Podcasts

The
Retrofuturist
Chronicles

What is retrofuturism? The future as seen from the past? The past as seen from the future? Or perhaps just nostalgia for a time when innovation was looked on with romance and optimism. In nearly every aspect, the world today is better than at any other time in human history. And our future? Our future is in the hands of today’s youth. Tune in and be prepared to journey to the limits of technology.

Disclaimer: The Retrofuturist Chronicles podcast is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Season 1 | 12 Episodes
Join 12-year-old Miranda and her kind-of-crazy retrofuturist spinster Aunt Natalie for these fantastic tales of innovation across industries. Her stories have just enough truth to be intriguing and uplifting. At the conclusion, host Helen Dwight separates the patently nonsensical from the nearly unbelievable reality.
  • The Real Story
    Direct-to-Penguin Sales
    Embracing the Direct-to-Consumer Model
    12-yo Miranda decides to become a social media influencer. This prompts Aunt Natalie to tell how the secret sisterhood to which she belongs once spearheaded a rescue mission to Antarctica to find a group of researchers who got lost looking for the lost city of the Elder Things. The rescuers included a waddle of 300 penguins.
  • The Real Story
    A Tale of Two Crises
    Reinventing for a Customer-Driven Era
    Miranda is upset with a group robotics project that's in jeopardy due to an apparent lack of teamwork. Miranda’s struggles trigger Aunt Natalie’s memories of how her secret sisterhood were called in to help two villages, one in Bavaria and the other in Bohemia, that had an ongoing, centuries-long battle about which made the best pretzels.
  • The Real Story
    Oil and Water
    Learning to Compete as an Ecosystem
    Miranda informs her Aunt Natalie that she’s trying to make bombs, but she’s stressed because it’s not going very well. To Aunt Natalie’s relief, they’re bath bombs made with essential oils. This triggers one of Aunt Natalie’s outrageous memories of trying to separate water into hydrogen and oxygen in an attempt to build a water engine as part of Winston Churchill’s Special Operations Executive.
  • The Real Story
    Lost Memories and Other Oxymorons
    Insights on Embracing the Experience Economy
    Miranda panics when she loses her private journal. Aunt Natalie finds it ironic that her niece can’t recall where she put a journal of thoughts she’s written down so that she won’t forget them and tutors her niece on the “disappearing object phenomenon.” She relates a tale of when she helped find a crude oil tanker that had vanished in the Bermuda Triangle.
  • The Real Story
    Tapped Out
    Capitalizing on Advanced Capabilities to Reinvent Government
    Miranda is overwhelmed by an upcoming dance competition. Aunt Natalie steps into a spare pair of tap shoes to help her master the Double Maxi Ford Toe with a Pullback while distracting her with a memory of her secret sisterhood who were called in to help when an evil man once infected an entire town with choreomania, or “the dancing plague.”
  • The Real Story
    Watered Down
    Shifting Government’s Focus to the Service Experience
    After a 15-km hike, a dehydrated Miranda fears using the water fountain that's surely been infected with E. coli, histoplasmosis, salmonella, and viral encephalitis from raccoons and pigeons. Aunt Natalie attempts to distract her with a fantastic tale of the secret sisterhood who once helped a tiny country reinvent itself after the death of a corrupt dictator.
  • The Real Story
    On the Fly
    Making Higher Learning More Intelligent
    Miranda accidently destroys a reel for a microfilm reader and foresees a bleak future as the entire world learns she’s completely obliterated a part of history. Aunt Natalie tries to distract her by relating an account of her time at Poland’s “Flying University” when future Nobel laureate Marie Curie was her lab partner.
  • The Real Story
    Crises and All That Jazz
    Making Education More Intelligent
    Aunt Natalie devises a random crisis-generator app connected to Miranda's phone via IoT, thus ensuring that she can keep her niece safe and prepared. She claims she got the idea from a troupe of legendary South African jazz musicians who used their improvisational skills to help the different departments of a university collaborate more effectively to manage crises.
  • The Real Story
    Pranks a Lot
    Miranda decides to play a small prank on Aunt Natalie, and fortunately her aunt has a great sense of humor about it. However, Aunt Natalie takes the opportunity to advise her young niece about the distinction between constructive and destructive behavior by relating a story about an innocent prank phone call that went terribly wrong.
  • The Real Story
    Dog Gone
    Miranda has a panic attack after allowing her neighbor’s Great Dane to escape. Fortunately, Aunt Natalie keeps her head and regales her niece with another extraordinary tale, this one about a dog that foiled his own dognapper via a smart speaker attached to a dog vest. The dog had been trained to make certain sounds that the vest's chatbot had been programmed to interpret. Much to the dognapper's dismay, the speaker even had a GPS associated with it.
  • The Real Story
    I Scream
    Aunt Natalie implores Miranda to give back to the world by volunteering for a research study on ice cream headaches and the adolescent brain. Already cranky by having to complete a detailed intake form, Miranda is less-than-pleased to learn that she's expected to eat fish-flavored ice cream before being strapped to a table with her head in a restraint. Miranda declares she has limits to how giving she can be.
  • The Real Story
    It's Always Great
    As the season concludes, Miranda reveals her project to help her friend who suffers from Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. Aunt Natalie is so moved that she suggests her young niece pledge to join the Cosmopolitan Retrofuturistic Innovators’ Secret Investigative Sisterhood. But Miranda's excitement is short-lived when she learns that her beloved aunt is leaving.