Bill Burr Interview | The Tim Ferriss Show (Podcast) | Transcription
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optimal minimal. I think this altitude I can run flat out for a half mile before my hands start shaking. Can I also do a personal question? Now what is it? I'm from Pentecime. What if I did the algorithm? I'm a cybernetic organism living tissue over a metal anthoscour. Me too, Paris, so... This episode is brought to you by FreshBooks. Man-o-man do a lot of listeners of this podcast and readers of mine love FreshBooks, to the extent that I ended up meeting with the CEO not very long ago. Why are they so popular? Well, they are the number one cloud accounting software designed exclusively for self-employed professionals, that's many of you, and used by more than 10 million people. You can send invoices, track your time, and get paid very, very quickly, which suits the needs of a lot of freelancers, a lot of entre préndres and beyond. You can take pictures or receipts. You can link your credit card and debit cards. So all the things you buy automatically appear in your FreshBooks in the right category. So on and so forth makes taxes easy, makes invoices easy, makes your life easier. And also, in fact, I recommend a PDF. They didn't ask me to read this part, by the way. They put together a PDF a while back called Breaking the Time Barrier subtitle, How to Unlock Your True Earning Potential. So you can search for Breaking the Time Barrier. A lot of people ask me, "How can I get a four-hour work week with a service business?" And the story in that e-book, it's PDF, is the short answer. It's really, really good. So I think you should also check that out. So Breaking the Time Barrier, check it out. But also, why not test out FreshBooks? Claim your 30-day unrestricted free trial at freshbooks.com/tim and enter Tim Ferriss two hours and two S's in the "How Did You Hear About Us?" section. That sounds like we're going to get very little tracking. That's a lot of work. Go to freshbooks.com/tim and try it out because it is a very good product and I think you will find it simplifies your life. Enjoy. This episode is brought to you by Shopify. I have known and loved Shopify just about forever. Back in 2009, when they had something like eight or ten employees, now they have more than 2,000, I helped them as an advisor to create a build a business competition, which is now the world's largest entrepreneurship competition. Many readers of my blog, first-time business owners, have ended up making millions and millions of dollars each. Many of them have side gigs to their full-time jobs. The goal of the build a business competition is to get, would be entrepreneurs to get off the couch and make things happen. All you have to do is open a store on Shopify and start selling. You can join in July or after July to be eligible to win. What does winning mean? You have to be one of the top performers, top sellers in a given category. The prize, the reward, is an exclusive opportunity to learn from mentors and experts. In the past, that has happened at places like the Gatsby Castle, where we had Tony Robbins and Damon John and Seth Godin and so on, or on Nectar Island, which is Sir Richard Branson's private island, it's nuts and super, super fun. I'm also involved. So there's a special offer for people listening to this show. Go to Shopify.com/Tim and sign up for a free 30-day trial. You will get all sorts of exclusive free video courses to help you along and to get started, including how to start a profitable drop shipping business with Corey Ferreira. You will also get some goodies from me. That's all free. It's all exclusive to people who are listening to this podcast. So check it out, Shopify.com/Tim and remember to sign up for the free 30-day trial. Why hello there. This is Tim Ferriss. Tim Ferriss, hey you, Trung, breaker of Chains, Mother of Dragons. Welcome to another episode of The Tim Ferriss Show.
Bill'S Early Life And Start In The Comedy Realm
Bill Joins The Show. (04:04)
Where does my job always to deconstruct world-class performers of many, many different varieties, pulling out the lesson strategies, habits, etc. that you can apply and test in your own life? My guest today is none other than the Comedians Comedian Bill Burr at Bill Burr on Twitter, B-I-L-L-B-U-R-R. Please say hello. Many of you know him as a standard comedian. Of course, his YouTube clips have followed me around the planet as has his podcast. He is one of the funniest humans alive. I mean, he loses his audience sometimes on purpose because making them laugh is not enough of a challenge and then he'll wheel them back in and get them back on his side. And he has been requested for this podcast for many years. Rolling Stone has called him, "The undisputed heavyweight champ of rage-fueled humor." And when we finally got on the same stage to have a conversation and do this, he did not disappoint. In this very wide-ranging conversation, Bill and I go all over the place. We talk about how he found his way into stand-up comedy, why he enjoys going for an encore after he's been booed, how he started as a squeaky clean comedian and then ended up where he is now, which is quite, quite different. Hell-learning can serve as therapy the importance of enjoying success and much more. This interview comes from my TV show Fearless with Fearless in parentheses because the objective is to learn to fearless, not to be fearless, not possible, in which I interview world-class performers. That's probably my favorite combo word. On stage about how they've overcome doubt, conquered fear and made their toughest decisions. You can watch the entire first episode with illusionist David Blaine for free at att.net/fearless. No parentheses, so all one word att.net/fearless, the way you would usually spell it. Highly recommend you check that out. To see all episodes, you can get it on DirectTV or you can go to DirectTVNow. I believe that's just DirectTVNow.com, but DirectTV.com, so D-I-R-E-C-T-V.com and then click on Direct Now. We recorded about three hours of material on stage and only one hour was used for TV. That means this episode is almost entirely new content that did not appear on TV. Even if you saw that episode already, you're going to get a lot more patented Bill Burr. Please enjoy this wide-ranging conversation with Mr. Bill Burr. Welcome to Fearless. I'm your host Tim Ferriss. On this stage, we'll be deconstructing world-class performers to uncover the specific tactics that they've used to overcome doubt, tackle hard decisions, and ultimately succeed. Bring yourself all alone on stage in front of 14,000 people staring directly at you. For many of us, probably most of us, that'd be a complete nightmare. But for my guests tonight, it's just another day at the office. The man you're about to meet is one of the most prolific and respected comedians in the world. He's done five-hour long comedy specials, hosts one of the most popular podcasts of all time, and is the co-creator and star of the animated series "F is for Family." Please welcome to the stage, Bill Burr. Hey, how are you? What's going on, Tim? How you doing, buddy?
Booed at a Phillies game (07:33)
I'm good. I'm good. If you ever get booed, you've got to come back. If there's an encore, you've got to go back. I think you've got to go back. So I wave. I remember there was this kid came running up because I trashed all of their teams because the Phillies hadn't won a World Series yet. They had like two years away from it at that point. I just remember this kid was yelling at me. He was just going, "Now he's going, 'Fuck you. Fuck you.'" Giving me the finger, yelling "Fuck you" when I was standing there. He was like, "30 yards away." I kept going, "What?" I kept going, "What?" And he started going, "Fuck you. Fuck you." He was like, "Give me the finger." I don't know what it is. I just kept going, "What?" I literally got there. He was like hopping mad. But he was jumping up, "Fuck you. Fuck you." I can't. I can't. I remember I was standing next to, "Oh, what?" I remember I was standing next to Opie and we were just laughing and going, "How about dumbest this kid?"
The incident (08:25)
But then I was mortified afterwards because I thought, you know, because I knew a lot of stuff was coming up on people who were having phones. They had cameras and I was just going, "Everyone's going to see me get booed. This is going to be embarrassing." I didn't know how it was going to play. I just thought that people weren't going to understand it. And we first connected and started texting because we know Dave Eilich, who's an amazing professional drummer. Yeah, and teacher. And teacher. He's just incredible. He has a great t-shirt for you guys who are looking for teachers to buy. And it says, "Listen, more slowly, once again, something like that." And he's slowed down. Slow down. And I think he says, "Repete or do it again." "Repete or do it again on the back." And so he got sick of saying the same thing. So we just point to one side of his shirt.
Exploring his his love for drumming, the warehouse story. (09:13)
How did you get into drumming? Why drumming? How did I get into drumming? I guess everyone was in the music where I grew up and everything. I loved music, but I didn't start playing drum cells almost like 20 years old. I started really late. And the reason for that was I was working in a warehouse. And I came from a jock town. So everybody played sports, pond hockey and all that. So I did a lot of that stuff. And I liked music, but there was only a couple of kids that played guitar and I wasn't around it. I didn't think it was possible. I thought what I was watching people doing on TV. I just didn't think you could do it. And then I started working in this warehouse and there was kids my age and they were from a different town that was more like kids put together bands and stuff. And they were coming in like the songs I liked. They could play it and I was like, "Wow, it's amazing." So I started playing guitar and I just didn't have the patience for it. And I think the thing about drumming was the sport background where it was like a real physical thing that kind of came into play. And I just started playing and I played for like six, seven years. And somewhere during that time I started playing. I started doing stand up and I moved to New York. Your neighbors don't mind if you're strumming a guitar. You can't like play drums in one bedroom apartment without pissing everybody off. So I kind of stopped for like five years before I got back into it.
I have the worst New York accent (10:32)
I grew up on Long Island. I feel like we don't have a tough accent. It's just a bad accent. Yeah. It's a lot like the show we do. After it's for family with where it was just like the parents just sent you outside. And some days you had good days. Sometimes you had bad days. Sometimes you just ran into bigger kids and they would just beat the shit out of you for no reason. I just think we remember them putting it in a pool one time. And they were like, you know, whatever the hell it is when they're smoothing out the concrete and this older kid dared me to throw a rock into it. So I wanted his approval. And I just took this big rock and this guy was just smoothing out. I just threw it down. And this guy almost killed me. He almost killed me. So that's back when you could almost kill a kid and it wasn't a problem. And it was no cell phone video. It was all your word against theirs. I think a lot of the reasons why I started doing stand up was I just thought, okay, I'm going to get on stage, show people that I'm a funny guy and people will stop fucking with me. Like that was basically. And then I was, I remember thinking that everything's going to fall into place. I'll meet the girl in my dreams. I'll make my money. I'll get my whatever the hell I want to house. And so I only worked on getting better as a comedian. And then by the time I got to my mid 30s, like being a comedian was like 600 miles down the road and everything else was at the starting blocks and like literally like social interactions, I kept messing up relationships. I mean, I was 36. I was still sleeping on a futon. And what they called was a one bedroom apartment, which was bullshit because I met the woman who lived upstairs who had the exact same apartment and hers was a studio. They just slammed a wall into mine. And yeah, so I remember like those, there was like a three year period of like I was in a full on depression and I was so detached. I didn't, I wasn't even, I wasn't even aware of it. When what was the age roughly on that?
Intro to comedy (12:27)
Oh, I don't know. I was like the early 2000s, whatever that made late 90s, early 2000s. It might have been a five, six year. I can't remember. I didn't worry about making it. I didn't worry about how am I going to make money. I didn't worry. I just like, I'm doing this. And when Billy got off stage, I mean, it was the end of the night, I was like going like, who do I call for open mics? Like, how do I do this? And they remember he wrote about Rita. And Rita Choice, who was, she used to book it. And she was like back then, like one of the big characters, like used to always run into a comedy club. So I used to call in to do open mics.
working with Rita at the comedy clubs (13:01)
And I remember she used to, once she got to know me and she thought I was kind of funny, I'd call up and be like, hey, Rita, it's Bill Burr. I'd like to do an audition. No, no, no, no, Bill. You call me and you say Rita, this is open miker, Bill Burr. She was always breaking balls. So I would always laugh and I would do it. And she was kind of like a test. Like if you had like a sense of humor about yourself and I gradually like worked my way in to doing stand up. You know, I remember one time I did a show.
Stories Bill wrote about in his book (13:26)
I've told this before. I did this show. I was, I was seeing this woman when I was in New York and I remember she came over and I was making a dinner or whatever. And then I had a spot at the comic strip, which where I was living was right around the corner. So I said, I got to go run do a spot. And during the week, I mean, you know, she asked me what are those spots paying? They would like, the comic strip was hilarious. It was like $5, $8, $7. And he was basically just going up there trying out material. And I went up there and I tried out new material and it worked. And I was psyched. And I finished like cooking the dinner or whatever. I was making, I can't remember what I was making. And I did this stupid dance in the kitchen and she was laughing. And I was dancing because I had this new material. I was excited. And then she got like this, she got like this sad look on her face. I was like, God, did I dance that bad? Like, what's the matter? Right? And she goes, no, she goes, I just wish I had a job where I got paid $8. And I came home and danced in a kitchen. And I never forgot that. I was like, oh, yeah, I didn't even think that because I got this weird thing about money where I want to have it so I'm not broke but I don't give a shit about it. But I also don't want to have debt so I don't overextend myself but I don't give a shit about it. Like, I will pay extra to not go through the process. I can't even, I don't use like, you know, frequent flyer miles. Like my wife signed me up for them but I don't use them ever because I don't want to go through the fucking, you know, logging in and all of a sudden I'm working for American Airlines. I'm like, I'm going to work for these fucking people. Like, I'll buy my own ticket. I don't want to do this. Yeah, I won't cancel shit. Like I got like, gym memberships I've never canceled because I'm not, because I'm not going through going on that stupid thing. And if you want to do this, press one. If you want to do that, press two. Like, I got, I don't know. Like my free time, I cherish it and I'm not like going to fucking, I'm not going to be laying on my deathbed one time just thinking about how many hours I spent on the phone going person, person, operator, person, fuck you. Like I don't want to do that. So I would rather pay the, I'd rather pay the extra charge. So a little bit later, I want to pull up the not caring about money examples that I have found most personally amusing, which are actually from your podcast. So we'll get to those.
Fathers dental practice (15:58)
But at the time, if you could just place us, when were you working in your dad's office and maybe you could describe what your dad did? Early 90s to mid 90s, I was working in my, we were going to dental office and I had been laid off from the warehouse with the guy all coked up, right? But my car was paid off. Thank God. And I was living at home. So I was kind of living like this little existence for like three months. And my dad started working with this other guy, I went into practice with him and I needed some, you know, I think he was just sick of watching me being around the house. So nepotism kicked in. And next thing you know, I got a lab coat and I'm standing next to him to hand in them all this shit as he's taking teeth out and stuff. And I had to get past the gross factor of that. And then I learned how to pour up models and stuff and take x-rays. And I was actually, I was halfway decent at it. But I knew that, you know, if I half a second, I thought maybe, you know, I would do this. But what was funny was I had to call my father, Dr. Burr. I couldn't call him dad in front of a patient because that would be weird like, hey dad, you want this? So I had to keep it professional. And when I worked there, it was around the time when I started doing stand up and what sucked, I was still living at home. So he knew, because at the end of the night, he'd be like, where are you working tonight? And I would have like a gig in Maine living in Massachusetts. And I would for free. And I would drive up there or maybe like five, ten bucks gas money. And I would drive all the way up. My dad would have like seven o'clock patience and shit. Like he worked like a lunatic like from seven to seven. He would side book root canals like on molars, which is three, you know, nerve involvement. We'd be like numb up a guy and then we'd go in the other room and like, and he didn't give a shit to like every one time some homeless guy came in. He was like, I finally got a lunch because you'd never get a lunch with him. This guy came in, you know, he was, you know, substance abuse. And he was all, you know, and all these other guys I noticed would just give him medicine. They would leave my dad. I'd be like, yeah, just get him in there and blah, blah. And I was like, pissed. And I'd be like, Dr. Burr, what the fuck? Why can we just get this guy, you know, just, and he just goes, look, he goes, I can't go home tonight knowing there's some guy in pain. And I didn't do anything. Did you get material for your comedy from that experience? Oh, yeah. Big test. I read that you had dental comedy early and I don't know what dental comedy is. Oh, yes. So no, no, I had all of it. I had all of it. My dad used to like, he used to set me up because he knew that I swear to God, if I had like a, like a late show, then he would go extra fast. He'd just go extra. Give me that. Give me that. You know, Christ Bill, you're out to lunch. He would start giving me shit in front of the patient. I used to tell him like, like dad, you can't do that type of stuff. And like he wasn't like that. But I got a lot of it out of like patience. Like I remember this guy came in, I used to work totally squeaky clean, totally clean because I didn't want to offend anybody because I didn't want to get heckled because I was still this really shy person, right? So I remember this guy came in one time and like his teeth were all rotten out. And I just remember he said something like, like, "Look, you know, I don't understand what the problem is." You know, I brush my teeth almost every day, right? That's what he said. So my punchline to that was like, "Oh yeah, well do you wipe your ass almost every time you take a shit?" So for a while, I started closing on that joke and I would work totally squeaky clean, going up there looking like Ron Howard and everybody's like, "Oh, look at this wholesome guy." And then on it nowhere, I would just end with, "Yeah, do you wipe your ass almost every time you take a shit?" And then be like, "You're not even funny, you're not even like, 'Dude, what's going on?' I had no idea what I was doing. I actually was a prop act for a second where I had one prop, like that's for whatever reason you're not allowed to have props and comedy and acting, it's fine. I have no idea, right? So we had this dental mask, like when you really just had some gnarly shit going on, they had these plastic things that looked like a welder shield but it was all plastic when just, I mean, I'll spare you the details and stuff is flying at you. So I used to bring that and I would take it out after I would do all the dental material and be like, "Yeah, my job's so bad. I have to wear this at work and I would just put it on and I had no joke." And I would put it on and they'd sort of chuckle and be like waiting for the joke and then behind the mask, like almost like muffled, I'd be like, "Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom!" I'd just take it away and I'd put it back in my little duffel bag and I'd walk away. It was just, it was horrible.
How do you know a joke is done? (20:27)
How do you know when something is close and when something is done? Like when you're working on a joke or a piece of writing, how do you know when something's done? Well, I think when I'm torn, none of the jokes are done. Until I start getting sick of them, then I'm like, "All right, I need to record these and document these because they're going to start becoming not funny because they're starting to feel like a job to tell them, "I'm sick of this joke and oh my God, I want this joke and this is one so long and I might not think that anymore." And those things, sometimes those things just drop away and you never record them or anything. So I'd say it's like that.
Bill's comedy beginnings (21:05)
When you bombed that first time, is that a Kelly's? That third gig? Yeah. That third gig. Jesus, you did your research. Oh, let's try that. How the hell did you find that one? I must have told that I were on the podcast. So a good team helping me. Magic elves in the back as well. That's why you got to cover that camera up on your flat screen. And on your laptop. That's actually really good advice. That's true. That's actually really really good advice. They try to see what you're watching and shit if you bang your wife. So I want to talk about last Tuesday night. When you, I imagine the drive back after that gig was very different from the Motley Crew experience. Oh, it was mortified. So mortified. How did you, what did you do to get yourself back on the horse for the next gig? I mean, would you say to yourself before you got on stage the next time? Because a lot of people fall off, they don't get back on. Well I fell off a lot of things and didn't get back on. But like I also always knew, I knew if I was good at something or if I wasn't. Like you know what I mean? Like as much as I loved playing drums and everything, I went to the music store enough times and saw an eight year old get on a drum kit and I'd be like, dude, like I would pay you to take this. It's like, I just didn't have it. Like it's a hobby. It's something I enjoy doing. But I would never subject anybody to it on a professional level. So this happens to me a lot with my ADDs. I went down that road and I forgot the question. The question was, which is fine by the way. The question was, how did you get back on the horse? Would you say to yourself before getting back on stage? Well, it never dawned on me not to do it again. Right.
The edge of giving up (22:41)
And you already committed to the next gig? All the other social shit that mortified me, I just stayed away from it. But that thing was like, I don't think I had another one. Yeah, I just was like, you know what's going to happen. It's like you're riding a motorcycle. You know one of these days you're going to go down. You just hope you're going to live. You talked about some dark periods earlier. I'm forgetting the exact timeline. But what precipitated that? I guess you said it was a couple of years. And for people who don't know, I almost off myself during a year off from college. So it's like I've had some battles myself. What motive, how are you going to do it? You know what? So this is a good question. And I'll tell you why I'm not going to give an answer because it was a really good plan. It was a plan that would minimize guilt or self-blaming on the part of my family. It was really well thought through. I had everything specked out. And so for the risk- Sip line in the woods. Sip line in the woods. Sip line. Mostly invo- Yeah, involve some porcupines. A little bit of curari. Yeah. It was very complex. Hard to replicate. But yeah, I wouldn't want people to copycat it. If I put it out there. But what precipitated that period for you? What does that mean? What came before that? What triggered it? Like what led you? Sorry. Using weatherman language. My bad. I don't know why. Comes out of me sometimes. Yeah, what led to it? Like what triggered going into that thing? Every laugh didn't know what it meant either. Thank you. I just think I was just going full speed towards a wall. Because I thought I was normal, well adjusted. Even though I knew I had a crazy temper, I had this period where I just was really just like, I would be what you needed me to be. And I really had like, I was friends with everybody. Which is not a real thing. If you're being who you are, I would adjust my shit. So I wouldn't cause any friction. So there wouldn't be any like the shit I dealt with coming up. I had enough of people screaming and yelling. I had enough of fighting and all that stuff that I would just adjust my behavior so then we would just be smooth. And I just think using that as a game plan, eventually you're just going to, you're so going to spin away from who the hell you are, that I think that, you know, and also just focusing on staying up and not other areas of my life, I think that that's when the anger and all of that stuff started to come up. And then I kind of went like this completely different person. And I really started snapping about nothing for a good 12 years. And I think get somewhere in there, somewhere in there. I mean, maybe I was always like depressed, but I didn't realize it. I think I just didn't realize it. And somewhere along the line, you know, one of the umpteen thousand poor women that ever came across me, like one of them finally told me to go to therapy. And I went there thinking like, yeah, I'm fine. Blah, blah, blah, blah. Then you start telling story. And it was all this shit that I knew that happened but was just hovering. It just sort of, it's just over here and you're just going around in life. And then all of a sudden when you start talking about it, it's you say it out loud. It's like, oh, that's a real thing. Oh, that really did happen to me. And then you start thinking like, wow, I'm pretty fucked up. And hey, and I'm not happy. I'm really not happy. I really started getting conscious of what my brain was telling me and what my, if my brain was like a friend, I would like be like, yeah, dude, we can't do this anymore. You're just bumming me out, man.
Bill'S Mental Health Journey And Evolving Goals
From angst to epiphyseal (26:29)
I mean, Jesus Christ, do you ever see the light? The fuck, you know? So then fortunately I wasn't like clinically, so I didn't need any medicine. All I needed was, I just needed to, I just became aware of it. And I'd be like, all right, well, there's that thought. Do you want to have that thought or do you want to go to the gym? I got back into playing drums, which was a great thing. And then I also, I just stopped giving a shit about making it. And in a way was just like, you know what, forget this. I'm just going to do what I do because I went through that whole period. Like, you know, I know many of you guys are trying to make it out here. You just go through that period where you're just like, oh, they like guys with, you know, whatever, blue button down shirts. And you're wearing the blue button down shirts and people who talk about this. They, like in my time it's gone from the tail end of the sport coat guy into the grunge guy, into the alt scene, into the whole, like whatever that period was where guys in their 30s acted like they were 14 and they were awkward. And just, you know, the hoodie like that.
How to host the conversation when you're not the one sweeping people away. (27:31)
My wife called them, what'd she call them, not baby men or something, man boys. Man boys, this is what she called them. And I don't know, I'm just like awkward. Like, that was this default thing. It's like, oh great, now I have to hold up both ends of the conversation. So I really just, those people I really just, I kind of got hostile with. I was just like, well, when you get over with that, you know, and you can fucking talk to me. Yeah, you are awkward. This is weird. And I also thought a lot of people, no, but a lot of people that do that, it's also, it's a passive aggressive thing to come in and fucking steal focus and we all have to deal with how awkward you are and make sure you're okay. It's like, fuck you dude, you're in your 30s. Figure this out. I never forget one time. I was in a green room in New York. I was living in LA and I met an old friend and we were talking about the old days about when we, oh remember this guy? Remember that night when this happened? We having a great time and there was younger comics and they were listening and some people who actually were in the tail end of the stories. We were having this great time and then this woman comes in, comedian and she was like socially awkward and she didn't know how to like get into it. So we're all, yeah, we're all laughing and everything and she walked right into the middle of the circle. I swear to God, she just walked in and I'm like, hello, hello, hello, hello. And she was like mocking, saying hello. But then totally stole all the focus and everyone's just like, oh, whoa, you're all right? All the fun went out of the room and then everyone was dealing with her and then she left and I said to my friend, I go, what the fuck was that? That was some rude shit. We were having a great time and like, if you don't know how to say fucking hello, learn how to do it. Don't come in and take the whole thing away and just ruin this thing and that was the last time. That was the last time I was like, fuck these awkward people. Like if you really are, look, I don't want to like bully people. I don't want to bully somebody. If they really are socially awkward or something like that, I'll work with you. But if you just embraced, I'm awkward. Now the world has to deal with it. If that's your shit. Yeah, go fuck yourself. So we also have a clip that will pull up in a minute from "F is for family" that might, I don't know. Now that I've seen all the episodes and now that you're telling me a lot of these stories, I can see where I think a lot of them came from. There's one clip that will pull up and a little bit, I'm not going to do it just right now.
Overcoming depression? Do shit! (29:56)
But what have you found to help get you out of a depressive period? You mentioned exercise. For instance, I mean, I found drummers in general to be very happy people. I don't know if they're happy and then they end up drumming or if it's because of the physical aspect of just going animal on a drum kit. It's awesome. It's a great feeling. So I also had to play the drums in college but not very good at all. But that was my experience. It was like it alleviated a lot of these darker thoughts. Is there anything else that you've found particularly helpful? Yeah, I just do shit. I just get up and do something that day. It's literally like I'll go on, you like to cook and stuff. So I'll go on YouTube and I'll see somebody, you know, what I did recently, who's the guy from Hell's Kitchen. I was Gordon Ramsay. Yeah, Gordon Ramsay. Dude, he's got this video like the sickest scrambled egg you're ever going to make in your life. It's insane. And I just remember watching it. I was just like, I'm going to fucking make that thing because I have the free time. Like as a comedian, like I can do it. I went on, I bought all the ingredients and all that type of stuff. And that's what I do. And I'll learn something, you know, but I do have my hobbies like cooking and playing drums and a few other things that I do. And it's just like I try to have like that moment in the day, like learn something or go somewhere. And what but working out is a big thing. That's a big thing.
How Bill's goals as a comedian have changed over the years. (31:33)
How did your goals change if they did from when you're trying to force fit yourself? Like what was the kind of pinnacle that you had in mind from making it to after goal? For me coming up, it was all about having an HBO special because HBO specials, those were the best comics. That's all the great guys that I saw coming up. You got on HBO is totally uncensored and they were the home for that. And unfortunately, when I got into it, you know, write them like early nineties by the mid nineties, they just stopped doing it for like 10 years. And so I don't, that was, that's when I kind of felt rudderless because when HBO stopped doing their specials, I didn't know what to do. And then what comedy central started doing the half hours, they, you, you were, the fact that they had commercials, they basically, I think it's eight minutes each hour. So they were automatically going to take 16 minutes out or eight minutes out of a half hour. And then they also, they would, they would beep out the curses with like the worst, most archaic, like beep, beep. So really, and they wouldn't just fade it down and come back up. So I remember watching specials and just thinking that was really distracting. So once again, I worked clean. So if you watch my first half hour on comedy central, I worked totally clean. And I gave them, I gave them the least amount of material that I could because I just looked at it because those guys doing like, all right, here's a half, you know, it's a half hour. They're only going to use 22 minutes. They would, they would do is they do 40. So then you had this guy who you didn't know, you didn't approve of is now going to hack 40 minutes down to 22. What is he going to do exactly? So I was like, immediately I was like, well, fuck that. Like what's the least you can do? And they say, least you amount of time you can do is like 25 or 26. And I did exactly that. So the worst you could do is butcher four of it out, but the rest of it was going to look good. So I was happy with it. And, you know, it was just kind of doing stuff like that. But it still wasn't what I wanted because it wasn't me that that half hour that I did, that was me like just kind of doing an extended letterman spot where I was working totally clean. But it wasn't until HBO came back and did the half hours. And I did those that I actually got to do. It was the first time people got to see me, you know, not in a club. They were at home and they got to see that this is what I do. And you know, that was the same time I got on the Opie and Anthony show and they all kind of came out at the same time. And it was the first time I went to a club and it was sold out and people were there to see me, which was a whole other level of pressure. It used to be. Yes. Up until then it was people who come into the club because that's what they did. They had nothing else to do. Like, oh, it's going on the comedy club. And you had to prove to them that you were funny. And I used to remember thinking like, imagine they came to see me how much easier this would be. I didn't realize the other pressure was like, no, we saw that. So we're expecting at least that, if not better. And then it's like, oh, man. So that took me like a good three months of it. It was a new kind of nervousness experience to get over of people expecting like, yeah, we're here to see you. We like what you do. Don't ruin this.
Did Bill feel like he'd 'made it' after the HBO special? Why or why not?" (34:48)
What was the first special? The first half hour? Yeah. Or not the Comedy Central, but the first time you could be yourself. Oh, that was the HBO half hour that I did. And that was in 2005. 2005. So remember, April 2005 came out in September. Is there anything since then, and I mean, this is an assumption of my part, which is dangerous, but did you feel like you had summited the mountain at that point? Did you feel like you'd arrived? No, I felt that somewhere in like 2009, 2010. By then I'd done a couple of hours. I'd done my second hour for Netflix, which became the new HBO as far as just totally uncensored. And I think I bought a house at that point. I bought a house, right? And still, you know, people didn't really, I had a niche following in that. And I said to my wife, I was just like, I know you're not supposed to say this, but I made it because there's this sickness in this business of like, no man, if you think you made it, and then you're going to relax. And it's all going to go away. So like, oh, so I'm never going to be happy. It's like, I tell dick jokes and I just bought a house. I made it. Yeah. So I didn't want to be that guy that is doing well. I was like, oh, what about the next thing? Like that sickness. Just the gray hound chasing the rabbit. Yeah. Performance or driven people can have this sickness of like, it's just, you know, it's just like, you can't even enjoy it. It's like, what's the next thing? I mean, I know guys that like, they have like, they accomplish something. And as they're right, as they're getting right to the peak, this depression hits them. Because they're like, then what? And then what am I going to do? And then this is over. And then I got nothing and blah, blah, blah. It's like, hey, can you just fucking have a beer up here? We did this, you know? Can we enjoy this for a second?
Did Bill keep doing therapy? At what point will he grow up? (36:40)
Did you keep, did you continue doing therapy after those initial sessions that you mentioned? I did it for a few years. And then one day it just dawned on me that I just kind of am just talking in circles in here and it's just like, bad shit's going to always happen to me. And what it makes me keep coming in here and I'm moaning about it. Like, what point am I going to grow up and kind of not need this? And I'm not trying to say that you're weak if you go there, but I just hit this point where I was like, all right, you know, I, all of that shit happened, you know, it happened, right? And it definitely affected who I am. But now I'm not going to be like lashing out at people and I'll be like, oh, I do this because of that a little bit of that. But I, what I did, you know, at some point, it'd be like if somebody's teaching you how to fix a car, at some point you've got to try to fix it yourself, you know what I mean? You can't keep going to the new like term right here. How I do this, right? So I just became like that. So now I kind of, you know, my kind of self therapy myself. It's cheaper. So you mentioned the, I guess, delusion maybe of always chasing the next thing and never being satisfied with where you are. The other worry that I've heard a lot from friends of mine who are comedians is that if they do therapy or meditation or fill in the blank to tone down some of their tendencies that it will make them less funny. Yeah. Is that something you thought? I thought that was true enough. It's not true. Because it gives you an insight into you as a human and then you start, you see people differently and it actually allowed me to write like, or think about characters and just notice shit with people that I never did before. Like I got a, I got a thing with somebody. Somebody, anybody who does this when they're talking like, I wasn't a blah, blah, blah. They're full of shit. No, not only, not only are they full of shit. They have a complete inability to accept responsibility for anything they've ever done. I just recently told this to Jim Norton. It was that publicist who backed over like those 12 people in like Long Island. Oh, sure. And then I remember she just, she drove away and then she went to her house and when she got to her house, like the cops showed up and the lawyer met them in the driveway and was like, yeah, she'll come down tomorrow and blah, blah, blah and they left. I remember thinking like, you can fucking do that. I don't know you can do that. So she was of course vilified and then the next day in the paper they had this picture of her and she was like talking to the media. She was like, she had a hand like that. She's like, you fucking backed over 11 people. I'll go with you that that can happen, that you can't see that, but you left. You fucking left. Yeah, get the fuck out of here. So I've noticed that and I remember. So you start picking up on that. I remember one time this comic did some passive aggressor shit to him. I called him out and he immediately went with the two hands to the chest. I'm like, that's the kind of guy that went back over 11 people and drive away. So I wouldn't have noticed that if I didn't go to therapy and I've also noticed like, you know, like, I like, yeah, I talked to myself a lot about like going, you know, like getting into it with people and screaming and yelling and then I'll drive away and be like, I bill, how did that go? You know? You know, try to see how they're how, you know, if I was wrong in it, like they were right, you know, that somebody's mom, you just yelled at her. Like what's wrong with you? You like, I really had like a, like really a hair trigger kind of thing. So it's something that, you know, working on my temper, I really try to, I've really been like, especially lately because, you know, I was making my wife like on pins and needles because it wasn't like I was flipping out over anything. Like, I fucking hate these things, whatever this, the second I came out and I saw this, the whatever this is, this pad. Yeah, I bet. I hate these, I hate these things. I can't stand them. They don't make my life easier. They're a nightmare. They're intrusive. You know? And my, I can't stand it. So I flip out about them and like, I saw a thing recently, this politically active comedian was sitting there talking, was trying to get people to vote in like this oddly like bullying way going like, you know, there's going to be an app out there that's going to say, you know, whether you voted or not. And they're not going to know whether you voted and who you voted for, but they're going to know that you voted. So you can't basically bullshit people anymore. I just was watching the whole time going and like, that's a good thing that that level of private information because of this fucking app. I didn't say you could say whether I voted or not. That's what I, that's what I hate about all of this shit. Like I have a theory like like somewhere around 94, 95. We should, we should have stopped making new shit. All right. They could, they cured enough diseases. Cars were fast enough. You could, you know, planes aren't ending really faster than they were back then. It was good. But all of this shit now that like, you know, tape your cameras. Yeah. Tape your camera. All of this stuff. Look at Billy Bush. Billy Bush got fired for some shit that happened in 2005. This fucking unbelievable and all he was doing is what an interviewer does. He was keeping the interview with you happy. Right? The guy, I just grabbed the pussy.
Key Moments, Projects And Perspectives From Bill'S Career
Billy Bush, public shaming. (41:58)
He was like, hey, grab some pussy. Whatever. We doing this? And for all you know, at the end of the interview when Trump left, he could have been like, what was that guy like? I think I was out of his mind. He was talking about grabbing pussy. He's fucking crazy. Anyways, who do we got next? Matthew McConaughey. All right. All right. What's going on? You know, he's just doing that. For all you know, that's all he was doing and it was literally like, that's what I hate about this shit. You literally take two seconds of somebody's fucking life and you're like, that's who you are. That's you. That that tweet is who you are. That's what's in your heart and all of this shit. I got friends of mine that have gotten like big shows, SNL and stuff like that.
The origin of F is for Family... (42:34)
I think the one person they had to go back to 2010, they went through six years of tweets to try and whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Yeah, it's like, get the fuck out of here. Right? Why didn't you start doing the podcast? I guess Bobby Kelly, once again, I was hanging his apartment when we used to live near each other in New York and he was just like, dude, you got to do this. It's called a podcast. I had no idea what it was. You can say, you know, it's another way to connect with your fans and both me and him and all of my friends, we weren't the guys they were picking. We just weren't the guys. We weren't whatever they were going for. We just never were the guys and, you know, and yet we, they, on every showcase, they'd always put us on last because we would, you know, we were really good at what we did, but there was always like the, you know, whatever the hell it was they were looking for, we were just, we were the outcasts. So, um, so any way to connect with your fans, we had to do it. And that was this new thing. And I just liked doing it. And I first, I just, I used to call in, used to, before I had like the mixer and all that, used to call in this service. So I would just call up this phone number on my flip phone. And I would just, I mean, be in airports and I would just be trash and people. And tell them stories and sing it songs. And at first I just did it for like seven minutes and it was 10 minutes. Then it became 20, then a half hour. And then I started going like, well, you know, yeah, you know, ask me some questions or I had this thing underrated, overrated for a while and YouTube video of the week. And I just sort of built like a show around it and, um, and it just kind of became what it became. Was it for shits and giggles or was there something?
Bill's podcast. (44:04)
No, I wanted to connect with fans, you know, it was a way to just, just another thing to do and, um, but it was also, uh, I enjoyed it. Because there's other ways to connect with fans that I don't enjoy. Like all those, um, those things you guys, when you upload your pictures, I don't like those because it says, can we have access to, to all your photos? And it's like, no, you can have access to this photo. You fucking weirdo. So I don't do it. You know, so I, I just don't do any of those, but then there's other stuff that like, this is the same thing. So like the mall thing again, like does this fit into the wheelhouse of what I feel like I want to do and it was just something I liked doing. So I just started doing it. So between, I should say during the period of your specials and then getting all the way to F is for family, what were the, what were the high points for you in that, that entire situation?
Defining moments in Bill's career. (44:50)
I didn't hear the question. I just heard that person groan it out there like, ah, sorry, sorry. We're getting down to the end of the question. That's a C minus question. Bear with me. No, I think it's natural. I'm working on my material. This acid's heartened from sitting down. So it's the beauty. We can go around. Here we go. So from the point that you started doing your specials up to F is for family, were there any particular inflection points or experiences that set you on the path that led you to where you are? Ah. The formative experiences. You know, I'm thinking of shapal shum, it's like breaking bad. I mean, you have, you have so much that you've done. I'm just wondering if any standout influence my comedy or just got me to where I'm at. Both either. All right. Well, getting me to where I'm at is like, you know, how long it took me to make it is like it's a bunch of people. It's comics that I saw when I was in Boston, people who gave me shots. Getting in at the comic strip was woman Amanda Shatz at MTV. She saw me in Boston and then she was like, I want you to, I want to see you in New York. And I couldn't get in at the comic strip. I remember Lushion going. I already have enough white guys, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And I remember all these white guys used to get mad about this, like reverse racism. And they want to say all this type of shit. And it's just like, dude, you know what he's saying. There's like, we're not even a dime a dozen. There's like, we're a dime for 60 of us. And if you're going to be another asshole coming in here talking about you cul-de-sac life, he already has that. So, you know, stopping a baby about it, right? Everything else is gravy for you as a white dude. So, I just basically was like, I remember thinking like, all right, this guy's, I'm going to get in here. I don't know how, but I'm going to get in here. And she saw me. And so, she hooked me up with the showcase there. Somehow, I did well. I got passed there, which led me to get into New York. And then through New York, just being there. I remember Dave Chappelle said some nice things to me one night saying that basically you're going to get there, but the road that you're going is going to take longer. But when you get there, you're going to have that staying thing. And I held on to that for years. And when I would be playing some shit-hole, I was just like, but Dave Chappelle said, you know. But then it was just, you know, a lot of radio guys. Jim Norton, get me in with Opie and Anthony was huge. Randy Bauman in Pittsburgh, because like, I would go to these markets and the guys that I really vibe with, like, they would give me the option to be like, hey, rather than flying in Thursday morning for your Thursday through Sunday, if you want to fly in Wednesday or Tuesday and just do radio the whole week, you know, I'll help you pack the place. And guys like Randy Bauman in Pittsburgh, I would do that. I would just come in, have no shows Tuesday, Wednesday. And I would just do four hours of radio in the morning, do the whole morning show, and then do morning on Thursday and Friday, just killing as hard as I could to, you know, get it like half full. Maybe they don't have to pull the curtain. And it was just all those types of things. And I guess, I've been doing this shit for a long time. So trying to be a breaking bad, breaking bad was huge because forever I wanted to play a guy like that. All right. But back when I had my hair and stuff, I looked like Ron Howard. So it was like, I was always the friend. I was the nerd. I just wasn't going to be that guy. And I just always wanted to play a guy like Cooby. And they gave me a shot. And then through that, all of a sudden I got these other roles like, you know, once you get it on tape and they can see that you can do it, then like, oh, we can do this. And then people will take a shot on you. So that was a huge thing. And I'd say Mike Binder with when I did black or white, which became black and white. Black. Yeah. What was it? It was the original name of it. But somebody already owned the copyright of that and they wouldn't sell it. And then we had to switch it to black or white. And it was like this trial about who should have the rights to watch this kid that was racially mixed was half white and half black. So black and white made it seem inclusive, but we had to switch it to black or white. So it kind of became like this, make a decision kind of five to it. But he let me, I got to play a lawyer in that and had all these great dramatic scenes and all that. And I got a nice like acting thing going on where I get to do some drama stuff. I get to do some comedy stuff. So it's been cool.
How does Bill deliver his humor without alienating the women all the time? (49:28)
Yeah. Speaking of Cosmo Magazine, this next question is from Marcus Harbaugh. I think is how you say it also from Facebook. My wife thinks he's hilarious and she's generally not a fan of pro male types of comedy. How did he learn to so expertly deliver that kind of humor without alienating his female audience? I alienated a lot of females. I do. I alienate issue people. I alienate politically correct people like they got like that thing where like, you know, this is the issue. You're only allowed to have this thought on this issue. I have zero sense of humor about this issue. These are all the proper words. These are all the, if you use these bad, if you use these words, this, you're this. If you use that, they're very like, it's hilarious because they're progressive left using the exact same like Fox News extreme right. They're the exact same fucking lunatics. I hate them, I hate progressive left people and I generally speaking and the Fox News to the right. They're taking our country, those people, those, I can't even listen to them. They're idiots. Yeah. They're like both of them and they both have both of them like, like their heart is in the right place. They just, they're not doing it, and they're doing it in this very Stalinesque kind of way of zero tolerance. And what's funny to me is the right always gets that the left just cannot see when they're doing it. It's like, you've become what the fuck you're fighting and you're annoying. You're annoying. So, I mean, I think that explains, you know, a little bit of the Trump shit, like how that guy kind of came up with it's like, you guys were ramming this shit down. Like, what's this is so fucked up. If you just look at politics, like Obama was a response to eight years of the Bush people ramming it down your throat, and he was a response to eight years of Clinton people ramming it down their throats. And then 12 years before that, you had Reagan and Bush. Both sides just can't present their shit. They got to be like, "Fuckin' eat it, eat it!" You know? And it's all it does is it causes resentment and if you look, the pendulum just keeps swinging like further and further and people sound fucking, right now people sound crazy to me on either side that I can't watch it. It's like, if anybody in the left gets in, it's like, it's going to be socialism. This is going to be like communist Russia. And if anybody right gets in, it's like, this is like Germany in 1935. Every fucking time just go in like this. So I don't know. Like I just try to just be like, "Alright, let's settle down." You fucking relax, get yourself a sandwich. Some of these things could be true. Some of them might not be true, but like getting into this, "Ah, ah, you're not going to be able to think clearly and be able to make the right move when you have to." I guess. So what we'll say. Now do you deliberately at times try to lose the audience? Like push them to the breaking point and like... There is something that I... And then reel them back. I mean, is that sort of a sport for you? What I used to do, that was from playing Hell rooms and no one would listen. So what I would do is I would make a statement that would make people be like, "Dude, what the fuck?" And thinking that I'm heading towards this thing, right? Like I would make a statement that would make anything, make you feel like I'm heading towards supporting the clan or beating women or anything like that. You just say that and that gets everybody to drop their fork to listen, to like, "Dude, what the fuck is this?" And then you just wind them back to the point that you wanted to make anyway. And then you're like, "Oh, all right. Okay, that's kind of funny." And then you just keep doing that. And then eventually, once I had the room, then I could just do my show. And I think a little bit of that started to bleed into my style. I don't... I mean, I don't do that anymore on purpose. When I was coming up, I used to do that on purpose. There was all these techniques. You could also start talking quieter, people talking louder. People used to say that. That never fucking worked for me. Then just nobody heard me. I was just like, "Okay, nobody's listening to my jokes." But you know, yeah, a lot of that came from, you know, all those crazy rooms I did. And I'm very proud that I did all those. And I didn't sidestep any of those. Like, I pretty much did all of them. I did the good rooms, the bad rooms, the white rooms, black rooms, gay clubs. I did everything because I really felt that I know why. I know why. Just remember this.
Why Bill played gigs in all the arenas that hosted variety acts. (54:06)
When I was a kid, not a kid, I was probably 18 years old. And it was the summer of '86 in Rodney Dangerfield. Late Great Rodney Dangerfield was on... He was on tour and he came to this place, Great Woods. Now it's called the Twitter Center. And I remember he came and he killed and he was hilarious and all that. I saw all these people there, blah, blah, blah, blah. And I didn't notice that they were all white because I was white. So I was just like, "Oh, wow, I'm watching this guy." And then like a month later, I saw Eddie Murphy on the raw tour. He had the blue leather suit. I had lawn seats. That's how famous this dude was. I was sitting on the grass watching a guy do a stand-up comedy. He had like the weather girls opened up for him and everything. And I remember that night looking around going, "Wait, this guy's making everybody laugh. This is the difference." So I remember when getting into comedy that I didn't want to be that guy like being like a radio station. He makes white males 18 to 35, you know? I wanted to be like, "No, this guy is funny, but the only way to do that was to do all of those different rooms." And it didn't always go well. Like black rooms are hilarious. It's like, what I learned about them is they're either going to have fun with you or without you. But either way, they're going to have a good time. That was definitely... Those were some of my favorite shows that I ever did. There was a legendary show at this now gone comedy club that's now like a fucking wine bar, which just kills me because I mean it was just the rust, sickest like in the village. It was right this Giuliani was taking over. So people were still selling drugs out in front of him. It was just, it was crazy. And I used to see like all these guys like young Dave Chappelle, Jay Moore, all these red Johnny in the round guy, all these guys just they've just murdering in there. But Sunday night was the uptown show because they wouldn't say the black only show, I guess. So they would say the uptown show and this guy, talent and Will Silvin's used to host that show. And that for me, that was the show. But to this day, like that was the most fun show I ever did was when you killed on that show, dude, it was like you walked out of like, why am I not famous yet? That's how hard it was. Everyone was on top of you. It was the greatest ever. But when you bombed, it was just like, why did I ever think I was funny? I should have opened a hardware store. Like you would just leave.
Random Facts About Bill And Parting Thoughts
My biggest advice to my 25 year old self... (56:40)
Those are some rough nights though. Back to the technically one bedroom that was really a studio and getting onto the futon just laying there. Yeah. A lot of grunting grown in the next day in the shower like, ah, God, I hate myself. What piece of advice would you give your 25 year old self? Oh, I hate that question. What do you always say that if you could go back and tell yourself what you know now? What did you dislike about your 25 year old self? If you prefer that question. Um, what did I dislike? No, I definitely felt like a freak back then. I definitely did not feel, I never felt like I fit in anywhere until I went to a comedy club and just seeing all the comics. And I was just like these, these people are the same kind of crazy than I am. You know what I mean? Like everybody's out of their mind, but like they, there was a specific way that they were nuts that like I just, like, I would just meet them. Like I, it's like I know this person, but I don't know them. Like they, it just felt like, um, in a weird way, like you were going home. It was crazy. But as far as like what I would tell myself, um, I would be afraid to fuck it up because it ended up so well. Yeah. You know, it's like that, uh, back to the school, not put back to the future, whatever the hell it's called. Um, I always mess up the name of movies back to the future where you change one thing and you know, you know, your mom wants to fuck you. However that happened. You still, whether that one of the storylines. Yeah. Calvin, maybe Calvin. Look at the feel good family movie. The mom wants to bang her son from the future. Oh, it was great for the kids. It was wonderful. Oh, the 80s. How old are you now? 48. What do you think your 60 year old self would tell your current self? Why some apartment buildings? Why some apartment buildings. Because you're going to be, you know, I, no, I want to do stuff like that because I want to, when I'm 70, I want to leave if I want to. I probably won't because I love doing it so much, but I don't want to be that guy in that mustard stain tuxedo suit. Just still, you know, as the numbers start going down the back nine and I'm like, oh, you have things to say. You know, it just people going like, oh, I saw him in front of like three people. It was sad. It was a, it was a donut making sheet machine in the back. I go back to those gigs. So I would like to not go out and, you know, I'm doing real well. I'm making great money. I would like to not go out and buy a bunch of dumb, shiny shit.
What does Bill want to buy? (59:16)
I would like to buy shit like assets. So I have money. So my next goal, the same way I did the thing where I never got sucked so far into this business where I had to apologize if I was even if I wasn't sorry. I, I now want to get the money that I'm making this business to make money outside of the business. So because eventually this business is done with you. Yeah. It just is. And you have to really, you got to deal with that shit. So like I would just love to be, to be honest with you, man, if I could just, you know, making a decent amount of money off a shit like that. Yeah, just always picture myself just sitting on the back porch, you know, with a dog not giving a shit, smoking a cigar. Like that's how I want to, what kind of stuff. I, I, they don't mess them up with global warming. If you can still make a great one, it'd definitely be a Cuban, probably a Robusto, the cohebbers I like. I like the part of this. I just smoked one recently. I don't even know the name of it was one of the sickest cigars I, I've ever smoked, but it was like, it was like a two hour smoke in a, I absolutely love cigars, but like, you know, there is a thing amongst cigar smokers where like if someone comes nosing around, you know, if you break up, you bust out like a box of cigars at a party, all these fucking phoneies will come up. Oh, yeah, you smoke cigars. Yeah, I smoke cigars and you'll learn this one time. You'll give out your cigars to them. And then what kills you is you'll look over like a half hour later and the things like halfway smoked and they already asked the thing out, just snubbed the thing out and I learned that. So I got a buddy, Bobby Kelly, I shouldn't out him here. I shouldn't have said his name. He has two, he has two human doors. He's got the real shit and then he's got his bullshit. So somebody comes over be like, so he just, yeah, he likes cigars.
Do you smoke cigars? (01:01:00)
Oh, yeah, what kind do you like it? If they just saying bullshit, I got one for you. I got one I wanted a carnival. Here you go. I was breaking this delicious. So but I really like smoking a cigar is a sacred thing to me. Like if I have a great cigar, like sometimes if there's no place to smoke, I will not smoke it. Like I'm not going to be this asshole. These fucking, they couple of my friends are animals. They'll stand next to a dumpster. Like, it's not as cigarette smokers are animals. They're like, they're on the shit, right? So they'll be in an alley. They don't care fucking rat running by. They're out there smoking, catching pneumonia. They're animals. Cigar smoking is a gentleman thing. It's like it's a, it's a brilliant and adult thing. And so it's just like, I want to be with people that I love telling stories, hanging out and like the right, the right everything. And then, and even if you're doing it by yourself, it's like you have to have, I'm never doing this like, well, can I, can I smoke it before blah, blah, blah? It's like, I just want to have nothing and I just sit there and that great guy thing that my wife cannot understand is just being able to be a guy and just be not thinking about shit and just be sitting there and just enjoying yourself. Next question is from Sharpie Sharp.
Best heckle? (01:02:12)
I would like to see that birth certificate. This is from Facebook. What's the best heckle that's been thrown your way or most memorable? There's too many, man. All right. We'll go around the, all right. When I was black room, best one I ever got, I was bombing at this place. Used to be called mixed nuts. It's now called the comedy union. And I was up there and do, when I tell you five minutes of straight silence, dry mouth, nothing. And it was the summertime when sound carries, right? And I'm just going and going and it's nothing and nothing. And then just in the middle of one of my jokes, I'm meandering in this long setup for something else that's going to bomb. It's big black lady in the back, just out loud to nobody, just sort of looked around and said, "I laugh yet." And the whole place exploded laughing. And I didn't know how to deal with it. I didn't know I had to address it. I kept trying to do my material. And then they were just laughing at me trying to do my, it was fucking humiliating. And then I don't know. There's one, I'll tell you the weirdest one I got. I've told this one before. One of the weirdest ones I got, I was at Danger Fields doing the midnight show. And it was just one of those nights, everybody was bombing. Place was packed and nobody was laughing. I remember the guy in front of me like, he was just bombing so bad. And he was on some show where he played a bartender. And he had gotten beaten up. It was like, "Oh, you guys see that movie? You guys see this movie? Blah, blah, blah." He goes, "Yeah, I played the bartender. The star of the movie beat the shit out of me. You guys see that?" And then some kid in the back just goes, "He should have killed you." So I was like, "Oh, from that guy walked past me, never even looked at me. Just when he got up stage, he just said this flop sweat and just walked by me, just going, "Wow." Wow. And then I went on stage immediately bombing. And there was this group of kids in the corner, these white dudes, and they were just like, just ready for a fight. They were just super fucking hot. They had that hole. My dad used to beat the shit out of me vibe. And everything I had learned up to that point was like, "Bill, don't get into it with them. I heard them talking." And I was just, "Don't say anything. Don't say anything." And I just, that's fucking thing when you're on stage as a comic. You think like this, and this is like some sort of like a fucking gun in bullets, but it's just plastic shit. And I just like, I finally said it, "Hey, you know what? What's going on over there? What are you guys talking about?" And blah, blah, blah. I can't remember what's saying. And this guy just finally just yelled out. You know, I had the, he goes, "Anything, he just yells out. He goes, "Anything read and on stage is a faggot." Right? And it was the most childish heckle I ever got. It was back when like people didn't freak out about that word. You guys were like, "Oh my God. What does that say about gay people?" This was when straight people used it. It just meant you were an asshole. And so he said that. I just remember like, I didn't know what to do. It was just like, it was so fucking childish. But I also knew he was going to like beat the shit out of me. So I just went like right back into my state, like my act. Like this almost like a kudos joke. You know? This right here, the reaction to that is why you can never leave the comedy clubs, by the way. Like, because that used to be a funny story. But now because of like, that now gay people said what that word makes us feel like. Now everybody, even if you say it and you say that somebody else said it to you, it becomes this weird thing of like, well does he advocate what he said? Like, it just becomes all of that and becomes like context and all of that shit. So that's what he said. I'll spend a few, a handful more questions.
You mentioned helicopter parents. Helicopters. Helicopters, yes. Let's talk about helicopters. All right. How did you, how and why did you get into helicopters? God, you just run in the gamut of everything here. Ah, okay. Helicopters, how did I get into that paranoia of living in California? Okay. Living in the L.A. base and enough conspiracy theory about nothing being behind the dollar. Crosscoming and all that type of shit. And this place became really claustrophobic. Well, it was just like, how the hell would I ever get out of here? When this shit hits the fan. How do you get out of here? Like, even when it's working well, it still takes three hours just to get out of here. Forget about some Armageddon shit. And I was just thought, you know, up and out. That's the way to go. Learn how to fly a helicopter. And when the zombies come, you just start it up and go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go, go. You just fly out. So assuming you're-- By the way, that does not work. If you ever see that in the movies where you just start the thing up and you fly out like that, I mean, you can do that, but you're going to fuck it up. Like, you got to let the-- they got like belts and stuff. You got to let those things stretch. You got to let the engine heat up and all that. So anytime you see Rambo and those guys just jumping in-- Jumping in the bank hole. Like a comerole. And you just-- I mean, if zombies were coming, I would definitely do that shit, but I'd be like going, "Hahaha!" Just how fly away like-- Please, don't let the belts snap. Then he just knows it down into one of those fucked-- Take one with you. Just imagining the visual. Just like a lawnmower just taking out zombies. The-- So do you have other preparations? Now, this has spoken to someone, so people think this is crazy. So in San Francisco and then in New York, it got really into-- At one point went off the deep end with prepping stuff. Like got really into it. Like going to canneries for LDS. You guys can look it up. You can really go down the rabbit hole. And some of you will spin out and get tied up in the straight jacket. But I-- and I was being kind of lectured at how unreasonable it was. Now silly it was that I was getting water and gathering food and all this stuff just in case we had disaster that took us off the grid for seven days or more in SF, which happens fairly regularly. And some editors were kind of making fun of me because I was writing at the time. And then Hurricane Sandy hit New York and lo and behold, nobody was prepared, right? So do you have besides the helicopter? Do you have other preparations? Nope. No. And I don't own a helicopter either. So it's pretty fucking useless. No, what it was was I went down that rabbit hole and you got to get gold coins and you got to get this powdered food and all that type of stuff. And then somewhere along the line, I was just like, do I really want to survive this? Do I really want to see what's next? Or do I want to be one of the people that dies? Like, and I realized, no, I want to be one of the people that died. JFK said it. The living will envy the dead. And it's true. I don't want to start over again. Some whole new society. I remember doing a, I used to do a bit on that. So we just pick it up a rake like these are the new rules. And you just all gather around with your burlap shirt with the string tied around it. I don't. Like, I remember when the fat dude who was running North Korea, right, the boss's son who's trying way too hard to show that he's a badass who's saying he was going to, he had missiles aimed at L.A. and everyone was panicking. I was like, perfect man. I hope it's right at my house. Right at my house. And I hope I'm watching the UFC or football Sunday just sitting in it, and then, and then and then just vaporized. Who you don't want to be is the people up in Bakersfield. Just outside of it, you still get the radiation with the boils and shit. You're trying to, your teeth are falling out. Fuck that. Trying to figure out how to catch squirrels. They have no desire to do any of that.
Final remarks (01:10:01)
Ladies and gentlemen, Bober! Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you. Thanks for having me on. Thanks very much. Have a great time. Have a great time. Thank you. All right. Thanks.
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5-Bullet Friday (01:10:14)
Hey guys, this is Tim again, just a few more things before you take off. Number one, this is 5 Bullet Friday. Do you want to get a short email from me? Would you enjoy getting a short email from me every Friday that provides a little morsel of fun before the weekend? And 5 Bullet Friday is a very short email where I share the coolest things I've found or that I've been pondering over the week. That could include favorite new albums that I've discovered. It could include gizmos and gadgets and all sorts of weird shit that I've somehow dug up in the world of the esoteric as I do. It could include favorite articles that I've read and that I've shared with my close friends, for instance. And it's very short. It's just a little tiny bite of goodness before you head off for the weekend. So if you want to receive that, check it out. Just go to 4hourworkweek.com. That's 4hourworkweek.com all spelled out and just drop in your email and you will get the very next one. And if you sign up, I hope you enjoy it.
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