Let's Hear from Everybody
Updated: Jul 25, 2019
I was driving around in my car, listening to Fresh Air, with Terry Gross, and I was thinking, “Wow, she’s really good at interviewing people, but you know what would be really cool? What if she interviewed people with normal jobs? Now, that would be really interesting. What if Terry Gross asked all these amazingly insightful questions to an engineer, or a nurse, or a fireman? That would be good radio.”
What I mean is, I have nothing against interviewing actors, writers, musicians, politicians, and filmmakers – they’re really interesting, and congrats to them for all their success – but we’re always hearing from them, and about them, on late night TV, daytime talk shows, celebrity websites and magazines. I’d like to hear the story of “normal people” living normal lives, dealing with normal challenges. That would be a fascinating story, and I could relate to that: How do you pay your bills and also do what you love? How do you deal with negative co-workers? What got you interested in nursing, or teaching, or being a cop? Why do you do it? What’s hard about it? How do you raise kids on a social worker’s salary? How do you afford a house or a college degree for your kids? What’s a typical day like for a fireman? Did you always know you wanted to be a pilot? What’s it like a flying a plane across the ocean? What’s it like being a paramedic? What it’s like being a doctor or a nurse, in the middle of a night in the emergency room?” There are a million questions I would ask of “normal people,” because normal life is interesting and relevant.
But this is the story that isn’t being told on late night talk shows or programs like Fresh Air. When was the last time Jimmy Kimmel interviewed a social worker? It’s all about some actor, and their new film. And while that’s cool, it gets kind of old, when there are so many other people we’re not hearing from. Maybe this is why Reality TV and blogging have exploded into our collective consciousness – because now we can hear from people who aren’t celebrities, and maybe their stories are more relatable, and worth telling. Nothing against actors or filmmakers, but let’s hear from everybody.