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Do The Thing (private feed for

Author: Samantha Morgan and Mika Torkkola

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Where the past and the present collide to ask questions about how in the world we intend to have a future.
12 Episodes
Guess who has COVID!

Guess who has COVID!


Hello friends! It’s been too long. I’d say we’re going to avoid going so long without an episode in the future, but that’s probably not true. Instead, here’s some fun bits of information related to what you’re going to hear in the audio recording. After nearly three years of avoiding COVID, I tested positive THE DAY after Christmas. On the right is me taking a picture with family on Christmas day, and 24-hours later is a picture of me in bed with a 100.7 degree fever. Admittedly, my partner and I really dropped the ball. We got the first round of the vaccine but then didn’t get any subsequent booster shots. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t really know what to believe and I figured that I would just be careful and avoid putting myself in risky situations. After I left the news business, I had no reason to be around large groups of people. I didn’t have to sit in a big open air room with people who were out in the community all day talking to people, so I felt less at risk. Sometimes I would go a week without seeing a person. All was well for a very long time, but then I got far too comfortable and began taking way too many risks. I was planning on getting the latest round of the vaccine but I just didn’t get around to it. So… sick! As for Mika, I didn’t really get into any of that with him, but he got sick at a time when the regulations were becoming more relaxed. And unfortunately, he’s like the ghost of Christmas future because he says he’s still feeling the impacts of his illness and it’s been many, many, many months since he was ill. Now, all this is to say that you should do what’s right for you, but if I had one of those magic time machines, I would go back and remind myself that I am not actually immune and I should get the booster. The best way to stay healthy is to avoid getting sick, and I did a great job at that right up until I didn’t. I also learned a few fun things I would like to share: * If you have fever, you should not bundle up under blankets. The idea of “sweating out” a fever is not true, it just makes your body temperature increase. * COVID feeds on itself, so you should get up and move around every hour or so if you want your energy levels to improve. * Feed a fever and also feed a cold. The idea of starving a cold is a myth. You should never starve yourself when you’re sick, unless you have a stomach virus. * You can take Advil and Tylenol together because they are processed by different systems within the body. * Nose spray is a gift from the gods. Add your tips to the comments. And we’d love to hear your COVID story, too. When did you get it? Are you still a COVID unicorn? Did you get the boosters? Give us the scoop! Until the next episode, stay healthy! Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
You can breathe, we’re back! Oh, I know it’s been far, far, too long. But here’s the problem, we’ve both been out doing the thing, which is kinda our thing. In this episode - which we’re calling episode one of season 3, because we can - I update Mika on the fun project I’ve been working on that’s kept me too busy to finish editing anything else. Guess what, it’s another podcast! Remember when I went and quit my job? No? Sheesh, you have some catching up to do. For the rest of you loyal listeners, I went to work for an organization called The Walls Project, and they have given me the support to launch a podcast of my own. A couple months ago I released the first episode of Walls Plus One. It’s a lighthearted look at the symptoms of poverty and the systemic policies that disproportionately impact people in our community. Okay, it’s not lighthearted at all, but there are a few laughs, I swear. Listen to the season summary of Walls Plus OneI’m in the middle of creating the second season, among all the other things I do, which is not a small list. As for Mika, he’s going to be spending more time traveling! Listen to the episode and you’ll find out what this is all about. I don’t want to ruin the surprise, but I was legit shocked and have been telling everyone who will listen, including the lifeguard at the YMCA. As for Mika, he was given an offer he couldn’t refuse at his job, which further legitimizes his reason for uprooting and moving to Finland.Oh, and, THANK YOU FOR BEING A FRIEND!!!!! Listen to the end, you’re not going to want to miss it. Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
After being shut down for a year due to the pandemic, Louisiana is letting the good times roll once again. Carnival Season is officially in full swing!In this episode, Samantha and Mika discuss the Mid City Gras, a parade Mika is considered to be part of the founding members. Then he went and moved to Finland, but still managed to get himself volunteered to be at the starting line of the event, coordinating those who are participating. He really takes “do the thing” seriously. Samantha, on the other hand, was not as easily convinced, so you’ll catch her watching from the sidelines. The Mid City Gras parade will be held on Sunday, February 20 at 1 p.m. If you want to read a little more about the backstory, check out this article that was published prior to the first run. Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
You got one email from me already, now another?! No, it’s not your birthday, I’m just trying something new. Substack, the host of this newsletter, is now offering the ability to host podcast episodes. So, I’m giving it a test drive. Tell me what you think about this format. Any better? Easier to navigate? What do you think? Okay, enough making you work. Let’s Do The Thing and talk about the episode, shall we. Mika's move to Finland was certainly a shock to a lot of people, but the bigger shock was learning his beautiful wife, Jennifer, was not going to go with him and they were not getting divorced. The decision was actually a very wise one, but is still difficult to understand nonetheless. Although Mika's already talked about his reason, her perspective is way more interesting, as is typically the case. Oh, and if you're wondering about the photo for the episode, that's Jennifer participating in the Mid City Gras parade! She was dressed as a flying squirrel and was riding a trike. Ain't she the coolest!  But I really love the picture below of Jennifer and Mika. It was taken not too long ago at our friend Jenn Ocken’s house. She is discussed in this episode. She’s another fabulous person who I hope to feature on an episode one day. If you like this episode, please share it with friends. If you want to listen to it on Spotify, CLICK HERE Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
My bestie is back in town for a visit, so you know we’ve been out on some bike rides. In fact, we recorded one of them for you! This week’s episode is coming to you straight from the saddle. We went for an extended bike ride from my house to his and along the way we talked about what cars can do to be kinder to bicyclists, what bicyclists should know about wearing helmets, and a few other random things along the way. Get ready, this episode has a lot less editing, but it’s not completely raw. I did cut it down to half the length of the original recording. You’re welcome.   Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
On this episode Mika talks about his trip to bike Mecca with our good buddy Dominic. He shared some of the really neat things Copenhagen did to make the city more bike friendly. I made some comparisons to the Government Street project in Baton Rouge. Lots of people believe bikes were the reason for the change to the road, but in reality the bike lanes were an afterthought. Also, find out why a German guy decided to come to Baton Rouge and my former boss called to tell me about it. Oh yeah, it’s a rather interesting story.  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
I quit my job! Well, not just my job, but I quit my career, too! I'm leaving traditional media and I'll announce my future employer at a later date. For now, Mika and I talk about my decision to leave the industry I've been working in for the last 20 years and he talks about why he moved 3,000 miles away from home to leave his old job for a new one. If you have any kind of feelings about jobs, you're probably going to enjoy this episode. To get additional content related to this show, join the Downtown East Newsletter.  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
We’ve spent so much time talking about biking in America, but Mika has been living in Finland so I thought it was about time we finally talked about that. It should come as no surprise that the bike riding is pretty great.  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
Because both Mika and I have started/led group bike rides, we were nominated to tell all you folks how to start your OWN group bike ride. And let me tell you, if THIS doesn't inspire you, then you probably have better things to do with your free time. I'm going to guess probably not if you're listening to this in the first place. YEAH BIKE!  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
Friendship and beans

Friendship and beans


Is friendship important? Duh! But what does modern day friendship look like? Thanks to technology, friends can remain friends even if they decide to put 5,160 miles of distance between you. “Do The Thing” is our excuse to keep the wheels turning and the conversation going. Obviously, we’re not on bikes when we do this, but what we talk about is pretty much the same. In this week’s episode, we talk about what friendship looks like nowadays. Don’t blame me, this was Mika’s idea! And I have to give it to him, it ended up being a pretty great chat.  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
This episode starts with a discussion about the book How to Avoid a Climate Disaster by Bill Gates and ends with an explanation about the concept of energy slaves. Buckle up because this episode is full of environmental goodness. Subscribe to the Downtown East Newsletter to get the full show notes with links.  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
In this episode we discuss our origin story, which begins with a bang... literally! Mika discovers his hidden rage, and Samantha uncovers she is full of terrifyingly bad ideas - it's all in a day's work, really. So come along for the ride! DING, DING!  Thank you for subscribing. Share this episode.
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