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New York - The Unknown

  • The Wild Project 195 East 3rd Street New York, NY, 10009 United States (map)

The Story Collider is delighted to be participating in Idea Distillery's Festival of the Unknown! Join us for five stories of the mysterious, the ambiguous, and the just plain weird. 

Stories by:

Cara Gael O'Regan is an artist, health advocate, and podcaster who has more than two decades of lived experience with complex chronic illness and the chronic uncertainty that comes along with it. Her painting, Syndrome, was published in the Fall 2015 issue of The Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine. She is a Clue Ambassador for menstrual + reproductive health, and a 2016 Stanford Medicine X ePatient Delegate. Cara's podcast, In Sickness + In Health, features interviews with people about their relationships with their bodies and discussions about the intersections with chronic illness, disability, healthcare, and mortality. She tweets about life and living with chronic illness @bimpse, and you can find the podcast @InSicknessPod and at


Eben Kirksey studies the political dimensions of imagination as well as the interplay of natural and cultural history. Writing in collaboration with Stefan Helmreich he coined the term "multispecies ethnography" to describe new approaches for studying contact zones where the lines separating nature and culture have broken down.   He first went to West Papua, the Indonesian-controlled half of New Guinea, as an exchange student in 1998. Later his study of West Papua's resistance to the Indonesian occupiers and the forces of globalization morphed as he discovered that collaboration, rather than resistance, was the primary strategy of this dynamic social movement.  Eben has published three books: "Freedom in Entangled Worlds: West Papua and the Global Architecture of Power" (2012), "The Multispecies Salon" (2014), and "Emergent Ecologies" (2015).


Dale Markowitz is an engineer and data scientist at OkCupid, where she spends endless hours contemplating the mechanics of romance and attraction. She graduated from Princeton University, where she bounced from physics to math to neuroscience before landing on a major in Computer Science.  When she's not bugging people for stories about their online love lives, she can be found pondering math riddles or blogging at


Sandi Marx, a retired talent agent, has been telling stories all over NY and LA for the last two years. A seven time Moth champion, Sandi can also be heard on many podcasts such as Risk, Modern Story Mix, Soundtrack Series and many others. She's also just premiered her first solo show," You'll Be Sorry" part of the Dead Parents Club Festival for the Tank.


Rita Tavares is a pirate born in the country of Portugal. She crossed the Atlantic ocean to make it to America, where she anchored her ship in New York City after a period in the Pacific waters off of San Francisco. She has a day cover working as a neuroscientist and a poet. In both these activities she keeps a facade of solving the mysteries of the mind scientifically and artfully. In her science job, she discovered that the human brain "sees" our social environment in ways similar to how it encodes physical space. She is now investigating how these processes go awry in patients with psychiatric disorders. In her poetry, she uses her pirate persona to write about her travels and her love of lunatics.

Earlier Event: July 31
Cornwall, UK - Port Eliot Festival
Later Event: September 8
Swansea, UK - British Science Festival