RL361 - Tethering the Gas

This week, Merlin and John talk about:

The Problem: John exploited the opening, referring to John scoring the hattrick of eating three deserts although he didn’t have a particular reason to eat that entire piece of cake, but there was the opportunity.

The show title refers to having an nascent idea that is still in gas form and then tethering it to the wall by hearing somebody else state it as well.

Raw notes
The segments below are raw notes that have not been edited for language, structure, references, or readability. Please do not quote these texts directly without applying your own editing first! These notes were not planned to be released in this form, but time constraints have caused a shift in priorities and have delayed editing draft-quality versions to a later point.

Sugar intake, celebrating things (RL361)

it is going good! Merlin is kind of tired, but not because it is early, but because he has been up long enough that it already feels he is ready for a nap at 10am. There are always things to do, people stomping around, getting ready for school and work and whatnot. John asks Merlin about his sugar intake, and it is very low. He goes through phases with ice cream, but amongst his numerous vices sugar is very low. He is a savory boy. Sometimes he wonders if he has an imbalance of bodily humors because he always craves large meat.

Lately Merlin did the weird bifurcated sleep thing where he falls asleep before he goes to bed and sometimes he wakes up and has an interregnum and have a Mac & Cheese or a left-over, at midnight or a little later. They have also recently rediscovered baked potatoes in their home, like a House of Prime Rib fully loaded baked potato, which John has seen, but not at a House of Prime Rib because Merlin has never taken him there in 20 years. John has never been to a House of Prime Rib. Scott Simpson and Merlin are like an old couple, they just go there. Everybody Merlin and John know in common has been with Merlin at the House of Prime Rib, they all have T-shirts. John is Merlin’s Dim Sum friend, but the last time that guy closed his Dim Sum store like 6 years ago and the pigeons are probably still there. He didn’t seemed to mind them, they were just part of the kitchen. ”I did not make the rat! God made the rat!” (reference to John’s landlord who didn’t care that John had a rat in the apartment)

What is John’s sugar intake? He is vulnerable. He doesn’t like tart sweets or sweet sweets, but he likes chocolate and ice cream, fat and sugar mixed together with cold filled with chunks. John likes chunky ice cream and he likes cake. There are a lot of excuses to have cake and ice cream and John maybe makes more excuses than a normal person would allow for, like birthday, but there is also Halloween cake. Merlin comes from a family that has a low threshold for celebration and it doesn’t take much for them to celebrate something.

John has a very high personal threshold for celebration, he doesn’t celebrate his victories, he doesn’t want to celebrate his birthday. When he was a drinker he would celebrate his birthday by drinking alone, but he is surrounded by all of the women-folk in his clan, with the exception of his mom who shares his distaste for celebrating, although she celebrates her victories and she even celebrates his victories, but who could tell? But the other ladies, and that is a long tail, they use every opportunity to celebrate, and also celebrations bleed over into the days on either side and you get a jubilee.

They had one of these last night and even though there was no reason for John especially to use it as an opportunity to eat an entire piece of giant cake and a huge bowl of ice cream in addition to the little bowl of ice cream they had at dinner he took the opportunity and exploited the opening and scored the hattrick of three deserts, and now he is sitting there in a state… He understands, people have explained the human body to him a few times, and apparently it is some kind of machine. You put fuel in and waste comes out, but somewhere in between there you are doing jumps and you are thinking deep thoughts, you make music, you look at stuff and you can interpret it, all that is happening as a result of the fuel.

It doesn’t feel like a normal machine that does a thing or two, it is not anything Merlin would buy for himself. If John was going to buy one he would buy a better one or a little one like Merlin’s lizard. He doesn’t poop very much and right now he is in the middle of his Odinsleep that he has in the winter time. They are monitoring the situation closely, they have turned off the lights and they have darkened the room, it is a whole thing. Basically every room is his daughter’s room now with the crafts and the food and the things and the lizards lives and has Odinsleep in her bedroom, and by extension it is all her house really and Merlin and his wife don’t get a room for anything anymore, he has barely a place to put his iPhone down.

When John scooted his chair back to join Merlin today on this program, it made a crunching sound, and under the wheels of the chair was an old issue of Web of Spiderman that belonged to John at one point many years ago and then got inherited by his daughter and she felt like the best place to put it was underneath the wheels of his chair. Merlin was refactoring their spice rack yesterday and found a brown LEGO in there. Thank God it wasn’t on the floor where most brown LEGOs end up, but it is a whole thing.

The body is a mystery! Merlin has to be careful with the carbs because they hurt his engine and make him logey. There are lots of people… John has a friend who is a nutritionist who teaches at the Bastyr College of Alternative Medicine and her entire job is to go to school every day and teach alternative medicine-men and women about what to put into your machine and how important it is. Yesterday John ate: He went to the mall in the morning because yesterday’s celebration was a birthday celebration and John’s daughter and John’s mother and John all needed to buy presents for this person because they have waited until the last minute (the person requiring a week-long jubilee is probably John’s daughter’s mother). John would never go to the mall, but he is not the decider.

John at a Fireworks gift shop (RL361)

John went to the mall, having a hard time, he ended up in a Fireworks (store), standing there, unclear where to turn, because in that store there is no place for John to stand because any place he picks where he is not in anybody’s way somebody is immediately behind him, like: ”Excuse me!” Those stores are not ADA compliant! When John was a kid it was the hallmark store if you wanted to get somebody a Christmas ornament as a present or cards and little things, but now you go there if you are really fun! The ladies who work there are all really fun 65-year old ladies who are super-fun and having fun and there is so much fun stuff in there!

There are oven mitts that look like hot dogs and hot dogs that look like oven mitts, it is so much fun. There are socks with swear words on them, it is just: ”Wheheee!”, but it is so crowded with stuff and when you put people in there it gets way more crowded with people who are a form of stuff, and John is not going to buy anything there and he doesn’t want to be in there, but his daughter is in there, ostensibly looking for a present for a grown-up, but what she is really doing is try on every hot-dog shaped mitt she can find. ”Daddy, look what I found! A puppy with a princess and a princess and a pea!” - ”That is not a gift for the person we are looking for gifts for” - ”Hmmmm”

Then John saw across the store a guy who was 6’8”, 300 pounds, all shoulders, and John knows him, his name is Hoss and he is one of the old-school club bouncers in Seattle. They looked at each other across the store because they could see over everybody else’s head and all the display racks and they both mouthed: ”What the fuck are you doing here?”

At the food court (RL361)

Finally John’s mom came over and said she was hungry and John started the sentence with: ”We are at he mall…”, meaning to continue with ”…, so let’s get out of the mall if we are going to find food!”, but she heard ”,… there is so much food at the mall!”

They went to the food court and mom got some kind of Shrimp Teriyaki, which is not what you are supposed to put together, his daughter got to Chipotle (John says Pechotle) and got a Chipotle cheese quesadilla, and if you went to any one of them, except maybe the Teriyaki place, and asked for a bread and cheese, they are all going to have a bread and cheese, whatever their version is, but she was going to wait in line at Chipotle for 20 minutes to get a fucking bread and cheese. John had to find something for himself and he is very frustrated at these places because there are always 57 people lined up at the Sbarro and he Johnny Rockets, and then there is the little Falafel place and the guy is standing there, trying to hand out little bits, and people are just walking past.

John went to the Bibimbap Korean place where they have a superheated stone bowl filled with egg and kimchi and ordered the one with everything, meaning his first food of the day was a big bowl of spicy Korean food. That was the base layer. He ended up not getting anything at the mall and he went to the Filson store which is increasingly embarrassing for him, and he found a gift that was way more money that he should have spent on any gift for anybody, but John buys gifts that he would like to receive and a Filson is an investment.

Everything made in China (RL361)

Walking around the mall, people are talking about the death of retail, but there are 200 stores in this mall and it is packed so you can’t turn around, everybody is buying stuff. Merlin doesn’t understand how you can have so many shoe stores or stores that are selling God-only-know-what. Basically America has turned into a nation of stocking stuffers. Look at that Fireworks! It is stocking stuffers all the way down. 98% of everything in this mall, all the clothes on the backs of the people in this mall are all made in China and is all part of this gargantuan global economy that we all talk about all the time where stuff is being made with slave labor and comes over in shipping containers and gets sold for bargain prices.

We all wring our hands about it, but the world has transformed. The idea that you would buy a pair of shoes, wear it for six years and then have them resoled and then wear them for another six years and have them resoled again, the thing is that resoling a pair of shoes costs more than a new pair of shoes and a lot of people just wear their shoes for 6 months, throw them away and get a new pair of shoes. Merlin remembers that happening with VCRs. They used to be very costly, but at some point in the 1980s they became $200. Merlin had one of those and he needed to get it fixed and they had a bench fee of $50, which is 1/4 of the price of a newer and better VCR. Now they won’t even put it on the bench because as soon as you crack the case open all the butterflies inside will get out and then it can’t be fixed, so forget it!

John and Jason Finn used to drive around the town and point out apartment buildings and say: ”I slept with a girl in there” - ”Oh yeah? I slept with a girl in there!”, which was a real dick afternoon event for them to be jerks. Now they drive around and can’t help saying: ”I remember when that was X” and the other day John drove past this place that was the typewriter repair place and now it is an axe throwing bar who is making single malt whiskey on the spot, flavored with vape juice, and there are a bunch of guys in there with beards.

It hasn’t been the typewriter store for 25+ years, but John remembers going in there and there was a crazy guy in there with a green visor and the store was dark except for some table lights pointing down at his work. It wasn’t a printer store, you didn’t get in there for cartridges, but you went in there to get your typewriter fixed. John was looking at it and was thinking that there isn’t anything even remotely equivalent to i left in the universe. John has a clock from 1930 that he wanted to get repaired and he took it to a place where the sign said ”Clock Repair”, but the person looked at it and said: ”There is no point in fixing that!” - ”There is a point in fixing that, it is a clock from 1930 that is of sentimental value, but also real value as a thing from my family! You can surely fix this clock, you are a clock fixer!” - ”No, not really, there aren’t parts available and it is not really worth it!” - ”Oh wow, worth it?”

It definitely made John feel that going to the Filson store and making an investment that was going to last for the rest of your life has become such a performance now because nobody is truly ready to say when the sole of their shoes gets worn through that they take their shoes to somebody and pay more than they would pay for a new pair of shoes to get the soles redone until you are really swimming upstream and are fighting the tide. You are going to be the anachronism who does this and John is exactly the target audience for that mentality. But Jesus Christ, you have got to find the shoe repair guy and they sit sniffing glue all day…

That is why Merlin loves their dorky neighborhood, because they have stuff like that around and there is a shoe guy and a tailor nearby. He was pondering getting some buttons reinforced because he likes the shirt he got, but the buttons were a bit flimsy. They also have a saxophone repair place where they wear smocks. John had a button come off the other day and he was walking past a dry-cleaner and he walked in, there was a lady there from Asia, John told her that this button came off and she sowed it back on, better than it had been before, and she just wanted $5 for this, which was not enough. John should bring everything in here to have her sow buttons on it, because every jacket he owns is missing at least one button.

It is like the spice rack, it is a quality of life issue. When you refactor your spice rack you are making a lot of decisions about the worth of your life. Merlin hugely improved his spice rack recently. Merlin put on a shirt today, not Mack Weldon (which was their sponsor this week), although he does enjoy them very much, and the shirt was a little flimsy. Merlin and his wife refer to this as the tiny life improvement project, which is finding tiny little things that you can improve in your life that have out-size effects. Making a shelf that will accommodate the olive oil and the sal de mare on the same shelf has been huge! There are lots of things like that and Merlin doesn’t want to be told not to repair his shoes.

Merlin’s nearby shoe man has now pivoted to wallets and purses and various leather goods as well as shoes. He has the technology, he can make the shoes better and faster than they were, but he can also make purses and wallets! Merlin got a gift for his wife two Christmases ago because he likes to shop local.

Printers (RL361)

Merlin’s brother in law had a whole career in office hardware. For years he was a big wheel at the printer selling place who also did printer servicing under the ages of a large and well-known manufacturer of office hardware stuff. It really feels like something from the 1930s at this point. He would have these relationships with mom-and-pop-stores or the school system and he was the sales rep who would work with them. By the time he retired a few years ago that career didn’t exist anymore. Merlin’s Epson printer that he likes fine, every printer is fine, they just buy costly inks for it until it breaks and then they get another one, and what is he going to do? Take it to a store?

John’s daughter’s mother just bought a printer three days ago and watching her do it John realized that he hasn’t bought a printer since 2007 and it had some element that was meant to be WiFi and he tried to WiFi to it and he was not ever able to successfully print from it and it sat there on top of a DVD player until they all went to the Goodwill and John has never bought a printer since (see RL153). Anytime somebody sends him an email that tells him to print this out, sign it and fax it back he replies: ”No, I cannot do those things!” You either find a way to send it to John where he can approve it with a minimum of effort by clicking ”Yes!” or he will not do it.

When he was selling his house, John went down to the mortgage office a couple of times in a downtown office building, saying: ”You have every paper you want me to sign all there on the desk and I will sign them with a pen and we will have a human interaction about this, because I will not try and navigate your online signing process and you better believe I am not going to print something out, sign it and fax it back. Go fuck yourself anybody who asks me to do that! There is a lot of stuff in the music business where they want you to do that. People love doing the thing that is easy for them.

This is an email problem do. Like that lady who got mad at John because he didn’t respond to her Facebook message. She might as well have put it on her front porch and asked him to find it. The pie graph of Merlin’s printer usage, he and his lady are probably both competing for the 2% slice. For Merlin that is that before they go out for Halloween he will put a sign over the candy and say: ”Help yourself!”, he has a template for a note that he gives to their neighbors if they are going to be traveling that he changes details of, his lady prints out school things and work things occasionally, but far and away 90% is Merlin’s kid printing out paper craft that she finds on the Internet. She is the alpha-user of it.

So far they don’t allow John’s daughter anywhere near the Internet, but that will change one of these days when she is 18 or 19. They have books with things she can color. John is looking at a piece of paper that she drew on 6 months ago that is still taped to the wall here.

Dave Eggers interview (RL361)

Merlin was listening to an interview with Dave Eggers today Ezra Klein from Vox (see here) and found it thought provoking. John likes him because he has given him things to think about many times, like ”That’s not for you!” (referring to what their fans write about you online, see RL26, RW2) The fellow does not have WiFi in his house! he last time he and John did a thing has to be 5 years ago. They went to some cocktail party in a rich people’s house who were rich literary people and they had done an event and he was giving a talk and they were going to give money to something. He is genius at it, he makes everybody feel smart.

He is the number one Irish Good Bye guy. He will be the center of the party and he will sneak up behind you and say: ”Ready? Let’s go!” and you go out through the kitchen door and you are three blocks away before anybody in the house is: ”Where is the guest of honor?” Even then, 15 years after the first time he said: ”That is not for you!” he was laying out some science for John how you don’t want to give too much and put yourself in a place where… he makes a very good case for it, including that he still has a flip phone, but he is very successful and he has people, he is not driving a Lyft. He also knows where his limitations are.

Merlin is not going to say the P-word (?) because it might make John angry, but to be able to say you are writing a 600 page novel, so you have chosen to spend 10 minutes on email in the morning and then for the rest of his day you will read for 2 hours and then you will write your thoughts for your novel in the afternoon is not something everybody can do, but he is not advocating his principles by going to the hotel worker’s employee’s union and giving a speech to them about how they should use their time. It is very thought provoking because he is making the case that if you do have this level of control, would you have accepted all the thing that have become incursions to our attention and privacy in even just the last 10 years. He is saying a lot of the things that Merlin thinks that John thinks and he presents it in a novel and very sensible way. John is hesitant because the interview is in the form of a podcast he has to listen to.

John says that when you hear someone who agrees with you or whose thinking comports with yours, there is a tendency to just listen and nod along because you want your own biases confirmed by someone else, but in fact, and this might be why podcasts are catching on and why people listen to this show, you hear someone state a thing that you believe in a kind of nascence and you are trying to wrestle with the thoughts, you might have a gas-ious version of that idea without any mooring, but it is not really tethered to anything, but just hearing people be smart can be really useful whether or not you ”agree” with them or not. Even if they are also trying to tether their gas, hearing them do that and you are over here trying to tether your gas, you go: ”Oh, right!” It is part of why we converse.

Being in an old-school Italian restaurant (RL361)

The second meal John had yesterday was at an old-style Italian restaurant where the owner was there coming around the table, which it great except that in this case there was a husband-and-wife waiter team who were actually serving John’s family, at John’s age, and they were extremely needy, almost cracky. They weren’t explaining the food because this was 100% not a place where they were: ”Have you ever dined with us before?” and if you don’t know what a fucking meatball is, there is nothing funny about this meatball, we didn’t put any sage in it, it is not in any kind of reduction, but it is just a fucking meatball and some sauce and if you want extra sauce, it is fine, it is just $1, not a problem.

The owner was a super-nice old white-haired guy and he spent most of the time in the bar, joshing it up with people, but by the way the servers were behaving it felt like he was beating them in the back and the energy was cracky, maybe they were on their last leg or they were on crack and weren’t able to moderate how enthusiastic they were about things. John was just a family that was having a birthday dinner and they didn’t need anything. After they said one time: ”It is great! Thanks!” that was the last interaction they needed except for filling up the water glasses.

It was an Italian restaurant from the core group of four that had too much food, and one of John’s party ordered a rib-eye steak, one ordered a Cioppino with a side of scabetti [sic] (a hearty Italian sea-food stew), one ordered a Veal Marsala, also with a side of scabetti [sic], and these are not small sides of scabetti that would be a whole portion of food, and one ordered a Cheese & Bread. Two of them Merlin could assign very easily to the person who ordered them. John ate his meal and he also ate some of every one else’s meal (like Mr. Rogers says: ”Look for the helpers!”), so he had a piece of Cheese & Bread, a lunch-sized portion of the Cioppino and 1/3 of the steak in addition to his Veal Marsala and Scabetti. In the end he had had too much food because he had already started the day with his Bibimbap breakfast.

When the wait staff came over and asked if they were read for desert, Spumoni, they said that they already had desert at home because they were having a birthday party, buy they would not take ”No!” for an answer. They even wanted to give it to them for free, but they still didn’t want it because half the time in those restaurants, the more authentic those deserts are the worse they are. Nobody wants Spumoni! Merlin doesn’t turns for Italy for desert, it is just not what they are the best at. They were frantic to give them the desert, as though if they had failed they were going to have to put the lotion on their skin.

John wanting a landline for his new house (RL361)

John wants… ”What I want…” (reference to The Godfather). He now has a house from 1955 and he also has a phone from about 1955 and he would like to have it so there was a phone in his house that rang and he would give this phone number to about 3 people, but he wants to have an old-fashioned phone in his house that rings when about 3-5 people call it. It is absolutely possible, but Merlin is not sure if that is what John wants because he is going to get tons of spam. No matter what phone number you get it isn’t a fresh number but a reused number.

Merlin recommends to get a phone through the phone company with an actual landline so it still works when the power is off. John wants it for that exact reason: He doesn’t answer his phone and people call him and he doesn’t answer it and they call again and he wants a place where the people who always want John to answer it can call, John wants a Bat Phone where only Commissioner Gordon is allowed to call, but he doesn’t want any more spams.

John eating too much food the day before (RL361)

John had three meals just at that meal and they ended up acquiescing to the forced desert and the one cracky server was like: ”Everyone! 1… 2… 3…” and everyone in the bar turned and there was this singing and then the ice cream shows up. At the end the lady server even came over with a comment card, which was weird, but John let his little girl fill it out, which was great because she was like ”the food was about a 4.5” and she drew a little thing. It became a graphic novel because she had done a couple and crossed it out and edited it, but all on the same page and in different-colored crayons, so it would be unintelligible to any other adult.

When John came home he had a piece of cake and a giant bowl of ”Every but the…” Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. A nutritionist would say that John would have to exhibit the signs today of having been poisoned. He should feel some consequence of having eaten 5 large portions of food across a fairly broad spectrum of nationalities and spice levels because the Cioppino was very spicy whereas the Masala is not a spicy food. John had a lo of rich food, there was not a light meal. Then there were the coffees of course.

John should by all rights have either no energy, or too much energy or the wrong kind of energy or his head should be swimming or it should be aching or he should have really bad hot takes about George Martin and the string score of I Am The Walrus, he should be over-quoting The Godfather, something bad should happen. Is it because he is so screwed up in this life that he is not even affected by all this terrible Chemistry?

Kimchi egg fried rice 1 serving: 374 cal
Veal Marsala 1 cutlet: 350 cal
Rib-eye steak 100g: 291 cal
Scabetti 300g: 474 cal
Bread cheese 100g: 195 cal
Spumoni 65g: 140 cal
Chocolate cake 1 piece: 352 cal
Ben & Jerries 4 servings: 1240 cal

Or is it that it doesn’t matter what you put into your battleship Potemkin, it will just power through the Adriatic, it will cross the Dardanelles irregardless?

The Gravity Bar in Seattle (RL361)

John talked about this in RL23

Years ago in the early 1990s there was a place called The Gravity Bar, which was very futuristic, very heuristic, but it was designed in a way that now you see a lot, but at the time it seemed very Logan’s run, it was very white surfaces and chrome and things were backlit, some pink-light behind something that gave everything a glow, like Virgin America were a bar, but it wasn’t a bar, but it was a vegan juice food place was very ahead of its time and on Capitol Hill in 1991-94 it was The jam! When John first moved to Seattle, no way did he want to go to a vegan juice bar, but he was with some ladies that had a vision of the future and John agreed to do whatever they say. There was no pizza, but they promised he won’t miss it.

There was a meal called the RV-1 that was just very lightly steamed vegetables and Tahini and John didn’t want to just eat raw vegetables and whatever this ranch dressing is for late lunch, but they asked him to just try it and it was a fantastic lunch and blew John away. There have been 50 events in his life where he was just: ”Oh, if I could just eat this every day I would be a vegetarian!”, but when people ask: What would you do if you had a million trillion dollars, the only two things John ever consistently said over time is that he would have his clothes made and he would have someone cook for him and that person would make him a vegetarian because they would make delicious vegetarian food for him every day and they would never tell him.

For Merlin as a carnivore, for as long as he can remember vegetarian, and don’t get him started on vegan, was presented as a neutered option. In the 1980s Merlin went exactly one vegetarian restaurant ever, and it was fantastic. They served this herbal tea called Celestial Seasonings, they had ice tea, steamed vegetables, but it was all flawless and it was not neutered. The first thing Merlin ever learned about eating vegetarian is to reject a food that is given to you if it would normally have meat in it. It can not be the same food that you would otherwise order with meat except they replaced it with fake meat of they have taken the meat out of it. If somebody cares about this and does not see it as a neutered version of regular food it can be sublime.

Merlin also wants a gravy fountain that is pumping out four kinds of gravy. John remarks that he would have to come back to the JoCo Cruise because it is still there.

John wants to be fooled and he wants people to lie to him if they can get away with it. Do the thing without consulting him that is best for him, don’t offer him any options, just give him the food and he will eat it. But if you ask if he would like to get a super-hearty bowl of meat stew or meat stew without the meat…

The great thing about The Gravity Bar was that it introduced John to Wheatgrass Juice which he loved and for most of the 1990s he would stop there and get a double-shot of Wheatgrass Juice the same way he would get an Espresso because he actually loved the taste of it. A lot of people don’t like it because it tastes like grass, but John really likes it because it is sweet. Merlin has never tried it but he has to places where they have it. They are growing grass right there in the bar in a tray that is covered with grass and they mow it and put it into a squeezer and out the other side comes a shot-glass full of bright green grass juice and it is really delicious. It is energizing and in contravention to the thing that John can eat a bunch of garbage and not feel it, when he would drink a glass of wheatgrass juice he always felt like ”Gazing!”

The bad part of going to The Gravity Bar was that because the whole trip of the restaurant was that they were the future and we were all going to eat lightly steamed vegetables and Tahini and drinking shots of Wheatgrass Juice in a pink-neon colored bar, because your hamburger joint is on the Exxon Valdez and Waterworld, it is over.

There was a book by the cash register that was for sale, like at the Starbucks where you can buy a Bob Dylan record. It was a retail opportunity, but they only sold a couple of things, and one of them was this book in the family of Behold A Pale Horse, a conspiracy book about food conspiracies. It started out very reasonable, but by chapter. 3 or 4 it got more and more serious. First you fast for 10 days and just drink lemons and salt and then you start doing wheatgrass juice enemas and you fast a different way, you start on your head and fast. The barrier to entry of this whole process was very hight, it was not just a 4-day fast that will change your life.

Later on in the book it started to make some claims and it would not going to be able to make these claims if any schmo who has eaten an RV-1 once a week could go ahead and try this 4-day fast. Merlin says it is a little bit like Scientology where you are not going to learn about Xenu until you held the cans a bunch of times. This was not a fast that any joker could accomplish and John knew a couple of people who had tried it, but you just can’t get that far. Particularly friend of the podcast Jason Finn likes to take fasts all the time because he continues to pursue a health regimen that will continue to enable him to competitively drink on the other side, and if he fasts and jogs he will run away from his mortality, and through a 5-mile run every day he can outpace his alcoholism.

At a certain point around chapter 7 or 8 the writer started to talk about impacted hardened fecal matter that after you had been through this two-week long process and had done enough tomato juice enema you will no longer smell like skunk and you would start to see this material appear that has been liberated out of your body. When you are fasting, everything gets out of you and pretty soon it is just water, eventually your tape worm or whatever is gone, too, this might even have been the book where John read that if you had a tape worm you should sit in a bathtub full of warm milk and the tape worm would come out and you wrap it around a pencil and turn it over gently

The book claimed that along the walls of our intestines from all of our years of bad living there is a coating that even when you fast and do everything you can is like plaque in your arteries. It is the Tora Bora of your butt and the only way you can get it out is through this process. Once it starts to cleave off of the sides and come out, and apparently it is this amazing material that is blacker than black and has a specific gravity of 10 million and you can use it to power a Mercedes 300D.

Merlin’s lady friend in 1989 worked at a pretty extreme health food operation in Miami and she said that all the rage was the coffee enema which produced something that was described in the literature as a bicycle inner tube. You would drop a deuce and out comes the inside of a tire.

One time John had a really bad sinus infection and it was the spring, it was one of those spring days in Seattle where it had been raining and then the sun came out and John was in his wool jacket and he had his hat on, but it was sunny, too and his whole head was stuffed up like there was a fucking raccoon living inside his sinuses and he did that thing where you are trying to snort some stuff down so you can spit it out, called hog a loogie, and he felt the materiel, the mucus, come lose from the walls of his head way up above his eyes from above and in front of his ears, like turning over a thing of Jell-O and watching it come loose and John felt the entirety of his head release and it all came out and went down.

John was bent over a gutter making noises as this mass the size and shape of a bulldog puppy came out. He was on a side street in front of Bill’s off Broadway Pizza in the middle of the day when nobody was there except his girlfriend who was so appalled, but she was appalled of John already. The last little bit to let go was from inside John’s ears and it all came out. It was the one time in his life when John went from being super-sick to being completely healthy in one 30-second moment. It was the greatest moment in his life and he still thinks about it all the time (John has told this story before, look it up!)

Merlin would take that on any part of his body and this is what we are looking for with this UFO transporter technology, because after John became the anchorman for the UFOs they are going to run him through the box and he is going to come out a little Dr. Manhattan over here and everything will be torn out by the roots and is going to go down the alien drain. The first thing John wants them to address is his prostate, just take it out and remake it or give him a young one, just one that is not trying to interfere with stuff. It is basically saying that humans weren’t meant to live past 50 and this is not what it was designed to do.

The UFOs are going to take all the mucus out, his cuticles are going to be repaired. The state of John’s knees is such that every time he bends down to look at something on a low shelf now, once he gets down there he will ask himself: ”Why the fuck did you do this? You got to get back up, man!” The pastime nutritionist listening to this show will now say: ”See, this is the cake and ice cream! It is not that it makes you think weird when you are going to do a podcast the next day, but when you bend down your squeezer bulb…” - ”No, fuck you! Shut up! You are just looking for a reason!”

One of the ladies that got John into eating raw food also bought the book and told him he had to read this and it was at a time when anybody who would put a book in his hand and said: ”You have to read this!” he read it. It was how he ended up reading Frederick Exley’s A Fan’s Notes. John read the book and the hardened fecal matter guy by chapter 12…

The book The Long Walk (see RW14) by Slavomir Rawicz is about his escape from the labor camp in Siberia and with his little squad of various escaped people during World War II they walked from Northern Siberia down through the Goby desert over the Himalayas to India, which was a very long walk and the book is an extraordinary tale. In that book you get to the last 20 pages and all of a sudden an event happens where you are like: ”What?” It is a real turns-out. It was turned into a movie called The Way Back starring some famouses not very long ago. When the movie gets to the last 20 pages of the book, which are the key to the book, and the movie just completely ignores it.

That is the thing about this book about this hardened fecal matter: After it comes out then apparently your intestines are reborn and they are going to be pink just like the day you were born and every food you eat from that point on, every time you eat an RV-1, every time you take a little sip of Wheatgrass Juice it goes perfectly into your body through these very pink membranes just as God designed it to do. If your intestines were lined with hardened fecal matter it would just go straight through and you wouldn’t get any nutrition from it, but once that stuff comes off you only need to eat two table spoons of grass a day and it goes perfectly in and you don’t need to run to stave off your alcoholism, but you wouldn’t even need alcoholism. You would just be living in the warm glow.

The final chapter of this book he starts to talk about being in the mountains… not the Polish fellow because he surely just ate whatever kind of Yak fur he could get his hands on, he was not living in the clear, in the light, he had never met Xenu, he was not the key master,… was it a 707, was that what it was? The plane? Rough people in the volcano… they are violating a lot of copyright with this… the one in South America where they all eat each other because they got no soup cans (probably the movie The Green Inferno).

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