One of the utter joys of having an iPod is all the terrific podcasts out there that have freed me from channel surfing in the car, and helped me to enjoy walking the dog.
These days, I’ve been listening to:
- New Yorker Fiction – Roger Angell, Updike’s long-time editor, reads and discusses “Playing with Dynamite”; Thomas McGuane reads and discusses James Salter’s “Last Night”
- Thinking Allowed – BBC’s Laurie Taylor on The Hole in the Wall project
- Between the Covers – CBC’s serialization of Paul Quarrington’s “King Leary“
- Vinyl Cafe – classic CBC radio show starring Stuart Maclean and some rather maudlin’ stories (but hey, I’m getting older)
- Great Lives – BBC interviews featuring an admirer and an expert on various celebrities. Recently up: Bette Davis, Margot Fonteyn, Robert Kennedy
- Start the Week – BBC weekly with Andrew Marr – this week’s show covered Tom Stoppard, Slumdog Millionaire author Vikas Swarup, psychoanalyst Adam Phillips and Wendell Steavenson’s profile on the Iraqi General Sachet
I also enjoy the BBC World Book Club where the host interviews an author each month with questions from their worldwide audience. While I was painting the basement, I listened to a terrific 3- (or 4-) part series from BBC Discovery on Darwin.
I still prefer reading. I don’t really like to listen to audiobooks…probably something to do with my learning style. But for those times when I’m unable to read a book (while knitting, driving, walking the dog), these kinds of programs are terrific. As is the Moth podcast, which is (as they say) “true stories told live without notes”.
And they’re all free and available on iTunes (or directly from the source).