« The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe

Episode 198: Where Do I Begin

2021-05-04 | 🔗

A problem at the border, a fat man in a shiny suit, and all the thirty-five cent draft you can drink. It’s a fine place to begin, even if you don’t know where you’re headed.

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This podcast dynamically inserts audio advertisements of varying lengths for each download. As a result, the transcription time indexes may be inaccurate.
I guess it's my grow. This is absurd. One. Ninety eight of the way I heard it it's called: where do I Again, where do I begin to tell the story of how great a love can be? Yes, I learned last week, then I'm allowed to sing on the pod guessed the copy written material, but ever so briefly Oh my god, though letters. The money that was spent with lawyers just trying to figure out simple little copyright questions. I want to bore you with a bunch of complaining bent man? What an ongoing adventure things I learn doing this podcast. You can fill a book with them which of course is what I did on today's episode features The conversation with shock the producer this year podcast and it concerns itself with a story that Chuck wrote for the podcast couple years ago, called fame
infamy! It was a fine story, but I wrote it as my hubris Hands and, for various other reasons that will soon be made clear. I also change the title to oh brother and I omitted the inciting incident around which the entire tail was originally based, shucks, whereas you forgive me for rewriting him, which is nice, also full disclosure. This is a political story in Spain, shared by today's headlines. Specific headlines concerning our southern border, so trigger warning for those of you who believe borders, don't matter, I'm very sorry but tat, they they matter a lot. That's followed by a continuation of last week's story about the audition that started it all with an their audition story that mattered a whole lot more than I thought it did at the time just just one more reason why it's it's hard to know precisely where to begin.
Where do I begin even when you know exactly where your headed, episode number one. Ninety eight and it all starts right now and by, right now I mean right after I tried to articulate the unparalleled satisfaction of saving money by paying off high interest credit cards with a credit card consolidation loan from light stream life. cream offers credit card consolidation loans from five point: nine five percent, a pr with ATO pay an excellent credit plus there, no fees, none and you can't even get your money as soon as the day you apply, like stream, believes the people with good credit serve a better loan experience and I couldn't agree with more, never ever settle for an interest rate that doesn't reflect your own good credit. There's just no reason
and just for you guys, apply now and get a special interest rate discount and save even more light stream. Dotcom, Slash wrote. The only way to get this disco is to go to light stream. Elijah Hd S, t r e m dotcom, slash row. Subject: credit approval rates range from five point: five percent, a pr to nineteen point. Ninety nine percent, a pr includes european five. Zero percent ought to pay discount lowest rate requires excellent credit terms. Conditions applying averages, objected change without notice, mislaid shrink by complex row from word formation. Now, where do I begin about right here chapter. Twenty, oh brother, Ed and his little brother had a lot in common. Both were famous actors. Both were deeply patriotic and both love Turkey, with all the fixes
but unfortunately, for those around them add was a staunch Republican, his brother, a devoted Democrat, and that was not a recipe for a peaceful Thanksgiving dinner before the election. The brothers had bickered over the economy, immigration, taxes, race relations and, of course, the border. Their arguments had been heated but always respectful. It was frustrating for ed, though, because during the run up to the recent election. His kid brother had been so damn smug like Many in the entertainment business adds little brother solve the elections outcome as a fait accompli He not only believed that a Democrat would win. He believed it would
and in a landslide, all his friends said. So all the pundits said so besides, the republican alternative was a buffoon, a dangerous, unpredictable buffoon. Well, on November eighth, conventional wisdom gone out the window the buffoon had one and now after the most contentious election in? U S, history adds little brother was still in shock. He wanted a recount. He wanted a do over bits of man. potato flew from his mouth. Is he announced to every one in the room that the Republican was not my President Ed held his tongue as his little brother railed against the Electoral College, the new limits on a free press, the future of the Supreme Court and, of course, the situation with the border?
His face became flushed and his voice rose higher and higher. It seem to add that he was watching a performance, a series of talking points called from a biased media, delivered with all the drama and passion he could muster like a shakespearean actor addressing the last row of a sold out theatre. The man is a tyrant. He said a warmonger Adele, tater and mark my words he will destroy this country with that adds little brother stood up from the table knocked his chair to the floor and slammed the door so hard. A picture fell off the wall, Ed side heavily and apologised to his guests. He turned his attention back to the turkey, and that was that the two brothers never spoke again. It's always drag when politics
tromp family relations, but there was more to this sibling rivalry than a contentious election. While both brothers were actors, only one was a household name. It was ed who travelled through Europe and towards the United States too great a claim. It was ed, who basque than the glow of critical reviews. After performing one hundred knights of hamlet on broadway- and it was ed who would have his statue erected in grammar- see park the first american actor to be honoured in such a way, Ed's fame asked a long shadow and his little brother had lived in it for most of his life and yet barely remember Ed. Today his statue is still there not far from Broadway.
but his memorial is dwarfed by the legacy of his younger brother. Just five months after that, fateful Thanksgiving dinner, the aspiring thespian stepped out from under his older brothers shadow and delivered his command proof limits with just one line delivered with all the drama and passion he could muster. Adds little brother addressed the last row of a sold out theatre just like the shakespearean actor. He had always wanted to be sick samper territories, thus always to tyrants. It was an odd thing to say about a president, who is most fervent hope had been to make Amerika great again by reuniting the nor and the south, and bringing an end to the civil war that had very new
They destroyed the country had served, but that's exactly what the audience it forwards. Theatre heard on that fateful night in April, just a few seconds after headwinds, little brother murdered Abraham That's why we barely remember the immensely talented and deeply patriotic performer named Edwin Booth, the great actor up staged by his young
brother, a common murderer whose full name is unforgettable and not worth repeating. Edwin booths brother was twenty six when he jumped onto the stage Forts theatre, wild, eyed spewing nonsense in Latin. When I was twenty six I jumped onto the stage of the Lyric Theatre, wild eyed and spewing Italian at twenty seven. I was feeling french and german. By the time I was twenty nine. I was simply spewing. My opera plan had worked, but, like all my plans, it has not worked in the way I'd intended. I got my Ag Mc card and my sag card and started auditioning for union commercials that paid actual money, but I hadn't quit the opera as planned. I'd stay on
because MIKE Gellert had been correct. The music was terrific. The orchestra was world class, the chorus girls turned out to be friendly, very friendly by one thousand nine hundred and ninety five song in nearly two dozen productions and even had a few solo lines. My italian I've gotta know better, but I had ingratiated myself into the fabric of the chorus and become a useful, if not tiredly, reliable participant one Sunday afternoon bring the intermission of something in german gallery and I slipped out the stage door and walked over to the Mount Royal Tavern for a couple of beers and a few minutes of the football game. We were dressed like vikings, but the patrons of the Mount Royal Tavern were in no way surprised. They had seen in a variety of costumes over the years. Always during
intermission of some opera gallery and I took our usual seats at the bar. But when we looked up at the tv the game was not on. Instead, we saw a fat man in a shiny suit, selling pots and pans what the Hell Rick where's the guy, in its half time the bartender said okay, but why are we watching a fat man in a shiny suit, selling pots and bans because said Rick, I'm auditioning for his job tomorrow and I'm trying to figure out what that guy does exactly the first time I had ever seen or heard of PVC Rick explained to me. The network was basically a twenty four hour commercial. currently engaged in a nation, wide talent search. It had come to Baltimore and was holding a cattle called audition.
Ex mourning over at the merry out and the inner harbour as he Portas another beer Geller nodded to the tv and said I bet you could do that. What I said get fat dress like use, car salesman. You keep saying you want to work and television that looks like television to me. You should audition. Last time you told me the audition for something I wound up in a bar dressed like a Viking watching an infomercial you're welcome. He said laugh all you want Cedric nodding towards us.
green that fat guy in the shiny suit makes two hundred thousand dollars a year. Starting salary is sixty thousand dollars, plus a bonus. We drank our beer and continued to watch. Kubi, see the thought of a twenty four hour. Commercial struck me as a sign of the apocalypse, a harbinger of doom, an end to western civilization that or a steady paycheck, something I had yet to experience. In my chosen field, we got back to the lyric in time to make our entrance spew some german and take bows, but that night in bed I flicked around the dial and found pvc. I watched a nervous looking woman, try to sell me a treadmill, a simulated diamond bracelet and an eel skin handbag amazing. I drifted off with the tv still on
when I got up to be. I saw sweaty gentleman in a leisure suit, hawking, unbreakable plates and stem, where followed by an electronic device that purported to keep mosquitoes away, sixty thousand dollars a year plus a bonus. The next morning I drove downtown to the merry out there. As you know, I talked about a pencil for eight minute straight and landed my first job in television, the job that taught me the submissive posture, among other things, what you do now is that I wound up forgetting the important lessons I learned on that job for many years one out of my way to forget them later on I'll. Tell you about those years to a time I think of day as my ears and the woods, the time that lasted until I found a path that led me to the place, I should have been all along when it comes to
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routines for anybody looking to get fit at home or on the gulf. Bodies. Nine, ninety nine a month or fifty nine. Ninety nine a year pick up the pace on your fitness journey with football today in your future, self will thank you and, for you guys, twenty five percent off your membership it fit bod dot me slash. Might that's twenty five percent off at fit bod dot me Slash MIKE chuckle, Meyer producer extraordinary power. Feeling now in the wake of Europe. Your second prick was was way worse than the first prick I'll tell you that yeah on Friday, I got my second Madonna shots and nor was it was soon reasonably good and then Saturday morning, just dumb everything just started to crap the bed and the fee.
We're getting out of the super. Eighty, I think talk to you were going to do this yesterday and- and I was like you know what I think we should do it tomorrow goes, and you were like it should take a nap it'll do good and they're nice. I turn on the tv and- and I woke up at seven p M Really I was hoping you would take me up on it because I feel like hell myself. I mean I am just absolutely dirty jobs is kicking. My ass again, I have, as you know, a third greed burn on my shin. Then I got one I'll welding, the interior of a tugboat about a month ago, and I just did this job sucking ox off of a roof one second, before just but were you move onto that. I just want to say that I have seen this in on your shin having just been up there, and it is like a debate on a golf course. I mean there is it's like a look. It's like it's.
A pond if you feel you fill it with water. If you were lying flat, it's like a hole in your shin. That's because there's a whole in motion and it hurt look. I've got a decent threshold for pain and I- and I certainly don't like to complain in front people logic, but I'm telling you man, I was curled up like a, or like a ring worm inside the hall of an upside down tugboat with a cutting steel, and I saw the molten magma drip edit. It it hit my car hearts. It didn't even pause like a knife through butter. It just burn through the car hard hit. My skin and bird right to the bone and it hurts so bad. I made a high pitched whimpering sound, but I'm not even going to attempt to replicate and and the most amazing thing happen. All the pain went away like with within a say,
and now it was kind of relief than I thought. Oh no doesn't hurt anymore, because all the nerves are God they're gone and the dutch the guy had cauterize the nerve, cauterized blood, everything so just a hole in your leg. Now, anyway, I'm on those, this roof in Nashville, so king rocks off with the giant vacuum, and the technique requires me to put the hose against my left shin. So I don't have to and over with giant house, so I mean the way square inch of my body, that's it absolute agony is the exact spot where this giant hose is supposed to rest, while I'm rock sucking so anyway, as all this is happening, I've got this chronic problem because of a grinder I was another job right. This is another previous job that it was right after the tug clothes I was putting on a poxy
floor a month ago, and I had a big grinder on the Laura and I'm hanging onto the the handlebar. The thing- and it's got these big spinning wheel, rules with diamond blades on them and if the diamond blade catches too far into the bed to the floor it'll spin the whole ride around. That's what happened and I didn't like go so wrapped. My arms, like in a figure eight sprained, my left wrist hyper extended. My right well, and so yesterday I went to get these shots of something called p r p. I'm sorry folks, as I said. I d like to complain, but just let me get this out pr be polite. Lit rich plans, I'm nervous, named Cheyenne comes in with a needle like the size of my index, it takes. A lot of blood, alchemy puts it. In Jeanne spends the machine, separates the bread,
the white cells, the platelets in the plasma, that's left at the top somehow get mixed up. With something else, and then they shoot it back, into my elbow to the the tender my elbow and then he did same thing that my head. So now I can't pick anything up with my left hand, can't straight, not my right arm and tomorrow, I'm supposed to be and a guano hunt in Florida. their overrun with the Aguano down there. You know I'm sorry, they guano Hunt, yes, a team of people look for iguanas, they find them. We kill them because have to die there made their invasive species and their terrorizing people, and then we sell them for bait. I can't believe I do so again. Do leave. Ike edgier older than you ve ever been, as I recall that, right honestly, yes,
just turn. Fifty nine. nine years since I did this, swore I'd? Never do it again. I'd covered with burns, brains, tears, I'm having a ball, don't get me wrong, but damn anyway, what are you talk about well, I figured we should start with the store oh brother, about John Wilkes Booth, because so hate me for rewriting it goes this one. You took a complete pass at, as I recall yes. I know I do I don't I don't hate you about it. I said MIKE he's a nice because, as I recall, I wrote the thing and it was called fame, an infant, and I was in no. Carolina at the time on vacation, and I took like three days to write it I just. I really been researched a lot, I sent to you and you were like yeah- that's good, but I think it's really
their mother and I was there and you sent it back to me, and I am I right. Did, and I was like I, you know. I kind of I mean I'm not married to the the story a married to the structure- I just thought it was about these two brothers and- and you too, another passed with the mother and then eventually to your credit you after after two passes where the mother was a character. You were like. You know what I think you are right. I think that this is a story about the two brothers will, if I may be so bold, I don't either of us was entirely right. The this, picture to me would was still a little too. leading but you were right. It wasn't about the mother. What I was trying get at was that it wasn't about the brother is either it was about every brother. It was about him, the family I was try. I wanted to write something you know at the time the country was being torn apart, pretty much the way it is right now, but the parallels that you pointed out between Trump and Lincoln were Absent
we fascinating and the things that we could learn about the booth. brothers were also really interesting, but but no more info. Resting than you and your own brother. You know who I love. right right, you have you and Rick not see eye to eye now on a great many. things that I and say the same thing about my brother. You know- and so It was literally brother against brother in for years ago during the selection, not quite isn't Lastly, as it was in eighteen, sixty one with other Indians brother in in war, the surrender right correction I just wanted it to be more reliable to people who didn't care about politics or history, but were, living through this weird thing tearing families apart and d in conversations over Thanksgiving in every other meal. For that matter, the cool thing,
that story for me was that there was a show on. I think it was abc called timeless and I I first of all you know billing TED's excellent adventure, one of my favorite. movies. Just because I love the rules of time travel? And you know a moment in time all these great move, the one with the what his name was reefs. Chris rays are somewhere in time somewhere in time with a penny. Cheese. By the way the grand hotel imagined. island, they feel that, and four million jobs twins, yet the dirty jobs twins, the two boy, there's a store Oh my god will say that for another time, but teaser alert, I finally got to twins in my bed hatch. I did know they were there and they were each seventy five years old. Yes, like they're, so sweet, yet anyway,
This show a timeless. I just I love just time travel shows, and so I'm watching it and John Wilkes Booth right in two Lincoln Son, whose name I cannot remember and talks about how his elder brother, John Witherspoon, is my older brother saved your life on it at a train station. Stop yes or sorry, the the can the sun says: you're her brother saved my life train station. I thought that can't be true and then click click, click click. I look like a son of a gun, Edwin Booth saved the younger Lincoln's life and I thought how interesting that brother saved a Lincoln in the other, killed a Lincoln right right. When I thought There's a story here, so I started researching it and then what really crazy. He was just all of the similarities between the election. We had just gone through because I wrote this
like December of twenty sixteen and and once I have real once I found out that Lincoln. Second, you know it. the day was November? Eighth, I was like uh, that's too much It's the same. It was no vibrated this year, forty of twenty six Tito yeah right, and so I mean in the end, what you did I thought was really great, but the reason I took a hatchet too. It was because as interesting is that moment on, the train platform was and as monumental as the assassination itself was and as it resting, as the similarities were between Trumpet Lincoln, I thought the most interesting thing was what was happening to our country, the kite now and. You know in in your draft. You made mention to a war that was going on and right- and I did
like that, because I don't like you know, that's gonna make people think civil war. You are referring to a note, their war, but but to me the bigger hook was the problem at the border. The problem at them what're, you know the civil war was a problem at the border as it was, and right now, as four years ago, the problem at our southern border is but who knows how big it's going to get and who knows what is actually going on He too it's a monumental problem and end. All of that just made me think boy. This is really. This is a story, at dinner time. Yeah families and family suggest can't talk to each other and that something that you did at first of all, let me just say I like your version better than mine. I thought you took it and you you kept it. You get the bones, the bones were all. I was interested in a really honestly and there a couple turn of phrase is like a fait accompli and stuff like that that up with that that manage to to five, your draft, but I think it's really
interesting to note how Sometimes you go looking for a story and you find a completely different one for, in this case, all about the trains platform and saving the life, and this is no we're in this. In the same way, there was a story that we did about. I went look to research Tesla and wound up writing a story about the electric chair and Tesla is nowhere in the story. That's right and that's one of my favorite stories to and Sean Report of course, now, who is a friend of ours and helps helps with with the stories he he did. The exact same thing, which we know, will we we didn't coordinate, cried quite well, we both road and, at the same time, a writer. Said. Well, you know what a how I got to the electric chair as I was looking for story on testimonies like that's exactly what I was doing, fig figuring out what stories are. Is the
this challenge, but for me and the thing I wanna talk to you about next, regarding the second part of the chapter Is figuring out where the story starts right and that's I mean it if a story as a beginning and a middle and an end as all good stories do well. I always come at it in terms of as long as I know where I'm going to land, I'm in good shape and I have to figure out. Ok, well, what's the what's the big overarching theme? What's the point of writing it and then. You know it's supposed to be easy to figure out where to start, but it is not. no at an end, and you told what is it really struck me last week talking to Michael Gallery, who is asked on the broadcasts and if you haven't heard it, you should cause he's awesome. I am, I realise that for years I have been talking about the most important audition in my career. Being is very, very weird,
our or so they got me the job at Kubi. See I realized, of course that's. That's not true, because I never would have had that opportunity had my geller. not got me into audition for the Baltimore opera and, of course, that wouldn't have happened had Fred Kay. Not drag me on stage with you back in high school and enforced me in that direction and what worries about what would have happened if you hadn't stolen his Oreo for album, we had listened to it incessantly right and that would it happened without my mom and dad who are also on this progress from time to time. So where do start your story right, it's it's probably the least sequential thing in comparison you ended, but you'll make yourself crazy. If you dont decide and that's why so many of these things get rewritten David said Aramis. I was listen to something. He said the other day, maybe on his master class or something, but he said
writing is what do you think he's rewriting? That's right. Writing is rewriting. in the end. In the same way, acting is reacting, reacting yeah right. writing is rewriting, and and God help me I just I just keep going. you ve embracing that MIKE. Let me just say you have embraced that maxim to the maximum, yes, absolutely So here we have murderous son of a bitch. You killed my favorite president spewing, you know Latin from a stage and I thought it would be fun to pick up where we left off Before, where I'm spewing italian honest stage, I get into the Baltimore opera and as discussed Delbert name get across the street. Have ourselves a beer Let me let me ask the did. This is your. talking about the Mount Royal Tavern correct. Yes, absolutely so
many consequential dive bars in my life. and we'll get to that in a minute? But how much? stories. True, the beer with colored oh I mean the way I heard it. It's all true some of the names are conflated. I actually did do something. If you want me to come completely clean the m. The the details are honoured percent accurate all that happened, but it wasn't, and an honestly. This is how weird memory get sometimes I remember it is my gallant and I sitting there having that conversation, it wasn't gallery and it was It was another guy from the course, but you know It was a long time ago and be you know Geller than I have sat in thousands of dive bars as have you and I had countless, conversations solving the problems of the world. Now I remember him dressed as a Viking, and he was I
dressed as a Viking. We were both downstairs dressed as vikings an hour and a half to kill, but no, I walked across the street. A couple of other guys to watch the football game and when I was there drinking a beer. It was Rick behind the bar, who am who didn't have the football game. But was watching a big guy had a shiny suit cell pots and pans in that's that's out here member which big guy wasn't pvc. Did you work with him later yeah? I did it with Steve I want to know the comrades fifteen pounds. He really was it that big, but not you know he was past it was a large puffy guy. It wasn't Hall Kelly who we ve had on right back on, but at the moment it didn't matter who it was. Who was a large man? I thought it was a parity. oh, I thought somebody was doing a parody of a commercial that now around it interesting. It was a real thing. It was q, v C
I think it's time you ve seen home shopping, yes and wreck the guy behind them. Are you who is a very serious actor and at the time, I've kind of fat see myself a an artisan of yeah I were in the Baltimore opera. Yes, you were, but I was also drinking beer dressed as a Viking rights that's just makes you cool. Well, I felt like it was important to be the true to yourself right I mean I still do, but I was kind of haughty in the way that arrogant actors sometimes become and and starving artists to realise. Well, yeah I'll tell ya committed. I am I don't. Have any money see that's how committed I am with you I don't know what you're talking or how you could be referring to I got tired of feeling that way. I wanted money. I was twenty seven years old and I thought you know it would be nice They have some money,
sitting there. I caught myself arguing with the bartender about the inevitable decline of western civilization, brought on by the advent of home shopping that that was my argument about how much worse can things get? They have a whole channel a whole chain cattle now with nothing on it, but one endless commercial and and rape like our well I'll. Tell you I'm auditioning for that eyes job tomorrow. That's why he was watching. Pvc he said they started sixty thousand dollars a year plus bonus and then in eighteen, eighty nine. That sounds good to have an awful lot of me. me, and so I went from thinking Steve Carlin to know was: a harbinger of doom, one of the four horsemen right. I went from thinking this guy represents everything
that I despise all filthy lucre up to. I wonder if I could do that should I shall take your job, sir, and I will do it properly well for the people, but but it still would have happened. Had Rick, not bet me that I couldn't get a call back on and that that's the truth. That was a handshake we made? A wager, I said, is a hundred dollars in the story. I dont actually think it was that much. but where did he get money? Did he replied? No, he didn't, but, but he didn't charge me to drink anymore. Why is this so? It was not without a lawyer bout royal tat, for I know it was brilliant on his part, because I had even thought of it. But if I got the job I would have to move away gesture. I would I drinking there anymore riot. Of course Yelp would have
is reckon I went down there the next day the merry out and we both auditioned well here about that audition, but not before. I tell you that when I called MIKE alert to get him on that aghast last week the very first thing he said to me: do you know what it was no sailor now I still have the fifteen bucks. I owe you and it's and and I'll because of interest is now thirty. Three, ninety five he offered he said, he'd pay, you fifteen bucks. If you jumped off of that kind, easy. We were at the glory. I don't know what the quarry, what was it was a was. an old rock quarry. There was now a Woody college, but, like us, whole like sitting filled. They hit water and it filled up, and it was a place of people with to swim and stuff. It was deep as all get out, but there were these giant cliffs, like twenty twenty five foot, cliffs that you could
I'm up on and jump off, and he said I ll give you so how much better, go off that and I We settle and fifteen, and I we goes without looking. Don't you look over the side, just get up there and run, and I did it because I was an idiot. You were totally what happened. You man can't you you were, I was remarkably brave once you know what I mean the working for micro works? Yes, we'll make a careful I'll tell you that Yes, I've gotta scatter, fifty bucks good anyway, I'm saying way so that this was all leading up to the audition that you made a bet that you could get a call back on and Don't write about this in the book, so why don't you tell people what your idea consisted of well. I didn't write about it because I wrote about it Earlier on Facebook, and on a post that reached, like fifteen million people kind of felt like it would be cheating a little bit. It was somebody asked me what I thought
Howard Dean's comments regarding Scott Walker, the governor of Wisconsin. And how are deemed it said. He didn't think Walker was qualified to run for president because he hadn't gone a college. Oh you know. So this is a big softball for Micro works right right, MASH, this out of the park right, can I was trying to be political. I don't see eye to eye with Howard Dean, and I dont know Scott Walker, but it's kind of crazy to suggest a college degree is somehow a qualifiers in order to be president, in my view, and so to make the point. I wrote a story about how cutie see back in the day had no hope of of. accurately predicting the success of its show host. They tried You know they had very elaborate processes.
Early on to try and find a great salesman, and they did they found great salespeople. But many of them were just no guarantee so then they started going to people who had worked. As show host on television game show talk, show whatever and those people they found. Just one very good at selling things and so they were screwed and after going through. All of these crazy protocols They just decided that they would have any one who could talk about a pencil for eight minutes. That was the audition. If you could talk about a pencil for eight minutes, you were essentially put on three mm. Of probation and put straight into the middle of the night right, so you get the graveyard shift at it's up to you, you sink or swim
M, depending odours, no training programme zero, you walk in and you are confronted with a litany. A smorgasbord of church keys and stuffed it had failed to sell a bribe time. I mean it's the kind stuff you might win, on the mid way of some kind of all if the Barker couldn't guess your way. You know I mean it was just stuff you ridiculous stuff. Anyway, I write about all that in a book in and but getting there was so interesting I walked in after Rick Audition, he didn't tell me anything. He just walked up, and down said he beat me said he made me at Philips, the bar and Philips, not far from America, hotel when it has done so. I went in and a guy named John Eastman nodded. We shook hands, he Ask me if I had any experience on telling me.
should, I said, none whatsoever and he said, ok take a seat and we, at a conference room table, At one end, I was sort of in the middle and he had a camera set up on the table. And he said. I'm going to ask you to talk about this pencil and he took a pencil from behind his ear you and he rolled it across the table, and he said I'm gonna ask you to talk about it until I asked you to stop. You didn't tell me how long it would be right. He just said I want you to make me want the pencil. Don't stop talking make me want this pence. Do you have any questions, and I said, No? No, I I understand, can I voted in a twenty dollar bill with that, I should add that now turn, the camera on the little red light came on and dumb and I just started talking then the the
First thing I did was grab a piece of hotel stationary that was on the on the table and I I wrote the word quality and I am and I held it up- and I said, as you can see you can see, the glance the Ticonderoga Dixon Number two pencil is all about quality. Look look at the market leaves, I said, not hard and wispy like thee, three or soft and smudgy like the skid marks left behind by those number ones? This is a number two right. smack in the middle and that I just felt on everything I knew about. You know feature benefit selling, which was if you're gonna, if you're gonna point out a feature point out the benefit right on its heels. So it's a yellow pencil. That's a feature. Why is that good? Because, When you open your desk drawer that vibrant canary yellow pops right out, you can see it there. It is. You don't spend your value.
we'll time rooting around looking for a baby, colored pencil, Why would anyone do that? You're making me want a number two right now graphite from matter ask are not lead Madagascar, graph, why's that important? Well it last longer and it won't poison you and to make the point I licked the point. Ribald Johnny's Love- and this goes on, and on rightly the the eraser at the end is not their randomly. I mean obviously, where Would you put in a razor, but the size of the eraser is perfectly calibrated to last the hierarchy of the life of the pencil- even and all the way down would not that racer is still guaranteed to be. There right. The little silver thing that holds the eraser to the wood, that's Julie, real silver. I said, and the reason yes we're going to charge a little bit more for this pencil than we normally would because all the
extra money goes to Madagascar to help the poor children there you see. So it's not just a pencil. It's a way to help your fellow man. I've dig it as fast as I can write an end, now at this point, one minute has gone by all my gosh and, unlike yeah yeah yeah yeah. You know what. Can you say so when you run out of features. You run out of benefits, and then you have to stop thinking like a salesman and start thinking like like something else like a poet we're a philosophy, so speaking of which would what sort of poems have been written in pencil, Robert Frost wrote all his power firms in pencil and the next thing you know where I am to roads diverge than a yellow wooden. Sorry, I couldn't travel both and be one traveller long. I stood and looked down one as far as I could to wear it bent in the undergrowth then took the other
just as fair but having perhaps the better clay, because it was grassy and wanted where but for that. The passing there had warned them really about the same. I ask you could have done with a pen, know he'd be cross and stuff out making it a mess of things you can't do across word with a pan unless your genius, let's face it- who among us, is really a genius. So I see try to make the case for the pencil. I signs. Theory of relativity was written in a pencil. Why? Because he didn't know how was gonna end when he started. like me. He didn't know where to start here knew where he wanted to finish, and if that's what you're going to approach life jack, you can't do it with a pen and ink. You need to do it with something that has an eraser, so you can course correct as you go, I may all these points, along with my first love letter to Heather Clee B, which I wrote in pence, laugh so eventually
broken. You know he just shook his head. He started laughing You said it has eight minutes right. I surpass. The eight minutes did was he he turned off? The camera walked over the pencil Adam, I hand took the peace. Paper I had written quality and turned it over and wrote your hired, and we had a brief comment. Station. He explained the situation was immediate. Offer was immediate. He invited me up the next day to take a look around and I was on the air four nights later, wow create three. I am oh yeah. I remember that we talk about bs core negative ion generator and the healthy infrared pain relief, and so it's such a hot mess of seeming
impossible events gathered set at last week when he talked about it's a wonderful life, and it's true. I I don't know why where to start. I think I know where I want to end. I may look I know I was gonna end eventually hundred years, all new people write one where the other, but this hot mess in between of additions and beers and stories. It's getting stranger. I wrote that the book starts to talk to itself were back to itself yeah yeah yeah. This podcast is The same thing you and I are doing the same thing right now, layers on layers- I don't open, is listening to us, but I am finding it positively fascinate. Well, This would be a good time to remind anybody who is listening. If you like what you hear give us five star, Center leave us a review shameless. Did that's not the way,
now, you're gonna get hired a pvc. While I mean I'm not gonna, take eight minutes to say that either butter exactly right I saw I also it was too brief. I should knows it was premature we're not now, you know what I like that up now, don't how long we ve been talking according to this thirty three minutes it's probably long enough, but I, but I did think of something as remembering the many times I left the lyrics stage in costume, usually in the middle of a performance to run across to the Mount Royal Tavern and have a beer. It occurred to me that stages and taverns our two things that you and I probably have more in common made than anything else. We know last, week you mentioned that you stood on the lyric stage, where I've
get who some people that you work within the opera you you know you had been. There was the exact same spot when you did your one man show a couple of years ago MIKE Geller, couldn't be bothered to make because he writes commitment but as I recall you and I Sang in the barbershop quartet, with the course of the Chesapeake for a show at the Lyric theatre headliner. Do member who the headliner was a quartet call Interconnection. Yes and we were big fat. And to be no connection. I remember that that we were all we just doing stuff we weren't supposed to do and we climbed up. To the rafters, I'm sure we would have gotten in a lot of trouble if anybody had seen us, but we watched from, I don't know thirty feet above the stage looking down at them.
It was just a inexperience, I'll, never forget. Well, it's the same place. I'd stood hundreds of times during performances looking out at the audience, they couldn't see me listening to the orchestra. Just play in the hell out of some. You know very score as Brunhilda sang at the top of her bottomless lungs on the top of some, Burma, shame Mountain and vote on cast down his indiscriminate lightning bolts I mean it was. It was an amazing place to watch any production, but it's The juxtaposition of the stage in the tavern, where I was gone right happened. All the time will yes, Eric and the Mount Royal Tavern but how many times did people leave the stages of the various community, theatres, where we worked and repair to a little joy called lefties wiki. We created
left is written. We saved lefties way saved at yes, so let us to give a little background. The way this started was there was a place called Chucks maple in on Philadelphia road that we would go to. All the time and they had a really? They had really good food too great crap soup, but how many? How many night started with a you wanna go to church and get a bullet crab soup, which meant we drink until two in the morning and then probably get breakfast at the deputy diner afterwards. So this one woman was it that happened. I don't know why we left chucks maple and we were asked to leave. Oh that's, probably true here There are many attribute over the Ms Pack, man machine, we have run out of quarters and I tried get a slug into the air, the sly and that I have not allowed its round on, and I m d there and they they ask us to leave the matter we were. We just walked across the street and back into time. yes well, we walked out of trucks, Paypal in and looked around
and literally across the street, there was a sign that said: lefties Methought will what could lie these be other than a bar. We had never noticed it before, even though we have been on that corner. Million times, and it was just that tiny, tiny hole in the wall and we opened the door and It was like that seen in animal house where, just like Music stops when the white people walk into the oblong right all the old age old people, just stop and stare at us, because the average age was like been add for five years in that truly well look I mean it's funny that we're talking about this. You mentioned timeless, and Europe and your love of time travel, but that's exactly what this was We walked through a ring oil in time and we walked up to the bar and we looked around and it was still decorated for Christmas though you know it was the middle of July, I think Christmas
its were always up in there, they had an order of things set up, as I recall, yet they. Ah we're like chicken fingers he asked and just stuff I mean not just bowls of chips, you speck to find on the square tables that were in every bar like this, but they had their real food out and Sinatra was on the New Box and the old man at the bar did give us the stink. I didn't care without rights, we sat down? He are you I thought you said. I said you get us a table like that was difficult. I mean there were there were, maybe he six people in the whole place, but you got the table. I went up barn. I said: don't get me to draft beers and I put two dollars with what you with this. I don't even remember. Eighty somebody's been eighty, the earlier one I put two dollars down on the bar, so give me too to draft beers and guide ports to dry
beers and the change was a dollar thirty and- and I was home, so I picked up the one dollar and I put it in my gonna grab the two beers and I came over and I set him down, and I said to you a we're drinkin here from now, and you know, being your mouth with high quickly. Did is this is thirty five cents a draft right? That's it that's a quarter at a dime. I've got a few of those gases that seven Mick right. I got seven metals and so Chuck and I started going to left these place after quartet rehearsal every week and that we started, going there just for fun and then one of us, I dont, remember who was involved in a play over it: else in town. I think- and I hope that the EP probably was me. Probably you
it- might have something like fiddler on the roof, maybe some Larry. I did Shenandoah eye to quite a few show's over there. I did South Pacific right yeah and I was doing- shows overdone doc communities there with my dad Actually, my dad and I did to three shows together over their stick. That's so much fun, but After a show, it's written, it's written the stars, ye must go out and you must have beer just on migration. Yes, ass, the habit of corridor, and so we started bringing the cast of very shows very shows we were in than the crew and such this little hole in the wall called lefties. That was me be on a Saturday night maxed out with seven people. You know a dice game in the corner. Some yacht see a little parched easy. You know. Suddenly there fifty sixty people parents
Nicholas yeah. It was younger level, people use it, as will the Danes the day the moral of the story, because all the time that we saw people in there, we were there as well, because we had brought them there, but the The crazy little coda on this story was years later, when I had moved to New York, maybe I was, out here and allay by then, but we met him Baltimore and was like hey man. You wanna go to lefties for old time's sake and we walked into lefties and the place was packed with young people. none of whom we knew yep. So that was a bridge. stay, visualization that we saved this bar. turned it into a young hotspot. Crazy. Now we're done because you just did it That's it I'm fumbling away to try and better articulate the tapestry that this book is and the hot ass, that my resume represents in the end, the inaction,
reliable ways that were that were all connected and I've been trying to do it with the people who have helped me up to the sword but what we are really talking about is walking into a bar that was on the verge truly on the verge of closing the we're shutting that place down and accidentally we don't get any credit for this. We give ourselves some because it feels good, but when I get credit for it We got booted out a chucks, maple and cause. I was doing a bad thing to a MS pack, man machine and suddenly were drinking thirty five cent drafts and way leads on to way to bring it back to Robert Frost. Oh, that's, not bad, either back to the and sold. Palm third stands up and both that morning equally two fields no step had trodden black. I kept the first for another
day, but knowing how way leads on to way I doubted, if I would ever go back, you can't write that with a pen, you have to write it with a pencil and if you do try to go back chuck to lefties place today, you'll find it has in fact closed. It's gone because Nothing is timeless, then, all fades, and sooner or later it really me last week when I said together just in passing the Baltimore. opera is gone. Do you think it'll be back The answer is no, it's it's, it's not gonna be back a version of it might arise. it almost certainly will, but never in the same way. Lefties will never be there. They haven't made a better video game since MRS Pack, man they haven't, they made a lot more
complicated once I understand people and are playing HALO and putting weird masks on their heads and some people are making billions of dollars developing games for they do they have. Made a better one than Miss pack. Man- and I I don't know where story really begins, but sure this. What has come to an end is right. He was Ten minutes ago. Chuck was, as he almost always is. If you want to listen to the book in its entirety, you can download it where people download books and at the risk of channeling those old pvc skills? Might I implore upon you to take just a moment ago, to Itunes wherever you listen to this podcast and give us five stars. If you don't think we deserve five stars, give them to us anyway, look, I didn't deserve to be hired by pvc, but I want, I didn't deserve to be hired by the Baltimore opera, but I was, I did deserve to be free
out of chucks maple in and I was which got us into lefties place which eventually brought us here and if you think that's weird ask yourself. This gentle listener since the whole damn thing now, he met now series talking to me Chuck series talking to you: what did she say Damn computer right in the middle. My sales pitch SIRI starts talking to me through my headphones. How does it happen? I don't use listening all the time she really As I told you what happened with me all the time I say, call micro inch and she died. She says which would you like me to call mom, mobile or mom home, unlike monster, dead along time. Man I just take that number out of their. But you really should. or it will you really left a sunny, Let us not play. Surely this out as well. God go back pit purchased pitches to think that we will go on so well until SIRI interrupted if you can find a mom,
well, I'm sure is a very busy day Could you go over to Itunes her wherever you listen to your favorite podcast and give us five stars? If you know we deserve five stars. Could you give them to us anyway? It really is ok, nobody. He takes these five star reviews seriously, except for the advertisers and self. If my plan comes together, And the stars truly align, I'm going to call pvc and see if Thou sponsor this podcast. But something tells me no man. five star Reviews is gonna- make that possible right anything else, brother now That's it manages out. You know what I did want to say. One thing this book: Thanks to these chapters over and over again reminds me of what a great writer you aren't. I mean that and you need to write this next book. You need to finish writing this next book and get it out there, because I think
people will read it. You're very good writer was very kind of you to say. Thank you. I will love I will send it to you for your normal, where they call at dramaturgy drama but just check the grammar. If you'd be so guide obvious profit. I remember, I hope, you're feeling better wish me luck with the iguanas. Yes, good luck. The ago on Us- and I hope that your feeling better I haven't fit, I hope that your elbow and wrists, Our back to normal solely a fresh food I'm reveals it sounds like you know that, don't fear the walking dead kind of thing where they took some of your blood they suspended around and then they inject it it into Europe? Unlike what suddenly, I'm spewing italian right, yeah crazy more next week that global we have
we have to end. It would be I'm just being quite just understand it, you don't I take it. Back. The ending is harder than the beginning. It is today
Transcript generated on 2021-05-05.