12.11.14: The First Skiers, How To Talk To Strangers, & This Is Crohn's Disease

Dec 11, 2014

A ski trail at Mount Sunapee
Credit Kelsey Ohman via flickr Creative Commons

In New Hampshire, skiing is one of winter’s biggest perks and the best cure for cabin fever. The first skiers put two planks on their feet and slid down a mountain, not as a past time but as a way to hunt. On today’s show, a National Geographic reporter sets out on the trail of the earliest skiers in human history and finds himself elk hunting in the far reaches of western China where he witnesses a skiing tradition thousands of years old.

Also, a couple embarks on a medical odyssey to find relief from a devastating illness. And talking to strangers may be good for your health. The psychology behind interacting with people you don't know.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

The First Skiers


How to Talk to Strangers

  • Talking to strangers might be good for your health, says Elizabeth Dunn, an associate professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia. She co-wrote the article “Hello Stranger” for The New York Times.

This is Crohn's Disease

  • This is the story of a woman who had no choice but to become a medical guinea pig to keep her disease at bay. Jack Rodolico traveled with her on her pilgrimage to the best doctor in the world for her condition. His close access was possible because the patient is his wife.
  • This story is part of the PRX STEM Story Project, made possible by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. You can listen to the full version at PRX.org.