Over the past few years, we’ve downloaded dozens of different podcasts. Typically, we only listen to a few episodes before our interest begins to flag. One of our favourite podcasts at the moment is To the Best of Our Knowledge (TTBOOK), which is produced by Wisconsin Public Radio and distributed by Public Radio International (PRI). We were already familiar with a few great PRI-distributed podcasts (e.g., This American Life, The Sound of Young America), but we were pleasantly surprised to learn that (besides cheese and beer) Wisconsin produces an earthy and effervescent podcast. (We're also happy that the program isn't called Cheesehead Radio!)
How we discovered TTBOOK:
Why TTBOOK is worth a listen:
We’ve learned about nerd culture, karaoke, and radical gardening. We’ve been inspired to bake Marlborough Pie, an apple pie that includes grated apples, eggs, and lemon juice and zest. (If you're interested, here is the recipe we used. The filling is very custard-like and lemony. It's unlike other apple pies we've tried.) We’ve also been interested enough to read books by some of the guests, including a lighthearted, entertaining book about tribute bands called Like a Rolling Stone (2008). The book's author, Steven Kurutz, appeared on an episode called "So You Wanna Be a Rockstar." His description of the Rolling Stones tribute band Sticky Fingers piqued our interest.
Recent topics on TTBOOK include autism, memory, libraries, remix culture, and David Foster Wallace. To tell you the truth, we were not looking forward to the episode on DFW. (We recently read lengthy articles in the New Yorker and Rolling Stone on him and were suffering from slight DFW overload.) But this was a really good episode. The discussions were generally illuminating, and Anne Strainchamp even managed to talk to his sister, Amy.
The TTBOOK website includes archives of the streamable episodes dating back to 2003.
For a change, we don't have any recommendations for other viewing/reading this week. Likely this is because we're ridiculously busy right now and suspect you may be as well.