The pandemic has seen audio shows fill a hole in our lives, providing companionship that is increasingly difficult to distinguish from the real thing Some of my friends have no idea I even exist. These are people I know intimately, extensively, profoundly: I know what they had for dinner last night, the petty arguments they have at home, their obsessions, their insecurities, their fears, what time they wake up in the morning. No piece of minutiae is too minute, no idle thought too inconsequential, no detail too mundane: I want to hear it all. If this is beginning to sound slightly alarming, I should point out that they tell me all of these things – and try to make me laugh in the process. I think of podcasters as my friends – and I am not alone.
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