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Meet the Positive Cynicism Podcast Network

A little over three years ago, Greg Mehochko asked me to join his group of podcasts on the Jittery Monkey Podcast Network.  I had made several appearances on another Jittery Monkey show, My 1-2-3 Cents hosted by Kevin Hunsperger over the previous two years. These appearances must have made an impression on Greg or else he was just hungry for content.  I quickly said yes but didn't know what the should would be called or what I'd talk about on a weekly basis.

After several months of debating over every aspect a name was finally decided  upon: Positive Cynicism. Since I didn't want to be tied to a specific theme each week, it was decided the topics would be whatever I wanted to talk about the day I was recording.  So, there was a name that didn't really tell you anything about the show and no set focus. For future podcasters reading this, these were two huge mistakes.

The first year of Positive Cynicism went without real consistency on the show. Was it weekly? Bimonthly? Monthly?  It all depended on my schedule and what I could convince myself to ramble about for 45-60 minutes.  During this time, I came to the realization that that doing a solo show was the third strike for Positive Cynicism.  That's when I started bringing on co-hosts to help carry the weight of conversation. Towards the end of the first year, I decided to make some changes in the second year of the show.  Every week would have a designated theme and designated co-host.

This model had worked pretty well for a little over a year and half. There was now a new "problem."  Trying to explain the show to people led to a lot of confusion and extra words. The show is called Positive Cynicism but it's on the Jittery Monkey Podcast Network and the different themes are *insert theme* but the last show of the month is also called Wonder Why. Oh yeah, even though each episode had a different theme, only one theme had a specific name. If the shows had any chance of realistic growth, it was time for another change and re-branding.


With (not enough) thought, it was decided to move the shows off the Jittery Monkey Podcast Network and establish the Positive Cynicism Podcast Network.  The hope was by establishing the PCPN, each show would have it's own identity.  So far, that is partially happening.  Unfortunately, I didn't do enough research so instead of each show having a separate RSS feed for individual subscription on podcast apps, all shows are lumped together under the PCPN name. As for the shows, here's what the PCPN offers.

POPOLOGY 101:  Co-hosted by Media Professor Travis Yates (@TheTravisYates), Popology 101 looks to examine the circular argument of does pop culture dictate society or does society dictate pop culture.  Taking a cue from Travis' teaching background, each episode breaks down a pop culture aspect as it relates to our everyday life as well as examining the evolution of trends and fads to see how we ended up where are today.

CHAD & ERIC'S FAN-tastic PODCAST holds the distinction of being the hardest show to name.  I have known Eric Bennett for almost ten years. Eric is a huge fanboy. From collector to yearly Comic-Con attendee to absorbing all things pop culture, Eric knows and a lot and has die hard opinions. Originally, I brought Eric onto Positive Cynicism because I had lost my fandom for most of the things I had loved for years and I wanted to Eric to try and help me understand how one maintains fandom without being cynical.

POLTICALAMITY:  What topic isn't discussed enough today? Politics is of course the correct answer because while people make talk politics, discussing areas of politics in a civil manner seems to be a lost art. I recruited Brandon Cooley (@MrPartisan) due to a few factors. Brandon studied Political  Science and has worked on campaign ads in his home state of Georgia so I figured he could bring some actual knowledge to the conversation while I bring generic comments.  I've known Brandon literally his entire life which helps keep conversations calm and civil even when we disagree. The primary focus of the show is to show the hypocrisy of politics. Democrat or Republican, the only difference is to which audience the politician panders.

WONDER WHY: The longest running show on Positive Cynicism, Wonder Why is all about trying to figure out certain musical acts only had one hit song. Co-hosted by Mike DeKalb (@MikeDekalb) who brings a wealth of musical knowledge to the program, once a month we sit down and explore the history of a singer/band and what else on heating up the musical charts to do our best detective work to give an honest opinion of whether there should have been another hit or if they were lucky to have one hit.  In addition to this show, Mike and I also have the podcast Out of Touchstone which  examines the history of Disney's Touchstone Pictures.

As of November 2019, the plan is for each show to be bi-monthly with the exception of Wonder Why which will release a monthly episode the last Tuesday of the Month.  The shows can be found on iTunes, Podbean, Stitcher, Google Play and Spotify.  Please give them a listen and leave a review to let us know what you like or don't like and how we can make the shows better.

The official Positive Cynicism website  is still and work in progress. Hopefully by the end of the year it will be fully redesigned and updated regularly.


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