Love + Radio focuses on “an eclectic range of subjects, from the seedy to the sublime.” Produced by Nick van der Kolk, this podcast is know for its lack of formal hosting and structure. It has received wide-spread acclaim, including a recent selection as a Third Coast Festival finalist. My selection this week was essentially arbitrary (I picked at random from our in-house “best of” list), but I’m glad that “Secrets” was the ultimate choice.
This particular episode is a short 20 minutes long that discusses the phenomenon of PostSecret. In case you’ve never had to kill time in an Urban Outfitters store, the PostSecret project collects postcards sent in by people who want to confess a secret. The idea is that there is a fulfillment in telling somebody about a secret, and it is much easier to tell it anonymously than telling it to someone you know.
“Secrets” starts with the established fact that there are three kinds of secrets. The first is a personal secret, which is too embarrassing to reveal. The second is the secret of a friend, which remains a secret out of the concern that the friend will suffer consequences if the secret were to become public. The third secret is a professional or business-related secret, one that, if revealed, would negatively impact someone’s career.
The episode goes on to reveal the story of how PostSecret was started. Apparently, random pre-addressed postcards were placed in random places such as libraries with instructions to write down a secret. The response was overwhelming. Even after the postcards were no longer being placed in public spots, postcards were being sent in. Eventually, the book was published, a website was created, and the rest was history.
There are several other anecdotal secrets revealed in this podcast. One person admits, “I give decaf to customers who are rude to me.” They’re fairly comical, if not relatable, and contribute a sense of brevity to the discussion of the very real stress-inducing aspect of keeping a secret.
It was certainly an entertaining episode. I have to admit that it didn’t make me think critically about my own life, or really inspire me to do more research. Perhaps, though, this episode would resonate more with someone who had secrets weighing him or her down. The episode was fine, but I don’t know that this particular episode should be on any “best of” lists. (Looking at you, Slate)
Let me know in the comments (or on Twitter with #AudiologuePerusal) if there are other episodes/shows I should check out!
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