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Episode 06 | Safety And… Creativity with Kyle Krueger by LAPCO FR

Safety And... Creativity:

Lauren sits down with Kyle Krueger who is a published author and speaker in the health and safety industry & Co-host of the Probability Matters podcast. Listen as they discuss Safety, Creativity, the Future of Health, Safety, and Industrial Hygiene Technology, and play a Mad Libs called "Substitute Safety Supervisor."




This podcast is sponsored by LAPCO manufacturing. LAPCO: premium workwear since 1989.



0:00:27.3 Lauren Brizendine: Hello everyone, and welcome to Safety And, a laughing and learning podcast where we talk about safety and whatever else is on your mind. And today, I am talking about safety and creativity with my guest, Kyle Krueger. Hello Kyle, welcome to our show.


0:00:47.3 Kyle Krueger: Hey, Lauren. Thanks for having me on.


0:00:49.9 LB: Now, if I'm being honest, I am very excited to talk about creativity because it's literally like my favorite thing in the entire world. I'm...


0:00:58.8 KK: Me too.


0:01:00.6 LB: Very much a creative person, but I'm also a little nervous because you, too, are a podcast co-host of the show, Probability Matters. And we kinda talked about what that might look like, two podcasters talking together 'cause... I don't know, it makes me nervous. I'm used to being the interviewer, and you were like, "I might ask you questions." And I'm like, "That just scares me." But this should be very... This should be a very creative episode, if anything, right?


0:01:35.7 KK: It should be. Yeah, absolutely.


0:01:38.2 LB: So, I'm just gonna jump right into it, and I want you to tell our listeners a little bit more about the show that you host, Probability Matters, and what that show is about.


0:01:51.4 KK: Yeah. Thanks... Again, thanks for having me on. So yeah, Probability Matters is a project that I do with my good friend and co-host, Mwangi. And Mwangi and I met as, really, a vendor-customer relationship. And I just immediately knew when I was in meetings, I was like, "This guy’s got something. He's pretty darn smart." And so, we would just have these lunches and then they would just go on and we were always late to the next appointments. And so, in January 2020, I said, "Hey, let's do this. Let's make it a show." And so, we started. The continuing theme is really... I always say we're trying to lay breadcrumbs for the health and safety industry, but really talking about this interesting intersection where data, and technology, and humans are all emerging to help to a broader goal of solving safety problems, innovation within industrial hygiene, and what all that means. So, what we try to do with each episode is have a guest on, talk about the topics, talk about maybe some of the tough stuff behind it.


0:03:00.4 KK: We usually have really long questions, longer answers, and not a lot of definitive items that are on there, but it's definitely meant for the long form and to engage and make people think. So, we're in our second season now, so we absolutely love doing it.


0:03:16.8 LB: Well, congratulations. I love this idea of safety, humans, and technology. It sounds so future-forward. But tell us a little bit more about how you kind of ended up as a podcast host. Now, I know you said how you guys met, but you actually have a sales background. And what I think is interesting is in looking at some of our show analytics, we have a lot of salespeople that listen to our show, so I'm wondering if we have some future podcasters out there. And how does one end up to where you've ended up?


0:03:56.7 KK: Yeah, that's a good question. And shoutout to all the salespeople, they are the ultimately the Jacks and Jill's of all trades, and usually have to be speaking with a lot of folks. So, the way I actually ended up is I was on a podcast way back in the day with my good buddy, Jon Ekstrom, who I went to high school with, he runs a podcast here in Denver. And I was a guest, I was like, "This is kind of cool." And earlier in 2020, I had bought a lot of mic equipment because I wanted to do something with my son, and just as a way... So, we have a podcast called "Soda and Son" and we just have a soda and just talk about life. And little did I know that 2020 would be a really interesting catalog year to have it, but it really just started out as a passion to wanna have the conversations I have with my son, but have them on audio. And it just so happened, because I had the equipment, then I began talking to Mwangi and setting it up. And now, I co-host two podcasts and I feel extremely comfortable in front of a mic.


0:04:58.0 KK: And if it weren't for this interface, for all of us extroverts out there, it would be tough because now I get to talk to new people, like you Lauren, and meet people. Whereas now, some folks have just sort of been... Those have been curved tremendously. So, nobody knows strangers anymore, and I like strangers 'cause strangers are crazy interesting to me.


0:05:20.0 LB: Yes, that's how I started this podcast. I was like, "I wanna talk about safety and meet crazy interesting people." And my boss was like, "Go ahead." But I love that you talk about the idea, too, of Soda and Son because interestingly enough, my nieces and nephews are big fans of the podcast. Of this podcast, and they were like, "We wanna do a special episode on safety in school or safe... " And I just love the enthusiasm that when you... Like you said, kind of when you sit down with people and learn about them, there is a level of enthusiasm and you get to learn so much, so this is just so cool.


0:06:00.7 KK: Yeah.


0:06:01.3 LB: So, I wanna talk a little bit more about your podcast, Probability Matters. And what industries do you think really benefit from the message that you... Or the messages you talk about on that podcast?


0:06:17.1 KK: I think we're pretty a broad brush, right? So, I think our listener base is primarily health and safety, industrial hygiene focus with somewhat of a younger tilt. Mwangi and I are both in our late 30s, so it's chock-full of like '90s references.


0:06:34.6 LB: Oh God, I love it.


0:06:36.5 KK: Yeah. So, we're more tiered toward that, but what we're finding is as we're meeting new people, we're really wanting to make more connections with others in other industries that maybe have nothing to do with health and safety. And so, we've talked to a digital hacker, we talked to a CEO of a behavioral economics company, we talked with a person whose whole job is just talking about innovation. We interviewed somebody that does artificial intelligence for recycling and does robots for recycling, because we feel that there are all these very unique lessons and experiences that others can really... We try to make some tangents back to the health and safety world, but we don't feel that we need to stay limited in that.


0:07:24.7 KK: Because I believe... This is my opinion, that as in health and safety industry, it benefits us to have more connections outside of where we're at. And usually, health and safety is like the last people to get something. I remember growing up, I had cousins in Iowa, and I live in Denver, right? And so, something would be popular in Denver, and then a year later, it'd be popular in Iowa, right?


0:07:46.9 LB: Right.


0:07:47.2 KK: And I'd be like, "Oh, I feel cooler 'cause I had it." Safety's kind of that way, where it's like all this tech and everything comes in, and then we're like the cousins in Iowa that are like, "Oh. Fun. Cool, look at that." And so, I think it benefits everybody to break that cycle and start bidding more... Now granted, safety's in a tough spot. Because everybody says, "Safety first" but the problem is, is it costs money. Some people go to the bottom line, and so it's difficult to drive that and you're not seeing, "Okay, I'm gonna buy this widget and I'm gonna input my throughput by this and I can calculate my ROI."


0:08:24.4 KK: Some of these items, they take a lot of work. And somebody still might get hurt. So, it's really, really tough. But in my opinion, one of the most important for everybody to focus on and do.


0:08:39.5 LB: Yeah, it's so interesting you talk about just kind of that broad spectrum because, actually, what I have learned through this podcast is safety is somehow tied into everyone's life. And at first, I kinda would joke a lot about, I don't wear goggles when I cut my grass, or me and some of my girlfriends were saying, "We work in an office. Is safety really a thing for us?" And then actually, the more we talked about it, we were like, "Definitely." And to some of the kind of... I don't wanna call them niche industries you talked about, but like a cyber hacker, we talked about that too.


0:09:21.1 LB: Like, "What about computer safety?" And maybe we've been blind to just how much it does impact our lives and it really does affect everyone. So, I think that's a really interesting point because I'm learning that as well in doing this podcast, so it's very interesting and exciting for sure.


0:09:40.7 KK: Yeah. And really what it is, Lauren, is it's just risk by another name. It just so happens that safety, for some reason, is like the weird uncle in the family that wears the phone on the belt, and it's just like, "Oh, it's safety." It's just risk. You're mitigating risk all the time in your life in different... You're making financial decisions based on risk, you're going out and making products choices by risk, we're all making risk decisions constantly, but when it comes to safety, there's almost this clown-like caricature that can be associated with it because it's... Don't wanna tell the safety guy or days until last, there's just all this theater around it.


0:10:19.6 KK: And what we wanna try to do is take that mask away a little bit, call it what it is, and then once we can drop that, maybe we can look at it from different angles or perspectives without that same moniker that guides a lot of people's thinking.


0:10:34.7 LB: Well, and I think that's kind of a great segue into my next question is, how do you see safety evolving? Because I think, to your point, maybe it's just in the terminology that we use and we have to just kind of rebrand the idea of safety, so it's not our funny uncle. [chuckle] You know what I mean?


0:10:54.3 KK: Yeah.


0:10:55.9 LB: Oh yeah, so I was gonna ask you, how do you, in addition to maybe just seeing kind of the rebranding, what else do you see and how do you see it evolving?


0:11:06.2 KK: Yeah. So after... We're about 40... By the time this comes out, we're like 40-plus episodes deep, right? So, I should have an answer to that. Where I believe we're finding it is it's really, in my opinion, it's branching out. It's the specialist of the day. They're still gonna stay specialist, but it's looking at it from all different angles. It's incorporating all these different technologies, it's incorporating different philosophies, different mindsets, and looking at it in that fashion. Because we had a guest on that said, "How many CEOs are... Come from safety, start in safety backgrounds?" Almost nobody. And as a field to survive, I think it needs to be able to branch out, it may not be so segmented in one area, but all branching in a lot of areas, because I think what safety professionals brings to the table is a good understanding of risk and risk mitigation, and there's no need for that skill set.


0:12:03.1 KK: There's nothing wrong with the safety industry at all, it's just we have to be constantly borrowing from other people's ideas and be far more open to those ideas in order to progress further because, ultimately, safety has one of the more difficult goals, which is this balance of tangible items. This balance of humans, and their make-up, and the decisions they make, compounded with all the fun chemicals and other junk that everybody works with in order to make our society go.


0:12:34.4 LB: Right.


0:12:34.9 KK: So, it's tough. So, I think you gotta keep people motivated to keep going to that angle, because it is a tough road to hoard. Anybody listening right now is probably like, "Yeah, it is tough." Yeah, it's tough. 'Cause, you know, we're talking about all these items, so I don't know if that's necessarily a definitive answer, see previous answer about the podcast, but that's where I see the industry going overall.


0:13:02.9 LB: Well, it goes back to what you said about safety, humans, and technology. I mean, that's kind of how it's evolving, so I think that's a great answer. And kind of parlaying on that, how do you think that either you or maybe safety professionals can take some of these safety topics that may seem very stale or bland, or repetitive and make them more fun and engaging? Because I've gotten a little bit of a mixed bag when I talk to people about their toolbox meeting or their safety tip of the day and some people are like, "You know what, it is all about getting home to my family and I could hear about fall protection 365 days a year and never ever blink an eye because I wanna get home."


0:14:00.2 KK: Right.


0:14:00.6 LB: And then you have the other who're like, "Definitely wanna get home safely." Little down on the fall protection for the moment but if you could make it maybe more creative or more fun, what do you think that would look like or how do you think that could benefit people?


0:14:21.1 KK: Yeah, and so my background is gas detection. So, I've been doing gas detection for 15 years and I grew up with my dad working in the safety industry, so Take Your Kid to Work Day was nitro gloves and respirators, and all that stuff.


0:14:35.4 LB: Oh, wow.


0:14:35.5 KK: And I found gas monitors like, This is amazing." So that's where I've been in that field. Now, I will say this, I don't know if safetiness always needs to be fun. I think that's where that weird uncle moniker comes from because some people try a bit too hard to go with it and...


0:14:48.8 LB: Maybe cool is the better word.


0:14:50.9 KK: Cool. Sure, maybe. And I don't even know if it needs to be cool but the main thing it needs to be as relevant, so finding relevance with audiences is tremendously important. And I can speak to that because I've done a number of different side projects where I did a whole video series that was a little bit more skit based. I was a former college mascot, so it probably explains a lot, and so bringing in those more fun concepts or humorous to point out the juxtaposition in our decisions and why we do it. So, I've gone more humorous manners, I've gone more informative manners as far as getting very technical, I've gone in more long form. So, I would say, whatever works for the individual and that audience to make it relevant is the main thing that you can do and if you can apply what is you, uniquely you, your unique human traits to that, that will be that much more engaging and that much more interesting, and that much more genuine. And not to say that safety people are lacking from a sense of being genuine but sometimes people need to be like stiff upper lip and really, "This is the line."


0:15:58.3 LB: Right.


0:16:00.3 KK: And that's tough because that's usually what gets people to deflect on that. Now, I say all that saying, I'm not speaking from a degreed safety person. I've been around under this service. I have tremendous respect for the people who do this every day. It is not what I do. I've been around those systems and I've spoken to those people ad nauseam and those are my observations based on that, so I wanted to get that clarified.


0:16:24.8 LB: Yes, and for what it's worth, we do have a disclaimer at the end of the show.


0:16:29.7 KK: Yeah. [chuckle]


0:16:29.9 LB: Just to make sure, but no, I really like that you use the word relevant, I think that's a much better word as well, and just your advice on to just being yourself because you kind of talked about how you've presented it in a few different ways. And similarly, we're trying to present it in a certain way that it is a bit more engaging. And I come from a comedy and an improvise background, in addition to a fashion background, but I do like that you're promoting that. Maybe that is what the safety industry needs, is a bit of unique perspective just to make it relevant. I think that's just an excellent point. Now, you kinda touched on this earlier with some of the guests that you've had but what types of people have you met along the way kind of doing your podcast, and not just in their profession but there's always... I've talked to some safety professionals. There's the overconfident safety guy, the guy who's afraid to say something or there could be just some interesting characters that you've met. Tell us a little bit more about what that's been like.


0:17:48.9 KK: Yeah, one of my favorite guests, his name is Jody Trevathan from Braggadocio, Missouri and just a wonderful perspective on... He had a background in the Armed Forces, and he brought a unique perspective coming from also growing up in a small town and then working on safety in ag. So, we've talked to people... Jody have talked to young students, who are non-traditional students, that go to my alma mater, Colorado State University.


0:18:15.7 LB: Yes.


0:18:17.7 KK: And we got their perspective on items. You're gonna hear the gamut of stuff on our show because that's the exact point, is we wanna hear from different people who are 15-year professionals. We talked to an OSHA director that was, shout out to her... But he was in OSHA for 35 years. That was his only gig. And so, we're trying to bring in a bunch of different people with different backgrounds, CEOs, students, anybody who can bring their item to the table, because we find it so much more rich and engaging when you hear from all of these different perspectives.


0:18:56.8 LB: Well, and it sounds like we have very similar goals, so it's really interesting that our paths have crossed because it's kind of like just bringing together this very eclectic group of people all around this idea of safety which, honestly, just energizes me. So, I do want to start slowly but surely transferring into the creative part of it. Yes and no, but my question is about what projects you might currently have in the works. And I know we're gonna talk about creativity, so if they're creative projects feel free but also, if they're professional projects that you might be working on or some special guests, or you... Second season anniversary. I feel like there's probably so many things but yeah, what are some things that you're working on?


0:19:55.5 KK: Yeah, there's always a bunch of stuff. I think one thing is, it's weird to say, "I am creative." So that's like, "I'm beautiful." Or "I'm strong." There are these interesting statements about a human quality about it but... So, it helps me not think that I'm crazy but I'm working constantly on things that I see in the world and what's really helped me is to be able to have to learn tools to bring these items to a tangible nature, to format them in a way that other people can see them the way that I would like them to see them more the way that it is in my head. So, at any given point, I'm working on things for Probability Matters, I'm working on stuff for customers of mine that have requests on things, we're working on everything with the Soda and Son podcast and making sure that we edit. And then what I try to do with each episode is take time purposefully to listen to the edit, write down notes and then create a short motion graphics piece that really complements the episode, what we talked about, the message that we're trying to get across in a different visual medium so that people can maybe look at that in a different perspective and gain more appreciation for when they listen to it.


0:21:10.1 KK: So, it's just... It's a constant... I have this whiteboard and it's weird that it's blank because normally, it's just chock-full of all of the ideas and things that I'm working on, so it's really hard for me to say 'cause I literally make six pieces of content every week.


0:21:28.6 LB: Well, maybe it's a good time for the beginning of a project. Oftentimes, I too... Funny enough, you kind of referenced to your right, you have a whiteboard. I too have a whiteboard to my right.


0:21:40.9 KK: They're awesome.


0:21:41.3 LB: Maybe it's just a creative thing to do. But mine is very full. But maybe it's just a good time to reset because I think sometimes that's very important to the process as well. But it sounds like a lot of fantastic things going on. Now, this is kind of my closing question to most of my guests and it will allow you an opportunity to maybe tap into that creativeness before we really dive deep into it, but if you could have dinner with three people, living or dead, real, or fictional, who would they be and why?


0:22:25.6 KK: Oh, my goodness, that is...


0:22:28.4 LB: That's usually everyone's response. [chuckle]


0:22:29.6 KK: Yeah, yeah. There's just such a list. Do they all have to be dead?


0:22:34.0 LB: No, they could be living or dead, they could be real or fictional. I often talk about John Lennon would be on my list but then, again, I feel like... I was trying to think of... Harry Potter would also be on my list, so it could be like both of our podcasts, a gamut of characters at your dinner party.


0:22:56.6 KK: Yeah, sure, sure. Now, the good son of me wants to say my mom would be there but I would say, in terms of people, in the thought of the creative space and in the theme of the podcast, Mwangi and I really like jazz music, so I would definitely say probably Phife Dawg from Tribe Called Quest who passed away. He'd be really interesting to talk to.


0:23:22.5 LB: Oh, that's a good one.


0:23:23.5 KK: I believe it'd be great to speak with Martin Luther King Jr. I'd love to talk to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. About things that he did and then I'm gonna throw in Buddha. Those would be the three people.


0:23:39.5 LB: Oh, okay.


0:23:42.2 KK: I think it'd be an interesting dinner conversation for sure.


0:23:45.2 LB: Yeah, invite me over because I wanna be at that dinner because that sounds really interesting.


0:23:50.5 KK: Yeah. [chuckle] When it happens, I will.


0:23:52.3 LB: Yes, definitely. Well, I wanna thank you for talking about your podcast with us and after our break, we are going to move fully into the creative aspect. Is there anything you wanna close with before we jump into that?


0:24:10.8 KK: No, I'm super excited. My brain's already tingling.


0:24:13.9 LB: Alright, well, awesome.

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0:24:58.0 LB: Welcome back, everyone. I am here with Kyle Krueger, who is the co-host of the Probability Matters podcast, and today we are talking about safety and creativity. I am the most excited I've been in all of my guests because, like you said, some people are beautiful, some people are smart, and I like to think I am creative. So, tell me a little bit... You said you were a college mascot. Tell me a little bit about just what creativity looked like for you growing up.


0:25:41.3 KK: Yes. I was an only child, so my best friend was Nintendo, and so it was just... I think being an only child teaches you a lot to have time and especially where you've got a space where your mind could be bored because you didn't normally... You had like a standard AR TV. My parents wouldn't pay for cable, it's totally very beneficial, so there's not a lot that you can do. So, a lot of it just came from boredom, which I think boredom is so underrated. Boredom is fantastic. There's so much that happens when boredom occurs in the mind. And so, a lot of it came from just growing up and being bored and then having a natural inclination to be somewhat extroverted really helped. We would go to the mountains. We had a cabin up in the mountains in Colorado and that was just sticks and stuff, sticks and stuff, and hay bales, and just trees. You've gotta get out there and you just come up with stuff, and I think that's really how it started with my... A lot of boredom, which I'm appreciative and thankful that I had.


0:26:46.7 LB: Yeah, that is an excellent point because like you said, I would say, thinking about my creative projects, they are often spun out of something like, "Oh, I'm just so bored, why don't I start a podcast?" Or you know, not that I was bored at work...


0:27:05.2 KK: Sure. [chuckle]


0:27:05.2 LB: By any means, or not busy. But yeah, you bring up a great point. I do wanna talk about the creative process. This is always something super fun to speak with creatives about. Because I would say that the creative process does have a lot of ups and downs, at least mine does. It goes from like, "I have to do this idea." To, "I'm never gonna do this idea again. I don't wanna finish this. I hate everything about it." To like, "Oh my God, it's better than I even dreamed." So, tell us a little bit about what your creative process is like.


0:27:45.4 KK: Yeah, so we'll separate the anxiety from the process for me. [chuckle]


0:27:48.6 LB: Right.


0:27:49.2 KK: So, I believe, what I found is the more work you can do ahead of time before you try to make something, the better off the thing you make will be. So, for example, if there's an idea that we've got, the more time you do word association and word clouds and coming up with words and sub-tangents of words to help make those connections, it'll help reinforce what you need. Sometimes, you'll have a very clear vision in your head, but it helps to tease it out a little bit. Make sure that it's transferable, so that your unique idea is a little bit more transferable to others. And then taking time to block it out, either in whatever you're doing, I'm speaking in the terms of video production, but block out how you think it's gonna work. Work to story board that, run it over again, and then get to the point of where you're... So, there's a big ideation process. So, I think creativity, people wanna create things right away.


0:28:45.0 LB: Right.


0:28:45.0 KK: But people need to ideate, to think a couple of steps ahead of time, that'll make their stuff stronger. And a lot of people get frustrated because they don't do the first part. And so that second part is super painful. Because if you're... Think of it like you're a sculptor and you work for two hours sculpting a leg, and you're like, "Oh hey, the statue doesn't have any legs, what the hell? [chuckle] Why did I spend two hours on something that wasn't part of the idea?" So, getting back to the core root of that idea and why it exists, and really teasing that out, I found to be the utmost best part of creativity. Music plays a huge role, the human brain is just so interesting, but a lot of things happen in our subconscious. So, a lot of times when I allow myself to be bored or don't hyper focus on something, that's when the most clarity, sometimes will pop in your mind. And that's also very... And it will come at random times. So, I'm always carrying around like a pencil and notebooks to write something down, or I have a bunch of emails to myself, because there's the beautiful spontaneity of it.


0:29:54.5 LB: Yes. It's so interesting when you said, kind of essentially taking that brain hurricane and vetting it, essentially with like ideation, it kinda made me think too of design thinking. And I know that sometimes, having a bit more purpose to your creativity, a bit more like problem-solving, instead of just like, "I'm creating for the sake of creation." Now, sometimes there is a place for that. I paint three times a week for just the enjoyment of painting. But I think to your point, that is part of that quieting of the mind that you need, to really come up with some of those more purposeful ideas.


0:30:41.6 KK: Yes.


0:30:41.6 LB: So, I kinda love how you put that. Now, the last question I wanna ask with regards to creativity is, you know, I hear so many people say, "I'm not a creative person, I'm just not creative." What type of advice would you give to someone who says that? Who maybe wants to be creative and just feels that they're not, or maybe someone who has a hard time getting a creative project off the ground? What would you say to them?


0:31:15.4 KK: Well, part of it is, you're good enough, you're smart enough and dog gone it, people like you.


0:31:19.0 LB: People like you, yes.


0:31:20.9 KK: Because [chuckle] I think what everybody needs to know is... So, creativity is just connecting dots. That's a quote from Steve Jobs is creativity is nothing more than just making connections. So, you can make all the type of connections and people think like, "Oh well, I need to have a unique hairstyle and unique clothing to be considered creative." No, you don't. There's a lot of creativity that happens in more mundane topics that aren't always in the tangible form of art.


0:31:46.4 KK: Right now, there's some safety person or somebody who's listening right now, that did something crazy creative today, that made a connection for a customer that looked to see something and then something spurred out of it. So, I would say that it's nothing more than making connections. And if you can make those connections, you can be creative. If you bound yourself to creativity of your example of painting or maybe my example of making video things, those are creative outlets, that is a form of creativity. But there's many, many forms of creativity that we always make all the time. It's something that's innately human. And by the way, we all need to get better at it. Because we talk about a lot of them on the show, artificial intelligence and 2.0 and everything that's coming in these 2.0, 4.0, 10.0. Creativity is innately human. It's one of those unique things that I don't believe anything is going to be able to recreate. And it's something as humans that we really...


0:32:41.1 LB: I was going to ask...


0:32:42.0 KK: Yes, we really need to be able to do and stretch our bounds and challenge ourselves to do it. So, I think it's an innately human trait, and I think it will be a survival trait in the business environment 100%. Because if all of the mundane has been processed out then, what's left?


0:33:04.3 LB: Well, I love that you already touched on it before I asked, because when you were talking about the technology and safety and humans, I do like the idea that creativity is going to be our saving grace, especially I think post-COVID. I'm seeing a lot more creative things that have come out of COVID, creative ways of approaching things, so I loved everything about that answer. Alright. Well, I am ready to do our fun thing, our fun creative thing. If you're ready, I'm ready.


0:33:46.1 KK: Let's do it.


0:33:47.7 LB: Okay. So, you know what... Or you've heard of the game of Mad Libs. I don't know if you played them as a child, but I was inspired by not just playing Mad Libs as a child, but also Jimmy Fallon does this with some of his guests, I think. So, speaking of creativity, I wrote a Mad Lib called Substitute safety supervisor, just so you know what it's called. And for anyone who's never played this game, basically what you do is you just ask someone to provide you with a noun, a verb, whatever the story calls for, and then you read the story in its completion. And typically, the answers provide kind of a funny story or just kind of a funny perspective, or if anything, just a creative perspective on a story.


0:34:48.4 KK: Sure.


0:34:51.4 LB: So, I'm gonna ask you to provide some of those things and then we'll read the story and I just wanna say whatever comes of it, even though we have the disclaimer, it is in no way any kind of real advice 'cause I'm just afraid of what it could turn out to be. So, the first thing I'm gonna ask you for is a time of day.


0:35:13.8 KK: Time of day. Let's go morning.


0:35:16.3 LB: Okay. The second thing is an animal plural.


0:35:23.6 KK: Polar bears.


0:35:26.7 LB: Okay. And it's gonna take me a second 'cause I'm actually writing this. This is so old school. You talked about always having a pen rather than typing it in the computer.


0:35:35.4 KK: Wait, did you print it out in the... Did you format a Word document and then print it out so you're writing these in?


0:35:42.1 LB: I don't know if you could see, but yes.


0:35:43.3 KK: That's fantastic. That's amazing.


0:35:43.5 LB: I mean, I'm old school and it's so bad right now.


0:35:47.9 KK: That's great.


0:35:49.7 LB: Yeah, why not?


0:35:50.5 KK: Why not?


0:35:53.1 LB: The last name of a celebrity.


0:35:56.9 KK: Oh, man. I don't know what we're gonna go with on that one. That one's tough. Let's go Elway. Let's throw it back to Denver Broncos. Sure.


0:36:09.7 LB: Okay. Loving that. Now, unusual occupation.


0:36:21.2 KK: Let's go with a Zoo dietician. Somebody who does diets for animals in zoos.


0:36:33.7 LB: Oh, my goodness, that is very unusual. And if we have any Zoo dieticians listening, I just wanna be your friend 'cause...


0:36:40.6 KK: Yeah. Thank you for the work you do.


0:36:42.5 LB: Yeah, exactly. [chuckle] Alright. How about your favorite beverage?


0:36:48.4 KK: Favorite beverage. We'll go soda. We have to go soda.


0:36:52.8 LB: Okay, yeah. Duh. Okay, a body part.


0:37:00.3 KK: Pinky finger.


0:37:05.4 LB: Alright. An adjective.


0:37:14.7 KK: Excited.


0:37:18.4 LB: My dad will love that. He says I use that word way too much, and you know what? He's right. It's fine. I'm human. What about a plural noun? Actually, I'll need two plural nouns.


0:37:33.4 KK: We'll say office cubicles.


0:37:38.9 LB: Office cubicles?


0:37:41.5 KK: Mm-hmm.


0:37:42.9 LB: Okay.


0:37:43.7 KK: And we will say, gently used recliners.


0:37:48.0 LB: Oh yeah, I love this.


0:37:50.3 KK: I know that's more than a noun, but.


0:37:53.5 LB: I'm okay with that. I'm...


0:37:54.5 KK: Okay. I feel I had the freedom to sort of... Yeah. But that actually, you know what though, I feel bad about that one, Lauren. That's a lot to write down on a piece of paper. That doesn't fit there. You're gonna have to go outside the margins.


0:38:07.3 LB: It's okay.


0:38:09.7 KK: It's fine?


0:38:10.8 LB: It's okay, yeah. We're making it work. What about a country that you would like to travel to?


0:38:21.7 KK: Let's say Norway.


0:38:23.6 LB: Alright. And how about another adjective?


0:38:32.5 KK: Can we say bemused?


0:38:33.7 LB: Bemused. I love that. Oh, such a good word. I need another plural noun and then a singular noun.


0:38:44.8 KK: A plural noun and a singular known. Let's go with tree.


0:38:54.0 LB: For the singular noun?


0:38:55.1 KK: Yes, we'll go with tree. It could be a plural. We could use it for both, but let's just go with tree, and then let's go with feathers.


0:39:04.7 LB: Okay. And then finally, before...


0:39:06.3 KK: This is gonna be such a weird one. [laughter]


0:39:08.1 LB: I am so excited. I know it's gonna be weird. I'm kind of secretly laughing already. Okay. What about a verb?


0:39:16.7 KK: A verb?


0:39:18.6 LB: Yes.


0:39:19.1 KK: You pick. Dealer's choice, you get to pick. You have to participate in this one.


0:39:24.9 LB: Oh goodness. You see, I feel like I'm cheating, but maybe...


0:39:29.1 KK: You're not. It's part of the process. I deferred.


0:39:31.2 LB: Okay. Dance. We'll go with dance.


0:39:35.1 KK: Dance.


0:39:35.1 LB: Alright, well here we go. Ladies and gentlemen, I know, I wonder if my sound guy can put in a drum roll?


0:39:43.0 KK: Ladies and gentlemen. Yeah, here we go.


0:39:45.7 LB: Yes, ladies and gentlemen, presenting the substitute safety supervisor. Good morning safety polar bears. My name is Sally Elway, and I'm filling in for your safety manager. Now, I work as a zoo dietician, so I'm no safety expert, but here's what I can tell you about safety. First, be sure to drink plenty of soda before arriving to work, it's good for your pinky fingers and will help you stay excited throughout the day. Number two, goggles should be worn especially when working around office cubicles and gently used recliners. Why you ask? Because as they say in Norway, better safe than bemused. And finally, number three, when working with heavy feathers, bring a tree, I know it may sound unusual, but it'll help you dance through the day, and I'll promise you'll thank me later. Again, this is Sally Elway, your substitute safety supervisor.


0:40:46.6 KK: Wow.


0:40:47.2 LB: That was so unusual. Please do not follow that advice.


0:40:51.1 KK: We strung a lot of weird words together all in one.




0:40:55.7 KK: But I do feel like there may be a one bit of actual safety advice in there maybe, but I'm not quite sure.


0:41:03.9 LB: Yeah, maybe better safe than bemused?


0:41:07.7 KK: And I'm glad that everybody now knows the saying in Norway because...


0:41:12.5 LB: Yes, if I could say it in Norwegian it's a...


[foreign language]


0:41:21.1 LB: Which definitely means that. [laughter]


0:41:21.3 KK: Well, I think most people in Norway, they don't say it 'cause they don't really know how to feel about it, maybe they're slightly upset.


0:41:28.4 LB: Yeah, and I wanna make sure it translates correctly, 'cause I know sometimes translating Norwegian into English, something could be lost there. So, if I would have known, well, no, maybe Sally Elway wasn't Norwegian, I was like maybe I could have read it all in an accent.


0:41:45.9 KK: Could have been. You never know.


0:41:47.1 LB: Maybe the next podcast.


0:41:48.3 KK: Maybe the next one. Lauren does accents. Yeah.


0:41:51.8 LB: Yeah, Lauren does accents. Well, I wanna thank you so much, that was super fun and super weird and super creative, and I loved every moment of talking about your podcast, Probability Matters. So, thank you for being on our show and best of luck with that.


0:42:12.0 KK: Thank you. Thanks for having me on.


0:42:16.1 LB: Special thanks to Kyle Krueger, host of the Probability Matters podcast and Driving Safety Improvements for talking about safety and creativity today.




0:42:35.2 LB: If you enjoyed listening to the Safety And podcast today, be sure to like, review, or subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. Also, if you're interested in being a guest on our show, please email That's Since this is a safety podcast, we should probably mention this disclaimer. The Safety And podcast is recorded and made available by LAPCO Manufacturing Inc. Solely for informational and entertainment purposes. The statements, comments, views, and opinions expressed in this podcast should not be considered by any listener as professional provision and/or direct a specific course of action. The statements, comments, views, and opinions expressed here, including by speakers who are not employees or agents of LAPCO, are not necessarily those of LAPCO and may not be current. This podcast may not be reproduced, redistributed, published, copied, or duplicated in any form by any means without prior consent from LAPCO Manufacturing Inc.


0:43:35.1 LB: This is Lauren Brizendine with LAPCO and remember safety doesn't happen by accident so stay safe and see you next time on The Safety And podcast. The Safety And podcast is produced by LAPCO Manufacturing with marketing and media by Lauren Brizendine and Tiffany Giroir, audio engineering by Christopher Hanlon, and music by Smokehouse Beats.


0:44:00.3 LB: That was easy. Cool.


Links of Interest:

Probability Matters podcast

American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA)

Soda & Son Podcast on Facebook

Kyle and his son Cole are currently selling merch to support the No Kid Hungry charity. Learn more, listen to their podcast and shop Soda & Son merch at