Gina Kaufmann

Host, Central Standard

Gina’s background combines print and broadcast journalism, live event hosting and production, creative nonfiction writing and involvement in the arts. Early in her career, she followed a cultural beat for The Pitch, where she served as an editor and art writer in the early 2000s. She also worked as a contributing editor of Heeb magazine out of New York, assisting with the Heeb Storytelling series and ultimately starting her own live storytelling event series in Kansas City. Gina got her public radio chops working first as an intern for KC Currents with Sylvia Maria Gross, then as a co-host of The Walt Bodine Show. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and her Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia.

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Central Standard
2:43 pm
Mon October 20, 2014

Money Therapy: Riding Out The Waves Of The Markets

2014 has seen all time highs in stock and bond markets. But last week took investors on a roller coaster, with the Dow erasing its gains for the entire year. So how are investors and their advisors responding to the volatility? And is the answer to that question different than it might have been before the recession?

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:53 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Composer Jeffrey Ruckman Knows His Tools, His Obsessions And His City

Jeffrey Ruckman's Kansas City home is full of instruments, familiar and unfamiliar.
Credit Paul Andrews

When Central Standard thought about asking Jeffrey Ruckman to create new theme music for the show, one of the things that made him appealing was his masterfully offbeat, genre-bending tendency.

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Central Standard
12:49 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Art Spiegelman and Phillip Johnston On Comics And Jazz

Art Spiegelman is rarely 'Wordless!', even though that is the title of his traveling production with musical collaborator Phillip Johnston.
Credit AFP

Art Spiegelman has been called the father of the graphic novel, though it's a title he resists. And composer Phillip Johnston has been a fixture in the New York underground music scene since the 1980s. The friends and collaborators teamed up on a performance (coming to Kansas City October 19, 2014) that, according to Johnston, is like a high school class slideshow lecture on LSD. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:07 pm
Wed October 15, 2014

Same-Sex Couples In Kansas Navigate Legal Gray Area

There's been a lot of ambiguity in the laws surrounding same-sex marriage in Kansas, with Johnson County clerks first given a green light to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, and then swiftly given the red light in short order. So how do couples evaluate their options while the state is in limbo? And what's happening in the courts right now? 

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:34 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

When The Storm Outside Triggers A Storm Inside: Severe Weather Phobias

"I know this one person will drive two hundred miles away to get out of the path of a possible thunderstorm that may happen a few days in the future." - Karen Multon
Credit MattysFlicks / Flickr, Creative Commons

When storms roll in, some people rush to the window to watch, while others are rushing to the basement. What is the difference between a healthy fear of weather and out-of-proportion anxiety? A mother and daughter professor duo have combined their expertise in the separate fields of geography and psychology to investigate severe weather phobias.

Guests:

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Central Standard
1:43 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Kansas City And Baltimore Public Radio Nerds Face Off

It's been a memorable season for the Royals, and city spirit is reaching all-time highs.
Credit International Business Times

Two underdog cities have made it to this year's American League Championship Series. The intensity among baseball fans in both Kansas City and Baltimore has reached a fever pitch. Public radio staffers have caught the bug; hear a little trash talk, public radio style.

Guest:

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Central Standard
1:09 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

Kansas City's Immigrant Communities Feel The Pull Of International Crises

At the Liberian service at the Lutheran Church of Our Redeemer in Kansas City, Mo., parishioners are concerned about Ebola in their home country, and the stigma of the disease here.
Credit Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Syria, Liberia and Ukraine are places most Kansas Citians know through news reports. But for immigrants from these countries, headlines aren't the half of it; friends, relatives and even memories remain in places left behind. Sound and stories take us around Kansas City, and around the world, as experts on the transnational experience add perspective. 

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Central Standard
1:00 pm
Fri October 10, 2014

Kansas And Missouri Nuts, From Tree To Plate

Who doesn't love a nut?
Credit Lady Dragonfly CC - >;< / Flickr, Creative Commons

Little-known fact: It's chestnut harvesting season in Kansas. So what's the scene at the local chestnut orchard? And how are chefs using the overall nut bounty in area kitchens?

Guests:

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Central Standard
4:32 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Searching For Complexity: Portrayals Of American Indians In Film

"Daughter of the Dawn" is the first film in a series of Friday night screenings at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art this fall.
Credit Courtesy: The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

"We're still here," says Gaylene Crouser of the Kansas City Indian Center. That's one of the many things she'd like people to understand about American Indians, a detail they might not pick up from mainstream movies. How have recurring characters on-screen shaped our perceptions of what it means to be indigenous in America? 

Guests:

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Central Standard
9:04 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

Tiny Glow In The Dark Crustaceans Gain Notoriety For KU Biologist

The tiny ostracod is almost eaten by the much larger fish, but the cardinal fish spits the ostracod out once the ostracod begins to emit light. Exactly why this causes the cardinal fish to spit the ostracods isn't known, but there are theories.
Credit BBC

They've been called fish fireworks, and their glowing displays are like nighttime light shows on the water. Ostracods are a very old species of crustacean with a trait called bioluminescence. That's a fancy way of saying they light up, like fireflies. But unlike fireflies, ostracods have extracellular bioluminescence. They shoot light out of their bodies and into the water. The behavior is part mating ritual, part defense mechanism.

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Central Standard
2:25 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

The Kansas Budget: Two Perspectives On The Numbers

Credit www.tradingacademy.com/ / OTA Photos, Flickr

The Kansas budget has been in the national spotlight ever since Governor Sam Brownback signed dramatic tax cuts into law in 2012. Over the past several months, tax revenue has been coming in at lower levels than the state projected. Not surprisingly, the two sides of the political spectrum view the resulting conundrum differently. 

Guests:

  • John Hanna, reporter, The Associated Press
  • David Trabert, Kansas Policy Institute
  • Duane Goossen, former Kansas budget director
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Central Standard
2:25 pm
Mon October 6, 2014

Mixed Emotions: The Complex Logic Of Feelings

An emotional reaction begins with a set of reflexive messages originating in the brain. It happens faster than thought and is beyond our control. But what we do with that emotion and how long we hold onto it beyond the initial reflex? That's another story.

Guest:

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Central Standard
4:14 pm
Fri October 3, 2014

Lawrence's Rock Wizard: Paul DeGeorge Of Harry And The Potters

Paul DeGeorge wouldn't be Harry Potter without his accessories.
Credit Paul Andrews

Paul DeGeorge and his brother Joe have been writing and performing songs about the trials and triumphs of wizards-in-training since 2002. They look disorientingly similar, and both wear v-neck sweaters and neck ties. Their band, Harry and the Potters, has inspired its own genre: "wizard rock."

It was the younger brother, Joe, who first read the Harry Potter books. In his early 20s when the first books in the series came out, Paul, the older of the DeGeorge brothers, picked them up out of curiosity; he immediately related to the Harry Potter character as a punk.

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Central Standard
3:02 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

Sexual Assault On College Campuses: A Look At Kansas And Missouri University Policies

A recent sexual assault controversy has shaken the campus of the University of Kansas in Lawrence.
Credit Tristan Bowersox / Flickr, Creative Commons

California just passed a law establishing "yes means yes" as the statewide standard for consent, and President Obama recently issued a message to the nation calling assault on campus "an affront to our basic humanity." In the wake of some controversial local cases, where do local universities stand on this issue, and what are students saying?

Guests:

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Central Standard
5:47 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Hidden Treasures From Kansas City's History

This photograph from the Black Archives of Mid-Americahe shows the winning 1908 Lincoln High School football team.
The Crosthwaite Family Collection The Black Archives of Mid-America

When historians hope to uncover a new wrinkle in the past, they usually head to an archive. They dig through boxes and folders containing photographs, letters and other artifacts, looking for something that sheds new light on the past. Here are a few little-known gems, selected by Kansas City archivists.

Guests:

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Central Standard
3:18 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

How Kansas City Relates To Its Jazz Legacy

Charlie Parker, one of Kansas City's most legendary saxophonists.
Credit Gottlieb, William P./Wikimedia-Creative Commons

In the 1930s, Kansas City was a place where talent and history converged, resulting in a whole new sound that jazz aficionados continue to study today. But how does that past inform Kansas City's present day jazz scene?

Guests:

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Central Standard
1:30 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Why Jazz Fans In Denmark Feel A Connection To Kansas City

Was Kansas City-born Ben Webster "king of the tenors" as this album title suggests?
Credit mohaoffbeat.blogspot.com / Creative Commons

Ben Webster hated to fly on airplanes.

When he went to Europe to perform for his fans across the Atlantic, the trip was one-way. 

A contemporary of Charlie Parker, Webster grew up in Kansas City, Mo., right off of 24th Street. He taught himself to play the piano at a young age, and started his career performing as a pianist for silent films. It wasn't until he was about 20 years old that he took up the saxophone.

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Central Standard
4:29 pm
Mon September 29, 2014

Meet The Teachers Of Some Unusual Classes At UMKC's Communiversity

Cathy Cowger is an EAGALA certified equine specialist.
Credit Patrick Quick / KCUR

The fall semester of Communiversity is getting underway at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. This all-volunteer adult education program allows Kansas Citians to take and teach a collection of esoteric classes that you may not find anywhere else. 

Central Standard's Gina Kaufmann talked to a few of the instructors, everyday folks with unusual skills to teach.

Let Horses Help You With Your Life Transition

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Central Standard
4:16 pm
Mon September 29, 2014

Royals Fans Adjust To Winning

KCUR's membership coordinator Kathleen Connaghan-Gross has a Royals sign her cousin picked up at the parade commemorating the team's 1985 win.
Credit Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

For the first time since 1985, the Royals have made the playoffs, finally putting an end to the longest post-season drought in professional baseball history. How are fans and city officials adjusting to the possibility of winning?

Guests:

  • Greg Echlin, freelance sports reporter, KCUR
  • Mark McHenry, Kansas City Parks and Recreation
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Central Standard
4:00 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

Smoking Meat In Kansas City, Past And Present

Greg Beachner at the converted bread oven-smoker he shares with about a dozen friends.
Credit Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Pork butts to the left of us, briskets to the right: that's one way of describing Kansas City's culinary geography. Join us on a visit to a Kansas City home with a smoker out back, and a chat with a food photographer who traced Calvin Trillin's famous footsteps with his own burnt-end odyssey

Guests:

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Central Standard
5:07 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Understanding Recent Child Migration From Central America

In the last year, there was a nearly 100% increase in the number of unaccompanied child migrants crossing the United States-Mexico border. The result has been a humanitarian crisis on the border, a crisis that has an impact throughout the country, including in Kansas City.

 

Guests: 

  • Jennifer Harbury, immigration attorney, author and human rights advocate
  • Angela Williams, Kansas City immigration attorney, Angela L. Williams, LLC
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Central Standard
2:42 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Miguel 'Mambo' DeLeon On Afrocuban Rhythm And His Time In Kansas City

Miguel DeLeon has been a fixture and driving force in Kansas City's Latin music scene.
Credit elmamboworld.com

Miguel DeLeon is a man of many aliases. To some, he's El Mambo. To others, El Pionero. After nearly three decades leading Latin bands and teaching music in Kansas City, he moved to Phoenix, but he's back for a visit, playing gigs and teaching an Afrocuban drumming workshop. 

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Central Standard
5:20 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Are You Going To Eat That?

We asked Kansas Citians for their questions about food safety, and we got an earful. A food scientist answers questions about 10-year-old frozen chickens and more.
Credit Wikipedia, Creative Commons

We live in a world where there's something remarkable about a clean plate after a meal. But that's just one small piece of the food waste equation. Visits to farms, a meat processing plant, a compost heap, grocery stores and Kansas Citians' kitchens help us understand why there's so much food nobody's eating. 

For more information about food safety, check out this handy chart from the USDA.

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Central Standard
1:41 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

Understanding Domestic Violence

Twenty years after the Violence Against Women Act, the Ray Rice scandal has prompted new conversations about domestic violence. What don't most people understand, from the outside looking in? And who decides what's best for victims?

Guests:

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Central Standard
5:33 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Randy Regier: The Poetic Mechanics Of Art

Artist Randy Regier in his Wichita studio
Credit Paul Andrews

Randy Regier didn't grow up making art.

"I gave no thought to art," he recalls. 

But he did use his imagination to conjure his own reality, which is an artistic process.

"I didn't have much in the way of purchased goods," he says. "I didn't live near a store, so I wasn't one of those kids who could haunt a store after school. ... There was a world of objects out there, and I lived in a world of dirt and chickens and tractors."

One of his prized toys was actually a farm combine.

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Central Standard
1:59 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Rehabbing Kansas City's Historic Homes: The Rewards, The Challenges

Kansas City is full of beautiful old homes, albeit in need of a little TLC. Investing in a home that's listed on a historic register or located in a historic neighborhood brings a closer connection to the city and its history, as well as a unique set of challenges.

Guests:

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Central Standard
10:16 am
Wed September 17, 2014

New Trends In Taxidermy

The new shop Oracle opened a little over year ago in the Crossroads.
Sylvia Maria Gross KCUR

In recent years, taxidermy has bust out of hunter's dens and natural history museums to become a new trend in home decor, as well as a way to remember pets.

Guests:

  • Anthony Eddy, owner, Eddy's Wildlife Studio
  • Maxwell Ryan, founder and CEO, Apartment Therapy
  • Cindy Cunningham, taxidermist, Second Creation Taxidermy
  • Jane Almirall, artist and shop owner, Oracle
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Central Standard
12:40 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

We Walk The Line: What It Means To Live In A City On A State Line

This 1866 map shows the division between Kansas and Missouri at a time when western Kansas was still largely unknown to the map-makers.
Credit Johnson, A. J., Johnson's New Illustrated Family Atlas, (1864 Johnson and Ward edition) / public domain

Bistate tax proposals. Sports rivalries. Competing school districts and business poaching. So much of what happens in Kansas City comes down to our location on a state line. But we're not alone. Tune in for a roundtable of reporters from cities on state lines. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
12:48 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Kansas City Artists Are Defining 'The State Of The Art'

Miki Baird, Kansas City, Mo. 'swatch...the weft and warp of red walker' (2010 - 2012)
Credit E.G. Schempf, courtesy of the artist and Haw Contemporary, Kansas City, Mo.

Curators from Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Ark., set out on a road trip to find the most compelling unknown artists hidden away in studios across the country. About a thousand studio visits later, artists had been selected for The State of the Art exhibitTwo Kansas City artists made the cut. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:26 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Pass The Pawpaw: Foraging For Missouri's Banana

The pawpaw fruit continues to ripen, just off the hiking trails at Burr Oak Woods located in Blue Springs, Mo.
Credit KCUR's Gina Kaufmann

You know how sometimes you stumble across a word you've never heard before in your entire life, and then suddenly, the word is everywhere? That happened to me with the pawpaw.

I was born and raised in Missouri, so discovering in my thirties that a random fruit with a made-up-sounding name is considered my state's own banana? That came as a shock (though, to be fair, it's also known as the Indiana banana and the West Virginia banana). 

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