How did one style of cheerleading come to dominate in so many American schools? In part one of a two-part episode, ELT flips through the history of cheerleading and meets the man who held cheerleading in the pompom of his hand.
When did organ music and baseball become a thing? ELT talks to some pro organ players to find out how organs and ballparks got together. Plus, meet Nancy Faust — the legendary organist who brought trolling to modern baseball music.
ELT gets to the bottom of a familiar aroma -- thrift store smell. Why do thrift shops all smell the same? Plus, is washing your clothes better than freezing them? ELT investigates listener cleanspiracies with expert cleaner Jolie Kerr.
Every year the TSA confiscates millions of pounds of pocket knives, sunscreen and snow globes from airport travellers. Where does it all go? ELT investigates. Plus, tips for sneaking your weed onboard, from a former TSA agent.
Why is pumpkin spice a thing? Flavor scientists explain why this particular combination is so appealing -- or not. Plus, how to make a new flavor, and ELT listeners pitch their ideas for the next flavor fad.
A Bulletin Board of Glory™ nomination from comedian Josh Gondelman takes ELT down a trashy rabbit hole, to a time before sanitation workers, when pigs roamed the streets. Plus, we meet the man who defied all odds to bring us the bag that cinches. Warning: Explicit.
Where does bubblegum flavor come from? A bubblegum bush? A beaver’s butt? We track down the original bubblegum flavor formula, and find out what’s in there. Plus, why turkey eggs aren’t a thing.
How did goldfish come to dominate our fish bowls and pet stores? We dive into the history of America’s favorite finned pet. Plus, the fanciest goldfish money can buy, and the best pet in a vocal performance.
If you dug up the graves of our founding fathers, what would you find? Tri-corner hats and puffy shirts? A grave expert fills us in on what remains. Plus, a terrifying sea creature that lurks in the waters off northern Australia.
When did “the wave” become a staple of stadium crowds? ELT talks to the professional cheerleader who first got fans out of their seats. Plus, the egg-laying mammal that is not a marsupial; we give monotremes their due.
Tucked into your car’s dashboard is a tiny arrow that points to the side of the car with the gas tank cap. Who came up with it? ELT tracks down the inventor of this tiny, brilliant car hack. Plus, do you really need to warm up your car?
How did they make the dinosaur roars in the Jurassic Park movies? Flora talks with the sound engineers behind the bellows. Plus, ELT goes deep into the Mesozoic to find out what dinosaurs looked (and tasted) like.
When did someone first see a cheese curd and think, “Yeah, I’m going to eat that"? ELT traces the delicious and X-rated history of cheese. Plus, a processed cheese expert on making the most of the dairy aisle.
Who put the tension in reality TV? ELT tracks down the source of the nail biting-sound you can’t unhear. Plus, cicada killer wasps — a backyard horror story, turned intervention.
There are mysterious symbols inside your tee-shirt -- do you know what they mean? ELT reveals the secrets of The DaLaundry Code. Plus, lobsters pee from their faces, koalas have human-like fingerprints, and other cocktail party fodder from our fact buddy exchange.
Some birds can fashion tools and create tiny works of art, so why do we always underestimate their bird brains? In this panel discussion, recorded at the 2018 Aspen Ideas Festival, Flora talks with writer Jennifer Ackerman and crow expert Alex Taylor about the genius of birds.
The history of the world’s most iconic movie scream. Hollywood's most iconic scream has a name—and over the course of the past seventy years, it has made an appearance in hundreds of films, television shows, and commercials. But what makes it so good? And how did it become a favorite inside joke for so many filmmakers?