That’s why Nerdette hosts Greta Johnsen and Tricia Bobeda sat down with Ann Friedman and Aminatou Sow, hosts of CALL YOUR GIRLFRIEND, the premiere podcast for long-distance besties everywhere.
They talked friendship, feminism, and bodily fluids before playing a Newlywed-esque game to determine which pair of co-hosts knows each other better. Below are highlights from the podcast mashup you didn’t know you needed — but definitely do.
How they kept their long-distance friendship close
Aminatou Sow: I think we were pretty good about making time to see each other in person, but really, (it’s) just being in touch about things that were both personal and not personal.
Ann Friedman: We definitely had chats and email threads that said, “Put this on the agenda for our next call” — years before we had a podcast. Like it was a convention in our friendship. Obviously, it’s not as formal as what we do now for the podcast — which, LOL at calling our podcast formal.
Greta Johnsen: So do you mean you had a literal agenda? Like a Google doc or something?
Sow: It’s like a Gchat thread where we would say, “Oh, I’m going to call you later. Here are the five things I want to talk about. What do you want to talk about?” Because otherwise, you forget. Write it down. Write. It. Down.
How their feminism has changed over time
Friedman: In some ways my feminism is always changing. I think of it as a way of thinking about and being in the world. I don’t think of it as a destination or a fixed thing. It’s not.
That’s why I always struggle when people are like, “What’s your definition of feminism?” And well, it’s a framework in many ways. And it’s a call to action. And I think that depending on the time we’re living in and the privileges and resources at my disposal and all these other questions that come into play — the level of education I have, how much Googling I’ve been doing — my personal thoughts on how to live as a feminist in the world are changing, hopefully all the time. Like, I hope I’m always getting better.
Sow: I think that the challenge really is to live up to those ideals and to be as inclusive as you can.
I think that you’re right. It’s not a destination. It’s a fight for freedom that honestly is never going to end. I think that for as long as humans are evolving, that framework will change. But I do think that it provides a framework that makes it feasible, and it makes you a smarter person.
What they won’t talk about on their podcast
Friedman: It’s tough for me, both in things I write about and in terms of what we talk about on the podcast, to talk about or express an opinion on something that I still feel unresolved about. Or talk about something I’m going through when I’m still trying to make sense of it myself.
And so I think when it comes to talking about feelings or things that I have been through or we have been through that are difficult, for me at least, if I’m talking about it, it’s because I feel some kind of closure or some kind of clarity, or I feel OK about it. Which isn’t to say I talk about everything I feel OK about, but that’s the criteria. And if I’m still working through something, it’s too tender for the podcast.
Sow: “Too Tender for the Podcast.” That’s the book we should release.
Play “Know Your Co-Host”! Do you know the ‘Nerdette’ and ‘Call Your Girlfriend’ hosts better than they know themselves? Play “Know Your Co-Host” before you listen to this week’s podcast.
This interview has been edited for clarity and brevity. Click the “play” button above to listen to the entire podcast, which was produced & adapted for the web by Justin Bull.