This week we answer:

  • is nude or partially clothed sexier?
  • is Mad better than Cracked?
  • would you climb that?
  • does a friendship last over 40 years?
  • do the Crash Test Dummies still rock it?








Alan: Good morning, Alan. Good morning. There we go. I okay. Wow. You’ve neatened up the background. It

Stephen: looks great. Yes. Thank you for noticing. I’m glad I, I don’t look like a, a teenager putting up rock posters, . It looks official almost. It took me a while. I still, I keep saying I gotta put my muse shelf up, so I gotta get my muse shelf up.

That’s funny. So

Alan: we’re that this week, , I really was that guy in college. I had rock posters up of all my favorite groups. Usually on the dorm room, there wasn’t that much wall space, so I put ’em on the ceiling. So when you’d go to sleep, you’d see Pink Floyd and Kansas and Genesis and you know, like classic

Stephen: album come, you know, most guys put like girly pictures up on the ceiling.

So you’re putting rock band guy. I don’t know about that man. ,

Alan: actually, this is, so one of my summer jobs was I worked for a place called Clarkville Printing. If I remember correctly. And they did some of those girly posters, not explicit, but like who was popular back then? Cheryl Lad, Susan Anton.

And, and they had big print runs and not all the posters were perfect. And so I said, you know, hey, this is a little blurry, but do you mind if I take these? They’re just scrap. Anyway, that’s why over the course of my summer job collected them, I must have had like a hundred brought ’em to college and I didn’t, you know, that you’d go to the poster store and get ’em for five to 10 bucks.

I was like, how about three? How about one? And so all, all manner of people had Farrah Faucet majors, actually when she was fair, or Faucet wasn’t majors yet way back then because al the the naughty merchants, you know, it wasn’t porn, but, but it was the big hair and it was, I don’t know. Boy, there, there were like, there was one with Cheryl Ed where she looked like a classic, and this was going back really far.

Let’s see. Sorry, who was, did you ever see LA Confidential? And they Veronica Lake. Veronica Lake. She did a poster that looked just like a classic pose from Veronica Lake. And, and I’ve almost thought that you can really be beautiful without being perian. And I’m sure that I’ve just lost my guy card, you know what I mean?

It’s okay. And I, I’ve read all kinds of things, like if you’re in a, if you’re in a swimsuit or in lingerie or clothing, there’s something appealing to leave a little mystery. Not have it be, Hey, here I am naked, but it’s more whatever that wonderful final step is. Before she might like, you know, Dane to have you see all the treasure and stuff like that.

So I, I kinda like that. I like that there’s still beauty without it having to be full exposure, I guess, or something like that. And that’s what these posters

Stephen: were. Yeah, I agree. It’s more like you know, This sound, this sounds weird, but it’s more like looking at a, a piece of art that you can admire rather than just oh, there, and then, then it’s actually less interesting and more boring when there’s no, like you said, no mystery.

You know that, that’s

Alan: right. There was no buildup. There was no, you know, and, and that, to be clear, that wasn’t only the posters. As soon as I got to college, I regularly got Playboy and Penthouse and National Lampoon and things that were more adult, and then I was just like, you know, I, I can’t bring these into the house.

My mom and dad are respectable people, and I don’t think that they would’ve minded, but I, I never did it. I never got ’em and hit ’em under the mattress or whatever. The classic thing was, you know, you, you should have done that just

Stephen: so you could say you did it, you know?

Alan: Right. , but it was like graduating from mad to National Lampoon.

You know what I mean? But now when I go back, I, I, this is really a cool thing at one. Somebody collected like all the Mads ever published and put ’em out on a multiple DVD set. Right? Right. And, and I have worked my way through almost everything. Same with National Lampoon, same with Rolling Stone, a couple things where the, there’s really fantastic material that doesn’t age poorly.

You know, sometimes you really have to be, well, what they made fun of in the fifties was the politicians in the fifties. But then that’s how I learned a lot about whoever else it might be. So it, I have discovered that the sensibility that MAD has, I’m still, it very much formed me when I was young and I still find it funny.

And in fact, I did a presentation on Mad Magazine that was, you know, all, all about the history of it and how I got a chance to meet them in the office and stuff like that. And I don’t know that I have that level of affection for National Lampoon when I go back and read it now. It really was always punching down at least a lot, punching down, you know, it was.

I don’t know. Ivy League guys making fun of anybody who’s not waspy. And at the time the, they, there, there are some incredibly funny issues and they made fun of a lot of the right things, but they also made fun of things that nowadays are, are quite politically incorrect. Yeah. So now when I reread them, I get a little bit of, oh, I once found that funny.

But now I’d be like, that’s, that’s, that’s a cheap laugh. That’s not a, a really witty laugh. That’s just anger and hatred.

Stephen: Almost. Mad magazine, like you said, you could say it’s classier. You could say it’s more kid-like you know, it doesn’t take the adult theme. It doesn’t take the politics as hard, it doesn’t take sex themed and swearing as you know, like that.

It’s kinda like watching the Muppet. You know, there’s a certain group of people that don’t find that funny. But I always, it’s, it’s subtle humor. You know, and it’s something you can, you know, I had no problem with my kids reading mad. I had no problem with my kids watching them up until I tried to get ’em to watch more, but they didn’t know anybody that’s part of it.

They didn’t know who those people were, so,

Alan: okay. Yeah. You know, it’s funny, I don’t know, I don’t know if classy is the word, because mad Sure had its share of booger humor. Yeah. And, you know what I mean, that kind of stuff. But it just has, it has lasted better. It, it has, you know, the, maybe those themes of, I don’t know, everybody like trips and falls.

Everybody gets fooled. Mad Magazine very much gave you my sensibility of making fun of advertisers, of, of people that lie to you every day. The politicians that do the, the, the every advertising that is like, if you buy this car, you get the girl. And it’s like, how do we decide it was gonna be not? The car has good mileage.

The car is you know, it will, it’ll be reliable. It’s more like, oh, there’s a. A nice, a look, a nice looking she lad sprawl down the hood. . Right, right. And that’s the association that they create in your mind, you know, that kind of thing. So,

Stephen: and you know, you mentioned the, the pictures and stuff. I had a client for a while that collected, back in the day, the tobacco companies put out like 10 pictures and they were very similar to the ones you always see, like World War II bombers, you know, they would draw on the sides.

Okay. They were the cigar girls short skirts and little hats and stuff. But he collected those that that was a big thing. Yeah. And they were sexy without being uh, slutty like you said, you know? Exactly. And so there, there is that, you know, and I think, honestly, you say that to women and they never believe you.

They’re like, yeah, sure. Right. All guys wanna see is the naked one. No, no, that’s not true. it really,

Alan: that’s, you know, it’s kind of funny. I’m pretty sure that if you look at it historically, there’s so much. , exotica and erotica. That was what first inspired any number of sculptors, painters, right. You know, like, you really gotta commit if you’re gonna like etch something into stone that happens to also be beautiful

You know what I mean? So I, I dunno, that’s, that’s such a boy sweeping statement. Sex is so tricky. There’s so much like there isn’t any one standard. When somebody tells you that it’s this way only or this way, it’s like, man, that just doesn’t take into account the 8 billion people who have all kinds of different tastes, all kinds of different quirks, all all kinds of like different cultural and environmental situations and stuff like that.

So the standards of. Across the world are quite different. Occasionally have, you know, you’ll see the various different mis universes, Uhhuh , but for all the various different countries, and it really is, wow, she’s beautiful. Argentinian Lee, but I don’t know that that’s the same as beautiful Nordic Lee or whatever else it might be.

And, but they’re both beautiful, you know what I mean? I, I, that’s, I, I, this is kind of funny. I really find all kinds of people beautiful, right? And so whenever, when someone sells me, you know, wow, I really have a thing for named Asians. Like so much that you exclude others because there’s beauty to be found so many places and not just guy girl.

It, it really is. You know, when I see a handsome man, I don’t have the sexual attraction and, and, and I don’t know the 1% that we all do. You know what I mean? Right. Be, but it really is and, and sometimes when I see some of the people consider pretty or handsome and I don’t get it, it’s not like I’m sure that they are not indeed pret or handsome.

It’s that they’re just not to my taste. Right.

Stephen: So, and, and I tried to explain to somebody, it’s not just the outward looks. You can have someone that looks good, but then when they open their mouth and some of the things they say or whatever, sure. It’s just like totally turns me off and I can’t view them.

Physically pretty any longer because that personality and thoughts and stuff affect me so much as to how I view the person. And I, and I’m go, I’m gonna throw the name out. So if she’s, here’s wind of this and I get sued. , this is what an example is Kelly Pickler who I don’t really know. This is the only reason I know her.

You know, a lot of people say, yeah, she’s pretty, she’s got a good voice and all this. But she was on, is she like a, she’s a newscaster, I think, right? No, a singer. She was on America’s Got Talent or voice, you know, one of those type of things. Okay. And she’s been in like a reality show now, whatever. Okay.

I, I don’t keep up with her, so I don’t really know because Yeah, she was on Foxworthy, are you smarter than a fifth? . And it wasn’t that she got stuff wrong. That’s okay. Everybody, you know, when you’re in school, you know this stuff, right? When you get out school, it slowly fades away cuz you’re not hit with it every day.

Right? So yes, it is gonna be harder for a 35 year old than answer some of these in fifth, fifth grader. I get that. But they encourage you to talk out loud. Okay. And then your thoughts. And she was doing that and I’m like, dear God, how stupid are you? ? I mean she’s like saying stuff like, yeah, DC that was like our 50th state, right?

Washington DC was our and, and Canada. What, what, what, what state? No, that’s not a state. That would be Canada can, that’s in England or something, isn’t it? I mean, she’s saying stuff like that. She’s like, that’s, and she wasn’t England. And I’m just

Alan: like, she wasn’t faking it. She wasn’t doing it to like tweak fox or something like that.

It really seemed to be wow, there’s no governor on and there’s a whole bunch of nothing to debris that has to be gone through to dig for the answer.

Stephen: Yes. Wow. So now when I look at her, I don’t view her as pretty because that’s what sticks in my mind and I can’t see the, the, the nonphysical is super important and it affects how the physical is viewed to me.


Alan: absolutely, boy, I, I think that that’s true for many people. You know what I mean? And, and I don’t know, being both in Mensa, there’s even a term like sap p sexual, you know, where you’re attracted to intelligence. It, it absolutely, absolutely. You know, I don’t know. I went to, I got outta college and I had lots of intellectual stimulation because college is, is full of people at that level, if you will.

And I got out and would be invited to parties and, and would be, you can’t help it. You walk into a room and you scan and you see like, okay, here’s the people out of attraction, the half dozen out of 30 or whatever like that, that I would like to go talk to. And then how often it was, oh boy, what a pretty smile, but not a lot of light on behind.

And just a little bit of conversation can give you that. What they talk about or the kinds of questions that they ask or how quick they are to respond. Any number of things. And I just, I really was before I joined Mensa, I really was aware that I’m, I’m not everybody’s cup of tea and I’m gonna have difficulty in the dating world because I, I really can’t be, I can’t not have a good conversation.

I can’t be bored. I can’t be, please catch up. I, I, I, so some things that people want to talk about a lot are like, boy, that that’s just so low level. You know what I mean? There’s a famous, you know, what kind of people talk about people versus ideas. And, and I really have a need for Mensa almost talks about one of the reasons that you join is because people get your jokes.

Yes. Right? And how many times I was at parties where I said what I thought was a pretty witty aside, or that it was, if they get this joke, then they’ll have read the same thing, seen the same thing, have that same odd connective humor that I have. Right. And if they don’t, if it falls like a lead balloon, it’s like, wow, I’m now, I’m the oddball.

Now I’m, I’m made to feel like, does that guy always say weird things? Right. Well, cuz he is hoping, he’s hoping that there will be a fellow weirdo, I guess. Right? You know what? Oh, well I totally get that. Many pe many smart people had that same occurrence. And it, I think that it’s such a delight. I don’t know.

Colleen, my wife, the first time that we really had a one-on-one conversation time just faded away. And it was at a, an annual gathering as I recall. And there’s so many things to do at an annual gathering. There’s programs coming up that I wanted to go to and games I wanna play and other people I wanna see and.

there’s magic. When you’re with somebody that’s like, you keep on connecting, you keep on having each other laugh, you keep on like, wow, that she said a little thing that I would love to talk ano another hour about. And so we really didn’t want to, people talk about this all the time where the first date goes until like two in the morning and you, you and you, you wasn’t dragging on at all.

It was like, I still don’t wanna part, you know what I mean? Can, can I, can I make up some excuse for, you know, the walking you to the door and then like, what I wanna do is come inside and be with you? Not, not more than that. It’s just such a delight to have some of you feel that wonderful connection with, and happily, luckily Colleen and I have that to this day.

You know, one of the reasons that we do our driving vacations is because when you’re in the car, you’re reading the signs and talking about and, and things that have. Background stuff that can, can kind of now be talked about at more at length or more maybe cuz you’re like not looking at each other.

Holly would talk about this, that with her and her son Tim, they had some of their most important talks where they weren’t facing each other, where it was just what they were saying. Not all the body language that has you kind of tune to, are they, are they angry about this? Are they embarrassed? Or whatever else it might be.

And so Colleen and I have had that to a certain extent as well. The how is your life going? Conversations are often just like, we’re gonna drive down to Johnson Woods, you know, the old growth forest in, in, in central Ohio. And it’s like an hour, hour and a half drive. But you can, you can have a wonderful conversation that’s not, oh, the phone just rang, oh we have something else to do, we, et cetera, et cetera.

Right? So as usual, I, I go on a little bit too much, but that wonderful attraction that is more than the physical, it’s just. I, I’m glad that people like my sense of humor. Some people have said to Colleen like, kinda is he always like this and, and, and in a way of like that it would wear them mouth that it was burn them out.

And she’s like, yeah. And I love it.

Stephen: Yeah. It’s so nice to have someone that makes me

Alan: belly laugh at least once a day and it’s not like I’m almost trying new material out on her and stuff like that, but it really is, we just have that same always little playing with language, playing with the circumstances of the day.

Some part of how you have to get through some terrible situations in this world are to be able to say something witty about a horrible person or a horrible situation. You know, war isn’t funny, you know, genocide isn’t funny and. You kind of can’t go mad with just all the, the battering of terrible that you get from just tuning into the news channels nowadays.

Right, right. You know, so almost always when people say too soon, it’s like, no, it’s always the right time to have a little bit of, of safety valve and, and especially the kind of humor that you’re making, you’re not making fun of the fact that people died. You’re making fun of the crazy extremism that would’ve led someone to be able to say, I don’t like you because you eat

Stephen: the wrong pasta, but what, what the hell?

How does your mind not

Alan: work

Stephen: that that’s actually

Alan: a voting

Stephen: issue for you? Right. Oh, well, . Okay, so I wanna hear about the, what you’ve done on the weekend, but I got a joke first. Sure. . Ready? Yes. What do you call when two men are mansplaining to each other? .

Alan: Well, an infinite loop. No. Don’t know.

Stephen: a podcast.

Alan: Oh, . Ouch.

Stephen: Ow , I’ll tell you about that. I heard it at a concert the other night. So I’ll tell you about that in a bit. But first, I, I wanna hear about the Band Film Fest Festival. Cuz I know you went to that and I know they do a lot. I, with the, the horror reviews. Reese and I seem to pick a lot of award-winning movies at festivals at Cairns and Ban and Sun sundown Sun, whatever.

And, but it doesn’t seem like a lot of them are in the theaters, big popular movies, you know, that’s almost two different segments. So I’m interested to hear about the weekend and what you. Right.

Alan: And in fact, Banff is very much like that. And, and uh, it’s Sundance, if I remember correctly by the way. Yeah.

Sundance. Sundance, exactly. So it’s very much like adventure movies, outdoorsy type movies. And so they, they aren’t featured in theaters and they’re not full-length movies. There’s often like a six and a 12 and a 20, and then there is a 60 minute movie occasionally, depending on the subject matter and how much it gets explored.

And it’s cool because you get exposed to, there really is someone that’s gonna try to climb El Capitan like without a rope. They’re, they’re really so good at free climbing that they really could die. They could follow their death, but they’ve got the whatever incredible skills that they can do it.

And it’s not only mountain stuff, it’s going on deep sea diving. It’s kinda like adventure films. You know, they go exploring ice caves, they go biking on things that like, wow, that’s the width of a bike tire. And yet you’re going to. Go across a river on like the top of a fence or whatever else it might be.

It’s inspiring. It’s a little bit crazy. Like there’s people that are indeed one of the ones that featured this last time was people that love doing free climbing. Well, a lot of what you do, you find a, a, a crack, you know, a fault in a thing, and you can, you can wedge hands and feet in there to get a grip and move your way up.

So they, at one point they were underneath a bridge like a, like maybe like, you know, a value duct like this. And they saw that in modern road construction, there’s often a gap between sections of the road so that it has a little bit of give and sway. You know, if you’re doing a 2 46 lane thing, it you have to give the ability for it to, to change with the, the, the weather and stuff like that.

Right? Right. And so they said, can we cross like this thing, just using that gap hanging straight down from the gap on the underside of the road. And they did it on a small one. It’s like, well that was kind of challenging. What’s the biggest one we can do? And they found one on the M five in England that was like a quarter mile long or something like that.

And you know, gravity is working against you, every single thing. And it wasn’t just hands, they had the special little clamps where, where it can actually, it expands into the thing, but you’re still, you’re holding your entire weight the entire time that you’re doing this. And they just started off.

And in four days, maybe I’m un mis I might be underestimating how long it was, but it took ’em four days to cross this. And when they get to the other side, it’s like, well, we know we’re insane. We know that nobody else really cares that we did this, but we wanted to see if we could. And we did. And they had people that.

Maybe like the people that go to the Ban Mountain Film, ban bumped film festival are the ones a woman each day came to like where they were and they let down a rope and she put a pizza into the rope cradle and they bring it up and they hung their sleeping overnight in their hammocks that they had anchored into this gap and had pizza.

You know, so Tanya, who, you know what I mean, was their friend that in one case they were over a river and she had to actually row out in a canoe and still deliver them their pizza. Oh. So it’s a wonderful thing because everybody else that goes to the festival, they’re kind of into that. They wanna know what’s the cool hike to go on, what’s the, what’s it like to go up on the Mount Everest base camp and already be such rarefied atmosphere that you’re needing oxygen and you start to get, oh my God, I’m, my eyes are bleeding, or whatever else it might.

and yet could I, could I do it? And so everybody there, they’re not, everybody is like noticeably str. They’re not all healthy and perfect. But so many of these adventurers, when you look at ’em, they’re not the perfect physical specimen where they’re buffing themselves up in the gym and then they go do this.

They just have will. They just have curiosity. They have tolerance for pain. And so they go, I’m gonna climb a mountain in the middle of the jungle and if I get malaria on the way, then that would be unfortunate, but I gotta climb that mountain. You know, that whole Right. Edmund Hillary because it is there, type thing.

Right, right. And so it’s kind of interesting to see obsessives or amused people that have made their amusement into a career. So many of these people don’t seem to have a job. It’s not like, well, I had two weeks and so I went to Aconcagua, you know, in the Andes and climbed it. They seem to get like, there’s a whole underground of the equipment people, the doers and the robs and the north faces and stuff.

They sponsor people to do these kinds of things. Cause it’s gonna make for a good adventure film. And I don’t know how much does it cost to sponsor a person for a year, pay their expenses a hundred k or something like that. But they’re gonna get this amazingly cool always that says Eddie Bauer on the, on the thing.

And so that subtle advertising of, wow, if I had my Patagonia hat on, I could do amazing things, . You know what I mean? So the Dumbo feather, it’s just such a wonderful atmosphere. And every year there’s something new, you know, there, there are people that are rafting, things that are like Class five Rapids that have never been run before and it’s in the middle of Ecuador or, Nigel or something like that, where like if they have a problem, they, there’s not even a guaranteed that someone’s gonna be able to like, helicopter in and get them because it’s a cleft in the rock that, et cetera, et cetera.

So I guess it’s fun to just celebrate a little bit of harmless madness. They’re only putting themselves at risk and when they triumph, it really is. Man, that’s just amazing that they could pull that off. And it really does inspire you. Well, I could go for a walk in the metro parks a little more often and put on my boots and very much it.

They’re all pa to being outdoors is healthy. Getting that change of scenery, getting that fresh air, being an old growth forest, being in the, in view of mountains. They, they have skiing things where like someone gets, they don’t just helicopter and get dropped. They climb up a crag where it really is like a sheer apex where there’s snow on one side that you can kind of climb On the other side, there’s a shear drop, and they climb all the way to the top, take those skis off, that they head on their back for this entire climb and shush, boom, all the way down this impossible.

How are they not dying? You know what I mean? They’re like finding exactly the line that’s not gonna have ’em scrape themselves to death on rocks. Right? Go off too much of a cliff, start an avalanche, whatever else it might be, and, and like they climbed. Eight hours to be able to have an hour run. Cuz some of these mountains like to go from top to bottom.

It’s, it’s long, it’s a lot of work. And yet everybody, almost everybody that concludes their things, they’re just glowing with, ha was that cool or what? And, you know what I mean? I, I just love that kind of stuff. To see people build mountain bike courses that other people then can say, well that was just so perfectly tricky and he knows enough from having done other mountain biking courses that if I do this slightly different, it’s gonna make a new wrinkle and people are gonna flock to this place in the middle of Alberta or whatever like that.

Because another thing was British Columbia, right near Vancouver that there’s. I don’t know. I, I, we have gone probably, it was early on in my coming to Cleveland then I discovered this, and it actually has been multiple places in Cleveland, but it’s they do the actual festival up in Banff, like the first, last week of October, first week in November.

And then they bundle the award winners and best ofs and, you know, the audience appreciation awards and stuff. And they do what’s called the World Tour, where they book it in all different kinds of cities around the United States, most often in independent theaters, because that’s the one that will say, we’ll give you an entire night of this.

And so we saw it at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. Then we saw it at Playhouse Square, and now it’s been at the Capitol the last couple years. And they not only have the movies, but they have like little booths there in the lobby for, here’s the Cleveland Shore Kayaking Club, here’s the climbing club, here’s the share the waters.

A lot of environmental and conservation concerns. It’s just, like I said, those people are just, it’s so cool. They’re like, everybody is here in. Under Armor and Boots, and they, they kinda like, I don’t know, Colleen and I dress up to look like we belong because we have the woolen gear.

Stephen: You know what I mean?

Yeah. And

Alan: I, I just, it’s a highlight of our year for something so oddly specific, but it really is kind of a self-fulfilling, wonderful virtuous circle of every time we see these movies, we’re like, you know, we really could do Al Capitan and use the there, there’s a way to climb so that you use chains that are like, you know, put into the thing.

And it really is a sheer drop on each side, but it’s a chain. It’s not going anywhere. And as long as the wind isn’t too high and as long as it’s not raining, you just gotta say step by step, link by link. I’m gonna climb here. And then there’s the vista. And that’s anybody who is a mountain hiker like that, they’ll tell you That’s so much worth it when you get to the top of Angels Landing in Zion.

If you get to any number of places that we’ve been to, and just the world is laid out underneath you. And it’s that difference in perspective of look ants, you know, little people down there all the way at the start of the trail, you’ll look back on the series of switchbacks that you came up to at Refrigerator Canyon, and you’re like, we did that.

We, we climbed that. It’s very satisfying to not be helicoptered in, but instead, me and my boots and my legs and my wind got me up here. And luckily, another thing that Colleen and I share, she’s wonderfully hardy. You know what I mean? She’s, she’s not a little flower on waiting to be. She’s so sure.

Let’s, let’s try that. She’s got stamina. She’s got will. It’s a delight to find someone that like, they’re willing to go, Hey, there might be some, some mountain goats up there. Okay. Wouldn’t we be lucky if we saw one as opposed to, but what if it butts me off the cliff , you know?

Stephen: Yeah. Yeah. Well, I’ve never done anything that extreme and I don’t know if I, I really would, especially at this point.

But I did used to do some backpacking when I was in scouts. Yeah. And we went backpacking on a two week trip out in New Mexico near Cimarron when I was like 17 or so. And it was in the mountains, in the woods for two weeks. We had our backpack with everything on it. We did not see civilization. And it really was, I mean, it wasn’t anything like, oh my god, cliffs and mountain climbing.

But we did go to the top of a mountain. It had a trail, you know? Mm-hmm. And lots of people did it. It wasn’t like only a couple people did, but being up that high and seeing everything. But the, the worst part was we, you know, this was 88. And we really were in remote areas cuz I had an accident due to a borough.

Cantankerous borough. And I smashed my head and had a concussion and a bleeding and, and they said, well it’s going to be a 20 minute walk to get to a Jeep trail and then a two hour ride to get where the helicopter can pick you up if we have to go to the hospital. That’s how remote you were? Yeah.

Wow. Okay. So it was, and, and, and I mean they had some Jeep trails they could get to most of the camps, but not all of them. There was once it, it just started storming and we got off, we were in a Jeep trail that was down in a little culvert almost and we got up higher cuz it started raining. You get flash floods.

Yes. And literally there was a little rain cloud that went bopping along down the Culver area and we watched it go right past us. .

Alan: So, you know, I, I’ve done the narrows, which is a, a great hike in. Zion National Park, where the Virgin River is what cut that entire valley. And you go from the start where it really is a trickle and you follow as it carved the path through.

Well, regularly you have to check with the Rangers to make sure that there’s no chance of rain whatsoever. Right. Because indeed, all those little tributaries, they join in and that thing comes through like a freight train. And every single year people get swept away, battered to death by being in the wrong place when the power of water is gonna, yeah.

There’s no place to go on some of these stretches. There’s, there’s at least a like an hour part of the trail where. You really have to do a final check of if you start this, there’s no way out. Except through. Right. And if you start to get rain, you’re really in trouble. walking to get to a high rock or anything, you know what I mean?

So like

Stephen: walking along that railway behind you if a train started coming. . Right, exactly. . So, so the one, one thing I remember the most, and it’s a fond memory well two things. One of, when we hiked, when you backpack like that, you try and cut down on your weight. And nowadays they have really light gear, so it’s a lot easier.

But back then they didn’t. So instead of carrying pots and pans for eating and dishware, we carried large tournament frisbees and we ate off our Frisbees, clean ’em, and then we’d play Frisbee afterwards at night. That’s so smart. Exactly. And, and one of the, the guys was just really ticking someone else off.

I forget what. and they grabbed this Frisbee and threw it off the side of a mountain. And we watched that thing soar for like 35 seconds. It just kept going and dropping and you know, it didn’t hit the ground. Well then he

Alan: has no plate,

Stephen: then he has, right? They, they, they had to share the other plates. So whatever that was on you.

But the best part was you really learned some physics too, because you are a higher, so the atmosphere is less, it’s not as much pressure, so it doesn’t take as much for things to freeze and and all that. So we were at the, near the top of a mountain, going around a corner now it was 74 degrees and we were hiking, sweating, we were, in short, we come around the corner and it was in the shadows with the wind blowing up high and there was snow all over it with a field of snow.

So we have a picture of us having a snowball fight in shorts and that, that was a great memory. I love that one. .

Alan: That’s, you know, Colleen and I, and we, there’s only been a couple trails that we have turned back from because it was just the two of us. You know, there’s other bunch people, other people on the trail.

But when you’re there, So there was, we went in the Badlands, there was a place where they had like the walls, the windows, there’s three in a row that are various different features, and one of them has a ladder that you have to climb that’s part of the trail. And to get to the next level. And it wasn’t difficult going up on the way down.

The rungs were spaced enough that I could always, with my longer legs, feel the next rung, and then, you know, it’s there and then you lower your weight onto it while you’re holding on and you’re always doing three points of contact and all that kind of stuff. That was not the case for Colleen. She regularly had, like, I was below her.

Like as if, if she starts to fall, well I’ll catch her and I’ll take the thud at the bottom. You know what I mean? Right. But I’m not gonna be able to necessarily stop her. It really unnerved her to continually have to commit to, I know the rung is there. I know that the angle is like this and that if I just clinging to the wall, I’m not gonna fall.

But she regularly had to like, let her wait, go down, knowing the wrong was gonna be there two or three inches lower than her getting a toe onto. and forever after, we don’t do that anymore because it’s so much, she just was on there saying, I hate this, I hate this. And she was smart and safe and we made it down, but I don’t wanna take her on someplace where I hate this, I hate this.

Yeah. You know what I mean? We, we’ve been smart about that kind of stuff since then. And a couple places, like you said, where we’re doing a series of box cannings and the trail can clings to the side, and then you get to one where instead of being nice and level, it’s a little bit more of an angle and there’s gravel.

So your footing is not secure. And it’s like one wrong step. And I’m over the side, you know what I mean? I, there’s no way to hold onto a sheer wall there. Would I be able to correct in time? Could I drop to my knees? What would I do? And we just kind of said, today, my jurisdiction ends here, . You know what I mean?

Straight outta Silverado. I just, there’s, we go do this for excitement and enjoyment, but not for, I gotta prove that I could do this, what you did. You know, that kind of cool. Deep woods. We’ve never done backpacking and tenting and where we really had to be self-sufficient. We’ve done long hikes, 10, 12, 15 miles.

But at the end of the day, we got back to the hotel room and had a lock on the door and a bed in a shower and food. Right. And it wasn’t, you know, having to rough it, if you will. So Colleen always laughs about her idea of roughing. It is no remote control. . That’s my cousin too.

Stephen: Yeah, exactly. I remember the first time I went whitewater a rafting.

Mm-hmm. . We had never gone teenager, a bunch of friends. It was another scout group thing. And they, they kind of put the fear of God in you at times. It’s like, stay in your boat, help people in it’s, you know, can be unsafe. And it, the rightly so, because people don’t understand that the water is a lot harder, faster than they.

And if your foot gets caught in a crag, it could lay you down underwater and you’ll drown in, you know, just a few inches of water stuck Exactly.

Alan: When you can’t free. Yeah, exactly. And,

Stephen: and so, wow, the first little rapids we went on and it, the water was a little high. And this is the other thing, if it rains a lot, there’s not as much rapids cuz the water’s higher.

So it’s not getting that turbulence from the rocks and stuff. When it gets lower, that’s when the rapids get worse. So you gotta be aware of that. So it, it, it was pretty strong rapids and we’re going through and they had said if someone falls out immediately grab ’em and get ’em back in the boat. You know, we’ll come and help you.

We got guys in kayaks, so we’re paddling along, we’re a little nervous. First Rapids and one of our friends falls out, he gets knocked out, hit a bump and jump right over the edge. Oh man. And we get so nervous and he, another of our friend reaches over, grabs. My friend Eric, who’s a little shorter and yikes, as hard as he can, and flings him clear over to the other side, off into the water on the other side.


Alan: not into the boat, but .

Stephen: And then we’re all scrambling trying to get him in the boat. We’re panicking. He goes, stop, stop, stop. And he stands up and it’s like, you know, two inches of water. He’s like, I’m fine. Let me in the boat. You know? Right.

Alan: But that you don’t realize that it isn’t the depth that’s gonna get you, it’s the incredible force of all that water running at 30 miles an hour or

Stephen: whatever they, yeah.

Yeah. And, and they had a, a rock, they called pinball rock. This was over on the ahei. And I I, if you got through just right, you might scrape this one side and go through, but if you hit this other rock, it always bounced you into that one and flipped you. And they said it was like assured if you hit pinball rock, you were flipping.

Exactly. And you don’t always have the best control going through that. And we hit pinball rock and we flipped. And we were all un it was scary cuz you go underwater and it’s all rushing and you’re

Alan: like, it’s turbulent. You can’t


Stephen: you know, which way is up and stuff like that. So we come up and they’re coming in with to get us and throwing ropes and stuff and they got so mad at us cuz my buddy comes up and he’s laying there and goes, Hey, can I get a pizza to go

So from then on we were like, you know, okay you guys were keeping an eye on cuz you’re troublemakers .

Alan: Right, right. Well it, when they had the kayaking things, they had definitely, you know, here’s the line they’re gonna take. And in some cases they go off a waterfall. They went off a hundred foot waterfall in Ecuador and we had actually it’s Nori Newman that is the, the hero hero of this.

And we had just seen her in another documentary on Netflix or something like that. So we kind of knew a little bit about her, but her just like looking at the water and being able to say, that’s the line that’s gonna get me at least over the waterfall safely. And then you still have a hundred foot drop where you’re trying to make sure that you don’t change the orientation of your thing.

You can’t lose your paddle and yet, People do that. They have a, a feeling for how to do it. And sometimes they’re just like, I gotta know, I gotta go. You know, it, I’m, I’m pretty sure that even if I get to the bottom, and indeed I flip, I know how to do the little maneuver where I rate myself and there’s not so much there’s a lot of foam at the bottom, but not rocks that I can actually bash my head open bash.

But one guy did like break his back, you know what I mean? It really, and that’s like, I, I can’t imagine the pain of that and then still having to like adrenalize yourself and get to safety on the water. And then they say to somebody else, you know, that was really fun, but I can’t feel my legs. Wait, what?

What? So they’re, they, it isn’t all happy. This is a couple years ago, by the way. The band film, film festival kind of went silent for a couple years because you can’t do that thing in a big theater during Covid. Right? So the last year that we saw it before it finally got revived this year, They had people that went on, I believe, the Orange River in Nigel or Nigeria, and it really was some rapids that had never been run before.

Class five, all just terrible. They made it through incredible peril. And then they’re out on, I’m trying to think, maybe Lake Victoria. And while they’re, there’s two canoes, one guy’s here and he’s like talking to the camera, well, we did it, et cetera, et cetera. And the next canoe behind them, all of a sudden a guy is gone, an alligator came up out of the water after they had done all this death defying stuff and survived and took him and, and maybe a crocodile.

I don’t mean to get my that on film, or I just, it was like, and they had a little postscript. You know, they often will say like in documentaries, Hey, this guy is now in prison. This guy is now a successful business owner. Well, that’s what they had is that, you know bill. Indeed made it all the way through and then was lost to a gator.

Wow. Like what It’s, it was such a, like, everybody walked out like quiet and like looking up at each other and just shaking their head like, that’s not right. That’s so not right that they, oh, well. So there’s all kinds of joy, but there’s also where someone, a, a guy that has done tons and tons of bunny suit things, you know, you get one of those suits that has little like a flying squirrel, right, right, right underneath.

And they jump off the matter horn and they zoom and they go and go. And the really difficult stuff they survive and then like on a practice run it, they caught a tree and spun and killed themself and like, oh, that’s, you know, . Wow. You know, it, it really was one of the best in the world. Has taken all the precautions, all that kind of stuff, but it’s what they’re doing.

Some things that if you let your guard down for a minute, It’s, it’s not walking on a sidewalk. It is defying stuff. ,

Stephen: You remember the Microsoft Connect from about 10 years ago? I still have one, but you know, it’s not a big deal anymore. Okay. They had a game like that where you would fly in one of those suits and, and you’d hold your arms out and you’d have to guide yourself.

That’s as close as I wanna get to the real thing. I, I’m good with that. It looked good. Maybe if I get one on vr Okay. I’ll do that. But yeah, I, I, my feet are on the ground. I’m good .

Alan: Right. And there’s just enough, you know, like you read about, oh, son Bono died because even though he was a really good skier, he hit a tree.

Right. And just that if you’re going whatever, 40 miles an hour, your body is a little pale, pink envelope, . And there’s so many ways for a rib to go into your heart or break your neck Yeah. Or whatever else it might be, that you can be instantly gone. You know what I mean? And, and so we. I, I’ve only been skiing like twice in my life and I don’t know that I’m looking to take it up now in my sixties because I know my reactions are slightly slower.

I know that my knees and ankles, if I screw it up, it’s kind of screwed up for life. I’m not gonna come back from, you know, rugby tough and heal overnight. So we, Colleen and I, you know, we have our limitations. We wanna do cross country skiing more than regular skiing because you’re kind of always under your own control.

And if you gotta go up and down a little hill, you’re sure not, you might fall over . You’re not gonna fall over into a chasm . Right. You know that. Agree. So,

Stephen: oh, well , so, so for these films you mentioned you saw somebody on Netflix, you know, it’s all of these. So what, what do they, I mean, are these, are they doing these to try and lead to something bigger?

You know, is it just for fun? It

Alan: seems to be for fun and that people really have that need to explore, to test themselves, to, to be the first to do certain things and stuff like that. And like I said, there’s an entire interesting underground economy, if you will, for the, the people that make that kind of equipment.

They seem to be the ones that are gonna sponsor. These guys are going up into Nepal, and they’re and we will pay for their transportation and their equipment and that kind of stuff. Just let us have the guys recording you and we’re gonna, we’re gonna make it into one of these things. So I, I don’t know the economies of it except that they don’t every year Banff gets more submissions than they can put into the movie festival.

And, you know, that’s, there’s a camaraderie I guess that comes from you start off and you’re just doing things and maybe you’re recording it as a YouTube video nowadays, you know? Right. People are doing incredible things on bikes. No problem. One of the things like six year, six minutes along only was do a wheelie.

and there’s a guy that like can do wheelies in ridiculous circumstances and then hop on his back tire from like one there there’s a railroad and he hops from one rail to the other. Like who has that am amazing balance and body control. It can rear your weight up and poop over here. And so I think that there’s a lot of, if you will, try out, just like there are people that record themselves in YouTube videos singing like the Justin Beepers of the world.

And then this might be a thing where you never really break out because this isn’t enough popular that you can make millions doing it. But the Tony Hawks of the World that did all the cool skate tricks and the people that built up the X Games, that all started off. Very much counterculture and underground.

And then they started to say, well, there really are some people that do amazing things here and we could set up exhibitions or competitions. And they kind of built it into that. Now those things are in the Olympic Games, you know what I mean? The people that do the amazing ski things, it’s not just slalom and giant slalom and downhill.

Now it’s all the cool snowboarding and doing the aerial flips and that kind of stuff. And so I’m, you know, probably the most telegenic are the things. There’s regularly festivals. Lemme see what it was called. They had a whole movie that was about the, the, the shush moving where you come down off of a high mountain and, and where it was enough.

It made it into theaters and enough people went to see it, that then there was like a, you know, ski patrol too and stuff like that. . And actually, by the way, ski school one and two are some of those movies that I really love watching, even though they’re. Total porkies type movies. It’s all teens type comedies and stuff, but there’s incredible wit.

But anyway, back to this

Stephen: Today. Sponsor brought to you by . Exactly.

Alan: So I think that they just do it because they don’t want a conventional job. They don’t care about a conventional job. They want to go I want to explore the world and this is a great excuse. I wanna see what I can do there. Many of them talk about the, the flow state.

You know, we’ve talked about that before. There is no bigger feeling of being connected and fully involved in an activity than when you’re skiing fast in a dangerous place or when you’re climbing. Another guy they featured was, there’s cenotes in Mexico where there’s big sink holes and you not only are in the water, but there’s ways you can try to climb the walls of these things.

And then if you fall off, you just go back in the water. So this guy was specializing in that. , like seemingly a wall that has nothing. And yet he was finding the tiniest little toe in hand holes. And he, it apparently started off relatively poor and said, you know, I totally upped my game when I got climbing shoes because before he had been barefoot, you know, and he actually thought that he was doing this and like nobody else from the world was doing it.

And then actually found out that there was a climbing convention coming to nearby. And then they all shared their, oh yeah, we’re not, we’re doing, we’re doing that. Not snots like you are, there’s an arch off the Pacific coast that people try to cross all the way over the arch. And same thing, if you let go, you just fall into the water falling into the surf.

And so it, there’s a wonderful under culture of people that kind of know each other, appreciate each other. There’s certain people that are like the best in the world at whitewater kayaking, and they will, Hey, I don’t wanna do this alone. You know, two people you wanna come with me will have their red, yellow, and blue kayaks.

And They kind of team up and sometimes they get married and sometimes they have fallings out. And so there’s kind of like loose alliances that they almost like, you know, people get talked into things just by daring each other, . Right. You

Stephen: know what I mean? They’ve been there, done that. Nope. Yeah. You know,

Alan: we’re gonna go, some guys specialize in free climbing, like they do every boulder in this entire valley, and then they go to like Monument Valley.

And some places you’re not allowed, you know, there’s safety or religious restrictions and so forth. But everywhere that they can, they go to the Caucus Mountains or something like that, and they just, they, they need to be able to say, I did that one, I did all of those. I was the first one to make it to the top of Death, Mesa, or whatever else it might be.

And there’s, there’s some cool because it is their aspect that doesn’t really seem to be at all commercial. It’s. These are the guys that back in the days, they would’ve been the mappers and the explorers and the first ones to, you know, make it deep into the heart of Darkest Africa, or the first to scale K2 or whatever else

Stephen: it might be.

Right, right. So, so it reminds me of the movie point break okay.

Alan: That, that’s exactly where they’re surfing because that’s, you know, they don’t, and actually it’s kind of funny, we just had a conversation, you know, I’ve been in Colorado a couple times, either driving through or going there, and there’s certain cities, like when you go to Veil or Aspen or Breckenridge or Telluride, you can see why people just say send for my stuff.

I’m not leaving here. I love it here. I love the mountains all around me. I love the skiing. I’ll, I’ll be the dishwasher at this place if it means that I can go skiing during the day and have my nut jobb at a restaurant, I’ll be the IT guy for the town. Right. You know, that kinda thing. And so there seems to be a lot of that kind of thing where the joy of doing that they, they can’t get any.

Rush. Better than that, than that. Some people are adrenaline junkies, you know what I mean? Some people really like the whatever, the dopamine, serotonin, the, the pleasure things. Some people love that exhilaration and the way it makes them feel just more alive than they’ve ever been. And then once you’ve had a taste, you keep trying to recapture that.

You know what I mean? Right. So that’s none of ’em seemed crazy, but sometimes the things they’re proposing, even other experts are like, man, are you sure you know what you’re doing there? ? Right. You know, that’s like, and, and, and it’s kind of funny. Always part of Geek Re is the passion for things like that.

You know, there’s people that love Star Wars far beyond reason and, and everything. But also to, to geek it up about. Man have things changed in terms of people’s ability to do this? They’ve got equipment now, like I said, the little clamps that that separates exactly right. So you can wedge it into a thing and it can hold 180 pound man or whatever else it might be.

The, the materials for insulation that you can be in some kind of like thinsulate jacket. What you were saying about, I, I remember getting a, a book called like the Complete Walker and it was always talking about if you’re gonna be this kind of backcountry, hiker weight is always a concern and you don’t need, you know, you need one knife, one fork, one spoon, and they gotta be sturdy cuz you don’t wanna lose them.

And your backpack is gotta be able to hold your ruck, your, your, your sleeping bag if you will. Well now they have domination of sleeping bag and a pad so that you don’t end up having to sleep with like a tree root in your back. But it’s all it weigh. 1.4 pounds or something ridiculous, right? That it used to be 20 pounds.

So that’s always a cool thing, is that the advertisements at these kinds of things, you know, the sponsors oftentimes give a little thing, Hey, we now have a, a lantern that will light in any circumstances. And you can bring along, or, or a stove that all you have to do is have water and these packets of stuff, and you cook it up and hey, it’s the perfect right.

Carbo loading mac and cheese for your next day’s adventures, right? And stuff like that, right? So all of the, the ways in which they can kind of armor themselves or keep themselves alive in, in difficult circumstances, there’s better equipment for that than there ever has been. And every year it gets even better.

So that’s very inspiring too, is to be like someone said, I, I can, I. Find a way to have something that’s gonna be hot from negative 20 , you know what I mean? Or like the sleeping bags, right? Where it’s like, this is good to 30 below you have a little pour hole for your face, and otherwise, one of those, it totally retains your body heat.

And how cool is that, that we’ve figured that out, that the right amount of air fluff is, it’s, it just doesn’t let heat

Stephen: out. How cool ? Yeah. I, we, we did get a polar bear badge and scouts for sleeping with wind chills of negative 20 in a tent. That’s sad.

Alan: Exactly. Yeah. You know, and, and, and I don’t know, then when sometimes we, we’ve seen a couple things where people, you know, they, they don’t realize what they’re getting into.

The, the weather on Mount Washington just had like, it changes a hundred degrees in an hour, you know what I mean? That the winds come up and all of a sudden you drop a hundred degrees and people get kind of flash frozen if they’re trapped out on the slopes. The, the fact that these guys know going into that canyon that you might get a flash flood, they’re like, well, I have something that if I had to, I could take two minutes of chink, chink, chink this into a rock and it really will hold my weight even with water trying to sweep me away.

Right. So that’s kinda like emergency things or trying to have drinking water. You know, they, they for a long time had, will put some iodine in it. Yes. And then you have different kinds of pumps and nowadays they have like such good filtration that even things in the drinking water, cuz nowadays there’s hardly any place that doesn’t have at least.

Some pollution or bacteria, even snow melt and stuff. So it’s good against Giardia, which is like, I don’t know, three microns across or something. Incredible. And you really can do that with like, well, I got water, but then I died of diarrhea

Stephen: because yes, I got intestinal. That’s huge. Before, yeah, they should have played Oregon Trail.

You would’ve known, you would’ve known

Alan: exactly that. The the theory is gonna take you out the, the exact Right. Oh, well, .

Stephen: So before we go, cause I know you got a, a hard out, you gotta get your car in over the weekend Sunday I met up with it was a, a very interesting time. So an old friend of mine who I literally have known since kindergarten, cool contacted me and said, Hey crash Test Dummies is playing at the Kent stage.

Are you in. Well, yeah, I haven’t listened to them in 30 years, but I get to hang out with you for a couple hours. Let’s do it. You know, ex ex. And that’s

Alan: the reason, because it’s him, not because of the guy with the geek based voice. You know what I mean? .

Stephen: So literally we were talking, it’s like, you know, we, we chat a bit online but I don’t think we physically have seen each other since graduation day.

So it had been that long and we were just chatting. I mean, it was like an hour and a half and it’s like, oh man, at the restaurant, we better get going because they’re, the doors were open, they’re gonna get started soon. You know, we just didn’t wanna stop hanging out. Yeah. So it was Crash chest dummies at the Kent stage Now.

The last time I was at the Kent stage was probably seven or eight years ago when Colin did a talk there for one of the encrypted conventions. Yeah. And it was still kinda run down and falling apart. The seats were, you know, a shambles and it just, it looked like, oh, this had been here forever and nobody took care of it, you know?

Okay. They have completely remodeled and redone. It looked like a brand new place in there. And we were just, wow, this is nice. But he said, this is where we saw Raiders of the Lost Ark in 1981. And he said, I think we were sitting right about here. And I said, I think you’re right. And we were talking about it with all our friends, and he, he knew that the face melting scene was coming.

We were like 10. Yes. And he got, he said, okay, this is the part I was told to close my eyes. So he says, tell me when it’s over. And he closes his eyes. My other buddy goes, Hey Kevin, it’s over. And he goes, Theater and we were laughing about that cuz he, cuz he’s told his kids about it. I’ve told my kids about it.

Yeah, yeah. and, and we were like, it was just so much funny crash test dummies. Mm-hmm. I was like, okay, well I should go listen to some of their music cause I know nothing except for the one album . Right. So, you know, I binged a lot of crash test dummies over the last couple weeks to catch up and they, they were on top of it.

They sounded really good. Robert, the main guy, his voice did not sound like it changed. They were, it just, it was wonderful. They, they got a little bit of that Hooter’s vibe a little bit, you know, they’re Canadian, so they, they, they get a little different than us. And I was noticing the, the lyrics and the way he puts the melodies together, it’s just so different than most rock that you hear.

It’s not that just straight on beat. And that’s very interesting. Yeah. You know, so I was like, wow, I, I really appreciate these guys way more than I did in the nineties. But we had a great time. We had fun. It was so funny because they, they had the bar open and and it was one of those things arguing.

He’s like, Hey, you wanna go see the show? And I’m like, yeah, sure. Tell me how much tickets are. He’s like, oh, don’t worry about it. I’ll get ’em. I’m like, okay, well then I’m buying dinner. Come early, we’ll sit. He’s like, no, no, you don’t have to buy. Yeah, I’m gonna buy dinner. You know, it’s like arguing who’s paying for what.

Right, right. And, and and, and I’m like, he’s like, are you sure I’ll help pay for dinner? I’m like, dude, you paid for the tickets. So we get there and he goes, oh, hey, the bar’s open. You want a beer? And I’m like, wow, Kevin. This is like the first beer we’ve ever shared together because we were too young to have alcohol the last time when you were first hanging out.

Exactly. Yeah. And he goes, well, you know, it’s not the first beer I’ve ever had. I’m like, well, I hope not. If you’re asking to get one, I’m not driving you down to Columbus to get. And we were laughing because I said, so you really are married, right? He says, yeah, I’m, I’m like, because me and Scott, another friend, were talking, we thought Paula was kind of like a unicorn, that she didn’t really exist.

You just kind of made it up that, you know, so I’m verifying that. So , it was just a really good time to catch up. Good to be in the theater and see this band that I hadn’t really thought about for years, you know? Yeah.

Alan: I, you know, one of the joyful things nowadays is the way that they can put together tours.

It doesn’t have to be that they got big, you know, on the radio, on YouTube, whatever. It’s just that there’s enough interest in all these different cities to put together some kind of tour. So I, I didn’t, I didn’t see the crash. Cause I would’ve been interested. I should have thought about that. In the last, let’s say since I got to Cleveland, I’ve seen Uriah Heap.

I’ve seen. Hawk Wind and Nectar and like all kinds of bands that they didn’t like leave Europe usually. And somehow they found their way to like the Beachland Ballroom in Cleveland or to the Winchester or something like that. Right. And it’s a delight. We, I went to see FM in Chicago. They, they’re, they have a, an album called Black Noise.

That is one of my go-to if you want to hear how good progressive rock can be with the dynamics, with the, you’ve not heard songs that sound like this before. They’re, anyway, it was like a dream come true. I never thought I’d get a chance to see them because they were never big. And then if they, you know, they don’t have enough to tour.

Sometimes it’s just the economics. And so the fact that they came to, you know, frog Tober Fest in Chicago and they were gonna be like the Saturday night and, and. The younger brother, who also I had turned onto that album, him and his wife came up and we just, we, we kept looking at each other like, can you believe this is really happening?

I wanted to see these guys forever and here we are. It really can still happen that the, especially if it’s like you said, if Robert is the voice of the band, I don’t want to hear the roadie that took his place. Right. There’s certain things, the guitarist or the voice are so often the characteristic of that thing, and if they’re still.

I, I’m just so curious as to have they held up? Do they still have passion in what they’re doing? You know, so good for you, man. That’s,

Stephen: it was a good show. I mean, even, yeah, the couple songs I didn’t know they, they were enjoyable, but, you know, Kevin and I were talking a little bit and, and we were laughing because it’s like people were getting up and dancing.

These are the hardcore groupies that have stuck with them for years, you know? Right.

Alan: That they know the songs well enough that they’re moved by them. Exactly right. And I’m

Stephen: like, yeah, it’s a good thing. Our kids aren’t here laughing at all. The 50 year olds up dancing, you know, . So,

Alan: and of course Colleen and I laugh about that every time we go to a show nowadays, it’s like, who are all these geezers?

Oh, you mean like my peers? You know what I mean? Like, you know, cause I don’t, I still don’t think of myself as sedate, you know what I mean? I’m playing air guitar and air keyboards on the back of the seat in front of me, and I’m singing along with every song. I still love the experience of a concert. So,

Stephen: yeah.

Wow. It was a good time. It was fun. I’m glad the Kent stage is like revitalizing itself. Yes. That it didn’t get sold and become, you know, a a dollar general or something, you know? I hear ya.

Alan: They definitely made use of Covid time to like, not just say, well, we’re gonna shut down and we’ll reopen. They really did refurbish the place.

I’ve been there for a couple things since then and I, I had the same impression walking in of like, I don’t need to worry about a spring poking my butt in these terrible old seats that they really have done a lot to fix the place up and give it a, a second life and, you know, wow. A place right next to Kent State, a good college.

It always, you’d think that always is a good draw. And the that little downtown area there has. Cool restaurants, funky game and record and, and you know, other stores, I, I don’t often enough build in like an extra hour or two in front to just wander that little area and say, you know, do I need more Kent State, you know, paraphernalia, I know that I wanna check out the CD store if that really still exists, but yeah.


Stephen: it’s, although, anyway, the bookstore has expanded and they have a whole record in CD Music Place now. It’s big. It’s huge. I’m sorry, you’re freezing up a little. Oh, sorry. I lost the, the, the bookstore they expanded, they have a record in CD store and it’s, it’s growing So wonderful. I I love the, the whole downtown acorn Alley.

They’ve revitalized. Kevin came, he’s like, oh my god, I almost don’t recognize it. He’s like, I always think of Ken as depressed and falling apart and stuff. He’s like, this is a whole new place. That’s great. That’s cool. . So, alright. I know you gotta get going.

Alan: Exactly. I got, I got a car fixed appointment. You gotta, you gotta keep our Prius in top working shape, so, yes.


Stephen: As. So that, that was funny cause just saw a movie with Reese horror movie and it was this serial killer practicing to be a serial killer and they treated it like it was a job. And he talked about Michael and Jason, like they were real people and his real happenings and stuff, right? His inspiration,

Alan: his

Stephen: trainers.

Right. And it was so funny cuz he drove a Prius and I’m like, oh yeah, let’s save the environment in the world while go kill people. So

Alan: killing people that is saving the world, breathing all that oxygen. Okay, take care Steven.