November 13, 2005

Audible Althouse, #20.

This is a 46 minute podcast, covering an insulting letter, a misunderstood interaction with another blogger (my ex-husband), the concept of "The Althouse Man," how ugly the Three Stooges are, how blankly beautiful actors today are, that song about Saint Germain stuck in my head and the Supreme Court case that put it there, the problem of calling war opponents "unpatriotic," and the creepily under control Ave Maria Town.


Palladian said...

I have been craving a new podcast!

By the way, I always wonder what kind of wine you are drinking during podcasts? Tonight I'm drinking Ch. Malescasse 2000, a very affordable cru borgeois from a great vintage. I tend to polish off the bottle myself, but judging by the number of "wine breaks" you take (and the fact that you remain rational and coherent) leads me to suspect a smaller consumption on your part. Anyway, since we're hearing about the "Althouse Man" (which always reminds me of Leonardo's Vitruvian Man), what is the "Althouse Wine"?

Ann Althouse said...

Actually, this was a wineless podcast, because I was going out later. I wonder if I was different without the wine. I was very tired and took a nap afterwards, waking up in time to get out to my dinner party. The standard house wine, Chez Althouse, is J. Lohr Cabernet Sauvignon.

Steve Donohue said...

I like the hour-long, twice a week pdcasts, but I can understand why they may be a tax on both time and interest. For your sake I worry about the former, but for my own I worry about the latter. Maybe don't adhere to a set schedule- just do one when you like. I treat the podcasts like a friend who stops by and discusses what's been written on the blog for a week, and meanwhile I listen and do some homework, but it simulates conversation quite nicely. I needn't know that the friend will stop by Wednesday and Sunday at around 7:00 pm, just that she will, when she has something to talk about.

Most importantly, do what befits you, because if you don't, it'll probably be less enjoyable to us all.

Palladian said...

I'll have to try the Althouse House wine! I didn't notice any marked difference between this dry podcast and previous podcasts.

I was alarmed to hear that you're considering cutting down on podcasts, though as Steve says, I'm sure the schedule is a bit taxing. I really enjoy the longer format podcasts, and it seems you have no trouble filling up the time. I think the fact that you're a professor makes the podcast format sort of a natural fit (I'm a college teacher too, so I think that's why I can relate to your style). I hope you continue with your current schedule of bi-weekly long-format podcasts as long as you continue to enjoy it. Whatever you decide, I'll continue to be a happy listener, even if I miss the large dose.

Lawrence said...

I concur with Steve's and Palladian's sentiments.

Ann, you have created a relaxed, intimate feel with the podacasts (much like sitting down with a friend over a glass of wine while a squirrel skitters across the roof) and discussing not only the posts on your blog you found interesting but also the comments - completing a cycle of dialogue and feedback. I beleive that that this was one of your objectives for the podcasts, an objective I say you have achieved.

I would also encourge you to blog/podcast on topics, serious and otherwise, that catch your eye. That is why I keep your blog bookmarked. I know I am going to read some well thought out posts on a number of topics. I also know I am probaly going to see posts on things that I would not normally come across, which is something I find delightful and stimulating about your blog.

Podcast on a schedule that makes sense to you and on topics that you find interesting, they will always be welcome on my iPod (with a glass of cabernet sauvignon - also the preferred varietal Chez Moi).

Pete said...

It appears you’ve invited comment to possible change in your podcasts and, if so, here goes. (Otherwise, please ignore, since I don’t wish to criticize unless asked.)

From the beginning, I’ve been an advocate of shorter, fewer podcasts. I’ve listened to the first two and, frankly, don’t find anything in them worth downloading and finding the huge chunk of time to later listen to. From the summaries, it appears to be not much new, though the above comments indicate you may address some comments you haven’t addressed on the blog. I’d be more interested in shorter podcasts about subjects not covered on your blog. (Lileks is a good model of podcasts, I think.) Goodness knows, on some topics, you get plenty of comments but I’ve noticed a dearth of comments about your podcasts and I think it supports my theory: despite its fans, they are the least popular feature of your blog. (I’m sure you’ll be able to blow me out of the water with hard numbers about how many downloads have been made of your podcasts so blast away.)

My prediction: rarity, and brevity, will make your podcasts more valuable.

Ann Althouse said...

Pete: Before I started podcasting, I questioned their value compared to podcasting, for reasons similar to what you're saying. People can't skim them, can't find the parts they want to hear, and so on, and fewer people are going to listen to the podcast than will read the blog.

As to my approach to podcasting, compared to Lileks's or anyone else's, I have my style, and it was nominated for an international award -- the only U.S. podcast that got nominated. I'm interested in using the podcast to explore ways that I would talk about things, and I'm not looking to make it more like something someone else does. It's a creative endeavor for me, like the blog -- an art project.

Pete said...

Yes, ma’am, to all your points. (You’ll recall, though, that I congratulated you on your podcast nomination and acknowledged it was a pleasure to be proven wrong. However, my critique is intended to help you win. ) But I’m not suggesting your podcasts should be more like anyone else’s; I’m just looking for ways to help you improve it and pointed to Lileks as a podcast I enjoy. And, yes, I agree your blogging is an artistic endeavor but like any artistic endeavor, you want it to be the best it can be.

Bottom line: I’m more likely to download a podcast I know I can find time to listen to. That might hold true for others. I suspect your devoted fans will download ‘em no matter what their length. So there’s a strong possibility you’ll broaden your audience rather than narrow it and while that’s not your first impulse as an artist, that’s no bad thing, either.

I’ll be quiet now.

Ann Althouse said...

Pete: Podcasts probably work best for people who are doing things like driving or walking where they are looking for something to listen to to fill the time. Then finding the time isn't the issue.

nypundit said...


You mentioned in your podcast that you are using Garageband to record your podcasts. I am thinking of doing a podcast myself and was wondering GarageBand was a solution to use. Also, do you use an external microphone or do you just use the microphone that comes in your iBook?

Ann Althouse said...

NYPundit: My iBook does not have its own microphone. I am using the microphone that came with Via Voice, but it's probably not the best choice.