The Interesting Hour

The Interesting Hour is a podcast that follows hosts Devesh Verma & Justin Kupanoff as they seek out some of the most interesting professions, hobbies, topics, and discussions that they can find. No area is off-limits. When one episode will be about crime scene cleanup, the next might feature a real life archeologist or astrologer. Devesh & Justin will sit down and have an honest uncensored conversation in order to get interesting, accurate, and thought-provoking information to their listeners.


Whoa! Buckle in for this episode. Devesh & Justin didn’t give too much thought when the episode ran way longer than expected! Join us for one of our favorite episodes this season as we take a tour of our solar system with Jaclyn Avidon.
jaclyn-avidonJaclyn Avidon is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Amateur Astronomers Association of New York, the Chair of the Association’s Education Committee, and an instructor for the Association’s classes. Jaclyn graduated with honors from Lafayette College with a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and a minor in Mathematics. She spent over two years researching the subsurface conditions of Jupiter’s icy moon Europa, including a summer spent at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Jaclyn is a frequently invited guest speaker at public astronomy seminars, such as those held at the American Museum of Natural History and The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Jaclyn is active in educational outreach, including writing scripts for NASA-funded animated videos and leading astronomy workshops at children’s hospitals. By day, Jaclyn works for an educational software company.
Alchemy was researched for centuries before being debunked by the science community. The lure of the elusive philosopher's stone, or just wanting to make gold from anything attracted great minds from around the world. In this episode, Devesh & Justin get to sit down with the one and only Travis Dow, host of the History of Alchemy podcast. Sit back and learn how some of history’s most notable figures got captivated by such theories.
travis-dowTravis Dow is the host for the acclaimed History of Alchemy podcast. Check out their show on iTunes to find out more!
Our first and special guest, Whitney Powell. Marathoner, Athlete, and filmmaker. Devesh & Justin get to sit down with the athletic icon from & Iron Will Productions and realize just how much each of them sucks at life. If you thought working out was only recreational, boy were you wrong!
whitney-powellI am a travel/adventure host, filmmaker, podcaster, and sponsored Ironman triathlete. With a serious affinity for adventure, a sweet Indiana Jones hat, and a passion for story-telling, my film "work" has taken me to the poles of the Earth and many places in between. I have raced and filmed in Antarctica, ridden camels in Morocco, stayed with Inuit people in Alaska, scaled the Alps and Pyrenees on vintage bikes with Phil Keoghan ("The Amazing Race"), chased cyclists across America, run along the beaches of Chile and with lions in Zimbabwe, been shark diving in the Caribbean, guided a blind marathon runner in Japan & Africa, and SO much more! With multiple national & international medals in rowing, marathons, & triathlons, I race competitively and teach athletes how to find sponsorships when I'm not building my empire or traveling. I'm super inspired by people who aren't afraid to fail, who go after their goals wholeheartedly (even when it sucks!), and who don't settle for "ok." Don't hesitate to find me on Facebook or Instagram! Any friend of Justin and Devesh is a friend of mine! 🙂
In this episode, Devesh & Justin get to sit down the the Scorpian Queen herself, Lauren Esposito. Listen as the three of them get into how science can take you around the world, and how diverse and fascinating arachnids can be. For the California locals, we also asked what dangerous bites we should look out for!
lauren-espositoLauren Esposito is the Assistant Curator and Schlinger Chair of Arachnology at the California Academy of Sciences. Esposito studies the patterns and processes of evolution in spiders, scorpions, and their fascinating venoms. In addition to her research, Esposito continues her passionate dedication to public engagement and science education. By empowering students and citizen scientists—both at home in the U.S. and abroad—Esposito helps share the inherent wonder in the scientific process of research and discovery. As part of her commitment to increasing global access to science tools and education, Esposito co-founded the science and education non-profit Islands and Seas. Her organization is currently building a global network of small research and education stations on islands and along mainland coastlines where local residents, scientists, and tourists can work together help conserve unique natural resources. Prior to joining the Academy, Esposito travelled extensively in the Caribbean region as a National Science Foundation postdoctoral fellow at the University of California at Berkeley, studying biogeography of arachnids in one of the most biodiverse regions on Earth. Her doctoral dissertation was completed at the American Museum of Natural History in collaboration with the City University of New York, and focused on the medically important North American scorpion genus Centruroides. When she’s not sailing around the Caribbean islands or trekking through forests at the intersection between South and Central America, she can be found basking in the fog at San Francisco’s Ocean Beach.
Buckle in. Because Devesh & Justin go toe-to-toe with The Pigeon, also known as Shayna Meikle. Owner of the Moxi Skate shop in Huntington Beach, and roller derby athlete extraordinaire. Check out how roller derby is played, the culture it incubates, and how this sport is taking over the world.
pigeonPigeon (born Shayna Meikle) is the owner operator of Beach Cities Roller Derby League and the Moxi Roller Skate Shop in Long Beach California. Previously a science teacher in inner city LA, she left her career to pursue her passion of roller skating. With 2 roller skating businesses currently under her belt, she is committed to spreading the love and benefits or roller skating worldwide. Catch her and the rest of her skate mates at the following media sites: INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK: @MoxiSkateShop @BeachCitiesRollerDerby @pigeonskate
Okay, make sure you drink your coffee before listening to this episode. We had the man himself, Dr. Ken Wharton, drop some serious knowledge on Devesh & Justin. “Brain dead” is an understatement to how this guy made our hosts feel, but learning about such cool physics makes this episode that much more awesome. And also, time travel. Why are you still reading this? Hit PLAY!!! Click here to view the reference materials.
ken-whartonDr. Ken Wharton is a professor in the department of Physics and Astronomy at San Jose State University.  His research is in quantum foundations, where he is working to develop explicit retrocausal accounts of quantum phenomena.  His popular-science writing has appeared in venues including New Scientist, Nautilus, and Aeon — and he even has a history as a science fiction author, having won the Special Citation of the 2001 Philip K. Dick Award.