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[00:00:01]

It won't take you long to figure out that I just think differently than other people. Hey there, Stephen Dubner, and that's my Freakonomics friend and co-author Steve Levitt.

[00:00:10]

I've worked for two decades studying strange phenomena, human behavior and weird circumstances.

[00:00:17]

But Levitt is now ready to start his own podcast. It's called People I Mostly Admire. Listen, unstitched Apple podcast, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.

[00:00:34]

It won't take you long to figure out that I just think differently than other people.

[00:00:39]

Hey there, Stephen Dubner, and that's my Freakonomics friend and co-author Steve Levitt.

[00:00:43]

I've worked for two decades studying strange phenomena, human behavior and weird circumstances.

[00:00:50]

But Levitt is now ready to start his own podcast. It's called People I Mostly Admire, and it debuts on August 21st. Subscribe now on Stitcher, Apple podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts. We're back, we're back, it's this distraction, a crew that's wrong, say hi to everybody. Hey, man, how's it going? Oh, what a rollicking start. We're off to. It's just you and me again.

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Yeah. Setting huge, huge energy and wrath is going above and beyond. He is broadcasting today from Maine, scenic Maine.

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Wow.

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You have any idea how many other things there are to do that aren't podcasting in the state of Maine? I'm allergic to most of them, so this is actually fine for me.

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But it is still the point stands, I like I'm the I'm the Dadua. Any time Maine is mentioned, I'm like, did you know they served lobster in prison?

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And that they got sick of it, imagine being sick of lobster. You've got Maine bona fides that I don't actually, which is that you spent like a formative portion of your youth here, whereas I was like I did Outward Bound in Maine.

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So I was on a boat for a few weeks and I pooped in the ocean. That's the same thing.

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Is going to college. Did you did you poop in the ocean necessity or just for like for fun? Oh, it was a dare. I had to. I got that was you can't get into the Crips. I joined the Crips at that time and, you know, it was that was the option.

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There is like a bucket. And then there are other times you're on a boat, you know, so there's only so many places you can go.

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I didn't care for it too much.

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But, you know, it's better. It's better than the bucket, though. Yeah, the bucket was terrible. And, I mean, I guess I'm not really talking out of school there. I don't think anyone's going to be scandalized to find out that a bucket that a bunch of teenagers are sitting in for a few weeks. It was bad.

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Right. But but now now our main experiences are primarily indoors and in a motel in Lincolnville, Maine. And my wife is sitting right behind me, ignoring me and I don't know, feels normal.

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It feels good how if I went to college in Maine, then of course I wrote something for GQ years ago titled Made Do We Need It?

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Or I took a big shit on main nades were extremely mad. I even got letters from I think I mentioned before I got I got letters from a class of middle schoolers in Maine. Oh wow.

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All made the case for Maine to me saying, well, you said it's a shithole, but actually it's really nice and we have national parks and stuff. And it was adorable.

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I wrote to the teacher, I said, this is great, where they all addressed that, like dear Mr. McGarry. Yes. And they were so good. Yeah. So with respect, I think you're underestimating the natural glory and beauty of the Pine Tree State.

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Yeah, Kate is from here.

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And it was you know, this is like not a cool state. There are no cool states, but that it is like when she was going away to school that like when people found out she was from Maine, they'd be like, oh, do you have like indoor plumbing? Like, what's it like up there?

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Do you have to fight a moose, like, just to get into class every day? And she'd be like, no, that's a that's an exaggeration. You almost never even see Moose and you seldom have to fight them. But obviously it's very different now.

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Well, it's it's two states along the coastline. It's basically more practical, Nantucket. And then if you drive five miles inland, you're in northeast Mississippi. Yeah, it's incredible.

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It's the it's so fucking big to do. Like, we drove up here, we rented a car and it's like a solid six hours to get to southern Maine.

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And then to get to the top of the state is like another eight hours of just like and for most of that, you're surrounded by nothing bit like potatoes and firearms.

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Yeah, it's awful to drive to. Colby was always awful. It's just ninety five, two lanes. Well four lane highway and just, just a straight shot and just endless trees and nothing. It's like Nebraska of trees.

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It's fucking horrible and you're not even like you get to like Colby you're nowhere near the top of the state like. Yeah I also I drove to Bar Harbor once and that's an endless drive. And then you get there and like you're you're still on the bottom of the state. You're not like you're not like Cariboo or anything like that.

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Yeah. The real hardcore shit. Kate's dad was a fireman for many years in the training was all up in that part of the state. And it's like, oh my God, I get only like these little like planes that land on lakes. And it's all I mean, just a world, as I said, completely unimaginable to me. Like, I absolutely married into some, you know, hardy virtues here where like in New Jersey, any time you're more than like fifteen minutes from, like a particular type of sandwich that you care about a lot, you're like, I don't even know where I am right now.

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And it's terrible.

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As your wife of Anada accent, she's like, oh, you all somehow she does not. She was home schooled by two people with hard core German accents and yet just sounds she's got a perfect non regional diction. She can, you know, sort of put it on.

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But it's it's a wonder that someone spent as much time around her parents as she did and doesn't even say like God.

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Now, I feel like that's actually a thing that happens, though, like I know Texans who don't have a Texas accent, I know people from Boston who don't have a Boston accent.

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Like sometimes people are just just have flat accents.

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They don't they don't necessarily affect what what's around them.

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I will say that she's good and extremely exacting at picking them out when like in TV shows and movies, whenever someone fucks up, like watching like a like in the bedroom with her or whatever, she's like, I'm sure you like Tom Wilkinson very much.

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But like that is maybe Rhode Island, maybe just that's a very New England gripe or.

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Yeah, I respect it.

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I was not an accent. Oh, I was a terrible Maine accent.

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That was good. Yeah. It was almost somehow racist.

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So now all in order to go right into me again, another batch of middle schoolers will say, well, actually, Mr. McGarry, we don't talk like that. You're a dickhead.

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But we were always in OK?

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And we were also made earlier this summer because we're discussing yuppies. And and my son kept saying lobster, but he said it was a phony, like Maine accent. He was like lobster.

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And I was like and like, it's cute, like the first two times. But like, by the time I was like, you can you can just call lobster.

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That's all right.

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You're you're from off to because I've had the same issue with my nephews and nieces that like it's not to say that I have a career. Exactly.

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But to the extent that I have, I've got it from being annoying repeatedly in the same sorts of ways. And so the idea of being like, oh, you don't want to do that, saying the same thing over and over again and progressively dumber ways is a great way to irritate people like it is literally how I put food on the table. It's like how I've made friends. It's all I know.

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So that was main talk we loved doing. That's what people come to the show. Yeah.

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Talk about maybe like we're launching a podcast in a website and people are like, listen, we we all subscribe to a defector, but we need we need the site to be at least 50 percent main takes.

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If you can't give me to middle aged white guys talking about their vacations, then I just don't see what the point is of giving you my money.

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Yeah, and you don't really get sports fans from New England in the media that often. It's a very you know, it's a very underserved market. Yeah.

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Because no one dares to, like, talk about, you know, these are these are real fans, for one thing. All right. They suffered a lot.

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How else am I supposed to know? James Harden throws cheap passes. I mean, you just need that. You need that that special New England judging authority. What about baseball with you for a second? Because this week, Fernando Tatis of the Padres hit a grand slam while his team was way the fuck up in a game. And and that caused a little brushback situation. And the other team shit. I should know. I should know the other teams, the Rangers, the right.

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Oh, it was the Rangers was the bitch ass Texas Rangers who saw the Astros being bitches. And they were like, we cannot bitch them. So then they they got mad and did a brushback after tatties hit a grand slam off the late. And that's not really the worst part about it. I mean, it is. It is. It's pretty bad because tatties just hit it was a three oh ball hit out of the park. Tough shit. You're in the major leagues.

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You know, this is where I get to call people snowflakes for a change, right?

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Yeah. This is it's incredible to because it's all it's like it is these guys that are like the most, like, cop mentality do it's possible. Yeah.

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Like instantly are able to pivot into being like just the biggest, like etiquette weirdos that you could imagine. It's so weird.

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Just doesn't make any sense because it's just like roug stuff and then like someone hits a grand slam off the late in a game, you're you're already going to lose and you're like, wait a sec. I wasn't nice.

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Yeah. Heavens to Betsy. Yeah. Like that was very disturbing for me when you to be with your superior ability in the most embarrassing possible way.

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So the shitty part is that Podres manager Jayce Tingler, which is just just an astounding name of the year handly, he he got mad, he got mad at tatties for hitting the goddamn home run and tatties apologized for doing it, which was just like, what the fuck are you doing?

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What was the wit? The way he got mad, he was like, priggish, like so well, this is a learning moment.

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Like you have to remember, like Fernando Tatis, junior is the best player in the National League right now by the numbers. But he's got so far to go in terms of like he seems like he's enjoying it too much. And so this is something that I think we can grow from.

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Yeah. Machado got tossed out in the next pitch and Tinkler's tossing his own player into the bus. Why don't you play for that asshole if he's going to do that?

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Like, I want the manager who's like, we don't apologize for nothing. My guys are the best they can murder someone in the street. And I'd say, let them walk.

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I want that guy.

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I don't want the guy who's going to be like, well, that wasn't the right thing to do. Like, I actually like it better when they do worse, but seem sadder about it just. Yeah. And Tingler too. I mean, this is one of those guys.

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It's like like a dude topped out at, like, extremely like five eight energy to like his whole shit.

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And he literally is five eight, which is fine. It's cool. I mean it's it's not short enough to be a short game and it's not tall. It's a very difficult place to be.

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But between him and Chris Woodward, who is like the Rangers manager, is equally pissy and was just like sort of a journeyman MLB dude of no great note.

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It's like those seem to me like two people who maybe shouldn't get to scold Fernando Tatis for being too good.

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Yeah, I think it's what I think it's especially wild given the extenuating circumstances of the season, like the St. Louis Cardinals. Good to play a quadruple header like the last eight days of the season because 9000 their players have covered.

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So it's like that's enough to deal with why are you why would this occupy your your mind at all? Who gives a shit?

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It feels like things kind of like like baseball scrambling for normalcy in some ways, you know, like this is the sort of thing that like over the course of a normal season, if you're in early August, like too much baseball has been played already. There's still also somehow too much more to play. So this is like all anybody is upset about is just kind of like, yeah, they hate going to work. They're sweaty, like they're like, you know, they want to be in San Diego, but instead they're in suburban Dallas, like, I understand being upset about it.

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It just at the same time, like, you have to be better than that. Yeah.

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It is refreshing to have a little bit of just trivial back page action.

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Like if you're in New York, it would be like less than Amando TT's.

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It's especially lame to because TT's has been so insanely good this year, like as bad like most of the baseball. That's I mean, I'm obviously I'm happy to have it, but most of what's been played is like very much like third week of spring training in terms of quality. And yet, like. Right. Tatis has been cool.

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He's got that was like his 10th and 11th homers of the season. I think, like, that's just celebrated. You got nothing else going on, man. Like you said, like everybody on the Cardinals is just like whatever giving each other Kovik is. It's like the right way to show your teammate or something like.

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Right. Find the cool baseball stuff and be happy. Yeah.

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And it's it's it's cool to have him and Machado on that team like the Padres have been moribund for ever like since 1984.

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So it's like so why would I I just you know, you've got this actual exciting thing happening and you get bitch about them being too good at the like at a at a rude time.

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Yeah.

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I mean, I, I do feel like that's broadly speaking, on the way out in baseball, just in the sense that like the you know, the players that are coming up are more expressive, like Mike Trout is not like the most like swaggy dude or whatever, but like a lot of the other young players, like they do like to go out and try to seem cool and all that.

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And that's something that you want. The part of it that bothers me is that Tinkler and Rupert are both like young managers. This isn't like a couple of like crustacean like just like seventy five year old guys that are like back in my day, like Bob Gibson, who come to your hotel room and stomp on your nuts for doing stuff like that.

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And that's that's like obviously got a place in baseball too, like a dwindling place. But like Tinkler and Woodward are like in their forties like there. That's the part of it.

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That kind of bums me out. Like you want to leave. The culture will change as the generations change.

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But it's all these like young suburban dudes that, like, came up through, you know, the shock system and like college baseball and all that. And they're still somehow carrying that forward, even though they're young enough to know better.

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Yeah, it's weird because I thought the Nats are helped get rid of a lot of that. Yeah, that was naive on my part. But like one solo in the stances and the crotch grabbing and all that stuff, I was like, yeah, yeah.

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New generation, turn the page. And of course baseball is still baseball, so we're still going to evolve. It's a couple of bulls.

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Just because you're I mean, it's OK to be like boring. I just feel like the idea of being self-conscious is like, really that's much harder to come back from.

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I agree. I just I don't know. You know, I think it's almost bitching about the unwritten rule stuff is almost as tiresome as the unwritten rules themselves.

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So I wish there was just some solution to it.

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Like the ideal solution is that baseball stops having a bug up its ass about this stuff. But that'll never know.

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I mean, especially because it's like the one way that you can sort of that's like the way the Americans are or whatever that like they were going to push back against anything that they could consistently enjoy because they're not like at the center of it or like, you know, whatever, just like a way of complaining that, like, is as old as our culture itself. It stinks.

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Americans have just the strangest uptightness in like it's just uptight in the weirdest places, like, you know, like you never see a boob in a PG 13 movie and you don't see you hardly see any of it.

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Anywhere it's all just like, yeah, I mean, there's no limit to how many whatever, like Bori squibs you can have going off, but yeah, like everybody is just kind of pissed off and like, can I mean, whatever as we as a nation, we need to get back to being OK with being horny.

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Yeah. Like machetes are illegal in America but like you can have all the guns you want.

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Doesn't make any goddamn sense.

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I just I want to talk about some football. Hell yeah. I got. Speaking of uptight, welcome to the man zone.

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That's right. This was the week or over the weekend. The Big Ten in the PAC 12 both suspended their seasons, at least until the spring.

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The FCC and the FCC and the Big 12 are not there going through with it.

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I don't know about the fan situation yet. The FCC unveiled their schedule on Monday.

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And of course, although if you want me to go see the Twitter replies, it's not a bad time.

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And anyway, so anyway, the Big Ten postponed and all their Big Ten parents were big mad for the season were postponed, including Justin Field's dad, Justin Fields, the Ohio State quarterback and Sure-fire first round NFL draft pick.

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His dad like was like, I'm not standing for this. And like and Justin Fields had to, like, send around a petition. I don't know whether his dad made him do it. It sounds like a parent would make him do.

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Yes, it does seem like it's a real football parent. Stuff like being like this is about values, son. Also let them know that I'm available to appear on television and radio whenever needed.

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Yeah, it's only like they circulated a petition to like to reinstate the season. And it's just it's one of those things where it's it's wild to me. That like I I think I almost suspect that the big tent is like might possibly reconsider it because they're just that leaderless and shitty. Yeah. And and because college football, there's no there's no guidance from the NCAA. NCAA was like, well, we trust our institutions to be respectful of institutional respectfulness, like just standard McKinsey bullshit.

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Yeah.

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Everything feels like it's done without like with the aim of avoiding like not a lawsuit but a lawsuit that is directed towards you.

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Like it's about like sort of pushing it off onto somebody else and making it someone else's responsibility. Yeah.

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There's no leadership anywhere like like the NFL season's coming and they're gonna play the games. And like half the teams have announced that they're going to not have any fans in the stadium. But the Bears announced that this week. But then other teams like the Cowboys, like Jerry Jones, like we got air flow like like as if as if like air doesn't flow literally everywhere you go.

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Well, it's different. It's different in Texas if you want to be if you want to be fair for a minute, the airflows bigger Texas.

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That's why that's they paid extra for that in designing a Jerry world, because that's always been very important to him. Ventilation, certain types of blended scotch, the most expensive kinds. And then, yeah, just making sure that every room in his home has a stripper pole in it. Those are like the three big things for him. It doesn't make any sense.

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I sound exasperated. I sound too exasperated and tired of all this shit. I just you know, I think it was I was very.

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Like over the weekend, I was really bothered by the post office stuff like I've. Yeah, I think I, I, I tweeted about this, which is is it depressing?

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Did it work? Did it make you feel better?

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You know, where it used to be like it used to be like if I wrote about like Trump doing a Trump thing and I got off my chest, I felt a little bit better, like in that standards are writing cathartic way.

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Hmm. But like, ever since I covered started, like like I've sort of kept my chin up. I have been, you know, like I haven't had my like I didn't lose my job center. No job to lose to begin with.

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But I didn't lose my freelance work and we didn't lose our house and I haven't lost anybody to to the illness or anything like that.

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And so I've been very, very fortunate in that regard. And that's allowed me to keep, you know, keep my chin up in the in the face of all this despair.

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But, you know, when I see pictures of, like mail sorters, like being systematically destroyed just for the sake of destroying them and piles of fucking mailboxes, I was like like I felt like there was no wind in my sails at all.

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Well, it sucks. It feels like he feels like you can't win or like it doesn't matter or isn't like that's the part of it that hurts. You know, the idea of it just like though it's going to be like this forever and it's going to like slowly get worse or whatever. You can't create anything from that perspective.

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But you also it's really hard to, like, feel good about anything in a long term way that way. Yeah.

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Like like it's been an ebb and flow during twenty, twenty, like during like, like sort of the height or I guess it would be the height of like Bernie's campaign.

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I was like, yeah, he's going to win, we're going to do this like like I see, I see the bright spots and I latch onto them like they're fucking crackers in the desert and like oh my God yes this is it. This is the thing that's going to this the little the little light that's shining that at the end of the tunnel that's going to portend good things.

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And then something else comes along and I'm just like in the gutter.

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Yeah. Just another little girl. Like one of those things where it's like at the beginning of the administration, like it would be like I'd lose sleep over it, like I'd be like just as shitty and horrible.

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And I don't know what's going to happen regarding a nuclear holocaust like that kind of stuff.

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And like like I slowly got accustomed to it because, like I've said this before, but it's like, you know, the people who say this is not normal. Well, you can said all you want, but you're not going to survive. Yeah. Like you have to.

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You just have to in order to, like, put your feet in front of one another day after fucking day.

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You just have to say, like, OK, this is what's happening. It blows, but I have to still go live my life. Yeah.

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And I think that there's also an element of it that like it, you know, obviously, of course it isn't normal. But at some point, like once you realized, at least for me, once I realized it, like Trump is still Trump. Right. Like he's not going to get better, obviously, like, that's entirely off the table.

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But it's also like he's not going to be different. He's not going to try harder. He doesn't really want anything but to be on TV and to be seen as like the expert and master of the news or whatever. And so it's all just going to kind of wind up being the same stuff like so you're going to get what McConnell does.

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And McConnell only really wants to do one thing.

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And like, it's just that's the part of it that's tough is it just feels like time's wasting and nothing is happening. And there's this incredible sense of urgency among.

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The people that perceive, you know, how things actually are and then there's this just like weirdly abstracted. Sort of like play-acting shit coming down from from on high, but like once you you can get used to it. It was just always clear that the, you know, the election thing was going to be worse, that there was always going to be this chance that Trump would this would be the thing that would motivate him to actually act. But I agree, the post office thing, I was just like the idea of of losing that for many years has just been like it's the one thing that we have that works for everybody that everybody uses.

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I also frankly, I didn't expect it. I was like I was like, well, you know, like he either, you know, like maybe he'll get some Russian interference and like Facebook will do their Nazi shit and all that.

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But I didn't expect him to just, like, obliterate me.

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Yeah. As like the one institution that whatever we have that like could conceivably deliver an outcome representative of the populace like. Yeah, it would obviously be at risk for that reason.

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But yeah, it seems hard. That's why I'm not sure that they're necessarily going to pull it off. I just don't appreciate the trying.

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Yeah I well I was the other thing is that our um Billy hazily, who has a knack of being annoyingly right, was like, I don't think it'll make that actually that big of a difference. And someone did crunched the numbers.

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So my medium CELAC posted it where it was.

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If you factored out the mail in voting, like Biden was still up by like ten points and like by like one hundred electoral votes or something like that. So I was like oddly comforted by that. But I'm also not comforted by the fact that I have a president who wants to, like, outlaw.

[00:24:10]

Yeah, that's that's absolutely it for me, too, that there's like this sense all along.

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It was the case and it was much more it was happening very rapidly early in the administration with like the first round of secretaries that he appointed, many of whom like after they resigned in disgrace or were forced out, we're just never really officially replaced. But a lot of those guys were there strictly because they wanted to, like, fuck and fly private and like featherbed that was like. Yeah, like and direct contracts to their buddies and whatnot. And, yeah, I respect that.

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So, yeah.

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But at least at that point you're like, all right, well these guys are just out to get everything that they can steal. But then at some point when they were like replaced by like just like twenty six year olds named like Skylar von Skyler, like at that point you're kind of like what do you even want?

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Like you just going there to like fucking hang out and like have a security clearance.

[00:25:01]

Yeah. There was a Olivia Nuzzi so I hate to use the word Tic-Tac, but it was like a breakdown of the current Trump campaign. And there is no campaign, just like in 2016.

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It was just we'll just we'll just let him go off and let him improvise and maybe we'll win and maybe he won't.

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But but it was basically like. Like, Trump can't hire anyone who's competent because no one who's competent wants to work. And if there are two competent and then they start getting like stories about them, then like he's going to be like he's not really that tall. So he hires morons.

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And because these people would never get a job that good in any other circumstance, they're loyal to him for ever and just fucking die and kill everybody because they managed to rise up to, you know, vice president of sewage appreciation at the EPA.

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And they're never going to get that high again.

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It's like a bar stool was a presidency.

[00:25:59]

If and when we get to the other side of this, it's going to be amazing to like to sort of go back and get on some remember some guy's shit with people that we're like guys that were briefly the attorney general of the United States can be like, remember the guy that like he had like an infomercial about like how, you know, like a toilet that like you won't ever dunk your balls in the water by accident.

[00:26:17]

Like that guy, the attorney general of the United States for six weeks.

[00:26:20]

Remember that like until we're well clear of it, I'm not going to be able to laugh about balls in the toilet.

[00:26:25]

Attorney General Guy, it's a podcast and we have live reads and maybe we have to do a library for, like, the my pillow guy. And that's going to be a moment.

[00:26:34]

Can you do it in his voice where you kind of sound like chopped and screwed Jesse Ventura? Can you get in that Minnesota mentality?

[00:26:41]

You know, it'd be great if someone could do it. Jesse Ventura and impersonation because it's got a just a fantastic voice still.

[00:26:47]

James Adamia and men, it's perfect. I encourage you and everyone listening to this to seek it out. It's fantastic. Yeah.

[00:26:54]

You can really get the thing with Ventura is that he alone among really strong men, has figured out how to do exercises on his glottis.

[00:27:02]

So every syllable is just profoundly muscular and Adiyaman is able to capture that.

[00:27:08]

Looks like Tito to me. Gorilla, that's a terrible, terrible no.

[00:27:13]

But you need to have the depth. You need to, like, gargle walnuts. Yeah. Eight hours a day or something.

[00:27:18]

Yeah. Which is I mean it's not to say it's not worth doing, but you've got other things.

[00:27:21]

You've got a family I was going to like. My whole rundown is all depressing shit except except the part where I watched Locke on a Saturday morning and enjoyed it.

[00:27:33]

But I had to look up what that is.

[00:27:35]

That's Tom Hardy in a car for an entire movie. Yes, it's Tom Hardy in a car for an entire movie. And yet and yet it's incredibly suspenseful.

[00:27:45]

You're like, oh my God, it's a one act play. That's fucking horrible. But it's like it has like it's juicy. It's like gossipy.

[00:27:52]

And like every time the phone rings, something something, you know, something horrible is going to happen. So every time the phone like the Bluetooth goes off in his car, like your asshole clenches and stuff, it's it's a very good movie.

[00:28:03]

It also seems like Hardy is showing his face and speaking in his actual voice in it like a rare instance of that. Terrific.

[00:28:10]

Well, the one thing is that I don't actually I'm not certain I know what his real voice sounds like. Yeah. I don't know if anyone does.

[00:28:19]

So, like, it's close, like like he says concrete, concrete, like, like it's very like it's somewhat elegant and parts and then rough and others. So I don't know if he did the whole venom thing where he like I don't know, listen old like stand up albums or something. So he could have like a new voice or some shit like that. But at least you can understand what the fuck he's saying. It's not like Dark Knight Rises where he's like.

[00:28:42]

Yeah, cause he's just whale song. Yeah. He's in a movie that I like James Gandolfini, last movie called The Drop. It's pretty good, but it's like a real festival of actors from other countries doing like outer Brooklyn accents. And it is psychedelic work, like it's a fun movie in every other way.

[00:29:02]

But Hertie trying to do like basically sounds like he's trying to do Dustin Hoffman's voice from Midnight Cowboy, which is like it just is not a voice that fits into a body or a face like that.

[00:29:11]

So he's kind of like a memorial guy. But, you know, sometimes, like on a couple murders at the bar, that's good.

[00:29:19]

It's not bad exactly.

[00:29:21]

But you're just like there's no place on Earth where people sound like that. But he's very consistent about continuing to sound like that.

[00:29:27]

That's like the Capone thing. Like I didn't watch Capone, but I just all I read were reviews of Capone, where it's like, well, Tom Hardy plays Al Capone and he shits his pants.

[00:29:35]

And this. Yeah, it's like I like this sounds awful.

[00:29:39]

I need to read all about it.

[00:29:40]

And never that was exactly the approach that I took. I think in my younger days I might have been like, oh my God, wow. Like real boogers in every scene. I should I need to watch this. But I'm not a young man, so I'll just settle for reading like Robert Miller's piece on it and being like, wow, that sounds fucking gross.

[00:29:56]

There's an entire this entire genre of barely not direct TV direct to TV mob movies like that. And Gotti. Oh yeah. Mobsters with Richard Grieco, which I saw in the theater seems like for ten was a summer camp movie for me.

[00:30:11]

That was I was always talking to my kid about this on the way up here about just like movies that I saw in summer came. And it's there's no rhyme or reason to like. What we saw, except for like how lenient the counselors were willing to be, so, yeah, seeing mobsters there, I think they were kind of like, I don't know, whatever if you want to like it, just a bunch of, like, dudes in suits.

[00:30:31]

I remember I remember like when Disney Plus first came out, they had like the entire Disney back catalog of, like, obscure Disney movies.

[00:30:40]

And someone did a whole thread of all these strange titles.

[00:30:44]

And one of them was the Shaggy Dieser. And I was like, I've seen that that was a camp movie.

[00:30:49]

And I remember because, like, they would announce the movie like at at breakfast or something on Sunday. And I remember the counselor was like, our movie tonight is the Sherida. There was like, what the fuck?

[00:31:00]

So like, so if you guys are like it, it's about an attorney who turns into a dog or a dog that's an attorney.

[00:31:08]

I don't know. We were so horny for pop culture. Like we just watch any movie they put in front of us. We didn't we didn't give a shit like like I remember a camp like like listening to America's top four with Casey Kasem on the weekend was like a big fucking deal. And it didn't matter that all you heard was, I wanna dance with somebody 500 times.

[00:31:26]

Like, we were just like, OK, what's going to be number one?

[00:31:28]

Oh, it's Whitney Houston again. That's right. I forgot.

[00:31:31]

I forgot that song existed until he played it. Ten minutes.

[00:31:35]

Yeah, there is definitely I mean, I definitely get when people gripe about there being a monoculture because there aren't like, you know, as many fun movies or weird things as there used to be. And I do believe that's true.

[00:31:43]

But also all through my youth, it was like everybody was just listening to the same Taylor Dayne songs on the radio and then showing up at school the next day and be like you're Taylor Dayne song, which is not necessarily an improvement.

[00:31:55]

No, no, it's definitely not.

[00:31:57]

I mean, like, you know, it's one of those things where people are overly fetishize the fact that, like, you would you would listen to every song on the album because it was the only way to listen to the album. Or you would watch shitty movies because you didn't have movies on demand and you had to watch whatever was there. And, you know, I want a treat that is like some sort of grand, monocultural enlightenment.

[00:32:20]

But it wasn't I had to watch it and listen. Yes, it was horrible to watch and listen to cool stuff all the time, any time they want, and that's way better.

[00:32:29]

I do feel like there's a sense in which, like being able to stream everything, it's like maybe you miss some stuff because you're really only listening to what you want to listen to all the time.

[00:32:38]

So you're not like ever having to deal with, like, you know, just some shit that, like, you maybe just are finding by accident. But at the same time.

[00:32:46]

Yeah, like, I can't necessarily say that anybody's like whatever like waiting all day to watch a Richard Marx video like that wasn't better by any stretch of any imagination. Yeah, I'm bad.

[00:32:57]

Like I keep going back to the same playlist on Spotify over and over again when I could be like I could be hunting for new music and like I could give that new that music more of a chance. Like if you buy an album and again, I've already reverted I just to cry boomers and became one in the song. Oh yeah. Seconds.

[00:33:14]

But but you buy the album, you spend ten to fifteen bucks, you would have to, you would listen to the album because you're not going to waste your money. Yeah.

[00:33:21]

And maybe there's stuff on there that's good. If I have Spotify and and you know I'm listening to a song and someone's like oh it's a grower like I don't have time for that.

[00:33:32]

I got, I got, I didn't have to make like, you get two minutes and then like, if the courses have a hook, I'm fucking out.

[00:33:39]

So like it's not I don't have the patience anymore for music that I might like if I gave it more of a chance.

[00:33:46]

So I need to do that. We've got some very dinosaur music consuming methodology up here, so I can't exactly speak on it like I own a CD player.

[00:33:54]

And I use it though. Wow, wow. Yep, yep. What are you going to do? Can I can I tell you if you buy a pill, it, it's, it's a pretty good investment. They're not expensive, they're insanely fucking loud. You can, you can cook dinner and have a cocktail and play all the Carly Rae you want.

[00:34:15]

It's a very, very nice, it feels very elegant. I like it. Yeah. Maybe we'll do that.

[00:34:19]

It's definitely better than having to go back to the goodwill and like seeing if the CD players that they have for sale have like too much hair in them to play, which is basically the stage right now.

[00:34:29]

If I would recommend them to you look over over there on the podcast.

[00:34:34]

But I'm not going to do that unless Ultimate Ears pays out the ask me to mention.

[00:34:38]

Yeah, but I mean, what an investment imagine endorsed by Drew himself. I know.

[00:34:43]

Yeah. Endorsed by a guy who listens to the same fifteen songs.

[00:34:47]

All of his rat record sound amazing on it. I listen to a lot of rat. You would not believe the number of times I listen to body talks by rap in the span.

[00:34:57]

It's really not that. And like Jet City woman and like this one Charlie Puth song. I really like that. I, I sang for for the Defector Trivia Night last week and no one recognized it.

[00:35:08]

So I was like, really, it's a Charlie deep cut that I'm into.

[00:35:11]

I had no idea. No one tells you what your early middle age is going to be like scooping a bunch of twenty somethings on Charlie Puth and having them judge you for it.

[00:35:19]

No one could anticipate. Yeah, yeah, who would have guessed that something dad thought was cool turned out to be not cool? God, what a turnabout. Yeah, pretty shocking.

[00:35:28]

Hey, by the way, my mood has lifted now. I feel like I feel like we've worked this out.

[00:35:32]

It got like like it's sort of a little dark and a little I was a little exasperated, but now I feel energized because I talked about shitty Tom Hardy movie.

[00:35:41]

Yeah. And the power of Puth. We also we haven't talked about take Guch yet, so. Oh yeah. Great.

[00:35:47]

It was the north Alabama. I think it was a student body, a body student government, whatever.

[00:35:52]

And I honestly like he just he gave some Twitter message about, I don't even know, probably like we're we're we're brave here in Alabama.

[00:36:00]

We don't need masks as massive purposes.

[00:36:02]

But it didn't matter because all the replies, the tweet, they're like 500 plus the tweet. There was all just people saying take. Yeah, it's a great name.

[00:36:09]

And that's always that's a good, solid use of Twitter. Whenever you see it, there is one a couple of maybe it's like a year ago.

[00:36:16]

I remember it because I was I was a part of it at that time. And, you know, I didn't feel great about it. I feel better about it. In retrospect, a Georgia high school player committed to play at the University of Georgia and the tweet was just homegrown.

[00:36:29]

Speedster Wlad McConkey commits to Dallas.

[00:36:32]

I love the dog and I love and I wish had McConkey. Well, obviously.

[00:36:39]

I mean, I think all all of us here at the program. Which lad McConkey.

[00:36:42]

Well, but whatever you encounter a name like that, it's like, I don't know, it's like finding a quarter on the street or. Yeah. Something is happening to you, whatever the opposite of a bird shooting on you is, it's a better iteration of the sixty nine.

[00:36:54]

Nice joke. That's all over Twitter. Like I don't I got no problem with everyone responding nice when it's like sixty nine people dead.

[00:37:01]

An avalanche. Yeah.

[00:37:04]

Like that's, that's still Allmusic. Yeah. But the repeating of a name back especially when it's take Googe by the way I need do apologize to take Googe because I take Gooch's message. Was it you please. Where I'm good job. Take Goudge the best out of it.

[00:37:18]

Yeah. So but it's still take Googe and he looks like a take Googe and that's even more.

[00:37:23]

It's such a, I think it's a wonderful type of name.

[00:37:25]

It's, I think that's, it's one of the great gifts that the Southeastern United States has given us is like people that are named like decently successful law firms, but not like super huge law firms.

[00:37:38]

I also I feel like those people, you know, by the time they reach like professional age and stuff, they're already well equipped to handle all the name stuff. Like there's a Donald Trump in Northern Virginia who goes by Skip. Because why the hell wouldn't you? Yeah, and you just wear it, I think it helps you grow. I say this as someone who was named David Roth and grew up during van halons, moment of peak popularity, that's 100 percent.

[00:38:02]

Was it ever like we ever, like, annoyed by it or was it ever just. Yes.

[00:38:07]

Let me stop you there. Yes. I mean, a little.

[00:38:10]

But I mean, it was it was definitely the sort of thing where, like, I remember, like being asked like, is your dad and be like I look at me, man, like I have braces like, do I look like my dad is like the shirtless, like jumping up and touching his toes guy like that.

[00:38:26]

I would have said, yeah, yeah. All right, whatever. Yeah. I did have a tennis counselor at a summer camp convinced that he was my dad and was coming for visiting day and then he didn't. And I had to be like, yeah, I mean it is really hard for me to when he was like, I don't think he's really dad fucking asshole.

[00:38:43]

The first time I met Dave McKenna of his training and he looked like my old ad boss, I said, Why are you over my old boss?

[00:38:50]

And he was like, That's cool.

[00:38:51]

And I must sit like 90 times, because the last time I said to him during the period, I was like, I can't get over. How would you look like my old boss? And and he went straight and he was like, Drew, I'm not your boss. And I was like, oh, now it's no longer funny.

[00:39:05]

I never I never bothered him about it.

[00:39:06]

But let's take a break and come back with the guy of the week was. Sounds good. This for the record. There it is, a win for the ages. Tiger Woods is one of our most on Spierings sports icons and his story. It comes with many chapters. I am deeply sorry for my irresponsible and selfish behavior, but here it is, the return to glory. And this is all American and new series from Stitcher hosted by me, Jordan Bell, you realize Tiger Woods doesn't know who he is best in the history of golf?

[00:40:01]

No question in my mind. And this season, with the help of journalist Albert Chen, we're asking, what if the story of Tiger Woods that the media has been telling? What if it's been completely wrong?

[00:40:17]

all-American Tiger is out now. Listen and Stitcher Apple podcast or your favorite podcast app. We're back, right? Remember a guy, Rolph, anything, any guy. Let's do it.

[00:40:30]

Let's remember one guy and the guy I picked this week is Tom Romanski. No Brunos return. Yes, I love that record.

[00:40:42]

Tom Barrett, is he former Minnesota Twins who I believe used to lead the team at home, runs back when you would like lead the team in home runs when you hit like 20 yards in a season.

[00:40:52]

That's very much what I remember that, too, about him being like.

[00:40:55]

I think that he maybe was gone by the time they were winning World Series.

[00:41:00]

Yes, he was. But he was definitely like that was his role.

[00:41:03]

And like all those dudes, like the sort of like corner outfield slugger guys looked exactly the same at that time, too, that there was like but, you know, there's like like barbershop things where you could, like, take the haircut that you want when you were a kid, see him on the wall.

[00:41:17]

Yeah.

[00:41:17]

So I think like for that it's like if you wanted to hit between 20 and 30 homers in the majors, it was just like 20 different pictures of Gorman Thomas. And you could you you could get a perm or you could not have a perm.

[00:41:28]

But otherwise, that was just how you looked like a big chunky bartender mustache. They all look like Bassmaster.

[00:41:35]

And it's it's very it was very innervating when your slugger like where it's like the big slugger you team to try to get you hyped up for, like these the cleanup hitter. He hit twenty six home runs last year with ninety RBI. And you're like those numbers.

[00:41:49]

Yeah, it was definitely not it was not the funnest time for baseball.

[00:41:53]

I think that no I think it was probably a fun time to be a baseball player because like every American city was basically the same. So your job would be like you fly in, you have like a steak with like a piece of curly parsley on it. You drink like nine ounces of Cutty Sark and then like, you get up and go to the ballpark the next day and then you just do that for like fourteen years. And then you retire and you run like a pool cleaning business.

[00:42:17]

Yeah. And you swap a wife. Yeah. Oh yeah.

[00:42:19]

Every now and then, you know, whatever and get to keep it spiced up and everything like that.

[00:42:23]

I remember. So you did you remember seeing Burtynsky play. I saw him when he's with the Cardinals and I remember like being at a Mets can be like, oh, this guy's scary. And then like after the first at bat, I was like, no, no. About that. Actually, I might have been might have been off base.

[00:42:36]

I believe I might have, but I may not have a good memory of it.

[00:42:39]

And really, I think the reason why is because I went to the eighty seven World Series as a child and that's my, you know, that's my formative twins memory.

[00:42:49]

Obviously we're at the sea, so I don't think I knew that. Yeah, that's cool. It was like a game. I can't remember which game.

[00:42:54]

It was not it was not the deciding game. It was one of their home games. It was early in the series. And our America's the Homer hankies, everyone's waving their home. Yes. Around.

[00:43:03]

That seemed like a wild place to see a game to super loud and the like. The fences weren't fences. They were just tarps.

[00:43:10]

Yeah, well, the other thing is that that the Metrodome, I think even if you haven't been you probably heard about it's a balloon.

[00:43:17]

So when you would walk out of the stadium after the game like the roof is is coming down because the roof is, you know, the roof is a tarp.

[00:43:26]

And so you get shoved out of the stadium, it's like a draft and it like literally pushes you out of the stadium and you're like like as if like a gale force wind came and just like shoved you out.

[00:43:36]

Like the Metrodome cannot wait for you to get the fuck out of the shadows. Delightful. Anyway, I think we got to talk about where you are.

[00:43:43]

I'll give you two options for new features this week. One is and you're gonna have to do both, but it depends on the order. It's up to you.

[00:43:51]

One is mash ups were icing the mash up.

[00:43:54]

You have to guess the two bands in the mash up or we can read the first while your team sucks letter of the season from a Bengals fan.

[00:44:05]

So I have I've heard you saying mash ups, whereas other people might not have, because at our weekly sort of defector team trivia things, some people play them. Drew likes to perform them because he's just one of the more normal guys that you'll meet. So I know that this is going to be hard and I'd like to do that first and then we can move on to something less disturbing like Cincinnati Bengals football.

[00:44:29]

All right, here's the matchup. You have to guess the two bands. I'll sing it once. You can request a second one, but I don't think your gut probably won't.

[00:44:38]

It's OK. Go ahead. Ah ha. I feel so alive. Yeah. Oh, Lord, I still alive. You all right.

[00:44:53]

So I believe based on I'm going by tones is that we've got a creed on the front end and Pearl Jam on the back.

[00:45:02]

That is incorrect. That feels bad. Answer.

[00:45:05]

The answer is podi. Son of a bitch. It definitely is bad isn't it. The d'Amboise boys from the South. San Diego's in the legends themselves.

[00:45:15]

All right. You ready for why team sucks. This is a letter from Alex. You wanna hear from Alex why the Bengals suck?

[00:45:22]

I mean, if he if he thinks he can convince me. But it's not going to. Easy. It's going to be tough on the Bengals ones are always extremely depressing. And given that we started the podcast on a depressing note, I apologize in advance for bringing us right back to depression. So I'm going to read this from Alex.

[00:45:37]

Alex writes, I'm a Bengals fan from Arkansas, a feat so odd.

[00:45:42]

When I was in high school, I was outnumbered not just by Cowboys, Steelers, Pats and Saints fans, but by Chargers, Skins and even Browns fans this year.

[00:45:52]

And this was the year the Browns won in 15, followed by Owens 16. Also, as of this writing, I've never even met another Bengals fan period. I'd hope things will get better when I start going to college in Illinois last year. But I had an epiphany the first game of the past season when they came back to beat the Colts. This was in twenty eighteen.

[00:46:08]

I was waiting to see my professor Ebbin wildly refreshing my feet as time ran out. When they won, I jumped up and down and cried out excitedly. But then I looked up.

[00:46:17]

There was nobody around or even on the same floor of my building. A professor due to show up. There was nobody else to share the moment with me, nobody to rejoice with, nobody to high five, or even ask me why I had been so happy. Just the walls and the books and a clock ticking away slowly. That's my fandom in a nutshell. You're watching the team in a corner of a building with nobody to share in the moments of glory and heartbreak as the impassive world passes me by.

[00:46:41]

Always be a Bengals fan, but sometimes as I sit there quietly, I wonder why all the good writing. It's really I mean, it's mostly just because it's very sad writing. It is.

[00:46:53]

But it's it's such good writing, I, I almost feel energized by his despair. Yeah. There's something.

[00:46:59]

See, this was something that I was really into as a kid, as a fan of the New Jersey Nets who were just awful at that point. Like this is years before Jason Kidd arrived, before there was any hope of any kind, right before Kenny Anderson arrived. I mean, it was just like a bunch of guys that looked unhappy, losing to the Pacers by nineteen, like twice a week. And at the time I was like, this is important.

[00:47:21]

Like, it's meaningful to me, not just, you know, because they were from New Jersey. In my case. I have no idea how you end up a Bengals fan in Arkansas. And that's honestly between our writer and his God. But there is something about it that just it felt like significant.

[00:47:34]

I was like, this means something that I that I am this unhappy by choice.

[00:47:39]

And I think it's, you know, in the fullness of time, I think that was probably a dumb choice on my part. But I do think there's some integrity to it.

[00:47:46]

Yeah, I respect Alex, even if I even if I pity him, I respect that his is self-awareness and how just how awful they've really been on a sad trend for a long time too, because they haven't ever I mean, I guess last year they really were bad, but for the longest time they were like, yeah, they win like one or two games last year.

[00:48:09]

Well, yeah, they were they were really shitty for most of my childhood, except for the Super Bowl year in the Super Bowl in really awful fashion. And then Marvin Lewis came and they were competent but always lost in the playoffs. And now they have Joe Burrow, my son. And I think Bura will be I think bro will be an absolutely brilliant quarterback.

[00:48:30]

I mean, this year, because he's from Ohio and he's a cool guy. Yes. Yeah. It's just not there. And it's also tough.

[00:48:37]

At least Burrow's cool, like, you know, cheer for and stuff. The restaurant where you're like, well, I hope Joe Mixon figures it out.

[00:48:43]

Like, do you think that why run that time? Let's get to the fun bags. This is the end of the week from Jonathan. Let's imagine a bizarre scenario where the White House accidentally agrees to an interview with a defector who would get the call to actually do the in-person interview.

[00:49:00]

Hmm. It would not be me. Yeah, I'll tell you that.

[00:49:03]

Right. I think that you would maybe be the guy to do it.

[00:49:05]

No, I one, there are better journalists on the staff like Diane is a way better journalists than me.

[00:49:10]

Yeah, that's true. I mean, I think that she's a better journalist to be for sure. I think the first choice I had would be MacKenna because he's already shown the capacity like that dude, talk to James Dolan and like still kind of defends him as a human being.

[00:49:25]

Yeah, it's awful. Yeah, it's really it is awful where he's just kind of like, you know, he's I think he's very lonely, like thirty. Like, that's it.

[00:49:32]

I don't need to necessarily hear an explanation why James Dolan is misunderstood, but I do think that, like, if like physically to be in a room with James Dolan for an extended period of time.

[00:49:43]

That's MacKenna passing his interview to talk to to Donald Trump.

[00:49:46]

To me, yeah. Dave might also be the one who would like to instantly punch him in the face.

[00:49:51]

Yes. Like, if you're interview to me, if you're interviewing the president, you know, punch him in the face. You've wasted everyone's time.

[00:49:57]

Yeah, but I think it's like he would he would take some time to get there, which I think would make it more gratifying when he finally did, like if he started out and he's like, what's your favorite band?

[00:50:06]

And Trump, like many bands, think that I'm actually the best president. If you look at Gene Simmons of Kiss, a beautiful friend, I, of course, had sex with his wife, like at some point, like even McKenna would be like, all right, this is I'm going to throw you out a window now.

[00:50:23]

Oh, let's wrap it up, by the way, for why our team sucks, you can be part of the entire team, sucks previews by emailing me at Waitz at defector's please for the love of God, include the team name in the subject heading so I can organize this shit and don't.

[00:50:40]

And it has to be your own team. You can't you can't tell me why the Steelers suck if you're a Ravens fan or something.

[00:50:46]

I don't care. I hate you. I'm going to put it in the why the Ravens suck one just to just to yell at you.

[00:50:52]

Also, Brendon Nix is our producer and engineer this week. Daisy Rozario is our executive producer and Stitchers chief content officer is the legendary Chris Bandhan. And that is it. We will see you next week. Roth, enjoy Maine and we'll see you again from Maine. Will that be exciting? Different wireless connection? Same state, but yeah, man, I'm looking forward to it, truly. You cannot get there from here. We'll see you next week.

[00:51:15]

Bye bye.