact, such a thing), astronomer Carl Sagan oversaw an ambitious project to launch a compilation of Earth’s greatest hits into deep space. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 23, 2020
Short Stuff: The NY Times Crossword
942
Today Chuck and Josh take a shallow dive in the warm pool that is the NY Times Crossword Puzzle. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 22, 2020
The Soul Train Episode
3117
Today, Chuck and Josh dive into the funky, cool world of the classic TV show, Sooooooooul Train. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 21, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Labor Unions Work
3315
Yes, it's true: Unions have a shady mob-related past and were originally championed by anarchists. Born from medieval trade guilds, these organizations also helped grow the American economy, and not only protected but established workers' rights. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 18, 2020
How Wastewater Treatment Works
3835
All that gross stuff we humans put in the water that gets flushed down the sewers has to be taken back out before that water is reintroduced to the environment. That’s the ideal, and it’s essential to staving off the imbalance people bring to the planet. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 16, 2020
Short Stuff: Turning Down the Radio When You're Lost
957
It’s a typical human reaction: When you’re driving and you realize that you’re lost, you turn down the radio. On its face it makes no sense – or does it? (It does.) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 15, 2020
Bidets: Now More Than Ever
3129
We all know the benefits of bidets. But with toilet paper in short supply, they're more important than ever before. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 14, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Dissociative Identity Disorder Works
2939
Dissociative Identity Disorder was known as multiple personality disorder until a case of mass hysteria brought on by the movie-mad public and unscrupulous psychiatrists led to a stigma over the term. Now psychiatry has gotten serious about the condition. Learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 11, 2020
Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, Feminist Physician
3248
Becoming the first licensed woman physician in America was tough, convincing male surgeons to wash their hands between patients was even tougher. Today Josh and Chuck pay tribute to a genuine pioneer in medicine and society. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 09, 2020
Short Stuff: AAirpass
994
In the go-go 80s and 90s, American Airlines offered the AAirpass, a lifetime pass for unlimited first class travel. It was an amazing deal, but AA didn’t predict just how much some travelers would use it. They played with fire, they got burned. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 08, 2020
The Legends of Lost Nazi Gold
3081
As if being murdering SOBs weren’t enough, the Nazis were also thieving rats. During WWII, they stole billons in gold from countries they overran and moved it to Germany. But at the end of the war, only part of it was recovered. Where’s the rest? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 07, 2020
SYSK Selects: How the Deep Web Works
2244
Perhaps you didn’t realize that when you search the web you’re only skimming the surface. In fact, the types of web pages that turn up in your search engine results represent only a mere fraction of the total web. Immerse yourself in the Deep web and its dark corners in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 04, 2020
Student Loans: UGH!
3709
Student loans can be pretty complicated. Luckily Chuck and Josh are here to wade through the financial muck for you. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 02, 2020
Short Stuff: 666
892
Today, Chuck and Josh dive into that scary number...666. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Apr 01, 2020
How Dog Training Works
3006
Chuck and Josh explore the age-old question: Should you train your dog by treating it like a living, feeling being or should you beat them up and break their spirit? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 31, 2020
SYSK Selects: Can Nuclear Fusion Reactors Save The World?
2976
The world’s energy consumption is ruining the planet but for decades physicists have been working on what could solve the world’s energy and climate change woes for centuries to come – nuclear fusion. Learn about building stars on Earth in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 28, 2020
How COVID-19 Works
4319
We’re in the middle of an odd, tense time and Josh and Chuck are here to explain what’s going on and how to stay safe.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 26, 2020
Short Stuff: Dagen H
871
One day in 1967, Sweden changed what side of the road its citizens drive on. It went surprisingly well, considering. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 25, 2020
Could A Robot Tax Win the War on Poverty?
3575
An old idea – giving every resident of a country a set amount of money every month with no strings attached – became a hot item in Silicon Valley and on the 2020 campaign trail. Could it alleviate the impending job loss coming from automation? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 24, 2020
SYSK Selects: Virus Talk with Josh and Chuck
2313
Viruses are big jerks that invade regular cells and hold them hostage, making you sick while they're doing it. Learn everything you ever needed to know about viruses, including how the common cold works, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 21, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: How Jim Henson Worked
2788
We’ve already recorded an episode on The Muppets, but Jim Henson was such a neat guy we delved into him even further. Learn all about the man behind the Muppets who was so much more than just a master puppeteer in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: SYSK Live: How Bars Work
3264
Join Josh and Chuck live from Vancouver as they dive in to the ins and outs of one of the oldest businesses in the world – the bar! Learn about the history of bars, cocktails and the good people who put them together in new and amazing ways. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: How Grass Works? Yes, How Grass Works
3305
There’s nothing more boring than watching grass grow, which is why Josh and Chuck aren’t asking you to do that. Instead, you can learn about all sorts of neat things about grass - like how American became obsessed with perfect lawns - in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: How Terraforming Will Work
2706
A lot of great thinkers are warning that if humans are to survive as a species we are going to have to find another planet to live on. Terraforming, or engineering a planet to maintain all of the ingredients to sustain life, seems to be the answer. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: How Rogue Waves Work
2294
Rogue waves come out of nowhere and tower as much as 100 feet over hapless ships they encounter, breaking across the boat and frequently breaking the boat and its inhabitants. Investigate the mystery of rouge waves in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: Was there a real King Arthur?
2880
The legend of King Arthur is very old and very established. By the time the king who saved Britain and united it was first written about, his story was already hundreds of years old. And while many of the details of his life and adventures, from the Lady of the Lake to Merlin the Magician, seem fictional some archaeologists believe that Arthur -- and much of his life -- was real. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: The Amazing History of Soda
2958
The soda we get instantly mixed at a fast-food joint owes a lot to a rich history going back to the Roman baths, that features drugs, diseases and explosions. Learn all about soda and soda fountains in this surprisingly interesting episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: How Rodney Dangerfield Worked, Live From LA
3653
Other comedians cry on the inside, but Rodney Dangerfield built his entire act around his sad life. Get to know this legendary comic who was nearing 50 when he got his break. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: How Pinball Works
3003
Pinball was actually illegal until the 1970s in NY and other cities, hidden in the backs of pornography shops. The game was finally legalized, thanks to a Babe Ruth-style shot by the best player in the world. Learn all about it with Josh and Chuck. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
SYSK Distraction Playlist: Sugar: It Powers the Earth
3007
Since sugar spread from Polynesia a few thousand years ago, the world has been crazy for it. Insanely high prices, wars and even slavery couldn't undo world's need for a sugar fix. Today that fix is responsible for the obesity epidemic facing the West. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 20, 2020
What was the Falkland Islands War all about anyway?
3423
The battle between Britain and Argentina over the rocky, cold Falkland Islands is one of the weirder wars in history. Learn all about it today! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 19, 2020
Short Stuff: The Pledge of Allegiance
947
The American Pledge of Allegiance is much more interesting than you might think. Give us 12 minutes and we'll fill you in. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 18, 2020
Chopsticks > Forks
3382
Today Chuck and Josh sit and converse on the simple, elegant chopstick.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 17, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Monopoly Works
4167
Since more than 1 billion people have played it, you’re probably familiar with the board game Monopoly, but we bet you don’t know its secret origins as a left-wing socialist teaching tool. Join Josh and Chuck as they chase it down in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 14, 2020
How Ice Climbing Works
3736
A few decades ago, some people who liked to climb mountains decided they wanted to make it even harder and ice climbing was born. If you think rock climbing is difficult, put on your base layer and join Josh and Chuck on the glacier. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 12, 2020
Short Stuff: Teresita Basa
952
In the annals of American justice there is a 1977 case where the police were tipped off to the identity of a murderer by a woman who said she was possessed by the victim. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 11, 2020
How Coyotes Work
3043
The coyote truly is wily. Even after a century-long attempt to drive them to extinction, this close relative of domesticated dogs not only hung onto survival, but actually doubled its range and expanded its population. Coyotes are here to stay. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 10, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Gold Works
3122
As of early 2013, only 161,00 metric tons of gold had been mined in the entire history of the world. Considering about 85 percent of it is recycled, there's a decent chance your jewelry may once have been part of an Incan headdress or Mycenaean face mask. Dive in to gold in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 07, 2020
Mardi Gras! One month late
3117
In true SYSK fashion, Josh and Chuck are late to the game. But never fear, they will still detail Mardi Gras in all its colorful glory.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 05, 2020
Short Stuff: Exclamation Points!
944
We all use them! But did we always? NO!! Learn all about everyone's favorite punctuation mark today! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 04, 2020
How Morphic Fields Work?
3535
Biologist and science historian Rupert Sheldrake is known as a heretic of science, mostly for his deeply strange ideas about what connects all living things. But his pokes at science help keep the field from growing dogmatic and for that we salute him. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Mar 03, 2020
SYSK Selects: Your limb is torn off - now what?
2416
Were you to be the unfortunate victim of a limb removal of any sort, you could take hope. Here in the 21st century, doctors have gotten pretty handy at reattaching arms and legs, replacing thumbs with toes, rebuilding breasts, all to great success thanks to microsurgery techniques. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 29, 2020
Sammy Davis Jr: National Treasure
3713
Today Josh and Chuck sit down and detail the complicated life of the late, great Sammy Davis Jr. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 27, 2020
Short Stuff: Hawaiian Night Marchers
725
Get ready for some Hawaiian folklore, people. Today we discuss the Night Marchers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 26, 2020
What's the deal with indigo?
3067
Indigo is a color with a rich past. Learn all about it today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 25, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Cult Deprogramming Works
2624
The fear of cults in the 1970s drove Americans to look the other way on kidnappings, abuse and torture of cult members by deprogrammers – but did it even work? Find out in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 22, 2020
Birthmarks: Probably Not the Mark of the Devil
3329
It’s a pretty safe assumption that people have been born with birthmarks since humanity began, and between then and now we’ve come up with some wacky, even dangerous, explanations for them – even a few that survive still today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 20, 2020
Short Stuff: Mexican Jumping Beans
845
Mexican jumping beans are a real thing and they really do move around. It’s not magic, it’s nature! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 19, 2020
The Unsolved Indiana Dunes Disappearances
2786
In July 1966, three women out for a day at the beach waded into the water of Lake Michigan, got onto a boat and were never heard from again. To this day, not a trace of them has ever turned up and theories of what became of them abound. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 18, 2020
SYSK Selects: A Podcast on Zoot Suits? Yes
2410
Few riots can be attributed to passing fashions, but zoot suits are top among them. After originating among the Harlem Renaissance crowd, the zoot suit came to symbolize political defiance. Find out why it's still illegal to wear a zoot suit in L.A. in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 15, 2020
911 Is Not a Joke
3581
Josh and Chuck delve into the world of 911 in today's episode.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 13, 2020
Short Stuff: Body Under The Bed
821
A couple unknowingly spending the night above a dead body stuffed under their bed is a longstanding urban legend. And a true one. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 12, 2020
Optogenetics: Controlling Your Genes with Light
3083
What if a genetic brain disease could be turned off simply by flashing a light in your eyes? What if your depression could be cured that way? Sounds amazingly wonderful, true, but what if your behavior could be controlled that way too? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 11, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Bonsai Works
3693
For thousands of years people have been taking normal trees and forcing them into miniature. Learn all about the history and art of this strangely engrossing pastime in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 08, 2020
Why are Pentecostals growing so rapidly?
2801
Pentecostals are seemingly taking over the world. Or at least they're making up a larger section of Christianity than every before. Why? We'll dig in on that in today's episode.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 06, 2020
Short Stuff: The Iowa Caucus
1002
The Iowa Caucus is super important. But not really. Find out why.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 05, 2020
How AI Facial Recognition Works
3628
With the development of increasingly smart artificial intelligence and lots more cameras spread around than ever before, we have reached a critical point in the US and other countries where governments can easily track everyone, everywhere, all the time. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 04, 2020
SYSK Selects: How Maglev Trains Work
2174
Thanks to the amazing properties of magnets, clever engineers have figured out how to make entire trains levitate above their tracks, letting them move frictionlessly and allowing them to reach incredible speeds. Learn about how maglev trains work and what's taking so long for us to get aboard in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Feb 01, 2020
Who were the Buffalo Soldiers?
3363
Josh and Chuck dive into history today to tell the story of the Buffalo Soldiers.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 30, 2020
Short Stuff: The O.K. Corral
880
Listen in as we detail, in short, the legendary shootout at the O.K. Corral. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 29, 2020
Amazing Animal Stories!
2555
Regular animal stories are wonderful enough, but when animals lead amazing lives the stories become almost unbearably wonderful. You’ve been warned! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 28, 2020
SYSK Selects: How the Scientific Method Works
3956
It evolved over centuries to become the gold standard for conducting scientific inquiry. Yet many people - including some scientists - don't fully understand it. Learn about the basis of how we explore our world in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 25, 2020
Barefoot Running: The Best Podcast Episode in History
2822
What is barefoot running? I think you know. But we'll detail all of the ins and outs. Listen and learn! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 23, 2020
Short Stuff: Byford Dolphin Incident
913
In 1983, what may be the worst diving catastrophe in the history of deep sea oil exploration took place when a pressurized chamber was opened, instantly killing four divers inside. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 22, 2020
Why Postal Employees Go Postal
3234
1993 was known as the peak of a disturbing trend in America: post office shootings, carried out by postal workers. A stunned country looked for answers and turned up a toxic workplace that seemed to be driving some workers past their breaking point. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 21, 2020
SYSK Selects: How the Placebo Effect Works
2686
For centuries, doctors have prescribed drugs they knew weren't real – but that still somehow worked. It wasn't until the 1980s that the placebo effect was studied. Learn all about how an inert substance can have a genuine impact on a patient's recovery, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 18, 2020
The Tulsa 'Race Riots'
3101
In reality, the Tulsa "race riots" of 1921 was more like a massacre. Yet it was almost lost to history until 1997, and still not widely known outside of Oklahoma until HBO's The Watchmen put it on the cultural map. Learn all about this dark chapter in American history today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 16, 2020
Short Stuff: The Mona Lisa
919
The Mona Lisa is a captivating work of art. But why? We'll try and figure it out in today's short stuff. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 15, 2020
Transdermal Implants: Body Art or Nightmare Fuel?
3495
Transdermal implants are just one in a number of procedures under the banner of extreme body modification. We don't like to yuk yums, so we'll offer a fairly straightforward look at this niche art form.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 14, 2020
SYSK Selects: Jellyfish - Even Cooler Than Octopi?
3479
Jellyfish are among the most adaptable, competitive organisms on the planet. They can grow back into their juvenile stage when resources are scarce, reproduce in massive groups and kill an adult human, among lots of other neat stuff. Learn all about em in this classic episode! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 11, 2020
The Disappearance of Flight MH370, Part II
3055
In the absence of an official explanation of why flight MH 370 disappeared in 2014, conjecture and conspiracy theories have filled the vacuum. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 09, 2020
Short Stuff: Corduroy
946
Learn 12 minutes worth of stuff about corduroy today! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 08, 2020
The Disappearance of Flight MH370, Part I
2795
In 2014, a Boeing 777 airliner disappeared. Despite two full years of searching an area of ocean covering more than 120,000 square kilometers, it has never been found. It is the only unexplained missing vessel in modern aviation history. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 07, 2020
SYSK Selects: Will Computers Replace Doctors?
2470
With savvy and health-conscious people taking control of their wellbeing through apps and sites, technology is meeting the desire for individuals' responsibility for their health. But is the day coming soon when doctors will be obsolete, replaced by computers that read our health-related data to treat us? We explore these questions and more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 04, 2020
How Safecracking Works
3798
Burglars have come up with a whole range of ways to get into a safe. There’s lock manipulation – methodically testing the dial to coax the combination from it – and if that fails you can always blow it open with nitroglycerin. Both count as safecracking. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 02, 2020
Short Stuff: Why Does Time Speed Up As You Age?
996
It’s not just you – time really does seem to pass faster for people as we age. But exactly why remains a mystery, though some of the theories for why life passes by so quickly are make a lot of sense. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Jan 01, 2020
Are broken arrows a problem?
3284
Are broken arrows are a problem? After all, they are incidents and accidents involving nuclear warheads. Like, sometimes they go missing. But it hasn't happened much since the 50s and 60s. OR HAS IT? Learn all about them today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 31, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Wine Fraud Works
3217
Wine fraud may be a case of rich con artists tricking wealthy people into parting with money, but it's still a crime. Learn all about this weird, widespread practice in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 28, 2019
SYSK Live: Andre the Giant
4177
Andre the Giant was a giant both figuratively and literally. Sure he was a wrestler, but more than that he was a human being who left a great legacy behind. Even if you're not a wrestling fan, you can appreciate his story. Join us for this very special live edition of the story of Andre the Giant.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 26, 2019
Short Stuff: The Santa Claus Association
910
If a con man manages to make needy Christmas wishes come true is he still a con man? (Also, Merry Christmas!) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 25, 2019
The SYSK Holiday Spectacular
2671
It's an annual treat, folks. Our holiday special is back and better than ever, and as always, brought to you ad-free. It's the least we can do.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 24, 2019
SYSK Selects: The Star Wars Holiday Special of 1978
3600
Long ago, in a galaxy not so far away, George Lucas allowed the Star Wars Holiday Special to be made. What happened on the night of November 17, 1978 can never be fully explained, but we make our best effort in a very special edition of SYSK. May the force be with us all. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 21, 2019
Cave Diving: Totally Nuts
3393
There are extreme sports and then there is cave diving, the most extreme activity a person can engage in without leaving Earth. Cave divers stay underwater swimming miles into – that’s right – caves, where no human has ever been before. It’s pretty cool. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 19, 2019
Short Stuff: Obituaries
910
Learn everything we know about obituaries in 12 minutes! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 18, 2019
MC Escher and His Trippy Art
3773
We love us some MC Escher. Turns out his story is pretty fascinating too. Tune in today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 17, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Currency Works
3132
Even if you entirely eschew the concept of money, we'll bet you'd be hard pressed not to trade in some form of currency. Learn how everything from cows to cacao beans to tiny shells from Maldives have served as currency at some time or another. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 14, 2019
How Anorexia and Bulimia Work
3934
Anorexia and bulimia - those twin eating disorders that seem so common and maybe even just a phase for a teenage girl – are actually the deadliest mental illnesses in America. Cultivating an eating disorder can create issues that can last a lifetime. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 12, 2019
Short Stuff: Whisky or Bourbon?
930
What's the difference between whisky and bourbon? We'll tell you if you care to listen. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 11, 2019
Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Gin
3259
If there's one thing we've learned about Chuck over the years it's that he loves his gin. And he loves it even more now that understands it. Pour yourself a martini and cozy up to the gin-cast.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 10, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Amnesia Works
3895
Those movies where someone gets hit on the head and can't remember who they are anymore? They're actually not too far off from the reality of amnesia. Learn everything about this bizarre and life-robbing condition with Josh and Chuck in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 07, 2019
What's a gap year anyway?
3420
Chuck thought a gap year was post college. Turns out, it's a post high school year off from academics, where you travel the world, help others, and find yourself. Should you do it? We say "yes!" If you can afford it that is.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 05, 2019
Short Stuff: Macadamia Nuts
877
Macadamia nuts aren't nuts! They're seeds! And they are delicious. And good for you in the right amount. Learn all about them today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 04, 2019
Did Climate Cause the Collapse of the Maya?
2954
After millennia of development, the Maya culture suddenly collapsed at its peak. Why is one of the biggest mysteries of history. One theory says catastrophic climate change was the cause. And it may have happened to other cultures too. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Dec 03, 2019
SYSK Selects: Fractals - Whoa
2482
In the 1980s, IBM mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot gazed for the first time upon his famous fractal. What resulted was a revolution in math and geometry and our understanding of the infinite, not to mention how we see Star Trek II. Get blown away by fractals in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 30, 2019
How Conversion Therapy Doesn't Work
4140
Conversion therapy is a misguided attempt by religious zealots to convert people from gay to straight. News flash - it doesn't work. Learn all about this abhorrent practice today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 28, 2019
Short Stuff: Niagara Falls Dewatered
1024
In 1969, the Army Corps of Engineers turned off one of the main waterfalls at Niagara Falls to see what could be done to preserve it. They found two corpses, one carcass and lots of pennies. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 27, 2019
How Carbon-14 Dating Works
3660
Some of the carbon dioxide in your body is radioactive! Don’t worry, it won’t harm you (not sure why we used an exclamation point there). Instead, it might someday be detected by future archaeologists to determine how long ago you walked the Earth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 26, 2019
SYSK Selects: Have all the good ideas already been discovered?
2375
It's no secret that human beings have an obsession with innovation -- but has our species already found every good idea? As Josh and Chuck break down the continuing search for the next great idea, they touch on everything from hand tools to cancer cures. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 23, 2019
What Makes a Must-Have Christmas Toy?
3287
Ever since Cabbage Patch Kids came along in 1983, there’s been an annual holiday frenzy around one particular toy – the must-have Christmas toy of the year. But what makes a toy a must-have toy? Josh and Chuck investigate (and kick off the holidays). Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 21, 2019
Short Stuff: Backyard Burials
902
Time was that you’d bury a deceased relative in your yard; now it’s just weird. But it’s still legal – and if you want to do it, here’s how! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 20, 2019
The Murder Mystery of Ötzi the Iceman
3538
About 5,300 years ago a Copper Age shepherd was murdered. He just happened to die in a place where his body was so well preserved that gave researchers an actual shot at determining the course of his final day on Earth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 19, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Salt Works
2935
A Roman senator once said, "Mankind can live without gold, but not without salt." Right he was. The human body needs salt so much we have developed a taste for it specifically. But too much salt can be toxic. Learn about salt's role in human history and how we get it from the Earth in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 16, 2019
NYC Water: An Engineering Marvel
3208
Getting the rain and melted snow from upstate NY into the taps of every NYC resident and business is one of the great feats of engineering. Does it taste great and make perfect bagels and pizza crust? Sources say yes! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 14, 2019
Short Stuff: The Conch Republic
991
Back in 1982, Key West seceded from the United States. Don’t believe us? It’s true! Just listen to the episode, will you? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 13, 2019
Augmented Reality: Coming Soon?
3819
Augmented reality adds a digital layer over the real world and soon it will revolutionize how we live. Ultra-tailored information will be everywhere we look, creating a richer, more personalized experience in everything from surgery to walking down the street. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 12, 2019
SYSK Selects: Can you Treat Mental Illness with Psychedelics?
2768
Hallucinogenic drugs are currently illegal, but they were once commonly used in psychological treatment. In this classic episode, Josh and Chuck discuss the rise and fall of psychedelics in treating mood disorders -- and why they're starting to gain favor again. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 09, 2019
Cockney Rhyming Slang: Beautiful Gibberish
2897
What is Cockney Rhyming Slang? It's complicated and its origins are unclear. Learn everything we know about it today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 07, 2019
How Ironman Triathlons Work
3673
Sure, you could train for months to finish a marathon, but why not make things interesting? Ironman triathlons add a 2.4-mile swim and a 112-mile bike race before the marathon leg. It’s as grueling as it sounds.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 06, 2019
Short Stuff: The History of Paternity Testing
837
Paternity testing. It wasn't science for many years, yet they still tried to do it. Learn all about it in 12 minutes. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 06, 2019
SYSK Selects: Halitosis - Worst Smell Ever?
2417
Occasional bad breath is one thing, halitosis is another. Or is it? From its odd origins as a marketing ploy to modern weight loss diets that can induce this embarrassing condition, you can learn all about bad breath in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Nov 02, 2019
SYSK’s Scare Your Socks Off Halloween Spooktacular 2019
2429
Josh and Chuck chose a truly unsettling story by one of the greatest science fiction authors of all time – Philip K Dick. Join the boys as they read “The Hanging Stranger,” complete with scary sound effects by the Extraordinary Jeri! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 31, 2019
Short Stuff: Our Shortie Halloween Spooktacular
842
Join us today as we read three short horror selections from Ambrose Bierce.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 30, 2019
Where Did Trick-Or-Treating Come From?
3380
We aren’t exactly sure who invented trick-or-treating – kids who realized they could extort adults for candy, or adults who bought off kids in exchange for laying off pranks? The bigger question is: Will trick-or-treating survive the 21st century? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 29, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Haunted House Attractions Work
3235
Ever since the Egyptians, humans have been evolving toward haunted house attractions. The level of sophistication in the scares and gore effects continues to rise over time, but the purpose remains the same: to scare the pants off you. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 26, 2019
How Historic Districts Work
3015
A fascinating thing about Americans is that we can disagree on anything. Such is the case with historic districts – areas of historic importance protected by local laws. Seems innocuous, but are they also to blame for the affordable housing crisis? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 24, 2019
Short Stuff: The Toxic Death of Gloria Ramirez
855
In 1994 the body of a woman who died in a California ER somehow became toxic and sickened 24 people. To this day, no one is sure what happened. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 23, 2019
What's the deal with subpoenas?
3418
Subpoenas are all the rage. But what do they even mean if someone can just ignore it? Learn this and a lot more in today's episode.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 22, 2019
SYSK Selects: The 'Satanic Panic' of the 1980s
3734
In the late 1980s, the United States experienced a "Satanic Panic," leading parents to fear for the safety of their children. But were there any real examples of Satanic ritual abuse? Find out this and more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 19, 2019
How Project Blue Book Worked, Pt II
2986
A rash of UFO sightings kicks off a new spike in America’s UFO fever and new headaches for the Air Force, which continues to reluctantly investigate. After becoming a laughingstock for its limp explanations, the Air Force looks for an exit from the UFO biz. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 17, 2019
Short Stuff: The Disappearance of Ambrose Bierce
875
Ambrose Bierce was a journalist and writer of short stories. He also disappeared rather mysteriously. Listen in and learn of the various theories on what happened to him.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 16, 2019
How Project Blue Book Worked, Pt I
2791
Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 15, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Black Boxes Work
2536
Black boxes are designed to be the only survivor of plane crashes so they can live to tell the tale of what went wrong to prevent future accidents. Sit in with Josh and Chuck and learn about how these grim devices are made, how they're tested and the tales they've told, in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 12, 2019
The Ins and Outs of Beekeeping
4163
Who wants fresh honey? We do! Learn all about the ancient art of beekeeping today. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 10, 2019
Short Stuff: The Devil's Den
932
The Devil's Den is the sight of one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. Is it haunted? Nope. But still creepy.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 09, 2019
How Environmental Psychology Works
3269
In the 60s, psychology expanded from exploring inside the mind to exploring the inside of buildings. Environmental psychology looks at how our spaces affect us – from how a busy mall can create a panic attack to how looking at nature can speed recovery from surgery. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 08, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Pez Works
2879
PEZ began in Vienna as a mint meant to help people quit smoking. But once American kids got ahold of it, the candy took off and a symbol of childhood - and healthy secondary market among collectors - was born. Explore Pez history and culture with Josh and Chuck in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 05, 2019
What were the Freedom Schools?
3079
Freedom Schools were set up in Mississippi in the heart of the Civil Rights Movement, with the aim of giving young black school children agency and a future. They remain one of the more inspiring and progressive programs in American History, yet so few know about them. We're hoping to change that.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 03, 2019
Short Stuff: Fish n' Chips
951
How did these two wonderful strangers meet up and become best friends? The answers lie within today's short stuff.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 02, 2019
Guardian Angels: Behind the Red Beret
6341
If you grew up in the 1980s, then you know who the Guardian Angels are. If you don't then you're in for quite a story. Listen in!  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Oct 01, 2019
SYSK Selects: What Happened at Kent State?
2654
On May 4, 1970, four days of anti-war protests at Kent State University in Ohio culminated in the unthinkable when Ohio guardsmen opened fire on protesters, killing four students. How could this tragedy take place? Learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 28, 2019
What are paraphilias?
3459
Josh and Chuck dive into the world of paraphilias so you can get the skinny in 45 minutes or less.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 26, 2019
Short Stuff: Dare Stones
1052
What happened to the Lost Colonists who disappeared from Roanoke Island in the 1580s remains a mystery to this day. But it’s possible a carved stone a man vacationing in North Carolina found in the 1930s may have solved it – if the stone isn’t a hoax. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 25, 2019
We Are Running Out of Sand and That Actually Matters
3082
Sand, we’re beginning to realize, is a non-renewable resource - and we are consuming it at a voracious pace. We use it in every construction project around the world and to create new land. And we’re wrecking the ecosystems we mine sand from. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 24, 2019
SYSK Selects: Could You Live Without a Refrigerator?
2552
Do you know that hulking refrigerator in your kitchen emits CO2 thanks to the electricity it uses each year? It's a comparatively small amount, in truth, but enough that some people have foresworn their fridge and adopted a life without one. See how they do it in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 21, 2019
How the US Interstate System Works
3970
Wait! This is actually a good episode! It turns out that America’s 48,000 miles of superhighways – possibly the largest civil works project in the history of humanity – may have also ruined what made America a cool place. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 19, 2019
Short Stuff: Scurvy
905
Scurvy seems like a terrible way to go: Your gums swell so you can’t eat, your teeth fall out and your brain and/or heart hemorrhages. Fortunately, all you need is an orange to cure you. Or some – blech – broccoli.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 18, 2019
The Skinny on Lyme Disease
3187
If you live in the Northeastern U.S. then you may know someone who has had Lyme disease. But it's spreading all over the country and parts of the world. Learn all about this tick-borne disease today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 17, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Wills Work
2680
Whether it's oral, scrawled in blood or signed on a deathbed everyone should have a will. But how do they actually work? Join Chuck and Josh as they explain that "of sound mind" thing in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 14, 2019
Special Effects: A Short History
3643
Special effects have been around since the first movies. In fact, the techniques the earliest filmmakers created are still around today, we just use computers to do them faster and cheaper. Put on your beret and get ready for SYSK film class. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 12, 2019
Short Stuff: Papasan Chairs
908
Oh, the papasan. What a chair! But where did it come from? And what does the name mean? The answers lie within. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 11, 2019
How Government Shutdowns Work
3486
Every year Congress decides how the federal government will spend money. Simple enough, but in practice politics tend to mess it up. Sometimes it gets so messy the budget doesn’t get passed and parts of the government shut down. Then the hurting begins. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 10, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Ouija Boards Work
2368
Although most people who've used Ouija boards don't think they're communicating with the beyond, there is something mysterious about how it works. Learn the ins and outs of the popular parlor game that sprang directly from the 19th-century spiritualism movement in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 07, 2019
What's the deal with MSG?
3712
MSG got a bad rap in the 70s and 80s. But what is it exactly and how bad is it for you? The answers to those questions lie within.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 05, 2019
Short Stuff: Barbed Wire
905
Barbed wire changed the Western US as much as the railroad and the six-shooter. Before barbed wire arrived, the West was free and open; after, the West became concentrated in the hands of a few big ranchers. No wonder it was called “devil’s rope.” Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 04, 2019
Ed Gein: The Serial Killer's Serial Killer
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Any movie featuring a deranged killer who’s perversely devoted to his mother and makes things out of human skin has a real-life person named Ed Gein to thank for inspiration. He was Buffalo Bill, Norman Bates, and Leatherface all rolled into one. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Sep 03, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Icebergs Work
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Icebergs: floating chunks of ice. True, but whoa there. Scientists are learning that there's a lot more to icebergs. Appropriately enough, we've only come to understand the tip of the iceberg and recent research shows there's plenty more to uncover. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 31, 2019
The Rubik's Cube Episode
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Rubik's Cubes. Ronald Reagan. Jerry Falwell. Just Say No. One of these things was awesome. Take a guess and hop on board the 80s train.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 29, 2019
Short Stuff: Dead Bodies and Airline Codes
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Did you know there are airline codes for pilots and flight attendants? And some of them have to do with dead bodies on board? Learn all about it today! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 28, 2019
A Brief Overview of Punk Rock
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Punk rock really needs about 10 episodes to do it justice, but we'll try and tackle anyway. Learn all about this movement right now.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 27, 2019
SYSK Selects: How Sleepwalking Works
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Sleep behaviors are pretty fascinating. Some people snore, some grind their teeth -- and some take a little stroll, or perhaps a drive. In this classic episode, Josh and Chuck investigate how sleepwalking, or somnambulism, works. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 24, 2019
How Ventriloquism Works
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Ventriloquism – where a skilled performer “throws” their voice, making it seem like a dummy on their knee is talking – has taken a long, circuitous road from early prophets, to witches, then finally to the stage. Get to the bottom of this uncanny trick. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 22, 2019
Short Stuff: Horseshoe Crab Blood
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Perhaps the most expensive liquid on the planet is the blue blood that comes from horseshoe crabs. Researchers realized that horseshoe crab blood could indicate the presence of pathogens and the massive, ongoing horseshoe crab harvest began.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 21, 2019
Nuclear Semiotics: How to Talk to Future Humans
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The nuclear waste we produce will be dangerous for a very long time. We’ve figured out how to safely store it in the earth until it’s no longer a biohazard. Now we just have to figure out how to warn humans 10,000 years in the future to stay away from it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 20, 2019
SYSK Selects: Are We in a Cyberwar?
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There's a secret war going on around us, and it's happening on a daily basis. The Air Force has a unit specifically designed to carry out and defend against cyberwar. Go deep into this alarming type of war in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 17, 2019
How Peyote Works
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Josh and Chuck have tackled a lot of drugs on the show, but peyote has loomed like a bad Jim Morrison poem. Learn all about this plant today.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 15, 2019
Short Stuff: Petrichor
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You know that amazing smell when it rains? Kind of clean, kind of earthy, one of a kind? It turns out that a miracle of nature produces it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 14, 2019
Solar Power: The Future or What?
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We’ve been promised solar energy for a while now – where is it? Turns out, it’s been quietly and steadily growing across the world. And with a few breakthroughs, we just may be able to say goodbye to fossil fuels. Learn about sun-based energy in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 13, 2019
SYSK Selects: What Is a Shotgun House?
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Shotgun houses are iconic pieces of American architecture: they're long, narrow, and filled with artistic flourishes. But where did they come from? Join Chuck and Josh and explore the mysterious origins of shotgun houses. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 10, 2019
Iran-Contra Affair: Shady in the 80s, Part 2
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As the operation expands it also begins to unravel. Word starts to leak out of the illegal stuff the Reagan administration was up to, Congress and the press investigate and people start to point fingers. Spoiler alert – they all got off scot free. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 08, 2019
Short Stuff: Time Zones
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Time zones are a pain. Let's get rid of them! Can we? Sure! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 07, 2019
Iran-Contra Affair: Shady in the 80s, Part 1
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When Ronald Reagan was president, America got involved in some deeply shady stuff, not the least of which was the Iran-Contra scandal – a convoluted operation that managed to combine an illegal covert war in Nicaragua with secretly selling arms to Iran. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 06, 2019
SYSK Selects: How the Black Death Worked
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The Black Death was gruesome: Symptoms included tumors, purple splotches, fevers and vomiting. But how did this disease manage to spread from the Gobi desert and kill approximately one-third of the population of 14th-century Europe? Find out in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://www.iheartpodcastnetwork.com
Aug 03, 2019