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Fora and Fauna

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There's a lot of cool stuff going on right now on the MaxFunFora, so I thought I'd take the opportunity to introduce you to a bit of it in a periodic feature called FORA AND FAUNA!

Lots of MaxFunsters have already shown us what they've made. So far they include remarkably life-like Jello fruit (by emily), what appears to be a macrame Charles Darwin (by Yuhm) and an as-yet uncalibrated theramin (by irondavy).

I asked for advice regarding conventions. Might I be hatching a half-baked plan? Of course. I'm always hatching half-baked plans. At this point, it's fair to say that hatching half-baked plans is my profession.

These football fans are starting a MaxFun Fantasy Football league. These nerdiness fans are discussing the nerdiest moment of their lives.

If you're travelling to San Francisco or New York, you might want to check out the tips MaxFunsters are sharing.

Over in the Arts & Culture forum, the new Futurama movie is being discussed, as is Wall-E, Pixar's new animated sequel to Short Circuit. NealAppeal claims that a certain comic will take you from zero to crying in 22 panels.

Of course, you don't need an account to read the fora, but you should join in the fun!

Podcast: The College Years: Superheroes

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The College Years is a look deep into the vaults of The Sound of Young America. Take a journey with us every week as we post a new program or two from our salad days.

A star-studded episode of The College Years, hosted by Jesse and Jordan, featuring Patton Oswalt and Colin Meloy of The Decemberists, a rock and roll band. Bold statements and double-decker tacos--just two of the many things you'll hear in this blast from the past.

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Pootie Tang's Hit Record

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When Pootie Tang set to work on a followup to his hit "Sine Your Kittie on the Runny Kine," he faced a formidable challenge. How could you improve on perfection?

But Pootie found a way. Pootie always does.

Let it be said, now and always: Pootie is the pone tony.

Related: Pootie performs live with the great Missy Elliott.

Monsters of Podcasting Saturday Night

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Me and Jordan are headed to San Francisco today for the Monsters of Podcasting. Saturday night at 10PM at the Dark Room Theater on Mission in San Francisco. Featuring You Look Nice Today, Jordan Jesse Go! and surprise guests. Advance tickets are sold out, but there will be some tickets at the door. Yes, my mom is coming.

The end.

TSOYA: The Pixar Touch

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Show: 
Bullseye

David A. Price is the author of The Pixar Touch: The Making Of A Company. In the book, Price takes a look back at Pixar's humble beginnings as a technology company and reveals how the company developed into the computer animation behemoth that it has become today. Price reveals some major players in Pixar's dramatic history, George Lucas, John Lasseter, and Steve Jobs to name a few.

If you enjoyed this show, try these:
Patton Oswalt
Japanese Robots
Mark Evanier
Austin Grossman

Podcast: American Nerd author Benjamin Nugent

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Show: 
Bullseye

Benjamin Nugent is the author of "American Nerd: The Story of My People"
It's a book on nerds that's part history, part sociology, part reportage and part memoir. Nugent traces the history of the nerd, from the antagonists of romanticism in the 19th century to the classic Hollywood nerds of the 1970s and 80s to the "geek pride" and "nerd hipster" classes of today. He also writes movingly about his own childhood, and that of the friends with whom he played role-playing games as a middle school student.

If you enjoyed this show, try these:
David Hajdu on Comics in the 1950s
Merlin Mann
Patton Oswalt

Public Radio Talent Quest Produces Three Pilots

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Folks may remember the Public Radio Talent Quest from last year. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting put together a big pot of money to find new talent for public radio. They sponsored a contest for organizations to dig up the talent, and two won. PRX, the Public Radio Exchange held an American Idol-style competition online, while a consortium of producers decided to make a "big list" of people they'd like to hear in public radio, then ask them if they'd be interested.

They narrowed the list down to six finalists, each of whom would get enough money to produce a professional-quality pilot episode. Based upon these pilots, one winner would receive funding for a full year of programs. Among the finalists were Mark Bittman, "The Minimalist" from The New York Times, SNL alumna Julia Sweeney, who hoped to do a science program, and a woman who goes by Skepchick.

What happened was a surprise: the CPB was so excited about the finalists that they chose three winners, rather than just one.

Al Letson, a performance poet, playwright and actor will host "State of the re:Union." The show will look at the unique cultures and communities of cities and towns across America. You can download the pilot, about Washington, DC, from this link (MP3).

Majora Carter is a MacArthur "genius" grant-winning organizer in the Bronx. Her show, "The Promised Land" will look at how leaders are created, "around the world, or around the block." You can download the pilot from this link (MP3).

Glynn Washington is Executive Director of the Center for Young Entrepreneurs at Haas Business School at UC Berkeley. His show, "Snap Judgement," will look at how one decision can have huge consequences. The pilot is available from this link (MP3).

What do you think of the shows?

Tell a friend, be a better person.

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Want to include The Sound of Young America on your page? It's easy.

Pledge Thank You Gifts

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Pledge Drive thank you gifts are heading out the door this week. If you made a monthly pledge during the drive, you'll get a thank-you gift, either one of the books and other prizes we had on offer early in the drive, or a poster. If you made a gift of $5/month or more, you'll get a t-shirt as well.

This has been an immense undertaking for intern Chris and myself, but everything should be kosher. Your thank-yous will start showing up in the next couple weeks. If we get or got something wrong, email Chris (chris@maximumfun.org), and we'll sort it out. But like I said -- we just sent out the gifts (some are still being processed), so wait a couple weeks.

John Mulaney on Law & Order

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That is: sharing some thoughts about Law & Order, not appearing on the TV program Law & Order.

John Mulaney did a solid half hour or so last year at the Project Breakout show at Comix in New York. He was still growing as a performer, but his material was among the strongest I've seen a young comic perform in... ever. The guy was a 10 for writing out of the box, and a good performer to boot. Too bad he was at Bonnaroo (good for him, I guess) or he'd have been on TSOYA Live.

Video via Punchline Magazine

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