Moving in Stereo

For the last month or so I’ve listened to The Cars fairly regularly. I think it’s the change of the season as I’ve always associated them with summer.

When I was a young pup, knee high to a garden snake, my Californian brothers brought many an otherwise unknown band to our midwestern home. Van Halen, Rush, Scorpions, Iron Maiden, and others were in the mix. The more heavy metal of the bunch I discarded.

Rush was the first of those bands I embraced. One of my friends in my Connecticut high school was a big Rush fan. When I started working many years later for a Canadian company Rush again entered my listening life.

Van Halen, and later Van Hagar, became frozen in that late 80’s to 90 moment when they were everywhere.

And then there was The Cars.

The Cars was like a less overplayed and better version of what Journey was doing at the time (also part of my brothers’ music mix). Journey stayed ever present on US radio from the Rock to Classic Rock to the oldies station where they live today.

I recall having one of their tapes, Heartbeat City, when the family road tripped across the western US on holiday in the mid 80’s. Then they dropped off my radar.

I’m caught a bit off guard by the high regard in which I hold The Cars today.

Who cares. It’s summer (in the Northern Hemisphere)!

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The State of InfoSec Podcasts

With a few exceptions, InfoSec podcasts sound the same to me as they did in 2014, both in production quality and in content.

There are two daily shows: SANS ISC Storm Cast and the Cyberwire. They run the gamut – SANS has a brief unpolished production sense and the Cyberwire is perhaps overproduced and over sponsored. Both provide solid daily content. I’m happy to skip both show’s “research” component.

And then there’s the rest.

Most non-vendor podcasts fall into two general categories: echo chambers and interviews.

The “echo chambers”, essentially panel shows full of inside jokes, are mostly gone from my pod catcher. Their production quality is close to zero and they’re mostly op-ed (opinion & editorial) with no counter argument. On PVCSec we tried and mostly failed to counter the standard InfoSec podcast.

The interview shows can be better. The production quality tends to be higher. Several make the interview more about the show host/interviewer and less about the interviewee. Sponsored shows are just that.

There is a third category: “NPR”-style free podcasts. These are the ones that talk about topics most other typical security podcasts miss – legal, governmental, and diplomatic.

Here’s what I’m catching:

If your InfoSec podcast is not on my list and you want it on there, let me know why I should include it.

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If you get much fatter …

A new acquaintance suggested I put on more weight to look like the current US President.

That’s a hell of a thing for someone to say in the middle of a holiday. True, but a hell of a thing to say.

The last time I received such an unflattering comment (and the above was a bit of good natured ribbing) was when I was about 40lbs (18kg) heavier than I am now and six years younger. Work required some Saturday office visit and the security guard mentioned that, in my hoodie and Detroit Tigers cap, I looked like Michael Moore.


I vastly prefer the people, usually women of a certain age, who flatteringly compare me to actor and director Sir Kenneth Branagh. I welcome and embrace that comparison – as inaccurate as I know it to be if for no other reason than he is older than me by a lot.

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Baseball batting helmets sporting a front cheek guard are like buying lightning strike insurance
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