I'm a podcast host, novelist, culture critic, radio maker, interviewer, Twitter liker, Twitter fearer, dog owner, former lawyer, one-time college a cappella singer, occasional bread baker, photography dabbler, and very lucky weirdo.
My dog’s name is Brian. He was rescued in Spain, where they have a surplus of speedy dogs like him, so he was brought to the United States where he had a better chance of being adopted. He was named Brian by the rescue (which seems to give all its dogs people names), and when I adopted him, it seemed like he’d had enough upheaval, so he kept his name. I take a lot of pictures of him. You can find them on Instagram at @primodogcontent.
I'm the host of Pop Culture Happy Hour, NPR's roundtable culture and entertainment podcast. I also created its pop culture blog, Monkey See, which I edited from 2008 until 2018, when it was reorganized as part of Pop Culture Happy Hour’s world. I've worked with most of the radio shows at NPR in some capacity: I've talked about pop culture on All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Weekend Edition. I once spent a week writing for Wait Wait, Don't Tell Me, took a turn guest-hosting Jesse Thorn's wonderful interview show Bullseye, and did a terrible job answering questions about music on a bonus episode of Ask Me Another. I do local live radio whenever they let me.
My first novel is available now! It's called Evvie Drake Starts Over, and it’s about love and sad things and baseball and the state of Maine -- all of which are irresistible.
My side hustle is moderating live events where I interview people in front of audiences. I've talked to TV and movie folks like Shonda Rhimes, Ron Howard, Connie Britton, Lauren Graham, Trevor Noah, B.J. Novak (also a writer, of course), and Joe and Anthony Russo. I've also talked at the Folger Shakespeare Library and the Sixth & I synagogue to authors like Jane Smiley, Maria Semple, Elizabeth Strout, the hosts of Welcome To Night Vale and, in a moment that my 12-year-old self still doesn't quite believe, Judy Blume.
I'm also a public speaker, both on panels (which I've done at places like South By Southwest) and at conferences (I've given keynote addresses in Philadelphia and Bowling Green, Ohio; I'm going one state at a time). I once gave a presentation (complete with slides) about becoming a person who wears colorful dresses. I even co-hosted an awards banquet once, which made me much more sympathetic to everyone who has to host awards on television.
I used to write about TV, much of it reality, at the wonderful and now retired site Television Without Pity. I've also written for MSNBC and Vulture and TV Guide.
In a former life, I was an attorney, which is where I developed my great love of arguing. That's how I once successfully persuaded some very intelligent people to vote the "Honeymoon In Metropolis" episode of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures Of Superman into their Canon of great television episodes.