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A selection of podcasts I enjoy

I love podcasts. I’ve listened to them for years. Starting with Leo Laporte’s [TWiT Network(http://twit.tv). I listened to Boagworld and the Web 2.0 Show. Seasonally, I enjoy some fantasy football podcasts and other things blip on and off my radar. I use Huffduffer to save single episodes of shows and listen to them through Overcast.

I’ve struggled with how to write about the shows I enjoy and why I enjoy them. There’s also the question of what is a podcast?

I got my answer recently when heard Jordan Cooper explain them on The East Wing: The East Wing 2: Hate-Listening to Talk Radio – Jordan Cooper.

Podcasts are on-demand radio.

Succinct and relatable. Perfect.

As I listen to the shows, I make notes of lines I want to remember, or they made me laugh, or I thought they were memorable. Below is the collection of quotes from various podcasts.

Technical Difficulties, and it’s spin-off Dawn Patrol are two of my absolute favorite shows. Technical Difficulties has amazing shows notes that serve as the textual accompaniment to the audio. Dawn Patrol is a group of friends talking about their current wants/struggles/loves with technology in their lives. It’s akin to eavesdropping on a group of friends nerding out. And I love it!

From Technical Difficulties 076 – What’s Living in Gabe’s Closet?

  • “You have to have access to your blinking lights.”
  • “Don’t worry about my NAS Dobermans.”

  • My iPad doesn’t do a whole lot more than my phone does. It’s got a little bigger screen but it’s a whole lot less portable.
  • I don’t understand the governing philosophy of Windows. I don’t think there is one.

From TechnicalDifficulties: 080 – A History of Computing with Dr. Drang


From 001 – The Skyping is Coming from Upstairs

Did you unfollow me again?
I didn’t have to. You never tweet.
You unled!


Isometric is a show I listen to on and off. But this particularly episode had me laughing as I walked home.

From Isometric: 17: The 90s Were a Dark Time

  • So Twitch proposed to Amazon and Amazon said yes. And they’re getting married. And there’s going to be a lot of DRM at the wedding.

At least we have two evil corporations right.
So they can battle each other.
Yeah like Kaiju.


The Nerdist podcast is another one I skip depending on the guest. The latest episodes with Benedict Cumberbatch, Wil Wheaton and Adan West were a lot of fun. The Nerd/Geek jokes between Chris King of the Nerds Hardwick and Wil Wheaton was hilarious.

From The Nerdist: Kevin Smith #3

Comedy is like Boggle. All the answers are there but you can’t always see it.
Failure is just success training.
Your story is the only currency you have in this life.

From The Nerdist: Ron Perlman Returns

That’s why I couldn’t come up with any names of heroes is because I’m just so fucking tired of knowing everything about everybody. Before I can begin to admire someone on my own the world is doing it for me.

From The Nerdist: Corey Taylor

French Tips:
It makes everything that you do with your hands impossible.
Who needs 10 styluses on their fingers trying to work a phone?
French tip capactive styluses is a great idea. With Bluetooth.

So it’s like a Renn Faire for thrashers.
I encourage everyone to wear their poet shirts.

It’s 9 dudes in masks playing crazy metal from Iowa.


Futility Closet is quickly becoming one of my favorite shows. It’s a random collection of interesting stories through history. If you have a passing interest in history or enjoy trivia, you’ll enjoy this show.

From Futility Closet: 031-Pigs on Trial

Insects? They did trials for insects?
Those were held in a different court in part because you can’t haul a swarm of locusts into court. You have to try them in absentia.

If you were a pig hauled into court you were given a lawyer.

From Futility Closet: 027-The Man Who Volunteered for Auschwitz

In September 1940 Polish army captain Witold Pilecki volunteered to be imprisoned at Auschwitz. His reports first alerted the Allies to the horrors at the camp and helped to warn the world that a holocaust was taking place.


99% Invisible was a show I avoided listening to for a long time, despite seeing people rave about it in my social media circles. It was referred to as a “great design podcast” so I thought it would talk about CSS or web development just like the 50 billion other design shows out there. Boy was I wrong!

It’s a fascinating podcast, similar to Futility Closet in its research into real-world design and architecture challenges and history. A couple of their recent shows discussed a 113 year-old light bulb, flag design, and how to design a chair.

My favorite episode has been about flailing arm men.

From 143- Inflatable Men

You see them on street corners, at gas stations, at shopping malls. You see them at blowout sales and grand openings of all kinds. Their wacky faces hover over us, and then fall down to meet us, and then rise up again. Their bodies flop. They flail.
They are men. Men made of tubes. Tubes full of air.


I have long been fascinated with how people work. What do you spend your days doing? What kind of work keeps you busy all day? Slate has taken up the cause and started a fantastic podcast called Working

This is my new favorite show. It’s short, always interesting and they’ve covered a wide array of people and professions.

While there are memorable and interesting bits to everyone’s stories, I’ve only collected one from the first episode.

From Slate’s Working: Working: Stephen Colbert

My show is a shadow of the news so I need to know what shadow it’s casting so I can distort it in my own way.

Have you ever wondered how a pastor works? What about a perfumer? What’s a perfumer? Someone who develops new scents of perfume. It’s a world I’d never once thought about but was fascinated with the process to create new fragrances. How about the a porn star? And finally, a lexicographer. I had no idea what that is either. She defines words that go into Marriam-Webster’s dictionaries.


Analog(ue) is show all about The Feels™ from Casey Liss and Myke Hurley. They discuss the life around technology. So many tech podcasts talk tech and forget about the humanity behind it. This show celebrates that humanity.

From #3: White Whale Syndrome

Nobody in my family swears up.

Suffering creates a fraternity of people who “share your pain”

From #5: The Only Way Out Is Through

It can also be isolating.
When life hands you something crappy it doesn’t matter what your neighbor got handed.
Be supportive even if you can’t relate directly.
It’s scary. It’s hard to reach out to someone. People will meet you where you are if you let them in. So please let them in.

From #6: Work/Work Balance

If you’re working more than 40 or 45 hours per week, something is fundamentally broken.


Overtired is a show from Brett Terpstra and Christina Warren about pop culture. This podcast sounds like my college apartment. We’d talk about TV shows, movies, technology and the internet for hours. We’d ramble and cover all sort of weird topics. This show is that and I love it. It is worth noting this show recently moved to the Electric Shadow Network. So if you’re interested in following along, subscribe at ESN but the first 18 episodes are at 5By5. Got it?

Overtired: 18: Death to Pop Culture

“That is not the right Filth.”

You can rent from YouTube? What? Why?


From Overtired: 19: Schooled

I have a great library of stuff I don’t know about.


What’s less focused than Defocused?
Uuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

The next show is one of my favorites where I don’t understand most of what’s going on. And it’s great! The Defocused Podcast is hosted by Internet SuperFaver Joe Rosensteel and Arizona-sufferer Dan Sturm.

The show purports to be about movies. Or special effects. Or something like that. But mainly it’s a trip into Joe and Dan’s Excellent Adventures. The podcasts I most enjoy can be summed up as friends talking about something they really like to each other.” And this show is no exception. Joe and Dan are a delight to listen to and I look forward to each new episode. While I don’t understand most of the special effects talk, I enjoy their opinions about the movies and where their brains take them in discussing the films. It’s interesting to hear the people talk about movies who also have a perspective in how movies get made.

If you have to start anywhere with this show, their crowning achievement to date has to be EP. 19: “WORK YOUR TABLESCAPES”

This episode is about The Rocky Horror Picture Show. They lead into the movie with this exchange:

D: Is it just your Florida past that sweat makes you so uncomfortable?
J: Maybe it is Dan. My post traumatic sweat disorder. I have no idea.
D: post traumatic Florida disorder.
J: Well there’s a lot of problems with Florida.
D: Well you probably can’t be blamed for something like that.
Mmhhmm Being blamed for Florida? J: All of Florida? My bad guys. Florida’s all my fault.
D: I mean you did spend a lot of time there. We don’t know how much you caused. You just left it in shambles and bailed for fancy Los Angeles.
J: Yeah I didn’t lock the doors or anything. Left the toaster oven on. I left the iron going.
D: Left the sinks running so they’d know all the houses were robbed by the same bandits.
J: The Wet Bandits.
D: The Wet Bandits.
J: That’s a different movie Dan.
D: I hear that’s a bad way to go because then they can tie you to all the other crimes.
J: And then you can come back in the sequel and you can be The Sticky Bandits and then Tim Curry can be in the movie and Tim Curry was in Clue and Rocky Horror Picture Show and we’re back to the movie. YAAAAY! I did it!

It’s important to properly understand how to watch The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

I don’t participate in any way in any of the theater things because I don’t any to be around people.
But that doesn’t mean I’m not going to stand up in my apartment and sing or dance along to certain parts of this movie. Which I think is totally normal and reasonable.
– Joe

The episode ends with a Rocky Horror fantasy team casting that I won’t spoil here. But it features Matt Alexander as Dr. Frankenfurter, Casey Liss as Rocky, and John Roderick as Meatloaf.

And since we’re started with 19, we’ll work backwards with some choice lines from other episodes.

From Defocused: 18: “Tim Curried Bacon”

I’m not writing fan fiction for the singing telegram girl in Clue.

From Defocused: 17: “The Clipping Plane from Heaven”

You couldn’t stop yourself from eating our entire social engagement platform?

From Defocused: 15: “Chekhov’s Law of Omega Thirteens”

My love has a final frontier. – Joe

From Defocused: 12: “Server Farm to Table”

It’s a free sweat lodge. You’ve wrapped yourself in blankets in Arizona in the middle of the summer.

Published inObservations