I cannot remember when I started listening to podcasts, but if you have not tried yet, I would strongly suggest to stay away from them! Listening to podcasts is seriously addictive… and you learn about so many things that you feel almost intelligent! You start with one, then you add another one, and another one, and then without knowing how it happened, you have subscribed to 130+ podcasts and have a backlog of 14500+ episodes to listen to. Of course you could jump straight onto the latest episodes, but where’s the fun in that?
The subjects I follow on podcasts range from fiction to politics (although one could argue both are interchangeable) via knitting, history, myths and legends, self-help, organisation advice, and of course the TED talks… I have become quicker at unsubscribing if the subject or the way it is narrated does not work for me. I usually prefer audio podcasts as it allows me to do other things while listening, but I do download a few video ones too.
I use the Podcast Addict app by Xavier Guillemane on my Android tablet and I save the episodes I want to keep on iTunes on my laptop. The app is very simple to use and sees regular improvements and new features being added. I tried some other ones but I found them difficult to set up or impossible to play the episodes without having to play with the set-up.
I will probably mention more podcasts in future posts, but here are some that I enjoy a lot:
- Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History by Dan Carlin: I have only listened to the free episodes so far, but I suspect I will download some of the other ones at some point. Dan Carlin brings a different viewpoint on some parts of history with an in-depth analysis and commentaries that make you think. I listened to his 5hr 49min The Destroyer of Worlds in one sitting. It is just incredibly interesting! I also listen to Common Sense with Dan Carlin, which is more of a political podcast where Dan Carlin expresses his thoughts on a subject that caught his attention. Whilst I do not always have the same views as him, the podcaster explains his with an in-depth knowledge and arguments that make me consider why others may think the way they do with more interest. Love it.
- Everyday Emergency by Doctors Without Borders: testimonies of MSF doctors. I have shed more than one tear listening to the horrors that people encounter, but feel it is important to learn about them and about the generosity of doctors giving their time to help.
- Invisibilia by NPR: the podcast explores a range of subjects that have all captured my interest, but one that absolutely blew my mind (and I have since then heard more about this) was How to Become Batman which looks at how people’s expectations of us influence what we actually do. If you listen to only one episode of this podcast, I would strongly recommend this one.
- Irish & Celtic Music Podcast by Gail Rybak: self-explanatory! Love the selection of the podcaster.
- Little Yellow Uke Crafts by Zena Perry: a video podcast about knitting mainly (in the episodes I have watched so far), but also about cross-stitch, crochet and fibers. I love the way Zena Perry presents the projects she has completed, what she is working on, the yarns she uses… I find watching her inspires me to work on my own projects and it feels like she could be a friend from next door. Absolutely love her podcasts. The only downside is that I can only watch her podcasts while doing something where I can give the video some of my attention 🙂
- The Magnus Archives by Rusty Quill: a horror fiction podcast. I just finished listening to season one and think I will struggle to wait a week for the new episodes once I have caught up with all the ones already released!
- The Moth Podcast: true stories told live by a variety of storytellers. Great!
- Myths and Legends by Jason Weiser: I absolutely love this podcast, not only for its subject but also for the way it is narrated and the sarcastic comments about the “facts” of the stories that bring so much fun. Simply love it!
- TEDTalks: there is a range of TEDTalks podcasts, some audio, some video, but here are some of the episodes I have saved to watch over and over again: What’s so funny about mental illness by Ruby Wax, A tale of two political systems by Eric X. Li and How to fight desertification and reverse climate change by Allan Savory
- This American Life: a podcast about a variety of subjects, exploring different points of view, all incredibly interesting!
- Witness by BBC World Service: short episodes (usually under 10 min) reviewing historical events narrated by people who experienced them. Again, very interesting!