With this month being a kind of un-official Podcast Awareness Month, I wanted to share my daily digest of podcasts. Podcasts have been a lifesaver for me. I ride the train an hour to and from work and I get carsick if I try to read or play on my phone. Audiobooks and podcasts make my time on the train almost indispensible. It's awesome.
News ~ Fun
I listen to these podcasts every day. This is my news source and I'm very happy with it. I enjoy the follow podcasts at 2x speed.
This New York Times show is a short and refreshing news podcast. Featuring interviews with the journalists who right the stories and as much raw audio as possible, this podcast feels like a behind-the-scenes, close-to-the-metal look at the news. Short and impressive.
This is my balancing act. Another short news podcast from the political experts at the Wall Street Journal. This source is the most conservative in my feed and provides an essential foil to a lot of the other sources I use. They also discuss political strategy, which is always interesting.
The only long-form news podcast I'm recommending. This podcast from Vox has a name that rings true: they do like to get into the weeds. The shows focus on one piece of legistation or topic and dive deep. They also end most shows by diving into a relevant research white paper. It's probably the most liberal-leaning podcast in my digest, but it provides great depth. Honestly, I can't get enough of what Vox is doing, their video content especially.
This was largely my sole source of news for the two years leading up to the election. Short and witty, this show is impressive in its ability to provide a new interview each day. Wide ranging in topic, but often bookended with political news. Facts up-front, interview in the middle, opinion at the end. And puns. Oh so many puns.
When I want to slow down and enjoy myself, these are the podcasts I turn to. They are enriching in different ways and deserved to be enjoyed. I play the following at their intended 1x speed.
While a lot of these podcasts in this list make me more informed and makes me feel smarter, the memory palace from Nate Dimeo makes my life richer. This podcast features some of the best writing I come across on a regular basis; it's nearly poety. Occasionally it might actually be poetry. Also, absolutely do the Met episodes at the Met.
Favorite episode: Episode 70: Developments in the Design and Manufacture of American Menswear 1840-1860, a Fable
If you don't know what this show is by now, just go listen. It's, like, the most popular podcast for a very good reason. Relaxing and smart.
Favorite episode: Ten Thousand Years
A new podcast that takes modern myths and problems (hypnosis, climate change, fracking) and puts them under the microscope of meta-research. This episode pours throughs hundreds of research papers, summarizes them in an entertaining way, and delivers them with humour and a British accent so you don't have to!
*Favorite episode: DNA and the Smell of Death
A slow-burn, true-crime podcast about cold cases in rural Canada. One case per season. Very satisfying with how much of the investigation you get to hear and how vivid a story teller the investigator and host is. Also, cameos by some incredible accents.
Favorite episode: No spoilers, listen to the whole first season
This show presents stories of murders. This show gets grisly. I'm rather squeamish, and sometimes it pushed my limits. If that doesn't turn you off, or in fact makes you more interested, the two hosts, Karen and Georgia, are chock-full of banter. They are hysterical and witty. You will be repeating catch-phrases before you know what happened.
Favorite episode: Any of the live episodes.