Episode #136 -- Pan Am 103 Sunday, December 21, 2008. Twenty years ago today, Pan Am Flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland.  I discuss the story of the most deadly terrorist attack against Americans prior to September 11, 2001, a story that is far from over twenty years later.

The podcast will be taking a short hiatus to recharge and get a jump on preparing new episodes.  When I return on February 2, I'll be talking about one of the best cartoons ever made.

Direct download: 20yearsago_136_122108.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:59pm EDT

Episode #135 -- Spitak Earthquake Sunday, December 7, 2008.  Twenty years ago today, a major earthquake struck the city of Spitak, in what was then Soviet Armenia.  At least 25,000 people were killed in this disaster.  I look at why so many people were killed in this earthquake, and my thoughts about the prospect of being in a natural disaster myself.

People from nations all over the world stepped in to help rebuild after the Spitak earthquake.  The picture here is a statue that the people of Armenia gave to the United States as a token of gratitude.  It stands near the Red Cross Building in Washington D.C.

Direct download: 20yearsago_135_120708.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:06pm EDT

Episode #134 -- The Steel Cloud Friday, December 5, 2008. Twenty years ago today, plans for a unique monument called the Steel Cloud were unveiled in Los Angeles.  I tell a little of the story of this oddity in steel and glass that was never built, and muse about visions of the future and how they stack up to reality.

Direct download: 20yearsago_134_120508.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:26am EDT

Episode #133 -- Computer Security Day Sunday, November 30, 2008. Twenty years ago today was the first Computer Security Day, an event held annually to raise awareness of computer security issues.  I talk about the observation of Computer Security Day, and about the problem of computer malware such as viruses, which were beginning to become a serious problem in 1988.

The image at the right was the first Computer Security Day poster, created for the second CSD in 1989.  It, and all the CSD posters from the past 20 years, can be found at the Computer Security Day website.

Direct download: 20yearsago_133_113008.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:52pm EDT

Episode #132 -- Mystery Science Theater 3000 Monday, November 24, 2008. One of my favorite TV shows ever, Mystery Science Theater 3000, made its debut on this day twenty years ago.  It first ran on a small independent station, KTMA, in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  I share a little about the background of the show, as well as how it resonated for me from the moment I first saw it on the Comedy Channel a few years later.

If you are curious, a number of the KTMA episodes of MST3K are available on YouTube -- a search on "MST3K KTMA" will turn them up.  For more information about MST3K than you could imagine existed, try the official fan site, Satellite News.


Direct download: 20yearsago_132_112408.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:53am EDT

Episode #131 -- Michaela Garecht Wednesday, November 19, 2008. Twenty years ago today, Michaela Garecht was abducted near her home in Hayward, California.  She has not been seen since.  The picture at the right is an age progression of Michaela to about age 24; she would be 29 now.  I speak about Michaela's disappearance, my memories of the case (I lived in the Bay Area, about forty miles from Hayward, in 1988), and about Michaela's mother, who has never forgotten her missing daughter.

The MySpace page devoted to Michaela and maintained by her mother, Sharon Murch, can be found here:  Still Missing: Michaela Joy Garecht.
Direct download: 20yearsago_131_111908.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:00am EDT

Tuesday, November 18, 2008. Twenty years ago today, the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan.  I talk about a few of the provisions of this big drug and crime bill, as well as tell the story of how one of those provisions -- regarding pre-employment drug testing -- almost got me into big trouble.

Direct download: 20yearsago_130_111808.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:59am EDT

Episode #129 -- Dorothea Puente Sunday, November 16, 2008.  Twenty years ago today, serial murderer Dorothea Puente was arrested in Los Angeles.  I talk about the case of this woman, who killed people in her care for their money, and how she gained enduring hatred, among one community in particular.

I'd like to specially thank my husband, Joe Medina, for his insights into how the case of Dorothea Puente resonated in the Hispanic community and his own family.

The TruTV (formerly CourtTV) Crime Library is an excellent resource for information about many historical (and current) criminal cases.  Their entry on Dorothea Puente was quite useful in preparing this show.

Direct download: 20yearsago_129_111608.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:23pm EDT

Episode #128 -- The Queen of the Damned Thursday, November 13, 2008. Twenty years ago today, the number one book on the New York Times fiction best seller list was Anne Rice's The Queen of the Damned.  I had been looking forward to reading this book a lot, but when I did, I couldn't finish it.  I talk about why I was looking forward to the third book in the Chronicles of the Vampires, and why I put it down after less than fifty pages.

Direct download: 20yearsago_128_111308.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:54am EDT

Episode #127 -- Election Day 1988 Saturday, November 8, 2008. Twenty years ago today, George H.W. Bush was elected the 41st president of the United States. I share some facts about that election.  1988 was the first election in which I was able to vote; I share some stories about my history as a voter, and the connections between the 1988 election and the 2008 election.

Direct download: 20yearsago_127_110808.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:52pm EDT





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