Friday, April 13, 2012

Podcasting, not podracing

Several months ago my very good friend Eeon asked me if I would like to join him and our very good friend Pete in podcasting on Cutthroat Island over at Canned Laser.  I was confused, because their first podcast was of Robocop, which is a good movie, and Cutthroat Island is, well, a bad movie.  But of course I agreed, because I knew it was going to be a chance to talk about movies with Eeon and Pete, who are pretty much my own personal Mike Nelson and Kevin Murphy.  Eeon is one of my favorite people in the entire world; he has a wonderful Midwestern sense of humor and tends to take jokes to absurd levels.  No one makes me laugh harder.

Pete, on the other hand, graduated before I got to Binghamton University and was therefor only known to me in myth and legend.  I seem to remember him being about seven feet tall. We reunited at Eeon's wedding and I was surprised that he remembered me, because I did not recognize him in a tuxedo and of mere mortal size. I have since found him to be a phenomenal storyteller, the familiar legends each time taking on a slightly more mythic quality each time they are retold.

So in mid December 2011, I went down to Eeon's house, where he and his wonderful wife Bridget gave me a leopard print snuggie to sleep under and let me drink their expensive whole-leaf tea. I don't think it's possible to love and respect Bridget anymore than I already do, after all, she allowed me to give the speech from Independence Day at her wedding, whereas most brides in my social circle seat me somewhere between the kid's table and the kitchen as punishment for daring to speak to their husbands with my brazen, hussy propositions of "hey, want to come over and watch Cowboy Bebop and eat a jumbo bag Ranch Doritoes?"

I didn't realize that podcasting about a movie would require us to watch the movie, let alone twice.  I hadn't seen Cutthroat Island since college and despite my teenage love for it, found this part to be excruciating. We riffed.  We made notes on yellow legal paper.  I quoted along with the film, astonished at my own geekiness.  I was having trouble remembering the name of the diner Eeon and I had lunch at earlier that afternoon, but I could remember whole chunks of dialogue from a film I hadn't seen in five years.

By now, it was nearly 11 p.m.  Bridget had gone to bed, and Pete was just setting up the recording equipment.  The first take started around midnight.  We talked for about 45 minutes.  We did a second take around 1 a.m.  When you listen to the podcast, you start to hear where we're getting punchy and silly, where our words slur together and we trip over our phrases.  Those are from that take.

At around 2 a.m, we finished and went to bed.  Because Pete was staying over too, I had to surrender the couch, (but not the Snuggie) and slept on the loveseat with my knees drawn up.  Around 3a.m, I heard audio and wondered if I'd fallen asleep in the middle of recording.  Nope, it was just Pete.  I asked him what the hell he was doing.  Editing, I guess.  I fell back asleep with my own voice echoing back at me.

I have a bleary memory of Bridget leaving.  I was glad when she came back, because she brought back bagels.  We all ate like zombies.  She went to the movies and we three, still in our pajamas, watched the rifftrax of The Star Wars Holiday Special, too exhausted to do anything but lie there and take it.  If the rifftrax had stopped dead, we would have just kept watching.  That's how tired we were.

And if I had the chance, I'd do it a hundred times more.  It was a great experience, talking film with two people who love movies and make me laugh, even at 2am when I am punchy and tired.  Hope you all enjoy listening to the podcast as much as I enjoyed recording it.


  1. Great times. I think this experience especially wore on Eeon. I can hear the disdain at around minute 40, which was more like hour 3. Hope you liked the finished product. There's about 200% more in outtakes. Also for the record I was still at Binghamton your freshman year. Now it's epic story time. Here was our first and only conversation of the year. The backdrop: It's October 31st. Halloween. I was walking towards the Triangulon when I intercepted you outside your door. You were costumed. I was not. I asked "What are you supposed to be?" You replied "Lust" in a lusty voice. I said "cool." Then I walked to my room, made Gnocchi and watched Fist of the North Star.

    1. Did I really use a lusty voice? Lusty like Morgan Addams? I love how our epic meeting involves me in my slutty Halloween costume. You have brought my dorkiness full circle, my friend.

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  3. "We made notes on yellow legal paper." This is a critical point, since having notes means that we didn't need to have facts.

  4. . . . And white legal paper is for dopes

  5. Also, Pete, I want to hear all those outtakes and hope the two of you will make an outtakes reel of all your Canned Laser adventures in the near future.