Episode 1170 - Melinda HillWTF with Marc Maron
- 811 views
- 29 Oct 2020
If comedy equals tragedy plus time, comedian Melinda Hill has reached the point where she can make some funny out of the traumas from her past. Melinda and Marc talk about processing the pain, particularly dealing with parents suffering from mental illness. They also talk about Melinda’s trajectory in the comedy business, starting with success in voiceovers to her influential LA stand-up showcase What’s Up, Tiger Lily? to her acting, writing and podcasting ventures. Plus, Melinda talks about the connection she has with Marc’s past, something that requires a bit of processing on Marc’s end.
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Lock the gate. All right, let's do this, how are you? What the fuckers, what the fuck buddies, what the fuck? Nix what's happening? This is Marc Maron. This is my pie. I'm Marc Maron. Howzat. This is this is he is Marc Maron. He is. Marc Maron is talking about himself now. This is Marc. I'm Marc. This is WTF. How are you? How's that thing on your head? Were you able to get a haircut?
This is no time to buy shoes, is it? I don't know what you're thinking with that. Did your cake come out all right? I know some of you were inspired to outdo me with your cake experiences, so I hope your cake made it.
I did make some beef stew and cornbread.
I'm going to honor the fall of mankind.
I'm going to have a fall.
This is one of the things that I always miss about living in a place that has well defined seasons is that I. I miss the fall. I miss going outdoors in the fall. I miss that crispness in the air.
I miss the heaviness of the of the sky and but the beautiful light of the fall and the colors and just the breathing in that kind of cold air and knowing that you're wearing a couple of layers and you got your boots on, I miss it.
But as soon as it gets you just a little chilly in Los Angeles, as soon as that desert chill starts coming over over us here, I put my beanie on. I was wearing my tweed jacket today. I got my white boots and my Filson pants. I got my flannel shirt on and I layered up and I sat out on my porch and it felt kind of foolish. I can't even explain to you, I think some, you know, fall people know.
Maybe it's because I was born in the fall. That's what some people say, because it really moves me. It changes my whole disposition. I guess there's a nostalgia trigger I can't really explain. The poetry of it, but somebody told me that if you were, you have a relationship with the season you're born into, and that seemed to make good sense to me. I'll take it I'll take it today on the show, I talked to Melinda Hill, Melinda Hill is a comedian and you might know her stand up.
She's also been on a lot of comedy shows like Reno 911 one in the Sarah Silverman program. And she founded a show we all used to do around here called What's Up? Tigerlily. It was at the the old Yaqub with Maria Bamford, Natasha Lázaro. And I was actually at a Cuban restaurant, I believe, originally, and then it kind of moved around to places.
She's got a new special out called Merlinda Hill Inappropriate.
And I've known her forever. And she's one of those people. I'm like, what's she up to? Where you been? How you been? And she actually came over here and we did a partitioned conversation. I put my plexiglass up and we did the thing. And it was good. It was good. We talked for a long time about deep shit and I love her. And she did. And I want to set this up at the beginning.
Before you forget, she did want to make sure that you all knew that she gets along with her parents.
We have a conversation about parents, and she just wanted to make it clear that she's OK with her folks.
OK, all right, all right, I just want to get that out of the way, I want to give you a heads up to a thing here, someone who's been on this show, a great comedy writer, funny person, Merill Markoe.
She's been on The Pacis, one of the original writers for the original David Letterman show. And she's written this this book. She's written a lot of stuff. But this is a very unique and personal undertaking. She's she's done here.
She's she's written a graphic novel memoir.
It's called We Saw Scenery, The Early Diaries of Merrill Markoe. And it's hilarious and it's personal. It's great writing from one of the funniest people out there. And she did her own illustrations.
So it's got a very the whole thing is a very personal undertaking. And it's great. Again, it's called The Early Diaries of Merrill Markoe. We saw Scenery is the name of the book, so you can check that out wherever you get your books. All right. So nostalgia is what we're talking about, the fall. Where does it take you? I've thought about this idea before, you know, it's very hard to look forward with any, you know, reasonable speculation or excitement or hope, no matter what happens, we're heading for difficult times.
covid is out of control. The government's in chaos and malignancy. People are terrified the economy's buckling. So it's not like he can go like, man, I can't wait to what? You can't wait until what? Until this disease is gone. Till this president's gone. Till things start to function again normally. Well, I don't know when that's going to fucking happen. So it's been, I think a normal thing at this point is, you know, people are just churning through the past, churning, churning through their past in terms of memories, going through stuff.
A lot of organizing going on.
Reflection and then churning through the past of entertainment, because that's what's available to us, but now we start to worry about nostalgia. I worry about hanging on to nostalgia. I like looking back and at least seeing the evolution of different choices I've begun to make in my life to maybe be a different person. I try to have hope, but I used to have this idea. It was a concept that I tried to make a bit, but it just never worked.
Because it's based on the idea of your life flashing before your eyes, you know, they say that when you die, right before you die, your life flashes before your eyes.
And I always thought, like, well, how long does that take, is it does it happen, like, quickly or is it like a year? Yeah, because once you start reflecting or or living in the past or being nostalgic about something, you know, like when old people say it was a different time, they wistfully say now it's a it was a different time.
Is that the beginning of your life flashing before your eyes? When does that happen? It's hard to stay engaged because the present is terrifying. But to be careful not to get too nostalgic, because it may be your life flashing before your eyes. I guess that's the warning.
You've been doing a lot of cooking dimension that made some beef stew. I mentioned that the beef stew, everyone wants to keep their home and family safe.
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I know for the fall man. I bought some apples. There's something about it man. Something about the fall in a crisp apple, looking at a pumpkin, wearing a sweater, breathing in maybe a slight hint of a. Fireplace in the distance, or if you live out in L.A., the entire state on fire, man, it smells like fall, all of Northern California is smoldering.
What the fuck, man?
I was going to go on a hike the other day, the air was too shady again and the where I had caught fire, I was not getting go. I always wondered about that. What do you do? You always got a plan in your head. But usually those plans are about is as good as like when you were younger and you thought, hey, if this elevator cable broke, I could just jump up right before it hits and then land safely.
Yeah, I got a plan from on the mountain and it catches fire.
I'll just go up to the area where there's no trees and lay down.
No good. No bueno. You better run man. So. Yeah, the fall nostalgia. I had dreams again. I had a Lynn Shelton dream. And. It's Havemann. But it's good, I'm trying to see them as good, I'm trying to see them as visit. My grief has been sort of it's sort of turned into kind of a baseline sadness, but but I had this dream. I've been doing these Instagram lives.
I see some shit about some people occasionally I try to maintain a certain amount of diplomacy, but, you know, sometimes my real feelings come out tempered but true.
But I said something about somebody in a show. But it was just this old sort of weird, kind of gnawing resentment that, you know, has been worked over, it's I'm not it's not active.
But that guy. From Radiolab, Jad. But he once said something to a friend of mine at an event about me and not knowing it was my friend that got back to me and it kind of gave me kind of stuck in my craw. Forever. So I was just telling the story, but the dream was like in the dream, I was looking at my phone and there was an incoming call from Radio Lab and I was like, oh, no.
And when I was just there, she was just right in my face and she was smiling.
She's like, what did you do? What? Why why don't you want to answer the phone? What did you do? And she's looking at me, smiling, like knowing that I did something wrong and I'm like way. And she was just sort of like, what did you do? And her face was right up near my face and I put my hands and I grabbed her cheeks and I just held her face and I said I said, I miss you.
I miss you. And. And she she she walked a few feet away. She goes, it's it's real. It's real or this is real. I don't know which and I don't know what she was referring to. But she's referring to the visit or was she referring to her being gone? I don't know. But it did, you know, soften me and it made me realize, you know, is that energy like what did you do?
What Mark don't come on, Mark. Oh, come on, she's such a big hearted person. Big spirit. And I have to be careful. Not to let mine close up, I have to be careful not to let my heart close up, I have to be careful. You know, not to, you know, to be angry and resentful and mean again, I do. I do miss her and I do like. Do you like those visits?
I am really trying to actively. Take her memory a blessing. So.
Melinda Hill is my guest and her new special, Melinda Hill Inappropriate, is available now on Amazon Prime Apple TV, YouTube and most other video on demand platforms can also get the audio version on most streaming music platforms. And and I've I've known her for a long time. She's always been on the periphery, if not right in front of me, probably going on. 18 years. She's just always been around, I've always been like, you know, what are you been doing, you know, and there was this is really the first time we talked like this.
This is me talking to Melinda Hill and. Look, I wore this in honor of you, Katsav, thank your Katsav. How many do you have? Cats. You got one? Yeah, I have the one. Just the one. Yeah. Did you have more?
I would like to give him a little friend. How long have you had this one.
This one Stardust is is about four years old.
So she's been alone the whole time. Do you do you find see this guy used to have the old ones. So I feel like he's longing. Oh yeah.
And it makes me sad. Is he does he need somebody.
That's how I feel. I ask him all the time. I'm like, do you need a little friend? Should I get you a little another kitten. Yeah. And do you feel like you get responses.
What are you feeling like she's saying. Well it's a he. OK, see, I'm sorry I should ask for how does he identify it today.
It's a he and he believes he's a lion so he's not really a cat. OK, but I'm not really sure if he would like another. Well that's the risk you take, right? If you get another one, you don't know each other. Get get along.
Well, my I know my guy. I know how he behaves. He's a bully and he's a fucker. And he used to beat up on the old man. OK, no respect for age this cat.
And and it was like it was a problematic because when monkey got old and sick, this guy this was like jumping on and I like dude.
So he was actually I neglected him.
And so this is the first time because he's ever since he was I got him, I had the old cats and he was always sort of the third banana. So now he's got all my attention.
He's turning into this other kind of cat, kind of wild, like a like a happier cat.
He's just becoming more friendly, a little more open, a little more connected. Because when I got one cat, if I'm focused on a cat, I'm checking in all the time, you know, don't you?
Yeah, for sure. I mean, right.
You walk in, you're like, what's up high? Yeah. Where are you. Yeah. Yeah.
But when you have a couple you focus on the old guy. My old guy. You have to realize like I was just like leave me alone, leave me alone. Like stop it.
So that was the relationship. But now it's like, hey buddy, all the time. He doesn't I think he knows what to do with it.
Where, where did you get him. Showed up. He was eating on the porch of my old house, wild and fucked up and crazy. OK, did he.
It wasn't quite I don't think he was feral. I think someone, you know, someone had gotten him, had him for a little while and then he got out and was in the wild. But he's only a couple of months old.
But he was fast and crazy and living in the wild. Yeah. Crazy like this little fucking he's a tough little fucker.
I always tell Stardust's I remind him of the story that, you know, the story, the origin story.
Exactly. I tell it to them like a bedtime story of like you were rescued from the Doughty's shelter. And Jouni, what were you doing there?
Well, several friends knew I wanted a cat. Maria Bamford took me to the Pasadena theater to get one. Yeah, they didn't have any kittens available that day, weirdly. So my other friend Beth took me to the Downey Shelter, and that's where I found this little guy. And he was in a cage with a bunch of rapscallions who were like going nuts on the cage. And he was the little demure one.
Uh, and you got him. Yeah, that's nice. And it worked out. Yeah.
He he's part part time rapscallion. Oh. He concealed it that day. Yeah. But generally he's very demure and sweet, putting on a show, wanting to get out.
Get me out of here lady. I got your number.
We had an old cat back when, when, when Mishna and I moved here we had that butch cat and then that guy but we had gotten that cat, another cat boomer and and I picked the craziest cat in the place because we went to some shelter.
It was it wasn't like a city shelter, but it was one where it just seemed like most of the cats were cats that people got tired of. Like all the cats were like they were over ten and clearly looked like other people's cats.
But this one, there was one that was just out of his mind. I like that one. And I realize it until I trapped these other guys that that fucking guy was completely feral.
Completely feral. Oh, wow.
So, like, what was the training process like bringing him in to break him down? These are the ones that I had, aren't you? Maybe in a decade you can get them to sit on your lap or something, but you can't pick them up. They're tweaked all the time. But, you know, you get used to him.
I have I've had three feral cats like real feral cats now in my life. For me, they're good because you got to fight for it.
Yeah, there's a distance there. There's aggressive boundaries, you know.
That's like when I get cats that are just sort of like loving fat little cats and my cat.
A little self-respect. You look at you. Oh, my God. Pull it together.
But like I was thinking about our past and how long I've fucking known you.
Yeah, it's kind of crazy. It really is. Right. Yeah.
I always want like, whenever I see you, I'm like, what has she been doing? Oh, my God, Melinda, what do you even where are you, where have you been doing.
That's the feeling I get now. Now you've got this special coming out. Yeah. What's it called. It's called inappropriate word. You do it. I did it down the street in Hollywood. Well down the street from me. What do you mean. What place.
It's a it's in theater row. It's called. Oh my ribs on Santa Monica.
Yeah. That weird little theater row. Yeah. What is going on down there.
I used to like a lot of plays happening there. A lot of but it's always like, you know, like what is. It's like it's been there forever. Yeah. I've done standup shows there. Yeah. At one point or another. But I'm just like there's, there's not much theatre in L.A. and I just always wonder how those places work. Do people just rent them out. Did you just rent it out.
Yeah. Did you do a run there before.
You know, I thought we considered it but I just know I just did two, two shows in one night and taped it. So you shot it. Yeah.
With two, three cameras. I think there is three.
You pulled the crew together. Yeah, exactly. Yeah.
Did you use both shows are just the one, you know, the second one was pretty unusable. So it's primarily the first it it's not always what happens.
Yeah. Like the shoot the two and rarely in my experience I haven't used a lot of the other one.
Yeah. No, we just mostly went with the first one and comedy dynamics. It's putting it out and it's coming out.
I just did a deal with them after the fact. Well I had I made a list of places that do specials and I thought I would just go down and call the people on the list. And they were the like the first name and they just took it. So I didn't go to any other names.
Good for you to be a fighter. OK, go and get what you are going anywhere. Walk all over you with the weight. The first people want it. Let's take it right. We take it right.
Well, Maria, because I'm really good friends of Maria Bamford and she had just done her special with them and she was like, they're amazing. Yeah. So it was like a glowing endorsement.
So she was championing you a bit. Did she bring you into them?
No, I just wrote them myself. You wrote them? Yeah.
No management? No. So what was the deal?
A handshake. OK, you're like, well, you guys distribute this shirt. Do I get any money? We'll see. Oh, sounds perfect. I take you know, I had a lawyer and I did a deal.
You know, there was a negotiation. OK, this is a real show business. Yeah. I didn't send them a handwritten letter.
I didn't just send them the beta a tape and say, you know, the big wish for the wish for the best good.
Well, that's good. So now but this is your first special. Yeah. But you've done CDs or. Yeah I feel like yeah.
I did a few CDs back in the day.
A few CDs back in the day. Yeah. Selling them at the club.
Right. Yeah. I mean this was supposed to happen years before supposed to air quotes, you know it was purchased by judicial. Yeah. Do you remember that company chill. No.
OK, so they made Marías other special the ones you did in front of our parent, the one with the parents which I love. And then they did like Arissa Fears and Greg Proops and stuff, and we had to deal with them. I was at Brillstein at the time and and then they folded.
The whole company folded was a production company. Yeah. And then I was with anonymous content and they were also making after Brillstein after Bill Stamens with Anonymous was making their own special with them that didn't go through. And so now I just did it on my own. You're persevering.
WOMAN Well, I also feel like if it had happened at those times, it wouldn't have been the same special. It's a much better special now. How so?
Well, at those times it probably would have been a series of funny dating stories gone wrong, which are always entertaining. But now there's a more thorough narrative arc and I've learned more as a person. And there's it's this one's about healing trauma, so. We don't continue to recreate it. And so I've really I can MDR special, it's got it's a very you have to watch.
You have to move your head. You have to move your eyes when you watch it back and forth. Someone should do that.
That would be revolutionary.
It typically it actually is it actually is the it's a it's about when I went to MDR and my trauma.
Yeah. Oh yeah. Well that's OK. Well good.
And so it's I feel like it's got a much stronger message now because I have more healing as a person. Well where'd you come from.
Like, like where did you like. Because like when I got here, when I got back here in 2002 and I was desperately trying to, you know, plant myself here, you know, I wasn't really known.
But you had a room early on, right? Yeah, like way early.
I was like a box right where I wasn't in a mall.
It was a box. Was a it. Exactly. It was a box in a mall. Let's see. I had first I had several. Wait, where'd you come from. OK, so I was born in Hutchinson, Kansas. Kansas.
You're like a Kansas person. Yeah. Whereas Hutchison. Hutchinson is Hutchinson. Yeah. Hutchinson or Hutch.
Hutch for locals. My refer to it when they say how many high schools are in Hutchinson.
I don't actually know because we only lived there like two months. So you got out. Don't have a lot of info about it, but it's a small town in Kansas.
So that's, that's where you were born. And then where did you grow up? Well, so we moved twenty seven times. What the fuck. Military. You're just running away.
My dad was a criminal. I would say both my I would say both.
My dad was military, he was Navy and he was bipolar and he loved to move on a bipolar high.
My dad did that. What? Sure. Yeah. Really.
How many times when he destroyed his wife and hit the road? I don't know what I'm trying to think.
So that started in Albuquerque. He was in Victoria, Texas. Warsaw, New York. Muscatine, Iowa. I don't remember like there was at least four or five times where.
And I used to track it because, like, you know, he and my mom broke up. So he he hit the road.
He was a doctor, but he got kind of chased out of Albuquerque, chased out like I never got the full clear story, but I knew that he would what he would do is he would sign up.
He would he would get a job basically as an orthopedic surgeon in existing practices and do a year deal with them in these different places. So he wouldn't have to pay. He'd have an office. You know, he would just enter an existing practice in these other towns and then he'd stay there for a year.
But it always sort of kind of it was the arc of his cycle. Like, you know, by the time he left, I got the feeling that the town wanted him to leave.
Do you know what I mean? Like, he was right around the time or the mania would kick in. He'd be writing letters to the newspaper and, you know, getting you know, so I am I guess I'm just saying I'm familiar with the manic compulsion.
Mom, your dad would say, like, I want a new life.
He I don't even think was that conscious. But I do think that's what it was that he would say, we've got to go. Yeah. And sometimes it would be like that night. Oh, really? Yeah. He'd be like, we're leaving. And, you know, in the middle of the night, how many kids were there?
Three. That's crazy. It was very it was was he in trouble ever?
He was never in trouble that I know of.
So he wasn't like literally like we got to get out before they get me. No, it was just more like I mean, he would have like a reason. I was like job transfer or I'm leaving this job or I need to there's a better job here or something like that. But he loved to move. Like I've never seen him happier than when we were in the movie motion. Yeah.
That freed feeling. Yeah. Starting over. Well, you know how they call it.
They call that a geographic graphic. Geographic. Yeah. So if you, you know, people change your hair all the time, it's a hair geographic.
Oh that's interesting. I never heard that.
And you want to change. I've done some hair and clothing geographics in my time. Sure. Me too. Oh my God.
But you have you you look exactly the same for fifteen years. I could tell you I can see Melvindale from a half a mile away. You know, it was you.
Thank you. It's a compliment. I did too. I did do brown hair once and then red hair.
Big geographic. He didn't cut it, though, I did I did chop it all off once when I was like 18. OK, before I knew it. Yeah, right. So fuck. You can watch all my Canaan's and see like, what's this guy got going on today, haircut's outfits.
Did it change a lot. I feel like you look exactly the same.
I walked in at some point I realized it's time to commit to saying, well, I've had the mustache configuration for a while. I don't know if I had it when I met you. I don't think I had it when I got here. Maybe scruffy, but not the mustache.
I had long hair, OK? I don't remember the long hair. I feel like you've always I guess it was kind of short. You look the same. I feel like you've always looked the same.
Yeah, I'll take it. I think it's about right.
Some people look drastically different from year to year.
Yeah, well, some people do the rebranding, you know, like that guy is not working anymore. I need a new hook.
You know that guy, what's his name? You know, he's a comic. He was on a comic last standing Chris tall guy. Be like, you know, he talks like this. He's from the South. Chris Porter, Chris Porter. He went through full rebranding. What's the rebrand?
Just like, you know, car horn rimmed glasses, short hair. No, he's not he's not like white trash Southern rock anymore.
He's like like a comedy nerd guy now. Oh, full. He went full. Jonah Ray.
Oh, well, I guess we're we're allowed to evolve.
Of course I'm the full believer, so. All right. So you're going from town to town.
What was it what were the cycles like every year or tighter? Must have been tighter than that.
It really varied. We did live in twenty seven places. There were many schools so rough.
It was it was definitely rough. And I feel like my formative years, though, were spent in Colorado Springs, which I kind of think of as home. OK, even though I never visit like high school.
Yeah. Like, you know, ninth grade in there. And then we moved to a little town called Woodland Park, Colorado, and then we moved to Halstead, Kansas when I was a kid, when I was a junior in high school.
So you just kept pulling out of high school, pulling out of friends. So you're unable to really make bonds that lasted. Exactly. But like in terms of the bipolar situation. So your mom did what she just like kind of co-dependent in this situation. Did she have a battle? Did she have any sort of will or strength of her own in the face of this horrendous, I am assuming, tornado of bipolarity?
No, no. She was married. Yes, definitely co-dependent. Married at 19.
Had me shortly thereafter. I'm the oldest at twenty.
She had you? Yeah, nineteen at nineteen, I imagine having a child at nineteen.
My mom was twenty two. I can't figure it out.
And she had two subsequent children immediately. My both my brothers and you know.
Does your dad still in the military know. My dad had returned from the Navy. He was like twenty six. He met my mom and they were married, they had three kids and my mom had was an orphan. Yeah she was orphaned at six.
So she grew up in foster parents. She was separated from her. She was one of six children. They were all separated at age six from their parents because her dad had PTSD like shrapnel in his brain from the war. And so he couldn't care for the children and they he would forget to feed them like stuff like that.
So where was the mom? The mom was there, but she, I guess, had emotional breakdown. I don't know if it was like, wow.
So your mom lived with this family. This was for six till she was six. So she was six. So she was wired for. She was why her future.
Exactly. And they were out like, you know, she was like one of the oldest, her and her sister.
So they would like care for all the other kids. So they would like to have to steal food to eat like that level before they were taken away and then they were separated into foster care and.
Oh, Christ, she tells like the story that like they were in this orphanage. And the highlight of the kids day was like when this policeman would come around on his beat to the window and like do like a funny dance for the kids. Like, they would gather around the window and like, wait for this policeman.
Exciting life, entertainment. His first open mic. And anyway, so she was she was eventually adopted and by a very abusive alcoholic, she ran away at 16 with her brother.
The two of them were adopted. Yeah. They were adopted together by abusive alcoholics. And the alcoholic woman would just beat them up every night. I mean, this was before they knew about child abuse and stuff and they knew about it.
And, you know, kids, they don't know, like we're supposed to report this, you know, especially being adopted.
So at one point, my mom was 16, my her brother was 15. Her brother was getting, you know, beaten up or whatever. And he ran out the door to the police station. Yeah. And my mom ran after him. Yeah. And they were taken out of that home. And my mom went to live with her friend and then she met my dad like, you know, oh my God.
And he's back from the Navy and he's got the bipolar.
Well, nobody knows that he has bipolar until years later. So my whole childhood, it was unmedicated.
So like, well, what what did he go down, down like? I mean, like, depressed.
Yeah. Yeah. He would get, like, really depressed. And he was from, like, the good family in the town. So my mom was like really excited to be with him and a part of this great family cause my mom like Kansas.
Yeah. Kansas, Hallstatt, Kansas. All she ever wanted was like a great to be a part of a great family.
But he's from Halstead. He's from Halstead. Hutchinson is just where you were born. Right. So Halsted is close to Hutchinson. It's like an hour away. But Halsted has brick streets, right.
So he come from like an old family in Kansas, rich family.
They're not rich, but they were very well, well respected. The hills of of hills of. Yeah, yes.
And you know, all this there were nine children, Catholic, and they were all like this star athletes of the week.
Do you have a million.
I don't even know hundreds. Do you know them?
No, none of them. I mean, yes, of course I know them and remember them from many gatherings to my childhood. And my grandma always had like these fabulous gatherings with all the, you know, cousins and stuff.
But I'm not close. Close.
So this is like not them psychoanalysing, but I mean, this is like kind of rough to get any footing in the old sense of self. I imagine it's kind of a walking, untethered vessel.
The name of my next project, walking untethered vessel. Wow.
Yeah. Truly, truly. Yes, you're right.
And you've wandered out here somehow.
Yes, I untethered. I flew in here from Kansas like the Wizard of Oz.
Yeah. Untethered. Looking for someone to tether you. Yeah. Looking to show business. Whatever you. Yeah.
Looking to the most untether all business in the world to parent you ok.
Yes. Like so many of them. I know. I know.
But what was that like. So like are your siblings all right. They are grandma. That's good.
It's like it's very concerned. No serious. Right. Because you know, you think of the three like coming from depression and that kind of stuff and talking to so many people.
It is nice to to know that, you know, people get out. It's a good you know, not only you, but they're doing OK.
Yeah, for sure. It's it's inspiring. Did you take the hit for them? What do you mean. I mean, were you I mean, you're the oldest. Yes. So like were you more aware of like the insanity.
Were you protective of them like I was.
It's really hard to, you know, live in that and want to protect everyone. And I definitely like wanted to protect my mom and my brothers. It was a very turbulent household. So, you know, I definitely wanted to be able to do that. And I kind of like grew up kind of getting my validation in life by being people's counselor, you know, hearing people out and supporting people like your mom sometimes.
Yeah, for sure. Was like always trying. To save my mom. So help her. And what was it? Was your father abusive or just out of his mind? Both. He was a ranger. So I know that one. I think that's why you always had a natural aversion to me when you're like that guy and he's a monster in there.
I can see a monster.
I've never had a natural aversion to Mark. What are you talking about? Is this an imagined, maybe, maybe slightly imagined, but projecting? No, not really.
Not really. I was you know, I was a ranger when I was younger. Yeah. So I understand it.
Well, it's familial, right? So it's pilot. Sure.
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, that's horrible. It's horrible. I mean, it certainly you know a lot of what you know, because I associate you with my ex-wife so and you know that was much of the reason why she left me, you know, was because of that.
So I, I'm familiar with it, Mom and I and I know that the damage that it can cause because it's just so it's so like especially with bipolar is like you can't help them when they're depressed, they'll drain you that way.
And then when they're manic and they're raging around, then they just you can't be close to them because they're going to hurt you. Right. So you're just your whole sense of self gets all shattered.
Yeah. I mean, and it's just really unpredictable. I mean, it's so predictable, but you don't know when it's going to.
So he would be like the most charismatic person in the world and then alternately very depressed and sad, not just like a black hole, like talking to anyone, only speaking to the pets may get that horrible look in their eye when they're depressed.
That kind of like there's like an almost kind of lostness, inconsolable guy.
Not even there, like there, but not that is right. And then alternately extreme rage, like throwing the vacuum like war zone.
No, man, sorry you went through that. Thank you.
So when you're not physically abusive, though, thankfully, that's lucky, though, a little trickier to address the trauma.
It is because it's subtle.
Yeah. And it's it's like a period of trauma, like I find especially with the MDR, that if you have an event that you can start with and move through, that's like that seems to be really the good way to do it. But if you just sort of like. Well, my whole childhood.
OK, so that's a lot like therapy session.
Did you do MDMA too? I have. OK, I do it now. What was your experience? What's your experience?
Well, my buddy Steve is a he's one of the big guys. We're practitioners of it. Steve Danziger. You know Steve. No, he's he's my sponsor.
He's also my friend. Cool. And he got he got hip to it a few years back. So he actually teaches MDR. So he kind of he told me about it and he showed me how it worked. But lately I've been seeing a therapist who does it, a friend of his this woman, you know, in processing, you know, the lens death, you know, in that, you know, specifically, you know, like the last week or a week or so ago going through that last week of her life here, you know, here.
Oh, my gosh.
Not knowing that she was dying and then looking back at it after she passed it on my plate and the. Yeah, the weight of that, we you know, we get we reprocess that twice a year, the second time a couple of weeks ago.
And it definitely helps.
Do you feel lighter or you feel like how is it making you feel?
Well, I mean, it's really about like you said, you know, once you whether you believe in the hocus pocus of it or not, because I think that MDR is an uphill battle is on with the buzzers and this and that.
However, you're going to do it, right?
Yeah, it seems a little crackpot. Right. But there is some science there and they're having a lot of success with vets and PTSD and stuff. So for me, once I understood that the agenda was to kind of like open up whatever the I don't know. Do you know exactly how it works?
I think and I'm paraphrasing, but it's been described to me something like you take their traumatic memory that you're currently reacting to and reacting from that space in your life, the historical trauma, and you take it and you process it in real time with this eye movement stuff and it puts it into the right drawer in your brain. Yeah. So you're no longer reacting from that space.
You're not constantly re traumatize. As yourself, right, or perceiving circumstances to be historical. Right, so the eye movement thing or the buzzer's kind of distract the brain in a way that you can pull this stuff out of your your reptilian or animal brain where trauma plants itself. Yeah. And move it into the more cognizant thing. Kind of like like a spread it out or something. Yeah.
And I think just processing those emotions of grief, of anger and sadness.
Of fear. Yeah. I like it.
The process where you start with the thing and then and then you do the buzzer's or the eye movement and then you're like where are you at now? And you kind of go through that like five or six times until you see where you end up.
Yeah, even that process without buzzers or eye movement would be good. Yeah. But with it, to answer your question, like I was, I kind of was compulsively going over all that, all the things that happened. Yeah. That week, not so much.
I felt like I didn't do what I could, but I didn't know she was dying. So, you know, in retrospect, you sort of like that.
Maybe I should have taken it like it's not a whole lot of shoulda, woulda, coulda, because what she had would have done her in anyways. But there are moments where, like, I like there just, you know, they just you keep going back and keep it so that so by reprocessing it, it seems to have subsided a little. I don't revisit it.
That's really powerful to not be in that loop because that is the that that's I believe that's what it's it's coming up for healing. Right. So in doing this process, it's healing. Right.
So clearly what we're talking about is like a long period of different type of trauma, right?
Yeah. You know, what started happening was I started kind of hiding, like going underground, like wanting to have do my career and getting this acting work and stuff. But I would start like hiding. There's something inside of me like undermining me, like trying to stay hidden where it just felt safe and, like isolating.
Like, you know, I had Tigerlily and it was like crowded every week and we'd have these great lineups.
And yeah, you started that room with Maria Maria Bamford. And it was it just you two. It was Maria Bamford, Natasha Lázaro and you and me at this feelies unless feels at the Cuban restaurant.
Yeah, I thought it would be a weekly show that would last like a month and it just ran for ten years. It had a life of its own.
Right. So it's well, maybe we'll back up and back and then drive into the trauma. So when do you when do you run away from home?
So I left home three days after high school. So 18 years old. You're, like, fucking done. I wish you could.
Yes, I had to go home and I did feel guilty. I didn't want to leave my brothers there, but I had to go home when you came here now.
So because we had been moved from Colorado Springs, where all of my friends were boyfriend and stuff, I wanted to go back and be with them for that summer. So I told my mom I'm going to Colorado Springs for the summer with no intent of ever coming back. But she didn't know that. Right. So I went to Colorado Springs to try to be with all my friends. They've all moved on. High school's over.
They're all going to college, you know. And so I'm just they're like the loneliest feeling in the world, like trying to. Oh, my God.
So you go back to to get some I'm going to go back home. My friends are in you. No, I'm going to get my teen years back and they're gone. Said everyone's moved on.
Wow. So I took this weird nanny job. I had a scholarship, I had a theater scholarship to go to Wichita State University. And I was like, well, I'm going to take six months off and take this weird nanny job. Why is it weird? It paid like two hundred a month. Yeah, not much.
You lived at the house.
Yeah. And I took care of these four children or and I was like eight. I was eighteen.
Crazy. Was it, were the parents weird.
No. I mean it was a sweet woman. She was a flight attendant. She was always gone. But I think I just took it in the moment because I needed like a place to stay. And then I just ended up staying there for, like, the whole semester. And then I was like, what am I doing? I need to go to school. And I moved back and took my scholarship.
So you went from taking care of your siblings to taking care of strange kids?
Yeah, well, I mean, I wouldn't call them strange. They they were sweet, but the caretaker role followed you. All right. And yeah. So you go to Wichita. Yeah. So I go to Wichita and you get your theater degree. I do a bunch of plays and a bunch of writing classes and I that's where I got like a lot of I mean had already been doing plays for years.
He went for four years. You did the whole thing.
No, I did a year there and I did a year at CU in Lawrence.
Uh. Did you get a degree or no. No fucking I went I got some skills, I did some writing classes, got some skills, and then I came here and went to acting school where Joanne Barron, Joanne Barron, she's still around, I believe.
So, whether it was their famous people who were her famous people, her famous people are like Robin Wright Penn.
That's all I can think of.
They all have one.
No, I'm sure there are many of them.
Did you go to acting school? I did not go to acting school, but I did study some acting with Mark Howard in New York briefly. I took it here and there, but I never it never I would never say I studied for very long.
Do you feel that it helped you or you didn't really need it? Because you always just play yourself right now?
Wait a minute. I think that I'm a nuanced actor, that there's different variations that didn't land well.
I feel like a lot of comedians are such good actors and dramatic actors as well. And then some really just they're just straight comedy, right? Yeah.
I don't know. I didn't really do any acting until much later. I mean, didn't really, you know, it was really here and there and I never saw it.
I never tried to do it because I always believe that there were just at some point there were just people better at sitcoms than me.
I'm not it's not. I can't do it. So I like you're great. I think you're great. And Glau Yeah.
But I that was like four years ago. Right. So I was already I was fifty something years old. I mean that's really the first acting job I really had was doing Meryn. I feel like though that my late forties but that's perfect. I'm not complaining. Thymine.
Yeah I'm not complaining, I'm just saying that none of it was going to happen and it didn't happen. And I never I guess my point was I never really put myself out there to be an actor. I couldn't handle it right.
Because I had so much invested in my own work to go and do like mediocre scripts and have these garbage come out of your mouth and have that be your life and worry about whether you can deliver the garbage.
Well, I mean, it's like, fuck it. Yeah. I don't even think the I don't even think I had representation for a decade. I, I think they used to tell me that I had representation, but I really don't think I did.
I went that move. I just don't think I had an agent. I think I had every once in a while he'd get somebody to do him a favor and check me out a few times I didn't get anything and then I just didn't I just stop fucking worrying about it.
Yeah, well, that's when things happen, right? No, I wasn't worrying about it.
When things happened is when I fired Dave, Becky, I lost everything missional left me, crushed my life. I had nothing. And I and I didn't know what was going to happen. That's when it happened. Now, when I, I, I gave up.
That's when it happened when Mike. I guess it's not going to work out.
That's when it happened. Not when I'm like I'm gonna fuck. But I seriously was just sort of I it's over and I'm going I have to figure something out.
I've had such similar experiences. Yeah. I've just giving up. Oh yeah.
And then there's there it is, you know, but it's just giving up that plan and being like, OK, I guess this isn't going to be a thing. Well yeah.
But you've had so many things and so many things that went for a while that almost went I mean so like when did it start. I mean because you like you there's some things, there's things you created that went for a while.
Yeah. Like when did all that start happening. I mean you've been plugging along.
I have been plugging along. I mean, I guess, you know, after acting school, they have to have a little consultation at the end. And my teacher was like, I think you should go into comedy. You're accidentally funny. You're doing these serious scenes and you just have to figure out how to do it on purpose.
Good luck with that. That's my next special accidentally funny. Yeah. So I went to the Groundlings. Oh really? Yeah. And I completely I mean, I had never even really seen standup at this point. My brother was a huge comedy fan, but I went through the Groundlings. I learned how to write sketches.
I were you ever in the company now? So I advanced through all the level. Yeah. To the very tip top level.
And then at that precipice, right before you go into Sunday company, I, along with ten other people in our twelve person class, were cut. Oh, devastating.
And it was a very talented, tremendously talented group. It was like Mickey Day who's on SNL now. Guys, you got cut. Brian Keith Etheridge. Well, Mikey was a I think they told him to repeat and Brian Keith Etheridge, who's a big TV writer, and Kristen Wiig. And it was like a great group. But at that point, I was cut from there and I was devastated.
I'm just I mean, imagine like spending like every night going to these shows and taking all the classes and writing all these sketches, working towards this thing.
Working towards a thing and really putting our heart and soul in this basket. Holy shit. And then the basket gets up and walks away.
So first lesson in show business. What's the lesson there? It's not necessarily a meritocracy. It doesn't end well for many people. And it's filled with rejection.
That's right. And so at that time, I well, first I was like, I'm quitting. No, I'm quitting.
And we were going, forget it or it's over. We can go to the road.
Yeah, I guess it's Kansas hiring.
I don't know the state. Yeah. I'd like to apply to Kansas. Kansas. Do you remember me? Is it too late. I'm sorry I left.
That's your next one person show is a lot of titles are coming up during this episode title. Do you still remember me.
That's a book. That's not a comedy special. That's a book. So anyway, I didn't quit acting well.
I did quit and I took a job at waitressing and I out of the blue, this agent called me and they're like, We saw you at the Broadway show.
Oh, great. They dragged you back in. Like, we just put a voiceover booth and we think you'd be great at.
Voiceover So I went in and auditioned for this. Voiceover I booked it.
Yeah, it ran for years. Oh, my God. Won the Emmy for outstanding commercial. Really.
And you made some money and I found out I got the job while I was in the bank for identity theft. I found out I had been identity theft and those checks.
So I'm like waitressing at this job. Maybe like thirty tonight. I've quit acting like I've got these checks that people have washed my checks. They dropped in the last philos post office and I'm in there sorting that out. My agent calls. He set me on one audition and they're like, you booked it. And I just thought it was like a spec thing. I'm going to pay like fifty bucks. And it's like this giant commercial campaign for Citibank.
Wow. And how many how many spots did you do that? Was it it was the O.G. original Citibank spot with the guy sitting in the recliner and he's had his identity stolen by a valley girl. And that was me going like first I empty the checking account and there was a sexy little outfit, you know, that thing?
Yeah, I definitely did have it, that thing. So that, like, ran. And then I started doing standup because I was like, well, I've been around a long time.
Right. That commercial and four years. But that was back in the day where you made a little money on that shit.
Yeah. You made a lot of great money on those campaigns. And then I was doing standup and there was a an agent in the audience from ICM voice. So I got signed I them voice and then I was like working all the time in. Voiceover So that happened right after saying I'm never acting again.
Voiceover That's where that was the secret because I was always sort of like, what do I know?
She's doing standup over here, but what does she go on the road? What does she do all over?
Yeah, the secret voiceover life. Yeah, I was doing I've done a lot of voiceover and then the Groundlings have really came in handy because it was like using all those characters and whatnot.
And then I started doing those in my act and then. Yeah, and then I got to invent Adventure Time cartoon.
You did a lot of episodes of that. Yeah. That's great. Did you do too. I did one episode, but it seems like they called you back all the time. You did a bunch of characters.
I did a few like five. And then like when Maria Bamford was doing her show, they just would hire me to fill in for her voices. Really? Yeah.
When she was doing it because I. Oh, she's on adventure time alone. Oh yeah. Yeah. Maria did so to so much voice stuff.
Oh really. I didn't realize. Yeah. Do you do a lot of voice stuff. It seems like. You know I do. I have done lately. I did a flying squirrel on adventure time.
I they, they, i in voiceovers they're not looking for me to have a lot of range. They want me to be what I am. Usually I have just done two movies that are roughly different degrees of me.
Like I don't do much of this, you know, I, I do do it, you know, I don't do and I don't do news.
Oh no. But they're like we went crazy guy.
We got a cranky snail. Yeah.
I often you remember I offered you a part in my, my series as a as a as the angry guy. Yeah. And you're like. You can't do it, and then TJ Miller did it. Oh, good luck to you. I'm so glad. So when do now we're skipping over some of the gossipy stuff. We're skipping over personal life stuff, because I remember there's a lot of trauma in the world, like the world was small and that back then to where like when you broke up with what's his name and went with the what's your name?
It was like a big there is a rupture in the community. What it is like, what she's not going out with, what's his name and she's going out with her.
When did this happen.
Do you remember now what what are you talking about. I just remembered Dylan.
Oh, it's um. Yeah, you're like you were with Dylan and he was sort of a comic writer. And Dylan was not a comic.
He was a very talented filmmaker. But he was always with you. He was.
And then, yeah, I was great.
And then and I but I don't know how public you are about whatever it seems like you are. You abash because I like you public about the secret society.
I mean, I feel like it helps people. Me too. So I used to see, you know, him or at certain secret society meetings because I'd go to both of them because I was with double winner. We did. And I, I was doing the co-dependent thing and the AA thing. Yeah.
And all of a sudden you're down and you're not doing any more and then you're with Tig and everyone was like, we take when did that happen.
That went on for like years ago. Right.
No, I was with Dylan Abboud's and there's some time lapse issues are there that in my narrative. In your narrative.
But I was I didn't keep up with you as fully as I should.
You didn't keep the best tabs. But, yeah, I was with Dylan about two and a half years. Right.
And then I left. We broke up and I left the secret societies and I started drinking.
Oh, how long it gets over several years at that point. So how was it fun to start drinking? It actually was so fun.
Yeah. This is really helping people. Not only does the secret society not work, but it's fun to drink this.
No, it definitely was really fun until it wasn't anymore. And now I definitely prefer not drinking personally for me. Are you back in the game? Yeah.
Oh no. Yes. And when did. Eight graduations. Thank you.
I got twenty one. You're winning.
No, no one any. That's amazing.
No one wins just a day when we just got today. So. So when did that big thing happen. Are we just. Oh and over that.
Well I mean what have you heard. I'll fact check. Haven't heard anything.
I just remember it like we were all sort of excited and intrigued to hell is with Tig Notaro and like a lot of us are like wow, it takes got game player man Merinda.
Well just how does it work. What's happening.
People need answer. Oh my gosh. So funny. Well that happened about. Yeah. Yeah. I guess around that time. Yeah. Dylan and I broke up. I'd always had a boyfriend doing stand up. I was with Dylan all the time so I was never throwing out some single vibe or anything. Right.
Um and and then yeah I, I started having drinks at shows and then I started, you know, traveling around the world, having drinks in other countries, trying all the drinks and I'm good, you know, having the mithai in Hawaii, having the you know.
Yeah. You really get around her having the soki in Japan, you know, having the hot toddy in London. Why not. How is all that happening?
Well, because I was like doing tours. We were doing tours for troops.
Oh, no, no. I was a separate stand up tours. And then while I was on a tour for troops across all of the South Pacific, I was offered a job in London doing that show World stands up where they fly the comedians in from around the world and have these go for you.
The tours. Yeah. I mean, you know, it's it's the ultimate service, you know, being of service, bringing comedy to people on islands and where, you know, they are starved for entertainment and morale. So in that sense, it's really wonderful.
When do you start this isolating thing like it was?
It's a couple of years ago where you start to have these these symptoms of a very trauma or.
Yeah. So I so, you know, I I'm I'm doing Tigerlily. It's moved to the Gowa Gulch. It's in that little corner.
I think our goal. Yeah, no, I did I did several times. Yeah, you were there several times, and it would be it got really popular, it was packed every week with these amazing comedians. Yeah. And I found myself just like I would drive to go there and I either wouldn't put myself on the line up or I would just drive home. I found myself starting to hide. I was like hiding.
I kind of remember that, like you'd be there at the beginning. And it was sort of like, oh, that's her show. It's your show. And then you'd go, Yeah.
And I had just started to retreat. Retreat. Mm.
And I started what was happening with my writing was I started a storytelling show before that show and I would start telling these stories and, and then it was like that the stuff from the childhood that I had basically blocked out my whole life, like I don't even remember most of my childhood started to come out in these stories before before the same night as Tigerlily.
I remember. I remember. Yeah, I, I did one of those.
Did you. Yeah. It was a great place to get new material. Right. Right, right. And that's more my style is more storytelling. Sure. And so I would get to generate a lot of material and the most no pressure way in a way that you couldn't really do on Tigerland Tigerlily anymore because it was just such, you know, so many people were there.
So I started to do these stories that were like really honest and vulnerable. And I think people were scared for me, you know, because I was starting to tell the truth on stage.
It was coming out about your childhood. Yeah. And I think it was just coming up where you to be killed? I mean, I think that one that's generally the point of concern.
When people are at a comedy show and the entertainer is crying, that's usually where they're like, OK, she's crying.
I definitely did cry was I started crying storytelling.
So it's OK. You got. Yeah.
A little bit of a room to cry. Yeah.
I'm telling you, it was like, what's going on?
And I feel like it was just a need to get the work done, get some work done. So you found a therapist. Yeah.
And I was like had gotten become a regular at the Comedy Store around that time and I stopped drinking again and started going to therapy.
So that was eight years ago. Yeah. So you drank for a while.
Yeah. Mm. You went through a lot of stuff. Yeah. Relationships, weirdness. Um yeah. So did your codependent thing. Yeah. So now you've eight years ago you kind of walked back in, got sober. Yeah. You do them both double entering it.
Yeah. Oh yeah.
I definitely need the help with relationships and letting others do their thing. You do your thing.
I'll do it without your help with that. You're trying to control them and help them. Exactly.
I needed help to stop being a counselor because that's not my job and I'm not even that great at it. My clients are dying.
They're just gone dying. Yeah, but this was sort of the beginning of the process of dealing with your past, dealing with the trauma and putting together this special.
Yeah, when I went to MDR, you know, they uncovered the memories and there was like a memory from my childhood that, like, basically my dad had these rages and it was really scary. And none of us knew that this was like something he could get help for or anything like that. But I tried to tape recorded on a little tape.
Remember those old school like Panasonic's and I tried to get both buttons. Yeah, yeah. It was like, you know, really young, four or five. And I try to tape record this rage and like, smuggle it out of the house to the next, like, big family gathering to going to play it around, walk around.
I was just going to see if anyone is interested in representing us with this tape. And so I and then I made copies and I was selling it later at comedy shows now.
So I'd like you to grab it. Grab it. I, I got one of those. It's called Dads Mad.
It's a hit. And um so I tried to leave it my grandmother just as a cry for help but someone would like save us. Yeah. No one ever found it. Oh wow. And so that was a memory and MDR. And then I later was like so scared someone would find it that I went to my grandma is being like, you know, that tape I left here?
It was a joke, right? Tried to cover up what was happening. And I want anyone to get in trouble.
Right. My grandma is like, I have no idea what you're talking about. So that was the beginning of that was the portal into the the trauma was that story.
That's a story that we worked on. And there was so much in there of like believing that your voice doesn't matter, that you aren't going to make any impact. So you might as well be quiet. No one's going to save you like that. There's no help. Right. And so, like processing all of that. And then just like you can see how that would play out and, you know, career stuff is like everything.
Sure. You're not going you don't matter. Right. No one's going to help. Right.
So, like, really processing that and like that and several other similar things was it has made a huge difference. It's great.
And then also having friends like Maria, supportive people. Oh, my God, Maria is the best. Margaret Cho chose helping out to the past. Great.
You know, and just to be able to call people and say, like, how do you do this? I don't know. Like, what do you charge for this?
Like, how did you make this happen? Maria is the best because she'll just be like, you know, practical.
She's like, do it in your living room. It doesn't fucking matter, you know, like. And so a lot of this, like running the special. I would just say I'm running my special tonight at 6:00 p.m. in my living room and people would come and watch and I would take notes, what if what resonated with you?
Whatever you enjoy doing, it's it really like that is specifically Ave Maria. Yeah, exactly. It's kind of amazing how she does that, how you guys have made that it's actually a practical system that you were able to use. Is it like why not do it like that?
You know, I mean, you know, connecting is connecting. And if you're sort of completely reliant on one guy to go to the theater, I got to rent this. I mean, she will she just solicits people on Twitter to sit with her for an hour.
Maria doesn't care. She used to hire me just to listen to her new jokes, which was the best job. And I would just drive over to Eagle Rock and listen to her jokes. And she would do that from the road sometimes. And now, yeah, she just meets people on Twitter and and she really should buy them lunch.
Yeah, I'm sure. By and large, it's just what that does is it simplifies the process, you know, of like, you know, instead of spending all this time promoting an appearance, you're going have to make all this money to pay back or whatever. How about just focus on the material? And so anyway, so that's a lot of how it came together in addition to doing like a million spots everywhere.
Well, that's very exciting. Congratulations. Thank you so much. And what's this movie. Oh, so, yeah, I'm doing I'm doing a I did a movie called Love Weddings and Other Disasters, and that is starring Diane Keaton. Jeremy Irons. It's coming out December four, Part I. It's one of my first lead roles in a film. Wow.
With those big hitters, are you doing scenes with both of them?
No, they had their scenes. It's four different storylines. OK, OK, so I'm in a completely separate storyline. We filmed it in Boston for a month and it was a wonderful shoot.
Boston's a great town and I'm sure, you know, it's a really great script. It was a really fun part. Was that going to be on?
That'll be covered pending. I don't know what the premiere will entail. Yeah, but it will be everywhere.
Released from Sabon Entertainment on December 4th.
OK, I had to do a Russian accent. Really? Yeah.
How do you do that? Do you buy a tape?
You know, Jack Daniels said, don't do that.
So it's really kind of I'm learning what I'd done in the audition because I was doing a very funny character, like from Barry type Russian accent. And so it was sort of unlearning that and making her a very real person who's like, authentic. I got to use my Meisner.
Great. Did they have a dialect coach? No, they did send me to a trainer. So I worked out with a personal trainer because there were a lot of stunts and things that I had to do, just like this character.
A lot going on in this movie. I am a Russian girl, Svetlana, who is trying to escape from her dark and sordid life involving the Russian mafia. And, you know, it's really funny, but, you know, she really needs to get out heavy.
Yeah, OK, and funny, it's heavy and funny.
Yeah, and what have you been doing during lockdown if you doing voice stuff? No, I mean, some voice stuff will come through. Are you alone over there with the cat? I'm alone with Stardust. And I've been writing a lot about writing a self-help book and I'm writing a single self-help book.
Um, it's really I've decided you can help people now like you. You've taken up the mantle again. I've got enough recovery. Like, maybe I'm not so bad at helping me.
I shouldn't really revisit that counsellor position. You know, it's really just things that have helped me about like self-love and empowerment and so forth.
On the level. It's not funny. It's going to be funny as shit, but like really helpful. It's kind of like a it's a self-help vibe, though, OK, but I'm not pretending to be an expert in anything. I'm just sharing what's helped me. Right. And that's what the special is really doing, too, is like I'm really just trying to help free people from their abusive stories about themselves because they're just not true. Yeah.
Yeah, it's a it's a it's a bad it's it's we created bad self parents when we were younger.
Yeah. We have bad parents, but when you're younger you don't. This is what I learned that changed my life in the last five years, maybe a year or so.
Is that when you don't get what you need from your parents, you assume it's your fault and you put in place a fairly probably negative self parenting system because you think you're shitty, because you don't feel loved or you feel whatever they're doing, emotional abuse, physical abuse, you know, however neglect or overbearing, whatever it is, if you don't feel good in your skin when you're a kid, it can't be their fault because they're they're amazing. They're your parents.
So it must be you.
Exactly. And that narrative is very well, destructive narrative.
And it leads to so many things, right.
When you're trying to prove your worth all the time. Or for me, it became workaholism. Like if I just achieve X more things, then I'm going to be good enough or I'm going to, you know, and it's like not it when really it's like that radical self-love is just knowing, like your enough like in you have inherent value, not contingent on any exterior. And that's what probably people with nurturing parents. That's probably the message they received from people, the mother fuckers.
They'll never be a comedian, never.
They're just going to accept their dumb, boring lives. Not like it's just tumbling through it to notice me. Notice me.
Yeah. Well, you know, is that enough?
And so it's just, you know, they say enlightenment is unlearning things. So enlightenment is really an unenlightened enjoyment and enlightenment. It's unlearning all that. It's a chapter in the book.
Could be better. Write that down.
Both the net exposure, especially you got a lot of specials to do, but um.
And Yeah. And yeah, about BTIG, we were just friends, OK, and then we started dating. OK, that's fun though, right. You guys seem to have a good time.
We had a great time um and I'm really selling it and uh and uh and uh you know, but when you're drinking the best of times.
The worst of times I hear you man, but everybody's doing good.
Oh my God. What you doing. OK, I, I, I love her.
I'm so grateful for our friendship. We did, I did her little comedy festival a few years ago.
Yeah. She's great. She solid. She's solid. I always was. And Dylan's great too.
Oh good thing. No we're not but um.
Oh I'm doing OK.
But Dylan is um. He's amazing, you know. Yeah. And he's doing great. Yeah he's doing great. He has a wife. Good. She looks exactly like me. Wow.
He just never let it go. I'm kidding. No she's beautiful and they have a beautiful baby and I paid him back the money I owed him and you know, all this stuff.
But he doesn't like you. You do all the stuff that you're not friends. That's a little concerning. Check it out. I mean, how how friendly can you be with people who are you're asking the wrong guy are married with children, you know. What do you mean?
Like I respect you for my ex on your fucking podcast specifically to cause trouble.
Wow, wow, wow.
OK, talk it out. Yes, please deal with the risk. Yes, yes.
You have a resentment. No, not really. I would love to know about that. Did that hurt your feelings?
You have to understand something. That woman I've not seen her since 2007, so I've not seen her since we got divorced.
I don't zero. Right?
Like nothing. Never ran into her. I would email her. I tried to make amends, which she didn't really take.
OK, what do you mean she can take it?
Well, we were going to meet and then she called me 20 minutes before and say, I can't fucking do this. You know, if you to do on the phone, let's do it. I'm like, I don't.
So then I wrote her something, but like, I can't account for. Like, I can make it amends, but if somebody brings me up to her or she's still attached to me on a Google search or something, that's not me, you know what I mean? And I just tried to not talk about her anymore, which I'm breaking my rule, but because I still think it bothers me.
But I used to I used to email her my sober birthday every year and thank you for getting me sober, OK, which she never responded to until like a couple of years ago.
She just said, if I want to hear from you, I'll let you know.
And then I realized she's like still aggressively Allanah and but but but it was it was a great it was like, have you ever had amends? Like, have you have you had more people not want and amends or is that the only one you can do in amends, but doesn't mean they have to accept it, you know.
Right. And you know, and she's got what she owe. All her reasoning is fine. But you just curious, you know, after a certain point. But like, you know, it's a weird thing. But that moment was very important to me because I realized, like, oh, I'm that fucking idiot.
Everyone's got that person that when you see them come up on your phone after a year, you're like, fuck, yeah.
Yeah. What does that person want? Like you like when you when you realize, like, I'm that guy.
I'm the guy. Yeah, I'm that guy.
Like, yeah, she's got her whole lot like she's really framed our thing as, like this. Not a mistake necessarily, but it's like we don't have kids, you know, whatever the divorce, all that.
But it has nothing to do with her life anymore.
She's got pretty baby. She's got a nice life I guess.
And I'm just like this mistake or this process, this whatever. So that's so that's that.
I mean, I can accept all that. Yeah. Really. But there is a there's always curiosity, like I would love to run into her.
Yeah. But she would still hate me but but whatever. I would still just like to see your face.
Yeah but that's all right. I know I've been over a decade. You friends with her.
I am friends with me now. I don't see her often because, you know, she has her whole life and she's very busy. Wrote a movie. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think she's written a few now.
Yeah I know people are in her new movie, the comic book one or the one that's based on a video game or something.
Yeah. I think it's a horror. No that's right. You're right. And I e so you know, but that's so great.
I just remember her always working so hard. Yeah. As a you know, writing comedy and so it's so great to see her doing all that. But no, I don't see her very, I don't see hardly anyone very often.
No one's seen anybody anymore. Yeah but I.
But Yeah. What, what was your beef with the podcast. No nothing.
It was just like at that time because like there were still like, you know, it took me a long time to sort of process all of that.
Yeah. So I just made it about me. I'm like, why the fuck are they. I know. Jillian, why is Jillian Melinda with you got to talk to me for.
Because there was some suggestion of me. Oh really?
During the question. This is so like I just sort know I know it was just sort of like, well, you know, I'm talking about that kind of thing.
Oh, OK. Like, I went out with a comic. It was just some veiled reference and like it was. But in my mind, I'm like, this is about me. It's all about me. Yeah. So but it was nothing about me.
No, no. And we would never want to like I'm friends with both of you, so I would never want to. Yeah. You know, disparage and I don't know enough about anyone's relationship. I mean I guess everyone feels like that, right. Like I feel like that when I break up with public figures, people are going to be taking sides and. Yeah, yeah.
Well, there wasn't like I she just left comedy really and just became a writer, which is I think what she wanted to do anyways.
But that's another thing I should do some MDR in that I think it would be helpful because you know and I don't know how did you guys try couples counseling. It was like a Hail Mary pass.
OK, is it too late to revisit that? I'm kidding. But I was in couples counseling one time and they said, you know, your. When you guys are in a relationship, it's it's their parents, it's your parents are all in the relationship with you, so you're just like acting out of your triggers or whatever. And and, yeah, we keep recreating that until it's healed. Right. So, yeah.
And I would probably be I just like it's not active anymore. And I really do have a lot of acceptance around it, but it wouldn't be bad to eat sort of like when I think about the like, you know, that moment of like I'm leaving. They like when she walked out of that kitchen and that was it. That's heavy. You didn't see it coming? No fucking moron. Yeah, and you have you have like I have a very rumination mind, so I can, like, keep replaying that, trying to oh no, I don't think about her Hardway at all.
You know, I just don't anymore. And it's a gift. I think that her writing that email was smart because it really put things into perspective.
And I don't you know, and there's no and I know there's no reason for us to have a relationship or to talk or any of it doesn't.
There's no reason. But I do think in whatever fucked up way that I was capable of, I was in love with that person.
Mm hmm. You know, it may not have manifested that way.
It may have been driven by a lot of other things. But I I was right.
It might not have been healthy, love, whatever the fuck it was. I but I did like it was a profound event in my life.
Yeah. Because how long were you guys together.
Like seven years. Seven and a half years. Yeah. Well when I met both of you you were always together. Yeah.
She's just like it was one of those things where like my insanity just. By the time she left, she just hated me, so like there was no well, I heard you describe to her before that you were kind of like just making her hate me while you were making her.
You're everything, right? So you weren't. Oh, yeah. You know, when when you make someone, you're everything. It's a setup for disappointment. Does she got me sober and I grabbed on I mean, what are the fucking odds of that? Yeah, but like I learned all this stuff after the fact. Yeah, of course. But there's moments where. Like, I remember my emotionally abusive behavior, and I'm ashamed and sad, like I can see her looking at me in a way where I'm like when I feel that I'm like you, you're this you awful person.
Wow. That's really deep. Mark Like, what would help alleviate that? What do you think? What's your sponsor say. I don't know if we've sort of moved through all that, you know, like the Mishna book is closed, but that's an interesting question, though, for for those two specific events, that moment where I realized that, you know, she did not love me anymore because of my behavior and the moment where she left me. Those are interesting points.
Like, I don't know. I feel like they're behind me and I'm OK, but maybe I just stuffed them and maybe.
I mean, what when you I mean, sort of rhetorical bomb. What could give you peace.
I have peace around. OK, so you happy. So what is.
I think there's a shame thing. I think that there is still a you know, whatever the amends process gives me, however, I have made a living amends.
I think I'm ashamed of that man that I was, especially in that relationship.
Yeah. So, like, what is the what's the antidote?
Oh, ask for shame to act better and well, to act better and let yourself off the hook a bit that you that you did the you processed it, you made amends.
You know, everyone's alive, everyone's moved on to their, in their lives and they're OK. So, you know, at some point you just got to say like, all right, you know, you've you're better now and and you know, that was a bad time and you made some mistakes and you were sort of a shitty person. But you're better. What do you do? Yeah, people change.
People people change and forgiveness. Forgive myself. Forgiveness of yourself.
Mm. Yeah, I was Dick, you know, I mean, look, we all have been, you know, but, you know, it's like allowing yourself to rewrite the narrative moving forward.
Boy, I have been through three lifetimes since being a different how can I be a different person now like we have. Right. And it's like.
That's all you can do. How can we we're doing it. Have you heard the acronym for Shame?
Which should have already mastered everything? That's a good one or that one come from. One of the secret societies. Yeah, I don't know, I you know, when I wrote Dylan the amends and amends via Facebook, I'm not wanting to disturb him and his family. He was like, hey, don't you owe me some money?
So that cost me additional thousand dollars.
And you know what? I was happy to pay because I was like, thank you for giving me something tangible that I can do to get right with you.
One thing I don't owe her is fucking money that that I can tell you with full confidence.
What do you think has helped you the most? Is it therapy? Or is it like no other things, like what helped with your rage? That's a really big thing to turn around.
Well, just like I you know, I just knew I just had to identify where it was coming from, you know, which was like this fear and, you know, insecurity about it, receiving love or having control like I did somehow or another, identified the source of it and what it did. And also, you hurt people enough. You know, you're sort of a monster if you don't take responsibility for that.
And, you know, it took a while to temper it. But like when I was younger, when I was just getting sober, certainly during that relationship with me tonight, I was just I was just crazy because I was I was jealous and I was trying to control and I and I couldn't believe that you would like me. So I was hating myself and projecting that. I mean, that has a lot to do with it. I think the more self-esteem I got from, you know, kind of pulling out of that relationship and finding some success in my life really makes a big difference.
That you were like, well, everything I worked for maybe wasn't for nothing and that, like, I am good at what I do and I, I feel OK about myself. Like, so a lot of the that filling in some of that self-esteem just from esteemable acts and from, you know, working helped.
Do you think that work started to come to you more when you had that internal switch or was it vice versa?
I just think, like, you know why the time I started the podcast, I'd really let go of the idea that I would be a successful comedian that would act all that stuff.
I was like that, that I just I got to be grown up about this and know that it's not going to happen for me and accept that and, you know, whatever heartache comes from that. And I've got to figure out where I go from here because I'm not prepared to do a job in any way. And so that's it.
And then start talking on the mic, you know, and I always did standup, but I had to lower my expectations a great deal and believe it really let it go, that nothing was owed me and that, you know, if it doesn't happen, that's just life. You know, no one counts on that.
In show business, no one enters show business thinking they're not going to make it.
We all think we're going to do something, you know, but but the percentage of times that that works out is small, relatively speaking. I mean, you can find your way. You can find your groove. You know, you can survive sometimes.
So but I knew I couldn't. Like, I knew that there was no way I could go on doing the, like, stand up if I was just going to be like a broom headliner for the rest of my life, I was like there was a lot of dark visions going on. Yeah, but I just I just focused on doing the podcast.
I started one on my couch during covid political. It's called Let's Process This.
And that's available. Yeah, it's available.
I do it on Iggy Live and you know, put it up on iTunes.
It's OK, it's on iTunes and everywhere.
But it just I couldn't really meet with people during covid, so I just started doing it from my couch.
Nice. Yeah. And then you do you have guests and I do I. Yeah, OK. And you were able to record them. Yeah.
I mean I'm not guaranteeing a great sound or anything. OK, got it. But yeah it's, we're really talking about like how people are processing their trauma, how they're healing from it and how that affects their creative process or how they're turning that into creative treasure.
Oh so it's it'll be like people who created a TV show have had, if you like, show runners and comedians and you know, just people who've turned whatever they've over come around. Oh, good. Yeah. And talk about creative process, which I'm like so fascinated with creative process and healing process.
Nice. Yeah. Sounds like you're going to open a school of some kind.
What kind of school. There are a therapeutic processing, uh, space. I wouldn't be able to start a school that's too much admin for me. I can barely do a podcast from my couch. OK, very nice talking to you.
You too, Marc. We're going to cut about an hour and a half of this.
You could release that hour and a half as its own special.
OK, thanks. Thanks for coming over. We covered it all again. She wanted you to know that she she and her parents are good. They're good. She's good with their parents. OK, her special, Melinda Hill Inappropriate is available now on Amazon Prime Apple TV, YouTube and most other video on demand platforms. You can also get the audio version on most streaming music platforms. And don't forget, simply Safe Home Security delivers award winning 24/7 protection with the best professional monitors in the business.
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Uh. BOEMRE lives, Monkey Lavander, they all fucking live.