I spend two and half hours a day on average commuting to and from the office. I tell people (seriously even) that I have the best commute in Los Angeles. If you live in LA and have a commute you probably wish you had mine. One hundred eight miles a day, ninety-two of which are along the beach. Having an office two blocks away from the Santa Monica pier doesn’t hurt either. Still, that’s a lot of time in the car. I make use of it by listening to audible books (two per month on average) and podcasts. I’ve recently changed my podcast list, here’s the new version.
In Our Time with Melvyn Bragg: A BBC podcast of eclectic content addressed by academics in true British style. Informative, interesting, sometimes illuminating and always with a dose of Bragg’s sardonic wit.
Harvard Business Review IdeaCast: Exposes me to current best business thought, trends and information. Lots of author interviews which allow me to glean key nuggets from the best of
current business writing without spending the time to read the whole book.
The EntreLeadership Podcast: Dave Ramsey’s podcast is the single most popular entrepreneurship and leadership podcast on the planet and the reason is simple. It’s good. Really, really good. Relevant business and leadership topics presented in an energetic, to the point, no nonsense style.
Fareed Zakaria GPS: My go-to source for insightful analysis of global geopolitical events. With direct access to leaders across virtually every area of life, Fareed has an unusual platform and skill in bringing us the kind of information on world events we often wish we could get.
NPRs TED Radio Hour: Yep, TED done for radio. Interesting takes on interesting stuff being done by interesting people. What’s not to like?
99% Invisible: A recent find this one is quickly climbing my charts. A design-centric look at sometimes eccentric subjects. For example, building your own space suit from household items? One recent post described the not so friendly competition between the two Architects building the Chrysler Building and the Manhattan Building (now 40 Wall Street) during the late 1920’s. Well done, informative and entertaining.
This American Life: The online version of the radio show, usually the most popular podcast in America in any given week with over one million downloads on average (pretty much like this blog…lol).
Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History: Carlin is not a history professor but he is clearly passionate about history. Delivered with energy and a sometimes “off the wall” perspective (what if the Apaches had modern weapons?) he brings history alive in dramatic fashion. From studies of giants among men such as Alexander the Great and Genghis Khan to dissection of the Battle of Stalingrad and other history defining events, Carlin presents lessons from the ages that we should not forget.
Car Talk: Why do I listen to a podcast by two auto mechanic brothers? If you’ve ever listened to them you know the show is much more about life. Would you talk to your mechanic about your relationship problem? People do, and the conversations can be hilarious. Tom and Ray recently retired but with twenty-five years of reruns to work through we are safe from a Click and Clack – less future for a while yet.
Note: All of the podcasts I listen to are free and available on iTunes or other podcast outlets. I prefer Instacast myself, but it is a matter of preference. For audible books I listen via Audible.com.