The first time I get asked for a list of things, I share that list with whoever asked for it. The second time I say “great, I’ve already got that list together for so-and-so. Here it is.”. The third time I put it on the web. This has happened in the past in the form of places I love around the world and my Chrome extensions. So today I’m adding to that collection with a list of my favourite non-technical podcasts. I say podcasts, but I’ll also cover those audio delights that aren’t available as podcasts but through a certain custom third-party app, too, since there’s some great content I’d otherwise miss.
- Friday Night Comedy from BBC Radio 4: news and current affairs comedy; either The News Quiz, Dead Ringers or The Now Show.
- Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review: it’s less about film and more about two middle-aged men bickering.
- Serial: season 2 is now mid-flow, exploring the story of Bowe Bergdahl who is the only US soldier to have been captured in the Afghan war. If you’ve not heard it, then you also need to listen to season 1.
- The Bugle: updates of this comedy podcast hosted by John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman are few and far between these days. I hope it picks up a regular flow again soon, since Andy’s pun runs are second to none.
- TEDTalks (audio): edited versions of TEDTalks, tailored to the format.
- Freakonomics Radio: covering everything from migration being a human right to food science, I’m starting to work my way through the back catalogue of this.
- This American Life: a different theme each week, covering all aspects of Americans’ lives.
- Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History: I’ve not yet started listening to this, but it’s at the end of my playlist currently, having been recommended to me by a few people.
Unfortunately some excellent content from the BBC still isn’t available as a podcast, which makes it tricky incorporating into a regular listening schedule whilst pedalling. These are worth making the effort for, though, and listening to in the iPlayer Radio app:
- I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue: the antidote to panel games.
- Just a Minute: panelists talk on a subject for a minute “without hesitation, repetition, or deviation”, and have been doing so since 1967 (not continuously, obviously).
- Any Questions: weekly topical debate programme. Useful for getting angry at and shouting responses which scare other cyclists around me when I’m out on a ride.
As I spend a fair amount of time consuming audio I regularly run out of things. I’m therefore always keen to hear recommendations of additions to the playlist. Do let me know if you’ve got any suggestions.
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