Kenneth Theriot


Kenneth Theriot is a third-generation Cajun shrimper from Chauvin, Louisiana. His son has taken to shrimping, adding a fourth generation. In the off-season, Kenneth builds shrimp boats. He says you don’t get rich shrimping, but it is in his nature. He describes the process like this: “Well, you go out there and you find shrimp. You catch them, clean them, ice them, and you just do that all day and all night long.”

“When people are in trouble, you help them. You do it for people, people do it for you.”

I don’t care who come down here, you’re welcome in my house. We always cooking and before I know it, I got a full table and we’ve got to put another table out. It doesn’t matter if it’s people I know or don’t know, it’s just what happens. At one time everybody knew everybody and everybody just take care of everybody. It doesn’t matter if I agree or disagree with the guy, if he needs help, I’m going to help him. It’s just the way it is.

When I was a kid growing up, we didn’t have air conditioning. Our doors were open, our windows were open, we had attic fans and cool air blowing in the house. You could walk in somebody’s house and that didn’t mean nothing. In today’s world, my doors are locked. Every little noise you hear, you wonder if somebody is coming in your house. Society is changing. You don’t know who is next door.

I don’t think people got time to socialize. They leave to go to work in the morning, they come back at night. They’re tired. Back in the days, everybody used to sit on the porch, they gossip, and everybody knew what was going on. I want you to ride around and tell me how many people you see sitting on the porch talking to each other. You don’t see it.

Images from shrimping on the Gulf of Mexico

Kenneth Theriot Full Podcast

Discussion Questions

  • Do you find peace in helping other people? When is a time that you’ve helped someone without expecting anything in return? When have you helped someone but expected something in return? How was your experience of peace different in both of these situations?
  • Have you ever bought something you know you couldn’t afford in the long run? How did that affect your ability to experience peace?
  • What is your relationship like with your neighbors? Where is peace present and where is it absent in that relationship?
  • How has society changed throughout your lifetime? How do you se it changing in the future?
  • Do you find peace in the work you do? What is not peaceful about it?

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