Raymond’s podcast list (for 2011, at least)

Ry Jones wants to know what other podcasts I subscribe to.

Remember, I wrote this back in 2011.

Here's what I listen to. Note that I am not averse to fast-forwarding over parts that don't interest me, such as when they discuss a movie that I simply don't care about.

  • Pop culture: I don't really follow pop culture, but these podcasts are just plain fun to listen to.
    • Pop Culture Happy Hour. Imagine a group of four really close friends, all intelligent, witty, and who love to tease each other. That's what this is. Favorite part: The Regrettable Television Pop Quiz, an occasional segment in which participants are challenged to identify excerpts from television programs you are embarrassed to admit that you watch.
    • Extra Hot Great. Similarly enjoyable round-table discussion of This Week in Pop Culture. Most of the attention goes to The Canon, a segment in which episodes of television are nominated for inclusion in the pantheon of great television. But my favorite part is Game Time. (Alas, by the time this article reached the head of the queue, Extra Hot Great is no longer in production.)
    • Slate's Culture Gabfest. The most highbrow of the three, and the most likely to suffer the fast-forward button. Sorry, guys.
  • Sports: I am more of a meta-sports person rather than a sports person. I'm interested in things like rule changes and the business of sports, not so much the "Who's going to win this year?"
    • Hang Up and Listen. I find Mike Pesca's voice a bit too brash for NPR news reporting, but when opining about sports, it's the perfect pitch. Stefan Fatsis's sporteaucrat impression is always welcomed. It's hosted by Josh Levin, who opens each week's show with "This is Josh Levin, and this is Slate's Hang Up and Listen." That opening bothers me because of the shifting antecedent of the word this. ("This voice is Josh Levin, and this show is Slate's Hang Up and Listen.") I would prefer that he open with "I'm Josh Levin, and this is Slate's Hang Up and Listen."
    • Only a Game. The week in sports. I usually fast-forward over the "Who's going to win this year?", but I never miss Charlie Pierce.
  • Economics: The dismal science.
    • Planet Money. Economics in layman's terms. I'm a particular fan of their latest series, Ask a Banker, mostly because Matt Levine writing style is hilarious.
    • Freakonomics Radio. This is the most recent addition to my blogroll. Still in the trial period. We'll see if it's still on my list next year.
  • Other
    • Slate's Political Gabfest. The first podcast I ever subscribed to. I tend to fast-forward this one a lot of late, though.
    • Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me, the NPR News Quiz. I was one of the very first listener-contestants on this show, back when it was really awful. (They actually called me to ask me if I wanted to be on.) Fortunately, the show is no longer awful.
Comments (12)
  1. Steve says:

    Re: your mislabling of economics – I am assuming you do not know the origins of the term, "dismal science" http://www.econlib.org/…/LevyPeartdismal.html

  2. GWO says:

    I'd just like to recommend the BBC's "In Our Time" – Melvyn Bragg draws three academics into giving a layman's explanation of their area of interest. Covers a massive range of stuff — the last few have been "The Upanishads", "Fermat's Last Theorem", "The Anarchy" (12th century English History) and "Simone Weil" — usually fascinatingly. There's also <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/…/">a massive back-catalogue available</a>.

  3. AP² says:

    No technical podcasts? Yeah, me neither, now that I think of it. And now that IT Conversations kicked the bucket, there's no decent source of them.

  4. not important says:


    Please do not help spread the misconception that economics is a science, dismal or not. Science is supposed to predict something (that is what makes science useful). Economics has not predicted anything since the day it was born. Latest example: the fact that US is debating its way to the fiscal cliff shows how useful "economics science" is. A real science with centuries of history would have settled the question of "fiscal cliff" in a textbook exercise.


  5. Gabe says:

    What is it about the Gabfest that it is under both Pop Culture and Other? You'd think that "Other" would mean "None of the above".

    [There are two different podcasts with "Gabfest" in their name. One is pop culture, the other is political. -Raymond]
  6. Lefty says:

    @not important:

    Don't confuse politics with economics.

  7. not important says:

    Lefty – if economics was a real science with real results there would be no debate, political or not, about the fiscal cliff. Instead, there would be a clear, history-tested result to the problem. (To see what real science would mean in this context, imagine politicians debating electricity.)

    (With apologies to Raymond for high jacking his blog).

  8. Joshua says:

    @not important: You mean like global warming? Reasonably good science is available after wading through the trash and it is being largely ignored because the only meaningful solution we have today is mass nuclear power.

  9. Marcel says:

    If German is an option, CRE (cre.fm) is the way to go. It's a highly informative interview style podcast with very diverse topics, from feminism to beer brewing (quite good) to IPv6 (exceptionally good).

  10. nathan_works says:

    A big tangent on economics, and no one is amazed that Raymond was a contestant on Wait Wait ? Can you tell us which part of the show you were on ? Bluff the listener ?

  11. no, really, don't tell me says:

    I usually either a) try or b) wish to be out of radio range when Wait Wait is on. But it greatly interests me to know that our host was on it. And really, it was worse back then?

  12. Mrs Trellis, North Wales says:

    If you're not listening to I'm Sorry, I Haven't a Clue then you don't deserve ears.



Comments are closed.

Skip to main content