14 – The Last One

After three years, People Movers is wrapping up production.

For the final episode, host & creator Lindsey Green joins me for an exclusive interview from her home studio (wardrobe).

I’d like to say an enormous thanks to everyone who has listened to and supported the podcast over the past few years.

Please stay in touch with escalator stories in the future.

P.S this episode was not sponsored by Uncle Toby’s or The City of Adelaide.

Credits & Thanks

Some of the music in this episode was provided by Tim & Dave of Umbra

Additional music: ‘Heliotrope’ – Blue Dot Sessions via Free Music Archive, ‘Driven To Success‘ – Scott Holmes via Free Music Archive.

The logo was provided by Greta Larkins


Transcript

Lindsey (Interviewer)

Music

That was Project Elevator number 1 by Tim & Dave of Umbra and you’re tuned in to Podcast Watch.

Today on the show, we’re joined with local podcast host Lindsey Green.

Lindsey is behind the popular escalator podcast, People Movers. Yes, you heard that correctly, it’s a podcast all about escalators. 

And she’s just published her final episode.

Lindsey, thank you so much for joining us.

Lindsey (Interviewee)

No worries thank you so much for having me

We’ve a lot to get through today so I’m just going to jump straight in. 

You could’ve made a podcast about anything. Why escalators?

That’s a great question. Why escalators? Well to be honest, why not escalators? No one else was making one
Okay that’s true but where did the idea come from?
Okay so in the first episode of the podcast I tell a story about how when I was living in Melbourne a few years ago, I got a new job and the train station closest to the job was Melbourne Central so I started using those escalators more often than I had before. And after I’d been taking them for a little while, twice a day three times a week, I started noticing that the escalators would go faster in the morning and in the afternoon when I was going to and from work, but then if I went into the city on a weekend, to go shopping or whatever, the escalators were slower.

And I remember just thinking to myself “that’s weird”

Or not even that it’s weird, but it’s just something different that I started paying attention to

And then I started noticing all sorts of different things with these escalators and any other ones I would take

To be fair I was listening to a lot of 99% Invisible at the time which probably made me pay more attention to things like this, things that I’d usually ignore 

And at first, I thought, because I was listening to so much 99% Invisible and because I had so many questions about escalators, maybe I could pitch them a story about escalators and by doing the story I could find out why the escalators were going faster on weekdays than they were on weekends.

So I started writing this pitch to 99% Invisible but as I was writing it I realised two things: one was that I had way more questions about escalators than what you could fit into one episode. And the other thing was, that I’d never done anything like this before. There was no way that they were gonna accept my pitch.

So I thought, I’ll just make a podcast about it instead.

Okay sure but why a podcast? Why not a blog or something?
Okay so this is going back to 2017. I’d been listening to podcasts pretty consistently for the past two years and I’d actually made a radio show and podcast in 2015. It was called It’s A Match and it was about online dating. It’s still online if you want to check it out. 

And so in 2017 I’d decided that I wanted to work in podcasts in the next couple of years. And I thought…no one is going to hire me to make podcasts unless I already know how to make podcasts, so I will make an escalator podcast to learn how to make podcasts and then I’ll be in with a better shot at getting a job making podcasts

And did it work?
Yeah it did
If you’re just tuning in, you’re listening to Podcast Watch, and my guest today is Lindsey Green. She’s the host of the escalator podcast People Movers which has just wrapped up production after three years.

Lindsey, what have been some of the highlights of making the podcast over the past few years?

I don’t want to sound too dramatic, but making this podcast has well and truly changed my life.

Yes I made the podcast to try and get a job which I did get which I love and I’m really grateful for, but there’s been so many other things that have happened which I never could’ve anticipated when I first started.

Like I’m really shy but making the podcast let me create this whole new personality for myself where being shy was okay because if someone is gonna make a podcast about escalators, you’d expect them to be a bit of a loser who doesn’t know how to talk to people, so if they call you and they’re really nervous and awkward about it, you’d think “oh yeah that makes sense” so when I first started the podcast, I relied on that personality really heavily until I felt more confident with talking to people

But by talking to all of these people, I genuinely started becoming more confident with talking to them. And not only escalator people, but real life people as well

I’ve met so many people from within the Australian podcast and radio communities which I love and which I’m so grateful for, and if I hadn’t made the podcast, I probably wouldn’t have had that kind of access

I also started the podcast before I had any guests confirmed so I actually had no idea of the kind of people I would speak to and how they use escalators, I just kind of started the podcast and hoped for the best. And I was seriously blown away by the people that I got to speak to and that this crazy idea that people might think about escalators or use escalators in a different way than just getting from point A to point B, the fact that that actually came true was just phenomenal

Over the course of making the podcast I’ve been invited to people’s homes and into their lives and have been able to listen to their stories and share this really, really silly thing that we both have in common.

And sometimes when I was editing an interview I would think to myself how incredible it is that I have permission to talk to these people and then I started to feel this amazing sense of duty in telling their stories kindly and accurately. I’d done plenty of interviews before for community radio or studying journalism during uni, but I’d never experienced that kind of connection or sense of responsibility with my guests before.

And sometimes when I’m feeling particularly cynical which is really, really easy to do especially these days I think to myself: there are so many bad things happening in the world right now, what is the point of making anything creative unless you’re trying to do something about it?

But then I stop and think and I remember that not all podcasts need to be doing something about it. Podcasts can be silly and small and hopeful and that’s okay.

And making this podcast really has given me a lot of hope and I hope it has for other people listening as well. Um and yeah I’m just so, so grateful for it.

Lindsey you put out 6 episodes in 2018 and then only 2 in 2019 and 3 so far this year. Why has there been such a long time in between your episodes?
To be honest, because I was tired.

You’re right, most of my episodes came out in 2018 and then at the end of that year I was really burnt out and sad.

I’d spent 2018 just obsessed with work. Any opportunity I was offered, I said yes to, so at the end of the year I was really tired and actually really resentful of the podcast. Obviously I was really grateful for the opportunities that came from it, but I also made a lot of sacrifices for it as well.

That’s why there was a year in between the last episode of season one and the preview of season two. Literally the thought of doing any work on the podcast filled me with dread and I just couldn’t do it. And I didn’t want to force myself to do it because then I’d just end up hating it even more and I didn’t want to hate it.

So then by 2019 when enough time had passed, I still wanted to make the podcast, but it wasn’t my first priority anymore. I just wanted to do it for fun so I’ve  fit in when I’ve been able to.

Some people might think that it’s brave to put yourself out there like you have. Were you ever nervous about getting any kind of criticism? 
No, not really. I’ve never cared about how many people listen to it and to be honest, at the start I really didn’t want anyone to listen. I was so embarrassed that the podcast wasn’t as good as I wanted it to be. But the podcast was only ever supposed to be a reflection of my skills at that point in time because remember, I started the podcast to learn how to make podcasts, not to be the best at it. And I never was going to be the best at it.

I think a lot of people get really paralysed about making things and then not putting them out there until they’re perfect. But the way I see it, is it’s never going to be perfect. But you’re not going ever gonna actually get any better at it if you never do anything. 

And I also think a lot about that quote from Brene Brown where she says  “If you’re not in the arena also getting your ass kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback”.

Like if I get constructive feedback from someone else who makes creative work for free, then that’s awesome I really appreciate that, but if it’s someone just sitting in the peanut gallery who doesn’t make anything and doesn’t put anything out there, then I really don’t care what they think. 

We’re going to take a short break now to hear from our sponsors. We’ll be back with Lindsey in just a few minutes.

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Music ends abruptly

If you’re just joining us, my guest today is Lindsey, she’s the host of a podcast all about escalators called People Movers. Lindsey, do you still love escalators?
Yeah I do! I really do love them. I just love public transport generally. Like trains, buses, trams. I love it all. I think it’s a great microcosm of our communities and I really love looking at how people use them.

Like I catch the same train to work every day. I wait at the same place on the platform and get in the same door and get out of the same door so that I’m as close as possible to the escalator on the other end. And so many people have the same ritual as me! I have my train people, or at least I did when people were taking public transport more regularly, who I would see every day and maybe they’d see me, or maybe they don’t, but in a weird way seeing these people every day makes me feel more connected to the community I live in which has been really important moving to a new city in the last year.

I would spend a lot of time thinking about their stories, like there are a few couples who get the same train as me, and I would always think to myself: what is your routine in the morning? Like are you both fighting over the bathroom at the same time because you both need to get out the door at the same time, or is one of you a nighttime showerer and one of you a morning shower so you can avoid any congestion? And I’m always so surprised when they would talk to each other on the train. Like you already live together, what do you have left to talk about on the train and also don’t you want a little bit of peace and quiet just to put your headphones in and listen to music?

And then when we get to the city and to the escalator, I love watching how people navigate them. Usually where I get off there are two trains pulling in on opposite sides of the platform at the same time so there’s always this bottleneck of people trying to jam their way onto the escalator, and I love watching how people approach it. Like do they go to the end of the line and wait their turn or do they try and push into the front of the line? 

It’s just so fascinating and I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of it! 

Are there any stories you wanted to tell, that you didn’t get around to? Or maybe people that you wanted to speak to that you never got a chance?
Yes so many! I really wanted to do an episode about elevators and escalators in popular culture and in music, but I thought it might be a bit too tricky with using copyrighted material.

And then I really wanted to meet a couple who met on an escalator or in an elevator, or someone who had never ridden an escalator before, but unfortunately I never found them.

So if you’re one of those people, get in touch with me and maybe I’ll revive the podcast for you.

Lindsey, before I let you go, can you recommend any Australian podcasts for our listeners? Yes I can! There are so many.

I think the Australian podcast I recommend the most is The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry by Lee Tran Lam. In each episode Lee Tran interviews people from the world of food about their culinary highlights and lowlights, their war stories and where they like to eat and drink in Sydney. I couldn’t care less about food to be honest but her interviews are just absurdly well researched and well done and I listen to all of them.

I also love Mike Williams & Friends where Mike draws the name of a random Facebook friend of his out of a hat and gives them a phone call. 

The Subtlety Of It is a podcast about race and identity and class and culture and the host Nana interviews really terrific guests.

Frugal Forever is a podcast about money that I never miss an episode of and I’m really excited about the second season of Tender which is coming out later this year.

That’s awesome, our listeners will have a lot to binge on.

Now that People Movers is over, what are you going to do next?

Nothing

No that’s not true. I’m not going to make any more escalator episodes anymore, but I still want to continue to make radio stories. I have heaps of ideas so I guess keep an ear out for them.

Now where can listeners catch up on the podcast if they haven’t had a chance to listen yet
You can search People Movers on whatever podcast app you use: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, it’s on there. My favourite podcast app is one called Pocket Casts

And you can also follow me on Instagram at people movers podcast and I have a website too, it’s people movers podcast dot com

Lindsey thank you so much for coming on the show and again congratulations on the podcast. 
Thank you so much for having me
You’re tuned in to Podcast Watch, it’s quarter past eight, and up next is Heliotrope by Blue Dot Sessions