What I’m Listening To: Murder and NPR Disney

I keep trying to listen to audiobooks, and I’ve been listening to more music, but when walking the dog and doing the dishes, podcasts are still my favorite way to pass the time.

My Favorite Murder with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia HardstarkMy Favorite Murder

My newest favorite podcast is My Favorite Murder with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark. This is a true crime murder podcast where two ladies from LA describe their favorite murder (or murder attempt survival) stories that I found after the hosts had a guest appearance on the Cracked podcast. It’s a bit morbid, I know, but murder stories are fascinating (it’s why I have a hard time changing the channel when I come across a Law and Order marathon) and Kilgariff and Hardstark are having so much fun talking about everything that I get almost as much enjoyment out of just listening to them talk. Some of it gets really brutal (like Episode Seventeen, oh my god) so be prepared for that if you go to listen to this.

I’ll also just add that listening to a story about a pregnant lady fighting off a would-be murderer/baby snatcher is really good motivation while you’re running on the treadmill.

Disney parks American Icons Studio 360American Icons: The Disney Parks

Studio 360 recently replayed their episode on Disney and the Disney Parks on NPR, so I downloaded the whole thing for a car trip with my husband. Because if you didn’t know, we really like Disney Parks, and my husband particularly loves learning about the history of WDW and the like. If you have any interest at all in Disney, it’s a great listen. There are sound bites from people who love and hate Disney (Carl Hiaasen refusing to take his grandchildren to Disney World is kind of great), a story from a woman who played Snow White for years, and a gay love story involving a Disney dancer and a Prince Charming.

What podcasts are you listening to? I’m trying find some book podcasts, but I have trouble finding anything that I’m able to get really into, so any recommendations on that end would be fantastic.

Other podcasts that I loved can be found here, and here.

Obsessing Over a Trip (Anticipation is Part of the Fun)

In about 30 days, my husband and I will be going on our next Disney World trip. Since the circumstances of this trip are a little different from last time, I was able to spend more time planning everything. That meant digging around for travel agents, booking reservations and Fast Passes, making an itinerary to make sure we fit in the things we’re most excited about, and overall just obsessing over the whole thing.

I took the lead on planning the trip, which my husband was fine with (he’s usually in charge of planning trips, so this was probably a nice break for him) but at one point, during my tweaking and rambling and restaurant review-reading, he had to ask me — was I okay? Was I stressing myself out too much?

Part of the answer was yes, I was making myself a little stressed about it (I’ve always had a deep fear of being prevented from doing what I want to do, even though this is a trip with two people controlled by me). But, part of the stress was from the excitement. As I looked things up and watched videos, anticipation for what we were going to do grew more and more. I got myself excited about the restaurants, and the rides, and the things we plan to see that we’ve never checked out before (we’re heading to Trader Sam’s for a big ol’ overpriced souvenir cup drink). Thinking about the fun I’m going to have is part of the fun, and as much as I stress over whether a lunch reservation should be at 12 or 12:15 (really) knowing that all the bits I don’t want to miss are accounted for with plenty of time to spare gives me a way to calm myself down when my anxiety tries to override, and also I know will help me feel relaxed about the whole thing once we’re actually there.

I’m looking forward to my trip, and that, I’m realizing, is half of the fun of it.

Do you obsess over plans and trips? Do you do it too much? Does it make the trip more fun, or do you keep ruining it for yourself?

What I’m Listening To: Writing and Disney Animals

Here are a couple more podcasts that I’ve been getting into lately.

Writing Excuses. This one’s short, about 15 to 20 minutes per episode, where the four hosts — Brandon Sanderson, Howard Tayler, Mary Robinette Kowal and Dan Wells — give their writing advice on specific topics. I haven’t delved too deep into their backlog, but the episodes that have come up new since I’ve started listening have been wonderful. Last month was a lot of help, focusing on middles and why you need to let your characters fail, since I’m working on filling out the middle of my current work-in-progress. Really, I’ve found them all helpful to some extent, if only that hearing people who know what they’re talking about talk about writing inspires me to sit down and write. Like I said, they’re short and to the point, so if you write at all I would suggest you go listen to them.

 

Radio Harambe. I recently added this to the list of Disney World podcasts I listen to (wow, that’s a nerdy sentence). I’d been hearing it mentioned on other podcasts and my Twitter feed, but I’ve put off listening to it for a couple of reasons: they’re a little long, and besides, they focus on Animal Kingdom, and how much can you really say about one park? But, Animal Kingdom is almost evenly tied with Epcot for Angela’s Favorite Park, so I had to try it. And it turns out, there’s a lot you can say about one park. They pack a lot into each episode, which explains the length. There’s the focal point — where’s a good place to cool down in Animal Kingdom, what they wish the park would do with the big cats (in homage to Cecil) — but that’s just the end. A whole chunk of the beginning, if not most of the episode is taken up by “World News” (All of Walt Disney World and other parks) and “Local News” (Animal Kingdom specific). Because Disney parks always seem to have a lot of news going on (it’s amazing and ridiculous) it’s nice to have a regular podcast that spends so much time talking about it. Also, they regularly play a fun game, How Much Does It Cost, where one of the hosts guesses how much a new tour/package/whatever costs, highlighting how ridiculously overpriced some Disney bonuses really are.

So, podcast friends, what are you listening to?

Weekly Finds

You might know I’m planning a Disney World trip this fall, so I’m excited that the Epcot Food and Wine Festival menu has been released. I’m done planning park days and dining reservations, so now I have something else to obsess over while I wait to plan Fast Passes!

Steven Universe had another Steven Bomb (five days of episodes) this week. Ugh, you guys, this show is so good, I can’t even. This is my face the whole time:

Steven Universe Pearl "Cry for Help"

A recent Stuff Mom Never Told You episode focused on Judy Blume and her books. It got me wanting to read her books again, so while I wait for my name to come up on the list for her new adult book In the Unlikely Event I’m reading some of her kids books. Some I’ve read before (Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret) others I don’t think I ever got to (The Pain and the Great One). Maybe I’ll have some posts about them soon.

What got you excited this week?