This page has screen-reader accessible transcripts of the Stories from the brainreels podcast episodes. The show is 30-65 minutes long, and used to be hosted on blogtalkradio.com. It focuses on interviews with disabled artists and activists and occasionally people who work with people with disabilities. We also talk about disability arts and culture news.
What do we lose when we have a narrow view of what makes a good radio voice? Who is excluded? Why do we make these choices? Disability Visibility Project founder Alice Wong talks diversifying radio by including actually disabled voices on the air.
Vilissa Thompson, LMSW talks about #DisabilityTooWhite, #BlackDisabledGirlMagic, Black Disabled Woman Syllabus, Ramp Your Voice!, and other intersectional empowerment work for disability community with a focus on Black disabled women.
Audio from a presentation AJ Murray and I gave at the Disability As Spectacle conference through UCLA’s Disability Studies program. We talk about Black, disabled sexuality in US fiction film. (Hint: It’s not there.)
Feminist disability justice activist and scholar Sara M. Acevedo talks about disability justice, disability studies, and identity. We also critique Gloria Steinem and Meryl Streep in their harmful, ableist depictions of disability and madness in their attempts to critique the 45th President.
Severe TBI survivor Joan Miller and I share some short stories and perspectives about brain injury, politics, motivation, and community.
Jane Vogel of Age & Gender Equity in the Arts and Gigi Williams talk about the upcoming Unconscious Bias: Achieving Gender Equity symposium in March, 2017. They take an intersectional approach to gender equity and talk about the importance of good representations in the media.
Social justice engineer, activist-attorney, and founder of HEARD (Helping Educate to Advance the Rights of Deaf Communities) Talila “TL” Lewis talks about disability solidarity, deaf and disability justice, the school-to-prison pipeline, Deaf art and more.
Blind illustratrix Sabine Rear and installation artist Arianna Warner, who has invisible disabilities, talk about crip comics, crip zines, and how to create, archive, and talk about disability and accessibility in comics.
I interviewed award-winning independent media makers Elaine Velasquez and Barbara Bernstein on KBOO Community Radio’s Bread and Roses feminist news and public affairs show. We focused on their new food justice documentary “Gaining Ground.”
Critical disability studies student and dog lover Michael Miller talks about his brain tumor, neuroplasticity, culture, and neurojustice.
Gigi Williams, Ashley Nichole Williams, and Dori Lyon talk about “Angela’s Sacred Heart,” ending violence and sexual assault, and women’s empowerment.
Theater artist and filmmaker Sue Perlgut talks about her work in the original feminist theater collective in the 1970s to today’s multi-media storytelling work.
I talk with Leslie Gregory, primary care provider, founder, and president of Right To Health to discuss racism as a public health threat and what we can do to heal as a nation.
I talk with Cathy Sparkes and Sam Simpson who are speech-language therapists and counselors in the UK. They practice rehab from the Social Model of Disability in the UK.
I chat a little more with The Backstrokes founder Anne Tillinghast and play disabled activist Laura Hershey’s poem, “You Get Proud By Practicing.”
The founder, volunteers, and members of The Backstrokes play music and talk about music, aphasia, and life after stroke. This is an open community group for people with aphasia, friends, family, and professionals who work with people with aphasia.
- SFTB 045: OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon Transcript, December 22, 2015: Keith Scholz and Jared Franz on transit justice
Keith, of Bus Riders Unite, and Jared, former Policy Director, talk about OPAL Environmental Justice, transit justice, gentrification, and thoughtful civic engagement.
I talk about Sojourner Center’s initiative around TBI and domestic violence (BRAIN program) and British sports concussion guidelines. Mild TBI should be considered a social justice issue.
- SFTB 043: E Amato Interview Transcript, November 2, 2015: Poet and performer talks about feminism and trauma
E Amato talks with me about unapologetic feminism, trauma, healing, art, and social justice. She writes for The Body Is Not An Apology and runs the Zestyverse and Zesty Pubs.
Caitlin Wood and I had the great pleasure of talking about how feminism can be more inclusive of the disability community, art, and activism on the Bread and Roses Collective radio show on KBOO Community Radio.
A documentary filmmaker captures his first foray into discussing being a lifelong stutterer, explores family, and demonstrates the power of peer support.
Blogger Jackie Pilgrim shares a series of moving stories about powerful relationships with animals from childhood to the present.
- SFTB 040: Theodore James and AJ Murray Interview Transcript, September 4, 2015: Documentary producer and star
Producer Theodore James and performer AJ Murray talk about disability representation in the media and the documentary “Becoming Bulletproof.”
- SFTB 039: Brain Energy Support Team Transcript, August 5, 2015: Peer-led brain injury support organization in Washington
I talk with four people from the Brain Energy Support Team about their innovative and dynamic, peer-led work supporting the brain injury community across Washington State.
I’m starting a new storytelling segment with short stories from the disability community. My story looks at the odd ways we feel a sense of community around disability sometimes.
- SFTB 037: Sonya Lea and Richard Bandy Interview Transcript, July 1, 2015: Husband and wife memoirists
Richard Bandy sustained a severe anoxic brain injury 12 years ago due to a mistake in surgery for cancer. He and his wife have written an intimate, deep memoir about love, sex, relationship, and identity, “Wondering Who You Are.”
Sarahjoy talks about her personal journey to finding yoga for personal peace and social justice, teaching adaptive yoga to the disability community, including persons with disabilities who are incarcerated, and her book, “Hunger, Hope, & Healing.”
Lauren Marks had a stroke at age 27 when an aneurysm that she didn’t know she had ruptured in her brain. We talk about her experiences with the language disorder called aphasia, her volunteer work with others who have aphasia, and her new memoir “A Stitch Of Time.”
Nina G. Comedian talks to me about her new one-person show, the new comedy compilation album by The Comedians with Disabilities Act, and the strangeness of being PC around disability.
- SFTB 033: Did I Stutter Interview Transcript, April 3, 2015: Discussion with founds of the Did I Stutter Project
Josh St. Pierre, Erin Schick, and Zach Richter who co-founded the Did I Stutter Project talk about celebrating stuttered speech instead of loathing it or needing to correct it in speech therapy. They discuss the stuttering pride and social justice community in the Did I Stutter Project.
- SFTB 032: Irene Sutton and Britta Geisler of the BeYou-ty Pageant Interview Transcript, March 25, 2015: University of Portland students new event
Irene and Britta are redefining women’s beauty not by trying to get rid of beauty pageants all together, but by creating one that represents their ideals of female beauty: confidence, pride, accomplishment, and empowerment.
- SFTB 031: Caitlin Wood and Cheryl Green Presentation Transcript, March 11, 2015: “Cripping Capitalism”
Caitlin and I presented a 90-minute session at the 34th annual Lewis & Clark Gender Studies Symposium. This recording is 54 minutes of the presentation. (The rest was a group activity and Q and A.)
- SFTB 030: Sue Pelzer and Karen Green Interview Transcript, February 11, 2015: I chat with my mom and twin sister about family experiences around brain injury
I talk with my mom and twin sister about our perceptions, interactions, and perspectives with me as the person with TBI and them as family members. We reflect on how my short comedy film based on personal narrative was what broke down many misunderstandings and got us talking better.
I talk about disability access in the media, what we’re doing for the documentary, services that I can provide other media makers, some great upcoming guests on the show, and local brain injury news.
Karen and John Krejcha of the non-profit Autism Empowerment talk about the importance of having an Autistic- and ally-run organization that centers the voices and experiences of people in the Autism and Asperger’s communities. We talk about philosophies behind why the started the organization and the many ways they work with and influence the community.
I update folks on my services creating more disability access in the media and why I make media accessible, and some of the guests coming up in the new year.
- SFTB 026: Jane Hash Interview Transcript Mini-cast, October 10, 2014: Disability arts blogger, podcaster, and documentary film star
Jane Hash runs a blog and podcast, Hash It Out With Jane. Today we talk about making disability documentaries from within the disability community.
- SFTB 025: William Greer Interview Transcript, October 1, 2014: Festival Coordinator at Cinema Touching Disability through Coalition of Texans with Disabilities
William Greer started the Cinema Touching Disability film festival in 2003 to highlight how disability is represented in the media and to bring more awareness to the activist, advocacy, and legislative work done by the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities. We also swap stories about TBI humor.
- SFTB 024: Jennifer Pepin and Chris Foster Interview Transcript, September 1, 2014: Artists who run the J. Pepin Art Gallery for artists with mental illness
Jennifer Pepin and Chris Foster are artists who live with mental illness. They have a gallery in the Pearl District of Portland, OR, that features fine arts by artists with mental illness. This month, the gallery turns 1 year old.
Sarah and I talk about her experiences working in disability services, becoming disabled from a stroke in her 20s, and how those two experiences have led her to a much more nuanced, political view of disability and work in the services field. Sarah and I talk about blogging, brain injury, work, and the weird ways in which non-disabled people misunderstand the disability community.
Please note, many of these early episodes have been archived. While the audio is no longer available, the transcripts are still here!
Jade talks about her life, racism in school and in the film industry, and her unstoppable dedication to social change and social justice through film. Her work always prominently features Deaf actors of Color. Through documentary film, narrative fiction, and community cultural events, Jade brings first-hand perspectives to film and TV that are sorely missing.
- SFTB 021: Bittin Foster Duggan Transcript Transcript June 6, 2014: Artist with traumatic brain injury leading collaborative, expressive art workshops for healing
Bittin talks about her own journey in recovery, exploring her ideas and emotions through art, family support and her business, Growing Through It. She’s been leading collaborative arts workshops over 20 years. In the show, she describes the layout of the healing arts workshops.
- SFTB 020: David Parkin Transcript, May 2, 2014: Artist with traumatic brain injury and clinical depression from the U. K.
David talks about writing his new book, “The Next Life,” humor, and “Good Friday: The Clinical Depression Concept Album Show.”
- SFTB: 019 Vince Diorio, Taylor Harris Transcript, April 4, 2014: Cognitive rehab specialist (Vince) and Speech-language pathology student with ADD (Taylor)
Vince began a professional arts exhibition for artists with brain injury in the New Jersey area 11 years ago. Taylor discusses humor and navigating school and disability identity.
- SFTB 018: Marilyn Lash transcript, March 21, 2014: Co-founder of Lash & Associates Publishing and Training
Marilyn talks about experiences of TBI in her family, starting the publishing company of training and resource materials, and how she creates a space for peers with brain injury and their family and care partners to be considered respected experts in the field.
- SFTB 017: Craig Sicilia Transcript, February 21, 2014: Brain injury survivor and prolific, multi-media activist and advocate for holistic peer support from Washington State
Craig talks about his own journey in finding support for recovery and the wide range of services he has helped to start and run for other survivors.
- SFTB 016: Derek Amato Transcript, February 7, 2014: Former businessman who turned musical genius (savant) after a mild traumatic brain injury
Derek talks about his life, activism, spirituality and passions.
- SFTB 015: Cynthia Lopez Transcript, January 1, 2014: Co-director and Producer of Who Am I To Stop it
Cynthia and I chat about her work as a filmmaker, what brought her to work on a brain injury documentary, and how we communicate around disability.
- SFTB 014: Caitlin Wood, Kathy Coleman, Lavaun Heaster, January 3, 2014: Three influential disabled women artists
I talk with three disabled women in Portland who have influenced and shaped my concepts of disability identity, disability culture, and the arts. They share about their views and their artistic projects and pursuits.
Rick and I riff on whatever pops into our heads, play a sarcastic version of Disability Olympics (Blind versus TBI), and discuss media representation of disability.
Jackie is an Autistic mother of an Autistic child. We talk about diagnosis and treatment disparity around race and class, her art and self-expression, and bust myths about the Autistic community.
I talk about how and why I co-produced a short film series called “The Tablet Shorts, Out” with three folks with disabilities from brain injury. I also talk about a presentation I’ll be giving at this month at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s annual convention on using patients’ stories and personal values to guide cognitive rehab.
- SFTB 010: Cavin Balaster Interview Transcript, October 16, 2013: Musician and memoirist Cavin Balaster
Cavin talks about his upcoming memoir, “Lights, Coma, Action!” We also talk about his injury, various surgeries and treatments, vision therapy, and how music and his mother’s love and dedication saved his life. Warning: very dark, wry brain injury humor!
- SFTB 009: Cheryl Coon Interview Transcript, October 4, 2013: Social Security lawyer specializing in brain injury
Cheryl Coon discusses how to avoid mistakes and problems for people with brain injury filling out SSI/SSDI benefits applications. She also discusses being the parent of a child with disabilities and her book “Books to Grow With,” a resource for children’s books that have strong, affirmative characters with disabilities and illness.
- SFTB 008: Caitlin Wood Interview Transcript September 6, 2013: Disabled author, activist, trainer talks about disability culture
Caitlin and I talk (mostly I talk) about her work in affirmative disability cultural work, training, editing the innovative anthology “Criptiques,” and how humor serves us well in dismantling oppressive attitudes. You’ll also hear snippets of her electronic music throughout.
- SFTB 006 and 007: David Kracke Interview Transcript, August 2, 2013: Personal injury lawyers specializing in TBI
Dave and I chat about brain injury legislation and advocacy, arts, and understanding in this two-part conversation.
- SFTB 005: Brandon Scarth, Jeff Black, Nicki Sinner Interview Transcript, July 5, 2013: Three artists with TBI in a group art show
Three short conversations with artists in a group show I curated at Splendorporium and who have all been interviewed for the documentary “Who Am I To Stop It.”
- SFTB 004: Brent Pudsey Interview Transcript, June 3, 2013: Brain tumor survivor and disability advocate
Just in time for National Brain Injury Awareness month in Canada, I talk with Brent Pudsey, who does a lot of training and advocacy in the disability community around employment and independent living.
- SFTB 003: Lady MJ Warrior Interview Transcript, August 16, 2013: Krip-Hop Nation artist with brain injury in the UK
Lady MJ Warrior and I talk about her music, Krip-Hop Nation, fighting for brain injury and disability awareness, and we hear her music.
T. Alika Hickman was a signed hip hop artist when had two aneurysms rupture and a stroke. She has become a motivational speaker, author, documentary filmmaker, community organizer, and has returned to recording hip hop.
This is the first episode of the podcast. I talk about why I started the show and talk about some new concussion recognition legislation in the Oregon Senate. My guest is Jeff Black who does minimalist pen and ink drawings and sustained a severe TBI several years ago.