Addiction: A Cautionary Tale

Today’s post is all about addiction. You may remember last month I posted a plea asking for podcast recommendations. Well, you guys really came through! I listened to at least one podcast from every one of your suggestions, and as I searched for those I even added a few more that popped up in the searches and looked interesting. As a result I have added 22 new shows to my podcast lineup! And because I’m an obsessive freak when it comes to these things and seem to really enjoy listening to podcasts from many years ago (it’s like an oral history of geekdom!) I am going to listen to all of these podcasts from the beginning. That means I now have 1,287 individual podcasts to listen to! I will never want for podcasts again! Thank you!

Here comes the cautionary part of this tale: Today when I started to take my daily photos my phone told me I couldn’t take them anymore because of “insufficient space.” That’s never happened to me before, and I’ve gone on some pretty epic photo binges in the past (I also make sure to clear up my camera roll between binges). I checked my usage stats and it turns out my beloved podcasts are now taking up 36 GB of space. So, if you’re going to become a podcast addict like me, you may want to change your podcast settings so it doesn’t auto-download every episode you add to your player. I’m not 100% clear on what all those settings mean, but I’m pretty sure that as long as you’re within wi-fi range you can still listen to all those podcasts without them being downloaded to your player. Now excuse me while I go hit “remove download” on 1,287 podcasts.

Today’s photo also deals with addiction. I drink Coke. I drink A LOT of Coke. It helps keep the migraines away, I swear. I don’t know exactly how or why and I haven’t really bothered to look into it because Coke is delicious and I’m not complaining.

Staging and lighting: I decided to go for the kitchen counter this time. I pulled out all the empty Coke cans from the recycling basket (last emptied on Sunday) and piled them up behind a glass. The light sources are the overhead light in the kitchen (one of which is burnt out) and the under cabinet lights (which apparently need cleaning).

IMG_4585 IMG_4587 IMG_4588

For the Instagram photo I cropped out the outlet, used the little sun button which appears to be some sort of brightness/enhance tool, and used the Sierra filter with a border.

For the computer edit I cropped it, enhanced it, increased the exposure a bit, decreased the yellow a bit, and decreased the contrast until the badger on the glass showed up.

edited with iPhoto

edited with iPhoto

I don’t know what exactly that sun button in Instagram does, but it sure did help the badger show up! I couldn’t really replicate it in iPhoto. I tried every single slider to see if any of them would help and the only one was the contrast. This was as far as I could get without the rest of the photo looking really washed out.

Podcast Roundup

As a crafter, my hands and my eyes are frequently occupied. If I want entertainment while I work, it has to be consumed with my ears. Sometimes this takes the form of re-watching old shows on Netflix that I really don’t have to pay attention to. Sometimes I listen to music. If I’m craving something more in-depth though, I listen to podcasts.

I’m sort of new to podcasts. I didn’t really know what they were until about a year ago, and then it took me a while to really get on board with the idea. Now I’m sold. They’re awesome. Well, okay, I’m making that statement based on very little information so far, but I’m pretty sure it’ll hold up under scrutiny.

So far I have only listened to two podcasts, but I started both from the very beginning so I’ve had quite a bit of material to listen to.

For my knitting fix I listen to Cast On with Brenda Dayne. It’s a truly captivating podcast about knitting…but also about much more than knitting. It wasn’t until I was half-way through the archives that I realized it’s classified as “philosophy” and that sounds about right. It’s Brenda Dayne laying out her philosophy of art, knitting, life, the universe, and everything. It’s sort of like a really long artist’s statement, but without a single hint of pretension. Listening to Cast On makes me feel like what I do means something.

You don’t have to start listening from the beginning like I did, but if you do it’s almost like listening to a modern history of knitting. The podcast started in 2005, when Ravelry was just an idea, and SO MUCH has happened in the knitting world since then. Brenda captured it all, as it happened. It’s really cool to listen to the story of how our knitting culture became what it is today and to know that this podcast was part of that.

For my drama/horror/story fix I listen to We’re Alive. It’s a zombie story. I like zombies. Well,  actually I’m terrified of zombies, but I sort of like my stories with a side of terror, so I like zombie stories. It’s not top-notch writing, but it’s entertaining. The only thing it’s really missing for me is more character development, but it’s got plenty of action going on to keep it interesting. What really makes this podcast stand out for me is how it’s done…it’s not like an audiobook. There isn’t one person reading from a book and maybe doing some different voices for each character. It has a full cast of characters acting out the parts, with lots of sound effects to add to the story! It’s sort of like an old-timey radio drama produced with modern technology.

These two podcasts have been all I needed to entertain me while my eyes and hands were occupied. Until now. Last night I ran out of podcasts. The last podcast from Cast On was in April, and there’s no telling when there will be another. Brenda travels a lot to teach and such and I know she had a new series planned, but she’s a perfectionist so it may be a bit before she feels it’s ready to be released to the world. I can relate. We’re Alive will start its final season on August 26th, so it will be here soon, but it’s not here NOW.

I have to find something else to listen to.

For starters I’m going to check out Welcome to Night Vale. A Welcome to Night Vale fandom has appeared seemingly out of nowhere on Tumblr. Several of my friends on Facebook (who have very good taste in entertainment) have been mentioning it in their statuses. A LOT. One of them even started a Night Vale ask blog on Tumblr. One thing I’ve learned about the internet, is that if something has a fandom it is probably worth checking out. People don’t get that excited about something if it’s absolute crap.

I listened to the first podcast last night and it was…weird. But the best kind of weird. It was all surrealist-absurdist-eldritch-horror-ish, which are all adjectives that I LOVE. I suspect I will be joining this fandom soon.

All of these podcasts are going in my sidebar of useful links, because I certainly find them useful for my workflow.

The Welcome to Night Vale podcasts are only about 20 min. each though, so I’m looking for more recommendations. What do you listen to while you work?