As you know, CEPH staff are always on the road! While traveling, we each like to absorb some non-work related content in the form of podcasts, books and TV shows. With the holidays in full swing, and many of us traveling to visit family and friends, we wanted to share some of our favorite entertainment with you! Enjoy!
Undisclosed: If you loved Serial Season 1, which covered the Adnan Sayed case, you will LOVE Season 1 (and beyond) of Undisclosed! In this podcast, three attorneys, including Colin Miller, an associate dean at the University of South Carolina School of Law, investigate and report on all of the legal ins and outs of wrongful convictions in this country. Season 2 reports on the heartbreaking case of Freddie Grey and the police brutality that likely led to his death. This podcast may be of particular interest to folks from Maryland, Georgia and Pennsylvania, as many of the cases they discuss originate there.
Armchair Expert: Actor and self-proclaimed armchair expert Dax Shephard and his team interview celebrities, exploring their backgrounds and stories in this podcast. The conversations dive deep, examining how folks overcome challenges to achieve their goals. Dax is a recovering addict and his life experiences inform his interviews. In addition to interviewing celebrities, the podcast has special episodes titled “Experts on expert.” In these episodes, Dax talks to authorities from various fields. Guests have included Jon Favreau (politics), Jonathan Haidt (moral psychologist), Sam Harris (neuroscientist/philosopher), Yuval Noah Harari (historian), and David Sedaris (humorist/author). Just note, this might be one to avoid at work or with kids in the car as it does carry an explicit warning.
I’m also currently listening to the book “Small Fry” by Lisa Brennan-Jobs, the estranged daughter of Steve Jobs. The synopsis reads, “Part portrait of a complex family, part love letter to California in the seventies and eighties, Small Fry is a poignant coming-of-age story from one of our most exciting new literary voices”.
The Stuff You Should Know podcast has been around for 10 years and the backlog of episode topics run the gamut from public health-y (“How HeLA Cells Work,” “How Global Warming Works” & "How Restaurant Health Inspections Work") to history (“What’s the deal with Rasputin’s Death?” & “Was there a real King Arthur?”) to some really random topics (“How Pet Psychics Work” & “Juggling: What the Heck”). There’s something for everyone and hosts Josh and Chuck keep it fun and interesting. I like being able to pick and choose from such a wide variety of topics based on my mood! This week I listened to “How Search and Rescue Dogs Work.”
I also love to read and “The Cuckoo’s Calling” is a thrilling mystery set in modern-day London. A surly, damaged private detective and veteran returned from Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike, has nearly lost his business when the case of a lifetime walks through his door. This book was released in 2013 by new author, Robert Galbraith to rave reviews. But, surprise, Galbraith was a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame. The novel demonstrates her signature flair for world building. Now’s the time to catch up as the fourth Cormoran Strike novel was released this month. These books are also a great gift idea for the grown-up Harry Potter fans in your life!
Bag Man: Hosted by Rachel Maddow is a podcast about what was happening in the White House and the Department of Justice in 1973 – and it has very little to do with Watergate! It’s a non-fiction political and legal thriller that has some interesting parallels to politics today.
The Great British Baking Show on Netflix is an amazing reality competition import from the UK! A talented batch of amateur bakers face off in a 10-week competition that bears little resemblance to typical, American reality competitions. Despite it being a competition, the contestants are exceptionally nice to each other and develop friendships that last beyond the show. I love to watch this show after a long day because the music is upbeat and the contestants are so creative!
The Weeds: This is an amazing podcast for all policy wonks and required listening on my playlist. Writers from vox.com go deep into “the weeds” of different policy issues each week. Sarah Kliff is a regular and does great stuff on nuances of the ACA and the healthcare debate, but other weeks discuss immigration, TANF, housing policy, etc. Most weeks end with a segment called “White Paper of the Week,” which is just what it sounds like! Despite the wonkiness, it’s lively, fast paced, and funny, with occasional pop culture references that even I have to look up.
Good Company is a podcast, hosted by Design*Sponge, focused on professionals in the world of design including interior decorations, jewelery making, and artwork. Episodes cover issues such as ageism, imposter syndrome, and inclusion and advocacy for all people.
I find learning about other individuals’ paths to success enlightening and inspiring.
I am currently reading “The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels” by Jon Meacham. Meacham is a Pulitzer Prize-winning presidential biographer who writes about understanding current politics and looking back at moments in our nation’s history where we were able to overcome division and fear similar to what we are experiencing now. Meacham also eulogized George H.W. Bush at his funeral service earlier this month. While I’m reading the hard copy, the book is also available as an audiobook and ready for download on Audible.