Big thanks to everyone who came out to the show last Thursday. I had to call a few old teller friends to fill out the show and we ended up having the perfect number of stories 🙂

We started out with Gretchen who told a story that wasn’t about rhododendrons but now every time I see a rhodie I think of her. It turns out that people, like rhododendrons, need a hard pruning now and then to ensure growth. Maybe that will be a future theme for a show; stories of giving your life a hard pruning. (Anyone know if I used that semicolon right? It’s the first one I’ve used since the late 80s)

Cara was next with a story about Alaska that was 100%, incontrovertibly, unrelentingly, and incontestably true. I lived there for the first 27 years of my life and can affirm and attest to all the madness Cara talked about. Her story even took place in the neighborhood I used to live in. Cara couldn’t see me with my camera off but I was waving my arms around during her story yelling, “Yes! Yes! That’s exactly how it is!” What was she talking about specifically? I’d tell you but I want everyone who wasn’t there to regret they weren’t there. Is this a reverse teaser for a great story you missed? Yes. 

Lance was up next with a sweet story of when he was 10 years old and trying to show his cousin Linda how smart he was by wearing a pocket protector. This may be the first time in human history someone used a pocket protector to climb the social ladder. Lance might have been the first kid to try to make looking like a nerd cool. Does this make him the Ur-Nerd? The Chosen One spoken of in the prophecy? Probably. If he tells a story next month of pulling a slide rule from a stone we’ll know he’s The One.

Chris was up next with a story of trying to navigate Wales without speaking Welsh. Technically, people in Wales speak English but it’s like no English you’ve ever heard. It sounds like English spoken backward and underwater. Of course, this makes for great stories. I highly recommend visiting Wales if you’d like a story about missing buses and seeing the countryside from a folding chair in the back of a mail truck. If you’d like to know what Welsh sounds like, here’s a short clip of a weatherman pronouncing the name of this town: Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrob-wllllantysiliogogogoch

Randi followed Lance with a beautiful story about sitting down in an AM radio station in Idaho when she was 15 years old, putting on headphones for the first time, and changing her life. How many of us knew what we wanted to do when we were 15? Randi is one of the rare ones who knew even earlier than that. She was eight years old when she realized she wanted to be on the radio. I wish all of you could have been in the room with us when we saw Randi go back in time to the moment when she put those headphones on. Just for a second, we saw 15-year-old Randi fall in love. 

Tracey then told a story that you’ll be able to hear soon on the Moth Radio Hour. It was about being hired at a radio station two minutes before the station manager quit and tossed her the keys. Is this not the perfect ending to a job interview? “You’re hired. Do whatever you want. Don’t forget to lock up.” If you’ve heard Tracey tell stories before you’ll know that this is just the kind of thing that happens to her. I used to wonder why all these strange storyworthy things happened to her. Then one day I realized it’s mostly just her showing up. She doesn’t sit on the couch waiting for life to happen. She goes out into the world with a bunch of “what-ifs” and sees what she can do with them. Such a life she’s led what’iffing!

Our last teller was MaryAnne. She told a wonderful story that she’d just lived through a week earlier. It was about her storytelling road trip to eastern Washington and the people she met at the car charging stations. Anyone who lives here knows that Eastern and Western Washington are different in many ways. Think of western Washington as California and eastern Washington as Kansas. Over the last few years, the gulf between the eastside and the westside has grown larger. But for some reason, everyone seems to get along at charging stations. Big electric monster trucks are parked next to little electric Kia’s and the drivers of both cars stand around chatting about range and kilowatts. Can you imagine? Are car chargers the Cheers of the 21st century? I hope so.

Thanks again to all the tellers and everyone who came out to support them. Extra special thanks to all the folks who left kind remarks in the chat room. I send those off to each teller who requests their audio and I know they love them.

Our next show is November 17. The theme is “Who Loves Ya Baby? – Stories of people who were there for you.” I’ll get the invite out as soon as I can. It’ll be on Zoom again but I’m close to getting us a new venue in the new year. Cross your fingers!

Email me at freshgroundstories at Gmail dot com if you have any questions.

See you on the 17th!