A Postmodern Podcast

Three highly branching and divergent young men reminisce about growing up in the crumbling American empire. With digressions to technology, rap music, popular culture, and literature.

Hosted by Colin Barrett, Patrick Thomson, and Phillip Bowden

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#16: I Made a Poop Joke in Church March 2, 2014

Hello, listeners. Around Thanksgiving we sat down and recorded a really fantastic episode for you all. Unfortunately, shit, as they say, happened. Sorry about that. Everything is fine now though, and we're pleased to release this humdinger for your listening pleasure. That's it for the preamble, on to the show notes!

We begin by discussing Phillip's adventure to Hooters in Midtown, Manhattan (never go there) and speculate about a possible support group for victims of one-sided music industry beefs. We all complain about the weather and how it cramps our style. Stupid weather. A hair redistribution action is planned.

We have an existential crisis about kind of not caring about new consoles — real ones anyway. We follow on by breaking down the sailing mechanics in Assassin's Creed and Wind Waker. We also wail and moan about the horrible, horrible sexism that pervades gaming.

A bodying occurs, and the victims are the people who get off on positive feedback about their conference but silence any criticism thereof. Leaving the scene as fast as we can, we arrive at a discussion of Pulp Fiction, the new Eminem record, and Michael Jordan playing Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals with the flu. It turns out that the best cure for the flu is technology-fueled rage — which Patrick delivered in spades at the conference we all met at.

Phillip tells us about the time he gave a sermon and told a poop joke to his Southern Baptist congregation. Yes, this really happened.

We discuss our Thanksgiving plans (we all had a good time; sorry about the delay) which included watching a ton of Dragon Ball Z. We enter a milieu of '90s anime nostalgia and then end up talking about Mom & Pop video stores and the etymology of "Blockbuster".

We finish off by recounting some San Francisco adventures, and Colin drops the mic after giving some spot-on relationship advice.

#15: It Has to Be a Hot Ringtone September 30, 2013

We kick off another episode with what is rapidly becoming a Postmodem trope—that's right, more Williamsburg Bar Stories from Phillip. We criticize people who are poor about respecting the boundaries of others. Patrick discusses the time he got his ass whooped in jiu-jitsu by a bouncer from one of Cleveland's largest strip clubs. We engage in an truly exhaustive review of Doris, Earl Sweatshirt's debut album. We discuss the nature of publicity and popularity in the Internet age. Patrick defends his choice to avoid watching Breaking Bad (viz. that shit is stressful). Colin describes his experience at the Rock the Bells festival. Patrick demands a Postmodem jingle/ringtone. We reflect on the threat that Mortal Kombat and rap lyrics posed to America in the 1990s, grow angry about the devolution of American media and the deification of Ronald Reagan, and engage in some good-natured trash-talking regarding Letterpress. We decry both gamers and "men's rights" activists, then close the episode with a discussion of exploring an abandoned steel mill.

#14: Man, I Don't Know Shit About Thunderstorms August 12, 2013

We're back. Again. We have somewhat of an unprepared start to the episode, but quickly get down to three of Phillip's fantastic Williamsburg Bar Stories - including one about the previously-discussed scourge that is small-head privilege. We segue nicely into a discussion of the proper procedure for thunderstorms (consensus: pour whiskey, put on Boards of Canada, get mad snuggly on the couch). It is revealed that Patrick behaved very uncharacteristically and participated in physical sporting activity. We engage in a very long, nuanced discussion about both the merits and the awful misogyny of 'Yeezus', Kanye West's most recent album. Mac Miller and Earl Sweatshirt are mentioned. Patrick and Colin enthusiastically trumpet the virtues of Pacific Rim (though are unable to remember the name of the lead actor, eventually settling on "Blandy McProtagonist"). Some critical opinions of author Bret Easton Ellis are voiced, namely "FUCK BRET EASTON ELLIS", "FUCK THAT GUY", "WHAT A DICKHEAD", and "DUDE SUCKS, SO HARD". We discuss the great idea that is Snapchat and slam its awful implementation and user interface, and Phillip describes the horrified sensation of realizing that there's a New Cool Teen Trend (namely, Tinder) of which one knows nothing. We top it all off with a good old round of book discussion, covering Tracy Kidder's The Soul of a New Machine, Leslie Valiant's Probably Approximately Correct, and Haruki Murakami's 1Q84. Don't miss the post-episode coda; it's a good one.

#13: Millennial Gear Rising: Lazy, Entitled Action May 17, 2013

We're back with a nice frivolous episode after the unprecedented seriousness of the previous one. Patrick talks about a soujourn to Amsterdam during which he watched a king being crowned and a drunk person falling into a canal (not simultaneously). We discuss the virtues of the new Daft Punk songs and we discuss, in somewhat reverent tones, just how handsome Pharrell Williams is. We rhapsodize about our recent conversion to Aeropress coffee, then segue into a breathlessly excited discussion of the music scheduled for release this summer. We give a pretty exhaustive review of Tyler, the Creator's new record Wolf, call Robert Plant a nerd, and further humiliate Patrick re: his dislike of critically-acclaimed, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame–inductees Credence Clearwater Revival. We beg Uniqlo to sponsor our show and Colin does the knowledge on post-war Japanese literature. We launch into a furious, aggrieved cipher on the anti-Millennial horse hockey that has been peddled as of late by the media. And we finish with a digestif discussion of movies that quickly devolves into masturbation euphemisms.

#12: Childhood Is Ultimately a Black Disappointment (feat. Ed "Funkatron" Finkler) April 17, 2013

The Postmodem triumvirate is thrilled to feature our first guest appearance - Ed Finkler (@funkatron), host of Development Hell and the creator of the legendary Ham Button. After some brief discussion about the Ham Button economics, we embark on a long and nuanced (Really! Except for the part where we terrify Colin with well-placed Twin Peaks images) discussion of Ed's Open-Sourcing Mental Illness campaign to raise awareness of mental illness in the software development community. We recount our personal struggles with mental illness, how it's affected our careers (both negatively and positively), the coping strategies we've developed to adjust to day-to-day professional and personal life, and the hell-on-earth that is junior high. We then cap the episode off with the requisite discussion of rap, covering the brilliance of Ice-T's music (and his Twitter feed).

#11: Cumberbatch and Kojima Get the Vapors March 11, 2013

Last week we rapped about Odd Future wunderkinds Earl Sweatshirt and Tyler the Creator, Jay Electronica, and outdated audio technology. We reminisced about '90s MTV and a discussion of sub sandwiches somehow leads in to outdated Victorian innuendo. None of us can pronounce "code folding". We all complain about corporate engineering blogs, Facebook's in particular. Patrick gives us the run down on Metal Gear Solid Rising: Revengance: Frenetic Lightning Action, Phillip educates us on (500) Days of Summer, and Colin gives a brief update on Double Date Dot Com. We laud Tim Curry and Beverly Cleary and then close out the show with a story involving Nine Inch Nails, mirror repair and a harpsichord. Seacrest out.

#10: Could I Get That Martini Syphilitic, Please? February 21, 2013

In this episode, Patrick and Phillip reminisce about their first battles with Internet Haters, Patrick rants about functional programming, and there is a disagreement on the matter of the Martini. Arson is threatened and disavowed in a discussion about Frank Ocean's prospects at The Grammys. Tycoons, dinosaurs and reference books somehow occupy the same conversational space. Colin opens up about his abandonment issues regarding JJ Abrams. Your hosts discuss the films of Quentin Tarantino, Takeshi Kitano, and George Lucas. The Rap Quota is once again filled by an examination of Jay-Z's lyrical prowess and his business acumen. Google Hangouts is adopted in favor of Skype, the Clown Shoes of communication software.

#9: Christopher Nolan's High Tide January 28, 2013

Our first live episode, "sponsored" by, recorded in Phillip's apartment in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York, USA, Earth. We recount Colin and Phillip's adventures in New York City and Patrick's adventures at the Pittsburgh airport. We discuss various nocturnal emissions and the care and feeing of older models of televisions. We shout out to one of our listeners and Colin teaches you how to steal a car. We discuss ridiculous airplane and TV edits of movies and Mark Hamill's storied voice acting career. We come down solidly on the question of Biggie vs Tupac. We compare the structure of superhero movies to the Star Wars trilogy. We cast a very critical eye on the Lord of the Rings movies and the new film adaptation of The Hobbit. We also discuss horror movies including Dawn of the Dead (2004), 28 Days Later (2002), Saw (2004), Veritgo (1958), Psycho (1960), and Candyman (1992). We finish off with brief discussions of minimalist classical music from the 20th century, Pop Tarts and Twin Peaks.

#8: A Sartorial Cut Down January 17, 2013

We’re back! We regale you with tales of our holidays: Phillip tells of strangers attempting to fight him by insulting his sartorial choices, Colin describes Hawaiian radio stations that play nothing but Hawaiian Christmas music, and Patrick gives a breathless summary of the world’s greatest tea shop. Patrick tries desperately to get sponsored by Uniqlo. We discuss the merits of liking things unironically, dive into a spoilerrific discussion of Nick Harkaway’s The Gone-Away World, discuss Ryan North’s upcoming choose-your-own-adventure version of Hamlet, and promote Pete Townshend’s autobiography and Ice-T’s latest documentary.

#7: Amateur Physics December 17, 2012

We're back on our grind on our new schedule. We discuss Patrick and Phillip's eventful Thanksgiving in lovely Virginia, complete with bourbon and animal attacks. A sleep-deprived Patrick squares off against some unnerving Japanese vending machines. New Star Wars films are on the horizon, so we talk about Star Wars past, present and future, delving into such topics as the quality of the prequel trilogy, the problems with Return of the Jedi, what we'd like to see in a new Star Wars film and the Agony and Ecstasy of Being Jake Lloyd. We stumble upon the corpus of a young Colin's work in the humble medium of Amazon reviews. And, finally, to meet our quota of talking about rap in every episode, speculate on the identity of the recently-unmasked rapper, Captain Murphy.

#6: NPCs Don't Do Anything December 3, 2012

In mid-September we discussed a case of mistaken identity at White Castle; the The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker–shaped hole in the Postmodem family, which game may or may not be excellent, and also the other 3D Zeldas; the flaws and virtues of the Wii; the pervasive culture of design-by-project-management and Nintendo's cultural inability to say no; Colin's foray into improv comedy. Feelings and anxiety received an extensive, video games and literature–tinged treatment and we had another potentially family-ending argument this time about Credence Clearwater Revival; Patrick and Colin sang the Crossfire jingle and we all sang the praises of Nick Harkaway once again. Patrick told of his internet-less vacation to France, Phillip called out sanctimonious Internet quitters, and Colin complained about the addictive nature of social media. Hideo Kojima broke the 4th wall, we discussed the Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes trailer and the possibility of Christian Bale as Solid Snake. We discussed a bunch of films including the new Judge Dredd movie, The Raid: Redemption (2011), Shoot 'Em Up (2007), and Bunraku (2010). And fulfilling our music quota, we discussed the new Lil Wayne, the documentary The Carter, the new Atoms for Peace, GZA's classic Liquid Swords, and Pitchfork's practice of re-rating albums including the first Andrew W.K. album. And finally we asked: what if someone quit Wikipedia?

#5: Salmon-Colored Shants November 19, 2012

A brief programming note: check out our brand-new website at It's really cool and we made it just for you.

In late July we discussed underwear, shorts, shants, knees, jorts, and queefing; The Pre-Taped Call In Show, Junot Díaz, and Seinfeldian second-cousin doppelgängers; Nick Harkaway, John le Carré, and Patrick's classy, magic Twitter interaction with the former; Frank Ocean, Tony Kushner's Angel's In America, Nas, Earl Sweatshirt, and Lil Wayne; Daniel Kahneman, Malcolm Gladwell and Oliver Sacks; the cold fate of bad rapper Pitbull; one man's love of another man's salmon-colored pants; and the official Postmodem uniform: a salmon velour tracksuit. We also gave some shouts out to friends of the show Mark "bobtiki" Boszko and Wolf Rentzsch and Andrew Pontious's show Edge Cases. Oh, and don't forget to check out DadBoner.

#4: Small Head Privilege August 22, 2012

We discuss the weather. We squee about RZA's new movie "The Man with the Iron Fists" and Masta Killa's debut album "No Said Date". We hate on Rdio's redesign and Colin drops some data-driven product design knowledge. We talk about Patrick's and Phillip's abnormally large heads. We reminisce about growing up without any seasons and about our childhood fears. We compare and contrast the religious views of J.R.R. Tolkein, C.S. Lewis, and Sigmund Freud, and recommend the book "The Question of God". We talk of ironic retweets and Pitbull's then-impending visit to Kodiak, AK. We wax poetic about Biggie Smalls. And we end with a discussion of New Yorker rudeness, Midwestern politeness, and our apparently impending group trip to Hawaii.

#3: Contrarianism by Proxy July 24, 2012

We're back with a new episode. We talk about the dangers of programming in the dark ages, Drake's status as King of Moms, celebrity-endorsed alcohol, newspaper comics, and hipsters and their Williamsburg affectations.

#2: Afterbits May 25, 2012

Our tenth-funniest show to date! Experience: placenta shampoo! Hear: tales of crushing rejection! Smell: nothing, you're on a computer! Plus: Nickelodeon as a source of cultural reference, a very serious discussion about smoking, and not a whole lot else, frankly.

#1: El Paso Metaphysics April 11, 2012

Hey, listen! New content! A full-length episode, even! Topics discussed include: racism, musicals, Crossfire, advertising jingles, Javascript, Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, and probably some other stuff too.