Day 589: Post-Experiment

It’s good to be back!

I did not enjoy that as much as I thought I would.

First, let’s not kid ourselves. I’m a bit of a mess. Not much of a mess, but a bit of one. So I’ve become… dependent isn’t the word, but over the course of a year and a half this has become an important part of my life. Pre-producing and releasing episodes is… fine, but doesn’t sit right.

Second, I’m not sure I’d listen to this podcast. The personal connection is a super strong one. A litany of tips from strangers is… meh. Not terrible, but if I’m producing something I myself wouldn’t listen to, that seems like kind of a weird move.

Third, it would take a hell of a lot of effort to get up to steam. That’s not a reason not to do something. I’m not afraid of work. But I am aware of my limitations and my constraints, and it would be really hard to make this happen.

But there was a lot I liked! I liked the surprising things I learned. I liked picking up new tips.

It’s been an overall bad week for exercise and diet — the Whole30 thing didn’t even last a week, we bailed on it super fast. I think the podcast helps keep me on track, so now that I’m back to daily this, hopefully everything else will kind of slide into place.


Chores Digest

Our first digest edition! A collection of the week’s call-ins in one go.

This… doesn’t quite work. I think I’m onto some sort of Patreon-styled thing, where one or the other podcast is a reward — you can subscribe for the weekly digest, or subscribe for the daily ‘cast, but doing this this way feels a bit weird. You’ve just heard all of these, and now you’re hearing them all again? No.

It might work if there were a lot of callers and there was a ton of surplus material. That would remove the redundancy problem.

But as a listener? I’m not sure this works for me. I’m not sure this system is a winner. I’m going to give it some more thought.

Getting Psyched for Chores 6: Adam from Kingston

Our last tip for Chores Week — but not least — from Adam, in Kingston. Possibly our most prosaic tip, and one I think will stick with me. It also reminds me of my grandpa!

My grandpa’s thing was “that’s better than a kick in the teeth.” I don’t think he ever had been kicked in the teeth, and I don’t think he was a teeth-kicker, but it’s an expression I use to this day.

That’s a wrap for Chores Week. We’ll be setting up the digest tomorrow — one long show with most of what was submitted — if this were something where I was drowning in submissions it might be a long show, but I would up just getting enough tips to fill the week, so there y’go.

Next week: get out of bed! How do you do it? What’s your one thing? Take a minute right now to call 1-833-JERKPOD or send a voice memo to You could be making a difference in thousands of lives! Okay, (a) not actually thousands, and (b) don’t actually do it, this is just a test.

I’m going to do a little bit better today than I did yesterday. How about you? Yes, you will. I can tell.

Getting Psyched for Chores 5: Michael in Toronto

Question the premise! It’s a healthy approach to most problems. And today, Michael in Toronto is doing just that to tackle the very idea of psyching yourself up for a chore.

Well worth considering: is psyching up a false start in and of itself?

Tomorrow, our final psyche-up tip from Adam in Kingston. On Sunday, the weekly digest of the bulk of our calls, plus some additional stuff.

Every day, we’re taking a tiny step forward. Not always a huge leap. Not every day. But we’re still advancing.

Get Psyched for Chores 4: Andrea in Kingston

One thing I’ve discovered this week is that I didn’t need to worry about variety. I thought maybe I’d get one tip, six or seven different ways — that’s not the case. Turns out lots of people do things differently! Who knew?

Andrea from Kingston is checking in today, with an organized/optimized way of approaching the dreaded chores…

Sensible and straightforward! Thanks, Andrea.

Next week is “Get Out of Bed” week — send your ideas and advice on how to get your butt off the mattress and into gear. Voice memos to, or call the Jerkline at 1-833-JERKPOD. We’re not really doing this! It’s fake!

Let’s get ready for another day and another small step forward.


Get Psyched for Chores 3: Max in Lennoxville

We’re doing this thing, you guys. This is day three of Get Psyched for Chores week, and Max is calling in from Lennoxville with a tip so simple it borders on genius. Maybe it is genius. I’m no genius, so I’m not really qualified to say.


Next week is “Get Out Of Bed” week. What gets you off the mattress? What’s your one killer idea that gets you up and at ’em every morning? Send a voice memo to, or call the Jerkline at 1-833-JERKPOD and let me know.

Folks, we are doing this one day at a time. We’re building an arsenal of small chunks of helpful knowledge from normal people who are doing their best while living their lives.

Tomorrow: we’re back to Kingston with Andrea checking in for her killer unpleasant-chore tip.

Get Psyched for Chores 2: JR in San Jose

JR from San Jose checks in with his tactic for getting psyched for unpleasant chores — this is more of a mantra, and a good one! Parental wisdom at its finest. Thanks, JR!

This is part of the big experiment for Jerkpod 2.0 —  feeling out what this format is like. Do I like it or not? What kinds of things should I say in the blog portion?


Get Psyched for Chores 1: Stephen in Kingston

I’m Matt and this is Jerk in Progress, the podcast about getting a little better every damn day. We’re building this thing ourselves. There’s no ads, no products to sell, no religion, no guru, no leader — just a bunch of people figuring it out and sharing what we’ve found.

As you know, this is kind of an experimental version of what I’m hoping will be the evolution of this project toward something collaborative and crowdsourced. This is the first foray into the new format — if I like it, I’ll keep it, and probably start preparing to flip the switch and do this in earnest starting in January of 2019. Why then? I’m taking a course this fall, and it’s going to absolutely destroy me to try to do this and that and some other things.

This week, we’re kicking it off with a pretty universal idea: doing the things we don’t want to do. I asked what gets you psyched up to do an unpleasant chore. And you answered! Let’s check in with Stephen, from Kingston…

…visualization is the key. Thanks, Stephen! Tomorrow, we’re going to hear from San Jose, California, and some sound fatherly advice.

NEXT week: what’s your single best tip to getting up in the morning? What gets you out of bed? Fire off a voice memo to, or call the Jerkphone at 1-833-JERKPOD with your best idea for literally getting your feet on the floor and your butt off the mattress. Alarms? Automated coffee machines? Music? A pet? Let me know. We’ll share it.
[Don’t actually do this, you guys! It’s an experiment!]

Day 579: Weekend Away; Experiment Next Week

All right! A day of vacation, a weekend romping around. Staying with my folks tonight and at a friend in Toronto’s tomorrow night, back on Sunday.

That means a few days of Jerkpod to queue up, including — gasp — the bold experiment, which I’m pretty excited about trying.

There’s a huge gulf ahead of me. To illustrated it in text,

This is where I’d like to be: a podcast that’s generated by its listeners. 









Able to put together five days of stuff based on friends’ contributions. 

Most of ’em don’t even listen to the podcast!

So this is a bit of a Great Unknown. I’m looking forward to the attempt, but I’m not sure how to cross that great gulf given the limited time and resources that I have.

In the one step at a time vein, the first thing is to actually try the test week and see if I like it…

Pre-records for the next two days, and Monday will be the First Experiment Podcast! Woohoo!