Hump Day Brain Dump: Podcast Nuggets and this Weird Dog

I keep waiting for that summer slow-down at work, but things are still coming fast and furious and it doesn’t seem like it’s about to let up anytime soon. The good news is that I’ll be done with grad school in 3 weeks and then I can actually have a life again!

In honor of this being a week of crazy, and because my capacity to form well-organized thoughts is lacking, I’m brain dumping at you today.

Incidentally, I was going to title this post “Hump Day Dump”, but I figured you’d all accuse me of making poop jokes again, so I thought I’d spare us all.

1. The Brain Dump idea is on…my brain lately

This quarter I’m taking a class in Public Persuasion, and one of the exercises that we’ve done includes starting with a prompt and writing fast and without stopping for a set amount of time (say 10 minutes). While I joked with some of my cohort that we’re paying $2000/day to learn how to journal, I can’t express enough how much I have gained from practicing this kind of writing.

The idea behind the exercise is that as you continue to write whatever pops into your mind as quickly as you can, you stop censoring yourself and you can come up with insights that were previously locked up somewhere in the deep recesses of your brain. It’s amazing how inhibited our everyday/work-email writing tends to be.

If you’re interested in learning more about it, check out Mark Levy’s book, Accidental Genius.

(Not a sponsored post, Mark Levy doesn’t know me, and that’s not an affiliate link. Over and out.)

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2. My “new thing” is listening to podcasts while I walk

My commute to work involves a 3/4 mile walk each way and I also try to get out and take a walk at lunchtime whenever possible, so I manage to find quite a bit of time on my feet for an office-dweller. I’ve decided that there is so much content out there just waiting to be heard that I put on a podcast most of the time I’m walking. I’ve been jumping around between podcasts a lot, so I can’t say that I really have a favorite, but here’s a sampling of some that I’ve enjoyed:

  • Invisibilia (produced by NPR) – concerning the unseen forces in our lives that determine why we do and think what we…do and think. Really interesting if you like thinking about the brain from a psychological perspective.
  • Planet Money (also produced by NPR) – quick episodes on economic/financial/miscellaneous money matters. These are lighthearted and, like I said, quick, but I always feel like I learned an interesting tidbit.
  • The Tim Ferris Show – Tim interviews various successful professionals (they are often names you’d know) and gleans from them some of the tricks they use to heighten their success. Motivational to the max.
  • Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me! (also produced by NPR…jeez, maybe I should go work at NPR since I’m obviously such a fan!) – A weekly radio show, converted into podcast format. A look at this week’s news through the lens of fart jokes. Sort of. Just plain funny.

Oh, and sometimes if I’ve had a particularly stressful day I will turn the podcasts off and call my mom to whine – you guys do that, too, right? (Sorry, Mom..)

3. Sonia Sotomayor’s take on why baseball is awesome is…well, awesome

Politics and whatnot aside, this justice loves baseball and it’s awesome. She was featured on a recent episode of How To Do Everything, which is another fun podcast, and her explanation went something like this (I’m paraphrasing here):

Baseball isn’t boring. The great thing about baseball is that it’s not over until the last out. Sometimes I watch a basketball game and halfway through you know what the result of the game is going to be, and THAT is boring.

I could not agree more.

4. One of my dogs thinks he’s a human child, and a weird one at that

Look at this face.

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That’s Gus. Sitting on the couch. Looking at me all, “What? I’m comfortable, I don’t want to get up to come eat my breakfast. Also, can you change the channel to my stories?”

I tell you. We’re raising a monster. A cute monster.

That’s all for tonight. Hope you’re having a great week, and happy Friday Eve Eve!

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4 thoughts on “Hump Day Brain Dump: Podcast Nuggets and this Weird Dog

  1. I just started listening to “Wait Don’t Tell Me”, and I really like it! I also really enjoy Grace Helbig’s “In Too Deep” and NPR’s “Pop Culture Happy Hour”. This is now what I do with my hours of non-sleeping at night.

    • Ooh, thanks for the recommendations, I’ll check those out! Boo to non-sleeping, though. At least the end result is worth it? 🙂

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