Overview

Wen cover a range of topics including discussing our experiences with winter and indoor life, discussing tech-related topics like how technology interacts with our lives, car automation, self-defense and martial arts training, cybersecurity, and a mention of Doc Savage novels. Towards the end, we mention plans to discuss ‘Echo’.

Recommendations

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Bama

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F._Paul_Wilson

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Transcript

Relentless Geekery 174 – Navigating the Chaos

Stephen: [00:00:00] Hello, Alan.

Alan: Find another new outside or cold weather picture. So here’s my big elk. I think it’s a moose. Maybe an elk. I think it’s a moose. All right.

Stephen: This is my backyard. That’s where the bird feeders are. You can’t see them. Pretty

Alan: cool. Wow. We do not have a South 40. We have a little tiny backyard that borders right out of my neighbor’s backyard.

Okay.

Stephen: So enjoying the weather?

Alan: Actually, it’s, I just wrote a little thing about it. It’s one of the reasons that I love living in a place that has seasons is that you really get the ebb and flow of life and that instead of being obligated when it’s 72 degrees year round and beautiful to go walk on the beach every single day, it’s cool to say time to act like I’m in a mountain cabin and that the snow is piling up against it and hey, stay inside.

Keep the fire going. You know what I mean? Make a big pot of soup that you just keep adding environments to and keep that going. [00:01:00] We’ve got it. A lifetime of, collecting has so many books, so much music, so many games, so much good stuff in the house that we need to make provision runs like milk and cream, we’ve got, I bake bread and so we’ve got all the bread ingredients in the house. We’ve got a basement freezer full of meat and various other things, so it just, it really is like. It would be an interesting exercise to see how long can we go without having to go outside and really hermitize ourselves.

But, and even here, maybe it’s like this for you. I don’t mind going out, I’m built for cold weather. As long as I got like a parka and a good hat and gloves. I’m just fine outside. I’m not looking forward to the hassle of shoveling or cranking up the snowblower if it comes to that. The snow thrower, as they say them now, but it’s we have good street plowing around here.

Lakewood is a dense enough population that they got plows out there at 4 in the morning to make sure that people can get on their morning commute and stuff like that. We just yeah. As [00:02:00] much as it is really hitting the rest of the nation, you and I have talked about this for years now.

Northeast Ohio is an incredible beneficiary of whatever’s going on with climate change, where we’re just not getting the drought and the fires and the mudslides and the blizzards and the I don’t know. Our power grid has stayed up. One of the things I said was the only thing that could clear the deal is to like, have our power go down and then it’s well, the heat’s not running.

And so we got to burrow into bed or put on our big, over the years, I’ve gotten Colleen, a whole bunch of different like Snuggies, things like you’re just in a little marshmallow full of warmth and your little hands can come out to, Compute or hold the phone or read a book or something like that.

I’ve been doing laundry, I’ve been seeing the plumes of steam coming out the back of the house because so what a wonderful civilized world we live in that just being able to, take the temperature from 14 degrees outside to 68 inside. It’s all an end. We’re looking getting a new furnace, a new furnace air conditioning humidifier [00:03:00] combination.

It’s been long and calming. We’ve been running off of and maybe I don’t know how your house is set. We, our house is older like 1930. And so it’s got things that are still kind of artifacts from the 30s, the 60s, the 90s. Things continue to run. It’s time to look into there’s things with a much higher sear rating where it’s much more efficient.

And we have had heat, but not full house air conditioner for all the time that I’ve been here. So we’ve gotten very cunning about one room, one room air conditioner per floor. And as long as you seal the house up, it really seems to handle that level by level. And, but it’ll be really nice to have one thermostat to rule them all.

And in the,

Stephen: as long as hackers don’t get into it,

Alan: well, and that’s, that’s funny, I really do want one that. I can remotely control and then I can of course, I’ll have a timer on, so it does things during the course of our day of wake up for us and then be calm during the day.

So I’m there’s a company called Samsara. That is still part of the [00:04:00] Internet of things that really seems to be doing a lot to solve that problem that it’s not. Hey, I got a. Heart pump that you can take data off of without, but oh yeah, but you can also control it and kill me. They have all kinds of, so far as I can tell, they’re one of the leaders in the race for making it that those things are put out there for convenience and then die from bad security, that there really are good things being embedded in it.

So that it’s not going to be because we rushed to have. Our TVs and our for refrigerators and our furnaces be controllable that now we’re also under somebody else.

Stephen: I’m not that concerned on those things with all the security in that just as long as they can play doom. I’m okay.

Alan: It’s funny one movie that we’ve been planning on seeing and I’m not sure we just haven’t had like movie time we’ve had a couple shows time.

There’s a movie called I think inside with Willem Dafoe who is one of those guys that no matter what movie he’s in I’m watching it because I just find him arresting on screen. And it’s [00:05:00] about, I think like an art thief a jewel thief that breaks into a rich person’s. Penthouse condominium and then gets trapped in it because it’s all controlled with electronic locks and electronic humidity.

And so he’s you they’ve had other horror stories about this, where the whole house is under control and then people divorce and then the bad spouse keeps playing with the. The person that remains in the house’s temperature and humidity and that kind of stuff and those aren’t just like one night a day stories, not somebody made it up, but it really has happened that people were using it to torment someone.

And that’ll never be the case for Colleen and I, but just the fact that you really have to have. Like the awareness that you’re putting a big thing in your life, like your car can’t go under somebody else’s control of your house. Can’t, people are mindful, about their phones and stuff like that, that they’ve got reasonable security, or at least they count on.

Stephen: They’re mindful of it. To the extent that they [00:06:00] really understand what the problems are, you still get the people like here. Just answer these 20 question personal questions about yourself to tell what take a dog breed. You are. How did somebody get into my bank account

Alan: Or also, it comes equipped with that.

But then. Part of this world nowadays is you have to set yourself up to get regular updates from all the security places so that you’re not just left wide open after six months because there’s always new exploits being created and stuff like that. So I, it, I don’t know, we, that could be a good discussion for us to have of this.

What do I have? I have. On my phone and on my Mac systems, not only what Apple gives me, which is a good firewall and stuff like that, but other things that regularly do malware checks, like malware bytes, and just by having it run in the background. And occasionally it says, yes, you just got an email that has a payload that if you click on the attachment, it’s going to try to attack your machine.

And even though it probably couldn’t do it because I have other things that stop things, yeah. Apple [00:07:00] has a good system for the core OS is segregating programmatically from anything that an application can run. There’s still, there are always new things coming up, especially zero day stuff where they haven’t even really had a response from the security team yet.

So I have those things running in the background, but occasionally it’s and I think this, I know we always have a little bit of a religious war and we talk about this and I apologize. I get those occasionally from the Mac, whenever I’ve put. A Windows system online, like I have a Windows partition that I run under my, my VMware not VMware, Parallels.

If I don’t immediately lock it down, it, I immediately start seeing attacks. There are things continually probing the internet for, can I get to your router? Can I get to your machine? Can I get, and just, it’s, I think that’s one of those, like. There’s never a time. You can’t be like, I don’t know, physically segregated enough.

The minute you [00:08:00] tap into the internet. It’s just saying, I’m going to check every IP address within this range. I’m going to run a series of things to see how locked down you are. I have, I’ve never been. Let me think about this. I don’t know if I can say never. I think that I’ve only been caught once where I didn’t immediately do.

Things to stop it from happening and occasionally I’ve done something where, Oh, I shouldn’t have clicked on that. It’s making attempts. Nothing has ever taken me over. I’ve never had my machine encrypted and locked. I’ve never had data stolen so far as I know, but I know over the course, I’m all over the internet.

And I’ve been on the internet for 25 years, much more than a longer time than most people. Early passwords were like nine characters, not only because I chose to do that, because that’s what places were limited to. Nowadays, nine characters is like the snap of a finger for any kind of cracker to be able to run a quick dictionary attack, or you name the various different things they can try.

And I have not always been great. Don’t listen. All you [00:09:00] security bad boys about making sure that every single Site has a unique password. I didn’t get a password manager like apples or like last pass or first pass or whatever else it might be for, I don’t know, the first 10, 15 years that I was on the net.

So I’ve got scatterings of old passwords in a lot of places. And occasionally I’ll get like something we’ll even say here, have you gotten these? Like I’ve gotten the email that says, Hey. We took over your camera, and we noticed that you were doing something naughty. And unless you pay us ransom money, we’re gonna release your photos on the net.

It’s that can’t be true for me for multiple reasons. Not that I’m not a naughty boy occasionally, but the fact that they quoted my password, it’s out there in those vast lists. Of people where they try to collect social security numbers and credit card numbers and passwords, and they’ll try those combinations everywhere that they can to see if they get that they can penetrate.

[00:10:00] I’ve over the course of time, been updating everything. So it really is nowadays, whatever, I think the current standard is either 48 or 64 for, impenetrable enough that using that level of DES, digital encryption standard, it’ll take this many years for it to penetrate and therefore you don’t look like easy pickings to the bad guys, and so they’ll move on.

But then you hear about quantum computing. And they say that’s all going to go away when we can do all those cases simultaneously and have it collapse to a solution. So there’s interesting things still happening in that regard. There’s a whole bunch of biometrics now that are supposed to prevent that from happening.

I use my fingerprint identifier. They figured

Stephen: out ways around some of that. I saw

Alan: some of it doesn’t have to be the spy movie thing where you cut off a guy’s hand. You know what I mean?

Stephen: And you mentioned apples versus windows and stuff, and part of that is user experience to windows wants to make things easy for people.

And people, as [00:11:00] we’ve said, are pretty much stupid when they want to use their stuff. They don’t want to mess with it. They don’t want to learn anything new. They just want it to work. So to do that, you have to like lower all the security standards. You have to turn things off and that’s, what windows does by default, it’s changing and they’re a little more out there.

But I still know people like, Oh, that’s too much for me. Just turn it off type thing. Apple has not had that attitude. They’ve been like, look. This is how it’s going to be, and you’re going to learn and conform. And for the most part, people have done that. But even there, hackers are starting to get more and more into Apple and even Linux.

I’ve heard about more attacks on Linux systems than I ever did before that, you

Alan: know. It’s so risk management is all about what’s the possibility of something happening and what’s the cost if it does, and how much are you willing to pay to prevent that from happening? One of the things that people often talk about is, Apple has a walled garden.

That’s the phrase many people use. But what I like about that is that there’s nothing in the Apple app [00:12:00] store that hasn’t been checked and vetted with the most current versions of every single malware detector. So there’s nothing on there that’s going to bite you. And if anything ever has gotten on there, it’s been identified, honestly, in like minutes and removed.

Instead of it being, hey, a million people downloaded the flashlight app, not really Android was exactly unexplored and. And unfortunately, that isn’t the case for Android, as opposed to iOS, or for Windows, as opposed to macOS. It, I’m willing to give up just whatever that is about variety and wider range, it, boy, it’s just a mindset, right? The same way that people are like I’d rather have no police as long as I got my gun. That’s ridiculous, but there really are some people that, that’s how they think. They can’t help but think that way. That need to feel that they’re independent.

Even if risk is all around them is it’s just deep inside them and it’s weird when they don’t get more knowledgeable. They just get [00:13:00] bigger guns, more guns, more angry about it instead of well, what’s your gun going to do when a hurricane shows up? The only thing protecting yourself is an intruder with a gun as opposed to.

A plague or bad weather or an electrical, I

Stephen: mean, like the guy over in Bulgaria has hacked into your phone and your car and your nest system. And they’re like monitoring you and they’re listening to you talk and they’re getting your password stuff. You’re going to fly over to Bulgaria and find this hacker center.

How are you getting your blunt, your gun over there?

Alan: Every time I see one of those silly means that says, as long as I’ve got a gun and you’ve got water, I’ve got a gun and water. It’s what you don’t have is the fact that I just hacked your bank account and your kids grades and whatever else I might want to do to, I can, there’s all kinds of wonderful quotes about, you can steal more with a briefcase than you can with a gun and all of those things.

And there’s people that won’t come out of the 1800s showed up on at the OK Corral [00:14:00] mentality that isn’t the way the world is and maybe what they’re trying to do is pull things back to that where it really is going to be a matter of do I have a Mad Max, posse that I can roam around and as long as I got a big car with a big gun, I rule will not if the guys that make the gasoline don’t agree with you and they’ve got enough money.

To put up a fortress.

Stephen: So you’ve mentioned two things that lead me to a segue about cars apps and people with doing things.

Alan: Shopping lately, I suspect that you’re getting an idea of what’s available.

Stephen: Let me tell you, this is a trip. So this car, it’s one of those things.

My mother’s 75. She doesn’t need a new car for 20 years, unfortunately and she doesn’t like to drive a whole lot. That’s a lot of payment for a car for her. So it’s a matter of. Here’s a car. We’re splitting it, but it’s in her name at the moment. Eventually it’s going to get turned over to me at the end of its life.

And that’s okay. That’s fine. I can work with that because [00:15:00] it’s a nice car. So we got a good, reliable car, as opposed to you want her

to

Alan: be safe. You want it to be reliable. You can’t let anything bad happen to your mom. Exactly. There’s also, you just said the limitations as to how much time it really is going to need to be a useful life and

Stephen: And it’s a big payment cars are outrageous, no matter what you get, but splitting it between us.

It’s much more reasonable payment, and I’m going to get a 2nd car used to just when, not driving that 1, not putting all the miles on it. Running the kid back and forth to work, got two cars. We’re good and we can afford that. So couple things, this new car has an app so she could start it remotely and all sorts of stuff.

And she’s afraid to do it because she’s if I lose my phone, somebody’s going to be able to get my car. Or she’s afraid she’ll get hacked and they’ll have control of the car. I’m like Honestly, I’m not that worried about somebody over in India getting control of the car. If we find out about it we switch the codes and yeah it’s all good.[00:16:00]

Alan: When I used to have those conversations with my parents, once in a while, I’d be like, that advice that I take on what you have so much experience about, you really might be able to take my advice because Mom and dad, I know a lot about computers. I know a lot about phones and apps and so forth.

And if I say that the odds are low and that kind of stuff, don’t let your fear run your life. Listen to your loving son who would not expose you to those guys. Exactly. You know what I mean?

Stephen: But it’s funny you say that because the country wisdom, the general wisdom, there are two things I’ve learned about modern cars.

So here’s our geeky tips of the week for cars. Number one, You do not, when a car is cold, it does not help it to turn it on and let it run because the oils don’t run when it’s not moving.

Alan: So without it moving, that’s exactly right. Okay. So

Stephen: you’re actually damaging the engine by leaving your modern cars run without moving.

So you need to turn it on and get moving. So all those people that turn it on for 20 minutes[00:17:00] you’re shortening the life of your car.

Alan: In some cases, so they can warm the cabin so that they’ll be okay in it. But yeah, that’s

Stephen: a different issue, which I totally

Alan: blocked away. And my car is already pumping out heat.

It depends on what car it is, but it isn’t where you really were already at your destination before the frost on the inside of your car, maybe in this weather. Okay.

Stephen: So the other thing I learned very similar to that is this cold weather. This car is used. It’s only a couple of years old, but I went out yesterday and it wouldn’t start no juice.

And I’m like, we drove it Saturday and now it won’t start Monday. The cold weather drained it. Battery

Alan: can’t have drained the alternator.

Okay.

Stephen: Yeah. The battery is four years old, which is. A long life for a car battery. It’s time to change it. But what I found out when the guy came to jump it, that’s triple a.

Thank you, God. It’s seven degrees out there. I am not pulling a battery out folks. I’ve been there, done that pay for triple [00:18:00] a. That’s the benefit of being 50.

Alan: Yeah. We’ve had a triple eight forever because so there’s such a security net, no matter where you are in the United States.

Stephen: Absolutely. So he came out and he said, yeah, you don’t want to leave it.

Just sit and run because the alternators don’t work. They have to be moved. Your car has to be moving to be charging. And I’m like, I didn’t know that. So everything my father told me, and like you said, the words of wisdom from cars from the 60s. Does not apply anymore.

Don’t

Alan: apply to solid state cars. If you will.

Yeah. It’s not a mechanical world computer world.

Stephen: Okay. Hey you can’t get a car without getting all sorts of do dads and gadgets and stuff nowadays. So this car has got some cool little features, fun toys to play with.

Alan: Okay. That’s I love all the safety stuff. Colleen finds some of those intrusive.

It won’t let you change lanes without alerting you that you’re drifting instead of actively pushing

Stephen: you turns the wheel and pushes you away from the

Alan: edges. [00:19:00] That’s right. And some of those things make her feel out of control. But I like this. The overall thing is. I like the hints that it gives me about you’re too close to another car.

It gives you alerts. It actually will hit the brakes for you and stuff. The automatic braking systems nowadays where it isn’t a matter of hit the brake and then starts getting, but it does that tap, where it’s like applying the brake in just the right way. That is beyond what human beings either will or can do.

But and the overall thing of. Why do I think that we’ve got to get to this world of automated cars is because people complain about I don’t want it to make mistakes, but you’re making more mistakes in every minute of driving and the computer will make it’s checking 100, 000 times a minute to make sure that you’re the right distance for the things and the right interval and the right speed and weather conditions and all that.

And I see you checking your fucking phone, not paying attention. If you want to make all of us safer, give some of those stuff. Tasks that you get bored with over to the computerized car, and then you can relax and sip your drink in the [00:20:00] back. If you want

Stephen: to explain to people and you just get that they refuse to listen.

That’s the problem. We have with so many things that the climate politics, everything they just refuse to listen and accept what you’re telling them as any type of truth and proof that if all of our cars were work. Computer controlled and communicated our roads would be so much safer there. There wouldn’t be 50, 000 accidents a year in Ohio.

There would be 5, exactly. And people don’t understand that if every car had the control and they could talk to each other and alert each other and drive what makes it sense with all the other cars driving. They can do that way better and it would be safer. It’s the human part. So when you have five cars that are human and the others aren’t, the humans are causing the problems.

Alan: That’s right. It’s, I’ve read about, for instance, the reason we want to get to automated trucking is because you really could have all kinds [00:21:00] of trucks actually driving closer to each other, but they’re in constant communication. So they’re like a swarm. There are a fleet of things all being the same.

Reasonable rules for how far you can be interval wise because there will never be a time when someone gets surprised. They will all talk about, hey, black ice up ahead. We’re all going to slow down, etc. What you just said, sometimes when you try to just apply statistics to it, everybody thinks of anecdotal when they’re like I don’t drive like that or I’m, I am.

A faster reaction time than anybody else. I know. No, you’re not. It’s another Dunning Kruger thing. When I am unfortunately trapped as a passenger with a bad driver and I can see that they don’t react any faster, they are tailgating and they don’t leave themselves enough room for a mistake, all that kind of stuff.

It does statistics of. Wow, 50, 000 accidents, like you said, and whatever it might be, there really are 50, 000 doofuses that they got unlucky. Colleen and I always talk about how are there not more accidents with all of the bad driving [00:22:00] that we see, all the bad decisions we make about every merge, every tailgate, every switching lanes, but because they got to get somewhere.

Somehow much faster than everybody else thought.

Stephen: The road they, their life is so out of control and they feel so, such a little person that they need to tailgate people, flash their lights and cut people off. ’cause that’s what makes their life more fool and they’re a bigger person for it.

I swear that’s all, it’s,

Alan: that aggression comes out like that. And it’s, and we talked about this before. I, so it used to be like. Slow on the right, fast on the left, middle is where you’re just flow of traffic. I can’t tell you, probably over the last 10 years, how many times I would begin to move over to the right because I was getting off at an exit and get honked because someone was coming up to pass me on the right.

And it’s not that I don’t check. I really do check both left and right, but they would be behind me and get into my [00:23:00] blind spot as soon as they possibly could and startled me.

Stephen: I had this happen. It was the same thing, but the guy was like a quarter mile back. So there was plenty of room, but he was doing like a hundred because nobody was in the right hand lane and he had to slow down.

You’re speeding in the wrong lane. And why is this my fault? Cause I got

Alan: to get off. Exactly. It I think this is funny. Some part of it is the video gamization of the United States. When you’re playing a video game about driving, they really don’t care about the lane usage at all. They are continually doing things where they not only go left they go on the shoulders, they do whatever they can to like, Do stunts and stuff like that.

So anybody that has played too many games of Gran Turismo or whatever like that, the whole road is a playing field to them. And I think that there’s a certain amount of that impacts that. So what I’ve started to do is I really often in the middle and I checked to the right, but also if I see somebody coming up to pass me on the right, I will move over, not cutting [00:24:00] them off.

But just to say, you have to learn, you have to learn where you should pass this to the left of me, to the right of me. I don’t think I’ve caused any accidents. I’m not vengeful and nasty about it, but I really don’t like that trend. And I do what I can to nudge, to encourage, not nudge metal to metal. You know what I mean?

I’m not anybody off, but it just, it’s, and I just saw this. I think that there is a A characteristic of a certain political mindset that goes with how you people, they talk it derogatorily like virtue signaling, like anybody who backs into a parking spot in a parking lot that makes people wait behind them so that they can escape more quickly when they’re done.

I think that’s the selfish, red, asshole attitude that certain people have that they, the parking lots are designed so that there’s flow [00:25:00] optimized for everything getting in and out. And they’re willing to say, especially the

Stephen: angled ones.

Alan: Go to hell. All the rest of you. And exactly that, when I see someone actually back into an angle thing.

So when they come out, they’re going to be going the wrong way, unless they do a sharp right to compensate for that. And I just saw this at playhouse square. I see this at the work slot all the time and when they have a truck too big for a parking spot, and they don’t even try to get up to the end of their slot, they’ll leave themselves not a foot out, but a yard out into traffic.

There’s such selfishness, either unawareness or willing. Assholery to be doing that kind of stuff to create a hazard for everybody else, because I’m a little convenienced. I’m a little, I don’t think they’re safer, but there’s such. Self centeredness and selfishness to that.

And I’m willing to bet that if I was to do a little survey that said, do they have a bad bumper sticker, Oh, my

Stephen: father

Alan: was stolen. It’s all

Stephen: those people. My father was disabled and you know how many times I [00:26:00] had to park elsewhere and he had to walk further because some asshole truck with no placard.

Parked in a disabled, they’re like nobody was there, right? Nobody was there because it’s waiting for the people that are disabled. You asshole. And I’m only going in for a minute. You’ve been in there for 30. Yeah, exactly. And real quick, I’ve got another car thing. You’ll did you see the news item?

Some Republican group was checking and they found 4, 000 votes that got tossed aside or missed or whatever, but they were almost all for Biden. So they’re hurting themselves more and more.

Alan: It’s proof every accusation of confession, that’s right. That’s my catchphrase for this year for the next 10 years.

I think is that anytime that I see somebody projecting how. And somebody else is it’s because they’re doing it themselves and they’re either unaware or they’re trying to distract and I just, it’s hypocrisy level has reached stratospheric [00:27:00] in this world. We just, anybody that tells me we have to pass a law about this.

I keep thinking, is that because you can’t control yourself. So you want there to be some kind of enforcement mechanism that will stop you from seeking out sex in a public restroom from using a false name. Ted Cruz, Raphael Cruz, like it’s just the weirdest thing. And I don’t know why somebody in the press doesn’t immediately say that’s bullshit because your name isn’t, you know what I

Stephen: mean?

They should immediately call them out on

Alan: double standard here. You don’t get to be above the law, different than the law that you’re contending, it’s just the weirdest thing to see how fervent people are. About something that absolutely applies to themselves. And sure, let’s pass the law and then throw you in jail.

You’d be our first

Stephen: customer. You want to know that? So here’s something that’ll anger you. Last week, Colin and I new car. It’s only a couple years old or a couple weeks old. Drove to [00:28:00] go see a movie. And I heard a I’m like, oh, man, something’s. Like rubbing

Alan: something got stuck underneath.

Stephen: Yeah, it didn’t sound like a flat.

It sounded like a tire rubbing. I’m like, did we pick something up? And I had noticed the week before shortly after getting the car. When I was driving right here on the road, lower speeds, there was a bit of a shimmy wobble, not alignment, more of a tire unbalanced. And I’m like, okay then maybe they had a balance on there and it flew off and, or, whatever.

So we took the car in, I said, look, there’s rubbing something or whatever. They said, oh. All four of your wheels, lug nuts were loosened. Your tires were wobbling all going down the road because it’s a kind of sabotage

Alan: more than a

Stephen: tick tock challenge. And the police put out an alert here in Northeast Ohio that it’s going around and the dealer when we took it in and said, we’re the second car that’s come in [00:29:00] this that week to have all four tires lug nuts loosened that needed.

This is like endangering people’s lives.

Alan: How just irredeemably dangerous does the planking thing in the middle of the road. They’re doing something incredibly stupid, but it’s them at risk to do this to somebody else. I’ve seen the video where like they just. In the middle of walking along the street, they fall off and hit someone.

Yeah. ’cause the surprise is funny. It’s not funny at

Stephen: all. See here’s I told the tow truck guy that came and jumped our car, I said, you know what, if I ever walked out in the Walmart parking lot, somebody was doing that to mine, that tire iron would meet the side of their head. And here’s the thing.

Here’s the thing. If you hit them and hurt them. They’re gonna sue you and they’re going to freaking win, even though them loosening your lug nuts is essentially trying to kill you. It’s attempted homicide, but it wouldn’t go over that way. That would be I attacked them in a parking lot when I wasn’t at risk.

Yeah, I’m at risk because I [00:30:00] didn’t know they were doing it if I didn’t walk out there. That’s what would drive me crazy is I know if I would attack them to because they’re losing my lug wrench, I’d be the one at fault. And with just as much issue, they probably would get some slap on the wrist because they weren’t doing anything to endanger.

But they were, and that’s, oh my God, it’s, I swear to God, if I ever see anybody doing that, I’m probably gonna go off because what would happen if my mother was driving that car and the wheel flew off at

Alan: 70? I’m so happy that we nowadays have a garage because it used to be that our cars were both in the driveway and we’re right next to a parking lot that features restaurants and bars and I could just see what a hoot it would be coming out of the bar at one they’ve been

Stephen: doing it.

Alan: Look, their house is all dark. We can easily sneak over there and go maybe kill them,

Stephen: wreck their car. They’ve been doing it in like Walmart parking lots and movie theater parking lots, not people’s driveways because they can

Alan: for me to quick check when I come out

Stephen: [00:31:00] because they can, there’s so many vehicles they can hide down and they can get three or four cars.

And move on. And I’m just like,

Alan: junior vigilantes. What should we do? I guess I’m not going to strike the guy with his, with a tire iron. I’m going to take a picture so that I can make sure that I can present that to the police and say, here’s the guy doing it. I saw him. I will, I usually get a drink with a refill at the I’d splash my drink all over him just to inconvenience him on this nice cold day.

You know what I mean? What are the things that I can do that it isn’t a fault. Of course it is to splash a drink on somebody, but the judge would be amused. Not that I cave his skull in, but it’d be more like you at least shine him away from doing this evil thing. And maybe because he’s all full of Coke, he rewrecked his nicest jacket.

Now he’s not going to have his gang colors anymore. It’s not a gang thing. It’s a punk teenage idiot thing. You know what I mean? Just,

Stephen: oh, that’s so I’ll tell you, we think differently though. I’d have a hard time [00:32:00] not attacking him with that tire iron. I hear you. I

Alan: really do. That’s, I Colleen sometimes comments that I don’t use my size.

You know what I mean? We’ve been in any kind of number of confrontations at concerts or just like when we were walking down the street and people were yelling at our masks because they didn’t believe in COVID. And once in a while, it would be okay to just say, Hey, buddy, let me talk to you for a minute.

Wham. And I throw a good punch. I carry a pretty good punch. You just got to put your hips into it. And I weigh 285 but all those things, it just, I got all my aggression out when I played rugby in college, when I, when I studied a little bit of boxing and stuff and yet. That’s boy, how much do I want to get this recorded?

Colleen really doesn’t like dogs. She’s very scared of dogs. And once in a while we see people that are not managing their dogs well, where it really could be a [00:33:00] difficulty. So I make a point of getting in between and not letting the dog get to Colleen, but get to me, but I’ll tell you what, if ever I got attacked.

I’m not going to yell at the guy, come get your dog. I’m going to kill that dog. I’m going to put my thumbs in its fucking eyes. I’m going to give it my arm while I beat it to death. And

Stephen: the owner might get a few lumps also on that one.

Alan: Like it isn’t like that when things, I don’t know, you and I have read, maybe this will be a segue into repairman Jack.

You and I have read enough things that. How many people they get hurt, they die out of indecision and. Self control when the other person has no such restraints. And so I’ve got, I’m always thinking of what would I do in certain scenarios? You know what I mean? I really try never to be caught flat footed.

And I really have decided if ever there’s going to be a fight, I’m really not going to like marquee of Queensbury rules. I’m going to try to fucking break the [00:34:00] guy. I’m going to break a limb so that he can’t attack me anymore. I’m not trying to kill him, but I’m going to stop the fight as soon as I can.

I’m not going to create a few punches. I’m going to try to. Step to the side and take his knee out. I’m going to try to poke his eyes out of his head. I’m going to be, I’m going to fucking bite the guy. Sorry, everybody in the world that wants to think that Al’s a nice guy. But if ever you’ve reached that point where it’s not just talk, it’s not just ragging on each other.

Nowadays, it’s all a street fight then. Yeah. And what do I have to do? I have to get to the guy before he pulls a gun on me. Yes. No matter my size, I’m not as big as a gun. And so what do you do to make things stop immediately? And I think that’s what Krav Maga and various, I hope I pronounced that correctly.

Another one of those things, how many times have I read that? You only get

Stephen: a couple moves in.

Alan: Exactly that you just need to stop the fight, you need to make it so that the threat is removed. And so I, whatever, if there’s anything I want to do with Colleen and I learning about self defense, it isn’t get a gun.

It isn’t also become [00:35:00] part of the crazies, but it is, I will have no, I will not have many restraints. If it really gets to that point. I’m going to go a little bit crazy and then come through what I mean. So sorry, world, if maybe this now is he was premeditated and how he attacked that poor young man who just happened to be undoing his lug nuts.

But I just, I, when I’ve been in a few fistfights in my life, and this is a weird thing to talk about, I was amazed at how I like felt nothing. When you get adrenalized, it’s your body girds you to be in a fight and it turns off your pain receptors and it heightens your senses and you’re faster and stronger and I can use in a fight between a big guy and a small guy, unless the little guy is really well trained, the big guy can use his reach advantage and his weight and whatever that is to do more damage quickly.

And what an odd topic for us to come to, but it’s we reallythose kinds of things [00:36:00] really are a threat. And here, just to geek it out, what did I love about the Ender’s Games books? From Orson Scott card. If you’ve never been any of them, they’re really good at the first one. Okay, exactly. And the first one’s probably the best, but there’s at least the first three are quite good.

A lot of what he talks about is not just a matter of winning the battle. It’s if you know anything about your opponent, that all they’ll do is go back, lick their wounds, retrain themselves and come at you again. Then you end them, you make it so that thread is

Stephen: part of the move. Nowadays there really aren’t a

Alan: lot of people that seem to be like that.

You know what I mean? If I was to be like, I don’t know, maybe this is vendetta, weird sounding. But if you got somebody that you know is not going to say, Oh, he beat me fair and square, I guess I lose. He’s going to be, I’ll go back here with my gun. I’ll be back here with my four friends. Then you.

There’s a calculus you have to do there that says I’m not going to look over my shoulder for the rest of time. I’m not going to have my wife and my loved ones at [00:37:00] risk right out of the superhero comics. You know what I mean? There really is a reason to accelerate and Finish something. If you’re really worried if the signs are all there, such as better what you think they tell you that they’re going to come back after you.

So I got to finish you.

Stephen: That’s one thing with martial arts. I know a couple of times, not that I’ve ever really been attacked or in a fight or needed to use any of that stuff. You have training. Yeah. But just I remember Gina, yeah. Used to complain about this and her kids a bit that we had certain things you do over and over with your training now.

I’m not Fighting anybody, but I’m going through all the motions over and over. So it’s so built into my system memory. Exactly. And every now and then they would come and just to get our attention or we’re doing whatever and grab the outside of my wrist or move their hand a certain way. And me and Colin.

Especially with just reactive and they’re like, what are you doing? That hurts. I’m like, sorry. It’s like touching a [00:38:00] hot stove. It happens before it reaches your brain. And that’s

Alan: right. Your reptile brain takes care of when someone tries to grab my wrist. I immediately make sure that whole.

Stephen: Yeah. Yeah.

And I remember the instructor. Now, of course, there’s some debatable questionable teachings on some of his stuff on this, but he basically said, All you kids, you’ve got training now, so you can’t just go around picking fights with people and fighting and using it. That doesn’t happen anymore. You’ve been trained, but.

If someone ever messes with you, you act like a black belt. Even if you’re not black belt yet, you act like a black belt. You step away from the situation. You tell them to back off. You tell them to stop. If they don’t, you end it. And that’s what he said. He said, you do everything you’re supposed to. You back, you don’t.

And this happened to Colin once. There was a kid on the playground when he was young First or second grade. And the kid was like picking on him. And whatever, saying whatever, [00:39:00] and Colin told the teacher and the teacher said I didn’t see it. He told me and I contacted the teacher and she said we’ll watch, but we didn’t see it.

And I’m like, I know this kid. He’s caused other problems because he’s in cubs. I know this kid causes problems. So it happened again. Colin told the teacher and they said you stay over here. And I’m like, no. My son’s getting picked on and you’re telling him he’s not allowed to go all over because of that.

No. So we told him the same thing. Don’t start it, but finish it. And this kid made the mistake the one time, like grabbing his shoulder and calling, knocked it off and stepped back and said, don’t do that again. Stop whatever and the kid didn’t listen and calling just palm struck him right in the middle of the chest, knocked the kid down and calling got pulled into the principal’s office.

I got called and I went down and struck. Yeah. And I said, so what happened? And Colin said that as well. We saw was your son hitting the circuit. And I said, and here’s the emails from 3 days ago. Here’s what he told me. Here’s what the teacher said. We have a record of [00:40:00] this kid doing this. My son was protecting him.

He shouldn’t have struck him. Colin, did the other kid do something to you first? Yeah, he grabbed my shoulder. He pushed me. Okay, we’re getting, we’re going. And the principal did not want to let us go. And I said, call this number. He’s what’s this number? I said, his name is Jack Edwards. He is a Marine and he’s a fourth degree black belt.

He’s our instructor. You talk to him for a moment and Jack wouldn’t let this guy talk. They said no, if my, if one of my kids did that kid’s at fault, that kid touched him. If he says that kid touched them first, he’s telling you the truth. The principal we don’t, I don’t care what you saw.

Do you need me to come down there and straighten this out? So yeah he did that for a couple of kids, but there was one kid that. Started a fight once and Jack took his belt away and made him drop all the way down and only work with the lowest ranked

Alan: kids because you learned what this is really all about.

Not to be in fights is to avoid fights is [00:41:00] the

Stephen: course. Jack liked the fighting. We were at a club once, and some guys, there were like four of them were dancing up around his wife, and the one grabbed his wife’s butt, and then Jack went after him, and me, and another guy who was like, big like you, we were both new, white belt, new, and Jack’s come with me, and we’re like, oh my god, we’re all about to die.

Alan: Cause the bar fight is chaos

Stephen: personified, but Jack was so scary. They ran. All right. Good deal.

Alan: It, it I think that’s so important nowadays is to be like, there’s gotta be proportionate response. You know what I mean? I talk about this proportion in, in all ways that whatever Benjamin Franklin, everything to moderation that there really should be like, how does it evidence itself?

We’ve seen craziness with cancel culture. We’ve seen crazy with, The militarization of things and you don’t need like military equipment to [00:42:00] stop shoplifters, all that kind of stuff. The fact that people push and push until they force a response. I’m not sure why society is only about keep the peace, no matter what, instead of keep justice, no matter what.

And so just that I’m not advocating. No, please don’t. Get military training. Don’t get martial arts training so that you can go pick on other people. It’s so that you can defend yourself and your loved ones. But it absolutely is when the time comes to act you have to be in the mindset that said, I didn’t cause this.

They pushed it to the point that there was no other response. And to stop them from being the threat, right? I will say that’s the thing that’s in people’s about why they want to gone because they really think that the world is threatening all around them and threats to them don’t consist of bullies.

It consists of minorities or. Revenuers or whatever they have had built up in their mind that are false threats, but that gives them [00:43:00] the permission. To always think that everything outside anything outside their house could be threatening. You know what I mean? And sometimes people talk about, hey, the only solution for a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

I don’t know that many good guys with the guns. I don’t know. All I know is people that are carrying guns around. Not all. How about 90%? They’re looking for a reason to use it. It’s not just for show. They are they want to get in front of the cameras and say I saw this right at the theater and so I shot five people, but luckily I killed the one guy that did something.

And it’s I don’t want all those bullets flying around me. I don’t want to think that you, with no military, police, or other training, are the one that’s going to be the

Stephen: defender for all of us. And don’t tell me, don’t tell me Concealed Carry gives you that good of training. They’re just trying to legally get you through the least amount and hand you a certificate to make you happy.

And yeah.

Alan: It’s funny. I don’t, I’m trying on new things in 2024. I [00:44:00] don’t want a gun in the house, but I think that what are the threshold things that might happen that would say now I need to be armed as well, because I think that there’s bad things around me.

And I’m not going to let Colleen and me be victims. And so is it keep the gun in the car. Is it only keep carry it where I’m worried. I don’t want to be going to a concert or a church. Or a mall because I’m worried about crazies around me, but if that’s like now the trend that everywhere you go, someone is pulling a gun on you with the gas station because you took their favorite pump, like the number of crazy stories that you read as that goes up, I’m like, I’m not going to die stupid.

I’m not going to die from crazy, right? And I don’t want to shoot anybody, but I’m not going to get shot. I don’t know. This is

Stephen: I remember some of the contests and meet meetups and stuff. We would do with martial arts. You, you get in the black belt rings. Now, none [00:45:00] of this was official. None of this was taught, but everybody’s talking.

They’re like, so the general consensus is as a black belt with your training, that if you see somebody going for a gun and they’re about to pull it out and they’re about to shoot you, if you are within 22 feet. You have enough time to get there and take them out before the gun comes out. If you’re beyond 22 feet, you take off.

And as, and that was like the rule of the exact

Alan: number, that’s how many strides and the element of surprise and whatever else it might be. And that’s the thing is that if you’re going to be martial arts trade, the key is to get guns out of it because they give them range weaponry, they there, that it’s not.

Hand to hand anymore. You know what I mean?

Stephen: If I would go back into it and I thought about going back in, I was like seven, seven and a half years of training with that it builds confidence and keeps you in shape and all sorts of stuff. But once you get up to fourth degree, you get to go down to Texas where the [00:46:00] headquarters is with the grandmaster and you get to train with archery, bow and arrow on horseback.

I’m like, that’s

Alan: awesome. That’s an interesting path. Exactly. That’s

Stephen: kind of funny, but you got to be careful and just stay within the compound because it’s a big field, but there’s a lot of grass. You don’t go into the grass because of all the rattlesnakes.

Alan: Wow. We might have talked about this in a long ago episode, I’ve been shooting, and I’m surprised at how good a shot I am.

I knew I had pretty good I hand coordination I’m good at shooting pool and all kinds of other things like that, but with a 22 rifle. I was shooting like 23 out of 25, just point to the targets, like plink plink. I whatever that Zen Archer is that you don’t take the I did aim, of course, I did use the weapon correctly, but there was some confidence in I am reaching out and touching it.

This is now just an extension of me. I think there’s a word for that. It’s not, I used to think it was catechesis, but it’s not that, I don’t [00:47:00] think, but it’s like. I like the fact that if it ever, do you ever see Quigley Down Under? Oh, yeah. Yeah. Long ago movie. Let’s see Magnum, right? Magnum. Exactly that.

We only know him by the character. But and also Alan Rickman as the good villain. And he’s a rifleman in Australia as I recall. Yeah. And then the gunman, the pistolman forces a showdown and he proves before I took up the rifle, I was pretty good at this too. I think that.

sweeping statement because we’re going to civil war. Let’s say we’re going to civil war. There’s going to be so many hotshots opposed to gunmen. They’re going to be unpleasantly surprised that you can be a peaceful warrior and still be a better shot than them. You know what I mean? All of those terrible confrontations that might start to happen.

Hey, no, you don’t get to raid my house for water and gasoline. You know what I mean? Because I will kill you if you step across the threshold of my house and all that kind of stuff. I just, I hate this topic because I don’t want to add to the mountain of it’s [00:48:00] all scary and we have to be ready to take our guns and that’s the only solution to everything.

It isn’t. It absolutely isn’t. The fact that we’re letting that crazy 5 percent of the population make it so that it seems as if everybody should be armed like it’s the wild west. No, the way that the world got civilized, the way that we had progress was not because we had more guns and everybody in town was armed.

It’s because we made it safe to not own a gun and spend your time on how to be a better dentist, how to be a better Holiday. Oh, I guess exactly that. Y’all be your huckleberry, that guy. So it, I just that we will see a turn in these next couple decades where we will have gone as far to the edge as we could as a relatively still young nation.

And just Europe and various other civilizations had to turn towards what matters is the progress of civilization, not descending [00:49:00] into armed anarchy because the crazies. What things that they haven’t done any contribution to get, they want to be walking dead, a lot of us watched all 13 seasons of that or whatever.

And it was really a great show with playing out. What are the various different responses that people might have to the fall of civilization. And some people were builders and they made their safe places and they started to farm and others were the crazy Raiders that was like. As long as I am crazy, bold, willing to do anything, no matter what they’re spending time doing, I get to ride it right in there and either out of a protection racket or out of an armed grade or whatever, get it.

And then you find out I only got 10 men with me and here comes a 20 man. And then it’s now you’re going to find out that maybe you’re not the top man, that you’re always going to be under threat of a bigger gun, if you will. And there’s got to be a time at which we all say, you know how we’re all going to survive this if we all band together against the zombie thing.

And if it’s not zombies, it’s the [00:50:00] pandemic. It’s global warming. It’s, it’s all under threat from, and it’s not a matter of having.

Stephen: I got to eat the most cake before we all died. That’s not the way you run a world. So I’ll recommend a throwback for the anti violence non gun using your smarts and brains go watch the old MacGyver show.

That’s what that was all about. Humanitarian don’t use guns using your smarts.

Alan: Exactly. Have you ever seen Billy Jack? It was all the rage back in the late seventies. Maybe even early to late 70s. It’s about a a martial arts guy. And I think he’s an American Indian as well, who is continually pushed to the edge.

And then when they push him too far, they find out that this guy can walk all of us. He just has been calm up until now. Kenny

Stephen: Rogers, coward of the

Alan: county. There you go. Exactly. Yeah. And that, I don’t know, we, that would be a good same with the entire [00:51:00] series of Kung Fu. You know what I mean? Like when David Kearney did that, we’ve had this epitomized that.

You really get to restraint is not cowardice. That’s, the boy, why am I tearing up almost? The silver surfer once had a great he was in the middle of a terrible battle, and he had to explain to the people that were after him that you’ve mistook my, my restraint for inability. You, there that the good guys tolerate your bad behavior.

We’re not afraid of it. We’re not unable to stop it. We just wait for you to grow up. We wait for you. We hope that the good will come into you without us having to force good. And yet, when we’re under threat, then The hero step up. You know what I mean? And they, and a lot of times you’ll find out that they really do have not just, oh gosh, a slightly bigger gun.

They have the power [00:52:00] cosmic and they really will end the threat forever. Like I stopped. So it I just been watching the John wick movies because they’re Perfect escape fantasy for how many different gangs are going to throw and assassins and supposed impenetrable organizations. How many of them are going to throw themselves against John Wick and crash against the shoals that he is this.

Tower of ability, and they talk about that, but he’s not necessarily the best fighter and stuff like that, but he just, he has a will that will not let him stop. We’ll not let him lose.

Stephen: And we always talk about that on the horror podcast. He’ll be like, so I’m like, yeah, they killed the dog in this one.

They get what they deserve.

Alan: What were they thinking to unleash this terrible force. Because they, they thought they could because they thought they could get away with it because they’re that cruel, and there’s nothing like the the realization in the eyes of the villain when it’s yeah, I really did [00:53:00] screw up there.

Yeah, I really did. I

Stephen: saw a meme about that. It shows the Death Star. And then it shows the scene where the guy is telling Tarkin, Hey, we identified a problem. We should leave. He’s we’re not leaving. We’re strong. And then the guy goes, yeah, but John Wick’s dog was on Alderaan. And he’s you see the shuttle flying away.

Alan: Exactly. That’s very good. See, isn’t that fun that’s entered everyone’s vocabulary. It’s like that. Oh so let’s see what else we have to talk about today. Repairman Jack. There’s a, there’s an author I really like, F. Paul Wilson, who wrote a whole series of Repairman Jack books, and the reason that they’re, the reason I first got Interest in them is because I think you mentioned the power of pull quotes on a paperback to one of the other things is when at this point, I think Stephen King has turned me on to John Sanford books and F Paul Wilson books by saying.

This is what I love reading. These are some of the best summer reads. You know what I mean? Where it’s not meant to [00:54:00] be deep. It’s meant to be escapist literature, but it’s a great form of that. And it’s about a guy that he’s like off the grid. He really has made a point of not being in society, but he has an 800 number that people can call and say, I’ve tried every other avenue to get this bad thing to stop, and I heard that you’re the repairman.

Can you help me? And he will take on causes. Reacher there’s a number of interesting, very moral code better than most other organizations that profess to be the moral organizations. And he is great. Not only at rigorous force, he’s great at manipulating situations so that the villains Set themselves up for their own demise.

The Avenger way back in the pulp heroes used to be really great at that too. And he actually does often warn them saying, if you continue with this course of action, you’re going to get it in the neck. And they no, they’re all only for themselves, only full of bluster and idiocy. And then indeed.

Their car goes off the cliff or whatever else it might be, so there are very satisfying read in this regard. [00:55:00] And there’s supernatural elements as well as the criminal elements. They runs through the secret organizations, the septimus and stuff like that. And he’s actually written a whole number of interlocking series called the secret history of the world, where, the keep that was about like a lot agent vampire that was kept at bay by having many crosses in all the wall of this place and how one when they during the war, one of those gets broken and it lets out and then the Nazis get to find out maybe not the most evil thing out there that maybe this thing is going to decimate them anyway, they’re so high recommendation to he was really good at creating all these interconnected things really good at new always advancing the series not just wow another cardboard cut out you know we’ve talked we just talked about the doc savages a little bit and there’s actually a pretty formulaic plot to a lot of those yeah and i like that kind of plot But there’s 181 of those.

I don’t know that I need 181 doses of exactly the same thrill, if you will. Whereas there was [00:56:00] enough surprises and stuff and movement forward in him and sub characters and stuff that it comes to a very satisfying conclusion in Night World. So where him and The other series, the adversary cycle that he wrote, collide together and stop the whole world from being destroyed by the elder gods, if you will.

So really cool. The rakosh, he uses the rakosh as his main demons, and it’s a lesser known mythology. It’s the Indian demons. That is not even American Indian, but subcontinent Indian. He’s just very good at dread where it’s not only jump scares. It really is. Oh, yeah, that’s bad And it’s building and it’s building and I really need to find out but I don’t want to and you know what?

He’s got a talent. There’s that paul wilson guy. I don’t think he’s as well known as a stephen king or as a Robert block and stuff like that are famous horror authors, joe lansdale There’s a couple of joe hill that are now really well known for Not even series, but individual works.

Didn’t he do,

Stephen: A [00:57:00] series that was cowboy steampunk with a robot, like a coil hunter or dust hunter or something like that? I don’t, I

Alan: don’t know that one. If he did, I’ll glom onto those and read them, but I don’t know that it’s

Stephen: Maybe it was some other, F. Paul Wilson, that just keeps ringing in my head.

Might’ve been somebody with their name really close.

Alan: Okay, what’s interesting is So they went off and I would look for him in horror or in thriller, but they’d have them in the fiction section. It’s you’re not going to attract the readers that you want if you get yourself meek, misclassified.

You know what I mean? I would have to look in multiple sections, even though they were clearly not just a work of fiction. Anyway

Stephen: and you mentioned Dr. Savage who I’ve started reading first time. I’ve never read Doc Savage before. I’ve known of them, heard of them, knew about them, never read the stories.

I’m enjoying them. They’re so much fun. Like you said reads is now if I think we talked a little bit about this is. If somebody created Doc Savage [00:58:00] today and wrote these stories today, they’d never get anywhere. It’s not the stuff of modern fiction. It’s definitely pulp fiction. It’s that era. The story, the book, I’ve got omnibuses.

It’s four stories in one, but they’re each only like 120 pages. They’re. That era, the Mac Bolin and executioner stuff, James Bond, I mentioned, I said, it’s got a big James Bond feel

Alan: about it. Yeah, but there’s not a lot of killing. It’s not about having a gun and spraying the room with bullets.

They’re very much about. He’s like a science detective. He investigates. In fact, that’s One of the reasons that I love reading the pulps is because they’re of that time and back in the 30s and 40s when you read like this is a time before jet airplanes, this is a time before all kinds of different technology that we have today.

And to think of the world still having terra incognita, places we haven’t fully explored and Doc specializes in that. Here’s in the middle of the desert, a lost city. Here’s a hole in the ground that goes into a lost civilization. [00:59:00] It’s I love the fact that he was good at saying it really is possible that this place has never been visited by.

Europeans by white men, because it’s in the middle of an impenetrable jungle or whatever else it might be. And it’s, they had a great sense of wonder about exploring the world in that way. Let’s go to the polar ice caps. Let’s go to the, the middle of the, not even like the Gobi desert, not even the Sahara.

Cool stuff like that. It there’s a lot of camaraderie, it’s not just him. It’s him and his fabulous five. It’s his other his gang, his posse and but each of them is not just cardboard there. There’s very well written characters and they really do have their own like Hammond and bunker often picking on each other going at it.

And they’re laugh out loud funny in some cases. So they learned early on that thing of, you can have a whole bunch of adventure, but you need to have a little bit of comic relief in order to catch your breath a little bit and then go on to the next threat, that kind of thing. So I loved those when [01:00:00] I was growing up, I devoured those as soon as I and people, if you haven’t ever heard of them, think back to the sixties and seventies, when you saw fantastic looking paperback covers, James Bama did the covers.

Different than what had been published on the pulps. And Doc Savage is the guy, he’s like the man of bronze. And he has a close cut hair that comes to a widow’s point. A widow’s peak, sorry. And it was a torn shirt. So if you’ve ever seen that image. They, how many of those were fantastic, like you can’t walk by the paperback rack and go, what’s that about?

How cool

Stephen: is that? Look,

Alan: Him in front of a boat trapped in the Sargasso Sea, that big quarrel of seaweed in the mid in the North Atlantic now, Middle Atlantic, and Got to know where he visited this time. I got a, and that the titles were interesting. The, I think you said you were reading the White Elf.

White Elf. Yeah, exactly. Like the. Brand of the werewolf mad eyes, they really were like those guys who like forties and fifties, it had to be able to stand out from [01:01:00] racks and racks of other things on the stand. So they were very skilled at how to name things named characters named titles.

So they really would jump off the stands. The shadow was great at that too. So it was operated. Number five, so was the spider, et cetera, et cetera. So I’m you reading them. It really inspires me to I don’t think I ever got through the full 181. And in fact, those omnibuses that you have are, they are pre printings of some of the later works like from 41 to 45.

So that’s why they’re shorter. The magazine, the pulp was smaller, but And a lot of times they don’t even include the entire posse. It’s just like Hammond, Monk, the standout characters, if you will, maybe Renny. I, those are the ones that I haven’t read because right when those first started to come out, maybe I was transitioning from school or whatever else it might be.

And I didn’t get at least half of the ones that came out. There’s probably 10 to 20 omnibuses. So I really should, in this era of Everything’s available somewhere on the net. Look for them and not only the [01:02:00] perfect copy that I’m so much a weird collector about, but just get a reading copy because I would love to say I really have read all 181.

They’re

Stephen: fun, definitely a nice palate cleanser after a stressful day.

Alan: I think you said you found them at like the Pulp Con, right? You found a nice

Stephen: That’s a treasure, I’m sorry. These I found at Kenmore Comics. John bought a collection. And I just happened to walk in and I’m like, what is all of this?

And it was like the whole back wall. And it had all these pulps. It had a lot of sci fi had a lot of Star Trek, had a lot of fantasy and science fiction magazine, a lot of Omni or. Odyssey magazine. It was just like, ah, I’m like, so John, what type of deals are you working with this?

Alan: Back out. Exactly. Yeah. So has that collection been really like picked through or

Stephen: yeah, that was over two months ago. Yeah. Okay. They didn’t have he didn’t really have any more. He had the guy who collected it had, all these omnibuses for Doc Savage, but that [01:03:00] was all the Doc Savage.

He had predecessors.

Alan: Okay. Yeah. He

Stephen: had

Alan: to kill me. And 100 are individuals. And then they went to the omnibuses to finish the last bunch of them. There’s probably 20, right? Okay.

Stephen: Yeah. So yeah, it wasn’t a whole lot after I got through and picked out the stuff I wanted and other people would have gotten it, there’s a lot of popular mechanics magazines from the fifties, which I’m like, yeah what good are these nowadays, but whatever.

Alan: There’s gotta be some things that are still like a furnace works the same. If you’ve got an old furnace in your house,

Stephen: some of those old projects, would probably be cool to. Do and work on because they would have DIY or how to articles, and but it’s probably hard getting kids to want to build crystal radio sets nowadays.

Alan: Exactly that crystal and radio. I hear you. Okay. All right. All right, ma’am. Always a pleasure and stay warm man. It really is like still teens and like single digits at night. I’m surprised we haven’t had more like trees explode and stuff, but it’s not zero yet. It’s still at least teens.

Stephen: Our wolf got loose [01:04:00] because his chain, not chain, it’s a, lead line.

It got crimped and then he pulled on it when it was cold. It just snapped.

Alan: And it, but yeah, oh

Stephen: my, okay. I had to go get him. That was a treat. And next week. We really got to talk echo because there’s a lot to talk about that show. Okay, exactly.

Alan: I’m liking it, but not loving it. And maybe because I haven’t gotten to the lead character.

You know what I mean? She’s not someone that I. I haven’t. Oh, she’s great. It’s more okay you, she’s dangerous. She’s interesting. She’s not, I

Stephen: dunno, quite often yet, quite often, Alan, I do think, you know what, he reminds me of a 20-year-old female kickboxer. Quite often I think that looking at you from the Choctaw, it might be

Alan: station, the demographic mesh might not be there for me.

I hear you.

Stephen: Yeah. We’ll talk about it. I can’t wait for that one.

Alan: Okay, whatever we’re doing today. I noticed very few stutters. So since we had talked about if you’re doing it local recording instead of the net, or if you’re using a different [01:05:00] whatever you’re doing, this is back to zoom. And I guess we’ll stick with that until we find out what we can do to offer correctly,

Stephen: wonderful. I was going to try that other one. I told about through the script and I got on, but it was a web based cloud recorder, which we’ve never had success with that. And I was watching it and I’m like, see, I keep telling you, it’s me, not you with this. I’m watching, it’s got a ping number and my ping is one to five and it’s on three.

It’s on three drops to one. It’s on three. I’m like, what the

Alan: hell, why, cause just it’s funny. Physical isolation means nothing in the era of fiber optic cable. You know what I mean? But that everything, every little bit of data we collect helps us get to a solution.

This really has been a great session compared to a couple of the ones where we experimented with web recording. And

Stephen: The ping, unless I’m online playing games or I’m doing some Web conferencing with all the other work I do. I never [01:06:00] notice it. You don’t know. It’s only true. Yeah.

Alan: Latency and lag matter the most to first person shooters, not to zoom calls. Exactly. All right. All right. Later, dude. Okay. Bye bye.

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