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Minneapolis boy trolls NPR into talking more about 'dinosaurs and cool things'

Well done, Leo!

Leo's favorite dinosaur, the Concavenator.

An 8-year-old Minneapolis boy got his wish to talk about dinosaurs by simply trolling NPR's oldest show, All Things Considered.

Leo Shidla sent a letter to the show explaining that he listens in the car with his mom and that the show should change its name to "Newsy Things Considered" because they don't talk enough about "dinosaurs and cool things." He wrote: 

My name is Leo and I am 8 years old. I listen to All Things Considered in the car with mom. I listen a lot.

I never hear much about nature or dinosaurs or things like that. Maybe you should call your show Newsy things Considered, since I don't get to hear about all the things. Or please talk more about dinosaurs and cool things.



The Minneapolis boy's note garnered special attention, so much so that he was invited onto the show as a guest host to ask a paleontologist questions about dinosaurs. Leo asked why humans aren't as big as dinosaurs, if the paleontologist has discovered a dinosaur and what the expert knows about his favorite dinosaur, the Concavenator. 

You've likely seen all of the Jurassic Park movies and the Concavenator probably doesn't ring a bell. So what it is? According to Leo, it's basically a miniature T-Rex. 

"A really tall person might've been able to look it in the eye, but if it reared up, it could easily shadow you. And it would be really scary," the paleontologist explained to Leo. 

Leo is right about NPR not talking much about dinosaurs. NPR did a little digging and found that in All Things Considered's 50-year history the word "dinosaur" has appeared in stories only 294 times, while "senator" was found more than 20,000 times. 

Making up for lost time, NPR has since created a playlist for kids like Leo who are more interested in "dinosaurs and cool things." You can find it here

Leo's dream of becoming a paleontologist got even more real thanks to an invitation to help dig up dinosaur bones with the Bighorn Basin Paleontological Institute in Montana. 

"We're with you, Leo. Wherever you are, come out digging with us this summer!" the company wrote in a Facebook post. 

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