Back to Work
217: The Worst Most Advanced Teenager04/22/15
TOPIC: Take it personal and make it personal. This week, Dan and Merlin talk about culture, solipsism, hiring, and needle-moving things.
216: Safety Sword
TOPIC: Kremlinology and Verbing This week, Dan and Merlin follow-up on Dan's neighbor and The Trailer Incident. They also undertake a rather circuitous exploration of how little we understand about how stuff gets made. This leads to a semi-useful...
215: Legacy Cat
TOPIC: With great power comes…uh, uh, what-have-you. This week, Dan and Merlin cover a lot of ground. What makes a great comics movie. What movies to show (and not show) your kids. The majesty of The Big Lebowski. And, what exactly Dan should do about...
214: Destroyed by Farm Equipment
TOPIC: Youth as exception. This week, Dan and Merlin talk about chess, the problem with SEO, and why getting old is normal (if you're lucky).
213: That's Not Where Rogue Goes!
TOPIC: Thinking Patterns and Thinking Bias This week, Dan and Merlin talk in detail about how our unconscious patterns of thinking can damage our quality of life and hinder our ability to grow.
212: That Tuesday Feeling
TOPIC: A lotta ins, a lotta outs, a lotta what-have-yous. This week, Dan and Merlin are all thrown off since they're recording on a Monday. Weird, right? They mostly talk about the respective states of comics and Apple fandom.
211: Squeeze the Teabag
TOPIC: The weather is not the sky. This week, Dan and Merlin talk about discovering the challenges that help you to thrive—and grow.
210: Fighting with Garbage Can Lids
TOPIC: Less of an Island. This week Dan and Merlin talk about time, negotiations, and what we want (and don't want) from our email apps.
209: Habitual Ritual
TOPIC: Throwing Stars and Managers This week, Dan and Merlin talk about working in a beehive and discuss whether they played DD properly.
208: Don't Touch Daddy
TOPIC: Illness, Late Night TV, AI in the home, and Talking Baby Dolls This week, Merlin battles the flu to talk with Dan about late night television, binge watching, talking baby dolls, and the kind of artificial intelligence we really need.
207: Vampires in the Wallpaper
TOPIC: Scoping the Minimally-Viable Me This week, Dan and Merlin catch up on illness, Marvel comics, and what-have-you, but end up talking a lot about who we really are—who "I" actually am. Merlin eventually slips into an imbued and mildly-psychedelic...
206: Talking to Santa
TOPIC: Work as Practice This week Dan and Merlin chew on some of the numerous eternal imponderables of creative work—with a special focus on "work as practice."
205: Obsolete, circa 1993
With Merlin on sabbatical, Dan is joined by John Roderick to discuss his recent visit to Africa, the military, corporate friends, strategic thinking, the Internet, digital books and albums, echoes, playmobil figures, measuring your arms, the tribal...
204: Space Geisha
TOPIC: "I am NOT talking about bartending." A kind of two-parter this week. First up, a meditation on invasive thoughts, how they can take over our lives, and how we can maybe learn to deal with them. Second (starting about 38 minutes in), a VERY...
203: I Blame the Media.
TOPIC: The things you did or didn't say. This week, Dan and Merlin sympathize with their pal Marco's recently becoming "way too popular for a day." What happens when something we said or wrote gets quoted, misquoted, taken out of context, or amplified...
202: Choosing is a Radio Button
TOPIC: The Life You Actually Want. This week, Dan and Merlin talk about organization, multitasking and new year's resolutions.
201: Never Enough Bathrooms
TOPIC: The Opacity of the Stack In this depressing holiday episode, Dan and Merlin talk about how tenuous our modern infrastructures feel. How great it is when everything in the stack "just works"; how increasingly seldom all the pieces work; and how...
TOPIC: He'll only do three of these. This week, Dan and Merlin mark their 200th episode by responding to listener feedback and talking about Led Zeppelin and lunch tables.
199: Merlin Mann's Best of 2014
TOPIC: When You Love a Voice. This week, Dan and Merlin talk about podcasts they're loving right now. And, yeah, Merlin rants a little about overthinking and fetishizing podcast production.
198: Gardening Leave
TOPIC: Time to reboot. This week, Dan and Merlin respond to a note from Listener Tim on how to stay busy and active during his garden leave. The Boys encourage him to experiment with the personal rebooting that's almost impossible to do when you're...
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