Each week I will publish the most Delicious Ingredients of my Audible Feast … the scrumptious, delectable, savory, rich, sweet, spicy, and best podcasts that have fed my ears this week. They’re listed in no particular order. You can see what I’ve been listening to here to see the competition these shows beat out to earn their spot as the best of the week.
Ponzi Supernova, Episode 2: When Madoff Calls (5/11/17): What it’s about: “Reporter Steve Fishman finally reaches Bernie Madoff in North Carolina, where the famous Ponzi schemer is serving a 150 year prison sentence. In never before heard jailhouse interviews, Fishman asks Bernie the big questions: how did he do it? And why? The answers lead further and deeper than we ever imagined.” Why it’s great: I could have listed any of the three episodes that are out so far – some listeners may remember that episode one was played on Radiolab’s feed sevearl months ago, and then Ponzi Supernova hid for awhile behind the paywall of Audible. You can’t really go wrong with a show where Bernie Madoff is an actual cast member, like – the real Bernie Madoff. Fans of the new HBO special “Wizard of Lies” will love Ponzi Supernova. (I thought Wizard of Lies was terrific.) This is a 6-part series, so there are three to go as of this posting. (26 minutes)
Omitted, S3E1: Crisis in Levittown (5/8/17): What it’s about: “It’s not hard to believe that states that fought for the confederacy in the civil war might be the ones most likely to hold on to those tired beliefs, but they’re by no means the only ones. In this first episode of season three, we’re traveling north of the Mason-Dixon Line to hear a story of a planned community that lost its way when its plans were challenged.” Why it’s great: This is what Revisionist History should have been, right down to the humility Corey Constable exhibits at the beginning of this episode. He is aware of the potential risk of a white person explaining racial injustice and reaction to integration in a 1950s town outside of Philadelphia. I am really looking forward to hearing more from this show – you may remember I was really turned off by Malcolm Gladwell in Revisionist History, despite really wanting to like the idea of the show. Hopefully this show will give me another avenue to explore the missing links in the history that’s written in books and told to us as if it’s the one truth. (20 minutes)
The Gravity Beard Podcast, Episode 36: D.B. Cooper: Revealed (4/17/17): What it’s about: “Today I’m gonna introduce you to Derek Godsey. Derek understands how he’s perceived by the world. But I’d like to issue you, the listener, a challenge. As you listen to him present his case, imagine if the same facts were being presented by a subject matter expert.” Why it’s great: I had no idea what this show was going to be about – I heard about it through #2PodsADay and through The Karen and Ellen Letters – and I thought this episode was awesome. It’s about a man in Alabama who believes he knows who D.B. Cooper was, and how he arrived at that conclusion. It’s hard to hold my attention longer than about 40 minutes but I was all in for the entire hour of this show. I can’t wait to check out more episodes. (57 minutes)
The Heart: Inheritance (5/23/17): What it’s about: “In the second episode of the series, we catch up to Kaitlin while she is in her mid-twenties, waiting to fall in love. Over the years she has become an expert at advocating for her own pleasure. She has learned how to say no to the sex that she doesn’t want to have with tact and grace. Just as Kaitlin thinks she has figured out the art of sexual negotiations, another unsettling experience becomes a catalyst for a search for answers.” Why it’s great: I wrote about this in my review of The Heart this week – it was so relatable and unfortunately something I suspect most women have experienced. What do you do when you’re pressured to participate in sex that doesn’t do it for you, and you don’t want to do it? Such a great introspective piece. (33 minutes)
Read my updated review of The Heart here! (May 2017)
Code Switch: We’re Still Talking About “My Family’s Slave” (5/23/17): What it’s about: “This week, we join the global conversation on The Atlantic’s essay “My Family’s Slave,” in which Alex Tizon writes about Eudocia Tomas Pulido, who was his family’s katulong, or domestic servant, for 56 years. Why did Eudocia’s story hit such a raw nerve in the U.S. and the Philippines? Shereen and Gene talk to Vicente Rafael, a professor who has studied and written about the practice in his native Philippines. We also hear from Lydia Catina Amaya, a Filipina who was a katulong in the Philippines and the United States. And we talk to Melissa Tizon, the author’s widow. Eudocia Tomas Pulido lived in their home for the last 12 years of her life.” Why it’s great: This episode made me realize how much I have been avoiding the news and clogging my ears with podcasts instead … it’s good that I listen to some current events shows. So I didn’t know about this story, but I’m glad Code Switch was my entry point vs. some more biased news source. It makes the best podcasts of the week list because it was absolutely fascinating to hear the team talk to Alex Tizon’s widow Melissa explain her (and her late husband’s) role in the life of Eudocia Pulido. (27 minutes)
Read my review of Code Switch here! (October 2016)
Sleepover: Toronto Skyscraper I: Judy Doesn’t Have a Problem (5/22/17): What it’s about: “Judy’s an octogenarian powerhouse! She sings, dances, golfs, and downhill skis—driving everywhere herself. Her family wants her to stop driving. They’re worried that she can’t see over the dashboard and will get in an accident. Here lies Judy’s problem. She doesn’t think she has one! Judy hates it when people treat her like a little old lady, and refuses to give up the wheel. Struggling with the realities of ageing, Judy must decide whether to move forward or sit back.” Why it’s great: Two weeks in a row, my mid-30s self is identifying with the ladies quite my senior on Sleepover. Judy is a firecracker, and she had a lot to share with the other guests. But what I loved about Judy the most was her style! There are fantastic photos of Judy rocking it on the Sleepover website – those pics will give you a glimpse of her vivacious spirit. (27 minutes)
Read my review of Sleepover here! (November 2016)
The Mash-Up Americans: Hillary and Jonathan Sitting in a Tree (5/23/17): What it’s about: “Hillary Frank of The Longest Shortest Time. Jonathan Menjivar of This American Life. You know their voices. You love their work. But did you know they are ALSO mash-up married? Hillary, a Russian-Jewish-American Mash-Up, and Jonathan, a Mexican-Salvadoran-American Mash-Up, joined Rebecca and Amy in the studio for their first-ever interview as a couple. We talked parenting, chanclas, Gael Garcia Bernal, latkes, and what it feels like when your insides don’t match your outside.” Why it’s great: Whelp, first of all, I didn’t know Hillary Frank was married to Jonathan Menjivar. Two names you hear all the time in radio/podcasting – so that is completely awesome. This episode was soooo good because as Rebecca and Amy always do, they had a very fun conversation with Frank and Menjivar about how they mash up, but they also asked some great questions about what all the mashiness means for their young daughter. (38 minutes)
The KnowNothing Podcast, Ep. 05: Indian Food and Bidets (2/1/17): What it’s about: “I have always been a little sheltered when it comes to my tastes in food. It might be because I live in a land locked province in Canada but I am a meat and potatoes kind of guy. So it was no surprise that I had never really tried East Indian food. When I became friends with Laksh Gill, it became apparent that I would have to try Indian cuisine. After dining at a local restaurant called Mango Tree, we discussed my experience. We also talked about Laksh’s journey to Canada, the similarities between Indian and Dominican culture and Laksh’s love of bidets.” Why it’s great: Another suggestion from #2PodsADay – I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was intrigued by the description of the show: two hosts try something or learn about something about which they know absolutely nothing. Humor between friends can be so difficult to translate into good audio – but I could tell this pair had a great friendship. Trying a bidet for the first time after eating East Indian food is an excellent idea. (67 minutes)
Modern Love: A Slow Fade to Black (5/24/17): What it’s about: “When Patty Dann met her husband Willem, she was in her late 30s. Her dreams of a lifelong partner and family were all but complete but then reality got in the way. Minnie Driver stars in the ABC comedy “Speechless.” Here she is reading Patty Dann’s essay “Our Story Ended With A Slow Fade To Black.” Why it’s great: As New York Times Modern Love Editor Daniel Jones comments, this essay about becoming a widow at a very young age is so matter-of-fact, and still has a fairly happy ending. Minnie Driver did an excellent job reading the essay. (20 minutes)
Twitter: @meghnawbur @danjonesnyt
Read my review of Modern Love here! (April 2016)
All episode descriptions and artwork come from the linked sites. What else was fantastic this week? Send me a note! firstname.lastname@example.org or @audible_feast on Twitter.
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