The Biggest Problem in the Universe - Episode 12Transcription courtesy of: Megan Pennock
Maddox: Welcome to The Biggest Problem in the Universe, I'm Maddox. With me is Dick Masterson.
Dick: Heyyy, buddy!
Maddox: So we have some exciting news: we're already at 225,000 downloads.
Maddox: At just over two months old. Which is phenomenal for a new podcast.
Dick: You're amazing. (Maddox chuckles)
Maddox: WE are amazing.
Dick: Yeah, we're amazing.
Maddox: We're incredible. (dryly)
Dick: Thank you for listening.
Maddox: Yeah. So...uh, last week's problems we brought in -
Dick: (interjects) Who won, who won, who won, who won?
Maddox: (chuckles) The most important question.
Maddox: Number one came in...Slacktivists, or "Slackticists" as it's written down, 'cause (cracks up) my Internet was out and Dick was gracious enough to make me notes, and I've been doing nothing but giving him shit because of a typo on the note. (laughing)
Dick: Everything's gotta be perfect with you!
Maddox: Yeah. And then number two was Neil deGrasse Tyson!
Maddox: Which was very controversial! There was SO much backlash in the comments, and on Facebook, and on the website.
Dick: Yeah, you had to know there would be, though. I mean...right?
Dick: He's like, everybody's hero.
Maddox: He's -- yeah! He's this...he's Internet Space Jesus. And then was Know-It-All Masseuses, and dead last, as I predicted, you fucking idiots love your French fries, so enjoy. Choke on them.
Dick: Your French fry problem was really weird, man. I got a lot of feedback on that one.
Dick: I don't think you got your point across with the French fries. 'Cause I respect you, I think you always have a reason for your problems, but I don't know if you were able to get your real issue with French fries out.
Maddox: Well, they seem like such an arbitrary side dish. In everything that you order at a restaurant...a hamburger, a steak, anything, comes with fries...it's just arbitrary. Why fries?
Dick: Nah, I still -- it's not getting across. I want you to think about it and come back.
Maddox: Well, the closest -
Dick: (interjects) French fries, take two. (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: The closest I made a case for French fries was the diabetic connection, which you kind of pointed out - rightly so, I think - that exercise also plays into that. So whether or not it's exercise alone, or the increased consumption of French fries...
Dick: Mmm. (thoughtful)
Maddox: ...that results in higher instances of diabetes, I'm not sure. So there's that.
Dick: Well, if that swayed you, go ahead and vote it up. You can go vote at any time on the website.
Maddox: Great. And -- oh yeah, go ahead.
Dick: Yeah. Well, I have, uh, some exciting news. I don't know if you know about this.
Dick: Speaking of voting on the website, the number one problem of all time (Maddox chuckles) is, as of this week, Armchair Psychologists!
Maddox: Armchair Psychologists. (amused)
Dick: That means *I* am the big winner.
Maddox: (applause sound effect)
Dick: I am number one!
Dick: I am William Riker, and you are Wesley Crusher. (Maddox bursts out laughing) I am pee-pee, number one, and you are poo-poo, number two. (Maddox laughs more)
Maddox: You thought about that...
Dick: Yeah, I had that. (grinning)
Maddox: Yeah, of course, yeah.
Dick: I thought of that. (laughs loudly)
Maddox: Yeah, that's not a joke that just comes up off-the-cuff. That's brilliant.
Dick: I didn't write it down, though! I kept it so it would -
Maddox: (interjects) Oh, I believe you did, yeah!
Dick: Yeah, alright.
Maddox: With typos. Um... (cracks up) (Sean laughs in the background) So speaking of the number one problem, I got a comment from Paul Schaefle. He says, "What the fuck, Dick? Maddox is telling a story about a guy upgrading his daughter's computer and Dick goes into this psychoanalysis about 'It seems to me that this guy has a techno-compulsion that's not healthy and blah blah blah.' What the fuck is this armchair psychology hypocritical bullshit? Dick, you didn't even add anything to the discussion. It just seemed like you were trying to preemptively argue against whatever point Maddox was trying to make before you even heard the whole story."
Maddox: So, Armchair Psychologists, number one problem in the -- you know what, Dick? I think this actually proves your point, because the fact -
Dick: (interjects) It was annoying!
Maddox: Well... (cracks up) It IS annoying -
Maddox: - but also the fact that you became an armchair psychologist; it's a huge problem!
Dick: MAN, you just, you can't resist it! (Maddox laughs) Like, I felt like a prick after doing it.
Dick: And this guy was right, I sounded like a prick, but it's just...it's too easy to do, that's why it's such a big problem.
Maddox: And by the way, can I just point this out, Dick?
Dick: Go ahead.
Maddox: Here's -- so last week we had Know-It-All Masseuses, know-it-all scientists...
Maddox: ...here's my problem this week: know-it-all co-hosts. (laughs)
Dick: What did I do THIS week?!
Maddox: You -- okay, that's not really my problem, but you don't have a kid and you always espouse child-rearing techniques! Like you're an expert.
Dick: Look, I think -- um, I'm just out here giving my opinion. Alright?
Dick: If you have kids, and you agree with it, great. If you don't... (Maddox scoffs) I don't know.
Dick: I don't know what to tell you. It just seems to me that if you're trying to raise a kid, going out in the backyard and shooting up their laptop is stupid.
Maddox: Awesome. And effective. Uh, so what comments do you have?
Dick: I got comments...from Kurt Radyko: "Maddox, you piece of PISS!" (Maddox laughs) "If you ever talk smack about French fries or coleslaw again, you are going to be mourning death at YOUR funeral!" (Maddox laughs more) He did the right "your," also. "Absolutely love the show guys, keep up the great work."
Dick: So mixed messages on that one, I don't know.
Maddox: Yeah. A "piece" of piss. So, what are you, freezing the piss, you idiot? What are you, putting piss in ice cube trays? You know, that's gonna spill everywhere. You're gonna get it on your hands. So I'm not worried about -
Dick: (interjects) I don't think you should antagonize this guy, dude.
Maddox: Yeah. Well, I'm not worried about his threats, 'cause this guy's gonna come over with piss all over his hands, like a fucking moron. (Sean laughs quietly in the background) Alright, idiot. Um, I got a comment from Megan Pennock.
Maddox: It says, "When Dick asked for an example of actions Maddox has actually carried out in support of his rants, the first one that came to mind was the time he mailed a box of tampons and a bottle of No More Tears shampoo to Bill O'Reilly" - from the Fox News show - "from the 'Bill O'Reilly is a big blubbering vagina' article in 2004. That was so ballsy."
Dick: "That was so ballsy"?
Maddox: Yeah. (grinning)
Maddox: It was -
Dick: (interjects) You got a low criteria of "ballsy" - what was her name? Megan?
Maddox: Megan Pennock. Yeah.
Dick: Did you ever get a response from that?
Maddox: No! Uh, no. I assume that they just took it out in the parking lot and blew it up, assuming that there were explosives inside.
Maddox: Which is par for the course.
Dick: Uh, let's see. I got one from Canon Manley...uh, that's probably a fake name. (Maddox snickers) "Goddammit Dick, how you botched a slam-dunk like Neil deGrasse Tyson is beyond me." Well, sorry, Canon, I'm trying my best. "Though those tweets were smug as shit, when facing a power-house like Maddox you need to present clear evidence of hypocrisy and douche-baggery." Uh, then he links to a YouTube where Neil deGrasse Tyson's being smug.
Maddox: Oh, that's true, we could've brought in some clips of Neil deGrasse Tyson. You know, I actually don't have a problem with Neil deGrasse Tyson himself; it is his zealous fan base that I have a problem with, who can see no wrong and admire him way in excess of his accomplishments. Great, he's raising science awareness, but he's not a fuckin' messiah. Chill out.
Dick: Yeah, um, speaking of 'not a messiah,' Kal Peduzzi says, "Maddox knows all about Jan Oort and her discoveries, but apparently not his gender." 'Cause you were showing off last episode (Maddox laughs) when you were trying to say what Jan Oort was responsible for.
Dick: Like gas clouds, or some dumb stuff?
Maddox: The Oort cloud, right.
Dick: Yeah yeah yeah, but you said it was a chick, and apparently Jan Oort is a guy.
Maddox: You know, I looked it up and it is a guy - he is a guy. It's pronounced, what, "Yan" Oort? Because he's from the Netherlands, or something like that. So if you read that name in a physics book, which is where I read it, I read it in a physics book about astronomy -
Dick: (interjects) I would assume it's a man because it's not a cookbook. (Maddox and Sean laugh loudly)
Maddox: Bravo, Dick. Excellent. ('ding!' sound effect) Um, so...no, but when I read that in a physics book, there is no context! There's no reason for me to assume the gender. They're not gonna mention the gender of the scientist who discovered whatever. Who gives a shit? That's not relevant in a physics book! I read it in a physics book, and my whole life I thought, "Oh yeah, it's probably some chick who discovered this thing."
Dick: Yeah, I'll tell you why you know it's not a chick: because there's not six chapters dedicated to it. (Maddox smirks) If it was a chick who discovered that, it would be like, "Ohh, and then, the GREATEST discovery in science came about from this chick!"
Maddox: Yeah. Well, we got Madame Curie, so that's enough. Oh, and let me guess, I pronounced that wrong; it's "Madman" Curie, it's a dude too. Idiots. Okay, so I got a comment from one of my illustrators from The Alphabet of Manliness, Angelo Vildasol. I'm still friends with...you know, I talk on a regular basis with most of my illustrators from that book. He noticed an interesting thing about your voice, Dick. You know, you've had comparisons to P.J. from Goof Troop...
Maddox: ...one of my friends sent that in. He also said that you sound like Raphael from the original 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Dick: Oh, yeah! The cool one!
Maddox: Uh-huh! And -- well, no. He's, eh....
Dick: He was "cool but rude"!
Maddox: No, that's...
Dick: Yeah! It says it in the SONG, you asshole!!
Maddox: Oh, that's true, yeah. He is cool but rude, you're right, you're right. And then, uh -
Sean: (interjects) He's "tough but rude."
Dick: No, no, no!
Dick: It was "cool but rude"!
Sean: ...are you sure?
Dick: Or is it...
Sean: I think it's "tough."
Dick: Oh, no...
Sean: Raphael is "tough but rude."
Dick: Nononono, um...
Maddox: And Michelangelo is the "party dude."
Dick: Yeah yeah yeah...or was it "crude"?
Maddox: You know, it doesn't matter.
Maddox: It's irrelevant. However, Rob Paulsen is the guy who voices all of the names. So I looked it up just to double check...here's some clips from Raphael, from Rob Paulsen voicing these clips.
Maddox: From the original -- listen to how...(cracks up) how much this sounds like Dick.
[Maddox plays series of Rob Paulsen voice clips]
Rob Paulsen [as Raphael]: "Cowabunga! Shredder, you dead-faced geek, get back here and taste cold Turtle steel!" ... "You picked a heck of a time to become a philosopher!" ... "Does the phrase 'go suck a lemon' hold any meaning for ya?"
Dick: (interjects over clips) That's how I sound?
Maddox: [pauses clip compilation] Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Dick: "Does the phrase 'go suck a lemon' have any meaning for ya?" (Maddox laughs) Does it sound like that?
Maddox: It sounds like I just played the clip twice! (chuckling) Listen to this. [continues playing clips]
Rob Paulsen [as Raphael]: "Somebody toss me a rope! They aren't paying me enough to take this kind of abuse."
Maddox: [pauses clip compilation] And that actually even sounds like it could come from this show. (Dick laughs) Just the whining...listen to more whining, listen to this. [continues playing clips]
Rob Paulsen [as Raphael]: "Man, Leonardo, you are such a downer." ... "Can't you hear? It says, 'beep, beep, beep!'" ... "It's really comforting knowing that you've figured that out."
[clip compilation ends]
Dick: Alright, I got a stupid-sounding voice, ENOUGH! (Maddox laughs) Jesus!
Maddox: Or a million-dollar voice. Either way.
Dick: Yeah. That's -- it's real erotic, when you're dirty-talking with a chick and you're like, "You know, uh, guys say I sound like Raphael from the 1980s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon." (sarcastic)
Maddox: Um...so -
Dick: (interjects) You got a problem? You wanna get into the problems or do you have more comments?
Maddox: Let's get to the problems. What's your, uh, what's your number one problem?
Dick: You want me to go first?
Dick: Alright. This one comes straight from the comments. So, L. Dix says -- again, probably a fake name -- "I'm curious what is up with the lack of swearing. You" - meaning me - "had a whole chapter in your book about how swearing is manly." Which it is, and I did have that chapter.
Dick: [continues quoting comment] "It's not like this is on TV or any FCC-regulated medium, so I don't understand all the self-censorship." So my first problem, believe it or not, is too much swearing.
Maddox: Aw, you fucking pussy! (laughs)
Dick: Yeah! I know...I know I'm gonna get eaten alive for it, like I know I'm gonna get downvoted to hell -
Dick: - but it would be disingenuous for me to come in here and say that the problem is not enough swearing. 'Cause I really think it is too much swearing.
Maddox: TOO much?? I never -
Dick: (interjects) And I just…and I wanted to address it, 'cause a bunch of people brought it up in the comments. Like, "Why don't you swear? Why don't you swear more? Why don't you swear more?"
Maddox: Yeah! You have an R-rated character doing a PG-13 show. What...what the hell is up with that, Dick?
Dick: I think I have an X-rated character.
Dick: Doing -- yeah.
Dick: Well, so here's my thinking on it: I went to...I did some research on it.
Dick: And I ended up at the Cuss Control Academy... (amused) (Maddox and Sean laugh) ...like, trying to find reasons?
Maddox: Oh yeah, of course! The CCA! Yeah. (sarcastic) (laughs more)
Dick: Yeah, the...it's http://cusscontrol.com. (Maddox laughs harder) So I wanted to get some reasons for why there's too much swearing, right?
Maddox: And it's a .com, not a .org, of course. 'Cause they're for-profit.
Dick: (interjects) Or a .edu. (Maddox laughs) I don't know, those are probably too expensive for the Cuss -- you gotta go to this site, dude. (grinning) This guy has this book...like, it's this dopey-lookin' -- the guy looks exactly what you would think he would look like.
Dick: And his book says "Cuss Control," and it's all about, uh, controlling cussing. (Maddox smirks) But here's where -- okay, but I actually agreed with part of it, and I bring it up just so I can read these parts. The reason I don't do it on the show all the time is because "it doesn't communicate clearly" - this is from http://cusscontrol.com - and "it neglects more meaningful words."
Maddox: Um, what's more meaningful than the word "fuck"?
Dick: I don't know! Any -- anything! If you are...if you stop yourself from using the f-word, or the s-word, or the shit word, or any of these other words, I think you are gonna think of something funnier to say.
Maddox: You know...okay, Dick, I hate to actually give any credence to your bullshit-ass problem this week, because I *totally* disagree with it. However, I will say this. This is...I'm pulling the curtains back a little bit and telling, uh...I don't even know if my fans know this about me, since I've never really mentioned it in interviews or anything like that. But for the first, I would say, 10 to 15 years of my website, I never used the f-word at all. In any of my writing.
Maddox: It was a conscious choice, specifically for the reason you mentioned: 'cause I was trying to find a more creative way to express what I was expressing. However, I found -- I finally gave in when I was working on a comic one time - uh, on my article "Things that are wrong about the movie Signs," or whatever.
Maddox: And there was this -
Dick: (interjects) I remember that article.
Maddox: Yeah! There was this line where I just wanted to say, "fuck me in the Ozarks," and I *just* couldn't think of any other way to say that, that had the same impact. And I finally just wrote it down as it is, because I really pushed myself to try a creative workaround, and I couldn't find it.
Maddox: But -
Dick: (interjects) And I think -- but I think, that's exactly what I'm saying. You did have to push yourself, and it wasn't just "fuck me," it was "fuck me in the Ozarks," which is much funnier.
Dick: Right? And don't get me wrong, I love swearing.
Dick: Like, I swear constantly, all day...
Maddox: Mmm... (skeptical)
Dick: ...when we're not -- you don't think I do?
Maddox: No, not enough. You use your crutches of "a-hole," "s-," "f-ing"...
Dick: I think that's funnier sometimes, though.
Dick: When -- I don't know. I get...like, I feel like a masterpiece painter with swearing sometimes.
Maddox: Uh-huh. (skeptical)
Dick: I've been doing it for so long, and I love it so much, that sometimes I like to -- like Picasso.
Dick: I'm like the Picasso of swearing, I think. He would -- he was an amazing painter.
Dick: Like, as a KID. Right? He could reproduce any still life, or any, you know...any actual painting to a masterful degree.
Dick: But then as he developed, he would start that weird Cubist shit.
Dick: Right? So that's how I feel about my swearing.
Maddox: Um... (doubtful)
Dick: I like to not -- like okay, yeah, I could do the tapestry of swearing. But then I could throw in, like, an s-word...
Maddox: Oh. Ooo!
Dick: ...or "f-you," and now it makes YOU say the word in your head, and that's funnier sometimes!
Maddox: Ohh. No, it almost never is. You know -
Dick: (interjects) Or you go like, "AOOOHH, FUDGE!" (Maddox laughs) And then, 'cause -- yeah, see??
Dick: 'Cause people are THINKING you're gonna say "fuck."
Maddox: No, because - (cracks up) - because you, you...you look like such a finicky bitch right now, with your arms up in the air, which, I wish we were recording this. (through laughter)
Dick: Oh, that's why that's funny?
Maddox: Yeah, 'cause you're a finicky little bitch. Like, "Oh, fudge! Fiddlesticks!" Uh, it's funny in certain contexts but almost never funnier than the actual swear word. And it depends, however, um...you know, if you use swear words too much, I agree, it loses its impact and loses its meaning. But back to your analogy -
Dick: (interjects) Yeah. That wasn't at http://cusscontrol.com. It had -- I brought in a bunch more reasons why it's bad, and 'they lose their impact' wasn't on their list, surprisingly. (Maddox chuckles)
Maddox: That's because they're such pussies, that they never cuss.
Dick: It could be.
Maddox: Yeah. So back to your bullshit analogy as Picasso.
Maddox: Let's look at this analogy for a second. When you were a kid, you were a master orator. Right? You mastered speaking just like Picasso mastered painting. And then as an adult -
Dick: (interjects) No, no - not speaking. Just swearing.
Maddox: Oh, you mastered swearing.
Dick: Swearing. Oh yeah, man, when I was a kid, "fuck fuckity fuck fuck fuck" - like I could fuck with the best of them.
Maddox: No, but that's not mastery! That's...that's misuse. That's what THAT is. So Picasso, when he was a kid, if he was a good painter that means he mastered the use of color and palette, and not using too many colors. The number one mistake most kids make -- and, trust me, this is coming from somebody -
Dick: (interjects) Is overswearing!
Maddox: No! (cracks up)
Maddox: No, no. Kids never swear, it's not enough. But when they're drawing or painting, they use a palette of all the colors, rather than restricting it to like, 5 -- the 5 most used colors they use in their...whatever they're trying to depict.
Maddox: So in your example, you used swearing too much as a kid. I am gonna challenge you, sir -
Dick: (interjects) No! I'm not saying I did that!
Dick: I'm saying I used it *just* the right amount.
Maddox: Just the right amount...
Dick: Which is all the time.
Maddox: Yeah. (skeptical) And now... (starts laughing) And now that you're a big, grown -- here's my problem with the, uh, with the censored swearing..."f-ing," "s-ing," "a-hole"...it's not saving anyone anything. 'Cause when you say "a-hole," I'm thinking "asshole" in my mind...
Maddox: ...and when you say "f-ing" I'm thinking "fucking," but then I'm also thinking you're a pussy, so it's distracting me from your message because I'm thinking of what a big vagina you are!
Dick: Oh, really?
Dick: Well, maybe that was this guy's point. (Maddox cracks up) So you disagree with me?
Maddox: Oh, yeah, I...absolutely.
Dick: That I should be swearing all the time?
Maddox: I think swearing is great. Not all the time.
Dick: I don't know...
Maddox: Not all the time. Use it like...pepper. Well, don't use it like I use pepper; I use way too much pepper. But use it like a spice or an herb in your cooking. Right? You don't wanna put too much basil in your spaghetti sauce.
Dick: I don't know, man. So, I learned to swear from my uncle. Like, I was first...I first fell in love with swearing when I was probably 8 or 9.
Dick: And I remember meeting my uncle - my uncle Al - we were hanging out with him. He had -- he looked like a tough version of Tony Clifton. You know who Tony Clifton is?
Maddox: Oh, from uh, Man on the Moon. He's...
Dick: Yeah yeah yeah, Andy Kaufman's alter ego.
Maddox: Andy Kaufman's alter ego, yeah.
Dick: He was like a -- he's a very crass alter ego lounge lizard guy. Except this guy was a burly, tough dude with those '70s dark glasses, and a big bushy '70s mustache.
Maddox: That's cool.
Dick: Yeah! Oh, yeah, it was cool. Especially in the '80s, it was like, "Man, you already look like a throwback." Anyway, he would...he would get pissed off, and he would start gearing up to swear like Donald Duck. (Maddox chuckles) Throwing -- like, you would see the steam start shooting out of his ears, and every time, he would put his finger up to his mouth, like he was biting on it.
Dick: I don't know why he would do this. I think it was to, like, block his lips?
Dick: So you couldn't read his lips, somehow - or to muffle the swearing?
Dick: But, OH my god. He would get pissed off and he would just let loose: "F-, f-, f-, f-, f- f- f- f!" (accelerating) And I thought it was the awesomest thing in the world. I remember seeing it as a kid and going, "Man, I'm gonna do that someday."
Dick: "I gotta figure that out. I gotta figure that guy out."
Maddox: But he didn't say "f-," did he, Dick?
Dick: No! No, but that's what I'm saying. I'm saying I love swearing, just in this case I try not to do it all the time.
Maddox: Yeah. Why?
Dick: To think of something funnier to say.
Maddox: Okay, but in...usually instead of something funnier, you end up saying the same swear word, just censored. Like "f-ing." Or "a-hole."
Dick: Well, I guess I'm fuckin' up, then. (Maddox cracks up) I don't know what to tell ya.
Maddox: There you go! You are fuckin' up.
Maddox: Oh, that felt so satisfying to hear. "Fuck" is such a versatile word, too. It could be used as a noun, as a verb, as an adjective...right? As a pronoun.
Maddox: Uh, it can be so many different ways. I think George Carlin had that piece about, um...
Dick: That it's, like...
Maddox: ...the fuck word, yeah.
Dick: Yeah, I don't know. I've gotten that email, yeah.
Maddox: Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's -
Dick: (interjects) Uh, look, I'm just getting sick of getting called a pussy in the comments for not swearing enough!
Maddox: So swear.
Dick: There's too much swearing! No! Not gonna do it.
Maddox: Oh, my....ah. Unbelievable.
Dick: It's perfect the way it is.
Maddox: Naww, man. So you -- look. You don't wanna swear, you wanna make your segment of the show...'cause here's the thing, we're recording - this is a really professional operation, believe it or not - we're recording our tracks on three different tracks, and then Sean, our audio engineer, mixes them and it comes out sounding perfectly. So maybe at some point in the future, we could release just the Dick track, which is just your censored, PG-13 show, and we could just have that, uh, just for kids, where you're talking to an imaginary host and then every few seconds (cracks up) you interrupt with some angry bloviating (laughs harder) and say "f-ing"....I'm gettin' the DEATH stare right now from Dick.
Dick: It's funny. No, that's -- come on, keep going. What else?
Maddox: Ohh, I'm so glad there's a table between us right now. So, anyway, I think that it is a problem that you *don't* swear enough. So, I guess, the opposite.
Dick: Oh, you know what, I heard something interesting this week. This girl said that the reason that the f-word is bad is because it combines sex and violence.
Maddox: How...how is it combining sex and violence?
Dick: Because it's...that's the word. It means -- when you fuck, the word means to violently have sex with someone. What do you mean, 'how does it combine sex and violence'?
Maddox: You don't have - you don't have to have violent sex.
Dick: It kind of implies that!
Maddox: No, there's all sorts of sex - you can...what about, um...
Dick: What do you mean, 'it's not violent'?
Dick: So if a girl at a bar was like, "Hey, um...you know, why don't, uh, why don't you just go upstairs and, you know, we'll light some candles and I'll run some nice jazz music, and you can fuck the shit outta me."
Maddox: No...what, Sean?
Dick: What? Sean, what?
Sean: I'm sure someone'll double-check me on this, but I think the word...uh, I've heard it comes from a German word, which translates to "to strike or to knock." That's the origin of "fuck."
Maddox: Oh, okay. So you're...
Dick: There you go! That's pretty much the same.
Maddox: ...you're striking or knocking...that's, uh, the poon.
Maddox: Okay, I guess that makes sense. But, uh, you can also have all sorts of different sex. Like, what about lesbians? They CALL it "fucking," when lesbians aren't -- they're not necessarily striking, and they're not always scissoring.
Maddox: I know that for sure. Yeah, they don't scissor.
Dick: What else do they do?
Maddox: Uh...I don't know, man. I don't know. What could you possibly do? (smirking)
Dick: I don't know. But it was interesting, 'cause I'd never heard a good reason of why the f-word is bad. That makes sense!
Maddox: No, but it's not necessarily violent, like...that sounds like a feminist theory, a feminist theory type thing, where they bring in some -
Dick: (interjects) I've never not meant it in a violent way!
Maddox: Gross! What do you mean, vi-...it's not violent! Stop saying "violent." When I think "violent," I think...things falling apart and bleeding. Is that how you're having sex, Dick?
Dick: Well, sometimes! (wryly) (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: Gross. Poor mangled women, or...you know, whatever, no judgments. Uh... (laughs more) But, I don't know, man. That's not how you -- that's not how it's done.
Dick: That doesn't make any sense to you?? I mean, you don't give any credence to that? I thought it was interesting!
Maddox: Yeah, but that's not something people internalize in their head! It's like...it's like feminists who have a problem with the word "men" being in the word "women," because they say, "Oh, well that -- it makes women a subset of men because the word 'men' is in there." But people aren't actively, critically thinking about that when they read the word "women"! Or when they say - like, for example, the word "hysteria." The etymology of the word "hysteria" means, uh, somebody who is hysterical; someone who has, you know, some crazy psychological malady -
Maddox: - that they're not able to -- and it used to be women who, I think, were on their period or something, way back in the day.
Maddox: And they were called "hysterics." So, they say it's -
Dick: (interjects) True!
Maddox: Yeah. But today if you read that word, "hysterical," right? You're not going to make that association because you don't even fucking know it exists!
Dick: (cracks up) I was just gonna say, I think of a woman...(Maddox laughs) Like, not on her period, right before.
Maddox: Oh, okay. Yeah.
Dick: Yeah. That's when they get nuts.
Maddox: Right. But the majority of people don't make that association because they don't even know the etymology of that word.
Dick: No, man, I think you're wrong on the f-word. I think they do, like, people -- as soon as she said it I was like, "Wow! I guess it kinda is a violent way of...it's like violence and sex together."
Maddox: What about just squeegeeing? That's not violent.
Dick: No, that's like, squishy. And funny.
Maddox: No, no. You know what squeegeeing is?
Maddox: It's, uh, tittyfucking. That's not violent.
Dick: Is this like, an Urban Dictionary thing? That -- maybe I should bring that problem in.
Maddox: What, Urban Dictionary?
Dick: All these weird sex terms for things!
Maddox: Facesitting, that's not violent.
Dick: Yeah, but this is all comin' from a guy who uses the c-word like it's nothin'. You use the c-word WAY too much.
Maddox: Oh, no I don't! I RARELY use the c-word.
Dick: That's too much!
Maddox: You mean -- wait, wait. Are we talkin' about "cock" or "cunt"?
Dick: We're talking about the latter.
Maddox: (draws back, incredulous) Dick Masterson, creator of menarebetterthanwomen.com! Let's go on record -
Dick: (interjects) I've used it, like, TWICE.
Maddox: Oh, unbelievable.
Dick: I've used it twice on that site.
Maddox: Unbelie-- most *women* I know use that word like it's fucking water! They just say it, "cunt, cunt, cunt, cunt, cunt," it's like, nothing!
Maddox: And it doesn't MEAN anything, it's just -- again, that's only offensive in America. Most other cultures don't think it's offensive. We're perverting it into this thing, and giving it power. You know what? Why don't you guys - everybody listening right now, go to the big list of problems and vote up Other N-Words, 'cause here we go again. These are more "other n-words."
Dick: I just think it makes people uncomfortable! You're droppin' that thing in mixed company? It's like "Ohh, BOY. Alright. Did we all just hear that? Huhuhuh, cool." (uneasily)
Maddox: Alright. You know, you know -
Dick: (interjects) At least say it -- if your'e gonna use the c-word, at least say a British accent when you're doing it.
Maddox: How do you say it in a British accent?
Dick: I don't know.
Maddox: "Cunt!" (attempting a British accent)
Maddox: No, that's...no, that's silly, I'm not gonna do it. There's nothing more offensive than ideas. WORDS aren't offensive. Okay? If you give power to a word...with the exception of the n-word, because it's SO damn engrained in our society, we can't escape it...but if you give power to words -
Dick: (interjects) I think you're kinda cherry-pickin', there.
Maddox: I am!
Dick: That the n-word is bad, but the other words aren't bad?
Maddox: I am, because there is no other word - there is no other word in our society that has the power of the n-word. It just doesn't. There *just* isn't.
Dick: Well, wait a minute.
Maddox: There just isn't!
Dick: For who, though?
Maddox: You can't say it to anybody! Like, black people can say it to other black people, but you can't say the n-word to anybody.
Dick: Uh, why??
Maddox: Because -
Dick: Why is THAT? This is a whole other topic!
Maddox: Well, okay...
Dick: But that's -- and by the way, I don't think all black people are on board with that.
Maddox: They're not!
Maddox: Right, no, they're not.
Dick: So what do you tell them?
Maddox: Well, I actually agree with them, and -- look, if you want to take the power away from words, then stop giving them so much power. Stop acting like it's big fucking deal! It's not. They're just words. Ideas are way more offensive than words. I can go out on TV; if I say the word "fuck," great. Everyone older than 6 years old is gonna say, "No big fucking deal." When the planes hit the World Trade Center, the first thing out of everyone's mouth, during the hit, on the videos - during the recordings - was "Holy shit!"
Maddox: They weren't thinking about offending people! They didn't give a shit, that's what just came out of their minds. They were saying, "Holy shit, holy fuck, look what just happened!" What's important there isn't the words; it's the context, it's the *ideas.* So if you go out on TV and you make a racist statement, say...um, I don't know. Say, just pick a race -- say, "All Chinese people are lazy." If you go out there and you make that statement -
Dick: (interjects) That's not...they're not...when have they ever been called lazy?
Dick: Chinese people?
Maddox: I specifically chose Chinese, because that's not a stereotype that applies to them. But if you came out and you said that statement about a specific race, that is INFINITELY more offensive than "cunt" or "fuck." You can go out on TV and say "cunt" or "fuck" all day and night and not be offensive...as offensive as you would be if you said an idea that actually rubbed people the wrong way. Ideas are infinitely more powerful than words.
Dick: Um, well, all I'm sayin' is, that's why I don't swear as much. Trying to keep things funnier.
Dick: See what else I can think of.
Maddox: (buzzer sound effect) There you go. (laughs)
Maddox: Let's move on. Let's move on to a real problem.
Dick: Too much swearing! I think -- you think that's gonna get a lot of votes?
Maddox: Yeah, a lot of down--
Dick: (interjects) Somehow I don't think so.
Maddox: It is going to get a lot of votes - a lot of downvotes. So, here's my first problem this week: anti-cyclists. Okay?
Maddox: These are all the dickheads -- oh, here we go, Dick's one of 'em.
Dick: Go ahead.
Maddox: These are all the dickheads who have such a fucking bone up their ass about cyclists.
Maddox: And you'll hear them all the time - they're drivers who say, "Ugh, can you believe this cyclist? He acts like he owns the road!" First of all, cyclists aren't owning the road, they're just part of traffic. And if you can't swerve your steering wheel three degrees to the left and go around somebody who has the physical footprint of a human walking, then turn in your fucking license!
Maddox: Okay? And every time you see a cyclist riding on the street, you should get out of your car, pull over, pull their pants down, and kiss their asshole. Because everywhere you go, (cracks up) every time you find a parking spot, there's one more parking spot free because of a cyclist.
Dick: One less car?
Maddox: One less car!
Maddox: The gas prices are cheaper because of cyclists! And I don't do it for the environment. I cycle all the time, but I don't do it for the environment, and I don't -
Dick: (interjects) You do it for the chicks, right? (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: Oh, yeah. It's, uh, it's been a real winner on dates, let me tell you, when I go out to my *bike* to ride back home. But no, it's faster, you get some exercise, you get off your fat ass...and, uh, that's about it. Those are the only two reasons I cycle. (chuckling)
Dick: Okay, lemme ask you this, 'cause I hate cyclists.
Dick: Um...I hate everything about them.
Dick: I think -- it's okay if they're on the road, I'm not one of those guys who are just pissed off to see a bicycle guy there. But I do hate them. Lemme ask you this: do you walk your bicycle across the crosswalk?
Dick: 'Cause I have yet to see one of you motherfuckers do this.
Maddox: If I'm...if I'm in the crosswalk, then yes. But if I'm not -- why would I ride my bike through the crosswalk? I'm not on the sidewalks.
Dick: Nonononono - okay. You approach a red light with your bicycle.
Dick: Right? Then it turns green or whatever, and you're supposed to walk your bike across.
Maddox: No, Dick. You're not supposed to walk your bike across unless you're walking it on the sidewalk. You're not supposed to ride on the sidewalk! It's illegal to ride on the sidewalks.
Dick: I swear, you're supposed to walk your bike across crosswalks.
Dick: Not when you're in traffic, but when you're on the sidewalk, or whatever.
Maddox: Yes, when you're on the sidewalk, which means you're already walking your bike. So that's a false problem.
Dick: 'Cause I see them do this all the time, and I almost hit them every single time, 'cause I can't see 'em comin'.
Maddox: Yeah. Well, they're not supposed to be riding through the crosswalk because they're not supposed to be riding on the sidewalks. So that's the problem - motorists always yell at me and say, "Hey, get on the sidewalk!" Well, guess what, dickhead? It's illegal to ride on the sidewalk! And then when I do occasionally ride on the sidewalks - say, if I'm going to a business or somethin' like that - pedestrians yell at me! They're like, "Hey man, that's dangerous! You should ride on the street." First of all, it's not fucking dangerous. How many people do you know who've died because of a cyclist? A cyclist hit them - how many pedestrians?
Dick: Uh, none.
Dick: 'Cause a bicycle hit them?
Dick: No, I think it would hurt the bicycle guy more.
Maddox: Yeah. It's so incredibly rare. However, I have been hit by a car while cycling.
Dick: What, Sean?
Maddox: Yeah, what's up?
Sean: No, I was gonna say, knowing people who have lived in New York City for a long time, it's almost a rite of passage to be hit by a bike messenger.
Sean: Bike messengers hit people on sidewalks all the time. (slowly for emphasis)
Dick: Ohhh, yeah, I bet everybody hates bicycles in New York! Right?
Sean: I don't know if anybody's died, but I know multiple people who have been hit by bike messengers.
Maddox: Well actually, there was somebody who died...this was actually recently in the news. Uh, this is from The New York Times - a San Francisco cyclist was charged with manslaughter recently, because he was riding down a very steep hill and didn't stop when the light turned red, and hit a pedestrian walking through the crosswalk. They both tumbled about 20 feet, 'cause the guy was going about 35 miles an hour. Which is really unusual for a cyclist. But that's *exceedingly* rare. It's SO rare.
Dick: I feel like bicycle riders think they own the road, though. (Maddox splutters angrily) Like, I feel like they all got a chip on their shoulder about having their goddamn bicycle, and...
Dick: Like, "Ohh, we're just like a car! We're just like a car, you guys should be thanking us!" (stupid voice) I do feel like they're all like that, though, and that does piss me off.
Maddox: Yeah, you know, because all these fucking car drivers are such pussies. They say, "Oh, man! I have to slow down a little bit to go around a cyclist!" You know, if only there was some utopia where there were no cyclists on the road, there would be no traffic, huh? Oh, except we already have that - it's called a freeway, and it's always fucking gridlocked because of cars! Cars, cars, cars, choking up all the fucking roads.
Maddox: Cyclists aren't the problem; they're the solution, buddy. Your gas is cheaper because of us, you have parking because of us - everything's better because of us. And you're just sittin' there in your stupid car, with your Persian racing rims, like an idiot. (laughs)
Dick: Yeah. Maybe -- that all might be true, but why are you guys so *annoying* about it? Like, why do you cyclists...it's always about bicycling. Everything is about bicycles, bicycles, bicycles. You do those dumb things where like, 300 bicycle guys show up, and you hog -- you take up the street, riding up and down, riding all over town.
Dick: You're always getting harassed by the cops. Right?
Maddox: Meh...yeah, cops do harass us.
Dick: Why is that?
Maddox: I don't know! Because cops have nothing better to do. They just...you know what it is? I've even heard a friend of mine who said that a cyclist wouldn't get out of the way when he honked. I'm like, "Well, of course not! Would a car get out of your way if you honked? No! They're just gonna continue driving down their path, you dick!" And he goes, "Well, I have 2,000 tons of metal around me - who's gonna win in a battle?" Well, I guess you are, dickhead, if you're gonna be a homicidal FUCK.
Dick: Yeah! I win.
Maddox: Great. Yeah, you win what? A trip to jail, ya moron.
Dick: So how can someone who's so into driving fast support bicycles?
Maddox: Because -- no!
Dick: Like, the slowest wheels on earth.
Maddox: Dick, it is NOT -- I will race anyone. I can get within a mile of anywhere in this city faster on a bike than a car -
Dick: Okay. (skeptical)
Maddox: - guaranteed. In heavy traffic.
Dick: Alright! I gotta call you out on that, because we've DONE this race, and I fuckin' beat you by like 5 minutes, dude!
Maddox: No, you -- BULLSHIT.
Dick: You remember??
Maddox: Yes, the coffee shop! And it wasn't 5 minutes, we pulled in at the same time!
Dick: And you were sweaty and disgusting. And I was on my phone, I had a nice conversation the whole time... (Maddox laughs) I was -- I had already purchased my coffee!
Maddox: Ohh, no. That's a LIE. First of all -- and it was 1.2 miles, uh, I actually calculated it.
Maddox: I can do one mile faster than anyone in a car.
Dick: I mean, I'll take you up again!
Maddox: You're on!
Dick: With that bet.
Maddox: Heavy traffic, you're on. I can get there faster on a bike than you can in a car.
Dick: Heavy traffic, and what else? No roads? What other...what other stipulations do you wanna put on it?
Maddox: We'll go on, uh, mountain biking trails. (laughs)
Dick: Why...why do people with bikes have such a chip on their shoulders?
Maddox: We don't!
Dick: I do wanna know that.
Maddox: No. Look, some of them do, I'll give you that. Some of 'em are assholes, absolutely, 100 percent. And by the way, I'm not a bike activist. I'm not an *any* kind of activist. Because those guys annoy the shit out of me.
Maddox: I'm not out there protesting and trying to make a point. But, I just wanna get where I'm fucking going without some DIPSHIT in a car behind me, havin' a FIT because they have to go around 3 degrees! They have to turn their steering wheel 3 degrees to go around a guy who has the physical footprint of a human being.
Dick: Yeah. What do you do when you encounter bicycle riders on the road?
Maddox: I just go around them! It's not a big deal.
Dick: Really? You're just totally, like, chill?
Maddox: Yeah! Because, you know -
Dick: (interjects) You don't react at all? You're just like, "Well, you know, that's just something we have to deal with, bicycles in the road."
Dick: "No problem at all." (amused)
Maddox: Because, you know what, Dick? If you pay attention, next time you're driving - I want everyone listening to do this. Watch a cyclist that you pass by, and then watch what happens when you get to the next red light. They're gonna pass you, and then you're gonna pass them again, and they're gonna pass you - and eventually they're going to be WAY far ahead of you, and you're gonna be stuck in traffic because you're an idiot. And they're gonna be wherever the fuck THEY'RE going quicker than you're going. I use cars as pace cars. Every time I see a U-Haul truck, or a big vehicle, whatever, I look at it and I keep that in mind, and I say, "Okay, if I was driving, how fast would I get to my destination?"
Dick: So let's go over some of the negatives of bicycles. (grinning) Since you're going over all the positives.
Dick: Uh....looking lame? (Maddox and Sean laugh loudly) That's a pretty big negative.
Maddox: I don't know, man, I think I look pretty cool. (amused)
Dick: Hold on, I'm writing these down.
Dick: Looking lame...you definitely don't look cool...
Maddox: That's definitely your opinion.
Dick: Uh, being sweaty and gross?
Maddox: Sweaty is cool! Chicks dig sweat.
Dick: Really? So...
Dick: ...you're telling me that every time you've ridden your bicycle everywhere, the sweat hasn't been an issue.
Maddox: Well... (Dick laughs) I'll tell you one time that it has.
Dick: OH! Okay!
Maddox: I rode my bike to a meeting with...I believe it was Comedy Central. (bursts out laughing with Dick) And I was -
Dick: (interjects) Walk me through the thinking on that.
Maddox: Well, you know...I was just a mile down the road, but I left late, and I had to cruise really fast. I got there on time, but then I locked up my bike to this handrail, and this fuckin' like, mall cop came up to me - he's like, "Hey, uh, duh, no, you can't park your bike there." (stupid voice)
Maddox: I said, "Why not?" He goes, "Uh, 'cause it's a liability. If somebody's walkin' up the stairs, they might trip and fall."
Maddox: And I said, "Hey, IDIOT, if somebody's walkin' up the stairs and they need to use the handrail - "
Dick: (interjects) Like that guy knows! First of all, like whoever trained him took the time to EXPLAIN why these rules are enforced. (cynical)
Maddox: Yeah! Uh-huh, yeah. Thanks...thanks, buddy. Yeah, if somebody's walkin' up the stairs and they need to use the handrail, they're probably handicapped anyway and they're not gonna get more handicapped. Like, who cares? So - (laughs) - that's my argument.
Dick: Okay, so this is from a bike guy: "Fuck the handicapped." (Maddox laughs harder)
Dick: Good start.
Maddox: I...uh, sure. Whatever. (Dick cracks up) So anyway, I had to race down into the parking garage. I had to park my -- and by the way, they didn't have any bike locks downstairs! It was just a fucking parking garage where executives park their cars. Where the fuck am I supposed to park my bike?
Dick: In, uh...you were supposed to park it when you were 13, and then you never ride it again. (Maddox laughs robustly) 'Cause it's not something that adults do.
Maddox: So anyway, dude. I got to my meeting on time. However -
Dick: (interjects) Where'd you lock up your bike??
Maddox: Oh, I just rode it back up and parked it on a sign, or something. Who cares. (Dick cackles) So I got to the meeting...however, the reason I was sweaty is because Dickhead Security Cop made me run downstairs, run back upstairs, and I came to the meeting all sweaty, lookin' like shit - so, whatever.
Dick: Okay. (giggling)
Maddox: Yeah. That's why you don't see my show on Comedy Central, 'cause I was too sweaty.
Dick: 'Kay..."sweaty"...that's another con.
Maddox: Okay, what other negatives do you have? Hm?
Dick: Um, I think almost getting -- like, the reason I don't have a motorcycle...I go through motorcycle withdrawal every year, about summertime, 'cause it'd just be so cool to have a motorcycle and drive around LA.
Dick: Uh, but I think I would get hit! Like, I'm pretty sure I would get hit by a car.
Maddox: So, I've actually done the research, and motorcycles are WAY more dangerous than cycling. Because you're driving at faster speeds, you have lower reaction time, and you're actually in both lanes of traffic, whereas cyclists tend to stick to the side, and slower side streets - things like that. So that's why cyclists are safer than motorcyclists. In fact, I have some stats from The New York Times. It says, "4,834 cyclists and 59,925 pedestrians were killed by motor vehicles in the United States between 1999 and 2009..." So, in ten years. [continues quoting article] "...the most recent year for which figures are available." Now, "...according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cyclists killed just 63 pedestrians, or about six per year, during the same time period."
Dick: Oh, I'm getting all mixed up with the numbers. What's the...what is the amount?
Maddox: So in ten years, cyclists killed just 63 pedestrians.
Dick: Okay. Yeah, but no one's concerned about bicycles killing people!
Maddox: Exactly! That's my point.
Dick: They're concerned about bicycles being annoying!
Maddox: Oh, no! WAHHH. What are you gonna do about it, dude?? Look, if you just waved a magic wand and all the cyclists were gone, do you think traffic would get better or worse?
Dick: I don't CARE! I just don't wanna deal with them! I don't want them buzzing -- I don't wanna have to try to squeeze around them when they're taking up, like, more room than they need to be.
Maddox: Yeah, mmhm. (skeptical) Yeah, then you have to...then wherever you get, there's gonna be ten more cars parked, because suddenly cyclists aren't there anymore. Right?
Dick: You know what, bicyclists are like pregnant women. (Maddox laughs) Like, it's just -- they make everything about their dumb bicycle. Every pregnant woman's like, "Oh yeah, you know, Shakespeare...that reminds me of my baby. And how I'm pregnant."
Maddox: No...no. That's not at all -- first of all, if you have a cyclist who's making everything about cycling, then you have dickhead friends. When I cycle places, I don't make a big fucking song and dance about it. I just get there, do what I'm doing, and then go the fuck home. I don't care if anyone knows how I got there! My form of transportation isn't important.
Dick: (guffaws) Ha! That's such bullshit. I only have one cyclist friend, and it's YOU. (Maddox bursts out laughing) And it's always, "I can get there on my bicycle faster than anyone in their car!"
Dick: "You guys are suckers!"
Maddox: Yeah. That's true, eat a dick. Well, here's another interesting stat: the number of trips made by bicycles in the United States more than doubled in the last decade, according to the U.S. Transportation Department and Federal Highway Administration. Meanwhile, the total number of cyclist fatalities has *fallen* by 21 percent since 1988.
Dick: All these stats don't make you guys less annoying. That's all I'm saying.
Maddox: (cracks up) Dick, I don't know how...like, I've made such a cogent, clear argument, and all you're sayin' is, "Well, it's annoying." (nasal voice)
Dick: (interjects) LOOK! Because anti-cyclists -- people don't give a SHIT about lives you're saving or not saving, or whatever! It's just fuckin' annoying to deal with bicycles in the street! (yelling)
Maddox: You know what's fucking annoying? Traffic, and that's you! You're traffic. I'm clogged up, sitting behind some dipshit with Persian racing rims, because you're too much of a moron to get a cycle...a bicycle -
Dick: You know what?
Maddox: - and ride around town.
Dick: I -- yeah, I will not get on a bicycle and ride around town. It's uncivilized. (Maddox and Sean laugh) Uh...ride on the sidewalk! Just do us all a favor, take your toy (Maddox laughs more) and go on the sidewalk with it. Take your Huffy --
Maddox: (interjects) Yeah. Why don't you ride on the sidewalk? Take your bullshit-ass car and ride on the sidewalk. Oh wait, that's what you were doing already. So -- uh, Rain Slick Dick... (laughs)
Dick: Ohhh. Oh, that's a low blow, man. (Maddox keeps laughing)
Maddox: You know what, dude? I can't ride on the sidewalk, I can't ride in the streets - I can't ride anywhere, huh? So maybe everyone should just drive everywhere all the time, and traffic would TRIPLE! That's what would make you happy. And there's no more parking spots, there's more...and the gas prices would go up, 'cause everyone's using gas all the time.
Dick: Yeah. You know what? Nothing would make me happy.
Maddox: I know. I know, Dick.
Dick: That's what...it's just the...I'm just explaining to you why you guys are so annoying.
Maddox: Do you think cyclists are morons?
Maddox: What, so...then how would you describe cyclists? What are they?
Dick: Um...they're a pain in the ass.
Maddox: "Pain in the ass." (scornful)
Maddox: So you're saying -- what Dick is saying, here, is he wants more pains-in-the-asses on the road in cars, behind wheels. That's what you want. (Dick smirks) You want more pain in the ass people...in cars.
Dick: I don't -- look, I don't WANT...I don't have a solution for this!
Dick: People who hate bicycles don't have a solution!
Maddox: Maybe, maybe...it sounds to me like you have a *final* solution in mind.
Dick: Hm. Very good. (dryly)
Maddox: Fuckin' fascist. Alright. What's your next problem? (cracking up)
Dick: Speaking of fascism, my next problem is the Nuremberg Defense.
Maddox: Oo, great transition!
Dick: Yeah. So, you know what the Nuremberg Defense is?
Maddox: Let's define it for some of our listeners who are morons, which is a lot of 'em, so...
Dick: Uh, the...I think it was...when World War II was won, they lined up all the Nazis -
Maddox: (interjects) When America won World War II, let's make it -- let's go on record sayin' that.
Dick: Yeah. (amused) They lined up all the Nazis in court, in Nuremberg.
Dick: The Nuremberg Trials. Right?
Dick: And they said, "Okay, you guys are guilty of all this horrible stuff." And they said, "Well, we were told to do that. So it's not really our fault."
Maddox: So, the phrase is "we were just following orders." Right?
Dick: Orders. Yeah.
Dick: And I guess that worked...?
Maddox: Did it? Were they let off the hook?
Dick: I think that's -- I think they got let off for that. Sean, you always know facts. That's true, right? Everybody basically was...got away with everything, because they said somebody else -- someone's shakin' their head "no."
Sean: I don't think they did!
Maddox: No, I don't think so either. I don't think that was a good defense.
Dick: Oh. Really?
Maddox: No. And also -
Dick: (interjects) It doesn't SOUND like a good defense!
Maddox: Isn't that the premise of the -- what was the psychological...the famous psychological experiment that's...
Dick: The Millican experiment.
Maddox: ...the Milgram...no, the Milgram trials, er, the Milgram experiment. Where they asked people to shock - give a painful jolt - to somebody behind the wall who was acting like they were in pain. And because a doctor who had authority told them to do so, they kept shocking and shocking -
Maddox: - beyond lethal levels, because an authority told them to.
Dick: Pretty funny experiment. (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: Pretty...pretty hilarious. But that's essentially a replication of the psychology that went into Nazis saying, "We were just following orders."
Dick: Yeah! Okay, then you're saying it's a big problem.
Maddox: It is!
Dick: So the reason I brought this up is, um...have you heard that Comcast call? Where that guy tries to cancel his Comcast service?
Maddox: Yeah! There was that -
Dick: (interjects) It's kinda old, but I just got around to listening to it this week.
Maddox: No, it's still pretty current. There's that guy who called Comcast and he tried to get his cable service canceled -
Maddox: - and he argued with the guy for over, what, 20 minutes! 20, 30 minutes!
Dick: He records the second half of it, and he says he did it for like, 20 minutes.
Dick: Um, but I finally listened to it this week, and it's, like.....it's painful to listen to.
Dick: It is frustrating to listen to. But everyone's excuse is, "this guy was just following orders." Like, "this guy was just doing his job."
Maddox: "Just doing his job."
Dick: They're basically giving the Nuremberg Defense for this jackass.
Dick: But I listened to the thing, and it's clearly just the guy being an a-hole! Like, if the Nuremberg Defense didn't work for the Nazis, it shouldn't work for this guy.
Dick: You know what I'm saying? So I brought in...for a first time, I brought in clips to this show, to prove what I'm -- I didn't bring in the whole thing, 'cause it's like, I don't wanna...if you wanna listen to the whole thing, just go and Google it or whatever.
Maddox: We'll link to it on our website.
Dick: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Play, uh...okay, play the...hold on, not yet. The first one is...where did I -- oh, yeah. Okay. So the first one is this guy throwing out the Nuremberg Defense. Go ahead, play number 1.
Maddox: Okay, here we go. [begins first clip]
Disgruntled Comcast Customer: I don't understand why you can't just disconnect us.
Comcast Employee [over telephone]: Because my job is to have a conversation with you, about havin'...about this, I mean, keepin' your service! I'm finding out why it is that you're lookin' to cancel the service.
[first clip ends]
Dick: Okay, false.
Dick: That guy's job is not to do what he just said.
Maddox: (buzzer sound effect) Idiot. Yeah, his -- oh, it's his "job," to just...
Dick: To sit on the phone and dick around.
Maddox: ...to sit on the phone, yeah, to dick around -- no, your JOB is to handle customer service inquiries, dickhead! If someone wants to cancel, you fucking cancel!
Dick: Yeah, I mean, I...I hate Comcast as much as everybody else, but I don't think it was their fault here.
Maddox: You don't think it's Comcast's fault?? (incredulous)
Maddox: They TRAIN these dickheads! And I'll tell you why I DO think it's Comcast's fault. (Dick sighs thoughtfully) Because I used to work in a telemarketing company, and we had lots of clients inbound and outbound.
Maddox: Outbound was mostly soliciting calls, and inbound was customer service-related for different clients, like Sprint and Nextel, and all these different phone companies. And they taught us, when somebody called in to cancel their service, to give them a first objection - now, that means we object to their cancellation and try to keep them on board - and then if that didn't work, give them a second objection. And some clients thought that the second objection was too much, and we shouldn't do it.
Maddox: But some of them went to third, fourth, *fifth* objections, and some of 'em were taught, "Don't let the customer cancel, no matter what," and that's EXACTLY what this sounds like.
Dick: So -
Maddox: Some dickhead told him not to let the customer off the hook.
Dick: - that doesn't excuse this jerkoff from doing this!
Maddox: Right! No!
Dick: Like, this guy's sit-- and the people at your company are making a CHOICE to follow these, like, orders?
Dick: That are coming from on high?
Dick: It's still their fault! (Maddox splutters in objection) They're still the dickhead doing it, it's not the company!
Maddox: No, it's both. I think it's the company, AND it's the person that's doing it.
Dick: Yeah, well, you can't punch a company in the stomach.
Dick: That's the point I'm making. It's -- this guy deserves more blame than the, whatever, the atmosphere, the boiler room atmosphere that Comcast is generating.
Maddox: It's their policies. I'm telling you, Comcast tells their reps on the phone -- Comcast is trying to eject from this one, saying, "No no no, it's just a bad seed, it's one guy!" It's not the one guy! If this guy didn't have an INCENTIVE to do this, he wouldn't do this.
Dick: I don't think that excuses it, though! I really don't -- like, I'm not defending Comcast. I don't wanna seem like I'm defending Comcast, 'cause I hate them, too. I think they're scumbags too. But I -
Maddox: (interjects) I mean, it SEEMS that way.
Maddox: That you're defending Comcast.
Dick: Oh yeah, I know, it seems like I am. I actually think they love this. Because -
Maddox: (interjects) Comcast?
Dick: Yeah. Because they get -- everybody's thinkin' about them, everybody's talkin' about them, and all -- like, they can come out like priests, saying, "Ohh, my god! We're gonna change EVERYTHING!" (parodying insincerity)
Dick: "This is SOO bad."
Dick: "This is obviously soo bad, we're gonna fix everything." And they're not gonna do shit, of course.
Maddox: Oh, of course not.
Dick: So they get a bunch of free ads for it.
Dick: Um, go to.....uhh, yeah, you kinda already said that. Go to number 3. Okay?
Maddox: Alright. [begins next clip]
Disgruntled Comcast Customer: I'm just gonna wait until you can confirm that we've canceled service, so I'm just gonna hang out here.
Comcast Employee [over telephone]: Okay, well, you're all set. It -- you know what, it's disconnected. I'm really sorry to see you go to somethin' that can't give you what we can, but I'd like to thank you very much for bein' a great part of Comcast, have a wonderful day.
Dick: (interjects over clip) Okay.
Disgruntled Comcast Customer: Uh, can you give me a confirmation number for the cancellation of service?
Comcast Employee [over telephone]: I...I don't have a confirmation number.
Dick: There is NO WAY that that's Comcast's policy. That's all I'm saying.
Maddox: No, that guy's a little bit of a snot at the end. But -
Dick: (interjects) Yeah, he's an a-hole!!
Maddox: He's an ASSHOLE.
Maddox: An *asshole,* for sure. 100 percent for sure, an asshole. But, uh... (cracks up)
Dick: I see what you're doing there! (Maddox laughs more)
Maddox: But, yeah. Okay, maybe Comcast's policy IS to give the customer a confirmation number, but uh...the fact that they, they -
Dick: (interjects) And he's so EMOTIONAL about it! You can hear it in his voice, like, how emotionally invested he is in getting this sale! He's just a total PRICK!
Maddox: Yeah, he's a prick, but he's that way because Comcast incentivized his prickish behavior!
Dick: See, you're letting him off. And that's why this is -- that's why I'm bringing this up as a problem.
Maddox: (interjects) No!
Dick: Because you are totally letting him off the hook by saying that!
Maddox: No, they're both guilty! I think you should hang this guy, right? I mean...
Dick: That's -- yeah! That's what I was thinking.
Maddox: Metaphorical OR literal, I'm okay with capital punishment in this case! Or...and/or destroy Comcast. Uh, brick by brick. Just dismantle that whole fucking evil firm, I FUCKING hate Comcast. Everybody hates Comcast, they're the w-- they're absolutely terrible. And for our international listeners, Comcast is a cable and network provider that has HUGE monopolies in huge swaths of America, where if you sit out in the suburbs someplace - in Utah or New Jersey or wherever - sometimes the only service you have is Comcast. You have to pay whatever fee they want you to pay, because they have monopolies, they have contracts, they have lobbyists, and they keep other competitors out of their areas.
Dick: Well, they give local politicians kickbacks. That's how they get those monopolies all over.
Maddox: Oh, absolutely!
Dick: So here's why the Nuremberg Defense is the biggest problem in the universe, though.
Dick: 'Cause Comcast is gonna go away. Alright? They're gonna get driven out of business by whatever Internet...Hulu, or Amazon TV, whatever TV networks are coming along when we don't need cables anymore. But the Nuremberg Defense is gonna be here forever. (Maddox chuckles) People -- whatever the next thing is that's gonna kill cable is gonna come out and say, like, "Uhhh, I was just doing my JOB, by being a total jerk to these people when they're trying to cancel their service."
Maddox: Yeah. Well, if we can effectively -
Dick: (interjects) Same reason a bouncer won't let me into a bar when I'm wearing flip-flops!
Dick: It's like, "Well, I'm just doing my job!"
Maddox: "Just doing my job," yeah.
Dick: Like, wha... (splutters) Can you just be a PERSON for a second and let me in??
Maddox: You know, Dick, I'm glad you brought this up, I actually do agree with you. This is...a legitimate problem! And you actually brought in research! This is like, the first time you've done this and I'm *so* happy. (cracking up)
Maddox: But - (still cracking up) - yeah, this is a great problem! I actually like this a lot. Uh, I have been trying to -
Dick: (interjects) Maybe I could get less shit for this next week, then. (wryly) (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: I think so, yeah. You're -- I'm on board with this. Um, I think that, I've been trying to...dismantle, or reverse engineer the Nuremberg Defense...
Maddox: ...and I'm not sure if this is the right way to do it, I'm still experimenting with it, but sometimes I'll run into a dickhead security guard -- like, I was riding my bike the other night in a parking structure. And, who cares? (Dick scoffs) It's fucking 10 o'clock at night, it's empty, there's no one around, and some dickhead happened to be on his walkie-talkie upstairs -
Maddox: - just passing me at the wrong time, and he goes, "Uh - gah - stop right there!! Are you lookin' for your car?" And, uh, I got tripped up, 'cause I wasn't expecting -
Dick: (interjects) Yeah! (grinning) "I got my BICYCLE to look for my car, you FUCKIN' idiot!" (Maddox laughs loudly)
Maddox: Idiot. Yeah! So, anyway. I was like, "Uh, no. I'm just riding around." He was like, "Oh, you can't be up here! You can't be up here!" I'm like, "Dude, who cares?" And I kept riding, and he goes, "Stop, stop, stop!!" I'm like, "Alright, man, alright." (exasperated) He's like, radioing in people -- and I'm glad I did, 'cause there were cops right downstairs.
Maddox: Um, so...I came up to the guy, and before he could even say it to ME, I said it to him. I said, "I get it, man. You're just doing your job."
Dick: "You're just doing your job." (amused) Yeah.
Maddox: Yeah. So I'm trying to defuse the situation, but I'm not sure how to get what you want after you've defused the bomb.
Dick: Okay, well, um...well, what did you wanna.....why were you riding your bicycle around a parking structure, I guess? Let's find out what you wanted in this situation.
Maddox: I was just goin' for a ride. (Dick laughs derisively) If you've never ridden -
Dick: (interjects) In a parking structure?! (laughing)
Maddox: It's fun! It's...you ride all the way up, it's a big spiral, you ride all the way back down, you get to the top, you get a great view, there's a breeze - it's nice!
Dick: Is this your workout??
Maddox: No, I just do it for fun!
Dick: You ride bicycles up parking structures, and then down? (cracking up)
Maddox: You know, if I'm riding by somethin' that looks interesting, I'm gonna put my bike in it! (laughs)
Dick: Okay, no, I'll give you that! 'Cause I like climbing parking structures.
Maddox: Yeah. In your car?
Dick: No, when I'm drunk.
Maddox: Oh. (chuckles) So, in your car. (laughs more)
Dick: Um...hmm.... (sheepishly)
Maddox: So, Rain Slick Dick. (laughs even harder)
Dick: Let's, uh...let's, uh, talk about something else... (grimacing)
Maddox: Anyway, yeah. So I'm trying to dismantle the Nuremberg Defense. I've been able to defuse it, but then to get what you want, I don't know what the next step is.
Dick: I don't -- well, this...that happened to me this week. I was at Stout again...my favorite hamburger restaurant.
Maddox: The burger place, yeah.
Dick: And they're open 'til 4.
Dick: Which means their last call goes right up until 2.
Dick: And it was like, 1...it was like, 1:52.
Dick: And I *ran* in there. I was like, "Alright, thank god, I can still get a beer."
Maddox: Thank god. (amused)
Dick: So I go to the counter, like, "Yeah dude, gimme a...a Mama's Little Yella Pils, stat. Right away. Give it to me."
Dick: And he goes, "Alright, here you go! Uh, just so you know, I gotta come and collect this in 6 minutes," or in 5 minutes, whatever he said. (Maddox laughs) I was like, "Hey, buddy? Um...good luck."
Maddox: Exactly. (through laughter)
Dick: I was geared up for, like, "Well, I've never been tossed outta Stout before, but I am NOT givin' this beer up."
Dick: So I'm like, fuming, right?
Maddox: Yeah, yeah.
Dick: Like amping up for getting what I want, like you were saying!
Maddox: Of course.
Dick: Uh, so he comes back like 5 minutes later, and I had already drank the whole beer. So.
Maddox: Ha! Alright. Well...
Dick: Joke's on me.
Maddox: I guess you're both losers. Um... (laughs) Well, I guess you for alcoholism, and him for being a Nuremberg Defense dickhead. Um, okay. So is that -- is that your problem? Is that everything?
Dick: Yeah, that's the whole thing. I also wrote down all these dumb quotes from, uh...The Verge surveyed all these Comcast employees.
Dick: And, all of their interview clips make it sound like they're being trained like Nazis!
Maddox: They are!
Dick: WHAT THE FUCK, though?! Like, you're on the phone talking to somebody - just give 'em what they want!
Maddox: Yeah. And don't...don't do shitty things just because some authority told you to do it!
Dick: Yes! Thank you! Don't do shitty things to people!
Maddox: Stop being a FUCKING robot! That's why I don't -
Dick: (interjects) Unless it's funny. (Maddox chuckles)
Maddox: Hokay, unless it's funny. I...okay, just real quick, an anecdote. I was at the New York airport, the JFK Airport, standing in line for security. And there was a long security line, and I was near the front, and I heard this lady -- this wife and her husband were standing near the front, and the security guard told her to go through the first class lane because it was empty.
Maddox: And no one was coming through, no one was coming through for...you know, all the way down the terminal you could see was empty, no one was coming through first class. So the security guard told her, "Go ahead and go through first class."
Dick: Bein' a cool guy.
Maddox: Bein' a cool guy!
Maddox: Because his job -- he was also breakin' the rules, I'm sure, trying to expedite the process. So this lady says, "Well, uh, it says 'first class.'" And he says, "I know, ma'am. It's okay, go ahead and go through first class."
Maddox: And she goes, "But my ticket is not first class, it's coach."
Dick: (interjects) Alright, that's it, lady! Go to the back of the line! (sternly) (Maddox guffaws) That's it.
Maddox: No, but then, it goes on! And then he said, "I know, it's fine. Just go through first class." And she goes, "Are you sure?" And he says, "Yes!"
Maddox: And then she goes, "But my ticket is still -- it's coach! I'm flying Southwest and it's coach." And the guy's like, "Just go through first class!" And then she's like, "Well, I don't know if I can! My ticket - " And I almost butted in, I'm like, "LADY! Just fucking go!! Just FUCKING go!" I was gonna PUSH this bitch right through the fucking line! Are you insane?! Are you that fucking ROBOTIC? You're so engrained to the fucking rules of society, you can't fucking -- even when someone's *telling* you? He's the authority! You can't even override the previous authority?? Jesus. (surly)
Dick: Yeah! My dad used to do something similar to that, when we were kids and we'd go on a trip.
Dick: He'd be like, "Alright, we're boarding early. Uh, you guys have to act like you're under 12." (Maddox laughs robustly) And we'd be like, 18. (cracks up) Like, "Uhh, sir...they're not - " And he goes, "Yeah yeah yeah, they're fine!! They're fine, they're fine, they're fine. They're FINE." And he'd shove us through.
Maddox: Yeah! Just walk through, just do it! Just do what expedites the process, make people's lives easier, stop following authority. JESUS. Alright. I'm all pissed off now. (gruffly)
Dick: Alright, what's your last problem?
Maddox: That was a good problem, Dick. Um...
Dick: Thanks, man! I really thought about it, I worked hard at it.
Dick: Like, I did a bunch of research, I made those dumb clips...
Maddox: Made the clips, brought evidence, it was great! Great problem. Um, my next problem - and now I'm the one with minor quibbles this week - is hyphenated names.
Dick: Oh, okay.
Maddox: Alright? (chuckling) I am so tired of hyphenated names. Okay, first of all -
Dick: (interjects) So a hyphenated name, I'm just gonna say what it is. 'Cause I didn't learn this until I was in my 20s.
Dick: That it's when a woman takes the guy's name and tags it onto her last name when they get married, and puts a hyphen in there.
Maddox: Yeah. Basically, yeah.
Maddox: Basically. Or the guy does that with the woman's name, and they share each other's last name.
Dick: Like, the mayor of L.A.? Or did he just take her name? Villaraigosa, is that...? Yeah yeah yeah, I think his name was like, Villar, and hers was Raigosa, and he either took her name completely...'cause it was, like, more Mexican-sounding?
Dick: I don't know.
Maddox: He probably did.
Sean: He, uh, combined two names into one name. There's no hyphen there.
Dick: But he took her name!
Sean: Yeah, "Villaraigosa."
Dick: Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's WEIRD.
Maddox: That's name-melding. So, hyphenated first names -
Dick: (interjects) Yeah, that's not the right thing, Sean. We're talking about something else, so why don't you...keep a lid on it. (sarcastic) (Maddox and Sean laugh)
Maddox: No, but it's all related -
Sean: (interjects) Dick had brought it up! (Maddox and Dick laugh harder)
Maddox: It's all -- no, it's all related. I have a problem with all of it. All of it's a problem. Now, uh...and then now, people are hyphenating first names. You know what? Any time I see a hyphenated first name, it just means that it's the result of two people who shouldn't have gotten married. Right? (Dick scoffs) Because they -
Dick: (interjects) A hyphenated FIRST name?
Maddox: Yeah, because they can't make a decision.
Dick: Wait, they hyphenate their *own* first names?
Maddox: Well, not with their last names, but say, for example, there's...you know. You know a guy named, uh, "Ken-John," or "Duane-Reade," or somethin' like that. It's a hyphenated first name.
Dick: Okay. (smiling)
Maddox: Because...because, you know what that comes from! The mom wanted "Duane," the dad wanted "Reade."
Dick: Are you serious?! This is a real thing??
Maddox: Yeah! That's what it is.
Dick: Well, I know, like, "Peggy-Sue."
Dick: Like, that's a...is that a hyphenated first name?
Maddox: That's a hyphenated first name!
Dick: So this is actually happening, where the mom wants a first name and the dad wants a different first name?
Dick: And they hyphenate the first name as a COMPROMISE?
Maddox: That's the compromise!
Dick: ARE YOU SERIOUS?!
Dick: Where is this happening??
Maddox: Everywheeere! Everywhere. I have a -- some of my good friends have hyphenated names, and (cracks up) I love 'em to death, but it's *annoying* as shit.
Dick: First names?
Maddox: Yeah. First names!
Dick: Oh, that's goofy! (taken aback)
Maddox: Yeah. Even my editor for the Alphabet of Manliness... (through laughter)
Dick: Yeah, Ruby-Strauss! (grinning)
Maddox: ...awesome guy, Jeremie Ruby-Strauss.
Dick: He's great!
Maddox: He's a great dude! I love the guy, but uh, you know, he's got one of these bitch last names. And then, uh - (cracks up more) and then you have, you know.....oh, I don't even wanna say any of these names, they're all coming to my mind, but yeah! "Peggy-Sue" is another one, and uh...
Dick: I learned what hyphenated names were because of Ruby-Strauss!
Dick: I was like, "What is with the...what's the deal with the name? Why do they have that fancy hyphenated name?"
Maddox: Yeah, because they're not on board with the cultural, um...the cultural norm in America where the wife takes the husband's name when they get married. And, fine. You know, who cares.
Dick: I kinda like the idea of hyphenating the first name, though.
Maddox: WHY? That's stupid!
Dick: No! 'Cause then you get, like, two really, really, strong -- you could get like, "Derek-TheIncredibleHulk"...like, "Hi, I'm Derek-TheIncredibleHulk Masterson."
Dick: 'Cause obviously the dad wanted "Incredible Hulk," you know. (grinning) (Maddox laughs) You know what I'm saying?
Maddox: You think the mom's gonna go... (cracking up)
Dick: The mom wanted something lame, like "Derek" or something like that.
Maddox: Were you -- I think, uh, Dick, you have an interesting story; weren't you telling me you have a friend who has a superhero name?
Dick: ...oh, GOD. Uh, yes!!
Maddox: Yeah, with the kids.
Dick: OH! You know...you know who it is. Um...
Maddox: Can you tell the story on the air?
Dick: Yeah, yeah yeah yeah.
Maddox: Okay, let's hear this story.
Dick: Yeah, I think he would love it! Um, so he snuck in...his kid's name is Eddie.
Dick: He managed to sneak that in, and he made - like, as an afterthought - he made the middle name Brock. After Venom. Like Venom, the superhero, er, supervillain's name is Eddie Brock.
Dick: So the kid's name is Eddie Brock. (grinning) He totally -- like, I know he didn't explain why "Brock" was sentimental to him.
Maddox: But wait, wait; wasn't there more to this story? That his wife hated comic books, wasn't that...? Maybe it was someone else tellin' me this! But someone was tellin' me that, um, they have a friend -
Dick: (interjects) I mean, that sounds like a better story, so...
Maddox: This is -- yeah. I thought this was the story.
Dick: ...if that works, yeah, share it.
Maddox: So a friend of mine said that his friend LOVES comic books, and his wife *hates* them. And so, uh, when their kid was born -- she doesn't even want comics around the house, she doesn't want the kids reading comics, anything like that.
Maddox: She just hates comics. She thinks they're bad, they're a bad influence, and whatever. So this - yeah, this guy's a big pussy, so he married her.
Dick: That's weird. (chuckling)
Maddox: And, um... (cracks up) And THEN, he named his first kid Xavier and his second kid Logan.
Dick: Oh, funny. (amused)
Maddox: And his wife went along with it! Totally fine. And then they were at a friend's house one time, and he said, "Yeah, this is Xavier and Logan." (Dick laughs) And then the friend goes, "Oh, you mean like the X-Men?"
Dick: "Like the X-Men!" (gleeful)
Maddox: And he goes, "Shhhh! Sh-sh-shh!" (bursts out laughing) He snuck that under the radar, with his wife! It makes me so happy.
Dick: He probably thinks about that while he's banging her.
Maddox: Oh, my GOSH, yeah.
Dick: Like, "Oh, I got away with that! Yeahhh! Yeah, you take it!"
Maddox: That'd be -- that'd give me the biggest boner for the rest of my life. I would love it so much, gettin' one over like that. But yeah -
Dick: (interjects) Yeah, sneakin' stuff into names is really fun! It's a funny idea.
Dick: Meh, yeah.
Maddox: I was also thinking, um...it is funny, but not at the expense of having a hyphenated name. If you have to have a hyphenated name, fuck off. Here's -- I have a new theory; I have a new theory. So, the more syllables your name has, the bigger asshole you are.
Dick: Oh, yeah?
Maddox: Right? The more syllables...the more syllables that you have, the bigger asshole.
Maddox: If you have 6 to 8 syllables, fuck off. "Neil deGrasse Tyson."
Dick: YEAH. A-hole.
Maddox: How many syllables? Yeah. That's a...yeah.
Dick: Ne-il...that's two?
Maddox: That's like, three.
Dick: Is that two, or is that one? Neil...
Maddox: That's three, depending on the pronunciation.
Dick: ...de-Grasse, Ty-son.
Maddox: I guess that's not too...that's like, what, 5?
Maddox: Yeah. No, that's not too bad. And I don't really think he's an asshole, just his dumbass fans. Um, yeah, if you have 6 to 8 syllables -- and you're cursing your child to go through life having to speak a SENTENCE every time they say their name! And they have to repeat it all the time -
Dick: (interjects) That seems like something you would do, though!
Maddox: Yeah, well... (Dick guffaws)
Dick: HA! Didn't everyone have to call you, like, "His Honorable...something...Emperor Maddox"? (Maddox chuckles)
Maddox: Actually -
Dick: At the book signing?
Maddox: - no, for an entire month. After the Hurricane Katrina donations, I did promise that I would not read or reply to a single email that didn't include, "To his majesty, the honorable Maddox" in the subject line.
Dick: Yeah, I remember that!
Maddox: Yeah. And everybody -- I even made my editor, I believe, my editor had to reply to me like that too. I wouldn't read anyone's email.
Dick: I mean, if you had a kid, it sounds like something you would do.
Dick: Like, an outrageous middle name like that?
Maddox: Yeah... There's that guy in Sweden, too, who recently changed his name; it's the longest name in the world, according to The Guinness Book of World Records. But it's something like, uh, "Tron Optimus Prime Megadeth Metallica Viking Thor"...whatever.
Maddox: And it just goes ON and on. All these cartoons, all his favorite cartoons...
Dick: Funny. (flatly)
Maddox: And then I think it says, "9-11 Conspiracy Theory," and all this other bullshit he just throws in there.
Dick: So what's your problem with hyphenated names? What is it, really? Like, is it that nobody's sacking up and naming the kid?
Maddox: Yeah, pick a name, people! Make a decision! Make a fucking decision. And also, about the hyphenated last names: what happens with your next generation of kids? Okay? So let's say somebody comes along, their last name is Ruby-Strauss -
Dick: (interjects) Mexico is what happens! That's what's happening -- dude, Mexicans have like, a hundred...they've got six middle names, and a buncha last names -- you never know which one's which! That's not racist!
Maddox: Yeah, if two minds can't agree on something as simple as a NAME, then don't get married. Idiots. Just don't get married! And yeah, the Mexican problem, sure. You're gonna have kids...if you have a hyphenated last name, and you meet a girl; or you're a girl, and you meet a guy who also has a hyphenated last name, guess what? Your last name's gonna have two hyphens and four names! That's STUPID.
Dick: Yeah, I kinda like that hyphenated first name, though. 'Cause then the kid could pick! You know? Like if you have a cool middle name, you would go with that. You got all these options to pick from!
Maddox: Ohh, my god.
Dick: If you wanna say your name.
Maddox: Too many fucking names! Just PICK one! Just pick a fuck-- and you know what? Everyone with a hyphenated name eventually starts going by their initials. "Hey, T.J.! Hey A.J., hey B.J.!" It's always a 'J.' There's always a 'J' in there. (annoyed)
Dick: I know a guy who just says one letter for his first name.
Maddox: Ugh. What is it, "P"?
Maddox: "R." That's stupid. "R" is stupid. And also, people who name their kids after, uh...you know, just silly-sounding names these days. Everyone's gotta be really -- and then, special spellings for their names is really annoying. Like, "Bryon," B-R-Y-O-N, what a....why are you doing that? (moodily)
Maddox: What are you, 'standing out'? And only in print, by the way. When you introduce yourself to people, which is, the majority of the time, how people hear your name for the first time, is through introduction...VERBAL introduction...the stupid fancy spelling that you spent nights dreaming up with your dumbass wife (Dick smirks) isn't gonna come across!
Dick: No. (amused)
Maddox: So just get a fucking divorce! (Dick laughs softly)
Dick: Well, you're clearly all worked up by this. (Maddox cracks up) I have no fuckin' idea why, hyphenated names.
Maddox: Because you're -- you can't make a decision! That speaks to bad decision-making. If -
Dick: (interjects) So what about middle names?? You have a problem with those, too?
Maddox: No, because no one ever sees or hears them, unless you're lookin' at someone's passport! And if you are, you're bored in a security line. I don't have a problem with that.
Maddox: I think middle names -- if you should have all your interesting names, save them up and jam them right in the fucking middle. Because that's the only time anyone's ever gonna care, is when you're standing in a security line at an airport, and TSA's bein' a dickhead because some BITCH at the front won't go through first-class security! And then you have nothin' but time to kill, so you're standing around with your passport and your dick in your hand, and the person next to you says, "Hey! What's your middle name?" You're like, "Thor Jesus Christ. What's yours?" Right? That's the only time it matters.
Dick: It's a cool name! (Maddox cracks up)
Maddox: It's a cool fuckin' name!
Dick: Hyphen. "Thor-Jesus-Christ."
Maddox: Oh, MAN. Fuckin' hyphenate the shit out of your middle name, 'cause no one ever has to know. And then when you're playin' that stupid game with girls, where, like, "What's your middle name?" (obnoxious voice) And they don't wanna tell you, and you just immediately blurt yours out, so you show your hand immediately and they're just fuckin' holding it against your head! (Dick giggles hysterically) All fucking night!
Dick: WHAT the HELL?!? (through giggling) (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: You've never done this? In bars, and they're like, "No, you have to guess! You have to guess!" (nasal voice) "Well, what letter does it start with?" "No, you have to guess!"
Dick: Ohh. (worn out from laughing)
Maddox: "Well, there's 26 possibilities for letters! Why don't you just narrow it down to 1 out of 26, bitch?" And she's like, "No, no!" (obnoxious) And then you....anyway. It makes THAT game more fun, when you have an interesting middle name.
Maddox: So, hyphenate the shit outta that!
Dick: Yeah. (smiling)
Maddox: But nothing else, guys! Just simple fucking names! (clapping on each word) CHOOSE, make a decision! Make a decision.
Dick: So in your perfect world, there'd be like, 5 names that everybody gets to choose from?
Maddox: Yeah, it would be just like China. (laughs loudly)
Dick: Yeah -- ohhhh. OHHHH. (uncomfortably) (Maddox laughs more)
Maddox: Everyone has the same the same surname in China, there's like 5 surnames in China. There's Chang, Chong, Li...and Liu, I think...uh, you know. That's an exaggeration; there's a lot more surnames. But um, this is kind of interesting...one other note I wanna make about this.
Maddox: So the hyphenated name is not universal...I'm sorry. When people get married - er, when women get married, and they take on the surnames of their husbands, that's not universal. That's actually mostly common in Western countries, specifically America. In Saudi Arabia and in Muslim countries, women keep their surnames!
Maddox: So all these women who are like, "Oh, let's liberate the Muslims, because they have to wear burkas! Let's liberate - " They're more advanced, culturally, than we are in certain aspects, because the women always keep their names. And I don't even understand why it's a big deal, I don't give a FUCK what you call yourself. If you're marrying me and blowing me every now and then, I'm fine with that.
Dick: I don't know, I think I would want the name change.
Dick: I don't know! I never thought of it before.
Maddox: Do you name your shits?
Dick: Sometimes! (Maddox cracks up) Yeah. I'll be like, "Oho, that was...I call that one Too Much Vicodin This Week." (Maddox laughs)
Maddox: Ew, what does it come out, all lumpy and gross? Like paste?
Dick: No, no, dude, uh...constipation is a side effect...like, if you take too much Vicodin for an extended period of time, you will shit a football.
Maddox: Yeah. Is that, uh...
Dick: That's a medical fact. (Maddox and Sean crack up) AND an anecdote. That I wanna end on. (laughs)
Maddox: I believe, uh, I believe it does say that on the packaging. So, okay. Yeah, let's actually...we should probably end there.
Dick: Let's summarize.
Dick: My problems are Too Much Swearing...oh, god, I'm gonna get killed for that one.
Dick: And The Nuremberg Defense.
Maddox: And, my problems are Anti-Cyclists and Hyphenated Names.
Dick: Lemme just say, I'm predicting a Nuremberg Defense clean sweep.
Maddox: You know what, Dick? (closing riff starts) I would never say this, but uh, I actually hope so, 'cause it's a really good problem. (Dick laughs triumphantly) And don't forget to vote at http://thebiggestproblemintheuniverse.com!
Dick: Thanks for listening.