Dispatches from the Head

WTF - Nick Cave likes knives, doesn’t understand podcasts.

Full episode out 7/4

What now?

It was a good run, people-

What am I going to do now? The final two episodes of Maron aired last Friday, the book is out and doing what it does, I finished an hour-and-a-half standup special for Netflix that we are finishing editing now, and the insane promotional and touring schedule I have been on for what seems like a year is winding down. What now?

I’ve been home for a few days and I’m not leaving again for a week or so and apparently what I like to do is run around and complain about things that need to be done around the house. Which is everything. I guess one of my hobbies is driving my girl crazy with bullshit. The reality is I have to re-enter life, start hitting the LA clubs, work on new material and try to enjoy what I have accomplished. Good luck with that last one. I just wrote that to myself but I guess I wanted all of you to see it.

I will let you know as soon as I know whether or not we get picked up for a second season of Maron. I'm into it.

The response to the series and the book has been great. Outside of the one or two people that thought the show and/or the book was about them and got mildly upset, I was thrilled with all the feedback. It’s a tricky thing to write about your life because there are other people in it and they might take a hit. You have to be able to live with that. I am. I believe that my father will eventually talk to me again. The other guy I pissed off I really haven’t talked to that much in years and quite frankly they should both lighten up a bit.

This is an exciting week. On Monday's show, I had the opportunity to sit down with David Sedaris for a bit and just shoot the shit. I didn’t really know him. I knew some of his work and I know his sister a little but it was really a first conversation. It was fun. It got cut off rather abruptly but we had nice talk. On Thursday, I have Nick Cave in the garage. This was not an easy chat for me. He’s intense and a bit difficult. I think we did good. I will say that the Russell Crowe story towards the end was worth the entire struggle.


Boomer lives!


WTF - David Sedaris liked Marc’s book, just not the cover.

Full episode out 7/1


WTF - The Origin of the Name “Cheech and Chong”

Full episode out 6/27


400, man. That is crazy.

Okay, folks. We did it.

Today is the 400th episode of WTF. It’s insane. I’ve never done 400 of anything. It’s a pretty amazing achievement. It is the most rewarding thing I have ever done. It is a fucking blast and I’m glad you all enjoy it. 400, man. That is crazy.

I really wanted to do the monologue for the show today from my garage. I was going to basically fly back to LA from Buffalo, which was great btw, and do the monologue for the 400th only to turn around and come back to NYC on Tuesday to tape Letterman on Wednesday. I got to the Buffalo airport and it was just one of those fucked flying days. It wasn’t even so much a weather issue. It was just a karmic issue. My biggest fear all weekend was that I wouldn’t be able to get home to get the monologue done and sure as shit it happened. My flight was cancelled, the one I switched to was 8 hours late with connections, but it was through Detroit instead of Chicago. I had already decided that I wasn’t going to make it home to do the show and that I would have to record in a bathroom at the airport or on the street. Luckily I had the gear. All I could think about was getting the opening for the 400th show done. Then I decided I would do it on my layover in Detroit (5 hours) and that would honor our guest appropriately being that it is Iggy Pop and he cut some of his teeth in the Detroit area. I had the poetry all worked out. I would be close to his source and it would read. Then I realized that I might not have the wifi necessary to move the files. That’s when I decided to just go to NYC. I have no clean clothes and nothing to wear for Letterman but I just wanted to be somewhere I could get the damn monologue done for the 400th show. There was an urgency to it. So, I did it. I flew to NYC, spent a shit ton of money on a hotel and will have to buy clothes. All of that only so I could get the monologue done. That urgency and need to get the podcast up and out no matter what has remained in me throughout the entire run of this show. It is the most important thing in my life.

The fact that Iggy Pop was actually in my garage is some kind of milestone, a goal, and an amazing event. The fact that if all goes well I will be sitting on the couch next to Lettermanon Wednesday is another milestone. I’ve worked my entire life to sit there for a few minutes. It all happened because of the podcast. It all happened because all of you dug it. Thank you.

I will have you know that I was nervous when Iggy came over. I was probably more nervous than I have ever been for a guest. He got out of his limo. Walked around back with me. Stood out of my deck, arms outstretched saying, "This is great.” And within minutes his shirt was off. If it were anyone else it would have been odd but that’s just Iggy. We walked together into the garage, me with my shirt on and him with shirt off and we talked. It was just fucking great.

This is actually a huge week on the show because on Thursday Cheech and Chong are in the garage. Who doesn't love Cheech and Chong? They were the first comedy I heard on vinyl and they seared themselves into my brain when I was like 8. It was a fucking honor and a pleasure to talk to them and their story is completely surprising and amazing.

Thank you all for listening.

Boomer lives!


WTF - Iggy Pop wishes he could beat up his band.

Full episode out 6/24


WTF - Kristen Schaal talks about makin’ it.

Full episode out 6/20

I think some part of me really wants to be a professor.

Hola, Amigos-

Firstly, here’s what’s coming up: Tomorrow night I will be at The Paley Center in Los Angeles doing a panel for IFC’s Maron with director Bob Goldthwait, producer Jim Serpico and writers Sivert Glarum and Michael Jamin at 7PM. Should be good. We’ll talk and watch things. I will be at Helium in Buffalo this coming weekend, Thursday through Saturday, June 20-22. I'm scheduled to be on Late Night with David Letterman on June 26th and Late Night with Craig Ferguson on June 27th. Lot of flying. Gunning for that executive platinum status. I think the level after that I can actually fly in the cockpit.

The East Coast book events were great. Thanks for coming out! I did DC, NYC and Boston! Jess had never been to DC so I wanted to show her around. We saw some space capsules and then we had our first big post-engagement fight in the cafeteria of The Museum of the American Indian. It bled out onto the National Mall where we stormed off away from each other. It seemed that there was no resolution possible. It was ugly. We negotiated a truce through texting and agreed to a peace treaty. We met in front of the capital building, hugged and enacted the agreement. Then we went and looked at dinosaurs. It’s holding. Tears were shed, dresses were bought (not wedding, make up), love was made.

I spent some time with my old friend Jim in DC. He works in politics. He’s an advance guy for presidents usually, among other things. I hadn’t seen him in a while. I always like talking to him. He tells me stories that make presidents human to me. If I don’t check in with him they tend to become robots or aliens in my mind.

It was great to be in NYC for two days. I had great readings and it was good talking to everyone who came out. They shouldn’t allow cars on that island, at all. That’s my two cents.

Boston was great too. I spent a lot of my early life there and rarely go back. It was nice this time. I needed the sterile-but-sweet highbrow quiet of Harvard Square. There’s still part of me that is envious of the Ivy League academic lifestyle. I think some part of me really wants to be a professor. I guess there’s still time.

Well, more Jew stuff on Monday. What can I say. Sometimes it just works out that way. Danny Lobell is a comic who actually had one of the first comedy radio show/podcasts with his Comical Radio. Good guy. New to LA. Good talk. On Thursday we go decidedly non Jew with Kristen Schaal and talk about her upbringing on a farm and her ascent to one of the funniest comedy actresses working today.


Boomer lives!


WTF - Danny Lobell interviewed George Carlin

Full episode out 6/17

I proposed to Jessica.

Wow, People.

So, I’m not going to waste any time here. I know a lot of you know already but in case you’re not caught up—I proposed to Jessica. I got her a ring and everything. I served her pancakes on her birthday and stuck the rock right in the middle of the top cake on the stack. We cried and laughed. And so begins another journey into matrimony. I hope it doesn’t kill me or my heart. We’re both excited. I’m also scared but we can keep that between us.

I will be all over the East Coast this week doing book events. I will be in Washington D.C. on June 11th at the 6th & I Synagogue. I will be at the Barnes and Noble in Union Square in NYC on June 12th and in Bryant Park for the summer reading series on June 13th. On June 14th at will be at The Brattle Theater in Harvard Square in Cambridge, MA. I don’t know what kind of tickets are available for any of these but check on them and come out if you can.

It’s a real trip to be doing The Brattle Theater. When I was in college I saw Spalding Gray do Swimming to Cambodia on that stage and it was a life changing event. I had never seen anything like him. I wasn’t hip to the performance thing in NYC at the time. I was kind of just a kid. I thought I knew what was up but I clearly didn’t. To see Spalding perform was like validation that someone just talking about himself passionately and honestly was creatively viable. I had never seen someone so intense and focused on his own story. I remember there being a stack of a manuscript in front of him that he half read as he furiously turned pages and delivered his piece. It wasn’t comedy but it was completely compelling and meaningful on so many levels. It was also hilarious at times. There was really nobody like that guy. He was an inspiration to me.

The book seems to be resonating deeply with the people who read or listen to it. As does the TV show. I have always known I’m not for everyone but it feels good that the people I am for are finding the work and that’s the best I can hope for. That, and the ability to do more work.

This week I get Jewy with Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg on Monday. On Thursday I go into the music time machine and head back to the 80s a bit with a double header. Two episodes in one. Thomas Dolby and Marshall Crenshaw. Interesting talk about innovation and the music biz.


Boomer lives!


WTF - Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg are subdued Canadian Jews.

Full episode out 6/10


Podcasters are under attack from a patent troll.

Okay, Nerd Warriors and others!

The time had come to ride off into the Internet and find some weapons for the good fight.

Podcasters are under attack from a patent troll called Personal Audio. Personal Audio claims to own a patent that covers distributing episodes via the Internet—basically, well, podcasting. Specifically, Personal Audio makes the ridiculous claim that it invented an "apparatus for disseminating a series of episodes represented by media files via the Internet as said episodes become available."

Broad patents like these are all too common these days, and unfortunately they often end up in the hands of patent trolls.

Patent trolls are companies who don’t make anything or don’t sell anything, but own patents and use them as a weapon to extort money from businesses and individuals, usually demanding licensing fees that are cheaper than actually litigating a case in court.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation plans to challenge the patent at the U.S. Patent Office. To do this, the EFF needs to show that the claimed invention was not new (or prove that it was obvious). To do this, they need to find publications from before October 2, 1996 that disclose similar or identical ideas. This also known as "prior art." In other words, anything that describes early versions of podcasting or any other kind of episode distribution over the Internet.

More details here, including where to send prior art:


A patent troll uses patents as legal weapons, instead of actually creating any new products or coming up with new ideas. Instead, trolls are in the business of litigation (or even just threatening litigation). The business model works because patent litigation is so expensive—often costing well into the millions of dollars. This means that when facing the threat of a patent suit, many will choose to settle instead of fight. Of course, this just further emboldens the patent trolls.

Adam Carolla is already being sued. I have received letters of intimidations as has Jesse Thorn, Sam Seder, Comedy Bang Bang, Ari Shaffir and John Oliver’s show The Bugle, among others. We can’t give into this. It really isn’t right. Please help us fight the good fight.

This week on the show, I talk to a multi-talented comedian, Kevin Christy. He paints, acts, does comedy and design—all well. Impressive. On Thursday, Tommy Stinson of The Replacements talks rock. Real rock.

Thanks for helping out.

Boomer lives!



WTF - Kevin Christy talks about how boring art school is.

Full episode out 6/3