[00:00] Hello, you're listening to the Super Power U Podcast. This is episode #26.
[00:09] A funny lady is just out of this world. There's so much stuff…even just being a woman that is annoying, but funny. Welcome to the Super Power U Podcast where we reveal the mental models and tactical skills needed to activate your inner super hero and here's your host, Lisa Betts-LaCroix.
[00:29] Hello. Hello, it's Lisa Betts-LaCroix. Thank you for coming back to join us here today. Before we jump into our super fun conversation with Meryl Klemow and jam on her experience in the music industry, marketing, her comedy writing and her podcast The Campfire Sht Show, I want to do a fast intermittent fasting experiment check-in and my podcast recommendation for this week. I just finished Month 1; Week 3 of the intermittent fasting experiment. This past week I did my regular 18+ hours of intermittent fasting during the week, and I went a bit gentler than usual on the weekend.
[01:11] I fasted on Friday and Saturday for 15 to 16 hours with a longer eating window than normal on those days. Now again, this choice was in support of longterm sustainability and my desire to create a healthy lifestyle for the future, gently. Interestingly, this week I also noticed that I have actually lost weight. Day to day, I have to say it felt like my weight was just going up and down like crazy and that essentially I was either staying the same or gaining weight even, but because I track my weight with the Withing Scale, I was able to see the actual reality, which is that in the past 4 weeks, while I have bounced up and down, up and down, on average, I've actually lost about five pounds. So while that isn't my primary reason for fasting, I do feel good about moving towards a healthier body composition. And I found it really interesting to notice that my emotional reaction and intuition was actually different from the reality and that's all the more reason I keep on telling myself to just keep on going.
[02:30] Last week I mentioned that my long fast, my 40-hour fast, I was not feeling great and so today I ended my long fast at 38 hours. Next week I also plan to add sea salt to my water on my long fast day because I've heard that makes a really big difference to electrolytes. And so I expect that might help me feel better as well. So stay tuned. Next week is the month long update.
[02:56] If you are new to the show, thank you so much for joining us. If you've been listening for a while, I am so grateful. If you can think of a friend or a family member who might benefit from hearing this episode or any previous episode, I would so much appreciate you sending them a link. Most apps have a share option or you can just email a link to them. Today's episode is at https://lisabl.com/26.
[03:20] As always, rating the show and reviewing it and subscribing really, really, really help. So my new mini-segment on what Lisa's listening to, obviously a half dimension my guests Campfire Sht Show in this segment, but I wanted to do a bonus mentioned as well. This week I want to tell you about Mary Baird-Wilcox, the Simplifiers Podcast. I just discovered it in the last day or two and each episode breaks down a topic in business or life and it simplifies them in order to discover new insights and action items to help us Do The Thing. I'm loving the topics like how to build an email list, making a decision and simple dinner time rituals for raising emotionally intelligent kids, and I have to say that Mary's background as a voice-over talent really makes her shine as an interviewer. So after you've subscribed to this show The Super Power U Podcast, consider heading on over and checking out The Simplifiers Podcast.
[04:23] This last couple of weeks we dove deep into facing death on episodes #24 and #25 because it's my belief that we really need to keep on doing that in spite of the fact that it is our culture's automatic response to just put our attention elsewhere, anywhere, and to avoid the topic. I suspect I'm going to keep on coming back to issues related to aging, dying and grief because I think it's so important. But for today, we have a much lighter conversation and I think you are going to love my guest. So come on in now and let's meet Meryl Klemow.
[05:05] Meryl Klemow is a woman of many, many talents. She has worked for over a decade in the music industry and she's a writer for the variety show “Tonight in San Diego”. She hosts two podcasts What's Up at the Belly Up and the Campfire Sht Show and that is just a start…
[05:28] We met at a Podcast Nation meet-up in San Diego and I thought she was really lovely and super fun and then I listened to her Campfire Sht Show podcast and I found myself laughing out loud, which is really pretty rare for me. She's just an incredibly refreshing mix of earnest and deep, but also kind of goofy and self deprecating and really totally candid. So, hello Meryl Klemow. Thanks for being here.
[05:52] Thank you so much for the great intro.
[06:00] We're going to go more into the quirky craziness of the show, but before we get too much into me fan-girling on you, let's get a little bit of your backstory. So I want to know the story of your name because Meryl is a pretty uncommon name, although of course there's the famous actress, a favorite of mine and also I have a favorite figure skater and winner of Dancing With the Stars named Meryl. But what's the story on your name?
[06:26] A fun fact is there was another Meryl where I went to college, which was Syracuse back east and she kind of looked like me too, but she was a really big partier and always at the cool parties. So I would walk on campus on a Monday and get like high fives and people would be like, yeah, Meryl. And I'm like…hehe, no, so there was this other Meryl going around campus having fun and I was at home studying or whatever.
[06:47] But um, yeah. So I'm named after my aunt Miriam who passed away. And I guess according to my parents she was a little bit persnickety. So they didn't want to do straight up Miriam and, and they were perusing “M” names. And my dad was set on Carmel and I'm just really happy that my mom talked him out of it because I can't…I'm not a Carmel kind of girl. And so, I really, really liked my name. And I think some people have thought of Meryl as an older lady's name and even my cohost on one of the episodes he said that he thinks of like a bowl of oatmeal, like “the mural is getting cold”. But uh, I really like my name and I'm also happy that like an actress, like Meryl Streep has it because I feel like it's a good, good example.
[07:32] And you also said that you're an only child and I'm always kind of interested in the influence of birth order. So I guess I'm guessing that only-ness also has an impact on who one becomes.
[07:42] Yes, very, very much so. I'm definitely an only child in many ways and my parents were very good about getting me an activities where I had a lot of friends. So I mean, I still have friends to this day who feel like sisters and brothers to me. Like I definitely wasn't the type of only child where you're sitting alone like connecting legos in a basement or anything like that, but I definitely grew up being more like friends with my parents, too. Even on road trips, we would drive down to Florida and I would be talking to them, like, I think you really need to go for this promotion, dad. So I've always loved adults too. I think even growing up I just thought adults and older people were so cool and I couldn't wait to become one.
[08:21] I wonder if that's related to being an only.
[08:23] Yeah, I think because I was so imprinted on my parents and we are still such a little family unit. I just, I love my little pack of three so much. I'm very, very close with my parents and I found it like very special, just having a one on one relationship with them.
[08:41] I am always really curious about parental relationships because I have kids and because I do my best to be a good parent and I aspire to having a good relationship with my kids, but like most parents I think I fail in certain areas. To what do you attribute having a close relationship with your parents?
[08:58] When I was little they were just always there and always supportive and not in a weird screaming soccer mom kind of way… like in a funny, “I love you” from afar when you're doing your own thing, but I'm there if you ever need me type of way. Like I didn't get grounded. I didn't get time out. I feel like they would speak to me like I was a normal, just like a human being that was capable of my own decisions. And I feel like they've just always been so, so, so supportive and I don't think I could have done some of the cool things I've done in life without knowing that I have two people that are like “go do it”. And then I think as I got older, what even strengthened my relationship with them is they're just like good people out in the world. Like they're very hard working. They're very, very honest. They don't really partake in drugs or alcohol that much. Like I feel like I won the parent lottery for sure. I almost got like too lucky because I just, I love them as humans. So I think as I get older I see some of the qualities where I'm like, oh my parents are truthful and they save money really well. Like my dad just helped me with buying a first home and his credit score– I just want to cry because I'm like, oh my God, please don't ask me my credit score. So they're so sweet. Like I feel like instead of doing anything for himself, my dad will just wear the same pair of velcro sneakers…and they're just extremely selfless. Yeah. I love them because they feel like I lucked out. Like if I could pick in catalog who I would get, it would be them. And I'm at the age now, I'm 35 and I've had friends who are just starting to lose their parents, you know, some obviously before for tragic random reasons, and it's even made it more important for me to reach out to them. And I still text him every now and then like “hello, I love you”.
[10:39] Yeah. I mentioned in one of my other episodes I an article called I think it was called “The Tail End” and it's just about the amount of time that we spend with our parents and by the time you'd get out of high school you'll have spent about 90% of the time that you will ever spend with your parents unless you take extra steps to reach out and spend more time.
[10:57] I know. So sad. I think I'm going to have a second round of them because I currently live in California and they still live in Pennsylvania, so I mean we talk all the time but they have promised me that in the next two years they're going to move out. Because it's been too long for me living away from them and I've told them I need some sort of, even if it's just six or seven years, of hiking with them and doing fun things. So it's mandatory moving in about two years. Sometimes I'll text them like, okay, you guys are moving out in two years, nine months, 22 days.
[11:31] I'm interested in your working history and all the pieces that seems to you do so many different things.
[11:35] Oh I love that. Cool. Yeah, I'll do a zip through. So I grew up in Pennsylvania and then I went to school in Syracuse. I went there because their Communication School is really good, The Newhouse School of Communications. And then while I was there I knew I wanted to do something with music. So my main goal at that time was to do more public relations for a record label. So I majored in public relations and minored in music industry. But by the time I graduated in my senior year, all the record labels were starting to fold and become obsolete. So my friends a couple of years ahead of me got great jobs at Sony and they were a and reps and kind of like living the dream. And then it was April of my senior year and as I was graduating, every single one was not only laid off but they just said there's no future in it.
[12:23] The only position that I could get was to be like an intern or some type of thing for like two or three years. And then they all had experiences where it was where they were fetching coffee for a really long time and then really didn't get anything out of it. So I kind of restructured my thought process to working at a music venue because I'll still get to see bands and be involved in music, but it's more stable and you can jump around from venue to venue. And I had come here to San Diego on vacation and I really liked it. And so my original plan was to come to San Diego for a year and pretty much bum around on the beach with my friends. And then because I had a few other girlfriends that wanted to move out and they were in the same boat where we're like, let's just go somewhere warm and have fun for a year and then go to L.A. and really try to work at a venue. So in my mind it was like one year in San Diego then off to L.A. I go.
[13:13] And I ended up just getting a really great job at a music venue called The Belly Up in a place called Solana Beach, which is in San Diego, but a little bit north and it's coastal. So right by the ocean. And The Belly Up is really a legendary venue, it's had people from BB King, and Mavis Staples, the Rolling Stones… and it's also been around since 1974, so you know, it has a lot of background and just a really cool place. So I remember when I first went in for my interview and I could barely walk because my knees were wobbling together and I'm like, are they going to notice that my knees are like trembling profusely during my interview? And it was a good timing and I got a job doing ticketing and hospitality so I would go shopping for bands when they first came in.
[13:56] Is this around the period of time where you have the story about drinking Tequila with Prince Andrew?
[14:00] Prince Harry? Yeah. Yeah. I mean the stuff that happened there was wild. One corporate party would have the band LMFAO and they would call my coworker and I up to do pushups on stage with them. And then yeah, we had Prince Harry come one night. We had someone else rent out the venue and enough money to book the Solling stones. Like legitimately. That was probably one of the highlights. I mean the show itself was cool. But the sound check! I mean if people could imagine it's an empty venue and the rolling stones did their own sound check, so it's like myself and probably like seven or eight other people like the bartenders and just the night staff getting read for the night while Mick Jagger is up on the stage from my coworker and I were like holding hands, screaming. Like it really brought tears to my eyes. It was crazy.
[14:40] And so I just had such a good time there and it really solidified that I was rooted in San Diego at that time and my whole network was basically based around The Belly Up. Everyone kind of knew me as Meryl Klemow from The Belly Up. And I loved working at the different media outlets. That's really one of my passions too, is working with print and radio and just media in general. And within those 11 years I then transitioned into marketing. So by the time I left I was doing show marketing. So it was my job, once the booking team booked an act to take the show and make sure it was in all of our weekly papers and that the radio was talking about it and pretty much make sure the show was a sellout.
[15:22] So is that how the podcast, “What's up at the Belly Up?” came about?
[15:25] Well, in true sincerity? Uh, about two or three years ago I went to my boss and I just said, you know, I think I want to move on. Like I liked my job and it was so great, but the thought it was becoming a lifer there just kind of scared me. And it was one of those weird movies where I was like, nothing is wrong per say. The culture is really nice, that the owners are fantastic. I just felt like I was there for too long. I started when I was 23 and now at this point I was like 33 and I felt like I needed to just kind of shed that time of my life and start new. And my identity was so wrapped up in the venue that I was just kinda like…
[16:00] Also the job changed when I first started, there was no facebook. We promoted bands on MySpace, but towards the end my job almost became like a digital marketer and I just, I didn't want my whole life to be placing Facebook ads and sitting online. So the job became way less about the people and the connection to the music and more about straight up digital marketing. I just, I lost a little bit of interest and I was like, oh, this is a good skill to have, but I don't want this to be my whole life. So probably around two or three years ago I went to my boss, I love my boss…and I just have so much respect for that venue. And it was such a good relationship where it was almost like a marriage where I was telling him like, I think I'm going to leave you in a couple of years but I want to talk about this now and stuff.
[16:42] And so he was like, you're nuts if you leave to start something from the ground up. You have Robert Cray, you have people like Sheryl crow coming into the venue! Why on earth wouldn't you start a podcast at The Belly Up? And I was like, oh my gosh, you're right. And so they, uh, bought the equipment, we did it at a beautiful conference room and we pretty much were fed the artists every night. So I attributed to him and there was a lot of support for it. And we've done like 87 episodes for now…that's on hiatus because I've heard every single touring in a van story and I was beginning to kind of get bored during my own interviews. And so I'm like, okay, if I am barely engaged in this and how am I expecting other people to do it?
[17:22] So this past April I left, but I'm still really on good terms with the venue. And I'm also still thinking that the podcast itself might have a resurgence one day. Like right now, no one's doing it and it's just kind of on a hold. But we had like some amazing, amazing episodes and at the end of this I'll tell people a link because the stories that we've gotten… we've talked to Mick Fleetwood, See-lo and people have been so open. We've heard people's family stories and drug stories and it's just, we've gotten some really good stuff out of people and I really love doing it, but I just couldn't do my other big full time job just to have that piece of, of life and stuff. So I left and I made sure when I left I had some other work as a copywriter lined up and I started freelancing and doing other projects like promoting different shows, summer festivals. And when I left my work was really good and I feel like I was almost at first making more money than I was at The Belly Up.
[18:15] And then then it was like a plane that took off, like, yeah, baby, look at me go. And I think I was a little bit too ahead of myself where I was like buying expensive hair conditioner and almost a little too braggy, like “look at me” and then it was like I was at cruising altitude and then started petering out a little bit and I'm like, oh no, like the project's ended and the copyrighting stuff tapered down a little bit. And I was like, what am I doing? So I had my freakout moment as a freelancer probably about four months in…were a little bit of doubt crept in.
[18:47] Well, if you'd been working in one place for 10 years and that was your first job out of the gate really it sounds like, so you really hadn't had the experience of being an independent freelancer?
[18:57] Oh yeah. And then just thinking about healthcare and taxes. And at that point I almost felt like, like desperate about money and I feel like that's the worst feeling ever. You know, we've all been there and we've all had times where like something is $7. And I'm like, oh I'm not getting paid until three days from now. And so I've learned to relax and take projects that pay a little more and not undervalue myself. And I felt like I was going through a time of kind of that panicky feeling and then once I dug down and said, okay, instead of doing 8 million little jobs, let me focus on a few different things. So now I'm in a good space. I have a company that I do some copywriting for, and I also help promote different concerts and events for different people.
[19:38] So for a lot of people who are changing careers or doing something new, there is that fear that comes up because the doubt does come in. What was the process? How did you manage to shift into feeling more at ease with it?
[19:51] Yeah, so the first thing is like if I could do it all over again, I would have probably gotten a second job when I was at The Belly Up and I would have paid off my car and had a little bit more money in savings. That way I would have had a nest egg of about like four or five months so that if nothing else happens I'll be able to make my car payments, make my rent or mortgage, whatever. I didn't really think that much through. So there's way less freak out if you're prepared and even if you have to hustle for a year, it's like so worth it. Because I'm all for like taking chances and taking a leap but I also think it needs to be a calculated leap. Like I think someone just up and quitting her job is not smart for anyone.
[20:30] Right, having cushion is something that can create the foundation and the sort of ripe space you need to do something new.
[20:36] Yeah, so it was really cool and so like I basically had a moment where I'm thinking okay, what's important to me? And in terms of work, it's like writing and making videos and comedy stuff and then podcasting and promoting stuff. So I made a promise with myself that anything besides that — the whole driving Uber and walking dogs and, and all that stuff is great for supplement income and I was even doing some of that too. But it was kind of draining my energy for what I really wanted to do.
[21:03] So one of my podcasting heroes is Adam Corolla. He was on The Man Show and he's a standup and he really inspires me in terms of the kind of podcaster he is and he's built his own network. So I took a chance and I just said like, I have some free time right now to write some press releases or to help you in any way. And so like I just wrote a press release for one of the podcast, a live show and…
[21:26] You reached out to them and they…
[21:27] Right, I reached out to the guy and I said, I know this sounds weird, but right now with what I'm making with copywriting, I can afford to do a little bit of free stuff. And I'd rather have that be like towards one of my absolute dreams. Which is like working either with them or I'm part of their team or something like that. So they were really cool and he said, yeah actually we're planning an event in San Diego and we could use your help. So it was really cool and I know things don't happen that way all the time and I also think it may not lead to anything. It may just be me helping them for free but I would rather do that because it makes me feel alive and happy. I'd rather work a little bit for free towards my dream, then do all this stuff just to try to make money. And I think then the money comes. It's like when you're doing what you're supposed to doing and stuff.
[22:08] Totally. And when you're showing initiative towards the thing that you're really committed to you… It sounds like you really set a criteria for yourself about what you were willing to do and what fit under the umbrella of right action for you or right direction or right career. And you stuck to it. And then you took initiative to learn, show up, grow, and contribute. Which is fantastic.
[22:29] Exactly, exactly. There's one or two things that I would do for free, like at this point, I don't need to go get Reese Witherspoon coffee for free. There's some things I'm like, yeah, I'm not going to do that. And there's some things that I'm like okay, this is my day rate and I'm going to have to have people pay that. But then there's other things like getting the chance to work with a team like that where I find it worth it. And that's the other thing too is I'm 35 and you know, most people that intern or work for free or in their early twenties, but I've just kind of decided age just will not be a barrier of what I tried to do. Even if I was like 50 and interested.
[23:01] Totally. Age really doesn't matter. It's just in our mind and if we follow what it is we're meant to do, are really passionate about, or love doing or have something to learn from them, who cares about age.
[23:14] Yeah. And I feel like if there kind of network is pretty much like how The Belly Up was; everyone's running around like a chicken and having someone to write this press release is so nice and refreshing. And it's not like I'm taking over anyone's job. I'm not trying to creep up at anyone there. It's just like, I am here to help. I also have my other stuff going on. But in the meantime I'm eager and happy and I also think it creates energy and space for someone else to work there. Like I think staying at a job when you're not feeling it is a disservice to you and other people in the company too.
[23:45] So when you decided to leave and you made the commitment to yourself to have standards that you were going to answer to what was your criteria? Like, how did you decide?
[23:57] Based on feeling. There are even some like different podcast groups and everything that I'm like, no, I don't think this is for me. So I definitely have a strong gut reaction to things. I have a very strong barometer of what I like and what I don't like and I think one of the challenges is sometimes I can become so excited about stuff that I do that almost burn myself out a little bit. I think my enthusiasm is a good thing, but then it can also be challenging in the way where I burned myself out so I'm trying to have more of a steady pace. But I think just setting the criteria of like, okay, does this make me money to help me do my other stuff and without taking up all my time or is there joy in this. Also I've been really trying to put myself out there and do more things that challenge me. Like one of the best things ever, which I highly highly recommend to people is improv classes and I thought I would be good because I'm like, I'm funny. I got this. I was terrible at it. And the teacher was like, basically I didn't pass level two. And I'm like, who doesn't do well at Improv?
[24:52] I can't even imagine that because your style of humor and your personality and the way that you reflect back what's actually true seems like it'd be perfect for Improv. What aspects of Improv?
[25:03] Well, you know, it was Geeky and the Improv people, bless their hearts, but it's kind of like its own weird universe. It's like marching band, you know, the theater kids, the Improv kids, it's just kind of this weird world. So my teacher didn't really like me because we were supposed to do object work, like Improv object work. So, say if we were at a pool hall or something, he would be telling me that I'm holding the pool stick incorrectly, but I'm like, it's an invisible, a pool stick. Like I wasn't really good at more of the theater and Improv and like, so I like just telling a story about a raccoon or something random like that. But in terms of doing like scenes with my partners, I almost thought it was too funny to even do it. So like I would kind of make the class laugh about other stuff. And then I think I was taking attention away from the actual improv itself. But I was going to say I highly recommend it because just the Improv games that people play, you have to think on your feet and you don't have time to plan anything and they make it so that you can't prepare ahead of time, you can't make sure you're safe. I felt like that really, really was one of the best things as a podcaster because I no longer feel nervous if there's an awkward pause or you know that that kind of nervous feeling that you have when you first sit down with someone you used to kind of paralyze me and I would be in my head about like what if this goes off? Well, what if they hate me? But now I almost like relish the awkwardness and I think I use Improv as a tool for podcasting. I didn't really care about it in terms of performing on an Improv team or anything. But I think to anything that you can do to help your craft, whether it's taking a class on story writing or public speaking is so cool. And I do it all because I love podcasting so much.
[26:37] I'm totally with you. And one thing that occurs to me is I think all acting skills but definitely improv classes are a certain metaphor for life. When I was in acting school, they always used to say, your life problems or your life challenges or limitations are your acting challenges or limitations. So I think if you go into something like Improv that can be kind of intimidating. A lot of times it's going to show up for you what there is to work on and what there is to learn. Definitely you can apply it elsewhere.
[27:07] Yep. I totally agree. I completely agree. And I think it's good for just having those moments at parties where you're just standing with someone. It took away a lot of awkward, nervous feeling.
[27:17] That's so funny because one of the things I was thinking about as I was planning a little bit for our conversation was… I think I told you when I asked you to come on the show that I felt a little bit intimidated, I guess about having you on the show because I feel like I'm really just pretty serious and pretty deeply earnest and a lot of times I don't even really get jokes sometimes. But when I listened to the Campfire Sht Show, I was totally laughing out loud and I thought, oh my God, this is humor that I get. Some humor I just really don't get. So I was, oh wow. So what about it makes it funny?
[27:51] So we're like identical sisters, but different because I have a hard time telling people…like I promise! I am deeply, deeply earnest.
[28:00] Oh, I totally see it. I totally see it. That's what I loved about your sense of humor and what I was wanting to really kind of look at. Like what is it about the humor and there's something about realness. So anyway, I went online and I looked at what are the different types of humor and I found a little article about 20 different types of humor. So a couple of the types of humor that I thought, oh, I think it, were things like, “is it blue humor? Is it burlesque humor? Is it deadpan humor? Is it dry humor or epigrammatic humor” And a couple of the ones that I thought, “oh, these are the ones I relate to” and that I feel like I've heard in you, are anecdotal humor, self-deprecating humor and situational.
[28:40] Oh my gosh, I love it. I appreciate how intelligent and smart you are. I love the way your brain works. I think that's really, really, really cool. I would say that that's completely right. Like I love Mark Twain. I think he was an amazing humorist. I like clever. I can be annoying with puns and play on words. That's just something, I don't know why, but my brain just is annoying about puns and stuff like that. But I like situational humor, and anecdotal humor because it takes some of the stress and tragedy away from life.
[29:10] It's based on what's real and what you can recognize or something.
[29:13] Right. Exactly. And I'm not like a toilet humor kind of person. I don't really like punk or pranks or people falling from stuff. Like I can watch people falling off skateboards and it's not like, yeah, yeah, it doesn't really…or screwball slapstick. That kind of thing is not…. And I think I'm the only person on earth that doesn't really find Adam Sandler that funny. Ellen in her in her formative years, I think Ellen was insanely funny and she also has a twinkle in her eye. She's just a funny person. And so same thing with Sarah Silverman. And I love men so much, but I just think a funny lady is like out of this world because there's so much stuff about being a woman that is annoy but funny.
[29:59] Yeah, totally. I Love Ellen. I think she is so funny and I mean the other thing, I think she does have a bit of that dead Pan, which I don't know that I see in you so much. I don't know. Did you think you're a deadpan humor?
[30:14] I feel like if I'm relaying story about it, like so say if like one of our dogs or something like that (we have four dogs) and if one of them is frustrating me, the way I'll relay it to my friends I think can be in a type of like deadpan humor.
[30:28] Okay. So number 18 on this list sounds more like that. It says “situational humor arising out of quotidian situations is the basis for the Sitcom situation, comedies which employ elements of farce, screwball, slapstick and other types of humor.” Is that what you mean?
[30:43] Yeah, definitely, definitely. I have stuff like that all the time where that's a lot of our podcast. Beau, my cohost and I will… Beau is almost more like I would say. I don't know if this is one of them, but more like observational humor where I think he kind of sits back and looks at the world and comes up with stuff related to it where I'm more like “I'm grocery shopping and like a Kombucha bottle falls on me” and it's like that. And so, um…
[31:08] Totally you guys have such good chemistry and I think you really do play off each other so well. It's like your styles of humor are synergistic.
[31:17] We're like the odd couple because he's very, very, neat and clean and organized and even he's an artist but he never manages to have paint on him and his computer is so nice. He always has nice socks on. He always dressed really nice and then I come over to his house and I have chocolate sauce on me. I've got coffee everywhere. I'm like a hurricane. So we both really make each other better I think. And I think that's the other thing. I love our podcast because we have a true friendship and we kind of raise each other up and he's really, really helped me with the financial end of things…establishing my value and he's you know, an artist, but he does a lot of corporate events and when he tells me what he makes for a day, I was like, oh my gosh, that's very impressive.
[31:57] And I think he helps me like get enough confidence to, you know, instead of thinking small and kind of low balling myself in terms of what I'm worth. He's really been a big proponent and a big supporter of helping me charge stuff per hour or you know, stuff like that. I don't think I've ever been in a partnership like this. Like workwise, where I can count on the person so much and he amazes me with his skills. So I think both of us are really happy with each other's talents and, and all that kind of stuff.
[32:27] Yeah, it's funny. I was listening to a Dave Jackson School of Podcasting a couple of days ago about cohosts and I think you two really do fit in to his description of good cohosts. You really can tell the cohosts like each other, that they have similarities but different approaches, that they work really well together. You know, they don't have to be the same but that they just play off each other well so.
[32:49] Right. And the good news is, you know, because we're obviously a guy and a girl and I'm like, we're both like completely not each other's type and I'm in a very happy relationship. So I think a lot of people, especially in the arts might work on a project together because there's like chemistry and when you have chemistry it can be in a lot of different ways and from the start he and I have kind of solidified that our chemistry is in a creative podcast way. It's not in like a romantic way, at all. And I think, you know, we spend a lot of hours together and it really helps when you are so not each other's types and there's no elements of that. Where I think it would be distracting for me, and for him too, probably if….
[33:28] Yeah, plus you'd lose all that fodder you have of talking about all the different, you know, romantic adventures and mishaps and stuff.
[33:35] Exactly, yeah. It's way more just like a best friend and stuff. And so we've even, I've even had to tell him like we can't hang out as much as friends because I don't want to talk about stuff. There was one day in January, I think four days in a row we just happened to hang out socially and then we had to podcast the next day and I'm like, we don't have anything to talk about. We're no longer friends! He's just so talented too and he's a talented graphic artist so I almost feel like I have like a graphic arts agency as well to help along with our project.
[34:05] Nice. Nice. So when I was stalking you online, I read a little note that you said that you love to laugh and to cry and I was like me, too!
[34:14] Yes. I think for any person that needs to be in touch with their thoughts and emotions, you can't block it. Like I think if you try to block your sadness then you're also blocking the chance for humor or observation. For me, when I laugh really hard and finding stuff I'm also sensitive on the other end of things can be really sad and really despondent and stuff like that. I though people would think that because I usually am like bouncy energy. Mine is more like if I don't go for a walk every day or something like I need so much solitude. I think that's also an, that's true. I think I need like more solitude than the average person I need, like so, so, so much alone time of just walking and being independent, even if it's just coming to a coffee shop by myself everyday. Like I need a lot of independence and so I think if I didn't get that I start to become antsy and frustrated and stuff. So I think I'm a happy Meryl when I'm going for an hour long walk and I could meet up with friends. But then I also go home and work on something by myself.
[35:10] You seem like you're one of those introverted types who looks extroverted to the outside but actually recharges by having that time alone.
[35:18] Exactly. Exactly. I feel very comfortable going to dinner with my friends, one on one. I can do that every night. I don't need a break from that. But um, in terms of like networking or conferences and stuff like that, that's the kind of thing where I need to almost like start off the day with a walk by myself. I think groups of people can feel really draining.
[35:38] So the story about getting pooped on by the Falcon and then it went viral with close to 2 million views. I mean, seriously…
[35:47] Enough time has passed now that I can talk about it in real life what actually happened. So we were filming, I did a segment for “Tonight in San Diego” the TV show where myself and another girl would go out and try different things that people might not know exist in San Diego. You know, everyone knows there's the beach and surfing and reggae music and stuff like that. But a lot of people don't know some of the great things that we have here that are kind of off the beaten path. So I love that type of stuff. So we've been in beekeeping and we played a soccer team one day and so this one was a falconry. So we were going to a place called Sky Falconry and learning how to call a hawk and release a hawk. And you know, they're amazing creatures and absolutely beautiful and terrifying straight up because you look at their talons and you're like, this could rip my arm off right now. But so we had a great time learning and then at the end they have all these photo shoot opportunities and you can get photos of yourself with a hawk flying above you or a hawk landing on you.
[36:44] So the producer of the show, he had the foresight to say “what if we stage it so that it looks like it pooed on you”. So the real thing is, uh, it's whipped cream. So my friend that I do the video with this girl, Megan just had the artistic direction to kind of take the photo from a really great angle where it's not obviously whip cream. It looks like, I mean some people can, on Reddit, I was really impressed with people. Some people figured it out but it was just a bunch of whipped cream on my head and my friend took the picture from like a really funny angle and my friends and I just said, can you like post this on Reddit?
[37:25] I don't even know how to get it up. So he posted it and it ended up like I think within the next morning it was like number one on and trending and I had friends from the east coast that I hadn't talked to in day saying like why are you on the cover of Reddit and facebook trending on facebook. Like one of those things that you read on the side and stuff. And so I had people like, oh, there's somewhere else to where maybe buzzfeed or something like that where one of my best friends in New York was like. So I took my computer this morning. I'm like my best friend murals all over the Internet. And so I didn't debunk that. It wasn't for like a really long time. But I mean it sounds like you had a plan but you couldn't plan for going viral. Right? Exactly.
[38:06] For me, like when I posted it on my own instagram, I think I got like 46 lights are, you know, it could've just been like a funny moment. One of my best friends in the whole wide world, Lauren O'Brien, and she's a really great comedian and impressionist and she went viral in 2015 because she does impressions and she has something called celebrities and cars stuck in traffic. And so she would just do impressions of different people and like kind of wear a wig like Jennifer Aniston. And she ended up tweeting it out and then it ended up getting like 6 million views and she was on “Good Morning America” and all this crazy stuff and ended up getting like an agent because of it and it just gets like, you can't plan it. She just put it up on youtube and then someone else assisted her tweeting it and just kind of went like a wildfire.
[38:48] I couldn't handle the amount of people texting and messaging me and it was just very overwhelming. Of course, that's answering every single thing and trying to text back and I should've just put my phone down and gone swimming at my local ymcas or something. Instead I kind of burnt myself out with it where I was trying to answer every one and I got completely exhausted from it, but it was really silly. And then it's like a few days later you just get replaced by a cat video or something. So you're like, okay, now no one cares anymore to have.
[39:15] Okay. One of the things that I could ask you about was having fun in the workplace.
[39:18] Oh my gosh. One of the companies that I work with and do copywriting for, they're just big on like having fun and just kind of asking what people are into in terms of movies and I think it's great to foster an environment of fun and productiveness rather than just like. I think our culture is so crazy about like accomplishment, more accomplishment happens when you are in a state of having fun and also like I've never been one of those people that I'm like just be happy you have a job at this place. Like I don't know. I think there has to be the transaction between like gratefulness between the employee and the employer. And I think a lot of times if people rule with like a, you know, “if you quit, you're never going to find something as good as this.” Like I don't really operate that way.
[40:00] I operate from a communal partnership. Like we were saying before. Like bad moods and the lower order thinking and stuff is my Kryptonite, I don't like that. I've worked in places before where the energy can be really like moody or victim type of speak and that makes me like crumble, like I can't be near it at all. So I really like to work around empowered people, people that are like trying to call the shots of their own life and I think I found that way more in the entrepreneurial community, then people just kind of just stuck in the rut of a nine to five job. I love the open mindedness of the people that are kind of making their own life path and I think that's one beauty of podcasting too. It's made a path for people to create their own situation instead of just being like stuck or waiting for someone else.
[40:45] I love that about podcasting and I have to say pretty much everything that I'm attracted to in the world has to do with a fairly high degree of autonomy and self efficacy and freedom. When you empower people and when you engage people and when you give them the opportunity to learn and to grow like your old boss did, or you give them the chance to have freedom and fun everybody does better.
[41:09] Exactly, yes. I think we're moving towards a revolution now where there's so many jobs and availabilities for people. I mean just like things like Uber or dog walking or Task Rabbit, you know, it's really provided a lot of opportunities for people to not be stuck at their careers if they don't want to. And while that might not be the final solution for people, at least it gives you some sort of choice. I love that. I love that so much and I think it's going, it's like shifting more towards the employee having choices to work.
[41:41] It wouldn't be the super power podcast if we don't talk about your Super Power. So what do you have on that? Ideas? What's your Super Power?
[41:53] So the first one will be like health perfect health and I guess that would make me also want to like drink water and green juices more and everything. It's almost like my first superpower would be my super taste buds and made me want to eat less meat and cheese and more celery juice and stuff like that because I really also believe that that health is everything and sometimes I can get a little bit too excited about like revise and mashed potatoes and stuff. So my first Super Power would be the being having super taste buds that only like really, really healthy things. And then my second superpower would be to help all the older dogs and not make them feel sad because I love older dogs so much. My Super Power would be to like impart knowledge on people to not drop off dogs at like, like at the shelter because I just hate thinking of older dogs that have lived their own life and then get dropped off at a shelter. I know it's so random.
[42:51] That is so crazily specific, how does this show up in your life right now? Um, I have an older dog. I have a rescue dog. I wish I had enough land. I would just go to the shelter and be like, who is the oldest and has been here the longest and I'll take them. So I think it shows up in my life that I'm a huge animal advocate. I like love, love, love animals so much, especially like elder animals. But I think more people need to think of dogs, especially as they age that they need more care not to be disposed of. So I know it's very random, but like instead of having, instead of having billions of dollars, I would be more happy for like older dogs had a happier life towards the end.
[43:25] Well interesting if there's a theme here and the respect for age too, because you mentioned it with regards to people too.
[43:31] Yeah. I think that it should be like you just get taken care of instead of discarded. And so there's something about old dogs and justs get me. I even have a book called “Old Dogs” that I look at, crying once a month. It's a beautiful, a booklet of just these old gray dogs. And I'm like, oh my God, they're so beautiful. I just find older dogs like really, really special.
[43:53] That's really, that's really interesting. I love that. It's so detailed and so particular too a set of dogs, not just dogs, not just animals. So I want to dig a little bit deeper. I'm going to let you go soon, but I want to dig a little bit deeper because I love those two Super Powers that you're identifying as almost your strengths or your skillset, but I think that a Super Power is a through line that shows up in every part of your life. It's that skillset that other people noticed that you, that you might not even notice yourself. And it seems to me if I was trying to guess on a super power…it seems like there's something about Candidness or a willingness to show yourself. Does that have any resonance with you at all?
[44:36] Yes, very much so. And I totally get it instead of like what my Super Power would be I'm supposed to name what it is. So what's so natural to you that you don't even recognize it? I would definitely say I don't front on stuff. Like if I'm having a bad hair day or a bad anything day, it's open for people to see. And you're completely right….like candidness and not fronting and making it a certain way. Like I don't go on vacation so I can post a picture. So people say like to have enough self confidence and enough self worth that you don't need to project out a certain way because like no matter what happens or how people judge you, you'll still be like cool with yourself. So I think that's also, especially as one word out there as like either performers or podcasters or anything like can't do it to get love.
[45:21] You have to do it because you love yourself and you want to like put out stuff out there. So yes, I think being candid and saying stuff exactly how you feel to be straight with people and say like I'm on my own just to be straight and not like lead things or people on. So yeah, I think, being candid. Not trying to make it like that you have more money than you do. Not trying to make it that your business is a certain way. Because I the world would be a lot better if people just felt okay about themselves and they're not perfect. Even just candid in a way where like, my body's not perfect as a woman, but I still love it and I'm not going to speak bad about it and to just to not be so harsh on ourselves. I feel like I give permission to people to like themselves and if you don't like yourself then you know where you have to do work.
[46:09] Yeah, that is exactly it and I think you just hit on something that's the other piece of it. It's not only the willingness to be completely candid and actually show yourself that I notice and appreciate in you, but it's that you do it in a way that has a kind of love to it. That's what I feel in the way that you're expressing things and even in your humor and even when you're being honest and candid about the fact that you might not even feel great in this particular moment or when you're talking about the fact that you're feeling flustered or feeling a little crazy or whatever it is. That it's done with appreciation and acceptance is the underlying piece that I get. So I really feel that's like definitely your Super Power. Like that's the thing that hits me strong.
[46:49] Thank you so much. I like that. I appreciate it.
[46:56] Cool. Well, thank you so much. I'm definitely going to put all the resources you mentioned in the show notes, but tell people about your podcast and all that kind of stuff.
[47:03] So I would say first check out the podcast I do now, “Campfire Sht Show”. So if you search for that on itunes or google play or basically almost anywhere have podcast. We're still working on some places. That's really a great way to start and you'll get almost like too much of myself and my cohost, Beau. It's almost like too much Meryl and check out the “Belly up” one. There's still, even though it's not happening now, there's still I think almost 90 really, really good interesting interviews with musicians that people have probably heard of. And so I think if you just go to www.belly up.com. And then yeah, I would just say you can follow me at merylklemow on instagram and my twitter is really sad and as we said before, I don't have snapchat so I'd say Instagram is the best way.
[47:59] Awesome. That's great. I thank you so much for being here. It's been really fun chatting with you. I knew it would be, uh, would be enjoyable because I just really appreciate you. So thanks so much.
[48:11] And that, my friends, is it for today. Please come on over and join us on the Super Power U on Facebook. Join the group and I will see you again next week. Until then, sending you all so much love. Thank you for listening to this Super Power U Podcast. Please subscribe to the show on itunes and get more information@LisaBL.com.