The Stuff You Should Know podcast (from HowStuffWorks.com) team deconstructs some of life's most complicated topics and presents it with comic wit. This podcast is addicting. Some of my favorite topics include "Does oil speculation increase gas prices?", "Sherpas: warm, friendly living", and "What is stagflation?". "How homelessness works" gave me a new perspective on society, and I was already someone who stops traffic to give money to homeless persons (the guy who is a regular in my area is Chet, and he's a Vietnam veteran). Even still, that episode is the one that is most committed to my memory.
The chemistry between the show's hosts, Chuck Bryant and Josh Clark (pictured right), and the producer, Jeri Rowland, is the real magic here. They draw the listener into the conversation. It's nearly impossible to get through an episode without laughing audibly (a friend tells me she has to close her office door when she listens to Stuff You Should Know at work because she can't help but laugh too loudly). After just a few episodes, the listener begins to feel connected to the hosts and the topics. If knowledge is power, then engaging in learning is the path. Plus, the ability to spout off interesting knowledge about any given topic is a trick that nearly every geek prides himself/herself on.
I don't have a favorite personality from the podcast, but in the interest of full disclosure, I admit that I like it so much I nicknamed my new puppy Chuckers. The point is, I was pretty excited to get a chance to interview the Stuff You Should Know team. Get to know them here, and then head over to HowStuffWorks.com to check out the podcast.
Chuck Bryant, co-host of Stuff You Should Know (SYSK)TechRepublic: What is the geekiest topic you've covered on the podcast? Why so? Chuck Bryant: Probably the episode on the sun or anything dealing with physics. The sun was geeky because it was extremely technical, and physics kind of speaks for itself on the geek scale. TechRepublic: What is your favorite topic that you've covered? Chuck Bryant: Hard to choose but I really like the moonshine, cannibalism, and lobotomy episodes. TechRepublic: What topic has SYSK not covered yet that you would like to? Chuck Bryant: Scientology TechRepublic: What do you like most about your job? Chuck Bryant: That I'm paid to be creative, write, and learn really cool and interesting things. Knowledge is power! TechRepublic: What do you like least about your job? Chuck Bryant: I'm pretty busy with travel these days and miss my wife and animals when I'm away. But I have no complaints at the end of the day. TechRepublic: How has your life been different than what you'd imagined? Chuck Bryant: I never imagined I'd end up as a minor Internet personality, much less be on TV for any reason. It's all been quite a shock really. TechRepublic: Did you have a nickname? How'd you get it? Chuck Bryant: The name Chuck has no less than a hundred variations, and I've heard them all. Josh mainly goes with "Chuckers," and the fans have kind of adopted that one as well. TechRepublic: Which character in a book best describes who you are? Chuck Bryant: Tough one. I used to think I was like Holden Caulfield, but I think I just wanted to be [him]. I was too good of a kid, and had too rosy an outlook on life to be him. Now I think I should write my own book. TechRepublic: If you were any particular geometric shape what would it be? Chuck Bryant: A circle, of course. TechRepublic: What would you like to change about the world? Chuck Bryant: Make green living the default setting instead of the exception. Improve education too with more and better teachers, especially for the poor. TechRepublic: Would you rather have super strength or super intelligence? Chuck Bryant: I feel reasonably smart enough so maybe super strength, although I don't know how I'd use it. Can't I just fly? TechRepublic: Would you rather have the power to be invisible or the power to read minds? Chuck Bryant: Invisibility for sure. I don't want to be in people's heads. TechRepublic: What is your favorite motto or mantra?
"Be kind, for everyone you know is fighting a great battle," and "youth is wasted on the young." Words to live by!Read our interview with Josh Clark.
Nicole Bremer Nash is Director of Content and Social Media for HuTerra, where she uses SEO and social media to promote charitable organizations in their community-building and fundraising efforts. She enjoys volunteering, arts and crafts, and conducting science experiments at home. Nicole has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Transylvania University, and has experience in copywriting for education, print, business, and the web. You can find her on Facebook and Twitter via @HuTerra.