Spotlight feature

Monday, October 24, 2016

UCI Libraries to Host Second UCI Zinefest in Partnership with UCI Illuminations, Cross Cultural Center and LGBT Resource Center


Irvine, California, October 19, 2016 – The University of California, Irvine (UCI) Libraries will host its second Zinefest, during International Open Access Week October 26, 2016 on the Orange County campus. In partnership with UCI Illuminations: The Chancellor’s Arts and Culture Initiative, Cross-Cultural Center and LGBT Resource Center, the Zinefest will encourage students, faculty, staff and community members to engage in creative expression through magazine making.

During the event, from noon to 4 p.m., Orange County zinester duo, ZebraPizza will be on-site to help guests create zines. Completed zines can be contributed to the UCI Libraries Special Collections and Archives or kept for personal use. “Irvine is a college/business town that could really use some more zine flavor. As a former KUCI DJ (#DJZibaZ 2000-13) I see a real need to document music and student culture,” states Ziba of ZebraPizza Zine.

Special presentations will also be given by Emilee Mathews, Research Librarian for Visual Arts and Jeanne Scheper, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Gender and Sexuality Studies. “I love to use Zine and “DIY” [do-it-yourself] practices in the classroom - students are savvy consumers in our image-driven ‘society of the spectacle,’ but zine-making allows them to also be inventive cultural critics. They make their own images and project new ideas into a world they invent — one that is often driven by social justice, community-building, and the playful imagination of possibility, and not just profit,” says Professor Scheper.

Additionally, library curators will highlight zines from the growing collection in Special Collection and Archives. This display will include newly created zines donated to the UCI Libraries from the annual Orange County Zinefest held this past August in Santa Ana, California.

A zine is defined as a small circulation of self-published work of original or appropriated texts and images usually reproduced via photocopier. The primary intent of publication is usually not for profit and instead serves as a communication vehicle for various subcultures or social justice movements, which draw inspiration from a "do-it-yourself" philosophy.

About UCI Libraries:

As one of the founding academic units on campus, the UCI Libraries connect users—faculty, researchers, scholars, students, staff or community members—to information resources, facilitating the creation, preservation, and sharing of knowledge in all disciplines. The Libraries support the research needs of UCI and the community through the Libraries’ website and at four library facilities: the Jack Langson Library, the Francisco J. Ayala Science Library, and the Libraries Gateway Study Center on the UCI campus, and the Forest J. Grunigen Medical Library in Orange. For more information on the UCI Libraries, visit

About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 30,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $5 billion annually to the local economy. For more on UCI, visit


Good buzz generated for this new documentary about the curative power of bees

BEVERLY HILLS, OCT 4 2016 -- “The BEE KEEPER”, a documentary short film by director Briana Gallo, will make its festival debut as part of the 12th Annual LA Femme International Film Festival in Beverly Hills on Friday, October 21, 2016.

“The BEE KEEPER” tells the story of Ed “Doc” Ziegler, a retired dentist living in a small town in New England. 35 years ago, he discovered apitherapy - the power of bees to heal - both physically and mentally. He now devotes his life to beekeeping and shares the curative powers of bee venom with his community. His neighbors and friends recount their own recovery stories and loving thoughts about this kind and humble man who, at the age of 97, is still tending to the needs of his ‘patients.’

First time filmmaker Briana Gallo is a fine art photographer and philanthropist. She believes in the power of photography to inspire hope and understanding, and to connect people around the world, as well as in our local communities. She has travelled to places like Honduras and Ethiopia, using her photography to support non-profits working to improve local lives. Briana uses her photography to open doors around the world, pull viewers outside their comfort zones, elicit tears and smiles, and make people say "I never knew."

The 13 minute documentary will be shown on Fri. Oct. 21 at the Laemmle’s Music Hall Theater, Venue 2 at 10 am. The theater is located at 9036 Wilshire Blvd in Beverly Hills.

The film can only be seen as part of the festival, however tickets to the Festival include all screenings and can be purchased online at

For more information on the film or to schedule an interview with Briana Gallo, please contact Deborah Gilels, LA Media Consultants at 818- email to

Featured Writer-Director Cevin Soling and his highly anticipated documentary, The Gilligan Manifesto at 9:30am PST today!


Writer-Director Cevin Soling’s highly anticipated documentary, The Gilligan Manifesto, will be the Saturday night presentation at the La Femme International Film Festival on Oct. 22 at 6 pm at Laemmle’s Music Hall Theater Venue 2 in Beverly Hills.
If you missed Cevin Soling on today's show, listen here!

Just one year after the Cuban Missile Crisis, radio and television writer Sherwood Schwartz began filming his comedy classic Gilligan's Island, which depicts seven Americans shipwrecked on a deserted island.

Soling’s film reveals that this seemingly innocuous sitcom was actually an analogue for a post-apocalyptic world where survivors had to rebuild civilization as this was a major concern during the Cold War where many families had fallout shelters in their homes. What is even more shocking is that the society the castaways create is founded on Marxist Communism. Soling’s revelation was published in the prestigious academic journal, Americana: The Journal of American Popular Culture.

To convert his article into a feature documentary, Soling interviewed creator Sherwood Schwartz. He also spoke with Russell Johnson and Dawn Wells, who played the Professor and Mary Ann, and several professors from Harvard.

“Sherwood Schwartz often noted that he conceived Gilligan’s Island as a social microcosm where people from all walks of life would have to figure out how to get along,” Soling said, “but he confessed to me, in his last interview, that the show was deliberately designed as lowbrow humor in order to conceal its political message. For this reason, American audiences never realized that the show celebrates Marxism and lampoons Western capitalism and democratic governance.”

“The most transgressive message conveyed by Gilligan’s Island is that it shows how much better off people are in under true communism – not the dictatorship government the Soviets and McCarthyites called communism. The characters that represent the pinnacle of success in capitalist society – the millionaire and the movie star, become whole people and establish social bonds that they never could have otherwise. On the island, their lives cease to be empty.”

La Femme board member Deborah Gilels served as associate producer on the documentary which was edited by Joe Davenport and narrated by Rennie Davis, who, along with Abbie Hoffman was a member of the Chicago Seven. David Jackson’s Showcase Entertainment is selling the worldwide rights.

Cevin Soling produced and directed the first theatrically released documentary on education, The War on Kids, which was honored as the best educational documentary at the New York Independent Film and Video Festival and has been broadcast on The Documentary Channel and The Sundance Channel.

Soling wrote, produced, and directed Ikland, which documented his efforts to rediscover the lost Ik tribe of northern Uganda, who were famously disparaged in the early 1970s as the worst people in the world. The film won Best Documentary Content at the Boston International Film Festival and was heralded by the NY Times and other major media outlets. Last year, he completed Mr. Cevin & the Cargo Cult, a documentary about a tribe in Vanuatu who worship America, and is currently working on The Summer of Hate, a documentary on the Beatles’ controversial observations on religion and racism during their tour of America in 1966.

At the height of the Cold War, Gilligan's Island depicted seven Americans living in an analogue of a post-apocalyptic world where the survivors have to rebuild civilization. Remarkably, the society they create is pure communist. Interviews with the show's creator and some of the surviving actors, as well from professors from Harvard, reveal that Gilligan's Island was deliberately designed to be dismissed as low brow comedy in order to celebrate Marxism and lampoon Western democratic constructs.

Briana Gallo joined me at 9:15am to talk about her film “The Bee Keeper."

If you missed Briana Gallo on today's show, listen here!

Briana Gallo’s “The Bee Keeper” tells the story of Ed “Doc” Ziegler, a retired dentist living in a small town in New England. 35 years ago, he discovered apitherapy - the power of bees to heal - both physically and mentally. He now devotes his life to beekeeping and shares the curative powers of bee venom with his community. His neighbors and friends recount their own recovery stories and loving thoughts about this kind and humble man who, at the age of 97, is still tending to the needs of his ‘patients.

WATCH the trailer here.


"Courage is the power to let go of the familiar."

Briana Gallo is a Fine Art Photographer as well as a Photo Philanthropist. She currently lives and works in La Jolla, CA. She believes in the power of Photo Philanthropy to inspire hope and understanding, and to connect people around the world, as well as in our local communities. She visually articulates the mission of non-profit organizations in a compelling manner through Fine Art Photography. She believes in people’s interest in knowing more, in understanding better, in seeing the story, which can then lead to action and involvement.

In 2011, her travels took her to Honduras to work with Shoulder to Shoulder and the town of Guachipilincito. In 2012, she traveled to Cuba, where she captured the stories of the Cuban people and their vibrancy of life. 2013 she worked on a piece for Make It Right, a non-profit in the Lower Nine area of New Orleans focusing on housing for Katrina Victims. She is currently working on a number of projects in heart of the Omo Valley, Ethiopia. Each experience has inspired her to search for those communities where there is a story to be told. Briana forges real connections with communities when she shoots turning her lens into a bridge rather than a wall.

She is currently a member of the New Hampshire Art Association. She has had juried pieces in the PhotoPlace Gallery in Vermont. She has attended two juried Fine Art shows – The Foundry in Pawtucket, RI and the Mystic Art Festival in Mystic, Connecticut. She also has pieces published in the PhotoPlace Gallery Books–Self Portrait, City Streets & Country Roads, Portraiture: Expression & Gesture, The Golden hours Dawn and Dusk, The Art of Travel Photography. Briana was featured in Omo Magazine in 2014. Her Cuban series is currently in the Emerald C Gallery, Coronado, CA.

Briana uses her photography to help people see through a variety of lenses. To open doors to what is surrounding us, both locally and abroad. The emotion she captures in her photography pulls viewers out of their comfort zones, provokes questions, brings smiles to ones face, tears to ones eyes, and makes one say, “I never knew.”

Alexandra Horowitz joined me at 9am PST to talk about her fascinating book, BEING A DOG: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell.

If you missed Alexandra Horowitz
on today's show, listen

Scribner is delighted to announce the publication, on October 4, 2016, of Alexandra Horowitz’s BEING A DOG: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell. In her New York Times bestselling Inside of a Dog (2009), Horowitz revealed the often surprising evolutionary reasons behind why dogs behave the way they do; in BEING A DOG, she explores what dogs know in even greater depth, following their lead to learn about the dog’s spectacular nose and how we mere humans can improve our under-used sense of smell. The result is a revelation about the world that we share.

In BEING A DOG, readers will learn how well a dog can smell versus how well a human can smell. We humans are what Alexandra and her fellow scientists call microsmatic, i.e. “poor smellers,” compared to dogs. We have a mere six million olfactory receptor cells in our noses, whereas dogs have between 200 million and a billion, depending on the breed. Here’s another comparison: Human beings have three receptor genes that allow us to see all the colors of the world. Dogs have some 800 receptor genes just for smell. In theory, they can smell billions of different odors. We therefore have a very difficult time understanding what dogs can do with their noses because most of us can’t even tell if what burnt in the kitchen this morning was the coffee or the toast.

So what, exactly, can dogs smell? Amyl acetate is the chemical that gives bananas their smell. Dogs can smell one drop of the chemical in a trillion drops of water. Dogs smell earthquakes before they happen, and rainstorms miles away. They have been trained to find explosives, land-mines, chemical accelerants, missing people, underwater cadavers, drugs of every type, counterfeit goods, illicit cell phones in prison and imported shark fins in suitcases, dry rot, termites, fire ants, bed bugs, truffles under the ground, and dairy cows in estrous. They smell what you had for breakfast and whether a cat touched your leg yesterday. They can smell cancer, both inside human beings and in lab samples. They can smell their way home, the time that has passed since a flower closed up, and the body under the rubble.

BEING A DOG delves into all of these remarkable abilities and more, revealing a whole world of experiences we miss every day. Horowitz, inspired by her dogs, tries to be a better smeller. She spends days smelling everything her dogs smell. And she volunteers at an olfaction lab at Rockefeller University (sniffing hundreds of bottles of scents per session.) It is not that we humans can’t smell; it’s that we largely don’t. Based on the biological facts alone, the major determining factor in whether we smell an odor or not seems to be just this: whether we bother to try and smell it.

Writing with scientific rigor and her trademark wit, Horowitz changes our perspective on dogs – and smelling – forever. Readers will finish this charming and informative book feeling that they have broken free of human constraints and understood smell as never before; that they have, however fleetingly, been a dog.

Alexandra Horowitz is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Inside of a Dog: What Dogs See, Smell, and Know and On Looking: A Walker’s Guide to the Art of Observation. She teaches at Barnard College, where she runs the Dog Cognition Lab. She lives with her family and two large, highly sniffy dogs in New York City.

Visit her website:

More praise for BEING A DOG:

“I’m not entirely certain whether Alexandra Horowitz’s BEING A DOG has made me want to buy a dog or morph into one—but I do know that it was magical. Horowitz has crafted an utterly engrossing, witty, finely-observed narrative that will make you look at the power of the nose in a wholly new way.”—Maria Konnikova, author of The Confidence Game and Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes

Saturday, October 22, 2016


: The 12th Annual La Femme International Film Festival closing ceremony will host a Red Carpet & Awards Ceremony on October 23, 2016. The evening will begin with award nominees, our honorees and celebrities walking the red carpet and culminate in an after party following the ceremony.

This year we will celebrate and honor the accomplishments of Aisha Tyler (The Talk) - Lupe Ontiveros Image Award; Gina Torres (Suits) - Visionary Award; Wendie Malick (Just Shoot Me) - Humanitarian Award; Connie Stevens (Prairie Bones) - Lifetime Achievement Award; and Kerris Dorsey (Ray Donovan) - Rising Star Award.

WHY: The LA Femme Film Festival Awards Ceremony is attended by celebrities, Hollywood insiders, filmmakers and invited guests. Other celebrity guests may include Laurence Fishburne (Black-ish), Joely Fisher (‘Til Death), Dan Lauria (Pitch), Alfre Woodard (12 Years a Slave), Meredith Baxter (Famiy Ties), Robert Patrick (Scorpion), Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica) and many others.

WHEN: Sunday October 23, 2016
Red Carpet (6 pm – 7 pm)
Awards Ceremony at 7 pm
WHERE: Los Angeles Theatre Center

514 S. Spring St., Los Angeles, CA 90013

Deborah Gilels 818-758-6509 or Lisa Lyons 818-726-8199

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Deni Ellis Béchard, author of Into the Sun, joined me Monday at 9:45am PST

If you missed Deni Ellis Béchard
on today's show, listen

Kabul—Ten Years After 9/11: After a car explodes in the city, a Japanese-American journalist discovers that its passengers were acquaintances—three fellow expats who had formed an unlikely love triangle—and becomes convinced that a deeper story lies behind the moment of violence. The investigation that follows takes the journalist from Kabul to Louisiana, Maine, Québec, and Dubai, from love to jealousy to hate—and acutely reveals how the lives of individuals overseas have become inseparable from the larger story of America’s imperial misadventures.

About Deni Ellis Béchard

Deni Ellis Béchard is the author of the novel Vandal Love, winner of the 2007 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book; Cures for Hunger, a memoir about growing up with his father, who robbed banks; and Of Bonobos and Men, winner of the 2015 Nautilus Book Award for investigative journalism. His work has appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, including the LA Times, Salon, Pacific Standard, and Foreign Policy, and he has reported from India, Iraq, Colombia, Rwanda, the Congo, and Afghanistan.