Let me say this first—I will be at the Mayne Stage in Chicago this week August 1-4. I love the venue. I love the city. I’m excited to be performing there. If you are around you should come out.
I’ve been in Montreal at the Just for Laughs Festival for three days and I can honestly say I think I like the French pronunciation of my name better than the way I pronounce it. Maybe I could convince people to say it like that. There is elegance to it. I have had to deal with people saying: Marin, Moran, Maroon, Moron, etc. I’ve always thought that it was ridiculous. Look at it. In my mind there is is no other way to pronounce it but that’s life. In French there seems to be only one way to say it. Maybe I will move to France. I guess I will have to learn how to say something other than my name. Okay, maybe I won’t move there.
I came up here for as few days as possible primarily because I exhaust my capacity to be charming in 72 hours and it starts to diminish into contempt. I thought that was behind me—apparently I have a 72 hour window, so now I know that.
I would be remiss in not telling you what I ate. Specifically, head cheese. I went to Au Pied de Cochon. It’s an amazing restaurant. It is a restaurant apparently driven to mock the animals we eat in death. You can order a pig’s head for two. Somewhere in my heart I know it’s a little wrong to eat meat. I don’t honor that part of my heart primarily because I choose to not think too hard on it or engage fully in the empathy for animals we eat. There are a few steps and some packaging between me and the murder of the animal in the skillet. When you are sitting next to a couple eating a pigs head on a plate it’s hard not to engage and feel a bit of sadness and horror. I mean, do we have to rub it in that we are the heartless victors of the food chain.
I wouldn’t normally go anywhere near head cheese. It’s something you see in the supermarket and wonder, "Who the fuck eats that?" From what I can tell it’s just the picked head meat of the pig suspended in lard jello. For some reason the waiter recommended the house made head cheese, fried, over potatoes and for some reason I ordered it. After my third or fourth bite of cubes of fat and cheek meat I was overwhelmed with a duality of nausea: "Why am I eating this?" and "I shouldn’t be eating this." I’m forty nine. I have got to stop rationalizing this regional culinary suicide mission AND I have to start thinking about the pigs and stop being one. I’m not saying I’m going to stop eating meat but I am saying I will think about the process.
Exciting shows this week. On Monday, John Cale, one of the original members of the Velvet Underground talks about the slice of music history that he is. On Thursday, Don Barris, the first guy I met when I moved to LA in the 80s talks about his insane journey in show business and our shared chaotic history at The Comedy Store. I love these types of talks.