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Rachel Dratch as the narrator of a Curtis Sittenfeld story about panda sex is perfect casting.

Jessie Gaynor

August 11, 2020, 10:45am

If the sex scenes in Curtis Sittenfeld’s latest novel had just a little too much Bill Clinton in them for your taste, perhaps you’d be interested in reading her latest short story, “Breeze Point,” in which the paramours are pandas in captivity? Even better, perhaps you’d like to have it read to you, by one Rachel Dratch?

Well, The Chronicles of Now is here to scratch your Sittenfeld animal-sex-prose itch! Technically, the podcast features fiction inspired by the news (“Breeze Point” features the real-life story of two pandas who had lived together in the Hong Kong zoo for over 13 years, only to mate when the zoo closed to the public due to Covid-19). Past authors have included Roxane Gay, J. Courtney Sullivan, and Ben Fountain.

I’m not sure why Dratch feels like such a perfect narrator for this story—maybe the slightly Debbie Downer aspect of a pandemic being the only thing that could get the two pandas in the mood? In any case, you can listen here.

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