Reconcilable Differences

John Siracusa and Merlin Mann try to figure out exactly how they got this way.

#43: Pack Mule with a Checkbook

January 12th, 2017 · 117 minutes

This week, John won’t talk about his job, Merlin has jury duty (yes, again), and your hosts do some follow-up on documentaries. The disappearing of classic episodes of older PBS shows is lamented.

The main topic this week is Dad Stuff. Dad Jokes, Dad Hats, and Dad…everything. In particular, when did Dad Jokes become a thing, and exactly w…


#42: The Punching in Me

December 22nd, 2016 · 100 minutes

This week, Merlin introduces John to a thriving culture of internet busybodies. What happens when we’re only ever exposed to people who look or think like we do? What would we do with free access to an all-you-can-eat Fun Dip buffet?

In follow-up, John learns about “Bay Lake,” but badly confuses his celebrity folk heroes. Around a YouTube serie…


#41: Jingling Keys

December 15th, 2016 · 180 minutes

This week kicks off with some contentious claims that Merlin is a crammer and John is a monster. Merlin reminds John that he is out of his depth, and John remembers things. Also, some brief talk on Apple router alternatives and learning to tolerate morning notifications.

Lots of follow-up on Free Will, including thoughts on Heisenberg, tail-c…


#40: Slippery Slope to Dr. Manhattan

December 1st, 2016 · 113 minutes

This week, John has follow-up from Jason the Ranger regarding the weird smell in his house.

Next up, your hosts have a few quick thoughts on the recent presidential election and the extent to which convincing voters that citrus fruits are bipeds might have changed the outcome.

The main topic this week is Free Will. While Merlin has co…


#39: Rocks Aren’t Magic

November 16th, 2016 · 116 minutes

As your hosts brace for the quadrennial U.S. Presidential election (yes, this was recorded the night before), Merlin illuminates the seedy underbelly of YouTube upload workarounds, John says Merlin’s head is definitely getting bigger, and Merlin considers John’s new theory regarding helium and weight loss. Merlin pronounces more things wrong and m…


#38: The Monkey God Situation

November 1st, 2016 · 108 minutes

This week, John has been encouraged to pierce Merlin more, and Merlin still hasn’t watched Millennium Actress (although they offer a helpful listener suggestion on how you can).

Your hosts compare how they use Twitter these days and talk about the different ways they deploy the heart icon. They wonder aloud about who actually sees what on …


#37: A Useless Angle for Swordfighting

October 18th, 2016 · 105 minutes

This week, John and Merlin reminisce about the Flowbee, sea monkeys, and the alternately disappointing and satisfying quality of the action figures in their youth. Merlin briefly impersonates Dan Moren and shares that his iPhone activation problems were not unique. John conclusively demonstrates the mini ways that Merlin can’t hear himself prono…


#36: The Ragged Edge of What's Possible

October 4th, 2016 · 84 minutes

This week’s follow-up covers good news/weird news on Merlin’s wife’s phone, more on “accessibility” settings, and how craftsmanship and quality often war with management.

The main topic is solo parenting. Facing The Shoe Crisis, thrice ruining the dinosaur eggs, and finding yourself in a Staples line that’s literally not moving. Is fear and a…


#35: A Lot of Them Are Tricks

September 21st, 2016 · 118 minutes

This week kicks off with a look at the rise of vaping, the decline of public infrastructure, and whether it's okay for authors to sign their own books in the airport store.

Merlin (finally) figures out how to join Slate Plus, John reminisces about Yahoo!, and both hosts advocate strongly for the vanishing genre of slow-paced movies about how…


#34: All These Assistant Principals are Now Dead

September 6th, 2016 · 131 minutes

This week, Merlin figures out what's weird about John, and John declares Merlin to be a clique mixer.

The main topic this week is high school reunions. Or, at least it starts out that way. John and Merlin are both pretty good at not going to things, then ruminating about it.

(Recorded Tuesday, August 30, 2016)