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Now What? With Carole Zimmer

Conversations with extraordinary people about their lives and how they navigate all the bumps in the road.
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Now displaying: 2021
Dec 22, 2021

Covid is raging again.  The virus has similarities to another serious health problem. This one is caused by a tick bite and it can wreak havoc on your life. Just ask Ross Douthat, an Op-Ed columnist for the New York Times who fought a 5-year battle with Lyme disease. We talk about what happens when your life becomes a medical horror story and doctors can’t help you. “Now  What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Annika Hoiem and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Dec 8, 2021

Ricki Lake’s career took off when she was 19 and starred as Tracy Turnblad in John waters’ cult film Hairspray.. Lake played a high school student whose hair was so big that  the kid who sat in back of her complained that he couldn’t see the teacher. Lake went on to host a talk show that lasted for 11 seasons. Now she makes documentaries about women’s health. Her latest one is called The Business of Birth Control. We talk about the art of reinventing yourself and all the twists and turns Ricki Lake’s life has taken. "Now What?" is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Annika Hoiem and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by  Nick Ciavatta.

Nov 24, 2021

She’s most famous for her role as Carmela Soprano, the long-suffering wife of mob boss Tony Soprano played by Jim Gandolfini. Now, the long-running TV series has found a new audience, young people who can’t get enough of the New Jersey crime family. Falco has moved on to other roles. She played Hillary Clinton in the mini-series “Impeachment: American Crime Story.” And she’s starring in an off-Broadway play called “Morning Sun.” We talk about acting, motherhood and why she’s chosen to be a vegan and a Buddhist. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Annika Hoiem and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Nov 10, 2021

He’s a staff writer for the New Yorker and a Pulitzer-prize winner for his book The Looming Tower. Lawrence Wright also wrote an expose of Scientology called Going Clear. His latest book, The Plague Year, looks at pandemics and how long we all may have to live with Covid-19. But when Wright isn’t thinking about big subjects, he sings and plays keyboard in a band called WhoDo in his hometown of Austin, Texas.  “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Annika Hoiem and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick CIavatta.

 

Oct 27, 2021

Sarah Ruhl is an award-winning writer whose play Eurydice has been turned into an opera at Lincoln Center.  Ruhl is also a Pulitzer Prize finalist and a Tony Award nominee for her play In the Next Room (or the Vibrator Play). After Ruhl gave birth to twins, a hospital worker noticed that Ruhl’s left eye was droopy. That turned out to be a 10-year battle with a paralyzed face. We talk about the sadness of not being able to smile and the joy of working in the theater again. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Annika Hoiem and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick CIavatta.

Photo credit is Greg Constanzo.

Oct 13, 2021

I first met Neil deGrasse Tyson at a bug eating event at the Museum of Natural History when he was munching on a fried tarantula. You may remember Tyson as the host of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey. That was the continuation of a television series that originally starred Carl Sagan, another well-known astrophysicist. Tyson is also the Director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York and he’s written more than 17 books. The latest is called A Brief Welcome to the Universe. But when you’re talking to Neil deGrasse Tyson, as you’ll discover, nothing is brief. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Annika Hoiem and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Sep 28, 2021

Georgina Pazcoguin started taking ballet lessons when she was 4 and when she was a teenager she was accepted into the School of American Ballet. She wound up becoming a soloist with the NYC Ballet and butting heads with Director Peter Martins. We talk about the tightly wound world of ballet, dancing nude in Oh! Calcutta! and Georgina’s tell-all book Swan Dive. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Fei Lu and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Photo by Matthew Karas

Sep 14, 2021

What is it with our Presidents?  They all play golf. I think it has something to do with power. And friendship, too. Gary Ginsberg wrote a book called “First Friends.” It’s about nine U.S. Presidents and the people closest to them like Abe Lincoln and Joshua Speed. They slept in the same bed for four years. Vernon Jordan stayed loyal to Bill Clinton even as impeachment loomed. And then there’s Donald Trump the loner. He didn’t have a best friend. We talk about the long arm of history and friends in high places. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Fei Lu and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Sep 1, 2021

Ben Rhodes was 29 when he went to work for Barack Obama in the White House. In his role as Deputy National Security Advisor, Rhodes helped to negotiate the Iran nuclear deal and the opening to Cuba, only to see Donald Trump tear down those policies. Then Rhodes traveled to Hungary, Russia and China to look at governments that promote nationalism. I talk to Ben Rhodes about reinvention, global despair and what the road ahead might look like. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Fei Lu and Alexander Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick CIavatta.

Aug 28, 2021

In 2001, when the World Trade Center was attacked, I was a reporter at Bloomberg  Radio. I was sent to Pakistan to cover the bombing campaign the U.S. was about to embark on in retaliation for 9/11. Based in Islamabad, I spent weeks traveling around Pakistan, visiting tribal areas in Peshawar and refugee camps where Afghanis had fled to escape the Taliban. I talked to women about the repressive policies of the Muslim extremists who then ruled Pakisatn. Now, 20 years later, the same fears fill the hearts of Afghanis and their desire to flee sounds eerily like the stories I was told in 2001.  And I, like so many others, now worry about what will happen to the people of Afghanistan.

Aug 18, 2021

James Patterson has written 140 novels, mostly thrillers. His books have sold over 300 million copies. Many of them were created with co-authors including former President Bill Clinton. Patterson is also a philanthropist who has given millions to causes that promote reading. And he says, “I don’t take myself too seriously. Yeah, I sell a lot of books. So what?” I talk to James Patterson about what it’s like to be the world’s best-selling author and why he can’t wait to get up every morning and write something new. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Fei Lu and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Aug 4, 2021

Lizzie Borden named herself after an ax murderer when she was a kid growing up in Detroit. In the 1980s she gained a reputation as a radical feminist filmmaker. Born in Flames is about an underground women’s army. Working Girls takes place in a brothel and tells the story of middle class sex workers. Then Borden went to Hollywood to make a film for Harvey Weinstein that turned out to be a disaster. Now, Borden’s early movies are making a comeback.  A restored version of Working Girls was recently re-released in theaters across the country. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Fei Lu and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta

Jul 21, 2021

Amanda Kloots may be the most famous Covid widow in the world. It’s not a distinction that anyone wants to have. Kloots’ husband, former Broadway star Nick Cordero, died of the effects of the virus last year at the age of 41. Kloots, who is also a celebrity fitness trainer and workout guru, wrote about losing Nick, raising their young son Elvis and how to move on in her memoir Live Your Life. We talk about what inspires her, how to stay positive and the benefits of jumping rope. Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Fei Lu and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

 

 
Jul 6, 2021

Oscar-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney likes to take on controversial subjects. He exposed the Scientology community in his film Going Clear. And then there was the portrait of Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes in The Inventor and her claims to have pioneered a revolutionary new way to test blood. Gibney’s latest doc is The Crime of the Century about the Sackler family, Purdue Pharma and the company’s role in the devastating opioid crisis. Gibney talks about calling out wrong doers and telling the truth. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Alex Wolfe and Fei Lu. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Jun 22, 2021

So far she’s written 17 novels including her breakout book We Need to Talk About Kevin which was made into a movie starring Tilda Swinton and put Lionel Shriver on the map. When she’s not sitting at her desk thinking up stories to terrify us you can probably find Shriver on the tennis court or saying something politically incorrect. Lionel Shriver talks about how she’s made an art out of speaking her mind and the suicide pact in her new book Should We Stay or Should We Go? “Now What?”  is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

 

Jun 8, 2021

Anxiety is running rampant through our lives these days. Covid hasn’t helped. The political situation is chaotic. And everywhere we turn we’re bombarded with social media and sensory input of all kinds. Don’t despair. Dr. Jud Brewer has our backs. Brewer is the Director of Research and Innovation at Brown University’s Mindfulness Center and he’s written a book called Unwinding Anxiety. We talk about scientific ways to calm down and even get to that gratifying feeling of joy. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

 
May 25, 2021

One day in 1970, the Village Voice sent writer Vivian Gornick to cover a women’s-liberation gathering on Bleecker Street. She came back a radical feminist. And it was her articles in the Voice that helped spread the word about the burgeoning gender equality movement that came to be known as second wave feminism. Since then Gornick has written many books including her latest Taking a Long Look and her celebrated memoir Fierce Attachments. We walked through the streets of Greenwich Village talking about all the things that make a long life worth living. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

May 12, 2021

Gregory Gourdet started his culinary career working at the exclusive restaurant Jean Georges. But Gourdet also spent a lot of time at raves, taking large amounts of drugs and drinking. His addiction wound up derailing his career. But then Gourdet  detoxed, becoming a serious marathon runner and gaining a reputation for cooking healthy food. Now, he’s a judge on Top Chef and has written a cookbook called Everyone’s Table which features recipes that contain not a drop of dairy, gluten or refined sugar. Gregory Gourdet spills the beans on this episode of “Now What?” which is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer and Tay Glass. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Apr 27, 2021

When I was in college, the Kennedy clan was America’s political dynasty, our country’s royalty. There certainly were a lot of them. Matriarch Rose Kennedy and Joseph Kennedy, Sr. had 9 children including John F., Robert F. and Ted. Robert had 11 children. His sister Eunice had 5 including Tim Shriver, long-time Chairman of the Special Olympics. I talk to Shriver about having more cousins than you can count and his book The Call to Unite. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Apr 13, 2021

Mark Bittman has been in the center of the world of food and cooking for the past 40 years. He was a long-time columnist for the New York Times and has written more than 30 books. His latest is “Animal, Vegetable, Junk: From Sustainable to Suicidal. It’s a deep dive into the history of agriculture as far back as the Crusades. We talk about farming, the environment and the future of the planet. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Mar 30, 2021

Silicon Valley is known for its young billionaire entrepreneurs, catered lunches, in-house yoga classes and Whiskey Wednesdays. Writer Anna Wiener worked at start-ups where she had a front row seat to the industry’s culture. Wiener wrote a book about it called “Uncanny Valley” which the New York Times named one of the 10 best books of 2020. We talk about innovation, greed and sexism in the heart of tech. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe.

Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Mar 17, 2021

Science journalist Elizabeth Kolbert has watched an invasive species of Asian carp jump 10 feet into the air when they’re shocked.  She’s gone to the Mojave Desert to see how researchers are trying to save tiny little pupfish.  And she’s traveled to the Great Barrier Reef to see coral that’s turned as white as a ghost because of rising water temperatures. Kolbert talks about far-out environmental fixes and what’s in store for our children on Planet Earth. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Mar 2, 2021

You probably know Gabriel Byrne as an accomplished actor from Ireland who’s appeared in more than 80 films. But before Byrne took to the stage he had a series of odd jobs like being a plumber and a petty thief. Byrne was 40 before he appeared in his first American film Miller’s Crossing. He plays a criminal in The Usual Suspects and a psychiatrist in the series In Treatment. Byrne talks to me about his career and his memoir Wallking with Ghosts. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Feb 17, 2021

David Duchovny spent 9 years investigating paranormal phenomenon on The X-Files, the TV series that turned him into a star. The actor also has other passions. He’s written 4 novels. His latest is called Truly Like Lightning. It’s about a former stuntman who becomes a Morman and lives in the desert with his 3 wives and 10 children.  Plus, Duchovny sings. “Now What?” is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Tay Glass and Alex Wolfe. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

Feb 2, 2021

Mark Cuban is one of those people who’s bigger than life. He’s a self-made billionaire whose father worked in an upholstery shop. Cuban started buying and selling companies during the 90s in the heart of the Internet boom. Then he bought the Dallas Mavericks, winning an NBA championship in 2011. Cuban is also a star of Shark Tank. He talks to me about money, deals and screaming at referees on this episode of “Now What?” which is produced with the help of Steve Zimmer, Alex Wolfe and Tay Glass. Audio production is by Nick Ciavatta.

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