If you have yet to dip your toes into the giant world of podcasts, prepare yourself for your newest obsession. They all have a similar format to talk radio, podcasts usually include a host discussing various types of material, from cooking, world news, bizarre stories which you really cannot imagine, interviewing special guests, sharing stories about important life-changing events or even a mixture of all the above in one. the length of the podcasts also vary to suit our attention spans — some of the shortest podcasts last just five minutes, while others are many part series lasting hours. And because they come in such a range of styles and subjects, you can tune in to keep your mind occupied while doing chores, making dinner, working out or commuting.
Are you like me and like to enjoy doing something else while cooking? I mean, apart from drinking a nice alcoholic beverage which I cook, I also love doing something along with it. When my kids are around, it normally involves listening to music and belting out the latest tunes which being entertained with Tik Tok dances which I cannot for the life of me do like my 10 year old. I sware, I used to be able do dance – really! But lately, I’ve been enjoying listening to more podcasts while I’m cooking and of course during my other “favorite hobby” cleaning – kidding!
The more I think about it, I can say that I go in phases – sort of like Netflix – I either binge watch a series and cannot get enough of it, or nothing at all and I search for the next greatest thing to pique my interest. So it’s not uncommon for me when I listen to podcasts, to just keep going and going. So after dinner, when it’s washing up time, I find I go back into the kitchen and put on the podcast. But I do need to watch what I’m listening to as my 10 year old daughter will often come in the kitchen or sit in the room off the kitchen and question my choices. So you can imagine when she hears me listening to one of Molly’s most recent escapades in Dying for Sex! You really cannot talk your way out of that trust me!
I’m a huge fan of narrative and true crime podcasts, and any podcasts that feature engaging or enlightening interviews.
Here’s a list of my favorite podcasts of the moment for you to check out the next time you’re cooking.
Serial is a podcast from the creators of This American Life, hosted by Sarah Koenig. Season 1 was the first Podcast I listen to and I couldn’t get enough – it really started my love of podcasts. Taking place in Baltimore in 1999. A popular high-school senior, disappears after school one day. Six weeks later detectives arrest her classmate and ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, for her murder. He says he’s innocent – though he can’t exactly remember what he was doing on that January afternoon. But someone can. A classmate says she knows where Adnan was. The trouble is, she’s nowhere to be found.
- DYING FOR SEX
Dying for Sex s a podcast about a woman named Molly who is diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer. She decides to do something bold. She leaves her unhappy marriage and embarks on a series of sexual adventures to feel alive. It is narrated by Nikki Boyer and you either love her or hate her – I love her. This podcast will have you laughing one minute and crying the next.
- THE DATING GAME KILLER
Dating Game Killer is a six-part series about Rodney Alcala who won a date on the popular TV show, The Dating Game in 1978. What no one knew was that he was a prolific serial killer in the middle of a cross-country murder spree. The narrator takes listeners on an unbelievable journey into Alcala’s twisting secret life. He hid behind normal jobs like a summer camp counselor fooling employers, prison psychiatrists, and parole boards — all while committing heinous crimes from coast to coast. A real binger!
- THE IMMACULATE DECEPTION
The Immaculate Deception is one that I really found fascinating – particularly perhaps because my own children were conceived with fertility treatments so the struggles of these women resonate with me. The desire and in my cases desperation to have children, the what ifs. Clearly my two children look like a combination of myself and their father, but had one of them not looked like either of us, how would it be – I cannot even being to imagine. And then many years later, hearing that the fertility doctor, Jan Karbatt which was trusted so much, used his OWN SEMEN and fathered HUNDREDS of children is just mind-blowing. He was determined to create life- by any means possible. Also this story takes place here in the Netherlands makes it even closer. Our treatments were in Boston, so I’m certain we’re in the clear! Interestingly enough some of those children are interviewed – some are rather upset to find out the news, another is not bothered much as they are grateful he gave them life. It really seems like something out of a twisted movie or something you read about in a far away country but here in Rotterdam? Shocking this has happend in other places too – so not the first time. With genetic testing more and more of his children which are now nicknamed the “Karbastards” are discovered to this day.
- NICE WHITE PARENTS
In 1954, the Supreme Court declared racially segregated public schools unconstitutional. From Serial and The New York Times, this podcast looks at the 60-year relationship between WHITE PARENTS and the public school down the block in New York City. She attempts to shed light on the influence white parents hold in American education. How do these parents facilitate current inequalities in public education, and what must change?
- UP AND VANISHED
Season 1 explored the 2005 disappearance of beauty queen and high school teacher Tara Grinstead from her home in Ocilla, Georgia. As the people of Ocilla began talking about the case again, new leads and stories emerged. In February 2017, the GBI arrested two suspects for Grinstead’s murder.
Season 2 aired in August 2018 and focused on the disappearance of Kristal Reisinger in Crestone, Colorado.
- IN THE DARK
Season 1 – Was about the investigation into the abduction of Jacob Wetterling which yielded no answers for 27 years. How law enforcement mishandled one of the most notorious child abductions in the country and how those failures fueled national anxiety about stranger danger and led to the nation’s sex-offender registries.
Season 2 – Investigated the case of Curtis Flowers, a black man from Winona, Mississippi, who was tried six times for the same crime. Flowers spent more than 20 years fighting for his life while a white prosecutor spent that same time trying just as hard to execute him. Finally he was cleared of all charges. Just today, in fact, I received an email notifying me of Episode 20 – a new updated interview with Curtis himself – so I’m going to go back and listen.
- HERE IN HOLLAND
Here in Holland is one that I know a lot of you might not find as interesting. While Andy Clark tells the stories and interviews in English, it is about getting the most out of life here in the Netherlands so it’s really geared towards us internationals living here. Many are funny and I do like to listen to him.
- ZEG HET IN HET NEDERLANDS
Zeg het in het Nederlands or “Say it in Dutch” is a great podcast and really helps to learn and practice the Dutch language. The podcasts are all in Dutch are said quite slowly and articulated well so if you have about an A2 level they are quiet good to follow. The listeners can use a full transcript PDF to follow along but I never have – but will in the future for sure. A few times she said a few challenging things, but she stops and explains a bit further. There is always a catchy Dutch song too.
- EAR HUSTLE
The daily realities of life inside Quentin State Prison shared by those living it, and stories from the outside, post-incarceration. I loved this podcast and binged listened to it. I downloaded all 36 episodes onto my phone so I could just keep listing whether I had internet or not.
- WHY WON’T YOU DATE ME?
Let’s be real, we’ve all probably asked ourselves this exact question at some point. But few of us can talk about it as hilariously as Nicole Byer can. If you don’t know who Nicole Byer is – she’s flipping funny! She’s the host of Nailed It the cooking show and she is down right FUNNY! So when I saw she hosted a podcast, I knew I’d have to list and immediately knew I had to listen along as she recounts the #struggle that is modern dating. Her sometimes raunchy comedy isn’t great carpool listening, so use headphones or wait until it’s adults only time – this one is NOT for the ears of kids.
Well, that is my top 11 podcasts! I need to add in that last one. When I started this post it was going to be my top 10, but during this post I discovered #11 – and It’s so great, I could not NOT include it.
So I’d love to hear what are YOUR favorite podcasts, as I am always looking for the next thing to listen to while cooking and doing my household stuff. Are any of these in YOUR top favorites?
Again, while I’m a fan of narrative and true crime podcast but I’d be up for listening to other things.