The Enumerator

“Then, an invitation arrived in my inbox: BE A CENSUS TAKER…At $25 an hour, the work was a potential lifeline. As a journalist, I was intrigued by the possibility of observing the enterprise—’the federal government’s largest and most complex peacetime operation,’ according to the National Research Council—up close. How, I wondered, could the government safely send hundreds of thousands of people to knock on doors across the country in the midst of a pandemic?”

Published: Oct 19, 2021
Length: 22 minutes (5,535 words)

“The Fire Is for the Greedy”

“Nawabshah, home to more than a million people, has the untidy, nondescript feel of just about any other small Pakistani city: tangled power lines, tacky roundabouts, squat buildings. It has one consistent claim to national fame, however: its dry, punishing heat, the suffering of which residents flaunt with pride and masochistic smugness.”

Published: Oct 18, 2021
Length: 7 minutes (1,985 words)

“Put on the Diamonds”

“Anton Chekhov once observed that the worst thing life can do to human beings is to inflict humiliation. Nothing, nothing, nothing in the world can destroy the soul as much as outright humiliation.”

Published: Oct 1, 2021
Length: 15 minutes (3,925 words)

To Be a Field of Poppies

“The elegant science of turning cadavers into compost.”

Author: Lisa Wells
Published: Sep 20, 2021
Length: 24 minutes (6,064 words)

Eating the Whale

“A personal history of meat.”

Published: Aug 18, 2021
Length: 22 minutes (5,739 words)

The Anxiety of Influencers

Educating the TikTok generation.

Published: Jun 9, 2021
Length: 33 minutes (8,366 words)

Lost in Thought

“The psychological risks of meditation.”

Published: Mar 15, 2021
Length: 24 minutes (6,098 words)

The Business of Scenery

“In Zion National Park, crowding is such that one of the most popular trails had to be temporarily closed in 2017 to airlift eight tons of human excrement from public outhouses that a journalist described as an “open sewer.””


Published: Mar 30, 2021
Length: 13 minutes (3,271 words)

The Crow Whisperer

“What happens when we talk to animals?”

Published: Mar 15, 2021
Length: 19 minutes (4,800 words)

Il Maestro

Martin Scorsese on “content,” the films of Federico Fellini, and the art of cinema.

Published: Feb 16, 2021
Length: 19 minutes (4,876 words)