I recently listened to three podcasts in NPR’s This I Believe series. These podcasts were, “Listen to Your Mother-in-Law,” “I Didn’t Wash My Car Last Week,” and “Time to Walk the Dog.”
These podcasts drew my attention due to their uniqueness. Each episode offered a dramatically different topic, with each of them boiling down to a central theme: the philosophy each individual lives by.
For instance, “Listen to Your Mother-in-Law” discusses Judi Russell’s philosophy of living in the present. This philosophy was borne out of advice given to Russell by her mother-in-law, who told her to enjoy the possessions and moments she had while they existed. Russell tries to live out this advice every day by wearing her favorite clothes and eating on her best dishes as if she would not have them tomorrow.
“I Didn’t Wash My Car Last Week,” on the other hand, comes from an essayist named Jeff, who did not provide a last name. It takes on a similar theme to that of Russell’s essay. Jeff tells listeners to live in the moment and not sweat the small issues of life. Jeff says he will not get to the end of his life and think, “…I wish I’d spent more time washing my car. If I’d only scrubbed those whitewalls a little more often, I could have had a really happy life.” This is the philosophy he lives by: enjoy life without worry about every little detail.
Finally, essayist Betsy Buchalter Adler believes in walking her dog. Adler explains this activity allows her to get outside and enjoy the small things, just like her dog. “He reminds me of everything I can’t control and don’t need to,” Adler states. This is a similar philosophy to that of Russell and Jeff, but in a different context.
This, I believe, is what draws me to podcasting. Whether it be washing the car or walking the dog, a speaker can discuss anything they choose in a podcast. Oftentimes, a podcast can center around a theme similar to other podcasts. This brings the thoughts and opinions of people together in a unique way.