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Thomas Paine said, "The sublime and the ridiculous are often so nearly related, that it is difficult to class them separately." The Colin McEnroe Show endeavors to prove Paine correct, every weekday.

Thomas Paine said, "The sublime and the ridiculous are often so nearly related, that it is difficult to class them separately." The Colin McEnroe Show endeavors to prove Paine correct, every weekday.


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Thomas Paine said, "The sublime and the ridiculous are often so nearly related, that it is difficult to class them separately." The Colin McEnroe Show endeavors to prove Paine correct, every weekday.








Two Hours With Songwriter Jimmy Webb: Part Two

Jimmy Webb was possibly the most successful songwriter of the 1960s and 1970s. Classics like "Galveston," "Wichita Lineman," "Up, Up, and Away," and "MacArthur Park" were recorded by hundreds of artists from Glen Campbell to Donna Summer. Webb wrote the songs that others made famous. Our team made the trek to Glen Cove, New York, in the summer of 2019 to meet Jimmy Webb and his wife, Laura Savini, at a recording studio near their home. Our adventure was well worth the trip. What we took home...


Laura Nyro Was The Emily Dickinson Of American Pop Music

Laura Nyro's most famous compositions -- "Stoned Soul Picnic," "Stoney End," "When I Die," "Wedding Bell Blues," "Eli's Coming" -- are jewels of mainstream music, and her covers of songs like "Jimmy Mack" and "Gonna Take a Miracle" are legendary. But she was uncomfortable under the spotlight and withdrew from it to become the Belle of Danbury. This hour: a night of singing, reflecting, and celebrating recorded in front of a live audience on January 29, 2020, as part of Colin's Freshly...


Two Hours With Songwriter Jimmy Webb: Part One

We're reairing this show from September, 2019, when our team traveled to Glen Cove, New York, to interview legendary songwriter Jimmy Webb. We waited a long time for this interview and it was worth every minute of the wait. It was a special day. We broke bread together, met kind people, and enjoyed a day of music and stories from Jimmy Webb's decades of making music. The day was not without adversity. A flat tire forced us to miss our ferry back home to Connecticut (and our dinner). We were...


To Bubble Or Not To Bubble: The Sports, They Have Returned

Sports! There are sports! Baseball's back. At least for now. With almost all of the teams playing games. And only, ya know, two of them having big COVID outbreaks. The NBA exists in a Disney World "bubble," and it hasn't had a single test come back positive yet. The NHL is doing two different kinds of tournaments at once in two different "bubbles" in Canada. The arenas and stadiums are empty and quiet, but for the cardboard cutout fans and the piped-in crowd sounds. And the whole thing may...


The Nose Got Bought Out By The Des Moines Register

This New or Second or Third Golden Age of Television has been going on for 20 or 25 or 30 years now. Peak TV just won't stop peaking. For decades, there's just been no way to keep up. But then… suddenly we've all got a lot more time on our hands in our houses. And instead of finally watching The Wire and The Americans and Homeland and whatever else, we're all just rewatching Parks and Rec for the eleventeenth time. And, hey, whoa: The New York Times bought Serial productions. And finally: I...


The Decimation Of The Osage Nation

Native Americans have been getting forced off their land for a long time. Although Thomas Jefferson promised they shall know the United States as only "friends and benefactors," he forced them from their ancestral home in 1804 after he signed the Louisiana Purchase. Assured by the government that Kansas territory would be theirs forever, they were soon forced from their new home by white settlers (including the Wilder family of Little House fame) who plundered their burial sites and squatted...


You Didn’t Ask To Be Here: Adventures In Antinatalism

Colin McEnroe Show alum Chion Wolf has a new show: Audacious. Hear this guest episode from her series! Last year, a 28-year-old guy in Mumbai tried to sue his parents -- who are both lawyers -- for having brought him into the world. He claims his parents didn’t get his consent to live. In addition to being a very bold person, he is an anti-natalist. That is, he believes that it is morally wrong to bring sentient life into this world -- no matter how charmed or how troubled that life is --...


America Loves Its Heroes

​On Tuesday's Colin McEnroe Show: How we define what it means to be a hero depends a lot on the values shared by the group that's in power at any given time. We're seeing it today in the push and pull over the statues of men whose values no longer reflect the values of a changing community. And time tends to wash away the nuance and complexity of heroes that stand as a symbol of a prior generation. Yet, America loves their heroes, even if only for a time. But ​we have a way of using the...


It's Hard To Be Black In America. Still.

Race is a myth; racism is not. I'm stealing this line from Gene Seymour, one of our guests on our show today. We're reairing a show with three people who discuss what it's like to be Black in America. The show was originally in 2017. We chose to reair it today to coincide with the memorials this week for Congressman John Lewis, who will be the first Black congressman to lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda, after fighting his entire life for social justice. And because the recent police...


The Glory Of Everything: Reading Kids' Books As An Adult

My son, Simon, is a year old. His mother and his grandmother are both librarians. His father is, well, me. Simon is, predictably, obsessed with books. Back before everything changed, we'd gotten into a pretty good reading routine. Every morning before Simon went to his grandparents', we'd read a big pile of books. Every evening when I got home from work, we'd read a big pile of books. We'd read Goodnight Moon. We'd read Little Blue Truck. We'd read Peek-a Who? and Peek-a Moo! and Peek-a Zoo!...


Do You Speak Corona?

It took two years for the word AIDS to get from coinage to dictionary. It took COVID-19 thirty-four days. The pandemic has inspired a thousand new or repurposed words, slang, nicknames, and neologisms. It has changed the way we speak. We made technical medical language part of everyday conversation. We created new words to describe emotions that had no words. We repurposed old words or combined two words to express a way of life we never expected. Lockdowns. WFH. Pancession. Doomscrolling....


A Place Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Historian Christine Sismondo says that "America, as we know it, was born in a bar." Taverns were where the Boston Tea Party was planned. They were where court cases were carried out, where land was bought and sold, where immigrants came to congregate. Over the centuries since, bars have fostered so much social change. And today, they're where we go to meet people, to catch the game, to talk about our problems, to relax. Or at least they were. Back when bars were open, back when there were...


Does Religion Still Matter When We Need It Most?

Religious scholar Elaine Pagels trusted the Gospel of Thomas to get her through the almost unbearably painful years after the death of her six-year-old son -- born with a congenital heart defect -- followed one year later by the unexpected death of her husband. Thomas was one of many hidden texts discovered in a cave in Egypt in 1945, written around the time of Jesus but omitted from the New Testament. Pagels's exploration of the secret gospels revealed early Christianity to be a mix of...


Coronavirus Is Still Rising, Biden Is Still Leading, And It's National Moth Week

The number of people testing positive for coronavirus continues to rise in many parts of the U.S., with sharp rises in places like Florida, Nevada, Alabama, Texas, and Puerto Rico. Yet, President Trump continues to attribute the rise to more testing -- despite the rise in hospitalizations and deaths -- and he wants to reduce federal aid for more testing, tracing, and for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Also this hour: The ABC News/Washington Post poll released Sunday shows...


The Nose Has Got A Lot Of Brains But No Polish

Four years ago, over the course of three days, film crews documented the musical Hamilton as performed by nearly its entire original Broadway cast. Eventually, Disney bought the distribution rights to the movie and planned to release it in theaters next fall. But then there was a pandemic, and people were stuck in their houses, and the film dropped on Disney+ earlier this month. And: Kanye West is running for president. Unless he isn't. But maybe he is. Some other stuff that happened this...


Awake In The Middle Of The Night

Our ancestors viewed sleep as a highly sensual and transcendent experience. Today, about a third of adults have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep or feeling rested. We're becoming a nation of insomniacs. We live in what Rubin Naiman calls, a "wake-centric era,” where sleeping and dreaming are viewed as less important than being awake and on the go. It's hard to come down from the hyperaroused state we whip ourselves into by the end of a day. It's not surprising that we can't sleep....


We Like To Watch

For decades, we didn't take television seriously. We saw it as ephemeral, as "chewing gum for the eyes," as, literally, furniture. And then, around the turn of the century, things started to change. There was The Sopranos. The Wire. And, at the same time, shows like Big Brother and The Amazing Race. For Emily Nussbaum, it was Buffy the Vampire Slayer that forever changed her take on television. And now... the president is a TV character. This hour: A serious appraisal of television with The...


A Perfect Storm: A Surging Virus and An Election Meltdown

The number of people being infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus is rising in 48 states. We're testing more, but the rate of positive tests, hospitalizations, and in some states, deaths, is also rising. On Sunday, Florida recorded 15,300 new cases, the highest single-day total to date. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 60,000 new cases in the U.S. on Monday. And we're seeing the same delays in test results and shortages of protective gear that we experienced in the spring....


Walking With Dante

"Dante's Inferno" is the most famous section of Dante Aligheri's 14,000 line epic poem, The Divine Comedy. But it's only the first part of Dante's long pilgrimage through the afterlife. He first enters the circles of hell, filled with beasts and sinners doomed to the Inferno for crimes like gluttony, lust, and treason. Dante slowly recognizes a glimmer of each sinner's fault in his own character as he makes his way through hell. His recognition of his humanity led him up the steep mountain...


A World In A Grain Of Sand

Sand is the most abundant material on Earth. And, other than water and air, sand is the natural resource we consume more than any other -- more, even, than oil. The pyramids are made of sand. Our roads and driveways and sidewalks are made of sand. Concrete buildings and their concrete foundations are made of sand. From computer chips to computer screens, window panes to lightbulbs, breast implants to the Hubble telescope, sand is basically the essential building block of civilization. Humans...