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Every time I talk about my love for podcasts, I think about that scene in Orange is the New Black where two of the inmates are talking about rich bougie white people and their love of veganism and podcasts. Cracks me up every time!
I may not be rich, but I do love podcasts. There are several podcasters who double as authors. Really good ones. Here are three of my favorites (plus a bonus).
Author: Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds
Book: The United States of Absurdity
Podcast: The Dollop
These guys are a hoot. On their podcast, they take a topic in history and talk about it for about an hour, heavy with jokes. The podcast is maybe 40% history and 60% jokes.
The book is like a condensed version of the podcast. They look at some of the more absurd anecdotes from history, summing each of them up in only two or three pages. Podcast, book, both are great fun.
Author: Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner
Both the podcast and the book by the two Steves are Freakonomics, and both are so interesting!
One of my favorites from the book: the instance of high-income baby names making their way down to low-income people. Or the effect of Roe vs. Wade on crime rates. Or any number of things – they make statistics sexy, and that’s not an easy feat.
Author: Sarah Vowell
Book: Assassination Vacation
Podcast: This American Life
Sarah Vowell is the perfect combination of nerdy and quirky. And she’s a history buff. I think she’s my spirit friend. In Assassination Vacation, she takes trips through museums and books to look at famous presidential murders. How delightful!
Vowell is a sometime contributor to This American Life, one of my all-time favorite podcasts. All. Time. This American Life takes a topic each week and looks at it in three acts from different perspectives
Author: Malcolm Gladwell
Book: Blink, The Tipping Point, The Outliers, and more
Podcast: Revisionist History
Malcolm Gladwell has a way of looking at things that makes a lightbulb turn on. Social psychology is fascinating through his eyes, as his many bestselling books attest.
His podcast, Revisionist History does the same thing with events and concepts. He takes a topic and looks at in a different way that makes everything click. Or not. Either way, it’s fascinating to look at things differently.