A little while back I discovered the Podcast button on my iPhone. Of course it had always been there and even though I had been downloading podcasts to my Zune for years (yes I still own one and it actually continues to work and be used) it still took me 3 years as an iPhone user to realize it was there. I am to say in short not a techie.
This revelation coincided with a recent drought of music in our lab, this led me to begin listening to podcasts with a vengeance. Most of the podcasts I listen to on a daily basis are information-based programs about history, science or news. However, there are few that have actually led to a little bit of a problem. These three podcasts routinely led to my lab mates turning the corner to find me sobbing with laughter in front of my fume hood. I looked like a stark raving maniac, which can be very troubling when you are a chemist and surrounded by dangerous chemicals all day. Relief and confusion usually follows when I attempt to explain the source of my amusement.
So in an attempt to fill the world with other out of context laughing maniacs. Here are my recommendations for podcasts that will make you laugh through your day.
Thrilling Adventure Hour is a serial podcast in the form of an old-time radio show. The podcast contains several different “shows” and while I enjoyed all of them the two best in my opinion were Beyond Belief (two lush married psychics dealing with ghosts and other things that go bump) and Sparks Nevada (the adventures of an Earth born Marshall trying to keep order on Mars). Both of these consistently made me cry with giggling.
The Thrilling Adventure Hour is the best podcast I have ever listened to; it is one of those gems that is well written, well produced and full of incredible voice actors. Unfortunately, Thrilling Adventure Hour is no longer putting out new podcasts but don’t let this stop you from listening, there are hundreds of episodes to go through so you won’t run out anytime soon. Start from the beginning to avoid confusion among the many story lines.
Remember all those angsty things you wrote when you were younger or maybe you attempted to pen the script to the next big blockbuster film as a 12-year-old? Mortified is a podcast where adults read all those hideously embarrassing missives out loud in front of a live audience. The result is nothing but hysterical. The content runs the gambit from reading diary entries about awkward sexual encounters, to letters home from summer camp and even a girl who tried to write the next great erotica novel before she had had her first kiss.
One of my favorite episodes was a man reading his letters home from sleep away camp when he was around 12 (I think) and it just happened to be some sort of naturalist camp where I guess they did a lot of things naked (think hippy not creepy). The result of this was that I couldn’t even explain why I was gasping for air through my laughter to my lab mates… because how do you explain naked camping problems without looking even stranger?
Speaking of not being able to explain yourself. My Dad Wrote a Porno is one of those podcasts that I hesitate to recommend to people I don’t know extremely well. This podcast balances derisive British humor and horribly written erotica. It fits my sense of humor exactly.
Imagine if one day your parent came to you and asked you to read a book they had just written and it turned out to be badly written erotica. This podcasters way of dealing with this horror was to grab two of his funniest friends and record their reactions as he reads it out loud. The result is a miracle in comedy podcasting and a huge hit in the UK. It is something you have to hear to believe, the level of bad writing and hysterical commentary is outstanding.
There are two seasons out (one for each book his dad has written) so start from the beginning and enjoy the whole uncomfortable journey.
This three are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to my recommendations for podcasts but they stand out as my favorites when I need a chuckle. Let us know what you think. Also let us know below which podcasts you listen to when you need a little levity.