December 26th – National Thank You Note Day with Alex Birch

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Podcast Recommendations for National Thank You Note Day

Today’s guest is Alex Birch, Senior Manager of the PRX Podcast Garage.

Use #ThankYouNoteDay for all things related to this day. 

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Podcast Gumbo is produced by Paul Kondo each week. Paul also writes the Podcast Gumbo newsletter where he recommends 3 unique podcast episodes every Wednesday.

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Paul can be found on Twitter at @paulkondo.

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Hey. This is Paul Kondo. This is the Podcast Gumbo podcast and I’ve got a rhetorical question for ya.

Are you like me and find those things we call National Days, like Cheeseball Day or worse, Moldy Cheese Day, amusing? Yeah, me too. So each week, I’ll have one of my podcast friends challenge me to find an episode related to one of those days and I’ll be releasing it on the actual day it occurs. 

So, let’s get to it. What is today’s National Day?

Dear Paul. Thank you for introducing me to National Thank You Note Day. 2020 has been a hard one. For a lot of people, it’s probably a year we’d rather forget. So this month I’ll write the traditional thank you notes to the people who got me books and gift cards but I’m also going to write them to the people who got me through this year. Like my friend who kept calling me just to check in, my coworker who made me laugh in long meetings and my aunt who asked how she can help me feel safe as a pregnant person during a pandemic. Let’s seal up and stamp this year with some gratitude. Warmest wishes, Alex.

P.S. Thank you, Paul for doing so much to support all the lonely lovely podcasters out there. Even though I know this is your last episode of Podcast Gumbo, I really hope this isn’t the last we hear from you. Your voice is important to me and this community.

I knew I could count on my friend Alex to say such sweet things about me. And knowing this was going to be my last episode, I was hoping that Alex would say yes to being my guest. More on that in a moment. 

Today, December 26th, is National Thank You Note Day. 

Today’s first recommendation is from the Schmanners podcast, called Thank You Notes. How’s that for being spot-on? In the episode, we hear Travis and Teresa McElroy discuss all sorts of things related to Thank You Notes. We get a little history, whether they are out dated, and more. 

Give it a listen and then thank me and Alex for recommending it to you using the Thank You Note Day hashtag. 

Now for the important stuff. Today’s guest is Alex Birch. Alex is the Senior Manager of the PRX Podcast Garage. It’s so incredibly apropos that Alex picked this National Day because she is the first podcast industry person I ever spoke to. I was curious about podcasts so I went to an orientation taught by Alex at the Garage. Immediately, I had a place that I loved going to, to learn and socialize about podcasts. 

Since that first visit to the Garage, I have been lucky to have met so many great people there, many that I have asked to be guests on this show. So this is my special UN-written thanks to Alex and all that she and her team have done to create such an amazing space for the podcasting community. 

Alex, thanks to you, here is a list of all my podcasting friends (and their podcasts) that I have met directly through the Garage. 

Lori Mortimer – Mementos

Charles Gustine – Iconography

Morgan Jaffe – Burst Your Bubble

Ian Elsner – Museum Archipelago

Juleyka Lantigua-Williams – 70 Million

Brad Turner – On Something

Mark Pagán – Other Men Need Help

Chelsea Ursin – Dear Young Rocker

Helen Zaltzman – The Allusionist

Cherie Turner – Strides Forward

Cody Gough – Curiosity Daily

Wade Roush – Soonish

Dahlia Schnaiderman – Snack Judgment

Isabel Cadenas Cañón – De eso no se habla

Stephanie Kuo – Racist Sandwich

Travis Lux – Life Raft

For our third recommendation, Alex recommends Roselle and Michael, an episode from the This is Love podcast. Alex says, and I quote:

“It’s a story about a man and his guide dog working in the Twin Towers on 9/11. It’s a powerful story about love and trust in the midst of chaos. And a reminder to thank the pets in our lives too, who improve our emotional well-being during all times and especially the worst of them.” 


Today’s Extra Hot Sauce is big. Unless things change, this is the last Podcast Gumbo episode related to National Days. I fully expect to make more podcast episodes but my goal for this version was to do it for a year and that year is now up.

It’s been a fun ride and as I go through the listing of all my eps, it’s emotional. I’ve had so many friends be my guests and for that I’m grateful. Not grateful enough to hand write thank you notes, but grateful nonetheless.

So many thanks for listening to my silly little podcast. 

As always, take a look at the show notes for links to all the podcasts mentioned in this episode as well as other life-altering information. To make it easy for you, there’s also a link to a podcast playlist that will contain all the episodes ever mentioned in this show. 

See you next week sometime for another round of recommendations. 

Are you still listening? Do you still want more podcast goodness? If so, get on over to and subscribe to my newsletter today. 

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