Silent Waves Podcast

I recently stumbled across the new Silent Waves podcast and after listening to the first one, devoured the following five episodes in a matter of days.

I am in awe of Raquel O’Brien for having not only the bravery to pull this podcast together, but for managing to get the rest of her family to speak up as well. It’s an important story and one that hopefully inspires others to speak out too.

Trigger warning: Sexual assault.

“Silent Waves tells one true story led by 25-year-old Raquel O’Brien, as she attempts to liberate herself from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse and a father with a dark secret.

To do so, she has raw, brutally honest and open conversations with her family about the cataclysmic circumstances of their story for the first time… and all on tape.

What emerges is a larger story as her previously fractured family, emboldened by being interviewed, find the freedom to confront their conflicting versions of the events and reconcile with it and each other.”

Listen to Silent Waves now.

The Teacher’s Pet – A True Crime Podcast

The Teacher’s Pet is a true crime podcast from The Australian about the cold case of Lynete Dawson, who disappeared 36 years ago.

Journalist, Hedley Thomas, digs deep into the unsolved murder and shines a spotlight on Lyn’s husband, Chris. All evidence suggests he murdered her and while two coroners found this to be true, he has not been charged and denies killing his wife.

It’s a sordid and intriguing story with a creepy twin brother, inappropriate/illegal relationships with the Dawson’s teenage babysitter and other school girls, and so many people just turning a blind eye to what Lynete was going through before she disappeared.

I gave true crime podcasts a rest for a while because they tend to get a bit much but thanks to my friend EJ for getting me hooked on this one.

Listen to The Teacher’s Pet.

Very Good Things for a Rainy Long Weekend

How is it almost the middle of the year already? Here are my recent top picks for TV, books, podcasts and food. Very Good Things to get you through a rainy long weekend.

Watch
Killing Eve – when Phoebe Waller-Bridge is one of the writers, you have to watch it. View trailer, watch on ABC iView.
The Defiant Ones – history is made when two unexpected music moguls come together. A four-part documentary series about Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre. Watch it on Netflix.
Sour Grapes – a fascinating documentary about fine wine fraud on a grand scale. Watch it on Netflix.
Atlanta season 2 – that ‘Teddy Perkins’ episode. Whoa. Watch it on SBS On Demand.

Read
Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie – an urgent, fiercely compelling story of loyalties torn apart when love and politics collide.
I Am, I Am, I Am by Maggie O’Farrell – an astonishing memoir of the near-death experiences that have punctuated and defined O’Farrell’s life.
The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn – a page-turning thriller, the movie is already in development. Great holiday read.
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – traces the intertwined fates of a picture-perfect family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives.

Listen (I’ve been in a bit of a podcast slump recently but my friend just gave me a bunch to get over it so stay tuned):
Revisionist History Season 3 – Burden of Proof (episode 2).
This American Life – #339 act one (Break-up) and Five Women.

Eat Out
Two restaurants I’ve revisited recently after years and they are still excellent, particularly if you’re after a cosy winter vibe – Alpha (Greek) in Sydney CBD with a stunning bar upstairs and Sagra (Italian) in Darlinghurst for perfect pasta.

Eat In
Curried Fish Pie from River Cottage.
Jill Dupleix’s Salmon in a Light Fragrant Broth. I like to up the spinach and chilli for a green hot hit.

The Habitat Podcast – The True Story Of A Fake Planet

I get a lot of questions about space from my five-year old, many of which I’m not equipped to properly answer. He has high standards when it comes to explanations. The Habitat, a new podcast from Gimlet, has helped me formulate some more convincing answers. It’s also a fascinating experiment.

On a remote mountain in Hawaii, there’s a fake planet Mars. Six volunteers are secluded in an imitation Mars habitat where they will work as imitation astronauts for one very real year.

The goal: to help NASA understand what life might be like on the red planet—and plan for the day when the dress rehearsals are over, and we blast off for real.

Host Lynn Levy has been chronicling this experiment from the moment the crew set foot in their habitat, communicating with them through audio diaries that detail their discoveries, their frustrations, and their evolving and devolving relationships with each other.

There are seven episodes at around 30 minutes each.

Listen to The Habitat podcast.
Read a review of The Habitat.

The Podcast ‘Alone: A Love Story’

Finished Dirty John and ready to binge listen to another podcast?

Alone: A Love Story is a memoir about love, the bomb and the fallout. With raw honesty, Michelle Parise takes you along on her winding journey from lust to heartbreak, through loneliness and despair, to eventually finding the courage to face the question mark of life alone.

It’s a story that taps into the loneliness inside all of us, a tale of heartbreak and hope that cracks open what it means to be alone so we can talk about it.

Listen to Alone: A Love Story.

Dirty John – A Terrifying True Crime Podcast from the L.A. Times

The six-part podcast, ‘Dirty John‘, is a true story about seduction, deception, forgiveness, denial, and ultimately, survival. It’s reported and hosted by Christopher Goffard from the L.A. Times.

Debra Newell is a successful interior designer. She meets John Meehan, a handsome man who seems to check all the boxes: attentive, available, just back from a year in Iraq with Doctors Without Borders. But her family are not fond of John and as it turns out, they have good reason to feel this way.

John Meehan is what nightmares are made of so settle in and prepare yourself.

Listen to the Dirty John podcast.

36 Questions – A Podcast Musical

36 Questions is a three-part podcast musical by Two-Up Productions in which a couple, played by Jonathan Groff (aka Kristoff from Frozen) and Jessie Shelton, attempt to bring their marriage back from the brink of divorce using 36 revealing questions designed to make strangers fall in love.

Not being a fan of musicals, I was dubious. However, I adored La La Land, needed a new podcast to get stuck into and it had great reviews.

Whilst it took me the first episode to get into it because the format is so different to anything I’ve heard before, by episode two I was unashamedly hooked.

Maybe I really do like musicals after all.

Read reviews by The New York Times, The Guardian and Vulture.

Listen to the podcast.

Podcast – Mogul: The Life and Death of Chris Lighty

Mogul: The Life and Death of Chris Lighty is a six-episode podcast from Gimlet Media that tells the story of Chris Lighty, a music industry and hip-hop heavyweight who was found dead at his home in the Bronx in 2012.

Chris Lighty was a giant in hip-hop. He managed LL Cool J, 50 CentMissy Elliott, Busta RhymesFoxy Brown and Fat Joe – anyone who was anyone worked with Lighty. His death left the music world reeling and left many questions unanswered.

Reggie Ossé, who came up through the hip-hop scene as an entertainment lawyer at the same time as Lighty, tells the vibrant story from the first breakbeat to the last heartbeat.

Whilst Chris’ story is interesting in itself, I love how the documentation of hip-hop history is woven through. Even if you’re not a hip-hop fan, it’s well worth a listen.

Read a review of the podcast.

Listen to the podcast.

The Secret To Living Longer May Be Your Social Life – A TED Talk

Well, this is uplifting news for people that beat themselves up about not eating the right foods, not exercising enough and drinking too much.* It turns out that the strongest predictors of longevity are two features of your social life.

It turns out that the strongest predictors of longevity are two features of your social life.

The Italian island of Sardinia has more than six times as many centenarians as the mainland and ten times as many as North America. Why? According to psychologist Susan Pinker, it’s not a sunny disposition or a low-fat, gluten-free diet that keeps the islanders healthy — it’s their emphasis on close personal relationships and face-to-face interactions.

Learn more about super longevity as Pinker explains what it takes to live to 100 and beyond, and why social isolation is the public health risk of our time.

Watch or listen to the talk.

* I don’t condone reckless living but it is refreshing to hear about studies that have found there may be other factors at play with regards to a living a long life. 

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