12.3.14: The Sixth Extinction & America's Only Water Sommelier

Dec 3, 2014

Paper triceratops
Credit Emre Ayaroglu via flickr Creative Commons

While the asteroid that killed off the dinosaurs may be most familiar, the earth has experienced five great extinctions, and we may be in the midst of the sixth…right here, right now. On today’s show: a startling account of the planet's biodiversity crisis, and the role humans have played in creating it.

Plus it’s easy to condemn the office gossip – but getting the inside scoop at work might just save your career. We’ll discuss why gossip can be good for you. And, America’s only water sommelier explains why his restaurant features a 44-page water menu.

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

The Sixth Extinction

  • In her recent book, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, Elizabeth Kolbert of the New Yorker asks whether we are right now living in the midst of another mass extinction – one caused not by an asteroid, or an ice age – but by us, the human race. The book is coming out in paperback in early January.

The Anti-Earplug Culture

America's Only Water Sommelier

Water Tap

  • Here in the U.S., getting water is as easy as turning on a faucet. In Nepal, however, it can be serious business. Reporter Laura Spero discovered this for herself when she spent nine months living with a family in a small farming village in central Nepal. She brings us this story.
  • You can listen to this again at PRX.org.

The Benefits of Gossip