Not to brag, but I have two absolutely amazing best friends. I listen to their banter and laugh so hard that sometimes my dogs will wake up from their peaceful slumber to check to see if I’m ok. They’ve gotten me through some truly exhausting times like our family’s move to Indiana from Texas, unpacking our new home, navigating through the pandemic chaos, and dealing with the anxiety and stress of being a mom of two. They stayed up with me through the nights when I questioned whether or not I could be a SAHM or if I’d hate myself forever for wanting to go back to work.
Through all of that, I’ve also made sure to be a great friend to them too. Through the birth of one of their kids, to the engagement of the other, to their loss of their fur baby, and sending good vibes when their family came down with COVID. My support for them has never wavered. These two lovely ladies, Ash Kelly and Alaine Urkhart have been a wonderful constant in my life through all this and more.
Here’s the thing, though, these two amazing and inspiring women don’t even know I exist. I know you’re wondering to yourself, how the heck is that possible? Are you a stalker? Should you reach out to them and let them know they have a deranged person listening in on their chats? I admit I am a bit of a weirdo, but Ash and Alaine are two hosts of my favorite podcast: Morbid a True Crime podcast.
Now you’re saying, “Oooooh, so you’re just a lonely weirdo who thinks these famous people actually think you exist.”
Ok, ouch, but yeah, sort of. But before I delve into that, have you taken a moment to recognize the irony that we’ve essentially gone back to enjoying something very similar to the radio? According to a study by Edison Research and Triton Digital, 41% of Americans listen to podcasts monthly. It makes me laugh to think that we’ve reverted back to one of the very first mediums as a way to connect with one another. The ease of finding relevant, inspiring, or relaxing content has more and more individuals tuning in and listening to hosts share information with them. The fact that wireless headphones and smart speakers are more accessible has also helped tremendously.
I personally began leaning heavily into podcasting right before the pandemic when I had an hour-long commute to and from work. I wanted to maximize the time that I spent sitting on the bus in Austin traffic, which I do not miss by the way, and the best way to do so was by finding content related to business, daily events, and HR.
But when the pandemic hit and I left my job due to stress, I no longer wanted to focus on that kind of content. Not only because it depressed me to think that I ‘failed,’ a trauma we can discuss another time. I really wanted to pursue more of my other interests, like homeschooling, Montessori, spending time outdoors, becoming a more zen parent, and, my favorite topic of all, true crime.
While I wanted a true crime podcast that was well researched and focused on the victims just as much as their offenders, I didn’t think I’d find hosts that helped fill that desire I had to connect with others. Let’s face it, the pandemic was incredibly lonely, even more so when I no longer had the outlet of chatting with coworkers. How could I make those connections I needed while we were on lockdown?
Listening to podcasts made this easy. I could pop an airpod into my ear while cooking meals while pleading with my kids to take a nap in the middle of the day or late at night when the anxiety of our situation and the sadness of being cut off from my extended family were so overwhelming.
I went through many true crime podcasts; some I barely gave a chance because the editing wasn’t great, or the host’s voice made me cringe, others I didn’t return to because of the lack of research and/or empathy for those involved.
Then I found Ash and Alaina, two sisters who loved each other, who were willing to share parts of their life while telling the story of victims so respectfully with just a hint of humor on the part of the jerks who took their lives. It’s refreshing to have others understand my morbid (as Ash would say ‘™’) curiosity and interest when it comes to the nature/nurture aspect of killers and the chances that have occurred in the lives of their victims to have their paths cross. I also love that Alaine is part of the same generation and benefits from Ash’s ability to guide us millennials into the world of TikTok and other ‘young people’ antics.
I am forever grateful to the community these two have created and allowed me and so many others to partake in. Many of us weirdos know we have a friend in one another because of our connection to this true crime podcast. I proudly contribute to their Patreon and eagerly await the day when I can see these lovely ladies live and tell them, ‘Thank you for being a weirdo.’
Do you listen to Morbid? Or are there other podcast/podcast hosts with whom you feel a connection?
Loved reading this – Ash & Alaina have this charismatic vibe that’s easy to relate to. As a SAHM who also quit work during the pandemic I resonated with your story.
I’m so glad that you enjoyed it! And your name is amazing lol!!! Ash and Alaina still help me get through the stress of my days. <3
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