Binge Thinking

Episode 47 - Youth and Diversity with Alex McLean

One in three young people (26 and under) are either unemployed or underemployed in Australia. Our youth rate for unemployment is at its highest in 40 years, and the Newstart allowance for young job seekers has not increased in over 25 years, even though our cost of living has gone up. To top it all off, a recent study found there are only two rental properties currently on the market that a person on income allowance from the government can afford. At the same time, internship programs that are funded by the tax payer are leading to vulnerable young people being paid an abysmal $4 an hour while big business like Hungry Jacks use these programs to fill what would otherwise be actual paid job vacancies.

How’s a young person to catch a break if they don’t have the privilege of living with their parents, volunteering and interning for months or years to gain experience for the workplace and not needing to worry about meeting basic needs like food, clothing, and shelter? In this episode, Caspar speaks with 26 year old, Co-Executive Officer of the National Youth Commission Australia (NYC), Alex McLean who is working to uncover and solve some of these big challenges for young people in Australia.

Alex is a passionate advocate of youth rights and development, as well as diversity and inclusion in the workplace. She also has a love of science with a background in epidemiology, the study of infectious diseases.

Caspar and Alex binge on all things youth development in Australia, the issues coming out of the NYC’s current inquiry into youth employment, and what drives Alex in all her work.

This episode was produced and edited by Nina Roxburgh, recorded at Youthworx, and features music by Big Gigantic.

Alex McLean and Caspar excited to go eat some smashed avo now they’ve finished the biggest binge ever. At Youthworx Studios, Brunswick.

Alex McLean and Caspar excited to go eat some smashed avo now they’ve finished the biggest binge ever. At Youthworx Studios, Brunswick.

Episode 44 - Australia Votes with Adam Pulford

We begin season 3, the only way we possibly could, politically. Most listeners will be aware that Australia is currently in the midst of an federal election. Here at binge thinking, we wanted to speak with youth representatives of each the parties to find out what they think the issues are, and why they feel they are best placed to look after your interests. Fundamentally, we wanted to know what makes a young person see the a bright future with a particular political party? So we approached the offices of the Young LiberalsYoung Labor and Victorian Young Greens, along with some of their millennial candidates. And while the Liberal and Labor parties did not respond to our requests for an interview, one millennial Greens candidate did. 

Adam Pulford is a 29 year old social activist running as the Greens candidate for the electorate of Wills, which stretches from Melbourne's Inner north of Brunswick through to Coburg, Pascoe Vale, Fawkner and Glenroy. The seat is currently held by Labor's Peter Khalil by 4.9% and is considered in play for the Greens who won 31% of the primary vote in the last election. So how did Adam, a 29 year old (originally from the Northern Territory) who grew up socially conservative and first voted Liberal in 2007, end up becoming a Greens political candidate with an actual chance of winning? Adam and Caspar sat down to discuss this, along with his life working as a social activist, his work with Greens MP Adam Bandt, his views on leadership, how he came to terms with his homosexuality, and going public about his mental health. As always, this episode was produced and edited by the incredibly talented and hard working Nina Roxburgh and features music by Big Gigantic

Adam and Caspar enjoying the first binge of 2019!

Adam and Caspar enjoying the first binge of 2019!

Episode 43 - Life and Death with Grace Wetherall

In our final episode for season 2, Caspar speaks with 32-year-old registered nurse Grace Wetherall. Grace works in a hospital intensive care unit (ICU) where she looks after patients in critical conditions with acute injuries often leading to death. Grace explains how people are more likely than ever to die in a hospital instead of in their own home. She outlines the difference between end of life care in ICUs versus palliative care, how hospitals can almost always keep us 'breathing' and how this differs from a 'meaningful recovery'. The two discuss the merits of voluntary euthanasia and the challenges of working in the medical field. As always, this podcast was produced and edited by Nina Roxburgh and features music by Big Gigantic

Caspar and Grace bingeing through the Brisbane air!

Caspar and Grace bingeing through the Brisbane air!

Episode 42 - Refugees and Seeking Asylum with Hedayat Osyan

Caspar speaks with 26 year old Afghani refugee and social entrepreneur Hedayat Osyan. A former refugee from Afghanistan's Hazara ethnic minority, Hedayat came to Australia by boat when he was 17 after fleeing persecution by the Taliban. He now runs a small business and social enterprise called Nick Tiling Services. Hedayat started the business to provide decent work for refugees experiencing exploitation in the construction industry. Aside from secure ongoing work, they provide mentoring, english lessons, and support navigating the legal system in Australia. 

Hedayat discusses his journey from Afghanistan to Australia, and explains how he came to start Nick Tiles after getting his education in politics. He shares his view on the war in Afghanistan and how we can better integrate refugees into our society (and why this matters to all of us). 

As always, this episode was produced and edited by Nina Roxburgh and features music by Big Gigantic

Caspar and Hedayat binge in Melbourne

Caspar and Hedayat binge in Melbourne

Episode 41 - Video Games with Laura Voss

Caspar speaks with 28 year old CEO, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Harmonious Productions: Laura Voss. Laura is a video game developer who, along with her peers at Swinburne University, started her own independent games development company straight out of university. Harmonious Productions specialises in developing nonviolent and positive games that foster genuine interaction and teamwork between players. You can find them on Twitter, and their game Putty Pals is available to play on Nintendo Switch and Steam. This podcast was produced, edited and brought to life by Nina Roxburgh, and features music by Big Gigantic

Caspar and Laura Voss binge thinking video games in Melbourne

Caspar and Laura Voss binge thinking video games in Melbourne

Episode 40 - Rock and Roll with Michael Lars Godde

Ever wondered what it would be like to be a legit rockstar? In this episode, Caspar speaks to 32 year old rock musician Michael Lars Godde. He has travelled the world playing original music composed with his two bands "Me" and "Other Animals" (FacebookInstagram). Michael has shared stages with the likes of Portishead, the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and has played festivals like Secret Garden Party and Big Day Out. Michael shares his experience in the music industry, along with why he prefers busking to big shows, his love of exercise to keep his spirits up, and his parallel career in social work. This podcast was produced and edited by Nina Roxburgh, recorded at Lupine Studios, and features the track “Oh Lordy” by Other Animals.

Michael and Caspar post binge at Lupine Studios, Coburg Australia

Michael and Caspar post binge at Lupine Studios, Coburg Australia

Episode 39: Tiny Homes with Molly Bryson

Come binge thinking with 29-year-old Tiny Homes enthusiast Molly Bryson. With a burning interest in design, fuelled by an unsustainable housing market and several YouTube sessions led Molly to build a Tiny Home with her partner. The only challenge? She had no carpentry skills. A wide ranging and, at times philosophical conversation covering sustainability, design, architecture, housing affordability gender stereotypes, the fear of getting things wrong, social media and appearances and the do-it-yourself experience. This episode was produced and edited by Nina Roxburgh, with music by Big Gigantic. Get On Board!

You can find out more about starting your own Tiny Home project by visiting Brunswick Tool Library or signing up for a Hammertime workshop.

Caspar and Molly on the front porch of the Tiny Home!

Caspar and Molly on the front porch of the Tiny Home!

Introducing, Molly’s Tiny Home!

Introducing, Molly’s Tiny Home!

Early days, Molly and Milos using recycled materials for their Tiny Home

Early days, Molly and Milos using recycled materials for their Tiny Home

Dream Tiny House Team!

Dream Tiny House Team!

Episode 38: Writing for Comedy with James Colley

In this podcast, we bring you Caspar's conversation with 27 year old comedy writer, satirist and podcaster James Colley. James is a standup comedian, a writer on several well-known Australian comedy TV shows including 'Tonightly', 'Gruen', and 'The Weekly with Charlie Pickering'. He co-hosts the podcast 'Stop the Posts' and is creator of the podcast 'Nailed It'. He is the author of "Too Right: Politically incorrect opinions too dangerous to be published except that they were" and co-authored the recent sports memoir "Tries, lies and meat pies: The Sam Thaiday Story". 

James talks to us about his journey from starting out by training in from the blue mountains for 5 mins of open mic stand up when he was 15, his choice to study physics at Sydney University, and to discovering political comedy and eventually writing for some of the country's most well-known comedians. He explains why he is more passionate about writing comedy than doing stand up, though he provides tips on how to do both. James gives us his take on comedy today, how it is being challenged when it comes to topics like freedom of speech, and the experiences he's had when getting it wrong. 

Other than that, we spoke about class, the recent #libspill and what he thinks needs to change about the world and comedy. As always, this episode was produced and edited by the ever-talented Nina Roxburgh and features music by Big Gigantic

You can follow James' work on his Twitter or Facebook page and if you live in Sydney, you can attend 'Nailed It!' live shows at Giant Dwarf Theatre.

James and Caspar post #libspill binge... so real

James and Caspar post #libspill binge... so real

Episode 37: Mental Health with Vicki Smith

Caspar gets binge thinking mental health with 30-year-old psychologist Vicki Smith. Join them as they talk about the different types of psychologists, therapists and counsellors and where you might look for advice or help. Vicki describes the differences between psychosis, bipolar disorder, mania and schizophrenia, the line between hope and madness, and why people feel shame for seeking mental health services. Vicki is also host of her own podcast, Insane Ramblings

Listeners who need support with mental health personally or for their family, friends or partners can call Lifeline on 13 11 14 and Beyond Blue on 1300 22 3646, and should call 000 (in Australia) in an emergency. This episode was produced and edited by Nina Roxburgh, and features music by Big Gigantic. 

Caspar and Vicki with that face you pull when you just stood in dog poop in Nina's backyard! 

Caspar and Vicki with that face you pull when you just stood in dog poop in Nina's backyard! 

Episode 36: Direct Democracy with Dion McCurdy

Caspar speaks to 33 year old lawyer and social pioneer Dion McCurdy about NewVote, an online direct democracy platform. The two discuss Dion's faith in ordinary people's ability to solve difficult political problems, the case for direct democracy in Australia, and how these systems work in other countries like Switzerland, Spain and even the United States. Dion also explains the value of citizen juries, and shares his passion for reforming politics to make the world a better place. You can support NewVote at their Patreon page here, follow them on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. This episode was edited by Nina Roxburgh and features music by Big Gigantic

Dion McCurdy, 33, Co-founder of NewVote

Dion McCurdy, 33, Co-founder of NewVote