This week I’ll be reviewing the Ready To Be Petty podcast (specifically this episode), and I’ll start with this. I did not think I would be into this show.
I’m a 31 year old *newly minted* dad who still listens to the same shit I did in high school, and I don’t have cable. Or perform any semblance of skin care. Or watch The Bachelor.
At its core, the Ready To Be Petty podcast is an exposition on all things petty--and it’s a solid use of the word. It’s ambiguous enough to allow the host (Torry, no last name given) to paint with a rather wide brush, encompassing nearly all elements of pop culture, celebrity gossip, personal wellness, etc--all through a somewhat critical and judge-y lens.
I don’t say that as a negative, quite the opposite. Where I thought I would become annoyed,I found myself laughing and curious as to what would come next. For example, on this particular episode there is a rather large chunk about The Bachelor and what seemed to be some groundbreaking action. While I honestly had no idea what Torry was talking about (my problem, not hers) her exceptionally candid and open opinion on the intricacies of the show were entertaining, funny, and endearing. I confess, I felt immediately obligated to google Colton Underwood and find out what the hell was going on. #FOMO
That’s where I feel this show really shines; essentially, the specific subject matter is secondary. I felt compelled to keep listening because of Torry’s speculation and refreshingly honest representation of herself. She is a 26 year old woman, with all the ambitions, fears, insecurities and baggage that comes with the territory. She is not shy about this; by embracing the opinions and struggles that those in a different age demographic might cast off as insignificant, the host creates a candid narrative that pulls the curtain aside on today’s media-driven culture.
A particularly visceral commentary was her closing; a trial segment (as of this episode) billed as an opportunity to discuss a personal petty moment of the week. Whether or not the host intended it this way, it was an all-too-familiar story that hit closer to home than I would have liked or expected. In brief, Torry describes her apprehension at posting about her dive into podcasting on Facebook--it seemed to ultimately boil down to fear of the unknown and feeling exposed.
Launching a new creative endeavor and the self-promotion that come with it are always daunting. The project will always always mean the most to the individual who nurtured it from concept to reality. Convincing others, even friends and family, of your endeavor’s value can feel terrifying, embarrassing, hopeless, or any number of equally negative and deprecating terms. Though any project will usually be accompanied by a certain amount of pre-qualified blanket support from your nearest and dearest, that too often fades. Quick. So to promote your baby on social media amidst the uncertainty and questionable confidence you’re likely experiencing...it’s understandable why one might hesitate to pull the trigger. How many likes will this get? Is this going to generate new followers? Will anyone care?
As Torry goes on to describe, the short answer is “nope.”
Over 40 minutes without a single like, on a post that was three MONTHS in the making. In the age of social media and instant gratification, forty minutes may as well be 40 years. To emphasize the point and rub salt in the wound, she posted a rather generic sunset picture as a test, which garnered a near-immediate 36 likes. It’s a situation we’ve likely all encountered at some point, and serves to highlight the largely apathetic view that our ever-scrolling audience has towards new creative efforts. In such a saturated market, who has time to get excited about another new podcast?
Torry makes it abundantly clear that she has received a large amount of support and thanks her followers precipitously; the Facebook engagement story was clearly intended to be a light-hearted take. Regardless, the message continues to resonate.
Anyway, this podcast should be commended for its honest portrayal of a young professional, bound into a media-centric pop culture frontier. Though its surface material may not be for everyone, the underlying tone and commentary are relevant and necessary.
If you enjoy social media, celebrities, TV, personal image and branding, among many other things, please check out the Ready To Be Petty podcast! I’ve subscribed and so should you!