Follow Friday
Psst ... want some Follow Friday stickers? Support us on Patreon with a $5+ pledge by October 31!
Chicago's worst food, The Berenstain Bears, video games are art

Mark Chrisler (The Constant)

A colorful illustration of Michael Tucker underneath the words "Follow Friday: Michael Tucker"
Jump to transcript ⬇️

On The Constant, Mark Chrisler chronicles "a history of getting things wrong" — the many ways that humans have misunderstood the world, or misled others about it. Over the past 100 (!) episodes, Mark's topics have ranged from death rays to forensic science to a submarine that was discovered at the bottom of the Chicago River.

Today on Follow Friday, Mark talks about his years-long podcast feud with the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle, his love/hate feelings about a prominent public intellectual, the McElroy brother he wants to be friends with, a fun Twitter account documenting the "Mandela effect," and a YouTube essayist shaping the way we talk about video games.

And you can get a fifth follow recommendation from Mark later today if you back Follow Friday on Patreon, starting at just $1 a month. Special thanks to our patrons of the week: Jon and Justin!

Follow us:
- Mark is on Twitter @constantpodcast and on Instagram and Facebook @theconstantpodcast
- This show is on Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok @followfridaypod
- Eric is on Twitter @heyheyesj

Theme song written by Eric Johnson, and performed by Yona Marie. Show art by Dodi Hermawan.

Thank you to our amazing patrons: Elizabeth, Jon, and Justin
Full transcript of this episode
Click to expand
ERIC JOHNSON: Today on Follow Friday, we're going to talk about broken windows, game jams, Chicago's worst food, the Berenstein Bears, the Berenstain Bears, and a perfect motto for the internet. That's in a minute with Mark Chrisler from The Constant.

ERIC [AD]: But first, I want to thank Jon and Justin from Transistor.fm for backing Follow Friday on Patreon. Transistor is an independent podcast hosting company with a simple, modern interface for uploading audio, distributing your podcast, and viewing analytics. You can also make as many podcasts on Transistor as you want for no extra cost, and, if you're working with a team, you can invite additional users to access the show settings, upload episodes, view analytics, and more. Check them out at Transistor.fm.

[theme song]

ERIC: I'm Eric Johnson. Welcome to Follow Friday, a podcast about who you should follow online. Every week, I talk to creative people about who they follow, and why. This is a guided tour to the best people on the Internet, led by your favorite writers, podcasters, comedians, and more. You can help me make Follow Friday for as little as a dollar a month at patreon.com/followfriday. You can also support the show for free by leaving a review at lovethepodcast.com/followfriday.

Today on the show is Mark Chrisler, the host of The Constant. It's a science and history podcast about getting things wrong. Over the past three and a half years, Mark has covered everything from death rays to forensic science to a submarine that was discovered at the bottom of the Chicago River. You can find Mark on Twitter @constantpodcast and on Instagram and Facebook @theconstantpodcast. You can also find the show on Patreon.

Mark, welcome to Follow Friday!

MARK: Hello. Welcome. Thanks for having me.

ERIC: I'm so excited to have you here. So excited to talk to you. I've been listening to the show for many years now.

MARK: I'm so very sorry.

ERIC: One of my favorite things about The Constant is that even though you cover stories from centuries of history, the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle comes up all the time. Can you explain why that is and how you've gotten into a podcast feud with a long-dead philosopher?

MARK: Oh, man. It's funny, because I'm taking a break from working on the 100th episode to do this. That means I'm going back through some of the earliest episodes and realizing that the feud with Aristotle began in episode one.

And at that point, I was very deferential. I was like "Obviously, Aristotle is wonderful and great, and we all love him, but in some cases he wasn't so wonderful." Nowadays, we just say, "F**king Aristotle."

Aristotle was a great thinker and he was a great philosopher. A great moral philosopher, especially. He had a lot of really bad ideas as anyone in the Bronze Age might have had, but the difference is that Aristotle's lived on with fervor and with an extreme amount of deference, mostly owing to medieval Europe and actually the Muslim Golden Age, where all the scientists and natural philosophers of basically 600 to 1300 thought that he could do no wrong. That he was almost literally an extension of the gospels. In the case of Aquinas, he said that he was an extension of the gospels.

It became heretical to question most of Aristotle's teachings, even the ones that were, on their face, just absurd. Like that men had a different number of teeth than women, or that the brain air conditions the body. All kinds of wackiness that it was like, "No, Aristotle said it and that's it." He led us down a lot of weird little gullies that we had to work pretty hard to escape out of and are still, in some cases, working hard to escape out of.

ERIC: People think, "Oh, Aristotle. Really old, really smart guy. I'm sure he was right about so many things. He's such a great thinker," is how he's described, right?

MARK: Right.

ERIC: But the reality is, at least in the context of The Constant, he's like Cousin Eddie in Christmas Vacation. He just shows up and starts emptying s**t onto your lawn.

MARK: Yeah. He's a great thinker in the abstract, but as soon as he starts putting that thinking to physical matters of the Earth and the people on it, he is invariably 180 degrees from correct.

ERIC: All right. Well, let us get as far away from Aristotle as we can. We're going to talk about who Mark Chrisler follows online. You can follow along with us today. Every person Mark recommends will be linked in the show notes and in the transcript at followfridaypodcast.com.

Mark, before the show, I gave you a list of categories and I asked you to tell me four people you follow who fit in those categories. Your first pick is in the category "someone you have a love-hate relationship with." That's the writer Malcolm Gladwell, who also hosts a podcast in your airspace, roughly, called Revisionist History. This is the second time he has come up on this show. If anyone wants to hear more Malcolm Gladwell talk, get back to the Michael Tucker episode from early May. You'll hear his first appearance.

Let's start positive with the love part of love-hate. What do you love about Malcolm Gladwell and his work?

MARK: [laughs] Yeah, I don't need to go in this hot at the top of this thing. What do I love about Malcolm Gladwell? I love his style. I have an affection, warranted or otherwise, for public intellectuals, writ large. He certainly looms high among them all.

I haven't read his last couple of books, but for a good decade, decade and a half there, everything that he wrote, I gobbled up. Every idea that he passed on seemed so delicious, and ... Actually, no, I'm not going to add another adjective. Delicious is the word. He comes up with really delicious ideas and he expresses them really deliciously. There's no question about that.

His podcast, which I've listened to most of, I think I've fallen off lately, is also an extension of that: Ideas that are just too chewy and yummy. As soon as the lead is put out there, as soon as the hook hits the water, you have no choice but to follow him. That's obviously an incredible gift.

ERIC: Then what about the hate side of love-hate? What's the downside of this?

MARK: Well, that's the thing. I think the hate has been rising considerably over time. I know that just recently, he's made a big celebration of LeMay, the architect of the firebombing of Japan in World War II.

ERIC: Whoa.

MARK: Yeah. He's got a book out about it. He did a three-or four-part thing, I think, on the podcast. LeMay is, to my mind, a monster. He was a really, really bad human being. I'm interested in hearing the contrapoint. My beef with Gladwell is that first off, he's always taking the contrapoint, and sometimes in dereliction of maybe being more honest or level-headed about things.

More importantly, I got into a lot of feuds and fights with people over Gladwell, especially on the left. A lot of my political lefty friends really hate him and see him as neoliberal, and for good reason too. He advocated for broken windows policing. He popularized that theory, which I think has been fairly disastrous.

ERIC: Correct me if I'm wrong. The broken windows policing theory, this is the idea that if there's already broken glass on the street, therefore there should be more police there. That's like a correlation of small crimes leading to bigger crimes. Is that the general idea?

MARK: That's the idea that if you let small things go wrong in a neighborhood, it creates a permissive atmosphere for greater and greater crime. Therefore, you should over-police minor things and that will stop more major things from happening. That's credited as maybe a justification for stop-and-frisk, especially in New York and Chicago, where they were very bad policies that did not, I don't think, lead to much good.

What I've come to think is that the problem, if I have to sum it up or reduce it to one thing, it's that he is so interested in these ideas. He's interested in these delicious, delicious ideas.

ERIC: Right.

MARK: I think he holds a sort of internal contradiction where his whole career, his whole milieu is about the power of ideas. Yet, at the same time, he seems to think that he's just playing with ideas. That when he does it, when he introduces thoughts, that's just a workshop. That's just playing devil's advocate, or that's just playing with thoughts.

ERIC: I see.

MARK: "We're just doing it in a safe environment." I think that he's, on several occasions, been pretty irresponsible with the way that he puts ideas out into the world, because he doesn't seem to hold his own ideas and his own sending of those ideas out into the world with the same... He doesn't think that they have the same power as the ideas that he's talking about. I think that's a fundamental problem.

ERIC: This is maybe a general problem with ... As much as you may have affection for the concept of a public intellectual, this is a related problem to Aristotle in some way, where someone has a reputation for having really provocative, delicious ideas, or for saying something smart about one thing, then there is this Katamari of attention that can they get rolled up. Anytime they say anything, they roll up credibility even if it may not necessarily be earned, if they haven't done the diligence and aren't being as careful with an idea as they maybe should be.

MARK: Absolutely. I do think that the history of public intellectuals is full of people getting over their skis and doing damage that they obviously don't mean to do, or leading us astray by just the power of celebrity and a recklessness with thought.

I don't expect anyone to be immune to that. I think if you're in that position, it's bound to happen, but I do think there are ways to wear thicker mittens about it. It doesn't seem to me that Gladwell wears any gloves whatsoever. I think he's pretty much bare-fisted with his ideas.

ERIC: I will say, going back to the previous episode where he came up, Michael Tucker from Lessons from the Screenplay said that, in his reading, the big thesis of Gladwell's Revisionist History is, "Don't trust common sense," which seems reasonable enough to me.

Michael was saying that he had applied that idea to his own creative work on YouTube and podcasting and beyond. Back on the more positive side, are there any either ideas that Gladwell has put out there that you've incorporated into your work, or anything you've learned from following him that has helped you become a better writer, a better podcaster or anything like that?

MARK: Actually, I entirely agree with Tucker on that. I think that that base thesis of not accepting received wisdom or common sense or what have you is invaluable. It's certainly something that I received from him. I agree that a thesis is worth entertaining and going down the rabbit hole on. That is my whole career at this point. In that way, I'm totally with him.

I think that there's an extra inch over that precipice, where the rock starts to give way. It's a really thin, yet dangerous and important inch.

ERIC: That was Malcolm Gladwell, the host of the podcast Revisionist History.

Mark, let's move on to your next follow. I asked you for someone you don't know, but want to be your friend. You said Justin McElroy. He's one third of the podcast My Brother, My Brother and Me and also co-hosts at least four other podcasts: The Adventure Zone, The Besties, Sawbones, The Empty Bowl. There's probably some others that I am forgetting. You can find him on Twitter @justinmcelroy.

I'm also a fan of Justin's work and the whole McElroy family, but why did you specifically choose him, out of all of them?

MARK: That's a good question. I don't know. I feel like maybe a few years ago, I might have been a Griffin friend. Now in my older, slightly more curmudgeonly and perhaps wise stance that I find myself in now, I find myself gravitating towards the Justin.

ERIC: Okay. Explain, what's the difference there? What's the difference between wanting to be friends with a Griffin and wanting to be friends with a Justin?

MARK: It is intangible. [laughs] I don't know how to explain it, unless you're spending the inordinate amount of time that we're all welcome to spend with the McElroy brothers, which I think everyone can agree is too much. They podcast every minute of their lives. Someone should let them get away from whatever satanic monkey paw put a microphone inside of their mouths.

What does Justin have for me? Just on occasion, he dips into a slightly more acerbic... You can see the notes of a venom just barely underneath and he covers them well. You just get the hint. I feel those hints of venom down deep in my cockles. It's all I need — while still being an immensely positive presence. All the McElroys are known for an incredible positivity and that's wonderful, but I like that there's just a little bit of acid note with Justin.

ERIC: Absolutely. On My Brother, My Brother and Me, he has a recurring segment called Munch Squad, which is amazing. I love it, where he reads these press releases for new fast food "innovations."

In almost all of them, this is I think one of the things where it's that mixture of cheerfulness, but also it's a little bit dark where it's this soulless marketing dreck for just crap you should not put into your body. He's just announcing to the world, all of these brand partnerships where ... this is like the peak of late-stage capitalism.

People should not be spending time trying to find new ways to put Mountain Dew and Doritos into stuff, and yet there's a gigantic number of people who that is their entire job. Are you a fan of Munch Squad yourself?

MARK: I love Munch Squad. Yes, very much. I appreciate, especially over the last year of the pandemic, because it lets you know how many of these corporate press releases are announcing some nonsensical, "In today's dark time, what you really need is a Dorito flavored Oreo" or whatever.

ERIC: "In these troubling times..."

MARK: Yeah. It's fantastic what a terrible bit of marketing copy they're just all copy and pasting into these dark times, indeed. They're only darkening them further, is the truth.

ERIC: Exactly. It's like, "Times are tough, but please eat this 3,000-calorie sandwich and it'll be a little bit better." Yeah.

MARK: Right.

ERIC: What was your entry point into Justin's work, or to the McElroy brothers in general? Do you remember how you first got into this empire that they've created for themselves?

MARK: It's funny because they used to write... Long ago, Justin and Griffin used to write for a video game website called Joystiq. This was, I think, probably more than a decade ago. I think before they started the podcast. I used to read that website because I am a video game nerd, religiously. I knew them just as some voices that I liked on this website.

Then years later, actually just in the last couple of years, I discovered My Brother, My Brother and Me, and then headed down the rabbit hole and then realized, "Oh, I've actually been following them for much longer than I realized," because I've been following them on Joystiq and on Polygon, which is another website that they founded. Because they're everywhere, I've been following them without even realizing it for half of my adult life, somehow.

ERIC: If you were friends with Justin, if you got in touch and he was just like, "Hey, cool. Let's hang out. Let's do something," what's your suggestion to him? What do you want to do?

MARK: I want to take him for some disgusting, awful Chicago cuisine.

ERIC: Like what, specifically?

MARK: Probably we got to go the Italian beef. We got a thing on the South Side. We call it Gym Shoe. That's best not to be described, but it's lovely and awful. Or there's the Chicago-style pizza. We'll do it because it's got to be done. We can really just make a day of traveling around and killing ourselves at a slow and yet accelerated rate.

ERIC: A few years back, many years back now, I participated in ... it was like one of those Reddit Secret Santa things where you sign up to just get a present from a stranger, and then you send a present to a stranger. You can put in a little bit of text about what you're hoping to get in the gift exchange. I said, "Oh, well, I want something that I can share with my friends."

My Secret Santa was someone from Chicago, so they sent me a bottle of Malört liquor.

MARK: Oh.

ERIC: That was certainly a choice. Maybe sharing it with my friends was a mistake, but I did.

MARK: Oh, no. I'm very sorry for everyone involved. We've got to do something about our reckless Malört-sharing. It's not okay.

ERIC: It's this really bitter, really foul-tasting drink, and I think it's famously connected to Chicago, right? Is it your city's official liquor?

MARK: It's the thing that we make people drink when they come to town, because we're jerks. Then there's this small sliver of the population that has actually grown in defiance of nature to enjoy it, or at least they say they do. It's just makes me bow my head, every time it comes up. That awful, awful Malört.

If you've never experienced it ... don't. It's really, truly the most abysmal and abhorrent liquor ever created by man.

ERIC: Do not give that to Justin McElroy. I don't think the Internet would ever forgive you.

MARK: No, no. I can't go that far.

ERIC: That was Justin McElroy, who's on Twitter @justinmcelroy. We're going to take a quick break now, but we'll be back in a minute with Mark Chrisler from The Constant.

ERIC [AD]: Today's show is brought to you by The Edit from Timber. It's a private space for podcasters to get feedback on their work from a group of podcasting experts: Shruti Ravindran, the former producer of Science Versus, Skye Pillsbury from Hot Pod, and Jenna Spinelle from Democracy Works. Oh, and also me! Eric Johnson from Follow Friday. For $20 a month, you get access to a special area of Timber's Discord server, and every month, you can ask for feedback on up to an hour of podcast audio; it can be a draft you're working on, or something you've already published, whatever you want. We'll give you notes on how your podcast sounds, where listeners might drop off, and notes on your story, format, and writing, everyhting. Each cohort is small and private, so you don't need to worry about the whole internet seeing this feedback. Sign up today for just $20 a month at followfriday.net/timber. That's followfriday.net/timber.

ERIC: Welcome back to Follow Friday. Mark, I asked you to tell me about someone you just started following. You said an account called Froot of the Loom, which is spelled with two O's in fruit. Their username on Twitter is @frootoftheloom1.

Their Twitter bio makes reference to the Mandela Effect and to things that are being "retconned." Do you want to explain what this account is about, what Froot of the Loom is referring to?

MARK: Yes. I think that at this point, Froot of the Loom is one of the sole reasons that I open Twitter. Froot of the Loom is an account that just pastes comments from a Reddit subgroup called the Mandela Effect.

If people don't really know this, I first encountered this a few years ago with the Berenstein Bears, or the Berenstain Bears, which is what they're actually called. The Berenstain Bears is a series of children's books that many of us grew up with. Many of us recall incorrectly as the Berenstein Bears, because that's a much more natural-sounding thing.

The idea is that we've actually traveled into an alternative universe where when we were children, we were living in the Berenstein Bears' world and then we somehow got retconned. As you said, existence got retconned to turn it into the Berenstain Bears.

It takes its name from this same phenomenon when Nelson Mandela died, in I think 2008, a lot of people apparently believed that they remembered him dying in the '90s. That became this major schism where they said, "Okay. Sometime between then and now, we changed the nature of the universe."

When you follow Froot of the Loom, who gives you the examples of these folks, and they're manically wholesale, you realize more fully than you can possibly imagine that there is just a small but not small enough group of folks who every time they spell something wrong, or misremember a date, or in any way make any sort of minor or trivial error, they go, "Oh, well of course that means that the world has just been changed again."

ERIC: The only explanation, the simplest explanation is time travel, or maybe an alternate universe. It can't possibly be that I was wrong.

MARK: Absolutely. The only reasonable explanation for the world that I live in where ignore is spelled with a silent G or whatever. That's not a good example. I want to look them up. I want to look them up right now so that I can give you a great example of ...

ERIC: This is one that I found when I was looking @frootoftheloom1 on Twitter. It's a screenshot from Reddit. It's a post on Reddit. The title is "When the Hell did Ed Sherman change his name to Ed Sheeran?"

MARK: [laughs] Right. Yeah. That's a lovely one. That's a lovely one.

ERIC: I like the 'when the hell' specifically, where it's like "the utter nerve of this guy."

MARK: Yeah. There's a nonstop cavalcade of aggressive ignorance being trotted out as evidence that something has gone wrong with the world. The moderators apparently on this subreddit have made it, you're not allowed to contradict someone. You're not allowed to say, "I think that maybe it was just always spelled that way," or what have you. It creates this Watt steam engine, a reinforcing loop of bad information over and over again, and it delights me to no end.

ERIC: I definitely was also in the Berenstein Bears camp. I was certain for the longest time that it was stein with an E. Another one, another classic example of Mandela Effect that was true for me was in Snow White. The evil witch is saying, "Mirror, mirror on the wall. Who's the fairest one of all?" Apparently, she never says that. She says, "Magic mirror on the wall." If you had asked me, until I looked this up last night when I was writing the script, I was like, "Yeah, of course she says, 'Mirror, mirror on the wall.'" Did you have anything other than Berenstein bears that's like that for you?

MARK: I have the Snow White one as well. ET never says, "Phone home." He always says, "Home phone." There are lots of little ones like that. Those are all great because there's a catchier version than what actually we experienced, that then became the cultural touchdown.

Which is a really simple and kind of interesting explanation for why we all have these shared errors. Instead of going down that, it's just, well, obviously the universe has shifted in the most mundane and unreasonable ways imaginable.

ERIC: I think the original people reporting the Mandela effect said, "I remember watching his funeral on TV," and stuff like that. It's often, I think, related to some media we've consumed where our brains have just conflated maybe a fictionalized version of a similar person to Nelson Mandela.

There is just some bizarre brain science happening here that I would love to really understand. What is actually happening when we delude ourselves into thinking that there's some retcon time-travel shenanigans going on here?

MARK: I think it's an incredibly Internet-based phenomenon, because in the olden days, people had things like this... I remember my uncle, when I was a kid, thinking that it was called a weather mane, not a weather vane. He was insistent. When everybody was like, "What are you talking about? It's a weather vane," he was like, "It's a weather mane." We all have those little moments.

The difference is when you can go online, you can find people who will validate your odd little quirks and so forth. They become not your mistakes or not things that you believe quietly, that you could grumble about under the table or whatever. They suddenly become things that you can amplify and exaggerate. We can make these strange behaviors louder and bigger and worse.

ERIC: Welcome to the Internet. Our official motto is, we can make it louder and bigger and worse.

MARK: Yeah. That's pretty much right.

ERIC: That was Froot of the Loom, which is on Twitter @frootoftheloom1, and froot is spelled with two O's.

MARK: As it always was.

ERIC: We have time for one more follow today. Mark. I asked you for someone who's an expert in a very specific niche you love. You said Mark Brown, who is on Twitter @gamemakerstk and on YouTube @markbrowngmt. His username stands for Game Maker's Toolkit.

I follow a lot of video game-adjacent people, and I feel like I missed a big trick by not seeing this account sooner. Explain what Mark does in Game Maker's Toolkit.

MARK: I have done you such a good turn, if I've turned you on to Mark Brown. He does a YouTube series, mainly, called Game Maker's Toolkit where he goes in depth into the medium of video games and the structure, I would say.

I'm from a writing background, I suppose obviously, so I've learned a lot of dramatic structure and how stories function and so forth. Mark Brown is really interesting to me because he's one of a not-small number of people, but he's really one of the best, at looking at this new emergent form of narrative, which is video games, and identifying new best rules and practices and sort of how things function and when they don't and why.

It's incredible because it's like watching a new artistic medium being born. Mark is showing you how it functions live as it goes. I feel like that's an experience that you could get once every millennium, when we come up with a new, entirely novel form of human expression. You can sort of watch it happen with this very thoughtful and intelligent and perceptive and lovely British fellow.

ERIC: The thing that's been really interesting to see over the past 10 years or so has been the explosion of indie games online and on phones and all of that, where for a while it seemed like games were in this linear progression, away from Mario-style games, and everything had to be 3D and everything had to be first person. There was this prescriptive thing in mainstream big-budget video games where everything was starting to be similar.

What Mark is talking about a lot on his channel that seems interesting is he's putting vocabulary to the artistry of all types of games. It's not just whatever's the current trend in mainstream video games. He's articulating why something is satisfying to play and why something is interesting or innovative. I'm really excited to check out more and more of his videos.

MARK: To me, it's really fascinating because yeah, as you say, it's not prescriptive. It's very much descriptive. It's looking at a lot of different games or experiences that don't, on their face, necessarily appear to be connected. He finds the underlying skeletal structure and says, "Oh, this works the same way that this works, and this functions better when it's like this."
It's not as dry as that. He's a very entertaining writer and performer. It's like wading into a world that you didn't know exists before.

Even if you're someone who plays a lot of games, but especially if you're someone who doesn't, it's almost like a really smart cooking show, like J. Kenji López-Alt or something for video games where you're like, "Oh, I knew that I liked hamburgers. There's rules to hamburgers, and here's why this hamburger works this way."

Mark Brown is doing that with video games, and that's just really fascinating because they're not experiences that we're accustomed to being analytical about, and describing so proficiently.

ERIC: He also runs an annual game-making marathon called GMTK Game Jam. A bunch of indie video game developers are given 48 hours to design a game, based on a theme.
Have you ever checked out his Game Jams or played any of the games made by the developers that participate?

MARK: Yeah. Actually he just, I think, completed one in the last couple of weeks.

ERIC: He did.

MARK: I can't remember what the theme was. Joined Together, I think was the theme.

ERIC: Yes.

MARK: It's really interesting because yeah, like you say, they've got 48 hours to build a video game with usually two or three people or something like that. They're very small and they just end up having to concentrate on one key idea or mechanic. Which again, then becomes really interesting fodder for how those things work, and whether they work, and why some work better than others. It's a really fascinating world to dive into.

ERIC: Absolutely. I watched the video recap that Mark put together from that most recent Game Jam, the Joined Together Game Jam, and it is incredible. I started watching the video. The first game he shows, I was like, "Oh, wow. I should play that." The second game, "Oh, I should play that." The third game, "I should play that." The amount of creativity that people can express when given just a simple, vague theme, it is mind-blowing. It's so cool to see.

MARK: Yeah, and I think that at this point, he gets thousands of entries when he puts those up too. Which is dumbfounding to consider that there are that many people out there who are willing and able to take that dive.

ERIC: For sure. That just speaks to the quality of the work he's done. He's been able to attract such a big audience that wants to get onto his stage, so to speak. What's the most recent video game that you've been really obsessed with? What's the last thing that really consumed all of your free time?

MARK: Oh, man. I just beat yesterday Subnautica, which is a couple years old now, but I just dived into it on the Switch. That's a pun, unintentionally. It's a survival game where you're surviving underwater. It has an incredible loop. You start out making fins and little knives, and then you're using stuff that you find with those fins and knives to make bigger air tanks. Then you're making little submarines and then you're making big submarines. It's a very terribly addictive game that, my wife is not happy, ate up a lot of my time for the last month or so.

ERIC: There's a bunch of folks like you who have been on the show who are big video game fans. I keep on collecting these like great recommendations for stuff like, "Oh, I should play that." Them what winds up happening instead is like, "Or I could just play this new Pokémon Snap game, because nostalgia."

MARK: There's nothing shameful there.

ERIC: I can't restrain myself. Nintendo knows how to press all my buttons.

MARK: I'm in the same boat there.

ERIC: That was Mark Brown, who is on Twitter @gamemakerstk. If you want to hear another recommendation from Mark Chrisler, you can get it by supporting Follow Friday on Patreon, starting at just $1. Go to patreon.com/followfriday and back us there. You'll get a bonus mini-sode later today. Shout out to our new patrons of the week, Jon and Justin.

Mark, thank you for sharing your follows with us today. Before we go, let's make sure our listeners know how to find you online. Where do you want them to follow you?

MARK: Oh, gosh. What's my Twitter handle? You know it. I don't. It's @constantpodcast with no 'the', I believe.

ERIC: Let's see... Twitter, @constantpodcast. Instagram and Facebook, @theconstantpodcast.

MARK: Good. The lack of consistency has been a real thorn in my side from the jump. Follow me on Twitter. The podcast itself is The Constant: A History of Getting Things Wrong. You can get it wherever podcasts are sold or otherwise given away freely. Otherwise, you can feel free to ignore me, aside from those.

ERIC: You can follow me on Twitter @heyheyesj, and this show on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok @followfridaypod. Follow Friday's theme music was written by me and performed by Yona Marie. Our show art was illustrated by Dodi Hermawan.

That's all for this week. This is Eric Johnson, reminding you to talk about people behind their backs. When you do, say something nice. See you next Friday.

ERIC: Hey, one more thing — Follow Friday is eligible for the 16th Annual Podcast Awards, but we need your help to get nominated! Go to followfriday.net/podcastawards, and sign up to nominate us. Once you make a free account, just scroll down to the Technology category, choose Follow Friday, and click Save Nominations. You've got until July 31 to do this, and I would really appreciate your support. One more time, that's followfriday.net/podcastawards. Thank you!

Recent episodes:

Made on
Tilda