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The Frontrunner

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The Frontrunner

Ray Mayfield & Tiara Jones

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The race isn't given to the swift but the one who endures to the end. The Frontrunner Podcast is for entrepreneurs striving to live out their passion through the highs and lows of business ownership. Ray and Tiara take you behind the scenes of what it looks like to take the leap and stay in the game with stories and strategies from entrepreneurs and trusted advisors.
 
Volcanoes. Trees. Drunk butterflies. Mars missions. Slug sex. Death. Beauty standards. Anxiety busters. Beer science. Bee drama. Take away a pocket full of science knowledge and charming, bizarre stories about what fuels these professional -ologists' obsessions. Humorist and science correspondent Alie Ward asks smart people stupid questions and the answers might change your life.
 
Hosted by Robert Jones a 25-year-old south side Chicago Native. Being in your 20s should come with a manual because you never really know if you're doing it right. What Rob has come to realize is that none of us truly have it all together. So maybe we should sit down and talk about and get to the bottom of this together. Using Chicago as a backdrop. Rob's goal is to bring people together through real stories from real twenty somethings. Cover topics such as finances, relationships, social me ...
 
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Birds do it. Bees do it. Why the hell can't we do it? Called "The Sleep Whisperer," neurologist and sleep specialist Dr. W. Chris Winter joins for an updated encore of the thrilling 2-parter about why we need sleep, the ideal amount of it, what sleep does to the brain, insomnia, sleep stages, ideal bedtime conditions, and even the historical lore a…
 
Predatory. Sneaky. Deadly. Lifesavers? You think you don’t care about cone snails. But that’s about to change. Conotoxinologists Dr. Sabah Ul-Hasan and Dr. Joshua Torres study these spiral-shelled hunters of the sea. Why all the fuss? Because their venom -– and the microbes that live in it — may hold medical magic that can help us solve problems re…
 
We’ve done Nephrology, Gynecology, and Phallology — but nothing prepared us for this. Penis implants. Road trip pees. Kegels. Bidets. Squirting. UTIs. Clitoral flim-flam. Elephant bladders. Everyone’s favorite Urologist, Dr. Fenwa Milhouse, makes chatting about the uh, juicy stuff effortless and easy. Like peeing should be. She humbly describes her…
 
Insects humming. Birds squawking. Chainsaws buzzing? What does the rainforest sound like? Or the oceans outside of port cities? Is the world getting louder? And what can recording devices detect that our ears – especially mine, Alie’s – can’t? Acoustic Ecologist Dr. Eddie Game of the Nature Conservancy has asked conservation questions over decades …
 
If you LIVE for drama, you will LOVE dead Romans. Wars, backstabbing, opulence and uprisings: a little something for everyone. Classical Archeologist and TV host Dr. Darius Arya is back for an encore of this 2018 classic to dish about priceless garbage piles, lead poisoning, ancient political scandals, pottery graveyards, unearthing sculptures, tom…
 
THE SQUIDMOBILE HAS ARRIVED. Get in losers; we’re talking cephalopods. Yes, she drives a vehicle with squid all over it and encourages people to text her, and we have this encore episode to prove it. The world's most impassioned squid nerd, Sarah McAnulty, gets locked in a basement with Alie to talk about cephalopods, alien DNA, camouflage, invisib…
 
Oh boy. This episode may seeeeem crappy but it is certainly not a waste of your time. We’re not kidding, while the episode is of course wonderful, mostly thanks to our wonderful guests, it is also certainly about poopy wastewater and what we can all learn from it. About those terrific guests: we mostly speak with Dr. Amy E. Kirby, Ph.D., MPH of the…
 
The hedgehogs of the sea: echinoids are spiky, spiny, pokey, be-toothed, venomous, mysterious, gorgeous evolutionary marvels. And Dr. Rich Mooi of the California Academy of Arts & Sciences is one of their biggest champions. Come stroll through the offices for a face-to-face encounter with this infectious expert. We talk sand dollars, uni, doves of …
 
Flesh hungry plants. The world’s fastest hunters. Botany with brains? Seymour, it’s time to feed because we’re doing meat-eating plants with conservation ecologist and carnivorous phytobiologist, Hali’a Eastburn. Can a Venus Fly Trap digest human flesh? Do frogs think of pitcher plants as home or hell? How fast is a bladderwort? Are scientists anes…
 
Pomodoro timers! Bullet journals! Apps, tips, tricks and philosophies. Also: the most mellow episode ever, recorded late at night in a guest room. Like a cozy duvet of wisdom, this one is full of life hacks for remaining productive & healthy during distracting times. I asked Ologites their best strategies for keeping their brains less burdened and …
 
In today's episode, Rob sits down with two women who have traveled all around the world multiple times. Both women have a lot of experience and exposure since a very young age. We discuss the importance of getting outside your neighborhood and seeing the world. We talk about favorite travel spots, foods, and the meaning of blackness from a global p…
 
The SMOL version of an ep about smol precious creatures, we're talkin' slimy little angels with bellies for feet... literally! That's what gastropod means! We've got Dr. Jann Vendetti of the Natural History Museum of LA County to talk with Alie about snail-based beauty products, escargot, urban snails, thousands and thousands of teeth, and whether …
 
In today's episode, Rob sits down with Insurance broker and business owner Eric Lindsay. Eric speaks about his youth growing up in the projects on the west side of Chicago playing sports, his experience in College, and how he got into the insurance industry. Eric Lindsay drops a lot of gems about life insurance you don't want to miss this episode!…
 
Trains. Locomotives. Choochoos. Bullet trains. Hyperloops. Subways. How fast can they go? How did they change American history? Why do people love them? What should we do with all that abandoned track? Can you marry a train? What's it like to shovel coal into a steam engine? Alie went off the rails at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan tal…
 
Did Part 1 leave you informed and now you need a pep talk? Get ready for an absolute banger of an episode with 5 experts: René Brooks of BlackGirlLostKeys.com, TEDTalk speaker and How to ADHD YouTuber Jessica McCabe and neuroscientist Jahla Osborne of University of Michigan. What is it like to get diagnosed? How do you know which medication – if an…
 
In this episode I sit down with a singer-turned-chef! Rashad Curtis is a multi-talented entrepreneur who wants to expand the palettes of black people with his food. We talk about how he got started in this industry, his favorite meals to cook, and the importance of not discounting your gifts to please others. Rashad is a ball of energy that loves t…
 
Focus. Productivity. Relationships. Distraction. Neurodiversity. How do you know if you have ADHD? How can you get others to understand your ADHD brain? What are your treatment options and how can they help? In Part 1, we talk racing thoughts, brilliant brains and the causes and effects of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder with the world’s l…
 
Gather 'round fellow nerds, you’re about to learn about the wildest not a fern not a bush not a cactus plant you never knew you never knew about: CYCADS. These endangered ancient plants have been around for 270 million years, give or take, and now they’re some of the most valuable vegetation in the world. Come along to learn about these uncomfortab…
 
On this new episode, I sit down with Jason Redd! Jason is a serial entrepreneur who is a real estate investor, property manager, rental car fleet, and vending machine owner. In this episode, I sit down to talk to Jason about how he got his start in his entrepreneurial ventures in his 20's. My hope is that his story gives you the courage to actually…
 
Ah, charismatic megafauna! Teeth, claws, fur, hibernation, bear hugs, hiking, cougar attacks, nature preserves, and living your childhood dreams with Alie’s longtime -ologist crush, Dr. Rae Wynn-Grant. The large carnivore ecologist, researcher and TV presenter tells us all about her field work, what it’s like to stuff a baby bear in your coat, how …
 
You have ants. We all have ants, but do we KNOW ants? Get ready for cult-leader queens, bullet ant stings, kitchen pest hacks, the dynamics of a billion-sister megacolony. Dr. Terry McGlynn sits down to have a BIG discussion about itty-bitty creatures in this encore because I was out of town seeing my family and just needed a week off. Learn about …
 
Bundle up for a smol, classroom-friendly episode with Princeton University evolutionary biologist and Thermophysiologist Dr. Shane Campbell-Staton. You’ll learn about everything from heat tolerance to frostbite, anti-freeze woodfrogs to icy alligators, why some people run hot, why your toes run cold, how a fever is like a honeybee, how geography in…
 
Shoving elk into a dorm room freezer. The wildest tasting rice. Flower bulbs, acorn whoopie pies, frybread debates, mushroom foraging tips, corn magic, puffball mythology, decolonized diets, squash lasagna, bison harvests, small worlds, Instapots and – most importantly – food sovereignty with the WONDERFUL Indigikitchen cooking show host, environme…
 
I scream, you scream, we all scream for… a brand new, screaming hot episode of Ologies. Be warned *slaps the top of this ep* you can fit so many screams in this bad boy. (Seriously though, there’s a lot of screaming in this episode, it’s probably not the one to gently fall asleep to.) What kinds of screams you ask? We got birds, foxes, caterpillars…
 
Slamming heads together to impress someone: why does this happen? Let’s ask Dr. Nicole Ackermans, whose current job involves receiving sheep heads and painstakingly counting damaged neurons from headbutting concussions. The Neuropathology episode last week gives all the concussion basics, but this one turns the microscope away from accidents and po…
 
Games! Play! Fun! Addiction? Flim-flam? From the origins of tabletop classics to the future of VR, Dr. Jane McGonigal answers our burning questions. This video game developer, TED speaker and bestselling author is an expert on how playing -- and especially video games -- can motivate, soothe and connect us. Will video games turn your child into a f…
 
Hi, last week I fell down a flight of stairs. Then I went to the hospital. Then I emailed Dr. Mary Alexis Iaccarino, a Harvard Medical School professor and specialist in rehabilitation from traumatic brain injuries. I asked her all about what happens during a concussion, when to be worried, how long it takes to heal, when a person should get their …
 
Here we go: SIX more raccoon experts, because one episode is not enough for the wonders of these terrific trash bandits. Revel in the raccoon love and hear about presidential pets, neuronal density, why raccoonologists walk out on the job, their fabled intelligence, how Aesop factors into raccoonology, and the comfort of the male gaze? Also, treat …
 
Tiny hands! Round rumps! Chaos! Compost! Delicious garbage and sweet faces make raccoons as mysterious as they are adored. World class raccoon expert, psychologist and animal behaviorist Dr. Suzanne MacDonald of Toronto’s York University explains tree sleeping, brain worms, cartoon raccoons, queer icons, whether you should keep one as a pet and als…
 
Who doesn't love a floppy, slime-filled, hot dog shaped creature of the deep sea? On this Smologies (It's like if Ologies were more Smol) we return to our conversation with Tim Winegard, a professional hagfishologist (YES IT'S A WORD) at Chapman University, and he dishes on the world's slimiest treasures. You're gonna learn about things like why yo…
 
How do your knees feel? How do YOU feel about your knees? Buckle up to better your relationship with what some listeners call their most hated and contentious joint. Globally-lauded orthopedic surgeon Dr. Kevin Stone agreed to sit on a porch and explain everything from cracking to popping, patellas to tendons vs ligaments, cartilage donuts, physica…
 
From crisp cider to blistering lava, life advice, climate solutions, the comforts of venison stew, cockroaches in orbit, UFO culture, social justice, dongs, worms, wasps, fireflies, bear orgies, makeouts, disasters, the deep ruts of the patriarchy, and desperate horny bugs. This second-ever “Audiobook Mixtape” has it all. So if you’re near a firepl…
 
CATS! Kittens. Tigers. Purring. Toys. Litterboxes. We cover it all in this abridged and G-rated Felinology version for Smologites, or just anyone who doesn’t want to listen to swearing with their science. Professional cat behavior expert Dr. Mikel Delgado dishes on domestication, cats on leashes, why they want to sit on your laptop, how to play wit…
 
Yep -- it’s detective work! But instead of crime scenes, environmental scientist, marine biologist and Forensic Ecologist Dr. Tiara Moore travels the world to sample the sea and the soil looking for the ghosts of larvae past, whispers of frog spit, fungal traces in loamy soil, and the unseen forces that lead to algal blooms and toxic tides. She als…
 
You’re six to ten times LESS likely to catch COVID-19 if you’re vaccinated, and thus less likely to infect others. Great! But what about breakthrough cases? Who’s at risk for them? How many folks haven’t gotten vaccinated? Should pregnant people get the ol’ jab, what might happen with transmission rates in 2022, yearly booster questions, the ethics…
 
Wolf howls, wolf packs, wolf history and more! November 23 is the dog appreciation holiday Wolfenoot so we’re dishing up a puppy-sized and kid-friendly Smologies with lupinologist and Princeton professor Dr. Brigette vonHoldt. Learn about wolf populations, canine family dynamics, Game of Thrones direwolves, if wolves howl at the moon, myths and tru…
 
Who’s on it? What’s on it? And why does the interface feel like you’re on a prank show? Scicomm host, vlogger, author, internet friend, and TikTok-maker Hank Green stops in to chat about learning the language of the algorithm, dopamine, duets, data concerns, idealized selves, self-expression, mental health, authenticity, work/ life boundaries. And …
 
PAIN. What is it? Where does it come from? And how can we hurt less? Which hurts more, a kidney stone or heartache? Why does chronic pain persist? Can we turn down our pain dials? To answer these huge questions, pain psychologist Dr. Rachel Zoffness enthusiastically explains the brain, pain and how to retrain it. She is an unabashed neuronerd and a…
 
Leaning into the lessons learned from past experiences builds character. Whether good or bad it’s important to view them as something you gained instead of what you lost and in turn it will propel you to the next level. In this week’s episode and season 1 finale we get a peak into Ray’s experience as a young Marine and how his challenges shaped him…
 
This is NOT about the Netflix show, Squid Game. It's about shapeshifting, flirtatious trickery, living fishing lures, siphon squirts, weird things found in shark stomachs, and cephalopods who are downright dicks to fish: real games played in nature by real squid. Because we weren't the only ones watching Squid Game and thinking, "Why aren't there m…
 
At long last: an episode dedicated to veterinary medicine! Dr. Terrence Ferguson & Dr. Vernard Hodges have been friends for nearly 30 years and have co-owned their rural Georgia veterinary clinic, Critter Fixers, for over 20 years. The two wonderful buddies talk about getting accepted into vet school, caring for spiders & camels & lizards & toads &…
 
Bidding farewell to the sweetest and spookiest month, we traipse past graves with archeologist, conservator and Taphologist Robyn Lacy. What’s the difference between a graveyard and a cemetery? Is it wrong to picnic in one? And can tombstone scrubbing help the world and soothe your living soul? Plus, font trends on headstones, old-timey gravestone …
 
They dance. They flirt. They will steal your heart. They are spiders. Jumping spiders, specifically, and impassioned spider scientist Dr. Sebastian Echeverri is on board to tell you all about their sexy dances. How far can a jumping spider jump? What makes a good spider dancer? Why are they so cute? Can you sample their mating drumming and make a s…
 
While taking care of our responsibilities and striving to reach personal and professional goals we can't forget about the importance of taking care of ourselves. Remember that you are an irreplaceable high valuable asset and your physical and mental health should always be a priority. Tune in to hear our personal stories and lessons we've learned w…
 
PART 2: The stunning conclusion of a 3-hour gab session about frickin' bats with America's favorite chiropterologist, Dr. Merlin Tuttle. Learn about bat conversations, their close friendships, surprising dongs, where they keep their nipples, how to go bat spotting after the sun sets, more myths and misconceptions about bat danger, perhaps the gross…
 
“People fear most what they understand least." Words of wisdom from explorer/American treasure/bat expert, Dr. Merlin Tuttle. As your internet dad/host takes care of her surgically recuperating husband this week, we revisit her visit to Austin. In 2019, Alie headed to the bat capital and sat down with the legendary chiropterologist to discuss wild …
 
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