the best podcast

My current favorite podcast.

I have a new favorite podcast, and so should you.

The podcast is hosted by Alex Blumberg, who is a seasoned producer and radio host who worked for National Public Radio. He produced one of the most decorated radio programs, This American Life, and cofounded one of my favorite business-economics podcast, Planet Money.

Blumberg’s new podcast is simply and aptly named StartUp. The show follows him as he navigates his way through entrepreneurship and starting a for-profit podcasting company.

Blumberg, with This American Life and Planet Money under his belt, knows how to tell a good story. Now that he tells his own story, he has access to the kind of juicy details he would’ve killed for when he worked for NPR.

Here’s how he put it:

After years of reporting on other people’s businesses, I decided to start my own. This show follows what happens next – my difficult journey from man to businessman. It’s a classic start-up story, but one that’s recorded in real time. I’ve documented disastrous pitches to investors, difficult conversations with my wife, and tense negotiations with my co-founder. The result is an honest, transparent account of something that happens all the time, but that we can rarely listen in on: starting a business.

Throughout the show, Blumberg is honest, transparent, and courageous. He shares his most intimate moments of doubt and jubilee. He dresses nothing up. He just shares his story as it is.

The podcast comes out once every two weeks. I would highly recommend you subscribe on iTunes or subscribe with a podcasting app of your choosing through http://feeds.hearstartup.com/hearstartup.

You can listen to the first episode below.

Alexisms.

Over the years, in classic halfsie fashion, I’ve coined my own words when English became a bit too cumbersome.

Here are five Alexisms you should use now (some may be borrowed/stolen from others):

Ridiculous: Ridikilik. (It rolls off the tongue.)

Hilarious: Hilayray. (I have a feeling I stole this one.)

Redundant: Redundun. (A word that is what it means.)

Dumb people: Dumbos. (Inspired by the ear-flying elephant.)

Past-tense of sneeze: Snuz. (The most unsatisfying word to say. The key is to not add an “ed” at the end.)

Maybe one day, one of these words will make it to Oxford dictionary’s word of the year.

Now that would be ridikilik.

I know there are many other words I made up and use freely like a dumbo, so I will add them to this list as they come to me.

keep your eyes open

Take a moment.

There’s a tree outside my house.

I usually never pay any attention to it.

Today was a beautiful day here in Chiang Mai, so I decided to walk out and take some photos.

I took an extra second to stop and look at the tree.

There she was. The rhino-butterfly (as I call her).

I wonder how often I miss the weird and beautiful because I don’t take a moment.

I should’ve learned this lesson from my dad ages ago.

He takes a moment all of the time to appreciate his surroundings.

There is wisdom in slowing down and taking a moment.

My relationship with lovely Jess, our precious time with baby Elliot, and this stage in our lives isn’t something I want to fast forward.

I’m going to take a moment and enjoy every bit of it.

Simply practical, practically simple.

My favorite purchases are usually the simply practical and the practically simple.

Consider the water bottle I bought this summer.

  • It holds 750 milliliters of water: great for on-the-go and in-the-office.
  • The bottom of the bottle is stable, yet slim: perfect for tables and cup-holders.
  • The lid is one piece, with a solid cover over the mouthpiece: easy to wash, hard to ruin.
  • The mouthpiece is incredibly well designed: ideal water-flow for post-run gulps, without any spillage.
  • Durable plastic: I dropped this water bottle driving my scooter, and it only has minor scratches.

The key is simplicity and practicality.

None of this took special technology. What it did take is product development that understood its end user exceptionally well.

The only way I can foresee this water bottle failing me is if it got itself stolen or lost, in which case I would just buy a new one. I’m honestly sold for life on this water bottle.

Well done, Rubbermaid.