Created with Sketch.
33 minutes | Sep 21, 2022
Ep. 115 The Priest’s Triple A League: Getting ready for the Majors Pt. 2
A lot more God talk in this one people, which you may or may not be into. A lot of Philosophical and theological perspectives on God, with a capital G. We continue our conversation with a very interesting Seminarian who has been studying not only theology but philosophy as well so he use big words, make brain thing hurtey. This recording dates back to August of 2022 and I’m just now getting to it… my friend the Seminarian was in a summer program of Chaplaincy at the hospital where I do some volunteer work, we’ve had some interesting conversations and I finally connected with him to be on this show. We start out with a simple question, that being: If God is all loving, how can there be so much hatred among us? If you are looking for an answer to that question, you’ll need to visit another podcast, but inevitably, the answer to all questions can be found in a podcast. A few glossary items referred to in this episode: The Eternal Now - It feels to me like I’m hearing more and more about this referred to as Mindfulness and mindfulness meditations, but to a Catholic Seminarian it is much more. It is his desire to be as present to God as he is present to us. This also sent me down a crazy rabbit hole that led me to a site called “faithhub.net”. Faithhub! Doesn’t that sound tasty? Like GrubHub only they deliver faith! Right to your door! There is a post titled, “God’s Eternal Now” it reads, “God, is present, here, and NOW. In each moment. It is our greatest desire to be present to God as he is present to us. It is we who are often missing from the moment and, therefore, are often out of touch with God.” Even if you take God out of the equation, and please do if you have a negative association with that word for now. Take God out of the equation, and most reasonable and thoughtful people would see the value of being in the moment and that, regardless of faith, we spend way too much time regretting or reliving the past and fretting about the future. I know I do and there really isn’t much value to it. Other than the satisfaction I get out of having a winning drop the mic argument with a fictitious person I’ve never met in a situation that will never occur. Back to the article on Faithhub… and get ready for a rabbit hole because it led me to a previous rabbit hole, that being author C.S Lewis. Remember I told you I thought he wrote Alice in Wonderland but it was actually Lewis Carroll? Well, this time it IS C.S. Lewis I am interested in. Lewis was an author of novels filled with Christian metaphor and before he wrote the Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, he wrote a novel called “The Screwtape Letters” which was dedicated to his friend J.R.R. Tolkien. “The Screwtape Letters” was published as a list of letters from a senior demon or devil, named Screwtape, to a lower level Devil, named Wormwood… sounds like JK Rowling snatched and changed a couple of names there doesn’t it? Wormwood is actually the nephew of Screwtape, and Screwtape advises Wormwood on how to treat his patient, which is an earthly being, so as to get him over to the dark side. Wormwood tells Screwtape, “Our business is to get them (meaning mortals) away from the eternal and from the present.” He also tells Wormwood that if the human “concerns himself with the Present because there, and there alone, all duty, all grace, all knowledge, and all pleasure dwell, his state is very undesirable and should be attacked at once.” - Your affectionate uncle, SCREWTAPE.“ This all gets back to the Eternal Now our Seminarian tells us about in this episode. Next glossary term... Boethius - He was a Roman Senator and Christian Scholar in the Early Middle Ages, when Rome was embracing Christianity and wrote and translated a bunch of texts. There’s your moron definition. next…. We talk about How to pray for someone and give them their money’s worth. We learn the origin of the term scapegoat! You guys probably know already but I haven’t a clue. He also tells us who THE all time scapegoat is. Here’s a hint… the GOAT is not Tom Brady. Also, a note: There is a graphic description of death and dying in this episode that you may not feel comfortable hearing, specifically involving a patient dying from cancer. With that same patient there is a discussion about the power of forgiveness, which leads me to bring up a professor I have mentioned before on the is podcast, Dr. Fred Luskin from Stanford University. He has done extensive research on the training and measurement of forgiveness therapy. His research demonstrates that learning forgiveness leads to increased physical vitality, hope, enhanced optimism and conflict resolution skills. It also shows that forgiveness lessens the physical and emotional toll of stress, and decreases hurt, anger, depression and blood pressure. There is a link at the bottom of the description to a short talk by Dr. Luskin. We pick up our conversation right where we left off last time, in fact there’s a slight overlap as our guest is talking about the literal versus figurative when trying to interpret the Bible. It’s my conversation with a seminarian and his chaplaincy work in a hospital and thank you for listening to The Modern Moron… CLOSE - I hope you enjoyed that conversation with my friend from the seminary and I will try to keep in touch with him and hopefully have him back. Since I have a couple of minutes I’d like to tell you about a recent visit I made to a patient. I was on the floor walk along and came to the door that was closed and had a sign posted that before anyone entered they should check with the attending nurse. I did and found out that it would be okay and that he seemed to be in a good mood that day, as he had been doing Elmo impressions earlier. Not knowing exactly what that meant, I walk in and find a young man, probably in his 20’s to early 30’s, long hair with a gauze mesh over his entire left leg due to a burn, and not much clothing other than that. His blanket was covering his kibbles and bits, and he had an incarceration geo-tracker on his left ankle. Not much of a traditional conversation. Even though I’m a moron, I’m feeling like not only am I observing someone who could possibly be a meth addict to the point of permanent damage, I also have the very unprofessional feeling that I’m observing someone who could be schizophrenic. Also, he looked to be fairly healthy physically and lacked the gaunt look with accompanying sores and missing teeth. He seemed to have all his teeth. Yay! They certainly were not dentures… and if they were, he got ripped off. So which is it? Meth of schizophrenia? I looked it up and gosh darn if there isn’t some overlap between methamphetamine-Induced Psychosis and Schizophrenia. How about that. There is a link to a study of just that at the bottom of the description if you’re interested. It can be difficult, with out the proper educational background, to make the distinction between someone who is suffering from addiction to Chrystal Meth and someone who is schizophrenic. I was speaking with a new friend who is in one of my exclusive social clubs that has recovered from addiction to meth and heroin, and he told me based on his experience and not medical data or trials or anything professional, that someone on meth will hallucinate, see and interact with hallucinations, partially because the stimulant effect has kept them up for 4, 5 or even 6 days and they are literally trying to sleep while awake and it results in these hallucinations. Again, that is the experience of one person, not a science based or clinically based conclusion. He also said that in his experience, the withdrawal from heroine was more physical with an actual craving for the drug, while the withdrawal from meth was additionally psychological. Again, his experience. Also, I noticed he had rather long fingernails, which I was slightly concerned that if he got squirrely on me, I would not care to get scratched by this… um… person. He did seem to respect that I was a Chaplain, he did have a bible with him and at one point asked me what was my favorite quote from the Bible. I am not that familiar with the bible and you wanna know what this moron’s answer was? I said, “you know, the gospel of Matthew is the first thing that comes to mind.” I mean, why limit myself to a favorite verse? I’ll take the whole book, thank you. This patient was pretty cagey. In fact that’s a pretty good word to describe him. Every couple seconds his eyes would shift as could his mood. So I tried to wrap up my talk with him in some prayer. He asked me to pray for him and just like our seminarian recommended, I asked him, “what would you like me to pray for?” His response was, “I would like you to pray that I will be back with my wives and that I never test positive for Chrystal Meth again.” Not my wife, my wives and not to be released from the grips of Meth and it’s addiction, just don’t let me get caught. And you know what? That’s exactly what I prayed for… “Heavenly Father, please let Bob heal from his injuries so he can be reunited with his wives, and may he never test positive for Chrystal meth again. And also God, please release him from the grips of it’s addiction.” I threw that last part in there so I would have a clean conscious. He told me that prayer was very powerful, I bid him goodbye and as I left the room he continued a conversation with his imaginary friends. Out of curiosity, if you have ever prayed for either of those things, to be reunited with your wives or to never test positive for meth again, would you please… PLEASE contact the Modern Moron because we would LOVE to hear your story… provided you can string two sentences together. You might think you yourself, “how can you be a chaplain and not know the bible?” My answer is that
39 minutes | Sep 10, 2022
Ep. 114 Father-to-be as in Priest, Nietzsche, Jedi Knights and Egoism
Okay, the Moron doesn’t seem so moronic in this episode… well, I do, but we really have some divine inspirations in this episode. My guest is a real live Seminarian in the Catholic Church. Yes, THE Catholic church, not one of the knock offs. He’s been pursuing his coronation… that’s not right… ordination! That’s what I was looking for… This conversation is all over the place, and I have to take responsibility for that. If I get him back I really need to try and keep my questions more focused. And because we are so all over the place, this guy drops some people and terms this Moron had to look up, especially if you’re not Catholic or are a heathen moron like myself. Among them: Exegesis - not exit, Jesus - this is e-x-e-g-e-s-i-s and it’s a critical explanation or interpretation of a text. Traditionally, for work with religious texts, especially the Bible St. Ignatius of Loyola - who was a Spanish Catholic Priest and theologian that was one of the founders of the Society of Jesus otherwise known as… the Jesuits. We might have to do a separate episode on those guys. A St. Paul Moment - which is explained in the episode, but it’s basically an epiphany or a “moment of awakening”... I don’t like to gossip but apparently he heard the voice of Jesus and was immediately blinded for three days until a guy named a-nan-ias restored his sight and he was baptized. The 14 Discernments of Spirits - no it’s not a way to make bourbon, it is the path to living a holy life. is the interpretation of what St. Ignatius of Loyola called the “motions of the soul.” These interior movements consist of thoughts, imaginings, emotions, inclinations, desires, feelings, repulsions, and attractions, what the Buddha might call cravings and aversions. Spiritual discernment of spirits involves becoming sensitive to these movements, reflecting on them, and understanding where they come from and where they lead us. Yes, I plagiarized this from a site called IgnatianSpirituality.com and there is a link at the bottom of the episode description. Towards the beginning of our conversation there is the mention of a code blue. A code blue at a hospital Usually means cardiac arrest (when the heart stops) or respiratory arrest (when breathing stops). You may say, what the hell is a chaplain doing anywhere near a patient experiencing cardiac arrest? Usually they are on the sidelines, staying out of the way. However if family members are present, we will get with them and suggest they stay out of the way and perhaps go to a more quiet area while the team does there work. It can be very traumatizing to watch a loved one receive treatment for cardiac arrest and while we can’t make a family member leave, it’s usually best to just get out of the way and let them do what they were trained to do. Our guest entered the seminary straight out of high school and mentions leaving the Central Valley, that would be the Central Valley of California which is comprised of a LOT of farmland and ranching. You hear about how much of our country’s Fruits and veggies are grown here under normal circumstances so for all of the approximately 18,000 square miles of that valley, a lot of that are the same folks you’d meet in the Midwest. It looks like the Midwest and it has a lot of the same values as the Midwest despite the libby-McLibberson label that California has. So, that’s what he’s referring to when he mentions the Central Valley. Towards the end of our conversation we end up talking about Star Wars as my friend the Father-to-be is a science fiction fan and loves Star Wars. I ask about the possible parallels between the Jedi Knights and the path of a priest which he disagrees with completely and being that he has also studied Philosophy as part of a Priest’s curriculum, I had to get out the dictionary again as he compares priests to stoicism. Stoicism is from the Greeks and was the belief that we don’t react to events; we react to our judgments about them, and the judgments are up to us. They would advise that we should not worry about things beyond our control as everything in life can be divided into two categories – things that are up to us and things that are not. Then…THEN he brings up philosopher Nietzsche. Look, I can barely pronounce his name let alone discuss his philosophy. So Nietzsche is this fatalist philosopher that thinks in the end nothing matters and everything is pointless, like they teach on Sesame Street! So Nietzsche had this concept called The Will To Power, that our Seminarian brings up which is according to Wikipedia like self-determination, the concept of actualizing one's will onto one's self or one's surroundings, and coincides heavily with egoism. Egoism! There’s something I get get behind. We begin our conversation as I ask him how his last overnight shift went at the hospital. So, I hope you find this conversation interesting and do not try to look up words while you’re driving. Let me handle stuff like that. CLOSE - Wow… that did not sound like your typical conversation between two morons, right? A lot of very interesting stuff there, and sometimes I have to just lean hard on the old “God is Love” bumper sticker. Either I am in acceptance of that ideology, tweaked allover the place to make it fit for me, I’m not and if you’re not, then best of luck to you and may your blood pressure remain forever low. But scientifically speaking, I think you might find that having a faith in something, you could use the word God for the sake of convenience, but not the baggage that you might believe that word comes with… having that sense of faith and finding comfort in it, will actually lower your blood pressure and can relieve stress. Not necessarily clinically proven, but there are studies that show benefits. There are two articles at the bottom of the description on this point from North Dakota State University and from Psychology Today Magazine. There is a benefit. Just try not to get hung up on nomenclature. Don’t like the word God, don’t use it. Don’t like meditation? Try silent prayer. Many thanks and all the best to my guest, more to come and hopefully we will speak with him again! Take care, stay cool if you’re where its hot, stay dry if you’re where it’s flooding, may the road rise to meet you rather than the ocean and thank you for listening to the Modern Moron. Discernment of Spirits - IgnatianSpirituality.com What Is Stoicism? Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche - Wikipedia Nihilism - Wikipedia Process theology - Wikipedia The Health Benefits of Spirituality — North Dakota State University The Surprising Health Benefits of Spirituality | Psychology Today
34 minutes | Aug 22, 2022
Ep. 113 Britney Griner; Psychiatric Psychedelics; to what Subculture do you subscribe?
Thank you for tuning in to another episode of the Modern Moron… I did say I have an episode coming with a seminarian in the Catholic church, and I do. This episode is the last half of my previous conversation with the Senator when I dropped out of it because I felt the need to address some science issues that we seem to be ignoring right now that place the economy as more important that the planet we live on and the resources that are becoming more rapidly scarce, namely water and oxygen. This conversation contains the beautiful faux paux from the Senator when he cannot remember the name of Brittney Griner, the WNBA player who is currently sentenced to 9 years in a Russian prison for possession of vaporizer cartridges containing less than a gram of hash oil. She had been prescribed medicinal cannabis in Arizona, and it is illegal in Russia. The Senator’s take is that if you’re going to travel, know the rules. Also, he’s never heard of Brittney Griner and who cares about her and we shouldn’t be trading a no name for an apparently notorious arms dealer. That’s a valid point I think. But to say Brittney Griner is a no name just because I’ve never heard of her doesn’t make her a no name. Between Brittney Griner and me, I think I qualify as the no name. But i think it does speak to the subculture we live in, and there are many. What is your subculture? Do you even think about it? Or do we think of it as a mainstream culture? My subculture is that I’m an aging white male… hell that’s not a subculture! That’s as mainstream culture as you can get! But I also live in a subculture of music as I was in the music entertainment business as a “DJ” for a stretch of time, so names that are familiar to me may not be familiar to you unless we share that subculture. And if you’re in it, you don’t think of it as a subculture. If I say I’m a big fan of John Paul Jones, you may think I’m a history buff. But I’m referring to the legendary bassist… and keyboardist… of Led Zeppelin. And I consider him, Jack Bruce, Getty Lee to have transcended the traditional roles of their instruments. What instrument? A scalpel? Are they famous surgeons? Let’s throw in Paul McCartney. Okay, there’s a point of reference we can all sink our teeth into. So Brittney Griner is not a household name, depending on the subcultures we subscribe to. And I would say if you are in the huge College Sports Industry, even on an administrative level, you know who Britney Griner is. I don’t, but she is legendary in her profession. Unfortunately, her profession doesn’t put as many asses in the seats as it would if she were male, where she would command a higher… salary. Back to money again. I could go on and on about her accomplishments on the court. She’s a phenomenal women’s basketball player. But what I think makes her such a high value trade for the Russians is that she checks a lot of boxes that are very sensitive in American culture today and there are a lot of boxes these days. Among those boxes: she’s a woman, she’s a woman of color and she is among the LGBTQ community. Those are all high profile, high sensitivity issues… if you’re a democrat or a liberal. But if you’re a tried and true conservative… do you honestly care about any of those? I mean behind closed doors. Of course publicly you’d give lip services to them but c’mon, just between you and me… do you give a rat’s ass about any of that stuff? Final note on Britney Griner… she does have someone in her corner that is going over to Russia to advocate for her release and he’s no stranger to snuggling up to communist leaders. That’s right folks, NBA Hall of Famer, reality TV star, and body piercing world champion Dennis Rodman has received permission to travel to Russia to help seek Griner’s release. "I got permission to go to Russia to help that girl," said Rodman. I don’t understand the “permission” part of it as he doesn’t need special permission from the U.S. to enter Russia — just a visa from Moscow. You may remember Rodman’s trips to North Korea to meet with leader, dictator and local sycophant, Kim Jung Un just to hang out, maybe shoot some hoops. And that’s as cutting edge topical as this podcast gets. We also talk about mushrooms! And not the kind you saute and put on a steak. I’m talking about yummy for your brain psychedelic mushrooms and their legitimate use in clinical trial programs to treat every kind of PTSD, depression, anxiety, cancer, addiction… the list goes on as to the medicinal benefits of psilocybin, the active molecule in these mushrooms. And in these trials they are measuring the presence of conditions not normally measured or considered with other types of medicine. There was, and perhaps still is, a clinical study at Johns Hopkins University Hospital using psilocybin where they have a questionnaire that can determine if a patient had what is termed a “mystical experience”. Questions like the following: During your experience did you feel: An experience of amazement Feelings of tenderness and gentleness Feelings of peace and tranquility Experience of ecstasy Freedom from the feelings of personal self A sense of unity or one-ness of all things Pure being and pure awareness The fusion of your personal self with a larger whole A feeling that you experienced something profoundly sacred From a mystical sense did you experience: Before you call me a hippy tree hugging liberal… I want to suggest a fascinating limited series on Netflix which is based on a book called “How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence” by author and host of the show Michael Pollan. I want to play you a short excerpt from the 2nd episode on psilocybin, where Pollan asks a patient, who I bring up later in this episodes, some of the questions on a mystical experience I mentioned . The patient is right in our demographic and she is dealing with cancer. She is a devout catholic and you will hear her mention Mary in this clip. She is referring to the virgin Mary: Earlier in her life, this woman experienced a miscarriage which affected her deeply. She worked through it and hadn’t thought about it for decades. And in her psilocybin experience, she said she had an encounter with Mary who told her not to worry because she- the Virgin Mary- had that child the whole time. Pretty profound… if that testimonial doesn’t make you curious enough to watch the episode regardless of your faith practice, I don’t know what will… other than my enlightened endorsement of course. You obviously shouldn’t take my word for it on this and the host, Michael Pollan, doesn’t want you to take his word for it either. Professor Robin Carhart-Harris is a neuro-psycho-pharmacologist… let’s hear the Senator pronounce that. And he looks at and measures the effects of psychedelics on the brain and can they be useful… There is also reference to The default mode network of the brain, which I had to look up. This part of the brain is potentially the neurological basis for the self, meaning: Autobiographical information or Memories of events and facts about your self Self-reference: Referring to traits and descriptions of yourself Emotion of one's self: Reflecting about your own emotional state The default mode network is also involved in how you Think about others or: Thinking about the thoughts you have of others and what they might or might not know Understanding the emotions of other people and empathizing with their feelings Moral reasoning: Determining a just and an unjust result of an action Social evaluations: Good-bad attitude judgments about social concepts Obviously this is a gaping rabbit hole and I hope you find it interesting and will watch “How to Change Your Mind” on Netflix. We pick up our conversation with the Britney Griner conversation and The Senator’s mis-recollection of her name. Thanks for listening to another episode of the Modern Moron! CLOSE - Okay, there will be a new segment on this show for a while… we’ll call it Moron Chaplaincy. “But for the grace of God, go I”, the phrase can be traced back to a mid-sixteenth-century statement by John Bradford, "There but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford", in reference to a group of prisoners being led to execution. Bradford was an English Reformer in the 1500’s and you can look him up if you want beyond that. I guess I failed to mention in the opening that we had a little reference to Caitlin Jenner, when we were talking about Britney Griner. It’s difficult to keep track of all the stupid things we say. And how about Wayne Gretzky as a hockey reference? He hasn’t played hockey since 1999. Both a tribute to Gretzky’s greatness and to our stupidity. Thank you to the Senator for being one of the pillars of the Moron Empire, best of luck to Dennis Rodman in Russia, and good luck to all of us in our search for enlightenment. See you next time. "How To Change Your Mind" Ep. 2: Psilocybin - Netflix Psilocybin can occasion mystical-type experiences having substantial and sustained personal meaning and spiritual significance - Johns Hopkins Hospital Default mode network of the brain - Wikipedia
42 minutes | Aug 18, 2022
Ep. 112 Politics just makes me upset but that never stops me; The End of An Informed Democracy
Half cocked, half informed, full moron. Seriously, the things we talk about and the half-cocked opinions we spout are really so misinformed that I would like to ask you a favor. My favor is that you half listen but don’t really pay attention. Is that possible? Listen for one of us to mispronounce something or to say something completely off base but I don’t want you to really pay attention. If you could… picture us both sitting on a front porch in a couple of rocking chairs. That’s the best setting for this conversation. Can you do that? This is also not the cheeriest episode. We try to stay away from politics and that lasts for about… 10 seconds? I’ve cut some stuff from this episode but left in other stuff for entertainment purposes. For example: We talk about the huge bill that Senator Joe Manchin helped pass but the Senator mispronounces his name. I’m not going to tell you what our Senator thinks his name is but I know it’s wrong and then I get it wrong. So much moron in this episode folks. Next up, Nancy Pelosi goes to Taiwan, which the Senator is in favor of and I am not. However the Senator’s take is that China should not have any say in where any of our citizens travel and Taiwan does not belong to China. That part I agree with. I just don’t understand the trip specifically for her as the Speaker of the House. Was she sent over there on a diplomatic mission? Or is she just over there on a personal publicity trip. If it’s the latter, I am against it. This does not seem like the job of the Speaker of the House. Maybe, however… “unofficially” she was sent there as a representative of the US to thumb our noses at China. And if that is the reason, okay… I guess. This is just a pissing contest. While Pelosi was there the Chinese military conducted “live ammunition” drills and invading airspace, blah, blah, blah look how big my wiener is exercises close to Taiwan. However there is a tiny upside to this… the last time this high a ranking official visited Taiwan was in 1997 when then House Speaker Newt Gingrich visited. The Senator is incapable of saying Gingrich’s name… Then the conversation takes an unexpected turn and it gets rather sad. The Senator wants the President to do something about the economy and says “we have enough oil to last us another 300 years.” And I’m taken aback.. I don’t quite know what to say. I think you can hear the confusion in my voice. Has he been paying attention to what’s been happening to this planet? Am I just another tree hugger? The Senator thinks we should be drilling for more oil to fix the economy. Seriously. And he’s not alone… We’ve got weather systems creating temperatures that are breaking records set by previous years, and I don’t mean decades ago or centuries ago, I mean last year. Personally, I don’t think electric cars are a long term solution either. Does anyone know what the byproduct of mining for Lithium is? Me either, but if you sift out a bunch of some element from the earth, there’s gonna be stuff left over. What is it and how will it effect the environment long term? As in for your granddaughter. YOUR granddaughter. You know who I’m talking to. I’m talking to you, that old fart that loves their granddaughter more than anything. What are we leaving her? He thinks that SOME…mmm “some” of the climate change we are seeing around the world is from the way we’ve treated the planet in the use of fossil fuels but we should still be drilling to get the economy back on track. That, to him and many others, is more important than what is happening to this planet, because we really don’t know how much is caused by us… we don’t know! I thought we have decided as a nation to make a switch to renewable energy and to phase out fossil fuel. Mega droughts, Mega Heat waves, Mega floods…the horse has left the barn on our environment and we’re still chasing our tails trying to improve the economy and the mighty dollar. The laws of nature and the laws of physics don’t care about what laws congress passes or vetos. You may continue to say it’s overreacting, so I’m going to let a couple of those guys that wear the white coats talk later, what are they called? Scientists, I think is the name. We’ll hear from one dummy named Carl Sagan, remember him? I have something for you from him back in 1980. And another, more recent dummy you may have heard of named Neil deGrass Tyson about that subject instead of us two morons. So, why do I leave some of this Moron mayhem in? Three reasons: 1) The Senator was recently in France when there was a heatwave going on and it was when the UK had declared a heat warning. For the first time. Ever. Ever, ever. Maybe the Norse God Odin declared one once when it got over 25 degrees once. I texted the Senator an article about it asking if he still thought global warming was a hoax. You will find out his response. 2) He then says he’s depressed and wants to talk about sports after he brought up politics in the first place. 3) when I bring up France, he wants give a blow by blow account of his trip to a wedding in fancy France and how he talked to some dignitary and I’m not having any of it because I’m pretty sure you don’t care. I know I don’t care and I put the kybosh on that and shut him down. I guess I’m hoping you will find that entertaining. You can just hear it in his voice that he’s all bent out of shape because I’m not the least bit interested in his intellectual conversation about politics with some French dignitary. After I interrupt the show, the Senator has one final topic he’d like to bring up that he says is a sports topic more than a political topic and that is Britney Griner who has been sentenced to 10 years in a Russian Prison for possession of a cannabis product, I think it was hash but it doesn’t matter at this point. Let’s just say it’s not a good idea to take Marijuana or any drug to a communist country and saying, “I didn’t know it was there” is not the best defense. Also, this is not a sports story. It is definitely a political story. Why do I leave it in? Because the Senator… and maybe he’s doing this on purpose and I’m a naive Moron, but he says her name is… you know what, I’m going to let you find out. I hope you think it’s worth it and thank you for listening to the Modern Moron… Okay, enough from us Morons about the planet. Here is Carl Sagan, and I’m assuming you know and remember if but if not, he was an American astronomer, planetary scientist, cosmologist, astrophysicist, astrobiologist, author, and science communicator. He spent the majority of his career at Cornell University where he was the David Duncan Professor of Astronomy and Space Sciences. He published more than 600 scientific papers and articles and was author, co-author or editor of more than 20 books. He also argued the hypothesis, that has since been accepted, that the high surface temperatures of Venus can be attributed to, and calculated using, the greenhouse effect. Here he is from the original series Cosmos on PBS in 1980, over 40 years ago… Now, here is Neil deGras Tyson. If you’ve not heard of him I’m very surprised, but he is an American astrophysicist, author, and science communicator. He studied at Harvard University, the University of Texas at Austin, and Columbia University. From 1991 to 1994, he was a postdoctoral research associate at Princeton University. His resume goes on and on with published papers and books, from 2006 to 2011 he was the host of the television series NOVA. In 2014 he hosted the television series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, which he called a “continuation” of astronomer Carl Sagan’s popular series Cosmos from 1980. Here he is talking about Carbon Dioxide in our atmosphere. If there wasn’t any, the earth would freeze, but if there is too much, it warms the planet…the background music from the program may make it a little difficult to hear… Next he talks about the amount of carbon thrust into our atmosphere from volcanoes and compares that to the carbon from fossil fuels… Not even 2% of the carbon spewed into the atmosphere from volcanoes is contributing to the 30 billion tons civilization cranks out every year for decades. And we wonder why this problem is accelerating? Finally here is Mr. Tyson in an interview with Larry King from 2015 on politics and science… “The end of an informed democracy.” The all mighty dollar-slash-strong-economy is more important than the air we breath. I can’t help thinking about the 10 Commandments movie when Moses comes back down from the mountain and what does he see? He’s like, “what the hell’s going on down here?” It’s just a bunch of goddamn dopamine addicts! Worshiping false gods in the form of cars and McMansions and private jets and swipe right on your electronic devices that need to be replaced every black Friday. Only instead of a golden calf, it’s a bunch of rectangular pieces of paper with pictures of dead presidents on them. Speaking of that golden calf, who loves gold more than anyone and wants you to know it? And here’s another irony for you: most of those right wing, gun toting whiteys who are afraid of losing our privileged status in this country are also bible thumpers. Apparently we aren’t reading the bible we’re thumping. You really should watch this old movie next Passover-slash-Easter. This was a film of our generation and during the orgie scene there is a tug of war with two guys who each have a woman’s arm and they’re pulling her in different directions so they can rape her. And what has she been directed to do by Cecil B. Demille? She’s laughing!... “Oh, you two are incorrigible!” This was a time when you were told, “When they say no?
28 minutes | Jul 18, 2022
Ep. 111 Walruses Politicians Integrity Eggmen and gun insurance
Welcome to another episode of TMM…where you can also find us at “The Old Man-dot-show”... try it! Also, happy post 4th of July. I have WAY too many tabs open in my browser most of the time. It’s as cluttered and messy as the rest of my house. I leave these tabs open because I think they contain something I want ot share with you, which is another way of saying something I want to complain, rant or brag about. I have a few items I’d like to complain about before hopefully getting to something hopeful. Item #1: Forth of July Message from California’s Governor Gavin Newsome 4th of July message: In it he starts off by saying let’s talk… translation: let me talk… about what’s going on in America… translation: let me bag on Florida Governor Ron…ald McDonald Desantis. Governor Newsome, don’t start off saying you want to talk about America and then attack another Governor, the images contained Desantis and the graphics were about Desantis. It’s this kind of rhetoric that actually contributes to the divisiveness in our country and it is not taking the high road. Mean what you say and say what you mean. In other words, if you tell your citizens to wear masks, YOU wear a mask. Even in Napa Valley. Don’t get me wrong, I am not defending Wrong Desantis. I am NOT a fan of that egomaniac. However… of the numerous laws Desantis has signed, the “Parental Rights in Education law, which prohibits discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through third grade classrooms.” This is going to sound like I’m a crazy conservative, but is that all that bad? Kindergarten through 3rd grade. Four and five year olds to what… eight years old? There shouldn’t be ANY sexual education talk of ANY kind in those grades, should there? What a great bargaining chip to use to look for compromise. And if there’s a kid having sexual identity issues in those grades, can’t we deal with it on a case by case basis with some compassion? Do we need a law for that. My recollection of grade school was a one night presentation with fathers and sons in attendance in the auditorium. That was it. My biggest takeaway from that was on the ride home I was able to get away with saying the F-word in front of my dad. And I said it with a little pause before adding the “i-n-g” so it seemed like I didn’t even now how to pronounce it. And my dad said, “yes, yes. This is fucking.” Man, I felt so victorious that night. I’d pulled a major coupe. Back to Gavin Gruesome… at the end of his message talking about America… if America was Flrorida, he invites Floridians to join us here in California. Hey Gavin, we’ve got 39 million people in this state plus a housing crisis. And you want more people to come to California? Seriously? We’re driving wealthy residents out of the state and you want to bring disenfranchised poor Floridians to California? You think the rich ones that can afford housing on the beach in Miami are going to come? No. We’ll have even more homeless….oops, unhoused people than we already have. Why? So you can win your reelection campaign? That’s who paid for the message by the way. Silicon valley isn’t the only place where businesses are leaving California. I’ll get a Netflix, Stranger Things plug in here and I’m sure that if you’ve been watching Stranger Things you don’t watch the credits. You think that show was shot in Hollywood? Even the scenes that were supposed to take place in Los Angeles were filmed in and around Albuquerque New Mexico where a LOT of productions take place as well as Wilmington, North Carolina and Vancouver, British Columbia for that matter. And it’s rarely for the landscapes. I’m sure you know that Southern California can provide damn near any landscape you want, except maybe a rainforest. Heck that’s what a soundstage is for. So, there’s a whole other industry besides high tech that has left California. Okay, see how my rants just swirl around and don't’ really go anywhere? (toilet) I guess if I had a point, it’s that California’s Governor shouldn’t be inviting a population to come to California when we can’t house the ones we have already. And if it was a political stunt for his reelection campaign and he’s calling out Florida’s Goofy Governor “Wrong” DeSantis, then I’d have to go with “Shame on You Gavin Gruesome”. Chucking barbs at your opponent or the other party is just perpetuating the horrible divisiveness we’re already bogged down in. Find another way to craft your message. What was I talking about? See? Okay, horrible politicians on the left and right. All that for only item #1! Item #2: C.S. Lewis and Lewis Carroll are not the same person. I obviously have way too much computer time. I try to keep my daughter from it but at the same time I can spend hours sitting in front of my computer… accomplishing, what? Am I fooling myself into thinking I’m educating myself? To what end? So I can take some information that’s little more than trivia, and regurgitate it in a conversation (or a podcast) to make people think I’m educated and worldly? Please. So here’s how I went from C.S. Lewis to Lewis Carrol to the Beatles to The Animals to… what? It really led to nothing. I was initially trying to find the origin of the saying, “Don’t judge a person before walking a mile in their shoes.” I still don’t think I have it but it led me to some very random places. The oldest origin I found was from a Native American prayer that goes: “Great Spirit — Grant that I may not criticize my neighbor until I have walked a mile in his moccasins.” While that rabbit hole didn’t lead me to a satisfying end it somehow got me on to C.S. Lewis and the Christian metaphors he used in his books, specifically “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe”. But instead of C.S. Lewis, I thought it was Lewis Carrol who wrote Alice in Wonderland, no… Through the Looking Glass. And in that book, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, who would be perfect guests for this show, recite the poem, “The Walrus and The Carpenter” to Alice… The poem tells of the Walrus and the Carpenter luring young oysters out of their beds and on to the shore where they are all eaten by the Walrus and the Carpenter, even when one of the older oysters warns them. In the Disney movie the Walrus eats all of the oysters and the Carpenter doesn’t get any. In the book it appears both eat some of the oysters but it appears the Walrus gets most of them. Their untimely end comes when the Walrus says: "The time has come," the Walrus said, "To talk of many things: Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax— Of cabbages—and kings— And why the sea is boiling hot— And whether pigs have wings." "But wait a bit," the Oysters cried, "Before we have our chat; For some of us are out of breath, And all of us are fat!" "No hurry!" said the Carpenter. They thanked him much for that. Even there at the end of that stanza the Carpenter cuts them some slack. Many have analyzed Carrol’s work to look for hidden meaning an metaphor including the Walrus and the Carpenter represents Communism vs. Capitalism or that one represents Christianity and Western religion while the other represents Buddhism and Eastern Religion OR… that Lewis Carrol did drugs when he wrote Alice in Wonderland. The general consensus on that is NO, he was simply writing for children to entertain them and their imaginations. If fact, one of the illustrators for a later edition of the book said that the original illustrator had the choice of a butterfly, a carpenter or a baronet (the holder of a rank of honor below a baron and above a knight, oh my god the rabbit holes people, I’m gonna break an ankle). Because, you see, butterfly, carpenter and baronet all have the same number of syllables and would keep the cadence of the poem. But what I did find interesting is that The Walrus from the poem is what John Lennon refers to in the Beatles, “I am The Walrus” from their Magical Mystery Tour Album, and if I play one second of that song this whole episode will get deleted from most platforms it’s published. Oops! Her is an excerpt from the 1980 Playboy magazine interview with John Lennon: LENNON: "The first line was written on one acid trip one weekend. The second line was written on the next acid trip the next weekend… PLAYBOY: "What about the walrus itself?" LENNON: "It's from 'The Walrus and the Carpenter.' 'Alice in Wonderland.' To me, it was a beautiful poem. It never dawned on me that Lewis Carroll was commenting on the capitalist and social system. I never went into that bit about what he really meant, like people are doing with the Beatles' work. Later, I went back and looked at it and realized that the walrus was the bad guy in the story and the carpenter was the good guy. I thought, Oh, shit, I picked the wrong guy. I should have said, 'I am the carpenter.' But that wouldn't have been the same, would it? (singing) 'I am the carpenter....'" So this got me to thinking if John was the Walrus from a Lewis Carroll peom, then who is the eggman? It turns out the Eggman is Eric Burdon. Please don’t say who is Eric Burdon. Did you just say who is Eric Burdon? Shame on you. How about Eric Burdon and The Animals, does that sound more familiar? How about the band WAR? That Eric Burdon, who Rolling Stone named #57 on their list of top 100 Greatest Singers of All Time. Why is Eric Burdon the eggman? Apparently, Mr. Burdon had this sexual fetish that involved cracking a raw egg and I won’t get into anymore details on that. However, Eric relayed the story to John Lennon and Lennon nicknamed Eric “Eggman” as in, “go get it Eggman.” How’s that for a rabbit hole? The rabbit hole continued by the way as I found an interview of John Lennon speaking o
35 minutes | Jun 29, 2022
Ep. 110 Retirement, College and A Retiring School Teacher’s Husband Brags. Also: How Many Morons Does it Take To Change a Light Bulb?
My guest has been on the show once before along with the senator and we refer to him as Templeton, as in form Charlotte’s Web. We’ve been besties since high school where we were both relatively scrawny, neither of us was on any sports teams but we hung out with a couple of the jocks. We took a bunch of the same college classes together and always talked about our own business partnership firm being called “Wrong and Wronger” and then fill in the blank after that… wrong and wronger accounting firm, wrong and wronger legal consultants, wrong and wronger construction company, you get the idea… whatever we did we would kinda screw it up. His idol back in high school was Woody Allen. Not the pervert Woody Allen, but the Woody Allen that brought us Annie Hall, Play It Again Sam, Manhattan, Sleeper, Bananas, Take The Money and Run. Unfortunately today we can’t separate Woody Allen from his sickness, but his work in the 60’s 70’s and 80’s alone was incredible and that… for very understandable reasons is why Woody was my friend’s idol. Here Woody in an interview from 1971… But what Templeton was always good at, and still is, he’s good at recruiting people into some kind of scheme, like in our 20’s we played a LOT of softball. He would recruit a couple of ringers and then get us into a D-league where he would say, “guaranteed sweatshirt”, like that was something to covet… a D-league softball champions sweatshirt. So he’s always been known to have some sort of scheme going, an angle or something (bite) We’ve been roommates, At parties and night clubs we were always, always the wallflowers, and I got to be best man at his wedding. His wife has been a teacher for over thirty years in the public school system… no easy feat. She retired on Friday of last week and we talk about what it takes to be teacher, how highly our society values teachers… at least we say we do, it just isn’t reflected in their paychecks. We also talk about our equally… well almost equal ineptitude at being handy around the house. Usually he has the good sense to not even try whereas my ego sends me to Lowe’s three times in one day and half a day just to complete a task that a normal human would complete in an hour. This time, however, Templeton has me beat and he shares his misfortune. One of the main things Templeton is absolutely beloved for is in the way he butchers the english language. I have several friends that do that including the senator…. But Templeton does it in a magical way that kept him with his business partner for over 30 years. I don’t think he quite demonstrates it fully in this conversation, and if he does I don’t call him out on it, but his usual response is, “You know what I meant”. As we start our conversation he is somehow under the impression that we are not recording yet and that at some point we are going to “go live”. I don’t think any podcast is live, otherwise it would be a webcast wouldn’t it? A husband brags about a retiring school teacher and how NOT to change lightbulb on The Modern Moron, and thanks for listening. CLOSE - Congratulations on 34 years of teaching our little one’s. Enjoy a great retirement. Before we part ways I want to keep trying to have a little segment called Moron Chaplaincy or maybe I have to set aside whole episodes for that, but I wanted to tell you about one very small, incident that I thought was going to be fairly routine but it wasn’t. Maybe that’s one of the things I like about Chaplaincy in a hospital, sooner or later you get something unique, as long as your paying attention. So I’m making my rounds a few weeks ago and usually the door to the patients rooms are open so I can knock gently on the door and see if they’re up for a visit. If the door is closed I figure one or both of the patients don’t want to be disturbed. For some reason, I knocked on a closed door, opened it and walked into a room with one patient in it. The patient was quite literally chained to his bed. With a chain. Not a strap or restraint, but a chain. And sitting with the patient are two Highway patrol, or if you’re not in California a State Trooper. One of them might have been a county Sheriff. I’ve opened the door and stuck my head in and actually am halfway in the room. So I said something to the effect of, “hey, what’s up?” One of the officers stands up and turns to address me so I introduce myself, ‘hello, I’m Charlie the Chaplain or whatever, I didn’t say that. But I did identify myself and the officer said it would be fine if I visited the “patient”. So I cross the room, I pull up a chair, and I sit with this guy, a pretty good sized guy… Are you feeling any pain? Where are you from? Does your family know you’re here? Not much of a conversation. I asked him if it would be alright if I prayed for him. He said yes. By the way I’m not big on prayer myself but if it’s for someone else and they value it, which some really do, I’m happy to do that. As I was leaving that room and walking down the hall, I thought of that incredibly sad hospital room. And it wasn’t just the patient chained to his own bed. Were either of those two officers realizing their full potential sitting in that room all… day… long. Staring and scrolling on their phone. Is that what they imagined when they decided to get into law enforcement? I doubt it. I felt bad for everyone in that room. What made me think of this is that today, I’m in one of the units, I’m walking down the all and I’m behind two law officers again. You do see officers around a hospital, particularly the ER Department and the front desk perhaps but not usually IN the hospital. So now I look past the two officers and I see a guy with gray hair, who I think is shuffling along because, that’s what patients do in hospitals who have just had surgery and many times they’ve got their IV stand they’re pushing along beside them. This guy has all that and he’s shackled AND he’s got some contraption around his waist that looks like they’ve got big brick sized batteries on his sides. AND, there’s another officer in front of him. This could have been Hannibal Lecter Junior for all I know. What gray haired man need three armed guards around him when he’s already shackled? Jesus, I’m lucky I still have a face. Music: "Lightless Dawn" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com); Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
32 minutes | Jun 20, 2022
Ep. 109 Investments, Flings, Home Improvement is boring, Movie Candy and Standup Comedy
Welcome to another episode of TMM… In this episode we finish my chat with my friend and comedian Christine Lederman, but as usual I want to cover a couple of things first. One is from an article in the Wall Street Journal from Sunday June 12th. I have to recommend the Wall Street Journal. You should at least get the online version plus the Sunday/weekend edition and here’s why: 1) it’s a very credible conservative news source, so if you’re a conservative I don’t need to convince you. If you’re a liberal and your bias against this paper then you’re being exactly what you complain about. People need to be more open minded and accepting of others lifestyles and opinions. I agree. Start by reading something that may take you outside your comfort zone. 2) Senior Moron discount! I’m currently getting the digital version of the Journal app plus I get the paper on Sunday morning which is very nice to nostalgically read an actual newspaper and since it’s the Wall Street Journal it leads me to 3) I feel like a grown up reading the paper on Sunday morning. Back to the article - this is moron curmudgeon stuff too… the title is: “The Age of Emotional Overstatement - From social media to job applications, the pressure to declare our feelings in public is turning us into gushing adolescents.” If you remember the beginning of last episode, Christine mentioned how hard it is to get kids to hire and actually show up for work because they are in constant need of mental health days. In a sense we parents are responsible for that mentality. When they were kids playing soccer or whatever sport, everyone had to get a trophy… and every kid had to have a speech made about what a gift they were to the team and with 95% of the kids, they forgot the goddamn plastic trophy when we left the pizza place. Seriously. It’s ridiculous and with all the value that team sports provides, we ruin it by giving everyone a trophy. Please knock that shit off with our grandchildren. That’s not how life works. Back to the article, she recounts a birthday wish from one of her fellow 21st century parents that posted on social media… “Happy 17th Birthday, Miles!” reads the typical parent-to-offspring entry. A previous generation might have stopped there, deeming the well-wishing sufficient acknowledgment of the day. But today’s parent has only just begun her tribute to the sunshine golden star-child who grew into the brilliant, gorgeous, side-splittingly funny, preternaturally gifted athlete (‘Go, Big Blue!’), not to mention the kindest person upon this earth as well as the head of the yearbook committee, who is loved “to the moon and infinity and back and to infinity again and to whatever lies beyond infinity…” We can’t just say happy birthday anymore, it’s got to be this ridiculously syrupy emotional outpouring and it has GOT to be made public so everyone can see how grateful I am. This Sunday’s Journal… as in June 19th 2022, has a couple of articles that caught my eye… one from the “intelligent investor”, Jason Zweig, titled “To Stand Up to a Bear Market, Act Cool- and Act Your Age” meaning, if you’re young don’t sweat this depression- recession- stagflation or whatever the hell you want to call it. Still invest slowly and regularly. In fact ‘Ol Warren Buffet says this is the best time to buy, when prices are going down. Quote, “if you like hamburgers, you want the price of hamburgers to go down not up.” So have your kids and grandkids look at this as a great time to start investing when prices are low or going to be lower. It’s us old farts that need to worry because we are about to make those investments part of our annual income. I’m sure If you’re thinking of retiring in the next couple of years, you have been giving it second thoughts. Another interesting tip from this article is: If you’re going to retire anyway, think about retiring without drawing your social security. Can you do that? I think so. They advise delaying Social Security until 70… if you can pull that off. The reason is that the fed will increase your benefits based on inflation and your eventual SS check once you start. The more you can put it off the better your payout will be once you need it, “need” being the operative word. Another tip to note is that with the prime interest rate going up, the yields on income-producing assets are going up as well. What the hell is an income-producing asset? Hell if I know… some to learn more about might be rental properties, which could be a pain in the ass unless you employ a property management company or you could invest in Property management companies themselves…OnlineMarketplaces.com suggests “Rightmove” and “onthemarket” which are both on the London exchange, there’s another in Germany called Scout24. Obviously I’m talking outta my ass and if you have any kind of a stock portfolio you would never take advice from a Moron, but you could check with your professional investor and see what they think. This would be a perfect topic for the Senator, and I’ll get him on eventually. Also, safer and therefore lower yield investments might be something like Certificates of Deposit which should have higher yields than the last five years as interest rates have gone up and will probably continue to go up. The problem with CD’s for a moron like me is that CD’s are usually sold in blocks of $10,000 which I would never have but if you’re the Senator you’d have that much just to buy a puppy. Okay… I can’t believe I talked that much about finance. And i wonder if you thought for a half second, “wow, sounds like he might know what he’s talking about.” I do not. Can you imagine the level of bullsh*t you get from so called experts in the field whose main goal is to make you think that? That they’re an expert and you should hang on their every word. Remember Jim Cramer? That investor guy who used to be on CNBC… he had a show called “The Street” and he would hit buzzers and bells over stock buys and he always had his sleeves rolled up to make you think he was a hard working joe like the rest of us. Remember him? There was the housing bubble of 2007 and then the Fanny Mae Freddy Mac business and then in 2008 Cramer said that Bear Stearns, one of the biggest investment banks in the world, was doing fine… … and then the following week they collapsed. Hell I can do that. The Modern Moron Investment Firm. We make money the old fashioned way, we burn it. Man I can talk can’t I? There’s no one to shut me up, which is why I need guests. Like my guest Christine Lederman. We pick up where I ask her about a nice little romance she had during quarantine in her condo complex which leads us to a conversation about the house she recently purchased, home improvement projects and how they are never finished and she painted the interior and then… she catches us in the midst of a boring conversation and she puts the brakes on home improvement talk. Thank God… Where was she when we needed her in the middle of this intro. So… Pandemic fling, home improvement, movies we’ve seen recently and a discussion about movie candies… what’s your favorite and do you buy them at the movie theater or do you stop at the drug store and get candy like this Moron? Investments, flings, movie candies and other things on The Modern Moron… and thank you for listening. CLOSE - I forgot to tell you we talked about Johnny Depp and Top Gun for about a minute, sorry about that. We are going to keep tabs on Christine’s standup schedule this fall and if you’re in the Denver/ Boulder area you can probably catch her workshopping parts of her upcoming show. Wouldn’t it be great if she just exploded on the comedy scene and we can all say I remember when she did that podcast. It could happen you gus. As always thank you for listening, please forward this to someone you think would enjoy it or to someone who would hate it but tell them you think they’d love it. It’ll be fun, try it… see you next time.
36 minutes | Jun 15, 2022
Ep. 108 Gun Laws, Christine Lederman, Tarot Cards and Unemployment (Not in That Order)
Welcome to another episode of the MM… this was supposed to be an easy-peazy light episode with my friend and stand up comedian Christine Lederman. Until… I decided to include something that I felt looked at both sides of the 2nd amendment-slash-gun violence issue that, along with some other issues, you can throw on the pile of burning tires that divides this country right now. And it has taken me a week to calm down enough to try again. I do this tiny podcast for the half dozen or so of us because I have fun doing it, I find some interesting people and stuff and I really am at a crossroads of being a complete shut-in that does not want to engage at all with our civilization as it has become and another part of me that wants to be able to stay connected in some way. So to do that I have to read, watch and listen to the news with a sense of curiosity rather than with an opinion. I’m really trying to get rid of my opinions that have collected like in a garage that can’t fit a car inside it anymore. You ever see garages like that? Maybe you have one. So the guns issue. Selfishly, i think the thing that pisses me off is that I can’t use this anymore… I love the ol’ machine gun sound effect as a symbol of over reacting to trivial matters. If I owned an assault rifle, I would probably be sharing with you how I went off on my dishwasher, or my weed eater or my garage door opener… some inanimate item that is the object of my wrath. But I can’t do that anymore because of the right to bear arms… the 2nd amendment written in 1791. Couple of things to note about 1791: The population density of the entire country or colonies was the same as the city of Los Angeles or the State of Connecticut. Many folks needed guns to acquire protein. The most common guns were muskets and flintlock pistols The most skilled hunters and marksmen could load from the muzzle of the weapon, fire, reload and fire again about every 20 seconds, maybe 15 seconds… so three to four rounds per minute. Those firearms were highly inaccurate. They didn’t use bullets shaped for aerodynamics that would rotate to keep their aim true. They were musket balls, which does not refer to the genitalia of a male muskrat. I said musKET balls. They did not fly true at all. I feel like there is a silent majority of conservatives, I know there is because I talk to them. Maybe they voted for Trump, but were embarrassed to say so, because… you should be embarrassed of him and his lack of integrity. Most of these silent majority wish he would just go away. They also believe in the right for a woman to choose but don’t want to speak up because it goes against their faith tradition. Most of the republican or conservatives I know maintain their political viewpoint for fiscal reasons and fiscal policy. “Run your government like you run a household. Don’t spend more than you have and if you borrow money, have a plan to pay it back. Balance the budge, blah, blah, blah.” But when it comes to social policy, they’re reasonably positioned. But to speak out in the midst of your contemporaries, and I’m using air quotes, “just isn’t worth it.” And over and over, the right to keep these automatic weapons and assault rifles is a more important right than the right of a kid to be able to go to school without having to be concerned about being shot, murdered, having their friends murdered, etc. Because it radiates out. Imagine how it radiates out from Uvalde, Texas and that school district. All the schools across the country who have to reestablish and practice their active shooter drills, with 5, 6 and 7 year olds asking, “why do we have to sit in this closet and keep quiet for how long?” And someone has to explain that to them and not bullshit them by making it some kind of a game. I want to bring to your attention a couple of articles on the recent shootings and the two groups of frightened people who either fear they or their children will be the next victim of a mass shooting because there are too many assault rifles or the frightened people who think there aren’t enough assault rifles to combat the assault rifles. I’m absolutely enraged as you probably are of the lack of functionality of our government, their inability to compromise and the … and I have deleted so many expletives today; group of people that subscribe to the “bad guy with a gun needs more good guys with guns” philosophy. I mean I’m having trouble sitting still in my chair to write and outline of what I want to say after listening to complaints about how 120 gun laws don’t work so one more isn’t going to help. The reason we have to have 120 gun laws in the first place is because you gun toting idiots dig your heels in and won’t allow one or even a couple of thorough laws get passed because you’re either afraid the russians are coming over the hill or there’s going to be Marshall law declared so you need your guns to protect your families but those guns are actually killing each other’s families. Go drink a pot of coffee on an empty stomach and that’s how I feel right now, it’s that bad. However… I do have an interview-slash-article… from a gun advocate… that I feel is worth listening to if you are opposed to guns as I obviously am. It’s abo I also have an article for those who are in favor of fewer guns, guns, guns and I’ll get to that one later. This first interview is from NPR, yes it’s left leaning, but it felt like at least it was an intelligent conversation… to me. The interviewee is David French who is the senior editor of “The Dispatch” which is a subscription-based and advertisement-free online magazine. Mediabiasfactcheck.com puts them as a right-center bias publication with a HIGH factual reporting credibility. They are NOT as far to the right as say Fox News which has a MIXED factual reporting credibility. David French is also a contributing writer at The Atlantic which is a HIGH credibility LEFT bias monthly magazine. This cat went to Harvard Law School where he graduated with honors. I know I wouldn’t want to have a debate with him. He is in favor of a concept called red flag laws that allow the proper authorities to reclaim or seize guns from those deemed to be a threat to the public or themselves by a similar legal procedure as getting a restraining order. I make a confession of an odd purchase for me in the form of a deck of tarot cards. What? I know, but Christine is the perfect person to confess this too because she is very much under the impression that she has psychic abilities. Not only that but she will also tell you that the reason her intuitions about me are completely wrong is because I don’t believe she has “the gift.” So, it’s all my fault. She proceeds to prove her inaccuracies during our call but I think we might have a regular segment called the psychic eye of Queen Christine. Something like that. We start our conversation with me inquiring about the hotel business and what seems to be the overall difficulty in our culture these days to get people to want to come back to work… CLOSE - That was a kind of weird episode right? Too much politics at the top and then tarot cards? A couple of things before we part ways… as of the recording of this episode The Modern Moron is exactly 14 downloads away from it’s 10,000th download. Doesn’t that sound impressive? Let me put a little perspective on that huge, huge milestone… California Has America's Toughest Gun Laws, and They Work - New York Times/ Yahoo Red flag laws, not gun control, are the way to stop mass shootings, proponent says - NPR What Firearms Looked Like In 1791 - Ranker.com
29 minutes | May 31, 2022
Ep. 107 Moron Chaplaincy
Open - So I have begun to volunteer at a local Hospital which is also a trauma center. What separates a trauma center from a regular hospital? I look at it the same way you might look at the difference between a four star and a five star hotel. A five star hotel needs two dining rooms, one formal, and I believe 24 hour room service and concierge service… probably some other stuff. According to https://hospitalmedicaldirector.com/ which is a blog about hospital medical directors: A level 1 trauma center must have a trauma/general surgeon in the hospital 24-hours a day, along with an anesthesiologist and a full O-R staff available in the hospital 24-hours a day as well as a critical care physician 24-hours a day. There must also be immediate availability of an orthopedic surgeon, neurosurgeon, radiologist, plastic surgeon, and oral/maxillofacial surgeon. There must be > 1,200 trauma admissions per year. There are also requirements for the number of hours these surgeons and physicians must have each year. Finally, These centers must participate in research and have at least 20 publications per year. The main difference between a 1 one and a level 2 trauma center is primarily the lack of research and publication requirements. So, I have just barely started volunteering in one of California’s 17 Level I trauma centers. So far, I go on only one day a week and I shadow one of the current 6 or so resident chaplains. There are some chaplains that are stationed on a particular floor as well, along with another set of chaplains that deal with palliative care, but that’s another kettle of fish altogether. Is it inappropriate to refer to palliative care as a “kettle of fish”? I hope not, but you know there are always going to be people who are offended by something so… insert expletive. You may be thinking at this point… “what? Why? Why would a moron want to do something like this?” Great question. I have no idea. Actually I do… The thick of the pandemic. Lost a patient from Covid Case Investigation work. Not just a case number. I had to write an essay. So, knowing that i am NOT a religious person, how do I write an essay about being a chaplain, with no religious foundation? What is my faith tradition? Spiritual tradition: Catholic High school. 1 year at Catholic College. Studied Buddhism and attended service regularly in Los Angeles (Shin Buddhist) I definitely drank the kool-aid of Improvisational theater. Don’t underestimate this. In fact, it probably gave me the most valuable tool in doing some of this work so far. CLOSE - In conclusion… I hope to be able to provide some insight, some reflections of my experiences and who knows maybe even a guest or two! I don’t know how long I will be permitted to be a volunteer before they find out I’m a moron and a heathen, but so far it’s been a very positive experience. Coming up in future Modern Moron episodes, I will be speaking to my college graduate who has a degree in art history, and we will be discussing a VERY interesting 2018 documentary called “The Price of Everything”. The film features interviews with people prominently involved in contemporary art and the market for it and it is fascinating. The title of the film comes from a quote from the 1892 Oscar Wilde play “Lady Windermere's Fan”. The quote is delivered in the film by art collector Stefan Edlis: "There are a lot of people who know the price of everything and the value of nothing". Chew on that for a while, right? Also, in line with The Modern Moron remaining on the cutting edge of technology and pop culture, I just bought an air fryer and I simply must tell you about my favorite dishes. Until next time, thank you for listening to The Modern Moron, please forward this episode to someone you think would like it, or to someone you think would hate it as a joke. Thanks.
36 minutes | Apr 2, 2022
Ep. 106 Larry Dorf Pt. 2 The Woman In The Window, The Oscars, Will Smith, Chris Rock and Kareem Abdul Jabbar
OPEN - Welcome to another episode of the Modern Moron and another very… long… intro. We all could use a little respite from Russia’s violent invasion of Ukraine, not as much as the people of Ukraine could use it, but you get the idea. So why not turn to the entertainment industry? How about the Oscars? Let's watch Hollywood celebrate itself. Of course you know where I’m going with this and that is the incident where Will Smith walked on stage and slapped comedian Chris Rock after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife Jada and her shaved head. He made a G.I. Jane joke, which wasn’t particularly good, it was made off the cuff, not in the rehearsed segment. After slapping Rock, Will Smith yelled twice in a very full and articulate voice to, “Keep my wife’s name out your fucking mouth”. It was at that point that everyone went beyond shock and dismay that it might be a rehearsed stunt, because you shouldn’t use the “F” word on live television… twice. So now we’re all Monday Morning quarterbacking this whole thing. Lucky for you I have all the answers because I am an omnipotent being who is all knowing. My take on it is similar to the take Jimmy Kimmel had and the take is this: Chris Rock made the G.I. Jane joke about Jada Pinkett’s shaved head. The camera cuts to the two of them and Will Smith appears to be chuckling and rolling with it. His wife, however, is not. The camera cuts back to Chris Rock and we can only ASSume, and you know I love to assume, that Will looked over at his wife and his chuckle quickly disappeared. I’m willing to bet it was a look like, “If you don't’ want to sleep on the couch for an indeterminate amount of time, you better do something.” Or maybe he just saw that her feelings were hurt. In any case, the rest is history and and it was ugly on so many levels. So, on a night that should have been a celebration of his great achievement in his industry, instead he’s stuck in a very, very bad situation. Chris Rock has made no statement but ticket sales to his standup performances have skyrocketed. And there’s one other person we have not heard from and that is the person who was on the butt end of the Chris Rock joke and that is Jada Pinkett Smith. She has only posted a cryptic message on Instagram stating, “This is a season for healing and I’m here for it.” I’d like to say this is not a season for cryptic messages. This is not a season to keep quiet, when you had some hand in this whole occurrence. No, you’re not responsible for your husband’s foolish action, but you are responsible for your reaction. While you didn’t like the comment, who would, it was your look of disapproval or disgust at your husband… who you’ve been married to for 24 years in what you have indicated was an open marriage, had to know what you were communicating to your husband in that moment. Or even put that aside, you still have an opportunity to alleviate some of the pressure on your husband by making a clear statement owning some of your reaction or… making a statement about your medical condition having alopecia and how many people have it. But you have not. I would suggest folks look to Kareem Abdul Jabar. Why in the world would I bring up his name? By the time you listen to this, his essay on this incident will have gone viral and in it he goes over the myriad of issues this incident, in those few seconds, has created. The piece is titled, “Will Smith Did a Bad, Bad Thing: Slapping Chris Rock was also a blow to men, women, the entertainment industry, and the Black community.” I’m not sure where you will end up reading it but it’s source is a site called “Substack” which is similar to “Patreon”. If you’re like me you have no idea what either of those are. They are both “platforms” meaning they are websites and mobile apps for people who what to make money from their blogs, podcasts, Tick-tock, Instagram, etc. I digress… Kareem’s subtitle says it all: Will Smith’s act was a blow to men, women, the entertainment industry and the black community. Kareem addresses each of those things and says that Jada Pinkett was and is completely capable of defending herself, especially against words, namely a joke that she didn’t find funny. On that note, I would like to read you a quote from a video on Jada Pinkett’s Instagram account from 2021 showing herself with a shaved head, she said, "Now at this point, I can only laugh.” So, besides being extremely ironic, it also shows how it’s easy for anyone to say they have let go of something and realizing that “thing” they thought they let go of is still very raw. Plus it’s one thing to make jokes about yourself and another to have them made at your expense. I would also include that, I don’t know if she was ever a professional model specifically, but I think most folks would agree that Jada Pinkett is and has been very beautiful in terms of traditional beauty and features that are, on a broad scale, considered beautiful. Jesus, do you see how friggin careful I’m being right now, not to overtly show how shallow and superficial I am? Political correctness takes wayyyy to much time to make sure I haven’t offended someone. And I think taking too much time making sure you haven’t offended anyone, you haven’t impressed anyone either. And by impressed I mean, have you provided value in terms of being either entertaining, educational or informative. How’s that for being a blowhard. Enough of that, and at the same time we can’t get enough of that. We love a train wreck don’t we. Especially when we’er not on either one of the trains. This is part two with my friend Larry Dorf, creator, writer and producer of the Netflix hit, “The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window”. We spend the rest of our time talking about: what the promotions process was like in terms of doing interviews before the show was released. They actually had to be coached on how to handle certain questions like a politician. What it was like shooting a production on location during the Covid Pandemic. Once the cast was set, you couldn’t just bring someone in on short notice because of the Covid protocols at the time. We talk about one of the executive producers for the series which was Will Farrell and there’s an interesting story there. How to segue your business from hanging a shingle outside your door to actually having a company with a name and a logo. How do you do that? There’s a chat about Larry’s parents, and this fits right into the Modern Moron listener sweetspot demographics, we talk about senior living facilities… I’m sorry… communities. Communities. I think the main difference is cocktail hour. All this and more on the Modern Moron and thank you for listening… CLOSE - Another element in “The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window” besides how tiring the Title gets after saying it a few times, is what I’m going to call an homage to, let’s call it the Scorsese montage. If you’ve seen “Goodfellas”, you know what I’m talking about. Scorsese grabs a hip, rocking piece of music, adds the narrator with some clips of what transpires. To me, the most famous is in Goodfellas when we see all the Gangsters get whacked to the fantastic guitar of Eric Clapton in “Layla” by Derek and the Dominoes, in fact it’s in the second half of the song…. The Woman in the House, kills it - no pun intended- with their homage to that cinematic mechanism with the Rolling Stones “Can You Hear Me Knockin’”. Why am I so excited about this? Music is so, so powerful in evoking emotions and this song in particular has so many moments within it, so many builds and mood swings, from the iconic guitar intro with Mick Jagger in the background…To the chorus… To the incredible saxophone solo… to the cold ending. Set to images, it’s fantastic and yes I’m going on and on like a nerd about this but when you watch it you’ll see and feel what I mean. Great job by Rock, Paper, Scissors Productions. That’s it for the Modern Moron for a while, unless you want to be on the show… I’m not going to babble about my opinions week after week just because I’m omnipotent. If I find something interesting like the concept of Bitcoin mining, yes that’s a thing, and how much electricity is required to power the thousands of computers that engage in Bitcoin mining, so much so that the town of Hardin, Montana that had a coal fired power plant that was going to be closed down was purchased just to run the Bitcoin mining computers. An entire powerplant. It was going to be closed, but now it’s back to running around the clock burning coal. To make money from Bitcoin. The same thing is happening in New York near Ceneca Lake. Reported 15,000 computers that could power something like 30,000 homes. For bitcoin. If I could get someone who claims to know about that, I would definitely talk to them. So until next time, thank you for listening to The Modern Moron. Will Smith Did a Bad, Bad Thing - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - Substack https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2022/03/29/will-smith-richard-williams/ https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/2022/03/28/will-smith-jada-pinkett-slap-fallout/
40 minutes | Mar 20, 2022
Ep. 105 Larry Dorf, Netflix, The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window, Norm MacDonald, This Podcast IS A NEWS Source
INTRO - Welcome to another episode of the Modern Moron. I’m pretty excited about my guest for a number of reasons, number one being that I find Larry Dorf to be an extremely entertaining person that I’ve known more than 20 years. Did you hear that Larry? That’s a long time. He’s a funny guy and I’m not completely sure that most of the time he’s not really trying to be funny. A second reason, probably the main reason, is that Larry is one of the creators, writers and producers of the Netflix hit, “The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window”. I feel pretty sure you’ve at least heard of it and I’m going to insist that you watch it. It’s a great title and a really, really bad hashtag. “The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window” is a parody… a satire of the suspense thriller novel genre like, “The Woman in The Window”, “The Woman in Cabin 10”, “The Other Woman” and on and on. We talk about the fine line of walking between making fun of the genre and dropping in jokes and still honor the genre of a suspense thriller. For example, this series is not like the movie Airplane with gag after gag. In an interesting way, a suspense thriller or even a horror movie is not unlike comedy. You have to have a setup where you get the audience to think you’re going in one direction and then the surprising reveal is the punchline of a joke or the scare of a thriller. How do you honor both? I found it to be a very interesting conversation and I hope you do too. Finally, Larry was on this podcast once before, our most listened to episode by the way… and I tell him this fact. It was when he and his partners were writing and producing “Mike Tyson Mysteries” for Adult Swim’s Cartoon Network. On that episode Larry claimed to “break the news” that the show was not being picked up after it’s 4th season. We recorded that episode at the end of May, 2020 and that information came out in January, so this wasn’t exactly a cutting edge news exclusive, at least we didn’t think so. However, apparently it had not been officially announced and somehow, there were a few nerdy news websites that actually sited this podcast, yes, THIS podcast to announce it’s cancellation, thereby explaining the mystery of why that episode had more downloads than any of our other episodes. I don’t believe him at first, so Larry proves this to me by sending me a link from his phone to a site called screenrant.com that sites The Modern Moron as it’s news source. How ridiculous is that? This podcast is a news source? Please… I’m just a journalist trying to be true to my craft. But the reason I bring this up is because of how pee in my pants giddy I become over this when I actually read it in disbelief. You can almost hear my ego expanding… So, yes we were sited in the publication screenrant.com but it also appeared in The U.S. Sun. Their about page states: “The Sun.com is a US online edition of The Sun, Britain’s largest newspaper.” We also appeared in a website called comicbook.com How about this…. A little publication called “NEWSWEEK”!!! EVER HEARD OF IT? It has the same quote from larry and sites “The Modern Moron Podcast” however Newsweek did not create a hyperlink where the name is, so hey, Newsweek? Lawsuit is forthcoming. You’re gonna want to put your best people on this case. By the way, Mike Tyson Mysteries, which you can still catch streaming on Hulu, has a 97% positigve fan rating on rottentomatoes.com. Can we please not gloss over that? That is a huge rating, from fans. Also, One of the voices of Mike Tyson Mysteries, was that of comedian Norm MacDonald who passed away in September of last year. I ask Larry about working with Norm and he talks about how the producers of that show valued Norm’s opinion on what was funny and how much they wanted Norm to have been able to see their Netflix hit. From all the appearances and interviews of Norm after he passed, it seemed like across the board, not only did people love him for how genuine he was but how they valued his unique perspective on comedy and how hearing his laugh was the best compliment of all. So, please enjoy this part 1 episode where I get a little too excited about being mentioned in a website. It’s THE Larry Dorf from the Netflix hit, and terrible hashtag, “The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window” and thank you for listening. Close - You know how movies many times have product placement in them and the production company can make a little money? Well, this production had to have Corning Ware as a major donor because there was shitload of casserole dishes in this production. Also, you’re the first to hear the bombshell that “The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window” is done. It was a limited series with no season two. I wonder if part of the allure they were going for included calling it season ONE? Hmmm mysterious. How cool was the Amy Schumer story? I wonder if she would do this podcast just to talk about Larry’s show? I mean this podcast is a news source now so she bound to listen to it. In part 2 we talk about what the promotions process was like in terms of doing interviews before the show was released. They actually had to be coached on how to handle certain questions like a politician. What it was like shooting a production on location during the Covid Pandemic. We talk about one of the executive producers for the series which was Will Farrell and there’s an interesting story there. So many reasons to tune in to part 2 with Larry Dorf and “The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window” and thank you for listening. The Woman in The House Across The Street From The Girl In The Window - Netflix Mike Tyson Mysteries Cancelled After Four Seasons | Screen Rant - The Modern Moron sited as an actual news source!!! From 'Venture Bros' to 'Metalocalypse'—The Most Controversial Adult Swim Cancellations - Newsweek
37 minutes | Mar 12, 2022
Ep. 104 College Senior Pt. 2 Some Stuff on Ukraine Kiev is Keeve not Key-yev
Oh my god, I have so many elderly meandering things to ask you and tell you… so many things I don’t understand. A couple of items I found interesting in the past couple of weeks regarding some minor events we’ve experienced, mainly what I’m hearing is the first war in Europe since WWII. A couple of things: On the day Russia invaded Ukraine I heard a story on NPR, one of my main news sources along with the Associated Press, Reuters and The Wall Street Journal. In this NPR story, which I could not find later, the reporter in Ukraine was asked how citizens were handling it on the first day. She said “humor”. She said the usual tensions of day to day life seemed to dissipated and that there were more Ukranians helping each other. Particularly helping the elderly with their supplies… helping them carry groceries and assisting with finding bomb shelters and that there was a sense of quiet unity. I found that sort of hopeful and very cool. Another NPR story which I did find the link to and so will you at the bottom of this description, is regarding US Military intelligence for Ukraine that was being delayed and therefore was not nearly as valuable, because of attorneys. The interview is with Republican Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse who is on the Senate Intelligence Committee. Yes, it sounds like an oxymoron, but let’s leave that alone for now. Also, while we’re on Ukraine can we talk about how to pronounce it’s capital, Kiev. I always thought it was Kiyev. In fact I thought it was a different city, but then I found out it wasn’t so I thought it was like Niche. Remember when the word niche was pronounced niTCH? But then I wasn’t fancy enough to have a nitch and I had to have a niche. So I left my niTCH in Key-yev. Actually there’s more to it. Key-yev But this episode is about my guest… my college senior and the value of learning to write, to convey a thought and support an argument or position. Isn’t there a thing called a position paper? My senior mentions writing in MLA.. MLA style refers the style recommended by the Modern Language Association (MLA) for preparing scholarly manuscripts and student research papers. It concerns itself with the mechanics of writing, such as punctuation, quotation, and, especially, documentation of sources. The “Modern” Language Association was Founded in 1883. How that makes it modern? I have no idea. Maybe the same thing that makes this moron modern. Do you remember doing research papers and having to have a bibliography… and citing sources? Remember ibid? I remember using that a lot so I had to re-look it up and ibid is when you’re using the same source but a different section, so you just put ibid… I-B-I-D which is latin for in the same place —used to indicate that a reference is from the same source as a previous reference. Which you probably already knew… and proceeded to forget, like me. We talk about studying art and applying techniques vs. studying art history and studying techniques. Also how most artists that create art piece together their career and their income. Most artists at one time or another teach art. I’ve heard the expression, “those that can’t do, teach”, which is utter horse manure. Most artists, in addition to creating art, teach or find commercial applications for their art. You’ve heard of actors who do one film “for the studios” and for the money, so they can take smaller roles or roles in smaller independent films for art’s sake. In the art world not everyone can become a Takashi Murakami, Jenny Saville, David Hockney or Yayoi Kusama. And to those iconic names you’re probably saying, who said what now? No, I’ve never heard of any of those artists either but apparently they are among 10 artists you should know about. There is a link to the article at the bottom of the description. We get back to our discussion about mental health and the growth that occurs between freshman and senior year of both high school and college. More wisdom from youth and my college senior on the Modern Moron… thanks for listening. CLOSE - What better way to conclude an episode about art than to talk about the Simpsons and Bob’s Burgers. Like most shows I was way late to the party when it comes to Bob’s Burgers. My daughter and I watch it and it does crack me up. And if you appreciate the aesthetics of different animation styles you really should watch episode 1 of the 8th season of Bob’s Burgers. Some refer to it as a “fan-imation” episode where non professional animators were allowed to animate a scene of the show. I really enjoyed it and again it is the first episode of season 8 called “Brunchsquatch”. Thank you to my guest and an early congratulations on her graduation in just a couple months! Now… it is a rare occasion where I actually know who my next guest is and can promote it and I have a pretty great guest coming up next time. Are you familiar with the Netflix show “The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window”? It was on Netflix’s top 10 when it first came out, and has received some great reviews. It is a satire of the psychological thriller, keep that in mind when you watch. My GUEST is one of the creators of the show along with being one of the writers and producers. He has been on the show before when he was writing for the animated show Mike Tyson’s Mysteries, an episode that included an interesting story about Mike Tyson and it’s our most downloaded episode! Of course I’m talking about Larry Dorf. He’s my guest next time, I’m very excited, so stay tuned… to the Modern Moron. Kyiv or Kiev? Why people disagree about how to pronounce the Ukrainian capital's name - NPR Why Is Ukraine's Capital Pronounced 'Kyiv' and Not 'Kiev'? | HowStuffWorks 10 Contemporary Artists you should know - Artsper Magazine The Bob’s Burgers Cast Improvises a Mini-Episode About the Birds and the Bees - YouTube | Vulture Magazine
34 minutes | Feb 26, 2022
Ep. 102 College Senior Moron Minor- You cant have too much perspective
Welcome to an… episode of the Modern Moron. Wow. Long, long time since we’ve done an episode. A lot of water under the bridge, a lot of swabs up noses, needles in arms and a lot of masks being worn and NOT being worn. So… why? Why do an episode and why did we quit? Why I quit… seemed like it was getting stale, I was told it was getting stale, listening to the Senator and me bickering over the same old political issues and politicians mainly. It seemed like I became more interested in my opinions than my curiosity. And this podcast. Podcast? It’s more like a one way conference call, but with over 1 million podcasts, think about that… 1 million podcasts, I’m sitting down behind a microphone with my big fat ego and all of it’s opinions… and I don’t want that. I don’t want to have opinions. If anything I’d like to lose opinions. My opinions are like the crap you stick in your garage or a storage unit. It’s a bunch of worthless crap. If it had any value, it wouldn’t be in a storage unit or collect dust in your garage. That is what I think of my opinions and my ego keeps trying to sell me these worthless opinions as if they have value. They don’t. My goal is to evaporate my ego and lose all of my opinions. This podcast doesn’t really do that. So why this episode? I have a bit of a problem. Not a huge problem but it’s something that is on my mind daily and it’s something I worry about as I’m sure you worry as well. It’s our children. I have a soon to be teenaged daughter that is soon to be going into high school. She’s got some issues as all kids do and her grades are not currently “the best” and she doesn’t particularly like school. Some kids like school and some don’t, mine doesn’t, at least not right now. And like many kids this age, not all, mine doesn’t look to me as a source of wisdom. In fact, based on the tone of her responses and the receptiveness to my advice, she thinks I’m an idiot, or rather a moron. I have to bear some of the responsibility for that. First off I put the word Moron in the name of this podcast and I am also known to use self deprecating humor from time to time so I have not done a lot to garner a ton of respect by my own hand. Still, there are many parents who find themselves in the same boat. So, grades are not the best right now and her small group of friends seem to be getting better grades and after next year will be heading to the local private Catholic high school to which she now wants to attend. However A) she may not have the grades to get into that school and B) the private catholic high school she wants to go to is even more expensive than the private shool we’re sending her to now and I’m not sure I want to pay that kind of money for a kid who doesn’t like school. Again, I’m sure I’m not alone in this situation but I have chosen to talk to a sort-of expert. An expert in high school and college preparatory school because she recently went to one, in fact the same high school as my daughter has her eye on. She is now a senior at a liberal arts university in New York. We’ve talked to her before, she’s the Senator’s daughter and we talk about post pandemic academic life and how that was just as hard to get used to as it was to go into quarantine. We talk about post graduate work and the perspective on high school advice from a college senior. Maybe you will find some similarities in the changes to your routines as well. We start our conversation by talking about what it was like to come back to college. I thought she was going to say rainbows and unicorns but it wasn’t. It was hard and like most change it took some adjusting. It’s a Re-egowakening with a college senior and a Moron minor on the Modern Moron… CLOSE - What she said at the beginning of the episode, “the weird thing about time is when you’re in it, it feels like forever but once you’re out of it, it doesn’t feel long at all.” The wisdom of perspective. And I love the ease with which she was able to discuss her mental health going through high school and in college. I don’t know how another college kid would ever end up listening to this episode but wouldn’t it be great if one found it that needed to hear that message of not being alone in feeling alone, or feeling anxious or nervous. You never know. Next episode, whenever that is that I just show up in your headphones, we’ll continue our discussion about writing papers for college, breakups and therapists and good luck finding a therapist since the pandemic, because they ARE ALL BOOKED. Seriously, if you feel you need some therapy right now, and who doesn’t, it just isn’t available at least in the health care systems I’m familiar with. We also spend some time talking about what it’s like to study art and art history vs. creating art in college. I hope you’ll check it out, thanks for listening to the Modern Moron.
36 minutes | Sep 15, 2021
Ep. 103 Ted Lasso the Christmas Episode, Old Men Fawning Over Younger Women is So Gross and The Fear of Getting Old
Ep. 103 Ted Lasso the Christmas Episode, Old Men Fawning Over Younger Women is So Gross and The Fear of Getting Old Welcome to the Modern Moron where we take a brief break from the shitstorm that is our civilization and spend some time taling about the hugely popular Ted Lasso, some of the characters and it’s co-creator Jason Sudeikis. Part of the show’s attraction is that despite the aforementioned shitstorm this planet seems to be currently embroiled in, Sudeikis and Ted Lasso seem bound and determined to find a bright spot, grab ahold of it and refuses to let go. All in the midst of their endearing character’s challenges and flaws. The show is so determined to give us the warm and fuzzies that they even released a Christmas special in August that had all the trimmings of the romantic comedy or rom-com … Love Actually. For the most part, I didn’t care for the Christmas episode. I didn’t really care for Love Actually either for the same reason. Too sugar coated for me. I seem to remember being nauseated by Keira Knightley in particular. However I may need to revisit the film, if for no other reason than for Bill Nighey’s washed up old rocker trying to make a comeback selling one of his revamped hits as a Christmas song. THAT is my kind of Christmas character. I also love, love Alan Rickman who is in that film as well with Emma Thompson who is also fantastic. Hmmm, I am talking about a film I don’t like, right? Where were we? Ted Lasso! The Christmas episode. A number of homages to Love Actually in the episode and that’s why I didn’t like it. Okay moving on… we then begin to talk about our favorite characters in the show. First off, we can’t remember the name of Roy Kent, who is played by Brett Goldstein. He’s probably my favorite character because, well he’s old - at least by professional soccer standards - and he’s angry. What more could I ask for? He also has a podcast, yuk, and I hear it’s very good. It’s called “Films To Be Buried With With Brett Goldstein”. He has a guest every episode and finds out about films that stand out at different points in their lives. Hmm? A focused podcast with a point. What a concept. Regarding Brett Goldstein, there are two articles in the bottom of the description from Vulture, which is sort of a website covering entertainment and is an off-shoot of New York Magazine. Here is an excerpt from one of the articles where Brett talks about how he got the role of Roy Kent. I REALLY want to try to read this as Roy Kent but my daughter thinks I do embarrassingly lousy impressions, which means I might do it anyway… Brett says: “So what happened was — and I still can’t believe it worked out, and I also can’t believe that I did it — basically, as we were writing it, I just started to think I could play Roy; I really get it. I really get this part. But I also knew it was not the sort of part I would usually play. I usually play a softer character. It’s probably my typecast up to that point. So I didn’t want to say anything because I thought, No one’s thinking of me for this role. And I didn’t want to embarrass anyone and make it awkward. So on my last day in the writers’ room, the night before, I [recorded a tape], five scenes as Roy, without telling anyone, and then I sent an email to Bill [Lawrence] and said, ‘I’ve been thinking I could play Roy … but if this is embarrassing, you can pretend you never got this email, and I will never ask you about it.’ Then I got a message from him at like three in the morning, going, ‘Oh! This is good. Let’s see.’ And then very luckily it all went ahead.” Regarding Hannah Waddingham who plays the owner of the futbol club, I’m embarrassed to say I get a little too exuberant in describing her statuesqueness. And having to stomach listening to myself is making me more aware that nobody wants to hear an old man talk about the opposite sex in any sort of desirous way except maybe… MAYBE other old men. It’s gross. That time has passed, show some class and keep that shit to yourself. It’s where the term dirty old man comes from. I wanted to leave it out, but then I thought… fuck it. Just expose the disgustingness of it, but try to learn from it and keep your mouth shut next time. We also get all tied up looking for a photo of Ms. Waddingham and I try to send the Senator to imdb.com which stands for Internet Movie Database and it’s great for looking up that guy who was on that show, you know, I can’t think of her name but she did a movie with Tom Cruise. So you look up Tom Cruise and then you see all of his movies and then you recognize the one you saw “that person” and you click on it and find the actor. That goes for writers, directors and producers as well. Okay, Ms. Waddinghams incredible voice… she has performed for many years in London’s West End which is our version of Broadway. In fact, she’s performed on our version of Broadway as well where she played The Lady of the Lake in Spamalot. Finally, the co-creator of Ted Lasso, Jason Sudeikis. There is a GREAT, thoughtful interview with him, link at the bottom, from Indiewire.com, which is a film industry and review website that focuses on independent film. It’s about a 20 minute interview and I’m going to play a clip from it that focuses on the one time where Coach Lasso calls out Jamie Tart in front of the entire team. He tries to do it once before when they were alone, but if you remember, Lasso’s son comes running in which interrupts what he was about to say to Tart. Tart ends up signing his son’s jersey for him and the moment is gone. But when Lasso does call out Tart in front of his teammates in the locker room, he keeps repeating the word “practice”. Jamie Tart skipped practice because he said he had an injury which he clearly didn’t and was passive aggressively acting out in protest. But Sudeikis using the word “practice” over and over again is an homage to former NBA star Alan Iverson. Fortunately, you didn’t need to know that to see the message that was being delivered in the scene. But if you did catch that connection, there’s a lot more going on. Alan Iverson was a firebrand of a basketball player. He was only 6 feet tall, which really isn’t that tall for a player who dominated the way he did. He did an infamous press conference where he was asked about missing practice. He uttered the word practice 26 times… Almost word for word right?... Even though most people have only heard that part of the press conference, it was at least a half hour long and I listened to all of it so I could find more context. The context that Jason Sudeikis provides… So here we have the same message about practice, but it’s not coming from a cocky soccer player or an young League MVP… now, that same message is coming from a coach. Sudeikis turned it on its head… and it was also the first time we see Ted get fired up in a tough love, stick versus the carrot type of coaching. But it was what Jamie Tart needed. By the way when I mention the character Jamie Tart the Senator says he thinks she’s a cutie… I think he was thinking of the character Keeley Jones played by Juno Temple. So, we have a nice light and breezy episode talking about Ted Lasso… until… I bring up the topic of getting old. Like moving to a senior living facility old. “Senior Living Facility” that is definitely not what they call it. I think it’s Senior Living Community. I took a tour of a facility a couple of weeks ago as my 80 year old sister is ready… yes, ready on her own… to move into such a community. It’s really nice, but it’s also really scary. Actually, I think I’m the one that’s scared because I know that’s going to be me soon. Sooner than I think or realize… So I make sure and squelch out the good Lasso vibes by brining that up. You’re welcome. CLOSE - I guarantee you this topic will be discussed many more times on this program because it’s hugely popular with adults 25 to 49 and males 18 to 34. Wait, that’s not our demographic. You know who you are. There is so much more trivia I could unload on you regarding Ted Lasso but there’s not enough time. Isn’t there? There’s no time limit… it’s just the two or three of us. For example, you may already know that Hannah Waddingham played the character Septa Unella on Game of Thrones, which I have never seen, and in one episode she underwent about 10 hours of water torture on set to get approximately 90 seconds of usable takes. True story. I read it on the internet so it has to be true. A quick COVID note about our friends in this country who are not getting vaccinated. Apparently the states where the COVID variant is spiking happen to be red states, which are also states where vaccinations are severely lagging, can you imagine? Well, here is the Governor of West Virginia, Jim Justice… great name, telling his citizens to put down their conspiracy theories and get vaccinated… Red state, Republican Governor. God sakes a livin’, that’s a good ol’ boy right there. Also, as of this recording, The San Francisco Giants are the first team in baseball to clinch a playoff berth! Okay, that’s it for realsies… thank you for listening, please forward this to a few people you think might enjoy it or as a practical joke to some people you think will hate it. Just forward it and we’ll see you next time. Ted Lasso - Apple TV Ted Lasso's Christmas Episode Made Everyone Lose Their Mind - Vulture | New York Magazine Ted Lasso's Brett Goldstein on Finding Roy Kent's Soft Side - Vulture | New York Magazine Ted Lasso Theme - YouTube Jason Sudeikis on the Hidden Truths Behind Ted Lasso’s Allen Iverson Tribute - IndieWire.com Analysis: This Republican governor NAILS it on anti-vaxxers - CNN Love Actually, Bill Nighy, Festering
36 minutes | Sep 7, 2021
Ep. 101 Peed my pants again, a sincere apology, Afghanistan X2 relieved of duty
Welcome to a very full episode of the modern moron, a bit longer than usual. We cover a lot of ground so I’m mostly going to just give you some bullet points… mostly, so you can either be prepared, be in on the joke, or decide to skip this episode entirely. Sort of a spoiler alert without too much spoilage. Item #1 - The Senator peed his pants… again. If you’re a guy and you’re listening, you’re probably right in this demographic, you’ve done it too and it’s just a sign to us all to stop wearing khakis. But this very quickly segues in into... Item #2 - A sincere apology… from the senator. Hmm, how do I set this up. We were both in a high school alumni golf tournament a few weeks ago. He and his high school buddies were in the foursome behind my foursome. Through most of the round, say about ¾, the Senator was telling another guy in his foursome to yell certain things during my backswing. Things that might “get to me” and you all know what a delicate flower I am. Well, It’s one thing to do that from 2 or 3 hundred yards away, and another to do it from the same tee which is what he did himself toward the end. He yelled from 15 yards away the name of a girl I was in love with in high school that ended in a very gasoline soaked fiery crash. Should I have gotten over that by now? Yes. Is it still a complete dick move by the Senator? Yes to that as well. He came sauntering over right after saying it, and after I shanked the drive, as if I would have no problem with him yelling at me during my backswing, and I tee’d off on him, pun intended. He had been trying to buzz kill my round of golf so I buzz killed everyone’s round by yelling an f-bomb ladended tirade in front of eight people and ruined their round, at least for that moment. A couple of complete morons. So that is what he apologizes for. It was sincere and very out of character for the Senator. Good for you Senator. Item #3 - Afghanistan. We hit this topic a couple fo times actually and this section is about the refugees - Afghanistan or Mexico or Central America, what’s the difference? Why do Afghani’s get sympathy, deservedly so, but our closer neighbors to the south get no love? Or are they just the flavor of the week and it’s in vogue to give them refuge. And how are we going to be viewing them in 5 or 10 years when they are still learning finding their place in our society? Item #4 - We are reminded that now California Senator Alex Padilla owes over $35M to California Tax payers from money he funneled to a firm that happened to be advising then presidential candidate Joe Biden. We originally discussed this in February of this year on Episode 89. Item #5 - The Senator refers to a certain Vice President as ‘The hooker from San Francisco’? Item #6 - Afghanistan again… This time it’s US Marine Corps Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller who was relieved of duty on August 27th. This happened after posting a video the same day the 13 soldiers were killed at the Airport in Kabul. In the video he calls out the senior leadership for their lack of accountability in botching the withdrawal from Afghanistan. I don’t need to tell you that as a soldier, you do not post videos proclaiming any political criticism. Period. You’re a soldier and you take orders. But Lt. Scheller did and he was relieved of duty. Most of the coverage of this was from the right because it shines a light on the mismanagement of Biden’s Whitehouse and because of that, I went looking for more left leaning publications which to no surprise were not as easy to find. CNN had a a short article in which:Marine Corps spokesperson Maj. Jim Stenger said in a statement that Scheller had been relieved of command: "due to a loss of trust and confidence in his ability to command. This is obviously an emotional time for a lot of Marines, and we encourage anyone struggling right now to seek counseling or talk to a fellow Marine. There is a forum in which Marine leaders can address their disagreements with the chain of command, but it's not social media," Scheller wrote in a Facebook post Friday after being relieved that "my chain of command is doing exactly what I would do... if I were in their shoes." "I will not be making any statements other than what's on my social platforms until I exit the Marine Corps. America has many issues... but it's my home," he wrote. The other coverage I have is a Time magazine op-ed from a military veteran who writes: Scheller held battalion command. The Marine Corps is very selective about which officers it grooms to become battalion commanders; the fact that Scheller held that job means he was—before this past week—well-regarded, a Marine with a future in the Corps. Furthermore, Scheller is seventeen years into a twenty-year career. At twenty years, he would have been eligible for retirement at half his base pay with other benefits, like healthcare for life. It took him exactly four minutes and forty-five seconds to throw that all away. Why did he do this? Until the past two weeks, Afghanistan was not a place, or an issue, most American cared about. In 2018, 42 percent of the country couldn’t even say whether or not we were still at war there. Over the past two decades, the war in Afghanistan has been waged by an all-volunteer military and funded through deficit spending. Unlike other wars, there has been no draft and no war tax. It’s often been said that while America’s military has spent the past twenty years at war, America itself has been at the mall. This has led to a massive civilian-military divide. This botched withdrawal, in which many active duty as well as retired members of our military are receiving hundreds of phone calls and texts daily from their Afghan allies and their families who are now left to fend for themselves against the Taliban, has only deepened this sense of alienation among many who’ve served. One only need to look back through history—from Caesar’s Rome to Napoleon’s France—to see clearly that when a republic couples a large standing military with dysfunctional domestic politics, democracy doesn’t last long. I hope you will check out the links at the bottom of this description, you can also find them at themodernmoron.com under episode 101(?) Moving right along... Item #7 - Louis Farrakan’s bow tie - What can I say? The Senator sent me a link to a speech he gave recently that is NOT at the bottom of this episode. You’re gonna have to find that yourself or ask the Senator. Item #8 - Then we start talking about the recall of California Governor, Gavin Newsome. We begin talking about the what if’s of this total waste of tax payer dollars when I stop… and listen and I hear this… (sfx). I let it go the first time, but when I hear it again I’m pretty sure it’s the Senator clipping his fingernails during our conversation. I don’t know which is worse: hearing him clip his nails as opposed to being engaged in the conversation or the level of disgust I find at him doing it. This show is basically a phone call, but it really bothers me, to no one’s surprise, when I hear it. Which he then tells us he had a masseuse come out to his house to give his family massages. Do you do this? Should I be making a budgetary adjustment to allow for a monthly massage? That is so not on my radar of things to work into the budget. Maybe it should be. Maybe I wouldn’t be such a dick if I got a massage once a month. I think I’d need more than one a month. So, yeah, that’s a lot even for a couple of Morons. Thank you for listening... CLOSE - Did we just sound like a conservative talk show here? Or is it just because we have a democrat in the whitehouse screwing things up instead of a republican in there screwing it all up? Regarding The Senator seeing Farrakhan on Phil Donahue 20 years ago. Phil Donahue did his milestone talk show from 1970 to 1996… I didn’t think he did it that long. Regarding Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller, I don’t think we’ve heard the last from him. He wrote on September 2nd: “Going forward, I must remain committed to forcing accountability across our senior leaders. I do not trust that reviews done by panels at the political/military level will bring the change we seek. And I do not trust that it will change unless a strong enough force is applied to the system. Major changes are needed. The system needs to be broken and rebuilt. We need fresh blood and perspective across the entire system. (he goes on) It’s time for a new generation to assume American power. We are ready, and we reject the current system. This entire experience has illustrated to me just how hungry Americans are for honesty, accountability, and reform across the government. This was expressed to me from ALL political parties. We the people want change. We the people WILL take it. We the people are ALL Americans. Follow me, and we will bring the whole fucking system down… in a constitutional manner with one loud voice.” As a person who loves to curse and does so way too much, that f-bomb at the end did not help his message. And the, “we the people WILL take it.” comment feels a little insurrectionist to this moron. He could be running for political office in the future and I’ll be curious to see which party he affiliates himself with. That’s it for this moron, next episode will not be so heavy I promise you, in fact I think we’re going to talk a little Ted Lasso… thank you for listening, forward this to someone who you think might like it and we’ll see you next time... Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller Speaks To the American Leadership.… - YouTube ( Channel: The Thinking Conservative) US Marine officer relieved of command after criticizing military leaders about Afghanistan withdrawal - CNN The Botched Afghanistan Withdrawal Exposes a Dangerous Fault Line in Our Democracy - Time - BY ELLIOT ACK
26 minutes | Aug 24, 2021
Ep. 100 She's Leaving Home
Welcome to episode 100 of the Modern Moron! We do have a special guest for this landmark episode depending on how you define the word special. Our guest is special to me as I’ve known this guy as my bff since junior year in high school. We were both undersized, red-headed umm what? Misfits? Class clowns? Maybe. Outcasts? No, he certainly wasn’t an outcast. In fact he was smart enough to surround himself with two of the biggest guys in our class. Neither of us were academics but he always had an angle and the angle was usually directed toward financial gain. My dad loved that about him and when he would come over he would tell my dad that he was the son he never had. My dad thought that was hilarious. I even had the honor of being best man at his wedding. My guest, is referred to in this episode as Templeton, he gets that name from E.B. White’s classic “Charlotte’s Webb’s” Templeton the rat. Not because he likes to eat but because Templeton was always looking for that same angle of opportunity… He is also good friends with the Senator. Both of them have something in common as it pertains to the title of this episode and the 6th track of the Beatles Sgt. Pepper Album She’s Leaving Home. Both of them are taking their daughters away to college… one for the first time ever and the other for their Senior year, but it’s after spending 14 to 17 months at home through the pandemic. Not easy for either of them, but I think in particular for our friend Templeton. You see Templeton is not a particularly emotional or animated person, doesn’t like to talk about feelings or emotions, you know, a typical male. But he is very close to his daughter. I don’t know all of the things they do or have in common but they do share a love of baseball. They go to ball games together, they talk baseball. She roots for the San Francisco Giants and he roots for the Oakland A’s, but it’s a real bonding thing and I know this is really hard for him as well as it is for the Senator taking his daughter to the East Coast for her Senior hear of College. My guest also has a love of practical jokes, which I do not share. I hate practical jokes, but in this case we pull a very short joke on the senator at the beginning of this episode and here is the setup: I use a service called Zencastr to record this podcast. Part of the process is that each participant has to sign in and everyone’s name is on the computer screen. I had Templeton sign in with a phony name like “Audio Compression Engineer” or something like that, so if he saw it he wouldn’t know who it was. As it turned out he didn’t look at the screen anyway, but Templeton decided to play with the Senator’s head and chimed in as if he was Engineering our recording session as a third party. Also, it didn’t hurt that the Senator had already had his nightly cocktail. Toward the end of the episode we talk about hiking as our guest had just returned from a trip to Yosemite to go on a couple hikes with his son. Naturally the Senator loves to talk about his hiking accomplishments, namely the Tahoe Rim Trail. But our guest confuses this and says The Senator hiked Pacific Rim Trail in three days. The Pacific Rim as opposed to the Tahoe Rim, Consists of all the continents and countries that surround the Pacific Ocean.. I mean from Australia to the tip of South America and all points in between including: South Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines, China and Russia, Canada, the United States plus all of Central America and Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Chile. Meaning, the Pacific Rim is a little bigger than the Tahoe Rim, so enjoy that moment. A couple of tough Dad’s get sentimental about their daughter’s going from cradle to college on this 100th episode of the Modern Moron. Thanks for listening... CLOSE - See? We knew what that he meant to say the Pacific Trail but said the Pacific Rim because he was watching a war movie about Korea and General Douglas McArthur which led him to think of the Pacific Rim Theater of operations… wasn’t that obvious to you? What’s wrong with you people? As you can tell, both the Senator and Templeton have a tendency to… confuse sayings and mispronounce a phrase or two from time to time. And they both like to rely on the adage of, “you knew what I meant,” to which I usually call bullshit. But I sure enjoy it and I hope you did too. I have a feeling we’ll get Templeton back on this program to hopefully mix his metaphors, cause’ that is a lot of fun. Thank you for listening, please forward this episode to someone you think might like it, hug your daughter if you’ve got one and we’ll see you next time on The Modern Moron.
28 minutes | Aug 16, 2021
Ep. 99 Its Corinth Not CorNith!
Welcome to episode 99 of the Modern Moron. In this episode we welcome back the Senator not that he was gone that long. I mostly berate and harass him which is no surprise, but I really do give him a hard time, downright mean. All because he has trouble pronouncing certain words, in this case the city of Corinth. There is so much moronoscity happening on so many levels in this episode. First of all we both refer to Corinth as an island. It is not. It’s actually an isthmus, which I would absolutely love to hear the senator take a shot at that word. An isthmus is a narrow strip of land connecting two larger masses of land. Second of all the Senator thinks it’s pronounced Cor-Nith. That’s right Cor-Nith. Normally that might not be such a big deal but when you are as steeped in the Catholic faith as he is, you hear the word Corinthians quite often. St. Paul was pen pals with someone there and his letters were apparently so important that they put them in a book… it’s called the Bible. So you hear it there in addition to hearing it numerous times throughout the 70’s from Ricardo Montalbon when referring to their high quality leather. Wait a minute where did that guy come from? So, the Senator, without pause, calls this Greek isthmus Cor-Nith. Why did it come up? Because the senator wanted to impress someone, a priest no less, by telling him he had visited that island in his world travels. Now, if you’re going to talk about, or in this case boast, about your world travels or that you’re a world traveler, wouldn’t you think part of that worldliness would include pronouncing the places you travel to correctly? And to refer to them by their correct geographic term? Not if your ego is as big as the Senator’s. Then he tries the argument that, “you knew what I was talking about” as if him botching the English language is mostly about my responsibility to decipher what comes out of his mouth and not his responsibility to articulate a clear thought. You know, like your mother used to tell you to “use your words.” Like a big boy! The reason this all came up is because the two of us had just come from a funeral. A buddy of ours from high schools mother passed away. And if you’re listening to this it’s because you’re in our demographic and our demographic is starting to attend more and more funerals, preferably not as the guest of honor. However, we’re at that stage and we’re going to talk more and more about death and dying as we all approach that bucket for one final kick. Which makes me think of the expression, “there are no atheists in foxholes.” And as we get older, or certainly as I get older, I’m thinking about or trying to connect with… what? God? Jesus, Muhammed, Ginesh… The Buddha? Mortality will tend to make most of us do that. As usual, I don’t really have a point, but I thought I would take all the humorous momentum of Cor-Nith and flush it down the toilet. We begin our conversation with the Senator asking me for permission to do something, which I find to be completely out of character for the Senator, and it has to do with a wild boar’s head… yes, the kind you hunt. Also, halfway through his story he spills his cocktail and really loses it. I find it entertaining but he is really pissed off about spilling his martini. And then… a few seconds later you can hear him spill it again! So much wonderful moronic entertainment awaiting you. That you would never get, by the way, with some celebrity infested podcast or with some brainiacs on some topic from NPR. This is true entertainment from the heartland. We also talk about Apple’s possible move to monitor and scan the contents of all iphones and the right to privacy. So our Moronoscity and thank you for listening… CLOSE - So there you have it, privacy on a leash courtesy of Apple. You know our conversation went on and on covering a number of additional topics that I may or may not get to because our next episode will be our 100th and I’m not quite sure what or who will be on that show. I wonder how long it will take to even get to it? Should we try for a celebrity? Maybe a celebrity only to this close knit group of listeners? And by close knit, I mean all four of us? The suspense is palpable isn’t it? Hope you have yourself a great day, evening or week, don’t forget to forward this episode to someone who might like it, we’ll see you next time and thank you for listening...
29 minutes | Aug 8, 2021
Ep. 98 The Journalist
Welcome to another episode of the MM…Wow… long time no pod. I have not posted an episode in over a month. I hit a wall or definitely I had issues with an episode and I went into hibernation. Or I got chicken to publish it so I moved on. Maybe I’ll get back to it, maybe not. But for this episode...Going to do something a little different and that is...we’re going to try a guest who actually has some credentials. He is a journalist, a publicist and a published author and yes, you’re still listening to the Modern Moron. As a journalist he wrote for the St. Petersburg times, now known as the Tampa Bay Times, the second largest newspaper as well as a staff writer for the Washington Post. He has also been the press secretary for one of California’s Lieutenant Governors. My name is not Charlie Rose and this is not The Charlie Rose Show. If I were, I would probably be making inappropriate sexual advances to this music… Now we know why he chose that theme song. But I digress… my guest has integrity even if I do not and we talk a little about working at California’s state capital and politicians in general. You’re going to be surprised to find that most politicians have issues with their ego’s… remind you of anyone? This session was recorded in early July. And he brings up the fact that the corona virus is starting to spread in areas of the country with low vaccination rates and we’ve seen how that played out. It is also way before the second mask mandate put in effect by the Governor on July 26th. He (our guest) talks a bit about his travels in Germany just after the fall of the Berlin Wall and what his overall impression was of that time during his freelance correspondence work and for the book he would later write. Also, at one point I try to recall a saying which is, “there’s no such thing as bad publicity” however I completely botch it and make it difficult for either of us to remember. So, I’m basically letting you know in advance that I already know I’m a moron… see how woke I am? We’re jamming with a journalist on this episode of the Modern Moron and thank you for listening. CLOSE - Wowwww… what do you think of that!?! Ending on a hard line position like that? Is this what’s going to propel the Modern Moron Podcast into the upper echelons of double digit listeners? Was that powerful enough for you? Do you really agree with that and say hell yeah, get vax’d or move to the back. That’s catchy right? Or do you strongly oppose that view like this gentleman being interviewed on the streets of Alabama... Okay, thank you that was great. Our guest mentioned a book title about the closing of the American mind. The full title of the book is called “The Closing of the American Mind: How Higher Education Has Failed Democracy and Impoverished the Souls of Today's Students”... sounds relevant doesn't’ it? It was written in 1987! Okay, that’s it for now, … please forward it to someone you think might find it interesting or if you just want to annoy someone, forward it to them and tell them they get mentioned by name in the middle of the episode. We would greatly appreciate it. Thank you for listening to the Modern Moron.
30 minutes | Jul 4, 2021
Ep. 97 My College Roommate Pt. 1
Welcome to another episode of the Modern Moron and in this episode we turn the way back machine on to go all the way back to college. Specifically… actually it’s not specific at all, as my guest is my old college roommate. We reminisce about being college freshman away from home, the freedom we had and how much we would cut up and laugh like a couple of 12 years old’s having a sleepover… no offense to 12 year old’s. We talk about how I used to criticize his hygiene habits and behaviors and how much time he spent in front of the mirror. He used to sway back and forth in font of the mirror while brushing his teeth or primping in general. Why do I bring this up? Because he says that his son does the same thing! In passing he mentions that he also has a condition called Achondroplasia which affects growth of the limbs, spinal column and skull. This condition is more commonly known as dwarfism and in most cases requires multiple very invasive surgeries to cope with this condition, but fortunately his son has not, which leads to a conversation about situations in life that first appear as obstacles many times become opportunities to view the world from a broader perspective. Isn’t that nice? All from a guy who likes to sway back and forth in front of the bathroom mirror. My old roommate is very energetic, very passionate, gregarious and bombastic is the word he uses. You won’t need to strain to hear us or look at your phone to see if the volume will go up further… it’ll be fine. We start off with a short conversation that I almost left out. I was going to leave it out because it’s just too juvenile even for this show. We used to have this gibberish language we used to speak that no one understood, no one appreciated and it, to me anyway is a bit embarrassing at how juvenile it was then and obviously is now… but we still do it. It would almost be like listening to a couple of toddlers in a playpen talk to each other even though neither of them has the capability of speaking intelligently. It’s when my roommate says the gibberish word “Skurvathur”… I’m embarrassed saying it and I actually spelled it out in a text to him and he texted back with another gibberish word we used to use… a very riveting way to start a hard hitting podcast. “What podcast do you listen to? Well I listen to the true crime podcast, I listen to the conspiracy theory podcast… I listen to Joe Rogan… I listen to Pod Save America and I listen to a couple of senior citizens speak gibberish to one another. Yeah, thank you SO much for listening, but you might want to keep it under your hat if you’re at a cocktail party and the subject of podcasts comes up… say you listen to something from NPR or something on finance… makes you sound half intelligent. Also, either I curse more than I realize or my guest doesn’t curse at all, but I spent a good deal of time bleeping out my… I’m sorry I had our production staff edit out a lot of my foul language. Sounds more professional. It’s my college roommate on the Modern Moron... CLOSE - Isn’t it nice to reminisce about the old days? I only played Rugby for a year and I had totally forgotten about all those songs we used to sing after games and now that I think about it, most of those songs were EXTREMELY sexist. There were songs about Dinah and a song about a guy named “Abdul Abulbul Amir” and I don’t remember them being very complimentary. There would be a chorus, and during each chorus someone from the team would put their beer stein… or red solo cup on top of their head to indicate they were going to sing the next verse and the song would continue until no one could think of another disgusting verse. Rugby was not played in any high schools back then and I believe a lot of high schools do have Rugby programs now, but I wonder about the after game rituals. Also, it occurred to me that the only way to learn those songs was pretty much through oral tradition. There was no binder full of Rugby songs, there was no website for Rugby songs which by the way yes there is a website for Rugby songs and even recordings of drunken Rugby players singing those songs, they aren’t very audible as most of them are slurring their words but isn’t the internet… great? Or is it? I do have more from my conversation with my old college roommate and I hope our reminiscing brought back some memories of your post high school or college years. Man that was a long time ago and man do I have so much wisdom and so many opinions I constantly want to impart on whoever is within earshot throughout the day. Fortunately most of the time that only involves my poor dog. Thank you for listening… please forward this to ONE person you think might like this show and another thing about those Rugby songs?... they’re a lot more entertaining after about 3 pints. We’ll see you next time on the Modern Moron… Conditions and Diseases: Achondroplasia - Johns Hopkins Medical Dirty Rugby Song #1 - YouTube Dirty Rugby Song #2 - YouTube
41 minutes | Jun 20, 2021
Ep. 96 - I'm So Fancy I'm EXCLUSIVE
Welcome to a program where if you hear the phrase tick-tock you can rest assured we are talking about either a clock or the time of day… it’s the Modern Moron Little bit of a long episode for you and in it we spend a great deal of time talking about exclusivity. That’s a good thing right? You hear about something being exclusive that means not everyone can get it, or experience it. And not only does it mean you do get to experience it, most people do NOT get to experience it… whatever “it” is… they’re excluded. Now that I say it out loud, this podcast seems pretty exclusive because it’s basically it’s you, me and maybe one other person we don’t know. That’s pretty exclusive! We talk about exclusive brands of alcohol like George Clooney’s Tequila who started Casamigos Tequila in 2013 along with two other partners for about 1.8 million… so $600K a piece. In 2018 they sold it for $1B, that’s billion with a B, which made him the highest paid actor in 2018 even though he didn’t make film. So be looking for Senator Single Barrel Rye Whiskey coming to a… specialty liquor store? Hmm I think it’s going to be more exclusive than that. You’ll probably have to go straight to him. Next up, we talk about the latest investigation into Trump searching for people leaking information to the news media during his administration. Trump went to Apple to get phone records. The Senator is upset because he says Obama did the same thing while he was in office. Now, you know that the last thing I would ever want to do is agree blindly with the Senator. So… I did look up a couple of things and when I say I looked it up I mean barely… no, I do not read the entire article from newspapers, that’s why most decent journalists should write with the traditional inverted pyramid goddammit. Okay, the articles I’m citing are from a NYT Op Ed. Yes it’s an opinion article BUT, it’s the NY Times. Also Wired Magazine. You may be thinking, “why Wired?” And I will tell you if you’ll calm down and listen to me for a second. I chose Wired because A) I’ve heard of it, even though they are a tech magazine that focuses on technology as it effects areas of our life including politics, B) because it’s another left leaning source… left center and C) because mediabiasfactcheck.org rates them HIGH due to proper sourcing. From a 2013 Wired article - The Department of Justice secretly obtained phone records for reporters and editors who work for the Associated Press news agency, including records for the home phones and cell phones of individual journalists, according to the AP, in what the agency characterized as "serious interference with AP's constitutional rights to gather and report the news." The records, covering all of April and May 2012, were seized by the DoJ earlier that year and covered more than 20 separate phone lines. The records listed outgoing calls for both the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, as well as the general phone lines for AP bureaus in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and a main number used by AP reporters in the House of Representatives. And this is from the December 2016 OP ED in the New York Times: If Donald Trump decides as president to throw a whistle-blower in jail for trying to talk to a reporter, or gets the F.B.I. to spy on a journalist, he will have one man to thank for bequeathing him such expansive power: Barack Obama. Mr. Trump made his animus toward the news media clear during the presidential campaign, often expressing his disgust with coverage through Twitter or in diatribes at rallies. So if his campaign is any guide, Mr. Trump seems likely to enthusiastically embrace the aggressive crackdown on journalists and whistle-blowers that is an important yet little understood component of Mr. Obama’s presidential legacy. Criticism of Mr. Obama’s stance on press freedom, government transparency and secrecy is hotly disputed by the White House, but many journalism groups say the record is clear. Over the past eight years, (remember this was written in 2016) the administration has prosecuted nine cases involving whistle-blowers and leakers, compared with only three by all previous administrations combined. It has repeatedly used the Espionage Act, a relic of World War I-era red-baiting, not to prosecute spies but to go after government officials who talked to journalists. Under Mr. Obama, the Justice Department and the F.B.I. have spied on reporters by monitoring their phone records, labeled one journalist an unindicted co-conspirator in a criminal case for simply doing reporting and issued subpoenas to other reporters to try to force them to reveal their sources and testify in criminal cases. Now I don’t think this article would be allowed to go to print in the NY Times if those statements were untrue, especially citing the number of cases. Again, I’d take Obama over Trump any day of the week as a president but it’s good to point out hypocrisy when it occurs. And of course, no politician, regardless of party affiliation, wants what they consider classified information to get leaked from someone who is supposedly on their team. Okay, so then we get to my favorite part of this episode where the Senator tells me he’s going on a retreat to one of the most exclusive social clubs on the west coast. The fun part is trying to figure out WHO decided this club is so exclusive. Because when I try to search for it guess which club doesn’t show up in any top ten lists of exclusive clubs? He finally has me go to the Wikipedia page for the club he’s talking about, but you and I know that either of us can make any statement we want on a wikipedia page so apparently this club is so exclusive that nobody knows about it. Hell, my house is just as exclusive as this goddamn place. I’m the only member. How’s that for exclusive? Okay, I’ve talked to much already and the episode hasn’t even started. It’s time to get fancy and really exclusive on the Modern Moron. CLOSE - Wow, long winded. By the way the tequila from way back at the beginning of the episode isn’t Geroge Clooney Tequila, it’s Casamigos tequila as I said. George Clooney didn’t sell his name or anything, that’s just me being an idiot. That’s it, thank you for listening to this 96th episode of The Modern Moron… you know, for old people. See you next time. Geroge Clooney of George Clooney Tequila - The $1 billion sale of George Clooney's tequila company just made him 2018's highest-paid actor — here's the story of how the brand was set up by accident - Business Insider Opinion | If Donald Trump Targets Journalists, Thank Obama - NY Times Obama Administration Secretly Obtains Phone Records of AP Journalists - Wired
Terms of Service
Do Not Sell My Personal Information
© Stitcher 2022