October 31, 2022
Just in time for Halloween, a 47-year-old horror fan shares the premise of the spooky novel she’s writing. She and Geth get nostalgic over trick-or-treat traditions and she explains how scary movies help her cope with anxiety. Later on, they attempt to make contact with the ghost (aka “The Putty Man”) that haunts Madison’s Majestic Theater in front of the live audience.
343 — The Putty Man (Live from Madison)
Chris [00:00:07] Hello. Madison, Wisconsin. It’s Beautiful/Anonymous. One hour. One phone call. No names. No holds barred. Hi, everybody. Chris Gethard here. Happy Halloween. Hope you enjoyed the Halloween festivities. Hope that your house didn’t get toilet papered too bad. Hope that you handed out lots of candy to lots of kids. And I know I enjoy Halloween myself. I was supposed to be a gecko from PJ masks cuz my son wanted to be cat boy, so I went out and got a gecko costume. And then my son decided last minute he wanted to be a stormtrooper, so I was just a context less adult gecko. That’s how life goes sometimes. Hey, everybody, real quick, before I tell you about this episode, it’s a live episode. And guess what? We do live shows all the time. I’m doing a live improv show. I’m returning to improv. I haven’t done improv in years. November 5th, 8 p.m. Brooklyn, New York Me and Tami Sager gonna be doing some improv. Chris Geth dot com for tickets. Also have live tapings coming up in December in Durham and Asheville, North Carolina. And then I have standup dates in Brooklyn, Atlanta, Athens, Georgia. That’s in December and January. ChrisGeth.com for tickets to all of those and I hope to see you there. This week’s episode, like I said, it was my first ever time going to Wisconsin. I performed in Madison at this beautiful old theater called The Majestic. It’s like 100 years old. And this is something that can honestly only happen during a live episode because we we we talk a lot. You hear me talking about Halloween costumes. We talk about horror stuff. We talk about all sorts of things, real life things and fertility stuff. And then, because it’s a live show, one of the people in the audience lets us know something very specific about the theater we are in, and we do something that’s never been done before on our show and we try to contact someone from the beyond. It’s really fun stuff, I thank the caller for calling. I thank the crowd in Madison for being there. And I hope you enjoy the episode.
Voicemail Robot [00:02:32] Thank you for calling Beautiful/ Anonymous. A beeping noise will indicate when you are on the show with the host.
Caller [00:02:40] Hello?
Chris [00:02:41] Hi.
Caller [00:02:42] Can you hear me?
Chris [00:02:43] I can hear you. Can Madison hear you? (CROWD CHEERS) Everybody can hear you.
Caller [00:02:49] Oh. Hi, guys!
Chris [00:02:51] You’ve got a crowd of very supportive and kind Midwesterners here who are ready to hear you talk for an hour. How are you feeling?
Caller [00:02:57] Oh, that’s really nice. That’s very, very nice. I like that. That’s good. I’m so nervous. My boobs are sweating.
Chris [00:03:10] I mean, we’ve got 59 minutes and 32 seconds left. I don’t know where. How do we go up from there? Are you-
Caller [00:03:16] I don’t know. I don’t know. I’m just going to, like, get a towel. Make sure I absorb some of this.
Chris [00:03:25] Is that something that we don’t like, men don’t know? Is that when you?
Caller [00:03:29] Ladies? Yes. Yeah. We sweat like underneath our boobs.
Chris [00:03:34] Okay, I get it. I get it. Yeah, we sweat underneath our balls. So we’re all in it together, I guess.
Caller [00:03:41] Exactly.
Chris [00:03:42] I’ve never had someone so, so liberally tell me about their level of boob sweat.
Caller [00:03:49] Yes. Well, you know, I think, like, you know, it’s kind of like menstrual cycles too. Like guys get nervous, you know, talking about what happens with ladies. Our boobs sweat and we bleed, you know, that’s just how it is.
Chris [00:04:02] You’re really trying to take me. You’re trying to put me right on my heels right out of the gate, huh?
Caller [00:04:10] Oh, my God. It’s my nervous energy. I’m sorry. I’ll calm down.
Chris [00:04:13] No, I love it. I love it. Change nothing. Change nothing about what’s happening right now.
Caller [00:04:17] Okay, good.
Chris [00:04:19] Yeah. So how you feeling? How’s things outside of the boob sweat? How are we doing?
Caller [00:04:23] Besides the boob sweat, I’m good. I’m so excited. I’ve tried to get through for, like, many years, and now it’s happening. And it just is, like, surreal. It’s crazy.
Chris [00:04:31] Meant to be. It’s meant to be.
Caller [00:04:34] Yeah, I’d like to think so. How are you, Chris?
Chris [00:04:37] I’m doing good. I always enjoy visiting places I haven’t been to before. And my wife, who is a punk rocker who’s toured all over with her band, she was like, I’m so jealous. She was like, Madison is one of my favorite cities I’ve ever played. So I was psyched to get out here because I’ve heard great things. And I’m not trying to like be cheap and get that heat. I’m just like, man, cuz my wife won’t hesitate to tell me if I’m going to some dog shit city either. So when she really likes the place, I always I get psyched.
Caller [00:05:02] Oh, that’s nice. Okay, so I have to add this to my list of places to visit, then.
Chris [00:05:07] Mm hmm. Mm hmm. Yeah. Well worth it. Well worth it.
Caller [00:05:10] Awesome. So you’re good, then? You’re good? I’m just trying, you know, I worry about you sometimes randomly.
Chris [00:05:16] Why do you worry about me?
Caller [00:05:18] Well, just cause I know you have, like, you know, your history with mental health, and, you know, I have some stuff, too, and I just sometimes I’m like, in the middle of the day, I hope Chris is okay.
Chris [00:05:29] Well, I’m glad somebody is out here worried about me. That’s. That’s nice, because most of the world don’t care. No, I’m I’m that’s actually very, very kind of you. I’ll tell you, yeah, I’ve been I’ve been very up and down, as we all have, I think, the past couple of years. I think between being a new dad and the pandemic, that was a lot on my plate. I think listeners to the show have heard that I am stressed at times, but I have to tell you, your kindness and the fact that you’re checking on me, it goes a long way. And right now I’m feeling good.
Caller [00:05:59] Oh, good. That makes me very happy. Yay.
Chris [00:06:03] Yeah. And how are you doing?
Caller [00:06:05] I’m good. I’m good. I’m I’m actually this is, like, spooky season right now, which is my favorite time of year.
Chris [00:06:14] Me, too.
Caller [00:06:16] Yeah? Do you like horror movies?
Chris [00:06:18] I hate horror movies. I have a weird dichotomy in my life. So one thing I haven’t talked all that much about on Beautiful/Anonymous, I don’t like horror movies, but from the age of 19 until about 24, I worked full time at a magazine called Weird New Jersey that was mostly about haunted places and local legends, specifically in New Jersey. And it was the best job. Like if I got that job when I was older, I would’ve just kept that job forever. But I was young and needed to go indulge my artistic pursuits. So I used to go visit. I’ve been inside like nine or ten abandoned mental hospitals.
Caller [00:06:53] Oh, my God, I would love to do that.
Chris [00:06:56] Yeah. Jersey, we got the devil’s tree, the devil’s tower, Clinton Road, Annie’s Road, so many haunted places. So I’ve been to all of those in person. The gates of hell. There’s a lot of great places in New Jersey. But if you if you put a soundtrack and jump cuts, I hate that. I like I guess I like I like the Michael Myers movies sometimes. But Freddy Krueger, Jason, they still haunt me from a childhood growing up in the eighties.
Caller [00:07:20] Oh, my God. Freddy Krueger. Okay. Cause I was a child in the eighties also. I just turned 47, actually, on September tenth.
Chris [00:07:28] Hey, happy birthday.
Caller [00:07:28] So I, I love like the eighties movies and always like this line from from Nightmare on Elm Street sticks with me when Freddy Krueger is like, how sweet, fresh meat. And he’s got his nails out and he’s going after a girl.
Chris [00:07:44] See, I didn’t even like how it made me feel when you said it. Let alone Freddy Krueger.
Caller [00:07:50] Yeah. I have such a scary voice. Um I’m actually just started writing my first horror novel.
Chris [00:07:57] Hey, congrats. That’s cool.
Caller [00:07:59] Thanks.
Chris [00:08:01] I love it. I love that you’re going for it. Have you written other- have you written other types of novels before?
Caller [00:08:07] No, no.
Chris [00:08:09] That’s cool.
Caller [00:08:10] This is my first go at it, and I just really wanted to, you know how- I am sure everyone can relate to this- you have a dream of something you want to do, and then you find all kinds of reasons or beat yourself up about that maybe you won’t be good enough at it. And then finally, you know, you get to a point where it’s like do or die. And that’s kind of where I am. Not that I’m dying, but I just am like, for my soul, I have to do it.
Chris [00:08:38] I love it. I love it. I got to tell you, I love hearing that you’re at that point. Because I’m, I’m a little past that point as an artist where I’m a little bit more in a phase of how do I get to slow down and spend more time with my son? Like that’s my priority. Full disclosure. But to hear you have that energy of, like, I got this thing inside me that needs to get out or else I’m going to explode, I remember that, and I’m still very inspired by it. And I’m excited for you feeling that because I know how daunting it is, but how good it feels when you finish your thing. And you’re going to finish your thing. It’s going to be rad. They’re going to option it. Netflix is going to make it into a movie. It’s going to be a ten series franchise, and you’re going to you’re going to be artistically satisfied and very, very wealthy. That’s my guess as to how this turns out.
Caller [00:09:26] Oh, my God. Thank you. From your lips to whoever’s ears.
Chris [00:09:32] Mm hmm. Mm hmm. Mm hmm. That’s cool.
Caller [00:09:37] But, yeah, and, you know, it’s interesting because you said you’re wanting to have more time with your son. And my husband and I, we don’t have kids. And so I’m actually trying to fill, you know, a void.
Chris [00:09:56] A void?
Caller [00:09:58] You know, I have a lot of time on my hands, let’s say.
Chris [00:10:00] Indeed. The horror novel shall be your child.
Caller [00:10:04] Yeah, I’m going to give birth to some sort of, like, you know, evil demon baby and and let it out in the world. And that will be nice.
Chris [00:10:13] Yeah. I mean, and when you phrase it like that, it sounds so lovely.
Caller [00:10:17] I know. I think that’s why people are always surprised that I really love horror, is because my voice maybe doesn’t match my hobby.
Chris [00:10:25] Yeah. Yeah, I’m um I moved back to the suburbs a couple of years ago and instantly became. I was like, I’m going to try to have the most fucked up scary lawn decorations. And mission accomplished. My neighbors were texting my wife like, Is there any way Chris could just wait until the 31st to put up all that fucked up shit on your lawn? And I’ve got I have fun scaring children. I set up a bunch of stuff. And one year, the first year, I put on like a real baggy outfit and I had all these, like, you know, mannequins and things with animatronics that move back and forth with motion detectors. And then I was sitting in the middle of them, and kids would come and I would jump out of my chair and quickly realized, do not do this unless you want to be labeled the neighborhood creep. Like, this is funny for you, and the kids are like running to their parents, going like, I don’t like that house or that man.
Caller [00:11:14] Yeah.
Chris [00:11:14] Like, don’t, don’t do that. Don’t be that guy.
Caller [00:11:16] You got to be careful. You can get arrested for that shit now.
Chris [00:11:19] You get a real reputation. Turns out, suburbs, you get a reputation real fast, man.
Caller [00:11:24] Oh yeah. You’ll be put on some sort of, like, list of, like, just don’t go to that guy’s house. But when I was, back in the day, it was all about scaring the kids. Like, if you could get a kid to, like, you know, pee their pants while they’re out trick or treating, that was like a good night out. You know? Now everyone’s like, you know, just being very careful. And it’s like, all their decorations are adorable. And I’m like, you know, where’s, like, the fake intestines and stuff? That’s like a big trick or treating experience.
Chris [00:11:51] Where’s the stuff to really make these kids think something bad? All throughout the entire eighties, adults were really obsessed with convincing us that bad stuff was just about to happen to us at all times. That’s really a parenting technique that we’ve let go. We’re no longer obsessed with making our kids think that something bad will happen to you at any moment, between nuclear bombs and kidnapers. You’re- any second now. I miss it. I miss it.
Caller [00:12:15] I do, too. I’m nostalgic for the paranoia. I mean, I’m still paranoid and highly anxious, but, like my mom used to tell me all the time I was going to be kidnaped. So I was always- we had a code word, actually. She said she said if someone comes to your school and they say, oh, my mom sent me here to come get you and make and cause she’s in the hospital, then you have to say, what’s my code name? And then she gave me a code name. And then if they didn’t know the code name, then I was to run away screaming because they’re actually coming to murder me.
Chris [00:12:51] Do you remember what the code name was?
Caller [00:12:54] Big Bird.
Chris [00:13:01] Let’s pause. It’s a good codeword. I bet other people are going to steal that code word, big bird, quality code word. Anyway, we’ll be right back. Thanks again to our advertisers. Thanks so much for sponsoring us and allowing us to bring this show to the world. Do you remember what the code name was?
Caller [00:13:32] Big Bird. (LAUGHS) I still remember. I still ask.
Chris [00:13:48] I just hate the idea, although it’s making me laugh, somebody being like, your mom has had a massive accident, and I need you to come with me, Big Bird.
Caller [00:13:57] Yes. I’d have to say what’s my code name? And then if they didn’t know, then yeah.
Chris [00:14:01] And they’d have to tell you- and then they’d have to ruin something wholesome for you.
Caller [00:14:06] Yeah, exactly. Like let’s destroy- that was my mom. She’s so paranoid, she destroyed Sesame Street for me.
Chris [00:14:13] Mm hmm. Oh, I just had a memory come back too. I just had a weird I haven’t thought about this in many years. I lived, like, two blocks away from the mayor of our town. And when you would go to his house for Halloween, you’d say, trick or treat, and he’d go “trick”. And then he’d make you come into his living room and do, like, a fucking somersault or something.
Caller [00:14:36] Wow.
Chris [00:14:36] And we all thought that was funny. Like, Oh, man. And Sammy the Bulldog Spina, the long time mayor of West Orange, New Jersey. Well, that’s weird. You got to go do, like, a cartwheel or something at Sammy the Bulldog’s house before he gives you some candy. And now as an adult, I’m like, What a weird, manipulative power move that was. You are already the mayor of town, man. Why do I have to come in and do fucking gymnastics on your carpet, you weirdo? That was weird.
Caller [00:15:00] What a dick.
Chris [00:15:01] No he was a pretty nice guy at the end of the day. And a good mayor. But weird choice, like every child shall do a trick for me.
Caller [00:15:09] Yeah. And now you have to worry that um oh, that there’s like, something sharp, like, you know, in your food.
Chris [00:15:19] We all remember that.
Caller [00:15:20] Yeah, I think those are just like urban tales, right? I don’t know any kids who ate, like, a bunch of needles or anything.
Chris [00:15:26] Yeah, from what I remember, if you actually look it up, there’s never been a single case of a razor blade in an apple in the history of American Halloween. It’s just never happened. But anytime you got an apple in your Halloween bag, your your parents acted like you needed to call the fucking bomb squad. Like you needed it needed to be like a Hurt Locker situation because you got an apple.
Caller [00:15:48] Exactly.
Chris [00:15:48] The amount of produce that was thrown in the trash because of our eighties paranoia. Unforgivable.
Caller [00:15:54] Oh, my gosh. It’s 100% true. And I feel like that’s why we have anxiety, you and I, is probably because we grew up in the eighties.
Chris [00:16:02] Oh, it didn’t help anything between whatever I had going on chemically and then also the tail end of like, you know, okay, if you don’t want to eat your dinner, don’t eat it. The Russians are probably going to bomb us tomorrow anyway! Like that type of thing being said on a regular basis.
Caller [00:16:18] And like hide under your your desk because that’s going to help you from nuclear warfare.
Chris [00:16:24] And listen, I grew up in a town where if you made a right at my front door and walked up the hill, you turn around after half a block, you could see the New York City skyline. Which was a nice thing, but we were told when I was in third grade- this is not a joke- my third grade teacher told us, you know, we’re just far enough away from New York to be in the worst possible position because the people even a few towns closer, they’re just going to die when when New York gets nuked. But we’re just going to get third degree burns. We’re going to we’re just far enough away, we’ll be the first people to live, but we will live in misery and horror. And I was like eight. Like, I thought we were learning multiplication, man. I thought we were learning like seven times six. How did we get off on this tangent again?
Caller [00:17:12] So many dicks in your childhood.
Chris [00:17:14] Just relentless weirdos, man.
Caller [00:17:16] Oh, man, no. Yeah, well, I think that- what’s your what’s your little one going to be for Halloween this year?
Chris [00:17:23] So there’s a show called PJ Masks. He loves it. I there’s some other parents in here, I think, who clearly have had to watch a lot of PJ Masks. It’s a little kids superheroes. It’s pretty adorable. There’s three central characters, Owlette, a.k.a. Amaya, Cat Boy, a.k.a Connor. There was a stretch of my son’s life where he refused to answer to his own name and only answered to Cat Boy or Connor. It was very adorable. He’s decided he wants to be Cat Boy. He asked me if I would be Gecko, so I did order an adult sized PJ Masks Gecko costume. I was like, There’s no way they make adult sized PJ Masks. It’s a cartoon for little kids. But it showed up and I am going to be Gecko. It has a big tail and my son is psyched. My son is psyched.
Caller [00:18:09] You’re a good Dad!
Chris [00:18:10] I’m okay. I have ups and downs.
Caller [00:18:15] Oh, my God, that’s amazing. I’m trying to I’m trying to convince my husband to dress like the characters from The Shining.
Chris [00:18:24] Oh, yeah? You know, I’ve never seen The Shining the whole way through. Can you guess which- I’ve tried so many times because people have been like, it’s one of the best horror movies ever. But also, dude, it’s just one of the best films ever. Like, you got to have to see it. And I understand that that might be true, but can you guess which part I can’t get past? I make it a little further every time I try to watch it. But where do you think I bail?
Caller [00:18:47] Is it the blood flowing from the elevator?
Chris [00:18:51] No.
Caller [00:18:53] Did you know that happens?
Chris [00:18:54] I’m aware that this is a thing.
Caller [00:18:56] Okay. Surprise. Spoiler alert. Okay. Is it when he’s banging down the door with an ax?
Chris [00:19:05] No, I don’t think I’ve even made it to that part. If I remember right. Like, I think I’ve seen that clip because it’s famous, but I don’t think I’ve actually made it there in the narrative of the film.
Caller [00:19:15] How about when he’s writing his little-.
Chris [00:19:17] How about when that lady climbs out of the bathtub?! Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. That’s the worst thing that’s ever happened. That lady gets out of the bathtub, and I’m like, No, I need to be able to shower and bathe. I’m never going to be able to step into a bathtub. I can’t. Jesus Christ. Just thinking about it now, I want to vomit, man. That’s disturbing.
Caller [00:19:39] Oh! It doesn’t bother me too much.
Chris [00:19:42] Come on.
Caller [00:19:44] No, it just is like, you know, I don’t know. There’s worse parts. Like your husband wanting to kill you with an ax. That cracks me up for some reason.
Chris [00:19:59] Yeah.
Chris [00:20:00] And that weirds me out.
Caller [00:20:03] I’m okay. Everything’s fine.
Chris [00:20:05] Just keep. Just keep saying it.
Caller [00:20:08] Yeah, yeah. Everything’s fine. Everything’s fine. No, but that’s you, you really have to watch the whole movie. And I challenge you to watch it this Halloween from beginning to end.
Chris [00:20:16] I can’t. I’ve tried it at least four times.
Caller [00:20:21] I have faith in you. What’s going to happen? What? Like what? What’s the what’s the thing that’s stopping you? What do you think’s going to happen?
Chris [00:20:26] What’s going to happen is more imagery that lives in my head forever. Like that lady coming out of the bathtub.
Caller [00:20:32] Yeah but you know what she looks like cause you’re describing it.
Chris [00:20:34] She looks like a meat human. I don’t like it. And that because I know- it’s not like movies. It’s not like movies hit a certain point and then go, and now we just slowly ramp down the intensity. That’s not how horror movies work. They got to try to up themselves and top themselves. And honestly, I feel like you’re tricking me in a way right now that’s not friendship. I feel like you know what’s after the bathtub and you’re trying to trick me into getting to it because you know it’s going to mess my head up more.
Caller [00:21:03] It’s 100%, like, kind of cute after that. Like the way they know are working on their relationship and a lot of like family bonding experiences in the snow. It’s nice.
Chris [00:21:20] So you’re telling me after the bathtub, and I think there’s a considerable amount of time left in that movie, it’s just mostly a pleasant drama free family narrative about a family that gets their act together and enjoys a snowy winter?
Caller [00:21:32] A hundred percent.
Chris [00:21:34] Well, good to know I can’t trust you about a goddamn thing.
Caller [00:21:39] I actually used to, my best friend’s terrified of horror movies, and I used to tell her, Oh, I got tickets for us to see that new comedy. And then I’d get her in the theater and it would be like The Blair Witch Project.
Chris [00:21:52] Ahhh. I worked in movie theater the summer that Blair Witch came out. That movie- that year that was Phantom Menace, Blair Witch, Eyes Wide Shut.
Caller [00:22:04] Oh, that’s a great movie.
Chris [00:22:05] American Pie, which is not- I’m not saying that’s like a cinematic classic like the others, but I’m saying that was a hot, hot summer for movies. And I remember, first of all, people were coming in for weeks beforehand, and were like, This Blair Witch thing. Like I’m hearing about Blair Witch, are you guys going to have it? And I was like, Yeah, here we are. And people would be like, is it real or not? And I’d be like, I legitimately don’t know. Like people were really, really convinced something bad was happening. And I got two stories about that. One, I remember once having to clean a theater after it played and I was in there by myself and they just looped it and it was playing again. And I was cleaning an entire fucking megaplex by myself while that movie played. And I hate horror movies. Another thing I’ll say, I was not present for this, but a friend of mine for college- in college, one of the worst decisions I’ve ever heard of- we all know sometimes people get high and go to the movies, right? Everybody knows, like eating an edible and going to see a movie, this is a classic college kid activity. People might have a couple of drinks before the movie, maybe smoke a little bit. I had a friend who thought it was a good idea to drink a bunch of fucking Robitussin and then go see the Blair Witch Project. And that has to be one of the worst decisions I’ve ever heard a human being make. That’s when you know you have a problem, when you’re like, I’m gonna get fucked up on ‘Tussin and go watch horror movies. And and yeah, I think he was dragged out of that theater. I think the combination of his physiology and his mental state, I think his friends dragged him out because it was bad.
Caller [00:23:33] Yeah, he’s probably like projectile vomiting. Robitussin, why? Didn’t he have some vodka or something?
Chris [00:23:39] I mean, we were college kids and losers and maniacs. It was a grimy time in our life. Do you know, you and I have been talking for over 20 minutes?
Caller [00:23:48] Oh, wow. That’s nice.
Chris [00:23:49] I can not imagine- when Andrea said to you, Hey, what do you want to talk about? I can’t imagine you were like, You know, mostly a very manic conversation about Halloween and movies.
Caller [00:24:01] Well, you know, it is spooky season. It’s perfect. I love it.
Chris [00:24:06] It’s true. And I’m happy with where it’s going. I just want to make sure that if you want the time to talk about anything else that you have. That being said, I’m thrilled with the energy of this and how it’s going. Should we go ahead and see what some of our people in Madison have to say via Twitter opinions and thoughts?
Caller [00:24:20] 100$. Yeah. Let’s talk to friends.
Chris [00:24:21] Okay. Let’s hear it. Okay. Oh, wait, let’s see. Okay. Erin says, Caller, you have a very good maniacal laugh. Bibrarian, who’s right there, is making fun of me saying, The Shining is not even remotely one of the best horror movies ever, lmao. So I guess I’m just an asshole, Bibrarian. DuJour also says, Welcome back to my anxiety, and then apologized for misspelling the word “cord” before. It’s all good, DuJour, I’m not going to trip, I promise you. Machi Mook says, The eighties we worried about things. And now they just happen today.
Caller [00:24:59] Yes.
Chris [00:25:00] Oh, Erin, this is interesting. Erin’s a little younger than you and I, caller, and says, I’m 29. This is really fascinating. It is. And would say the majority of fear instilled in me as a youth was entirely online. We were told all predators would befriend you on MySpace. That is a different that is a big shift. C just said, My mom this week warned me, her 29 year old adult child, that Smarties are the candies laced with drugs this year. So don’t eat Smarties, she says.
Caller [00:25:36] Oh my god, I already ate so many Smarties!
Chris [00:25:39] That, imagine that? I mean, if we all found out that Smarties were laced with drugs, people would be hoarding Smarties is what would happen.
Caller [00:25:45] Oh yeah. We’d be like, Yeah, more Smarties! Yeah. No, that’d be great.
Chris [00:25:50] Pedaling Poetry said, My mom had us trained to poke out stranger’s eyeballs by kindergarten. Hasn’t come up yet, thankfully.
Caller [00:25:58] Oh my goodness. My mom, too. My mom did teach. My dad used to teach taekwondo, so he taught me some moves too.
Chris [00:26:05] Really?
Caller [00:26:06] Yeah.
Chris [00:26:06] That’s cool.
Caller [00:26:08] Yeah. And my brother was like six foot eight. So he’s like this real tall guy. And so people were generally afraid of my family, anyway. I was pretty safe.
Chris [00:26:18] So you had a six foot eight brother and a taekwondo instructor dad?
Caller [00:26:22] Yeah.
Chris [00:26:22] Yeah. Nobody’s messing with you.
Caller [00:26:24] No, no. I think it’s maybe why I didn’t have a lot of boyfriends in high school.
Chris [00:26:28] How much- was your brother in high school at the same time as you? Was there crossover?
Caller [00:26:33] He’s five years older than me. So, yeah, it was like he was ending while I was beginning.
Chris [00:26:38] Right, but his legend lived on.
Caller [00:26:40] It sure did.
Chris [00:26:41] Yeah. Yeah.
Caller [00:26:43] It still does.
Chris [00:26:44] I’m going to watch what I say. I’ll watch my back.
Caller [00:26:46] Yeah, watch your back.
Chris [00:26:47] I will. So what else should we say? What else do you want to talk about tonight? We could keep going with spooky season or we could go anywhere you want.
Caller [00:26:58] Yeah, I guess we can go anywhere. Um, I. I mentioned before that my husband and I have been, like, a little bit kind of thinking about how we don’t have kids. And, you know, it was kind of like a decision we made and didn’t make at the same time, if that makes any sense?
Chris [00:27:21] Okay.
Caller [00:27:22] It was kind of like we had some fertility things going on and then it was going to be like, it’s very expensive to get any sort of like intervention to help you have like a child.
Chris [00:27:36] It is. And insurance doesn’t cover it. Some people have insurance that’ll cover it to a point, but most insurances, that runs out quick and you’re going out of pocket.
Caller [00:27:46] Yeah. And I’m, I’m Canadian.
Chris [00:27:49] Oh, God bless ya.
Caller [00:27:50] And so, you know, we have certain things covered because of the way our our system works. But for the most part, it’s still very, very expensive.
Chris [00:27:59] You mean rationally?
Caller [00:28:01] Yeah. Yeah, but your wait times are like, you know, it’s like, okay, so it looks like you got cancer and we’ll know more about it in, you know, three months. You know? It’s like there’s, like, long waits for things to happen.
Chris [00:28:14] Sure. Of course.
Caller [00:28:15] But we do save a lot of money, I guess.
Chris [00:28:18] Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, it’s uh we like to romanticize it, but it’s got its downsides as well for sure.
Caller [00:28:24] There’s pros and cons to both ends, right? And, but I mean, I do have a lot of a lot of sympathy for people in in the United States who and other places where it’s the same way, but where, you know, you end up having some sort of medical emergency and it ends up costing you all this money. And it can and it can ruin you because you’re trying to stay alive. Like it doesn’t make any sense. It’s not it’s not rational. It actually makes me really sad.
Chris [00:28:52] It’s a constant source of stress, especially as a as a husband and father who my family gets their insurance through my job, constant source of stress. And I’m doing okay. And I’m still stressed out about it all the time. Anyway. So you had some fertility issues and then you said it kind of became a decision, it sounded like?
Caller [00:29:15] Yeah, it kind of became a decision because it was just like we well, it’s it was just, you know, we’re not going to spend all this money. And then we’re kind of like, Oh, we don’t really need kids, you know, they’re a lot of work and the (UNCLEAR) But as you get older, like we were away at a cottage and, you know, we had his family there and my husband and his dad were playing guitar and he was kind of after like on the deck, you know, my husband’s a musician and so later on, you know, when we came back, he was like, you know, he started to think about how he won’t have a kid to play guitar with, you know, in a cottage somewhere on a deck. And then that really broke my heart.
Chris [00:29:57] That is really that’s that’s a moment. That’s a moment that that’ll cut to the quick. I’m really sorry.
Caller [00:30:04] Yeah. I think you kind of like when you when you make a decision kind of like that, you just kind of grieve it every once in a while. Right? And I think that, you know, around certain times of the year, I do feel kind of the pain of it. But then but then I’m I hear some child screaming somewhere and then I’m like, oh, thank God.
Chris [00:30:25] I mean, I’d be happy to tell you some stories about my child’s recent behavior that might make you feel totally okay about your decision.
Caller [00:30:31] You know what? If if you guys have horror stories that are about children, that would be great.
Chris [00:30:38] You want them. You want everybody to start feeding you…
Caller [00:30:40] I’d like, I would like to hear them. Yes.
Chris [00:30:42] Horror stories to validate your life path. Like, I can tell you- So, Cal, maybe three days ago, I was home alone with him and he was playing with a toy and he dropped it and he got very frustrated. And I’m not sure if he’s overheard me say this or his mom say this in moments of frustration. My guess is that he just started going to our town school. He’s in the preschool program, but the whole town is there, so he’s around older kids a lot more now. I think he probably picked it up in the schoolyard. But he dropped the toy and he got really frustrated and he’s like five feet away from me and to the toy he goes, Fuck you! In his little- he’s three and a half. He’s three and a half years old. And his little three, three year old voice, I hear him go, Fuck you! And I went, What did you just say? And it’s interesting because I learned, like, you can tell when a kid should get in trouble because I realizes he he instantly knew he had done something bad, but I could tell he didn’t know what was bad.
Caller [00:31:40] Right.
Chris [00:31:40] So I’m not going to yell at him. So he could tell something was bad. So he tried to adjust. So he goes, Fuck you. And I go, What did you just say? And he looks at me and goes, Fuck me? And I was like, No, that wasn’t the bad part, Cal. Good try. That was not too bad part. That first word, though. You don’t say that. You don’t say that anymore.
Caller [00:32:04] Oh, that’s it. But what did it sound like in his little voice?
Chris [00:32:07] Fuck me? Like it really, that is a close approximation of his voice right now. Fuck you. What did you say? Fuck me? I was like, no. Not that bad part.
Caller [00:32:18] Chris, that just made me more sad.
Chris [00:32:20] Okay. Okay.
Caller [00:32:21] To have a little person running around the house saying, Fuck me! would be great.
Chris [00:32:24] Sure. Okay, how about this? I’ve had feces on my hands multiple times this week. Not my own, not my own. That’s the type of stuff- I still gotta wipe his little- he’s potty trained now, but I still got to wipe his butt. I wind up with shit on my hands all the time. Three years of feces on my hands. That must make you feel better.
Caller [00:32:44] A little bit. Yeah. I guess it’s different when it’s your own kid, though, like, where you’re like, oh, this shit is so cute.
Chris [00:32:49] No, no, it’s not. And any parent who tells you it is is just lying at that point. There are certain aspects of this which are not fun and not cute. And I once… I once looked down and saw shit on my thumbnail.
Caller [00:33:06] Oh, no!
Chris [00:33:07] And I was like, Wait. And this was when he was still wearing diapers. I was like, When was the last time I changed him? And then I was doing the math. I was like, it was like 2 hours ago. I’ve been out. I walked around the neighborhood. I talked to neighbors. I went to the supermarket. I went and did shit. I went to the bank. I had shit on my thumbnail for hours and never saw it. And there were definitely people who must have seen it and just been like, that poor son of a bitch. Whatever happened to him, I hope it never happens to me. That he’s walking around with such a lack of self-awareness that he’s got another human’s feces on his fingernail. That must make you feel better.
Caller [00:33:44] That’s good. Yeah. Thank you. Yeah.
Chris [00:33:47] Let’s see what.
Caller [00:33:49] It’s like a shit manicure you had there.
Chris [00:33:49] Yeah, I did.
Caller [00:33:52] That mani shit pedi.
Chris [00:33:53] Let’s see. Pedaling Poetry- these are all things that are going to make you feel so much better. My little brother, as a toddler, would finger paint on the walls after digging in his butt. There you go. DiGiorgio said, Our five year old just got upset because his friend asked him nicely to stop using his balloon to hit toys. Full on meltdown. You also get- but then you also get to fake barf and fake poop in your pants as a game. So that’s a good thing.
Caller [00:34:25] Yeah. Fake barf, fake poop. I do that.
Chris [00:34:27] Oh, my goodness. You did not- Mateja, if you really do this… This is a nightmare and you’re kind of a hero. That sounds like the name of a very good album. Someone should use that. You can use that as an album title. Anyway, we’ll be right back. Thanks again to all the advertisers who allow us to bring this show to the world. Now, let’s finish off the phone call. Oh, my goodness. You did not- Mateja, if you really do this… This is a nightmare, and you’re kind of a hero. This, I want everyone to just close your eyes and envision what I’m reading right now. I put my baby sister in her stroller, tied our Australian shepherd to it, and let her run down the street so I wouldn’t have to babysit anymore.
Caller [00:35:27] Oh, no!
Chris [00:35:34] That’s so rad.
Caller [00:35:36] That is crazy.
Chris [00:35:38] Miss Huddy says, Here’s a horror story. Child pooping on a coworker at summer camp while changing them for pool time. The child was six. Too old to be changed or pooping on someone.
Caller [00:35:51] Ew. What happened there? That kid has problems now for sure.
Chris [00:35:54] MN says, When my son was two, he dropped a glass full of smoothie on the floor next to his highchair, and because it was in a highball glass, it shotgunned all over the ceiling. Nowhere else. Just blueberry and blackberry smoothie painting the ceiling.
Caller [00:36:13] Okay, I’m feeling better. You guys are great. Oh, my God. I have a funny thing-
Chris [00:36:20] Oh, I just have to say this one too, caller. Just to go back to another thing. Madison, I’m so sorry. This fucking country. Madison says, I’m getting a tooth pulled tomorrow and we don’t have insurance, so it’s going to cost me $10,000. To get a tooth pulled.
Caller [00:36:38] Oh no! Can we start a fundraiser for her tonight?
Chris [00:36:41] How- but the idea that we have to start a fundraiser for everybody who needs medical care in our country is- the amount of Go Fund Me’s is, is of course we should. A wish. Maybe we should caller. It’s a good idea. It’s also heartbreaking.
Caller [00:36:54] We should do something.
Chris [00:36:55] Heartbreaking.
Caller [00:36:57] That’s fucked up, guys.
Chris [00:37:00] It is. It is. What were you going to say?
Caller [00:37:04] Well, now I’m thinking about that poor tooth.
Chris [00:37:08] Franco also just texted me. Franco’s a comic doing the second show with me. He just said, This is not a horror story, just weird. My stepson named his big toes Kevin and Joanne.
Caller [00:37:20] Oh, no! Kevin and Joanne? His big toes?
Chris [00:37:27] My son, I mean, my son took a poop maybe four months ago, and before he flushed it, he said, Your name is Frackie. And every time he poops now he will stand over the toilet and go, Frackie, I’m sending you a friend! Frackie, are you okay?
Caller [00:37:43] Okay, that should be a children’s book.
Chris [00:37:45] Frackie The Poop? He has a whole story. Frackie lives under the pipes in our house.
Caller [00:37:50] Yeah.
Chris [00:37:50] Travels through the pipes. Yeah. And at one point he peed and named the pee Sheila. And Frackie and Sheila hang out in the pipes under our house.
Caller [00:37:59] Well, you know what? That’s creativity. You have a creative genius on your hands.
Chris [00:38:02] Thank you so much. Yeah, I’m inclined to agree.
Caller [00:38:05] Yeah.
Chris [00:38:06] Inclined to agree, yeah.
Caller [00:38:10] I was going to tell a quick story. So my my brother is the one who introduced me to horror movies. Just to go back to that because I just remembered something. So he he’s five years older than me, so he’s like 51 now. But he when we were smaller, my dad, he was a bus driver for the city. And he would he would come home and then after dinner, at some point, he would just fall asleep on the couch and he’d be like snoring. And he was just out when he was out. So my brother would wake me up and say, Do you want to watch some scary movies? Because it used to be at night on TV you could watch scary movies. And in the eighties. And so he would wake me up and we’d go and we would sit and watch his scary movies. And I saw some, like, really disturbing shit at a really young age, but I thought it was so cool until this one time when he was babysitting me along with our actual babysitter, because he never considered himself needing a babysitter. And they lured me downstairs and they tied me to a chair and they shut all the lights out. And then they hid underneath the stairs and were like (BLEEP) oops I said my name.
Chris [00:39:22] There’s one rule. I’ll caller.
Caller [00:39:24] Holy shit.
Chris [00:39:25] We’ll bleep your name. We’ll bleep your name. But your name whispered is particularly creepy, I will say. I think we can all agree.
Caller [00:39:33] Did I do a good job?
Chris [00:39:34] Yeah. There’s other names that aren’t going to be like if somebody was just like, Velma! Or like, Agnes! Like. That’s not as creep- like, your name whispered definitely has a chilling effect.
Caller [00:39:46] Yeah. Yeah. And so and so. Yeah. So I did. I did cry that night a little.
Chris [00:39:52] I bet.
Caller [00:39:53] Yeah. It’s kind of stayed with me.
Chris [00:39:54] I just had another horror movie come back to me. One of the worst experiences of my entire life was I had some friends, this I must have been maybe just out of college, and they convinced me, or maybe, you know, in college I forget, they convinced me to watch The Ring. We watched The Ring.
Caller [00:40:12] Yeah, that actually scared me. And I don’t get scared that easily.
Chris [00:40:14] That movie is so boring until it’s not. And the second it’s not boring, it’s the worst experience I’ve ever had. That movie is boring, boring, boring, boring, holy shit. I’m going to crap in my pants. This is so scary.
Caller [00:40:28] And when did the crapping in the pants start?
Chris [00:40:30] You know. Don’t you make me say it.
Caller [00:40:32] Oh, when she crawls out of the television?
Chris [00:40:34] Stop it! You stop it.
Caller [00:40:36] What the fuck?
Chris [00:40:36] Stop it, you Canadian mischief maker. I watched that movie and I was so scared. And I went home and I fell asleep with the TV on that night and I needed like some sound and people talking to be able to even fall asleep. And then I woke up in the middle of the night and I cannot believe- this must have been the very tail end of when this would happen. Do you remember what would happen sometimes if you fell asleep with the TV on and then the station didn’t have programing? Do you remember what they would broadcast instead?
Caller [00:41:06] Yeah, you’d get the shhhhhh.
Chris [00:41:07] The static. I had watched The Ring and been awake in abject horror for hours and then woke up at like four in the morning because I had on some cable station broadcasting static in the middle of the night, which, if you’ve just watched The Ring, is the worst thing you can do to yourself. And that was, I look back, that was also at an age when my mental health issues were at their most tenuous, and it was just about the last thing I needed.
Caller [00:41:33] Oh, man, you know what? Me too. And not that Me Too. The other me too.
Chris [00:41:38] You, as you said. Oh, yes, go ahead. What were you gonna say?
Caller [00:41:42] I, the same I, I saw that movie and I was like, oh, my God. I was so scared. And I actually went home and I rang the doorbell even though I had the key so that someone would answer the door and I wouldn’t have to walk into the dark house by myself.
Chris [00:41:59] I am wondering. It’s because you’ve said you share some mental health stuff, as I do, to the point where you sometimes are concerned about me, someone you only know from afar via my work. But it tells me you think about these things. As we’re talking about it I go, I think maybe part of why I hated horror movies was because I always felt like I had a very tenuous grasp on reality. And I had a tenuous grasp on my days going well. And horror movies, the whole thing, right? A lot of what’s underneath all horror movies, and this is I’m just rambling here, this is not something- but a lot of the premise underneath all of them is like, hey, you’re not in control of shit, right? Like, bad things happen and you can’t stop them. That’s kind of the premise of a lot of horror movies is something bad is looming. You can’t stop it. It’s going to happen. So I kind of am surprised to hear that anyone with mental health issues would latch on to horror movies, but I think a lot of people do.
Caller [00:42:56] Yeah, you know, it’s interesting. I find that in my real life, it feels like anything could happen at any time. I remember when I- and that feels very out of control. Like when I when I had my first panic attack, I thought I was dying, you know? I didn’t know what it was. And I thought I was having a heart attack. And I went to the hospital and it really fucked with my head. I, I, you know, that was like a real horror story. But when I watch a horror movie, it’s like controlled anxiety because I know it’s not real. And maybe because I was watching it at a young age, and then my brother would be like, you know, look at that makeup and look what they’re doing. And so I kind of always had this kind of behind the scenes kind of look of it. But it’s it’s a controlled anxiety. It’s like, I can have these feelings, but I’m in control. And, you know, no matter what happens, it’s not real. Whereas life, you know, with everything it’s happening in the news lately, and everything that’s going on in the world and everything else, like that’s, that’s the real horror of existence.
Chris [00:44:06] Well said. Well said. Are you comfortable- you don’t have to share it because I don’t want it to get out there if you if you’re like, hey, I got to sink my teeth into it before that. Are you comfortable laying out, like, the broad strokes of what you want your horror, horror novel to be?
Caller [00:44:22] Yeah. So basically my horror novel is about a young woman who’s actually dealing with her mental health. And obviously horror is can often be a metaphor for what’s actually happening in the world. Right? And so she attempts suicide and she’s in the hospital for care. And she gets out of the hospital and she gets invited to go to this reunion with these three friends that she used to have and that they had a- something happened in their relationship that that didn’t go well. And she’s reunited to go back with them. She’s invited to go back to them, sorry. And so she agrees. And she says she’ll go. But this big snowstorm happens. She has to drive to this place. And she only has so much medication. And the whole story, the tension is she starts to kind of she’s basically essentially in the story possessed by a demonic presence. But it’s kind of told through her also dealing with her mental health stuff and her running out of medication.
Chris [00:45:43] So she’s not sure if it’s just she’s running out of medication or there’s an actual demon she has to fight?
Caller [00:45:47] Well, we don’t know, right?
Chris [00:45:49] Yeah. This is like my personal nightmare.
Caller [00:45:51] Yeah.
Chris [00:45:52] I’ve lived this. This is going to sell. Someone needs to contact us. We’ll pass along your contact info. Publisher needs to get on this because this has an audience. I’m definitely not- you and I are not the only two people who have been like, shit, I forgot to refill my medication before vacation.
Caller [00:46:07] Aren’t you? Don’t you have anxiety just having a conversation about it? Like I- my boobs are sweating again.
Chris [00:46:12] Oh, my God. My boobs are sweating, too. My boobs are sweating.
Caller [00:46:15] Right? Yeah. It’s like it really brings on a boob sweat when you think about like, oh, my God, what if I don’t have my medication? There’s a snowstorm. Nothing’s open. And so she kind of like, starts, you know- and so so can I can I tell you- I’m like, telling my whole book. Is that okay? Is someone gonna?
Chris [00:46:31] Well, I just want to say, as long as you’re comfortable because I don’t want anybody out here stealing your shit.
Caller [00:46:36] Are people bored?
Chris [00:46:39] No, they’re into it. Good sign, publishers of the world.
Caller [00:46:43] They’re captivated. So she has to drive in this snowstorm and she has all this shit going on. And there’s also, when she looks in the mirror, there’ll be this, like, kind of weird, kind of look on her face that she doesn’t recognize and she’s trying to swipe away at it. And so when she- so the thing that happened between her and her friends is when she- when my main character, when she was younger, when she was like 16, her mother committed suicide. So we’re talking about generational trauma and a lot of mental health stuff gets passed on generation to generation. We’re just talking about we’re much more open now than we used to be, but every family had it, right. So her mother had took her own life. And so her friends, when she was 16, had this like birthday for her. And they said, we’re going to have a seance and what we’re going to do is we’re going to call your mom and she’ll come talk to you. So and they were doing it to play a trick on her because girls are bitches when you’re that age. And so they do this thing and they pretend her mom comes and she’s like, Oh my God. And then they laugh at her afterwards. But what actually happens is during the seance, they do call an evil spirit and it latches onto my main character because she’s very vulnerable with what’s happened with her mom. And so she’s actually been possessed since she was sixteen years old. And so there’s this whole life experience she’s had with this demonic presence. And now it, the presence, wants to get revenge, go to this place and kill these girls.
Chris [00:48:19] That’s a hell of a book. I see people tweeting at me that they would read the shit out of this book.
Caller [00:48:25] Would you? Thanks.
Chris [00:48:27] Caller, and also, I got a tweet that you’re going to find fascinating. And this is a first. And this is going to get fucked up fast. And I don’t know if everyone in the room is going to be comfortable with this. But very, you know, we started talking about Halloween stuff, spooky stuff. And now I received a tweet from Sneds, someone in the room, Sneds, Who informed me The Majestic, which is the name of the theater I’m in right now, is one of the most haunted buildings in Madison. See, quote The Putty Man who lives in the second opera box as written in Madison Magazine. Not only did Sneds do this, but somehow while in the room, found a picture, took a picture of this Madison thing- Madison Magazine. The Puddy Man. Height: six feet tall. At least six feet. Distinguishing characteristics: shadowy demeanor, extra long arms. It says, Let’s face it. Theater balconies are unsettling as hell, especially the dark ones that are difficult to see into from the ground floor. The balcony of the Majestic Theater has been around since the vaudeville days of the early 1900s. It’s apparently seen plenty of supernatural activity, including the ghost known as The Putty Man. A pair of women in the 1980s studying in the balcony were reportedly the first to see him, a massive shadow with rubbery mitts, Mr. Fantastic esque arms. He waved one of his wild, shadowy appendages at them, sending them scurrying. Smart move, ladies. So, caller, you and I have been talking about haunted stuff, scary stuff, a shared affinity for it. I’m standing in one of the most haunted buildings in Madison. Second opera- I believe they’re talking about that balcony box right there that you two are sitting in. What are your guys’ names? Laura and Sarah? So there’s people sitting in The Putty Man’s box right now.
Caller [00:50:18] Oh watch out for Putty Man.
Chris [00:50:19] Caller. Now listen, caller, we’ve got 13 minutes left. I’m wondering if you want to say anything to The Putty Man. If you’d like to taunt The Putty Man. If you’d like to tell him that Sarah and Laura are invading his space. I wonder if you’d like to do anything to try- I mean, you said seance. I don’t know if you want to do a seance for The Putty Man here in Madison. I’ll tell you on my end, I’m down for a whatever.
Caller [00:50:40] I mean, let’s lower the lights.
Chris [00:50:43] Okay. Can we lower the lights a little bit? And caller, I’m going to leave this up to you whether you want it to be, like half down, total darkness. I’m. Down. Let’s. Go. Caller, how would you like the lights to be adjusted?
Caller [00:50:57] You want to have, like, almost complete darkness.
Chris [00:51:01] If we could please- I don’t know if there’s anyone in the lighting booth. Okay? They’re adjusting lights. So they’ve turned off all the stage lights. There’s just some blue lights on, and we can kill those too, caller. It’s up to you.
Caller [00:51:13] Okay, no the blue lights, that’s kind of spooky, right?
Chris [00:51:16] So we can get those blue lights maybe, like, back up, like, 10%. Okay, the blue lights are back. So we got some blue lights. Very, very light. I think they’re leaving on, like, probably the minimum amount that they have to for legal purposes if anyone needs to exit. Okay. So it’s very dark in here now. Round of applause. Is there anyone who’s legitimately not psyched that we’re doing this? Handful of people clapping. One or two people clapping. Caller, what would you like to say to The Putty Man tonight? Hello, Putty Man.
Caller [00:51:48] Hello, Putty Man.
Chris [00:51:51] And I want everybody just feel free to look around into the balcony areas, see if you see anything weird happen. Please don’t look at me anymore. It’s not about me anymore. We’re honoring The Putty Man right now.
Caller [00:51:59] Yes. We’re here to contact The Putty Man tonight. Putty Man, you’ve probably had a tough life.
Chris [00:52:12] (PHONE NOTIFICATION SOUND) Oh, did everybody else hear that shit? The Putty Man just got a text! The Putty Man just got a text! Caller, was that you or was that The Putty Man?
Caller [00:52:23] It was a reminder to take my antidepressants!
Chris [00:52:27] Thank God. (AUDIENCE APPLAUDS) Oh, thank God. Oh, thank God.
Caller [00:52:33] Thank you, Putty Man.
Chris [00:52:35] Thank you, Putty Man, for the reminder. It is important that we all take care of our mental health. There’s no shame or stigma with mental health medications, Putty Man. Thank you, Putty Man.
Caller [00:52:45] Thank you, Putty Man. Oh, my God. That’s so funny. Oh, so are the lights still off?
Chris [00:52:50] The lights are still very dim. Like I said, I think they have to leave some on. So nobody. Oh, whoa, whoa, whoa. Okay.
Caller [00:52:57] What’s happening?
Chris [00:52:58] I need to know legit- is the light guy messing with us? … Because the all the lights just started flickering.
Caller [00:53:08] Putty Man… Putty Man…. Where are you? Come out and play. Chris wants to meet you-.
Chris [00:53:15] Stop. (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) Sarah and Laura are in The Putty Man’s balcony box. Okay? Chris has nothing against The Putty Man, but isn’t personally…
Caller [00:53:37] Putty Man, can you see Chris?
Chris [00:53:41] Caller.
Caller [00:53:41] Leave Sarah alone.
Chris [00:53:44] Caller.
Caller [00:53:46] Chris wants a hug.
Chris [00:53:47] Caller! God damn it (BLEEP). Cut it out. I’ve never had to do that once in seven years of this show. Okay? Never once had to do that in the history of this show. Don’t turn this around on me.
Caller [00:54:09] It’s okay. It’s okay. You know what? Putty Man’s probably just some pervert.
Chris [00:54:16] I am wondering.
Caller [00:54:17] Pedophile hanging out in a theater.
Chris [00:54:19] Like… You work here. Do you know about this reputation of the place being haunted?
Staff Member [00:54:25] Oh yeah.
Chris [00:54:25] Does the staff say it’s haunted?
Staff Member [00:54:25] Um we have- I’ve had more experiences at the Orpheum than here.
Chris [00:54:31] Okay. Apparently the Orpheum is even more haunted. No offense, Putty Man. This is not saying that you should, like, step up right now and do some fucked up shit in a competitive spirit with the Orpheum, which I also hear is a great historic theater only a few blocks away.
Caller [00:54:45] Get him, Putty Man.
Chris [00:54:46] Hey!
Caller [00:54:46] Aw. I feel bad for Putty Man, though.
Chris [00:54:56] Why do you feel bad for Putty Man?
Caller [00:54:58] Well, it’s got to be lonely, right? Which he’s probably trying to- he’s waving his arm. What? He’s saying hi? And everyone’s like, Oh, he’s a ghost! Like he’s just liek, heyyy. You know, he’s lonely.
Chris [00:55:09] I don’t think it’s a long arms. I think it’s more the fact that he’s an undead spirit.
Caller [00:55:13] Oh, right, right, right. Right.
Chris [00:55:17] With supernatural abilities.
Caller [00:55:19] Right. Okay. Oh, he’s right behind you!
Chris [00:55:21] Don’t. Listen, I knew you were kidding, but I did check. I did check. I’m going to go look backstage. Okay. I got no sign of them back here. I’m going to look down the steps, the mic cord’s very long. No sign of him here. But I’m not messing around. And crowd, don’t go along with this. Clap if you also are starting to feel like it actually is starting to feel a little strange in here, and I’m not thrilled. Because that’s where I’m at. See? At the beginning, it was two people that clapped. Now it’s like a solid third of the audience is like, Let’s move the fuck on from Putty Man.
Caller [00:56:01] That’s because I summoned him. I’m sorry.
Chris [00:56:03] Okay, wait. I’m going to see if there’s any other. What if I got a tweet from Putty Man? It’s like PuttyMan42069.
Caller [00:56:13] Oh, my God. That would be amazing.
Chris [00:56:15] Let me see. Okay, hold on. Let’s see what we’ve got in the tweet department. What if Putty Man could tweet with his long arms? Let’s see. It says a Useful Exchange finding the bright side. Putty Man gets to see lots of shows. Look at that. Bibrarian says, As a person in the opera box, I would be honored to be possessed by The Putty Man. So we can-.
Caller [00:56:39] Oh, we have a volunteer!
Chris [00:56:41] Bibrarian. Yeah. Yeah.
Caller [00:56:42] Nice.
Chris [00:56:44] And Abolish Hippo, who’s up there in the same box says, If I get murdered by The Putty Man, can you give a free T-shirt to Bibrarian, please? I didn’t bring merch, but I would mail one to Bibrarian. Erin says, I don’t know, The Putty Man just kind of sounds like Tunnel Bob, who apparently is a local man who lives in the tunnels? That’s just the guy everybody knows in Madison? Andrea, who’s doing sound tonight, says Hi, Geth. I quit. Not a fan of what we’ve done. Alex. Oh, Alex has a question I’m going to ask the crowd, and applaud if this is true, because I’m not going to lie, I thought it was just me. Alex asks, Did anyone get a chill as soon as we started talking about The Putty Man? Like a third of the crowd felt it. I felt a weird wind blow on the stage. I’m not kidding.
Caller [00:57:35] I felt it over here too.
Chris [00:57:38] DuJour asks me if my fingers are double jointed? DuJour, I really sympathize with your type of anxiety. They’re not double jointed. I was born with a joint condition where I can’t bend the top knuckles. That’s what you’re obsessing over and can’t get out of your head. Oh, my goodness. Okay, so we’ve taunted The Putty Man, we’ve heard about your novel.
Caller [00:57:59] I’m going to scare away the energy for you. I found I Googled some words. I now clear away any and all energy that no longer serves me. I welcome an energy of the highest good.
Chris [00:58:11] Oh, look at that, Putty Man. And Jordan tweeted, Time to go to the Dairy Expo. Once we start tormenting local ghosts, let’s just call it a day and go look at 23,000 world class cows. Is there anybody- I didn’t even ask before, is there anybody here who did, in fact, attend to the dairy expo at any point this week? Not one. Look at that. Look at that. I guess I can’t blame ticket sales on the Dairy Expo. Caller. It’s up to you. I’m still standing in near total darkness. I’m not sure if you’re ready to move on.
Caller [00:58:42] Oh yeah, you can bring the lights up.
Chris [00:58:43] Awesome. What if we all saw the shadow of some long arms as they came up? Imagine that? Oh, The Putty Man. Well, caller, we’ve got exactly 5 minutes left. How would you like to spend it?
Caller [00:58:54] I don’t know. How do you want to spend it?
Chris [00:58:56] Hmm. Let’s see. I caused Andrea to quit.
Caller [00:59:00] Stay, Andrea, stay.
Chris [00:59:02] Andrea, you’ve been a great asset to the show. Thank you for all your contributions. We’ve taunted a local ghost, we’ve heard about your novel.
Caller [00:59:08] Mm mm. Mm hmm.
Chris [00:59:10] There’s just one person clapping when I said taunted a local ghost, but it sounded louder than a normal clap. Almost like he had big haaaands!
Caller [00:59:19] I wish I had a good scream, but I don’t. Ooh, maybe we could do a scream contest, if we can get some people to really do a horror scream.
Chris [00:59:30] You want the crowd in Madison to have a horror scream contest?
Caller [00:59:34] Like people should raise their hand.
Chris [00:59:36] You want it to be orderly?
Caller [00:59:37] A female. Like a final girl in a movie. So raise your hand if you have a good horror scream, and then they can stand up and do it.
Chris [00:59:43] Okay. So anybody who wants to indulge the caller on this? Can we have house lights on, please? Is there anybody who’s willing to indulge the caller in a horror scream? I don’t know why she wants to hear women screaming. Oh, we went from total darkness to now I can see all their eyes. Is anybody else quietly looking around to see if there’s just somebody sitting. What’s that? Oh, okay. We have somebody raising their hand that you’re willing to do a horror scream. Do you want to come here and use the mic or no? Just from there? Okay. There’s someone who’s saying I’m willing to scream. She’s not sure if it’ll be a good horror scream. She will scream for you, caller.
Caller [01:00:19] Okay. Do it!
Chris [01:00:20] Okay. (AUDIENCE MEMBER SCREAMS) (APPLAUSE)
Caller [01:00:25] That was good!
Chris [01:00:27] That’s pretty good. That was pretty good. I don’t know if anybody’s going to beat that. Don’t know if anybody’s going to beat that. Well done. Well done.
Caller [01:00:36] Well done. I’m clapping over here.
Chris [01:00:39] Hey, Franco, you got a lot of balls sitting up there when we’re messing with The Putty Man. I just looked up and saw Franco’s all the way up there. Yeah, man, I bet. I bet. All right caller, 3 minutes. That killed a solid 2 minutes, that scream thing.
Caller [01:00:54] I want someone to turn Putty Man into, like, a graphic novel in Wisconsin.
Chris [01:00:59] Oh Putty Man, the graphic novel. That could be good.
Caller [01:01:01] Yeah.
Chris [01:01:01] You should write that, too. You should claim dibs on that, too.
Caller [01:01:04] I’m not going to put my dibs on that, but I’m going to visit the Majestic Theater, for sure.
Chris [01:01:08] Yeah, you should. It’s really genuinely beautiful. Somehow I get to travel, and sometimes I play places like this where you go, it’s been standing for a hundred years, and here’s a beautiful thing- on your way out, look at the stage because the floors have been redone down there. But I notice up here they’re all scuffed up. And I love that because I love thinking that for 100 and something fucking years, people have been getting on this stage and scuffing it up for the entertainment of Madison, Wisconsin. And tonight I get to be a part of that tradition and lineage. And I look at a scuffed up stage and I go, give me a scuffed up stage instead of a polished one, 100 times out of 100, man. Because it means you’re part of something and part of this idea of communities coming together. And I feel so lucky to be here at the Majestic. I feel so lucky. I love a good scuffed up stage, caller.
Caller [01:01:53] That’s beautiful. I love that. I wish I could see it. I feel like I’m part of it.
Chris [01:01:59] You are. You’re definitely a part of it. I promise you that. I promise you that.
Caller [01:02:05] But I just want to send love to everyone. And I hope everyone is taking care of themselves and their and their souls during these rough times. And I know United States has been through a lot, and Canadians, we love you and we’re thinking about you and we support you 100%.
Chris [01:02:24] That’s awfully nice. And caller, I got to say, this was so much chit chat about Halloween stuff and the eighties and all sorts of things. But that being said, you brought such a amount of energy and joy and I never knew where it was going. And I feel so lucky that we got to talk to you. And you started off the call by checking in on me. And I think this whole call has felt that that you are someone who just wants to give people a good time. And I really think you did tonight. And I thank you for calling.
Caller [01:02:50] Thank you for having me.
Chris [01:02:52] Well, that was a goodbye and we’ve got one minute left, so we can either cut it off or we can just awkwardly sit for a minute. You tell me. Maybe Putty Man’s phone will go off again. The highlight of this call was definitely when we all heard a weird noise, freaked out, and then all of us collectively were like, Wait, that was a fucking iPhone. What is going on? And then we realized it was your iPhone, not The Putty Man.
Caller [01:03:12] Yeah, and I still have to go take my antidepressants, so.
Chris [01:03:15] You do. Don’t forget. I don’t want you to live the plot of your novel because of this.
Caller [01:03:19] No.
Chris [01:03:19] All right. There you go. And someone named Madison Moreau just informed me there’s a Tunnel Bob song. So now I got to research this between shows.
Caller [01:03:28] I’m gonna Google that.
Chris [01:03:30] Oh. Closing note. Erin asks, Caller, since we’re in Wisconsin, I have to ask, if you were a cheese, what cheese would you be and why? And says I was asked this in a job interview here.
Caller [01:03:45] Oh, gosh. I guess Swiss cheese cuz of all the holes. Whoa that sounds dirty.
Chris [01:03:53] Caller! We started with boob sweat and ended with that? What an amazing call. Thank you so much for calling. Caller, thank you so much for calling in. Andrea Quinn, thank you so much for coming on the road with me and recording these things out there. It’s a tough job being, being out there in the sound booths of America recording Beautiful/ Anonymous. Thank you to Anita Flores for producing the show. Thank you, Jared O’Connell, for engineering this one. Our theme song, it’s by Shellshag. Support Shellshag. Go to ChrisGeth.com if you want to know more about me, including live dates coming up in Brooklyn, Asheville, Raleigh, Athens, Atlanta. Come on out. Say hello. And hey, wherever you’re listening, hit subscribe, favorite, follow. It helps when you do. You can find our latest merch at PodSwag.com. Talking about shirts and posters, all kinds of good stuff. Plus, if you want your episodes ad free, you’re gonna want to check out Stitcher premium. Use the promo code “stories” for a one month free trial at Stitcher.com/premium.