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Blue Dot: A History of the World in 100 Animals: a conversation with Simon Becker

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Simon Barnes lion watching at Kafue N.P. Zambia.

Dave visits with award-winning journalist and author Simon Barnes. For decades Barnes was one of the main sportswriters for the Times of London and also penned a column on wildlife conservation issues.

In his latest book, Barnes turns his attention fully to the world of animals -- specifically 100 animals that have been part of shaping the history of the planet and human civilization. From well-known subjects like lions, horses, dogs, and cats to lesser appreciated critters like barnacles, each essay in his book delves into why each has shaped the human experience and enriched the tapestry of life on Earth. It's a fascinating and wide-ranging conversation that takes us all over the world and often back in time.

Dave Schlom is the longtime host and creator of Blue Dot. From surfing to Voyager in interstellar space, rock guitar to orcas in our imperiled oceans, the topics on Blue Dot are as varied as the host’s interests and connections -- which are pretty limitless! An internationally respected space history journalist, Dave is also deeply fascinated by all aspects of the grand workings of nature’s awesome machinery on scales ranging from galactic to subatomic. And topics take in all aspects of the arts and sciences.
Matt Fidler is a producer and sound designer with over 15 years’ experience producing nationally distributed public radio programs. He has worked for shows such as Freakonomics Radio, Selected Shorts, Studio 360, The New Yorker Radio Hour and The Takeaway. In 2017, Matt launched the language podcast Very Bad Words, hitting the #28 spot in the iTunes podcast charts.