Episode 129 – Unstoppable Author, Change Management Expert and Karaoke Singer with Kris Gowen
Yes, all three interests in the title and so much more. Meet Kris Gowen. By any definition, she is a person with varied interests, and a wealth of knowledge that we all can appreciate, and she even has sung Karaoke in all 50 United States. Kris hales from New Jersey originally. She always has liked Drama, but her high school didn’t have a drama department until her Senior high school year. Even so, singing has always been a part of her life.
During this episode Kris and I have a far-reaching discussion about such things as communications, how do we change some of the conversations inside politics and how we can become more educated about things so we can make better decisions. Kris tells us about her teaching and personal adventures traveling around the world and tells us about lessons she learned along the way.
As I said, Kris is an author. She has written books about her Karaoke adventures and she has even written a book about sex education. Her stories about these books are fascinating and worth hearing.
I hope you enjoy our time with Kris. She is quite insightful, inspiring, and of course unstoppable.
About the Guest:
L. Kris Gowen, PhD. is an author and karaoke lover. She has written One Nation Under Song: My Karaoke Journey through Grief, Joy, and America about her epic road trip to sing karaoke in all 50 states (she did fly to Alaska and Hawaii), and Find Your Song: How to Cultivate Pockets of Joy during Times of Grief — both books are based on her own experiences navigating tough times by holding onto the small joys in life. She has also written Sexual Decisions, a sex education textbook for teens which she is both proud and sad to say is on several banned book lists.
In addition to being an author, Kris has a ton of other interests. She has spoken nationally and internationally on healthy relationships and the role of technology in sex and relationships. She is also on the Board of Make You Think, a small non-profit that supports science education and entertainment for adults. Her friends, bar trivia, and travel round out her passions.
Kris currently splits her time between Portland and Toronto and earns her keep as a Consultant, supporting organizations in Change Management and Evaluation. She prioritizes applying a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion lens to all her work. She will always say yes to sushi and while she doesn’t have a go-to karaoke song, she loves to sing Olivia Newton-John, Donna Summer, and Sia.
Links for Kris:
Find Your Song:
One Nation Under Song
About the Host:
Michael Hingson is a New York Times best-selling author, international lecturer, and Chief Vision Officer for accessiBe. Michael, blind since birth, survived the 9/11 attacks with the help of his guide dog Roselle. This story is the subject of his best-selling book, Thunder Dog.
Michael gives over 100 presentations around the world each year speaking to influential groups such as Exxon Mobile, AT&T, Federal Express, Scripps College, Rutgers University, Children’s Hospital, and the American Red Cross just to name a few. He is Ambassador for the National Braille Literacy Campaign for the National Federation of the Blind and also serves as Ambassador for the American Humane Association’s 2012 Hero Dog Awards.
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Michael Hingson 00:00
Access Cast and accessiBe Initiative presents Unstoppable Mindset. The podcast where inclusion, diversity and the unexpected meet. Hi, I’m Michael Hingson, Chief Vision Officer for accessiBe and the author of the number one New York Times bestselling book, Thunder dog, the story of a blind man, his guide dog and the triumph of trust. Thanks for joining me on my podcast as we explore our own blinding fears of inclusion unacceptance and our resistance to change. We will discover the idea that no matter the situation, or the people we encounter, our own fears, and prejudices often are our strongest barriers to moving forward. The unstoppable mindset podcast is sponsored by accessiBe, that’s a c c e s s i capital B e. Visit www.accessibe.com to learn how you can make your website accessible for persons with disabilities. And to help make the internet fully inclusive by the year 2025. Glad you dropped by we’re happy to meet you and to have you here with us.
Michael Hingson 01:20
Well, hi again. And yep, it is unstoppable mindset time. Thanks for being here. We really appreciate you. And we appreciate you listening. Today we get to chat with Kris Gowen. Kris has a lot of fun things to talk about. I’ll tell you as far as really fun. She is and wants to emphasize a lot during our interview karaoke, and we will but we’ll talk about other things as well. And she’ll tell us how she has sung karaoke in all 50 states. And I don’t know about the moon yet, but something to look forward to. But Kris, welcome to unstoppable mindset. We’re really glad you’re here.
Kris Gowen 01:57
Thanks so much. And thanks for you. Yeah, thanks for inviting me.
Michael Hingson 02:01
Well, so let’s start. Like, I usually like to tell me a little bit about you growing up how you started. And, well, you started like everybody else you got born, but you know, growing up and some of those kinds of things. And what eventually led you to some of the things that you do?
Kris Gowen 02:15
Yeah, so I grew up in New Jersey to Canadian parents, and most of my relatives live in Canada, in split between a couple provinces. So I, I’m outside of New York City. So which as opposed to mountain lakes, okay.
Michael Hingson 02:37
All right. So I lived in Westfield for six years. Okay, great.
Kris Gowen 02:41
Yeah, it’s a very tiny little town around it. So it was a sort of good public school system, often used to have, you know, where people would commute to New York City from and yeah, just people working. But yeah, it was it was small and lovely. But sadly, because it was so small. While I was in high school, there was no drama department until my senior year. But the only I’d loved singing, I just love singing, I can’t remember a time where I didn’t love singing. And I’m sure you know, ever, you know, I’m sure at some point, it just sort of evolved. But I would sing in the church choir a little bit. And that was like the sort of reason for me to even go to church early on, because I wasn’t really religious and, and then would just sing any chance I got and would sing along to the radio and tape songs and sing those and just do all that kind of stuff. And then finally, I got a chance to sing. I was Snoopy, and you’re Good Man, Charlie Brown my senior year in high school and really liked doing that. And from there, it’s like I said, I just have love to sing no matter no matter what comes my way.
Michael Hingson 04:03
When I was a freshman in high school, I was in the the Glee class. And one of the things that they did was schedule and start doing work to try to get people to appear in a mall and the night visitors, and I tried out for it. The problem was I said that although I could sing high enough because my voice hadn’t changed. I wasn’t quite loud enough, so I didn’t get the part. Darn it, but it was was fun.
Kris Gowen 04:36
Yeah, oh, yeah. Loud has never been my problem. If there’s anything it’s like trying to tone it down a little bit. So I have the opposite problem that you do when it comes to tempo goals.
Michael Hingson 04:47
Well, I think the issue really was that a guy would have a hard time in general getting a so it was a girl who eventually got the part anyway. Yeah, which wasn’t a surprise. was a little disappointing. But on the other hand, we did go to see it when it was actually performed. And there’s nothing like live performances anyway, whether it’s even a high school performance or a college or we, we actually when we lived in Mission Viejo, California, my wife and I had neighbors who were Mormons, and they had a number of performances that they put on every year. And they did a wonderful job of Oklahoma and there’s just nothing like live performance.
Kris Gowen 05:29
Yeah, I agree. And I I have a very good friend here in Portland, Oregon, that is a drama teacher for in high school, and I tried to go see as many of their shows as I can. And other friends that perform here and there and certain musical reviews or things like that, and I do love supporting them, because they’re my friends. And also just because it’s super enjoyable to to hear the live performances.
Michael Hingson 05:56
We were very fortunate when Jerry Lewis starred as Mr. Applegate the devil in Damn Yankees, we were living in New York, and it was his only time ever appearing on Broadway. They did a wonderful interview about it, but we got to actually see him, which was really cool. That’s fantastic. He did a great job. So you went through high school and all that in New Jersey? And then what did you do with your world,
Kris Gowen 06:18
I went to college in California and discovered I’m much more of a West coaster than an east coaster and spent did some my undergraduate in California and then I went back east for like three months to see if I could make it back over there. And I was in New York for a little bit and trying to work in the TV industry. And that didn’t work out at all. And so three months later, I went back to the effect of California, and then spent a little bit more time there. And then I went back to the east coast for a year to get a master’s degree. And then I came back to California to get a PhD in child and adolescent development. And then I moved up to Portland, Oregon, in 2000. And pretty much I’ve stayed here almost through I just move back actually, I spent a year and a half in Toronto. And we’d like to figure out a way to get back there. So I think that’s my flavor of east coast that I like ultimately,
Michael Hingson 07:24
so nice city. Yeah, I really enjoyed. I enjoyed some time in Toronto. So yeah, what was your major in college?
Kris Gowen 07:33
Communications, film and television. And that’s when I learned that I am a horrible filmmaker. And really, I just cannot put together a I can’t edit Well, I can’t do anything. It was just something that I thought I would really love doing. And I did enjoy it. But I was just very bad at it. And so. So after you figure that out, where do you major in something that you really don’t have a lot of skill in? You know, you need to be like, Oh, now what do I do? So yeah, so I managed to bakery for a little while, and then that’s when I started, then getting my master’s degree and then also my PhD in child and adolescent development for the most part, and started working with youth and young adults, as well as writing for youth and young adults in the sex ed world. And so that’s where I really got a stronghold there. But I then I started using my research and my research skills more broadly to support community based organizations in their evaluation program evaluation efforts. I mean, this is kind of nerdy and boring, but I love it. I really love using data in ways that are really applied and that are accessible to whoever wants to know the numbers and things like that. And it’s, it can be a pretty big challenge and I really love it.
Michael Hingson 08:54
So even though you like to sing and so on, you didn’t decide to try to go off and do music as a study and as a as a possible major. Hmm.
Kris Gowen 09:04
You know, it really never occurred to me that that would be an option. Um, I never really felt and saw myself as a good singer, I’d say until just the last couple of years. So I you know, would audition for things I wouldn’t necessarily get parts I still love to sing so I would still sing I knew I wasn’t awful awful, but I I never really saw any form of musical career being a possibility you know, really at all so you know, thank goodness for places like karaoke where, you know, one of the reasons I love it is because it’s got so much unexpected pneus in it. And another reason is it’s such a supportive community like it’s one of the few places that you can do, like awful at and people will still completely cheer you. Yeah.
Michael Hingson 09:56
And there’s no pressure no which is which is cool. I was telling someone yesterday we were listening to Joe Stafford, you know who she is? Or was, she was a singer in the 40s and 50s and had perfect pitch. And you talk about doing bad Joe Stafford recorded a whole album once, where she sang a half a note off key just to prove she could. And so the whole album, right is her a half note off key because she had perfect pitch to be able to do that.
Kris Gowen 10:31
Right? Which is it is very hard to sing. Right? Purposely off key when you’ve got all this music happening around you and you just sounds so wrong.
Michael Hingson 10:41
Yeah. It came out. Alright, the album was I don’t know how much it sold, it was fairly popular. As I recall. I just heard about it, having been done, but I believe as I recall that it was popular enough because it was Joe Stafford to who was a pretty famous person back and singing in the 50s. And so on. Probably her most famous song was the song you belong to me, you know, see the pyramids along the Nile and all that. And she was the main person, or the person who’s made that song most famous, although a lot of other people have done it. But what got you into? Well, first of all, where did you go to school in California?
Kris Gowen 11:22
I went to school at Stanford, both for my undergraduate and my PhD.
Michael Hingson 11:27
Oh, cool. couldn’t stay away from the football team out from the cardinal
Kris Gowen 11:31
height. I know, I know if Shaw being no longer being the coach. Yeah, no. So there is I mean, when I was there, actually, Stanford did have a couple of stints of doing okay. But for the most part, it was definitely not some of Stanford’s glory years when I was when I was on campus.
Michael Hingson 11:48
But it’s a wonderful school.
Kris Gowen 11:51
Yeah, yeah, I was just back there the other like, a couple months ago, and, you know, barely recognizing it as everything grows. But yeah, so yeah, decided that, California. And again, like I said, the west coast was really for me. And so I’ve spent a little bit of time, both in California and Oregon.
Michael Hingson 12:09
So what got you into child development and deciding to do that as a, as a career and as a major? Oh, yeah. So
Kris Gowen 12:17
I, you know, so I had my failed, I failed attempt at trying to be in, in the television world. And so tail between my legs, I went back to California, where my, my social circle was, like my support network, and I, I managed a bakery. And just to make, you know, make ends meet and just sort of regroup. And this was during the era where there was a lot of debate on condoms, whether they should be in schools or not. And you know, and the science, like any research study basically said that if you provide condoms in schools, it does not increase the rate of engaging in sexual activities among kids. And it but it does increase safer sex practices. So I saw I knew this literature, and I knew the research because, well, I’ll back up a little bit but but, you know, Congress and other other politicians were basically ignoring the science and, and just making laws that had nothing to do with anything grounded in evidence. And I just got very annoyed with that I would throw socks at the television anytime there was like a newscast about it. And I was like, that does it, I’m gonna go back to school and get fancy letters after my name. So I can write curricula and do these things. And, and so related to that was really, I went into film and television, because I wanted to make documentaries. From the standpoint, like from the viewpoint of youth, I wanted to do things about social issues. And that was really what was driving me because I really felt like that the whole educational system was teaching us about things that didn’t matter, right, like a very typical adolescent attitude of like, what’s the point of learning all of this, this is dumb, we should be learning other things. And so I was like, I know I’m gonna make important movies about social issues, and that I learned that I could not make movies at all. I just took that passion and kind of turned it into something slightly different that still allowed me to focus on issues that matter to youth and young adults.
Michael Hingson 14:35
How about collaborating however, so you didn’t make you? You weren’t great at making the movies did you ever explore collaborating with good movie makers and maybe helping to create the scripts and the topics and all that or have you not gotten that far yet?
Kris Gowen 14:48
It was funny because I didn’t think of doing that because I just thought like, it was going to be that just really hard to break into right. So as I was working in television for the three months that I worked, it’s Just like the whole competitiveness and things, and I just didn’t really, I didn’t really have the good networking skills, and I didn’t have those things. And I just really found myself again drawn to okay, what’s the what’s the evidence? And? And how are we going to do like create these best practices, and that was really more suited to sort of look into those things, not from a mass media standpoint, but really more from a research standpoint, but then also, from supporting these so many programs that are out there that are doing great things.
Michael Hingson 15:34
You know, what comes to mind, though, immediately, is, as you were talking about, the politicians go off and do the things they do they ignore reality, and so on. How do we deal with that? I suppose one answer is we got to elect other people. But how do we get enough people to do that, that we get intelligent people in Congress and so on? But how do we start to truly change the dialogue? Because it it gets to be so frustrating, when when they totally ignore the politics and they stir up so many people to do that? Yeah, well,
Kris Gowen 16:07
I mean, one, one piece of this is like, I can’t imagine being a politician in the sense of you have to make decisions about everything, like you like, so there’s sex ed policy, there’s forestry, there’s electric cars, there’s tax laws, whatever, like you’re supposed to have an opinion on all these different things. How the heck are you? expert in all these things? Right. So
Michael Hingson 16:35
go ahead. Well, I say that’s, of course, the real issue. Do you really have to have opinions on everything? Or do you use it as an opportunity to learn and then vote based on what you learned? But anyway, go ahead.
Kris Gowen 16:49
Well, right. But I agree with that would be ideal, but there’s only so many hours in the day, if you’re literally like trying to figure out how to and then so right, so the US has lobbyists and and then lobbyists have agendas, and some are better funded than others. So there’s that. And then also you listen to, you know, your constituents, because you want to get reelected. And so different moral values, and different, just values in general are infused into different segments of, of our population, and, and so then you start to go the direction that you believe will get you reelected, or you go in the direction of this lobbyists that’s giving you the information that you think you need, and maybe it’s good information, and maybe it’s less grounded in evidence, it’s, it’s so complicated to just sort of say, Oh, well, they should just listen to the science. It’s like, Yeah, but they got to listen to the science on like, 700 topics. And I’m guessing that I’m not even exaggerating when it comes to that. And
Michael Hingson 17:48
they do. But in reality, a lot of what goes on with the politicians is really, the accomplishments of the staff and the staff advises them, yes, the politicians vote. But I guess my point really is having spent a lot of time around Washington and dealing with Congress and, and educating them on issues with disabilities and so on. A lot of the time, it’s really educating the staff, or trying to educate the staff. So the staff really controls a lot of what the actual legislator hears and sees. So it still gets back to they’re not necessarily the experts that we might think they are. They rely on staff. And that also means maybe they need to do a little bit better job of hiring smart staff. But as I said, it’s also that they oftentimes stir up their constituents, which is a problem.
Kris Gowen 18:45
Yeah, yeah. Oh, yes.
Michael Hingson 18:47
It’s a mess. It’s a challenge. I don’t envy anybody who does it. I agree with you. But I think also there are, there are more things that we could do to to have a more substantive discussion about a lot of stuff. And and it seems like we’re really losing that opportunity, or at least we’re losing the perspective of having meaningful conversations, compared to what it used to be like 40 and 50 years ago.
Kris Gowen 19:17
Yeah, yes, there’s definitely more of a I mean, there’s lots of explanations. And again, these are sort of, I mean, we’re, we’ve, like, whatever, five minutes into this podcast, we’re launching into like, some of the country’s biggest challenges and I write, I definitely don’t have answers for them. And I don’t think anybody does at this point, because it’s not going to be simple. It’s so many different things that are happening that are coming together at a time that is creating, yeah, these like strong divides between between some types of values. And at the same time, I do think that there are commonalities that are there. It’s just that we’re very much entrenched, right? Now in, you know, being more drawn to difference than we are to similarity and common ground.
Michael Hingson 20:06
Yeah. And I think that’s a theme that a lot of people who think about it get to, which is, we’re focusing too much on differences and not commonalities and finding ways to work together. But you went off and you got your PhD and came back to Stanford to do that. And then what did you do with your life?
Kris Gowen 20:26
I ended up working a little bit in so I was in I’m trying to remember, this is a very long time ago, I didn’t realize I was gonna have to go through my whole biography. That’s all good. I just was like, What did I do after that? I, I was doing some research, I’ve really always been drawn to not being a traditional academic. So I’ve been research faculty at a couple of universities, I’ve worked, like I said, in sort of the nonprofit sector for a little bit. Some of it had to do with youth and young adults, some of it dealt more with health care in general. And so yeah, just been, you know, going where my passions were taking have taken me and I really liked that. That’s how I’ve done things. Sometimes it’s frustrating to be like to look at myself, some days, I’m like, Why did I just not choose an easy path or just like, you know, become an academic and stay in a place and just keep going. And I just sort of learned that just has to stop my nature, I just can’t stay in one place for too long. Whether that’s, you know, career ideas, or whether it’s a physical location, I just really always been drawn to making sure that what I’m doing matters, and making sure what I’m doing. supports other other people.
Michael Hingson 21:54
can’t do much better than that. Hmm.
Kris Gowen 21:56
Well, not I don’t know. I mean, also, I just, you know, I know there’s I’m sure there’s many ways I can do better. And this is what I got.
Michael Hingson 22:04
Oh, that’s okay. So did you go into teaching? Or what did you go into doing?
Kris Gowen 22:08
I did, I taught, I taught at Portland State University. For a while I taught human sexuality. I taught women’s reproductive health, I taught a handful of other courses, but those were the two main ones. And then I was what’s called research faculty. So again, I had a research portfolio that focused on youth and young adults, both in terms of healthy relationships, safer sex, as well as mental health. So I did that. And then I got tired of doing that. And so I took the opportunity to do some traveling for a couple of years where I was in a, you know, would stay in various countries for several, you know, for several months, and explore and really get to know different communities and different cultures and, and really appreciated that time, I taught some, taught some English and taught some research methods. And a couple of different I taught in Vietnam, I did some tutoring in South Korea, my student teaching was in Vietnam. And then I taught in Oman, which is in the Middle East. And all of that took around not quite two years to do that. And then I settled back up to being in an academic institution, again, in Oregon, and then, yeah, and then I, then the pandemic it, and everything went sideways. And that’s what allowed me to take that time and reflect and decide, you know, I want to move to Toronto at some point in my life. So I, I, you know, got my paperwork in order and went up there and work there for a little bit. And now I’m back in Oregon, where my social support network is, and I’m doing some consulting work.
Michael Hingson 23:56
So now you’re kind of on your own. Do you have have you formed your own company? Or what?
Kris Gowen 24:00
I do some independent consulting in that I also work for a large business management consulting firm as well.
Michael Hingson 24:08
What do you do for them?
Kris Gowen 24:10
Some change management work, as well as I’m currently supporting a new a new artificial intelligence, language processing, natural language processing tool, which is basically just something that would help help people analyze a lot of qualitative data as opposed to doing it all by hand. Because if you’ve got like a large organization, or if you’ve got, you know, for example, a large number of tweets or something and you want to make meaning of them, and there’s literally 1000s of them. Typical qualitative research methods just can’t really capture that data with any form of efficiency. So it’s an interesting dance between humans and machine to help make the process more efficient. So I’m looking into supporting that, that that work?
Michael Hingson 25:08
Do you use a tool that we would have heard of? No,
Kris Gowen 25:11
use a tool that is proprietary of the organization I’m working for. And it’s, it’s still we’re still in soft launch? So no, I haven’t I’m not using a tool that anyone else is really, I mean, other than internally, a few of us are being trained up on this to help to help support its utilization in house.
Michael Hingson 25:32
I know, there’s been some discussion over the last few weeks about the stuff that Microsoft is doing to do text analysis and be able to do everything from composing poetry to having conversations with AI. Yes. I have not played with that yet. Although I guess I should explore it. People have asked me and I haven’t really done that. So that’s one of the things that I get to do when I take a little bit of time and, and don’t do interviews for a day or two. But so that’s, that’s, that’s all pretty cool. Well, you, you’ve done some writing, you wrote a book, I believe on sex education, right?
Kris Gowen 26:10
Yeah, I did. I wrote a book called mimicking or they retitled it. So its first iteration was called Making sexual decisions. And then it just became sexual decisions. And it’s sort of a, it’s a textbook and like a library book for teens. And what made that unique, was it really balanced? It was about 5050, on healthy relationships versus sort of the the anatomy and sexual health components. So books tended to either lean towards one or the other. And so I wrote that. And then like I said, it had a couple of additions to it. And then, you know, it becomes sexuality education becomes really outdated very quickly. And so the book is, I think the last iteration of it was 2018, I think was when the the last edition of that was really published. But somehow, Congress is founded and has put it onto some banned book lists. Because it, I guess, it says things that they don’t want it to say. So my friends made me a t shirt that says, you know, my book was banned, not like, you know, kind of selling a stinking t shirt. So yeah, and so I wrote that. And then yeah, the other two books that I’ve written since then, one was about my karaoke journey. And then the other was somewhat related to that, but was looking at the importance of finding joy during times of grief, because the first book about my karaoke journey, singing in all 50 states was really about me, processing the loss of my best friend. So those books, you know, they’re certainly not sequels of each other, anything like that. But they’re they, you know, there’s a tie in there with the joy that karaoke brings me and how it really, I think, helps my mental health and just encouraging people to either find joy in karaoke, or whatever it is that they can find happiness in, during really, really tough times.
Michael Hingson 28:21
Well, I do want to get to that. But I’ve got another question that you just made me think of, as you said that there have been several iterations of your your book on sex education, and they become out of date very quickly, why is that? What, what really causes the shift that makes it come out? It will go out of date and need to Yeah,
Kris Gowen 28:39
I mean, there’s a lot of things like the from between, like, I’ll just give an example between the first the second edition, the HPV vaccine came out, right? So like, that’s a whole thing. So, and then other ways that we talk about consent? I think, you know, so this is this is not necessarily in the iterations of my book, but we start like, when I was in high school, and even when I was in college, the idea of consent was very heteronormative. In other words, it was very assumed that it was going to be a boy and a girl negotiating sexual activity and it was up to the girl to be the gatekeeper to say no. And then and it was really up to the girl to make sure that that’s the way it was. And now we’ve evolved so much more than in our consent language. First of all, we’ve dissolved like we’re working on dissolving the gender binary, we can’t assume the genders of the people that are wanting to engage in sexual activity we can assume who might be wanting to say no, versus another person who might be more interested. And then there’s also the concept of teaching kids how to hear a no and how to make sure they’re hearing a yes, so the onus isn’t placed on On the person who is less interested in engaging in a certain type of activity, so there’s so much on that. And then again, sort of talking about the ways we talk about gender identity and sexual orientation evolve very quickly. So if we want to be inclusive, and reach all young people in, in getting, you know, providing them with knowledge, things change really fast.
Michael Hingson 30:25
Do you see other kinds of changes that are coming?
Kris Gowen 30:31
I mean, yes, because gender identity and sexual orientation are still evolving in terms of how we’re discussing those things. And I didn’t even mention technic, the role of technology, and how that’s escalating, right? There’s always different apps that are being used, there’s always different ways to communicate, and what are the most common ways that young youth and young adults prefer to communicate. So all of that is very, all of that is continuing to evolve. And I think a lot of that is still evolving. I’m hoping that our conversations about like I said, consent, and gender identity and sexual orientation, and just relationship structure, and things. I think all of that I’m really hoping continue to evolve and start to become more gray, as it were, that we don’t have the sort of hard and fast rules, but instead really encourage listening and respect and communication and teaching people how to think about what matters to them, and then communicating that and feeling comfortable communicating that to somebody else that they might want to be with
Michael Hingson 31:47
and accepting the responses that come whatever they may be.
Kris Gowen 31:51
Exactly. And that’s part of the communication and listening piece. Yeah.
Michael Hingson 31:55
Well, so you have been doing all of this, which is great. And you’ve been doing karaoke. How did you get started originally with karaoke? What? What made you decide that that was something that would be fun to do?
Kris Gowen 32:09
Well, I mean, it’s it sort of comes back to when I was a kid and just loving to sing no matter what. And so the first time I sang karaoke was actually in Arizona. And I don’t remember what year this is, but it was in there was sometime in the 90s. But I do remember being like being in a bar after I’d like I was visiting a friend of mine, and we were, we just played a softball game. And now we’re in a bar, and there’s singing, and it’s like, Well, wait, what’s this magic, I can put a song in, and then they’re gonna call my name, and then I get to sing. This is the best thing I’ve ever heard was was the best thing ever. And then, and that first time was a total disaster. I mean, I picked a song that I picked hearts alone, which first of all, no one wants to hear that in a bar, like no one needs to hear that right. And then I left the big note. I mean, it was just a disaster. But I was super happy about it. I was just like, This is great. And then, and then when I went to get my Masters on the East Coast, I didn’t know anybody. And so one of the things I did was just sort of became a local at one of the nearby bars, and they had karaoke every Wednesday, I think it was. And so I just went every Wednesday as my chance and something I always just would look forward to. And I would just be like, I’m going to sing a couple songs and be able to do this thing. And it gets to see like the same people over and over again. And it’s just this wonderful, magical experience. And then so from there on out, I just started to look for karaoke bars, wherever I was. And just yeah, just kept singing as a key component of my, my mental health and just general fun.
Michael Hingson 33:58
We bought a timeshare at the Lawrence Welk Resorts in Escondido, California in the early 90s. Got a great deal. And they had karaoke on I think it was Saturday nights. And I’m not sure whether that was the first time I did it. But it probably was. One of the things that they did a couple of times is there were people who came and they did it enough that they actually let them take an hour and do a whole karaoke concert.
Kris Gowen 34:25
Wow. Which hopefully they knew that because then the people who came just to sing a song or two are like, wait, I have to wait an hour.
Michael Hingson 34:33
Oh, it worked out. Yeah, they they always advertise it ahead of time. But also, they started earlier and they actually started like an hour early so people can come to hear the concert and then the regular karaoke time. Started at the usual time.
Kris Gowen 34:47
Oh, that sounds fantastic. Yeah, that’s yeah, it
Michael Hingson 34:49
was it was it was wonderful. And so and you did even with a concert here, some people who will let’s just say did better than others. Okay. Yeah, that’s okay.
Kris Gowen 35:01
It is. I mean, I love that part of community. And I really think that that’s, you know, I’ve alluded to it before, but karaoke is yes, of course, I love to sing. And I love, you know, like, singing in front of people, I think that adds an extra joy to it for me. I mean, some people, it’s their living hell, but you know, that’s okay. Because that’s what variety and life is for. So, I love that aspect. And I love when a person gets called to the microphone, and I don’t know who that person is, and I have no idea what they’re gonna sing. You can’t tell by looking at a person with their song selection is going to be an end. Like, I just love all of that. And then I love going to a, you know, going to a karaoke venue, like regularly and then getting to know those people and just feeling that support and giving that support to people who are being really brave by just stepping out and singing a song in front of others.
Michael Hingson 35:59
Oh, since that first time, have you ever done hearts alone again? Oh, yeah. Okay.
Kris Gowen 36:03
Oh, yeah. And also, anytime I really now it’s sort of funny anytime I think I’ll know a song and then I don’t sing it very well. I am like that does it? And I like, really, you know, we’ll all focus on it. I can’t say that I, when it comes to, you know, bar karaoke, singing, I don’t really rehearse per se. But I will like, listen to the song a couple of times. So I actually, you know, know it,
Michael Hingson 36:29
know, the melody at least, do you? Do you read the words most of the time? Or do you try to memorize words ahead of time?
Kris Gowen 36:36
Well, I mean, I like to, it’s a good question, because there’s a couple of things. One is I like to do a bunch of new stuff a lot. And so I, I do enjoy, therefore, rely, like, being able to read the words and reading the words. And then also, I do find that oftentimes, I then end up using them as a crutch, like, I don’t actually need them. But I still look at the screen. And then, however, I’ve also been dabbling here and there in competitive karaoke. And when you do competitive karaoke, you 100% cannot look at the words like you just you have to engage the audience. And you have to be doing that. And there’s no looking at words, when you’re, when you’re doing that kind of that kind of competition,
Michael Hingson 37:27
you have no way to really put the feeling into it that you do if you already know the words, because you’re focused on the words, you’re not focused on what you need to be focused on. And that makes sense.
Kris Gowen 37:40
Yeah, your storytelling doesn’t get as good. You’re like, again, your audience connection isn’t as good. You can’t, you know, I mean, depending on how many monitors are there, but it’s also difficult to, you know, go to different parts of the stage to to talk to, you know, sort of, quote, unquote, talk to different people in different parts of the room. So you really need to not be tethered to the screen. Yeah, in order to do some of those things, to help create a better performance.
Michael Hingson 38:11
I remember once doing karaoke with someone, and they wanted to perform a song and I didn’t know all the words to do the melody and all that. And actually, the operator of the system stood next to me. And because I told him, I don’t know all the words, he said, don’t worry. And he told me the words far enough in advance that I was able to go ahead and put it together, which was really pretty cool. And then actually, it came out pretty well. I wish we’d recorded it, but I don’t even remember what the song was. But it was fun to be able to do that. And but for me, I do memorize and practice, before I go only so that I make sure I really do know all the words because it’s the only way that I’m going to be able to do it successfully, but it makes it a lot more fun to, to be able to, as you said, connect with the audience in one way or another. Well, and
Kris Gowen 38:59
it’s funny too, because I appreciate, you know, you needing to, like, you know, memorize the lyrics in advance. And sometimes the lyrics that show up on the screen are definitely not the right lyrics. Like, you look at them and you’re like, um, that is really not what I think this person is saying. And, and so, you know, sometimes the the lyrics are incorrect on these in these karaoke tracks.
Michael Hingson 39:24
So yeah, which is, which is another whole issue that one has to deal with, but you know, it’s it’s still is a lot of fun to do. And I’ve enjoyed it. What’s the for you the most rewarding or the thing you love most about doing karaoke?
Kris Gowen 39:42
I mean, I really do think it’s this this piece of, of community that even if you’re only in a like in like, again, when I was going around the US and singing karaoke in all 50 states wherever I was hanging my had that night that was sort of that was my community for the night. And again, it’s a very supportive community, and people are cheering each other and people will potentially, you know, strike up a conversation with you. And it is like, you know, when we were talking about the politics stuff at the start of this conversation, you don’t know somebody’s political affiliation, you don’t know, like, you know, who they go home to at night, if anybody you don’t know, you just don’t know really anything about them. And it’s okay, like, we’re just, everyone’s united. And I mean, my books called One nation under song, in part for that reason, because you really do become this community of humans. And there’s a lot of magic in that to then sort of forget about some of the other things that might make you not friends. Outside of that setting.
Michael Hingson 40:53
What are some songs that don’t make good Karaoke Songs? Or maybe a better way to put it is what makes the best Karaoke Songs?
Kris Gowen 41:00
Yeah. So the first one is like if it’s super long if there’s a lot of long instrumentals. And then And then usually, I mean, not always, but if it’s way too slow. I mean, because most karaoke is done in bars. And most karaoke is done late at night. And so, the idea of singing something super long, was super long, instrumentals and slow. Like you just no one wants to, like, people want their turn and people want to like go to a bar to feel probably usually a little peppier. So it’s like those things. So. But that said, it’s not necessarily the flip side is what makes a good karaoke song. A good karaoke song is the song that’s in your heart is a song that matters to you is the song that you want to sing because it is the song you want to sing. Because you can tell when people are singing the song that’s bringing them joy. It’s, you can just tell and it just becomes a funner performance.
Michael Hingson 42:04
I think I mentioned when we chatted before doing this interview about the time we were at Lawrence Welk and it was near the end of the night and one of the servers got up and just started singing from the best little whorehouse in Texas hard candy Christmas. Yes. And did the most incredible performance of that I think I’ve ever heard outside of and maybe is, is equal to what was in the the musical or the movie. But clearly, she had sung it before, and just in a really wonderful job with it and got a great reaction from the audience.
Kris Gowen 42:41
Yeah. Yeah, I mean, again, some people are gonna want to sing the same song over again, and have it be very rehearsed. And there’s nothing wrong with that, because that’s what makes that person feel comfortable, or the side of them that they want to show. And so I do know, people that sing, you know, a very small repertoire of songs. And that’s where they that’s again, that’s where their comfort is, that’s what they want to do. And then I have other friends who are just more like, it’s a bar, no one’s really listening to me. I just want to sing something that that I want to try, or I you know, again, that’s the song that I was singing to on the radio, and I was like, oh, I want to give it a whirl myself. Right. Like, there’s just sort of those things. And then, you know, every day is a different mood, and it’s a different time. And so what is the song that’s calling to at that particular time? And that’s, you know, what I when people will turn to me and say, What should I sing? I’m like, Well, what were you Yeah, what were you singing to on the radio? The last time you were listening to the radio, or what did you find yourself? Singing in the shower? The last time I was doing this? Well sing that.
Michael Hingson 43:49
So from a long song standpoint, probably. You wouldn’t want to go much longer than Don McLean’s American Pie, but at least it’s a fast tempo song.
Kris Gowen 43:58
Yeah, but yeah, American Pie. Yeah, that’s, I mean, that’s like seven minutes, right? I mean, there is a radio edit and a karaoke edit of that song. So, but yes, like American Pie. Piano Man is even really long. I mean, sometimes people can get into it. But like, if it’s over five minutes, you’re just like, Yeah, I don’t know.
Michael Hingson 44:16
It’s getting a little bit. It can be a little bit tougher, right? There is
Kris Gowen 44:21
no hard and fast rule. I mean, no. Do you have the bar, there’s nobody in that bar, I will bust out Come Sail Away, which breaks all the rules. It’s too long. It’s got like over a minute, instrumental in it, all that stuff, but it’s a fun song. And I’m only singing it if there’s like a very small rotation of singers.
Michael Hingson 44:39
Yeah, yeah. But if people enjoy it, it works. Sure. Sure. So. So how did you get involved in thinking of this idea of singing karaoke in all 50 states, you would love to travel so that gave you a good excuse for doing it. But how did that all come about?
Kris Gowen 44:59
Yeah, I mean, The the the slow roll of it was I can’t I think there was just one day that I noticed that I was starting to collect states because I again, as an as a former academic, I would go to a lot of conferences. And so sometimes you network in the conferences, and then sometimes you’re just sort of like, you know what I don’t want to network in a conference, I want to go out on this, I want to see what St. Louis is like, or I want to see what, you know, Tampa, Florida is like, and so you find the karaoke establishment, and you go there to get a little like dose of local flavor of a place. And so I don’t know, I had collected maybe nine or 10 states just sort of doing it that way. And then. And then in 2015, my best friend was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer. And I had a good year with her not quite a year, but you know, and when she died, I was like, she and I used to also sing together a lot. And I just, I just kind of was at a loss, for lack of anything else, just like, I couldn’t really imagine a life without her I. And so I quit my job. And I drove around the country to say, All right, if my goal is to sing karaoke in all 50 states, I’m doing it this weird trickle, you know, when else am I gonna get to Oklahoma? When else am I going to do? Like, I need to, I need to do this, I need to do this as an actual thing. And so I did, I got in my car. And I drove over 17,000 miles in 99 days to hit the 48 lower states. I took I avoided freeways and interstates whenever possible, because I wanted to actually see the country. And so when I was done, you know, I had a couple months in between, but then I picked up Alaska and Hawaii. So make it off. 50.
Michael Hingson 47:05
So you are clearly grieving? How did this really help your grief?
Kris Gowen 47:12
In a lot of different ways. And not intentionally mind you? I just was following my, you know, to me, I’m like, what is the one that I didn’t really like my job at the time? I you know, I didn’t my relationship situation wasn’t great. And so I was like, the one thing that still I could find anything to care about was karaoke. It was the only thing that I cared about. That was it. And so I’m like, alright, well, that’s something that’s good. I’m finding joy in something. And so again, I got in my car and just took off. And the things that made this trip really good for my grief, I think were one singing really helps emotional processing, it helps you get your feelings out, it does all that there was structure to my days, but not too much of a structure. Like I had, I knew that on, you know, I woke up in one state. And I knew that I needed to get to this other state by a certain time. And I had a lot of alone time. I didn’t do the whole trip by myself. But I did a lot of the trip by myself. So I had time in a car to sort of just again, let myself feel and let myself exist. I was constantly seeing new things, which is another great brain exercise for building resilience is to experience new things. And yeah, I just, I think this combination of like structured but not too structured, seeing new things, being able to use my emotions and channel them in ways that I enjoy and finding that like one slice of joy that would help me balance it just was a very good way for me to just allow myself to experience what I needed to experience.
Michael Hingson 49:03
Did you well rephrase that, do you think that you benefited more from doing the karaoke, or that you’ve benefited more from doing the travel spending time alone? Having a lot of time to think and process?
Kris Gowen 49:21
I mean, I think it’s the balance. And I think that’s the key to and so like, sort of, in my second book, which is find your song, it’s, it’s the whole concept of that book is is balancing moments of joy during times of grief. Because we need the balance. You know, like ultimately your body needs a balance your your brain needs a balance that when you provide yourself with the respite of moments of joy during an awful, awful time of life, you’re actually allowing yourself to grieve better, you’re allowing your body to to have those breaks it It physically needs in order to, to recover. Because grief is impacts us physically, emotionally, mentally. And so if we’re always, you know, quote unquote, in it, like just stuck in the, you know, we do need to be in it sometimes I mean, not everybody and and, and I was a person who needed to be in it sometimes. But if I was just always in it, then that was not, that would not be good.
Michael Hingson 50:30
What would you advise a person to do? Or how would you advise a person who is experiencing grief? What kinds of things would you say to them?
Kris Gowen 50:42
I mean, again, it’s sort of again, it’s like my, I mean, my book almost outlines, like a bit of a, I’m not gonna say a script, because there is no script. I think the first like, the first chapter is basically like, there is no brief script. So if you think, and also, if you think, you know, you’re like, Well, I’ve lost somebody before, or I’ve grieved before. Yeah, but this is a different person, and you’re a different person, because it’s a different time. So you can’t be like, Oh, I was like this, when this happened. Now I’m going to I’m going to be the same way, it’s just not going to happen. So your grief and your grief experience in the moment is yours. And so to allow your emotions in, allow them to be. And again, don’t be afraid, and don’t be ashamed if you’re experiencing some positive times in amongst the negative. And really being, if you can, being mindful of what are little things you can do to promote self care and to get the supports that you need. And so if you’ve got that one student, like you’re like, the only joy I’m getting right now is watching this television show. Fine, then go for it. If your joy is karaoke, if it’s knitting, if it’s making Chinese food, I don’t know, it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter how silly it seems. It’s not silly, because it’s it’s, it’s your it’s your your sister being pointing you in a direction of some form of a finding a little bit of pleasure and a life where it might be hard, and you can’t even see any form of pleasure at all, except for quote, unquote, this stupid thing. And this stupid thing is it’s not stupid. It’s,
Michael Hingson 52:25
it’s what’s important for you at the moment, and you’re right, there’s, there’s no reason to think that anything is stupid. What I think is important is thinking about it and internalizing it to the point where you can, at some point, start to think about, okay, I’m doing this, I’m really enjoying it. I don’t want to stop doing it. But how do I also continue then to move forward? I know when my wife passed away, last month to be well, and November, I started saying, like, a number of people always say, Well, you know, you got to move on. And I realized that was the wrong thing to say. Because if you move on, that it to me, it seems like it implies almost that you’re possibly forgetting. But what I realized the appropriate thing, at least for me to say is, we do need to move forward. And she would want that.
Kris Gowen 53:18
Yeah, yes, I mean, the language, language does matter. And everyone’s going to resonate with a certain way. So some people like you’re saying move forward resonated with you. Some people are like, move through that we’re different. I mean, you’re you’re different. You, you experienced a profound loss, and I’m sorry for your loss. And there is like, so you are now a different person. And so it’s like, okay, who’s this new? Who is this new, Michael? And how does this new Michael want to navigate through through the universe, and for a little while, you might be like, oh, and navigate through this universe at all, and other people have ideas. Because sometimes the grief and the loss is more expected than others. So some people have done some anticipatory grief or is like some, some preparing and other times, the universe does not provide us with that opportunity to sort of think about life without that person
Michael Hingson 54:17
whose case it was kind of half and half. I wouldn’t say that it was totally unexpected, but not as fast as it it occurred. And also, no matter how much you expect it. It’s really different when it’s occurred, and now you are actually in a different space, in my case alone. So there there are things I do differently. And sometimes I wonder why am I doing it differently? And I realized, well, that’s because now it’s the way it is so I wake up earlier, I turn the TV on when I get up in the morning and Karen always used to get up much later than ice. I’d never turned the TV on until we I go out In the other room and close the door. So a lot of things that are different, but it’s also okay. And I’m sure it will evolve some more over time. But I happen to be a person that likes to continue to move. And I get the joy, I will say, of doing this podcast, which is so much fun. And I get to learn so much, though all of all of the time that I get to spend with you and others is such an enjoyable thing for me. And it’s been that way ever since the beginning of the podcast, but it’s so much better even now.
Kris Gowen 55:34
Yeah, and it’s, I mean, it’s, again, it’s, it’s some connection that you’re getting for a little bit of time, it’s a project that hopefully isn’t too overwhelming for you. And it is these these pieces that just help you sort of take every, you know, take things day to day in that very mindfulness, that mindfulness way because again, it’s not like, you know, there’s the Kubler Ross stages of grief. And there’s these other things and, and, you know, if I look at my, you know, grief journey, if you will, it’s really just a big scribble. You know, because there’s, there’ll be days, I mean, Molly died in 2016. And so it’s been several years since she’s been gone. And, you know, for the most part, you know, I’m I function through the day to day, I still think about her every day, there’s something in the world that makes me think about her. And then there’s some times where it’s just a gut punch. It’s just like, it’s like, it’s like, it wasn’t that long ago at all. And there’s, there’s other times where it’s, it’s not doesn’t feel that way.
Michael Hingson 56:41
And for me, I don’t ever want it to be that long ago. And I will always remember and I think that it’s important. Well, when you’re married for 40 years, minus 15 days, that’s not a surprise. But I wouldn’t want I wouldn’t want that to change. There’s so much to remember about her and, and all of the wonderful times the memories will always be here. And that’s an important thing. Yes, definitely. So then the pandemic hit you remember that pandemic thing? And, yeah, well, I’m
Kris Gowen 57:12
Michael Hingson 57:13
Little things are crawling all over the place. And you wrote another book.
Kris Gowen 57:17
Yeah. And that’s the book that the Find Your song is, is where so I wrote one nation under song as like, when I completed that karaoke journey. And then I never really had the intention of writing a book from it, I just got back and I was like, I’m not done. I’m not done. Not done. And so like, that book just sort of came forward. And I, you know, worked on it that way. And then, during the pandemic, I, I wish I could remember, I’m sure it’s brain fog, or whatever have you or just the COVID time messing this, but like, I just noticed that like I was grieving the world was grieving. The two things that really bring me like, are the three things that bring me joy, karaoke, can’t do that. That’s like one of the worst things you do during a pandemic, travel can’t do that. So like the two things that helped me through my, you know, that the loss of Mali, those were way off the table, and then even being in community and being with friends or something, well, that was on the table in a very small dose, right, you couldn’t just go out and see people. So I was left with being stripped of the my coping mechanisms. And so one of the other coping mechanisms I still sort of had was writing. And the thing I wanted to write about was the thing that I was experiencing, which was grief and being the researcher that I am I went to literature and I looked at grief literature and, and just started writing about this concept of joy and grief and and synthesizing the science, my own personal experiences and, and my own abilities to synthesize literature as a researcher. Yeah, I just I, like I said, it’s, it’s a tiny little book. And, you know, so it’s digestible for people who are going through grief because, you know, can’t really read a lot when you’re super sad. And, and you Yeah, it just takes people through sort of things to consider others meditations in it, that you can use exercises that you can do if you find those fun, and otherwise, it’s just, it helped me and I just hope it helps other other people without being really super prescriptive, like do it this way. It’s not that kind of book.
Michael Hingson 59:47
No, I’m curious. You during the pandemic, of course, she had travel issues and so on, and I appreciate that I came back from New York on March 6 of 2020 is They closed down the city I escaped and made it back to California. Can you travel and get anywhere near the same level of enjoyment by doing it virtually?
Kris Gowen 1:00:12
Travel virtually, or karaoke virtually
Michael Hingson 1:00:15
traveled? Well, we could talk about karaoke too, but I was thinking more of travel virtually.
Kris Gowen 1:00:19
I’m, I don’t I mean, not for me, I’m gonna say I think other people, it might answer that differently. And I’m way too much of a people person. And way too much of a person that needs to absorb the ambiance. And the feelings that I’m have the space around me to really get the sense of I’ve been there without actually physically being there,
Michael Hingson 1:00:50
there is nothing like experiencing the ocean by being there. And I don’t necessarily even mean walking into the ocean, although that, for me becomes a part of it as well. But the sound is different, it is just a total different thing, or going to a live performance. And listening to the orchestra, and or to a musical and listening in watching it live. The sound the whole ambiance, although I can cope with doing things virtually. And I can watch movies virtually Well, or, you know, online or however. But there’s nothing, absolutely nothing. Like being in a Broadway theater and observing a performance.
Michael Hingson 1:01:40
Yeah, you feel the energy and you feel the energy,
Michael Hingson 1:01:44
the sound is totally different. And I’m sure that the site is as well. We went to see Lion King, what as soon after it came out, and my brother in law, his wife, and their daughter, three years old, were visiting us and a friend of his new one of the actors and got us into the Lion King. And Karen was telling me, my wife was we were watching and she said, you know, you really forget about the puppets, you just see the animals and you forget that it’s people behind them. And then after the show, we got to go back stage and meet several of the actors. And I actually got to look at a couple of the puppets. And although I experienced, obviously different than she did, and the others, I understood what they were saying, but there is just nothing like the energy of being in a live performance or in a situation. So I think you can see a lot by traveling virtually. But it is still not the same as being there.
Kris Gowen 1:02:47
Yes, I mean, I think it’s, it’s better than not doing anything and seeing the same four walls or one block or whatever, of where you’re situated. And yeah, and for me, it’s not the same. And I don’t want to take away the experience of other people have that experience that differently.
Michael Hingson 1:03:05
Well, the other part about it is is virtual reality improves. I wonder how much that will affect our ability to maybe have a better experience? Don’t know the answer to that yet. We’re to near the beginning of that whole process, though, to really know.
Kris Gowen 1:03:22
Yeah, it is interesting, because buildings, maybe, but again, like if you’re looking for the people energy, you’re still not gonna be able to get that. But if you want to look at like, you know, a castle, or some a temple or something like that, and just can’t be immersed.
Michael Hingson 1:03:39
Even people, maybe you can, again, depends on how good and effective the virtual reality is, how good the sound is, how good every aspect of it is. But that’s something that only time is going to really tell but I suspect, they’ll always be something that is hard to replicate in a virtual reality mode, as opposed to actually being there. And that’s part of the fun and even if you get all the same sensations going somewhere, you still know you’re there, which is just in itself kind of fun.
Kris Gowen 1:04:17
Yeah, for sure.
Michael Hingson 1:04:20
Well, this has been really a lot of fun to to do. I’ve enjoyed it. If tell Miss, where people can get your books and the names of the books again, and how could they reach out to you if they want to learn more about you if you’re doing consulting that may be relevant for people, how do they get to you and all that stuff?
Kris Gowen 1:04:39
Yeah, so let’s see. It’s um, like now trying to figure out which hat for which which contact LinkedIn? Probably LinkedIn is probably the easiest for consulting and things like that or just being in touch. And my two books are one nation under song and find your Song and they are both on Amazon. And my publisher went under when I was during the pandemic, so they’re currently in self published mode. And so other booksellers will pick them up because they’re through Ingram Spark. So it’s not just Amazon, it can be through a Barnes and Nobles online or a Pauwels, or something like that. And yeah, LinkedIn would probably be the easiest place.
Michael Hingson 1:05:27
How do people find you on LinkedIn? Kris? Gowen,
Kris Gowen 1:05:30
K R I S G O W E N.
Michael Hingson 1:05:33
That will that will find you How about your book on sex education and so on? Is that still available?
Kris Gowen 1:05:38
I think it actually is. And also, again, like sort of major retailer booksellers, I think it’s that’s through Rowman and Littlefield. And I think they still, I think they still churn it out every once in a while. It’s certainly not my retirement plan. But I think it’s still, it’s still out there and available.
Michael Hingson 1:05:58
I hear you any more plans for writing that you’re starting to think about at all? Yeah,
Kris Gowen 1:06:02
I got a friend of mine, a colleague and I were looking at doing a book about relationships. It’s still in its infant stages, but really looking to critically examine the way that relationships are sort of performed, for lack of better word, but you know, Dawn in, in the US and other Western communities, as well as the importance of friendships and embedding that as well into the book. So it’s very loose in its outline currently. So it’s hard to talk about now. But it’s been fun to start, I know that there’s another, there’s another book in there that that will eventually manifest.
Michael Hingson 1:06:47
Well, that’s still a cool thing. And definitely, please keep us in mind when you’re getting closer to publishing it, and so on, and it’s defined more or whenever you want to do it, we’d love you to come back and talk to us about that and other experiences that you’re having. Because clearly your experiences are valuable. And I think people will find listening to this a lot of fun. I know I did. And I’ve really enjoyed it. And I appreciate all the things you’re saying.
Kris Gowen 1:07:13
Thank you so much. And yes, my co author, and I, you know, we’ll we’ll talk to you in a few months, and we’re hopefully moving along pretty well on it. I like the extra pressure of saying these words out loud, and you know, to motivate me to get get a move on.
Michael Hingson 1:07:31
got to start somewhere you do. Well, thanks again for being here. And I want to thank you for listening to us tonight to this afternoon or whenever it is, wherever you are. I really appreciate it. I hope that although we’re not sitting right in front of you in person that your virtual experience or your listening experience is valuable enough. We really enjoyed you being here. And thank you for your attention to us. And if you’d like to we I’d love to hear your comments and your thoughts. Feel free to email me at Michaelhi M I C H A E L H I at accessibe A C C E S S I B E.com. Or go visit our podcast page, which is www dot Michael hingson H i n g s o n.com/podcast. Definitely, please give us a five star rating. We really value the ratings. But I also want to hear your views your opinions and I would love it if you feel free to and will feel free to email me. If you know of any other guests or other people that we ought to have on the podcast, please let me know. Let them know get us together, always looking for opportunities like that. We met Kris through LinkedIn. And we’re going to continue to search and Kris, if you know anyone else that we should be talking with please, we appreciate you letting them know about us as well. But most of all, thanks one last time for being here.
Kris Gowen 1:08:52
Thank you. It’s been really fun.
Michael Hingson 1:08:58
You have been listening to the Unstoppable Mindset podcast. Thanks for dropping by. I hope that you’ll join us again next week, and in future weeks for upcoming episodes. To subscribe to our podcast and to learn about upcoming episodes, please visit www dot Michael hingson.com slash podcast. Michael Hingson is spelled m i c h a e l h i n g s o n. While you’re on the site., please use the form there to recommend people who we ought to interview in upcoming editions of the show. And also, we ask you and urge you to invite your friends to join us in the future. If you know of any one or any organization needing a speaker for an event, please email me at speaker at Michael hingson.com. I appreciate it very much. To learn more about the concept of blinded by fear, please visit www dot Michael hingson.com forward slash blinded by fear and while you’re there, feel free to pick up a copy of my free eBook entitled blinded by fear. The unstoppable mindset podcast is provided by access cast an initiative of accessiBe and is sponsored by accessiBe. Please visit www.accessibe.com. accessiBe is spelled a c c e s s i b e. There you can learn all about how you can make your website inclusive for all persons with disabilities and how you can help make the internet fully inclusive by 2025. Thanks again for listening. Please come back and visit us again next week.