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My Favorite Podcasts 2018

I wish I had a time machine to grab my favorite podcasts back in yesteryear when Twitter was Odeo and going to aggregate them all. Some of the regulars from 2016 have been supplanted, will these in time be as well? 

GLOP: Culture by Rob Long, John Podhoretz and Jonah Goldberg manages to be side splitting funny while being informative. You immediately feel you at the table among friends in the discussion. Relatedly, Rob Long’s Martini Shot – seldom referred to on GLOP which is unfortunate is a polished 4 minute gem wryly letting us look in on this ex-Cheers writer/producer’s life in Hollywood. 

The Game Informer Show: podcasts in gaming are a microtransaction a dozen. By and for the fan’s circle of friends finding good ones is tough. Game Informer as a leading enthusiast publication has hit the right rhythm of show guests with insights they might not be willing to put in print. It pays to follow over multiple podcasts, even if the show can run a touch long at times. The irreplaceable quality of having developers discuss each other’s work (four discussing flaws in Red Dead Redemption II here)

Conversations with Bill Kristol: NeverTrump and always thoughtful on politics, media, society. The election previews and post-mortems with the LA Times’ Ron Brownstein hold up well over time. Paul Cantor discussing Shakespeare or great television like Breaking Bad are unexpectedly riveting and something I want to immediately revisit…and may feature in 2019 reading plans.

The Tim Ferris Show makes a great effort at getting me to drop it, with the worst questioning of any host. It also takes a while to get to the questions: there are invariably eight minutes of advertisements one has to mash the “forward” button on the app player. But the list of guests has no peer in depth and breadth. I’m annoyed that he won’t question Maria Sharapova on doping – but it’s still Sharapova. It is easy to bail on the conversation which regularly bloats to two hours. Where else can I hear Naval Ravikant and Nick Szabo thinking deeply together on cryptocurrencies (this podcast from last year holds up well even after the crash). It is also responsible for my discovering some other fantastic health podcasts from Peter Attia (“The Drive“) and Rhonda Patrick’s Found My Fitness.

Hardcore History has to merit an appearance here though I’m not sure “podcast” is the right designation of medium.  The Celtic Holocaust, clocking in at six hours, helped me through Ceasar’s Gallic Wars and riveted me nearly the whole way through – something of a feat 

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