Crude Conversations

Crude Conversations

”Crude Conversations” features guests who represent a different aspect of Alaska. Follow along as host Cody Liska takes a contemporary look at what it means to be an Alaskan. Support and subscribe at www.patreon.com/crudemagazine and www.buymeacoffee.com/crudemagazine

Episodes

June 10, 2024 66 mins

In this episode of Chatter Marks, Cody talks to Dehrich Chya and Angela Gonzalez about the cultural importance of Sasquatch. Dehrich works at the Alutiiq Museum in Kodiak and Angela is an Athabascan artist and writer. Dehrich’s perspective is of coastal Alaska. He says that the Alutiiq people call Sasquatch or Bigfoot creatures Aula’aq, and its temperament ranges from being a threat to being a menace to being used as a cautionary t...

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In this one, Cody talks to Jory Knott. He’s the Executive Director of the Alaska Innocence Project. The Alaska Innocence Project started in 2008 under the direction of Bill Oberly, and it took seven years for them to get their first exoneration — it was the Fairbanks Four case, in which four Alaska Native men were wrongly convicted of murder and subsequently spent 18 years in prison. Jory says that case involved a number of factors...

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In this one, Cody and co-host Aurora Ford talk to Heidi Huppert. Aurora is a former journalist and currently works at Covenant House Alaska; Heidi is the Chief Program Officer at Covenant House. Heidi’s perspective on homelessness in Alaska is unique because, in her younger years, she spent time on the streets of Anchorage. Her mom had a violent and abusive boyfriend and Heidi didn’t feel safe at home. So, one night after an especi...

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In this one, Cody talks to Buddy Bailey. In the late 1990s, Buddy became the face of his dad’s furniture business, Bailey’s Furniture. He was 7 years old when he appeared in his first commercial — the crew filming it realized that the furniture itself didn’t have much character, so they suggested that Buddy get in front of the camera. He was a natural — his charisma and affability came easy. He’d chat about furniture and deals, and...

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In this one, Cody and co-host Aurora Ford talk to Josie Hayano. Aurora is a former journalist and works at Covenant House Alaska; Josie is a member of the United States Advisory Council on Human Trafficking, a presidentially appointed position. She was the first Alaska Native person to be on the board. Every member of the board is a human trafficking survivor and advises and makes recommendations on federal anti-trafficking polici...
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For years, Shyanne Beatty has wanted to move back home to Eagle, Alaska. It’s where everything started for her — her love for culture, language, art and music. Today, she sits on her property in Eagle, along the Yukon River, and she imagines herself as a young girl, running down the river banks with about 20 sled dogs or trapping marten out at 40 Mile or walking to school, singing to herself to ward off any curious wildlife. Reflec...

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Mario Chalmers is part of a small group of Alaskans to be drafted to the NBA, including guys like Carlos Boozer and Trajan Langdon. He’s won championships at every level: Two high school championships, one NCAA championship — the one where his 3-pointer put the game into overtime, with his team taking the win — and two NBA championships. He was in the NBA for nine seasons — seven years for the Miami Heat, one for the Memphis Grizzl...

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In this one, Cody talks to Anthony Black and Jerry Smyth. They both grew up skateboarding in Anchorage in the ‘90s, before there were really any designated areas for skaters. Besides summer skateparks like the one in the outside Ben Boeke ice rink and the Girdwood skatepark, 40 miles outside of Anchorage, spots were few. So, in the summer they skated places like Abbott Loop Elementary, Hanshew Middle School and the flatbank and bo...
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February 23, 2024 88 mins
In this one, Cody talks to Dan Egan, better known as IG. In 1986, he started IG Boarding Shop. At the time, he was competing in big wave surfing, but there really wasn’t much money to be made in it. So, he thought, instead of trying to be in the contests and scraping by, maybe he’ll just make surfboards for all surfers he knows. His surf shop soon blossomed into a full retail store and for 25 years IG made and sold his own surfboa...
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Angela Gonzalez is an artist and a writer, and through her beadwork, her blog — the Athabascan Woman Blog — and the Fish Camp Barbie dioramas she creates, she shares her heritage. She says that it’s all a reflection of the way she grew up. Fish camp was a big part of that. As a kid, that’s where she spent most of her summers, about 16 miles from her home in Huslia, along the Koyukuk River. While the adults were harvesting the fish,...

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In this one, Cody talks to Robert Stark. He’s a former army infantryman and the author of Warflower, a book about his upbringing in Alaska and his time in the military. His upbringing was a turbulent one — his dad was absent, his mom struggled with addiction, his brother spent time in prison and his step-dad is serving life in prison for murder. He says he was known as the kid with the family of degenerates — people who drank alcoh...

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In this one, Cody talks to Paralympic sit-skier Andrew Kurka. From the very beginning, he was pushing his limits. He was the first sit-skier to ride down Christmas Chute at Alyeska, an in-bounds run with a 45-degree pitch that narrows to about 15-feet. And he’s never been afraid to get hurt. He’s broken his back, his ankles, his wrists, ribs, arm, femur. For him, fear doesn’t factor into his process. When he’s pushing out of the ga...

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In this one, Cody talks to Kaitlin Armstrong. She’s the host of The Alaska Myth, a podcast that deconstructs the stories created during the Russian settlement and European colonization of Alaska that began in the mid-1700s. Utopian settler stories, stories of the rugged outdoors, ones of monetary opportunity and ones of lawlessness. These stories — often embellished or completely fabricated — have informed the Alaskan identity and ...

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December 20, 2023 37 mins
In this one, Cody talks to two Alaskans about Christmases they’ll never forget. The first story comes from Beau Schooler. In 1990, he was living in Big Lake when his family was awarded a moose from the Alaska Roadkill Salvage Program. At the time, Beau’s family didn’t have much money, so the moose provided them with a hearty Christmas dinner, as well as meat that lasted them throughout the winter. It was an experience that would e...
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In this one, Cody talks to Christopher Michlig. He’s a visual artist and a professor at the University of Oregon, and he recently released a book titled "File Under: Slime." In it, he traces the origins of the idea of slime back to the early 1900s, with associations to ectoplasm, femininity, and sexuality. In his research, he found that people like HP Lovecraft and John Paul Sartre helped solidify the concept of slime within philo...
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In this one, Cody talks to professional basketball player Travante Williams. He says that everything in his life started with the environment he grew up in, in East Anchorage. There was good and there was bad. However, at times, the bad seemed to overshadow the good. His family, and many other people he grew up around and even looked up to, struggled with addiction and were in and out of prison. So, he had a fear of falling into th...

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In this one, Cody talks to professional wrestler Sarah States, better known as Freya the Slaya. She says that she’s always gone by Freya, that her wrestling character, or gimmick, started out as more of a viking and then it transitioned to an Arctic Amazonian woman — tall, strong and assertive. The Queen of the North. And it all started in Palmer, Alaska. She’s from Fairbanks, so she would have to drive six hours to Palmer to do s...
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In this one, Cody talks to professional poker player Adam Hendrix. He learned to play poker when he was a kid, at his grandma’s house in Homer, Alaska. Every time he would visit, he’d play penny poker with his aunts and uncles, but what really got him interested in it was the first time he watched the ESPN World Series of Poker Main Event coverage. It was filled with these unique characters — boisterous and stone-faced — sometimes ...

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Kristin Alford is a futurist and the director of the Museum of Discovery, or MOD., in South Australia. She says that MOD.’s main objective is to showcase innovative research that imagines multiple futures. This idea of imagining multiple futures involves anticipating where society and nature might be headed based on past and current trends. She says that it’s about understanding and recognizing opportunities, risks and downsides, a...

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The premise of this conversation is based on a question that Aaron Leggett — the president of the Native Village of Eklutna and the Senior Curator of Alaska History and Indigenous Culture at the Anchorage Museum — and Cody are curious about: What happens to Alaska when oil is no longer economically viable for the economy of the state? Aaron says that his hope for the future is that people will have a better understanding about the ...

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