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Sumo oranges, Koko the gorilla, bears aren't real

Broti Gupta (The Simpsons)

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The Simpsons writer Broti Gupta
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When she's not tweeting about sumo oranges or her podcast Lecture Hall, Broti Gupta is a writer for The Simpsons. And the long gap between when a Simpsons script is written and when the animated episode makes it to the air means Gupta and her colleagues have to think carefully about what aspects of internet culture have the staying power to be referenced on the show.

"It wouldn't reference Bean Dad, but we might have an episode of our own 'bean dad,'" she says.

Today on Follow Friday, Broti talks about four of her favorite people she follows online:

And on our Patreon page, you can unlock Follow Friday XL — our members-only podcast feed with exclusive bonus follows. That feed has an extended-length version of this interview in which Broti talks about someone super-talented who's still under the radar: Amelia Elizalde, a writer for Clickhole and Reductress (plus some bonus material about Dylan Gelula).


Theme song written by Eric Johnson, and performed by Yona Marie. Show art by Dodi Hermawan.

Thank you to our amazing patrons: Jon, Justin, Amy, Yoichi, Elizabeth, Sylnai, Matthias, and Shima.

Full transcript of this episode
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ERIC JOHNSON: Sorry if I sound rushed. I have to get this episode done ASAP because I am seeing Skyfall tonight with a live orchestra. So if there are any weird audio glitches, glitches, glitches, blame it on Daniel Craig and Adele.

Today's guest Broti Gupta is one of the many people I started following because of a previous guest on the show. The person who recommended her originally was Alexandra Petri from the Washington Post. And originally, our discussion of Broti was going to be a bonus follow recommendation on Patreon, but you can hear us talking about her in the public feed episode from June of 2021, the first one announcing the existence of the Patreon page.

Speaking of which, thank you to all our lovely patrons over at

You're listening to the public feed, which means you're going to get four recommendations from Broti today. But to hear all five of the people we talked about, head on over to Patreon and pledge any amount, starting at just one dollar a month.

Thank you to our patrons and thanks as well to this week's sponsor.

Today's show is brought to you by Kelsus, which pairs startups with expertly assembled software development teams. They work with funded startups across multiple industries to help them get to market fast. Learn more and get in touch at

[theme song]

ERIC: I'm Eric Johnson. Welcome to Follow Friday, the podcast about who you should follow online. Every week, I talk to creative people about who they follow, and why.

This is a guided tour to the best people on the internet, led by your favorite writers, podcasters, comedians, and more. If this is your first episode of the show, take a moment now and please follow or subscribe in your podcast app.

Today on the show is Broti Gupta, a comedian and writer at The Simpsons. Her work has also appeared in places like The New Yorker, McSweeney's, and she's the co-host of the podcast Lecture Hall, which you can find at You can find Broti on Twitter @BrotiGupta. Broti, welcome to Follow Friday!

BROTI GUPTA: Thank you for having me!

ERIC: So glad to have you here. So nice to meet you. You were recommended by a previous guest on the show, Alexandra Petri. And before we get into your follow recommendations, I want to ask you about something in your Twitter bio. You describe yourself as a "citrus influencer". What does that mean?

BROTI: I had a fantastic professional opportunity recently, which was that I tweeted something stupid about a fruit that I love, the Sumo orange. Then the very kind people at Sumo Citrus emailed me and they were like, "We liked your tweet, can we send you boxes of oranges?" And then I was like, "This is the best day of my life." And then they sent me a bunch of oranges.

My professional goals have ultimately been to do whatever it is that could lead me to what Jamie Lee Curtis does with Activia. I think her work with Activia is fantastic. Should she ever want an apprentice, should she ever want an heir to the throne, I would love to talk to her about Activia's probiotic elements and everything. But this seemed like a really great step towards that goal.

ERIC: You got a taste of the influencer lifestyle now.

BROTI: Yes, and guess what? It's not too tart and it's not too sweet. It's the Sumo orange.

ERIC: Oh, my God. You've got over to the dark side.

BROTI: And what I tweeted was so stupid. It was so generous of them to not only enjoy it but even just look at my Twitter in the first place. It was something like, "The Sumo orange and the tangerine are like the Gilmore Girls of citrus." That doesn't mean anything. It's just that one is bigger than the other, kind of like how in Gilmore Girls, one is older than the other.

It doesn't mean anything. It's so stupid but they were so kind and they were like, "You're very sick and you need this." No, they were like, "We enjoyed your tweet."

And I will say, because oranges are quite perishable and I had boxes of them and I gave many away, I have been pretty exclusively eating oranges for the past few days. So I might take a break from oranges for a little bit. But they're delicious!

ERIC: Gotta figure out what else to tweet about.

BROTI: I know. I'm just figuring out how to get all of my groceries for free.

ERIC: Exactly. That's the hustle.

BROTI: Yeah, I could tweet like, "Ground turkey and ground chicken are like the Gilmore girls of ground poultry. Give me meatball ingredients!"

ERIC: Well, moving from something orange to something yellow, you write for The Simpsons.

BROTI: I do.

ERIC: A television institution that literally started before the world wide web existed. And I had a question about this because on this podcast we talk a lot about how the internet reflects what we're into and also pushes us in new directions.

So, I'm wondering, as a pretty online person yourself, you're in the virtual writer's room for The Simpsons, are you all bringing internet stuff in with you, or are you keeping some distance because it's like a big network show that has to appeal to a lot of people?

BROTI: I would say we take more like cultural phenomenons than specific events because the turnaround time is so long. Our animation time is actually quite long from the writing of an episode to the airing of that episode. It's nearly a year. So, let's just say the Bean Dad episode is not going to...


Yeah. I think that something I love about being on the show — and some hot Hollywood gossip is that I'm having an amazing time and everyone that's working on it is incredible, kind, and hilarious. Everyone's very curious to know about these sort of Twitter phenomenons, like the Twitter "main character" and things like that have shaped how we view the world, through the lens of a very accessible medium.

ERIC: Yeah. I guess there are some things that are just memes that are pure ephemera. Like Bean Dad, everyone's mad at some dude for four days. And there's other stuff where the internet creates an aesthetic, like cottagecore or something like that, where maybe you could see "Lisa gets into cottagecore." There's maybe something there where it's created a new trend that has endured.

BROTI: It's exactly that. So it's like, it wouldn't reference Bean Dad, but we might have an episode of our own Bean Dad.

ERIC: Yeah, exactly. All right. Well, let's leave the world of network TV and go back to the internet to find out who specifically Broti Gupta follows. You can follow along with us today. Every person she recommends will be linked in the show notes and in the transcript at

Broti, before the show, I gave you a list of categories and I asked you to tell me four people you follow, who fit in those categories. Your first pick is in the category "someone you've followed forever". And you said Dylan Gelula, an actor who's been in shows like Chasing Life, Shameless, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. She's on Twitter and Instagram @DylanGelula. She's also the co-host of your podcast, Lecture Hall.

So, how did you and Dylan first meet? Were you online friends first, real-life friends?

BROTI: Yeah, we were online friends first and pretty quickly we realized that both of our brains are bad in the same way.

ERIC: How's that?

BROTI: Just, they don't work. We're very stupid, apart and together. Where most friendships, especially the very fruitful female friendships in my life, where we make each other better, Dylan and I remain so stagnated. It was a really beautiful match to find.

I started following her and I thought she was so funny in Kimmy Schmidt. That's where I knew her from. So I started following her right after I moved to LA and she followed me back. I messaged her and I said something like, "I guess we're the same age, should we hang out?" So, it happened like a play date, and then very quickly we realized that we're horribly ill in the same way.

ERIC: Well, for people who haven't listened to your podcast together, Lecture Hall, talk about that show. What sort of things do you and Dylan talk about on the show?

BROTI: So, Lecture Hall is a podcast that we've made impossible to find. It's on Patreon and nowhere else. We do not have mics and we do not edit. Basically, the idea is that we both come in prepared to teach the other about something completely new. And there is no category; there's no through-line.

So, she could teach me about Y2K and I'll teach her about what a skateboard is, or something like that. It'll just be completely different. I will say that it has come to light, we have now been doing the podcast for long enough that we've seen certain patterns emerge with what we want to talk about. And we are almost entirely a monkey fan podcast now.

We think that monkeys are fascinating and we are often talking about monkeys that can communicate.

ERIC: So, like Koko the Gorilla or...

BROTI: Oh, Koko is a staple of conversation. That's another thing that, early on in our friendship, we'd just sit next to each other in complete silence and watch videos of Koko the Gorilla.

ERIC: That's the part of the Mr. Rogers documentary that completely broke me was Koko meeting her idol, Mr. Rogers. It was like, okay, this is manipulative. Stop it.

BROTI: I know, really beautiful stuff. Yeah, Koko's amazing. I recently learned about Kanzi, who is another monkey who has been taught to speak. It's mainly through sign language, and Kanzi can sign "marshmallow" and "fire," which leads me to believe that Kanzi wants to make s'mores.

ERIC: Yeah, obviously.

BROTI: Get Kanzi some s'mores, he's figured it out. He's figured out that we've created the perfect dessert and it's s'mores. Get it for him!

ERIC: Absolutely.

BROTI: That's basically the idea of the podcast. We teach each other something. And as of now, it is almost entirely a fan podcast for monkeys. So, if you're a monkey listening to this, we would love to have you on.

ERIC: So what's something that Dylan does, either as a podcast co-host or an actor or anything else, that really impresses you, that's like, I'm really glad that I reached out and made friends with this person?

BROTI: Well, and I never want her to hear this.

ERIC: Dylan, stop listening.

BROTI: Dylan, go to sleep. She's super, super smart and she is fantastic. She was a fantastic actor. She has been in a lot of indie movies, and she has just been incredible in those.

I think that she's very precise in her joke writing in a way that she has this very good way of building up to a punchline that I think is so perfect for Twitter and maybe goes underappreciated. And for sure, it goes out-loud underappreciated by me because I'm not trying to uplift her. We're trying to keep each other down.

ERIC: Keep 'em humble.

BROTI: But yeah, she's a person who probably reads five or six dense books a month. And they're all about art and poetry. She's an Anne Carson fan. But then, she tweets what she tweets. You would never know.

ERIC: You would never know that she's a well-read person?

BROTI: Yeah. She's a very well-read person. She's a very intelligent person. And she has very precise joke-writing capabilities. And then on top of that, she's an incredible actor.

ERIC: Well, she's an actor, you're a writer. If you were writing a movie for Dylan to star in and it was guaranteed, greenlit by any studio you called, what would the movie be? Do you have a thought?

BROTI: Yeah. The movie would be called Somersault Susan, and every single scene, she would have to do six somersaults. She would be playing the titular Somersault Susan. And I would write a script where she had to just roll around for an hour and a half. Not too long.

ERIC: Yeah! Well, that was Dylan Gelula, who's on Twitter and Instagram @DylanGelula.

Broti, let's move on to your next follow. I asked you for someone who's an expert in a very specific niche you love. And you said the Cincinnati Zoo, which is on Twitter and Instagram @CincinnatiZoo. And mainly for the benefit of future Eric, when I'm editing the transcript of this episode, there are two N's in Cincinnati.

So, why specifically do you recommend the Cincinnati Zoo? Are you from Ohio?

BROTI: I'm from Cincinnati, actually. I'm from the other side of the Ohio River on the Kentucky side. I grew up in the greater Cincinnati area. I've been living there since I was like 7, and something happened in 2016 that launched the Cincinnati Zoo into the global eye, which was an unfortunate incident with Harambe, the gorilla.

[clip from CBC News report]

REPORTER: This four-year-old boy, they understand, fell 10 to 12 feet down into the moat, into the enclosure. There were two female gorillas, they were far away, but this 400-pound male gorilla named Harambe came to the scene. You can see him clearly holding the boy between his legs, and was sort of jostling him a little bit. It was described as a life-threatening situation for the boy, so within 10 minutes, the zoo officials had to respond, and they deployed a special team that shot and killed the gorilla.

ERIC: I forgot this was at the Cincinnati Zoo.

BROTI: Yes. But my theory is that since they have been thrust into the spotlight, they have hired perhaps the greatest social media team of all time because this social media team understands that what we want to see on our timelines is entirely a celebration of Fiona, the hippo

ERIC: Yes. Okay. So, Fiona,= the hippo, explain... This is one of maybe the most famous animals on social media, I think.

BROTI: So, Fiona is your classic hippo. She rules, she used to be a baby and now she's an adult — who among us? I don't know how to describe her. She is magic. She was a preemie. She is the smallest hippo, I think, to ever survive in captivity, maybe ... because we don't have the hippo history that we know about. They didn't tell us any of it.

She's sort of celebrated like a human baby is. She was the first hippo to be in an ultrasound, maybe. I think they did an ultrasound for her mother and they were like, "Oh, you're having Fiona."

ERIC: And I think the timing lines up. This was probably right after the whole Harambe incident, or maybe this is right when the zoo was getting into using social media well, that they had this big campaign around Fiona.

BROTI: Yeah. So, we kind of keep up with Fiona; what she's doing, what kind of watermelons she's chomping into. She's amazing. What can I say? She's got star quality. In Hollywood, you know how to recognize star quality and that's Fiona the hippo.

ERIC: From what I could tell, just from looking at the social media pages, Fiona is a couple of years old now. She's maybe five years old now, and because she was a preemie, she's still much smaller than other hippos. And as the internet knows, the smaller the animal is, the cuter it is.

Even though, I think even a small hippo could kill any of us if it felt like it, I don't think Fiona would... Fiona does not care that we think she's cute.

BROTI: Well, the thing is that it's not reciprocated at all. The love that we have for Fiona is not reciprocated. I mean, what better tactic than playing hard to get? She just turned five, you are correct. She is five years old.

Dylan and I did try to make it to her birthday party. Unfortunately, we could not. I forgot what exactly happened that meant that we couldn't end up going. Anyway, the point is, Fiona is amazing. The Cincinnati Zoo is doing the correct thing. They recognize when their animals have the X-factor and they bring the spotlight right to them.

ERIC: So, are you specifically Fiona stan, or are you a fan of any of the other Cincinnati Zoo animals? Do you specifically follow them for any other updates?

BROTI: It's mainly Fiona, as of now.

ERIC: I mean, they know that she's the star. I think in their bio, it says "team Fiona".

BROTI: She's the star. Yeah. And Fiona has to fight the other animals.

ERIC: In a metaphorical, social media sense; not the other sense.

BROTI: Yeah. There's no zoo fight club, but Fiona does have to get into a beef.

ERIC: Right. No zoo fight club that we know of. If you donate a lot of money to the Cincinnati Zoo, wink, wink, nudge nudge.

What do you think is the most underrated animal? Not one that everyone's like, "Yes, it's important that we protect this animal," but something that gets no love on social media, no love from the public.

BROTI: What animal? Okay. This is a great question. You know what? And I will say, I am at fault here as well because I'm a great skeptic of bears, but I think that bears get a bad rep.

ERIC: Yeah, they make one Leo DiCaprio movie and it's just like, " Okay, all bears will f**k you up the moment they see you."

BROTI: Exactly. And really, they're just huge dogs. They're just huge dogs. Do I think they're probably not real? Sure.

ERIC: But you live in California now. I mean, there are bears all over the place out here.

BROTI: Yeah, but living in California, there are also actors everywhere. Who says they're not putting on a bear costume? They're too big! This is what I mean; I'm a huge bear skeptic. I think bears are too big. They're not real. They're just a person dressed up as a bear, but I do think that they can be quite cute. I think that they can be quite cute, like a dog is quite cute.

ERIC: Has anyone ever seen a bear and James Corden in the room at the same time? I'm just saying, I'm just asking questions here.

BROTI: Exactly.

ERIC: Well, that was the Cincinnati Zoo, which is on Twitter and Instagram @CincinnatiZoo. We're going to take a quick break now, but we'll be back in a minute with Broti Gupta.

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ERIC: Welcome back to Follow Friday. Broti, I asked you to tell me about someone who makes you laugh. And you said Helena, who's on Twitter @freshhel and on Instagram @bugsizechihuahua. I think this may be the first person we've had recommended on the show who prominently advertises the fact that they have an 18+ OnlyFans page.

So, maybe the right place to start is, did you start by following her on OnlyFans, or did you start somewhere else?

BROTI: I started following her on Twitter. And then she followed me and then we sort of became Twitter friends. I think she's a genius. I think she's so funny. I think she's so smart and a genuinely lovely person. And I think that she is very brilliant about the human condition, if that makes sense.

ERIC: Explain the sort of stuff that she's posting that makes you laugh. Is it just the jokes that she's posting?

BROTI: I mean, she and I, I think, have a lot of overlap. It's really all with animals. Animals are really big. But she tweeted like a week ago, "Animals in the zoo should get a prom." That's true!

ERIC: Yeah! As soon as you said that ... Of course, they should!

BROTI: They absolutely should. She's the person who tweeted that, I'm paraphrasing it, but it was something like, "OMG, all you had to eat today was an iced coffee? Should we throw a party? Should we call everyone we know? Should we call Bella Hadid?" It just captures the small things that people will say to telegraph something else, to telegraph some very niche or specific glamor in a kind of disingenuous way, she will like to cut to the core of.

ERIC: When you're following folks like her, funny people on Twitter or wherever, do you see them posting something and have a bit of envy of just, "Ah, I wish I had thought of that joke or that premise"? Or is it like, no, you're just happy to see someone out there telling good jokes?

BROTI: It's a little bit of both. With someone like Helena and with someone like Dylan and someone like the Cincinnati Zoo, I am often like, "Man, I wish I had thought of that!" Or I see something and I'm like, "Oh, I've thought this thing and haven't been able to word it like this."

But I think, ultimately, it's nice to be able to enjoy someone else's, because then I'm just sitting back and having a nice time. Then that's just entertaining me. It's so much easier to be an audience than not.

ERIC: I also want to call out the fact that Helena has a perfect little cat named Printer. On her Instagram, she has one of those story collections where you can just see only the Printer pictures.

And I really have to applaud someone committing to a name for a pet that's not Fluffy or Whiskers or whatever. I'm really supportive of anyone who wants to name their pet something like Printer.

BROTI: I think it's a great name.

ERIC: Exactly. It's like a really dumb old joke where it's like, "What do you call a cat?" "Anything, it won't come when you call it." But that's perfect.

BROTI: Yeah, there is one tweet of hers that I think is why I started following her... The general idea of it is "The insistence that you have to do something great when you're young people make a lot of embarrassing decisions in their 20s. Also, I think that guacamole and hummus are boyfriend-girlfriend" Just all in one. I was like, "Yeah, every part of this is true."

ERIC: This is something that also comes up a lot in the show where someone will come up with a joke or a comparison, or just an idea, and it's funny or it's impressive or it's whatever. And it makes you wonder, how did they get there?

I know this is probably a question you get sick of; people asking you, "Oh, where do you get your jokes? Where do you get your ideas?" But it is a legitimate... What chemicals in the brain led to that joke? I don't know, but it's fascinating to me.

BROTI: I guess I sort of go into a fugue state and then write whatever I want on Twitter. And then a day later, I'll look at it again. Does that answer your question, "fugue state?"

ERIC: Yeah, that sounds right. When you go back and look at it, do you then delete old jokes to clean out stuff that you aren't as happy with, or you warts and all, leave it all up there?

BROTI: I leave it all up there. Just because I am ... I'm a person who could not exist in any other world besides the one we have now; I could not exist in a world without modern medicine. My instinct for survival is so low. For example, one time I saw a tiny flame and my body relaxed in that sort of euphoric feeling that you get right before death. That's how quickly my body gave up. I saw the tiniest flame that I then blew out, by the way. That's how tiny this was, and my body was like, "Well, we're done."

ERIC: That's it. Pack it up.

BROTI: Also, I'm in an imaginary industry in Hollywood. Hollywood is an industry created because humans aren't getting hunted.

Anyway, all that being said, I think it would be funny if somehow my Twitter were the equivalent of a fossil that was going to thousands of years in the future, to clue someone into what life was like. Because then, they would be like, "Oh my God, everybody had a lot of digestive issues."

ERIC: The one surviving Twitter account for future historians to study; they will work backwards from your tweets.

BROTI: Yeah, they'll be like, "Oh, I get why their world ended because clearly their brains didn't have oxygen and their digestive systems didn't do well."

ERIC: Before we move on to the next follow, is there anything else about Helena that we should call out or anything else that makes her a great follow?

BROTI: I think everything she posts is so smart and funny. I am her number one fan and I constantly tell her this. So, we've sort of become friends online and she's also just a lovely person.

ERIC: Well, that was Helena, who is on Twitter @freshhel and on Instagram @bugsizechihuahua.

We have time for one more follow today. I asked you for someone who makes you think, and you said Sarah Hagi, who is on Twitter @KindaHagi. Sarah is a writer at Gawker, whose work has also appeared in places like Vice, The New York Times, and The Globe and Mail.

And I saw that you've written at least one thing together; a piece for the New Yorker?

BROTI: Yeah. Sarah's the f**king best. She is also somebody who is so funny. She's also so smart and kind. And I told her the other day that if I don't know how to feel about something going on in the world, I just ask her how she feels. And then I'm like, "Great, that's my opinion now."

She's a very smart, incredibly funny writer. And because she does so many essays and things like that, she is on the more journalistic side.

Her writing is incredibly empathetic and it's very funny. She always has something to say and it's something important. It's never just a voice speaking for the sake of speaking.

ERIC: On the first part, it's good to have a friend who you can turn to to ask, "How should I feel about this?" But on the second part, it's also good to have someone who's not purely reactive. It's not like she's issuing hot takes on everything; she thinks before she writes about something. She's considerate about the possible angles of something or what's actually worth being angry about or something like that.

BROTI: Absolutely. And she's just correct, all the time.

ERIC: What are some of the specific things that she's helped you understand, or she's helped you understand how you should feel about? Is there anything in particular that comes to mind where it's like, "Oh, wow, I'm really glad I had Sarah in my corner because of this."

BROTI: She is very knowledgeable and literate about global issues, in general. She's a person who, last year, had great recommendations for me when I wanted to learn about Palestine because it was something that I had known the basics of and then wanted to learn the history of.

And she was somebody who was very quick to have all of these amazing recommendations to read. She's so smart and also incredibly funny.

ERIC: I was looking at her past writings, and I really liked this essay she wrote for Vice called "The Games That Let Me Have an Imaginary Social Life." It was written early in COVID lockdown and it's all about, how she's a writer who works from home. So there's some inherent loneliness already in that, but then it was obviously very relatable to a ton of people.

And she's talking about conversing with virtual characters in video games, it gave her some of that social feeling, which has never really worked for me, but I'm fascinated by the fact. There are many people like Sarah who get something out of that by talking to NPCs in video games.

BROTI: Yeah. She really does. I'm in the same boat. That's never been a world that I've known how to navigate or even start with. But talking to her about that is also super interesting. She's also an amazing ... she knows exactly where the cringiest tweets are, which I love to read. I love to see the cringey s**t that people post and she's a deep well for that, for me.

ERIC: At the risk of summoning some memory of something really awful, when you say a cringey tweet, what's an example that comes to mind? What's the sort of thing that Sarah has surfaced that has been really entertaining?

BROTI: Well, I don't know if you know this, but there is a large ground war in Europe right now. And a lot of people in Hollywood, we've all made it our mission to talk. So, she almost immediately sent me the spoken word poem about ...

ERIC: Oh, I saw this!

ANNALYNNE MCCORD: "Dear President Vladimir Putin / I'm so sorry that I was not your mother / If I was your mother / You would have been so loved / Held in the arms of joyous light / Never would this story's plight / The world / Unfurled / Before our eyes / A pure demise / Of nation sitting peaceful under a night sky / If I was your mother / The world would have been warm..."


BROTI: Yeah. And obviously, that went so viral, but she was definitely on the ground floor of that, I think.

ERIC: I'm often torn about this, where I feel like what we should be doing is uplifting the good stuff and the underrepresented people and anyone who's creating something interesting and unique, but on the other hand, there's nothing like a good pile-on like there was with that poem. I mean, my God.

BROTI: Here's the thing: Every other day, it wraps back around to just being pure art for me. I'm like, maybe that's art that's gone over everyone's heads. Maybe that's the highest level of art is art that makes you feel awful and nothing else.

ERIC: Great art is never appreciated in its time. We all know this.

BROTI: Exactly. And what if they never get appreciated? Is that kind of artistic?

ERIC: Does that make it more authentic, more deserving? All right. Well, that was Sarah Hagi, who is on Twitter @KindaHagi.

Broti, thank you for sharing your follows with us today. Before we go, let's make sure that listeners know how to find you online. Where do you want them to follow you?

BROTI: I am on Twitter @BrotiGupta. I tweet all the time, and it sucks, and I'm sorry. And that Alexandra recommended me is wild to me because she is so smart and funny. I've actually been a huge fan of hers since college. So, this was a very cool...

ERIC: Full circle.

BROTI: This is a cool full circle. She is very kind to have recommended me. She is wrong to have recommended me, but it doesn't mean she isn't kind.

ERIC: You're very humble. After she recommended you, I started following you and I have not regretted it for a minute.

BROTI: Really?

ERIC: Yeah.

BROTI: I don't know. Give it a little bit, give it a little bit.

ERIC: Okay. Well, follow me on Twitter @HeyHeyESJ, and don't forget to follow or subscribe to Follow Friday in your podcast app.

If you like this episode, then check out the past Follow Friday interviews with Alexandra Petri, Alasdair Beckett-King, and Alexis Gay.

Follow Friday's theme music was written by me and performed by Yona Marie. Our show art was illustrated by Dodi Hermawan. Special thanks to our Big Fri Patreon backers, Jon and Justin. Visit for an extended-length version of this interview, featuring a bonus follow recommendation from Broti.

That's all for this week. This is Eric Johnson reminding you to talk about people behind their backs. And when you do, say something nice. I'll see you next Friday.

One more thing before we go: Thank you to Jon and Justin from for backing Follow Friday on Patreon. Transistor is an independent podcast hosting company with a simple, modern interface for uploading audio, distributing your podcast, and viewing analytics. You can also make as many podcasts on Transistor as you want for no extra cost, and you can invite additional users to access the show settings, upload episodes, view analytics, and more. Check them out at

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