Bibelots

a place for the curious

Category: featured podcast (page 1 of 2)

Short, sweet articles highlighting some of the best podcasts in the current deluge of the podcast audio golden age.

Podlike: ripe with allusions

Mixed emojions

banks of red lights

Lighting a fire under the allusion of words

I dearly love The Allusionist and picking just one great episode verges on the impossible. Helen Zaltzman’s podcast always fills me with joy and while I can’t rightly say this is my very favourite episode, months later it does still makes me laugh. I find I’m still quoting parts of it to other people (my dear, tolerant friends).

I’ll be honest, when I saw the word ’emoji’ in my feed I was tempted to skip it and let the emoji snobbery have its way. This episode delighted and entertained me, and has now utterly corrupted me. I have acute and incurable premature emojulation. I suspect Ms Zaltzman would be proud.

The Allusionist is frequently surprising, subversive and powerful. This episode was an early, shining example.

‘this is a subversive commentary on text, because the text is all about how women are just there to be seduced; they’re just body parts. So she’s saying, “They’re just body parts, are they? I’m going to pick them and put them in a pie.”’

Helen somehow waltzes us around, through and towards a truly serious underlying issue. While the episode is supposedly about emoji, there’s a whole lot more going on.

The episode’s under 17 minutes. Take some time out and sit a while under the penis tree of language, allusion and emoji.


 

Podlike: rumblings in here

lots of little green lights

Shining some mindful insight

I am in here

This week’s podlike is a bit of a wild card entry. It’s been another magnificent week in podcast land, with too many ear pleasures to describe. But out of the storm of inspiring stories I stumbled on this stunning piece of audio from Rumble Strip Vermont. I hadn’t listened to their show before this week and this ep was my intro to them. And with it I’m hooked.

I am in here is a journey inside the thoughts of Mark Nutter. Mark’s form of autism meant he wasn’t able to speak for the first 30 years of his life. He could only listen. In this remarkable episode, we get to hear from Mark. In his own words.

I know love goes, but I am really into love’s arrival. I am aware that I felt deeply aware of love for a long time. […] I felt love and I saw love between real people, and between the movie/TV folks too, but I was not a participant, though I found I felt it in me.

Mark’s story – a story told with deft and beautiful human insight – left me breathless. I feel honoured to have been given the gift of hearing it.

This is the potential beauty of podcasts everywhere. This sudden light into the heart of someone else’s life. Someone who lives life in a way you can never experience for yourself. You can’t experience it, but possibly you can, for a moment, try to understand it.


 

Podlike: scrutiny in the house

bank of lights, tinted green

The harsh light of scrutiny

Housekeeping #4: scrutiny

I love a lot of what the folks at the Wheeler Centre do. While one of my unwritten rules for these articles is ‘one review per podcast show’, I’m going to let myself off the hook here. They just make too many types of shows. But the vastness of their work is what brings about gems like their latest mini-series, ‘Housekeeping’.

The Scrutiny episode of Housekeeping scratches at the surface of something that at first feels like it might be papery and dry.  Yet it somehow ends up in the middle of the digital era and leaves us surrounded by questions of privacy, individuality and public scrutiny. Like many of the best podcasts, it sets up our expectations and rapidly strips them away. With fascinating and beautiful speed.

Once you step out into the wilds of the internet, there’s no telling what’s going to happen.

I love it when any broadcaster or podcast show does a 3 or 5 parter, like Jarni Blakkarly & the Wheeler Centre have done. It’s a sweet, tangible serving to look forward to and it almost always leaves you wanting more.


 

Podlike: Paper radio & a prawn

The big prawn

a bank of lights

shining a light on the Paper Radio podcast

Paper Radio is an Aussie/NZ podcast. Their last podcast was end 2015, but more episodes are on the way. Paper Radio recently snuck back into my consciousness when they were made a Radiotopia Podquest semi-finalist. And for whatever reason, it seems that crayfish are everywhere right now too. So when Paper Radio came back into view, their big prawn story crawled right along with it.

I listen to a lot of podcasts, and yet somehow that big prawn episode has always stayed with me. I thought that maybe the theme of big things would not carry overseas. But I discovered recently that Katia Pase’s tale was rebroadcast as part of an episode of The Truth (and on Radio Tonic).

There’s something timeless here. It’s not only the tale, but the way the tale has been edited and mixed. It sings and it stays with you. It left a haunting little place in my heart.

We could see the creature a mile away. Dad pulled in at the servo and I got out of the car and looked at the Big Prawn from across the road. It wasn’t pink at all. It was a faded white colour and it’s eyes were all googly and weird.

The big prawn is, for me, a story about searching for something you can’t really hope to find. And that’s a message that can be shared anywhere in the world.


 

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