What's on DNTO: August 21

We have a complicated relationship with the insect world... on the one hand, our planet wouldn't function very well without it. On the other hand, so many of us are completely freaked out by it. So what to do? In an encore episode, we look close to the ground to figure out why we feel the way we do about bugs.

Read on to find out what's on this week, or listen to the "Your DNTO" version of the podcast by clicking the player below. (You can also download the podcast here, or get the enhanced version from iTunes).

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One thing insects can do is help us bond with each other... over our terror of insects. Brothers Jose and James Lourenco tell us how they combined forces to battle the terrifying arachnid in their basement.

Sook-Yin has not always been a fan of bugs (see pics here). But like most people, that may just be because she doesn't understand the insect world all that well. So we'll ask Aaron Steacie of Creepy Crawlers Express to introduce Sook-Yin to some new multi-legged friends.

Some people say that there are only two different kinds of bugs in Canada: regular bugs and northern bugs. Jennifer Quist knows that all too well. For years, she lived in Fort McMurray, where a certain bug called the "tarsand beetle" terrorized her... but not for the reasons you'd expect.

Everyone's got a bug story... so Sook-Yin will take her mic to the streets to get yours.

Have you noticed that when people talk about bugs, it's always 'That spider was as big as my hand!" or "There were a HUNDRED cockroaches in my old basement apartment!" Why is it that when it comes to bugs, we tend to really, really, exaggerate? We'll get the answer from CBC science guy Pat Senson, author of Nasty, Brutish, and Short: The Quirks and Quarks Guide to Animal Sex and Other Weird Behaviour.

We all have to deal with bugs on a daily basis, but few of us have been confronted by mile-wide columns of marching insects headed straight for our homes. Elaine Parks is the exception. Every year, her tiny Nevada hometown is invaded by an outbreak of Mormon crickets. She'll tell us how the town deals with the swarm... and how it's inspired her art.

When you work with insects, you see the world in a slightly different way. You also find yourself doing things you never thought you would - like, say, leashing a fly. We'll hear from "insect wrangler" Jim Lovisek.

Sook-Yin tells us why her relationship with the insect world is fraught not only with a bit of fear, but also a lot of guilt.

Sleep tight, and don't let the bedbugs bite - because once they do, bedbugs can have a profound impact on your waking life as well. DeAnne Smith will tell us about dealing with her own bedbug infestation.

"Nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I'm gonna eat some worms!" You're probably familiar with that kids' song. 'Cause everyone knows eating bugs is icky and wrong. Right? Well, David Gracer wants you to rethink that. He'll tell us why entomophagy - i.e., eating bugs - may be the next big thing.

When you go to war with the insect world, do you change the bugs... or do the bugs change you? Diane Flacks will explain why her fight with fruit flies left her believing the latter.

If Ruby Jean was a character in a children's book - instead of a Halifax dance diva - then The Thoughtful Bees would be her woodland companions, instead of her band. Rebekah Higgs of Ruby Jean and the Thoughtful Bees will reveal the story behind the name of the band, and spin us an unreleased tune.

Killer bees, killer centipedes, killer ants, killer flies, killer moths... the movies sure have given bugs a bad name. So why would someone who studies bugs for a living want to start a film festival devoted to "killer insect" movies? We'll find out when Sook-Yin chats with May Berenbaum, entymology professor and founder of the Insect Fear Film Festival. (And for more on maligned insects, check out May's new book, The Earwig's Tale: A Modern Bestiary of Multi-Legged Legends).

And here's this week's playlist:

Jonathan Richman - "Hey There, Little Insect"
The Flaming Lips - "Buggin'"
The New Pornographers - "Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk"
Chic Gamine - "Butterfly Woman"
Danko Jones - "Active Volcanoes"
Sarah Harmer - "Captive"
Psapp - "Eating Spiders"
Plants and Animals - "The Mama Papa"
Gorillaz - "Some Kind of Nature"
Ruby Jean and the Thoughtful Bees - "Cold Hearted"

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