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My Current Favorite Podcasts You Should Be Listening To

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Whether I’m waiting for the bus, working at my job, or doing the chores around my apartment, I find myself listening to podcasts. 

Their accessibility and convenience is unmatched; unlike a YouTube video or a TV series, I can listen to them much more easily while doing other things. Moreover, each podcast has a different atmosphere or “vibe” influenced by the hosts and covers a wide range of topics — which can be lighthearted or serious — that allow everyone to find something appealing.

Podcasts make me feel engaged in learning more about the world and provide media that I can actively listen to as I simultaneously focus on another task at hand.

I have compiled my current favorite podcasts that I recommend you listen to!

Heavyweight

Now onto its seventh season, Heavyweight is a podcast about turning points: what could have been, how it might have been, but was never acted upon. Each episode creates a welcoming environment that invites people to talk and listen to each other as they unpack personal life problems of the past and create solutions to apply in the future.

The podcast brings out the humanity in each story despite the melancholy that accompanies it, and the host shows remarkable empathy that compels you to listen and embrace vulnerability. Some of the most memorable episodes that I recommend — with the episode’s teaser — include:

  • #12 Jesse: “Four years ago, Jesse was hit by a car and nearly died. Now he wants to find the driver. And thank him.”
  • #16 Rob: “Rob remembers breaking his arm as a kid. But the rest of his family says it never happened. Did he break his arm? The answer will determine Rob’s Sanity.”
  • #27 Scott: “Eight years ago, when Scott was addicted to heroin, he crossed a line he thought he would never cross. And he’s been trying to uncross it since.”

The podcast can be heavy, but I love how open and honest everyone is on the show. It displays the raw and emotional struggles that are difficult to digest but are necessary to overcome. You can listen to the podcast on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

Reply All

First aired in 2014, Reply All is a podcast about the internet that tells human stories in a narrative that draws you into an exploration of the various ways technology has affected our modern living.

The podcast’s appeal is in the comedic banter between the hosts and the internet worlds that are delved into — from the mysterious dark web, to the annoying telephone scammers, and to the common social media platforms downloaded on our mobile devices. Some of the most memorable episodes that I recommend — with the episode’s teaser — include:

  • #79 Boy in Photo: “Who was Wayne?”
  • #104 The Case of the Phantom Caller: “A woman in New Jersey is getting strange phone calls to her office from unknown numbers. Every time she picks up, she finds herself eavesdropping on the life of a different stranger.”
  • #130 The Snapchat Thief: “After Lizzie’s Snapchat gets hacked, things start getting really creepy.”

Although Reply All ended in June 2022, the hosts left behind a wonderful show with amazing production that dives deep into the familiar space known as “the Internet.” You can listen to the podcast on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

99% Invisible

99% Invisible is a podcast that thinks about everything you don’t think about, from the designs of a coin to the architecture that gives texture to a building.

The podcast’s topic itself is fascinating, as it explores the details of designs that are present everywhere in everything that has been built but have stopped being noticeable to us. Some of the most memorable episodes that I recommend — with the episode’s teaser — include:

  • #110 Structural Integrity: “When it was built in 1977, Citicorp Center was, at 59 stories, the seventh tallest building in the world. But it’s the base of the building that really makes the tower so unique. The bottom nine of its 59 stories are stilts.”
  • #308 Curb Cuts: “If you live in an American city and you don’t personally use a wheelchair, it’s easy to overlook the small ramp at most intersections. Today, these curb cuts are everywhere, but fifty years ago most urban corners featured a sharp drop-off, making it difficult for wheelchair users to get between blocks without assistance.”
  • #309 Whomst Among Us Let The Dogs Out: “All kinds of songs get stuck in your head. And then there’s a category of memorable songs — the ones that we all just kind of know. Songs that somehow, without anyone’s permission, sneak their way into the collective unconscious and are now just lingering for eternity. There’s one song that best exemplifies this phenomenon — ‘Who Let The Dogs Out’ by the Baha Men.”’

The ground that we walk upon and the buildings that we enter and exit all have an interesting history, yet the sights of such spaces have become commonplace because of how often we interact with them. The host’s enthusiasm to discuss these overlooked areas makes the podcast a delight to listen to. You can listen to the podcast on Apple Podcasts and Radiopublic.

These three podcasts provide insight into various aspects of our world, and it is with these insights that I gain a larger appreciation for life. Next time you find yourself waiting for the bus, working at your job, or doing chores, I hope you will give these podcasts a try.

Kayla is currently a third-year English and Communications student at the University of California, Davis. She enjoys learning new skills, especially in relation to art or language, and loves petting cats.