Romany Malco chats boner pills and Call Chelsea Peretti joins the ‘masses

Romany Malco chats boner pills and Call Chelsea Peretti joins the ‘masses

The best podcasts for the week of June 21-27

Podmass comments and suggestions for future coverage can be directed to podmass@avclub.com. 

Quotes of the week

“I like to eat soup with a fork. I like the challenge.”—Percy Perryweather (Neil Campbell), Comedy Bang! Bang!

“This game is tense. I think of it when I’m trying not to come.”—Pete Holmes on The Leonard Maltin Game, Doug Loves Movies

“Some of you may know of the famous interview [Pedro Martinez] did for Sports Illustrated For Kids, when they asked him if he had any secret ambitions and… his answer to Sports Illustrated For Kids was ‘I want to fuck Sandra Bullock.’”—Nicholas Dawidoff on the candidness of the Cy Young Award winning pitcher, Hang Up And Listen

“There’s no greater hero than Iron Man, because he’s not a superhero. He’s a fuckin’ human being that earned everything and pays the price through alcoholism.”—Dan Harmon, Harmontown

“Most people just want to tell you why they’re right, more than they actually want to understand the true nature of something.”—Chris Hardwick, Nerdist 

“There ain’t gonna be no running. Unless I’m being chased. And if you’re too fast, I’ll give you the money.”—Sinbad, Never Not Funny

“It was the dirtiest hospital I’ve ever been to in my life. There were Toblerone wrappers on stretcher beds and loose muffins on the floor. Just, like, unwrapped, unexplained, whole muffins.”—Sasheer Zamata, This American Life

“Even when I’m walking on the beach, if my mind has any free time, even though it’s beautiful out and I can see Malibu in the distance, and I’m with somebody I like, and I’m just walking on the beach, my brain will go, like, ‘Fuck. What’s wrong with my computer?’”—Marc Maron on his recent trip to Venice Beach, WTF

“This motherfucker dressed like he know karate / Head like a donkey with a German shepherd body.”—Romany Malco on his favorite line from his battling days, WTF 

“Every time there’s a guy like you leaving a town, there’s a goof like me, like, ‘I heard that this is a fun place!’”—Pete Holmes, You Made It Weird

New (To Us)

The Soundtrack Series

The superb New York-based podcast The Soundtrack Series aims to reveal what music means to each individual’s heart. Broadcast live from Le Poisson Rouge once a month, host Dana Rossi travels to hear people spin emotive, often hilarious tales about their first exposure to certain songs. The Soundtrack Series doesn’t typically go after pop classics like “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” a refreshing break from the anniversary-loving cycle of digital music coverage. Think weirder, like the Oscar Mayer Wiener jingle and Amy Grant’s version of “Sing Your Praise To The Lord.”

Each episode is relatively short—the longest clocking in at 25 minutes and the shortest at a mere nine—but covers a lot of ground in the process. In the “Sunshine Of Your Love/Cream” episode, Rossi goes into favorite musical video devices, Christopher Walken, the most interesting comments she’s received on the podcast, and her obsession with Sia’s “Chandeliers.” In the same episode, former Go-Gos bassist Kathy Valentine shares her experience hearing Cream’s sultry number through a bedroom door in Lubbock at the tender age of 10.

The Soundtrack Series’ strongest attribute is its curation of excellent storytellers, who possess the ability to adopt humorous and self-depreciating tones that are never pretentious. The “Flash’s Theme/Queen”episode features Zach Hall, from the Queen tribute band Magnifico, tells a hysterical story about his amateur bodybuilder/magician dad “getting excellent” in the garage, pumping iron to the Flash Gordon soundtrack when he was a kid. Robin Gelfenbien tells a riveting story about her obsession with becoming employed to drive the famed Wienermobile after college in the “Oscar Mayer Weiner Jingle” episode. Rossi’s commentary is whip-smart and witty, guiding thoughts on the power of songs and shifting how they relate to sound and themselves. [PM]

The best

Call Chelsea Peretti: LIFE POD 1
Chelsea Peretti seems to have it all: a meme-able role in a hit sitcom, a powerful Internet presence, a beloved podcast, and is hot on the heels of filming her latest stand-up special. This national treasure could easily rest on her laurels and stick to the formula. Instead, Peretti decided to reinvent the game. Not letting a nationwide tour—nor giving a fuck about the framework set about in the show’s title—get in the way, Peretti has been delivering short tour diaries in true “Fitter Happier” fashion: using her personal computer. The tour episodes grew more experimental, and now we’ve arrived at the true vanguard of podcasting. This episode is brief, read through a text to speech, and plays as a reflective meditation on the comedian’s post-tour life. This is no place to start for the unfamiliar, but fans will vastly enjoy Peretti’s brave new world. [JW]

The Cracked Podcast #38: 22 Accidents That Made The World: Daniel O’Brien, Soren Bowie
In this edition of The Cracked Podcast, Jack O’Brien, along with writers Daniel O’Brien and Soren Bowie pack a lot of information into a discussion that lasts just under an hour. The panel devotes the hour to accidental discoveries and circumstances that have had the biggest impact on culture at large. One of the more interesting and enlightening threads of conversation involves the fact that Annie Hall is the result of Woody Allen’s failed attempt at creating a spoof of a murder mystery. Apparently, the murder plot failed and Allen accidentally created the movie that serves as the template for the modern romantic comedy. It also sounds like the three men are in the same room rather than a writer phoning into the discussion via Skype, so it’s an interesting peek into the camaraderie that must happen in the Cracked offices. [MS]

Comedy Bang! Bang! #296: Taking The Bladder Out: David Wain, Michael Showalter, Neil Campbell
Two-thirds of Stella (The State alumni David Wain and Michael Showalter) drop by Comedy Bang! Bang! to talk about their lifelong friendship, their shared status as both dads and grads and—perhaps most overtly—their new rom-com spoof, They Came Together. Along with Scott Aukerman, the deadpan trio spends the first segment mostly discussing the movie, a potential universal movie ticket price, and the need for more art house theaters where male patrons are free to leave their nut sacks out. They’re eventually joined by first-time guest and politely suicidal Steppenwolf Theater worker Percy Perryweather (Neil Campbell), who sounds an awful lot like Will Ferrell’s Harry Caray and harbors an enigmatic backstory on par with that of Charlotte Listler. When Wain’s old college professor, Phineas T. Johnson (Showalter) joins the conversation, things take an unexpected turn toward the revelatory and the lives of the two fictional guests may never be the same. [TK]

Doug Loves Movies: Pete Holmes, Jordan Brady, Wayne Federman
Doug Benson may have found the perfect panel-formula for the T.J. Millers and Jeff Garlins on his show: flank them with two incredibly witty, polite, easygoing guests. It certainly works for Pete Holmes, who gets along swimmingly with comic Wayne Federman and I Am Comic director Jordan Brady. Regardless, Benson keeps up his animosity shtick with Holmes, but this time around it’s playful on both sides and fosters a handful of great riff runs. Collectively, the dais explores the different avenues of offending an audience with the term “you people” (the “n-word” of a crowd in any circumstance, they observe). Brady is a little quiet compared to Federman and Holmes, but his contributions are solid, and he helps ground the episode. Everyone is in such good spirits that no one seems to mind how Samm Levine-level difficult most of the questions in this week’s The Leonard Maltin Game are. [DJ]

Final Level #13: The Mindset Of Success with James Altucher
Let’s hear it for Ice-T, fortnightly gathering the unlikeliest of guests, letting broad topics such as “music” and “I hate shit” spin into wildly abstract musings, and articulating lesson plans for those in any sort of hustle, while still managing to keep the product cohesive. Guest James Altucher comes from an investment background, squandering his self-made fortune twice, ultimately bouncing back again thanks to holistically healthy living. Ice is in one of his many elements with Altucher and clearly admires the man, even if hilariously plugging his book by the wrong name. The episode drags in the latter half with semi-extensive kvetching regarding the pains of commercial airlines versus the joys of private. Thankfully, Ice deftly threads that conversation into a million-dollar pitch for an Uber-style jet service. Final Level takes guests with specific backgrounds and knowledge and mines accessible lessons for all; Altucher’s liveliness perfectly befits the form. [JW]

Freakonomics: How To Screen Applicants, Act Your Age, And Get Your Brain Off Autopilot
This week kicks off the Think Like A Freak book club, where hosts Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner go through chapters of their latest book and answer questions from Freakonomics listeners. The format isn’t too far from the recurring “FREAKquently asked questions” episodes, but feels more like a plug than usual. That being said, the Q&A allows the hosts to go a little bit deeper into some of the themes they’ve explored in recent podcasts, fleshing out their various arguments. Likewise, the show is always at its best when the two hosts get to bounce off one another. Underlying everything, though, is the idea that being flexible is key. [NC]

Hang Up And ListenThe White Elephant In Manaus Edition
While the program’s World Cup game analysis leaves something to be desired, Hang Up And Listen calls in a well-timed substitute for this installment to provide a broader view of the international event. Grantland’s Bryan Curtis perks up a show that’s been running on fumes in recent weeks with his account of New York Times columnist George Vecsey’s trek to Spain to cover the 1982 World Cup, which marked the eighth consecutive time the United States failed to qualify for the tournament. Curtis’ account of Vecsey’s admitted soccer ignorance provides a fascinating glimpse at the early stages of the sport’s evolution in America over the next 32 years. A thoughtful remembrance of the late Tony Gwynn, whose seemingly universal respect on and off the baseball field was something of a wonderful relic, is another highlight in this solid episode. [TC] 

Harmontown #104: Death To Superman
Still exhausted after a plane ride, comptroller Jeff Davis kicks things off by saying, “It’s gonna be a good one, because I just don’t care.” It’s a sentiment Dan Harmon surprisingly doesn’t share this week. Harmon comes out verbal guns ablaze, first heaping praise on Robert Downey Jr. and Edge Of Tomorrow, then welcoming Dungeon Master Spencer Crittenden to the stage early for a spirited semantics debate. With the planet immersed in World Cup fever, Harmon runs through one of his best Sports Corner segments yet, but it isn’t until he meanders into explaining his hatred for Superman and humanity’s compulsion for fame that the episode slides into borderline poetry. Harmon’s 10-minute stream-of-consciousness pitch for his version of a Superman movie sits somewhere between a Spalding Gray monologue and the rants of a drunk uncle—and it still sounds more entertaining than either of Hollywood’s last two reboots. [TK]

Improv4Humans #140 Don’t Be A Dork: Charlie Sanders, Eugene Cordero, Dan Lippert
It’s always a good sign when Matt Besser starts an episode of Improv4Humans with an off-the-cuff, cold open. So things look especially promising when the cold open rolls into yet another scene with Eugene Cordero, Dan Lippert, and Charlie Sanders. The episode never slows down once the show gets it formal start, theme music, introductions and all. It certainly helps that Cordero and Sanders are on a comedy team together, but the four humans craft a winning series of skits effortlessly. Topics of discussion include the Pope’s disapproval of married couples keeping dogs over children, Spam’s utility in Hawaiian culture, and best of all what it means to call someone a dork. Besser had dorks on his mind from the start, and while their discussion of nerdasses is amusing, nothing tops the moment where Thomas The Intern corrects the name of a Dungeons & Dragons dog-man monster. [MK]

Nerdist #538: Greg Behrendt
Chris Hardwick’s discussion with comedian, author, musician, and Walking The Room co-host Greg Behrendt serves as both an in-depth interview and an intimate conversation between two men who have been good friends for about 20 years. In this conversation, Hardwick manages to avoid the trappings of interviews with past ’90s alt-comedy alum guests where he takes the reminiscing too deep inside the L.A. comedy scene to be of interest to an outside listener. Part of the reason is that Hardwick has a very deep and genuine admiration for Behrendt; he regards him as a bit of mentor in both comedy and sobriety. Behrendt’s comfort in discussing some of the darkest periods of his addiction and his life give the conversation a refreshing degree of candor. [MS]

Nerdist #539: Adam Rogers
Chris Hardwick sits down with Wired editor Adam Rogers for an extra long one-on-one. Rogers and Hardwick developed a close relationship when the latter regularly contributed to Wired. That level of comfort allows the conversation to flow freely from the development of the Internet to nerd culture to journalistic ethics. Rogers’ even-keeled, amiable personality is an ideal balance for Hardwick’s enthusiasm. He’s ostensibly there to plug his new book on the science of alcohol, but Rogers spends more time discussing the methodology of science writing and the changing landscape of journalism. Despite being nearly double the length of a normal Nerdist episode, this chat never drags. [CS]

Never Not Funny #1421: Sinbad
Sinbad hasn’t been a name on many comedy aficionados’ lips in a while, so it likely came as a pleasant surprise for many listeners when this week’s episode dropped on Thursday. At least the ones who are old enough to harbor fond memories of him from A Different World and his all-around permeation of popular culture in the ’90s. For those too young to remember that, this episode may serve as an entry point to the razor-sharp, singular sensibility of a candid and genial stand-up veteran. It’s odd to hear Jimmy Pardo regard a guest with as much deference as he does in this episode. And early on, it almost seems as though the slightly off energy between the two men might drag down the show. But any wisps of awkwardness swiftly dissipate, and the hour-long conversation zips along so easily that it seems to end moments after it begins. [DD]

99 Percent Invisible #120: “Skyjacking”
It’s hard to imagine, but in the ’60s, airplane hijacking was practically a national pastime for criminals. That’s the premise of this week’s 99 Percent Invisible, which both looks at the origin of the phenomenon (basically, crazy people wanting passage to Cuba) and how the airlines attempted to keep air travel completely unrestricted for as long as possible. The show runs through a number of harebrained ideas bandied about during the ’60s to keep terrorism out of the skies, including a hypodermic chair that would inject a hijacker with sedatives. One inventor even encouraged airlines to require all passengers to wear boxing gloves based on the premise that you couldn’t hold a gun in the big mitts. After a Southern Airways jet was hijacked and nearly turned into a weapon of mass destruction in 1972, though, the airlines relented, leading to the installation of airport metal detectors in January of 1973. [ME]

Professor Blastoff  #161: Cults: Leslie Wilson
The gang starts their exposé on cults by bringing relatively mainstream Christian denominations into the conversation, which would send any other podcast into inescapably choppy water. Instead, they take a hard turn into their most uproarious segment of the year as Jehovah’s Witness guest Leslie Wilson and Mormon former producer Aaron Burrell (appearing because this episode is held over from the January “couldn’t think top shelf thoughts” recordings) have an arm wrestling contest dramatically commentated on by the hosts before they promptly drop the episode’s topic to find out about Wilson’s experience donating her eggs. Only a brief excursion back into Witnesses and Mormons as cults is entertained before Kyle Dunnigan declares that he’s challenging the reigning arm wrestling champion, and just like that another installment of Professor Blastoff has come and gone in spectacular, goofy glory. [NJ]

Sklarbro Country #205: Blue Cheese Crumble: Steve Byrne
Randy and Jason Sklar open the show by getting almost infinite mileage about another absurd news story. This time it’s about prisoners who tried to smuggle drugs by tossing a football into prison. Then, the Sklars seamlessly transition into their interview with comedian Steve Byrne. The interview comes alive when Byrne and the Sklars trade war stories on some of their most troubling conflicts within the comedy scene. The Sklars share a very revealing and harrowing story about getting falsely accused of joke theft by a Saturday Night Live writer and the fallout it had on their careers. This strong episode also has a strong ending courtesy of a “Mark Wahlberg” call. [MS]

Sound Opinions #448: The Best Albums Of 2014 (So Far)
Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot absolutely never disappoint when they present their best of the year lists. Their encyclopedic knowledge of and constant search for the best music out there is as apparent as ever with this mid-year special, as they each sound off on their favorite albums of 2014’s first half. Kot highlights Cincinnati rock band Wussy, honky-tonk Lydia Loveless, indie rockers Parquet Courts, and post-punk Protomartyr, while DeRogatis gushes over the crooning Damon Albarn, the thrash-laden Against Me!, the garage band Le Butcherettes, and “Fudged Up.” Kelis’ new record, Food, earns the rare distinction of landing on both critics’ top fives. There’s something in their preemptive retrospective for everyone, and in true Sound Opinions fashion they keep the world looking forward with a glowing, expansive double Buy It review for Bob Mould. [NJ]

Stuff You Missed In History Class: The Yaa Asantewaa War Of Independence
Tracy V. Wilson and Holly Frey may not directly reference why a defeat of Ghana is a particularly topical reference, but nonetheless this episode brings to light a devastating conflict hidden in the archives of Western conquerors. In the year 1900 the British Empire faces a particularly bloody resistance from the Asante Empire and their leader Yaa Asantewaa in what would one day become Ghana. Looking to assert governing authority in a cartoonish fashion, the British Governor of the region Sir Frederick Mitchell Hodgson demanded the Asante people hand over their Golden Stool for him to sit upon. Little did he understand that the stool was a symbol of the souls of millions of dead and living Asante people, and such a demand was the greatest insult they had ever faced. The enthralling conflict was the last led by an African woman in modern history, and Wilson and Frey take care to detail every guerrilla tactic in a fight for independence where listeners will have a hard time siding with Westerners. [DT]

Stuff You Should Know: How The La Brea Tar Pits Work
Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant have both been to the La Brea Tar Pits, and their personal fascination gives this strange landmark a particularly compelling story. A bubbling pit of petroleum-based asphalt (no actual tar) the pits had not always been as visible as they are now. Humans dug out the site in the 20th century after it had become largely hidden over thousands of years, and they recovered over one million fossils of gigantic, extinct mammals. And the site has managed to stay interesting—large plexiglass mastodons decorate the pits, and scuba divers have even recovered murder mystery evidence from their depths. Clark and Bryant mix the history and function of the deadly pits with the wonder and amusement of the Page Museum that now sits on the property. Listeners with even a passing interest in paleontology will enjoy this episode, as the Pits have earned their status as one of the most iconic digging sites in modern history. [DT]

Stuff You Should KnowHow The MPAA Works
Artists and cinephiles have grumbled about the mysterious MPAA for decades, but hosts Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant deliver a damning snapshot of the organization by staying objective. Originally created for informative purposes that both hosts find appealing, it has become a marketing tool run by a small group that seems incredibly biased. Beginning in the 1920’s with an arcane and prejudiced set of rules known as the Hays Code, the MPAA claims its process is voluntary but without their $25,000 submission fee to them, movies can hardly be publicly presented. But the MPAA is extremely secretive, and its biases include a heavy favoritism of violence over sexuality and a history of disdain for alternative lifestyles. And its modern situation has changed rapidly, as tries to halt every bit of innovation and is constantly subverted by services like Video On Demand where they can be completely ignored. Clark and Bryant do their best to stay objective, but in the end the MPAA comes out sounding reactionary and outdated. And that conflict of ideas makes for a remarkable listen. [DT]

This American Life #528: The Radio Drama Episode
This week’s live episode is one of the most fun and idiosyncratic installments of This American Life to air in some time. It helps that the list of contributors—which includes Phillip Glass, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mike Birbiglia, Stephin Merritt, and SNL’s Sasheer Zamata--is perhaps the best ever assembled for a single TAL episode. While each of the four acts takes a form like opera, Broadway musical, or stage play not regularly associated with radio dramas, and all stands on their own as brilliant pieces of radio, it’s Miranda’s musical adaptation of a classic report from Episode #457 about an undercover cop who posed as a high school student from that shines brightest. A total joy to listen to thanks Miranda’s brilliant lyrics and score, the piece stays true to its source material while bringing it to life in new and unexpected ways. Listeners wanting the full experience of the stage show should download the recording of the show from the TAL website. [DF]

WTF #508: Craig Gass
For someone who found success in comedy almost solely due to his impressions, Craig Gass does an admirable job not using those impressions as a crutch and managing to steer clear of the hackdom that most impressionists succumb to. Gass’ impressions are good, to be sure, but what’s more interesting about them is the way he approaches doing them, along with the fact that he grew up in a house in which he was the only hearing person, and he provides just the right amount of detail about all of this. There’s not much in the way of insight to be found here, but Gass’ career trajectory is a unique one, plus he has great stories to tell—no surprise considering he started using cocaine at age 14 and lived with Mitch Hedburg for a brief span of time—and he tells them well, making for a solidly entertaining episode. [CG]

WTF #509: Romany Malco
With a twice a week schedule, WTF can, in spite of Maron’s best efforts, often autopilot to a standard hour and a half career retrospective. Romany Malco’s common denominator recognition probably comes from his role in The 40 Year Old Virgin; here we learn about his successful pre-acting “boner pill” enterprise, stint in the Marines, and the tumults of his boyhood. Maron could have stuck to the rapper-turned-entrepreneur-turned-actor’s genesis, but this interview is vintage WTF: two artists simply talking as people, exchanging ideas, theories, and stories. Malco’s ruminating on the 1 percent and D.C.’s shadiness could potentially drag the episode down; happily, it does not. Listeners might not expect much from a heretofore bit-player but are treated to fascinating and myriad accounts, with guest and host being striking an engaging chemistry right off the bat. For regular listeners unfamiliar with Malco, stay past the opening penis tragicomedy—it’s a great 87 minutes.

Who Charted? #186: Showin’ Arm: Jason Nash
Guest Jason Nash is primarily known through his amazing character voicemail messages on Sklarbro Country and his prolific and popular Vines, but Nash is enjoying a moment in the sun by being the primary podcast guest and just being his charming self. Nash is essentially there to plug his movie Jason Nash Is Married, but he does play a pivotal role in the podcast’s history where he acts as an audience surrogate and confronts Howard Kremer and on the largely imaginary hang-ups and neuroses that hold Kremer back personally and professionally. Also, Jason Nash’s mom happens to be in the studio and listeners can hear her chime in every now and again, sometimes while Nash is doing an impression of her. It’s pretty adorable. [MS]

You Made It Weird #213: George Basil
George Basil is a talented comedian with a recognizable face, if still unfamiliar name, and an interesting pathway to industry success that twined not only through Austin, New York and L.A., but also through a series of complicated relationships with various women, including his now 6-year-old daughter, to whom he is devoted. Early in the show, Holmes hits upon the idea of referring to his guest as “The Baze!”—in seeming reverence to Basil’s laid-back, Bohemian demeanor—which comes off as slightly more playful than reductive. But just slightly. If you don’t find this joke name funny the first time you hear it, give it time. You might like it a little more the 100th time. If not then, perhaps the 200th. Hopefully, you’ll learn to appreciate it eventually, because it’s a defining aspect of the episode. Which is too bad, because The Baze! really shows himself to be a pretty multi-faceted interview subject. [DD]

The rest

Bonnie & Maude#23 – Maleficent/Guest: Sophie Bushwick 
Tabled Fables co-host Sophie Bushwick is the guest this week, and the three waste no time in identifying the rape metaphor in the film. But they also make astute observations about the character arc of Maleficent, the roles women (and the spinning of cloth) play in fairy tales, how special effects helped this story, and the majestic powers of Angelina Jolie’s cheekbones—but the episode goes a bit long and the observations lean toward perfunctory. [AB]

Book Fight! #63: Michael W. Clune, White Out
Guest co-host Leslie Jamison (The Empathy Exams), graduate-school classmate of the host, suggested they discuss White Out, a heroin-addiction memoir by Case Western professor Michael W. Clune. Though all three agree the book is riveting and well-written, that enthusiasm doesn’t really become contagious. Much of the episode is taken up with Iowa City and Writers Workshop reminisces, but the lightning round does reveal that in a fight, Jamison would beat up sick people. [AB]

Doug Loves Movies: “Mark Wahlberg,” Tony Hinchcliffe, Brian Redban, Sarah Tiana
On top of losing any shred of good will from Doug Benson and his fellow panelists, a particularly shitty sounding Las Vegas club owner loses another episode recording. At the NerdMelt Showroom in Los Angeles, Benson attempts to relive the episode with the same guests, and Daniel “Mark Wahlberg” Van Kirk varies things up by inviting himself to play. It’s a mostly satisfying episode, but the energy drags a bit by the end. [DJ]  

Filmspotting #496: Top 5 Films of 2014 (So Far) / The Rover
Adam Kempenaar and Josh Larsen’s lists of their favorite films of the year so far are somewhat interesting, if not particularly compelling. We’ve heard most of this before, but you can’t really begrudge them episodes like this. Inventing new themes for these lists nearly 500 episodes in must be daunting. [DD]

How Was Your Week Gems Vol. 6: Merrill Markoe, Brian Stack, Andy Kindler
Andy Kindler fulfills his role as the expected highlight of another Gems installment that proves that some deleted scenes should stay deleted. [NJ]

Judge John Hodgman #166: My Legal Pony
Giggly testimony creates the impression this week’s case is an elaborate Punk’d-style prank on the audience: Nancy claims she owns 11 Shetland ponies, and Becky says the animals are “ill-mannered.” A docket-clearing case also involves another Shetland, which further suggests it’s a put-on. [DXF]

The Mental Illness Happy Hour #179: Tyler W.
Listener Tyler gives an engaging account of his battle with bulimia, but Paul Gilmartin can’t seem to help himself from making ill-timed jokes. While Gilmartin’s worries about the offensiveness of the wisecracks are largely unfounded, they disrupt the rhythm of Tyler’s story. [TC]

The MothShaun Sperling & Tara Clancy: StorySLAM Favorites
Shaun Sperling, the YouTube hit who made talk show rounds after Perez Hilton popularized a video of his fabulous Bar Mitzvah stunt, relives the short-term madness of becoming an internet sensation. Though 15-minutes-of-fame stories are cute, the self-serious way it’s relayed induces more eye rolls than chuckles. Tara Clancy’s simple, heartfelt story about her girlfriend fares better. [DJ] 

Stuff You Missed In History Class: Battle Of Poitiers
When Stuff You Missed In History Class goes into the distant past, one of the best parts is hearing Tracy V. Wilson and Holly Frey go off script. But the Battle of Poitiers, which occurred in 1356 between England and France, had lots of moving parts and conflicting accounts. Hearing Wilson and Frey rattle through vague details of treaties and a history-scrubbing outbreak of the Black Death make for a rather frustrating listen. [DT]  


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