What are you vigilant about?
June 20, 2019

For the first ten years of the talk show we booked a different guest every week. In all those hundreds of hours of radio there were only a couple of conversations so boring I couldn’t bear to listen to them again after we finished recording. I couldn’t tell you who the guests were at this point. I blocked them out, probably.

Otherwise? I’ve listened to every word of every program at least once more -- if not two or three times -- in addition to the hour I spent on the phone with that person. I’m noting how to do a better job at life, of course (“doing what works” and all), but I’m also monitoring my side of those conversations for filler words.

“Um.” “You know.” “Whatever!” As vigilant as I am, there are still far too many of them for my taste. Darrell’s amused by this. “Do you even pay attention to the network people?” he’ll ask. Well, no. “You’re fine,” he’ll promise. I’m not going for fine. I’m going for perfect. If I shoot for perfect there’s a possibility I’ll end up at fine.


lawnFiller words are like weeds. You have to stay on top of them.

When you do? Oh! Think of how soothing it is to listen to someone who’s well-spoken. It’s bare feet on a lush lawn. I get all tingly just thinking about it.