When it came time for me to start looking for a new vehicle, I had a few deal-breakers, including leather seats, audio jacks, automatic locks, and something I could put a remote starter in.

After looking at the price tags for such fineries, I gave up on leather seats as a non-negotiable.  But dad-gum it, I was going to hang on to having an audio jack like Grim Death.  Little did I realize that in the time from when my old car was built to when I was looking, audio jacks were, like, standard issue, man.

The back-story on the audio jack is thus: I used to be a long-time listener of Opie and Anthony (started when I was in high school), and were thrilled when they finally got a contract on terrestrial radio again.  A few months thereafter, that contract got canceled, so I switched over the local Morning Zoo show, got sick of that sycophantic crap, and made decent use of my Zune and started listening to podcasts. (Side note: I recently checked back into the morning zoo show I used to listen to, and it was like I had never left.  It’s like there’s a formula for that crap!)

I love podcasts for a few reasons: I get to listen to exactly what I want, I get to listen uninterrupted by commercials, and most of the time, I get to learn something.

Here’s currently my list of podcasts.  I pick them up from Zune.  If you listen to them using an Apple product: you’ll have to find them on iTunes.

  • Extra Hot Great: I found them through NPR Culturetopia’s Pop Culture Happy Hour.  I love this podcast: I get to listen to fun, snarky reviews of pop culture everything, without actually having to watch it myself.
  • Get it Done Guy: As a productivity nerd, I love Stever’s podcast.
  • Girlfriend M.D.: I tend to listen to these in clumps.  It’s not my first pick when I have a list of podcasts, but I like them, and they’re informative.
  • Judge John Hodgeman: This is one that I am brand new to, which I heard through Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me.  I like John Hodgman: he’s smart, witty, and subtle.
  • Modern Manners Guy: Another podcast that I listen to in clumps.  They’ve been through a few hosts.
  • Pop Culture Happy Hour, from NPR’s Culturetopia: the source for Extra Hot Great, a more PC version, covering slightly different topics.  I love the chemistry of this group, too.
  • Radio Free Burrito: from Wil Wheaton.   Not updated more than 8 times a year, but always a treat when it is.  I find Wil’s Tumblr and blog to be too political for me, but the podcast is fine.
  • Stuff Mom Never Told You: A solid podcast from Stuff You Should Know.
  • Stuff You Missed in History Class: Like the title said, it’s like “the rest of the story” for the history classes you kind of paid attention to in school.
  • Stuff You Should Know Podcast: For a while, I was listening to SYSK exclusively, going through all of the back-logged episodes.  The podcasts are always interesting, even if the topic seems boring, and I think the hosts, Chuck and Josh, have great chemistry.
  • The House Call Doctor: Another podcast I listen to in clumps.  Good information to know, especially when WebMD fails you.
  • The Nerdist: This is a new podcast for me, and I’m not a G4 nerd, so I don’t catch too much Chris Hardwick on TV, but I really like the guests he seems to grab.  And the Anamanaguchi opening credit music is pretty awesome.
  • The Public Speaker: This podcast is so, so helpful.  It’s part of the reason why I’ve been able to nail the presentations I’ve given in both work and school.
  • This American Life: Standard nerd faire.  I mostly listen to this at work.
  • WTF with Marc Maron: This was a reccomendation from the Zune marketplace.  I got on this podcast from episode 1 – the only time I’ve ever gotten in on anything on the ground floor (except maybe also Justified).  It’s been a fun ride watching it grow and see Marc Maron have a revival.