Becky Friedman has been one of my most favorite podcast guests so far. No. 1, she’s not a sports writer. No. 2, my kids love her work. Friedman, you see, is the story editor and head writer for the animated PBS kids show, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood — which serves as sort of a sequel for the characters who resided in the Neighborhood of Make Believe in the old Mr. Rogers Neighborhood show. If you haven’t seen the show, head over here to introduce yourself to Daniel and friends. If you have children of a certain age, you might know exactly what I’m talking about.
In our discussion, Friedman and I talk about why all those damn children’s songs gets stuck in our heads, why the writers don’t aim the show’s material at adults, and how everybody thinks they could write a children’s book or TV script. Plus, she runs us through how an episode gets made and why Fred Rogers’ comforting words and legacy continue to impact us today.
My favorite quote from Friedman: “Preschoolers don’t give pity laughs. if they don’t like something, they’ll get up and walk away.”
Here’s some of what we talked about (and some of what we didn’t).