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Welcome, welcome, welcome to armchair expert I'm DAX Shepard, I'm joined by Monica Padman. It's the end of the year. We get to do our third best of year.


It's so fun, really. What a year. Yeah. I mean, for a lot of people, it was a real shit show, a real shitty year.


But man, I had a lot of great times as 20-20 best year of our show.


Well, going through all the clips and stuff and looking at our roster from this year, I, I mean, it's easy to just be on the hamster wheel, but I just learned it's a hamster, not hamster. Right on the hamster wheel. The hamster wheel also. It's your hamstring, not your hamstring.


OK, that I knew. OK, yeah.


But it's easy to just be in the mode of working and paying attention to what's next, what's next. But when you get to look back, I was so grateful. What a wonderful year for the podcast.


Yeah. And I hope when people listen to these, maybe their own memory will take them back to like where they were at on a road while they were doing their morning walk or their jog or something fun they were doing while they heard this.


So maybe it'll trigger a lot of fond memories for everyone else. We're so grateful, of course, that all y'all make this possible for us. You're making our dreams come true. So thank you. And I hope you guys enjoy the best of twenty twenty.


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He's in chance. Let's start by saying that we are self quarantined, we're recording in Rob's garage, outhouse, lean to he's got his own little studio now at his new house. And we're in here and it's wonderful. Yes. And he has better Internet than we have at the attic.


So while we continue to interview people, which we're going to do for the people who have reached out and are worried that we will slow down in any way, we are not going to slow down. In fact, we're going to pick up the pace. We're probably going to offer some other distractions for you, some light hearted distractions. So those will all be coming.


But for now, we're going to get our arms around what we're all going through from episode to 61. All right.


Yeah, the people in the 50s wanted to go back to the 30s, the 30s want to go back to the Tanzy. Just follow it all the way down the rabbit hole. Yeah. And you're back in the Rift Valley. Exactly.


Now, I would say that there is still a lot of sense also in conservatism. I think that a good society needs both. It needs both some progressive people that push forward and also conservatives, because these experiments in building human societies, they very often fail. I think, you know, look at conservative philosophers like Edmund Burke in the 18th century observing the French Revolution. And they made some very, very good points. When you try to go all the way like building a new society from scratch, it's very often an arrogant enterprise because you think that you completely understand the world and how to build a perfect society.


And it never works. Even revolutions need to be gradual. You know, you compare, let's say, the Russian Revolution or the French Revolution, which they tried to build an entire society. Let's let's just throw away everything that was until now and start from scratch. And what you get is Stalin and the gulags, or in the case of the French Revolution, you get the guillotine and then Napoleon and the American Revolution was far more conservative and mild.


OK, let's take it slowly, step by step. Don't change everything at one time. And it had its downsides.


But also humans just don't have the ability to predict the outcome of everything they do. So when you really try to change everything at once, there is a big danger there. From episode to 55, Isabel Wilkerson. Well, yeah, and I'm going to go further. You're already at the apex of everything you could have transcended, right? So you're already representing The New York Times. I'm assuming you're dressed smartly. Yes. You're speaking in the manner that they would desire.


You know, everything's been done right. And you can't shake that. You can't transcend that.


And that's why I make a distinction between class versus caste and race. So I will say that caste is the bones, race is the skin, and class is the accents, the diction, the education, the clothing, the kind of things that we can change about ourselves in order to move up or to reposition ourselves. And so I often say to that, if you can act your way out of it, it's class. But if you cannot act your way out of it, it's caste.


Oh, interesting.


So that's the distinction. Will you repeat that? So if you can act your way out of it, it's class. If you cannot act your way out of it, it's caste. There's nothing more that I could do.


So then clearly African-Americans are most obviously the ones that can code, which you can do all that. But. Right. You couldn't have done anything there. So that would demonstrate caste. Yeah. Who else are we putting in that category? I would say females, right?


Yes, absolutely. And that's why I use the word caste to focus in on the infrastructure that is underneath all of it. Because caste is not only about race, it's about gender. It's about immigrant status. It's about the physical manifestation that is a signal to the subconscious of anyone we might meet as to where you belong, what is expected of you, where you presumably do not belong from episode seven Monacan Just Love Boys with Esther Perowne.


But when you go on a date or when you go and you just even live in a situation where suddenly somebody catches your attention, you are so busy focusing on your fears that you're having a relationship with this little thing that sits on top of your shoulder, that to be careful, which you don't know, you know, and say to this one, you've been really nice to me, protector of mine.


You've been so sweet for 32 years. You've made sure.


But, you know, I think I'm okay. I don't need you in this way. Yeah. And this one is going to convince you.


No, no, no. You need me badly. You need me.


But you don't know how dangerous and cruel the world can be. You're going to give all this power to people the moment you love, you give power to others and they can hurt you.


And this is part of love. Yes, it is. Love doesn't come without loss and doesn't come without fear, but it comes with a lot of other things, too. You know, I would want you to invite another one to sit on the other side. You need that other one that just has a dialogue here and says, would you please be quiet for a moment and just turn off this volume?


Let me even be here and enjoy the situation, see what happens. Yeah.


From episode to 58 with Matthew McConaughey. So Matthew's mom enrolled him or entered him into a like little Mr. Texas.


Oh, yeah. Oh, little. Oh, there's one in the book. He is the cutest motherfucker you've ever seen. I don't want to ruin it for you. So just tell us about Mr. Texas.


Yeah. So we got to Bandera, Texas. I'm like eight years old. Oh, my God. My vest on made out of leather vest, tassels, a cowboy hat. I go down there, Bandera, Texas, and we get up there, we do the questionnaire and we walk along and live on a horse and stuff and the lasso.


And I'm pretty good at all these things.


And, you know, when you win the trophy, there's a framed picture of me trophy and mom puts it up and the kit you on every morning, look at yourself.


And there you are, little Mr. Texas, the one and only a little Mr. Texan. And so this going on daily, weekly.


And then her introducing me. This is my son. You know, he's one little mistake. He is Mr. Texas goes on. And now I'm just like, oh, yeah, I'm in Texas. Well, this goes on for, you know, little Miss Decades.


Yeah, not here. When he was little, Mr. Texas. OK, well, I was Mr. Texas. I was a little Mr. Texas until.


Oh, I don't know.


I happened to zoom in on that trophy, name the plate on that trophy one day, just a couple of years ago. Runner up.


No, I did a runner look with the gifts she gave you.


Oh, she did. And she always to this day, I you know, I called her out on it just here recently. She's like, oh, well, you were a little Miss Texas at seventeen. Is that too much money they were able to buy? That three piece suit should form your little Miss Texas.


She still denies it from episode to sixty nine with Hillary Clinton.


I just have a quick question. Going back to transitions and you moving into the public stage. I wondered this. Since the 2016 election, like you, you know, I'm wearing my nasty woman shirt right now. Yes, Christian, me and Dax's sister Carly on Election Day. We went out. We came, we went to the polls. We brought donuts. We were so excited. And for you, like you're carrying around the weight of me, of the girl down the street, you're walking around with all of this pressure on your shoulders of all these little girls.


Like, I'm dying for this to happen.


I need this to happen. That's so much like it's no unfair of all of us. I mean, we can't help it, but it's unfair of us to be projecting all of that energy onto you.


But, you know, Monica, I felt that I mean, you have described it to a T.. I really felt the weight of history, the weight of expectation.


I mean, the you know, the thousands of, you know, girls and young women who showed up at my events and they'd be wearing the t shirts. And it just had such a a sense of possibility.


And I think you've rightly pointed out one of the most difficult transitions I ever had to go through was unexpectedly, you know, and not becoming president because I thought I was I thought I was on the path to being the president.


I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to do to, you know, deal with a lot of the serious problems we face.


And for at least two years, you know, very intensely at first and then beginning to taper off, people would come up and throw their arms around me and sob on my shoulder.


They would be with tears streaming down their face.


There were a lot of young women who came up and apologized to me because they said they didn't vote because they didn't think I needed them to vote.


I'm so happy that voting has gone up in the last two elections, particularly this one.


So I felt the burden on an almost daily basis that I feel like I let you down. I'm so sorry. I don't exactly understand what happened. And we learned more. And then and then I, you know, said, look, I got to write a book about this because I can't figure it out. And none of the quick takes on it made sense to me. And so I did.


I wrote a book called What Happened, because it was a perfect storm of all sorts of forces at work.


And thankfully, people learned, you know, about the Russians interfering. They learned about all of the disinformation on Facebook and everything that influenced voters.


They had a chance to digest that. And it didn't have as big an impact, certainly in twenty, eighteen or in this twenty twenty election. But it was hard. That was a really tough transition. You know, I love going for long walks. It's my mental health exercise.


You like to go in the woods as these women love your long walk and ask you how much we love these walks and you know, doing all those walks where I live, where I live in New York, there's lots of places to walk that are, you know, pretty nice.


And so. Oh, my gosh, like three days after the election, I was back in the woods, I.


I wasn't sure I was ever coming out and I walked on a trail past a young woman who had a baby in her backpack and had a dog on a leash, and I kind of nodded at her and she took like a step pass, you know, just started to cry. I said, you know, I've got it. I've got to talk to you. I've got to see you. We took a picture, she posted it, and then, you know, all the walking in the woods, Mame started up.


But incredibly emotional for me, too, because up until that point, I'd basically been just in my house, you know, feeling incredibly distressed.


So getting out there and beginning to go back to stores, go to the theater, go out to, you know, restaurants with my friends, I began interacting with people who kind of oddly, I think were also having a transition, if you will, transition from their hopes and expectations and the level of grief from if you talk about the stages of grief that so many people went through.


You know, I think it's one of the reasons why people are exhaling right now. You know, this election was closer than it should have been. It's hard to believe that, you know, millions more people than had voted for the first time saw what he had been doing and saying and wanted more of it. But nevertheless, you know, the election repudiated him and elected an honorable and decent man and an incredible woman to be our leaders. So I think people are kind of almost saying, I want to get back to not having to worry about politics.


I want to get back to normalcy. I want to, you know, sleep through the night. I don't want to be scrolling on Twitter seeing what terrible thing is going to happen or be sad. So a lot of transition is happening right now.


Episode one Eighty eight men's bodies with Rob McElhaney, Kumail Nanjiani. And also, what does he six or seven or something like that? I mean, like got great abs just genetically like their abs, the shape of it is just great. It's beautiful. What do the wives or that's going to be. I know Caitlin, because when I text it about the calendar, she responded and she sent me a couple of pictures and she said, here's a picture of my husband's deformed body.


Yes. So that's her response.


Yeah. She has certain trigger words like when she hears words like vascularity, she checks out Kasur. If she hears the term caloric intake, she checks out glycogen depletion.


Yeah. Yes. Jenny Craig is gay. Yeah, yeah. She'll just check out. Yeah. My wife. Same reaction completely over it. She says my body has corners now. There was a time that you were saying the nice window after you shoot for three weeks.


For me, the nice window with my wife was there like three weeks where every time she saw my body, she was surprised.


Oh, it was a great feeling because I would see her be surprised because I'll tell you, I don't wear a shirt around the house anymore.


I should. I do not. What a waste of time.


Why are you wearing one that would be like keeping a cover on the Ferrari? I'm keeping this up. When I would walk into the kitchen, I would see her like notice each time and that was a good window.


Now she's like over every aspect. She's over it with gains, caloric intake going to the gym. It is. There's an underlying threat to it.


I would say if you're a spouse of someone getting incredible shape, because one is they're spending a lot of their focus on themselves, there is obvious vanity to it. Oh, my God.


She's like, you can't, like, walk by a reflective surface anymore. That's right. So that's one issue.


And then second to that is I think they know on some level you're going to want to be appreciated for this and they're not going to give a fuck because that's not why they, like any of the three of us, though, are wise enough.


Certainly not for our looks or physique, I can promise you. So she's like, yeah, that's not what I was ever in the market for.


I would have married an athlete.


I don't know why you think I would care about. She said to me very seriously that if you had this body when we first met and hooked up, I would think something was very wrong. She was like, I would not go out with you again. Right.


Yeah, that's fair. I think that's fair. Caitlyn said to me when we were laying in bed and she and we hadn't talked in like four or five minutes, we were just like reading. She was deep in thought or I thought maybe deep in her book. And it was five or six minutes of silence.


And she just turns to me and she she says, I just want you to know I do not find this attractive, OK?


From episode to thirty eight with Ellen Pompeo, well, it's uniquely harder on females, which are a you'll never get paid.


So of course you want that trophy because you know at best someone's getting paid 60 cents on the dollar. So really the that award becomes the only thing that will be equal in that white women.


Sorry to interrupt you, but white women are getting paid 60 cents on the dollar. Black women are being paid. I don't want to misstep here and say, but I think it's 40 cents on the dollar. And Latino women are being paid less than that in our industry in shows. Yeah, yeah, yeah.


So, you know, you're uniquely penalized financially.


And then let's just be honest. And the shelf life is like you might as well be in the NFL historically it's like thirty eight s.a. And that is uniquely harsh. You know, I live with an actress, we joke regularly, we'll be like just horsing around and I'll go tick tock motherfucker.


It's true.


I said I say in the article first time I was up to renegotiate on Grey's six years after I started the show when I was thirty three. By the time my first contract came up, I was thirty nine years old and so I was had just had my first child and I was terrified. I was like, I'm super typecast on this show. The show's a monster and I'm thirty nine like I'll never work again. I better just stay here. And how, how amazing the strides that actresses have made in the past ten years.


I'm so impressed with all of these women who have gone into business, who are entrepreneurs, who are acting, producing whatever it is. There's so many actresses that have found a way to be entrepreneurs and do other things. I think it's so inspiring and I'm really proud to be amongst them.


From episode to twenty five with John Legend. And it's interesting, the physical strategy around where we put prisons because we separate them from cities, so you're distanced from your family or distance from most of the people in the state, so they never even see it. So one of my friends uses the verb we disappear people because they are basically out of sight and out of mind. And so you're able to go about your daily life in L.A. and I am, too, without even thinking about it.


Yeah. And then these small towns, their entire economy is built around the fact that a prison is there. So they have a stake in us incarcerating as many people as possible because that means jobs. That means more for their economy.


And what's interesting, in a lot of states, they get those prisoners counted toward their population so they get more federal money so they get more representation, more federal money, even though those prisoners often don't get a right to vote as part of that. And so it's a weird incentive structure for the smaller community like Lancaster or whatever these towns are in California or all around the country that housed the prisons. And there's a whole economy built around it and an incentive structure to keep it in place for jobs and to support this infrastructure in this area.


Meanwhile, the state and local governments are spending tons of money on prisons and jails. Families are being destroyed, families are being separated, and prisons are effective at reforming people now.


Now, people get out worse when you look at it as a system, right? As a system, we had this guy on. He said it's so simple and it's so accurate. Whatever result you're currently looking at is the result of a perfectly designed system to create that result. Systems work, they work. They're working at all times. And it's not broken. It's not broken.


That's the fucking result of this system. It's perfectly designed to create this outcome. And you're right, when you incentivize incarceration for a community, I'm not hating on the community that wants the money, blah, blah, but let's think of incentives that are productive and drive the narrative forward.


Yeah. And like we've been talking about with the fund, the police movement, all of these systems cost a lot of money and they are a choice. So whenever you spend it on one thing, you have a finite amount of tax money and you have to balance the budget every year if your state. So any time you're spending it on one thing, you're necessarily precluding that same money from being spent on something else. And so every time we make that choice for more policing, more jails, more prisons, it means we can't spend it on health care.


We can't spend it on schools, we can't spend it on pre-K. For all these young people, which is proven to reduce their likelihood to commit crime, increases their income prediction. You know, all of these positive outcomes come from pre-K. Are we spending the money on it? No, we can't afford it, but we can afford more police. So when people are talking about the fund, the police, what they're saying is not that there will be zero police ever.


They're saying let's spend way less money on this so we can spend it on that while prevention worth here.


From episode to 48, David. Yeah, all the all the subtlety out of that discussion that had taken place was just completely dry and it was just like, I'm wrong, Dex's wrong.


This man's wrong headline.


Yeah, because what would a lot of people admire about Trump is that he just he never says, I'm sorry, I'm wrong. So I understand that that's the part of the appeal. So it's like, yes, by painting me as some weak person who would admit I'm wrong was like it was the worst sin. Yeah.


And I think that is a big part of what we're facing is that subtlety has completely and nuance has completely gone out the window. This email says this. So this is clearly what there's no pulling apart the information in any kind of intelligent way. It's just blunt and black and white. I mean, you watch the discourse in the states at the moment and you can see how polarizing it's getting on both sides. Oh, yeah. And it's both sides just leaning into it, you know, both sides leaning into their own bullshit.


But I would argue that the bullshit on going on side is definitely, definitely maxing out at the moment.


Yeah. From episode to 36 Bushong. And I very much have always sought exoneration for being someone who cheats and partied too hard, and the idea of that really appealed to me for a big chunk of my life.


Yeah, well, look, we know that, you know, being a lush, I've been a lush myself, being a lush, you know, ultimately an unsustainable value added.


However, when we look at the kind of anti exoneration period that we're in, that's not sustainable either. Oh, I agree. You know, you're right. There's got to be, if not a celebration and embrace of the imperfections of all of us or we're just going to be an increasingly hypocritical society and and and a kind of game out hater society hating things that we ourselves possess, judging our neighbors for shit we did an hour ago.




And it's the opportunity to call somebody out somehow supersedes the ability to recognize that we see the same thing in the mirror, as you say, five minutes earlier. Yeah.


Yeah. And do you fear? I have a fear. And I think it's present in your book that the new expectation of perfection is going to limit the pool of people. We have to solve our problems to such a degree that I don't even know how we progress. Right.


Like if the barrier of entry is perfection, who's standing to to solve a problem?


Yeah, I'm what you get is a kind of order of reversal. And so you have the least responsible, the least self reflective people with the greatest amount of voice and power. And so that sets the standard a lowering of the bar of the human spirit that is creates a mass depression. And I think that that along with this covid pandemic and all that comes with it and all that will come with it, the kind of excess mortality issues, people who are afraid to go visit public health facilities, check a lump here or here who will end up getting their first diagnosis at stage four.


And instead of stage one or two, you know, we're going to be living with the effects of this. And there have been a lot of things, you know, in the kind of psychological pandemic that preceded covid that we've seen really on a kind of exponential rise in our divisiveness. And it's not just a political divisiveness. It's a devices in this of aspiration and a kind of freedom of connection, of thought that becomes all too cautious and less magical.


Things happen. From episode to 44 with Susan Burton.


When we talked the other day on our Zoom, you gave us an example of some of the day to day things like the woman who needed a cell phone. Yeah, I think it's important to hear the little steps it takes for people to get what they need. And when you told us that Chris and I were talking about it for a long time after. So can you share that story?


Yeah. So it was a woman, Spanish speaking woman. She just knows a little English. And she had dropped her cell phone in the toilet, as we all do. She was scared. She had made a mistake. And she was about a week out of prison and a friend had brought out the cell phone and she was scared to tell the friend that she had dropped the cell phone in the toilet because she thought she'd get punished and she was just really, really terrified.


So I let her know that it's OK to make a mistake and that punishment was not going to happen to her. That punishment was a behind her. What she had now was support. And I took her to the store and at the store, the guy says, well, the cheapest phone that we have is a hundred and eighty dollars. The phone that she dropped in in the toilet was three hundred and twenty nine dollars. So she reaches into her purse as she pulls out the money and she's ready to pay for a cell phone.


And I says, wait a minute, does that phone have a warranty? And the phone had a warranty, the one she dropped the way she dropped. So just those types of things happen all the time, all day long. People are overwhelmed just walking into a store.


Oh, drives me nuts. I get in these arguments with folks and it's like, well, why can't they do X, Y and Z? Why can't this person blink? And it's like, well, I'm going to guess that when your dad took you to the hardware store, you watched him interact with people and your siblings.


And if you don't, everything's new. Yeah, yeah.


Everything's new and different and really, really fast. So they have to learn the computer. They have to learn all of the gimmicks. You know, women say, oh, I just got a cruise. I'm fixing to go to girls. Where are you having to go on a cruise to get your credit card information? You know, give it to them, you know what I mean?


Yeah. And then. Yeah, and then a language barrier. I mean, if you put me in Moscow and I got to buy a phone, I went to college. I don't think I can do it, you know. Yeah, that's incredible. So, yeah, these, these tiny little life skills, you got to help people and have the patience to walk them through it and hold their hand. And sometimes that's all someone needs.


We have to care enough about the well-being of our fellow man.


And I mean, we could put it in the light, that word of patience, but we just have to care enough about one another.


Yeah. Stay tuned for more armchair experts, if you dare. We are supported by nightfall.


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It is. And neutrophil has helped me a ton.


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That's Boutcher box dotcom stacks from episode to 32 with Brad Edwards.


Yeah. Was there any moment for you were not to say that you ever lost your objectivity or came under his spell, but were there ever moments where you're like, this guy is kind of likable?


Like if I wasn't involved in any of this and I ran into him at a dinner party, that I might just think the guy was fine.


Every time, every time I ever met him, you know, there came a point in time where he's filed a lawsuit against me and then called me immediately and said, you know, look, I will drop the lawsuit against you if you'll abandon your prosecution against me. You know, that was his way of kind of extorting me or attempting to extort me into abandoning my clients. And there came a point. We were talking through lawyers where we both decided we're going to get more done if we don't have lawyers there.


So let's just start meeting in person. And we would meet at coffee shops and start talking in person, in person. So there comes a point in time where I use that as a way to feel him out and learn who he is and kind of get in his head. And at the same time, he's trying to do the same thing. He wants me off his trail and I want to figure out how to take him down. So we're we're meeting in person and jousting this kind of intellectual chess game.


And every time we were only three minutes into every conversation where I find myself laughing at his stupid jokes, I go, hey, wait, you know, he's not a bad guy. And then you go, wait. But I know all of the things that he's done. He's a terrible guy.


He's the definition of a bad guy. I would have to remind myself over and over again and go, OK, remember why you're here. Let's stick to it and try to pin him down on what his real game is, how I have you right now and listen to him try to talk his way out of it, you know, and he was a smart guy. So he would sometimes catch you in a situation where he would say, all right, Brad, you're a smart guy.


We don't have to get pinned down with all of these nuance, these laws when we're talking about I'm a billionaire who travels from Florida and the age of consent is 18. And then what? I go to New York and it's 17 and then I go to France and it's fifteen. And all of the girls are the same. And how am I supposed to keep up with all of this? You know, biology should kind of dictate things, don't you think?


From episode to twenty eight with Travis Strong. OK, so you're just an all time legend. You've also built this incredible empire, you're winning X Games, you're fucking jumping and flipping everything you could possibly do. And then you create a TV show, Nitro Circus, with a lot of the Jackass folks. And the pilot, if I recall and I told you about this, Monica, one time you almost threw up the pilot. You meet Travis on this show.


He's in an airplane up in the air and he says, hey, I'm Travis Pastrana and this is Nitro Circus. He's in board shorts and no fucking shirt and he jumps out of an airplane.


Oh, my God. And do I have that right? I mean, it was all those tests were always the best. It was actually it was a Red Bull test. You know, they said it gives you wings. I'll just check it out. OK, so I'm watching that.


And this is the first time I've now been put in the seat of, like, a mother or I'm like, no, no and no. I love Travis Pastrana. He is a motorsports phenom. I don't need him jumping out of a fucking airplane with no parachute.


He just dives out of the airplane and then he meets another dude in the air and he puts on a fucking parachute and then opens it lands safely. Yeah. And you can't practice this.


Yeah, well, so I'm not a great skydiver. Like, I got my license, which just like you beginner license. That's the here your learner's permit. I mean I get around fine. It's like one of those things you go out with the best. Yeah. I mean that's the best part about base jumping and skydiving. The second you step off the bridge or building or plane, you're going as fast as anyone else can go. So, you know, you're already you've got to figure it out from there.


But so I jumped out. I tried to get away from these guys. I was doing everything that I could to basically play tag, assuming that they were it. And I was trying to run. And they basically tackled me out of the sky and they just hooked up to the rock climbers. OK, so the guys, the our guys or girls, whoever chased after you in the air, I presume hopefully they were some of the best in the world at skydiving.


I found a military guy and I figured, you know, military, they'd never leave a man behind. So, like, I should be all right. We'll be great.


So, I mean, the words you're saying makes sense, but at the same time, they don't look like, yeah, I can jump up because the military's never left the guy behind.


Well, OK. Yeah, that is a true statement. But this isn't I don't know that it applies here.


From Episode eight of Monica Jessamy, Boys with Dan Savage. I also want to say that not everybody at the cockpit, FAA is there because it's their only option and they're sad and they really want a relationship. Some people want the cockpit and that's all they want. And that's perfectly legitimate. One of the problems in committed long term relationships is that so many people who don't want them are sort of hustled into them by sort of a cultural pressure. We've talked about that a little bit on here.


OK, good people want to be in relationships. I want to be a good person. I'm going to put myself in a relationship. A lot of people end up in relationships who really would be better at having a lot of stars, as I call them, short term relationships. We talk about letters all the time and successful letters, which means somebody died. That's our metric for success in a committed relationship. Somebody is dead. Coronavirus is going to result in a lot of successful relationships, right?


Oh, God. And what we we also need to have a language, I think, around what's a successful short term relationship, a successful relationship that both people emerged from alive at a start can be two hours after meeting up on Grindr. And if you're kind and decent and they're kind of decent, you have great sex, you created a little bit more joy in the world. Even if there's no click, it can be kind to each other. Or a successful SDR can be three months and somebody can be the kind of person who has a lifetime of successful three month stars.


One of the things that I see all the time is that when people want out of relationships, they feel like they have to blow them up. They feel like the only way they can legitimately leave a relationship is if it's high conflict and there's anger. So people will generate conflict and anger to get out or to justify getting out after three or six months all the time, rather than just being honest and parting amicably after three or six months. Because you're an A type.


And it's better for stereotypes to seek out stereotypes than to lead Elter types to believe that they might want to deltour when they know that they can't. But a lot of people out there who are types who have a kind of false consciousness about wanting to be elter people when they're not, it's just like monogamy. A lot of people out there make monogamous commitments they can't keep because they can't conceive of themselves as a good moral person, but not monogamous. Right.


So they set themselves up to believe that monogamy is for them when actually they're not for monogamy. I love that. Interesting.


From episode two thirty four with to go one day.


Should I accept the system I'm inheriting and do I want to perpetuate it or do I have questions for the overall system.


We can try and unpack that because I don't have to see our goal is for you to leave here with, with a mental diagnosis from two man professionals.


I get very disturbed by things that don't feel right and that are especially confusing to me. For example, in surgery, I became a person who really pushed back on the culture of arrogance and intimidating people. There is a difference between arrogance and self-confidence.


Oh, please tell me so I can stay on the right side of it.


You do have to make choices and you've got to forge ahead. But the ones who don't have humility that things can go wrong. Are the ones who then can't own it when things go wrong and learn from them. Right, right. And so it's not the confidence that you are perfect, which is a dangerous confidence. It's the confidence that you can handle it and that you're aiming for perfection. But, you know, you'll never completely achieve it. Right.


The best surgeons I know are ones that are able to have good judgment, make quick decisions in the face of uncertainty and are generally right and own it when they're wrong. Some of the best politicians, I feel like, are those kinds of people that, yes, they are able to recognize. Things are uncertain. You have to make a choice and then you've got to own it and live with it. Well, what's the saying?


Right. They say, like, you make the best choice with the best information available and sometimes that's insufficient.


You don't want someone dithering. Obama the night that he sent the special forces out to kill Osama bin Laden and his entire presidency is on the line. He happened to be at the White House Correspondents Dinner that night, yes, giving jokes, being as funny as any of the comedians roasting Donald Trump. But at that very night, regretable.


Probably, right. Right. Which, of course, pissed him off. Yeah. But being able to make the call, it wasn't arrogance. It was confidence. It was like I've done the best I can and then I'm going to own and live with the consequences. And I'm going to hope everybody comes with me when I then say, well, this is my choice I made. And here's here's how we deal with this consequence and where we are.


Right. I have to walk out in surgery. Look, I've got it down to like seven percent of the time. It's going to go as I hope the three percent I'm going to have made worse off.


By the way, that seems like one of the highest percentages in surgery, right? I mean, in general, there's a sliding scale right. Back operations. I don't know. They're like 50 percent effective or.


Yes, that's right. You can have their operations like colon surgery where. Twenty five percent. Well, have some kind of a complication that you have to deal with. And then there's you know, some of them are errors, some of them are not.


But I have to be able to walk in when there is something that goes wrong and, you know, not say like, well, nothing went wrong. Look, this is what happened. This is our situation. Now, here's what we can do and this is how we can manage the situation. Nothing is ever going to always go work perfectly. Yeah. And so and so you have to be able to bring people along for the ride. And that's what I felt like.


I got out of surgery, which was I was not that guy. My favorite New Yorker cartoon, which I felt like to find me, was the gravestone that said he kept his options open.


And that was me, that is. From episode to 43 with the Tom Brady. Can you remember a player that you were envious of, professional football? I mean, there's been so many over the years. I mean, if I have if I look at like some guys who physically obviously have a lot more ability, you know, they're faster, they're bigger. They can run. They can you know, I think there's some things that I've learned to do probably better over time, you know, because I've been working hard at it for a long time.


But, you know, my fifth year in the league, I was no, you know, freak of nature. Right. But I look at some guys who maybe were great physically, you know, run a four six forty. I like I'll joke all the time. I see a guy run like a four seven forty, which is pretty fast. I would say, like the average NFL quarterback probably runs, you know, a four eight four nine.


The fast guy's run like four seven to slow guys run like five flat and over. I ran a five three. I was slow.


There we go. I was the slowest person on the field I could know three hundred, 350 pound defensive linemen. So every time I got the ball in my hands like a potato, I'm like, where does I want I got to throw this thing, you know, I'm holding this thing. So, you know, I the ref was going to outrun me. Yeah, exactly.


So, you know, I'm sitting here thinking, God, if I could run a seven, football would be so easy. I mean, how he asked me if I could run away from people.


And again, that could be a limit you could have given yourself. Well, I'll just won't be that because I don't have that.


From Episode to 50 with Aly Raisman. Look at the fan comes up to me and they start telling me their story of being a survivor. I worked on this in therapy because I get triggered really easily. And sometimes, like, I'm the only person they've ever told. Like, I'll have someone in the grocery store say I'm 70 years old and I was abused, like over 50 years ago. You're the only person I've told. And I put so much pressure on myself to the point where, like, I obsessively overthink what I say to that person, because if I'm the only person they've ever told from personal experience, I understand the way in the power of when you confide in someone that you've been abused, the way that that person reacts to you, it has such a massive impact on their healing.


And so I want to make sure that I'm supporting them and being there for them. But then when it happens a couple of times a day, how can I still show them? I support them, but kindly ask them not to go into graphic detail, because when you have over five people or if I'm at an event and it's like 30 people going into graphic detail, if I do a meet and greet, how am I supposed to go through life traveling alone, being in a hotel by myself, walking outside late at night and not be afraid.


Something that's going to happen to me, like it's this paranoia. So I've worked on this strategy of just kindly being like, I support you so much. I'm still so much in my healing, so I support you. But just please don't go into graphic detail, but I'd love to talk to you about your healing, and I'd love to tell you about what's helped me like. I hope you're getting help. So a lot of people answer and be like you just seem so strong on TV.


I forget that you're still dealing with it. So it's almost the opposite. People don't feel pity with me. It's that they forget that I'm actually dealing with it when I do interviews. I haven't cried because I like have kind of put up a wall, like I have to be strong. I want people to listen to me. I want people to think that I'm intelligent and I don't want people to think I'm weak. And I've been, like, so afraid to be, like, super vulnerable in that way.


Yeah. That people forget and they're like, you just seem like it doesn't really, like, faze you. So it didn't occur to me that going into graphic detail would impact you.


So, yeah, the emotional weight of being a symbol of this movement must be humongous in that. Yeah. You're going to be asked sometimes 30 times a day to join someone emotionally, to meet them emotionally at a place that's just really taxing on anyone. Your own issues, I'm sure, are taxing enough and then you add on. So, yeah, I bet it's really, really hard to establish boundaries that are both protective of you and also generous to the people you want to help.




And it's so interesting the way that trauma works, because a lot of times not setting boundaries can be trauma. And it's also the shame of guilt, of not setting enough boundaries in my childhood and not speaking up for myself. So sometimes when I feel like somebody isn't respecting my boundaries and I feel like ninety nine percent of people are so respectful, but if there is that like anybody in life, not everybody you're going to like mesh very well with. But, you know, if I'm at an event and like somebody is really touchy with me but not meaning it and like a sexual inappropriate, it might be like an older woman that's like, oh, my God, you remind me of my granddaughter.


And they're just like touching me. And because I'm such a people pleaser and I don't want to let anyone down when they meet me, I like, you know what? I'd rather make her happy and just let her do this, that I put someone else first and then that has been so triggering for me because I'm like, well, now I feel traumatized and I feel uncomfortable because I was just standing there helpless like I felt when I was being abused.


It's like you're just there and you're so uncomfortable. It's almost like you're in shock and you don't know what to do. But I feel frozen because I don't want to upset them. I don't want to trigger them. So then I just like, set myself. I'm really working on it.


From episode to 54 with Eric Lander.


Well, and we're just learning what happens in the microbiome, like that's entirely new. Twenty five years ago, you would just think, oh, microbes in your gut, those are got to be bad. Now we're learning, oh, if you don't have the right one, you might have obesity. You don't have the right one. You might have mental health issues, you know. Yeah. So much is so unknown still.


Well, you know, science has to bring humility to things like it's amazing. We done all sorts of powerful things, read the genome, all the stuff. I love it. I'm proud of it. Yeah. You know what this generation has done. But science has to bring a lot of humility that there's tons of stuff we don't know. We are still reading this, you know, three billion year old text and we've been reading it for a decade or two where kindergarteners reading the text and we think like we understand all its subtle meanings.


So humility is got to be a part of every bit of science and how you balance amazing opportunity and the duty to serve patients and the duty to to move forward with the right kind of humility is is an important thing scientists have to hold together.


From Episode 218 with Blake Griffin.


OK, so then my last question is, so Donald Sterling, there's a new documentary coming out, right? I'm very excited to see it. Did you participate in that?


I actually didn't. They did a 30 for 30 on this whole thing. And then right after that, they were doing this. And I was like, I'm I've told my piece, you know. Yeah, yeah. By the way, I've also had to talk about it so many times before that that I was just kind of like, I don't want to do another deep in depth, like sit down for three, four hours and go over this one subject, you know what I mean?


Well, again, this would be another trigger of mine if I were black or mixed, which is OK. So there's this racist asshole.


And now I got to fuckin answer all these questions because this guy like this is my responsibility to constantly be available. And I'm doing it to you right now. But I don't you know, I don't need that. Like, I didn't sign up to have to now talk about this guy being an asshole all the time.


Yeah, it's really interesting because there's a draft lottery that happens where they find out who's picking what. So the Clippers get the first pick and then, you know, a month later is the actual draft. So during that time, they announced that they were going to take me with the first pick. And I remember my mom called me one day and she was like, you know, it's like, honey, I just was reading about the guy who owns the Clippers.


And at the time, I didn't know much about him because, like, the Clippers were never on TV, never barely in L.A. were they even on TV from Oklahoma and like.


Yeah, exactly. They were on PBS. And so I'm from Oklahoma.


So, like, you know, I heard about the Lakers and the Celtics and the big teams. So I sort of looked into it and it's like there's a lot of stuff, but like no one really seems to like say anything really quick to bring Monica up to speed, you know.


So I know the owner, the Clippers, he made a bunch of racist comments and he also bring his like his mistress into the locker room and stuff. And you do weird shit like that.


I think in this case, quickly, he made up all his money in real estate. He had so many different lawsuits surrounding racial discrimination, literally recorded saying this or that about different minority groups, also driving up prices to be able to kick them out, treating them unfairly like all these different things, right? Yeah.


So I would when I first got drafted, I had to I had to go to his house.


Oh, wow. Malibu for a white party. It was like, you know, everybody dressed in white. Oh, my God.


So I get there. He's wearing all black at his own white party. So he's wearing all black and he proceeds to parade me around the party. You hold my hand and bring me around to other people and they introduce me like this is our number one pick in all the land. And look how strong is feel his arms and.


Oh, my oh, you do stuff like that all.


So then, you know, we're playing for him. He would always do, you know, things. He would bring people in the locker room. I came. Yeah, she probably came in the locker room. There's a girl that she was she was always with. It was just known as his mistress, him and his wife, whatever. I don't know, whatever they had when he was taking you around the party and feel his muscles and all that.


In that moment, were you feeling I mean, because it's very it's very plantation owner.


He look at this thing. I own a feel strong. It's like, what was that on your mind? What was happening?


Or just feel like, oh, this guy's kind of a weirdo and I am pretty ripped, so go ahead and feel what was happening a little bit of both because like I'm just getting the league in like he's the owner of this team.


I don't know how. Obviously, I know this is not normal, but like, I don't know what I'm supposed to do.


What how much power do I have in this situation?


Yeah, I would like I would like not hold his hand as much as I possibly could, which is like, you know, me standing up like, no, you could have done more. I was like, yeah, but I wiggle the way few times.


So yeah, I don't know.


It obviously it felt weird, but I also was just like, get me out of here. So fast forward. He gets caught on tape saying to his mistress she secretly recorded, I mean he was saying a bunch of racist stuff. So then this is happening right before the playoffs. So then these tapes come out and we're about to play game three of the first round big series. And this all comes out and we're like, now what do we do?


Because, like, people knew he was racist before this.


It just brought it to light again, like he had multiple lawsuits for racial discrimination.


So now people are looking at us like, what are you guys going to do? Here's another thing I've griped about a lot.


And Monica disagrees with me, and I think I'm wrong about it. But I will say I am very sympathetic to like a black actor who just wants to be a comedian. And then the second they're famous because they're black, they also also have to be a social activist. It's just not a responsibility that a white guy has to deal with. And I think that's a little unfair. So similar to the Olympics, right.


When they wanted the black athletes to not go to the Olympics, I'm like, I mean, they already had the shittiest fucking life. And now you have to tell them not to go take the reached the pinnacle of their dream. Yeah. On top of that, I just had some. Part of that feels and then you've worked your ass off to get to the playoffs and now you have to, you know, oh, yeah, go ahead. And I'm I haven't watched the documentary.


I don't know if this is going to go against what anybody says. But like in my mind and I know and most people like we weren't going to boycott the games because we never played for him, right? Yeah. He paid us.


I wasn't like Dollis, my own romance guy, like, great. You know, like, fuck this guy. Yeah. He's paying us. He owns the team. Sure. But we're like, this isn't him, like, actually owning us. We're playing basketball. We're doing what we want to do and we're good at it. And we're in this situation, you know, we decided to do a thing where we turned our warmups inside out. We had to wear these jackets out.


So we came out to half court, four warm ups. We took our jackets off to them on the ground. And we were all just in basically blank T-shirts. They were inside out.


So gangster that's that's in that's in the commercial for that docket.


So gangster. I love it again at the time. Maybe I'm just a horrible judge of like, how big moments are at the time.


You just kind of like, all right, like we got to play this game is like the whole box thing. We're like, this is not in our box. We've worked our whole season to get to this point. And now we're going to let this asshole, like, ruin it and like, you know, take the focus away from what we're really here for when we were never playing from the first place.


And so, you know, I think we navigated it pretty well, given the circumstances and given how fast this came out on a Friday night.


Our next game was Saturday. Oh, so Friday night or maybe it came out Saturday morning. We had a team meeting Friday night. And our coaches like, hey, this is going to come out just so you guys know. And I'm pretty sure Saturday morning it all blew up on TMZ or whatever. So we quickly sort of had to decide, like what we were going to do because everybody was sort of looking to see like people thought we were going to boycott.


And I remember getting like texts from people like you guys should boycott, like you guys shouldn't play and all this stuff. And I think our coach at the time was like, turn your phone off now, because he didn't want us to deal with it. He did want us to deal with it as a team, but he just didn't want people, you know, trying to get in our ear who didn't work this whole season, who didn't put blood, sweat and literally tears into the season to be at this position to say like, oh, you guys shouldn't play, because then we're doing ourselves a disservice as well.


Yeah. So it was crazy situation.


From Episode 270 to. Now I'm working through my own stuff with you, which is there were times where I shouldn't be so in love with this girl, but yet Timothy Hutton is he's much older than me. I guess I'm fine. Was that something you were aware of? I guess that's where I'm going with all of this.


I was definitely aware of the fact that, like, I was being portrayed like mainly in kind of journalism around when the movies would come out as like this, like Lolita figure and stuff. And yeah, I've actually talked about it. I wrote a thing about it for the Women's March a few years ago about how being sexualized as a child, I think took away from my own sexuality because it made me afraid and it made me feel like the way that I could be safe was to be like I'm conservative and I'm, you know, like serious and you should respect me and I'm smart and like, don't look at me that way.


Whereas, like, you know, that age is like you do have your own sexuality and you do have your own desire and you do want to explore things and you do want to be open, but you don't feel safe necessarily when there's like older men that are like, yeah, me.


You're like, no, no, no, no, no, no.


And so I feel like you build these fortresses around you and also take on, like so many people, I think had this impression of me that I was like super serious and like prude and like the conservative as I get older and I realize I consciously cultivated that because it was ways to make me feel safe, that, oh, if someone respects you, they're not going to objectify.


Well, we interviewed the California surgeon general and she was talking about childhood ACS. Right. In a common outcome of that for women who were molested, it's pretty common for them to gain a bunch of weight to become invisible. They want to be not seen by men ever again. And so it doesn't surprise me that you had your own kind of defense against that unwanted attention. Yeah, it's doing well.


And it's a complicated thing because it's like you're told as a girl and a woman that you're supposed to want that and that it's a good thing that, like people finding you attractive are like people thinking you're sexy or people thinking you're beautiful or precocious, like these words that, you know, we use around young girls in particular.


And then it's complicated because it doesn't make you necessarily always feel good or old, always feel safe, and then it hinders your just like natural development of what you might be like because you're creating a self defensively. I'm like I be the person that is going to be like immune to any weirdness, you know, and it works out luckily. I mean, I was safe.


Stay tuned for more armchair experts if you dare.


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McDonald's serving here from Episode 176. The fact check for Claire Danes. Can we tell people that we think we might be having a baby?


Oh, sure.


I want to I don't want to start the rumor mill, but I used Monica's toilet at her new house, which is a nonfunctioning house.


And what I did is I flush the toilet and it flush properly. And I was like, oh, the water's still on. Great. Then I whizzed, OK? Yeah.


Then I hit the flusher again. Whoopsies. No water in there. No. So then I came to you.


I was like, I've peed in your commode and I got I'm going to have to bring over a five gallon bucket of water and flush this thing, you know.


Yeah, yeah. We'll get to it. And then you were there like a couple of days after and you were going to pee your pants.


Yeah. And so you peed on top of my.


I did.


I didn't want to put pee in another toilet because I would just be multiple things we had to figure out. So I peed on top of your pee and it's all still there. This is weeks ago.


Oh, jeez. And so embarrassed for us. And we think that maybe the mixture of the pee a life will grow. We don't know. We don't I don't know.


Maybe Malcolm Gladwell could weigh in on how many brothe babies historically, how many babies are.


I think this would be so exciting, though, if we went over there and we went over there with the five gallon water bucket and then we heard mom that that and there is a little yellow baby down there.


Oh, I really love it. I would say of course we would have little urine, baby.




It would probably need to, like, live in that toilet. It might need to live in that toilet. You're right. And it would be jaundice so.


Well for sure. OK, extremely OK.


From episode to sixty five with Tristan Harris.


Yeah. And my life has been largely defined by I think the impact of, you know, the Macintosh on my early childhood.


And yeah, that's a kind of an interesting place to theoretically start, which is prior to Macintosh. And again, I'm not super savvy about this, but I will say what used to be seemingly kind of a utilitarian pursuit of people who liked making simple programs on these early computers with Mac comes, in my opinion, a culture or a movement like transcends that space a little bit. Was that your experience with it? Did it feel like more of an emotional connection to that thing?


It actually did, yeah.


I didn't know any of the law behind the Macintosh. You know, who Steve Jobs was or Andy Hertzfeld or Bill Atkinson, some of these characters who, you know, invented and put all of this culture and soul into this computer. But it's funny because not even knowing that history, I felt this kind of weird, mystical, almost connection to the creativity behind it. Yes, it really was. You know, as the saying goes and as we say in the film, that the Macintosh and the computers were a bicycle for our minds, they would be giving us kind of leverage for the kind of conceptual creativity and capacity that we could have as human beings.


And that's a really optimistic view, obviously, of technology that I still believe is possible. We just went astray with these business models that kind of pulled us into this many dark ages.


Well, and then to drill down a little bit on what you just said, which I think could be useful, is, yes, the bicycle is a tool. You do a great job of describing that meaning a tool, a rake, a lawn mower. It sits in your shed until you want to use it to perform some tasks that it's going to assist you in. And that is not how we interact with these tools. Our smartphones, our computers, they are actually engaging us at all times.


Right. We didn't wake up necessarily with the game plan of like, you know, let's try to get five, six hours on that thing today. No, no. It handles that for you.


Yeah, that's exactly right. I mean, it's important to state if you go back to the Marshall McLuhan kind of theories of what is media, what is technology, and it's an extension of thinking and action. So all technologies are extending and reshaping the way we make sense of the world and the kind of actions that we might take. So a bicycle is going to change your basic sense, making a choice, making the menu of options that might occur to your mind.


Where do I want to go today or what I want to do today? Because your bicycle extends that. So it's important to say that first. However, as you said, a bicycle doesn't have an agenda about what it. Wants from you, right? Right. Well, it wants you to lubricate the chain, occasional pressure at optimum level.


I guess it's some existential level. It wants to survive, but it doesn't have any means of doing that except by being able to make you care about that. But, you know, a bicycle doesn't have an avatar voodoo doll like model of each of us that uses trillions of data points to figure out predictively, how do I get you to drive more to places like McDonalds and less to places like parks and playgrounds? Because I need to make money from you using me in a very particular way.


And that's the difference, as we say in the film, between a kind of tools based technology environment and an addiction to manipulation based technology. I mean, that's the thing that's really changed that we talk about in the social dilemma is that the business model of Facebook, YouTube, ticktock, Twitter and LinkedIn, Instagram, cetera, they all depend on us using it in very particular ways that involve hours, a day of screen time. But that's not really the core harm.


I'm sure we'll get into this more. It's really the kind of the erosion of the life support systems that make up a society that makes society work. Because we need our mental health. We need a common view of reality. We need shared facts and truth. We need to have a basic compassion for each other. And each one of those dimensions of our society are things that are not inside of the business models interests.


And that's really why we have to change the broader system from episode to twenty two with Jennifer Eberhardt. So I want to get into the story of your son because it's so profound.


I think it has to be very informative in the work you've done because you've led a lot of implicit bias or unconscious bias workshops for police departments.


And I think this experience with your son is just very profound.


So you tell us about that.


OK, so we're on an airplane and he's five. And my son, he's just so excited, right, about being on this airplane with Mommy. And he is looking all around and he is checking everybody out and he's checking everything out.


And then he sees this man and he points at him and he says, hey, that guy looks like daddy. And so I look at the guy and he doesn't look anything at all like my husband, like nothing at all, right, so good.


I start looking around the plate and I notice that this guy was the only black man on the plane.


And I thought, all right. I'm going to have to have a little talk with my son about how not all black people look alike. There's a couple whole hilarious points in that, which is your your husband is bald and this guy had really long dreadlocks.


Right. Right. Right, right, right. Right. Much different height difference. Everything. Yeah, everything. So I decided I was going to give it a shot because, you know, kids see the world in a different way from adults. And so I thought, well, maybe he's doing something right. There's some resemblance there that I can't get. And so I looked at his height and his weight and his skin color and his facial features.


And I looked at his hair and, you know, he did he had long dreadlocks, long way down his back. And my husband shaved his head. And I'm like, all right. So I turned to my son and I'm like, OK, you're going to get the top. So I'm already give him a talk about how not all black people look alike. Right. And so before I could say anything, my son, he looks up at me and he says, I hope he doesn't rob the plane.


No, I said what I said, what did you say? He says, Well, I hope that man doesn't rob the plane.


And I say, why would you say that? You know, Daddy wouldn't rob a plane? And he said, Yeah, yeah, I know. And I said, well, why would you say that? And he hit me with this really sad face. And he said. I don't know why I said that. I don't know why I was thinking that, you know, but there being this severe racial stratification that even a five year old can tell us what's supposed to happen next.


And that's I mean, what would you say you're leading causality for? That is television.


People always point to television right away, right? Oh, is the media exposure and all that. But I don't know. He's five. He actually wasn't looking at that much TV, frankly. And of course, the media that plays a role here. But I think that we're so quick to point to the media because we don't want to look at ourselves. And that part of it bothers me because they're not just picking up things from television. They are picking up all of this from the signals we we deliver to them, you know, even though we don't intend to or even when we don't intend to have another son.


When he was in the first grade, he came to me and he says to me, he said, Mommy, do you think people kind of have a different feeling about black people than they do other people? And and I said, well, you know, what do you mean? He says, I don't know. I just feel like there's something different there and how people look at black people to ask them to give me an example. And he thought about it and he said, well, remember, we were in the grocery store the other day and there was a black man who came in.


So this is a grocery store in a mostly white neighborhood, says a black man came in. He says, I noticed that people kind of stayed away from him a little bit and he was really into Star Wars. Then he was saying it was like he had a giant force field around him. And so people were like staying away. And then he said when this man got into the line, he said his was the shortest line because people weren't getting in line behind him.


And so he had picked all of this up, you know, and I'm just shopping and all, you know. And I did notice the man coming to the store, but I didn't I didn't pick any of that up. Right. Yeah. And then part of it is just I'm used to it, you know, I think white noise now, right?


It's just it's all in the background. It is.


It is. And so and then I asked them, what do you think it means? Why did they do that? And he thought about and he said, I don't know. He says, I think it's fear. And I thought, wow, yeah.


A first grader can get to that not by watching TV, but just by watching how we move through the world and how people react to us as we do.


Yeah, it's such a humongous motivator for people fear, right? I mean, it's got to be the strongest.


Episode 17 with Vivek Murthy. People don't start counting to see whether they're going to get payback for donating a meal to a family need, they step up and they serve and that's the best of humanity coming out. You're seeing that right now during the covid-19 pandemic, when doctors and nurses are putting their lives on the line, even though they don't have enough masks because they have a sworn duty to help protect other people. You're seeing neighbors chopping up meals to support other neighbors who are too old to go out because they're in a high risk group.


You're seeing humanity at its best and you saw it in 9/11 and 9/11 was extraordinary.


One of the lesser known stories of 9/11 is the boatlift story from 9/11. Do you guys. Are you familiar with the boatlift story? I'm not I don't think so. When the Twin Towers were burning down, there was a tremendous amount of smoke and ash in the air and it was hard to tell which direction to go if you were fleeing. And so some people fled north and that was actually the path of relief. But a lot of people fled south, not realizing that they were just heading towards the Hudson and that they would have no escape from there.


And as that happened, thousands and thousands of people started to build on that southernmost tip of Manhattan and they were getting more and more anxious and desperate as the smoke and fire behind them were growing. The Coast Guard recognized that this was going on. And they knew also that they didn't have enough resources in the area to be able to rescue all of them, so they did something they had never done before, which is they issued a call to all the civilian boats in the area and asked them to join on this unprecedented rescue mission.


You might think in that moment if you were sitting. On a boat in the Hudson, and you see this inferno growing in front of you, are you going to take your boat toward the inferno or are you going to head for the safety of home? Within minutes, there were scores of boats that were streaking toward Manhattan and these boats, guided by civilians, brought soot, covered passengers on board and gave them water. They ferried them to safety.


In total, they rescued nearly five hundred thousand people on that day.


And that 9/11 rescue became the largest boat rescue in Dunkirk. It's bigger than Dunkirk. Exactly right. Wow. That's what people do, because in our hearts, when the chips are down, we are guided by our human values. And when I was surgeon general, I tried to think about that as a guiding principle to how we act. We can get into debates, into political philosophy, debates about what's the appropriate role of government. And those are important debates to have.


Don't get me wrong, but I think what we have to make sure is always guiding us is that came in perspective of how do we take care of each other, recognizing that we all do truly depend on each other. How do we recognize just because we are doing well in one area, whether that's economics or our health or our children are doing well, doesn't mean that because other people aren't doing well in that area that it's all their fault.


From Episode 191 with Tom Silver, my goal is for you to look in the mirror and say, I really appreciate it, like who I am and I like the way I look.


Yeah. And it doesn't matter the way anyone else looks or they feel. It's a personal deal. It's an inside deal. If you if you appreciate the miracle of who you are and the way you look and the beauty in it. There's no one else like you. And you look in the mirror and say, I truly give myself permission to love and appreciate who I am, the way I look and the way I feel and the confidence within me that no other human being can ever take away.


And it's not for sale.


Yes, you're on to something amazing right now. And I can't believe I've never thought of it being part of this huge hurdle. Is your one in your look to be this thing that already existed. But as as he just said, you're your original thing in the thing is beautiful now. Yes. You can't point to 25 magazines where it exists and you can't point to twenty five leads of TV shows or exist. But that in no way means that this thing that's new for us isn't unbelievably beautiful.


You're just the first to show it to us. It's a Michelangelo. It's a work of art.


I'm not going to try to get you to believe you look like everyone else that's on TV and in man. Why should you? But I want you to believe that the version of you is insanely attractive and enjoy your natural beauty.


Yeah, because, bitch, it'll be gone soon enough and you're going to be looking at photos to do this.


Yeah, we are doing now you resonate that natural beauty, but you now need to know it's an inside deal that you truly feel it when you look in the mirror.


From Episode to 27 with Rob Corddry, this is the opening speech of Henry the Fifth. Oh my God.


You really want me to do this? A thousand percent. I also want to take my shorts off before you get by the way, this is so embarrassing. Email suicide.


But but I was shocked at how good you are at it. I mean, I'm not shocked. You're super talented.


OK, so the theater, you could hear a pin drop in the theater. Everyone's so excited to see the show.


The curtain comes up and a man walks out and the man is wearing a scarf of let's say I'm wearing a scarf and a suit without a tie. Perfect. Oh, for a muse of fire that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention. My kingdom for a stage princess to act and monarchs to behold the swelling seen then should the war like Harry, ascend the seat of Mars and at his heels listin like hounds should fam and sword and fire crouch for employment.


Pardon gentles all for a crooked figure may attest in little place a million. And let us on your imaginary forces work when we say there are horses. Imagine that you see them clopping their proud feet in the receiving earth. Oh. May we cram within this wooden oh, the very casks that did alight the air at Agincourt oh nhé.


And then I owe my. That was already messed up. No, no, no, that was a paraphrase, it was Henry the Monica. Can you relate to my my reaction yesterday, which is like I have no clue. One thing he said, I followed that there's horse that we have to imagine.


There's horses neigh where basically what you're saying is like, hey, we're going to act out, that there's horses, but you're not going to see this.


So imagine that when we say there's horses, you see them from episode to forty nine in the fact check for Sofia Coppola.


I could watch that. Me too. Let's do I can watch anything with Leo.


Oh my God. Oh. On a sex machine. All I can think about is his dinosaur bones.


Now I know his T-Rex skull. Yeah. I really want to see it. I want really to make a move.


And I want you to be bent over the T-Rex skull while he makes love. Can you imagine more weight? Is it?


Well, I don't think people are going to like that. Oh, why? Because of the paleontology of at all or just being bent over backwards to the T-Rex. Oh, OK. I didn't know if I had crossed the line with you about you and Leo.


No, he's in my age range under 65. Well, he's a little young for you, but. Yes, yeah. And he's going to move in and bring his T-Rex and we're going to find a way to incorporate that into my new house.


But just imagine that the lovemaking somehow takes place on the T-Rex and you're like holding on to the incisors of the T-Rex for stability.


I'm going to be nervous.


Can you imagine anything, though, more primal than holding the T-Rex incisors while coyness is happening? That's a lie.


I think I would make love to him if I could hold on to the incisors.


Maybe you guys will do it in the mouth of the T. Rex. Maybe is the mouth.


I bet it's big enough to put like a twin bed on the tongue or the tongue would be, oh, my God, you could be in like a T-Rex cave.


Oh, my God.


I'm not saying I don't believe he's listening, because if he hasn't thought of this idea, he's missing out on a great opportunity. But dibs, Leo, it only gets to be with me. That's my house with your T. Rex.


Talk about a novel experience. Oh, yeah. It's a double whammy. Very few people have been able to make love to Leo. Plus, I would argue no one's made love in the mouth of a T. Rex.


Yeah. God, we're so good at coming up with these. Should we write for softcore pornography production?


Could potentially first thing will be the butt snake. Butt snake. Yeah. Bottom snake. Oh, yeah. From episode to 52 with Bob. Take the question of George W. Bush who invaded Iraq, thinking there were weapons of mass destruction. This is 2003 before the invasion. I wrote a front page story in The Washington Post quoting a CIA source saying, we do not have a smoking gun intelligence that there is WMD in Iraq. Now, I did not realize what I had written, because if you say there's no smoking gun intelligence, that means you don't have hard intelligence.


That means you're not sure. And I should have realized what somebody was saying to me. And I failed miserably on that front. And if I would just have read and understood my own words where I was quoting somebody, I would have then converted the story in. It would have been uncertainty about WMD in Iraq before the invasion. And now would it have made in any difference? God knows. But it's a really wonderful thing to be in journalism.


And you learn and I haven't been fired yet because there is a realization there's what's called good faith, fuck up and then there's bad faith, buck up and a good faith fuckup. Is that where I didn't realize what I was being told? I didn't realize what I had written. And all the editors at The Washington Post were very smart. One of them could have come over to me and tapped me on the shoulder and say, hey, do you realize what you're saying here?


This is a gift for good faith fucka. That's a perfect term for us to use as we get into this.


From Episode 270 to Scout Kevin. Let's say at polling the food through your intestines, down to your butthole, that's not happening that for yeah, it's a vector, I think, for our digestion to know which way to move things.


So what's the remedy for that? When you're on the space station, you just poop once a month or something.


The Russians have some really great colloquial expressions and they have some space ones, too. And that's the one about like if you can't go to the bathroom in space, just eat more food.


OK, so eventually it's going to come out of one end. Is, I guess, is the method such a Russian way to look at things, get a bigger hammer. Yeah.


From Episode one six Alicia Keys.


And you added one little detail that says everything to me, which was he was early every time he was waiting for me.


I didn't have to go far for his father here.


And he was there ready because dad's are late, especially those those dads, you know, certain dads tend to be late, and that's OK. I find they come around eventually because my relationship with my father has evolved and I'm really grateful for it. And I'm glad that we've been able to find a way to really be friends, you know, because at some point I realized, OK, you don't have to be my daddy. I we can let that go.


But yeah, we could actually be friends.


We could know each other and get to know who we are as a woman and as a man and like respect that. Yeah.


I had a therapist say to me one time and I'm so grateful he said this, I was like, I'm at the point I think I might be done with this, trying to have a relationship with my dad. It just I get frustrated, I get let down, I'm disappointed, blah, blah.


He said, look, it's not about your dad. Are you the type of person that doesn't talk to their dad, like forget him. Do you think you're the type of person people would describe you as? Like, oh yeah, he doesn't talk to his dad. And I was like, fuck, I think you're right that I'm the type of person that no matter what would continue to try, I would reach out.


It would be cool. It's like I'm not I'm not harboring all of these things. Yeah. And I had I had a similar experience with somebody that shared some perspective like that to me that totally blew my mind. And it changed everything she said. Like, I'm always going to be disappointed. Like I'm always I'm disappointed. I'm going to ask him to come to the thing. He's going to say, don't come to the thing, and then he's not going to show up to the thing.


And then I tell myself, I'm not going to be disappointed because it's fine. I know he's not going to show up, but then he doesn't show up. And then I'm still disappointed and I'm kicking myself because I'm like, why you knew right away. I'm just I'm just over that. Let's just, like, forget it. And then I turned up to another level when I had kids because I was like, you know what? You're not going to do?


You're not going to do this shit to my kids because that's not happening, you know. So, yeah. So that, like, elevator. And she was like, so why do you keep asking him to do things that, you know, he's not going to do? And I was like. Oh, she was like it's like you're setting him up to disappoint you, like, you know, you have these different friends, you know, you can call this friend for when you need to vent and you can call this friend when you need to, like, be to an appointment on time.


And like, that's who you call you. That's a great you setting him up to not come through for you.


It changed every now. And I was able to look at it from that perspective. And I was like, why am I doing that? Like, I'm trying to punish him or something. And in a way, I was.


Well, and I think people do this in relationships a lot where they especially have people that have a hard time accepting that their love, they're having a hard time believing they're worthy of love. So then they start creating tests for the person that they can't pass. That was it.


And it was the so that changed so much for me. And I was able to start a relationship with him in a new way based on knowing who he is as a person and accepting who he is as a person. We do this thing where we try to make people who we want them to be, not who they actually are.


And so I was able to like look at that. And I said, you know what? I'm I stop asking him to do the thing that he's probably not that great at doing.


It's just it's just how it goes.


And I'm asking to do the thing that I notice goes well. And when I started doing that, we started to be able to connect and I felt good. And, you know, so it's so deep.


I thought in the book you did a really good job of being gracious about his position, which was he was 27. This was not a planned pregnancy. This he kind of found out when your mom had made the decision, yes, I'm going to keep this baby right. And so I think you're just you're pretty gracious about recognizing, like, oh, this wasn't his plan, per say.


So, you know, it's it's hard. And how do you who teaches you how to be a parent? At what point do you get the memo like, OK, here's all the guidelines of how you parent. Nobody knows how to do this shit. It's literally super confusing. It's scary. It's totally a whole new world.


And then the stakes are so high.


You know, it's not like you guys are married and you plan to live the rest of your life together. That's terrifying because then you're like, oh, my gosh, what do I do with that? Right.


So it's I really obviously in the beginning, I was totally, you know, pissed off and heated and all this all the shit.


And I talked about that, too, because that's fair. I had a right to feel like that.


But I also realized after a while, like the only person that's angry, heated and feeling this wrath that you swear you're slinging everywhere is you. Yeah, because he doesn't have a clue.


Did you feel like this? How does he know he's going off living his life, chillin?


I'm sitting here harboring all the anger in the end, like I'm darkening my spirit, holding on to something. But look, it's all the journey and it is hard not to say any of this is easy.


It's layered in all that. But oh, yeah. Finally getting there, you know, I feel you I feel and I'm glad that it came off gracious because, you know, that's how I feel at this time in my life for sure.


We have a saying in AA which is having resentment is like drinking poison, hoping your enemy dies.


That's exactly it. That's right. Yeah. Yeah.


Oh, you're like punishing yourself to get even with them. It's while the that might be a song.


Oh I feel like them. You don't even need to credit me. You don't even need to cry. All right.


I just credit AA from episode to fifty one with Jon Bon Jovi. Now, growing up in New Jersey, first of all, I love you on Stern, you're always the greatest interview. I think it's adorable. You guys are so close and I loved hearing him bitch about inducting you into the Hall of Fame for six months, leading up to is like every every episode. He lamented that when you would hear that would make you laugh or did you start feeling guilty?


A little of both, because I do know him so well. If you know I mean, you know that the guy that's off Mike is completely different than the one on the mike.


And the back story is and I'm sure you've heard it, but it is true. When I called him on the phone and I said, I have to come over to your house to see you today, you know, at first he thinks, are you OK? And then it was like, you're not coming to my house. And I'm like, Oh, I am coming to your house. So when are you going to get there?


Long story short, we finally negotiated the deal and he said, you have to meet me at this location and be in the back seat of my car, because when I come out, I'm going to tell the driver to keep rolling. So this was like a mob meeting.


You know, he's got his driver in a car. I got a driver and a car. I tell his driver to get out of the car and there's no R in that. Yeah, I'll get out of the car and I get in the car and then he comes in the back seat. This is real. This happened in the back.


Everything I'm telling you, you know, he closes the door in the back seat of his car and I tell him what it's all about. And I says in Ostergaard, You're my first and only choice. And he said, I've been asked a whole lot of times by a whole lot of people, but you're the only one I can't turn down. I'm in. I said thank you very much. It was an emotional little moment. I got out of the car to leave and I went home and I called my manager.


And if you know anything in the music business, Irving Azoff, you know that name is. I don't. He's a legendary legendary manager. And he says he said, yes, no problem. He said absolutely yes. He goes, did you tell him it's in Cleveland?


I go, No, no, that's it. That's what I pay you for.


And I think that's where the rubber met the road in this whole thing. Yeah, yeah, yeah. According to him that he was going to be flying to Cleveland at all.


He had to sleep in a hotel in Cleveland.


It scarred him.


But I told him, I said, Howard, you don't got to bring a passport to come to Cleveland. Right.


There's no immigration line. You'll stand in for hours.


From episode to 10 with Melissa McCarthy, Melissa McCarthy, yes, DAX Shepard, God, I love you right back at you.


But we're both from the Midwest. And I do wonder. So I think my wife in particular, she's a very good person. The best person. More good than me. Yeah.


Oh, my God. By a landslide. Yes. And I like you a lot. I like you a lot.


But sometimes I think she's so good that I'm like, in the end, are we going to find out she's super shady because it just seems too good.


I couldn't agree more. That bitch has secrets for sure, because, you know, I'm never shocked when it's the guy like, you know, like Bill Cosby, where I'm like, of course, that guy was going around telling people they can't swear doing stand up and shaming Lisa Monet for doing nudity.


Yes, that makes sense.


And the sweaters, I never trusted the sweaters. They can't be trusted.


But OK, so Christian stocks the house with very responsible cleaning and grading.


I know. I actually knew I was like, if I say pine sol, I feel like Kristen's going to going to text me and be like, you know, there's all these. I'm like, I use vinegar too. But today I just hit it hard and like, you know what? I want everybody all day to be like, God, she really clean that bathroom.


Yes, exactly. So I wanted a little proof.


Yes. I couldn't agree more person. I have this silly thing that happened where I had cut myself like in the afternoon and then I had used toilet paper to get rid of all the blood. And then I, I purposely put the toilet paper like on top of the trash cans so that when she got home she'd be like, oh my goodness, what happened to you? But then someone threw something else out in there.


And then I found myself rearranging the toilet paper so the blood would be on top just so I could get attention.


That's so great. And then just walk in limping are like holding your wrists, like, oh, this is fine.


Of course, I tried to play it off like. Yeah, like I can't believe she found that I was trying to hide it. And then I came clean.


I guess that you told her to. That's why you're that's why you're lovable. The weirdness plus the honesty is like a wonderful combo. Yes.


Scumbag. And then apologetic about it. I always feel like Ben is Christian and I'm you and we're all doing fine. But Ben's a much, much better human, a better person than I will ever be. And most people that know us as you do are like, yeah, that's that's pretty accurate. Yeah.


And I'm glad you brought it up, because I think that and I was like, you know, I don't know if I bring that up show, you know, it'll be met with open arms.


But yeah, I would say that's a really good. Yeah, we're each other.


We're each other. Why in what way is he better than you? I'd like him to prove it. He's super patient and I'm always like, hot, cold, cold.


I mean, anything I'm like that enrages register people. And he's like, well, let's figure out a way to help them.


But I've got to take seven laps around the house going, what's going to win?


Somebody has to do something. And meanwhile, by the time I'm done ranting, he's like, so I called. And if you do this, it can really help.


So I did that and I'm like, all I've been doing is outside swearing and like, he just does it and like does it better. And I'm like, oh, great. He has great intentions. A process is not always wonderful.


From episode to 59, Joseph Link-Up. We're not good at this, you know, and because we're not good at this, we need to be extra vigilant about the legal process, about evidence, about cross-examination, about all these things, like they are there for a reason because we are so fallible.


Yeah. And this is what I tell my students all the time is critical thinking if you're doing it right, should hurt. Right. Actual critical thinking should really make you uncomfortable and should make your head hurt. But it's critical thinking is making you feel good. That probably means you're doing it wrong. Right. That probably means you are just engaging in confirmation bias and you were just ignoring anyone who disagrees with you and then patting yourself on the back for, you know, seeing through the fake news.


You're so right to be presented with proof that confirms what you already thought is not critical thinking. Finding out things are counterintuitive and completely opposite of what you assumed is that's a great way to approach it, is that it probably feels uncomfortable.


Yeah, because I think all the time people are really engaging in something like anti intellectualism. And they said, well, what is Foushee know about disease, really? And like I'm a critical thinker. I ignore Dr. Foushee about coronavirus. Yeah, yeah. It can feel like critical thinking, but it isn't.


Episode two of two with Rob Lowe. You guys, what?


You shot that in Arkansas, right? Oklahoma. Oh, Oklahoma. Tulsa.


One of my favorite parts of your story is getting to the hotel, checking in, learning that Francis, in his wisdom, has given the sociopath, the actors playing the sociopath.


They're in better rooms and they have more per diem. Totally. And when you're checking in, you're checking in with the young Tom Cruise. And you the room is not to his liking. Is that is that how the story goes? Yes.


That part of it was when we went to New York, all the L.A. people survive the L.A. auditions and then had the handpicked people had to go to New York to face the New York version. And so it was me and Tom Cruise and Amelio and C. Thomas Howell.


And we got first time every day at the Plaza Hotel. And we check in and Tom finds out that we're sharing a room, OK, that's that.


And she just goes ballistic.


And you know what did to me and what's great about the story is there's certain people who have always been who they are and that element of them has power them to where they are today. And the rest is history.


And the notion that a eighteen year old actor with a walk on part in endless love and like a seventh lead and taps.




Could have that kind of like wherewithal. Yeah, I know. I remember going, wow, this guy is the real deal.


I mean it made me laugh. It was gnarly. But at the end of it you can argue with the results. He's had his eye on the ball since day one.


That's what I liked about it too. It's like no one knocks on anyone's door and says, hey, you want to fucking be in twelve Mission Impossibles. That's how it works. Like those people, they're that way and they make it happen.


I thought there was something oddly interesting about that.


I've gone down the rabbit hole recently of watching these YouTube behind the scenes of Mission Impossible, all the stunts that Tom's doing.


And Tom and I and it took me back, man, to being in the Tulsa gymnasium where we had to learn to do back flips for whatever reason.


Frances had it in his head that he wanted us to do back in France, had a lot of ideas that I don't know what was going on.


But, you know, you ever tried to back up. It's really scary. Like you think, oh, you fall and break your neck. It's not easy.


I hold people who can do back flips on the same level as Rhodes Scholars. I literally I think it's the most fantastic physical feat.


Someone can do it and it's hard as fuck to learn. And Tom was relentlessly competitive and he ended up being the only one who can do a backflip. It is in the movie The Outsiders for oh, I remember it.


He runs out of the house and does a backflip for no reason just to do it.


Yeah, but that's what people who do backflips, that is what they do. They are for no reason. Yes.


Our friend Ryan Hansen does them every couple hours. It's a thing.


Episode two thirteen. The fact check for Bradley Whitford. That is really, really good.


You're about to tell me something about Hudson did. Yeah, we started this. I was saying Hudson hasn't had a good. Well, there's as in Thursday's episode, we noted there are so many videos, there are so many things circulating. There's a. Two things to watch, and no one can expect everyone to, like, watch all the things but hosen, Manaj posted Nickie's brother no posting a kind of like short a kind of episode, essentially.


And it was speaking, like very directly to the Indian American community about getting involved and acting and not just like looking at it from afar because we're benefiting from civil rights, we are benefiting in the Immigration Act was like piggybacked on the civil rights movement.


You know, there's some obligation.


Yeah, there's an obligation.


I mean, I've been thinking about this for days and a few people have asked my thoughts on all of this because I said it on here a hundred times that I just wanted to be white. I always wanted to be white. And that's true. That's a part of my story. I did. I wanted that. And I did everything in my power to, like, strip away my otherness, my Indian ness, all of it, so that I could blend in as much as possible, which is, I think, a human thing to do.


But I've always looked at it in like a it was a defense mechanism that I feel like I created or something like that. I was unique and like figuring out how to how to, like, put this otherness aside. And I haven't I've never really thought to examine it from a little bit more of a bird's eye view, which is like, why did I feel like I had to do that?




And it's part of this whole conversation we're having.


You know, and I also blame myself because, you know, sometimes being you will have these debates or me and Eric or have it was having a debate yesterday and like I'll have like, quote, debates. And they're like intellectual debates about these topics. And they affect me a lot more than if we had an intellectual debate on, you know, on like Chris sleeping with your sister on vacation.


Yeah. Moral dumbfounding. Yes.


Like and for a while I was like, why am I feeling this so much? Like I couldn't even recognize why I felt emotionally tied in a deeper way. And at one point I was like. Oh, yeah, because I am a person of color, and often in these conversations, in these debates, I'm the only person of color and that is something I did like I created that I created this system where I've basically. You didn't go to babysit Will Smith's kids.


I'm not regretful. I love the way my life is turned out. And just I just I just started thinking, like, oh, every decision I've made since I was like five has been just surround yourself with as many white people as possible and blend into their surroundings and their situation and be like them. Uh huh.


And now I'm expecting you guys to defer to me because I am the only one who has experienced what it feels like to be judged based on the color of your skin.


And I'm expecting other people to, like, defer and not have a debate about it and just be like, OK, sure. But how can I expect that if all I've done is tell you I'm white, I'm white, I'm white, I'm white? Like, why would anyone take me seriously? Well, all I know I think so.


That certainly could be part of it. But I also think and this is a part that is always hard to to reconcile, which is nobody on any topic wants to be in a conversation where they're not allowed to have an opinion about it. It's like, well, that's just being taught. So I might search out going to class or I might search out going somewhere where I'm going to switch into I'm just absorbing information. But any backyard conversation, no one's entering it with the thought, OK, I'm going to enter this conversation and I'll have nothing to say.


So like, you're right, I cannot I cannot relate to your experience. I haven't had that experience.


And that's dead true from episode two hundred plus Sheryl Crow. So in high school, you were popular, you're a track star, you won a beauty pageant, did you feel those things like on paper you could acknowledge like, oh, if I look on the paper and I was on track and I was in honor society, it seems like you did pretty well in high school. Did it feel that way?


I mean, I felt like high school was obviously had no reference, but for me it was really awkward. I mean, I was a super skinny girl and I had the relationship to being loved with doing good, doing well, being the best.


Aha. Very female of you. Very female. Yeah. And not disappointing my parents, you know, working hard. The Sting guy was a huge motivator for me.


So ever since any disappointment on my parents, it was just like, you know, so I think that it took me really to be perfectly honest, until I got diagnosed with breast cancer to figure out that love is not something that you tap dance to get. And that was my relationship with my work, my relationship in the universe. I picked people that demanded that of me. I mean, I've picked some very high achieving men.


So, I mean, not to make you my therapist, but no, I would love to be your therapist.


I like to continue this weekly. You'll love my rates. They're very competitive.


It's too bad we aren't in the attic because if you were on the couch, you really, really feel like it was this would be like a four hour lesson cross, maybe some yelling, beating a pillow.


I think I did the really hard stuff after I went through the whole cancer thing. I mean, I think I've done bits and pieces over the years, but nothing like that. And I really dug down.


Do you think you could articulate what about that moment caused you to question some of these things?


Well, I had a couple of instrumental people that just seemed to say something that resonated at the moment that I could get it. For years I've been studying meditation. I would do it religiously, and then I would stop doing it for a couple of years, and then I would change the kind of meditation. It was just kind of like our approach to everything. And I started seeing this great healer in New York City when I was living there. He would not say he was psychic, but he was definitely into it.


And he is like, look, everybody has the ability to be intuitive. It's just it really depends on how much you you want to know. And that's what keeps you from knowing.


He said a couple of things that resonated with me. And then one of them was that, you know, until you can put yourself first in your life, you will always be at the bottom. And I think that was where I had gotten in fact, I think I had really mastered, even in relationship picking someone that could really manifest that with me, of making me seriously the bottom of the heap. And the other thing is that awakening emotion is the gateway to awakening.


So if you're somebody like me who's always been and this is typical of Westerners, anyway, you know, you fall down as a kid, you're not hurt. Just don't think about it. Or, you know, somebody breaks up with you. Just try to stay busy. Don't dwell in it. Everything is about pushing it down, pushing it down, not dealing with it. And that just registers itself in your somewhere in your psyche.


Have you read body keeps the score? Yes.


And I believe that there are several really great books that kind of fortify that notion from episode to thirty seven with Bill Gates. Oh, yeah, your ability to, you know, take on a completely new discipline, economics or biology or health or, you know, all these things, are there specific disciplines that have been hard for you? Well, I have this mindset that I'm still a student, and many people, as they become adults, leave that mindset.


I also for any subject I study, I know somebody who knows the subject super well. So I have a lifeline. You know, like when I'm studying macroeconomics, you know, I can say to Warren Buffet or Ray Dalio, God unconfused me here. So I know I'm not going to get stuck. And that helps you be kind of brave of pushing ahead. I mean, macroeconomics, that's a complicated one. You know, quantum computing, there's things that are on the edge where you've got to say, do I really have the time to figure it out or not?


Now, medicine has become this thing that I, I get a kick out of because there's all these diseases our foundation works on. So I've been rewarded for putting the time in and eventually it all makes sense. You have to be willing to be confused. Most adults, the minute they start getting confused, they're like, oh, this isn't for me, I'm not good at this to kind of have to feel good about, wow, I've just jumped in here and I am so confused and actually pursue the things that don't fit until they really do.


That's great advice.


From our bonus episode, day seven. I feel shady, but I don't feel like this is a problem. I didn't desire more when the thing was over. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. So this escalates to I have a ton of injuries.


I've had seven surgeries from shit. I go ride a lot.


Yeah. And after I ride sometimes on the track, I feel I'm entitled to take two Vicodin at the end of the day because I am in pain. That, again, doesn't feel that crazy.


And then this last go around of the hand than the shoulder starting like, I don't know, six months ago or whatever it was.


I'm getting shadier and shadier and I've not ever yet bought them.


Mm hmm. And then I do. Yeah.


And so, yeah. And for the last eight weeks maybe I don't really know.


You would know better than I would. I'm on them all all day and I'm allowed to be on them at some dosage because I have a prescription and then I'm also augmenting that and then all the prescriptions run out.


And I'm now just taking 30 ML boxes that I've bought at whenever I decide I can do.


And again, in my addict brain, I'm like, I don't take them after four so I can sleep. I'm taking stool softener so I'm not constipated. I'm doing all the dishes and I'm being a dad and I'm interviewing people. And the interviews seem to be going pretty well and it's feeling very manageable. And I'm thinking this is very manageable.


And then primarily you start saying, what are you on or why are you different or what's happening? And I start lying to you pretty regularly and I hate it.


And I'm lying to other people now and I know I have to quit, but my tolerance is going up so quickly that I'm now in a situation where I'm taking, you know, eight, 30 hours a day. And I know that's an amount that's going to result in a pretty bad withdrawal.


And I start getting really scared and I'm starting to feel really lonely. And I just have this enormous secret and I create a schedule.


You try to handle it yourself. I try to handle it myself and I come up with a schedule that I'm going to take, you know, eight then the next twenty seven and twenty six and blah, blah, blah. And then I can be done to a half an hour. Well, day one, when I'm supposed to step down, I'm like, oh, I wasn't anticipating that this was already going to feel bad after just one less. So I don't step down the first day and then I don't step down the second day.


And now I'm really panicking because I don't have many left and I know it's getting worse and I now start getting pretty visibly detoxes in withdrawal. And I lie and say I'm having an arthritis flare up. And then 10, maybe 11, 12 days ago, yeah, something like that, you and I are driving in the car. And I'm now on my, like, fourth lie to you of the day, and I just can't I can't do it.


I can't I just I'm gaslighting you and I know I am.


And I'm making you feel crazy and I'm making Kristen feel crazy and.


So I say to you in the car, why? Crying a little bit and I say, I have something to tell you, but I want to tell you and Kristen same time.


So we go in the gym and then I tell you guys everything. Yeah. And I give you the remaining stuff I have and I say, please help me because I'm not doing this well. Yep. And now I don't really know what to do. I'm like I've told you guys I apologize for all the gaslighting I've been doing and now I have this whole AA situation in my mind, more importantly, my ego in my 16 year, 16 years, 16 years.


Compounded by the fact that, like it's in the news that I have 16 years, I know the public element makes this so much harder than it is for another person, which is why I'm extra proud, by the way, I.


I said. I don't think you need to start over. I think it's fine.


I think we get through this and let's also say why? Because I think it's relevant. My fear was that if I have one day. Yeah, I'm going to drink. Yeah. And I'm going to do Coke.


So I haven't drank a beer in 16 years and I haven't snorted a line in 16 years. And if I have one day then I might as well fucking have what I really want and then start over in.


My fear of that is I know if I do that. It may take me three years to get that back in the cage and I may die, I just know what I'm like on those two things.


And so I'm I and again, it's very hard for me to know what part of this is like my addiction and what great stories I tell myself of reasons why I can't just be fucking humble and say I failed. I think I have a very legitimate fear that I would drink. And also, I think my addiction smart enough to say, you can't do that or you'll drink.


So what I end up doing is going to a meeting after I tell you and Kristen and I kind of I talk about the thoughts I had, which is, wow, that stuff's confusing because you're kind of functional and it doesn't feel powerless and it doesn't feel unmanageable.


And so, like, I kind of just crack that door, the guys there aren't necessarily thinking anything, and then the next night I go to a much smaller meeting with some really good friends of mine. And I copped to a lot of it. Yeah, I basically copped to getting a couple prescriptions that Chris didn't know about, which again, is not the full story. Right.


And then I Saturday I call. My best friend, someone who I look up to so much, who's much older than me and has everything I want as a person and two beautiful daughters, and he's just the most amazing man in the world. And I talked to him and I tell him everything.


Yeah. And he says, you know, you're your number one character defect is your arrogance, you think you're so much smarter than everybody.


And he said, and I know it because I suffer from the same one, which is true, I never thought I'm not an addict, but I thought I'm a smart enough addict to do this and be smarter than it and come up with the bullet proof game plan.


And he said, you know, it's your number one character defect in that unfortunately, I know the antidote to it, which is humility. And there would be nothing more humbling for you than to tell everyone in our meeting. And then ultimately tell everyone, period. And that was terrifying. That was so terrifying and yet. I could not deny that was the real antidote. Yeah, so then I am living in pretty big fear from Saturday til Tuesday.


Also, I'm stepping down and I'm really very physically ill.


Yeah, yeah, yes.


I'm like sweating bullets. I'm jerky. I my back kills. It's just it's it's terrible. I've never detox from opiates.


And I, I, I have so much compassion for these junkies who have like fucking cycled through this 20, 30 times. It's, it's. Yeah. I don't know also.


You just had your sobriety birthday. Yes. And Oh yes. So let me add that. Thank you. Yeah.


So my older friend who I worship, one of his first questions was how to feel taken that 16 year cake at the meeting where everyone was being so kind to you and saying how much they admire you.


And I said it was the worst hour of my life.


You were anywhere on them? Oh, yeah. I was high at the meeting having people tell me that they admire my sobriety.


And I said it was the worst thing in the world. But my choices in my mind at that time were don't go to the meeting on my 16th birthday, which would have been crazy, the biggest red flag in the world.


And my secret would be out. And I'm dead. And I I'm really at that point thinking like this is my life on the line is like the idea that I would have to quit these things tomorrow morning.


It's just the irony, right?


Because your life is on the line in the opposite way. In the opposite way. Yeah. But I have convinced myself at that point, again, stupidly and in wrongly, that the love I've experienced in that room for the last 17 years has been conditional. They love me because I'm sober and I really convince myself of that.


Yeah, you you have an M.O. of that or you think people love you because they love you, because you're a good driver.


I love you because of this and that. There's just people just love you. You have to be able to just put a period at the end of that.


It's very hard. Don't do you don't you think you have that? I think everyone does. But when you're on the other side of it, you know, that's just so not true. You're right. Yeah, you're right.


And then find yourself well and then that. So so I had great fear of going to the meeting on Tuesday and it timed up kind of perfectly where I had been off of opiates for a full twenty four hours and I had taken Xanax the night before to sleep because I couldn't sleep.


So Tuesday really was day one. Yeah. And then so I went to this meeting and I mean I've known the men in this meeting for a seventeen and a half years because I had many attempts before I got, you know, going.


And I told my whole story and I told it honestly. And I went first and I was crying.


And it turned into the most incredible, like ninety minutes of ever experience where there was just so much love and there was so much understanding and kindness and unconditional love.


And it's the only. There's probably been many others, but it's the only experience I can remember having that was just grace, the definition of grace, and it was very emotional and it was a really, really surreal kind of experience.


And when it was over, I actually mentally, for the first time in a very long time, felt optimistic because for the last while, a long time, I've known intellectually that things are going to get worse, that each.


Encounter with it has gotten more shady and more dangerous, and I recognize that the next go around would be, oh, I can't get pills, let's snort heroin in, you know, and I've had a lot of friends that I've watched go through this whole cycle.


And I finally have the humility to say I will not be any different, I won't be special, I won't be smarter. I will be exactly like everyone else. I mean, Philip Seymour Hoffman, who I just adored and idolized, he had 20 some years. And I think he he had a very similar kind of experience that ended in death. And so I'm not smarter than Philip Seymour Hoffman. I'm not more special. I'm not I'm not anything more than him.


So embarrassed by the thing. I'm not as much now going through it as I thought I would be. But I was I was very embarrassed by the whole thing. You know, I had really started. Yeah, my my ego was like, oh, I've got this under control, and you have to admit I don't have control, which is the thing I desire the most. And to openly say that I have lost complete control. Yeah. Is hard for me.


I think everyone hearing this is going to learn something new about you and maybe themselves and feel like everyone is going through a hard time.


Everyone everyone is the I guess the only thing I would hope people would hear is that at least in my case, the outcome wasn't anything like I feared it would be. And the secrets are so much more painful than whatever the fallout from owning my secrets was. Yeah, I'm just really, really grateful that you guys, you know, we're understanding and and didn't feel as betrayed as you should, you know.


No, but that's the other thing. I mean, I'm not letting you off the hook or anything at all, but it is a disease. It's a real disease.


I when you and I think we've talked about this before, but when you had surgery, this is maybe a couple of years ago and I don't know why Christian wasn't there something.


So I was in charge of administering your pills and we were just in the middle of conversation. Yeah. Normal, like totally like this. And and then you'd just be like it's too like in the middle of the conversation, it's two p.m..


Like, without looking at my watch. Yeah. You just knew your brain was always counting down the minutes until you could have it.


And that's the part too. I know. I want to be honest about which is the lie I was telling myself was. I'm pulling this off and this isn't powerless and it's not unmanageable because, look, I'm interviewing people and I'm going to work and I'm doing all this stuff.


But the truth is, while I'm interviewing someone, I'm almost having this out of body experience.


I'm like, oh, good, this is working. This will end in an hour.


I'm going to go pee. I have two pills in my pocket. I'm going to try to take one while I'm peeing. That way, Monica won't know I took a pill. Oh, my God. I think a pill fell out in the La-Z-Boy. All I'm thinking about is that there's a pill in the lazy boy and you're going to see it. But I'm still.


So that's what's fucked up is that, yeah, you're my real life gets put to my subconscious. My subconscious is now just operating whatever skill set I have.


But my real thoughts are all day long. When do I have another pill? I can't have too many. I got to stop it for what's already four.


I can't you know, really all I'm thinking about is that and I'm not actually present even though there is the facade of being present. Yeah, it's very grody that I can do that again.


When I saw that, like, you know, we've talked about addiction so much and I hear all the stories.


But when I was administering the pills was the first time, I really was like, oh, he has no control over this.


I don't know.


It just really opened my eyes to it in a new way. Like intellectually I can understand it, but I felt like I could understand it emotionally for the first time of. Your lack of control over it, and so I know it's like this is a disease, I really get that now and from episode to 19 with Jeff Sachs.


So in nineteen seventy six, after my first foray into trying to understand the world by visiting East Berlin, I went to Sweden, to Stockholm and Stockholm is a great place, an amazing, sparkling, you know, really special place. But they have what became famously called the middle way between capitalism and communism and the term that they have used for it. And by that point, it was basically a half century old is social democracy. And the main party that kept power for most of the time was the Social Democratic Party.


So I got there in 76 and whoa, that's interesting. OK, I've seen one. I've seen the other. I spent four years in college understanding this debate. But this is really something this is quite interesting. So I became a social Democrat in nineteen seventy six and I pretty much held that view all the way since then. And the idea of social democracy is it's a market economy, it's mainly private companies, but it's decency. You know, everybody gets a chance and everybody gets health care, everybody gets education and so on.


Really quick, can I just ask so that you're following along in my writing to say that in that paradigm you're you're basically circling some industries that you've decided shouldn't be for profit?


Well, for example, health care, you say that is a public service. That is what in economics we call it a merit. Good meaning everyone should have it. If you're poor or you're rich, you got it. It's part of your human rights.


So we have one thing in this country, which is the fire department doesn't matter if you're dead ass broke, your house is on fire. You call. We've decided everyone should have access to people putting their house out. That's correct.


And we have some in the health side. We have Medicare for everybody over sixty five and so forth. But in the social democracies. And they became strongest in northern Europe, especially Scandinavia, which is three countries, Sweden, Denmark and Norway. They went a long way to pay a lot of taxes. And then you got a lot of public services and the public services you get start from family leave time that both the mom and the dad get up to a year of paid leave and then guaranteed child care and then quality education.


And everybody gets health care and everybody gets basically free or very low cost, higher education if you qualify to either get into vocational or university system and so on. So their ideas pay a lot of tax and get a lot of benefits. And the society is not completely equal. And there are some billionaires and they're millionaires, but it's definitely much more equal and much more egalitarian in the ethic than in America.


I have a quick question. Are there any examples of social democracies where it's as diverse as it is in the United States?


Great question, because I can see a lot of people going, yeah, that would work in Scandinavia. You have this homogenous population. They they have good natural resources. They're set up to kind of win.


There's less maybe underlying social issues. Yeah. So it is really right in history that that kind of social homogeneity. Everybody speaks one language, same religion. Basically, they were all farmers. They weren't really set up to win. Interestingly, they were pretty late developers. They were pretty poor until the end of the 19th century. And actually the way social democracy emerged was after three decades of a lot of labor strikes, general strikes, strife, unhappiness, it was not a happy place.


But then they figured out we want social peace because we really are in this together. In Sweden, they made an agreement in nineteen thirty seven famous agreement to make social peace. And that's what social democracy really took hold. So it's not that it was fated to be the case. They had to invent it. But what is true is it came more naturally. You know, they felt we're all in this together. America is so divided. The truth is, it is I think our greatest strength is our diversity.


It's what makes America really special. It's what has allowed America to attract the greatest talent in the world. And people coming poor but with phenomenal talents or people coming like the great scientists that were the refugees from Hitler in the thirties that helped make America so dominant in science and technology afterwards. But it's also, you know, where our weak spot, because this is a country that was founded on slavery, founded on genocide of native populations, and there's a deep, deep, deep streak of cruelty in American history, as well as this incredible glory and achievement that I think diversity is our greatest calling card.


But when you look at it, it's absolutely correct that that diversity means we don't have the feeling that we're all in this together, much in group out group within the US.


Exactly. But you know, the problem and what I say is an economist is, come on, even if you're thinking in those ways, let me explain to you how it works so well for everybody to have that common system. So I'm constantly as well that Sweden that can't apply. And by the way, when you do the work that I do, which is seeing that something works and then trying to apply it somewhere else, the first line for anything and everything is, well, that won't work here.


Yeah. And the truth is, a lot can work here and a lot of things can really be learned, but it doesn't come naturally. And in our country, the you're in it on your own approach.