Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The one where I admit to being a geeky talk radio listener.

I have become completely enamored with NPR of late (which I always type as NRP - I'm not sure why.  Self-correction or something.)

Anyway, the past few weeks I've entertained my brain while I do random jobs while listening to back stores from the NPR website.  It's changed my world.  These are the things I've discovered, and I want to share them with you.  You know, so you can be a geek like me.

Beginnings.  It's a feature they are doing on All Things Considered about pregnancy and early childhood. The first episode, about infant and mother mortality in Mozambique, brought me to tears. 

Culture Happy Hour podcast.  4 NPR employees sit around and talk about pop culture and what they do to fill up their time.  They are hilarious and sweet and sincerely entertaining.  My favorite episode was last week's, when they talked about what one does while their time is "unstructured" - like when your sick or on maternity leave or otherwise homebound with time on your hands.  There was this awesome anecdote about a possible link between liking smoking and watching General Hospital that made me laugh out loud.  I'm a tad bit jealous of them all to tell the truth; they are all really funny and have an audience for their humor.  But I listen anyway.

NPR Book Podcast.  NPR does bits about books all the time, but they put 5-6 together in a podcast twice a month.  Sometimes I will hear a repeat of one I listened to already, but I also hear some that I wouldn't have taken the time to listen to otherwise.  I've gotten quite a few book recommendations through NPR this summer and have been pleased with the results.  And listening on Monday inspired me to challenge my kids to a week of reading - Thomas has to finish Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and Ben has to read 15 books before the end of the week.  Of course there is a bribe/prize if they meet their goal. It's been awesome - Ben worked his way through The Big Hungry Bear, Head to Toe, and Go, Dog, Go! yesterday, and Thomas is 1/3 of the way through HP.  Ah, the sweet sounds of children reading, rather than watching TV or playing video games.  As they are going back to school next week, I needed to feel like they had actually accomplished some reading, and now I will have.

Last night, I discovered that iTunes has a bunch of podcasts, so I downloaded a few.  This led me to a new story podcast site - The Moth.  I listened to a story this morning about a girl who meets her brother for the first time at their dad's funeral - I had to make an effort not to cry.  And now I'm swooning over their website and their radio hour episodes.  Be still my soul.

So, now I've come to the most important part of this post: the part where I ask what you listen to when your mind needs occupying.  Do you have geeky talk radio proclivities?  What satisfies your cravings?  As I am completely new to this genre, I need your suggestions.  And I can't wait to see what you have discovered!  I'm hoping to immerse myself in geekiness until my fingers are pruny.  What else have I been missing?


Amy Sorensen said...

I love NPR but I only listen to it when I have the chance...I don't do a schedule yet. I love, love, LOVE Science Friday though. That totally geeks me out!

Melanie said...

I became a fan of NPR when John introduced me to it in the car on our drives to the U together. I was hooked instantly and listened to Talk of the Nation - including Science Friday - almost every day in my car at lunch. I looooove This American Life! And I love to turn on the radio Saturday morning while running errands and listen to Click and Clack on Car Talk and laugh out loud to Wait Wait Don't Tell Me.

(I'm pretty sure I've just proven myself to be an uber-nerd.)

Once I got satelite radio, I got addicted to HLN (CNN's hipper sister network) and the Stars channel where I could listen to Rosie Radio, Dr. Laura, and all sorts of other garbage. My subscription just ended, and I haven't renewed it. I'm on a talk radio hiatus, and I'm learning to enjoy music again. :) I'm currently addicted to Adele.

Sorry for the super long comment!