26 min read

Episode 3: Information Overload, Progressive Ideology and War

Featured Image

⚠️ War, misinformation and disinformation 

πŸ’‘ Progressive ideology in the face of hate 

πŸ“Ί Habits and the constant struggle 

πŸ“± The chaos and misery of tech issues 

❓ Cervical Mucus!?

And more!




Alicia: [inaudible] and welcome to the latest episode of the Alicia McKay Show. In this episode, we go a little bit off track, thanks to some initial technical difficulties, and instead have some beautiful freeform conversations about some important stuff. With me, producer Cam and Callum Valentine, we touch on war, misinformation and disinformation, stress, what it's like to change our habits with the media that we consume, how scattered we all feel, how much information is coming at us all the time and cervical mucus might get a mention. Anyway, this is a great chat and I very much hope you enjoy the episode. If you do, please make sure to give us your ratings and reviews because they do make all the difference. Thanks. Enjoy

Producer Cam: Good morning, everyone. And welcome to the Alicia McKay Show temporarily hosted by someone else. We had an amusing mishap just before where, Alicia's on the road in a hotel and with a few technical things, not quite going her way, the show's kicking off to an unusual start i.e. hosted by someone who is not Alicia McKay. Good morning, everybody lovely to be with you. It's 6:00 AM here in Australia, or rather five past six in Australia. And I'm going to be in the hot seat for the moment while Alicia gets things sorted. How nice to be here for a third week. It is so enjoyable to be here hosting today. And with any luck, Alicia will be back here soon. I'd love you to jump in the comments and let us know where you are coming from so we can get the chat going because as you can probably tell the agenda might be slightly different while we don't have the host.

Now we are going to be joined by our regular panellist, Callum Valentine very soon so hopefully he'll have something wonderful to share with us. I'm in Australia, I've had a couple of really lovely weeks here and I've noticed a real mood shift as the upcoming next phase has approached. So when I was in Wellington, in order to fly to Australia, I needed to produce a negative test to get on the plane. And the week beforehand, it was a difficult one because Alicia already had COVID and we were separated and in isolation from each other, she was isolating rather. And whilst I didn't have to, because I really wanted to go on the plane and get a negative test, I didn't really do anything that week. Nothing was worth jeopardising me going and getting on a plane to see my family and friends.
The first week that I was in Melbourne, I had a completely different attitude. I was out and about seeing people, Melbourne had come alive in a post lockdown kind of way. And people were really up and about. I went to a football match where there were 72,000 people, I went to parties, people were hugging. It was a different vibe. This second week that I've been in Melbourne, the next thing I'm going to do is get on a plane to go back to New Zealand. And I've found that I've had almost the same feeling that I had when I was in New Zealand, except in reverse, this time I need to make sure I get a negative test to make sure I can go back to New Zealand. So this week I've gone back into a not anxious withdrawal, but definitely a discomfort with getting out and about, and it's all within the space of a week.

And so I'd love to know in the comments, how everyone out there finds this experience of having a really fluctuating, willingness to be part of society or a really uneven attitude to being out and about and socialising and how important it is then that we are all quite kind to ourselves and each other when we're out and about, because you never know what phase someone's going to be in. Someone who saw me last night and a week ago was like, you're like two different people. So it's really a reminder that we need to be just soft, a little bit soft with people, you don't know what's going on for them. And so this last week's been a personal really visceral reminder for me and certainly the stories I've heard mean that yeah, we want to be pretty gentle with how we come at people who are showing a little bit of unease. Now, we do have Alicia back online. We're not entirely certain which technology she's coming in from, might be the laptop, might be the phone. We're going to add her to the stream and see how we go. Alicia-

Alicia: Hi CV.

Producer Cam: Tell us about your morning, what's going on?

Alicia: I mean really, I should start 24 hours ago to be quite honest, or maybe 12 hours ago. It's been a shit of a time. And I really enjoyed you talking just now Cam about being kind, because I need you to be kind of me. I think that it's really easy ... I've got a decision to make as I come in here on the Alicia McKay Show this morning, I can either totally blow it off and be like, good morning everybody, it's Alicia McKay. Haha it's really funny or I'm disorganised, let's rock on and be fine. Or I can be like, I actually tried really hard and I messed some stuff up this week because I think that I've got a really high load, like a lot of us do at the moment as we try and work out what's going on in our lives and what to do next. I've got a lot happening and I'm dropping some balls.

So some of the balls that I've dropped in the last 24 hours, let me write you a short list. I jumped on a plane yesterday, but it wasn't the plane that I intended to jump on. I got to the airport hoping that I could check in on the way there and then just make bag drop, which is a very Alicia McKay move as we're saying. But I honestly had the best of intentions about getting there on time. Got there and Air New Zealand said, we've actually boarded this flight early, you are not flying to Taupo right now Alicia McKay. What are you going to do? Oh, great question Air New Zealand, what am I going to do? So I flew to Rotorua a little bit later and emergency booked a rental car to shoot ahead to Taupo, which was totally great and fine.

Once I got to Taupo and went plug my laptop in to do some work, I realised that I didn't have my laptop charger or my phone charger. Now for somebody who hosts a live video podcast on a Friday morning and is running a full day workshop with the Taupō District Council today, those are quite important pieces of equipment, but I don't have them. I've also shut my finger in the car door, did that on the way here. Turned up this morning and completely melted down my technology, run behind, didn't make it out in time for a proper coffee and have plunger coffee and just all around have completely messed up the last 12 hours of my life. Now the choice that I had in turning up here this morning Cam, was either to blow it off and act like I'm totally fine with it and that this is just who I am and it's part of my personality and I'm okay with that. Or to be honest and say, there's a lot on my brain at the moment and I can't hold it all in and it's starting to show up.

Producer Cam: Isn't it interesting how, even though we know this stuff, sometimes it's hard to practise it. So one of the core things that I've loved about getting to know you and your work is how well people respond to being given permission to be honest about what's going on, even knowing that it's still hard to do it. And so this morning, Alicia and I went dealing with a few of these problems. She's right, I wasn't affording her the kindness that I just spoke about in the impromptu introduction this morning. And so it's [crosstalk]-

Alicia: Which I'm sure you nailed by the way.

Producer Cam: Well, except that, as we said, the thing I was talking about, I actually didn't manage to do, even though it was on my mind. So it's fascinating to just analyse that from even a half step backwards. And so jump in the comments people with your experience of that, how easy do you find it to remain in that assuming positive intent above the line, kind of showing up that makes your life and other people's lives easier when we know it's hard. So, the last thing Alicia needs when she's on the road and things are already going wrong is for more things to go wrong or to have any of those pointed out.

Alicia: No, but it's all right. And I think so one of the things that I was hoping to talk about this morning that I've got on the agenda is about this sense of general kind of scatter that I'm observing in my own life and around me at the moment. And there's this layer of distraction that I think at the best of times makes it really hard for people to focus on doing the things that are going to make their lives easier. And so I just read Johann Hari's Stolen Focus where he talks about the kind of pressure that's on our attention spans each and every day and how challenging it is now just to cover critical path from what you're doing right now, to what you want to be doing. And I was reflecting on that this week, when I had to do something online. I was sending ...

What was I doing? I was making something. And I was like, okay, I'm writing this to document, oh, I have to look in my emails for an email from such and such to see what they said about that so I can put that in the report. So you go to your email and then you notice there are two other urgent things that you haven't responded to and a calendar invite of a meeting that's coming soon. So you quickly do the meeting, read those emails, follow a link in one of the emails, then you're on the internet. This is where shit gets terrible. You're on the internet, you recognise you've got two open tabs. You were buying a household appliance, you were reading an article, you've got social media open in one tab and actually some research for the report you're writing. Now, by the time you loop back to the report that you were writing, it's been 90 minutes and you can't actually remember where you were at, but all you stopped out for was a single sentence.

Now that's an example from my personal work experience this week, but I don't think I'm alone and feeling that sense of general scatter. And at one point this week, I sent Cam a text and I said, Cam, I can't talk right now. I'm busy doing 367 things at once and only achieving 0.3 of them. And since I sent that text, I've thought about that a few times during the week. And what I like about Johann Hari's book I think, is it's easy to point fingers at people, focus more, prioritise better, instal a blocker on your web browser, create better personal habits, change the way you show up at work. But hang on a minute, if everybody's feeling this way and we are all fighting the battle, what's the point of an individual level of blame? What's gone wrong in the way that we've designed, how we live, how we work, how much information we consume, how many things we expect of ourselves, how far we expect our identity to expand and what we expect it to en encompass. Maybe it's too big.

Producer Cam: I love the arbitrariness of where you are too. There's a great comment from Adam Barrack in the chat saying, they've got this phrase of having sinking week, a really easy way to label this feeling, which I think encapsulates all the things you were just talking about really well. And we'll just let the sinking week be and next week we'll sail. And I think the reason I love this comment is that it's, with a few words, labelled something, that's then easier to communicate. And if you've had the conversation in advance, like if you'd said to me this morning, I'm having a sinking week and we've had a conversation where we know what that means, that's an easier way to communicate the volume of stress or the acuteness of it, or a little bit more context to it that is more likely to lean into positivity rather than frustration. So I reckon we're going to take that Anna, that is language that we are going to start using right here.

Alicia: Yeah, I like it. The Alicia McKay Show's going to talk about sinking weeks or sinking days. And I saw a great post this week. I think it was from new south Wales, local government. I can't remember the name of the guy. So it is worth popping his name in the comments if you remember, but he's got a really massive piece of paper next to his desk where each day he puts where his mental state's at out of 10. So some days he's an eight out of 10, some days he's only a four out of 10 and what he needs from people. Now, what I love the most about that is that we encourage that kind of vulnerability and openness in the workforce, especially about our mental health. But it's actually quite rare to see that coming from the chief executive, which is who this guy is in his organisation.
Now, leaders need to go first. Vulnerability's hard, but we can't ask our teams to be like, oh, fail fast and be okay with your mistakes without being able to be the leader and get up and be like, well, I'm fucked this week. How are you guys? And it doesn't necessarily detract from your credibility or your professionalism, but it humanises you, it makes it possible to connect. And to realise that the kind of challenges we face that they're bigger than us.

So at Not An MBA, we teach context leadership, which is, Hey, you can be the best person you like, but at the end of the day, you're just at the whims of the environment around you, right? So either you can manage that and focus on that, or you can't. And this kind of level of focus and distraction and scatter, I think is a really good example of that, because it's like, sure, you can be the most focused person you know, but if you're operating in a context and environment and a society and a media environment that expects you to be across far too many things, even your best is going to be hard. And so it's how do we kind of lean in, be real and focus on the bigger picture that we are all part of and that we are all victim to, rather than like, what are you up to today?

Producer Cam: Love that. And so the example I want to give now is there's a friend on the call, Wayne Newland, who's this fabulous man who lives in Christchurch, a really, really good friend of Alicia. Wayne is just a jet. And so I wanted to point out an example of what he did to change his environment, to make it easier during lockdown. So he found that Wayne, who we stay with over Christmas and they're renovating their house and there's tools and everything everywhere. And Wayne is a very handy man, if you need something fixed just invite Wayne over, don't even mention there's a problem-

Alicia: No, excuse me, let me just fix that for you. Wayne is the handiest man, the handiest.

Producer Cam: True, true. And so the example that I want to bring up is during lockdown, he and his neighbour, his direct neighbour installed an open door with a bar between their two backyards to give themselves a little bit more social windows. So instead of walking out to the front of the house to say hi, during lockdown, they could literally just open the fence in the backyard, have two stools on either side of a wooden bar that Wayne installed to make his life just that little bit easier to connect. And so I think that's a really good, tiny example along with labelling something like sinking week of giving yourself a chance to get out of those difficult moments. And the more we can do that, share those things and be honest with them the better.
And to tie it back t

o a comment you made I think last week, you told us the story about the mayor in Sydney, who was talking about how he was making it safe for his teams to fail and be vulnerable. But then when put on the spot by a good question from you, absolutely bocked at it, because he didn't feel safe himself. And the fear that we all have that being vulnerable makes us weaker is a real one. Like you can't just default to vulnerability. It doesn't work that way. That's quite hard.

Alicia: And we get that fear for a reason, because we've all been burned. So it's not like we're like, oh it might happen. It's like I can think of three tangible examples in my life where I tried to be open and it failed me and those experiences stick with us a lot more than the ones where we were rewarded for being open. Because quite frankly, this whole leaders can be vulnerable thing, bit of a new trend mate, it's just kicked off.

Producer Cam: Absolutely. So here's an example from a completely different sphere that I experienced yesterday, a mutual friend of ours, Adam Voigt runs an amazing programme in Australia called Real Schools where [crosstalk]-

Alicia: He is the most Australian, Australian in Australia.

Producer Cam: He's a very Australian man. His accent is broad and he has the colloquialisms and slang that fits the amount of his large Australian physic. Anyway, he runs a programme called Real Schools. And what that programme does is help schools introduce that vulnerability to students in a safe way. So yesterday morning I had the privilege of interviewing some parents, teachers and hearing conversations with some kids about how the program's affected the school and the aim of it is to give children control of their destiny if you like and giving them tools to talk about their emotions and how they're feeling and taking away the punitive responses that schools often have in place for misbehaviour. And instead empowering them to describe in their words what's happened.

And so, talking to a couple of teachers yesterday, who've been on this progress journey and evolution of discipline with the Real Schools programme, hearing a student be empowered to say, I feel ashamed of what I've done and how I've made the rest of the class feel, completely changes their ability to then process it and evolve the situation to a more productive place. And hearing teachers describe how students do that actually gave me that burst of emotion that you get when you feel that vulnerability and freedom to express honestly what's going on for you, the deeper connection that comes from it. And so I love the idea that you can work on this. This isn't a fixed thing, this is a thing you can change and hearing firsthand examples from in a classroom and a playground was quite funny because I found myself getting drawn into the chat and being honest and saying, I think I had that revelation when I was about 42. Like this isn't a thing that we're often taught. This came to me late in life.
Alicia: And honestly, like while you're speaking, my body's now going right, that's enough. I've had enough feelings today. Let's go and do something more fun and exciting because I'm like, I've hit my limit, which at 33 is higher than it was five years ago. But it's not that high. So I'm like, all right, that was a lot of feelings, let's get on with the show. Which I assume I'm not alone in, in having quite a limited emotional window.

So what we're going to do team is in the next 10 weeks, run a whole show, which is quite exciting. What's been going on in New Zealand this week, aside from everybody sinking, falling apart, missing flights and generally feeling all over the place? Well it's about to get worse because we now have to make decisions about our own health and safety in the same way that Cam has been because the government has put out their official, fuck it, do what you want statement, which is quite exciting.

So 11 o'clock yesterday morning facing a presser, our governments come out and said, fuck we don't know, just go out mate. So vaccine passes are soon to be a thing of the past, scanning in which quite frankly hasn't been really happening for a while anyway, in a way that's useful is disappearing. We're no longer required to wear masks outside, so we are going to have to wear lipstick again. Sorry about that everyone. Outdoor gathering limits have disappeared and indoor gathering limits have been raised. And this is all at [read]. So really very exciting on the one hand and terrifying on the other. As we shift into a phase where we don't know anymore, whether the people teaching our kids and hanging out with our kids are going to be vaccinated. And for those of our kids who are under five or who are vulnerable and can't be vaccinated that raises some interesting questions.

We're entering a phase where we are not going to know whether the people that we are with in a given environment, particularly in hospitality are vaccinated and how safe we are. And so it's really putting the responsibility for our health choices, just kind of slowly giving them back. The government's gone, hey, we've made all these decisions for you because it's a tough time. We're going to want you to make a few of those for yourself going forward. I predict with some certainty that that's going to be really tricky for a lot of us and the kind of social anxiety and kind of health uncertainty that Cam's faced over the last few days as he tries to avoid COVID so he can come home to me is one really good example of that and something I think, that we are about to face in New Zealand over the next little while, so interesting times, but quite exciting really. CV, what are you thinking my friend?

Callum: Got to get that intro in. I'm thinking about all this, plus war.

Alicia: Oh yeah. War.

Callum: Yeah because we're-

Alicia: Yeah, shit. That's not good. Is it?

Callum: Because there's a bit of that going on at the moment in other places in the world and-

Alicia: Sorry, I don't want to interrupt you, but I'm about to. I've just got this feeling, seeing as Cam's talking about naming your feelings or I'm like, oh, I'm pissing and whinging about my flight and my fucking laptop charger. Okay. Well, you know, war!

Callum: Yeah. Well, this is what I'm going to talk about because we haven't experienced or thought about on a daily basis war for a long time. I mean, there've been plenty. There's been plenty of conflict around the world, but the way that Ukraine is kind of dominating the entire media narrative is something we haven't seen for a long time. And [inaudible]-

Alicia: And if you were being cynical CV about why it is that war in Ukraine is getting so much media attention, but the other conflicts that we've seen in the world over the last couple of decades haven't, what do you think that's about?

Callum: I mean, it's about a lot of things, isn't it? It's about the west feeling actually threatened by this. There's an unfortunate people look like us factor that says everything about the structural racism and other factor challenges that some people continually deny to exist, but yet we see these evidenced all the time. There's a lot of stuff that we haven't thought about for a long time and the privilege of not worrying about nuclear war on a daily basis, all of that sort of stuff is coming into play. But my bigger point about this is we kind of need to update our cliches of what-

Alicia: All right. Talk to me about this.

Callum: Of what a war looks like. So-

Alicia: Do they still have the helmets and that?

Callum: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, you still got all the military uniform stuff, but-

Alicia: Yeah, good.

Callum: The way that progressive ideology is threatened by hatred is something that we're really facing here in a way that, we've had advances in LGBT issues, we've had people be able to be themselves on a bigger scale. And when something like this propels us back to a different time, a time when it was more about survival and less about your ability to self actuate, it's something that we-
Alicia: Yeah. And then its all women and children off you go mate. Men, you're not going anywhere. Yeah. We haven't updated it. I love this idea that we've got ideas that haven't been updated, because they've been in the back of the cupboard because we haven't needed them the whole, how we respond to war thing, we haven't dusted that off for a while. And it turns out it's full of the values and ideas from 1942.

Callum: Yeah. So the legal requirement for men to stay and fight and the assumed gender roles in that. And this is the whole point, it seems like a facile woke conversation in the context of being shot at right. But these things do matter because they're the old stories that we pull out of the bag when it comes to this thing.

Alicia: Yeah. And what pisses me off actually, in the same way that I'm a bit nervous about the voices of freedom now being like, ah, we've changed our response. See I told you this whole time we didn't need to be kept safe from mass death. Bit nervous about that. I also get nervous about in times like this, when we do have to focus on ... not we, we don't have to focus on shit. We're very lucky right now, aren't we? In times when we've faced survival questions, really base questions and in times of deep crisis and when we have to default to these kind of base level stories that we didn't realise were still at the heart of the way we think, there's the danger of that narrative kind of invalidating the progress that we've made, but that isn't as solid yet.
So it's like, we've got this solid foundation of like a couple of hundred years or whatever of just patriarchy and violence and that, and then we've tried to kind of assemble this house of cards on top of it, of like equality, looking after children, social welfare, trans rights. And we are trying to assemble it, but it's not solid yet, it hasn't sunk in. And as soon as we face something that attacks that foundation, all the cards fall over and you've got people who never really got engaged in the house of cards going see, the cards are bullshit.
Callum: Yeah. It's that sort of first thoughts, second thoughts thing, isn't it? Where people assume that, oh, everybody's thinking it and that's the base layer and if you haven't reexamined up the chain that that's really damaging. The other thing that's amazing to me is it's very easy to put Zelensky in a particular box and say, this is somebody who used to play the president on TV and now is the president. And that's exactly what we need and exactly what leadership is. And I think this is a fascinating example of stripping away-

Alicia: [crosstalk].

Callum: That criticism of having a reality star or somebody who's used to being on screen. It's incredibly inspiring. The video work that's coming out, it's so natural in a way. And you can almost study it from a cinema point of view and think about how we're affecting people and how we are getting our message across.

Alicia: Okay. So what I really like about this CV, and this is super topical for me because a) you've got Annie putting this message out there being flippin amazing. And now you've got Zelensky, who's a former actor media star, who's using all of those communication and connection skills and channelling that towards one of the most brilliant displays of leadership that we've seen.

I listened, because I was in a rental car and because I had very limited service and no Bluetooth, because it was Rent a Dent not Hertz. I listened to a radio talk show last night with Duncan Garner. And he was having a bit of a stab at Kris Faafoi and saying, look, as far as I'm concerned, if you've been on the other side, if you've been a journalist or you've been in the media, obviously hugely biassed by Garner's media experience himself, he said, you shouldn't be a politician. If what you are used to doing is crafting story and fronting up and being in the media, then you should absolutely not be a politician. And you just kind of want to like ... I mean, sorry, Duncan, because I think you're a great guy, but you just kind of want to knock on Duncan's door and kind of just like point at Zelensky and be like, oh, okay. Is that right?

Callum: This is something really fundamental that we are learning about information. I think it's like, so take the protests recently, we had so many live streams out of there and there's a few myths about information that we need to update. And one of them is that seeing is believing because first of all, we live in a time of deep fakes where an example from Ukraine, there was a Zelensky deep fake that if you are in any kind of stressed position, which while being shelled, of course you are, you could entirely delete-

Alicia: [crosstalk] Yeah. But try missing a flight and losing your laptop charger.

Callum: Look, let's not judge people's stress levels. It's in the same live streams coming out of the protest were the same thing. Like the type of information or the idea that you know what's going on because you can see a live uncurated, unmoderated, unresearched feed of just raw data coming out of something. If you watch one live stream, they're planting lettuces. And if you watch another, they're hurling bricks at police and it was fascinating to see the commentary be stuck somewhere in between. So you had Newstalk ZB, who as the protest went on was sort of progressively more in there with the side. And then there was the traditional approach of this is not a real protest, these are imported ideas, which I think is a whole fascinating discussion there. Aren't all our ideas imported? Or imported [crosstalk]-

Alicia: No. No mine fresh, mine are home grown, natural, all organic, get them here. You do pay a premium for them, but they are fertiliser free. Yeah. I love that. And you and I had a conversation this week about that whole movement and how it started off looking like it was genuinely about asking questions around the government's management of the pandemic and what that was doing to people's lives and social inclusion. And I had a lot of sympathy for that. I think a lot more sympathy than a lot of my peer group, because I totally understood some of the fears around the way people are treated in the health system and also just how massive that feeling of marginalisation was for people that made different choices. So I had a lot of sympathy for the feelings, while still being totally on the side of the mandates.

So that I could see. And I went down a real Facebook rabbit hole watching a lot of those live streams to try and understand where people on the other side of the fence were coming from and how they were convinced and what mattered to them. And that was really helpful for me to keep me compassionate. I've lost a bit of that compassion this week, as you've drawn to my attention, one of the kind of leading live streamers from that movement who now seems to be adopting this kind of really cut price, independent journalism, which is actually just see what's in the news, say the opposite, but say it in a conspiratorial tone of voice, like Hmm Putin's the bad guy, is he? Talk to me about that CV?

Callum: Yeah. That's so ... I mean watching, what is unarguably propaganda filter in to-

Alicia: From Russia.

Callum: This ecosystem that ... yeah, I mean Russia is the master of this or was pre-Zelensky. I mean they had a ... RAND Corporation called it like fire hose was the metaphor for the Russian information complex, which is just to spray so much disinformation out into the world that what people's instinctive reaction is, is to think nothing can possibly be true so I'm going to retreat from this. I'm going to retreat from any kind of activism.

Alicia: To link that back to our chat earlier on, that's a really effective tactic when people are already so overwhelmed by information that if you get a whole lot more and it's not totally clear anymore, you just kind of go, I better not pick a side just in case. And so it's kind of picking up on that sense of overwhelm and lack of agency that we already feel about making decisions and just going haha, nah.

Callum: Because we're not very good in Western culture at saying no, I've had enough information for today. Like-

Alicia: That's enough for me. Thanks.

Callum: The study of the number of ideas that we're exposed to on a daily basis that we don't think of as being a finite resource, our ability to practise different ideas. And that's why this sort of yoga culture is so appealing, right? Because what we see as the appealing factor from Eastern culture is this like slow down, actually breathe, think about these sort of things and conquering that inner space is something that you can ironically read 6,000 LinkedIn posts about right now, if you find the right hashtag.

Alicia: But we've buck it up CV, because we are like, you can have everything that Eastern spirituality has to offer, just download this app and you too can become calm. It's kind of like, oh, but what you were just saying triggered me. You know, wee Harriet, my wee mate Harriet, my wee six year old, nearly seven year old daughter when she's full ... and she's the best kid I know at detecting an appetite and a lack of appetite and immediately executing it. Like most kids will continue to eat lollies after they're full, this kid halfway through the lolly that she decides she's full on will spit it out and not have another one. She's amazing like that.

But when she says she's full, she often says, I don't like it. And I'm like, well you clearly do like it Harriet because you've been eating it for the last 20 minutes. I think you're full. But she's like, I don't like it. And I feel like that's kind of what we need to be doing with news and ideas sometimes isn't it? A bit like the old [D.A.R.E.] programme, Stop it! I don't like it. It's not just I've had enough. It's like, I don't like it anymore, I'm going to have to see the end of that. Thank you.

Callum: Yeah. And I think you'd know as well, so when I'm just craving news because of various factors, including familiarity or wanting to consume information to feel safe is one of the things I'm trying to tone down in my life at the moment. And you can have a methadone of this, you can still consume content and just have it not be quite so overwhelming. So if you're-

Alicia: What if we picked up a newspaper. Here's an example, so I'm a big fan of going analogue when the modern world is too exciting. So, I don't like taking notes on my phone, I'm all about my pen and paper and I'm like, maybe we don't do news sites anymore, maybe we don't watch Alicia McKay Show streaming in whatever state she's in on the interwebs. Maybe we just have to read articles in the newspaper. Hold on a minute. I've got one. Right. Taupo Times, everybody. This is the slow news that we all need, climbing inflation, interest rates, race [inaudible]. I'm going to put that down. Yeah. It's no good news mate.

Callum: Yeah, put it down. So step one in my 12 step programme for information detox is to-

Alicia: I'm already signing up.

Callum: Maybe not text, read Facebook and Instagram and watch Netflix at the same time. So if you can do that, just concentrate on the actual visual images.

Alicia: One menu at a time.

Callum: Just put one stream in your brain at a time.

Alicia: I'm loving Raymond's comment there. It brings a whole new meaning to TMI, which I always thought was talking about like cervical mucus, but it turns out it can actually be about too many news articles on the internet.

Callum: Yeah, completely. And just allow yourself to fully connect and be present to one source of information at a time.

Producer Cam: I saw a great tweet that said after a long day of looking at the medium sized screen, it's time to go home and look at the big screen whilst rewarding myself with the small screen. And it's such an accurate description of so many people's days. I'm like I feel seen and I don't like it.

Alicia: All right Cam, we're [crosstalk].

Producer Cam: Wonderful.

Alicia: Reaching the end of our broadcast, which quite frankly has been in absolute shambles. And for all of you who are still with us and watching and enjoying where our brains are taking you today, as we have ideas in real time, probably-

Callum: We covered a lot of ground though.

Alicia: Well, I was about say I've had a bloody good time, it's been a good yarn. It hasn't been as sexy and entertaining as often it can be, but it's been a bloody good chat. And so I'm really interested-
Callum: Well I'm glad Cam and I aren't hosting a spinoff show on week three because it was either going to be Joey or Frazier and who knows.

Alicia: Yeah. Okay. But first of all, I'd watch your spinoff show the Cam and CV show, as long as it didn't talk about what a pain in the ass Alicia McKay was. But I'm really interested in hearing from our audience, how they've found our slightly different format today. Enjoyed a bit of a panel chat, covering things that we aren't even remotely experts on, like international relations, pandemic response, stress levels, and most importantly feelings, the things that we are really not an expert on.

Producer Cam: And while we wait for the buffer of the livestream to give people 20 seconds to respond to that question, I thought I'd mention the weird, not anxiety, but dilemma I had this morning, which was wondering whether or not this is the shirt I wore on the show last week. When you have a certain number of days in your laundry cycle, but you see the same person on the same day of your laundry cycle, not that I'm adhering to a daily structure here. You're like, I've washed this shirt in between. It's okay, this isn't my only shirt. And so those really strange little thoughts you can sometimes have to yourself of wondering if you're being judged for something that in reality, no one is noticing or caring about at all, but it still plays in your mind. Do I have to change this shirt because I was wearing it when I saw this person a week and a half ago. Does that go through anyone else's mind?

Callum: I will also point out I did wash my formal Grimes t-shirt in between appearances as well.

Alicia: Oh, you guys are so cute. So one of the advantages of the patriarchy is that no one's watching what you are wearing. They may occasionally watch what I wear, which I get around by wearing a black top every Friday, just in case you haven't noticed everyone, different black top, always a black top. So I'm getting around that. But no one's noticing what you're wearing, because they're not judging you on your appearance, they're judging you on the merit of your ideas.

Producer Cam: Well, the best part about that context, the comment you just made then. So there was a famous example in Australia for anyone who knows Karl Stefanovic and Lisa Wilkinson, they were the co-hosts of a very popular breakfast show for a long long time. Lisa Wilkinson would get roasted if she wore an outfit more than two or three times in a year, Karl Stefanovic wore the exact same suit for 200 days in a row in a subtle silent protest to the complete bias there is a gendered way and no one noticed.

Alicia: Assholes.

Producer Cam: You have been fabulous. What an audience Alicia. How patient and kind they all are.

Alicia: For my final shout out today. I actually want to give a shout out to Apple because they don't get enough coverage or enough respect. My MacBook has been running, I entered this live stream with 11% battery life and my friends it's currently at 4% and I've been online for an hour. So Apple fan club. This is it.

Producer Cam: If Apple wants to send us all demo units, I'm down for that.

Alicia: That's be fine. That'd be totally fine.

Producer Cam: All right Alicia, bring us in for the professional and polished goodbye close.

Alicia: Thank you everybody for joining the livestream of the Alicia McKay this morning. As always, we covered a great mix of entertaining and interesting thought fodder for you this morning in a very structured, totally planned, not at all fucked up kind of a way. It was great to have you with us here this morning and we'll see you back here next Friday at 8:00 AM. Make sure to listen on Spotify and Apple because this'll be an interesting one to listen back to and as always to give us your five star ratings because moving us up the charts matters. Thank you so much everybody for joining us and thanks for your patience.