Sixth Floor Walk-Up, Lakeview

Brandon Hillerty opens up a GarageBand file on his computer. In the beginning, he tried to use Audacity, he explains, but the YouTube tutorials were just too confusing. After pressing play, his inexplicably muffled voice rings out from the tiny laptop speakers. “Sup? No, I’m gonna start that one over. Sup, everyone.”

Hillerty readily admits that this new venture, starting his own personal podcast, is a direct result of his quarter-life crisis (or more accurately, his one-third-life crisis, according to the average male life expectancy in the United States).

“As a twenty-five year old, do I have any real expertise to offer the world?” Hillerty asks, pretending to busily type things on his computer as he speaks. “Of course not. Am I still ordering a Blue Yeti Miniature Microphone in ‘lunar gray’ and planning to monologue into it about the mundanities of my life? Absolutely!” Hillerty promises that his main objective in making this podcast is to prove every negative millennial stereotype true with astounding speed and subpar sound quality. He reveals that he mainly draws inspiration from older, better podcasts. “Think Serial meets Dave Ramsey meets This American Life.”

When interviewed, Hillerty’s roommates confirm: “We tried to stop him. We told him it would be like, really professionally embarrassing, and that none of his Hinge matches would want to meet him in person after Googling him. But that all just seemed to fuel the fire even more. At this point, we’re counting our blessings that it’s only a podcast, and not” —their voices lower to a whisper— “a YouTube channel. We might have to kick him to the curb if it ever came to that.” When asked if he suffers from masochism, narcissism, or an attractive blend of the two, Hillerty avoided the question by turning up the volume on his MacBook Air until it obscured all other sound.

— A Well-Mannered Grump