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[00:00:01]

This is exactly right. Hello and welcome to my favorite Merner, where we talk about true crime, exactly how you want us to. That's right.

[00:00:30]

And the exact cadence and speech pattern has it low and slow and fast, slow. A lot of policies like this make it seem important.

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It's basically Asmar.

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Yeah. Hey. Hi. How are you trying to fall asleep. Right. How do you like the sound of zipper's? Do you like this before.

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OK, there is a lot of big I don't know the first then I just start talking so loud. The first time I saw an ass of our video, it was something like that. It was a very specific sound where I was like, this is for one person, right? Maybe for. Yeah. And it was just like, you know, it was like titled like plastic ski jacket, zipper or something like that.

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Like someone is always loved but never even realized it was a thing they loved. You know, there's like I saw recently and there's hair brushing videos with just the sound of hair being brushed. Oh, the audio of the audio for as a matter of hair being brush. That's someone's thing.

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See, I might have the opposite of whatever the fetishes for hair brushing sounds because there's nothing that bothers me more. And this is very like when you're the first year living out of your parents house, when you're like, I'm living with the girls and we're we're living it up. And there's always some roommate that will get out of the shower with wet hair and then brush her hair violently, like in front of the TV.

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Oh, that's always driven me. Those kind of girls are like just just like pulling their hair, just like ripping through their hair. The tangles. Yeah. Just doing it really fast. You could tell that they had the kind of mom or sisters that was like, too bad you suck it up.

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You have to get your hair brush. Oh my God. My mom used to make us cry by French braiding our hair. Yeah. Because she pulled it because it was so tight and she'd yank it not on purpose, but it's like it was a little little, maybe a little less religion.

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It was getting back at her. It it does feel so good though. I can French braid here. I know I've been meaning to get you to French braid of hair, my hair. It's been a little. Absolutely. Do it.

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I don't know why it's never happened like on an on tour or something I guess because we don't roller skate that much in nineteen eighty four but like weird.

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Would it be like we're going to, we're going to go down to the Applebee's two blocks down.

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Will you French braid my hair for you know what I just realized. Sometimes when I can't sleep, if I need like a soothing thought I'll think of myself French braiding hair like just a long fuckin French braid.

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Yeah. That's my essabar in my brain, French part of it. But it's the visual or the audio as well. Visual and then the feel of French braiding is like so soothing, doesn't it.

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Yes. You know, yeah. As we said, this is true crime.

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So good. We're here to tell you about things that sound ways that people have made sounds work for them, whether it's this podcast, the old can opener.

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Asmar, what about the sound of bumblebee tuna being open, being opened by an electric can opener from 1970? Chicken of the Sea is kind of my thing.

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I like the sound of my mom lighting a match and touching it to the end of a bensen that just lights one hundred at the gas station with the windows rolled up in the car. Oh gosh.

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You know what I did the other night? I fuck and I smoke. I fucking smoked a cigarette for the first time and probably five years. Out of what? Boredom? No, I just was like kind of going crazy. I was having it just I was having a lot of anxiety about what's happening indoors right now and which is nothing. And the thought of smoking a cigarette like that thing of like it's escape, you get a walk out of a fucking party or bar a room or quarantine.

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And I can have a contemplative cigarette. I don't fucking I'm not all for it. Smoking super bad for you and I'll kill you and all this shit.

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But I had a cigarette, a Winston, and it was like it was excellent. I thought I'd get nauseous. You know, if you find that pack of Winston's under the floor mats of an old nova that was parked in front of your her.

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No, but I did find a brat for sale. You know, that was the Subaru bress Subaru brat for sale like a nineteen.

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Phuket's something. It's silver and I want it so bad. Holy shit. OK, I called my friends, my friend Salmo. And did I tell you about this? My friend Zalmen was doing this thing on Twitter where he was posting pictures when he saw Subaru Brat and loved it and it was like my favorite. And then I just started rip it. I just started doing it myself. I was like, oh, wait. The reason you love this is because it's Sam's idea.

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Like, this is the best idea I've ever fucking that this is the bug that have. Is all the time to be on Twitter where I love something and be like all about it, and then two months later I'm like, this is my original idea that it's never it's safe to assume that you never have ever once had an original idea.

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None of us anything were ripping.

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We're ripping off terrible sitcoms. We stared at us children. Yeah. This podcast is because we both were super into the last podcast on the left to give them credit.

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It's like we're we just cut up old scripts from last podcast on the left, put them in a fishbowl and just pull out lines. So anyway, that's Marcus Parks. And I'm Henries, broski.

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You know, I want to be Henry Elvises and Kessell go.

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OK, what do you have for me? I have for you your birthday present. That's a month late. Oh, those are the best kind. I did not expect it. It's it was took a really long time in the mail and then I was like, forget it, it's too late. And it's like I went past the like cute funny quarantine window and into the rude window. And then I was like, but then I was like, well what am I going to save it for Christmas?

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God knows what could happen between then and now. So here we'll do a Zoome presentation of your birthday present.

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OK, should we just say what happened, this prop here? Yes, definitely say what happened.

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Right. Everyone doesn't know. But we just had a fiasco happen where we were.

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Can you feel it recording. And it's been like forty five minutes of me trying to figure out why am I fucking Internet was down. And then I just had to come to the office instead to use the Internet here. I haven't been out of the house in six fucking months, so this is very odd. I'm drinking the end of Paul hols is Glenlivet because. Yes, that was very stressful.

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Wait, you haven't you truly have not gone anywhere? No, we are not. We don't go anywhere. Yes, that's amazing. Don't go anywhere. We don't even go.

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We get in car delivered. Yeah. Good. Yeah. So the safest this feels very weird and I, I'm digging it. OK, I strip out.

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Well while you were gone Steven and I, we did a mini sowed within the maxcy so that was just a carrot.

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Steven chit chat organum. We're going to put down a food culture. It's the most boring conversation of us meeting anyway.

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I wonder where she is. She OK. But basically I was in the middle of giving you a belated birthday present.

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You were such a bummer. Like pause right as you're reaching your hand.

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And I'm like, well, and the funniest part was it paused with you and your expression was, my Internet's going out.

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So you look like and I was like, look, your birthday present. And you're just like, oh, I thought you were vibing me out.

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I was like, hey, fucking better late than never. And Steven gets I think she's frozen.

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Oh, no, I love it. Oh. OK, so I'm going to open your present at you. I love it. So you can see this gift that is definitely recycled or just gift bag. It's real good. And then I actually took the time to put paper in it and stuff. I will drop this off at your house.

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OK, Steven, are you recording this? Can you video this. Yeah. Yeah. Are you ready for this fucking thing. Yeah. But does that. I can't see, I can't see it. Hold it down.

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Oh my God. Is that a book about cats.

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It's a fucking Tashan book. And this guy was this super famous cat photographer from nineteen forty two. Or maybe it's all the most favorite. Maybe it's not just one guy, it's a bit.

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And they have pictures. I am obsessed with it. Oh OK. Well Walter Qandahar is the is the name on it.

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This is, this is everything I've ever wanted. Thank you so much. Really heavy because it's a Taschen book. Yeah.

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You know I like, I like books that you can put out and make people think you're artsy and smart like in your living room.

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So perfect. Yes. And and the best Taschen is number one, especially if you're looking for a gift. This is so plucky. But I swear it's just a recommendation. It's something I believe in. Go to the fashion website. They're big fancy coffee table books. And I swear to God, it's the best. It's the best present. No, you would never buy for yourself.

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There's and there's like there's like a whole book about like vintage boobs, like a vintage porn star.

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Thank you. I love this shit. Because of that gift bag, I now have gold sparkles all over the front of her shirt and we both win.

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Yeah, right. And then, Steven, we in in all of this, we discovered Steven.

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Yeah. I also got you a belated birthday present. You oh, it is the it's. Should I open it for you. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. OK, I love is OK for other people because she wrapped it up it. So this one is one that I picked out. It's for George every week. Yeah. I have to get something I. We want to switch it, that's a vintage cooking for two. I almost bought that exact pork belly.

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Oh, that's so good. It's just like the cooking.

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These books from the late 70s, 80s just have the most insane. It's like Sayam and like, yes, pie. That broccoli.

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It's like broccoli, cheese with sliced deli ham wrapped around it with some kind of like berries as a garnish. Marcio Mancino cherries.

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You guys like know me. It's almost like you spent five years talking to each other about our most intimate.

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But there's more recording our conversations and editing those conversations. It's like from this it's a Gourmet magazine from your birth year and month. Oh, she's a good gift giver. Steven Brena knows her shit.

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And it's just like these old look again, it's like there's no food on it. It's just like a temple or something like that.

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Gourmet was like the Vanity Fair of food magazines. If I may be so bold, I.

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Oh, are you crying like, oh, she's doing it. Oh, these are the most thoughtful gifts. Thank you so much.

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And honestly, it's always been like I love getting books for a gift. It's like I feel like it's a very meaningful thing that people think you're smart and shit.

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And I think mine's just pictures. There's there's no words about cats, but it's cats. But it's cat that's smart. Mostly pictures, too. So happy birthday. Happy belated Q covid birthdays.

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You to stretch it out for as long as you want. Yeah I'm on. I'm so touched. Thank you both so much.

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OK, I'm next week. Every parent next week. What if Vince Vince got you a cameo cameo from Kevin Nash, the wrestler Kevin Nash.

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Because if you tell Vince that you have a favorite wrestler, then for the rest of your life, he is going to always, like, send you gifts or news updates or cameos for your birthday with.

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And I didn't realize, like, first of all, it was fun to be able to pick a favorite wrestler. And the reason I picked Kevin Nash is because he's a very large man. He's gorgeous. He's a fascinating individual. But he also costarred on an episode of Detroiters on a couple episodes, I think, playing Tim Robinson's father.

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And he was so funny and so good. And that's I learned about him backwards from the Detroiters first. And then Vince was like, that's Kevin.

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And also Magic Mike, of course. Right. Although he didn't I mean, he was like an amazing body in that. But he never I never felt like he got the character development he deserved. No, he's he's a body. He's a body. He's a wrestler. He called me he called me sweetheart in a cameo.

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He's very exciting next year because. Karen Yeah.

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And then Steve, when you can go the following week, what if and also what if this is the role, it's just it's called covid. Random quarantine gives to to keep ourselves going. But if like. So we just gave you books accidentally. But now this week you can't you can give me anything but books like you, you check off the OK.

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So much so that after we do this for like six months, it's going to have to start getting real obscure pack of cigarettes for care.

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We're basically stealing Bajur one.

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Oh, shit. Well, this is a good Segway.

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Great Segway into fix. Exactly right corner. See, we were just talking about stealing and we did it right before our very eyes. Bridger don't be mad. We got Bridger.

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We got last podcast on the left. Oh, my God. That's fucking hilarious.

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Let's let's since this is a great Segway, let's go into.

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Well, I will I will start with Bergert with I said no GIFs because as you know, last week we posted a live show. Almost had to post one this week.

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OK, so it's a fucking wi fi gig. Your blessings were back. But so this week, Sasheer Zamata is on. I said no GIFs with Purger Weininger and she's hilarious and brilliant. And you've seen her on lots of things. And she is podcast star herself.

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I don't want to upstage her, but last week I think it is a notable to mention the preacher as his guest head on one of the great actors of our time, Emma Thompson, live from the UK.

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Like, tell everyone how that happened.

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It's just, well, bananas. It's not bananas. It's it's I said no gifts. It's I said, no, it's the fault line.

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Apparently, she listened to the episode of I Said No Gifts, which Neil James and then Emma and her daughter sent emails to Bridger and Janelle saying, like, we're big fans. Call us if you don't believe us. So he called just Janelle.

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Janelle did. That's right. Janelle. Janelle was like, I don't give a shit on a girl.

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And then they all found out it was real and not a prank and not, you know, some some weirdo trolling, though. And I'm a freak.

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And Thompson is going on was like, I'll do your podcast. It's amazing. Delightful. I mean, like, what a joy. What an exciting, beautiful thing. When when we heard about that, we were freaking out carrying such huge fans.

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Another another podcast you can listen to that's on the Exactly Right network. This you tell us who's on the broadcast this week.

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Well, this week it's Matt Apodaca, who's an Airwolf producer and truly one of the sweetest sweethearts and talked about his two cats, Hurley and Sawyer, named after the Lost character.

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Oh, yeah. And he was just like a feel good time.

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Just talking about. Yeah, just talking about, you know, cuddling cats and all that good stuff.

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So so that's what the world needs right now. All right. So check out the cast as well. And there's a bunch of other if you look up exactly right. Network on iTunes that will show you all the podcasts we have on our network. And we are so close to having more. We just, you know, had some contracts signed. And I can't wait to announce those coming up soon. Yeah, but not right now. Sorry. No, no, but very soon.

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Yeah. And then I guess while we're on the we're talking about it, we can talk about well the fan call will put this, put the unwrapping video up on the fan call maybe. Yeah. Nice.

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OK, and then we also are putting up every week now recording video of us, of Steven pitching the titles for the episode that he has been writing down the whole episode. And so we're posting that it's always really funny. And then we also have new merch up on my favorite murder, Dotcom in the store. One of them we are doing we're so excited about this, this beautiful design that murdering Dana Marie Hosler, who's this incredible artist, a.k.a. she's at Mighty Pigeon Underscore Art on Instagram.

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It's an we're all indoor cats now shirts. It's so beautiful, so beautiful. It's my three cats. So how can I not love it. Yeah, of course. But then yeah it's just the coolest design. So check that out. It's such a good design. We were so excited that she wanted to make shirts with us. So definitely support your fellow Motorino artists and I'm very thrilled. I think we may have hinted at this, but one other new we've got a bunch of new merch up.

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So if you feel like it and you're in that place, you can go look at it.

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All mentioned the puzzle.

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People are sending pictures of it finish. There are those who can. And so they will and do and did. I started yelling at George about how it isn't that hard and that I was lecturing her about how I Nora and I once did a puzzle that was just all the same gumballs over and over. It was like a huge thing, you know, and then her Internet went out because she was tired of me yelling at her. So but I'm very excited because, you know, we have had the sweatpants in the store.

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Fuck you, I'm married. Well, now we're following that up with the lounge set and it fucking says, fuck you, I'm divorced and go get them. Are you divorced? Are you how did your friend getting divorced and you want to make her laugh?

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Does someone cry a lot and needs some sweats to make her feel like she's not alone? Get those. Fuck you. I'm divorced. What's there available now.

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Are you getting divorced and you can't where. Fuck you, I'm married. So that's anymore. Throw those fuckers out. No, give them to fucking give them a good. Well are you getting divorced?

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And this is how you'd like to let your significant other know that it's over. Put on those fucking fucking divorce sweats and let them answer their own questions.

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The next ones we have to make our fucking I married again. SweatBand.

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Fuck you. I'm remarried. Fuck you. I'm remarried. Yeah. Fuck you.

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This is my second husband. But that leaves a bunch of people out.

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OK, what else do we have?

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Well, I talk about I'm tired of business and I want to talk about our conversational thing.

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Let's do at it. I got I got some topics now that your birthday parties over there was just a couple of things we could I couldn't figure out. Steve and I were this is what was happening while you were gone running around trying to get your you're just chilling, casually telling.

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Steve and I were trying to figure this out because I got a bunch of tweets and the first one I got was from Kristen and she wrote, Hi, Karen Kilgariff, a fellow Motorino in the indie Martarano group who doesn't have Twitter, reminded me to remind you to put your trash out tonight. So but I don't think we talked about it on my favorite murder, I. I think Chris Fairbanks and I talked about it on Do you need a ride that I keep forgetting to put my garbage out?

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Yeah, because I it's a boy's chore and I'm glad that I have to do it for myself if I could.

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So I keep forgetting and then the then the garbage, the garbage gets piled up and then the dogs go over and they're like, are you not home? We're going to go like shopping through the garbage. And it's a nightmare. And so now people have taken it upon themselves to remind me I love that to put my garbage out.

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It's the sweeter it made me laugh so hard. It was just like I this is your light on it, but this is your life now. Yes. I'm having conversations I can't remember about bullshit that we're just trying to, like, fill the air.

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And then people are like, no, we're in your brain.

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The best is when we put up a live episode and people start like sending you a quote that you said and you're like, don't have any fucking clue who said that. What it was said about when it was said, you're just right. You're just fucking and it's well, that's funny. Don't bring a fucking don't bring a broom to a knife fight or something.

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That's funny, but I don't remember any of that.

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I know sometimes it triggers a memory, but for the most part, the idea that we did all those shows and we're on the road, it's just such it feels like a lifetime ago. And it was only a couple months ago.

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I've been really enjoying Karen Kilgore gifts on Twitter.

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Oh, Schmoo, hard work. She does lovely shmooze. She's she put up Karen Kilgore gifts. And it's very funny. Yeah. And there's also some of my favorite murder out of context. Be murder quotes out of context, which I find it's almost I get why my mom is mad about this podcast when I read this call.

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Oh yeah. We say some fucked up shit. Yeah we really do. It's great. But doesn't these days. I mean we're not alone anymore. That's what's nice. Oh.

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Speaking of can I say real quick. Yeah. Nick Terry put out a new meme, animated video about from the what's her face. Oh Typhoid Typhoid Mary episode. That's always a fucking joy to watch.

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It's so lovely. Yeah. He's it's so funny. You can and I of course have watched those so many times. There's so many tiny jokes in it. But they it's just so well done and so well done. So thank you, Nick Terry, for your constant your constant work. And also I was looking because I was watching a bunch of them on YouTube and then they had his merch underneath. Yeah. Nick Terry makes merch of scenes and characters from those animated shorts.

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So if you love the animated shorts, you can get like a t shirt of a ballerina hippo. Yeah, I didn't know that. Yeah.

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And I just started looking. I was like, oh my God, I did see the want my the one Patty Riley, where's that has all of the characters like the lineup thing. But he's got a bunch of really good shirt so. So buy some support Nick Terry as well. Oh so this just made me laugh because we just recently watched the second season of succession. Oh yeah. Which is just I got to realize. So it's so it's it like a good Nick Terry animated short delivers it.

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There's, it's just so good. And all the Emmy nominations just came out and so I knew that Nicholas Braun was nominated and I knew that cousin Greg was nominated, which is.

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He won. Yes. Yes. I mean, who deserves that more now? Because it's great. But I want, like, actual cousin Greg to win that, you know, like, yeah, I'm sure the actors fine and great. And I'm happy for him.

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He's so good as Cousin Greg.

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It's so enjoyable. So still I beg sprinkles.

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I started thinking because I was like I started getting mad, thinking, assuming for reasons I can't explain, because it makes no sense that Kieran Culkin wasn't nominated. I don't know. I never even looked. But I kind of had this thing of like, how dare they? He's so good that people aren't realizing that he's acting, which is very much how Cousin Greg is to where it's like, really, that's not the person that actor is, but it's so realistic and amazing and it's such a I'm sorry to say it, a tour de force performance.

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So I look I look up to be like, how many like who did get nominated and how many whatever. And this is the subject line or the the headline that comes up. It's an Entertainment Weekly article that came out like two days ago that says Kieran Culkin says he'll punch Nicholas Brown in the Balls of Succession co-star, beats him for an Emmy, so he is nominated. So congratulations. Kieran Culkin character would say that his character would say it's you shouldn't get it because it's just who he is.

[00:25:20]

Oh, my God, I wonder if bears still have it. I also love that guy Watchmen got nominated for a bunch of shit, which is make sure to why not so good. Oh, speaking of glitter on your shirt and TV shows, first of all.

[00:25:35]

So I've been watching. I'll be gone in the dark every week. We watch it every Sunday night before Perry Mason.

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It is so fucking good. It is heartbreaking and heart wrenching and scary. And like I can tell, Vince is a little freaked out watching it because it's it's so true to the book, which kept me up for fucking months, you know, especially before he was caught. First of all, I want to say that you look great in purple.

[00:26:00]

Thank you.

[00:26:00]

This week I was you were in a purple, really bright purple shirt blouse. Looks great on you. You should do purple in your life. Yeah, I.

[00:26:10]

I got my colors done in sixth grade. My mom, my aunt Kathleen, Aunt Litsa was there.

[00:26:15]

You know, I'm a spring. I'm a spring winter because I dye my hair so that actually that color magenta which I think I got it like the gap outlet or something, but I didn't know it was yours because like it's so not your thing, dude.

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My shirt and I did my hair and makeup. I was like, this is a disaster waiting. This is like every other fucking thing I was on where I thank you. People have been very nice. It's very nice.

[00:26:42]

What's very sweet is several of my friends and my friends that are listeners who I don't know have said when they see me in it and then they use that Leonardo DiCaprio gif from a once upon a time in Hollywood where he's drinking a beer and pointing at the TV.

[00:27:01]

Have you ever seen that game where he just goes like he's like, I love it. It's so good.

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And also Paulose, I have to say, it's like classic Paul Holes. Why we all fell in love with him way back.

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Like it's got this like he's so he is so effusive and so like you can just tell he's kind by listening to him talk and cares and it's the whole show is just fun. It's it's one of the best true crime shows I've ever watched for sure. And it's hard.

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I'm so glad I sent patinas all the like a fucking post show, like sad Instagram message, because it's just it pulls at your heartstrings about Michelle, too.

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It's just really beautiful and so hard. It's such a tough, tough thing. Yeah. Billy and I have been talking, Billy, where he's like, have you watched it yet? Have you watched it?

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Because I'm just like, I need a year. I think I just need distance and like, not yeah, whatever. But it's I know it's another one of those things were just like, yeah, I don't know if I want to sit down and like I feel every fucking awful feeling but yeah. I'm so, so glad it turned out great and I'm not surprised. And Adrian actually said the exact same thing she said when Paul Hols talks about Michelle and gets choked up, it is one of the most like lovely and touching and like heart wrenching.

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Tonally, she said the exact same thing. I love it. It's so it's so nice and and it's so cool that that they got such a unbelievably talented director like that whole project.

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You know, it's really it's incredible. I really don't I totally understand why you guys can't watch it. I didn't know her personally and I know you did. So that was that just seems so hard.

[00:28:44]

Um, how about the Madeleine McCann updates regarding what I haven't gotten any. Oh, they what you know about the guy and in jail. Right. And the German do. Oh was that the guy that they linked the cars like that. It's getting cheaper and I think oh they're about to find they just found a like a not a crawlspace but like almost like a basement cellar, cellar space where he used to live that had been left over from some of the other tenants.

[00:29:15]

And like I think they're about to find proof that that because I think he did.

[00:29:21]

Yeah, because he's that's the guy that lived on that property of that resort.

[00:29:25]

Right. I don't know if he lived there or near it, but he definitely it almost seems like he was in cahoots with someone who was letting who worked there.

[00:29:34]

And this is all fucking what's it called personal opinion, conjecture, personal opinion that let him know when people were not in the room so he could steal shit, not like it wasn't for that reason to take a child. But it seems like that was kind of his M.O. is is breaking into people's holiday rooms and and stealing stuff. And so I totally think it's him. And I think they're about to find something big shit. And I have to keep my yeah.

[00:30:04]

I should set my some Google alerts because I did not. I remember reading that article a little while ago, but that could have been fourteen years ago. It could have been I could have dreamed it. It was from last night. I have no clue what's happening in here.

[00:30:18]

I don't know. But, oh, I just want to talk for a second about Perry Mason this week. Yeah, which yeah, it's like I don't want it to end and it's clearly like about to end, huh.

[00:30:32]

And everyone is talking on Twitter about somebody did a like a fan post, kind of like a loving post about how amazing those title cards are, like how beautifully designed the graphics are so beautiful.

[00:30:45]

And then so I was like yeah they they're, they're firing on all over there who whatever that team was that they put it all together, they're nailing it. And then as that episode ended and I no spoilers, but just in case, if you're some kind of a, you know, reactive asshole, spoiler alert, which is nothing, but the guy steps into the doorway, remember, at the very end when he was, like, trying to see if he could find the fourth, I think it's the fourth man.

[00:31:13]

But either way, the guy steps into the doorway and I don't see it's almost 10 p.m. at that point when we watch it.

[00:31:21]

I've already watched I'll be gone in the dark, so I'm emotionally drained. And a couple cans of wine in.

[00:31:26]

Yes. No, it's true. And it's like that's it's the Sunday night pile up that used to happen with Game of Thrones.

[00:31:33]

There was one night where, like, everything was on on. Yeah, I'm I can only handle, like, those two shows. I'll become in the Dark and Perry Mason are so intense and dark that, like, I shouldn't be watching them side by side, but yeah.

[00:31:45]

Yeah, no, definitely not at the same time. No, that's for sure. But yeah, what I was going to say is just that very, very last shot. The guy steps in the doorway and then you see his gun. It's not a spoiler but like whatever if you haven't seen it. But as that happens, this horn like this soundtrack kicks in and it's basically the outro music, a jazzy horn.

[00:32:09]

And yeah, it's like a trumpet, but it scared the fuck out the way they did. It was so perfect where I was like, I think I'm having a panic attack.

[00:32:16]

And it's not I don't usually I have something in my house right now.

[00:32:22]

Am I being killed? It was so effective. And then I listen to the whole outro song that I was just like, these guys are just it's you. You can tell it's like all the honor students of show business got together and they're like, I'll direct it. You do the yeah. You do the title card mailing, do the music, nailing it up. It's so hard.

[00:32:41]

It's so good. It's such a good show. Um, what was I going to say. What else.

[00:32:45]

Anything that the alienist is out and I love that to you but it's five. Yeah. Oh it's like there's like four. There's four waiting for you. OK, great. I think it's four. We're just plowing our way through Parks and Rec at this point.

[00:33:00]

Oh no, that's good. I need something like the aliens to come bring me down again.

[00:33:06]

Don't get too high up there. Yeah.

[00:33:08]

With our with with friend of the pod Nick Offerman. Oh my kill is killing his friend of the podcast. Definitely not. I'm not being a weird phony. I know exactly what this is. OK, sorry. Can I just read this.

[00:33:22]

Yes, please. Please. This girl sent this tweet and I, I think she was being funny and sincere at the same time.

[00:33:31]

That's the best duo of personality traits. It was such a good job. She writes. OK, so this is from Andrea at.

[00:33:39]

A.K.A., I fish, I don't know, but she says so she's talking about I'll be out in the dark but she says, beautiful job done by a friend of the pod, Karen Kilgariff.

[00:33:53]

Way to use our own joke against us. I love it. I get to be a friend of my own family. That's how we grow your friend to yourself first. That's right. You can be a friend to all the pods.

[00:34:05]

You can't be a friend of other people's pod cast if you're not a friend to your own podcast. First for a friend, you're up. I guess so, she said. The whole message, which is very lovely, is you're beautiful, my friend of the pod last night and HBO, I'll Be Gone in the Dark, paying tribute to the iconic and badass Michelle McNamara. That was the whole message.

[00:34:23]

But so it was so sincere that the friend of the part pod part caught myocardium joke. Andrea, good joke. Love a good joke. Good one way to turn it on its head. Good. Good work. Good work. That's how I talk. Now, what else.

[00:34:39]

I just have one book recommendation. Oh right. OK. Because as you well know, George, I've, I felt maybe just a touch insane. At the end of last week, I was feeling very sober.

[00:34:53]

Another tough business week we had to do.

[00:34:57]

You know, that magazine Business Week, it was like we were being it was rolled up and we were being slapped with it. But no, there was just a bunch of stuff to do and think about it.

[00:35:06]

And I, I worry in these ways. I make up what I need to worry about so that I have it all in front of me in case one of the thirty seven things I've sure you don't like.

[00:35:21]

I got off guard. I told totally in the future, don't future worry.

[00:35:25]

Is that what they call it. Yes. Yeah.

[00:35:27]

It's like projection worries but so that's where I was last night, last week. And I was really bumming me. I was just like I didn't want to do anything. I was like, please, I can't do anything. And then I remembered when I get into that place, it's because I got so into listening to the Ramadoss podcast for a while. And Ramadoss is all about that's nice that that suffering that you're doing is what you're supposed to be doing, because this is all the work of waking up.

[00:35:55]

And so I read I went on because I was like I've listened to, I think, every episode of that podcast.

[00:36:01]

So I went to look at what books he has. And there's a book called Becoming Nobody, which is the Essential Ramadoss collection.

[00:36:10]

So it's kind of like a starter for me, definitely, because I'm very new to that whole realm of work and awareness and stuff. But I swear to God, becoming nobody. It's such a good audio book. It's him talking there, like the original lectures he gave.

[00:36:26]

And it's basically this thing of like we you're not your thoughts and your thoughts aren't real. So the work is just when you're in that shit, stop taking it so seriously, figure out their different ways. And it's like a practice and you have to kind of be it's about awareness. Yeah. But you can wake yourself up out of all those thoughts and and just step away from it and it's possible.

[00:36:49]

OK, and it's really cool when you I think these days. Yeah, I definitely am feeling those feelings. I just I don't even know what the fuck's going on, so I don't even know where to put my stress rhymes or how to manage it or anything even to excuse it away. It's impossible because it's true and real what you're feeling. It's not. Yeah. It's not just you spinning out or having too much coffee. We're in a fucking global pandemic and it's like and on top of everything else going on.

[00:37:17]

Right.

[00:37:18]

And then you're the the the reactions that you're having in this scenario. Like, I keep judging myself, like I shit, I'm overreacting and it's like, no, no, you're you're in a court. Yeah. Quarantine in a pandemic, there's kind of no way to overreact. I was telling Steven I went out the other day just to leave the house. And as I drove my car, I started getting like motion sickness from moving fast in a car.

[00:37:43]

Yes, me too. What the fuck is that?

[00:37:46]

We went for a drive and I started having a panic attack that we were going to get killed in a car accident and motion sickness because I'm I. I have been indoors for fucking six months. Yeah, it's really weird. We're in a very weird place for sure. It's very weird.

[00:38:00]

So if you're looking for, you know, if you have that feeling of like you're being hounded by your worries and your thoughts in these, like there's a lot on your shoulders, I highly recommend this book because it's about instead of analyzing all those ideas, it's about practicing just stepping away and like being your own personal observer because like, yes, you're worried and that's real in the suffering of it is real. But there's another part of you that isn't worried, that's watching you worry, that can see that.

[00:38:29]

And that's what you start identifying with.

[00:38:31]

Is that be the ability to look at yourself doing it and go?

[00:38:36]

I don't think I'm that worried. I think I'm just uncomfortable. All the difference, this is sorry, one more, but my therapist just talked about this today, the difference between actual danger and discomfort, a lot of people don't know the difference at all because it's the same fight or flight mechanism that comes up inside of you.

[00:38:55]

Your your body doesn't know whether or not you're actually in front of a bear. Right?

[00:39:01]

Well, your your eyes tell you whether or not but your body is having this reaction. And so you have to you have to teach yourself and remind yourself that you're safe, just uncomfortable because you can be uncomfortable. It's not going to hurt you. And the discomfort is what people so many people think. They're never supposed to feel anything bad ever. And so that when they do, they flip out of like this is all going down.

[00:39:29]

I mean, this is what I do. It should I should be just admitting it, because it's the thing of I'm not supposed to blank, blank, blank.

[00:39:37]

One time on me, it was before a show that a live show which was is so scary for me.

[00:39:41]

But you were like my therapist once told me that being nervous and being excited are the same feeling. And so now it's kind of cool to think of when I'm nervous about something being like maybe it's just excitement. And if you think about it in terms of that, it's fun instead of scary.

[00:39:59]

Yes. Which I love. And that reminds me, you said the funniest thing. This was like two weeks ago when we were very stressed out.

[00:40:06]

And you go, I don't know, I kind of like conflict, so I'm OK. And it made me laugh so hard.

[00:40:13]

I was like, yeah, actually this is all it's all like no one does no one doesn't want to know what's going on. No one wants that feeling of like huge question with no answers coming that you're not alone in that stress like.

[00:40:29]

So don't don't beat yourself up for being upset that you're like, what the fuck?

[00:40:36]

And everything on our phones is making us more scared.

[00:40:39]

And then we add on this thing of like, not only are you actually upset because of things going on, but then you're fucking on top of it in yourself and feeling bad about yourself and feeling like a loser because you're upset about it.

[00:40:51]

Just deal with the upset ness. You don't have to also pile on the negativity, right?

[00:40:57]

Yeah. Because then once you actually if you can sit there and breathe and go, I'm really upset. I need to actually like feel it, let it let it expand, see how big it can get. It doesn't get that big. These we're so afraid to actually feel things because we're like, I don't want to be uncomfortable, I don't want to be I don't want to cry, I don't want to be sad or whatever. But then it's like but if you actually let it happen, it happens for three minutes max.

[00:41:21]

And then and then usually there's like a little bit of a lull and you can feel that it's like it's like a sine wave, like anything else. It comes and goes and it doesn't kill you and it does. And you can actually build up a tolerance and then start noticing like this is this thing my brain does when I feel like I might be being betrayed. And suddenly it makes everybody everybody's betrayed. And that's my trigger.

[00:41:46]

Betrayal is the trigger of mine. And so it I spiral. Yeah, totally. Feeling Feelings is a friend of the podcast and hi, welcome.

[00:41:56]

Friend of the pod. Feeling, feeling feelings, crying.

[00:41:59]

Turns out as a friend of the podcast, I've been trying so hard not to let this friend in and now it's in and it does feel good. And Steven, his first.

[00:42:06]

Your first Georgia. Yeah. You fuck you did like Christians from Amsterdam.

[00:42:17]

Bonanos, an innocent man, gets hit by a flying pickle bananas. A Texas woman wakes up with a British accent, bananas, a duck, enters a pub, drinks a beer and fights a dog. I'm Kurt Braunohler and I am Bananas.

[00:42:32]

I'm Scotty Landis and I am bananas.

[00:42:34]

On each episode of the world famous Bananas podcast, Scotty and I serve you a steaming hot pile of the silliest news stories from around the world.

[00:42:43]

It's a lighthearted look at our big stupid planet, and we invite you to laugh with us and add us as we try to make sense of it all. But wait, there's more. We have guests, glorious, talented, hilarious guests who give bananas its pizzazz.

[00:42:57]

I might get sued from here to kingdom come for saying this, but the Bananas podcast has more pizzazz than any other podcast since 1992 and I don't care who knows it.

[00:43:07]

So whether you're bored at work or in your car, bored at home or buying boards at a lumber yard, it's time to stuff your ears with bananas. New episodes of Banana Slip on to Apple Stitcher, Spotify, or wherever you listen every Tuesday to put down your tacos and pick up our bananas.

[00:43:22]

Now with more pizzazz, bananas. So this week. I'm going to do. What were you eating? Can you hear it? No, no reading.

[00:43:44]

Oh, yeah. Like you just said that so slowly and staring straight ahead. I'm like, what's this going to be, Karen? Oh, so I am doing the zoot suit riots.

[00:43:56]

Oh shit. Yes. I don't know how this is. Never crossed my mind to do it. Like it's always just kind of been an afterthought and then I start looking into it and it's bananas. Yes.

[00:44:07]

And there's so much to know. It's our city year, Los Angeles that we know and love. So this is when Los Angeles experienced one of the most historically significant episodes of racial violence in the 20th century, known as the zoot suit riots.

[00:44:23]

Yeah. So there's so much good information out there on the Internet and podcasts and books. Some of them I got from the hundreds an article by Brandon Diaz, Smithsonian Dotcom, an article by Alex Gregory, L.A. Daily Mirror, AdCom. They have a bunch of old articles that you can read up there where there's an article by actual friend of the podcast, Allena Shatkin, who who's a friend of mine.

[00:44:48]

She's a really great food writer, but she wrote an article on l'Est about it.

[00:44:53]

Cool scholar historian Eduardo Obregon Pagone, who wrote Murder at the Sleepy Lagoon, the book about it. And then there's a podcast called Latino Rebels Radio. And they posted an episode from Latino Media Collective where they interviewed Professor Gerardo La Cone. And he's it's an incredible interview by Mercury News.com. History Channel has a documentary thought COH article by Robert Longly Curbed L.A. article by Elijah Challenge. I mean, there's just so much out there.

[00:45:29]

So did you. Now, may I ask, did you watch the film Zoot Suit starring Edward James Olmos? I did.

[00:45:37]

It's really it's so good. Yeah, I mentioned it at the end of the. And it's like I saw the theater with you.

[00:45:44]

Did you know it came. Yeah. Yeah. Eighty one. Eighty, eighty one. Yeah. I really remember is. Yeah.

[00:45:51]

But it was like if it was playing downtown we'd just go see it. We saw everything. Yeah. And he, I just remember Edward James Olmos in those zoot suits or whatever and that leaned back.

[00:46:04]

Well I think it just was the stylistic, fascinating kind of thing that I'd never seen or heard of before. It was like did they invent something new? Yeah. No, no, no, no. This is this is Latino history.

[00:46:16]

This this is origin shit. This is and I just had no fucking clue. And there's OK. And it goes it goes so deep. And I'm obviously not going to do a great job in ten pages of getting to everything. So please do read about it and look it up because it's, there's so many connotations that come along with this anyways. Yeah. So let's first start with a little history. The Mexican Revolution, which lasted roughly from 1910 to 1920, caused many Mexican families to emigrate to Los Angeles.

[00:46:48]

So much so that by the 1930s, new immigration from Mexico, migration from other states and the longtime presence of multigenerational residents dating back to the rancheros had made Los Angeles home to the largest concentration of Mexicans and Mexican Americans living in the US, the working class communities, most of which were concentrated to the diverse east side of Los Angeles. Everyone here knows that that's the East Side had, you know, was historically Mexican and Mexican-American families like Boyle Heights and Lincoln Heights were traditional, conservative and self-contained.

[00:47:24]

And actually so my family immigrated here from Eastern Europe to Los Angeles in the 20s as well, or late teens, early 20s. And Boyle Heights was kind of the only place where anyone who wasn't white could live. So, yeah, there was a big Jewish population there as well. And that's where my family's from.

[00:47:41]

So from Boyle Heights. Oh, now you see, those houses are rather amazing. Yeah. But a lot of farmland, too. I have old photos of my grandma and like the farmland there, it reminds me of something else.

[00:47:55]

And this could actually be in another Edward James Olmos film, Stand and Deliver, one of the great so other great 80s movie that. But as a teen I was like, I'm so inspired. Maybe I have to take calculus. There's no fucking way.

[00:48:07]

But yeah. And I guess it might be from that. It might just be, you know, other stuff I read. But it was some kind of thing where somebody yelling like, go back to your country, to Mexicans and Mexicans being like, bitch, this is ah we were here long before you. This is this part of Mexico. Like what are you talking about here in our country? That's that's part of the story. Right. So the Mexican-American communities in Los Angeles, HEADSPACES.

[00:48:35]

Decades of discrimination, you know, including not being allowed to patronize or even work in many of the businesses, so like even waiting tables at a restaurant they weren't allowed to do, they could be the busboy at the most and even they were expected to step off the sidewalk when white pedestrians passed them. So it was just incredible discrimination. By the 1940s, L.A. had a Mexican-American population of over two hundred and fifty thousand. And many of those families now had teenagers that had grown up in Los Angeles.

[00:49:07]

You know, so they this this is where they're from while their parents had been immigrants or had lived there for generations.

[00:49:14]

This is their hometown. This is where they're from.

[00:49:16]

And so they felt like the city was theirs as well. And what do teenagers do? They fuckin rebel. And these teenagers were no different.

[00:49:25]

So knownas pachucos. So pachucos are the youth of this counterculture and they're experiencing this huge cultural and generational gap between themselves and their parents. It kind of reminds me of like Rebel Without a cause, the way they were like, we don't want the norms that you're used to. We need to break out of what's going on, you know, and and pave our own way.

[00:49:48]

Yeah. And they were they were fucking over discrimination that their parents and grandparents had experienced. And they wanted to create their own identities, enter the zoot suit. So the fashion trend I didn't fucking know this at all had first been popularized during the 1930s in Harlem's jazz dancehall scene and predominantly worn by black teenagers.

[00:50:10]

So that's where it started. I didn't know that at all with black teenagers, super, you know, the jazz scene, the extravagantly styled two piece suit.

[00:50:20]

So just people who don't know it typically included that bright color fabric knee-length suit coat.

[00:50:26]

So it almost looked like a like an overcoat. But yeah, it was a suit coat down to the knees. They had accessibly wide shoulders.

[00:50:34]

It was very flamboyant and extravagant, the flowing pants that ballooned out at the knee and tapered really tight at the ankle. I read a thing that sometimes they were so tight that you had to put lubricant on your feet to get it over your feet.

[00:50:45]

So it was just like it was just this like it was it was purposely ostentatious. Yeah. You know what I mean? And part of the reason that it was so tight, it was also like function because they were jitterbugging, they were doing these amazing dances and so having flowing pants at the ankle would get in the way. So, yeah, that's pretty cool. That's where that came from. And these weren't suits you could buy at the store.

[00:51:09]

Either you had to go to a specialty tailor or you could take a regular suit that was two sizes too large and have that tailored right way. So, yeah, what I didn't realize about the style of dress is that the ostentatious ness and the flamboyant of the suit itself was a way of refusing to be ignored and dismissed as a minority. Hell yes. Right. So and this is such a youth culture thing of fuck you, I'm not fitting in and I'm going to look, you know, loud and get attention.

[00:51:40]

I'm not going to get into the background. Right.

[00:51:42]

I'm not going to step off the sidewalk because you're walking by.

[00:51:46]

I get to be like it's like I get to take up space and I get to be here as I am.

[00:51:51]

Exactly. Exactly. So minorities and people of color have always been expected to blend in and kind of be behind the scenes. You know, like they were menial workers. They were making everything comfortable for white people. But the rebellious youth refused to fade into the background. And that's where the what the zoot suit represented. Plus the amount of material and tailoring required to make them made them a luxury item.

[00:52:16]

So it was like a defiance against their association as a second class citizen, you know, they'd save up all their money and they'd have these luxury tailor made suits.

[00:52:26]

And we're essentially I wrote they were essentially balling shot calling.

[00:52:32]

One could say, if you're having a hard time relating to what this means, the truly the definition of balling and shot caller. Right.

[00:52:42]

And so the zoot suit becomes a symbol of counterculture and empowers young black and Mexican youth to express their individualistic identity within their culture and society. Fuck in both Cesar Chavez and Malcolm X were zoot suit wearers.

[00:52:57]

Now, right now, the female members of this counterculture are called pachucos and they wear tight sweaters and short for the times skirts that are like flared out. You can see them in the movie Zoot Suit.

[00:53:11]

They have fishnets, they have high hairdos and big earrings and heavy makeup. It was rumored that some of the pachucos would hide knives in there, like booth fonts. Yes, I've heard that. Sobre knives and razor blades sometimes I mean it. I hate violence. I'm against violence. That's bad ass.

[00:53:29]

It really well, because if you need it right, if you need it, throw it up in that air. That's right. Do it. Other pachucos.

[00:53:35]

Would actually where Zoot suits themselves, and that was a way to to rebel against gender norms, which is so ahead of its time and incredible that I know, I know.

[00:53:45]

So Catherine Ramirez, she wrote the book Woman in a Zoot Suit, wrote, quote, These youths refused to accept the racialized norms of segregated America with their flashy ensembles, distinct slang, extra cash generated by a booming war economy and rebellious attitude. Pachucos and pachucos participated in a spectacular subculture and threatened the social order by visibly occupying spaces.

[00:54:13]

Public spaces. Hell, yeah.

[00:54:16]

So in Los Angeles, pachucos adopt the zoot suit in order to brand themselves as rebels.

[00:54:22]

But white people see zoot suits as unpatriotic, and Zuiderzee, as they're called, quickly become branded as a negative thing. So this is partly due to the fact. So it's early 1940s.

[00:54:34]

We get into World War Two, US enters World War Two in 1941, and the rationing of resources and the commercial manufacture of civilian clothing becomes strictly regulated because both fabric and the time and energy is focused on the war effort. So.

[00:54:53]

So Zoot Suiters become a public enemy because of the amount of fabric it took to make the zoot suits because of racism, because that's an excuse for you to be racist.

[00:55:06]

Yeah. So bootleg tailors continue to make the zoot suits, which uses a lot of Rashon fabrics. And so white people view the zoot suit itself as harmful to the war effort. And the young people who wear them are seen as un-American and unpatriotic, which is just just an excuse for the racism.

[00:55:23]

It's always that it's unpatriotic. They're against the military. Exactly. It's all this. It's. Yeah, right.

[00:55:30]

Yes, 100 percent. Especially because by World War two, migration had peaked. So there was a lot of tension going on in Los Angeles. And don't forget that this was also a time when Japanese Americans were forcibly sent to internment camps. Japanese Americans who lived and thrived in Los Angeles were forcibly removed from their homes and businesses and sent to internment camps for the duration of the war.

[00:55:55]

So obviously, racism is rampant and blanket society and that this is just I think we've talked about this before, but when the Japanese were sent to this internment camps, all of the they many Japanese people lived in Southern California because they were here to grow the citrus groves, which used to be everywhere down here, just everywhere.

[00:56:18]

And like in Burbank, every other street has like a lemon tree or an orange tree.

[00:56:21]

Orange County is called Orange County.

[00:56:23]

It's it was Myal mile after mile. And when they in turn the Japanese, they stole their land, they stole their property. And people like Bob Hope went in and bought up all of this stolen land. And then it was just when those American citizens who happen to be Japanese got released from those internment camps, they just didn't have anything because it was it's so ugly.

[00:56:46]

It's that's it's one of the most disgusting historical times. And ah, well, they all are. There's so many there's so many to pick from.

[00:56:55]

We'll talk about all of them this vodka. OK, so throwing lighter fluid onto this fire is the fact that a naval school for the Naval Reserve Armory was built in Chavez Ravine. It's a it's a primarily Hispanic neighborhood. It's named after Julian Chavez, a rancher who eventually served as assistant mayor, city councilman and became one of L.A. County's first supervisors. So that area, you guys will know it's where Dodger Stadium is, but I'll get to later.

[00:57:24]

But Dodger Stadium was built in Chavez Ravine. The area had been home.

[00:57:29]

And it's it's kind of these beautiful rolling hills. It's this really lush, lovely place in Los Angeles.

[00:57:36]

It's right above Echo Park, if you've ever been here. And the area had been home to generations of Mexican-American families and the city used eminent domain, that motherfucking bitch to clear out some of those homes and then sailors that had so so they put the sailors in this Mexican-American neighborhood of Chavez Ravine. And then sailors had to cut through those neighborhoods to get downtown. So they'd be going downtown to drink. They'd come back through those neighborhoods. So, of course, there's going to be tension and there'd be catcalling.

[00:58:10]

There would be all kinds of, you know, tussles and that sort of thing happening stuff to start fights with.

[00:58:15]

Exactly. I think because things are still there, too. If you if you're driving off the five to get into Dodger Stadium to get tested for covid, now is what it's for.

[00:58:24]

Yeah, you'll see these old buildings and I think that's where it's from.

[00:58:29]

Wow.

[00:58:30]

Pretty dangerous. Thank you. Sean Penn, by the way, you know, Sean Penn is the reason all that covid testing is set up. Dodger Stadium kidding, I swear to God, I don't know that I don't know if he's financing it, if he organized it or what, but it that's his thing. And I know a couple of people who have done it and they say, you pull up in the line, looks insanely long. It's you're done like that.

[00:58:49]

I've heard that, too.

[00:58:50]

That's great. Yeah. Yeah. Everyone, be careful.

[00:58:54]

This is not a joke where I'm asked, OK, by the summer of 1943, tensions between the thousands of white U.S. servicemen stationed in and around Los Angeles and the pachucos are running high because we also have ports here. There was stationed in stationed in San Diego all along the coast up through L.A. There's a lot of servicemen here. Right. So many of the L.A. area servicemen view the Zetas as draft dodgers, despite the fact that nearly half a million Mexican Americans are serving in the military at the time.

[00:59:26]

And a lot of the zoot suited pachucos are teenagers. So like 12 through 16. So they're actually too young to even be eligible.

[00:59:34]

So it's false. Yeah.

[00:59:36]

OK, so before we get to the zoot suit riots, we have to go over the Sleepy Lagoon murder trial, which happens a year before the riots and is considered a precursor to them.

[00:59:46]

So Sleepy Lagoon was a real reservoir. And this is another thing is a lot of Los Angeles, which is now overdeveloped and crazy, was rule.

[00:59:56]

So like even Chavez Ravine was a rural role, hate rural, rural, rural, rural, rural.

[01:00:05]

So it's a rural reservoir. And that you said of Los Angeles and what is now commerce and that's a it's a popular swimming hole hangout spot lover's lane for Mexican Americans, partly because they're banned from segregated public pools.

[01:00:19]

So that's where they swim in the early hours of the morning. On August 2nd, 1942, a brawl breaks out at a birthday party near that in near Sleepy Lagoon. When police arrive, they find an unconscious and mortally injured twenty two year old named Jose Diaz on a nearby dirt road. He dies shortly after being taken to the hospital. His cause of death is inconclusive. Although he has severe blunt force trauma to the back of his head.

[01:00:46]

They don't. They think it's from being, you know, jumped or hit or it could be from a car accident. They actually he might have gotten thrown off a motorcycle. They don't know for sure. But authorities blame his death and the big fight that had happened on the at the party on the so-called, quote, Mexican youth gang problem in Los Angeles. So in the following days and there's amazing pictures from this, and I'm sure we'll post one on Instagram in the episode post the LAPD arrest 17 Mexican-American teens that are associated with the so-called 30th Street gang.

[01:01:22]

And the word gang is is really different back then. You know, it's it's not what you think of now. So this these kids who lived around 30th Street that hung out together are called a gang when really it's just teenagers hanging out together.

[01:01:36]

Yeah, there's no they're not getting jumped in. There's not there's not like the you have to go now, do violence or whatever.

[01:01:43]

It's just like kids that are all from the same neighborhood. I mean that's how my dad grew up in San Francisco. It's just like you kind of represented your neighborhood. Right. And then on the weekends you'd get drunk and street fight people. My dad used to say and he goes, oh, we couldn't find other people to fight. We just all fight ourselves because he had four brothers.

[01:02:02]

So. Yeah, man. Yeah, yeah.

[01:02:04]

Exactly. So thirty eight street gang quote. And despite lack of sufficient evidence, the young men are collectively charged with the murder of Diaz.

[01:02:13]

They're denied bail and they're held in prison and they become known as the Sleepy Lagoon defendants and they're paraded in front of the press. And part of the reason is because the LAPD, there's been a lot of false newspaper articles about this Mexican youth gang problem. And so LAPD is like, look what we're doing about it. And they parade them in front of the press to make it seem like they're actually taking care of it. But really, all it does is make people even more afraid.

[01:02:41]

So the by the end of the week, police have used the excuse of Diaz's death to further arrest hundreds of Mexican Americans in nightly sweeps for offenses that are just trumped up, like even possessing a draft card with an incorrect address. You can get arrested for unlawful assemblage like all of these. You know, they're just arresting people. Yeah.

[01:03:06]

And they single out youths in zoot suits.

[01:03:08]

In particular, cops line up outside of dance halls and they have like pokers that they with razor sharp blades that they use to rip the the peg top trousers of the zoot suit. So the boys as they come out. So there's a lot of there's a lot of like photos from back then of kids that have clearly been in fights and the trouser of their legs are ripped so the media doesn't help matters. And Prince. Incredibly racist headlines that history has shown were not supported by either facts or statistics, and in fact, the government statistics from that time found no increase in youth crime or delinquency.

[01:03:45]

So talking about it now, it's completely trumped up and it's basically just how dare you wear these outfits and say that you belong, stay in that it's your city, stay in your fucking lane, essentially, is what they're saying.

[01:04:02]

So in order to scare people, the press refer to the Zetas as a, quote, Mexican goon squad. And they called them delinquents and hoodlums.

[01:04:10]

And they also distribute false stories of Mexican boys prowling and wolf packs armed with clubs and knives and tire irons.

[01:04:17]

They say they're invading homes, peaceful homes. It's all it's all nonsense.

[01:04:22]

So after months of racist media coverage that goes nationwide, including a fucking Disney cartoon in which a Donald duck beats up another duck dressed in a zoot suit for being unpatriotic, fucking Disney. The Sleepy Lagoon defendants go on trial in October of nineteen forty two me.

[01:04:41]

There's never any testimony that anyone saw one of the defendants strike the vic like no one can put any of these defendants with or near the victim.

[01:04:54]

And some of the defendants can't even be placed at the murder scene. And yet Judge Freq permits the chief of the Foreign Relations Bureau of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Office to testify as a, quote, expert witness.

[01:05:06]

He says that Mexicans as a community, he testifies this in court, have a bloodthirst and a biological predisposition to crime and killing because of the culture of human sacrifice practiced by their Aztec fuckin ancestors.

[01:05:21]

Jesus Christ. Yeah, that's a stretch because the Aztecs haven't been around for a while, A and B.. Have you ever heard of Vikings? Have you ever heard of racial profiles?

[01:05:34]

Have you have you ever heard of every single joke human Klan has always had?

[01:05:44]

OK, the trial ends on January 13th, 1943, when three of the 17 defendants are convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison. Nine others are convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to five years to life. And other the other five defendants are convicted of assault.

[01:06:02]

So following the Sleepy Lagoon case, there's a lot of hate towards the Mexican-American community and U.S. servicemen, most of whom, by the way, grew up in other states. So they had had very little contact with people of Mexican and Latin descent. They're now streaming into Southern California to prepare for war and are getting into violent altercations with young Mexican-American suitors. And you also got to think they're fresh out of boot camp. They're also fucking young men, you know, and they have this they have what they think is this patriotism that allows them to fight for their country.

[01:06:39]

And they see these, you know, others as not American. And and it's just I mean, it's a what's it called tinderbox, you know? Yeah.

[01:06:49]

So but also but it is that thing of there there's people from small towns all over this country where they show up and instead of going, I'm new to the big screen.

[01:07:03]

Right. They start looking at people who have have parents have lived there for generations and say, hey, get a foreigner. I mean, like that's just that American ignorance that's so tragic because this entire country is made up of foreigners. Yeah, I hate to tell you.

[01:07:22]

I hate to tell you.

[01:07:23]

I love you to tell me about it. I hate I love to tell you.

[01:07:28]

Listen, New Zealand, can you get me and Karen and Stephen A.. Can we get in there, please?

[01:07:33]

OK, they're like Hayle now. You're only a week prior to the outbreak of what would become the zoot suit riots. A number of Mexican Americans dancing at the Aragon Ballroom in Santa Monica and Venice are attacked by a mob of American servicemen and bystanders after rumors spread that a sailor had been stabbed, which there's no police report to corroborate that. An LAPD officer later says that, quote, The only thing we could do to break it up was arrest the Mexican kids.

[01:08:02]

So that's that sounds like a setup.

[01:08:04]

Yeah, that almost sounds like a burning car at three p.m. on LeBron Fairfax or a guy with the umbrella breaking a fucking window at a hurricane. What is it? What was the place?

[01:08:17]

An auto parts that was in Minneapolis? Yeah. The big tall guy with the that covered him himself entirely and completely got caught because everyone's now on to that shit.

[01:08:27]

Yeah. Yeah. OK, so modern times. Modern times, it's the worst. I want to make clear that. These are normal teen teenagers who are rebelling, so, of course, they get into trouble, there's some escalated issues. They there are some that are, you know, looking to fights there. You know, it's the normal teenage thing that both you and I and everyone we know who's cool went through as teenagers.

[01:08:53]

So, you know, there were these there were cases of shit going down, but it was normal teenage stuff.

[01:09:00]

And that's the same thing as like in these in the protests, there will be a person here and there that's going to be like, I'm going to loot that store. And then that is what's manipulated and turned into this are all lies. People are. Yeah. And it's.

[01:09:14]

Yeah, right. So I don't want to seem like I want to make clear that I understand that. And it's partly from the fact that there's it's there's a wartime effort now that's growing and includes women being able to work in these labor in the labor force. So women and like mothers and grandmothers are now working in the labor force. So they're away from home. The fathers are either at war or they're working as well. The demands of the war effort made it so.

[01:09:43]

Both parents were working and out of the house for the first time and they're also working through the night. So kids are all right. You know, they have a freedom they didn't have before and they're not being looked after the same way because of that.

[01:09:56]

So and there but then there are also being watched in a different way, probably than they had before. You.

[01:10:02]

And police records at the time, though, show that there wasn't there is no escalation from regular juvenile delinquency. So it's not there is no proof that it was worse at the time it was normal. Juvenile delinquency, government statistics reported at the time found no increase in youth crime.

[01:10:21]

And also, the other thing that scared people is that the police officers, a lot of them are away at war as well. So people are already primed and ready to be scared of, you know, this fictitious mob that's going to come after them because they're not protected by the police.

[01:10:36]

So it's the crazy story in that so many little things had to add up to what happened. Right. And they fucking did. So all this tension is simmering.

[01:10:47]

Rumors are flying. And just the sight of a zoot suit at this point is enough to fucking piss people off.

[01:10:53]

Until one night in early June, an altercation between a sailor and a pachuco escalates into a brawl outside a bar in downtown L.A. and the sailor gets maybe gets knocked unconscious. We don't really know. There's a rumor that a sailor gets stabbed that's never corroborated.

[01:11:10]

And so the following day, the following night of June 3rd, around 50 sailors leave the armory flanked with makeshift weapons. And they want to get revenge for the fight from the night before. So at the Karmon Theater downtown in downtown L.A., they they get the house lights turned on and like fifty sailors, they roam the aisles looking for looters. They find two boys. Their ages are 12 and 13.

[01:11:36]

They know they yank them out of their seats and it says ignoring the protest of the patrons. So, you know, the people there were not fucking cool with it. The sailors drag them on stage. They rip the zoot suits off these kids and they beat the boys up and they set the Zugspitze on fire. Jesus Christ. And this is the start of the zoot suit riots.

[01:11:57]

And so this becomes a kind of a theme of humiliation and violence. The next night, over two hundred sailors grab a fleet of 20 taxicabs, which the taxicabs, cabs, the fare to to transport them and decided to take the fight into the Mexican-American neighborhoods of East Los Angeles and Boyle Heights. And the sailors cruise the neighborhoods they storeman to bars and cafes and theaters. There's nowhere that's safe. And, you know, violence continues.

[01:12:27]

On the night of June 4th and 5th, confrontations between servicemen and Souters occurring all over the city. And some military personnel start targeting anyone who looks to be of Mexican descent like they don't even care about zoot suits anymore. They're preserving.

[01:12:43]

Yeah. On June 5th, a group of Mexican musicians from El Paso are assaulted as they exit the Aztec recording company, even though they're not wearing zoot suits at all. The racist press encourages the servicemen. The Hearst own Herald and Express publishes inflammatory stories, including one that warned of five hundred Zetas planning to kill every cop they came across. You know, the Los Angeles Times applauds writers for teaching zoot suit as a lesson, but the media just happens to suppress any mention of the white mobs that are actually, you know, the fucking rioters.

[01:13:20]

They're the rioters.

[01:13:22]

And one Los Angeles paper prints a guide on how to dispute a suit, a zoot suit or so like Jesus Christ. However, a reporter for the city's black. A weekly newspaper, The California Eagle, named Charlotta Spears' Bass, she writes a piece blasting mainstream newspapers for race baiting and calls for black readers to stand with Latinos. And there is a camaraderie there with the zoot suits and these teenage rebellion. They understand that they're borrowing this culture, this jazz culture from another culture, and they all kind of stand together, which is good and credible.

[01:14:01]

And also another thing that could fuckin scare racists is, you know, comaraderie has you know what I mean?

[01:14:09]

Is is yes. Is marginalized people laying down any kind of biases or banding together and banding together.

[01:14:19]

I mean. Yeah, yeah.

[01:14:21]

On the night of June 7th, a crowd of 5000 civilians and gathered downtown.

[01:14:26]

So it's civilians and soldiers, Marines, sailors from other stations as far away as Las Vegas. They fuckin get on board and come down to like fight this fight. The witness, a witness to the attacks, a journalist named Carey McWilliams, writes, quote, Marching through the streets of downtown Los Angeles, a mob of several thousand soldiers, sailors and civilians proceeded to beat up every suitor they could find.

[01:14:53]

And then he says streetcars were halted while Mexicans and some Filipinos and Negroes, he says, were jerked from their seats, pushed into the streets and beaten with a sadistic frenzy. Jesus. And there's photos of this.

[01:15:06]

There's these two young boys sitting. One is clearly been beaten and unconscious. The other one's like hunching over him naked and there's a crowd circling them.

[01:15:20]

It's pure humiliation and violence.

[01:15:24]

A man named Vincent Morales and his girlfriend were at a show at the Orpheum Theater, which is a friend of the podcast From the Bottom or Sailor's, drag him out of the building, strip him of his clothing and beat him unconscious.

[01:15:37]

And when he comes to LAPD, officers arrest him for disturbing the peace.

[01:15:45]

It's so oppressive. It's so it's so upsetting. It's oppressive.

[01:15:49]

And if you think it's that much different from the way it is today, you're reading the wrong fucking newspaper.

[01:15:56]

Yeah. You know, yeah. Yeah. As rioting spreads into predominantly black neighborhoods like Watts, Latinos join with black residents to mount a resistance with hundreds gathering. There's a Coca-Cola plant on Central Avenue, I guess.

[01:16:11]

Years later, participant Rudy Laveaux tells the L.A. Times reporter, quote, Toward evening, we started hiding in alleys. Then we sent about 20 guys right out into the middle of the street as decoys. They started coming after the decoys. Then we came out. They were surprised. Oh, shit.

[01:16:30]

First time anybody was organized to fight back. So they fucking joined forces like the fuckin Xmen. The police arrest dozens of young Mexican Americans and one of them asks when one of them asks, why am I being arrested? The response is that they get savagely fucking beat with a nightstick, Harasta, that when the boy falls to the sidewalk unconscious, he's kicked in the face by police.

[01:16:54]

Please remember, these are 13, 14, 15 year old children, junior high students getting getting the shit kicked out of them by Wigram adults who have been trained in military combat.

[01:17:08]

Exactly.

[01:17:09]

So at midnight on June 8th, my birthday. Happy birthday again. Happy birthday to you. The Navy and Marine Corps finally intervene and declare downtown Somalia, you know, they intervene.

[01:17:23]

All this shit happens that they are like trying to restore order. So they say. But the fucking the the riot lasts until June 10th. Essentially, their official position is that their men were acting in self-defense. On June 9th, the L.A. City Council passes an emergency resolution that makes it illegal. Ready for this makes it illegal to wear a zoot suit on city streets, not to beat the fucking shit out of someone for their outfit.

[01:17:52]

And actually, it's really fucking interesting is that the War Production Board, which is a government agency that oversees industrial manufacturing, they they put out all these guidelines. They make it require that manufacturers use twenty six percent less fabric when they're making suits, which effectively criminalizes manufacturer of zoot suits, which is the first time any piece of clothing has ever been criminalized below the limit.

[01:18:19]

And so, you know, it keeps happening in other cities as well. There's no reported deaths, but more than one hundred and fifty people are injured in the L.A. riots and police end up arresting more than six hundred Mexican Americans on charges ranging from. Adding to vagrancy, only a few servicemen are arrested overall in total. The riots last 10 days from June 30, June 10th, and so no one died.

[01:18:45]

Wait, that's not 10 days. The rice lasted 10 days from June 3rd. No, to the June 13th. That's not 10 days. I'm going to say June 1st to June 10th.

[01:18:56]

Or it could seven days, but it's early June is like the note, you know, they ended. Who knows what the last day was, is what I'm trying to say.

[01:19:06]

Got you. What did you say? What are you saying? That no one died. You said there's no reported deaths reported, like officially. Got it right. So actual word in response to a formal protest from the Mexican embassy were like, I'm sorry, what the fuck? A special committee is appointed to determine the cause of the riots. And the committee concludes that racism is the root cause of the violence and also places the blame on the press for associating Zuiderzee with a supposed crime wave.

[01:19:35]

Good. Yeah, but L.A. Mayor Fletcher Bowron is intent on preserving the city's public image and declares that Mexican juvenile delinquents and racist white southerners are the ones who caused the riots. So we didn't do any wrong. He claims that racial prejudice is not and would not become an issue in Los Angeles.

[01:19:59]

No. Guys, come on. We got some news for you from the future.

[01:20:06]

Yeah, it's not a friend of your podcast. You admit it now.

[01:20:10]

Admit it now. The un-American Activities Committee attempts to prove that the the zoot suit riots were sponsored by Nazi agencies attempting to spread, you know, their Nazi propaganda between the United States and Latin American countries. But, of course, not surprising nothing comes out of that.

[01:20:30]

Yeah, but let's bookmark that for another time, because I feel like I couldn't be more relevant today.

[01:20:37]

Right in the aftermath. OK, so that's the zoot suit.

[01:20:40]

Riots in the aftermath, the Sleepy Lagoon trial.

[01:20:45]

No, that yeah, I thing the community organizers, the Sleepy Lagoon Defense Committee, SDC, and by 1944, they raise enough money to bring the case to the 2nd District Court of Appeals, wherein the judge, Clement Nye, overturns the verdict, citing insufficient evidence, the denial of the defendant's right to counsel and the overt bias of Judge Freq in the courtroom.

[01:21:12]

Nice. All 17 defendants are released in nineteen forty four from prison with their criminal records expunged. So that's post zoot suit riots. Officially, the death of Jose ideas from the Sleepy Lagoon. Murder remains unsolved, but before her death in nineteen ninety one for a former Shuka name, Lorina Encinas confides to her children that her brother Lewis, who's dead, was the one who beat and killed Jose about that night, which we don't know if it's true or not, but that was her confession.

[01:21:47]

There's so much more. Please look into the Chavez Ravine and see about eminent domain and what ended up happening that they fucking forcibly removed the remaining Mexican-American homeowners who lived there for generations. They ripped them out of their homes. They bulldozed them home.

[01:22:01]

They gave them fuckin pennies on the dollar of what their homes were worth. And they fought because they were going to redevelop the land and high end homes, which didn't happen.

[01:22:09]

And they ended up the city ends up fucking selling.

[01:22:12]

That very fuckin crucial land at a huge profit is sold to the owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Walter O'Malley, who starts building the Dodger Stadium in 1959. And that is a fucking blight on our fucking city Dodger Stadium.

[01:22:27]

And I. I really suggest people look into that.

[01:22:32]

I mean, it's a great fucking I love the Dodgers. Love the stadium. I love going to it.

[01:22:37]

It is an ugly time in history of what happened there. Horrifying. Yeah.

[01:22:41]

And it also hasn't changed too much in that. And I won't get into because I actually I've only very recently been reading about it, but is this is like kind of the spine of gentrification in that way where people that are from an area, especially in Los Angeles, in the way people migrate to this town, and then the actual families and the people that have lived there for a long time are forced out. And then they and because then those rents go up.

[01:23:08]

Right. And you've got all the people that are like, I'm going to be on a pilot this year.

[01:23:13]

Well, it's urban sprawl. And so when you put when you put entire cultures in a certain neighborhood and segregate them to that neighborhood, then when you want that neighborhood back, it's not like, you know, the city is naturally growing. You fucking steal that land back even though you told them that's the only place they could live.

[01:23:31]

You build freeways through their fucking homes so that the houses are worth less or they're divided from, you know, quote, better parts of town, you know, the whole L.A. freeway system. There was a recent L.A. Times article about it, how fucking racist and how race played into us building like the freeways make no sense here.

[01:23:51]

You're on the four or five and you want to get to fucking Hollywood.

[01:23:53]

It's going to take you forever. It's because of those those neighborhoods, because they were building them through.

[01:23:59]

They certainly weren't building them through Hancock Park. No, they weren't.

[01:24:02]

I'm sure they were building them through Inglewood. So, yeah, it's ugly. As for the zoot suit itself, although it did fall out of fashion, eventually, the part it played in challenging the entrenched roles of race, gender and class identities of mainstream America during World War Two has not been forgotten. In nineteen seventy eight, actor and playwright Luis Valdez wrote the play Zoot Suit.

[01:24:24]

It's the first play on Broadway made by someone of Mexican descent.

[01:24:28]

And I know and that got turned into a movie nineteen eighty one starring Daniel Valdez, who's so cute and sweet in it, and Edward James Olmos.

[01:24:36]

And actually in twenty sixteen Los Angeles County Museum of Art searched out a display as part of their life.

[01:24:43]

They had a men's like history of men's fashion, and it cost them nearly 80 grand to acquire like logit. Old school zoot suit, because they had been destroyed and kind of turned that way where it was so impossible to find them, probably.

[01:24:58]

Wow, there's been a push from historians to change the name from zoot suit riots, which fucking implies that it was the Zetas who were writing to the Saylor riots. But that hasn't stuck yet. And yeah, that's the story of the zoot suit. Riots in the Sleepy Lagoon murder.

[01:25:16]

Wow. The book that you can read if you want to know more is Murder at the Sleepy Lagoon. Zoot Suits Race and Riot and War Time. L.A. by Eduardo Bring on Pagan. Pagan is the last name.

[01:25:28]

Wow that's amazing. That's such a good history lesson. And living in the city, it's really embarrassing that I don't know anything about it. It's just that feeling every time it's the same feeling of of watching that O.J. special and learning all about the Watts riots.

[01:25:44]

We're just like, how come I you know, we don't know these things.

[01:25:49]

They don't teach us because they don't. Because it's because it makes us look bad and like that's somehow not OK to be like we did a really horrible thing.

[01:25:58]

And but we're learning from it, you know, because I think a lot of people aren't there yet and a lot of people in charge aren't there yet and. Yeah, or whatever. Great job. Thank you. That was really good.

[01:26:08]

That was a really thank you to Lily for all her research notes. That was a really that was that was an interesting one. I definitely get a lot of time researching that and I could have spent a lot fucking more time like there's so many good articles from every different angle.

[01:26:21]

Cool. I definitely want to look up. Did you say the Getty is the is the museum that got because they were doing the fashion. Sorry. No, no.

[01:26:30]

In 2016, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, they had a thing called Raining Men, Raining RMI, Jeanna and Raining Men, fashion in menswear from seventeen fifteen to twenty fifteen.

[01:26:44]

Oh shit. Sounds fucking cool. Yeah, I was going to say one thing really quickly. I texted my grandma to confirm because my mom side of my family has been here, I mean for generations and my grandmother's brother was actually a zoot suit her really.

[01:26:58]

But he entered the army. So I wonder if he and I now I want to like call my grandma and ask her, like, I wonder if maybe he avoided this because and they went on the road in L.A..

[01:27:10]

In Orange County, right? Yeah. Yeah.

[01:27:11]

Well, my grandma specifically grew up here. My mom grew up in Atwater Village, so. Well, like we grew up. Yeah. So I really now next time I see my grandma, I like I want to learn more of this because I want to know even to ask your grandma if she has a picture.

[01:27:25]

Yes. I would love to see an actual logit and yeah.

[01:27:29]

Morris family. What would that be. What's your mom's name.

[01:27:33]

My mom's maiden name is Valdés Raymond. Now that. Oh, my gosh. My grandfather and then my grandma, her maiden name was Flores. So Sara Flores.

[01:27:42]

Oh, my God. If she has a story, please get it on video or record it clear. Out of all, I'm so damned I can't ask.

[01:27:48]

My grandma was very old, but I'm so bummed.

[01:27:51]

I can't ask her if she remembers that, although I know she would just said, yeah, it was scary, you know. Yeah. That's incredible. Sveva Yeah. I got a tweet from a listener named Emma will hurt her at her Twitter handle is Emma Malia, Emma said, Hey, Karen Kilgariff, ever heard of the 1976 Chowchilla kidnapping? It's bananas. And I feel like I should have heard about it before. Emma, really good suggestion.

[01:28:23]

I thought I'd already done this. I thought, is this this isn't the chicken coop one? No, no.

[01:28:29]

OK, that's the that's the wine. What was that wine village.

[01:28:35]

Yeah. Yeah, right. Oh yeah. No, this is OK. So I have a very distinct memory of this report coming like my family. So it was nineteen seventy six. So I was six years old and we, my parents never caught on that. Maybe six year olds shouldn't watch the seven o'clock news along with them. Huh.

[01:28:59]

So and I paid a lot of attention to things. So when this report came out the night that had happened, I heard it and then would not stop asking my mom about it. And she was like, I don't know, we'll find out.

[01:29:14]

It was like I remember it so distinctly as you were murdering a baby murderer, you know, I was a baby. Well, and also it was that feeling of like, I'm sorry, I. I just came off a nice run of Sesame Street here. What are you talking about? This mass kidnapping. Hold on a sec.

[01:29:30]

And then, like, we're never going to hear about it again. You're never right. This should be the only thing we talk about.

[01:29:36]

You will not you will not sweep this under the rug patent gem because it's now on the table. And you need to explain it to me. And I do remember asking my mom, like, explain to me why. And she was like, I don't know, I'm tired.

[01:29:52]

So this is a Chowchilla bus kidnapping of ninety seven.

[01:29:55]

Oh, OK. I think. Yeah. Oh so good. It's so good Emma. Good catch. I swear to God I was like there's no way I haven't done this already because I such. But California legendary. OK, so there is a real you can go look on YouTube, you can watch the news footage as this story plays out in the news. Someone has compiled all of it.

[01:30:19]

This is this the buried one? Yep. This is horrific and insane.

[01:30:25]

And I'm so excited. I'm so excited for this movie to OK.

[01:30:29]

And just the majority of this information and like the shape of this story is from an episode of 48 Hours Lived to tell where they interviewed now grown children who were on this book.

[01:30:45]

Are they all just still screaming?

[01:30:47]

I mean, OK, so no, no, it's kind of amazing. OK, so aside from 48 Hours Lived to tell, which did an amazing and incredibly thorough job, and all of these people got to tell their own story. The best way to my favorite, favorite guy to experience Karen Kilgariff. Yeah.

[01:31:06]

You tell me what happened to you. That's all I care about. But the other sources, CNN, CBS News, SF Gate, Wikipedia. So here we go. So this basically starts July 15th. Nineteen seventy six. It's around four o'clock in Chowchilla, California. And the Dairyland Elementary Schools bus driver Ed Ray is dropping kids off after their summer school field trip is, I say, northern California, like near you know, Chowchilla is about fifty miles north of Fresno.

[01:31:38]

So centrally it's central. Yes, it's very central, but it's part of California. So it's it's like it's below Modesto. It's above Fresno. It's right there on the ninety nine. Ninety nine on land. And it's all fun. I mean it's the Dairyland Elementary School, it's all cows. And that's also it really gets me because all of this footage from nineteen seventy six, it looks like this, things that are in my head is childhood memories because it all looks the same as where I up to have just like rolling hills with oak trees and big cow pasture.

[01:32:14]

There's a brown lots of brown shades, it's lots of brown. And as the people in the 48 hours lived to tell, tell you and describe it, it Chowchilla was it had less than five thousand people living in it. I got it was a tiny cow town. As one of the guys describes it.

[01:32:33]

People did not lock their doors at night. They didn't know. They couldn't even imagine why they would have to. It was kind of out in the middle of nowhere. So it's central central California. Yeah. And people in central California, they have accents like they're from the south. It's really funny. It's like that part of it's very agricultural and people it's like they're there for generations with the same wonder.

[01:32:56]

They came from, like the Dust Bowl. So it just kind of stopped.

[01:33:00]

Yeah, I think so, yeah. I think that's what it is like, that's what they say. My mom talked, but there's like a lot of that kind of accent where you're just like, we're in California.

[01:33:08]

This is amazing. So it's my it's one of my favorite things because California is gigantic, but there's definitely a lot of the like A.

[01:33:16]

S in or Midwest in it. So element, you know, I love it. OK, yeah. OK, so Edra is the bus driver right now. These kids, their age range is from five years old to 14 years old. This is this is summer school. Right. So they're just it's like a group of kids that are just doing stuff while their parents are at work. And on this day, the field trip was to the town swimming pool.

[01:33:42]

That was at the Chowchilla fairgrounds there. Take me there. You can see it.

[01:33:47]

Everything is golden. It all looks like it's like everything's all this news footage looks like it's being shot at golden hour, but it's like, no, this is just what it looked like back then. It was so weird. There's one little girl who goes through this whole experience wearing her bathing suit.

[01:34:02]

So it's that kind of thing where, like, they left the pool and they got on the bus, like wearing the like, get out. No, you have to get out or you're going to get in trouble, Jennifer.

[01:34:11]

And so, like, it's like ran the trip. They ran on the bus.

[01:34:15]

It was a boiling hot day because central California in July and the kids talk about how they remember driving the bus they loved and they all called him Edward.

[01:34:28]

He had been the bus driver in that town for twenty six years, I believe. Yes. Twenty six years. So I'll go back to this a little bit. Ed is just beginning the route home. So he's he's dropped off a couple kids just at the beginning of the drop off route. He approaches a T stop intersection and there he sees a broken down white van that's blocking the intersection. So right now, at this point, there's twenty six kids on the bus.

[01:34:57]

Twenty seven people total, including Ed. So Ed Ray has like lived his almost his entire life in Chowchilla. He's been the school the school bus driver for the past twenty six years. He knows everyone in town as well as he knows these country roads that make up his daily routine. So when he sees this white van blocking the intersection, he doesn't think twice about pulling right up and opening the bus door to see which of his neighbors might need help.

[01:35:22]

Because that's the kind of town it was.

[01:35:24]

Yeah, it was. It's kind of out in the middle of nowhere. So it's not like it's like, oh, strangers. You know, that's not anyone's first thought.

[01:35:32]

Plus, it's like if you keep driving, then that person's fucked. It's not like they have cell phones to call. It's like you're going to be the only car in four hours.

[01:35:39]

Maybe I'm telling you this footage from 1976, you might as well have it looks like it's the turn of the century. It's so old looking and it's so funny to me because, like, it doesn't seem that long ago to me.

[01:35:54]

Yeah, but when you see this footage, it's like, yeah, it's it's there was there was if you had to if your car broke down in the middle of the afternoon on a July day and Chowchilla, you would be boiled to death. Yeah. Yeah.

[01:36:08]

OK, so so Ed pulls right up and opens those doors to see what's going on and who needs help. And as he does, two men climb onto the bus wearing pantyhose, pulled over their head bank style, which is so scary.

[01:36:21]

If you were a little kid and one's holding a sawed off shotgun at Ed and tells them to get into the back of the bus, then that mass man turns the gun onto the kids. As the second man gets into the driver's seat and begins to drive, a third man is following in the white van that they pretended was broken down.

[01:36:42]

So with Ed and all the kids on board, these three masked men have just hijacked a school bus full of children.

[01:36:50]

OK, so, yeah. So one of those kids is nine year old Jennifer Brown, who is in this episode of 48 Hours Lived to tell. She's she's an amazing it's one of those things where they keep showing pictures of her at nine years old because there's so many pictures of these kids and she looks the the face is exactly the same. And she has this kind of like so she's the one that says when Ed walks to the back of the bus, he says to all the kids, really harsh.

[01:37:21]

He says, just be quiet, sit down, do what they say.

[01:37:24]

And she had never heard him talk to the kids like that before. So she knew. She knew. That's how she knew something was really wrong.

[01:37:30]

So the hijackers take off down the country road and they eventually drive down into a dry riverbed in the Barondess SLU, which is seven miles outside of town. And basically they drive down into this area.

[01:37:47]

And there's, of course, you can see pictures there that this SLU had all these trees and Bambu that were like double high, a normal school bus.

[01:38:00]

What the hell is a slew? Someone from suburbia, it's lose like a river bed, it's basically and I believe I didn't look it up, but I think it's like when they make a river bed cement, right. So they make sure that, like, water can go, like runoff can go or whatever. It's not just a river.

[01:38:17]

OK, but you know what, Hailu, you heads out there, SLU Arenas. I'd love to hear how wrong I am. Educate me because I don't feel like it. OK, so so the weird thing is these, because these bamboo trees are so high, they drive this bus in and it's perfectly hidden. You can't see it at all. So they park the bus. The third driver from the white van now backs a second van that's green up to the bus doors.

[01:38:47]

He opens the rear doors of the van and that reveals an interior of a van that's been reinforced with wood paneling.

[01:38:55]

And all the windows have been blacked out and there's no ventilation that's been added. So they've customized the inside of this van so that no one can see in or out. And the and basically that it's it's a little cell. And they basically tell the kids to jump from the bus into the back of the van. So no footprints go on the ground and they can't see that anyone has been there.

[01:39:20]

What the Y will tell us.

[01:39:22]

Yes. So so at gunpoint, Ed and all the kids have to jump from the bus to the van. They fill up one van, drive it away, pull the other one up, and the rest of the kids have to have to do the same thing in the second van. I believe that Ed was in the second van and six year old Larry Park, who he's six when this happens. He's obviously an adult when he's telling his story. He says that as he walked toward the man holding the shotgun, the barrel started looking like they were getting so big that they were going to swallow him up.

[01:39:57]

He's six years old. He's a baby. He's a baby. So. So Jennifer isn't a nine year old. Jennifer isn't in the first van. She gets put into the second van and she gets separated from her 10 year old brother, Jeff. And that's when she starts really getting scared. She keeps telling her friends, I want I want Jeff.

[01:40:19]

None of the kids know what's going on. Like, it's couldn't be more frightening and or more like getting loaded from their bus into the back of a dark van.

[01:40:28]

And they're just in pitch black and they're jammed in there. They're jammed in. Yeah. So meanwhile, Jennifer and Jeff's mom, Joan Brown, she comes home from work at 2:00, what would normally be a house full of kids waiting for her to get home from work. And instead, as she says it, quote, There's no peanut butter on the counter. There's no chairs out there. They just weren't there. So because it's the 70s, they wait a little while to see.

[01:40:58]

And it is the thing where it seems so bizarre now. But like this was the this was the era where your parents would be like in the summertime would be like go outside until the street lights come on totally like it was all kids in that very self-regulating.

[01:41:12]

Sometimes you just go to your friend's house for dinner and they wouldn't they'd be mad at you, but you wouldn't. Yeah. Yeah, right.

[01:41:18]

No cell phones, no helicopter, anything. This was when it was like free range children.

[01:41:25]

But after a couple hours, parents start calling each other and realizing that almost none of the kids from summer school made it home that day.

[01:41:36]

Only those kids that got dropped off right at the beginning. So the parents. So it takes about it almost two hours.

[01:41:42]

The parents call the police, but two hours in the 70s is a modern day almost immediately to stop judging.

[01:41:48]

OK, so so police and parents go out together and they retrace the bus route, but there's no sign of any of the kids. And it isn't until police start a search by air that they spot the bus in the SLU hidden in the bamboo. So Madera County Sheriff Ed Bates and his deputies rushed to the scene, but the bus is abandoned. There's no footprints on the ground. They don't really know what's happened, but they are able to track the van's tire marks and they make it clear that they make it clear what happened, that someone pulled up those vans.

[01:42:28]

OK, so now they know that basically all those kids that were on the bus have been loaded into another vehicle, that they don't know what it is and have been transported somewhere.

[01:42:39]

So Sheriff Bates calls Governor Jerry Brown and asked for the help of the FBI immediately, thank God.

[01:42:47]

So 30 FBI agents are called in to assist, assist the investigation. Meanwhile, Ed, in the kids are being driven into jampacked vans. The windows are blacked out. There's. No ventilation, and they can't see where they're going. It's a brutally hot July night at this point, there's no food or water and they don't let anyone take bathroom breaks and they drive for almost 12 hours.

[01:43:16]

Yeah. So you can imagine there's kids that throw up from the motion sickness of God not being able to see out. And it's a bumpy it's bumpy country roads. There's, of course, kids crying. There's lots of crying. And then other kids, the older kids are trying to keep, you know, keep everybody, like, keep kids from crying. So they start singing the hits of the day. They all sing Boogie Nights together. They sing Love Will Keep US Together, which was never not on the radio back then.

[01:43:48]

Well, the fucking hours, 12 hours of being in the back of a car, I mean, I was I drove 15 minutes over the weekend and I almost threw up.

[01:43:57]

That's like, oh my God. Yeah. And little kids that are scared and, like, trying to comfort each other. At one point, the older kids have everybody's saying if you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. But they change the lyrics to if you're sad and you know, which I fucking love because they're not being creepy, like nothing's happening.

[01:44:18]

It's like, no, no, no, we're all freaking out. Let's let's sing the song. So that's the new that's our new quarantine song. Hey, look, if you're sad and you know it, clap your hands. You might as well. That's so. I love that.

[01:44:30]

OK, OK. So finally, around three thirty in the morning, this van comes to a stop. It's now Friday, July 16th. Early in the morning, the one of the vans back door opens and the masked men yank it out first and then shut the door. And then the kids just sit there waiting minutes past. They don't know what's going on. Ed's gone. And then, you know, and then the door opens again and one of the men reaches in and just grabs the nearest kid to the door.

[01:45:01]

And they do this. This is how they unload both vans. So there's little kids just sitting there waiting. They don't know if people are getting taken out. They don't know anything. They're just sitting there waiting to see what's going to happen. It's got the idea of it is horrifying and there's a really sad moment. OK, so the oldest boy is this 14 year old boy named Mike Marshall. And he is one of the he's the last kid in the van with a five year old girl, and he doesn't want to send her out by herself.

[01:45:36]

And he's making they're making them come out one by one. So he has to literally, like, pry her hands off of his arm so that he can get out.

[01:45:45]

And he he's I mean, he talks about how horrifying a decision it was because he was like, I can't send her out there alone. I have to go out before her, but then I don't. Then the five year old is left in the van by herself just to scare.

[01:45:59]

Like, you don't know which one's scarier yet because. Right. You have an excuse.

[01:46:03]

Yes, I think so. OK, so when they when they do lead the kids out, they realize they get walked from the van over to basically what looks like a ladder going into a hole in the ground. There's they're out in the middle of nowhere. It's kind of Sandy. There's there's no it's like pitch, you know, it's the middle of the night. And Jennifer Brown says that when she came up on that ladder, she remembers thinking to herself, oh, they're sending us to hell.

[01:46:33]

And so then they go down the ladder and realize they're in an underground bunker and all the kids and Ed have been loaded down there. So every kid that gets down the ladder then realizes no one's been taken off and killed. So they all are like happy. And, you know, they're all like it's reunited. They're all together again. The problem is, though, it's pitch black down there. It's they can't see a thing, but they like their eyes adjust.

[01:47:02]

They realize there's a table that's got some jugs of water on and some food. And then there's these kind of like slapped together kind of toilets that are built in these boxes that are where the wheel wells are just like a hole in the ground.

[01:47:21]

There's a hole that they like built just so people could have somewhere to go.

[01:47:27]

And but the good thing is they can hear fans spinning so that they know there's some sort of planned ventilation. So fuck. Yeah.

[01:47:37]

So then this is like this is like the the prequel to Soar.

[01:47:42]

It feels like it's it's horrifying. I mean imagine if I saw was twenty six kids. Oh it's so, it's so awful. So basically once all the kids and Aitor down inside the camp the kidnappers throw down a roll of toilet paper, pull up the ladder and say we'll be back for you, then they cover the open. With what everyone believes to be a manhole cover, it's very it's like it sounds like one, it's really heavy. So this is not how I thought it was.

[01:48:11]

I always pictured in my you know, I hadn't read enough. So I pictured them in the school bus being buried in the school bus. This is this is fucking crazy.

[01:48:19]

Yeah. No, they yeah. They transferred them into another thing. And this is the horrifying part. So they're down there. The manhole cover closes, they're standing in the dark, and then they hear of material being poured on top of whatever they're in.

[01:48:33]

So they realize they're being buried alive.

[01:48:36]

So back in Tarcoola, the parents are gathered at a command post that's set up at the fire station. Of course, everyone, the whole town is worried sick. Everyone knows about it. Everyone's trying to figure out what's going on. The police are trying to, like, formulate how anyone could kidnap twenty six school children, let alone who would do it, let alone why they would do it.

[01:49:03]

They just are baffled by all of it. And of course, this story makes the national news. So that night, Walter Cronkite's opening like, oh, I'm sorry, I don't know if it was opening, but this is how I'm picturing because this is how I remember it.

[01:49:18]

Yeah. Walter Cronkite going. Twenty six schoolchildren and their bus driver have vanished. Anguished parents, President Ford and hundreds of police are asking the question, where are the children?

[01:49:30]

I mean, six year old Karen should not have fucking heard. That first scares me.

[01:49:35]

I'm over here playing with matches.

[01:49:36]

What's this now, Mommy? Karen, go play with your matches. Don't worry, LT.

[01:49:44]

It's too late. And then I just let one of her cigarettes I already saw mother. It's ruined.

[01:49:50]

OK, so it's declared to be one of the biggest kidnappings in US history, but no one's heard from the kidnappers or has any idea who they might be. So they don't understand that. You would hope it would be ransom so you could pay it and get your kid back. But that's not that's that's terrifying.

[01:50:09]

Yeah, they're just everyone's holding their breath waiting. But that's but then calls pour in to the Chowchilla Police Department from all around the world, well-wishers, reporters. I mean, this is like it's it's blowing up.

[01:50:24]

So 12 hours go by. People wait. They're just waiting for word in Chowchilla, well down in the hole as the kids, like, come to call it, things get go from bad to worse. So they've run they've run out of food there. They have a little bit of water left. And the the fans that they could hear that were providing ventilation have stopped.

[01:50:53]

Now that this is kind of fascinating and I love this kid, I love this kid, whoever he is, because he doesn't get named. But there's so they basically there's blocks that are on the ground that these four by four pillars, there's four by four pillars kind of around every in each corner of this box that they're in. And there is basically holding up.

[01:51:19]

It looks like it's holding up the ceiling and and kind of like they're bracing this, the sides of it, and holding the ceiling up. So one of the boys starts kicking at these blocks and just out of pure fury and fear and everything. And with every block, every kick, he's moving the blocks.

[01:51:40]

And when the blocks move this stealings, that means the beam is moving and then the ceiling starts to cave in a little bit. And the walls of the of the box that they're in, they start to bow inwards and dust and dirt start streaming in. So everyone's terrified that the ceiling is going to collapse. But add in the older kids, they get together and they decide together if we're going to die, we're going to die trying to get out of here.

[01:52:08]

So in the oldest boy, Mike Marshall, they decide they're going to stack up these mattresses that are have laid all around like the outside on all the kids are just have just been laying on them. They stack them up so Mike can get climb up them and reach the hatch from the top to the style.

[01:52:28]

Right. They get up to that manhole cover.

[01:52:31]

But then when Mike gets up there, he tries to push it and it's like it's so heavy he can barely he can barely push it. He basically says then he talks about it. He he's like got his he looks like a classic, like rancher. You know, he's got like his his cowboy shirt on in his hat and his whole thing. And he was like, I'm getting I'm giving it everything I got. And the kids are cheering me on, you know.

[01:52:58]

Come on, Mike. You can do it.

[01:52:59]

You can do it. And all of a sudden it they say it moved, it moved so that this this cover that he's pushing against, he gets he is able to move it to the side a little bit so that there's a hole about half a foot wide. And basically he has to climb up through that hole and then figure out whatever's up there. Like the guys could be standing there with the guns. They don't know what's up there, but they're like, but we got we have to get out of here because the ventilation, there's no water like we have to get out of here.

[01:53:35]

So Mike, at 14 years old is like, I'll go up there. So he gets up out of the hole and realizes he's standing in a little box and the box has dirt in it and it has two truck batteries that were on the manhole cover. And that was the reason it was so crazy heavy. But once they started moving it, they knocked the batteries off and they knocked this dirt off. So then he's in this box and he's like, so he just starts beating on the sides of the box and realize it's just this fabricated wooden box that was covering over the hole.

[01:54:11]

He beats his way out of the box and oh, my God, I'm fucking OK.

[01:54:18]

Yeah, I know this isn't fucking eye of the tiger fucking parkour. Extreme fucking sports with little kids, Edam kids and big kids.

[01:54:28]

And then Ed himself, who's the school bus driver, know who I'm picturing Ed as is on Bob's Burgers. Who's the guy who's Teddy?

[01:54:38]

Teddy. Yes, that's exactly what he looks like. I'm not joking. Yes, totally looks like him without the beanie. OK, so Mike is like punching these wooden like walls and then he breaks through and Larry Park, the six year old, he describes seeing Mike Punch and this ray of sunshine come down into come down from the box, down into the hole. And he says looking up, the dirt was falling through the hole and the sunshine made it glymour.

[01:55:13]

And it looked like shooting stars to him.

[01:55:15]

Like all of a sudden they were like, we're out.

[01:55:17]

So after and this is this is the craziest story I've ever heard in my life. And it's it just gets crazier, too. So Mike steps out first outside the box to make sure the coast is clear. He doesn't see anyone. They see hills and trees. And it all looks kind of the same. He and Ed help all the kids get out of the hole by the time they get out. It's eight o'clock on July 16 in the morning.

[01:55:48]

They have eight pm sorry. It's eight p.m. on July 16th. They've been in captivity for sixteen hours.

[01:55:56]

And Jennifer, when she finally gets outside the nine year old, she looks around and looks back at where they were and says it looked just like a sand dune with like a little rectangle and a ladder. Yeah, not the ladder, like a little rectangle. But other than that, there was nothing around. She said if they were just if they just stayed in there, no one would have ever known they were down there.

[01:56:19]

So they just start, they hear in the distance engine sounds and whirring and metal and they don't know if that's where their captors are or what, but they just start walking toward the sound everyone together. And when they get up close to it there, they realize they're at a quarry.

[01:56:37]

And so it's all those like those machines that they're called that you see around machines big the big worry quarrier, Achara, Iser.

[01:56:48]

So these guys in hard hats, imagine if you're this guy that you've got the night shift at the quarry and you turn around and there's twenty six kids that are like that look like they I mean it's when you see these these pictures, two of these kids later on, it's unbelievable.

[01:57:07]

But they basically walked up to these guys that worked at the quarry, said Ed Gloria and Ed said, we're from Chowchilla and we're lost.

[01:57:18]

But of course they knew who they were dead. Was this the huge story? Yeah. So do we know where they are? Are we allowed to talk about where they are at this point?

[01:57:25]

Yes, they at this point, even though they've been they drove for 12 hours.

[01:57:29]

They were in Livermore, California, which is no, it's actually only a couple hours up the ninety nine and over. But they didn't go straight there, they just drove around.

[01:57:39]

They were trying to confuse the kids or let time pass or was.

[01:57:43]

Yes they yeah they wanted to make sure no one knew where they were. So they were basically 100 miles northwest of Chowchilla.

[01:57:52]

Livermore is this city. When I'm driving from L.A. to Petaluma, you go up the five and then finally when the five is up. By the East Bay, you you basically take a left off the five and now you're going into the East Bay and Livermore, is that for it's pretty much the first big city that's off of that, the 580.

[01:58:15]

So it's kind of right there. So they get the police are called, obviously, and they get there. They take pictures of all the kids. And this is in that 48 hours, they just start showing these kids that are like wide eyed and kind of dirty.

[01:58:28]

And, you know, they have stuff on their face and they're like, look like they all cried out. Then they load them into a bus.

[01:58:35]

No. So 70s. Listen to this shit. Listen, how 70s, like 70s were pro trauma. They were like, we gotta if we're here, let's do it.

[01:58:45]

Double down on those and double down on like they get these kids onto a bus and take them all to the Santa Rita rehab center, which is a local jail.

[01:58:54]

But it had. Yes. So Jennifer talks about driving onto the grounds and being like, oh, I think we're in trouble.

[01:59:03]

Yeah, but but basically, once they get there, it's great because they they don't you know, they get inside there. There's they're in a classroom now. So basically, it was just the one spot that they had nearby that could hold all of them up and like basically keep the situation contained so they could interview everybody and see what was going on. So the kids are led into a classroom. They're given soda and apples.

[01:59:26]

So the healthiest snack after fucking twenty eight hours of being. Yet they are also given jumpsuits from the jail to change into adult jumpsuits. So all these kids and they were of course, really little. So some of them had to roll the pant leg in the arms up and then some of them are just letting them flap around.

[01:59:48]

But when you see those pictures, these kids are so happy to be you know, there's there's two female police officers that are right in there with them and holding the little ones. And like there they all are, like, we're safe, we're all safe and we're all together. Oh, my God.

[02:00:04]

Yeah. So doctors arrive quickly, check everyone out, make sure that no one is hurt or, you know, dehydrated, whatever, aside from some bruises and some scrapes.

[02:00:14]

Luckily, everyone's OK. Physically incredible that no one's hurt.

[02:00:19]

It's incredible.

[02:00:20]

It's an unbelievable. And it's I bet you they must have been dehydrated to some degree because also it's a summer day. It's like.

[02:00:29]

And the crying that's. Yes. And so much crying. So but, you know, everyone's fine. The police question Ed and the kids for four hours before finally.

[02:00:40]

Yeah.

[02:00:41]

Please or seriously, please, before finally putting them on a Greyhound and two buses after the two buses ride.

[02:00:52]

Stop it. Stop it. Yeah. Stop doing. They can't they didn't know. It's it's like back when the doctors used to first of all, doctors were barbers and barbers would just bleed you. Like if you had a fever, they'd just like bleed them. Yeah, that's that's how they did stuff back then. But these kids, they picked the the pictures of them on the Greyhound in there, they're still in their white jail suits. It's the cutest.

[02:01:15]

They're all now they're all stoked and they're fine. And at this point, it's 4:00 in the morning, they get a police escort while they're on this Greyhound bus, kind of back down to Chowchilla and they arrive at sorry, they arrive at 4:00 in the morning. So they probably left it to or whatever the bus pulls into Chowchilla. And as the kids get off, they're escorted by the police through a big group of news reporters. You see Mike Marshall, the oldest, he's so cute.

[02:01:45]

He's such a 70s, like cute.

[02:01:47]

Are we talking like he'd he'd be played by Matt Dillon, a young Matt Dillon, who he would be? Yes.

[02:01:53]

He was definitely in the Matt Dillon spectrum of a cute kind of Italian, probably maybe either Hispanic or Italian or Portuguese. Yeah. And he's and one of the reporters yells, Hi, Mike. What was the pit like? So like all these all these people that these kids have no idea who any of them are.

[02:02:15]

They all know them by name. That's how these people have been following this story and reporting the story. When Eddie Ray steps off the bus, he's met with a round of cheers and applause.

[02:02:27]

So the investigators return to the burial site at the end at the rock quarry and they dig up a moving truck that has been buried in this big open field at the rock quarry site. And they start looking for clues. That's the weirdest part. It's a moving truck that looks like it's from nineteen sixty five. So it's got the big round wheel wells and the trailer is like kind of separated from the back. So they took the work that it took to bury a truck that big.

[02:02:59]

Yeah, it's really big. And plan everything out. It must have taken weeks, if not months, so investigators immediately surmise whoever is behind this must have had access to this quarry somehow.

[02:03:13]

So this is now this is the part where it flips over because it's so sinister. It's so scary. Like you said, it's like, what is this for? Now we're going to get into the slapstick insanity aspect of this story because it it boggles the mind.

[02:03:30]

OK, so of course, if they go well, I wonder if it's someone that has connections to the quarry. How about the quarry owner's son, 24 year old Fred Newhall Woods, who has a criminal record just two years before him and two of his buddies, brothers Richard James and Richard Schoenfeld, they were all arrested together for Grand Theft Auto.

[02:03:54]

Yeah, Fred and James worked together selling used cars, and they were arrested teaming up with Richard to steal one. But they all got away with that without ever serving jail time. They just received fines and probation because all three of them were from rich white families.

[02:04:11]

How quickly did it take them to get to investigators to zero in on them?

[02:04:15]

Was it like like maybe one day, like two? So obvious that.

[02:04:20]

Well, because they just stood back, they're going you the energy time, whatever it took to bury a full size moving van moving trailer.

[02:04:30]

Yeah, yeah. It's an inside job. It's a quarry inside job.

[02:04:34]

Like I said, like I'm not I'm not into like Grand Theft Auto, but I feel like if you get caught planning it instead of even doing it, you're not very good at it.

[02:04:43]

And you should quit it. Yeah, for sure. For sure.

[02:04:47]

OK, so authorities review the course of security footage. They find that the three had spent months leading up to the kidnapping, digging a massive hole at the quarry. And security guards do confirm the identity of Fred Woods. So they they they all said, yeah, that guy's been around here a ton.

[02:05:06]

So police go to Fred's dad's estate. These motherfuckers are rich, like rich.

[02:05:13]

I mean, he owns a quarry like that's fuckin Fred Flintstone, right?

[02:05:18]

Yeah. They get to the dad's estate and in and there they find the shotgun that was used in the kidnapping. They find papers detailing a kidnapping plan. It literally they show they have the the police footage in this and they show a piece of binder paper. Oh, no, it's yeah. It's the it's the assistant D.A. now who pulls this piece of binder paper out of an old box. And it just has an all caps the word plan written at the top.

[02:05:50]

No joke. I'm laughing because nobody died. But yeah. The fucking fact that they're so stupid and did this so poorly, so poorly and strangely OK.

[02:06:03]

And this is the reason my mom couldn't explain it to me. She was like, because when you're on the other side of it, it's like, this is so sinister. This is so horrible. Well, OK, so so it's his plan. At the top of the page, the ransom note was never delivered. It demanded five million dollars in exchange for the return of the twenty six children on the bus. But but it was still they still had the ransom note.

[02:06:28]

No one ever. No. Never received it, I'll tell you. So arrest warrants are issued for Fred Woods, James Schoenfeld and Richard Schoenfeld. And Richard turns himself in on July twenty third, eight days after the kidnapping. But James and Fred both take off in different directions. James zigzags all over the western United States. Fred tries to head north for Canada two weeks after the kidnapping. James is apprehended in Menlo Park on the morning of July 29th.

[02:06:57]

And Fred is caught in Vancouver trying to go over the border. British Columbia on the same night.

[02:07:04]

They don't want you, man. No. Yeah, don't worry about it. And they and they don't want us to this day. To this day, during their interrogations, the kidnappers reveal that they had been plotting this crime for a year and a half.

[02:07:16]

And what what they were supposed to do was after they had kidnapped the bus full of kids, they were supposed to call the Chowchilla Police Department and demand their ransom and then say, we're sending you the note.

[02:07:34]

But the story had already broken world wide so they couldn't get through.

[02:07:38]

The phone lines were busy, so they decided they were going to wait it out and they took a nap. And when they woke up from their nap, they turned on the news and Ed and all the kids had escaped.

[02:07:53]

So listen, I'm going to make a fuckin educated guess that meth was involved way or just really shitty weed. I mean, we're just kind of they were just confused. Stems and seeds, man.

[02:08:06]

Yeah. Just not enjoying themselves and confused when asked for a motive, James Schoenfeld explains. Despite being from wealthy families, all three men were in debt. Of course, he says, quote, We needed multiple victims to get multiple millions and we picked children because children are precious. The state would be willing to pay ransom for them and they don't fight back.

[02:08:29]

So these guys bungled their plan so badly that they had no choice but to plead guilty to. Twenty seven counts of kidnapping for ransom and robbery in July of 1977.

[02:08:43]

And they're also charged with eight counts of bodily harm for the physical injuries that some of the kids sustained. But their lawyers advised them they're facing life in prison no matter what. But if they're found guilty on the charges of bodily harm, they'll have no chance for parole. So the men plead not guilty to the bodily harm charges. Many of these kids, including Jennifer and Michael, testify against these kidnappers in court.

[02:09:12]

And I tell you, there is video of this little girl, this nine year old Jennifer, who talks about and they had all the kids make retell the story on tape afterwards, like for themselves to basically, like, process the story.

[02:09:29]

So they have tape of these children at that age telling what happened that they play in this in this 48 hours. It's really amazingly done. So basically, they talk about the horrible conditions of the whole and the chronic nightmares and PTSD that they now suffer from. Their testimonies lead to a guilty verdict on the bodily harm charges.

[02:09:53]

And on February 17th, 1978, Fred Wood and James and Richard Schoenfeld are all sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

[02:10:03]

So five weeks after the kidnapping, Eddie Ray and all 26 kids get taken on a trip to Disneyland right on August 22nd, the same year basically.

[02:10:16]

They basically waited about a month. And then Chowchilla celebrated their first annual Ed Ray and Children's Day, complete with a parade down the town's main street honoring the twenty seven brave survivors. But of course, the kids are traumatized by this experience. There's some suffer panic attacks. Almost all of them have recurring nightmares that haunt them and their families. So it's they you know, it's really tough. I mean, they they went through something horrible and like to look at it from the other side to come up out of that pit and turn and be like, what the fuck is one thing?

[02:10:57]

But to be down in it when you're six years old and you can't understand, all you want is your mom and you're just stuck somewhere. I mean, it's a nightmare. So basically, then in 1980, four years after the kidnapping, Fred, James and Richard all appeal the bodily harm charges. Their lawyers argue that the cuts and bruises on the children are not enough to warrant the official legal charge of bodily harm.

[02:11:21]

And they win this.

[02:11:22]

No, the bodily harm charges are reversed and now they're all eligible for parole. Two years later, in 1982, parole hearings begin and all of the survivors get dragged back into court to further testify, to try to keep their kidnappers behind bars at all.

[02:11:43]

At all told, the survivors of the Chowchilla bus kidnapping have had to endure 60 parole hearings, six zero six zero.

[02:11:53]

That is additional trauma to the trauma they already fucking endured.

[02:11:58]

And that is not fair. Every however many years, every every home.

[02:12:03]

I hate that. It's horrible. So in this period of time after that, you know, all this time is passing. Larry Park becomes, in his own words, an angry child just absolutely beyond justified. His rage leads his parents to put him in a juvenile detention facility when he's 15 to try to rehabilitate his behavior. It doesn't work. By the time Larry's twenty one, he's using meth, crack and other drugs recklessly.

[02:12:32]

And this is what happened to a lot of these kids. Mike Marshall, the fourteen year old hero, he said when he was a kid, he could see all the years ahead of him. Then after the kidnapping, I could not see tomorrow. So he begins drinking excessively when he's eighteen years old and he does it until he's forty eight. But then he finally find. So strength to treat his alcoholism, but I mean, it's, you know, 30, 30 years of being in the bottle because of this trauma and what it did to him.

[02:13:01]

Jennifer Brown is also haunted by nightmares and PTSD for years. But today she's married and she says she's worked through her struggles with the help of her family and her church family. So she has a lot of support. And there's this really amazing moment where they have footage of a reporter. It was when she went back, I believe, to testify. There's a reporter that asks her and she's just she's just this little girl and she's kind of like rocking back and forth, you know, and she's like got like one of her front teeth is gone.

[02:13:36]

And the reporter says, why do you think they did this? And she goes, I don't know.

[02:13:42]

They didn't get enough love. And she says it like super. She has this big smile on her face also that she tells a really funny story of taking her come out, taking her gum out before she testifies because she didn't want to spit it at them when she went to tell this. You do want to get so mad she'd spit it out. So she gave her dad her gum. And then when they cut to her talking to that reporter, she's chewing the gum again.

[02:14:06]

I want to say on that one, I want that one my my favorite. She's the cutest.

[02:14:10]

OK, so in June of twenty, twelve thirty six years after the kidnapping, Richard Schoenfeld is is paroled and his brother James follows three years later in twenty fifteen, many of the now grown children and their families are angry that the bodily harm charges were reversed and that parole was a possibility for them. But there's a notable exception. After years of suffering and substance abuse, Larry Parks says that he finally realized his resentment for the kidnappers was killing him.

[02:14:42]

So he decides to meet to he he decides to ask to meet with the Schoenfeld brothers who had recently gotten out of prison so that he can forgive them.

[02:14:54]

And they agree.

[02:14:56]

And yet and he says about this experience, quote, It changed my life. Something washed over me. And there was a piece like I'd never known. I knew that day I would be OK.

[02:15:07]

And now he's Larry sober and he runs his own handyman business and he sometimes volunteers as a pastor at his local church, Fred would still remains behind bars.

[02:15:18]

From the beginning, police suspected that Fred was the mastermind behind the entire plot, a true sociopath who had roped the Schoenfeld brothers into his plan and who to this day shows no remorse for his actions. His last parole hearing was October twenty nineteen, where he was denied parole for the 19th time, and his next hearing is set for twenty twenty four. After the kidnapping, Ed Ray goes back to driving a school bus and he does it for 12 more years until he retires in nineteen eighty eight.

[02:15:51]

And then on May 17th, 2012, Ed Ray passes away from natural causes at the age of 91 and the town of Chowchilla still continues to celebrate. Ed Ray and Children's Day every February. Twenty six in honor of these guys in 2016, the survivors of the Chowchilla bus kidnapping filed a lawsuit against their three kidnappers demanding monetary compensation for the horrors they experienced. And they wind up receiving a settlement. The exact amount is never publicly disclosed, but one survivor says it was, quote, enough for some serious therapy, but not enough to buy a house.

[02:16:29]

And that is the horrifying story of the Chowchilla school bus kidnapping layers upon layers.

[02:16:38]

Isn't that. Oh, my God.

[02:16:41]

That goes so much deeper than I fucking knew. Wow. Good job. That was great. Thank you. Great suggestion.

[02:16:48]

It's just so funny. I so this story is such a weird close to my heart. True crime like grew up with story. It's so weird that I haven't done it.

[02:16:59]

No, it was Zinser. Right. Wow.

[02:17:01]

That was incredible. Good job. I fucking thank you. I love that you told that story.

[02:17:06]

But so before we go, we just want to talk to you about something that's vitally important that you know about already. And I'm sure you've been hearing all about it. But we want to remind you were less than 100 days away from Election Day, which is November 3rd. Twenty twenty. So believe between a global pandemic and rampant voter suppression efforts, it is critical to help every American registered to vote to be prepared to do so safely and to ensure that every vote counts, which includes encouraging as many Americans as possible to request to vote by mail.

[02:17:42]

So vote Save America. Dotcom is a one stop shop for voter registration and engagement's, and it's being put on by our friends at Crooked Media. And they've created this incredible hub that's compiled every frickin tool you need, so you're able to request your vote by mail ballot early, which I've already done.

[02:18:04]

You can volunteer to call young voters in battleground states, which is so important, and talk to them about voting by mail. That's huge. Yeah, you can donate to groups on the ground working to mobilize diverse voters and you can volunteer as a poll worker if you're healthy and you're able.

[02:18:21]

Yes. And you guys, we're all in this together to win in November. We need to do everything we can, every single one of us. Voting counts. Even though you think your state is this or that, it doesn't matter. We need to we need to show our forces. So we need to get involved and make sure that everyone we know is doing that as well. So visit, vote, save America, dot com, every last vote and get involved.

[02:18:49]

It's such a great resource. Those guys in crooked media and God save America. They're their amazing political analysts. They're brilliant minds. And they have put together this drive in this directive so that people feel like there's something they can do and they can start you know, there's checklists, there's all kinds of information.

[02:19:09]

Go go to that website and see take some action and see what you can do about helping this country get out of the very frightening position that we're in right now.

[02:19:21]

It's the darkest timeline and the only way we can get out of it is to vote. So please make sure that everyone you know is doing this as well. Send emails, send them a link to this. Let's fucking do this, you guys.

[02:19:33]

Let's do it. And you know what else?

[02:19:35]

Stay sexy and don't get murdered by Elvis. Do you want a cookie?