Here's how to avoid awkwardness at 2021 holiday gatherings

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Holidays can be tough for families to get together and find common ground.

University of Chicago Vice President for Communications Paul Rand joined ABC7 to discuss which topics he recommends talking about during gatherings. He also recommended conversation starters to break any awkward silences.

Rand is also the host of the "Big Brains" podcast. From the science behind forming better habits to the reality that aliens might really exist, "Big Brains" takes complex topics and breaks them down into fascinating 20-minute episodes. It's been called a go-to resource for people who want to sound smart with minimal effort.

Rand additionally talked about what he likes about podcasts and recommended a few of his favorites.
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