September 24, 2018
EP. 131 — What’s It Like To Be A Man Today?
A European nomad with 30% battery and a very full bladder is riding a ‘lift’ in the Parisian Metro as she chats with Geth (and a live audience in London). She’s curious: what’s it like to be a man in today’s changing society?
This episode is brought to you by A Million Little Things on ABC, Calm (www.calm.com/BEAUTIFUL), Caffe Monster, and Bombas (www.bombas.com/STORIES).
131 — What’s It Like To Be A Man Today?
[00:01:37] CHRIS: [music transition] Hello to all my Parisian subway fans. It’s Beautiful Anonymous. One hour. One phone call. No name, no holds barred.
[00:01:51] THEME MUSIC: I’d rather go one-on-one. I think it’ll be more fun and I’ll get to know you and you’ll get to know me.
[00:02:02] CHRIS: Hello, everybody, welcome to Beautiful Anonymous, this is Chris Gethard. Thank you so much for listening. Very excited. We’re gonna do one of our live episodes that we just taped in London today, I’ll speak more about that in a second. Doing another live taping in Toronto, September 28. I’m going to JFL, Just For Laughs. I’m doing a standup set, doing a live taping. Jared’s coming with me to Toronto. So Toronto listeners, I want everybody to come out. Also go to chrisgeth.com, get tickets for that one. Got dates coming up in October for Brooklyn, Massachusetts, up in Cambridge, Los Angeles live taping. Never – I have not done a show in L.A. in years. Los Angeles, live taping. Get your tickets right now. Bet it’s gonna sell out. We’re also going to San Francisco and Portland. Go check it out, chrisgeth.com. Also, remember Beautiful Anonymous, the Facebook group, join it if you want. There was one post, you know, sometimes people discuss episodes. Sometimes people get into philosophical discussions about how they feel. And then this morning, someone posted an article about raccoons that broke into someone’s house and ate their English muffins because Lord knows we love English muffins around here! Okay. London live episode. You’re about to hear it, had so much fun. Thanks to everybody who came out as part of the London Podcast Festival at A King’s Place. Cool venue, cool town, great city. I had a great experience there. I’ve had tough times doing comedy there before Career Suicide. I mentioned it on the show. This was great. Everybody’s so nice. Thanks for coming out. You’re gonna hear a caller. Caller is actually not from England calling the English number, but from France. And you’ll see we get into it. I feel very put on the spot, which is always awkward, let alone in front of hundreds of people on stage. And then I’m going to be fully honest. There are times when I think this course starts to feel maybe a little unique, a little bit like the rhythm of this is, is very interesting. And then the caller starts to tell us something about them and their life experience, where their head is at. Where you’re like, oh, we’re starting to explore this, make more sense. And of course, France and England have a longtime rivalry. And you’ll have, I promise you, a good time listening to a French caller suddenly judge England as hundreds of English people sit in an audience and watch. It’s a good time. I enjoyed it. Thanks for coming out, London. We’ll see you next week in Toronto. Enjoy the call.
[00:04:17] PHONE ROBOT: Thank you for calling Beautiful Anonymous. A beeping noise will indicate when you are on the show with the host. [Beep]
[00:04:24] CHRIS: Hello?
[00:04:26] CALLER: Hey. Hey.
[00:04:28] CHRIS: Hi. How’s it going?
[00:04:29] CALLER: Is it, is it actually me? I didn’t know if it was me going on the line or someone else.
[00:04:33] CHRIS: It’s actually you. It’s the one who asked, “is it actually me?”
[00:04:38] CALLER: [laughing] Oh, bloody hell. Oh, sorry Sally, I’m sorry, but I curse like an Irish sailor. Just don’t listen to this one at all.
[00:04:47] CHRIS: No, no, I want them to listen.
[00:04:48] CALLER: I actually called many times and never got through. And this time I was, well I am in the Parisian subway and I thought, “oh, I’ll call and I won’t go through anyway.” And so I’m here in a Parisian subway. And also, I really need to go to the loo. [crowd laughter] So it’s kind of… I’m also not sure I even have enough battery. But where should, where should I go, ay?
[00:05:16] CHRIS: So just to be clear, you’re currently on a Parisian subway with almost no battery on your phone?
[00:05:23] CALLER: Well, I guess I’ve got 30 percent something? We’ll see. We’ll see how it goes.
[00:05:31] CHRIS: Great. Well, thank you so much. [laughter from Chris, caller, crowd] Thanks so much. I just want to mention – In case it was not made clear to you, you might hear that this is one of our live shows. So there are…
[00:05:42] CALLER: Oh I know!
[00:05:43] CHRIS: Awesome. Great. There’s some people here –
[00:05:44] CALLER: I know, you’re in London!
[00:05:46] CHRIS: [crowd cheering] Yes, look at that!
[00:05:49] CALLER: And you prob – Oh, I mean, in this because this is the only quiet place in the whole of Paris. So every so often I’m going to go up, up and down and some people are going to go up and down with me. Like there is a woman who just came in with her two kids right now in the lift so this is where I am.
[00:06:05] CHRIS: So it does sound like you’re –
[00:06:06] CALLER: So you’re surrounded by…
[00:06:08] CHRIS: Oh no, you go.
[00:06:09] CALLER: Sorry. Go for it.
[00:06:11] CHRIS: Oh, I was just gonna say, it sounds like you’re doing this phone call in a series of places where phones traditionally do not function.
[00:06:17] CALLER: [laughing] Exactly. Yeah. I mean, first thing being the battery. Traditionally, phones don’t really function with low battery do they?
[00:06:27] CHRIS: Yes. That is true.
[00:06:28] CALLER: But, it’s gonna go OK.
[00:06:30] CHRIS: It is. So…
[00:06:31] CALLER: So, so you’re back in London, eh?
[00:06:34] CHRIS: I am. Yes, I am. And I’m greatly enjoying it.
[00:06:38] CALLER: I know London quite well, actually. I’m often in London because one of my partners is there. I’m coming often to see you, all you guys but I used to live in Bristol as well. So I kind of know England, even though I’m not English myself.
[00:06:53] CHRIS: You said you used to live in Brazil as well? [crowd laughing] Is that what was said?
[00:06:57] CALLER: [laughing] No, no, no, no, no. I’m not, I’m not someone…
[00:07:00] CHRIS: Oh, Bristol.
[00:07:02] CALLER: No, no, Bristol, yeah Bristol.
[00:07:05] CHRIS: Great. Everyone’s laughing at me, just so you know. Everyone in this room is laughing. [crowd laughter] So, where are you originally from?
[00:07:13] CALLER: I am, I’ve got a French passport, but I’ve been, I’ve been a European nomad for like 24 years or so.
[00:07:20] CHRIS: Oh, wow.
[00:07:22] CALLER: So, I’ve been… like right now, I’ve got, actually my job just finished like a few… I’m literally back from my job in Paris. I was just there for ten days. And I’m gonna go to hiking the Pyrenees tomorrow for a week. And then I’m gonna go back to Slovenia, which is where I’m currently based, kind of? For six months. So, yeah, that’s what’s happening on my side.
[00:07:48] CHRIS: And that’s a…I’ve, I legitimately have this question. I’m not trying to bring up any sort of controversy in front of our London crowd tonight. That, that is, that’s a very European Union thing, huh? You can just travel from country to country and just live wherever you feel like, huh? [crowd laughing]
[00:08:02] CALLER: Well, do we really want to get in there? [laughing] Well, we used to…we used to until everyone else but the crowd in front of you voted something that would not allow this to happen anymore. [crowd laughing]
[00:08:19] CHRIS: That’s true. I know. And listen, like I said, I’m not tryna make anyone mad. But I am. I am actually very, very interested in that. That sounds like such a romantic life to just go where you feel and then wind up in Slovenia for a while and then back in a Parisian train station. That’s cool.
[00:08:34] CALLER: [laughing] Yeah. Well, there’s definitely something more romantic in the universe than the Paris subway, let me tell you. It’s probably as romantic as the New York subway.
[00:08:43] CHRIS: Oh, the things I’ve seen on the New York subway, you have no idea. I once saw a man who had fallen asleep, and a group of unruly teens were trying to light his foot on fire.
[00:08:54] CALLER: What?
[00:08:55] CHRIS: Yeah.
[00:08:55] CALLER: How, eh? How is this…eh? [laughter]
[00:09:00] CHRIS: They were placing matches in the shoelaces and trying to light that, those matches on fire. It was dark.
[00:09:09] CALLER: Did anyone do anything?
[00:09:11] CHRIS: No. No. [crowd laughter] They were incompetent teens.
[00:09:14] CALLER: Oh, of course.
[00:09:15] CHRIS: Oh you mean, I thought you meant like, did anyone actually accomplish the task. First of all, no, they didn’t do that. Also, no, it’s New York City. No one did anything. No. No one stops any trouble on the street.
[00:09:24] CALLER: So. So I take it you didn’t even do anything. What’s your excuse?
[00:09:31] CHRIS: Well thank you for putting the screws to me. Well, it’s interesting. I mean, the sad part and I wonder, I feel like in many major metropolitan areas, one of the sad things is you become a little desensitized to a lack of humanity. And I’ve fallen as…I will say this. I will defend myself and say this. I was with a friend and the friend and I both kind of looked at each other and nodded and knew that if it went too far, we were going to have to stand up and say something. But at the end of the day, they were just some drunk kids and they bailed on it. But I’d like to think in my heart that I would step up.
[00:10:04] CALLER: You had friends supporting you. I did share a study that says that the more people that is around some kind of traumatic event like this, the less likely people are to be saved because people don’t want to be found out, I guess…
[00:10:21] CHRIS: Yeah.
[00:10:22] CALLER: …And, if there is only one person that person will save the situation. And yeah, more people, less chances. Which is terrible.
[00:10:33] CHRIS: I’ve heard the same thing. It is, it is. And I’ve heard, I’ve heard that’s why in the States, it’s 9-1-1. I think in London, it’s 9-9-9. I’ve always heard that if you call 9-1-1 or 9-9-9, you shouldn’t…if you’re in a situation where it needs to be called, you shouldn’t just say “someone call 9-1-1”, you’ve gotta point at some asshole and go, “you, you’re on the hook now. Call 9-9-9” and that person feels responsible and then it gets done. That’s just what I’ve heard.
[00:10:58] CALLER: Good life hack. [crowd laughter] Good life hack, for real it’s a definite life and death hack. That’s good. I’m gonna remember that…[murmur from Chris] sorry I was gonna say something, but I forgot. You might as well.
[00:11:15] CHRIS: No, I was just gonna, I was just gonna say quickly here I will expose my ignorance. And I know Americans can be very ignorant when it comes to travel. If you had told me to guess what your accent was, I would have guessed Scottish. That’s what I would have guessed [crowd laughter]
[00:11:27] CALLER: Oh, my God. [laughter] Oh, my gosh. Okay. I, people often don’t know where I’m from. I hear all sorts of stuff. You can’t see me. So you can’t really use my physical appearance to help you. A few people because of my physical appearance, they place me somewhere inside of Europe, which is not completely wrong since I’m French and I could be from anywhere being French, but I did learn English in Scotland, but that was…hold on [crowd laughter]. So I’m 43…that was 20 years ago.
[00:12:04] CHRIS: Looks like this guy’s not such a dumb ass after all.
[00:12:09] CALLER: I have, OK, I’m gonna say this, Chris. Now, you are full of shit [crowd laughter] because every time I hear you say, “Oh, I’m such an ignorance”, you never say something dumb. Every time you’re like, “oh, I’m such a stupid American, whatever.” You always say something super smart, really informed and just generally good and stuff. So you should resculpt this shit because no one believes you. [crowd cheering]
[00:12:32] CHRIS: Well, thank you. That’s nice. I’ll say thank you for the kind words. Although the aggression behind it was jarring.
[00:12:43] CALLER: [laughing] I’m really good at giving offensive compliments.
[00:12:46] CHRIS: That’s awful nice. So you were about to say something and I had interrupted.
[00:12:53] CALLER: I don’t know. I lose my train of thought really fast. I mean, I guess I was gonna explain that I haven’t actually gone back to Scotland since my studying, my studying there. But I love this country…that country I should say. So I immediately took the accent with great joy, which was not the same when I lived in England. I never actually got an English accent. And I think it is because…sorry, London. There is a bit of a divorce of personality between me and England. But Scotland, I immediately took the, took the accent and it took quite a few years for me to lose it. But lately everyone says that I kind of have lost it. So I’m actually really, actually really chuffed that you found the English twang, the Scottish twang behind my English people.
[00:13:49] CHRIS: What can I say? I guess I’m the least ignorant man on earth. [crowd laughing]
[00:13:53] CALLER: There you go. There you go. You got it.
[00:13:59] CHRIS: I spent some time in Scotland at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and I greatly enjoyed it. I grew up around a lot of Irish Americans, which is not the same as the Irish people. But I will say that I found the Scottish to sort of be like a lot of the relatives I grew up with, times 10. That was my, that’s what I felt like. They were partyin’ hard in Edinburgh.
[00:14:19] CALLER: Yeah. I mean, so far the Irish and the Scottish have been people that I love the most in Europe. The sense of humor is on point, especially the Irish, just…it’s fabulous.
[00:14:35] CHRIS: Well thank you so much. Thank you so much.
[00:14:38] CALLER: Well, you’re American. [laughter]
[00:14:42] CHRIS: Of course. [laughing] You’re really good at twistin’ the knife when you feel like it, huh? I gotta watch out for you. We have some people submitting questions from the crowd via Twitter. Someone wants to know, can we get, Dave W. is asking, “can we get a battery percentage update?” [crowd laughter]
[00:15:00] CALLER: Oh, oh suspense! Yeah, thrilling. Yes, thirty-five, thirty-five. It’s all right.
[00:15:07] CHRIS: Thirty-five. I think we’re gonna make it through this hour. And someone, someone else wants to know actually –
[00:15:13] CALLER: The pee percentage is more worrying.
[00:15:15] CHRIS: Mm hmm. Mm hmm. Someone else wants to know where exactly you are in the Paris subway, where, where you’re headed to.
[00:15:22] CALLER: Oh [inaudible] Port Royal.
[00:15:26] CHRIS: Don’t know what that is. I’m so sorry to say. [crowd laughter]
[00:15:29] CALLER: It’s a, it’s a tube station. I was on my way from [inaudible], which, which is a university condition for the students in the south of Paris. And I was on my way to where I was staying. I’m staying at a friend’s between Gare de I’Est and Gare de I’Nor, east train station and north train station. So that, that subway. Because Jared actually picked up, because I actually got through, I thought, OK. Subway. That’s not gonna work obviously. So I just came out to the next stop. And here I am, in Port Royal in a lift. In the lift, which is metallic, metal and empty. And, yeah this is where I am.
[00:16:17] CHRIS: All right. All right. I’m sure those of us who have been to Paris could picture it in our minds. I can’t see it. [laughter] So what else would you like to talk about tonight?
[00:16:29] CALLER: I said, I said something to Jared. I was gonna ask you what it’s like to be a man in this very feminist society because I’ve become very concerned, concerned about the masculine condition. Amongst us, the left-wing leaning, feminist and discriminatory blah, blah crowd…men are quite bashed left and right. And I’m seeing my friends and I, you know, obviously I’m in touch with men quite a lot. Because, you know, half of the population and all that. I, I’m becoming concerned at what it’s like to be a man and to, to be born as a man and to have that kind of pressure and stuff. So I was actually gonna ask you what it is like to be a man in this society. [crowd laughter]
[00:17:29] CHRIS: Have you ever seen one of those action movies where the laser comes onto someone’s head and they feel like a sniper is about to take them out? [caller and crowd laughter] I think I know what that feels like. I mean, here’s the thing –
[00:17:44] CALLER: [laughing] I had to know, I have another thing which is possibly connecting to what’s happening right now is we could also talk about being on the neurodiversity spectrum. So, you take your pick, if you want. [laughing]
[00:18:00] CHRIS: On the which spectrum was that?
[00:18:03] CALLER: Neurodiversity, neurodiversity spectrum.
[00:18:06] CHRIS: Neurodiversity. Well, I’ll answer the first question first and then I’ll follow back up to ask more specifically about what neurodiversity is, because it sounds fascinating.
[00:18:15] CALLER: Sure, sure.
[00:18:15] CHRIS: I’ll say this, because I don’t want to cop out and I do, although someone did just tweet at me, “run away.” [crowd laughter] I’m, I will say this. Here’s the sentence you’re not going to hear me say. Here’s the thing that I will say right out of the gate. I do not want to be misconstrued about. Here’s a sentence that I will never say, is that it’s hard to be a man right now. That’s not true. And when I hear men who say, “oh, it’s hard to be a man right now,” I’m like, bull fuckin’ shit. Sorry Sally. It’s not hard. If the idea that we’re being –
[00:18:46] CALLER: [inaudible]
[00:18:47] CHRIS: What’s that?
[00:18:49] CALLER: No, no, no, no. You carry on. I was just gonna say I understand. But yeah, I, I…I am one of those people who say it is hard to be a man. It’s not a question of saying it’s harder to be a man. But I’m saying it’s hard to be a man. But we can…[inaudible]
[00:19:04] CHRIS: You’re saying it’s hard to be a man. I find that fascinating because I don’t think it should be hard to be asked to be a little more human and a little bit more responsible for your actions. I don’t think that that’s hard, myself. [crowd cheering] I think that that –
[00:19:19] CALLER: Yeah. I mean…
[00:19:21] CHRIS: I think that might be a hard adjustment for a lot of people based on culture in the way that it’s gone. But I don’t think that that’s difficult.
[00:19:31] CALLER: Well, OK I think there is a small picture and a big picture thing here. It’s not hard to be a man on a small picture…in the small picture section. But… [inaudible in French] Sorry, I was just gonna say to these guys, and if not…[inaudible]
[00:19:53] CHRIS: You could be saying anything right now [crowd and caller laughing] People could listen to this and say she said, “Gethard, fuck off. Fuck yourself.” I have no idea.
[00:20:07] CALLER: [laughing] Yeah, I think you’re saying on a day-to-day basis it’s not hard to be a man. Is that what you’re saying?
[00:20:14] CHRIS: I’m just saying that for perhaps the whole course of modern civilization, men have had it their way. So it’s a little bit both…I actually was on a television show where I played a men’s rights activist and they wrote me the line, “Men have had it hard very recently” as a joke. And I do think it’s like, in the past three years, men have had to watch their step a little bit more. But for the last five thousand???… it’s been the other way around. So it, I don’t know. I don’t know.
[00:20:41] CALLER: Yeah, but, but this is slightly different from what I’m saying. Men have had it their way. Absolutely, 100 percent. That doesn’t mean it’s not been hard for them on an individual basis. In a society which is putting a hell of a lot of pressure on boys to always be tough, be in control, be powerful. Being the best. Always the best. Always, always succeed. And everyone is counting on you, boy. Don’t cry and don’t listen to your emotions. I mean, you should know that part. And all of those things. And I think, I think it’s breaking men from a very early age. And it’s turning them into then what we see, what we see every day. It’s kind of like…well, I guess what I’m trying to say is that what I’m observing is that being a man is a big factory for bullies. And we, we all of the other ones, all over the oppressed people are at the receiving end of this big bully factory. And the bully factory is men’s education, which is ridiculous. It’s all about hierarchy and being the best and never being touched with their emotions. And I think, I think this is at the core of all of our problems. And the more I talk to my friends and the more I see that they…they are individually suffering. I don’t, I don’t know. Would you…do you recognize yourself in anything I’m saying? Or you’re thinking “nah, it’s OK”.
[00:22:30] CHRIS: No, I find it very fascinating. I find it very fascinating. I mean, it certainly sounds like the foundation of this conversation is a little bit different between the two of us. And I don’t know if that’s just because of our individual personal perspective or cultural perspective that’s a little different. I have heard, I do remember maybe reading something that was a…I believe a French actress who said, “no, I want men to hit on me. I don’t understand why we’re teaching our men to walk away from that.” So I think maybe, just on that basic level –
[00:23:11] CALLER: I…I wouldn’t identify as French any more myself because I’ve spent…you catch me right now on a 10-day job in Paris. But I’m extremely around in France. I’m still kneaded into French culture, of course. But I’m not, I’m not one of those French people who are still quite attached to the gender traditions. In fact, I don’t believe in gender at all. And I’m definitely not one of those feminists who…well, no, I’m definitely not one of those people who are going to say, “oh, I like people hitting on me because blah blah blah”…I’m a feminist through and through. I’m just that kind of feminist who thinks that liberating men from that stupid, hierarchical, power-driven alpha male bullshit is going to be the starting point for everything else to go…to be less oppressed and to go more smoothly. But on a daily basis. The dysmorphic, sure, as I said, is still a long way to go, but I don’t know when I show my friends, my male friends. I feel for them. I feel for them. I don’t know if, you know, some guys can tell me that they don’t have friends because, because they’re sick of just going for beers and going for bowling, whatever. And they just want to have conversations about their emotional state and they just don’t have that. There is no such thing. Or I hear another friend say that it’s the first time in their life that they hear that they’re beautiful. Or…so many examples. Or some friends who…who’s completely socially blocked and depressed because they don’t fit that, that going higher, going faster, growing stronger and “go, go, go. Be the best.” And everyone relying on you, they can’t take that amount of pressure. I think it destroys individuals. And who it doesn’t destroy? They become really hard. They become the bullies and they cannot transfer that hardness onto other people around them. Do you see what I’m getting at? Do you think there’s a big gap between…
[00:25:40] CHRIS: I do. Yeah, I will say you are thinking at this…you are thinking about this in a level that I will admit right out of the gate is advanced beyond most conversations I have. There’s a lot of what you’re saying that I do agree with. I mean, I certainly, I certainly do think that like the male tropes, like you said, this hierarchy is a you know, as an American, I think, I think my culture more than most has a reputation for like “be a man” this macho thing.
[00:26:07] CALLER: I agree.
[00:26:08] CHRIS: And I certainly, I certainly…like when you say that that leads to men having depression, I would say I might be living through that. [Chris and caller laughter] And, you know, we do constantly, that phrase “man up” in this idea, “you gotta be a man about it. Go out there, be a man.” I do think that causes a lot of trouble. And I do think that being someone who wound up being pretty non-masculine…I will say someone named Kitty did just tweet at me, “Don’t know if Chris is the right guy to talk about the struggles of being too masculine.” [crowd laughter] Which I think is a fair thing to say.
[00:26:46] CALLER: I think you’re exactly the right guy.
[00:26:50] CHRIS: And you know what, time to take a break. [music transition] I tell you, I loved everybody tweeting during this show. I think they, this is not the only three-point shot that our audience hit. Big laughs come from tweets throughout the show. Meantime, let’s take a break. We got advertisers. Use the promo codes, if you’re so inclined. We’re back right after this with more phone call.
[00:27:10] [AD BREAK]
[00:29:52] CHRIS: [music transition] Thanks again to all of our sponsors. Now let’s get back to the phone call.
[00:29:57] CHRIS: Kitty did just tweet at me, “Don’t know if Chris is the right guy to talk about the struggles of being too masculine.” [laughter] Which I think is a fair thing to say.
[00:30:08] CALLER: [laughter] I think you’re exactly the right guy. I think you’re exactly right guy, because if you, if you were my friend, you would be one of those guys that I’m feeling really sorry about. [crowd laughter] And I’m feeling like this world is not cut for you. And this world is actually not cut for anyone I don’t think.
[00:30:25] CHRIS: Well, thank you so much for the concern.
[00:30:30] CALLER: [laughing] I think it’s a feeling…I think kind of what I’ve been saying, I’ve been trying to share my thoughts with friends, I’ve been saying that I’ve come to the belief that men are perpetually in an emotional jetlag, so they’re never in front of their emotions. They’re never in sync with their emotions. Their emotions is always like somewhere, somewhere outside, I’d say for them somewhere past, possibly somewhere future. And they just, they just don’t have their feet where their emotions are. And that’s just inhumane, I think. It’s just bullying. I think that’s the way this society is working, is it’s bullying everyone. And I’m one of those feminists, who says, “I think it’s bullying men, too.” And I think we should start there. Maybe if we start there, maybe the rest will follow, I don’t know.
[00:31:30] CHRIS: It’s interesting. I mean, I do hear what you’re saying, that to…it feels to me like what you’re saying is that for for a male to grow up and say, “I want to embrace the idea of being vulnerable or the idea of being sensitive or being empathetic” might create a situation that makes me feel like a little bit of an outcast or like I’m declaring myself weak, which is not a thing that is appreciated, especially when you’re a teenage male and all those hormones come out that make you aggressive. And where it does start to turn into that like animal instinct, food chain thing. Here’s the question, because I think that’s all really beautiful thoughts. And I think that that’s really, I think there’s a lot of stuff that’s really astute and thoughtful about that. I think the thing I’m having trouble wrapping my brain around and that I would, I would wager maybe some of the people in this room or some of the people are is it feels to me like there is a leap between that and saying that categorically, it’s hard to be a man right now. It might be hard to be a sensitive man, but I think that’s always been true. It might be hard to be a nontraditional man, but I think that’s…
[00:32:36] CALLER: I can, I can totally be known for having some very extreme statements. That’s truly something that’s part of my personality. So just take it as it is. It’s an extreme. It’s an extremely worded statement that is just maybe a gross…how would you say it? A gross shortcut into what I mean? But maybe we don’t put the same weight under the words because you said, you said, you first translated, “it’s hard to be a man” into “men have trouble to have it their way”, which is not actual…obviously, I would be stupid to say that it’s tough for a man to have it their way. Of course not. So I don’t know. I guess I’m always talking about emotions. I think –
[00:33:32] CHRIS: Yeah.
[00:33:33] CALLER: It’s tough to be a man emotionally. It’s not tough to be a man…
[00:33:35] CHRIS: You are very…you are a fascinating person with fascinating opinions. Let me say, because it is true, there’s a lot of truth to what you say. Like you look at the whole…I don’t know if this is an American phenomenon or if it is farther and wider. But this whole idea of these guys, the incels, if you’re aware of these guys. Involuntarily celibate. These are guys who effectively can’t, can’t manage to have sexual relations with women.
[00:34:03] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:34:03] CHRIS: And therefore, they have turned into a militant violent sect, which is…exactly like you’re saying this kind of like, broken reaction to masculinity.
[00:34:11] CALLER: Yeah. I think it’s the carnival mask of what could be happening for men just generally. They are the gross exaggeration of what could be happening for all men. Because a lot of men do have this entitlement thing, but that’s been, that’s been said that entitlement thing all of their lives by whether they had a choice or not. I mean, the reverse…I’m starting to not know where I’m going, so I might not go anywhere at the end of this sentence – [laughing]
[00:34:49] CHRIS: Do you mean…do you mean conversationally or within Paris? Like, do you not know what neighborhood you’re in? Or do you mean we’re kind of getting free-formed with this convo?
[00:34:59] CALLER: Oh my. I’m literally going from first floor to ninth floor in this lift. And I’m just looking at people going through. [Chris laughing] That’s where I’m going. Like right now, I’m looking outside and I’m seeing the outside of the lift and here we go. We’re going down right now and I’m gonna see the subway. The white, clinical subway car. So this is where I’m going right now [laughing]
[00:35:25] CHRIS: I don’t quite know how, but that is somehow a metaphor for this entire conversation. I don’t quite know how. [crowd laughter]
[00:35:33] CALLER: [laughing] Maybe we are going back and forth and back and forth. And nowhere in particular.
[00:35:39] CHRIS: I will tell you, someone in the crowd just sent me a reaction to your things, which I think here’s what a lot of us in the room are having trouble wrapping their brains around. I’m gonna read you a few reactions that…’cause I can feel, I feel like I’m not the only one in this room of people going, “I agree. I agree with this. But something feels off.” Someone named L just tweeted at me. “It just feels sort of counterintuitive to continue to center male experiences in the struggle against the patriarchy”. [crowd applause]
[00:36:05] CALLER: Yeah, but I think the patriarchy is not helping men. Men should free themselves from the patriarchy as well for their own sake. I think the patriarchy is no one in particular. The patriarchy is this big hierarchical system of a society that was built where everything is ranked and everything we do and think and whatever is ranked and ordered in a hierarchy. And I think that is patriarchy. And I think men are…because of various things…well, actually, my thinking really is, is that men are at the top because they are not in control of making babies. And that’s why they took the top by force to be in control of babies, because before that they were not. And I think it’s because they’re afraid of their lack of control or worried of their lack of control about making babies that they took that top position by force and they held it ever since. So patriarchy is this big kind of faceless monster coming from evolution. But individually…men are individually like the guy who sat next to you or behind you. He’s not patriarchy. I think he’s a victim of patriarchy, just as much…no, not as much, I will not say that, not as much as other people [laughing]
[00:37:45] CHRIS: I’m glad you said that.
[00:37:49] CALLER: But I mean. Yes, I know. I can’t say, I can’t say men are victims as much as women or whatever, but they do die as well. You know what I mean? Men are… because of this alpha male bullshit. They die in fight. They die in wars. They die in all alpha male, hierarchical bullshit. And sorry, my call is one big sorry Sally. Can we agree on that?
[00:38:18] CHRIS: Is one big what?
[00:38:21] CALLER: Sorry Sally.
[00:38:22] CHRIS: Oh yeah, that’s okay.
[00:38:25] CALLER: So. So. Yeah. On one hand…I cannot, especially being a woman and being a cis woman myself…I cannot say that men are victims of the patriarchy as much as others. But there is a part in me saying, “wait, aren’t they? Are you sure they’re not? Is your scientific brain…(I am not a scientist) is your scientific brain agreeing with the fact? Do you have the actual figures? Do you know? Do you know how many men actually die in all this alpha male bullshit?” I don’t know. I think, I think everyone is a victim. Even myself doing this right now. Going like, “oh, men are more a victim or less a victim. Or women are more a victim or less a victim”. I am again, a victim of that fucking hierarchical system which is everywhere and should not be. It’s not because someone is suffering or someone else is suffering. But we have to rank the suffering. Both are suffering and we should try to…we should try to save them both if we really are anti-discriminatory. Do you see what I mean?
[00:39:42] CHRIS: I once watched…There was once…I once couldn’t sleep and there was a documentary on cable television that I saw, and it was about chimpanzees. And they talked about how if there is a group of male chimps and they are in their habitat, if they’re, if they’re, you know, just doing their thing and they realize that there’s another group of male chimps nearby, that they will quietly form straight lines and they will walk through the forest and come upon these other male chimps and ambush them in formation. And then they have a very specific order of events where they rip apart the face and then the fingers and then the toes and then the testicles. And this documentary pointed out that humans and chimps, which are our closest genetic relatives on earth I believe, are the only two species on earth that kill each other for fun and that get in lines and do it in these military formations. And that blew my mind of like, oh, there might be something as basic as if you’re a guy, you might need to overcome a little bit of programing that tells you to just be kind of fucked up. But being that we’re humans and not chimps, maybe we can work a little harder on choosing to do that. [crowd laughter and applause] Anyway…
[00:41:04] CALLER: You said what I was gonna say. You said what I was gonna say. I mean, you are vegetarian or you are pescatarian maybe? I don’t know where you’re at with your vegetarianism…I’m a vegetarian.
[00:41:13] CHRIS: Yeah, I’m pescatarian.
[00:41:16] CALLER: You’re what, sorry?
[00:41:18] CHRIS: I still eat fish. Yeah.
[00:41:20] CALLER: Oh you’re pescatarian, OK. So we’re in front of a London crowd and I’m sure there’s a ton of vegetarian in there. So we are programmed to do some stuff and we choose not to do them. So you said exactly what I said. First of all, I believe that actually bonobos are our closest relative and they are very nonviolent, extremely nonviolent to the point that they’re actually shag to a cheerful issue. And also, I do think… but don’t quote me on that, if there’s any scientists who actually know their shit and they’re in the audience, please let us know…I do think that this whole thing about chimps being the only violent animal outside of human beings. I think this, this has been debunked. I think this is not the truth. But I’m not sure.
[00:42:18] CHRIS: [laughing] Fair. Laura did just also tweet at me. “Dolphins are fucked up, too.” [crowd laughing] That’s another thing that just came. And also, do you know what animal is surprisingly fucking weird? Is otters, man. Look it up. We think otters are real cute. They are fuckin’ monsters of the sea – freshwater, freshwater. But they’re fucked up. Anyway, what was that other thing you were talking about? That neuro? What’s the neuro thing?
[00:42:45] CALLER: Oh the neurotypical. It’s…OK, do you know what a bell curve is?
[00:42:51] CHRIS: A bell curve?
[00:42:52] CALLER: Yeah, a bell curve. Like a bell, a jingle bell. Bell curve.
[00:42:56] CHRIS: I’m aware that’s a thing that exists [laughing]
[00:43:01] CALLER: [laughing] Oh, is it gonna be like that? Oh, what was that? What was that episode when you said…oh, the fruit fly! Oh bloody hell. I heard that episode, there’s a fruit fly. And you were like, “I know what a fly is. I know what a fruit fly is.” And as soon as you started saying how big you felt the fruit fly is you said it was bigger than a mosquito, in my head, I was like, “he doesn’t know what a fruit fly is.” So, [laughing] you remember that episode?
[00:43:31] CHRIS: You’re bringing up our last live call when I made a fool out of myself. Thank you for allowing now another audience on the other side of an entire ocean to also laugh at my inability to identify a fruit fly correctly.
[00:43:47] CALLER: [laughing] I mean, it’s just because you said, “oh, I know that this bell curve exists.” I noticed that you’ve become significantly more cautious.
[00:43:57] CHRIS: I am. I mean, if this podcast has made me aware of anything, it’s that I do not know everything. That is a very good thing. Also, a guy named Max is really pissed that I talk shit about otters. I’m sorry about that, Max. Max, put in all caps, “YOU KEEP OTTERS OUT OF THIS, CHRIS”. A fair reaction to otter fans.
[00:44:14] CALLER: I mean, you did rehabilitate sea otters.
[00:44:19] CHRIS: You are a whirlwind of a human being. You really are.
[00:44:25] CALLER: Why? [laughing]
[00:44:26] CHRIS: I feel like, I feel like, and I say this in a complimentary fashion. My experience talking to you is like I’m standing at the edge…I’m standing on a beach right at the edge of the sea. And I have no idea how large the next wave is going to be. [crowd laughter] That’s what I feel like talking to you. Like it might just be a pleasant thing that cools me up to my knees. Or it might be a tsunami that smashes me backwards and forces me to swim for my life. I never know if you’re gonna be like, “oh, I remember that charming moment from the last call” or if you’re gonna be like, “hey, what’s it like to be a man in 2018? Go!” [caller and crowd laughing] I don’t know what’s gonna happen with you. I don’t know. I feel…do you get this a lot from people?
[00:45:10] CALLER: You know, actually what I get a lot from people is that I’m really good at making people really comfortable. I mean, really comfortable. Not really uncomfortable. People feel very at ease with me. [laughing]
[00:45:23] CHRIS: Really?
[00:45:24] CALLER: They feel that they can really talk.
[00:45:26] CHRIS: Because people say that about me. [laughing] Maybe it’s like when two ends of a magnet come together and push each other apart because I feel like I’m walking into a bear trap every time I start to speak to you.
[00:45:42] CALLER: [laughing] OK. So maybe let’s put me under the, under the hot iron then.
[00:45:47] CHRIS: The microscope!
[00:45:51] CALLER: Yeah, maybe the microscope.
[00:45:51] CHRIS: I will, I will say that someone in the crowd, Milan just tweeted, “As someone who is French, I do recognize the French spirit of trying to cause trouble and argue because we love it.” [crowd laughter] That is something that was just put out there, which I didn’t know was a thing until right now.
[00:46:07] CALLER: Yeah, I’m slightly miffed that you didn’t actually pick up on the whole, “Oh, I don’t like England thing” seeing as when in London. [laughing] I really thought that you would just, just for the sheer joy of me arguing with 400 people or however many you are 4000, whatever.
[00:46:27] CHRIS: It’s closer to 4000. Absolutely. Definitely closer to 4000. Yeah. It’s probably like three thousand nine hundred something. So you’re saying that before you were actively trying to pick a fight with our entire audience and I missed it?
[00:46:43] CHRIS: I think it’s a good time to pause. [music transition] I’ve got to say, as an American standing on stage, I’m not so surprised I missed the subtle jabs between the French and the English. Those go back centuries. And I don’t know if I’ll quite ever understand the complexities of that relationship. Hey, we got advertisers. Check out their products and services. We’re back right after this with more phone call.
[00:47:05] [AD BREAK]
[00:48:39] CHRIS: [music transition] Thanks again to all of our advertisers. Now live from London, England. Let’s finish off the phone call.
[00:48:47] CHRIS: So you’re saying that before you were actively trying to pick a fight with our entire audience and I missed it?
[00:48:54] CALLER: [laughing] Yes, you did. I’m not a French person, [inaudible]
[00:48:59] CHRIS: So you’re saying there’s a whole room of English people you are trying to taunt and there’s one French guy out here that was like “I see what this is about” [crowd laughter]
[00:49:09] CALLER: [laughing] Exactly, yeah. But yeah, yeah.
[00:49:12] CHRIS: What were you trying to start the fight about? What were you hoping to get in a fight with our audience about? I’m happy to bring it back up.
[00:49:18] CALLER: [crowd laughter] No, no. No, no. It’s just because. I mean, it actually ties, it actually ties with the neurodiversity thing. It’s, it’s from a very long stay that I had in England for a series of very long jobs that…very long story, incredibly short…I found out that I was on the neurodiversity spectrum at the age of 42. I did not know that I was. But basically I did not know that my brain was not functioning the same way as ninety-nine point three people. So, yeah, that was a big discovery, which I…Oh, not entirely, but the starting point I owe to England and the way…the way social interactions are coded and built in that society, which is a way that I…my brain cannot comprehend.
[00:50:22] CHRIS: [laughing] So you’re saying the experience of interacting with people in England showed you that your brain operates differently than ninety-nine point three percent of human beings?
[00:50:33] CALLER: Yes, apparently. Apparently so. I’ve been told ninety-nine point three percent for me specifically, but apparently for the, for the bigger group of people like me, it’s 98 percent.
[00:50:46] CHRIS: So…
[00:50:47] CALLER: There’s about 2 percent of people who have the same kind of neuro-atypical brain as me. But, it’s kind of like gender, age…[inaudible]
[00:51:01] CHRIS: So, when we say the words, the phrase “neurodiversity”. I can’t say that I’m so familiar. Is this, does this mean when you say spectrum…I know that sometimes things like autism or Asperger’s are referred to as on the spectrum.
[00:51:13] CALLER: Yeah, exactly.
[00:51:14] CHRIS: That’s…okay. So that’s the type –
[00:51:15] CALLER: Yeah, exactly. So Asperger’s and autism…I am not autistic and I am not, I don’t have Asperger’s. But it is this kind of thing. It is, it is a functioning of the brain, which is not in the majority of people on that bell curve we were talking about. So, yeah.
[00:51:36] CHRIS: OK. And –
[00:51:37] CALLER: I’m on, I’m on –
[00:51:38] CHRIS: You are on that spectrum.
[00:51:39] CALLER: Sorry yeah I was just going to read…
[00:51:42] CHRIS: Now what, what was it about interacting with the English people that revealed this to you? I think we’d all like to know.
[00:51:50] CALLER: Yeah. The English society is, as we all know around the sun, it’s a very polite society, although politeness is very subjective. So for a French person, there are some stuff that the English will do which we will find very offensive. But overall, it’s a very, very polite society, but it’s also an extremely coded society. And overall, I’m sorry, London, but I’m going to have to make a broad generalization the whole way. So overall, it’s very coded and overall, they are trying…with…they’re trying to avoid conflict. It’s a very non-conflicting society. And their social codes and their interaction codes are based on the avoiding conflict principle. And on another hand, it’s also based on the “live and let live” principle. So quite an individualistic principle, like, “I’m doing my shit, you’re doing your shit but we have to live together next to each other, but let’s not interfere” which is very non-French. French interfere a lot –
[00:53:08] CHRIS: I feel like I’m actively here as an American for the entertainment of a listening audience in the future, actively trying to fan the flames of a millennial’s old rivalry between two entire nations. [crowd laughing] And I think I want to call it. I know that I’m doing that. I can feel the nervousness of the crowd as I’m actively asking a person who grew up French to criticize the English as an American [laughing]. What a bad idea! Anyway, continue.
[00:53:38] CALLER: Yeah, it’s gonna be fun. [laughing] So basically, for me, as a foreigner, possibly French foreigner particularly, the code of the society is too complex for me to grasp on a daily basis, because in France we’re not…we don’t care about us as your, as your French audience member. Like you said, we don’t give a shit if there is a conflict or someone saying no or someone disagreeing with us. We can totally deal with that. It ends up usually with lots of wine and a very, very long stew, very approximately approximate, conversation. But we kind of find it fun and we have no problem with this. And we’re still friends…sometimes. But the English have more of a problem with this overall on, as a society, unless they are with very, very good friends of theirs. So…if when I’m interacting with English people, there are a lot of little things that they say, which I don’t know how to decode. So, for example, I’m not going to do justice to this because I didn’t think about examples before jumping on this call. But if we agree if, for example, this is something happened to me. OK, so it was my birthday. I say to a lot of people, “hey, it’s my birthday. Come in that day”. And I only had yeses or maybes. And all of the reactions of the maybe…the maybe I thought, “OK, they’re maybe. Some people will really try to come”, so maybe out of…I’m sure all the English people in front of you are going like “na na girl, that’s not what they meant,” but they know. [crowd laughing] But I didn’t know that.
[00:55:42] CHRIS: So there was a knowing chuckle that maybe does not mean maybe in England. That’s what…so it sounds like you’re saying that where you grew up, people are very blunt. Tell it like it is. They don’t mind if they make you mad. And the English, the stereotype of the English to never want to offend made you feel like you were unable to process what they really meant in a way that made you realize you were on the spectrum.
[00:56:06] CALLER: Yes. Yes. Basically, from staying in England really long, I never knew what people were telling me. I was always…I was very, very often in situations when I was sad or disappointed because things…things I understood were not the things that I should understand. I was very often disappointed or sad. It made me feel insecure with myself, it made me feel like people don’t like me or whatever. And a whole cascade of events, whatever. And I had depression. And at the end of that, at the end of the depression, from the beginning of the depression, I was thinking something is going on with me. And what helped me climb from that depression was when someone pointed out the fact that I really talk like someone who has that particular…condition. And I should get my condition tested because I might have that condition. And I did, and I do. I did get my condition tested and I have that condition.
[00:57:16] CHRIS: Look at that. You should never go to Canada. [crowd laughing] The Canadians make it feel like the English just tell it like it is. [Caller laughing] Like I was once on an Air Canada flight. And I had put my bag above me. And then the fasten seatbelt sign came on and I realized that I had left my headphones in my bag, and I stood up and unbuckled my seat belt. The plane wasn’t moving or anything, it was sitting on the runway. And I opened up the thing and the flight attendant came up to me and went “thank you, sir. Thank you.” And I was like, “you’re, you’re welcome”. [Crowd and caller laughing] And then she was like, “sir, thank you”. And I was like, “yeah, no sweat. Yeah.” She’s like, “sir, thank you.” And I was like, “no problem. I don’t know what I’m doing. And I’m really glad it’s working for you”. And then I realized, oh, in Canada, thank you means fuck you. That’s what I realized. That’s what I realized. [laughter] We’re getting some very fun reactions to this whole idea about like how the the English propensity for politeness revealed some stuff to you. There’s a lot of reactions that I’m getting a kick out of. Katie said “the English don’t much like England either.” That was a good reaction that I thought didn’t quite understand. Someone said…Claire said, “I assume in a London audience the majority of us are not English anyway.” I don’t know if that’s true. [crowd laughing]
[00:58:35] CALLER: [laughing] That’s true, that’s true.
[00:58:36] CHRIS: Laura, I don’t know what this reference means, but I have a feeling the crowd’s reaction will reveal a lot to me. Laura said, “she hasn’t been out in Newcastle.” [crowd laughter]
[00:58:45] CALLER: No I know, I know, I know. I should say. Yeah, I know. She’s right. She’s right. I should say the North of England is a place that I can actually function a bit better…[Chris and crowd laughter]
[00:59:00] CHRIS: I’m gonna have to learn about Newcastle after this. Sean put one that makes my heart very happy. I believe he’s referring to an American trying to get the French and English to fight on a podcast. Sean simply said “this is perfect for somebody from Ireland”, which I enjoy that reaction as well.
[00:59:17] CALLER: [laughing] That’s true.
[00:59:18] CHRIS: Oh, Kenny points out, “it’s like in New York when hello does not mean hello. It means move”, which is very true. If a New Yorker’s ever like, “hello”. That means “get the fuck out of my way before I push you down this escalator.” That’s what it means. Someone, oh like –
[00:59:36] CALLER: But I, I, I –
[00:59:38] CHRIS: Go for it. Yeah.
[00:59:41] CALLER: Oh, I was just going to say, I need to say that there is no…I’m not saying that the English have it wrong or they should not like their country or whatever. I’m just saying it doesn’t work for me, but it works beautifully for the English and the people who can get that range of social code. Because it’s a very peaceful society to live in. Incredibly peaceful place to live in.
[01:00:04] CHRIS: Yeah, it’s a beautiful place. This makes me assume that because you live in Slovenia…Slovenians are like the most direct, rude people in the world. It’s just doing the math. Although who knows? I will now get angry tweets from Slovenia. I do, I will say that Martin just gave a reaction that made me laugh quite hard, “let’s lighten this up and talk about Brexit.” [crowd laughter] That’s…as we have this tense moment of a caller calling a live show in England to criticize the English. [laughing] Let’s just lighten it up and talk about Brexit. We have about nine minutes left, caller. We have about nine minutes left.
[01:00:42] CALLER: Oh wow, okay. Yeah. So, yeah. I did stay in England very long and I do have very fond…I’ve got a very strong fondness for England, but it’s just. What can I say? It’s like a relationship that was really nice. Started nice, and went nice and long and fun and stuff. When at the end of it, you’re like, “OK. So we’re not really mates for each other for life. And it was a nice story and will be nice to keep on our shelf, but…”
[01:01:14] CHRIS: I think that’s beautiful to realize, “yeah I can, I can go.” It’s funny. I know exactly what you mean though. ‘Cause I tell you, when I did…I did a show called Career Suicide and I did a run of it in London and it put me in my head and one of the things that put me in my head…I was practicing it for HBO and that had not been made clear to the theater. So the show was about 75 minutes long. They thought it was 60. And my agent from America called me and said someone from the theater called the British promoter. The British promoter called us. Your show is too long. And I was really freaked out. I look back now and realize that nobody wanted to have a face-to-face confrontation with me because they thought that that would make me very uncomfortable. But in my mind, as a neurotic human being, I was like, “well, now I just know someone’s mad at me and I don’ know who”. So I’m showing up at this theater every night, assuming everyone’s mad at me. It had the opposite of the intended effect. What do you think about Americans? [crowd laughter]
[01:02:14] CALLER: Yeah, I think you’ve summed up…one of my, one of my past love’s is American. The one who lives in London.
[01:02:22] CHRIS: The one who what?
[01:02:25] CALLER: The one who lives in London is American.
[01:02:27] CHRIS: OK. And how do you feel about the Americans? I know people got strong opinions about us, too.
[01:02:33] CALLER: I find, I find I mean, we kind of covered this with the whole masculinity thing. That there is quite a lot of masculine toxicity going around because this “go getter” attitude puts a lot of pressure on everyone. And there is, there is a big, big pressure to succeed and a big, big pressure to be positive, and to never complain, and smile and…yes. There’s just a lot, I find that there’s a lot of pressure for being the best all the time. Which, you know, we kind of covered that before. I think there’s very little room for it. There’s very little room for how are you actually how really are you? And how did you experience this, whatever your experiencing. Was it bad for you? Was it you know, it is not. You guys are…it’s, it’s really great to work with you because you guys always like, “Yeah! blah blah blah” But sometimes I’m thinking who, in that group I have in front of me is not going so well and doesn’t dare to say they’re not going so well. So, do you find as an American there’s a lot of pressure in you’re…in you’re social?
[01:03:53] CHRIS: Yeah, I mean…I think there is some pressure. I do. You know, there’s the whole idea of the American dream. You start with nothing and then you go and you conquer the world and Manifest Destiny go west. And there isn’t – I think you know, I think I’m a workaholic. And I think a big part of that is this idea of like, “you got to out-work the generation before you and you got to accomplish things and, and everything” I will say, L just tweeted “Truly typical of Americans to make everything ultimately about themselves.” [crowd and caller laughter] I think that’s getting a fair round of applause. Yeah, I don’t know, there’s some pressure, but then, you know, there also is a little bit of like I know my wife and I very often when we travel abroad, people ask us where we’re from and we quickly say New York. We don’t say America. We say New York. Thinking that maybe Europeans will go, “that’s a cosmopolitan city. And we get that you guys aren’t, you know, the Trump, the Trump country.
[01:04:47] CALLER: Yes, that’s totally what happens.
[01:04:50] CHRIS: Someone actually just vomited in the crowd. I said Trump and someone actually just went “blahhhhh blahhhh”.
[01:04:59] CALLER: [laughing] Oh, I wish it was true! Yeah. One of my best friends, is actually an American, she’s from Brooklyn. And it’s the same. I met her on a job here in Bristol, in fact, and…same as you. She never said she was American and Trump wasn’t even on the stage at that point. At that point, it was Bush, I believe, which was bad enough, too. So, yeah, she always said she was a New Yorker and she found that it went a bit more smoothly, but she still got attacked a lot, just from being American, I guess –
[01:05:38] CHRIS: The first time I came to London, George W. Bush was still in office. And I took a cab and I started to tell the taxi driver where I was going. And I got maybe six words into the sentence and he cut me off, “you guys are ruining the world!” And I have to say, he did not fit the English stereotype of politeness that we’re talking about. He was very, he fit the stereotype of an English cabbie who was not thrilled to have an American in his vehicle. And I mean I was like, “I know, I know. What can I do? I’m just a weird guy with glasses. I’m not ruining the world. I’m trying to be a citizen of the world.”
[01:06:16] CALLER: And I bet…I bet you gave him a tip anyway. [crowd laughter and applause] Catholic values and all that.
[01:06:32] CHRIS: Do you have like a list of shameful moments I’ve brought up before in your pocket? [crowd laughter]
[01:06:39] CALLER: [laughing] No, I’m just that smart.
[01:06:41] CHRIS: You know what I think is very fascinating about you? You know what I think is super fascinating about you. Between both your commentary on the interactions between different world cultures and your perceptions of what it means to be a man and how men fit into, you know, a feminist movement in 2018, is that you’re someone who has said that you are on the spectrum in a way that sets you apart. But it’s actually in many ways so clearly giving you…your outsider status has given you ability to sort of take in things and think about them and analyze them in a way that I find very, very interesting.
[01:07:15] CALLER: Yeah, but it’s weird. I mean, I don’t know. Because it’s funny, I’m 43 and I found that out last November. Can you imagine in my whole life I found that out last November? For my whole life, I lived it as an alien. Like, I really, really felt that something was weird with me. And I really felt that….I felt I was stupid. I felt that I didn’t get it. Like, when I was in England was before knowing that I was on the spectrum. And, and I said, “what’s going…what’s wrong with you? You just can’t do this. You can’t do it.” Yeah. I just felt weird.
[01:07:51] CHRIS: So you are saying that you spent four decades never really thinking that anything might be off. And then after just a short time in England, you were like, “I think my mind is broken. I think my mind is broken.” [crowd laughter]
[01:08:04] CALLER: [laughing] Well, you know what? I’m sorry to say. But, yes, it was, it was because England had such an extreme way to interact compared to what I could actually adapt to. I just could not adapt to England. It’s too extreme from the social coding and the social interaction. I think I would die in Japan as well. [Chris and crowd laughing] It’s not, I don’t understand…I think there is something with people like me, which apparently it’s very, very often that people like me can really understand people, which is why people really like to talk to me, because they find me very empathetic and they find I really get them. But the number of people who tell me, “wow it’s crazy. I don’t know you and you really get me” and whatever…which honestly, Chris, maybe look at that spectrum thing because maybe that might apply to you, too. [crowd laughing] Anyway, so yeah, people really, really think that I really get them. And at the same time, I don’t understand when they actually say words to me. And it’s…I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s because I understand their…I understand what they mean. And there is a difference between what they mean and what they say to me.
[01:09:26] CHRIS: I have to interrupt. Someone just tweeted, “did she say one of my partners? Are we missing a whole conversation on polyamory?”
[01:09:34] CALLER: Oh, baby. There are a lot of conversations missing with me!
[01:09:52] CHRIS: [music transition] [laughing] Leave it to your old pal Gethard. This…that one. I want to thank you guys so much for being here. Some last second reactions to this. Martin is saying, “I’m pretty sure she’s Scottish and just pulling your leg.” That’s one. Elon, our French friend who said, “the security guys looking at the security climb up that elevator is probably on the verge of calling the police after she did 30 ups and downs.” And I think the best one that I could end this evening on Sam reacting to our experience in England is by saying a simple, “Fuck, we broke her.” That’s all we had. You guys, I want to thank you so much for coming out. Thank you for supporting Beautiful Anonymous, really means the world to me. It’s been such a lovely time. Thank you so much for coming out. Have a great night. [crowd applause]
[01:10:51] CHRIS: Caller, thank you again for calling. And also everybody in London who came out to the show. Thank you for coming. It was so cool to meet you. It’s just a really great experience. Thanks so much. And caller, I wish you the best. I hope you’re doing well. And I hope we can all solve society’s issues together through these honest and elevated conversations. Thanks so much. Thanks to Jared O’Connell, who helps the show every week. As you guys know, the backbone of the show. Also traveled to England, traveled all the way to England for this one. Thank you, Jared, for stepping up. Thank you Harry Nelson, for all your help organizing the show. Thank you, Justin Lindvell. Thank you, Shellshag, for the music. Wanna know when we’re doing more live touring dates? Go to chrisgeth.com. There’s a lot of dates up there right now. Go check them out if you want to help the show, Apple podcasts. Write, rate, review, subscribe really helps so much. See you next time on Beautiful Anonymous.
[NEXT EPISODE PREVIEW]
[01:11:41] CHRIS: Next time on Beautiful Anonymous, a survivor of a world famous tragedy calls in, lets us know what it was like.
[01:11:51] CALLER: You know what? I thought it was fireworks. I thought, you know, maybe it was part of the show. You know, it was the last day, he was the last act. You know, he’s a fun performer. I thought it was just part of the show until my husband threw me down and laid on top of me.
[01:12:08] CHRIS: Wow. Wow.
[01:12:11] CALLER: Yeah.
[01:12:11] CHRIS: So someone, so the performer on stage, someone sent them word or sent them a signal like “you got to get out of there right now.” And what happens, he and the band just take off and you all realize, oh, that’s not a thing that ever happens?
[01:12:25] CALLER: Yeah.
[01:12:27] CHRIS: That’s next time on Beautiful Anonymous.
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