It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving break is just around the corner. It feels like only yesterday we were unpacking our dorm rooms, taking awkward family photos outside of Bennett, and complaining about how hot it was in our classrooms (oh, how the tables have turned). This semester has flown by, and now it’s time for a long-awaited, well-deserved break and possibly, an uncomfortable carpool on the way to the airport. If you find yourself stuck on a train, plane, or a car, or just with some extra down time over the break, here are my suggestions of what to plug into to get your mind off of school:


The Cut on Tuesdays 

This podcast is brought to you by New York Magazine’s The Cut. Hosted by journalist Molly Fischer, you can hear about a range of topics, from politics and sex to culture and style. Each episode is varied and features different guests, keeping the podcast exciting and engaging. Some of my favorite episodes include “Your Driver is Here,” in which we hear the story of a young woman kidnapped by her Lyft driver, and “Eva Chen Has a Magic Wand,” which features an interview with Instagram star Eva Chen.

Money Diaries (Refinery29)

If you’re nosy like I am, then chances are you love the Money Diaries feature on Refinery29, in which anonymous users share their salaries and what they typically spend in a week. It may sound weird, but it’s such an addicting column. This podcast is just like that, except even better, because it goes deeper by having a diarist call in with a money dilemma, letting us see a whole different side that isn’t shown in a typical “Money Diaries” article.


Even if you’re not a big podcast listener, I promise you that Serial will have you hooked. The podcast is hosted by journalist Sarah Koenig, who tells one true crime story per season, with three seasons to date. As you listen, you feel like you’re becoming an expert in the story, which is super exciting, and provides for a great listening experience.


Wine Country (Netflix)

If you’re looking for a good laugh, “Wine Country” is it. Premiering last year as a Netflix original, it tells the raucous story of six women traveling to Napa Valley, Calif., to celebrate their friend’s 50th birthday. The movie also has more meaningful moments that highlight the importance of female friendship. And it was produced by Amy Poehler and includes her SNL co-star Tina Fey, so you know it’s going to be hilarious. 

Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (Netflix)

This is one of my absolute favorite documentaries, because it’s so absurd. The documentary shares the behind-the-scenes story of the failed Fyre Festival, which was supposed to be a luxury music festival in the Bahamas in the spring of 2017. However, it turned out to be a huge scam, and viewers get an inside look on how quickly it all went downhill.


Shrill, by Lindy West 

This is the book that Aidy Bryant’s Hulu special “Shrill” is based off of. The book tells us what it’s like to grow up overweight as a young woman in our society, and the anecdotes that West chooses to include are extremely powerful. The memoir has the perfect blend of humor and vulnerability, and the results are inspiring. 

Educated, by Tara Westover

Tara Westover was born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, and received very little education growing up. In fact, she was seventeen the first time she even entered a classroom. This novel follows her journey on her search for knowledge around the world, whatever that may mean.


Jane Herz can be reached at

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