December 3, 2011

Kelley's recommended podcasts

I have sort of a short attention span, and during long hours of painting and drawing, I sometimes need a little extra entertainment to keep myself focused. Here are some recommended podcasts, all of them free.

This American Life. One of the most popular radio shows today, you've probably heard of this one - and my love for host Ira Glass - before. It's sort of a variety show. Each episode they choose a theme, and feature various stories about everyday people, some humorous, some poignant, some fictional, some topical, but always fascinating.

Stuff You Should Know. Every episode Chuck and Josh choose an interesting historical, scientific, or cultural topic - such as "Who was America's first murderer?" - and discuss it thoroughly. They keep it entertaining with their witty repartee and frequent references to the Simpsons and Ghostbusters. The casual format is like listening to two funny, well-read friends having a chat. My recommendations: "How Lobotomies Work," and "What are Japanese Stragglers?"

RadioLab. Similar to This American Life, RadioLab often starts with a philosophical question such as "What is the mind?" and ponder it from various scientific angles. Jad and Robert keep it upbeat with their unique style of quick editing and imaginative sound effects.

Snap Judgment. Normal people tell interesting stories from their lives. Simple formula, endlessly entertaining.

WireTap. A little different from the others, WireTap consists mostly of short comical skits between host Jonathan Goldstein and his continually scheming friend Howard. This podcast makes me laugh out loud on a regular basis.

Wait Wait, Don't Tell Me. Part quiz show, part comedy, and part news show. Every week they feature a different celebrity and quiz them on ridiculously obscure topics. Very, very funny.


  1. Perhaps this is what I need in order to stay focused!
    Hmm. maybe I have ADD or OCD! When I draw and paint, I think of all the things I need to do, laundry, cook dinner, etc.

  2. Oooooo I have a veeeeeery repetitive and boring job, but I'm allowed to bring my ipod. I'm going to have to check some of these out, as I find even music is not entertaining enough to make the hours pass.

    I was thinking just the other day that I needed a podcast or some talk radio. Thanks for the suggestions!!

  3. PVE, I don't think you have ADD! We all need a little extra reason to keep our mind on our work, sometimes.

    Lenoracle, I used to work at a very repetitive and boring job as well, and This American Life kept me sane. Let me know what you think of them!


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