A few months ago, I joined the 2010’s and discovered podcasts. Nay, I figured out what they were and immersed myself in them. I swam in the sea of free entertainment for my ear holes. I frolicked in the fields of um, insert euphemism here. I hardly ever watch TV anymore, as I’m constantly listening, learning, and laughing. My walks with Bennett are getting longer, and I’m sure my step count has a direct correlation to what I happen to be listening to at the time.
After my previous podcast post, I got loads of recommendations from you awesome readers here, and on the Frugal by Choice Facebook page. And I listened to almost all of the recommendations. Some stuck (Stuff You Should Know), some didn’t (The Moth, Tell Me Something I Don’t Know, Criminal), but many led to other podcasts along the way. Here is my current listening list:
Of all of these, The Hilarious World of Depression is my favorite. It is the one I listen to as soon as it downloads. It is a show that discusses depression, anxiety, and other forms of mental illnesses with comedians who have clinical depression. I have people in my life that have depression and anxiety, and this podcast helps me understand what they are going through – and it is really funny.
How I Built This is my second favorite of all the shows. After that, I kinda pick and choose based on my mood. For Jack, I have also downloaded random episodes of Brains On!, and he loves it. There are shows I no longer listen to because they either stopped interesting me, the host ended up being a dipshit, or I just couldn’t keep up with long episodes anymore. I tried the Minimalists, but I just kept picturing the hosts as these smug dudes in real life. I’m likely way off base, but I just couldn’t listen anymore.
One that I am not subscribed to, because I downloaded all the existing episodes is My Dad Wrote a Porno. I started listening to In the Dark about a famous child abduction case, and it was so overwhelming as a mom, that I needed a soul cleanse after each episode. My Dad Wrote a Porno is exactly what it sounds like. A man’s grown son discovered his dad wrote erotic literature, and each week he and his two friends (one male, one female) sit around and read a chapter. I’m fully convinced that people in my neighborhood think I am a giant lunatic because I’m laughing so hard that I convulse while out walking and listening to this show. The hosts are all British, and somehow that makes it better for me. I’m also learning some awesome British slang.
Some of the podcasts I enjoy, despite the hosts. I do not feel invested in the hosts in either of the history podcasts I listen to, and couldn’t even tell you their names. The hosts of My Favorite Murder are the kind of people where if I knew them in real life, I would just have to suddenly yell “stop your bitching, and get your shit together” one day during lunch. Obviously I don’t know their whole back stories, but listen, we all have baggage. Their podcast has a huge following and people seem to love them, but I like the podcast in spite of them. I really enjoy true crime (who knew!), and they are able to share stories in ways that don’t scare me too much.
Make Me Smart is a newer podcast, and I really enjoy it. Kai Ryssdal is the voice boyfriend of one of my friends. He has a lovely voice, and I discovered him on the Los Angeles NPR station when we lived down there. The hosts do a pretty balanced job of explaining tech and finance from a central perspective, and I enjoy a feature they have each week where they ask CEOs a “big” question. Pod Save America is entertaining, but is definitely not from a central perspective. In this political climate I have tried to listen to commentators on both the left and right, and it just makes me so tired. Honestly. And this is from someone who worked in politics for years and worked for both the Democratic and Republican parties (that’s me). If anyone has a great “middle of the road” political podcast you can recommend, please let me know!
Are there any shows I am missing and you need me to start listening to soon? I would love to hear more recommendation because I am clearly hooked and you’re all my dealers.
I love all the recommendations! I have an odd question- how does everyone listen to their podcasts- with ear buds, “out loud”, etc.? I have an 11 year old that I am home with all day (we homeschool) and some of this stuff I wouldn’t want her to listen to.
I have been listening to Explore Your Enthusiasm by Tara Swiger. It’s all about helping to create a creative business you love and letting you know you are not alone in the struggles that come with creating a business. I’ve really enjoyed it, but some of the others listed sound way more fun!
I listen to them on speaker around the house. When Bennett and I walk, I have ear buds in. I don’t listen to podcasts with Jack around, unless it is one of his science podcasts. Bennett doesn’t understand the content yet, but when he does, I’ll switch to just listening to them on walks.
I’m not usually a commenter, more a lurker but I decided to join the 2010’s with you and listened to My Dad Wrote a Porno. OMG! Its hilarious. I’m already through 6 episodes. And yes, I did get weird looks from my hearty laughing.
Comment more, lurk less! 🙂
My Dad Wrote a Porno is pretty much the best thing I have going on right now. I’m so glad you liked it too. It is so funny.
I agree with so many that you have posted! I’m always looking for more recommendations, so may try some of these that I haven’t heard of. My Dad Wrote A Porno is perhaps the funniest thing I’ve ever listened to. I discovered it the end of last year and listened to nothing else until I burned through all of them. Can’t wait for the new episodes! I’m pregnant with my first and just love The Longest Shortest Time, which is about parenthood. And am obsessed with The Birth Hour, too. In general, I have to say I most listen to podcasts like Freakonomics and the Sporkful.
Oh, and I agree with you on the Minimalists. I pretty much had the concept down by episode 2, and then it was just pretty redundant and a bit smug. And I second the commenter who suggested the Vinyl Cafe! I have been listening via Public Radio for years and would recommend starting near the beginning in order to “get” the podcast. The host just passed away, so I’m not certain what they are going to do with the show.
I am so with you on My Favorite Murder. I loved the premise but couldn’t get through the first episode because I wanted to scream at the hosts. Maybe I’ll give it another shot. Missing Richard Simmons is great as is Crimetown (which I found thanks to you :)). Reply All is okay, hit or miss, but the “on the inside” series (3-4 episodes) is excellent. Ask Me Another from NPR is a good one if you don’t want to pay too much attention. Thanks for the update! I’m always looking for new podcasts!
For something lighter (soul cleansing), something north of the border, the Vinyl Cafe podcasts.
Also, while you’re hanging around the CBC, please check out the Baroness Von Sketch Show. While TV related, I promise you, you will love it!
Made of Human and Beautiful Anonymous are my two latest finds. The first is Sofie Hagen trying to work out how to be a human by talking to lots of different people and Beautiful Anonymous is Chris Gethard taking an hour long phone call from someone he doesn’t know and he can’t hang up.
Beautiful Anonymous sounds like such an interesting concept!
I also love true crime and have come to love a Podcast called Thin Air Podcast. It’s about unsolved missing person cases and it’s produced really well in my opinion. I’m also a Podcast junkie and feel the exact same way about The Minimalists! There’s a Podcast about home organization I like called Organize 365, she’s quirky and funny and has great ideas. My favorite though, one I listen to everyday is Dave Ramsey, I just adore him.
Thanks for the recommendations! With The Minimalists, I got the feeling that one of the hosts had too many teeth for his mouth. I know that sounds strange, but it was like listening to Eddie Vedder try to talk coherently. And I couldn’t get passed it.
I used to love Dave Ramsey on his radio show, but I just started disliking his social views. And he is totally entitled to them and can share them on his radio show – free country. I’m all for it. But I also had the freedom to stop tuning in. 🙂
I’m with you on My Favorite Murder. A few I enjoy that I don’t see on your list: Missing Richard Simmons; Revisionist History; Terrible, Thanks for Asking.
I read the premise for Terrible, Thanks for Asking just yesterday. I thought it sounded interesting, but too touchy feely. Is it like that? I don’t want therapy in my ears.
Oh also you have GOT to check out Serial. You will be hooked. It is so so soooooo gooooooooood.
Serial is the first one I ever listened to – it got me hooked! Have you listened to Undisclosed? It is kind of the follow up from a different host, but it gave me all the answers I needed. I loved it.
I agree on the political comments in the last paragraph. Check out Depolarize. It’s super good and he’s also a Christian (but not all Christiany, which is nice) http://badchristianmedia.com/depolarize. Here’s the description:
Our national discourse is more divided than ever. Host Dan Koch moderates discussions with brilliant guests, using reason and storytelling to improve arguments on both sides, create empathy, and build bridges.
I read the blurb on Depolarization just a few days ago. It sounded great, but the episodes are super long. I have a hard time being invested in podcasts over an hour. It’s why I stopped listening to WTF with Marc Maron.
Try Pantsuit Politics – http://www.pantsuitpoliticsshow.com/
” no shouting, no insults, plenty of nuance”
Bennett and I listened to the latest episode today during lunch, and I really liked it! I will listen to more; hoping they are all so great.