Switching Spotify for Castbox: why you should listen to podcasts

I love music. I think all human beings with functioning ears love music, be it the repetitive pop that comes on the radio or the indie rap we download to our phones through less than legal means.

Music is fantastic. It allows us to fill our brains with harmonious noise while we ignore the 65 year old woman sitting next to us on the bus that really, REALLY wants to talk to you about the weather and show you pictures of her grandkids (listen, I consider myself a polite person, but you’ll have better chances asking me to breakdance than asking me to make small talk with strangers on a Monday morning).

But do you know what are also great and don’t get enough love? Podcasts.

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Book reviews: the cultural way to waste free time

I’ve been using the website Goodreads since 2011 to mark what books I’ve read and give them a nice little boxed rating from 1 to 5. I know Goodreads is owned by Amazon and thus is part of a larger capitalistic, dominating system designed to sell us more books from Amazon, but I also know that I’m a forgetful person and if I don’t annotate anything I’m bound to forget it sooner or later.

For that simple “I’d forget my own head if it wasn’t attached to me” reason, I also began to write on the website what I thought of said books.

For a long time I didn’t these reviews they were interesting enough to crosspost here, but now I figure hey, what the hell, maybe there’s someone out there wondering what I thought of Shakespeare’s Macbeth and to that person I say: I thought it was the bee’s effing knees.

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On Loving an Image

Reading the Price of Salt or Carol, as it was later known, was a curious experience for me.

I can’t relate to Therese and I’m not talking about the part where she falls in love with a woman. That bit seems minor. Love is love and all that. I’m talking about the way she falls in love with Carol. In that sudden moment, a shared glance, a baited breath and the heavy fall. Therese falls in love with an image first and a person later but her love doesn’t change, it perdures, not wavering, not seeming to grow or deflate for much of the book. And it is love, intoxicating and wild and so strong the reader can’t help but fear it and worship it at the same time.
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Spectre and the failings of nostalgia

I went to see the new James Bond movie last Saturday with my family and—drum roll please—I didn’t enjoy it.

We bought the tickets early in the afternoon for the 9pm session, which was how we managed to score mid-row, mid-column seats in a packed theater. As such, the seating wasn’t the issue.

Neither was the technical quality of the movie. The special effects were done nicely, the soundtrack fit the movie and the camera captured the right angles. It must be said that, despite being well done, none of that it stood out to me, not even the soundtrack, which is one of my favorite parts in any movie experience.

Some might say this is a good thing. After all, James Bond movies aren’t know to rely heavily on the technicalities. Nonetheless, nowadays one always expects that extra bit of fun and quality from a movie, which you don’t get with Spectre.

Regardless, the seating or the technical aspects aren’t part of my beef with this movie. To get to that, we should start with the basics.

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Five Podcasts you should listen to

I love a good podcast. I’m one of those people who always has their headphones in their ears or the music blasting whenever they go on the road. I love listening to music, everything from synthetic pop to classical music to Kanye West, but there are times when music doesn’t cut it for me. Times when I get bored of listening to the same old songs I’ve already listened to five hundred times. That’s when podcasts come in. Inspiring, entertaining and informative, nowadays there are podcasts about everything. Football, food, comedy, news, plays – you name it, it likely already exists.

There is a podcast for every person. These are my current top five.

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Birds: A Review

Birds are magnificent creatures. Terrifying, mysterious, and often idiotic, magnificent creatures. There is so much to be said about them, from their physiology to their behavior, that one blog post may not be enough. Still, I will try to write this review to the best of my ability for the sake of science. 

Wikipedia describes birds as a “group of endothermic vertebrates, characterized by feathers, a beak with no teeth, the laying of hard-shelled eggs, a high metabolic rate, and a lightweight but strong skeleton.”

I describe them as bloody weird.

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