Best Of The Week

Kept Apart

Episode: “Her Name Was Jean” | Podcast: Don't Act Your Age | 12m00s

Tear jerking story of a now-elderly couple who lost and found each other several times over the course of their lives. Karen and Denny were high school sweethearts, but a teenage pregnancy put an end to their hopes of getting engaged after graduation. She was sent to a home for unmarried mothers, their daughter was given up for adoption, and they were kept apart by their parents. They met years later, only for the same thing to happen again — family pressure meant they grew apart once more. But decades on, LinkedIn reconnected them and finally, they found a happy ending (12m00s)

Punch Line

Episode: “Sofie Hagen" | Podcast: The Comedian's Comedian Podcast | 82m55s

Danish comedian, now living in Britain, is interviewed about her professional experience to date. There’s a lot that’s surprising here: she started out at open mic nights in Denmark, where by making it clear to the men already on the scene that she “wasn’t one of those feminists”, she quickly found acceptance while other women received misogynistic abuse. Later, she grew into the kind of political views they despised, and become an advocate for safe spaces, trigger warnings and anxiety safe venues. Now, she feels she’s swung too far — people know her as an activist, rather than someone who is good at jokes (82m55s)

Huge Meal

Episode: “The Good, The Bad, The Hungry” | Podcast: 30 for 30: Extras | 25m13s

Interview with the director of a film about a major rivalry in competitive eating. In making the documentary, Nicole Lucas Haimes focused in on Takeru Kobayashi and Joey Chestnut, and found that although their matches might be unusual (at one point, she films a contest that involves eating cow brains) their long running feud has much to tell us about sportsmanship and culture. Kobayashi is from Japan and Chestnut from the US — the way they conducted themselves and how their fans responded to them is a fascinating insight into the differences between the two countries (25m13s)

Running Late

Episode: “How African Time Cost Us $1 Million” | Podcast: Life and Some Jara | 30m57s

Husband and wife co-hosting team explore the concept of “African time”, that is the cultural idea that the continent runs at its own speed and things happen when they happen. As well as looking at the practical implications of this attitude — events never start on time, and therefore if you want to be punctual, it's really hard to know when to turn up — they also consider the wider economic implications. The show is augmented with responses from an audience survey the podcasters ran, which provides plenty of colourful anecdotes about delayed weddings and endless waiting (30m57s)

Follow Me

Episode: “Is Targeting Creepy?" | Podcast: So, Bob | 48m06s

Two tech journalists from different generations discuss targeted digital advertising. We will all have experienced some version of the phenomenon they’re unpacking, where a single product seems to follow you around the internet. It can start to feel creepy or even invasive if you can’t remember ever searching for this item, but you have been thinking about buying one and somehow the internet knows. As the reporters discuss here, we leave traces of our intentions without even realising it, and companies with money to make are now very adept at harvesting those clues (48m06s)

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