Joseph Cooper

Host Topical Currents

WLRN Radio's Joseph Cooper says producing and hosting Topical Currents is the most rewarding experience of his long radio career, which began at the University of Missouri School of Journalism in the 1970s.

"It's now an obsession, but I never thought talk radio would be in my future. The wide, wide range of topics, research and reading keeps me hustling all week," he says. "It's similar to a daily newspaper column because, essentially, we write an essay to frame each show before conducting the interviews and taking calls and then it all starts over again for the next day's program."

Topical Currents is put together by a small production team, which includes producer Richard Ives and technical director Bonnie Berman. Syndicated food and dining columnist Linda Gassenheimer frequents the program, as well as a handful of expert regular contributors and regional reporters.

Topical Currents is a sub-tropical blend of regional issues and politics, local profiles, author interviews, "At Your Service" programs, South Florida history and any topic listeners might banter about around the proverbial "water cooler." It was first broadcast in January 1999.

Cooper is often asked to name his "favorite" interview subject.

"Hmmmm," he says with the hint of a smile. "Not necessarily the celebrities or famous authors but the one I've just done. Well usually.

Ways to Connect

4-27-2017 Linda Gassenheimer, with Irvin Lin, author of Marbled, Swirled & Layered, his cookbook of homemade cake and cookie twists.

Are you tempted by a beer-battered brownie?

(4-27-2017) Today’s Topical Currents begins with an ongoing program to reach the Miami-Dade stray and free-roaming cat population. 

It’s the COMMUNITY ACTION TARGETED TRAPPING INITIATIVE.  Teams of volunteers trap kitties . . . for neutering and release.

amoise@miamidade.gov

pets@miamidade.gov

305-418-7193, or dial 311

(4-25-2017, originally aired 1/4/2017) Today’s Topical Currents is with a self-proclaimed “difficult person,” Sarah Elliston.

She says most “hard to get along-with” people have no idea they’re such.  Clueless.

Once she saw the light, she changed . . . and began to help other “difficult” types take on different exteriors.

Perhaps her message will resonate with . . . YOU.  

(4-24-2017) Today’s Topical Currents looks at the Key Clubhouse of South Florida, which helps those with mental illness disorders reintegrate into the workplace and community.

Key Clubhouse is a close-knit membership group of adults living with mental illness.  Some 42-percent are employed, and have greatly improved physical and mental health, plus reduced occurrences of psychiatric hospital stays.

www.keyclubhouse.org

305-693-3508

(4-20-2017)  Joining us today is Mark Kelly, PR manager for Lodge Cast Iron.  Cast Iron Cooking has become very popular.  Handled right, cast iron skillets are naturally nonstick.  We’ll talk about what they are, and how to use and care for them. (You might remember that Ken Lyon uses only cast iron skillets in his restaurant.)  Linda brings pizza and cookies made in cast iron skillets for us to taste. 

Restaurant news with Matt Meltzer

Dinner in Minutes:

Onion Mushroom Pizza

www.dinnerinminutes.com

(4-20-2017) Today’s Topical Currents begins with info about Earth Day events you might attend.

For one, there’s Saturday’s Baynanza Biscayne Bay Cleanup, at more than 20 locations in Miami Dade.  We have details.

(4-19-2017)  Today, we explore the deep and ancient connection between humans and the domestic cat, with natural history and conservation writer Thomas McNamee. 

Some people consider cats as aloof creatures.  That they mostly depend on us for but food and shelter. 

Not so, says McNamee.

His latest book is, THE INNER LIFE OF CATS:  The Science and Secrets of Our Mysterious Feline Companions.

(4-18-2017) What fundamentals drive memorable advertising campaigns?  How will social media and ecommerce evolve to sway our perceptions and product choices?

Today’s edition is with F-I-U Professor of Advertising, Margo Berman.  Her years in the business cover all aspects.  She even formed her own ad agency. Professor Berman’s written numerous books, including The Blueprint for Strategic Advertising, and The Copywriter’s Toolkit.

(4-17-2017)  Today’s Topical Currents is devoted to the rich history and culture of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

An unincorporated territory of the United States in the Caribbean Sea, Puerto Ricans are natural-born citizens of the U-S.

We’ll get an overview of Puerto Rican past and present from F-I-U Anthropology Professor Jorge Duany, author of PUERTO RICO: What Everyone Needs to Know.

(4-13-2017)  Today we speak with David Grutman.  He’s the managing partner of LIV at the Fontainebleau, Story and Komodo Restaurant and his newest restaurant concept OTL in the Design District. We’ll discuss his new concept at OTL and the booming Miami nightlife. He also brings food for us to taste.

(4-13-2017) It's another “Doreen’s Deals” segment, with  Sun-Sentinel consumer columnist, Doreen Christensen.  Get tips for discount tickets to Miami Marlins baseball, as well as a myriad of saving offers on “tax day,” this year on April 18th.

www.sunsentinel.com/shop

www.sunsentinel.com/allstar

(4-12-2017) Never has our culture been as child-centric as today—yet never has childhood been as strained and structured as now.  Kids are considered “adults-in-training” and may have plans for college by the third grade.

We visit with author, educator and philosopher Christopher Phillips, PhD,  whose latest book is, THE PHILOSPOPHY OF CHILDING, which promotes the joy of being a child . . . at any age.

(4-11-2017) Today’s Topical Currents addresses our most vital South Florida issue:  protecting the fragile groundwater and ecosytems essential to drinking water and human health.

South Florida has been deemed the “ground zero” of sea level rise.

We have experts on hand to discuss threats to our aquifer, salt water intrusion and rising waters . . . and what innovative solutions can be created to mitigate them.

(4-10-2017) At first thought, being a game warden would be a fairly mundane vocation, mostly to check fishing and hunting licenses, or finding a lost hiker or canoer.

Today’s Topical Currents is with Bob Lee, who’s spent 30 years as a Florida wildlife officer.  We’ll hear about shoot-outs, rescues and powerboat chases from his book, BAD GUYS, BULLETS AND BOAT CHASES:  True Stories of a Florida Game Warden.

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