466 episodes

A weekly podcast: Join Dave Pickering on his journey to get better acquainted with the people he knows. Part interview show, part oral history project and part autobiography through conversation.

British Podcast Award 2017 winner (bronze in Best Interview category)

GBA was nominated for a 2012 Radio Production Award, aired for 3 seasons on Resonance 104.4 FM and was featured on BBC Radio 4's In Pod We Trust, BBC Radio 5 Live’s Helen and Olly's Required Listening and has been recommended by The Guardian, Time Out and the Financial Times

Getting Better Acquainted Getting Better Acquainted

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 15 Ratings

A weekly podcast: Join Dave Pickering on his journey to get better acquainted with the people he knows. Part interview show, part oral history project and part autobiography through conversation.

British Podcast Award 2017 winner (bronze in Best Interview category)

GBA was nominated for a 2012 Radio Production Award, aired for 3 seasons on Resonance 104.4 FM and was featured on BBC Radio 4's In Pod We Trust, BBC Radio 5 Live’s Helen and Olly's Required Listening and has been recommended by The Guardian, Time Out and the Financial Times

    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 15: The Fir Tree

    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 15: The Fir Tree

    This is the fifteenth episode of The Podgoblin's Hat, with Nina and Dave. You can find it on it's own feed wherever you get your podcasts.

    We're wrapping up this year on the Podgoblin's Hat with Tove's Christmas offering: The Fir Tree.

    It's got everything you want from a Christmas story: the light and the dark, the fear and the wonder. There's even a little cameo from the Moomin family gun.

    We chat about different translations of this story, we exchange presents and talk at length about egg nog.

    Our Spirits of the Moomins this Week are The Father Christmas Letters by JRR Tolkien, the Muppets Christmas Carol, and Christmas Days by Jeanette Winterson. Our Spirits of the Podgoblin's Hat is The Last Christmas, the final episode of Dave's other podcast Getting Better Acquainted.

    • 1 hr 15 min
    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 14: Moominland Midwinter (part 2)

    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 14: Moominland Midwinter (part 2)

    This is the fourteenth episode of The Podgoblin's Hat, with Nina and Dave. You can find it on it's own feed wherever you get your podcasts.

    We're wrapping up Moominland Midwinter this week, and despite being only three chapters, it's 70% of the words in this book, so do strap in for a mammoth episode.

    There's a whole raft of new characters: the lonely and the rum, a flock of small creep, a very melancholy dog and a jock Hemulen. Misunderstandings and unrequited longings abound. Moomintroll finally gets to grips with the snow. Little My invents ice skating. And we finally get to hear what Mamma thinks about it all. Perhaps the real winter was the friends we made along the way. Or maybe, as per Too Ticky, one has to discover everything for oneself, and get over it all alone.

    Our spirits of the Moomins this week are Strega by Johanne Lykke Holm and Bob's Burgers, an animated sitcom. Our spirit of the Podgoblin's Hat is the blog series The Percy Jackson Project by Talia Franks.

    • 1 hr 37 min
    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 13: Moominland Midwinter (part 1)

    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 13: Moominland Midwinter (part 1)

    This is the thirteenth episode of The Podgoblin's Hat, with Nina and Dave. You can find it on it's own feed wherever you get your podcasts.

    Welcome to series 3! We're back with a banger: Moominland Midwinter. Nina has had this book hyped up by everyone who knows she's doing this podcast, and despite all the hype it doesn't disappoint.

    In this first half of the book, the unthinkable happens: Moomintroll awakes from his hibernation and finds himself alone in a world of winter. It is as if he has rolled out into outer space.

    This is such a beautiful meditation on loneliness, and change, and uncertainty. We've got a great new character in Too-Ticky, and of course the whole show is stolen by recurring character Little My.

    Our spirits of the Moomins this week are Nimona (the animated film) from Dave and two short stories from Nina: The Horse in the Snow by Jeanette Winterson and the Snow Horse by Joan Aiken.

    • 1 hr 25 min
    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 12: The Dangerous Journey & Villain In The Moominhouse

    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 12: The Dangerous Journey & Villain In The Moominhouse

    This is the twelth episode of The Podgoblin's Hat, with Nina and Dave. You can find it on it's own feed wherever you get your podcasts.

    To wrap up season two we are bringing you the last two picture books set in the Moomin universe written by Tove Jansson.

    Both of these books are a bit difficult and inaccessible! They're very interesting to Moomin fans in that they show the later stages of Tove's journey with her little trolls, and how she felt about them towards the end of her life.

    The Dangerous Journey is a portal fantasy that sees human girl Susanna enter the Moomin world and travel through a series of gorgeously bleak watercolor landscapes. The Moomins are barely in this, and when they do appear, it's time for Susanna to go. We talk about the many influences on the art and writing of Jansson and read the book as a kind of retrospective of her life.



    Villain in the Moominhouse has no official translation into English and is kind of hard to find! You can read a fan translation by Teresa Ronayne here: https://kupdf.net/download/the-unwanted-guest-final-version-03-09-small_58d46345dc0d60893ec34667_pdf

    This is a more typical story shape for the Moomins, except it's all set inside the Moominhouse. Little My is awakened by a horrible smell - eventually the whole house is roused to search out the pungent intruder. Again, we have characters from all different Moomin books and comics humbled together, in a very much larger than canon house. This book is a photo picture book: each illustration was staged inside a large Moomin dolls house that Tove worked on in collaboration with her friends. It's more of a sculpture than a book?

    Our Spirits of the Moomins this week are The Boy Who Climbed Into the Moon by David Almond (honourable mention to How to Stay Sober When You'd Rather Be Dead which you can borrow from overdrive here: https://clevnet.overdrive.com/clevnet-ADVANTAGEKEY/content/media/1475832), Where the Wild Things Are (the movie). And Nina's Spirit of the Podgoblin's Hat is All About Agatha.

    • 1 hr 6 min
    The Podgoblins Hat Episode 11: The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My & Who Will Comfort Toffle

    The Podgoblins Hat Episode 11: The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My & Who Will Comfort Toffle

    This is the eleventh episode of The Podgoblin's Hat, with Nina and Dave. You can find it on it's own feed wherever you get your podcasts.

    We're breaking from our normal format for these next two episodes to bring you Tove Jansson's picture books.

    The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My is really ahead of its time in terms of interactivity and the use of holes cut out of the pages. It's a simple enough journey story, and a vehicle for some really gorgeous art. We compare the translation from the 1960s with the more modern text in our newer editions. There's very creative versification and some brand new Hattifattener lore!

    And if it's true to say that that first book showcases Tove's love of colour, that's even more true of Who Will Comfort Toffle?. Toffle is a small grey creature living in a big colourful world. He always feels on the outside of everything. Pointillism abounds in the black and white pictures of Toffle's fearful little world. Snufkin has a cameo and he's swapped his mouth organ for a silver flute - what is up with that? Ultimately it's a story about the wisdom and strength that love brings.

    For obvious reasons, there are a lot more pictures to share than usual this week, so we recommend you find us on twitter and instagram to see all that stuff.

    Our Spirits of the Moomins this week are the game Gris and Press Here by Herve Tullet. Our Spirit of the Podgoblin's Hat is She-Ra: Progressive of Power.

    • 1 hr 13 min
    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 10: Moominsummer Madness (part 2)

    The Podgoblin's Hat Episode 10: Moominsummer Madness (part 2)

    This is the tenth episode of The Podgoblin's Hat, with Nina and Dave. You can find it on it's own feed wherever you get your podcasts.

    Content note: discussion of suicidal thoughts in the What Would Snufkin do part of the podcast

    This book splits three ways on Midsummer Eve: Snufkin is enacting revenge on a Park Keeper, Moomintroll and the Snork Maiden are having a party with a Fillyjonk, and the rest of our crew are still aboard the floating theatre.

    There's so much about theatre in this book: a play within a play, a lion being played by two beavers, a disastrous dress rehearsal and happy endings all round.

    We talk about the effects of responsibility on Snufkin (spoiler: he hates it) and there's some light prison abolitionism.

    It's a banger. You should definitely read this one.

    Our Spirits this week are Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett, How It Ends and Wizard Team, a black fantasy podcast from Black Nerds Create.

    • 1 hr 12 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
15 Ratings

15 Ratings

TiernanD ,

Interesting and always enjoyable

Dave is an excellent interviewer and always chooses interesting interviewees. Highly recommended!

Witherkay ,

Towards a better understanding

Just worked my way up to about episode 30 of this tremendous series and am absolutely thrilled to have come across it. In every show there's some snippet or line of thought that'll chime with one's own experience and shine a bit of light on our shared experience of the world.

EarlGreywithmilk ,

Getting Better Acquainted

As conversations rather than interviews, GBA episodes are nearly always fascinating - especially when Dave talks about his own childhood and relationships. Compelling stuff!

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