We clock more than 17 hours of drive time in this month’s cover story, our compendium of day trips designed to make the most of the season—when our gray corner of the country suddenly bursts with Technicolor. Somehow we’ve even got a kangaroo or two leaping through our pages, like this old movie went fully absurdist the instant some real pigment spread across the screen.
Seventeen hours is a lot of time behind the wheel, though—“a long drive for someone with nothing to think about,” as that classic debut album by Issaquah’s Modest Mouse put it. Luckily we’re living in the golden age of audio: the art and craft honed by more than a century of radio realized in the form of podcasts, the reigning info-and-entertainment delivery systems of our era.
So it’s been a lot of fun to equip this most colorful, albeit travel-intensive issue with local podcasts that have caught our attention lately. First up, Omnibus. Think of this one as a supergroup, one that casts Jeopardy! champ Ken Jennings with the Long Winters’ John Roderick—our favorite local trivia nerd with our favorite local dentally challenged singer-songwriter. As with any good road trip, Jennings and Roderick’s twice-weekly dispatch includes curbside oddities; except in their case, instead of a gargantuan ball of string it’s a preinternet cultural artifact like, say, Domino’s Pizza’s the Noid (“a claymation terrorist with inexplicable bunny ears”).
Also in the queue: Eula Scott Bynoe, Alaina Caldwell, and Jasmine Jackson, hosts of the podcast Hella Black Hella Seattle (“We Bring Brightness”). In its first two years Hella Black has forged uncommon podcast ground, crafting an aural salon on local art, food, and politics that amplifies the voices of people of color.
Look, you could count cows, or kangaroos for that matter, to kill the time on your spring peregrinations—during the highly recommended rural drive to the tulips of Skagit Valley or the apple blossoms of Wenatchee. Or you could eavesdrop on some of our city’s most fascinating conversationalists. Just hit play.