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Person Place Thing
Fridays, 10:30 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.; Saturdays, 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 a.m.

Hosted by former New York Times Ethicist Columnist Randy Cohen, PPT features guests who talk about a person, a place and a thing they find meaningful. Randy pulls out the most interesting details from columnists to musicians, architects and ballerinas including Rosanne Cash, E. Jean Carroll and Gene Kohn. The results: surprising stories from great talkers.

To learn more about this program, visit presonplacething.org.

  • When Homer refers to the “wine-dark sea,” is that red, white, or rosé? It is no color whatever, asserts the author of Confessions of a Comma Queen, who offers an ingenious—and convincing—alternative. Wine and the Greeks: in the ancient world, the modern world, the world of mythology. Presented with The Neal Rosenthal Group.
  • This writer is particularly astute and amusing about manners, about aging, and about their intersection: “The shusher in the movie is always much louder than the person who’s talking; I’ve become a shusher.” Impressively, he has the self-awareness to recognize it, the courage to admit it, and the sense of humor to make it bearable.
  • When this Grammy-winning drummer was just a kid, Winton Marsalis performed at a local high school. “There were all these people in this auditorium, and I looked at Wynton, and it almost felt like everybody disappeared, and it was just me and him.” A musician discovers his destiny. Presented with Ralph Farris of the quartet Ethel.
  • He’s made a lot of films about war, from the Civil War to Vietnam, but Ken Burns' great theme is not death and destruction, he says: “Most of my films, despite the particular subject matter, besides the tragedy or the conflict, are ultimately about love.” He’s currently working on the Revolutionary War. It’s complicated.
  • When photographer Sylvia Plachy moved to New York in 1973, "The Village Voice" was at the center of downtown life, and her weekly photographs were at the center of the Voice, capturing not just how things looked but how they felt. Today? “Now I’m in my seventies, and I no longer have a community.” A conversation on art and aging.
  • Tod Williams and Billie Tsien are partners in work and life. The architects began working together in 1977. Their studio focuses on work for institutions including museums, schools, and nonprofit organizations.
  • Fiona Hill of the Brookings Institute began as a child dominoes hustler in a miners pub. “My granddad would have me play dominoes and bet on me, and every time I won, I would get a ginger beer.” This week on Person Place Thing - the making of a scholar.
  • Having won the Pulitzer Prize for his play A Strange Loop, what will he do next? One possibility, move to Wyoming. “I’d get my house somewhere, get my shotgun, if I needed it, and sit on my porch in my rocking chair.” An eastern sophisticate contemplates the West, Tori Amos, and soap opera. Presented with Federal Hall and the New York Harbor Conservancy.
  • This climate economist is surprisingly optimistic about onrushing environmental catastrophe. “Things are dire, yes, but things are moving much much faster in the positive direction than anyone would have imagined five, ten years ago.” A ray of hope! “Now, is it fast enough? No.” Or not. Produced with the New-York Historical Society’s Climate Café. Music was performed live by Mamie Minch.
  • “It’s grand, it’s palatial, it’s beautiful,” says the anthropologist-in-residence for the NY Department of Sanitation about a sanitation garage. She is happy in her work... An anthropologist looks at what we throw away and what it says about us. Presented with the Sanitation Foundation. All music performed live.