Episode 44 – Gravity

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Not the Sandra Bullock kind. Harkening back to Episode 16 – Honesty, Mikey and Kris talk illness, strength, creative outlets and the safe haven of music. There were some tears. If you’re onboard with that, here it is, and thanks for being here.

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29 Responses to Episode 44 – Gravity

  1. Daphnetrodon says:

    This must have been a really heavy episode to sit down and record. It takes a lot of courage to open up to a listening audience, and to trust said audience not to flip out and whine about a podcast installment taking a serious tone once in a while. Thanks for trusting us enough to share this stuff with us, guys. Not to turn this into a huge TMI sharefest, but I face a lot of depression and body issues and hearing people I appreciate and respect discuss their own ailments and worries honestly does a lot to help me.

    The stuff you guys do makes a difference to people, silly stuff and serious stuff alike. I'm grateful to have the podcast to listen to regardless of the direction you guys take it in, and I hope you guys never stop feeling comfortable discussing and sharing this stuff with us. I at least am always going to be appreciative and as supportive as possible.

    Thank you.

  2. @giggleloop says:

    Thank you for this, guys. Beautiful song, Mikey. You got me, right in the "feels". Seriously. You guys already know how I feel, so I won't go into it again, since I'm already late for work haha whoops. (Totally worth it.)

    Now that you've cleared the heart, you can go have fun on the boat. :) Kris and Mikey Cuddlefest 2014! (Now with fish kisses!)

    • @giggleloop says:

      Also, can I just say, it cracks me up when you both do the air kisses in a circular fashion. Ive noticed Kris has also added a chomping noise now? Which I have no idea what kind of kiss that's supposed to be, but it's adorable. :)

  3. LMcCJ says:

    I was worried I should have offered to take Mrs. Neumann out for mimosas but, it was fine. 😉

    Interesting take on the Gravity song. (Like that Sting song that people forget is actually about a stalker.) Certain lines just *hit*.

    I'll bet, statistically, you're unlikely to die, of whatever cause, on a cruise ship. That's another layer of relaxation right there.

    JoCo idea, order that food. At 3am order a bucket of bacon. At 4:35 order a souffle. 7am birthday cake. Maybe they'll let you in the kitchen.

    Enjoy your exotic ports of call. Smoke a Cuban cigar and eat foie gras. Is weed legal down there? We will undoubtedly fill your radio silence with fanfic to make a sailor blush.

    Sunscreen!

  4. RandoCalrissian says:

    Thanks. Best song yet, Mikey.

  5. Shaurmiath says:

    I definitely feel like the serious tone of this podcast is lent additional weight by how funny your usual work is. The presence of something like this is given additional emphasis juxtaposed with your usual humor.

    Mikey, I thought it was awesome when you mentioned laughing at your own problems. I feel like it's a good, healthy approach. It's a sign that you've really come to accept it and move past it. Humor is a powerful tool, and you use it well.

    Kris, I could tell it was tough for you, too. It's hard to know the right thing to say in situations like this. You're a good friend, man.

    I really enjoyed the song. I enjoy singing, myself, but I rarely have the courage to perform for people; I've always had a lot of speech anxiety. I really felt that song.

    Looking forward to future installments, you guys. Shine on, you crazy diamonds.

  6. Kyle_Douglas says:

    When the D&D Character Sheet of Life was rolled I got a natural 20 resist to musical connectivity. I also took some advice from a chainsawsuit sponsor months ago and made some cinnamon rolls ("they'll make things briefly better") to eat during the podcast. The combination of these two factors made me a pretty lousy psyche landfill this time around, I think.

    I was nodding emphatically with Kris at 30:17. I'm glad I can upvote someone like Daphnetrodon to partially make up for my weaker ability to be cathartic and respond to such things than most commenters here.

    That said, it was still nice to have a sort of condensed primer on Mikey's issues which I've always felt like I've half-grasped throughout the duration of the podcast. I continue to wish Mikey (and Kris) all the best with everything… even if I'm not the best at expressing such sentiments.

    I'll also join the "army of tsktsk-ers" and offer Mikey a gentle admonishment for, according to his Twitter feed, staying up late last night to get this up. Slow ride, take it easy.

    Moving along to less serious notes:
    I knew going full-on Matt Smith would break Mikey. You never go full Eleven! 😉

    Biggest laughs (easy choice in a serious episode): "She doesn't have time for my shit." | "Well, I could die too, Mikey."
    Out of context quote of the week: "I could do that here with a regular size hand"
    Understanding Borderlands 2 Development Process Quote of the Week: "I love slot machines"
    Also awesome: The return of my personal favorite chainsawsuit track, Chainsaws of Love.
    Disturbing thought of the week: Ron dies to fix the problem? Uh… no. Harry and Hermione get together and then Ron and Ginny get together and Harry Potter Books 8 onward become a dark and disturbing Game of Thrones ripoff.

    I'm not photoshopping Ron and Ginny together on the Iron Throne. Sorry, internet.

    Enjoy your high seas, room service calorie cramming, adventure on the boat full of nerds!

  7. You guys make me cry. <3 Often out of laughter, which is what the cat joke did this time.

    I really, really admire going all out and talking about this. It's admittedly something I've been curious about, as clues have been left here and there just in your storytelling that much of your life, Mikey, has been shaped in a medical context.

    While I don't have MS or something that can affect any part of my body with uncertainty, I can relate to the elephant-in-the-room nature of medical conditions. In making things public versus keeping them private, I'm often conflicted – I have decided to own my condition(s) and not be embarrassed, but every new start I get in life I feel like protecting myself is necessary. People – especially the middle-aged women I happen to work with – get very maternal if they know something is there, and as a VERY STUBBORN independent person I tend to reject all help, even when it's well-intended concern. I don't want something that's episodic to shape people's general perception of me, but this assures me that the everyday life equivalent of the 44th podcast is a good time to be frank about it.

    I very much respect and admire both of you for how much you put into simply creating. I also think your friendship is adorable and wish I had one of those that could overlap with creative projects and also express things so well – honestly and intelligently yet positively. A lot of what's shaped my character comes from dealing with medical conditions throughout my life that aren't obvious and can be easily misunderstood or skewed by other people, which is undoubtedly part of why I'm so entertained by this podcast. I'm always amazed at the hard work you put into this, especially Mikey with your post-production dedication, and I wish I could build up the energy and inspiration to do what you do.

    I really want to give you guys hugs right now. I think Mikey's would be a bit longer, though, but not only because of this podcast…

  8. @salmanbakht says:

    I love that this serious episode was still funny enough to make me spit out my drink and that the regular funny episodes are still thoughtful and sincere.

  9. Thank you guys for putting so much of yourselves out there. It's thoughtful and incredibly moving, and above all feels like a privilege to be a fly on the wall for what feels like a very intimate view into your friendship.
    ——-
    chainsawsuit™ – Sometimes you're king of the week, sometimes you're up dick creek and your mouth is the paddle.

  10. Qmzn says:

    Serious podcast, serious comment? Why not.

    I have few regrets, most of which involve not saying what I should have said when I had the chance. Sure, I've made a fool of myself on numerous occasions by speaking my mind (especially during public Q&A sessions, don't ask), but that embarrassment fades. Regrets do not.

    Mortality can swiftly rob one of the opportunity to properly air out one's laundry. Life is short. Some lives are tragically and unpredictably shorter than others. My belief is this: if you have the opportunity to share your demons with someone you trust, don't wait. Take it. The alternative is self-destruction. Of the two, catharsis is a far safer path to the same level of clarity.

    Worst case scenario, your confidant uses the information to tear you down. However, it's better to uncover this sort of petty insecurity sooner than later, and begin the search for better company. As an relevant addendum, from personal experience, I highly recommend presenting those that have damaged your life with an account of their actions. In these negative cases, take the high road and be as diplomatic as possible while getting your point across. Don't sink to their level, no matter how tempting, and be prepared for the reality that their delusion has already absolved them of any wrongdoing.

    With that out of the way… despite the subject matter, there were some good jokes in 44. It sounds like there's some improvisational flexing going on, to prepare for interaction with the heavy hitters of geekdom on the high seas. Do you even comedy lift? Also, I am no stranger to Royal Carribean's decades-old concept of internet. They don't have to work too hard in this department, because as Mikey said, the options in ports of call aren't much better.

    Kris, while it's too late to utilize this suggestion on this cruise, I highly recommend setting up a home VPN, either on a spare PC or a compatible router. It's a great way to securely get remote access to your home network and computers over a low-bandwidth connection. With a cell phone or tablet, and the appropriate VPN and remote access software loaded (iOS or Android, there's plenty of options for both), you can get your work done efficiently and securely, even over the third-rate pay-by-the-minute Wi-Fi in that seedy internet cafe. While initial setup can be complicated, I'd bet Mikey knows exactly what I'm talking about and more, as will as any contractable IT pro worth his salt.

    And last, I think it's a shame Mikey's a capella "Put Em Up" will have to go without the harmonic treatment for the whole vacation week, if it even gets used at all. But while the cats are away, the commenter mice will.. uh… something that rhymes with "away". Yes, I am currently putting the finishing touches on something autotuned-ly musical of my own, using these fine clips. If anyone would like to attend amateur night at the 'suit, I might post a Soundcloud link tomorrow. If things have already gone ghost town on 44, I'll just wait until next week.

    • Kyle_Douglas says:

      "I've made a fool of myself on numerous occasions by speaking my mind (especially during public Q&A sessions, don't ask)"
      Since you refuse to elaborate, henceforth I'm going to imagine you as Red Shirt Guy the world's greatest Q&A participant of all time… a fact that in itself can be considered embarrassing, depending on who you ask. Personally, I salute him… even if my answer to his question would be "a wizard did it."

      As for your thing you mention at the end, I'd probably hold off? I tend to check for new podcast comments when I swing by to check for new chainsawsuit/Broodhollow, but I imagine many other regulars don't.

      On the other hand, if the internet situation on The Boat is better than anticipated in this episode then you get the possibility of Kris and Mikey listening to your thing together during the "On a Bed with Kris and Mikey" segment that Mikey promised us back in the Episode 38 comments 😉

      • Stouffer's Derek says:

        I can confirm that I, too, check for new comments.

        • Qmzn says:

          Thanks for the advice. I'll keep polishing it up to shoot for a viable commenter audience. When it comes to a release date, I'll play it by ear. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.

          At least Red Shirt Guy knew what he was talking about, despite the awkward delivery. I'm convinced panel Q&As are just bad news, unless you're a supermodel with a ton of relevant experience to the topic.

        • @giggleloop says:

          Same here. :) I also recorded something last night, but I still have it set as private on Soundcloud. I'll probably post it this week sometime.

  11. @giggleloop says:

    In case you missed it, Kris & Mikey Cuddlefest 2014 has already begun. :)

    "@mikeyface: Good morning from Florida. Kris says hi :) http://twitter.com/mikeyface/status/4375812308804

  12. Alex says:

    Hey Mikey,

    This is the first time I’ve really felt I had to leave a comment. I’ll be honest, while I do listen for the jokes, the reason I really love the podcast is serious moments like this. Thanks for being so brutally honest in a public space, in an odd way listening to stuff like this gives me more courage to face serious issues in my own life. It’s easy to brood quietly in your own head about your worries and problems and let them eat away at you, and it takes real courage to bring them forward as you did and to sort of say “well there it is, now it’s not just me and myself”. I really just wanted to wish you the best and hope you have all the fulfillment and happiness in the world in the face of your adversity.

    And, for what it’s worth, I like to give some money to charity every month and next month I’ll be giving some cash to the National MS Foundation in your honor.

  13. Stouffer's Derek says:

    According to today’s update, the podcast is now awarb- winning. Which means… I need to be scared? I don’t know what to think, the way Broodhollow’s been going.

  14. ApH says:

    First time poster, but I have to say that this episode really hit me hard, in a good way.

    I suffer from a chronic immunological disease and to hear real understanding, plus the emotional side, of what is it like to go through flare-ups was refreshing. Not the, "take it one day at a time" platitudes that so many people offer as advice. My condition can get to the point where I can barely walk, therefore, the fortune cookie wisdom is never appreciated.

    I can fully empathize with Mikey, or anyone with chronic debilitating conditions for that matter, that when you are in the throws of your condition it is just plain terrible. Describing it again and again to every new person you meet that your immune system is attacking you and there really is nothing you can do to stop it chips away at you. The depression is very real, thank you tackling this subject and treating it with the proper respect it deserves.

    BTW – If anyone is old enough to remember that show "West Wing" the President suffered from relapsing-remitting MS.

    • LMcCJ says:

      had forgotten about Pres Bartlett! (Let's not turn this into an age thing.)

      Glad you enjoyed the podcast (I've elected myself ambassador of chainsawsuit while the men are in international waters.) Mikey has written elsewhere about his health (you'll find it in the google if you care) and he and Kris help educate us all to be more platitudeless. It's hard to tell if they're genuinely nice guys or merely fulfilling their court-ordered community service but, either way, we win!

      See you in the comments.

  15. Walls3k says:

    This video hit me hard, lots of love to you Mikey!

    I'm a young stroke survivor as well (33 yo). I had mine in July of last year, while I was asleep one night, which is a terrifying thing to wake up to.

    It managed to take out everything on the left side of my body. I couldn't feel or move anything on the left side. Since then much of it has come back, but I still walk with a limp, I have trouble using my left hand, and have trouble feeling the left side of my face. Oh, and then there' the pain and discomfort. Hoh boy. This whole experience has been an absolute nightmare, and the doctors still don't know what caused it!

    I managed to go back to school/work in January. It's really hard, but I put on a good face and muddle through it. I'm not seeing a psychologist, and they took me off my prozac when I left the hospital, so I really should look into that. Mental health is really important. If only I could find an atheist shrink, it seems like every one I find wants to use "god" as a solution. HA! Pull the other one.

    Anyway, you're not alone, Mikey. There are lots of us struggling with similar conditions. We just need to find each other and stick together. Maybe host a conference? lol

    • LMcCJ says:

      My husband had the same issue with his therapist. You can search online for secular therapists in your area or ask for a referral from a current doctor. There is also the Secular Therapist Project but, I have no experience with it.

      Good luck to you.

  16. Robopengy says:

    Hey Mikey! I just joined a charity video game tournie to raise money for MS. Stay strong duder!

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