Listening to This Week: Christmas Tunes, Nerd Podcasts, and More

| Personal Journal

I have found, over my many years of life (21, to be exact), that I both learn best audibly and that I work better when there’s some noise in the background from podcasts and great music.

If you’re like me, or you’re just looking for some cool audio waves to put through your ears because you want to drown out your family, here’s what I’ve been listening to this week.

1. Tim Ferriss’ interview with Ezra Klein


One of my most dreaded activities is the drive from Dallas to Houston (my hometown) for a holiday or break. I am convinced that Interstate 45 is the most boring stretch of road in the world, and I am always looking for long-form content to keep my boredom at bay.

As I wrote last week, I am a big Tim Ferriss fan because of how he deconstructs top-performers to reveal why they’ve been successful. He does this, in large part, by interviewing them on his podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show.

The title of this podcast – “From College Blogger to Political Powerhouse” – grabbed my attention. I have known who Ezra Klein is ever since Vox launched, and I have even admired some of his work. As it turns out, Klein and I have a similar backgrounds when it comes to our lives in high school and how we approach new information. Whether you agree with his left-leaning politics or not, I certainly recommend this podcast.

2. Ezra Klein’s interview with Malcolm Gladwell


I must have been really impressed with Klein, because I went over to his own podcast after I finished his interview with Ferriss. This time, the one being interviewed was Malcolm Gladwell, an author and journalist whose work I am currently reading.

In this interview, they chat about all sorts of really high-level-thinking sort of things, such as the cultural differences between the U.S. and Canada, the state of journalism and what its future might be, why pickup trucks are bigger today than they were 50 years ago, and much more.

3. Baby It’s Cold Outside – Michael Bublé and Idina Menzel


We are just a few days away from Christmas, which means it is totally acceptable to put your favorite holiday tunes on repeat and full blast. My favorite rendition of my favorite Christmas song just so happens to be sung by one of my favorite singers, Michael Bubleé. He accompanies Idina Menzel, who I am told is also big deal.

4. Matt Cutts: “Try Something New for 30 Days”


After posting last week about my goal to do 12 monthly experiments in 2017, I searched for people who have done similar things. I didn’t know who Matt Cutts was when I stumbled across his ted talk, but he tested the idea to do something new for 30 days. His thoughts gave me some good insights for next year.

5. “Shine” – Mondo Cozmo


First of all, how cool of a stage name is Mondo Cozomo? Secondly, while this song was released in September, it has been gaining in popularity this month. It’s a dope song to listen to, just in case you want a break from Christmas music.

6. My own damn podcast!


On my podcast this week, I talked about why Pizza Hut has ruined the $15/hr minimum wage argument for all service workers, why we need to reach out to people we viscerally disagree with, and the importance for young politicos to stay involved and engaged. So listen to it!