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Latest Work

For The Washington Post, I visited the home and ecological sanctuary of poet laureate W.S. Merwin on Maui.

For Slates Fast Food Week, I counted all the sad ways that Canadian McDonalds surpass American ones.

For The Atlantic, I covered how food delivery apps have taken over the restaurant industry.

For The Atlantic, I wrote about the rise of 15-minute groceries and history of fast delivery in the U.S. across the decades.


Over at WIRED, I wrote about the unholy union between Uber and taxi cabs and the trouble with disruption culture.

For Voxs truly wonderful Best Money I Ever Spent series, I wrote about the surreal joys of surveilling a stranger’s purchases.

For The Atlantic, I wrote about the rise of online sports betting and the experience of falling into a digital gambling vortex. 


For The Washington Post, I wrote about the 50th birthday of the Egg McMuffin and the decline of American entrepreneurship. 


wrote about the myth surrounding pandemic unemployment benefits and labor force participation for The Washington Post.


Heres a deep dive I wrote for Marker on the eerie, wild rise of ghost kitchens during the pandemic.

For Marker, I dove into Japans konbini culture and the future of 7-Elevens and convenience stores. 

Latest News


I joined 99% Invisible to talk about the social factors that brought about the birth of the fast-food industry.

I had a long chat on NPR 1A with Todd Zwillich about AI and  technology in the service industry.

I popped in on The Today Show to talk about the post-pandemic popularity of drive-thrus. 

I talked with Steve Inskeep on NPR Morning Edition about McDonalds corporate layoffs and the broader economic landscape.

Season 4 of The Food That Built America is now airing! Check me out across a handful of episodes here.


I joined Boston Public Radio to talk about my work on the gig economy, Uber, and the impact of tech disruption.

Catch me talking business and convenience culture in the new History Channel series The Fast History Of... Now streaming here.


joined Nuala McGovern at BBC Context to talk about the Super Bowl and the online sports gambling trend.

I’m talking fast food and 1980s trends on the reboot of the National GeographicThe ‘80s. (Now streaming on Disney+.)


I joined Christopher Kimballs Milk Street podcast to talk about the sad tale of defunct fast-food chains. 

I appeared on The History Channel’s latest season of Modern Marvels. Check it out here!

I talked about the good and bad of fast food with Dr. Marcia Chatelain on Ed Levine’s Special Sauce podcast. 


Dr. Marcia Chatelain and I discussed the fast-food franchises that disappeared for the Americas Test Kitchen podcast Proof.

I spoke with Tracy Smith for CBS Sunday Morning about drive-thru culture in the time of coronavirus. 

I joined the Gastropod podcast to talk about how McDonalds became a juggernaut and fast foods unlikely place in civil rights movement. 


Drive-Thru Dreams made NPRs list of favorite books.

Smithsonian Magazine picked Drive-Thru Dreams as one of the best food books of the year.


Amazon named Drive-Thru Dreams a Best Book of the Year.


Sarah Gonzalez and I talked about the history, technology, and future of french fries for NPRs Planet Money.

I joined the legendary Ed Levine for the Serious Eats podcast Special Sauce to talk food and writing. Part I | Part II


The great Houston Matters had me on to discuss the cult of Whataburger and Americas affection for fast food. 

I drove around with Derrick Shore of KPRCHouston Life and visited Whataburger, Taco Bell, and McDonalds.

I joined NPR/KCURCentral Standard to chat Kansas history and how White Castle transformed the hamburger into the national meal.

Louisa Torres of NPRs The Salt and I discussed the intricacies and complexities of Americas relationship with fast food.


Drive-Thru Dreams has been selected as one of the 10 Best Books of the Month by Amazon Book Review.

I joined NPR/KBUR’s On Point to talk Drive-Thru Dreams, American mobility, fast-food history, and Taco Bell.

Kate Bernot and I caught up about the culture and criticism of fast food for The Takeout.

Over at Vox, Rachel Sugar and I discussed how fast food explains national divides and offers unlikely meeting places.

I also talked about Drive-Thru Dreams and American history with Anna Diamond over at The Smithsonian.

Just ahead of its release, Drive-Thru Dreams was named a 

Publishers Weekly Pick of the Week 

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