Dispatches from the Head

Be Thankful

Be thankful, people!

I love this time of year because winter in LA feels like fall everywhere else. The air is crisp, it's raining occasionally and I can wear a beanie if I want to. I like to wear wool hats. I like dressing for colder weather. So, I’m layering up even if it’s unnecessary.

This is the first year in a while that I’m not going to my mother’s for Thanksgiving. I will find something to do. I’ve been invited a couple of places. I’ll try not to sit at my house by myself though that is definitely an option. It might not be bad but I think it’s a bold action. I think if you sit holidays out when you have the opportunity to spend them with other people and it is an intentional celebration of sadness. Though sometimes spending time with other people can be even sadder. Tough call. We’ll see what I decide. I do know I probably won’t be cooking. Or I could actually just cook for myself. Maybe I should sit at home and eat scrambled eggs on Thanksgiving just to be contrary. We’ll see.

I just want to tell you about tomorrow’s show. I had the opportunity to talk to Larry King. I think it came through the folks that work on his Internet show. I don’t know if I would have interviewed him if it were just my decision. I guess I’m saying I wouldn’t have sought him out. I have nothing against Larry King per se. We do the same thing in some way. I just would not have thought to interview him. He’s a real guy. He’s is like a media truth of some kind: An archetype, a singular presence, an institution. I'm not going to put a value judgment - good or bad - on it. I’m just saying I didn’t seek him out. I think it was primarily because I couldn’t picture the person in there. I had absolutely no sense of who that guy is. I agreed to the interview and even made the trip to his place in Beverly Hills. I was given the time of 10:15 as when I was supposed to be over there. I waited out in the street in my car because I got there early. When I rang the bell I was greeted by a woman, walked into the entry way and waited for Larry King. He came out of the back house and said, “You’re late.” I wasn’t. We had been given different times. It got so uncomfortable for a few seconds that I wasn’t sure it was going to happen. He said he wouldn’t do the whole hour. I guess as punishment for my perceived lateness. At that point I wasn’t sure I cared one way of the other. I was cranky, he was cranky. I just wanted you to know that going in.

On Thursday comedian John Heffron talks a bit of shop and then we get into the real stuff. Great guy.

Have a great week and be nice to your family if you can.

Enjoy.

Boomer lives!



Love,
Maron

WTF - Larry King on why he interviews.

Full episode out 11/25

7

WTF - Edgar Wright’s must-watch list.

Full episode out 11/21

2

The Boston Comedy Festival at The Somerville Theater

Hola, People-

Just went back and forth to Boston in 24 hours. Crazy. I went to accept the Comedian of the Year award from The Boston Comedy Festival at The Somerville Theater. It was an honor. I started in Boston. All of my early memories of working as a comic are in New England and the award means something to me. Those were tough days, lean years, crazy times. I bled a lot all over the New England countryside. It was like my own Revolutionary War of emotions.

They gave me the award after the finals of a competition. It was pretty intense to watch a bunch of new comics doing their best eight minutes. I hadn’t seen that in a while. Joke efficiency and hunger. It was great. Nothing was lost on me. In 1989 I lived two blocks from that theater in an attic in a house full of the kind of people that lived in houses with other people. It was a transition house. It was a holding pen for people between kid and grown up. It was one of those places that no one really knew who owned it but the one guy who had been there the longest—longer than he should have—paid the guy. I have definitely come a long way and I am grateful.

I did make time to stuff meat into my face at Redbones. I was living in that hood when the place opened 26 years ago. The owner, Caryn Whitney, came down to the restaurant when I was there and we hung out and caught up. It’s very weird to have known someone that long as an adult. It was great to see her. The food there is still awesome. It’s amazing to see a place become an institution.

Big week of shows! I know nothing about wrestling so I talked to one of the biggest wrestlers in the world! CM Punk is on the show Monday. On Thursday I have a lovely chat with Edgar Wright about his career and movies. Great guy. Great talk.

Enjoy!

Boomer lives!



Love,
Maron
2

WTF - What do you call CM Punk?

Full episode out 11/18

1

WTF - Barry Crimmins chose stand up over shop lifting.

Full episode out Friday 11/15/13

2

WTF - The Figgs & Marc Maron talk about when they first met.

Full episode out Wednesday 11/13

Return to planet Marc.

Hey, Folks-

Hope everyone is well. I can now report that I saw Gravity. Yes, in 3D. I had a weird type of high expectation. A lot of people I respect said it was great but they couldn’t explain why. There was really no critical talk about it or any specific analysis. It was really just, "What? You haven’t seen Gravity yet. You have to see it. It’s great." I didn’t find anything compelling about the ad campaign nor did I have any interest in seeing a "Space" movie. But, not unlike any cultural phenomenon, if I am not part of it I am outside, left out, in cultural limbo, outer space. Unlike the characters in the film all I had to do to get back to Planet Earth was see the movie.

I liked it. It made me feel very isolated and anxious and relieved over and over again. I can get those feelings in real life. Not necessarily repeated in that order or connected and not always with relief, but a lot of money went into me transcending my own feelings into no gravity and broken equipment. It was a very well done movie. I just recently saw 2001 again and the ballet of space vessels is very satisfying when done well. It was done very well in Gravity. I also had no idea what a hurling piece of fragmented satellite shrapnel could do to a man’s head. Now I do. So, there’s that. Also, between us, I love Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. Who doesn’t?

On the personal front I think it’s time to get to ground zero of me. Check in with the baseline. I am seriously entertaining the idea of getting off the nicotine lozenges and the caffeine and the sugar, all at once, of course. I also have been entertaining the idea of regular exercise again. I will give you a heads up if I do these things, any of them, so you can prepare yourselves for what I imagine will be a temporary change of tone. Right now it’s just a fantasy, an idea. I do think I want to end the recurring cycles of anxiety, aggravation and relief and return to Planet Marc. We’ll see.

Three shows this week! On Monday Illeana Douglas talks to me about her life and career. She is an intense quirky woman. Love her voice. On Wednesday one of my favorite underrated bands, The Figgs, are all in the garage. It was a little unruly but a good time with some good music at the end. On Friday another unsung hero of modern comedy, Barry Crimmins, talks about his harrowing journey that moved through horrendous abuse as a child to performing for the Sandinistas. Heavy episode. I think you’ll dig it.

Enjoy!

Boomer lives!



Love,
Maron
3

WTF - Illeana Douglas talks about her time in Astoria.

Full episode out 11/11

2

I am 50 years old.

Okay. I’m okay, People-

I’m cooking at home and starting to function like a person again. There is a dull ache to being present and aware of being alone but there is also the beauty of space. Mental and physical space.

Before I forget I want to hip you all to my friend Jerry Stahl’s new book. If you don’t know Jerry he’s most famous for his memoir "Permanent Midnight" and his amazing old Hollywood tome, "I Fatty." He’s a dark and fevered humorist. His writing blasts. His new book "Happy Mutant Baby Pills" is out tomorrow. Jerry and me will be doing a reading this Friday November 8th at the Last Book Store in downtown LA if you want come down. Should be dark and fun.

It’s odd. I think I’m just really settling into the idea that I am 50 years old. I didn’t think it mattered when it happened. Then again I was in the middle of a breakup and spent my birthday alone in a hotel room in West Hollywood. It is hitting me now. The reality. 50. I don’t think I feel bad. I might actually feel great. Can't tell. It really depends on which angle you take on any given day. I don’t seem to have as much control over the angle as I would like. It seems that some days everything seem kind of meaningless and I wonder what the point of it all is. This has always been one of the big questions once people realized they could fill their time. On some days life is full of meaning and purpose and I am thrilled to be part of the living. On some level, I am 50, twice divorced, childless and living alone. It is amazing. I may have won. I just have to accept that certain things may not happen for me and which of those things are actually things that I want or things that I have been lead to believe I should want.

Family propaganda is very powerful and is supported by the biological fact that we are here to make more people. It is also disseminated by people who are in the thick of it and, in a lot of cases, trying to make themselves believe that they have done the right thing. We are animals able to ask questions and make choices. Maybe there are plenty of people already here and it’s okay to sit this one out and think about why some days my life lacks meaning and purpose. It’s because some days, it does.

A big three-episode week is upon us! On Monday the lovely Sally Kellerman talks about her career in show biz and some of the biggest names of old Hollywood play a part in her story. It was great to talk to her. On Wednesday I will release the Live WTF from the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal featuring Big Jay Oakerson, Tig Notaro, Trevor Noah, Seth Meyers and Eddie Izzard with a little Andy Kindler thrown in. It was a very wild show in terms of stories and personalities. On Friday Booker T. Jones talks to me about the old days at Stax records and a fifty year career in the music biz. Amazing. Dig it.

Enjoy.



Love,
Maron

Boomer lives!

WTF - Elijah Wood talks vinyl.

Full episode out 10/31

6

Lou Reed is Dead.

Damn, People-

Lou Reed is dead. I spent the entire day Sunday listening to as much Lou as I could. I loved that guy. Reed has been extremely important to me for most of my adult life. Of course, I came to him late, but that was a generational thing. He became part of my personal music mythology. He was one of the anchors. He was one of the pillars of genius I built my understanding of music on. He was one of the true poets. He was like Baudelaire. He was out there on the edge of sanity, drugs, sexuality and New York in a raw, tender way. He could make the worst of all of them beautiful and the best of all of them fragile and human. He was a difficult artist that took a lot of risks with what he created. He was always challenging, always looking for truth. Rest in peace Lou Reed. You are the only one. Thank you for what you left behind.

Sometimes Deaf Black Cat just sits out in back looking at my door. I see him out there. I always assume he wants food, sometimes he just relaxing. That is, relaxing as much as a deaf cat can which isn’t much. I brought some food out to him this morning. I have to be careful to go slowly when I bring the food out or he will bolt and will not come back until the next day. I set the bowl down and went back into the house. He gave me stink eye for while. I stood at the door looking out and he took a few gulps of food in between looking at me. Then he stopped and just sat beside the bowl looking at me. I have projected that he is just looking out for me. He has become my living spirit animal and Boomer is my mythic spirit animal. So, I stood there looking into Deaf Black Cat's eyes for a while and I realized that he probably wants some wet food -- cat crack for ferals. I have only given that cat wet food once and that was to trap him in a cage. I have to assume that has to be one of the more traumatic moments for a wild animal: To be tricked into a cage with something really special and good then to hear that trap door come down. The moment that you know you’ve been duped and now you can’t get out. That has to be terrifying. It amazes me that he still wants the wet food. I wonder if the memory of the food is so sweet and good that the memory of the trap is secondary, if nonexistent. I think that is a hazy line with all of us animals. When something feels or tasted so fucking good you forget about the trap you are in or the one that you might find yourself in.

Johnny Knoxville is in the garage on Monday. I had great talk with that guy. And yes he did have an injury. He had a splint on his arm. On Thursday Elijah Wood talks to me about everything. Good kid. Good actor. Good talk.

Enjoy!



Love,
Maron

Boomer and Lou live!
1

WTF - Johnny Knoxville talks about his family history.

Full episode out 10/28