Sunday, April 09, 2006

Earworthy Podcasts

As anyone who has had their ear bent by me knows, I'm a major proponent of podcasting, even while the debate does rage on about whether its just the latest technorati fad or has the legs to become something more.

I'm on the "something more" side of the fence, and listening to my podcast subscriptions has become as much an item on my weekly schedule as the exercise bike; cat walkies; or my online "home" poker game. If you're looking for a few good poker podcasts, I think you can't go wrong with the following...

Poker

As you could expect, I listen to poker podcasts. I think I have about five on my subscription list so far. Two of those would make my "desert island" podcast list, PokerDiagram and Card Club on Lord Admiral Radio.

The description of PokerDiagram, two guys playing on-line poker and talking about it as they play, sounds as deadly as watching paint dry, but it's strangely addictive... at least if you're into poker. It helps that the two podcasters, "Zog" and Henry, are both British, and their accents always give me the mind's image of two Victorian fops sipping their dry sack at the club while discussing that day's luck at the gaming tables. If you like poker and haven't heard PokerDiagram, try it.

CCoLAR is a more traditional podcast, two guys broadcasting out of their Dad's base-... no, no, just kidding Sean and Stacks, I couldn't resist. Actually, they broadcast out of Sean's basement, and discuss happenings in the poker world and in the poker blogosphere; strategies, poker books, anything poker-related that may have caught their eyes that week. With no disrespect to either of the two, the highlight of the show for me is Columbo's One Minute Mystery. "Columbo," who has his own blog, contributes a segment per show, detailing hands he's been involved with, giving listeners a chance to think about how they might have played the hands out, and then relating how he played them.

I'm not much of a fan of analyzing hands, which makes me unusual in the blogger circles I travel in. In most cases, there's either an obvious answer, or there are a multiplicity of answers, any of which could prove to be the right one, dependent on odds and chances in that particular round. As Peggy would tell you, I'm more of a black-and-white kinda guy. I'm much happier with one obvious answer, than, "well, this hand should win 64 percent of the time." But Columbo makes that sort analysis palatable, and even stubborn know-nothings like me end up learning a bit.

The Well-known "Other" Category

Even ricoM doesn't live by poker alone, and my "must listen" podcast list includes This Week in Technology, Wait Wait, Don't Tell Me (thank you NPR!) and the Poetry Foundation's series of poetry podcasts.

Currently, #1 on my hit parade is Coverville, the well-deserved winner of the 2005 People's Choice Award for "Best Music Podcast." As the name implies, the Coverville podcast focus on covers of usually well-known - sometimes obscure - previously recorded songs. The production values are great, the music is wonderful, and the information enlightening. If you haven't heard Coverville, virtually run, don't walk, through the aether to the site rat now, as my friend Jill would say.

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