Saturday, July 31, 2010


Have you ever planned something, worked out every last detail, and then totally botched it? Who hasn't, right? Well this episode of WNYC's Radiolab, sent to me by Carol in Sacremento, talks about some of the worst (or best) mess ups ever.

Click here to download this episode from itunes. The itunes release date was 6/28/10.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Los Tigres del Norte

I've never thought too much about Mexican music, and I'm a little embarrassed to admit that it all kind of sounds the same to me. After listening to this podcast though I have a new appreciation for the genre, especially for the band Los Tigres del Norte. My favorite part of the podcast is how these guys make their set list, and that because of it they'll sometimes do nine-hour shows.

Listen now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 5/17/10.

Monday, July 19, 2010


I know some of you reading this probably visit Starbucks daily, while others think it is going to end the world. Regardless of how you feel about the buck, you cannot deny their success as a business and the ingenuity of founder and CEO, Howard Schultz. Here is an interview with Schultz on the Harvard Business Ideacast.

Listen now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date of this episode was 6/24/10.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thomas Jefferson

If you've never listened to the Thomas Jefferson Hour, you need to. It is hands down my favorite of the many historical podcasts out there.

Before you dive in, allow me to briefly explain how it works. For the first half of the show the host, Clay Jenkinson, plays the role of Thomas Jefferson. He answers listener questions written to Thomas Jefferson, he discusses policy that he (Thomas Jefferson) supported, and he rails on his arch nemesis, Alexander Hamilton. Then for the second half hour Clay Jenkinson speaks as himself, and analyzes what Thomas Jefferson said during the first half of the show. Brilliant.

Here's one of my all time favorite T.J. hours called "Presidential Blunders." Listen to this episode now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 4/9/06.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Science and Christianity

Today I'm posting two podcasts that are seemingly at odds. One is by a scientist (Sam Harris), one by a Christian (Shane Claiborne). But this is not about science vs. christianity, this is about science AND christianity. Both of these men are great thinkers, and both very concerned with the well being of others. I cannot stress enough how different these two podcasts are, but I feel like deep down at the root somewhere they share something in common.

The first is is an episode of "APM Speaking of Faith with Krista Tippet." Listen now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 7/1/10.

The second is a video podcast by TED Talks. Listen now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 3/22/10.

Friday, July 9, 2010

WWII Spies

In 1943 a body washed ashore off the coast of Spain. Planted on this dead body were details about the allied plan to invade Sardinia and Greece. When the Nazis discovered this body they felt like they had hit a gold mine, and they moved most troops in the region to Sardinia and Greece. What happened? In probably one of the best instances of trickery ever used in warfare, the English left Sardinia and Greece alone, and invaded Sicily. The body had been planted by the English.

This article by Malcolm Gladwell provides a detailed account of this allied touchdown, and discusses some of the finer points of spying.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wrongly accused

I know many of you listen to The Moth podcast regularly, and the latest episode is one reason I love The Moth so much. This one is told by Barry Gibbs, a man who spent 19 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit. Listen to his story now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 7/5/10.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


I've been getting some excellent podcast recommendations from David in London, and here are two, both on the topic of war.

The first is about the Vietnam War. Lyndon B. Johnson recorded many of the conversations he had when deciding what to do in Vietnam, and this episode of the Bill Moyers Journal plays and discusses some of these conversations. Listening to this almost makes you feel like you're hearing something you're not supposed to hear, and it gives good insight as to what motivates a president to make the decisions he does. You can listen now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 11/20/09.

The second is titled "wounded platoon," and it is about just that, a platoon from the war in Iraq. This episode is done by Frontline PBS, and you can listen now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 5/20/10.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Fashion, copywriting, and a glimpse at what the music, film, and publishing industries should do

In fashion, you can copy just about any design. If I had the skills I could go buy an Armani suit, copy it's design exactly, and as long as I didn't use the Armani logo it would all be legal. Why can't you do this with books, movies, or music? Why can you do this with jokes, boardgames, and bluejeans? This 15-minute TED Talk video by Johanna Blakley (not to be confused with my favorite fashionista Michael Blakley) answers these questions, and discusses the implications.

Watch now, or download it on itunes. The itunes release date was 5/25/10.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Daniel Okrent just wrote a book about the history of prohibition called "Last Call". This podcast episode of Econ Talk interviews Okrent about not just the rise and fall of prohibition, but also who supported it in the first place (the Klu Klux Klan and the women's suffrage movement were totally in favor of prohibition, while the Jews, Germans, and Catholics were against it). This is a good history lesson, and they make an interesting point that so much public policy is ultimately shaped economics.

Listen now, or download it from itunes. The itunes release date was 6/7/10.