Editor's Note: This transcript was automatically transcribed, so mistakes are inevitable. You can contribute by proofreading the transcript or highlighting the mistakes. Sign up to be amongst the first contributors.
No, no, no, no, no, no, no, don't press record, whatever you do, trying to steer me wrong on my own hit show.
This is Don't Ask BTIG, I'm Tig Notaro, and here you are asking. We don't know what it is like. Here to help me with my very first episode ever offering advice is my closest friend in the entire world, Will Ferrell. Dear, dear friends, did you know that you held that title?
I had heard from a number of people around town. They were like, do you know that comedian Tig Notaro? And I'm like, Yeah, sure.
It's like, you know, she refers to you as her best friend in the whole world.
And I would say, Oh, that's funny.
It's like, no, no, it's a serious thing. She literally says, you know, Will Ferrell is my best friend.
It was my plan because I knew it would make you feel like you had to do the show. Yeah, well, it worked.
Now, Will, do you have any advice for me as the host of this podcast, this brand new podcast, or just even life advice in general as host of a of a podcast?
I mean, always check your equipment. Mm hmm. Sure. Right. Right. I mean, that's a given. You want to make sure you're recording.
Yeah. You know, the basics and like life advice.
Well, and it's kind of driving me a little crazy right now because I can't do it. But go to the dentist. Go to the dentist. They recommend once every six months or so, twice a year.
Right. OK, but I actually go three times a year.
I go every four months and also floss. I do floss. Yeah, you can really it just better for gum, health and things like that. I also am paid one hundred thousand dollars a year by the American Dental Association to.
Is that where you get all your money?
That's that's what I pretty much live.
You're living off of that because I've blown all the movie money like 10 times over. So yeah. So without the a.D.A I wouldn't have a roof over my head.
Well, thank you for that. That advice. So so you're saying as far as advice podcasts, I should record them and then general life advice, go to the dentist three times a year and floss twice a day. OK. Yeah. All right. Yeah. Well thank you. Do you like hearing people give advice or do you like giving advice or.
I usually don't feel like I have great advice to give, but no, I'm, I love hearing advice. I do know I think it's a good thing.
Do you find yourself do you give unsolicited advice?
No, no. I did one time in my mid 20s and I really took a stranger to to a good friend of mine, OK?
And I really offended her. It was about somebody she was dating. And I, I, I think it wasn't my place and I think I also was twenty five and not editing myself well and, and yeah I think we maybe didn't talk for like five years.
Whoa. I, yeah. I think I just didn't handle things well.
So that's, I mean you learn from that and you're like yeah. Yeah. And then you did then you start an advice podcast. But I do, I love giving genuine advice that could I love helping people. I feel like I have a really wonderful life. And if anything I've been through can be of help to somebody, I really want to help a little bit. And I also love nonsense.
So I like to throw that into yeah, so anyway, that's why I'm here, in case you're like, wow, I feel like I feel like the advice, another piece of advice I would I would give, but I don't know how to do it is learn basic mechanics on your car.
Really, can you do anything basic on a car? Well, now they've become so complicated, right?
Unless it's like a Volkswagen Bug.
But I would I actually did I would change the oil on my bug and I learned how to change the tire. Oh, you did. That's pretty good. You do drive a bug. Not anymore. We're not be amazing. If Will Ferrell I still had my 1969.
No, what would be amazing is if you drove one of the newer Volkswagen bugs and you put one of those flowers in the little flower thing. And that's what your big sunflower.
Yeah, well, yeah. Oh, my gosh. I didn't realize how much I wanted you in a bug in a brand new Volkswagen bug with the flower and the holder.
Yes. And so proud of it, too.
Always showing people that are always when you call up BiPAP. Yeah, that's a hey, are you known for your sound effects? I yeah, I, I started as a Foley artist, you know that, though I do know that, um, the hell's going on here.
Oh, is that moving around in a bathtub? No, no, this is walking through a forest on a bed of leaves. Do you want to hear my sound effect that I'm very well known for?
Please. A clown horn, correct? Correct. Walking through the forest, honking a clown with a clown horn. Yep, done. Well, before we get into the questions, I'm curious if there is a time in your life that really sticks out where you felt like you needed advice the most.
Probably one of the bigger. Yeah, one of the bigger moments was deciding because I had gone to college, I had, you know, studied journalism, sports journalism. That's what I thought I was going to do. That was going to be kind of the real job. And my brain was to go be a sportscaster.
And then I thought, you know what, I'm going to I'm going to try to go for this comedy thing.
You know, I'd been performing at the Groundlings, which is a sketch and improv theater company in Los Angeles.
And it was going well.
And and and I had lunch with my father and I was like, hey, I think I'm going to give this a shot. I don't know what that means exactly. And he said, I go, What? What's your advice? He's like he's like, you know what? If it was based solely on talent, I wouldn't worry about you. But it's there's just a lot of luck. And so just give it a period of time where you want to try it, and if you don't get to the point where you want to be, it's OK to quit and just try something else.
And which I think he had he had had the same experience as a struggling musician where he was just getting tired and exasperated of trying to make ends meet. And he really wanted to just hang it up. And but there was nothing else he was trained to do or he probably felt too scared to go back to school or whatever you want to call it.
So he was just stuck playing music.
And so he was like, so just know that it's so it was like the anti pep talk.
Pep talk. Yeah. It was just like just no, it's really hard.
And and for whatever reason, I didn't take that as like, come on, you got to have my back. I was just like, yeah, yeah, you're right.
So he basically gave me permission to fail. And that was like the greatest advice of all.
Well, it sounds like it was also grounded in reality.
His advice, which is you can't really argue with it, also gave me kind of this outsider's approach to it. Mm hmm.
Where I I felt like I'm you know, I've snuck into this party that I'm going to get kicked out of at any moment. So I might as well just have a great time. And it's kind of why I just remember some of the first first couple of shows on Saturday Night Live. I got some these horrible reviews that they were so bad that they literally just made me laugh and I would just tape them up on my office wall.
And people are like, are you OK? I'm like, yes, if you read this, it's fantastic.
That was my first big turning point in Stand-Up was when I in my first few months, I did a coffee shop and I bombed so hard and my friend had brought his video camera to film my set for me.
And the only laughter was my friend laughing hysterically and the camera shaking from how hard he was laughing because nobody was even cracking a smile. And I rode my bike home to my studio apartment like I was in love for the first time. There was something so freeing and fun about bombing that hard and seeing that I lived through it.
I don't know why. I don't know why those things are just I guess it's that that holding your hand over the flame that's so weird and funny.
Weird, funny, uncomfortable. Yeah. All of that. Yeah. Yeah. Well I. I could. Spend the rest of my life sharing the stories. Yes, yes. Do you want to solve some people's problems now? Sure, sure.
All right, well, let's get started. Well, OK. Is there music? Do we have to wait for music?
Well, they do that in post-production. Oh, great. Yeah. You're familiar with the business, right?
I love post. First up, we have Dana. Dana writes, I can't stop taking out all my anger and frustration on my husband. We have a two and a half year old who has taken over our lives. And I managed to be patient with him. But I unload on my husband. He's a wonderful partner who does the majority of the housework and takes care of our son while I work full time. What can I do to stop being so frustrated?
Now. I'm just going to say right away, unless you have something you want to say, I mean, it sounds like she has a very loving patient partner there, but maybe maybe there are pressures of her job that we don't know about.
But otherwise, I think I think Dana needs to chill out. Well, right.
Quite possibly. I think it's more complicated than chilling out what what I think needs to happen.
It sounds like they're busy people. You know, a two year old takes a lot of time, a full time job. Plus, you're just a human on the planet that's that's busy and then you're married.
So they need some to create some alone time. So I think it's important to just however you get it to connect and really look into each other's eyes. And I know that there's moments that Stephanie and I have gone through frustrating experiences. And when you just shut out the rest of the world, if it's at, you know, right before bedtime or. Right, right. As you're getting up, but to really put your phone away, don't watch a movie.
Don't don't do anything. Just look at each other's faces and connect. That's what I think. And you need to make sure. Are you happy with the fact that your husband is is the stay at home parent? Are you happy being the full time breadwinner and just make sure there's not some sort of resentment that you're not in touch with?
Yeah, or you could just go with what Will said, which was just chill out.
I wonder if you should reach out to Dana personally. I'll swing by her house. I was going to say you and Stephanie can watch that the two year old for like a weekend and let them have like a long weekend together.
And then do you mind coming over and watching our four year old twins while we go to Dana's house? Oh, I see, uh. Hmm. And take your time. Dead air on the podcast is solid. Yeah, think it through. Let's see. Twins, right? Yes, Wolf. Yeah. No, I don't think I can come by, OK, so I'm not going to be able to go by Dana's house, OK? All right.
Never mind, but do you agree with me or not, these people.
No, I think I think you're right. Yeah. They need to, uh, you know, assess what's what's happening. Take a walk with. Yeah, just take a walk.
Look into your person's face. Right. Right. All right.
Well, thanks for your question, Dana. We have to take a quick thanks, Dana. Dana, thank you, thank you, thank you so much, Dana. That was the first question on the first episode with my first guest. So thank you so much for taking that leap, Dana.
Dana, you will look back on this moment 20 years from now when you and your husband are celebrating your 20th anniversary, your. You'll go, that was the moment that we figured it out and that Tigan will really think to me. So thank you, Dana. We do have to take a quick break here, but we're going to be back with some more problems and some advice you should not take.
Yeah, and I. In her new podcast Come Through from WNYC Studios, cultural critic Rebecca Carroll speaks with guests including ICRA, Brittany, Peconic Cunningham and Robin D'Angelo about how race is at the heart of the issues we face as a nation and what it means for our future together. Come through with Rebecca Carroll is available wherever you get podcasts. OK, we're back. This next question is really not one you should get outside help with, but you asked, so we're going to answer.
Justin writes, How should I propose to my girlfriend?
I can't emphasize enough how much I think the best way to propose to somebody is with a flashmob. OK, that's the way to show that you really love someone, especially during a pandemic.
If you get hundreds of people to quarantine for two weeks and take tests, shoving stuff, shoving a Q tip in your nose, pipe cleaner, a pipe cleaner, my doctor uses a pipe cleaner.
Is that I switched off with whatever it is.
Is that your dentist? I don't know. But the shove this is this is true love. If people quaranta if hundreds of people quarantined and then learn a synchronized dance.
Nothing says I love you.
Like, yeah, some fun dance moves that spontaneously happened that took months to plan, and you had to clear out an area of a neighborhood for everyone safe, right?
What's what do you what what would you. That's my suggestion. Well, that's your suggestion.
Yeah. Suggestion, because I stand behind it, I feel like it's the only way to really prove your love. I would say. Just I would say the best way to propose. Is just a classy seafood dinner. You know, a nice piece of fish.
Maybe in a broth. And you're going straight to lobster done deal, so romantic, because I'm over here being sarcastic for that.
Everyone loves the ocean and the sea and it's exciting and it's good for you, too. It's heart healthy. I'd also say do not and you wouldn't be able to do this anyway, but don't propose at a sporting event on the Jumbotron.
Oh, yes, yes. Because if the person says no, which we've all seen, there's your in front of thousands of people.
But that's not even an option right now. So, yeah. Unless you get an entire stadium to core and once again quarantine the planning. Yeah, the pipe cleaner up the nose. All right, well, Justin, while we don't recommend it, feel free to use any of our answers. Just make sure to give us credit, please, sir.
Now for the next question. I'm going to put you on the spot, Will. You're going to need to answer for all men and rights. Why do men not take care of their bodies? I don't mean grooming or even exercise. I'm talking real aches and pains that need a doctor's attention. How do we get the people we care about to take care of themselves?
Well, yeah, great question. I think we're a little bit stubborn in that sense that it's going to go away.
I don't need to see the doctor and probably were afraid of doctors at the end of the day.
Why? I don't know. Are you scared of doctors, do you keep up? I know really take care of your teeth, but you just let the rest of your body go.
I don't have a problem going to the doctor. In fact, I'm I've I really enjoy going to my yearly physical. No, I mean, I don't mind it. I just feel like there's peace of mind.
Right. But you don't actually go to a doctor's office, do you? Sure. Yeah. I sit in the waiting room.
I go, yeah, you don't have you don't have, like, your own doctor that comes to your house. Know what?
I don't know. I'm not like Howard Hughes.
I don't know.
I don't know. No, I. Yeah, I go, I go. I get in a car and I drive to the to the doctor. That is precious.
I don't I won't give a urine sample though.
Mm hmm. That's where I draw the line. You do. When no one asks for one your hand in about left and right. Right I at the dentist I always bring a supply. Yeah.
Before you even ask. Here you go. Here's my urine. Yeah.
Sample if you want to, if you want to sort of sample, don't ask for it, you'll get it. You got to play it cool with me. But if you beg me for it. No, I'm not going to do it. I'm not going to placate you.
Yeah I, I'm glad that you do take care of yourself. Well but yeah. I don't understand, I don't know what my advice, I think maybe just kind of say why is this, why can't you just listen to your body and take care of yourself.
Because if even if you don't care about yourself, don't you care about me and by taking care of you, you're taking care of me.
That's a really good point. Something like that. I tell people that all the time, because when you don't take care of yourself, when you really neglect your health, you're going to depend on other people to be financially someone else.
Somebody is going to have to you might have to move into there, into someone's house.
Somebody is going to have to drive over and do all sorts of stuff of various things.
Yeah. So take care of yourself. Yeah. Not just the teeth, everything. Yeah. Oh gosh. That just upsets me. Thanks for writing.
And did that put you in a state. You really did. But I still want to go back and think Sarah. Is that it, no, Dana, no, Dana, I just I can't think Dana enough, even though I think we can't ever forget you, Dana.
I think every episode you need to think, Dana, just at the top and then get into the.
To the new people, right, for each episode of your podcast, always think, Dana. Thank you, Dana. The final question veers back into wedding territory, but it's even messier. Will. Oh, jeez. Melissa writes, I'm getting married this fall and we're keeping it to just 20 people due to the pandemic. Here's my problem. I come from divorced parents who can't stand each other. My stepmother behaved hideously at my sister's wedding, and my dad is likely to sulk and be rude.
Is there a way to not invite them without them finding out? What would you do?
I would just say it sounds like there's two paths there is confronting both sides of the parents and saying the last time we were all together, you behaved like children and I don't want to risk it. And we're adults. And this is how I'm going to do my wedding. And I'm sorry, but you're not invited. Yep, that's number one.
Or number two, hey, I would love to have you guys come to my wedding, but you can't pull the crap you guys did the last time.
And I need your solemn promise that you're not going to do that. And if you can't really give a commitment, then you're not coming.
I think both are solid options. I had a very last minute, just came up with an idea that I think might be brilliant while you're talking. Sure. And if we know me, it's probably going to be pretty good. Yeah. If you do feel like you're dealing with three big babies, have the wedding. Don't tell them.
And then have a fake wedding after that's even fewer people with a flash mob that it performs with, with an entire stadium, no, have just your parents and let everyone be big babies.
And it's not even really your wedding. You already got married behind their back, right?
That's already done.
Yeah, just invite all the babies, let them come in their diapers and their have their rattles in their hands and their bibs on and let them just be babies and take pictures and video of them being big babies. Your fake wedding.
What if your partner is like, no, we're not doing that.
Why wouldn't somebody. That's crazy talk. Oh, my gosh. Well, then you can't marry this person. You got to be a united front.
Sure. In theory, yeah. But this person might be like, wait, so we're going to pay for a whole nother thing, like a fake thing.
You just use the baby's going to be low to use the Skype low rent and you have the big babies show up and then you have to make sure everyone takes a picture and videotapes them being big babies. And then you get their pictures framed, you get the picture framed of them being big babies. Yeah, I got they have to see how pathetic.
But but what happens. I have to go.
Will, I don't have time. No, no, no, no, no. I was so worked up about this.
But what happens when you get across wedding. No real wedding. Right. The original twenty. Yeah.
Intersect with the big babies like a couple of years down the road and they were like. Oh, well, we were out their wedding. Like, no, you weren't. OK, then here's here's what you do.
You have a real 20 person wedding, then you have the big baby wedding, and then you tell everyone at the big baby wedding that you're going Big Baby was big baby wearing a movie, by the way?
I already know.
Was that did you do a voiceover on Big Baby Wedding? I thought you did so.
So you have pandemic 20 person wedding, then you have big baby wedding big babies.
Then you tell all the big babies that you're going to have a fake 20 person pandemic wedding after the big baby wedding. So you have three weddings, OK? And so confusion, young people, big babies, when they hear about the other weddings, they'll be like they weren't at the wedding.
Speaking of which. Weddings are fascinating, though, aren't they? It brings out baby tendencies in. A lot of people you invite, it can it can we didn't experience that, did you face that now? OK. No.
Well, see, so you avoided the the big babies. There were no big deal.
There were no big babies and not on Stephanie's side. We didn't have any we had actual only actual babies at our wedding and they don't even behave themselves. Just from the community, yeah, we had community babies, and as we were walking from the public beach back to my cousin's house to celebrate, all the neighbors came out and were cheering us on as we were. Three hundred and fifty people walked to my cousin's house and I.
I told Stephanie, wait, three fifty, three hundred fifty people.
Wow, you guys sort of full on party. And they all came in from East and West Coasts, small town Mississippi.
That's amazing. And and so all these people were coming out of their house going.
You know, and I turned to Stephanie and I said, they probably think I'm a man, just so you know, because she was like, this is so incredible.
And I said, it is. But they probably. But just so. Yeah, they probably got them. So, yeah, I mean, especially if I had worn the tie. I never wear that. But so pick up your pace. We're going to walk a little faster. Yeah.
And that's it for listener questions, but before I let you go, will we have one more issue to tackle? We have a question from 80 years ago, and I want to see if you and I can be more helpful. Yeah. Than they were back then. This is advice of yesteryear.
When Jerry brags about taking Jenny out here, he learns that she dates all the boys from, as we say now, menstruation is just one routine step in a normal and natural cycle. How do you choose a date?
Well, one thing you can consider is, look, I did everything you said, but my boss still hasn't asked me to lunch.
This question comes from a 1941 Teen Topics Advice column.
OK, dear Miss Parker, I'm a young fellow of 18 and I am deeply interested in a girl will call again, but she is used to being squired in fancy style movies at least twice a week.
Whoa. And smart snack places afterwards.
I am financially unable to entertain her on such a scale.
I have to help provide for my family and it is therefore impossible for me to take her out so often. Please advise me what to do. See wow.
The letters. So see.
Yeah, well, wanting to remain anonymous, especially decades after their death, I'm sure.
Yes. And making sure that he didn't divulge the name of the woman either and.
Mm hmm. OK, here's the original answer. Why not get three to four boy friends, all with financial families, to pool their resources and have a little party, let the host be the boy with the largest living room and the most congenial and understanding family, get some ice cream cupcakes or pretzel sticks, ginger ale or hot chocolate. These refreshments will not set you back very much and you'll all have fun.
That doesn't seem very helpful to the guy.
Well, yeah, he doesn't have any cash, he's supporting helping support the family. So he's yeah, he's like, really it doesn't give him any one on one time with and really.
No, but I mean, after he fills her with hot chocolate pretzels, chocolate and pretzel sticks, I think she's definitely going to want to spend some time with this guy.
I mean, she's going to be she's going to be knocked off her off her feet.
Absolutely. I mean, when did people stop talking like this?
I'm a young fellow of 18 and an 18 year old to know what squired and fancy style.
Yeah, yeah. I don't know. God, I know we really, uh, we've lost our ability with language.
We've lost everything. Yeah. Yeah.
Do you have any other advice for him? A young fellow of 18, deeply interested in a girl he'd call and she's used to fancy style and he just, you know, fancy style and have Karimov's two nights a week.
And not just that, but smart snack, smart snack places.
Well, I'll say I said it once earlier. I'll say it again. There's, you know.
Nothing like an inexpensive romantic fish dinner in expensive. The fish dinner. At a seafood restaurant. So that's your advice just yeah. Do you know how one Stephanie over and then we can get out of this darts start throwing now? OK. Stephanie had never kissed a girl before, and we shared a kiss. Right, and we had so much fun hanging out. Yeah, and the next day she wrote me this five page long email about how she's never kissed a girl.
She doesn't see herself for the girl, but she went into detail of how much she enjoys my time. And and she just really she just really went into it. Well, yeah.
Yeah, I replied, OK, dyke. That's the only thing I wrote to that long email.
And she said when she got that, she laughed so hard, yet she kind of couldn't say no.
She was like, game over. Yeah.
And now we're going on eight years. So let's see. Yeah. Simplicity. Yeah, it's good. Yeah. There you go. Good stuff.
Thank you so much for being here. Will, I know this is not.
No, not my pleasure. Hi.
I thoroughly enjoyed it, but. I just want to thank Dana, though. For to yeah, for hanging in there. Yeah, for the whole podcast, Dana has really been the back.
Oh my gosh. When I think of Dana, yeah, I start to well up. Just do everything she's been through. And so. Anyway, Will. Well, you know what, people might not know and I don't know if we talk about it here, but we're doing a movie together. I know. Down the line. Down the line. Yeah. We don't have to go. Yeah. We don't have to get all crazy.
But at some point we're going to be doing a movie and it's going to be where we're acting in a movie together.
And and here's a curveball. I'm the star and you're not.
That's right. Yeah, we didn't go to great no, we didn't see that coming, and you have you have a new Netflix movie coming out, Eurovision, right? It's out. It's it's out there.
It's people are watching it and enjoying it. It's it's great. It's been so much fun to see the reaction. It's it's good times. Dana's seen it like five times she goes.
So she knows all the songs and. Yeah. She's just great. Well, I just want to encourage everyone to go see Eurovision and on their television. Yes. So send your questions to don't ask BTIG and we might try to answer them on a future episode.
You can write down your question or you can send it to us as a voice memo, which is very cool. Thank you again. Will come and watch Eurovision. Thanks, Dana, thanks, Dana. By. That's where Joe. Don't ask, BTIG is hosted by me, Tig Notaro. It's produced by Thomas Willette, Mary Knoff and Tracey Mumford. Our editor is Phyllis Fletcher, executive producer Lauren D. Engineering and Sound mixing by Eric Rachmani, digital production by Christina Lopez.
Our theme music is by Edie Brickell and Kyle Crusher, executive consultant Dean Cappello, special thanks to Lily Kim, Alex Shaffer, Hunter sideman and gobsmacked company studios. You can always ask for advice at Don't Ask Tig. Just write in with your problem or send us a voice memo. You can also follow us on social media, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram at Don't Ask BTIG, Don't Ask. TIG is a production of American Public Media.