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The Greatest Squirt Gun Ever Built
One of the bestselling toys of all-time, the Super Soaker, was invented by a rocket scientist nicknamed "The Professor." This is the story of the man, the legend: Lonnie Johnson.
Bonus: Magic Mushrooms With Michael Pollan
Author Michael Pollan talks about all things magic mushrooms, including their potential for upending the brain's hierarchy and helping people cope with death.
Screamtime: Zombie Fungus
Imagine a fungus that could infiltrate your whole body, turn you into a puppet, and grow right out of the top of your head. Actually, you don't have to imagine it -- IT'S REAL. It's called Cordyceps, and fortunately, it only has this effect on insects... for now.
Bonus: Australian Scientist Offers First-Hand Account Of Steve Irwin's Tragic Death
Australian scientist Jamie Seymour was friends with the famous "Crocodile Hunter," Steve Irwin. He was even there when Irwin was fatally stung by a stingray in 2006. He sat down with Ben to talk about that experience and Irwin's legacy.
Screamtime: Doom Jelly
Imagine sitting in a hospital room for 24 consecutive hours in the most agonizing pain you can possibly imagine. You feel a sense of impending doom. You having a feeling this won’t end well. Then, the pain subsides and you walk away.
Screamtime: Haunted House, Holy Water
When Alex was in high school, he and his best friend used to break into abandoned houses. But Alex was a tough guy, giving people hell. Until one night, in one of those abandoned houses... hell gave him something back.
Snacktime: 'Last Seen' Edition
We’re popping into your feed to share a project we think you’ll love. It’s a new podcast called “Last Seen,” about the largest unsolved art heist in history -- the theft of 13 irreplaceable pieces of art from Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.
The Great Mattress Conspiracy
Why are there so many Mattress Firm stores? How did they end up catty-corner across intersections and in the same shopping centers? Reddit users start to dig deeper into these Mattress Firm conspiracy theories, and we team up with Business Insider's "Household Name" to conduct an investigation of our own.
Rome Sweet Rome
Could a unit of Marines destroy the entire Roman Empire if they traveled back in time? That is the question that inspired the now-legendary Reddit thread that turned James Erwin from an anonymous commenter, into a Hollywood screenwriter. His once-in-a-lifetime opportunity did not go exactly as planned.
Tim From Texas
Tim Rose was driving home in February 2015 when he got into a car accident. He was mostly fine, though he went to the hospital just to be safe. That's where things took a turn. He turned to Reddit for help and his life hasn't been the same since.
The Cursed Manuscript
A 17th century monk using a nom de plume pens what could have been the blockbuster of its time: a teenage boy embarking on an epic voyage to the Americas. But, due to a series of bizarre circumstances, it was never published... until now.
The Ulysses Bucket List
A Reddit comment about a chance encounter on a train inspires thousands to participate in something called the Ulysses Bucket List Challenge. Endless Thread hosts Ben and Amory join in on the action, leading to Ben getting hypnotized and Amory performing stand-up comedy at an open mic.
The Original Most Interesting Man In The World
King David Kalākaua was the last king of Hawaii. But he was much more than that -- he was a traveler, a dreamer, a tech nerd. Or maybe he was fond of drinking, reveling and gambling. It depends on who you ask. But one thing he was not: Boring.
A Lookback At Endless Thread's First Season: The Archive And The Gallery
We look back on Endless Thread's first season of episodes and a gallery of the original redditor artwork we've featured on the show thus far. Season 2 begins August 10. Get ready...
Snacktime: A Trade Of Their Own
In this "Snacktime" episode, we chow down on two stories that were sent to us by listeners. The first, a look at how baseball fans on Reddit honor Major League Baseball's annual July trade deadline -- with a trade of their own.
Call Of The Void
When you’re in a high place, peering over a ledge or a drop off, do you ever get that super weird feeling that you should just...jump? This is a real scientific phenomenon. It has a name: The call of the void.
A serial killer dubbed "The Axeman" terrorized New Orleans in 1918-1919. One day, the local paper published a letter he'd written saying that he would strike again on a particular night. The only thing that would spare you... was listening to jazz. We dive into this popular TIL story from...
Death: It comes for all of us, eventually. This week we bring you two tales from Reddit about the Grim Reaper himself. One involves gravestones; the other, a "natural" way to think about burial.
A man makes a terrible sculpture of his girlfriend...out of Soylent. (Guess what..."they are now separate.") He then makes a flyer to try to give that sculpture away. The flyer goes viral. Why-oh-why did he do it? We find out.
That Old Chestnut
One of the nuttiest stories of near extinction and resurrection ever seen in the United States. It involves genetic engineering, warring factions of tree enthusiasts, and a mysterious, destructive power that started at the Bronx Zoo.
What do you do when you're about to fly home from Japan and you realize you've left your passport in your hotel 300 miles away? Or when you're looking for pals to run with you from England to Italy? Post to Reddit, of course.
A lab at the University of Oklahoma wants your dirt -- really. A viral post on Reddit brought awareness to this fascinating program, which studies fungi from soil samples from around the country with the hopes of discovering new disease-curing medicines.
With spring finally here and the MLB's opening day upon us, we're talkin' baseball. We talk to the Redditor who calculated the odds of the infamous 2001 Randy Johnson mourning dove incident occurring, and to a young dad who received a memorable gift from the Seattle Mariners via Reddit.
Drinking The Hader-ade
Funnyman Bill Hader has a new show, "Barry," about a depressed hitman who heads to Los Angeles for a job, and ends up taking acting classes. He talks about his career as a comedian and how his stage fright helped inspire the world behind "Barry."
Ben and Amory do a live AMA at SXSW, where they talk about what they've learned making Endless Thread, and what it's like meeting Redditors IRL. They also sit down with Reddit CEO Steve Huffman for a conversation about the history and future of the platform.
"Our landlord isn't letting me talk to you, but it's important we do." This text was written on one of several creepy post-it notes that mysteriously appeared in Redditor RBradbury1920's apartment. Who wrote them? Why? And how were they getting there? We get to the bottom of this famous Reddit...
There Was An Attempt
A small village in upstate New York faced a lot of criticism about its official seal. They decided to change it, but did it really make a difference? You might say... there was an attempt.
The Italian cyclist Gino Bartali could rightfully be called "the GOAT" -- the Greatest of All Time -- for his athletic achievements alone. But in this episode, we tip our hats to him as a humanitarian.
More than 115 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose. Alex from Brockport, New York, is determined not to be one of them. He's currently 5 months clean, after using heroin for 5 years, and Reddit is one of several resources that helped him get there.
And... It's Good!: A Look Into Football On Reddit
Hey football fans, ever heard of the Chicago Bears Principle? How about Winter Magic? Or the UFL? In this Super Bowl-themed episode, Redditors educate us on the stats, the halftime history books, and tackle football on wheels.
'The Front Page Of The Internet' Is About To Make Some Noise
We're delving into Reddit's vast ecosystem of communities to bring you original stories. Don't quite get Reddit? Here's why you don't have to be an expert Redditor to enjoy this podcast.
Hosted by Ben Brock Johnson and Amory Sivertson, Endless Thread, a podcast from WBUR and Reddit, delves into Reddit’s vast communities to explore some of the most compelling stories the Internet has to offer, including revelations about our shared experience and powerful, personal stories. Also, cat videos. This is a show for Reddit connoisseurs, skeptics, and even the uninitiated.