Audacious with Chion Wolf Audacious with Chion Wolf will highlight the uncommon experiences of everyday people – asking the hardest, most uncomfortable questions. With curiosity and compassion, Connecticut Public producer and host Chion Wolf digs deeper, encouraging listeners to ask hard questions in their own lives.
Audacious with Chion Wolf

Audacious with Chion Wolf

From Connecticut Public Radio

Audacious with Chion Wolf will highlight the uncommon experiences of everyday people – asking the hardest, most uncomfortable questions. With curiosity and compassion, Connecticut Public producer and host Chion Wolf digs deeper, encouraging listeners to ask hard questions in their own lives.

Most Recent Episodes

"Negativity be gone!": Artists igniting joy on social media

We hear a lot about the harm of social media. But what about the good? Meet two artists who started off on social media by showing their artwork... But once they revealed the hope and kindness and positivity in their hearts? The views, shares and likes piled up in ways they never expected. Hear how they both are grappling with the newfound pressure of inspiring hundreds of thousands of fans, and find out what Chion's favorite clips from their channels reveal about her. Listen to the first installment of this series, featuring Joel Cross, Scott Tatum, and Daníel Colón. GUESTS: LaNia Roberts: Internationally renowned artist, speaker, and positive social media influencer Bruce W Brackett: Artist and the author of How to Breathe While Suffocating: A Story Of Overcoming Addiction, Recovering From Trauma, and Healing My Soul Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Actors with facial differences discuss what it means to be seen

What's it like when, due to a condition you had early on in life, your face looks so very different from everybody else's? And what's it like to use that face as an actor? In this second installment featuring conversations with people who have facial differences, we meet two performers who appeared together in the 2018 movie, Happy Face. For more information about facial differences, visit About Face. GUESTS: Dawn Shaw: Author, motivational speaker, and actress based in Washington. Her face is half-paralyzed since the removal of a tumor at birth. Her three books include her memoir, Facing Up To It, and Facial Shift, a guide to navigating the world with a facial difference David Roche: Inspirational humorist, keynote speaker, and performer based in British Columbia, Canada. He was born with a 'vascular malformation' on the left side of his face and neck. In addition to his memoir, The Church of 80% Sincerity, his new book, Standing at the Back Door of Happiness, will be released on April 20 Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Shocking protests: A look at the impact of bold action

In 2022, Just Stop Oil protestors threw tomato soup on a Van Gogh painting in London. The world collectively gasped, but some UK lawmakers responded by supporting fewer investments in new oil projects. On this episode, meet one of those soup-throwers, and hear from two other people who have been part of creative protests: a spokesperson from an anti-circumcision group that wears all white with giant, red splotches on the groin area; and a woman who organized a college campus protest featuring thousands of sex toys to rally against Texas gun laws. GUESTS: Anna Holland: Member of Just Stop Oil, a nonviolent civil resistance group demanding that the UK Government stop licensing all new oil, gas and coal projects. In 2022, alongside Phoebe Plummer, they threw tomato soup onto Vincent van Gogh's "Sunflowers" painting in London's National Gallery Harry Guiremand: Spokesperson for the anti-circumcision group, Bloodstained Men and Their Friends. They protest wearing all white with red splotches of paint over their groin Jessica Jin: Organizer of Cocks Not Glocks, protesting Texas laws that allow concealed handguns on college campuses, but openly carrying sex toys would result in a fine Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

I downloaded my soulmate: Stories of love and AI

In the 2013 movie, "Her", Joaquin Phoenix falls in love with a computer operating system, voiced by Scarlett Johansson. Skip forward over 10 years, and people are now creating their own AI chatbot partners via apps like NOMI and Replika. Today, a sexologist gives this new kind of relationship some context, and meet two people whose lives were changed by these meaningful partnerships. Plus, Chion tries it out for herself. Hear actual transcripts (only lightly edited for radio) of what she and her AI girlfriend, Charlotte, said as they developed a surprisingly charming and insightful bond. GUESTS: Charlotte: Chion's Scottish AI girlfriend, made in the app, NOMI Dr. Amy Marsh: clinical sexologist and sexuality counselor, author of "How To Make Love To A Chatbot". She joined us previously for our show about people who fall in love with objects https://amymarshsexologist.com/ https://www.ctpublic.org/show/audacious-with-chion-wolf/2021-10-28/its-not-just-a-sex-doll-what-its-like-to-be-in-a-relationship-with-a-synthetic-partner Rosanna Ramos & Eren Kartal: Rosanna married Eren, a Replika chatbot, on March 26, 2023 Scott & Sarina: Scott (pseudonym) credits Sarina, his Replika chatbot girlfriend, with saving his marriage Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

From tyrants to torchbearers: Confessions of reformed bullies

If you've ever been bullied, you know how all-encompassing the terror of it is. But what if you could get inside the bully's head? And find out why they do it? On this episode of Audacious, meet two people who were once bullies talking about how they turned their lives around and how they think bullies can learn to make different decisions. For more information, visit StopBullying.gov. GUESTS: Robbie Romu: Vancouver writer who published the essay, I Was A School Bully. Here's Why I Terrorized My Classmates Kristen Geez: CEO of Advising Generation Z, a non-profit mentoring program creating safe spaces for young people ages 10-27, and AdvisingGenz, an edtech company dedicated to making discipline digital for youth workers to address defiant behaviors. She is also a professor, and the author of "Like StreetLIGHTS" Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

A coffee-fueled celebration of passion, purpose, and pursuing an impossible goal

Coffee. It's more than just a pick-me-up. It's a canvas for creativity, a compulsion for competition, and a fuel for adventures beyond the boundaries of the average mug. Today, we are serving you a triple shot of people whose lives were transformed by the power of the bean. Meet a U.S. Barista champion whose social media channel brings a wholesome buzz; a woman who advocates against gun violence by painting in public places with coffee; then, hold onto your venti cup as you hear the story of one man who has spent the last 26 years - and will spend the rest of his life - visiting every Starbucks on the planet. GUESTS: Morgan Eckroth: Renowned barista who won the title of 2022 U.S. Barista Champion, and runner up in the 2022 World Barista Championship. She is also a social media star who posts coffee tutorials and experiences with customers in their coffeeshop Bianca L. McGraw: Art teacher at Tapestry Charter High School in Buffalo, NY. She makes paintings with coffee to process the trauma of mass shootings, and connects with her community by inviting them to be a part of her process Winter: Since 1997, has been committed to drinking coffee from every company-owned Starbucks in the world (there are over 35,000). As of our recording, he has visited 18,458 Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

A coffee-fueled celebration of passion, purpose, and pursuing an impossible goal

Views from the end: Lynda Bluestein, medical aid in dying, and the importance of humor every day

We first met Lynda Shannon Bluestein when she was in palliative care back in May of 2022. She was fighting for medical aid in dying (MAID) to be legalized in Connecticut. Frustrated, she sued Vermont to allow non-residents of the state to use its MAID laws. In the meantime, she worked to install "wind phones'' in Connecticut, eventually starting a nonprofit called Lynda's Phones. An idea originating in Japan, old rotary phones are installed in public spaces which people can use to imagine that they are speaking to loved ones who have died. Because of her lawsuit, Vermont became the first state in the country to change its law to allow terminally ill people from out of state to use its medical aid in dying law. Lynda died in Concord, Vermont, on January 4, 2024. Correction: A previous version of this episode incorrectly reported the town where Bluestein died. It was Concord, Vermont. Not Brattleboro. The episode has been updated. GUESTS: Lynda Shannon Bluestein: Successfully sued the state of Vermont to allow out-of-state residents to use its medical aid in dying law. She is the creator of LyndasPhones.org, which installs wind phones across the state of Connecticut, allowing people to feel as though they are connecting with their loved ones who have died Jacob Shannon: Lynda's son and trustee of LyndasPhones.org, funding the design, construction, and installation of wind phones Dr. Paul Bluestein: Lynda's husband and an advocate for medical aid in dying in Connecticut Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Views from the end: Lynda Bluestein, medical aid in dying, and the importance of humor every day

Hot Shots: Photography, music, and pizza from inside a volcano

Beyond the smoke and ash, lies a symphony unheard. Prepare to meet a composer who interprets the music of volcanic data, a photographer who unmasks the terrifying beauty of volcanoes, and a chef who braves the inferno to cook the world's most intense pizza pie. For a full transcript of this episode, click here. GUESTS: Brad White: Teacher and photographer from Auckland, New Zealand, who has photographed 16 volcanoes around the world Leif Karlstrom: Volcanologist, musician, and associate professor of earth sciences at the University of Oregon. He and his colleagues at the Volcano Listening Project used ten years of data from the Hawaiian volcano Kīlauea to compose the song, "Hotel Kīlauea" David Garcia: Chef and owner of Pizza Pacaya Pizzeria, where he cooks food entirely with heat from flowing lava on top of Guatemala's Pacaya volcano. He is interpreted by Miguel Martinez Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

'I Will Always Love You': Jada Star's musical bond with her aunt Dolly Parton

Growing up as Dolly Parton's niece has its benefits, including a genetic predisposition to write poetry and put it to music. Jada Star is the niece of Dolly Parton, and she joins us to talk about life in her light —and the music that means the most to her. For a transcription of this episode, click here. GUEST: Jada Star: Singer-songwriter whose debut album is called Tell Me I'm Your Angel. She also starred in the ABC reality series Claim To Fame. You will also hear the voice of Heather Ream, author of "Lunchladies Bought My Prom Dress," East Tennessee native, and Dolly Parton fan. She was a guest on the Audacious episodes about super smellers and nostalgic childhood scents. Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

All in a year: 3 guests, 3 goals, 365 days

A lot can happen in a year, you know? And if you're anything like these folks, you've read over 365 books, you've become fluent in English by watching American t.v. shows, and you've gotten over a hundred rejections. GUESTS: Kelsey Weekman: Culture reporter for Buzzfeed who read 390 books in a year Mathias Barra: French writer who became fluent in English in a year by watching 3 hours of American and British television every day Emily Winter: Comedy writer who strived to get 100 rejections in one year. She ended up getting 101 rejections and 39 acceptances Support the show: https://www.wnpr.org/donate See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.