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Mister Nizz


Cringing, I recommend...

I love podcasts and podcasting technology, I've made no secret about it. When I discover a podcast that features some of my geekboy interests, I take notice. Such a 'cast is HistoryPodcast, produced with earnest effort and zeal by Jason Watts. Jason admits that he took to the study of history late in life, and was greatly inspired to create HistoryPodcast by one of my favorite podcasters, Bob Packett, the history teacher that brings us History According to Bob, which is worth a listen any day of the week. Jason has kept pretty true to his word to produce these podcasts on a regular basis; he has made a weekly cast for the last 80 shows or so (give or take a week), which all can be downloaded from the show's Archive Page. I like what Jason selects as his subjects for episodes... many of which I had some prior knowledge of, some of which were a complete mystery to me, and some were topics I took for granted and learned something new about them.

With that said, I have to mention the "cringing" part, and I mean this constructively. This guy needs to depart from the script occassionally. He writes well enough, but his reading style starts off rather slow and formal and doesn't improve much until he starts departing from the script, which isn't often. The number of misqueues and mispronounciations literally made me wince. For instance, I was delighted to see a podcast on the subject of H.P. Lovecraft, one of my favorite fiction writers, and downloaded it eagerly. I had noticed some mispronounciations in prior 'casts but this one really took the cake.. pronouncing "Cthulhu" as "Cathool" and August DerLETH as "Dereth" and pulling the second syllable in "Arkham" so it sounds more like ArkHAM instead of the generally accepted "Ark'm". That really had me wincing. I realize Jason probably produces these casts on a tight deadline and he might not have the time to check on such things, but a quick check with someone, anyone authoritative on the subject would help his podcast tremendously. I will say this much, he is improving with time. The Lovecraft cast was early on (in his 80 plus count), and he seems much more comfortable with the microphone now than he was then. The sheer fact that he has doggedly put out 80 episodes on historical subjects is enough for me to admire him, and so, wincing, I recommend dropping by!