Dispatches from the Head

I went to a modern dance thing.

Okay, Action!

So, folks my special ‘Thinky Pain’ is now available on DVD for purchase at wherever you purchase DVDs if that is something you would like to own. It’s there for you to have.

Also, did you know if you put chia seed in coconut milk over night it makes almost a pudding. This was an amazing thing that someone showed me and I am beside myself about it. I just put chia seeds in a one-to-four ratio with some unsweetened coconut milk with a little Stevia and let it set in the fridge overnight and woke up to this awesome pudding thing. It was a life changer that I thought I should share.

Last night I went to a modern dance thing. It was Wayne McGregor’s Random Dance troupe. The thing was called FAR. I know nothing about dance, zero. It was wild to see. I think it’s easy for most of us to dismiss ‘modern dance’ as being this ridiculous mode but I have to say I was impressed and moved. I hate that I dismiss things as something I wouldn’t like just because I make it ridiculous in my mind. Dance is one of the important arts and I was reticent to go because I think I was traumatized by a modern dance performance in college. That was 30 years ago. I don’t think I’ve gone to a modern dance performance in thirty years because it seemed ridiculous to College Marc. Many things were ridiculous to College Marc. He was an ‘art’ guy but for some reason dance wasn’t part of it. It was an astounding performance. It was only an hour (perfect). I drifted in and out a bit but the great thing about modern dance is that if you space out and come back you can get right back on board because you probably didn’t miss any plot points.

I went with my friend Moon, her daughter who is 9 and her daughter’s friend who is 8. Like me they were very excited initially. As I strained to keep focused on the dancers and was beginning to drift I looked over at the two girls about twenty minutes in and they had moved into glazed almost nap mode. So, that gave me pause because I realized I had the attention span of an 8 year old when it comes to modern dance. I forced myself to hold steady and lock in for the rest of the show. It was challenging but amazing. I cried a bit for reasons I don’t understand. I guess that means it was good art.

I am directing the last episode of Maron this week. I am not nervous but I am doing something I have never done before and excited to learn and feel what it is like. I will let you know how that goes and whether or not I sent us over budget with my vision.

This week on the show Simon Amstell talks to me on Monday. He’s a comic from the UK who I have surprisingly way too much in common with. On Thursday Spin writer Marc Spitz talks to me about his journey through drugs and music. For most of it, we were blocks away from each other in NYC in the 90s. It is all in his newish memoir ‘Poseur.’


Boomer lives.




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Erik February 04, 2014 at 12:33 am

Love the show.  I think I’ve heard them all ... I’ve been on the Stitcher app since May 2011, and you were my first podcast subscription, so thanks.  You’ve helped me get through a lot, and yes, sometimes listening to a show has a similar effect to sitting through a good 12-step meeting ... hearing other people talk can be healing.  So there.

Just wanted to make a comment.  I’ve known about you since the early days.  I’m about to turn 48, and I remember seeing you on TV since what must have been your first appearances.  Always a fan. 

The comment is that I’m happy for your recent success, and I wanted to say that I think you’re funnier ... or at least more efficient in your humor ... when you’re super busy.  On the days when you’re clearly exhausted from doing the TV show and the podcast, and probably fucking wiped out, you just instinctively bump it up another notch.  Maybe it’s like the old saying ... if you want something done, ask a busy person.  When you’re busy you don’t have time to fuck around and think too much about it.  You just do it.  And you, Marc, when you “just do it”, seem to make even more sense. 

Keep doin’ it.  Whatever that is.  Enjoy the success, and keep being true to what is.


Rus February 05, 2014 at 3:53 pm

Been following you on twitter at around the time you first started tweeting. I was watching BRL that day. I just knew you’d take to a medium that is pretty much the same as walking into a room, yelling something off the top of your head, then stalking out. Also been kicking down 2 mochas since sometime after the first Dave Attell episode - well worth it.

Not sure how that coconut milk and chia pudding is supposed to taste, though. For some reason, it has a distinct aftertaste of hand soap when I tried to make it. I didn’t have any Stevia though, but I had some agave syrup…maybe that was the problem. Or maybe it was because I let it sit overnight in a plastic sealable container instead of glass - I didn’t wash it with soap, just scrubbed it, so I don’t know what’s up with that. I’m using the black chia seeds and the unsweetened coconut milk. I still make that Angry Chef scone recipe that you did back in the day, though, and that was a great one.

Mike February 05, 2014 at 5:22 pm

Great show, just adding an insight you’ve probably but maybe not considered.  As a vegan, non-beliver, people without fail care more about what I do versus me not caring at all what they eat, wear or think about a god.  We’re not a big chuck of the audience, well maybe in Portland we are and probably an anomaly, but mostly the vegan atheists I know couldn’t care less what others eat or think as long as they aren’t jerks about it.

Jake February 08, 2014 at 9:20 am

How do you only have three comments on here? Last episode, does that mean there is a second season, but there will not be more? Happiness and disappointment at the same time. I think I’ll start listening to your podcast - yeah, bit of a late arrival. Perhaps not having a million people responding means you’ll have the time to read something like this. You know, I appreciate seeing someone who, in a way (I suppose it is impossible to speak like this without making a million assumptions, or have things ruined by rarefied distanciations, so my apologies on what I get wrong), is an example of someone…well, how should I put this…finding the appropriate balance between the integrity of ones words and the social niceties of friendships can come more easily to some people than to others, no? I appreciate that you address eating issues as a man a lot - I have them, too. I wish there was more comedy out there like the sort you provide - clearly, you are still an art person. The anger, the honesty, and the lack of making excuses for oneself - how to balance the analysis and idealization of integrity with, maybe, being okay with being happy (maybe you could relate - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U88jj6PSD7w)? I’m really happy you’ve found this success - the commitment to dickish analysis and ruthlessness (to whatever degree one might like to imagine one is ruthless) with ones own emotions is reaching an audience that can relate, and doing a lot of interpersonal good. Not that I claim to have an understanding of anything (I’m sure my assumptions here are wild and off the mark), but anyway, you’re pretty great, fuck the system, etc., etc.

Marc Shifflett April 16, 2014 at 10:51 am

Happily surprised to read you were taken with Wayne McGregor Random Dance. They are brilliant. I know one of the dancers and like many artists she works incredibly hard and will appreciate the kind words.

One of the great things about watching dance, modern dance (though I scorn the term), is the ability to disassociate with conscious intellect and enter the realm of the conscious unconscious not dissimilar to meditation. I know, sounds just a tad bullshitty, but true.