I recently (as in, about a year ago) started to listen to The Moth Podcast. It’s on many lists as one of the best free podcasts to download, which first prompted me to give it a listen. The Moth Events are held regularly all over the country and feature regular people getting up on a stage to tell true, live, unscripted stories from their lives around the theme of the night. Some of the best stories are recorded and aired via this podcast; from week to week, you can hear a story from any city, any time, any theme. Apparently the NY Times has hailed Moth events as “the hottest and hippest literary ticket,” so obviously I had to go.
My first Moth event was a StorySLAM, an open-mic storytelling event, where people throw their names into a bag if they are interested in telling stories based on the theme, “Only in Boston.” How perfect, right? Besides being held in a very cool venue of a church converted into a performance center (and being shockingly lax on alcohol regulations, leading to people bringing in their own wine bottles like it was a picnic and getting increasingly sloshed), it was just my perfect idea of an evening. Cheap, entertaining, shared with a friend, and a wonderful way to get to know this city better. Every person I’ve talked to about this has exclaimed about how cool it is and expressed disbelief that I’ve only been here for two seconds and I already know more about the city than they do. Thank you, public radio.
Ten different people got up to tell five-minute stories about their “Only in Boston” experience (some funny, some heart-warming, two about poop), and in between the emcee read little pieces of paper audience members had filled out to complete the sentence, “I knew I was in Boston when…”
“I knew I was in Boston when… an 80 year old woman hip-checked me coming off the T and told me to ‘F*$& off.'”
“I knew I was in Boston when… even my GPS got confused.”
And of course, the one my friend Lauren contributed that I adore: “I knew I was in Boston when… the cashier at Trader Joe’s asked me where I was watching the Bruins game. Not if – where.”
The main thing that listening to the Moth makes me think about is how I view my own life. Every podcast recording ends with, “We hope you have a story-worthy week.” Well, I hope so too, Moth Podcast Host Dan Kennedy. Now to go out there and live the story-worthy week is another thing. It’s so easy to just stick to the routine and never try to view things as future stories or reflections – I know I am certainly guilty of that. But that’s part of the reason of this blog – so that I can live and explore more deliberately and make sure I am not staying down in my rut, as comfortable as it may be.
And with that, I hope you, too, have a story-worthy week. As for me, I am headed to the great commonwealth of Virginia on Wednesday for a long weekend and I could not be more excited. The K10 Explorations continue down south!