Rise from your grave..
When things are getting a bit much in my head, my mind wanders and is bubbling away ready to boil over, I have a number of things to do to try to calm down. One of which, is listening to The Last Podcast on the Left.
For the unitiated The Last Podcast on the Left is a podcast hosted by Marcus Parks, Ben Kissel and Henry Zebrowski in which they discuss various true crime, paranormal, supernatural and cryptid stories.
Starting in 2011, I was a late comer to the world of LPOTL only starting to listen in 2018 but it didn’t take long for me to get through all the nearly 400 episodes – some multiple times.
It was the killer episodes that interested me initially. The very first episode I listened to was Richard Kuklinski. I had just just read The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer, so it peaked my interest. Then I listened to others I knew of such as Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, Ed Gein, and John Wayne Gacy.
After I had worked through the other killer (‘Heavy Hitter’) episodes, I branched out to aliens, occult and cryptid ones. It made sense to then start at the beginning and work through them in order, well from episode 34.
What I love about these podcasts is the intense amount of research and effort that’s put in to the episodes. Their humour and the connection all three have and their honesty is very NSFW, natural & fun. You’re listening to three best mates having a laugh, loving life, living their dream and sharing their incredible knowledge.
So, what is it about listening to hours upon hours of horrific brutality, crimes against humanity, paranormal activities, sasquach sightings and creepy pasta that helps me when panic starts to set in and my mind decides to take a turn for the worst?
That’s when the cannibalism started..
A combination of the actual information, and their personalities. I feel like I’m with friends when I listen to them. That may sound ridiculous, but it’s comforting to listen to them.
Imagine being in a room with some friends. You don’t really feel like interacting but you’re enjoying their company and listeing to their conversations. That’s how it feels to me. I’m there with them, but haven’t got to contribute anything and can just be quiet and enjoy it.
I listen to LPOTL on the way to and from work, and whenever I walk anywhere alone. In my job I’m lucky enough that on occasion I can put my earphones in and listen to podcasts. This opportunity is particularly helpful when my anxiety has crept up on me when at work. I can just put on the next episode and enjoy.
In fact, in April I completed the Brighton Marathon (and raised £700 for the Cats Protection). It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, mainly because I hate running. But I did it! I even had my motivation scrawled on my hands. This, along with the Pee Wee Gaskins episodes helped me make it to the finish (and that’s the final truth!!).
I can zone out and concentrate on the podcast. It distracts my mind with subjects that interest me. Another thing I like about their episodes is they are broken up often with general insults and inappropriate TMI statements. I’ve often had to stifle much laughter while sitting on a train alone or at work.
Before I know it I’ve listened to an hour or so and I’m a bit more grounded then I was. My mind is getting back to more realistic thoughts.
Let’s rewind to about Feb/ March 2019 (2019 is officially last year now!eek!) and in listening to an episode they announce UK dates for September in London. Well! Straight away I sent my friend, Polly, a message. She lives in London and is just as big of the Last Podcast on the left fan as I am. She is also the one who introduced me too them.
After an initial Patreon/advance ticket hiccup we finally got tickets. Not only were we going to see Last Podcast on the Left but also on Friday 13th September. Was just meant to be!
I had bought a t-shirt online, and made sure I had enough to buy official merch when at the show. Nearer the time I had also decided to sign up to their Patreon – Hollow Earthling Gang level. This meant I got a free T-shirt, ad free episodes, and a few other little bits. Although, these items didn’t arrive until after the show.
What was that?
In between tickets purchased and the big day I had gone through a whirlwind of mental health emotions. I was weening off my social anxiety medication enough to stop it. Then, within a few months I came crashing down with huge depression. I had time off work and a visit back to the Doctors. I was back on medication again.
This happened about 2-3 weeks before the show and I had forgotten about the side effects of starting medication again. I felt really sick. Wasn’t a nice feeling at all. Luckily these feelings had passed by the time 13th September arrived.
During my mental health crash I was still listening to Last Podcast on the Left as much as physically possible. Ideally, I wanted to listen to all the episodes before the live show (but time just did not permit that). I was getting more and more excited about seeing them live.
The day arrives. I got my fake merch on, my bag packed and obviously episodes of the podcast downloaded. After I got to London I’d have about 3.5 hours to kill by myself before I met Polly. By myself. I was on the train, on the way to London, BY. MY. SELF!
My depression and excitement about the trip had distracted me enough that that I hadn’t even processed that I was going to London and spending hours by myself! Any social anxious thoughts hadn’t even occurred to me. Even after this realisation, I wasn’t anxious! I was excited and dare I even say it, quite proud of the fact I didn’t have super anxiety.
It was this that made my internal conflict about going back on medication end in peace. Sure, I still had bad depression and my anxiety wasn’t gone completely, but it was under control. I knew then that it just wasn’t the right time to come off medication, but I had made actual progress.
So, off I continued to that there London. I made my way to settle down in numerous BrewDog pubs before meeting Polly and her other like-minded friends.
By the time the show started I was a little bit drunk, but absolutely loved it! It was everything I wanted. As a big Pokemon Go fan (See about how Pokemon Go also helped my anxiety) to see the Pokemon / Serial Killer mash up at the beginning was just glorious.
We agreed, that if they come back we need to pay the extra and do the meet and greet. They are just the most awesome guys. It would just be the best to meet them and thank them for all their hard work.
When listening to Last Pocast on the Left you need to be open to some pretty NSFW language, and also some topics can be really hard to listen to details on.
But, if you’re interested in the psychology, facts (and 100% spot on accents and impressions from Henry) behind savage history, cults and killers then this is for you.
Who is detective popcorn? Nannie? Or Minnie? And most important of all.. Who is phone?? – better listen to find out!
If you’re interested in giving it a go below are some of my favourite episodes and a mixture of the topics they cover. If you select the parts it will take you to Spotify. I’d also suggest you check out some episodes on topics that interest you first. 18 months ago I never thought I’d have an interest in aliens, or Mormons, but here I am now thoroughly engrossed in any topic they cover.
Richard Kukinski part 1, part 2 & part 3
The Donner Party part 1 & part 2
The Enfield Poltergeist part 1 & part 2
Chaos Magic part 1 & part 2
West Memphis Three part 1, part 2 & part 3
Ed Kemper part 1 & part 2
Charles Manson part 1, part 2 & part 3
L. Ron hubbard part 1, part 2, part 3 & part 4
I’ll sign off in true Last Podcast on the left style :
Hail Gein, Hail Yourself, Hail Satan & Megustalations 🤘
I also want to throw out there a Hail me for getting my social anxiety under control and for progressing in the right direction with my mental health.