Episode 50: FRIENDS

Wow. Once again, it only took me half a year to get a new episode edited. Just in time for the end of 2016! This episode is so appropriate for several reasons: 1) I’ve spent more than half a year working on a project about Friends (1994-2004) in my PhD program and 2) It’s our 50th episode! The milestone deserved a celebration of What Did You Look Up on Wikipedia’s journey. If I keep up this pace, you can look forward to our 100th episode in another 3 years!


We try our hand at news parody in some residual Goth makeup.

On one serious note, we are truly sorry to hear of Adrianne Wadewitz’s passing. Although we didn’t know her personally, we admire her dedication to gender issues on Wikipedia and her tireless editing. Our condolences to her family and friends.

Women’s History Month: Two Writers

Hey y’all. It’s Women’s History Month, AKA Womyn’s Herstory Month. In honor of that, we dressed up as writers Sappho and Anais Nin in our most recently recorded and soon-to-be-posted episode. Now, if you’re saying who? then you’re not alone. So we’re here to give you a little schooling à la Wikipedia:

SAPPHO was a Greek lyric poet who was born sometime between 630 and 612 BC.

Most of Sappho’s writing exists only in fragments and so what we know of her life comes from her poetry. Because her poetry included references to narrators infatuated with both men and women, the word sapphic derives from her name and lesbian derives from her birthplace, the island of Lesbos. Wikipedia notes, however, that neither of these words were used to reference homosexuality until the 19th century. Another hilarious fact is that during the Victorian Era, Sappho was sometimes referred to as the headmistress of a girls’ finishing school. If you’re looking to read some Sappho, I recommend Anne Carson’s translation in if not, winter.

ANAIS NIN (February 21, 1903 – January 14, 1977) was an author born to Spanish-Cuban parents in France. I don’t really like the construction of that sentence, but I just took it from Wikipedia. I mean, is anyone born an author? Anyways….

She is best known for her erotica, extensive diaries, and affair with Henry Miller. At one point, she was married to two men and kept important information under two different last names in a “lie box.” I’m guessing the best way to get start with Anais Nin are her diaries, but I’ve also read Delta of Venus and if you’re looking for erotica, Nin is one of the best.

WELL, now that you guys are wiki-educated on Sappho and Anaïs Nin, go check out some of their writing in preparation for Episode 30!

Episode 23: Lost Youth

We shot this during finals week and so we tried to channel our inner undergraduates by drinking Miller High Life, putting on some Minnesota gear to show school spirit while we complained about Uggs, R. Kelly and Lutefisk. Just in time for Festivus!

MUSIC: “Teenage Dirtbag” cover by Sammygee.

On another note, I (Kristin) would like to share with you one of the reasons why it took so long to post this. See, back at the beginning of December, one of my friends suggested that we look up and talk about R. Kelly because Ignition (remix) was a defining song of our generation, and who can forget SPACE JAM? Nothing like Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan coming together for the good of all mankind.

Then, this article in the Village Voice came out just as I was almost done editing the episode and it kind of stopped me in my tracks. It wasn’t that it was news to me – I’d heard about these allegations when they came out. But as the title of the article suggests, [re]reading it really punched me in the gut. It put it in a new light and I wasn’t sure what we should do. It felt wrong to gloss over the dark stuff, as we often do, because let’s face it, this shit’s not funny. I wondered if I should include any of the R. Kelly section we’d recorded. In the end, I did, but I also left in things that we would normally cut if the conversation around R. Kelly and sexual assault hadn’t started up again.

I wanted to take this opportunity to link to sexual assault resources in the Twin Cities area, compiled by the Aurora Center at the University of Minnesota.

Safe and happy holidays to everyone from us here at What Did You Look Up on WIkipedia?

We’re Still Here! Want to give us some suggestions of what to look up?

What Did You Look Up on Wikipedia? will return shortly, we promise. We’ve just been a little behind since Thanksgiving, but we’re trying to make it up to you with these holiday portraits, for one:

If you’re a fan of Awkward Family Photos, you might also like…

For our next shoot we’ve chosen a College Finals/Winter/Minnesota theme mainly because we can wear yoga pants and snow boots and drink Miller High Life. Do you have any related topics you’d like us to look up? Leave us some suggestions in the comments or on Twitter or Facebook. You can also send an email to whatdidyoulookup (at) gmail (dot) com.

Episode 22: A Very Peanuts Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, America! Maybe you are a little Charlie Brown, and will mope about no matter what, but that’s okay, we still love you.

Music: We used a snippet of Charles B by ChristopherHall. This song is licensed under a Creative Commons Licence.

p.s. Episode 21 (The Batman-sode) is temporarily offline pending a change of music, but we’ll let you know when it’s back online!