In 1998 I was a senior in high school. There were 3 things that consumed my thoughts…Music, Basketball and Women. Of the three, Music was the only one that I truly felt at ease with. So I was always looking for new audio stimuli to be excited about. I had a reputation for being an “old soul”. In retrospect I realize its because I had a natural tendency to think deeply about…everything. At times it helped me connect with my teachers. But, more often it served as barrier between me and my peers. I didn’t talk much. But when I did…I would pontificate on the intricacies of matters that were inconsequential to those who could hear my rants.
One day, while driving to work in my 1982 VW Rabbit. I turned on the radio and heard this guy talking about ‘cringe moments’. He was recounting his horrific experience as a rookie journalist when he had to interview a famous actor. He replayed each agonizing audio clip of himself asking awkward and somewhat ridiculous questions. I was late for my game, but glued to my seat, listening. Because it was one of those rare moments when you could truly identify with a stranger. That stranger was Ira Glass. And the radio show was “This American Life”.
At the time, I did not have a cell phone. Then it was still quite uncommon for a 17-year-old to have his own phone. But, we did have the internet. and I quickly learned that I could Download some of these shows and listen whenever I wanted. That was my introduction to podcasts. So here are some that I really enjoy. There are some obvious pic that pretty much everyone is listening to. I’m going to list some that I really love.
- Where There’s Smoke . This podcast is fun, interesting and educational. These guys put their heart and soul in to every episode. Very Inspirational. And They go deeeep. WTS is currently my favorite.
- Snap Judgment. You’ll get some real Gems with this one. It’s very versatile; Great storytelling, social sciences, music and even poetry.
- Lore . Sometimes the truth is more frightening than fiction. This show is always top notch.Each episode examines a new dark tale from history, and presents it in a style that’s been compared to a campfire experience. Wait, this one is my favorite right now.
- Embedded.Love this one! It’s new and awesome. Hosted by Kelly McEvers, Embedded takes a story from the news and goes deep. What does it feel like for a father in El Salvador to lie to his daughter about the bodies he saw in the street that day? What does it feel like for a nurse from rural Indiana to shoot up a powerful prescription opioid? Embedded (EMBD) takes you to where they’re happening. Very interesting.
- Eric’s Guide to Egypt. There is so much happening in Egyptology right now. The Host Eric Wells, will keep you up to date. I Love this show. This guy clearly loves this stuff, and he will make you love it too.
- Dan Carlins Hardcore History. You already know…He drops a new episode only every few months. But, they are bonkers! (in a good way) Most shows are more than 3 hours long. Full of intriguing and exciting content, you don’t need to be a history buff to appreciate this show. The way Dan Carlin Delivers, he pulls you into that moment in history. I’ve actually paid for couple episodes of this in the past. Thats how good it is.
- Waking up with Sam Harris. I listed this one reluctantly; Because the host, Sam Harris is a somewhat controversial figure. Also, I disagree with just about everything he says. Why would I promote this podcast? Well, I’ve never heard anyone so perfectly articulate as Sam Harris. He is a master debater and he is able to explain deep philosophical issues without batting an eye or using ‘word whiskers’. Gotta to respect that. He does not allow political correctness muffle his views and opinions.
- Homemade Stories. Imaging the popular, funny, high school jock has a life altering experience that transforms him into a thoughtful, Caring, narrator of his own experiences. That’s the sense I get from the host, Shannon Cason. He Gave a TED talk on storytelling. “Practice storytelling by telling true stories from your life where you’re the bad guy”He said in the talk. Cool guy, great podcast.