17 episodes

The Mean Podcast is hosted by journalist and blogger Kristen Philipkoski, who interviews grown-up women who are creative, ambitious, progressive and engaged. You'll hear from women who are diving into the second half of their lives with style. We see you, even though most media don't seem to.

Please get in touch if you'd like to be interviewed for the podcast or if you'd like to contribute to the magazine.

The Mean Show Kristen Philipkoski

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9, 10 Ratings

The Mean Podcast is hosted by journalist and blogger Kristen Philipkoski, who interviews grown-up women who are creative, ambitious, progressive and engaged. You'll hear from women who are diving into the second half of their lives with style. We see you, even though most media don't seem to.

Please get in touch if you'd like to be interviewed for the podcast or if you'd like to contribute to the magazine.

    Episode 17: How to manage a shoe business like a grownup

    Episode 17: How to manage a shoe business like a grownup

    This week I interview Tamar Miller, founder of luxury shoe brand Bells & Becks. Tamar’s experience in the retail space is impressive, to put it mildly. She’s been head of merchandising at Old Navy online, head of merchandising at Banana Republic online, director of merchandising for women’s shoes at Piperlime, and earlier in her career she was a buyer at Macy’s and Pottery Barn.
    Her education is equally stellar: she graduated from UC Berkeley and Harvard business school. And at a time when she had reached what some might call the pinnacle of her career, she decided to jump off the corporate ladder and become an entrepreneur.
    When we recorded our interview, we were in the earlier stages of the coronavirus pandemic, and you can probably hear in our voices that we were both a little shellshocked. Tamar had returned from Italy, of all places, just weeks before, so you don’t want to miss that story.
    We also discuss how becoming an entrepreneur when you are approaching 50 might be unconventional but it also might be optimal. Tamar goes into some detail about her decision-making around slowly but steadily growing her shoe brand, and how bootstrapping the business has served her well, especially in the time of coronavirus. She also shares some gems about her experience with Facebook advertising and her thoughts on the pros and cons of a brick and mortar shop.
    It's a really meaty conversation that I think you’ll get a lot out of, especially if you happen to be an entrepreneur.
    Plus, the shoes are so cute!
    And as always, we also touch on the personal perks of getting older. I really enjoyed this conversation with Tamar and I learned so much. I hope you will to!
    Audio editing by Sofija Jovanov
    Relevant Links: 
    Bells & Becks
    Bells & Becks sample sale
    Bells & Becks on Instagram
    Bells & Becks on Facebook
    Bells & Becks International Women's Day survey data on shopping habits/desires of 40+ women

    • 59 min
    Episode 16: The truth about hormone replacement therapy and how to get it from home

    Episode 16: The truth about hormone replacement therapy and how to get it from home

    On the show this week, we’re talking bout something near and dear to my heart: menopause. Sexy, I know!
    O.K. maybe it's not exactly sexy, but I'm trying. Historically, the topics of perimenopause and menopause make everyone squirm with discomfort and are basically taboo, which has led to much unnecessary confusion and shame when it comes to what it all means and what treatments are available and safe to relieve hot flashes, insomnia and other symptoms.
    So I'm very excited for this interview with Dr. Leslie Meserve, founder of CurieMD, which offers digital medicine for women navigating perimenopause and menopause. Dr. Meserve is a certified specialist through the North American Menopause Society, and has 20 years experience as a primary care physician focused on wellness and prevention.
    That NAMS certification is less widespread than it should be. Among other disturbing statistics, Dr. Meserve let's us know that while there are 36 million women experiencing perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms right now, there are only about 3,000 certified menopause practitioners in the U.S. Another study found that three-quarters of OB-GYN residents had limited to no knowledge of menopause. 
    I mean, WTF. 
    So thank heavens for Curie MD and Dr. Meserve, who is working hard to get the truth out there about the treatments available for menopausal women, including hormone replacement therapy which has been much vilified over the past 20 years. But Dr. Meserve shares that besides helping with hot flashes and sleep, HRT actually has shown in studies to have many long term benefits including lowering the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease and osteoporosis, just to name a few. 
    I hope you'll have a listen, and if you enjoy it, please review The Mean Show on Apple Podcasts (scroll down under "Ratings and Reviews" to find "write a review."
    Relevant Links:
    Dr. Leslie Meserve
    CurieMD
    CurieMD on Instagram
    North American Menopause Society
    "Free Period" was actually coined by Christine Marie Mason, who will  the subject of an upcoming podcast! Stay tuned!

    • 48 min
    Episode 15: Two Gen Xers walk into a podcast

    Episode 15: Two Gen Xers walk into a podcast

    I know every week I say I’m super excited about the podcast, and I promise you it's always true. But this week is extra special because I finally convinced one of my best friends, Jen Sullivan Brych, to join me on the show.
    I've been wanting to have Jen on partly because she's smart and funny as hell. She's is an award-winning author whose work has appeared in Fourteen Hills, The Los Angeles Times, Wired, The Rumpus, and sparkle+blink. She was a finalist for Third Coast magazine’s fiction contest, and her plays have been performed in various Bay Area theaters. She teaches creative writing at City College of San Francisco, where she helped revive Forum, the college’s literary magazine founded in 1937.
    I also wanted to have her on becsue we're both confirmed Gen Xers, and we met while we were both working at Wired in the late '90s. 
    And with all the talk about Gen Xers supposedly being great at sheltering in place during the coronavirus pandemic, I thought it would be fun to chat about how our experiences growing up have influenced our ability to weather the coronavirus pandemic. 
    If you have no idea what I’m talking about, I’m not surprised. Gen X’s moment in the spotlight was actually quite short-lived in late March and I might be the only one still paying attention to. But I'm OK with that because no one ever accused Gen Xers of getting too much attention. Long story short, those of us born between 1965 and 1980  are supposedly born for sheltering in place because we were latchkey kids, often forgotten, accustomed to lowering our expectations, and generally OK with being alone.
    Add on to all that my only child status and I should have quite an advantage—which I guess is true but honestly it’s getting old even for me at this point. 
    These are all stereotypes, of course. And as Jen points out in the podcast, they’re assumptions that mostly consider privileged white people, not usually minorities or other disenfranchised populations and it’s important to acknowledge that.  
    Still, my ears always perk up when Gen X is in the spotlight because it happens so rarely—most of the time everyone literally forgets we exist (check below for evidence). I just really wanted to take the opportunity to extend this rare conversation as much as possible. 
    This episode is also a little different because it’s more like a conversation with Jen than an interview—I hope that cool with you all. It was very cool for me not only to finally get Jen on the podcast, but also to have a solid chunk of time to talk with her—which never happens because of our children. You will notice that the conversation is not completely uninte

    • 38 min
    Episode 14: Banana Republic art director Kim Mitchell on her dream job, addiction, and loss

    Episode 14: Banana Republic art director Kim Mitchell on her dream job, addiction, and loss

    This week we have a very special podcast for you with Kim Mitchell, Banana Republic's art director and all-around lovely person. I met Kim about a decade ago when we both had fashion blogs (she still publishes hers!) when often ran into each other at events in San Francisco.
    We spoke from our respective quarantines, she in San Francisco in her studio apartment and me at home with the family in Pacifica. Kim told me how she worked her way up the ranks to land her dream job, as well as some of he challenges she has navigated. Not only is she one of the few black women to hold her position, but a few years ago she also suffered the tragic loss of her husband of seven years.
    Kim is also one of the friendliest and kindest people I’ve met in the fashion industry (or anywhere). She’s one of those people who always greets you with a smile, is easy to laugh with, and who you can tell is attentively listening when you’re talking, which is such a rare and wonderful trait in a human being. So I'm really excited for you all to get to know her better!
    Relevant Links:
    Academy of Art University
    Banana Republic
    J'Adore Couture
    National Alliance on Mental Illness
    Love over Addiction
    Al Anon
    Al Anon SF
    Shatterproof

    • 1 hr 15 min
    Episode 13: Lizzie Bermudez talks ageism and sexism in the television business

    Episode 13: Lizzie Bermudez talks ageism and sexism in the television business

    This week on the podcast we feature multiple Emmy-award-winning T.V. personality Lizzie Bermudez. You've heard from her on the podcast before, but this is the first time we actually focus on HER and her career.
    We discuss how she got her start, how she rose to prominence, the ageism and sexism she experienced along the way, and how she's surviving at home with her two young girls.  
    I always love talking with Lizzie, but I especially love this interview because we discuss some intimate details about her struggles and successes. It also made me very excited to see what she'll do next! Keep an eye on this woman, she is poised to do amazing things. 

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Podcast 12: How Tea Collection's CEO is navigating the coronavirus pandemic

    Podcast 12: How Tea Collection's CEO is navigating the coronavirus pandemic

    Our interview for you this week is with Leigh Rawdon the co-founder and CEO of Tea Collection, which is a very cute but not too cute kids clothing brand. I love it because it’s girly enough for my glitter-loving 7-year-old, but it doesn’t have pictures of princesses covering everything. Rawdon founded the company 18 years ago after raising just a small amount of capital and has stayed at the helm all these years.
    Tea Collection is now a multimillion-dollar children’s brand that along with providing kids with stylish clothing, spreads knowledge about various cultures and gives back economically. Twice a year, Leigh and her team explore a new region of the world and transform their discoveries into high-quality, modern and sustainably-sourced kids clothing.
    Through a partnership with The Global Fund for Children, Leigh has donated more than $500,000 to local, grassroots organizations. Under her leadership, Tea Collection has been recognized in Inc. Magazine’s “Inc 500” list of America’s 500 fastest growing private companies, as well the San Francisco Business Times’ list of largest women-owned companies in the Bay Area.
    Leigh grew up in a suburb of Memphis, earned a BA in English from Davidson College and went on to graduate with an MBA from Harvard Business School. Later she taught entrepreneurship as a lecturer at Stanford Graduate School of Business before launching Tea Collection.
    She is hunkered down in Oakland, California in her new home office, and she gave us an honest peek at what's happening at Tea Collection during the coronavirus pandemic. We also talk about the magic of dance classes, and the best things about getting older, and lots more. We hope you enjoy!
    Relevant links:
    Tea Collection
    Global Fund for Children
    Dance Fit Fusion with Andre Cole
    Volt dance class with Kristarae Flores
    Rhythm and Motion

    • 42 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

lolazelma ,

Love to be Mean

A true joy listening to Kristen and guests. I deeply appreciate Kristen’s journalism and her point of view. Great subject matter, I feel like I’m always learning with each episode. The Mean Show fills a serious void and it’s wonderful to finally have a space to talk about life for women who aren’t 20. Amen.

Jays1223 ,

My happy

This is such a refreshing listen during my daily walks. Thanks Kristen!

Roz Kaur ,

All

Very inspiring. Kristin’s voice is so so soothing and calming ....puts joy to my day during these difficult times. Have loved all the guests so far !!!

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