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Wiser Than Me with Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Wiser Than Me With Julia Louis-Dreyfus are conversations with iconic older women and actor Julia Louis-Dreyfus. The discussions are humorous, personal, and filled with wisdom. The episodes that I listened to are with Patti Smith and Billie Jean King. This is an engaging podcast full of fascinating stories and sound advice. 

In the episode with Patti Smith, Smith talks about her daily habits that include: writing, exercising, and staying in contact with her imagination. She describes growing up in southern New Jersey before moving to New York City and working in a bookstore. She created her iconic hairstyle by cutting her own hair to imitate Keith Richard’s style. The diary that she kept while living in NYC helped her write Just Kids. The episode ends with Patti Smith singing a song that she wrote for Robert Mapplethorpe’s memorial service. Louis-Dreyfus and Smith have a great chemistry and their conversation is a joy to listen to.

The second episode that I listened to was with Billie Jean King. King talks a lot about her experiences with sexism. Though she was a college athlete, she did not receive a scholarship unlike her male classmates. She worked two jobs to pay her way through college. To this day, she experiences sexism. She talks about being ignored by the media when in the company of male athletes.

King describes the pressure she felt leading up to the Battle of Sexes. If she lost, she felt she would damage the perception of female athletes. To make sure she was ready for the match, she toured the Astrodome ahead of time and mentally prepared herself for playing against Billy Riggs. When she won, women’s confidence in themselves was lifted up and the feminist movement was strengthened. King is an inspiration both on and off the tennis court and this radiates from this podcast.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus is an excellent podcast host. She asks great questions and she has a good sense of humor. Even when there are technical issues in her interview with Patti Smith, she makes the podcast enjoyable. Anyone interested in deep and moving conversations mixed with humor will love this podcast. I thoroughly enjoyed  Wiser Than Me With Julia Louis-Dreyfus and I highly recommend it.

Michael Walsh is an Adult Service Librarian at the Will Library. He is currently read A Stillness at Appomattox by Bruce Catton.

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