This summer, I spent a whole lot of time in my car since I had an hour commute to and from work every day. Podcasts deterred my road rage in Atlanta traffic and save my sanity. I'm all for jamming out in the car to music, but music doesn't always hold my attention for long periods of time. I also end up using too much data on Pandora and Spotify, but with podcasts, I can quickly download them to my phone while on my home wifi and listen in the car without using data. Then, I can delete the downloads after I've listened to them. I've rounded up a list of my favorites at the moment.
1. Gravy - Sponsored by the Southern Foodways Alliance, this podcast always makes me hungry. Tina Antolini shares stories of the changing American South through the foods we eat. I love food and good storytelling and this podcast has both. The podcast and affiliated publication, also called Gravy, won the James Beard Foundation's Publication of the Year for 2015. If you don't want to go through the whole backlog, some of my favorite episodes include Hip Hop to Bibimbap: the Atlanta of Christiane Lauterbach (Ep. 11), The Jemima Code (Ep. 6), Sweet, Salty, Bitter, Sour: The Emotional Life of Eating (Ep. 5), and Separation of Church and Coffee (Ep. 2). At the end of every episode, Antolini reminds listeners to "make cornbread, not war."
2. This American Life - You've probably heard of this podcast because it's won all of the major radio awards and it's just the bomb. Amazing storytelling that sometimes makes me laugh out loud or shed tears in my car. If you're new to podcasts, start here.
3. Call Your Girlfriend - A podcast for long distance besties everywhere. Journalist Ann Friedman and tech boss Aminatou Sow are the besties behind this podcast along with producer Gina Delvac.They talk about current events, pop culture, boss ladies and more. It's currently on a short hiatus for updates, but I can't wait for it to come back! Call Your Girlfriend really does feel like a phone call where you catch up with your closest smart, funny girlfriends.
4. TED Radio Hour - TED talks are the bomb. Pretty much all of my favorite professors in college incorporated TED talks into their lectures. This show takes a topic and interviews people who have given TED talks related to that topic. TED + NPR = happy ears.
5. Reply All - It's a podcast about the internet, but not in a boring technical way. The episodes are also usually 30 minutes or less, so this podcast is great if you only have a little time.
6. The Ladycast - Brand new podcast, y'all! If Call Your Girlfriend sounds like it's up your alley, you'd probably like The Ladycast as well. It's actually created and produced by a fellow Red & Black alumna Alex Laughlin, who currently works at The Washington Post.
What are your favorite podcasts? How do you survive long commutes? I'd love to hear!