Best conversational podcasts to listen to during your day

Those of us avid podcast listeners understand that different types of podcasts are perfect for different times. Narrative podcasts like Thunder Bay or (everyone’s favourite) Serial, are great to enjoy to when you have the time and energy to binge-listen for a couple hours.

Meanwhile, podcasts like Freakonomics and Heavyweight are great listens when you have about an hour of dedicated dish-washing time to immerse yourself in audio storytelling and learn something new.

However, some of my favourite podcasts are conversational in nature and perfect for when you’re half-distracted, slightly preoccupied, but still want a little background entertainment, nevertheless. These are my favourite pods to enjoy when I’m commuting, playing video games, or falling asleep.

1. (Un)Spoken by The Varsity – I couldn’t write these recommendations without giving a shout-out to The Varsity’s very own conversation-based podcast! But seriously, (Un)Spoken deserves to be on this list. U of T’s very-own Blythe Hunter and Elham Numan bring listeners into funny and intimate conversations about race on campus. The episodes are around 45 minutes long and occasionally include guests. Highly recommend.

2. Guys we F****D: The Anti-Slut-Shaming Podcast by Sorry About Last Night – This podcast is one of my all-time favourites. Hosted by comedians Corinne Fisher and Krystyna Hutchinson, each episode is a low-stakes chat about sexuality, life, and occasionally love. Each episode has a guest who discusses how their lived experiences influence their understanding of sex. This pod is hilarious, entertaining, and you might accidentally learn something new.

3. Earning Curve by Gimlet Creative – Although I usually avoid branded podcasts, Earning Curve is a great listen for those who are interested in learning about business but aren’t studying at Rotman. Earning Curve is a podcast hosted by former-Dragon and venture capitalist Michele Romanow who candidly chats with entrepreneurs about their businesses and their struggles. This pod isn’t as popular as some others, but its Canadian twist makes it a hidden gem.

4. Still Processing by The New York Times – Jenna Wortham and Wesley Morris have truly made this podcast a must-listen. Discussing pop culture, current affairs, and politics from a racial and gendered lens, Still Processing is a go-to for those who want to think critically about the society we live in.

5. Pod Save America by Crooked Media – This podcast is a staple for news junkies. Four former White House aides in the Obama administration discuss the latest news in American politics while interviewing notable politicians and stakeholders along the way.

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