Lex Fridman Podcast - #287 - Bobby Lee: Comedy, Skyrim, Sex Robots, Love, Fame, and Power

The following is a conversation with Bobby Lee,

a standup comedian and podcaster,

and one of the funniest humans on the planet.

And just someone who brings joy to my heart

with a mix of non-sequitur absurdity,

darkness, and the singing voice of an angel.

In all seriousness, Bobby’s just a beautiful human being.

I’ve been a fan of his for 20 years,

since his time on Matt TV,

to today with his podcast, Tiger Belly,

that he does with his other half,

the love of his life, Kalilah,

and the podcast, Bad Friends,

that he does with Andrew Santino.

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This is the Lex Friedman Podcast,

and here is my conversation with Bobby Lee.

I’ve been a fan of yours for many, many years.

I think you’re one of the funniest people in the world.

I’ve been a fan since Matt TV days 20 years ago

to today with Tiger Belly,

so given that, given your status as a world-class comedian,

how did it feel that you were not invited

to Andrew Schultz’s wedding and I was?

What, you were there?

Yeah, I was there.

I was the least funny person there,

and the whole time I was thinking,

isn’t that funny that Bobby Lee’s not here?

Yeah, all my life I always felt like people didn’t like me

and they didn’t want to invite me to things.

I think that’s fundamentally the reason why I do what I do,

so it really did hurt a lot, and I had resentments.

I did some revenge fantasies

about how I’m going to get revenge on him and stuff.

Yeah, on him specifically?

Him specifically.


Like have a big wedding, invite everyone,

you know what I mean, except him, stuff like that,

and then just write him a letter like,

see, that’s how it feels or whatever,

but instead of that, because I’m in therapy and stuff,

I’m just kind of like trying to let it go.

What’d you do there?

This right here, why’d you do that?

I forgot to start the timer.

And now it starts.

Do you want to start over?

Yeah, let’s do this again.

Let’s do it again.

Take two.

No, you still feel like an outsider?

Your exception is successful in many domains,

you still feel?


You know, I’m doing a Netflix show tonight

with Andrew Santino at the Comedy Store and this and that,

but last night I just felt like I wasn’t a part of,

in fact, on stage I go, I even mentioned it,

I go, Netflix, they don’t like me, you know what I mean?

And I just say things like that, they’re not true,

and this is something that I want to correct with myself

because I have this internal dialogue

that’s based on just the past,

and 99% of the things that go on in my mind aren’t true,

and I’m just at a point in my life

where I don’t want to live like that anymore.

Really, because I’m the same way,

I’m deeply self-critical all the time.


That’s kind of an engine that drives you to do stuff.

Yeah, but it doesn’t give you

the kind of freedom that I would like.

Don’t you want to be truly free?

Free from your mind?

Free from negative thoughts?

No, I’m free part of the day,

but some of the day I spend being extremely self-critical,

and that drives you,

because I’m afraid I’ll become ultra-lazy otherwise,

because I love life, I love being comfortable,

I love just relaxing.

I need very few things in life,

and so I’m afraid I’ll just get super-lazy.

Oh, are you a minimalist?


So if I went to your house in Austin, do you have a couch?

I recently got, this is the first couch I’ve gotten ever,

because the guests were complaining,

because I also record the podcast there,

the guests were complaining there’s nowhere to sit.

I have no chairs, no couch,

I sleep on the floor, a mattress is on the floor.

Not out of principle, I think,

out of some kind of minimalist momentum.

Minimalist, so we’re the opposite in that way, then.

Oh, so you like stuff?

I’m not a hoarder, but, because I can throw things away,

but I have a shopping addiction, I think.

Like when I’m on the road,

like I was in Oklahoma for two weeks,

I just, I bought a bunch of stuff, you know what I mean?

Like what?

Oh my God, I went to Todd Snyder,

and I bought, I bought these shoes.

You know?

Because, you know, I-

But you’re wearing them,

so they’re actually, you’re using them,

and they’re giving value to your life, that’s awesome.

Yeah, but this is the last time I’m gonna wear these.

This is the one time?

Yeah, yeah.

This is like a wedding, but it’s a red carpet dress.

Who’s the designer, do you know?

I don’t know anything about it.

What are you wearing, Bobby?

I don’t know what I’m wearing,

but because I’m on a native show

called Reservation Dogs, right?

I just wanna get into the spirit of things.

That’s your, yeah, this is,

because if I was ever like native,

and I was in a tribe back in the day,

you know what I mean?

I would’ve been a gatherer.

Yeah, I’m not a hunter.


I’m gonna weave baskets with the ladies.

I wanna pick berries with the ladies.

You wouldn’t be the chieftain.

No, no, no.

And I would make, after the hunt,

I would probably make some,

so some of the guys make love to me.



Not because I’m gay, just because,

you know, I’m eating away.

Yeah, yeah, I want them to like me.

There’s a power hierarchy,

and you gotta know your place in the hierarchy.


You’re alpha male, then.

I don’t even know what that means.

Joe Rogan.

Joe Rogan is the definition of alpha male?

To me, yeah.

If there was a picture of alpha male in the dictionary,

it would be Joe Rogan.

It would be Joe Rogan?


So you hoard stuff, okay.

Yeah, yeah.

But you can throw,

when was the last time,

let me call you out on that,

when was the last time you threw away something

that’s actually valuable?


Like something valuable to you,

or valuable in general?

Most things that I buy aren’t valuable to me.

There are things that are valuable to me

that are like keepsakes for my family and stuff

that I will keep forever.

So like in terms of like an old photo of my father

or whatnot,

so those kind of things I keep.

But when it comes to like, you know,

Aviator Nation sweats,

like if somebody came over to my house and goes,

hey, can I have six of those sweatshirts or whatever?

I’d be like, yeah, go take it.


If my brothers come over to my house

and just done a clearance,

you know what I mean?

Like I’m gonna take this, this, this.

I generally really don’t have a problem with it.

So the self-critical voice is serving no purpose

in terms of,

because you’re pretty, you know,

I’m a fan of yours,

so you’re known to be a little bit lazy sometimes.

100% lazy.


So the self-critical voice,

don’t you think that it’s serving a purpose

in fighting off the laziness,

beating off the laziness?

The self-critical voice that I have,

I’ve been able to compartment,

how do you say it?


Yeah, however you say it.


You’re free.

Put it in a compartment, right?

And I’m able to like,

I’m a good avoider.

I’m good at avoidance.

So for instance, right now,

to avoid, I’ve been playing Stardew Valley.

You know what that is?


It’s a phone game or?

No, it’s a,

you can play it on your Switch,

but it’s on the Xbox

and it’s a farming simulation game.

And so I like to farm,

you know what I mean?

And so in playing video games

and doing stuff like that,

distracts me from,

you know what really is going on.

Okay, you’ve mentioned elsewhere

in terms of video games,

Elder Scrolls.

Yeah, did you play that?

Yeah, of course.

It’s probably my favorite game.

If I could live in a world,

you played Morrowind and Skyrim.

I played Oblivion.


I played a little bit of Morrowind,

but I didn’t like the graphics back then,

but I really played the,

can I swear on this podcast?


I played the fuck out of Oblivion and Skyrim.

Like, eight characters,

played it all the way through.

You have to do all the quests,

that type of thing.

What’s your favorite thing about those games?

Why did you spend so much time in that world?

Because I like games that you can grind.

What do you mean by grind?

So like Stardew Valley, for instance, right?

There’s a lot of-

Back to the farming simulation.

Back to farming, right?

It’s the same thing as Skyrim.

The reason why I like it

is that there’s a lot of like,

I have to collect a lot of these things.

You know what I mean?

I have to just constantly pick things up.

You know what I mean?

Like for instance, in Skyrim,

there’s a mushroom called blisterwort mushroom

that you can pick and then you can make it into

some sort of formula, right?


Yeah, the potion, yep.

So I would spend like,

literally human 12 hour days

just going to every cave

and picking up as much blisterwort as I could.

Like that kind of grinding.

You know what I mean?


So you’re actually,

the randomly generated quests

that those games do,

that’s designed for people like you?

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

You don’t get bored.

That’s the fun.

That’s the fun for me.


Yeah, there’s always something to do.

And I find,

like when you play a game that’s linear,

like there’s certain games

where you have to go this way, right?

I don’t like games like that.

I like open world games where I can make choices

and I can grind if I want.

Yeah, yeah.

Would you stay in that world

if you could live in that world?

In the Elder Scrolls world?

That’s how I feel.

In reality or become like an animated thing in there?

Oh no, say like virtual reality.

We’re moving towards that direction.

If you look at Skyrim,

you mentioned graphics,

it’s starting to get realistic.


Like I’ll sometimes just walk around.

I mean, it’s been a while,

but I’ll just walk around in Skyrim.


You can, there’s code you can turn off enemies

and you just walk around.


You can just listen to music

and just walk around.

That’s what you did?


Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Yeah, I would do that.

When you do that,

would you do it with me?

Yeah, sure.

We would have a house together?

Oh, I mean live.

I thought walk around.

No, no, no.

If you and I were able to go into Skyrim, right?

And walk around and live together.

Would we make love?

No, no, no, no, man.

Don’t go there.


No, no, no, no, no.

Because we like girls, man.

Yeah, that’s right.

But it’s not gay.

Well, you told me it’s not gay.

Yeah, it’s not, yeah, yeah, yeah.

All right, so you and I would.

Yeah, I would hunt.

You would gather.

But in that world.

Oh, there’s no hunting.

Yeah, but there is hunting.

I would, because we don’t have to find a bandits.

We have to fight.

I’m not gonna gather a bandit.

I’m gonna hunt them.

But I thought you said it’s all but the potion.

You don’t need the bandits.

Okay, well, we could do this.

You could be the guy that defends our place, right?

I’ll gather all the blisterwort,

all the whitecaps, all the mushrooms.

I’ll get all the food.

You know what I mean?

I’ll go to Whiterun.

Remember Whiterun?

Right, or Winterhold.

And I’ll do all the crusts that have nothing to do with.

You know what I mean?

So no dragons, though?

No dragons, but we would have a banquet.

We’d invite the Dark Brotherhood.


The Fighters Guild, we’d definitely invite them.

Mages Guild, we’d invite them.

Are you a thief kind of guy?

I’m a thief guy.

Yeah, I’m a thief guy for life.

And you still wouldn’t invite Andrew Schultz to that?

No, no, no.

But what a piece of shit, though, huh?

Because let me just say something, okay?

I just wanna get back to that, okay?

Okay, sure.

So I met him at the Montreal Comedy Festival,

and him and I are kindred souls.

We really connected.


And he did my podcast.

He’s done it several times.

Done his.

We’ve communicated on the phone, this and that.

And to me, and then he invites Whitney Cummings,

which Whitney is a good friend of mine.

But what I’m saying is that I know Andrew

as well as Whitney knows him.

I don’t think that Whitney knows him more than I do, right?

What if it was a competition?

Like it was a tie, you know, NBA,

like a Bobby Lee versus Whitney?


In what way do you think she’s better,

in what way do you think you’re better?

I think it’s all about gender optics.


Right, so she’s a comedian.

She has all these alpha males coming,

and he’s like, all right, I have one more seat left.


Whitney or Bobby, but Bobby is,

although I don’t think there was a lot of Koreans there,

so he could’ve used that card.

This is true.

Right, but I think he went for,

you know, Whitney’s a woman, it’s better for optics.

Okay, so she was a diversity hire for the wedding.


I see.

It was pretty fun.

I have to say, I don’t, it was Joe Rogan.

Yeah, I know.

His wife.

I get it.

And then Whitney.

Are those the only comedians that were there?

I spent the whole time talking to Joe,

so I think, no, I don’t think there was that many comedians.

Some I’m kind of joking about.

It was a pretty small wedding.


What do you talk to Joe about?

First of all, we’re both grapplers,

so we talk a lot about jiu-jitsu.

We talk a lot about-

I’m a grappler.

Are you?

I was on the wrestling team in high school.

Yeah, I know.

I know this.

As a grappler, to you, if I don’t know jiu-jitsu,

is there only one kind of grappling that you like?

Yeah, there’s levels to this game, I think.

I just talked out.

No, no, no, there’s nothing more.

That’s a surprising fact that you’ve dropped that.

It almost feels like a lie,

because you’ve said that before that you were a wrestler

in high school.

It doesn’t make sense.

Well, it’s funny that you say that,

because, and I’m gonna cause a little controversy here.


But Joe Rogan, one time came to me,

when he lived in LA, this is years ago,

and he said, you’re a liar, you’ve never grappled.

And I go, yes, I did, you’re a fucking liar,

no, you didn’t.

And at that time, I didn’t have any photos to prove it,

but if you look at my Instagram, I have photos.

That I was a grappler.

Of you as a young man dressed in a singlet, or what?

On the wrestling team.

If you go to the fucking, sorry,

if you go to my fucking high school,

you’re right, I was on the wrestling team for three years.

I’m not gonna go to your high school,

so is there actual photo evidence of you?

Yeah, I’m like, you know what,

you’re being like Rogan right now,

and it really is.

How do we know it’s not Photoshopped?

Oh, well, you be the judge then, dude.

Okay, so this is my brother and me

in high school on the wrestling team.

Which, oh, it’s, you are, yeah.

I’m the bottom, that’s my brother to the left.

I mean, yeah, to your right.

Oh, handsome.

Yeah, I’m not, that’s, yeah.

How much do you weigh?


At the time I weighed, I was on the 105 weight category.


Yeah, but, so I was also on the tennis team.

What people don’t realize is that I’m very athletic.


Yeah, yeah, yeah.

And I resent the fact that people think that I’m not,

because I’m doughy.

You’re an athlete, so, which is very surprising to me.


So I was invited to the wedding.

Yeah, yeah.

I’ve also been on Joe Rogan’s podcast.

He’s a big fan of yours.

I know, I love Joe.

No, Joe, when Joe’s, and I see each other,

we hug and stuff, we talk, I love him.

I just talked to him today, said I’m talking to you.

This is hilarious.

So why, oh, you hug him, you just never?

It just hasn’t worked out.

Like, I don’t wanna go like, hey,

because I don’t want the rejection.

So it’s like, if I go, hey, can I do it?

And he goes, I don’t know, man, I’m busy, man.

I got a lot.

I don’t want that.

So if he said, hey, are you available Thursday,

this day, fly out, do my podcast, I would 100% do it.

And that hasn’t happened yet.

So interesting.

Why is it interesting?

I don’t know, because you’re, like I said,

you’re one of the funniest people in the world.

That’d be a great conversation.

It’s just funny it hasn’t happened yet.

Well, it’s like this conversation.

It’s like, I just learned how to tell time.


Not like, I know how to write digital.

You showed up on time today.

No, digital.

I know how to write digital, obviously,

but in terms of the hand clock,

I just learned that six months ago.

How to operate a hand clock?

To read a hand clock.

Hand clock, okay.

Not that I, obviously, I’ll be able

to absorb the information.

I’m one of those guys that just refuse to learn things

if I just.

What did you think it was before?

I would look at it, and I would try to sometimes,

like if I was at a train station,

and I would look at those old clocks,

I would look at it and try to guess,

and I would kind of go, I think this is the way,

you know what I mean?

But not fully, you know what I mean, really grasp.

So the way ancient people looked up at the sun

to try to tell time, you looked at a clock

to try to tell time.


Like, for instance, we don’t look at the sun, right?

So to me, it was an obsolete information to me

because I’m digital.

You already had digital.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

And so that’s somehow comparable to you

going on the Joe Rogan.

And you, because it’s like, I don’t know much about.


No, podcasting I can, but in terms of like,

the singularity and all that stuff,

like I know what it is, you know what I mean,

when machines have consciousness.

When is that gonna happen?


Are you afraid of robots?

See, if you were in Austin, I would show you some robots.

Oh, I’d love to.

Are you afraid of robots?

No, I love it.

You love robots.

Oh, yeah, yeah.

In fact, I have this,

I think to me, unless they become hostile

and it becomes like the Terminator,

which I think could happen, right?

There’d be a Skynet, we have to bring it down, whatever.

There’s definitely going to be autonomous weapon systems.

So a lot of the robotics research

is being conducted, funded by the military.


You know, the military industrial complex.

I know what that is, yes.

Yeah, so a lot of the cutting edge research is done,

is funded by DOD, Department of Defense,

DARPA, and so on.

So a lot of the robots will be used in war.

But hopefully not most of consumer robotics

will be in the home.

I’m just trying to terrify you.

No, no, no, but can I ask you this though?

What you’re saying to me is that, as a lay person,

is that in my lifetime,

that machines will have consciousness.

Oh, that I don’t know.


I’m one of the people, well, depending,

you live dangerously,

so I don’t know how long you’re gonna live.

So let’s put, but I believe that consciousness,

yes, could be engineered in a machine.

Or at least we can have machines that are human-like,

and we believe they have consciousness.

Can I ask one last question about it?


But just one more.

Will they have the smoothness of skin,

and will they look realistic?

See, I’m one of those people that believes

that visual appearance isn’t the magic.

So if you close your, if you’re blind,

you can still have a connection with a person.

People can fall in love with each other

through just letters.

So yeah, I know you’re mocking me with your entire energy.

But yes, yes, I believe that part too.

You’re talking about sex bots

is what you’re probably getting at.

Okay, intimacy.

Why would you?

Just friends, friends, but you wanna feel

the smoothness of their skin.

Yeah, like a guy, just go, what’s up, dude,

and just rub his hands.

Just hug and kiss, like on both cheeks kind of thing.

I get what you’re saying, though, right?

Obviously, there’s no soul, you’re right.

And I’m just curious to see.

You’re right, I was going with sex bots, but.

Yeah, yeah.

Have you seen Whitney Cummings’ robot?

Yeah, I’ve seen it.

Okay, how did that make you feel?

She’s a beautiful girl.

I just don’t find her attractive.

The robot or Whitney?

I find the robot way more attractive.

Yeah, if I had the choice, robot.

So you were turned on by the robot.

See, I was surprised by the very thing you’re saying,

which is the realism of the skit, like it was quite,

they did a really good job on that robot.

Oh, they did?

The life, when it’s animated, the life is not quite there.

You can tell it’s a robot, but just sitting there still,

it has a lot of human-like elements.

The texture, I don’t know.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

It’s quite fascinating.

So they’re getting there.

They’re getting there.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

But the funny thing about sex robots

is most people that get sex robots,

they don’t get it for the sex.

They get it for intimacy, not sexual intimacy,

but just somebody being there.

It’s the emotional connection, not the sexual.

Yeah, I mean, I saw a long time ago

a documentary about real dogs and people marrying them.

Yeah, and what I was fascinated about is the cuddling.

You know what I mean?

And then watching TV together and stuff like that,

which I find, you know, I’ve just been able

to find human girlfriends and stuff.

So I’m good at it.

That’s really impressive.

That’s one of the reasons.

Thanks, man.

Yeah, thanks, man.

Speaking of human girlfriends,

I’d love your advice in this direction,

but you have an amazing relationship with Kalilah.


So you two are very different.

So you host the Tiger Bella podcast together,

but there’s real love there.

There’s a real connection.

What do you love most about Kalilah?

Let’s talk about love, Bobby Lee.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

I mean, that’s a really pretty deep,

I’ve never really gone down this path.

We’re gonna walk down that path together holding hands.

It’s one of those things where the first time I met her,

it was almost as if I had known her all my life.

It was really weird.

You know what I mean?

There was a trust there, you know what I mean,

that was just fundamentally there that I could trust her

and that I could, you know,

when I look in the mirror

and I see all my character defects and stuff,

a lot of those things aren’t necessarily things

I wanna share with people

because I don’t wanna be judged or ridiculed.

But with her, I felt comfortable showing those things.

And I think she feels the same way about her.

And then secondly, she’s funny.

I mean, she made me laugh and she’s hot.

It’s all, you know what I mean, the perfect,

it was like a perfect combination of things.

You know what I mean?

One night we were in bed and I forgot what the joke was,

but she really made me laugh one night.

She was living in an apartment in Long Beach

and I cackled, you know what I mean?

And generally women don’t make,

I mean, women I’m dating, comics do,

don’t make me cackle in that way.

And then thirdly, she’s partly Asian.

So it’s like, one time I dated a white girl

and I invited her to Koreatown.

Are you about to be a racist?

A little bit.


Yeah, yeah.

And what I love about Asian girls

is they’ll eat something first and ask what it is after,

but white girls ask what it is before.

What is this, right?

But Kalilah would eat the eyeball,

eat everything and go, what did I just eat?

I like that.

You know what I mean?

So it’s like, and it reminds me of my mom in that way,

in terms of like, my mom growing up just to scare us

and freak us out, we’d have a fish

and she would eat the eyeball first to see a squirm.

And as a kid that you thought was gross

and weird and this and that, but it’s like,

you know, when Kalilah does it, it just kind of like,

I don’t know, it just makes me feel like at home.


In a weird way, I don’t know.

It’s a little act of fearlessness.

I like that.


Just put it in your mouth and figure it out.

Yeah, that’s what I like.

And at the end of the day,

she also, out of all my girlfriends,

and this is gonna sound not strange,

but hard to admit, but my career when I met Kalilah

was in the shitbox.

I could not get anything going.

And this is at the time where Ken Jeong,

who’s a very good friend of mine, very talented,

was getting everything.

And I just remember going, I can’t even get an audition.

Like, I can’t.

I would go on the road, Lex, and I would fill half the room.

I just couldn’t sell tickets.

And when I met her, I was just kind of like,

maybe I have to find love and open up my world in that way.

And she was the first girlfriend that I ever had

that looked at me and saw the potential.

And she said, no, this doesn’t feel right.

You’re so funny, and you’re so relevant to me,

and this is what we’re gonna do.

And so she started Tiger Belly.

You know, and then obviously I had the skillset to do it,

but once Tiger Belly happened,

and then Andrew was like, let’s do Bad Friends,

and then now things are great.

You know, my career is, I’m too busy almost,

in a weird way, you know?

And I feel like she had a lot to do with,

like, for instance, before I met her,

even if I would’ve get an audition,

I wouldn’t go because I just wouldn’t get it.

In my head, I was like, I’m not gonna get this.

I’ve gone on a thousand of these,

and they just never hire me.

But she was, so I just didn’t go on them for years.

And then she was the first girlfriend that said,

no, I don’t care if you don’t get it, right?

I just don’t want you to be a pussy,

and I want you to walk through fear.

And so she would drag me to these fucking things,

and I, for some reason, would book them.

You know what I mean?

And so, you know, in that way.

She saw the potential of what you could be.

She loved you for who you are already.


But also loved you for the potential that you could become.

Yeah, and I’m lucky in that way, you know?

So on day one, you could show her,

you said you could show your flaws to her?

Like, you felt like you could be fragile with her?

Well, I accidentally farted.

Yeah, on day one?

On day one.

You know, because I just, I’m a fart machine.

And I have loose cheeks.


I like how you, for the listeners,

you just winked at me.

Yeah, I have loose cheeks, and-

But not in a gay way.

Not in a gay way, no.

And I was, we were on a couch, and we’re talking,

and I kind of adjusted my body.

I ripped one by accident.

And she laughed, you know what I mean?

It wasn’t embarrassing, you know?

And also, I have a little penis.

I have a little penis.

It’s all relative.

Yes, it’s a little.

But relative to an elephant.

Everybody’s penis is little.

Yeah, but I’m not an elephant.

I’m a human, you know what I mean?

So, relatively human, it’s very small.

And so, when she saw it, you know what I mean?

I thought she was gonna balk at it, right?

And she looked at it as if it was like an orphan.

Like, I wanna, you know, it’s a lost child,

and I wanna, you know, take care of it.


Cradle it.

Cradle it, yeah.

What about you, man?

You haven’t met anybody like that?

Never met a girl, never seen one of them.

I hear they’re nice.

When are the two of you getting married?

We don’t know yet.


Is that something you would like?


This comes up sometimes.

You know, we’re in couples counseling.

We’re working on some issues that we have.

Every relationship, even my friendships have issues.

And so, we’re working through some issues,

and once we get to the end of it, we’ll figure it out.

Would you like to be a father one day?

This is kind of couples counseling.

You know, yeah, I do.

I do, because I feel like,

you know, before I was very childlike.

You know, I play a lot of video games,

I’m irresponsible, I’m lazy, this and that, right?

But, you know, to be honest with you, Lex,

in the last six months,

I really have come through some breakthroughs,

and I’m in therapy, and I’m doing a lot of things,

and really self-analyzing myself, and my behaviors,

and what I want, my desires,

and I think ultimately, yes, I really do,

because it’s a life experience that, you know,

I don’t wanna be an old man looking back and going,

it’s something that I’ve always was interested in,

and I think it’s based on fear,

because I don’t want to scar my child

the way my parents scarred me,

but at the same time, my parents didn’t do

the work on themselves like I am,

and they were never about self-improvement,

they were just about, they were immigrants, you know,

and they wanted to put food on the table,

and after that, they just went about their business,

and I’m not like that.

I would never be violent toward my kids

like my parents were.

My dad was very physically abusive, you know,

there was a lot of trauma and stuff,

and so, you know, as a kid, I thought,

you know, I just would never put my kid through this,

so that’s why I never wanted it,

but I would completely do it differently, you know,

even yelling and those kind of things,

I would be very mindful about those things,

and I think that I have certain things,

you know, I’m not a science-y guy like you,

but there are life things that I’ve learned over the years

that I could teach a child, you know,

about living in the moment or walking through fear,

or, you know, things that, you know,

things will pass, and just different things,

you know, that I could, I would be a good listener,

and yeah, I would like to do that.

So your dad died in August of 2019.

Wow, yeah.

He did your research.

Yeah, it’s on your Wikipedia.


So you said some of it was rough,

but what’s your fondest memory of your dad?

Well, those memories happened later in life.

As a child, my fondest memory was my mom,

because he never spent time with us,

so my mom made him take me out one time,

one day, and he took me to a park.

Like, he doesn’t, there was no baseball glove,

or baseball, or anything like that,

and we sat on a park bench, right?

And we just sat there for hours.

We didn’t talk, because he didn’t know English that well,

I didn’t know Korean, so it’s just very, you know,

basic, you know, information being, you know what I mean?

How are you?

This is how we go, how are you doing?

I’m okay, you know?

Good, good, good.

That type of thing?

Yeah, for a long time.

For a long time, and then, but the day turned bad,

because I forgot my jacket there, and he yelled at me.

But there’s a bit of peace together.

At that time, yeah, there was peace.

But then what happened was, later in life,

when I got Matt TV, and I was doing, you know,

in my early years, you know, I’d booked a couple of things,

like in 2000, I did The Tonight Show on Leno,

and then I did, I got Matt TV in 2000.

And, wow, that was over 20 years ago.

And that’s when my parents kind of went, huh, you know?

Because obviously, you know,

there’s some nepotism in Hollywood, right?

But in my case, my parents were straight up immigrants.

I had no connections to Hollywood.

And I came up here poor, you know, with no connections,

and I built it, you know what I mean?

Through the years, you know?

And in that way, I’m very proud of myself,

because I went through a lot of fucking hell,

and sadness, and desperation, and all that stuff.

And I persevered, and I did all that shit on my own, man.

I booked The Tonight Show on my own.

I got Matt TV on my own.

And when I did those things, my parents were very proud.

But before that, did they doubt you?

Oh, yeah.

You’re not funny.

You know, you never make me laugh, right?

And that kind of stuff.

You’re never gonna make it, you know what I mean?

You’re gonna be poor all your life,

you know, and that kind of stuff.

But Matt TV, he was proud, your dad, your parents?

Well, you know, because it was a weekly show,

so on Saturday nights, they would watch it.

They would?

Yeah, and I would play characters

that they would understand.

Like I did Kim Jong-il at the time, right?

So they loved that, right?

They loved the things that I would do,

the physical comedy.

And they couldn’t believe in their mind.

Imagine your parents from Korea coming here,

not knowing the language, having a child here, right?

And in their minds, that was never an option.

An option, right?

And so when they see their kid, I guess, on TV,

especially, there was no internet too at the time.

The internet had just started.

So to them, they were like, this is a miracle.

In fact, when I did The Tonight Show,

my dad called me the next day and asked me,

how much, he literally asked me this.

He goes, how much did you pay them to do it?

He thought that I had saved all my money.

He thought that Tom Cruise goes up there and goes,

here’s a grand, thanks for having me on.

You know what I mean?

No, I go, no, they asked me.

Conceptually, they were just shocked by it.

So when I got it and then they were watching me weekly,

MADtv, the producer was like, hey, have your dad on.

So my dad did two or three sketches on television.

So those memories, I also did a pilot for Comedy Central

and he was on my pilot.

A pilot for a show?

Yeah, a show.

It didn’t get picked up, but he was on the pilot.

He was in the show?

Yeah, he was in the pilot.

He was on MADtv too, on television.



Oh, wow, okay.

Yeah, yeah, so it’s like, he would get residual checks.


You know what I mean?

This changed everything.

There was nepotism in reverse.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, it was really nepotism in reverse.

And so he, those memories are very,

I have very fond memories because he had changed as well.

He was no longer that violent kind of a guy.

He had softened a lot, you know what I mean?

But when he died is when those issues came up,

like a freight train.

The bad stuff.

Oh yeah, and I didn’t know what was going on.

It was really hard.

You miss him?


How often do you think about him?

Every day.

Obviously a lot of it’s regrets, you know what I mean?

Like what kind of regrets?

Not having said something or not having had a conversation?

It’s not regrets because even if he was still alive,

they’re just things that are impossibilities

because of his culture and the way he was raised.

But my regret in life will always be having those types of,

even, because I was with my mom a couple of months ago

and I looked at her and I had tears in my eyes.

We’re at a Starbucks.

I go, mom, I just wanna let you know that I’m so sorry

that you lived in that house and my dad,

you know, and dad hit you and you survived.

You stayed in the marriage because of us, right?

And you know what her response was?

Let’s go to Book of the Pebble.

She wanted Italian food.

It was like there was no, there was nothing there, right?

And so my regret is that they just will never be able

to even grasp the concept of that kind of communication,

you know what I mean?

And I’ll never have it.

So that’s sad to me, you know?

But there’s nothing I can do about it.

Yeah, that callous that comes with the immigrant mentality,

you don’t even, that emotional connection is not even there.

I’ve had, my grandmother, she,

there’s something called Holodomor,

which is starvation in Ukraine in the 1930s

that you had to live through.

She lived through World War II and there’s nothing,

like the only way you survive that is the callous you bring.


You can’t talk about it.

People that fought in major wars, they can’t.

They can’t, yeah.

You can’t talk about it.

My mom, when she was 12 years old,

she walked her little sister, my aunt, to school, right?

She forgot a book.

So my mom goes to my little sister, my aunt,

stay here, I’m gonna go get my book.

She ran up, she came back.

While she was gone, a military truck ran over my aunt

and my mom discovered her body split in half,

in trails, the whole thing.

And my mom and my uncles had to go and get rice bags

to pick up her, you know what I mean?

And then bury my aunt.

When you live through something like that,

and also the guilt, because my mom believes deep down

that if she didn’t forget that book,

that my aunt would still be alive, right?

So she carries all this guilt and this,

and to survive all that trauma, you have to build a callous.

Back then, they didn’t have EMDR and therapists

and psychologists and any of that, right?

So they had to survive.

So that’s who she is.

And it’s sad to me that, you know what I mean?

That it’ll forever, she’ll forever live in that torment.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

Boy, what about your own?

What’s been the darkest place you ever gone in your mind?

Oh my God, what the, you wrote that down?

In my mind?

In your mind.

You ever consider suicide?

Have you? I didn’t write that down.

Have you considered it?

In the distance.

Yeah, I’ve distantly thought about it.

About four months ago, I was in a really bad place.

I was naked in a hotel room in Arizona.

I hadn’t eaten in like almost a week.

I hadn’t slept in over a week.

I haven’t slept, you know, and I thought I was dying.

I was coughing up blood and I was waiting

to go into a outpatient psychologist place,

you know what I mean, in Arizona.

I literally thought I was dying.

So recently I was in a very dark place.

How much was that connected to losing your father?

How much was that connected to rehab and that kind of stuff?

Alcohol, drugs?

It’s all the same thing, dude.

It’s all the same thing, man.

It’s all from my childhood, right?

The reason why I do stand-up is because of my childhood.

The hating yourself or like being self-critical,

that has to do with your childhood?


So the drugs and drinking is childhood?

It’s childhood.

It’s all about survival and protecting your heart,

you know, and there are ways that I did that as a kid,

like using humor as a defense mechanism

and also avoidance of all emotions, you know what I mean,

because I just wanted to feel.

And the reason why comedy is so good,

the reason why I was able to survive in comedy

is because I can withstand a lot of bullshit and pain,

you know what I mean?

Like physical, emotional, spiritual pain, I can absorb it.

But now what’s happened later in life

is I’m unwilling to do that.

I’m unwilling to absorb it.

I’m unwilling to carry this weight around with me

and it’ll kill me.

So I am doing everything I can

to free myself of all this baggage.

Okay, so how you’re naked in Arizona in a hotel room,

face down or face up or on the side?

Or what’s your favorite, when you go to a dark place?

No, no.

On the floor, on the bed or bathtub, shower?

A fetal position.


I don’t lay on my stomach, that’s weird.

Like I’m not doing like a downward dog or yoga position

or anything like that.

No, I’m like.

On the bed, on the floor?

No, what happened was,

so I had a relapse.

So I was doing drinking all night long.

What was the first relapse?

What is the first thing you did?

Just drank, what, wine?

No, I took an edible.


And that opened the door?

To drinking, yeah.

And the combination’s not good for me.

And the excess of the amount is not good for me.

I just can’t stop and I do it 24 hours a day.

Were you alone?

Well, no, I was living with Kalilah.

No, I mean, at that moment when you did the edibles.

I was alone.

No, I took a flight because I was shooting Magnum,

I’m on a show called Magnum P.I.

So I was flying to Hawaii.

So I bought edibles.

And then right before I was gonna get on the plane,

I looked at my girlfriend and said, I’m gonna relapse.

Oh, so you knew.

I knew.

So I got on the plane, I took it,

and then literally the last,

the next three months were like a blur.

Why’d you know?

Well, what gave you the sense that you’re gonna relapse?

There was a couple of things that happened in my life

that were very shocking to me.

And I just, and I wasn’t going to meetings

and I, you know, it’s the same old story.

I was not connected to my sobriety brothers and sisters

and I was drifting away and I.

And something in your mind, it was just.

I just, the pain was too much.

So I did it.

And then, so what happened was now two and a half months in,

three months in, I started coughing up chunks of blood.

Right, so I was,

because I’ve been a smoker since I was 17 years old, right?

And I was smoking so much weed and cigarettes

that I would just cough up blood.

But then simultaneously what happened was

Bob Sackett and Louie Anderson died, right?

And that week when I was coughing up blood

and because of, because I knew them, both of them,

I just in my head going, I’m next.

Because to me, everything happens in threes.

You know what I mean?

You know what I mean?


Yeah, and I’m like, and I had convinced myself

that I was gonna die and I was on the precipice of death.

And so I begged my people to put me

into this place in Arizona.

So, because I knew I needed to go

to a really rigorous psychology program

to get me out of where I was going through.

And also I was getting, at that time,

when I was in that hotel room,

I had not drank or even smoked a cigarette

or done drug in a week.

I had to wait in LA for this bed to open up, right?

So I was coughing up blood.

I hadn’t slept, I hadn’t eaten, right?

I was sober, but I was in so much pain.

And I slept naked by the door of this hotel room

because I thought it would be easier

for the maid to discover my body.

I mean, that’s how fucked up I was.

I was just in this prison in my mind, you know?

And I’m much better now.

Can you give some insights to how to get out of that place,

how you got out of that place?

I think getting sober, first of all, was very important,

but that still didn’t do it completely.

You know what I mean?

I still was convinced that I was.

And then I went to this place and I did,

this place is a 12-hours-a-day psychotherapy place

where you do 12 hours, you see therapists all day long.

So it’s like a 12-hour-long podcast every day?

Yeah, yeah.

But with professionals, and they call you on your shit,

and they tell you what’s real, and they tell you,

you know what I mean, I’m going,

also dealing with still my dad,

still some of these other things, you know what I mean?

And the third thing that happened

was when I got back to LA after that place,

I got my lungs checked out, and I got my physical done,

and EKG, my heart, all of it, and I was completely fine.

And I quit smoking.

I haven’t smoked in almost four months.

Haven’t drank and done drugs since then, too.

So there’s definitely a complete clarity.

And I have to also admit that this time around,

it’s just been completely different.

Is there still in the distance a fear of relapse

and all that kind of stuff?

Is that still?


So you feel good?

I feel great, yeah.

I feel better than I’ve ever felt.

Even when hard shit happens?

Yeah, because it’s like,

I no longer wanna be in that place.

And also, on top of it, it’s like,

it would be a real shame,

because I worked so hard to get to this place in my life,

not just in my career, with all of it.

You know what I mean?

I have so much to lose.

I have so many people that love me.

I just don’t want to be there again, you know?

Let me ask you, sorry, you’ve talked about this before,

but it’s interesting.

Let me ask you a question.

Do you always wear a suit only for the podcast?

Yeah, I wear it in private, too.

Oh, you do?

Not always, no, because I get recognized, unfortunately,

so I have to be selective about how I wear.

Do you like it when being recognized, or no?

So because of podcasting, as you probably know,

the people that at least recognize me

happen to be amazing people.

So it’s an immediate connection.

So there’s two things about that I don’t like.

So one, I fall in love with people,

and so the nature of interaction is like,

well, it’s gonna be short.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

So you have to say goodbye, and I hate goodbyes.

You do?


And then the other thing is just introversion.

I just, I’m an introvert.

I have social anxiety.

I’m nervous about talking to people, and so on, so.

So you have to always, I’m walking around always

a little bit anxious that there’ll be an interaction.

But ultimately, once it starts, it’s fun, it’s beautiful,

and then the goodbye is what hurts.

So both the hello and the goodbye is what hurts.

It’s the stuff in the middle that’s delicious.

I think there’s a beautiful thing, though,

for people like you and I, in a weird way,

because, number one, I don’t know about you,

but I’m an isolator.

I don’t really like any kind of social thing.

I like, even when I was doing drugs and drinking,

I never do it with people.

I do it privately in a garage, you know?

And secondly, you know, like I was,

my girlfriend and I watched The Northman,

the movie The Northman.

No, what is it?

Is it?

Tell me the plot line.

You haven’t even heard of The Northman?

I have not heard of The Northman.

It’s Eggers.

He did a movie called The Witch.

He also did a movie called The Lighthouse.

You ever see The Lighthouse?

Okay, you watch movies?


You’ve never seen a movie?

I’ve seen The Godfather.

Yeah, I bet your money you’ve seen Dr. Zhivago.


You have?


Yeah, you like historical sweeping.

Schindler’s List.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

If it’s not historical or sweeping,

you’re not gonna like it.

All right, so how do I explain?

It’s basically a Viking movie.


Yeah, yeah, and one of the Skarsgård,

I don’t know, Skarsgård brothers is in it,

Bjork’s in it, Willem Dafoe, Nicole Kidman, Ethan Hawke,

and it’s a Viking revenge movie.

So why does it make you think about isolation?

No, because, no, what I was gonna say is

when we went to the movie theater, right,

afterwards, there was a kid sitting next to me,

and he just looks at me,

because I guess he didn’t know

I was sitting next to him or whatever,

and he just went, hey, dude,

I just can’t believe you’re sitting next to me,

and you’re my hero,

and I’m doing comedy, and it’s really hard.

So I was able to give him some encouraging things,

because that’s who I am, too, you know what I mean?

I wanna help people,

and I also, you know, the idea that he likes me,

because he also spouted off specifics about my life,

about my comedy, and this and that,

so he definitely was a fan,

and I was able to, you know,

even if I become Joe Rogan famous or that big,

you know what I mean,

I’m always going to say hi to people,

I’m always gonna take photos with people.

I like that part of me.

It makes me feel also that I belong in a weird way,

because I felt so invisible before I did comedy.

You know what I mean, I felt invisible,

and it puts me in the game of life, I think,

in a weird way, you know?

So I think it’s good for you, as well.

Yeah, it’s a little moment of experiencing love.

It’s like, it does feel like celebrating life together.

You smile at each other and so on.

Although you did say, I think in a recent podcast,

that, you know, people recognize you,

but recognize you incorrectly.

That I don’t like.

That’s the opposite of love.


Yeah, that I don’t like, loved you in the hangover.


You know, or this is what I don’t like,

this is why I hate this.


Some guy will like me, right, I’ll take a photo,

and then other people will go, huh, he’s somebody,

and will walk up to me and go,

hey, so why did he take a photo?

You know what I mean, I want a photo.


And then you’re like, no, would you do that?

No, I don’t like that.

No, no, no.

But I do like the experience where maybe there’s a couple,

a guy and a girl, boyfriend and girlfriend,

and the guy is a fan, and the girlfriend has no idea.

And it’s always a funny interaction.

Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Because she’s like trying to figure out

what is happening here.


And it’s always beautiful to see.

But what if the guy, when the guy explains

to his girlfriend who you are,

do you feel uncomfortable about that?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

It loads, the information is transferred quickly,

and she starts to understand,

because she’s not used to her boyfriend

being excited about a stranger.

It’s like, what’s happening here?

So it’s a fascinating little dynamic that’s beautiful.

It’s like the spread of information happens right there

in real life, it’s beautiful.

It’s mostly though, would you say that

it’s probably usually men that recognize you, or?

No, but men, the thing I’ve discovered is

men are more likely to approach aggressively, right?

Women recognize you, they have a different way

of like double take.


They don’t want to invade your space.

Guys are like, bro.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

They come in with a hug.

I had a, South by Southwest,

had a guy, I was just walking to a 7-Eleven,

I go to a 7-Eleven a lot, my favorite spot.


7-Eleven, yes.


Sugar-free slushie, I think, for happiness.

I like, I find happiness at a 7-Eleven.

So adorable.

Late at night.

And he came up and, you know what?

Can I tell you something that happened to me?

I haven’t told anybody.

This never happened to me before.

I was outside of a 7-Eleven in Austin,

I’m not gonna say which one,

and there was a gentleman that approached me,

this was at three or four at night,

which is usually when I go, I program all night,

and I just like to go and take a break.

He approached me in the way that maybe somebody

who recognized me approached me.

He did a double take, he walked past me,

and then walked back, and then looked at me,

and I went into the 7-Eleven, I thought, that’s weird.

And then I came out with my slushie,

and then he approached me,

and he said, can I give you a blowjob?

So I have never.

I have never.

No, really?

Yeah, so the energy he put, I’ve never had.

Were you wearing a suit?


I was wearing sweatpants,

and I was very hiding from the world type of thing.

I’ve never had anybody approach me that way,

but the energy he put, the love he had in the approach,

I thought he would be like.

Love you on Rogan?

Yeah, love, yeah.

Something like love, some kind of,

and then he just said, can I,

I’m forgetting the exact wording,

because it wasn’t, the wording was such

that he wasn’t, he wanted to make me happy.

He didn’t want to make himself happy,

he wanted to make me happy.

I forgot, can I give you a blowjob?

I think that was the thing.

Because if he said, can you give me a blowjob,

it would be very different.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

No, but I think there’s a more aggressive way

of phrasing that, but he presented himself.

See, I forget, it was almost like gentle and poetic,

and I was like, I just stuttered and said,

no, no, thank you.

Moved past.

That’s what everyone does.


No thank you to a blowjob proposition.

Well, no, I would probably stutter,

no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, thank you.

In my mind, I was like, is this a threat?

Because it’s Fortnite.

I wasn’t exactly sure.

I mean, I’ve never experienced this.

I imagine this is what sort of women often experience,

that kind of the danger,

the constant threat all around you.

But I’ve never, this just, it was a funny little moment.

I didn’t know what to do with it.


That happened, and I go to that 7-Eleven often

looking for the guy.

Because now, now I would say yes, no.

There used to be a steam room in Beverly,

on Beverly Boulevard,

and my brother and I walked in there once,

and we walked in, and there was a man sitting there,

erection, and his dick was so big,

he was jerking it off with both hands.

And we kind of walked in, and he goes, what’s up?

And he just did it.

Kept going.

And we just sat there, you know what I mean?

Because it was not aggressive.


Yeah, yeah, yeah.

And maybe that was the same feeling.

You sensed that it wasn’t an aggressive thing.

Yeah, it wasn’t.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

It was just a kind, he was just minding his own business,

and he threw it out.

But it wasn’t also, it wasn’t sexual either.

It was like, it was like, it’s just, you know,

it’s just like, it’s like love or something.


I felt like, it’s almost like, can I give you a hug?


Then why don’t you just take it?

I keep looking for it.

Next time I see it, but not in a gay way.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

I just wanted to be clear about that.

Did you grow up in Russia or Ukraine?



But your great-grandmother, your grandmother was in-

My father is Ukrainian.

Oh, your father is Ukrainian.

My grandmother is Ukrainian,

so if you just look at the full family tree,

it’s about half and half is Russian.

There’s a lot of conflict with you right now.

Internally, yeah.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Let me ask, you’ve talked about this before,

but I’d love to sort of re-explore this,

is Carlos Mencia.

Oh my God.



Why go there again?


I’m willing to do it, but do you like Carlos?

Well, first of all, I’m friends with Joe,

and I remember being a fan of,

I’m outside of this whole world.

I remember thinking Carlos was funny.


So just as a fan, I was like, oh, funny.

I remember all this big controversy

about him stealing jokes,

and because I’m a fan of yours,

it’s such an interesting human dynamic,

and I’m a fan of friendship and loyalty,

and you had a great podcast conversation with him.

It was tense.

It was so tense.

It was very tense.


But it was interesting,

and it kinda, well, it makes me think of you

talking to your father on that bench.


That’s what it, yeah, that’s essentially what it was.

Some of it wasn’t getting through,

but maybe, how do you feel about that whole thing,

about the guy?

I mean, he gave you, he’s a friend.

He gave you a lot,

but you’re also a comedian,

so stealing jokes is no good,

but also there’s like a,

I don’t know, all the tensions in your heart

about all that whole thing.

How do you feel about it?

Do you forgive him?

Okay, let’s just, let’s go back to,

it’s very Shakespearean in a very weird way, why?

Because there’s some betrayal there.

You know what I mean?

There’s a lot of drama when it comes to that situation.

Again, also, I’m a very loyal guy.

Like, I’ve had the same manager since the late 90s,

and I’ve had every gigantic manager wanna sign me,

even though my manager is great, right?

She’s in a big company, right?

And there’s only so much she can do,

and maybe, you know what I mean?

My career would have been different

if I would have signed with a bigger management.

I don’t know, right?

But I will never leave her, you know?

I’ll never leave my agent, Matt, you know?

People go, well, you’re at CAA, that’s amazing.

The only reason why I’m at CAA is because of Matt Blake,

you know?

So there are certain loyalties that I have.

The Comedy Store, you know?

I mean, I generally play the Comedy Store mostly

because my loyalties are with them.

I don’t know if that’s a good trait,

but it’s just the way I am, right?

I admire that, yeah.

Okay, so when it comes to Carlos,

you know, in the mid-90s is when I met him.

I was a doorman at the La Jolla Comedy Store.

He brought me on the road.

He introduced me to Matt Blake, my agent, right?

And he bought me a car, you know?

When I couldn’t pay rent, you know,

and I was really desperate,

I could always go to him for money, you know?

And he helped me out in so many different ways, right?

So, you know, I really appreciate that.

Pauly did the same thing.

So anyway, and then all of a sudden,

and I always knew going on the road with him

that number one, I found it odd

that he never had a notebook, you know?

Usually, you know, comics riff with each other

and they write things down, you know what I mean?

Me, I’ll get together with people and write,

you know what I mean?

I’ll do a new joke night because I’m too scared

to try it in front of a packed room

or whatever it might be, okay?

He never did that, right?

And he had hours of material.

And, you know, a lot of it was derivative of other people’s.

He would sometimes hear a bit, change it to Mexican.

Like for instance, you know,

if Paul Mooney had a joke about black people,

he would change it, change it a bit.

But premise wise, it was always extremely too similar.

And there were examples on the internet.

So, you know, there’s things that you can’t really deny.

And so when that whole thing happened,

you know, it was like the Titanic.

I mean, I was either gonna sink with Carlos or survive.

And I did the worst, not the worst thing,

but I had made a difficult decision

and my decision was to cut ties.

And, you know, over the years,

I have felt very guilty about it in some respects,

but, you know, there is always in my mind,

I wanna help him, you know?

I wanna help him reestablish

some sort of a different, you know,

route for him to go in terms of his career and whatnot.

And so I had him on my podcast

and it didn’t go the way I wanted it to go.

You know, I mean, I’ve always believed

if he just fully just was apologetic and said,

you know, I’m sorry for stealing in general,

because we don’t know specifically,

I mean, there’s specifics, you know what I mean?

And I don’t wanna argue every case, you know?

So I thought the healthiest thing to do

was like in just in a broad way,

listen, I stole, I’m so sorry,

these are the reasons why,

and I’m a different guy now,

but it just never happened in that way.

And so it’s been difficult.

So you don’t think he self-reflected looking in the mirror

about mistakes of the past at all?

Like, do you think he’s aware?

I think it’s ego.

You know, I think that he,

for one reason or another,

because there are probably jokes

that he legitimately in his heart know that he wrote,

that people are accusing of stealing, right?

But, you know, it’s like, we don’t know, right?

So it’s like, just apologize for all of it, right?

But he won’t, he fights for every, you know, every point.

And, you know, I just think that that’s not the route.

And he, I mean, he’s always gonna make money.

He’s, you know, but he’s never gonna be what he should be,

which is, he’s a powerful performer,

you know, in terms of laughs.

I mean, dude, I wouldn’t wanna follow him.

He’s a crusher, you know?

So it’s like, you know, it’s really, he can act.

He has all the skillsets.

It’s just that, to me, he went about it in the wrong way,

and it’s sad to me.

But I still always love him,

and I’ve always will thank him

for all the help that he’s done.

So you still got room in your heart for him?

I have room for my heart for a lot of people, man.

You know, Hitler.

All right, what was, returning back to Tiger Belly,

because you said Kalilah basically started it.

What’s the origin story of Tiger Belly?

You know, when I met her.

Oh, by the way, for people listening,

in case you somehow don’t know Tiger Belly is a podcast,

you do, it’s an amazing podcast.

You also do Bad Friends with Andrew Santino.

Yeah. So on.

Thank you so much for the plug.

Appreciate it.

I don’t know, it’s content, it’s not the plug.

Can I plug other things, though, since we’re doing it?

Sure, sure.

Oh, what’s your?

I’m on a show called Red River.

Okay, that’s enough of that.

Okay, thank you.

So what’s the name of the show you’re on?

I’m on a couple.

A couple shows?

Oh, that’s good for you.




I’m on Sex and the City.

Sex and the City.

I’m on Reservation Dogs.

It’s an FX show.

Wait, Sex and the City is not a joke?

No, I am actually on Sex and the City.

Wait, are they rebooting the show?

They did.


It’s called And Just Like That, Sex and the City.

Oh, and you’re on it.


Is this not a joke?

You can Google it.


You know what I mean?

Who do you play?

I play a podcaster on it.

On the show, Sarah Jessica Parker’s Carrie has a podcast,

and I’m her podcast partner.

Oh, got it.


But I’m also, now they’ve, my storyline,

anyway, it’s fine.

Do you sleep with somebody on there?

I am married on the show.

Yeah, they showed my, I’m married to a young lady on it.


It felt like a joke.

I know, because you don’t think doing it,

I look around going, are you sure I’m supposed to be on this?

You know what I mean?

I do feel that, but lo and behold, I’m on it.

Yeah, you are.

I started this way.

My friend, David Cho, do you know him?

He’s an artist.

He used to have a podcast, right, called DVD ASA,

and he used to have me on it,

and then Kalilah started doing it,

and then when DVD ASA ended,

Kalilah was just like, let’s start our own,

and I was like, nah, it’s not gonna work.

So she goes, well, fine,

I’m gonna just do it on my own then.

So she went and bought the equipment,

and we were living in a condo at the time in Hollywood,

and she would do them on her own.

She did probably three on her own,

and one day I was watching television.

The door was open to the podcast room,

and I looked, turned around,

and she was literally like this.

We had a table like this.

She had the mic and all that stuff,

and she was doing this.

She was slumped over like this,

and I just kind of went, fuck it.

So I walked in there, I go, all right, let’s just do one,

and that’s how it started.

And then chemistry was there immediately.

Well, I already knew that she could do it

because of DVD ASA, right?

So I already knew that she had the skillset.

It’s, you know, it’s just all about,

even in this conversation that you and I had today,

there are gaps of like, oh,

what else should we talk about, right?

Or like, I don’t know what direction, right?

And it’s all about the old improv rule, adding information.

Even if you don’t know what you’re gonna say,

just fill the dead space with something.

Like, so if right now, if we had,

we stopped talking about something, I’d be like,

like when I asked you,

did you grow up in Russia or Ukraine, right,

was one of those dead spaces where I was just like,

let’s just throw it out there, see where this goes, right?

And she has that ability to fill that dead space

with information.

That’s all you need, right?

And she gets it in that way.

So it’s like when we, you know, started doing it at DVDSA,

I just knew that she had the skillset.

So when we started doing it for Tiger Belly,

it was a given, you know, you know, she can do it.

I’ve had girlfriends that wouldn’t be able to do it.

What are you doing?

You know, you have the skillset.

You know, you’re a science-y guy.

You spend all night long, you know what I mean?

You know, doing whatever you’re fucking doing, right?

But you have this innate ability to do it, right?

And I think it’s a talent.

Do you think it’s a talent?

No, do you think you have talent?

What are you doing?

I know what you’re doing, not adding information.

I know what you’re doing, that’s a good bit.

It’s a good bit.

I kept doing it and you kept filling the space.

It’s quite interesting.

Yeah, that is true, huh?

Because you’re yes-ending yourself, which is great.

The improv thing, that was really impressive.

Can I ask you a question?


Have you ever had a guest on that didn’t add information

and then you had to keep doing it?

Yeah, yeah, but it’s part of the magic too.

And sometimes I feel like they were actually giving me

a gift of silence and I was stepping on it.

Like for example, I had a conversation with Jocko,

Jocko Willink, and every question I would ask him

in the beginning, and I’m now better friends with him.

It was the first time we met in that conversation.

And I would ask him these long questions

of mumble and meander and so on.

And he would answer with yes or no, and that’s it.

But he’d do it in a strong, Viking-like way.

And I kept trying to go full,

Bobby Lee style of create chaos

and just keep talking and talking and so on.

As opposed to, I think he was inviting me

more for the stoic type of silence,

short sentences, that kind of conversation.

So I fucked that up, I believe.

But yeah, not the adding information part,

but the adding chemistry part.

It’s usually ego, where people don’t realize

that there’s a magic to be found between two humans.

Like genuinely, it’s like a first date.

That to truly listen to each other

and to do the yes and thing and have fun with it.

When you have this energy, I’m way too important

for this conversation that, yeah,

the information might be there, but the chemistry’s not.

So you have to remember that a lot of the podcasts

I’ve done are technical.

And so you could still say a lot of stuff

about what this project or whether it’s physics

or robotics or biology, you could say informational stuff,

but the excitement, the magic is not there.

But I often blame myself because if I’m excited,

they’ll be excited I’ve learned this.

So I’m learning I’m not allowed to have a bored face,

which my face naturally looks bored,

but on the inside, I’m excited.

So it might be a Russian thing, I don’t know.

It’s not.

Can I tell you why you’re not boring?

Your face?


Because you have crow’s feet.

Oh, this thing?

Yeah. Is that what the thing?

Yeah, and the reason why you have crow’s feet

is you smile a lot.


Yeah, you’re very expressive.

I know white dudes, I don’t trust white dudes, right,

with no crow’s feet, right?

Because that means that they’re not accessing

that part of their, you know what I mean, face.

Yeah, which is why I hate when,

this is an LA thing especially,

women have talked to me about Botox,

and they hate the crow,

they hate, not me, on themselves.

And they hate it because it’s all wrinkles

and stuff like that.

And to me, it’s like, no, that’s where the,

that’s the magic.

That’s the magic, it really is, yeah.

So, okay, so the interesting thing about Tiger Belly

is there’s some weird aesthetic to it.

It’s really unique, it’s not just good, it’s also unique.

Like in the way that Wes Anderson films are unique,

like Life Aquatic, I don’t know if you know those films.

Yeah, I love those.

I mean, they’re my favorite films, yeah.

What is that?

It’s not just the chemistry between you and Koala,

it’s like, what is that?

Can you put a finger on it, or is it just like?

Well, it’s essentially who I am.

That’s what my, all my houses have looked like that.

You know what I mean?

I’ve always been a collector of designer toys.

You know what I mean?

I’ve always been a collector of kind of weird artwork.

Yeah, I’ve always been like that.

You know, I like weird wallpaper.

Like I’ll get, instead of like going to a wallpaper store,

what I’ll do is I’ll get artwork that I like

from an artist, like, and go get the, you know,

get their approval, and go to a place

and make wallpaper out of their artwork.

You know what I mean?

Like if I wanted a Lex Friedman, your face on my wall,

I would ask for your permission,

and I would probably put your face on a gigantic wall.

Like I would do stuff like that.

That’s awesome.

Yeah, but I.

Can you do that?


You have my permission.

You know, I think I will.


You know, I think I will just for the laugh.


You know what I mean?

But I would do it.

I’d love to get it big, please.

Yeah, yeah.

You know, but my point is that I,

it’s essentially who I am on the inside, I guess,

in terms of like my, you know,

but I don’t really, I’ve never,

I’m glad you said that,

because I never even thought about that.

Yeah, it’s just who you are.

You know, you just kind of do it,

like this, you know,

because all your podcasts have this black, ominous thing.


You’re wearing a black suit.

You have a specific thing, too.

It’s like.

But I don’t really think,

people ask me like, why do you wear a suit?

I really don’t.

I just feel good in it.


It’s just who I am.

My podcast looks the way I do

is because I feel comfortable in that environment.

And it, you know, like you,

I don’t try to think too much about

what I’m doing on Tiger Belly,

or even Bad Friends, right?

Because when you start thinking about it,

and go, we should do this segment,

and I should, you know, do it this way,

or this podcast does it this way,

so why, you know.

No, I just show up,

I keep my mind open,

and I do the best I can.

I add information like we talked about,

and I just keep talking, right?

And I try to be authentically myself.

Like right now, you know,

I had this fear when I was,

I was, I shit in your fucking bathroom, man.


Because I was so scared.

Out of fear, you shit out of fear.

Out of fear, yeah, yeah, yeah.

And like, you know, I was like kind of nervous,

because I, you know, this whole week,

it was anticipating coming here,

and I watched the Mark Normand one,

I watched the Giannis one to see,

you know, how tonally.

And last night, my girlfriend just looked at me

and just goes, just show up.

Yeah, Kalala knows who I am.

Dude, you think that, first of all,

let me ask you something.


You think I have the day,

you know how busy I am,

to drive all the way over here to West Hollywood?


To do your fucking thing?

Why would I do that?


Because we are well aware of who you are,

and we like you.

Thank you, man.

God, and we want you on ours.

I would love that, I would love that,

I mean, that’s the reason I’m doing this,

is just to get on your podcast.

You gotta get on it.


Yeah, it’s funny,

because I just mentioned to you offline,

I got a chance to talk to Oliver Stone,

and he asked me this thing,

which is, you know, how many listeners does this thing get?

All that kind of stuff.

And I don’t even pay attention to that.

So it’s like, I just don’t.

A little bit though you do?


I wrote extensions of my browsers

where I don’t see the views, the number of views.

Oh, really?

Yeah, I don’t pay attention.

Did you know that some of your YouTube videos

on interviews and stuff have over a million?

That I know.

I know loosely that it bleeds through,

but it’s not part of my conscious thing I think about.

I’m very, I’ve just seen it destroy people’s minds

where they’re no longer thinking creatively,

they’re not, they don’t feel good

if something they do doesn’t get as much attention

as they thought it should.

It just can destroy you, even though it’s good.

There could be great stuff you create

that nobody, everybody ignores.

But it was still great.

It is still great.

And sort of letting that negatively affect your mind

is a, I don’t know, I’ve seen it destroy people,

so I’m very nervous about that.

It’s like that old saying, never live in the results.

It’s like if I podcast to make,

I’d like initially, honestly, when I did Tigerbilly,

we made no money for the first couple of years.

Like not enough to put a dent,

I couldn’t buy anything nice or anything.

It was just side money, you know what I mean?

I could buy some shoes once a month or whatever, right?

And like I said before, my career was in the shitter, right?

So Tigerbilly wasn’t like, this is gonna be the thing,

it was just something to do

with my girlfriend creatively, you know?

And it just so happens that it did do

all these things for me, right, podcasting.

But yeah, I never, and still today,

I don’t do it for any of those things.

I do it because it’s fun.

Yeah, it’s fun.

It is, right?

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Let me ask you, since you say why you love Kalilah,

why do you love slash hate George Kimmel, your producer?

What’s your favorite thing about him, let’s say that.

Positive thing, positive.

Oh God, I’ve never been asked this question.

Because it’s like, I don’t want to give him compliments,

but I’ll try.


Yeah, I’ll try.

Have you actually, I don’t think you’ve publicly

ever said anything positive about George Kimmel.

I don’t think I have either, so I’m gonna give it a go.

I’m gonna give it a real go here.

Okay, yeah.

At the end of the day, when it comes to money,

when it comes to responsibility,

obviously this is a business now for you and me.

It is, it’s a side business, but it’s a business.

And you want to be able to trust the people

that are running it.

And I have 100% trust in everything that he does

in terms of financial things, in terms of technical things,

in terms of all of it, you know what I mean?

Merchandise, and I have 100% belief in him.

And that’s rare, to find someone like that.

Also, at the end of the day, I know his heart,

and he really is a great guy.

There’s nothing about him.

Like for instance, he was over the other day,

and I go, I bought this key wooden thing

that some native man made,

and I don’t know how to put it on the wall.

So I just, you know, I go, hey, can you figure this out?

And he goes, yeah, I got it.

You know what I mean?

Like he’s just that guy, you know?

He’s also, but there is a part of me,

and this is probably wrong,

but there’s a part of me that feels like I kind of made him.

Yeah, he would be nothing without you.

No, that’s not what I’m saying.

Well, that’s the way I heard it.

That’s what I meant.

Okay, but that’s not what you said.

And it’s probably wrong, right?

Because he did all the things that he has in his life,

he did on his own, right?

But still, for some reason-

He’d be nothing without you.

That’s not what I’m saying, but that’s what I mean.

Yeah, okay.

So basically, like, because when I met him,

I was a part of this YouTube studio called Maker Studios,

and he was just a producer there,

and that’s how I met him.

And when he left Maker, he came to us,

and he wasn’t a podcast producer,

and now he has this big company.

He produces a bunch of podcasts,

and he has a bunch of employees,

and he has a nice business,

and I feel like I had a lot to do with it.

So both the competence and the good heart.


What about Gilbert?

Yeah, Gilbert is a godsend as well.

I don’t know if, because of, let me ask you this,

because you’re a science guy,

this is an interesting question for me.

Do you believe just that the universe

gives you certain things at the right moment,

at the right time?

Do you believe that there is a mechanism out there

where it’s just, we’re just a part of this machine

that’s kind of like, almost as if things

are just happening the way it’s supposed to happen?

Or do you think there’s just these random things

that are occurring, and we’re just, it’s chaos in that way?

Well, I don’t know from a science perspective,

because I wouldn’t be able to explain it,

but I do believe, you mentioned karma,

there’s a karma thing.

It just, if you put love out there in the world,

like certain doors open in a certain kind of way,

like they’re almost waiting for you,

and then you walk through them.

So yes, in that way, I believe that it just,

it feels like not everything is like a basic

like billiard ball model of like,

you have to fight for everything.

You could just generally be cool to people,

and kind to people, and certain opportunities

just pop up at the right moment.

But more specifically, though, so for instance,

let’s suppose, like Gilbert, for instance,

he just showed up at my house one day.

I didn’t know who he was.

I had a fight night, and a friend brought him.

This is right when Kalilah and I

were starting Tigerbelly, right?

And in conversation, he was like,

we didn’t know how to engineer.

We didn’t have an engineer for our podcast.

And that night, he was like, you know,

I know how to do it, right?

And if I hadn’t met him that night, he just wouldn’t,

I don’t know if it would be as good.

It would be completely different.

And I really believe that we met him that night for a reason.

So you don’t believe that.

It’s complicated.

I believe that for love and these kinds of things,

but I don’t believe that as much for building a team.

But that’s the engineering thing.

I think that’s the artist in you.

I’m less of an artist.

I think artists thrive in the chaos of it.

So it’s not only that you guys met at that time,

is you didn’t probably ask in detail

about his qualifications,

or didn’t go through a rigorous thing.

You just dove in and figured it out on the fly.

I think that’s sort of the artist ethic.

I think if you’re doing a startup or engineering,

there’s a little bit more rigor in the selection process.


I see what you’re saying.

Because the same with Rogan, Jamie just walked up to him.

Jamie Vernon.

Yeah, I know Jamie, yeah.

Yeah, he just walked up in the same kind of situation.

And then he made it, you know,

both of you have one of the best podcasts in the world.

And so it’s like, how did that, what?

Yeah, so I believe that-

It’s very strange.

Yeah, it’s strange.

Or maybe it’s just like cool people

hang out with cool people.

So you kind of collide a lot.

That’s not true because they’re,

because that’s not true.

Because with Bad Friends, for instance, right?

I’ve had 12 people before Andrew Santino

that had asked me to do one with me, right?

And, you know, they just wasn’t,

it wasn’t, didn’t want to do it, you know?

With Andrew though, it happened kind of organically

and in a way that was almost like,

in my heart, meant to happen in a weird way.

That’s a weird combination, by the way.

So why did, why was that the sticky one?

Because you have a lot of comedian friends.

Why Andrew?

Because number one, we both know just instinctually,

without even talking about it,

that in many ways we’re polar opposites

in terms of like energy, right?

He’s more aggressive.

I also know I respond good with alpha males,

you know what I mean?

Because I’m more of a follower, you know what I mean?

Or sensitive in that way.

But in many ways, I am an alpha male

in certain areas of my life, you know?


Well, you know, when it comes to Smashing Dot, what’s up?

You know what I mean?

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

But, you know, so we both knew instinctually

that in that way our chemistry worked, right?

And also in terms of style and all that stuff

is completely just, it was just an organic given to us.

Yeah. Yeah.

But you trust yourself with power?

You play dictators.

What do you mean, do I?

Because I feel like you would be,

because you said you’re not an alpha male.

But in many ways, when you smash what’s up

and you winked at me, what do you think about that?

If I give you absolute power, would you be able to,

what would you, how would you change?

What does absolute power mean?

Like you said to me, listen,

you are gonna be the dictator of planet Earth

and anything that you want is at your means?

Yeah, including violence, sex.

No, I would not.

Because even in my personal life now,

there are things that I could do, right?

That I have power, I guess, that I don’t participate in.

Right, so why would I do it if I had ultimate power?

I mean, because there’s always,

there’s still a moral and ethics that I have, right?

That I don’t feel comfortable with, right?


You wouldn’t even enjoy it.

No, I mean, I think that there would be no,

if I had ultimate dictatorship on planet Earth,

there would be no violence.

I mean, I would not cause any wars, right?

But if there’s an uprising, I’d have to quell it.

That’s how it starts, Bobby.

You quell it with a bit of a.

Don’t uprise.

Right, but, so first you’re gonna censor everybody

who wants to even suggest the idea of uprising.

And then one person gets out of line,

they run a red light, okay?

That’s, you ever get angry in traffic?


I get rageful.

So if you could murder that person.


No, no, no.

Nobody has to know.

No, I would give them cancer.

But I would not murder them.

That’s so much worse.

I would not.

I know, I know.


No, but here, no, this is an interesting thing

because I wanna elaborate.

All right, so the thing,

if I was the dictator of the planet Earth, right?

There would be a reason why people would uprise, right?

So give me a reason.

Because I would give them food, shelter, right?

And all the things I feel like people would desire, right?

But you’re right, because you’re right.

I think this is what you’re talking about.

So here’s the deal.

So there are certain things that I do believe in, right?

Like for instance, it’s a very controversial thing, right?

In terms of a woman’s right, right?

In terms of abortion, right?

I feel like as a male, it’s not my body,

so I don’t really even have an opinion

or I shouldn’t even have a voice on it.

Because, you know what I mean?

It’s like if they created laws,

if white people, men, created laws for Koreans in America.

Like you don’t have the right to, right?

So it’s like, so if I was a dictator, right?

I would just be like, yeah,

women have all the rights in the world, right?

And I think abortion should be legal

throughout the planet Earth, right?

But there will be people out there

that will believe that, no, you know what I mean?

We’re pro-life.

So you would put them in jail just so.

So that’s right.

So I think as a dictator,

there was no way to be able to please everyone.

So there will be an uprising.

So yeah, fuck it, I don’t wanna do it.

Would you do it?

Uh, not, no.

There’s several loaded questions.

Would I enjoy it?


Would I do it?

No, because I don’t trust my own mind under power.

Like I’m well aware that in situations where I have control,

it’s as much a freedom as it is a burden.

Like it can change you.

I’m very nervous about that.


How much the ego starts to flare up,

how much just like the less pleasant things

about your nature come up.

You know, I have a temper too.

Like I have all that kind of stuff.

And you have, I’m sure you have a bit of a temper.

Yeah, I have a temper, yeah.

And so when nobody’s able to as clearly call you out

on your bullshit, that could be a problem.

Do you have this when you rage out and you have a temper,

is there like either a day later or a couple hours later,

is there a shame and regret that comes along with that

or no?

Yeah, no, no, no, no, of course, yeah.

During it.

Yeah, during it too, yeah, shame and regret.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

But I try to make sure it’s like love and respect

are felt always underneath the whole thing.

But still, it’s like human emotion.

You can’t control it.

And if you give an absolute power,

you start to lose your sense of the world.

You start to be unable to see what is right and wrong.

You think everything is right.

You start to have a distorted view

of who is doing the wrong things in the world.

And then also distrust.

Well, that has to do more with how absolute power

is usually attained.

Because when you’re in the seat of power,

everybody, first on the outside,

but then in your inner circle, you start to distrust them.

You start to believe that they’re going to,

they want your power.

So the people you love,

the people that were source of so much beauty

for you previously, like even like your girlfriend, wife,

your closest lifelong friends, you start to suspect them.

I don’t want to live like that.


Yeah, yeah.

And you’re often right to suspect them.

Because you think they change a little bit too.

They change too.

Yeah, yeah.

They start to get a little bit taste of that power.


The interesting thing is a bunch of people

in Hitler’s inner circle at the very end

betrayed him in search of their own power.


It’s fascinating.


It’s fascinating, this power thing.

Let me ask you a bunch of ridiculous questions real quick.


If you could be someone else for a day,

someone alive today who you haven’t yet met,

who would you be?

For one day, you get to be, it could be female, male.

There have to be a lot.

I’ve always wanted to see what a pop star was like.

Which one would you go?

Like Harry Styles.


Yeah, yeah.

Harry Styles, right?

I just want to see what it’s like

to go to the Beverly Center.


As Harry Styles.

Yeah, yeah.

Or Coachella.

Just walk around Coachella as Harry Styles.

You know what I mean?

But you get a lot of attention.

And it’s a very specific kind of attention.

Yeah, I just want to see what that’s like.

I want to be able to,

because the thing is that I want to be able to see

what it’s like in terms of how easy would it be

to get a hot chick.

Oh, I thought you meant to get a table at a restaurant.

No, no, no.

That, you know, I can still do now as Bobby Lee,

you know what I mean?

But as Harry Styles, I want to see what it’d be like

and how that would go about,

like how easy it would be.

You know what I mean?


Could you just walk up to the hottest chick at Coachella

and start making out with them?

Yeah, that’s interesting.

Just to see.

Just to see if you could.

Test the system.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Because I know as Bobby Lee, no, no, no, no.

Could you?

No, you couldn’t do that.

No, no.


It’s an interesting reason.

So if you were the last person on earth,

like everybody disappeared, everybody’s dead.

What would your day look like?

What would your days look like?

What would you do?

That’s interesting because if I was able to figure out

the, you know, electricity,

I think my days would be like,

God, why didn’t you learn about electricity?

Oh, yeah.


You realize how little you know.

Yeah, yeah.

Why didn’t you learn about these things?

Because you’re gonna die.

Yeah, right?

Yeah, yeah.

But I think the first thing obviously is,

no, let me ask you something.


Now, if you’re saying that I’m the last person

on planet earth because there was an alien invasion

and there’s predators and things

that I have to fucking look out for, that’s one way.

But if I’m just all of a sudden I wake up

and just everyone’s gone.

No, everyone’s dead.

Everyone’s dead.

But there’s no threat.

There’s no threat.

Then what I would do is I go,

well, let’s find a place to live.

Not probably my house, right?

So I’d probably live in a place

where it’s closest to grocery stores, right?

So I would get food and stuff first, right?

And then secondly, it’s like,

I’ll probably go, you know what I thought about?

I would probably go to San Marcos, San Diego Vista

because that’s where the real doll factory is.

And just fuck all of them?

No, no, no.

I would have to grab like six of them

because I’m gonna get lonely.

Six of them for a variety.

You wouldn’t be monogamous with one doll?

No, and I also would carry out like the,

the vagina parts, you know what I mean?

And all the accessories and stuff, right?

And then go back to LA probably.

Oh man, why do I stay down there?

I’ll stay down there.

Yeah, you could stay in the factory.

No, yeah, maybe the stat factory.

And then, but I think thirdly,

I would run out of electricity, right?

And I think, you know what I mean?

My demise would come slowly.

Well, you could find sources of electricity

because nobody’s using it.

So I don’t know how to turn the machines on.

Like, I don’t know how to go to the fucking,

what do you call it?

The place where, I don’t even know what it’s called.

The place where, you know what I mean,

where it all, the energy’s generated?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, the generators.

Like, where do I go?

Yeah, it’s good questions.

All right.

Would you rather lose all your old memories

or never be able to make new ones?

The past or the future?

No, I mean, I can’t lose my memories.

All of them.

That makes me who I am.

But you wouldn’t be able to make new ones.

You wouldn’t be, so you’d be living in the moment,

nonstop with all the,

but you did say you’re in a really good place.

So maybe this is a pretty good set of memories you got.

You got all the trauma.


I mean, you just, that’s a nightmare.

You just created a nightmare for me.

That’s a nightmare.

The choice.

The choice is a nightmare.

Yeah, you’re fucked either way.

It’s already beautiful.

It’s a kind of death,

not being able to make new memories.

That’s it.

That’s all you got.

You get to relive the memories you have.

As a science guy, let me ask you a question.


Are you afraid to die?

Yeah, of course.

Not of course.

I am.

I think about it every day.


Yeah, I meditate on my mortality all the time.


It doesn’t make any sense.

It’s terrifying.

And because, are you terrified

because of the unknown

or because you believe it’s nothingness?

The unknown, but my best guess

is that it’s something like nothingness.

And that nothingness is-

So terrifying.

Yeah, the infinity of the nothingness.


But Ram Dass says,

and this is something that I always,

you know Ram Dass?


Ram Dass says he believes that death

is like removing a tight shoe.

Like release.


Like, ah.

That could be it too.

I think maybe when we die,

that’s initially,

maybe the last feeling that we have is release.

And then if that happens and there’s nothingness,

I think that’s cool.

Well, no, that has to do more

with the actual feeling of death,

which I think some people are afraid of,

the experience to make sure it’s one of release,

like you said.


But the existential aspect that you no longer exist.

Like all the shit you’re doing

kind of assumes you’ll live forever.


Like you don’t really,

like all your career and all that kind of stuff,

you probably will be forgotten.

I know.

Like completely erased.


So all you have is a few moments in this life,

a few moments of joy,

a few moments of trauma,

of suffering, and that’s it.

I know.

But here’s the thing.

And you’re wasting your time today talking to me,

and then you have a few such moments.

You’ll do a couple hundred more podcasts,

and then you’ll be dead.

No, because this right here, dude, right,

is human, number one,

I walked through a little fear today,

so I learned some things, right?

I’m talking to a science guy,

which I never thought I could.

You’re the first scientist I’ve ever talked to, right?

You get a diploma at the end of this.

Oh, good.

And I believe that there was a connection, right?

Not in a gay way.

Not in a gay way, non-gay connection, right?

In certain circumstances, I probably would blow you.

Would you?

In certain circumstances,

like if we were the last two people on planet Earth

and stuff like that.


Yeah, yeah.

But yeah, those are probably the only ones,

or like somebody put a gun to my head,

you gotta blow, Lex!

Okay, that’s kind of a turn on.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

I’m turned on right now, I’ll be honest.

Let me ask you one question.

Go ahead.

What do you think is the meaning of life?

My fucking, that’s the last one?

Yes, that’s the last one.

What do you think, why are we here?

Why are you here?

Why are we here?

Does any of it make sense to you?

I think ultimately,

here’s why I like life in general,

is what we talked about.

Like we view death, there is a mystery there.

There’s a wonderment to it, right?

So it’s like, when I walk outside,

and I look at the trees,

and I look at buildings that man made these buildings,

and I look at the universe,

and I look in the sky,

and I don’t really completely comprehend

what’s going on, right?

It’s just so, I’m in awe of all of it, right?

And I don’t have any answers, right?

But that, I think, is what the meaning of life is,

is to be in awe of it,

and the wonder of it all.

And it’s just amazing.

Yeah, just open your eyes to the wonder of it all.


While we’re still here.


Bobby, it’s a huge honor to finally meet you.

I’ve been a fan for many, many years.

It’s an honor that you would even consider blowing me

in the correct kind of circumstances.

I think you would blow me in the right circumstances.

I think that’s the definition of love.

Bobby, thanks so much for talking to me, brother.

Thank you so much.

Thanks for listening to this conversation with Bobby Lee.

To support this podcast,

please check out our sponsors in the description.

And now, let me leave you with some words

from Kurt Vonnegut.

Laughter and tears are both responses

to frustration and exhaustion.

I, myself, prefer to laugh,

since there’s less cleaning to do afterward.

Thank you for listening, and hope to see you next time.



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