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June 26th, 2015

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Free Podcast Transcript: Everyone’s Agnostic Podcast

June 18th, 2015

We are happy to present another Free Podcast Transcript: Everyone’s Agnostic Podcast, Episode 49 titled American Atheist Convention 2015. We transcribe podcasts free of charge for the benefit of the community. You can learn more about our Free Podcast Transcription program at the following link.

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episode-49-american-atheist-convention-2015.odt


0:00:02 Speaker 1: I don’t know. Say it with me. “I don’t know!” Good God, it is liberating! I am a towering mountain of ignorance! I don’t know! We’re taught to believe that everything has a reason. And so we observed the world, we see what happened, and then we defined the thing that happened as the reason the thing happened. But I think a lot of the time, we end up mixing up thinking something with knowing something. This is why it can be so impossible to talk about certain topics with certain people.

0:00:28 S1: They’ve tied those suppositions to themselves so tightly with knots of narrative and constructed reality and values, that there is just no untying it. And maybe, unsurprisingly, in those situations, the best course of action is just to be friends. Maybe even ask them about that thing that they’ve created, because to them, it’s immensely valuable. The world as we perceive it, as we’ve built it inside of ourselves is a lie that we tell to ourselves, not out of deception, but out of necessity. We have no other choice. We simply cannot understand the world as it is and so we construct, but sometimes I just have to tell myself the thing that is definitely true, the truest thing I can say, which is that I don’t know.

[music]

0:01:17 Speaker 2: This is the Everyone’s Agnostic podcast with Bob Pondillo and Cass Midgley.

[music]

0:01:42 Cass Midgley: Welcome everyone. I’m Cass Midgley. This is the weekend of June 6th, 2015. Bob and I have taken some time off to do some fun things with family and friends so I’m pulling out of the archives. Back on April 4th, I taped a few random interviews at the American Atheists Convention in Memphis. So today, I’m posting a few selections from that experience. The first, is a nine-minute interview with Dave Kong. Kong was personal friends with Madalyn Murray O’Hair, the founder of American Atheists, and he has witnessed the movement from the beginning. And for those who may have little exposure to Madalyn, I’ve posted an 11-minute excerpt from a speech she gave at the 1972 convention, 10 years after she founded the movement.

0:02:24 CM: Next is a six minute interview with comedian Keith Lowell Jensen, who performed a stand up routine at the conference. I’ve also tacked on a three-minute excerpt of a bit he performed there. Keith has his own podcast called “It’s Funny Because,” available on iTunes and Facebook. Lastly, I play a fascinating talk given by Dr. Jennifer Michael Hecht called “Poetic Atheism”. She wrote a book that changed my life called “Stay: A History of Suicide and the Arguments Against It.” She argues that to say there is no meaning in life, or that we have to make our own seems misguided and that meaning has always been a part of community and culture. We need not invent it.

0:03:08 CM: She earned her PhD from Columbia University in the History of Science and European Culture. She’s also the author of a book called “Doubt: A History: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas Jefferson.” Also another book, “The Happiness Myth: The Historical Antidote to What Isn’t Working Today.” I think you’re gonna enjoy Dr. Hecht’s talk and overall the hodgepodge of my experience from American Atheists convention. Today’s beautiful segue music is performed by a friend of the show, Nikolay Gavlishin. Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn, and most podcast platforms. If you’re feeling grateful for our podcast, patreon.com is like a tip jar for our work. That’s patreon.com/eapodcast. I hope your life is enhanced by this episode. Thanks for listening and be a yes sayer to what is.

[music]

0:04:15 CM: So what’s your name?

0:04:17 Dave Kong: My name’s Dave Kong.

0:04:19 CM: Kong?

0:04:19 DK: Kong, K-O-N-G like the big gorilla.

0:04:21 CM: King Kong?

0:04:22 DK: Yes.

0:04:23 CM: I’m Cass.

0:04:24 DK: Hey, nice to meet you.

0:04:24 CM: Good to meet you. So you were raised religious but…

0:04:28 DK: Yeah. Raised in a Episcopalian church. I always suspected something because my dad never went to church, except on Easter and Christmas. And my mom went to church, but we used to go to midnight mass. She’d come up with some excuse to go to the bathroom with me and we’d just much hang out in the bathroom and pretty much miss the sermon.

0:04:48 CM: So neither one of them were very serious?

0:04:49 DK: Neither one of them seemed to be very serious about it, which it never really occurred to me ’til later in life. And then, when I was about eight, and I know those people, they would say, well, this is a rea1lly foolish reas1on, but I’d come across the book “Chariots of the Gods”, and I’d read it and I said, “Well, I don’t necessarily really believe the whole alien thing,” but what he’s basically saying are that if these stories in the Bible actually happened, there had to be some sort of scientific basis for it. So I very quickly said, “Well, if that’s the case, then there really are no gods.” And so I told that to my mom. At the time, she told me, “Oh you’re wrong, you’re very very wrong.”

0:05:21 CM: At eight years old?

0:05:22 DK: At eight years old. And so I just kind of shrugged it off and then never, didn’t really give it too much thought, continued to go to church with her. And then when I was 15, I formed an atheist rock band.

0:05:31 CM: Okay.

0:05:32 DK: And so of course, we’re working on my band, and one night my mom comes up to me, and she says, “You know I’ve been thinking about it. You’re right.” She said, “There is no God.” And so, score one for mom. That was cool.

0:05:42 CM: Yeah, very much.

0:05:43 DK: And then my band, at one point… I grew up in Des Moines, Iowa. And we finally had a big gig at Adventureland theme park. So we did the advertising with these flyers about the band and didn’t really say anything about being anti-religion. Well, we did have a joke at the bottom that said, “Distributors to religious publications will be bodily evicted.” You know, clearly a joke. It caused an uproar. I could not believe it.

0:06:04 CM: Just that little subject?

0:06:05 DK: That little thing and suddenly, parents started calling my mom, churches started calling my mom, principals of schools were calling my mom.

0:06:11 CM: Tell me again what it said?

0:06:13 DK: It said, “Distributors to religious publications will be bodily evicted.”

0:06:15 CM: So tracks, people giving out tracks would be bodily removed?

0:06:18 DK: Yeah. So parents were calling my mom, the sheriff’s department called my mom. And she just said, she just told, “I agree with my son. Piss off.” And hung up.

[chuckle]

0:06:28 DK: And finally Adventureland said, “Oh well this is too hot to handle. Here’s your money back.” And we just said, “Oh, we were clearly on to something. Let’s go to California.”

[chuckle]

0:06:37 CM: Yeah, you would’ve thought that they would like… Sometimes the controversy brings out more people sometimes.

0:06:42 DK: Oh, yeah, well this was Iowa in what, 1979? Or something like that. They were hardly ready for it.

0:06:47 CM: Even now, Iowa is probably pretty conservative.

0:06:49 DK: And even then, we were not…

0:06:52 CM: It was a joke.

0:06:53 DK: Yeah. And we didn’t consider ourselves an atheist band. We just like, well, we do our little anti-religious thing and it’s just fun. It’s… Boys will be boys, it’s good, clean fun, what’s the harm in it? And then we moved out to California and started playing. And suddenly, it’s in the mid ’80s at this point, and then suddenly, we’re at these gigs and people are going, “Hail, Satan” and giving us the devil horn sign. And we were just embarrassed. We’re not into that and nor do we want to be associated with that. So we just declared ourselves an atheist band. And before I’d left Des Moines, we’d seen… Had the fortune to see Madalyn O’Hair speak at Drake University, a rather famous speech that she gave. And so when I was in California, I finally contacted her and said, “Hey, my band is an atheist band, could we sign up under the family plan for American Atheists?” And she was fine, she said, “Yeah, go ahead” and we signed up. So we were proud, card-carrying American Atheists members.

0:07:40 CM: What year was that?

0:07:40 DK: It was… It had to be in like ’82, ’83.

0:07:43 CM: Wow. So you’ve been a part of this for a long time.

0:07:45 DK: Oh absolutely.

0:07:46 CM: You’ve probably been to several of these conferences? This is my first conference.

0:07:49 DK: Yeah. Well that’s just it. I went to a conference in ’88 to promote our upcoming album and it was in Minneapolis. And Madalyn was really good, she’d put in a couple of notices about our band in her newsletter here from time to time. And I went to the convention for the first time. And everybody knew who I was, “Oh you’re that guy in that band.”

0:08:07 CM: Wow. Was Madalyn one of the founders of it? Or…

0:08:10 DK: Oh she was definitely the founder of American Atheists. Yeah.

0:08:11 CM: See, I didn’t realize that.

0:08:12 DK: Oh, absolutely. She was a firebrand. You talk about the firebrands we have now, she was a firebrand.

0:08:18 CM: Yeah, I’ve watched some old YouTubes of her.

0:08:20 DK: Yeah, she was incredible.

0:08:22 CM: So I guess my question is, you’ve watched it evolve over the years?

0:08:26 DK: I have. I absolutely have.

0:08:27 CM: What’s different? What’s good? What’s bad? How’s it improved?

0:08:30 DK: It’s exploded, are you kidding?

0:08:32 CM: So the numbers.

0:08:33 DK: Yeah. Well, right before Madalyn retired… Disappeared, she put me on the National Board so I was on the National Board for like 13, 19. I had… Lost track of the years at this point. But then I retired slightly before Dave Silverman became President. I’ve just watched everything just grow and explode. I’ve seen her visibility within the general culture, just improve. There’s atheist characters on TV all the time. In fact, if anything, they mock the religious, and it’s just really a good thing to see.

0:09:00 CM: So you sense there might be grassroots movement. Like there’s something changing, even in America.

0:09:05 DK: Oh, absolutely. Yeah. And part of it, I must say, was the agreement of all the various atheists and free thought groups to cooperate. Because when I started out, they weren’t cooperating. And in California, with Bobbie Kirkhart, we were one of the first states to say, “Hey we really have to work on these things together, or we’re gonna all be screwed.”

0:09:24 CM: Yeah, maybe Jesus was right, a house divided against itself will not stand. [chuckle]

0:09:28 DK: I’m sure you could quote other people with similar quotes. But yes.

0:09:33 CM: You still have rock and roll hair. Are you still a musician?

0:09:35 DK: I still have rock and roll hair. The band folded, the hair didn’t.

0:09:39 CM: Okay. So what have you been doing since? What do you do for a living?

0:09:42 DK: For a living? I work for a law firm. I do computer work for a law firm.

0:09:46 CM: So you’re like their tech guy?

0:09:47 DK: I’m their tech guy, yeah. I’m it. I’m IT.

0:09:52 CM: Is it usually, I guess… What do we got, I guess about 750 people here?

0:09:56 DK: That’s what I’ve heard, something like that.

0:09:57 CM: Is that pretty normal in the last few years? Or does it get bigger every year?

0:10:01 DK: It varies. After the Reason Rally, we had a huge convention in DC, and the next one was pretty big. This one’s just a little bit smaller. But they wax and wane.

0:10:11 CM: Two steps forward and one step back.

0:10:12 DK: Right, yeah. I mean when we first started doing conventions after Madalyn had disappeared, we were clocking at like 200-300 people. So this is definitely an improvement. And just frankly, just the local grassroots activism is just amazing. I mean that certainly wasn’t around in my days.

0:10:28 CM: I think you’re right. I think you’re onto something, that we’re getting better at organizing.

0:10:32 DK: But I also really agreed with JT Eberhard’s speech last night where he was saying now that we’re getting larger as a movement, we can’t let various philosophical differences suddenly split us apart. And that…

0:10:43 CM: That’s a good point.

0:10:44 DK: That would definitely be our downfall.

0:10:45 CM: Which is what has happened to religion, right? Because it’s like, “Well, do you immerse in baptism? Or do you sprinkle? Do you speak in tongues? Or do you not?” I mean they found a thousand reasons to split open, and they ended up very being splintered. But yeah, so if we can just say, “Look, we just want… ” What do you think are the main things? Separation of church and state? I mean what are the main platforms that American Atheists…

0:11:08 DK: Yeah, well, American Atheists has always stood on the platform of complete and absolute separation of church and state. And that was always their main thrust, and then also the work to protect it and enforce atheists’ civil rights.

0:11:18 CM: Yeah. Keep the nativity scene off the public lawn.

0:11:24 DK: Yes. And some people say, “Oh that’s just, you’re just arguing over petty stuff”. But symbolism is important, that’s why it’s there.

0:11:31 CM: Well, the Constitution’s important.

0:11:31 DK: Yeah, exactly. Yes.

0:11:35 CM: Well, thanks for talking to me.

0:11:36 DK: Hey, it’s been a pleasure.

[music]

[pause]

0:11:49 CM: So that’s my talk with Dave Kong. He’s an energetic guy. He was a lot of fun to talk to, really fast. I had seen him the night before they had a little costume party, and he was fully painted in gold paint, and I don’t know if he was… I really don’t know what character he was supposed to be, but he was a lot of fun to talk to. I thought it was interesting that he questioned God at eight years old and never looked back. But this was his 27th conference to attend and he’s been on the board of American Atheists for over 20 years. He’s no longer on the board but he served for over 20 years. Just an interesting talk.

0:12:31 CM: Next up I’m gonna play a clip from Madalyn Murray O’Hair, a talk she gave in 1972 at the the American Atheists conference. She surveys different types of atheists. She doesn’t like atheists at all, is how she starts out. She resents atheists being called “negative.” She breaks down the four… Well, let’s see, how many types here, several types of atheists: Primitive, which is just kind of starting out; philosophical, which are kind of braniacs; practical, hateful… She doesn’t like hateful atheists. Fanatical atheists, she doesn’t like, and lastly what she calls “Maslovian,” which I have to think means self-actualized or something. But she ends the talk with, or at least this portion of the talk, with my favorite poem, “For Whom the Bell Tolls” by John Donne. So here’s Madalyn Murray O’Hair, 1972.

0:13:37 Madalyn Murray O’Hair: I’m asked to speak to you tonight on the question, is atheism the religion of the future? No. That ends that speech. [laughter] Why atheism won’t be the religion of future is a subject that’s very dear to me, and we need only to consider the atheist to discover the answer. And that’s what I’m here to do tonight, consider the atheist. I don’t like atheists very much, if at all. This is highly unusual, given that I am their principal and most articulate spokesman in America. And what brought this situation about and why they cannot be the Messiahs in our culture is the subject matter of my discussion this evening.

0:14:30 MM: Since the prefix “a-” in a word of Greek derivation gives a negative sense to that word, an atheist is simply a person who is not theistic, whatever theistic means. And I recognize, and I’m sure you recognize, what Webster has to say and it’s always important to make a reference back, that theism is a belief in the existence of God or gods, especially belief in the existence of one God viewed as the creative source of man, whatever creation means to the astronomers, or physicists, or to you, or to me, as the creative source of man and the world, who, not which, but who, transcends, yet is imminent. And I don’t know what transcends means. I do not know what imminent means, and for that matter, I do not know what eternal means, or create means, or transmigration, or grace, or prayer, or God. And I don’t think anybody else in the world knows.

0:15:46 MM: These are nonsense words, which has special esoteric nonsense meanings to theistic idiots of all brands. Now an atheist is a person who simply does not accept that view, the view of theism, as I said, whatever it is, and properly stands in opposition to it. Because “a-” used as a prefix is a privative and negates the word. Now many people say that atheists are negative because of their appellation, but the prefix “in-” gives a negative sense to a word too, as in “independence,” and is in fact a negative word. It simply means free of dependency, and independence is a treasured word in American culture, as someday, the word “atheist” will be. To use a negative derivation does not mean that the philosophy of living, the Weltanschauung flowing from it is in any sense, negative. Only the most uneducated would have so little respect for language as to make such a gross supposition. But everything depends on what one means.

0:17:12 MM: Let’s look at atheists, known according to the degree of guts they possess also as agnostics, ethical culturists, humanists, free thinkers, objectivists, secularists, rationalists, iconoclasts, and God alone knows how many other names to hide what they are. But tonight I’m going to call them all “atheists” because fundamentally they are against a theism. There are primitive atheists, philosophic atheists and practical atheists, and I have been all three. There are also hate-ridden atheists who usually convert from Catholicism, fanatical atheists who usually convert from Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the primitive atheists, I meet everywhere in great numbers today, usually on campus.

0:18:15 MM: A primitive atheist is one who comes of intellectual age, does a double take at Christianity, finds it to be incredible as any thinking person would, and announces, “I don’t believe all that crap,” and lets it go at that. These people usually join the Unitarian church, [laughter] or the Ethical Culture Society, and live happily ever after with substituted dogmas, creeds, and routines to fill a gap they imagine was left in their lives. They float around in a small esoteric group, which plays the game of discussion in private, specifically the game of “We exceptional few, and are superior” philosophy. The philosophic atheist does a triple take of Christianity and gets hopelessly bogged down in reading Bible, King James, Standard, revised, renewed, re-edited, re-interpreted.

0:19:30 MM: And then, he turns to the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Torahs, the Book of Mormons, Science of Life, [0:19:38] ____ Urantia, I Ching, and other holy books, all of which are trash. He knows the teleological argument for God or the ontological argument, or the epistemological argument, or the pragmatic, or the moral argument, and how to refute them all in excess. He delights in a two-hour discussion of Pascal’s choice, and he can use up hours of priceless living time analysing all of the religious theories, history-diverse theologies. These people have been 10 years in the American Humanist Association and they live happily ever after, deeply immersed in obscurism, reading in depth the genteel, erudite, and completely worthless articles in the journal of that society. They play the game of beating ideas to death with words, and they usually flaunt PhDs. I need to delineate the other kind of atheist too, the one who has a hatred reaction to it all.

0:20:53 MM: He can recite an extraordinary number of incidents, where priests were discovered to be living carnally with their housekeepers, or he gleefully collects news items, where ministers appropriated $15.73 from the roofing fund, or where ministers were named as correspondents in divorce cases, or where a young choir boy accused the male director of indecent advances. All of these people belong to the Friendship Liberal League. This type of atheist never gets beyond his hatred and usually, this atheist has a trauma conversion to atheism, and not an intellectual one, and he can well have a trauma conversion back to theism, and proliferate these atheists do through every other category of atheist. Then there is the sectarian atheist, who flourishes only in bitter internecine warfare in the atheist groups and in factional strife therein, about who is the better atheist, and they all belong to the American Rationalist Association, and a great number of them belong to the United Secularists of America.

0:22:11 MM: Then there is another atheist, a Maslovian type, who just has a natural human thrust to what is healthy and natural in life. His is a gut reaction, as well as an intellectual one. He has a way of life, an underlying basic positivism. He is grounded in life and its natural rules. He has a free-wheeling, open-ended philosophy. His emphasis is on the worth of the individual, his human dignity, his intelligence, his ability to order his own life, his ability to enjoy the emotions with which he is endowed. And his emphasis is on reason, life experience and common sense.

0:22:58 MM: His life, this atheist, is unadorned with creeds, dogmas and rituals. He does not feel that he is a part of a chosen people, but only a part of mankind. He knows no sacrificial redemptions, he bends no knees, and he bows no head. He is as negative as Columbus, who denied the flat Earth. He is as destructive as was Galileo, who saw the Earth as a part of a whole. He is as anti as a physician curing a disease. He is interested in here and now, not in fantasy, and he sees religion, theism, as simply being irrelevant to human life. He has no negative emotion-laden reaction to religion, simply because that isn’t worth his time. And I am here tonight, I am certain, with this type of atheist predominant in this audience.

[applause]

0:24:07 MM: Then there is the atheist who realizes finally, that every aspect of living depends on the total living of all mankind, he recognizes the need of a better cultural philosophic base, and he looks at the old, old poem with new eyes, and recognizes it as a new truth. And you know it all: “No man is an island, entire of itself, every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less. Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee.”

[music]

0:24:59 CM: Alright, so there’s Madalyn Murray O’Hair, and I hope you enjoyed that. Fascinating woman and somebody needs to make a movie out of her life. She was brutally murdered, and that’s part of her story. Now up next is Keith Lowell Jensen, the comedian that spoke at the American Atheists Convention. So during his comedy routine at the convention, he mentioned something about his wife never having been religious, and he himself was raised religious. And so there’s this difference that they run into sometimes, and I thought it was a lot like Bob and I, as far as the way our relationship has formed. And then we talked a little bit about the fine tuning argument near the end, but overall, he’s a funny guy, great guy, and I recommend his podcast called, “It’s Funny Because,” Available on iTunes. So here’s my interview with Keith Lowell Jensen, followed by an excerpt from a comedy bit that he did during his routine at the convention. Enjoy.

[music]

0:26:07 CM: Oh, thank you so much.

0:26:08 Keith Lowell Jensen: Absolutely in love with it, would you?

0:26:10 CM: So I’m Cass.

0:26:11 KL: Keith.

0:26:11 CM: Keith Lowell Jensen.

0:26:13 KL: That’s me.

0:26:14 CM: So you’re wife raised completely atheist, no energy around it?

0:26:20 KL: No, not quite.

0:26:20 CM: Oh, okay, good.

0:26:21 KL: Her mom was religious, but she just… And her father wasn’t, and she just followed her father’s… She never…

0:26:27 CM: She took her father’s route. Yeah, so she never drank the Kool-Aid, it never was this energy… You know never was this energy?

0:26:31 KL: At no point did she believe.

0:26:32 CM: So when the Jehovah Witnesses come to the door there’s just like “No, we’re an atheist family”, and she can be real sweet about it. You have this energy around it, because, you’re still…

0:26:42 KL: I exaggerate that on stage. That chip on my shoulder which I think seeing my wife interact with people has sort of influenced me to temper that. It’s more when I was a young atheist that I think I was more kind of in your face, and did have that chip on my shoulder.

0:26:59 CM: So some of that energy, I don’t know for me, ’cause I was Christian, and then… There’s a little bit of shame involved for me, because it was like when it finally did dawn on me that there was no Adam and Eve, and then it just all came crumbing down, I was pissed. I felt like I’d been lied to. And I felt like how gullible I was for well into my 30s. How embarrassing is that?

0:27:23 KL: Who did you feel lied to you?

0:27:25 CM: Well that’s the thing, is there’s no blame game going on, I mean my mom and dad, you know the Church, or whatever, but here we are, and that’s where I find myself is we’re in a bizarro world.

0:27:35 KL: Yeah.

0:27:36 CM: Because we’re still… Like 80% of Americans, or whatever, a third of of the human population considers themselves Christians, the biggest religion in the world. And yet here we are, or at least I am, saying “It didn’t happen.”

0:27:50 KL: I think that there are liars out there, who are just exploiting it.

0:27:54 CM: Yeah, charlatans.

0:27:54 KL: Yeah. But for the most part I think the people in my life sincerely believed, so I didn’t have that anger as much as a defensiveness, you know, and then and initially, a great depression of that whole like, “Well, what is the meaning then?”

0:28:10 CM: There you go, the bedrock falls out.

0:28:12 KL: Yeah.

0:28:13 CM: And how now shall I live? And…

0:28:14 KL: Right.

0:28:15 CM: That’s a tough, that’s the learning curve for me.

0:28:18 KL: Yeah, yeah.

0:28:19 CM: It was about nine years to where… And it was stair step, cause you know I think maybe you made reference to this, but I know for some it can just become, you go from Bundy, to progressive, to liberal, to Deepak Chopra, [chuckle] There’s the woo-woo you hang onto, this new age stuff, or deism, or something, and then, for me eventually, it all just disintegrated, to where we’re just almost cellular beings that are just here, and it’s crazy that we’re here. It seems… I mean even Hitchens would use the word “miraculous” sometimes, as far as this is crazy. I mean when you think about evolution, what are the odds, that the oxygen level, and the temperature and everything was just right for these cells to… But anyway, it’s the mind fuck of all that.

0:29:05 KL: And I’m no scientist, but that thinking still baffles me, because I don’t think that the oxygen, and the temperature were right for these cells. I think that had the temperature and the oxygen level been different, [chuckle] we might have evolved differently. We’re so convinced that conditions were just right here and then we did find a life form in… Is it Mono Lake?

0:29:29 CM: I don’t know.

0:29:29 KL: It’s an exception to every other organism just found within the last couple of years, because it evolved under a different set of conditions.

0:29:38 CM: Okay.

0:29:39 KL: And I think it’s arsenic, that it actually utilizes within its system.

0:29:43 CM: That’s a good point because without broadening those options, the… What is it the argument that complexity, or something about to where it’s just like, you know, it goes… Theists ends up using it for an argument for theism.

0:29:57 KL: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

0:29:58 CM: Because it’s so improbable that it had to be, it’s so exact?

0:30:02 KL: Right. ‘Cause things don’t get more complex, they break down.

0:30:05 CM: Yeah. Anyway, I don’t know how much you’ve gotten into, I don’t get into the debate side of it so much but…

0:30:12 KL: Sometimes I do, when I need to write jokes ’cause I’ll come up with inspiration for funny stuff when debating with people…

0:30:16 CM: Are you a full time comedian?

0:30:19 KL: Yes and no, I mean this is the main way that I make my living, but I hang on to a job working for a friend of mine in town for stability.

0:30:26 CM: What town?

0:30:27 KL: In Sacramento, California.

0:30:28 CM: Okay.

0:30:29 KL: Yeah. I think I’m overly risk averse. I had periods in my life where I grew up poor.

0:30:36 CM: I have recently been… I’ve become a junky for Marc Maron’s show or Pete Holmes’ show where they’re interviewing comedians. Sometimes I kind of feel like I’m getting inside the head, there’s…

0:30:45 KL: Well, check out mine. It’s called “It’s Funny Because”.

0:30:48 CM: I will.

0:30:48 KL: And we talk to comedians about method and about what’s behind the jokes and…

0:30:52 CM: Fantastic. So let me write that down, what’s its called?

0:30:55 KL: “It’s Funny Because”.

0:30:56 CM: “It’s Funny Because”.

0:30:57 KL: And it’s me and Johnny Taylor, another great comedian.

0:30:59 CM: Okay.

0:31:00 KL: Who’s also an atheist.

0:31:01 CM: Well, the thing is I work in Nashville but I live in Murfreesboro, it’s about an hour commute, one way. And so what’s saved my life from just hating everyone else on this road…

0:31:14 KL: Podcast.

0:31:14 CM: Is podcasts.

0:31:15 KL: Yeah.

0:31:16 CM: And so, man, I would definitely will. I definitely will. Well, Thanks for talking to me. Cool.

0:31:19 KL: Yeah. Good talking to you, man.

0:31:20 CM: Good to meet you.

0:31:21 KL: Yeah.

0:31:24 KL: Have you guys seen this tattoo going around on the interwebs, the dude got a tattoo on his bicep, right around his big old “I workout” bicep. He had a tattoo that says, “Thou shall not lie with a man, as one lies with a woman. It is an abomination,” which means snowmen really did it. I didn’t… I didn’t finish school…

[laughter]

0:31:48 KL: Well, who’s got the attribution? Leviticus. And the reason people past it around, it’s the attribution’s fucking funny. ‘Cause Leviticus is the book of the Bible that says, “Don’t get a tattoo, you douche bag”. I’m paraphrasing but that shit’s in there, you could look it up.

[laughter]

0:32:07 KL: So that’s why people pass it around but what I find really funny about it, it’s just the wording, “Thou shall not lie with a man, as one lies with a woman”. I don’t think that really says, “Don’t be gay”. That just sounds advice on positions, doesn’t it?

[laughter]

0:32:27 KL: Like good advice.

[laughter]

0:32:32 KL: But I was like, “Well, hang on, you decide you want to fuck a dude and you just go jump in right into missionary position, you might end up frustrated.”

[laughter]

0:32:47 KL: Possibly, even injured. You gotta get the legs up a little higher. And I’m sorry if I got too graphic at the end of it there for you. I haven’t put that in those. I have a lot of gay friends and they would come up to me after shows, going like, “Oh, hey dude, we can do it in missionary position, all right.” And then maybe me, I’d always answer with, “Prove it”. But I would get weird and I sleep sometimes, so I… And that shit. But obviously, that’s not what this dude meant to get a tattoo on his arm, that’s not what he’s expressing. What he is expressing is, “Don’t fuck dudes.” That’s right there on his bicep, “Don’t fuck dudes.” That’s what he had to say to the world. And that’s a weird sentiment, when you’re expressing a part of your internal self externally in a way that’s permanent and sharing it with the world, what he chose was, “Don’t fuck dudes”? I mean, to me, that begs the question, “How shitty is this guy’s memory?”

[laughter]

0:33:43 KL: ‘Cause mine’s fucking awful. And I almost never forget not to fuck dudes. I’m not going all memento on my ass. You know what I mean? I don’t just go fuck ’em, it’s that easy. Thank you guys so much.

0:33:59 CM: So, that was Keith Lowell Jensen, funny guy, good guy. Next is Doctor Jennifer Michael Hecht and a talk that she gave at the American Atheists Convention in April 2015, entitled Poetic Atheism. It’s mostly about suicide and why it’s important to stay. That’s the name of her book and here’s Jennifer Michael Hecht.

[Applauding]

0:34:27 Dr Jennifer Michael Hecht: I love being here. I’m always making this an explicitly secular argument, but it’s very nice to be among atheists and be able to just not have to hedge that one. My interest in the subject started because I lost two friends to suicide. We weren’t that close anymore, we’d all gotten our PhDs up at Columbia in the ’90s and we’ve been good friends then. And after one friend did it, the other one wrote her posthumous afterward to her poetry book, and they were both very successful. Then the other one did it.

0:35:08 DM: And somehow that year and a half in between, because I write about atheism, because I write about doubt, you almost become an atheist priest. People ask you questions and as a historian I have some answers because I know how a lot of people have lived with either doubt or atheism all over the world throughout history. I know that there’s no God. People say you can’t know, but I know there’s no Superman, ’cause I know when we made him up, and I know when we made up God. And I know we made up the afterlife and I know how it’s changed in different places and times. The whole idea of agnosticism comes out of ageing scepticism, but it’s invented in the late 19th, early 20th century as an idea that you can’t prove something to not being there. But you can. You can’t prove that there are no unicorns, ’cause a goat could just have one, but you can prove there’s no pegasai because wings would have to be the size of a football field to pick up a horse.

0:36:17 DM: So there are things that are patently ridiculous. The earliest doubters… The earliest atheists I found in history… Straight-out atheists, ’cause in the Psalms, which go back really far, it says “the godless this and the Godless that” and we just sort of don’t notice it. But the ancient Cārvāka in 600 BC, before Buddhism… And indeed we think Buddha was influenced by the ancient Cārvāka. They said “If souls could exist without bodies, you’d also see mangoes hanging in the air with no tree, but you don’t.” Every brain, every mind I’ve ever encountered is gray and smushy. None of it hangs out in the sky. So it’s a… It’s…

0:37:02 DM: Again, as we all know, extraordinary claims need extraordinary proofs. But as a person who sometimes suffers dark times herself, I felt like I had to think this through, that we we had to think about what we could do for each other about sadness and about misery. And the idea of surrendering to something just… What can we do? And I began to think that the feeling of meaning is sufficient to the definition of meaning. Just as the feeling of love is sufficient to the definition of love. You don’t always feel love. But you remember you did, and you remember other people probably are now. And meaning, too, isn’t always a feeling we have, but we have felt it. So to say that there is no meaning, and to say that we each have to create our own meaning, seems misguided. I think meaning was always in community and culture and it is now. We haven’t really lost anything. There is no God-shaped hole.

0:38:14 DM: What first came to me was the notion that we need each other, that if a suicide causes this much pain, and this much suffering… And indeed, people through history have noticed that when one person does it more people do. We call it cluster… Suicidal clusters, or contagion, or social modeling. One leads to more. And that means that if you stay, you’re doing a service, and you deserve our gratitude. If you stay for other people, you’re doing something. Crying and useless is fine. Crying and useless is a million times better than dead. I’m not speaking at all about end-of-life care. And I have a sort of loose way of defining that by saying, “If one medical professional or member of your family or your friends thinks maybe you’ve had enough whatever it is you’ve… ” Okay, you’re a different category, and that needs to be adjudicated on its own terms. But if you know that even you in another mood would hate what you’re doing, and you know everyone you know will be upset and think it was not the right thing to do, then give yourself a little more time.

0:39:30 DM: And the ideas matter. People… Their first response to this is always, “Well, somebody who’s feeling that sad doesn’t have access to ideas.” But it doesn’t turn out to be the case. I get mail every day from people saying that either one or the other argument worked for them. The first argument is that you stay for community. And most secular philosophers throughout history have argued this, that we owe each other to stay. Socrates told the students and friends in the room with him where he drank the hemlock, “You may not do this unless you also are condemned to do it by a court of law because we need each other.”

0:40:14 DM: The second argument is about your future self. You don’t really know who that guy’s gonna be. Don’t kill him. He may know a lot of things you don’t know. If you think of what you knew 10 years ago, it can be pretty persuasive. I certainly hear from college kids who are moved most by the friendship argument. The idea that they could hurt their friends. It’s statistically very clear that if you want your niece to make it through her dark night of the soul, you have to make it through yours. A soldier wrote a piece… An ex-Army Ranger wrote a piece for The Daily Beast saying he read the book and that she changed it for him, that if you want your fellow ex-Army Ranger to make it through his stuff, he said, “I guess I have to make it through mine. I have to accept the help people have been trying to give me.” Because he didn’t want to get help.

0:41:09 DM: And I’m certainly not offering this as an alternative to help. Help is great for everybody. I’m a big booster of talk therapy. I think it’s… I think it’s a route to the truth. You get to see the world a little bit. Look at us. We each have this little skull and these two little viewpoints and we’re trying to see the world. And anytime you can get a little bit of an idea of what your biases are, you become wiser. It’s just… It’s a way of seeing more.

0:41:42 DM: The… The idea that… Well, look, if God didn’t make up morality, and he didn’t, then we did. And I’m very impressed. We don’t always hit the mark but we try, human beings, lots of human beings try to be good. And we feel moral feelings, which you can explain in a way by explaining it away. There’s just something very strange and real about being human. Even consciousness is a weirder trick than virgin birth. I mean, if I didn’t see it with my own eyes, I’d never believe it. The meet wrote “Ode to Joy”, and “Romeo and Juliet”? It’s really quite extraordinary. It’s bizarre. It’s the bizarre that’s behind religious bizarreness. The most rationalists of religious, of people who believe in some notion of God, do so often because of consciousness.

0:42:55 DM: But I meet weird right where I meet it. I don’t make another tertiary level of weird to cover up the weird that I see. So is existence very strange? Oh, my, yes. Do I then assume some other strange things from it? Not the best idea to me either for truth or for help. So I go through history, and I look for what people have said about suicide. And what I’ve found, well I sort of had this hunch before I went into it.

0:43:25 DM: It was very much confirmed that Christianity kind of overdid it in its attack of suicide. I knew that, but I didn’t know exactly why. When you look back, what happens is the ancient world, the Greeks and the Jews is what Christianity is made of. And both of those traditions were not rabidly anti-suicide. They… Samson asked God to help him have just enough strength to kill the Philistines, but also himself. He says, “I’ll die there, too.” So the Jews are sort of against it, but not always. And the Greeks are more against it than you’d think, but not always.

0:44:08 DM: What happens is martyrdom. The emperors had actually… There were so many Christian martyrs in the early days of Christianity that there were cases where the emperor just said, “If anyone else here wants to die for Christianity, could you please go home and do it yourself?” And people did. But after Constantine makes Christianity legal, it’s not the state religion but he makes it legal, there’s no need for martyrdom anymore to stand up for their religion. And yet it goes on, and on, and on. And so Christian councils starting in the 400, 500s, start saying things like, “If you were on the martyr list, if someone was martyred by suicide, but in fact wanted to die, you’re off the list.” That was the first one. You don’t get to really be a martyr. And then they start doing things like burying outside the church cemetery, and eventually, torturing the corpses, consistently torturing the corpses.

0:45:20 DM: Everyone thought of suicide as a worse crime than murder because you were stealing from God, instead of someone else. So when the martyrdom keeps happening centuries after Christianity is no longer… Nobody is dying for it by anyone else’s hand, the church makes these draconian laws, including eventually confiscating the estate. So you really hurt your family. A lot of the more subtle Christian thinkers gave the two reasons I gave you that you shouldn’t kill yourself because of community, because you’re needed. It’s not your job to figure out if you’re worthy all the time. Sometimes you have to let the community help you with that, and also… So community and yourself. But they also said, “God doesn’t like it.” And that was just too easy a way of saying, “You mustn’t do it.”

0:46:21 DM: So the enlightenment kind of went a little too far in the other direction. Obviously, even Voltaire, who tells you not to kill yourself, he has wonderful line of, “This person who kills themselves, if they’d just waited a week, might not have wanted to.” He was thinking sort of practically. Diderot was very against suicide, wrote a huge diatribe about it in the encyclopedia. Kant says, “When you destroy yourself, you destroy the world.”

0:46:55 DM: But the… But I was saying, Voltaire actually does struggle against these draconian punishments of the church. But it’s David Hume who really writes the piece that people think of as giving people the right to suicide. And he says, “If God drops… If a rock was falling on me, and I step out of the way, am I disobeying God? When we built houses, there weren’t houses when God made the world.” But he’s making these arguments that the church has no right. But he definitely is a little flip about it. He’s making jokes, and in a way, you’re arguing people into the grave. Rousseau is famous for an argument for suicide. But it is answered by a much better argument against. And that’s the one that he ends with. So the enlightenment is by no means uniformly open about suicide.

0:48:01 DM: But this argument that the church shouldn’t be stopping us made us sort of put it on the roster of rights. But if morality exists at all, it’s about not harming people, and not harming yourself. Even John Stewart Mill, with utilitarianism, he says, “The few things you can’t do are: Sell yourself as a slave to someone. You can’t give yourself as a slave to someone, you may not use freedom to take away your freedom,” Mill says, and for the same reason, you’re not free to hurt other people. And he says, “You’re not free to kill yourself. You would be taking away your own freedom.”

0:48:46 DM: So, it’s really… The ideas come about in the enlightenment, they’re a little too flip, and then you see them again in the beginning of the 20th century, Sartre, very big on… Every philosopher through history says that you come into the world and then you find out about your meaning, but the meaning’s already there. It’s in the community. It’s in the culture. Sartre is the one who turns it around and says, “No, you rise up,” because he’s an atheist philosopher, and we connect this idea of a kind of harsh world with being a good atheist, like we are willing to see what’s there. But really, again, it’s that God-shaped hole a lot of the time. Death is not an abyss. There is no abyss.

0:49:40 DM: If you thought that you were gonna walk straight and then that you come to a cliff, you got an abyss, right? I invented a little philosophical doodad of the notion of the holding. What if we had never thought of gravity, but we believed that everything was being held down by some god who was looking after us, keeping us and all the stuff, from flying out into space? If you realized that at some point, that that was not the case, you might feel there was an abyss out there, and it might be freaky. Every culture, as it comes out of a religion or a dogma, misses those things, and takes it for granted. I mean, in the late kingdom of Ancient Egypt, was there some woman who missed the pyramids? Remember, even the afterlife in that world wasn’t for everybody.

0:50:37 DM: It was a first only for the Pharaohs, and then you buy into it if you have money, but it was never for everybody. That’s the thing. There’ve been more people through history who haven’t believed in God than who have, and we’re told the opposite, but it isn’t true. Confucianism has no God. Theravada Buddhism has no God. These are systems of ways of feeling, and ways of being with each other, and we know when this Judeo-Christian idea came into being, and it has these attributes. Most people through history have not lived with the idea of an afterlife, and you don’t hear them saying through history that they need one, or that they miss one.

0:51:20 DM: You don’t see it, and a good deal of the Bible is written before we have an afterlife. Job has written before there’s an afterlife. Ecclesiastes says, “Why should a man die differently than a dog?” If we were the only ones on the planet, you could maybe guess these things, but you look around, and we’re animals among animals. And we have something very special, which is culture and community, but to assume that there’s something… A special situation for us, isn’t… It doesn’t make sense once you’re sort of seeing everything. If you really did think you can step on an ant and nothing happens, it begins to be clear that we’re organic. The thing is, you’re never gonna ask yourself, “Am I alive or dead?” and get the wrong answer. As far as you’re concerned, you’re always alive. Don’t worry. Also, life’s exhausting, who wants another one? It’s ridiculous.

[laughter]

0:52:19 DM: So I’ve allowed myself to roam on topics because it is early, and I didn’t sleep well. But I also just wanted to sort of share this point of view, which is what… I call it “poetic atheism.” It’s very close to humanism, but I like making a point that we’re really talking atheism here; no spirit, no ghost, no nothing, no supernatural. But the poetic part is to say that when we only lean on science to… We’re missing half the patrimony, that most artists and poets are doubters at least, because why else would you become one? You’re trying to figure out the world for yourself, so it’s really, you have a few poets who write about God, but most of them don’t. Keats knows he’s dying and he’s already coughing blood, and he’s writing about it: “When I have fears that I may cease to be,” and then in the last two lines he says he goes to the beach, and he goes down to the wide world to think, “Till Love and Fame to nothingness do sink.” He goes to the beach, not the church.

[applause]

0:53:25 DM: I’ll stop there, ’cause I want questions. Yeah, well, I’ll just say, I want it to be clear that there is a way of speaking about meaning and morality without God, because we always have been, right? The holding wasn’t holding us. We were always doing it, and we’re doing it now, but the more conscious you are of it, the more beautiful it is. And for community, we’re doing what needs to be done which is show up. It’s good to come out of the closet, but you also have to leave the house.

[applause]

0:54:17 Speaker 8: Hi, thanks for being with us. One of the most profoundly sad suicides I know of is David Foster Wallace, and how for many years, had suffered depression that seemed to be untreatable.

0:54:34 DM: David Foster Wallace is a very sad case because he actually was saying that he felt cured, he just didn’t like the meds he was on, and so he went off of them, and it was very soon after that that he did it. But yeah, it’s very tragic, but it also reminds us. Most of us think we’re gonna be happy when we’re successful, and it just doesn’t work. It doesn’t work. You just… What works is trying to be successful, so you work hard and have purpose, and have direction. Sometimes though, success makes someone feel very guilty for not being happy, because we all believe this thing.

0:55:12 DM: And so when you see the very successful using drugs to the point of death or killing themselves, it looks like a conundrum, but it’s not really. They found out they were still sad, and the rest of us are running towards it the rest of the whole life. But yeah, with him it’s tough to lose a person like that.

0:55:37 Speaker 9: And thank you for talking this morning. I have a couple questions, but I’ll pick…

0:55:42 S?: Keep it to one.

0:55:43 S9: Right, right. Do you choose the terminology “killing yourself” or “committing suicide” in lieu of dying by suicide or pathologizing suicide to the point of making suicide a disease and thinking of it psychiatrically, and then why?

0:56:04 DM: That’s a great question. I think that, well, we can sort of show with lots of different kinds of statistical studies that suicide is much more impulsive than we usually think. We think it’s the sort of chronic end-point of an almost biological disease, and that’s not what we see. What we see is people are very often have had a loss or humiliation within a few months before. There have been lots of different studies and different ways that we can look at that, so I think shame is one of the big things that happens. If a person feels shame, it’s very hard to get rid of that, and you can feel shame for things you didn’t do. Things that happened do you. But yeah, with the terminology, it’s certainly one of the things where, yeah I prefer…

0:57:04 DM: Yeah, I don’t think it’s mostly the end-point of a biological disease. And more people die by suicide every year in this country than by murder. It’s the top third killer of people under around 45, and between like 15 and 45, it’s one of the top ten killers in the country for every age. People who do it the most are older white men. Women try more, but complete less, we think because of access to guns. More than half of the gun deaths in this country are suicide, and more than half of the suicides in this country are guns. Access to means. I get letters from people saying that they put their gun, they wanna hunt, but they keep their gun somewhere else, because they know themselves. In the ’90s, the UK made it illegal to sell large amounts of acetaminophen. You had to buy them in a bubble pack, only a few at a time. Big deal, so go to a couple different pharmacies, buy ’em, and pop ’em out, right?

0:58:15 DM: No. No, people don’t… If there are a couple of steps you have to do in order to kill yourself, you’re likely to survive because it doesn’t stay that intense that long, so get the means out of the house. But we’re talking 40,000 Americans every year taking their lives, and that means that some people who don’t think that’s going to happen to them might need to hear now that when you have that thought, don’t let your worst mood kill all your others. Be on guard. Just be on guard. We all have homicidal thoughts, we don’t have to debate, “Does that mean I should… ” We know that’s wrong. And suicide isn’t quite right, and it isn’t quite a right. So if you put that in your head before it happens, lots of different studies show that many people who attempt never attempt again.

0:59:14 Speaker 10: Can you relate all of this religion and doubt and suicide to attachment theory in psychology?

0:59:25 DM: Yeah. Attachment theory is, the basic idea is that you can study usually a mother and her child, and if the child expects the mother to meet the needs, they roam farther, they behave differently when they can’t see their mother, and psychologists relate that kind of, if you’re not well enough attached, later on in life, you do seem to have intimacy problems and some difficulties. So these days, people believe misery is mostly biological. I think it can become biological, but I think that attachment theory is one of the many ways we talk about, whether your body has been sort of rigged up through your childhood to be worried or miserable or tense, to expect to feel those ways and then sometimes we give the reasons for it.

1:00:31 DM: But yeah, one thing I love about the mail I get about this is that it gets people to therapy, and I very much believe in therapy, so I’m not at all trying to replace it. But I am saying even in schools, we tell people how to find… See the warning signs in other kids. ‘Cause colleges now, it’s beating alcohol as a death in colleges, and in countrywide, it just surpassed auto accidents. It’s really on the rise, it was 30,000 a year when we checked in 2000, and then in 2010 it was up to just under 40,000 and then it hit 40,000.

1:01:17 Speaker 11: I thank you, Jennifer, we are out of time. However, thank you so much, Dr. Jennifer Michael Hecht.

[applause]

[music]

1:01:28 CM: That was Doctor Jennifer Michael Hecht. Before that, Keith Lowell Jensen, the comedian. Before that, Dave Kong. So that’s our podcast for this week, thanks for listening and we’ll talk to you next week. Bye-bye.

[music]

Free Podcast Transcript: Curtain Call Podcast

June 15th, 2015

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0:00:02 Chuck Clay: Hello, and welcome to Curtain Call Podcast episode 10. I am your host Chuck Clay and on this particular episode of Curtain Call Podcast, we are pleased to present a two for one episode. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, Curtain Call Podcast episode 10 is a Twofer. 10 is a Twofer. 10 is a Twofer. 10 is a Twofer. 10 is a Twofer. 10 is a Twofer. Say that 20 times fast. 10 is a Twofer. 20 times fast. 10 is a Twofer, 20 times fast. 10 is a Twofer, 20 times… I digress.

0:00:38 CC: On this particular Twofer, we are joined by Catherine Gray and Will Bigham, a wife and husband production team who recently launched their own production company in Los Angeles, Shamrock Motion Pictures. Catherine is a producer, writer, and actor who has worked with the Actors Co-op Theatre Company in Los Angeles amongst others. Will is a filmmaker and director whose latest full length feature film, “The A-List”, is currently available on iTunes and other VOD platforms. Please, if you’re interested, take a look at our website. There will be links to that as well as to Shamrock Motion Pictures so you can check out what Will and Cat are doing.

0:01:28 CC: Also, a big special thanks to friend of the podcast Felicity Scott Fulford for the recommendation. Felicity responded to a posting on our Facebook page and said, “You know, Catherine Gray is a theatre producer in LA. You might wanna look her up. And I did, and Cat said yes, and so Carmen and I took a lovely trip on a Saturday afternoon to visit Will and Cat in their lovely home in the Los Angeles area. And we sat down, had a chat, Will was hanging around. I said, “Hey, Will, why don’t you get in on this business too?”, and he was nice enough to oblige. And so the four of us just sat around Will and Cat’s dining room table and we had a fantastic hour long chat that you are about to hear.

0:02:26 CC: So, before we go further, a quick word, which is to say that if you know somebody that you would like to hear on this podcast that live relatively close to the Los Angeles area, please give us a heads up. Visit us at curtaincallpodcast.com, or on our Facebook page, on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Google Plus. There are a myriad ways that you can contact us. Please send us a message. Give us a heads up. “Hey, this person would be a great person to join you on the podcast”, etcetera, etcetera. Because quite frankly, the podcast called Chuck Talks To People That He Knows is going to run out of steam pretty soon. That being said, I have known Will and Cat for quite a long time. We went to college together. As a matter of fact, all four theatre professionals that you’re going to hear on this podcast graduated from Texas Tech University with one degree or other. So, there is that.

[chuckle]

0:03:43 CC: And a big shout out, word of thanks to the Texas Tech University Department of Theatre and Dance. They are a fantastic institution of higher learning that I am grateful for, that I know that Will and Cat are grateful for, my wife, Carmen, is grateful for it, and they continue to do great things for the community and for their students. So, keep up the good work, Texas Tech. One last thing, folks, which is that, now that we are on episode 10, we are rapidly nearing the end of one full year of podcasting. So, hooray! On the other side of that, it’s about the time that I’m gonna have to start asking for some money. I know what you’re saying, “But, Chuck, this is a free podcast. We don’t pay for it.” I know.

0:04:44 CC: That is sort of the crux of the problem. You see, I don’t get paid for this. As a matter of fact, I have to pay for it out of my own pocket most of the time. If you remember, I did do a crowd funding campaign at the beginning to get this thing launched. I’m gonna be doing another crowd funding campaign coming up in the next couple of months to fund the second year of podcasting. So, with that being said, let me start the soft sell. Ladies and gentlemen, if you like what you hear on the Curtain Call Podcast, if you think this is a thing that should be around where you can sit and hear interesting conversations with working theatre professionals, please, think very seriously about giving whatever you can to the campaign once it’s launched.

0:05:42 CC: Trust me, I will make it known on the podcast, through our various social media outlet, and of course through the website as well, once that campaign launches. But folks, I can’t do it without your help. So please, dig deep, give what you can. We’re gonna have some fun perks, but of course it’s not really about the perks, it’s about the podcast. So please, in the next couple of months when you see the many, many Facebook postings, and you hear me begging ad nauseam, do the right thing, give me a few shekels, that’s all I’m asking for. Thanks guys, enjoy episode 10 of the Curtain Call Podcast, it’s a Twofer! Featuring Catherine Gray and Will Bigham.

[music]

0:07:20 CC: Well, hello there, podcast listener. Didn’t see you sitting there, saddled up, listening to a podcast the way you are. Well, welcome! This here is the Curtain Call Podcast, it’s theatrical. My name is Chuck Clay, I am the host. I’m an actor, writer, director and a full-time stage enthusiast, which is a fancy way of saying that a likeable theatre, and theatre people, which is why for one hour every month I sit down with a different theatre professional to find out more about what they do and why they do it. So, stick around, why don’t you? This is Curtain Call Podcast, coming at you.

[music]

0:08:19 Catherine Gray: You have… You’ve been recording this whole time, you had…

0:08:20 CC: Yeah.

0:08:21 CG: Oh my God!

0:08:21 Will Bigham: Wonderful.

0:08:22 CG: He does, as he starts recording he doesn’t tell you.

0:08:26 WB: And then you’d say something…

0:08:27 CC: And then you’re cut.

0:08:29 WB: So are you editing this later or is it gonna…

0:08:33 CC: It will get edited somewhat.

0:08:35 WB: So if I say something stupid you can edit that?

[chuckle]

0:08:38 CC: You can always be like, “You know what, that thing that I said, let’s cut it out”.

0:08:42 CG: We did actually have one Miles, who is a colleague of mine, and Chuck had a conversation with him and he mentioned, he was talking about the Theatre 99 business and…

[overlapping conversation]

0:08:53 WB: Yeah, yeah.

0:08:54 CG: A specific… You got to not say that theatre name.

0:08:56 WB: What theatre was it?

0:08:57 CG: Well, I didn’t even know, because I wasn’t in the room when…

0:09:01 CC: He was talking about a particular theatre in Pasadena.

0:09:05 WB: Pasadena Playhouse, maybe?

0:09:07 CC: That is of a certain… It has a large budget, a large operating budget.

0:09:11 WB: Okay. Alright, alright. Okay.

0:09:13 CC: And he was basically saying that that seemed unfair that, that they would intentionally choose to go under this 99-seat rule.

0:09:21 WB: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

0:09:22 CG: Just so that they didn’t have to pay.

0:09:23 WB: Was he pro the whole 99, getting rid of the 99-seat thing or against?

0:09:29 CC: It was… I don’t know that he had decided his stands, that when I had spoken to him, he was definitely on the favor of actors getting paid.

0:09:37 WB: You know what? Me too actually, yeah. But my company is, they are on the losing end, I guess, so to speak. So, it was a dilemma.

0:09:46 CC: So, let me actually go ahead and let’s go ahead and jump into this thing from here, because I think this is a good jumping off point.

0:09:52 WB: Sure.

0:09:54 CC: Since we have found ourselves in this water already of this 99-seat business, because it is a complicated issue, the fact that, on one hand there is a very positive thing, which is that we do want actors to get paid and paid their worth. On the other hand, it makes it very hard for some small companies to operate. So, tell me a little bit, where does your company kind of fall on that? Speaking unofficially for the company.

0:10:26 WB: Right. Unofficially. So, I’m with 99-seat theatre company in Hollywood called Actors Co-op. And so, I produce for them and I’ve also been a manager for them as well, in the office, and run the box office for many years. And the big worry is that we would not survive, we were already struggling, and we are very well-known theatre company and well respected theatre company. But the question was, we were gonna have to pay actors more, and it would severely deplete our resources, and we wouldn’t be able to make it.

0:11:04 CC: Right.

0:11:06 WB: I felt in my heart that that would never happen, because we have such amazing supporters and such a great base of subscribers. I think they would have rallied and stepped up no matter what, I don’t think we would close. I guess it’s still up in the air, because the 99-seat thing did pass, and so the question is, we’re still trying to figure out what it means for us. Because they did, for the membership-based companies, there were a few things, some concessions they made. So we’re still trying to figure that out.

0:11:41 CC: Sort of have a lot of options for companies to find what works for them, and I thought that was… Well, I know that people were still unhappy that there was an iron-fist coming down and saying, “You must implement this minimum wage”. I did like the fact that they did seem to offer a lot of options for a lot of different size companies that, you know, so…

0:12:04 WB: Yeah, they really do. I mean, on the other hand, I really am in favor though of actors getting paid.

0:12:10 CC: Right.

0:12:10 WB: Because I have done so much free theatre out here, or basically free doesn’t even cover my gas, because I love it, because I love to do theatre and I try to do at least one thing a year, and I wanna do something that I’m excited about and that works for my schedule, so often it’s free. But I always feel like we should be paying actors more, actually our company maybe should be standing up for the actors and saying, “You know what? We think it’s the right thing to do, to pay actors what they’re worth, even if it means we’re gonna close our doors”. Sometimes I… I don’t think we would ever close our doors, but sometimes I feel if you could take a stance like that, that it can be for your benefit. So, I don’t know.

0:12:53 CC: What size, if you don’t mind my asking, what size theatre is the Actors Co-op?

0:12:58 WB: Okay. So we have two spaces, two 99-seat theatres, and our company size is… Well, it fluctuates, but there’s probably about 50 members who are active, and then as far as members on leave, that are still considered members, but they just aren’t active members. Oh gosh, I don’t even know, 100s, you know, it’s been around since 1987, I think.

0:13:27 CC: Wow!

0:13:28 WB: Mm-hmm. So…

0:13:28 CG: That’s pretty good in this neighborhood.

0:13:30 WB: Yeah.

0:13:30 CG: And by neighborhood, I mean Southern California.

[chuckle]

0:13:32 WB: Totally. Mm-hmm.

0:13:34 CC: For sure. So, how did you find yourself working with this group?

0:13:39 WB: So, Actors Co-op is… I’d heard about it, it’s a group of the… The thing that makes it different from other theatres in the Hollywood and this area is that all the actors are Christians.

0:13:51 CC: Wow!

0:13:51 WB: Now that doesn’t mean that we do Christians shows like ever, we do very secular things, but that’s the one thing that binds us together. It’ll be like, if there’s some Jewish membership companies where everybody is Jewish, or other sort of companies like that. And I’d heard about it and that stigma of Christian actors I thought I’m sure it is a horrible theatre company.

[chuckle]

0:14:15 WB: I just knew it was bad.

0:14:17 CC: There you go pre-judging.

0:14:18 WB: I was pre-judging, and so finally after we’ve been here for five years I… I don’t know… I’d heard some good things about it, I hadn’t even seen a show, and I decided, “Well, okay. Maybe I will audition”, and I did and got in, which was amazing, ’cause many people don’t get in on the first time when they audition, and… Anyway. And so, it’s just been such a blessing to be able to go to our meetings, and it’s people who are like minded, as you are, they’re striving in the business, and they’ve such a high standard for their shows, which I really appreciate.

0:14:52 WB: So I started, I was an actor there, and then became… I became the office manager after that, and worked in the box office, and really loved that. I mean, it felt like, I didn’t make a ton of money but it felt like I was making a difference in our theatre company, and in the theatre world in general, I felt like it was just a really neat opportunity. And then after that, I started producing for them. So, I produced this year, I produced “My Children! My Africa!”, which just closed a couple of weeks ago.

0:15:23 CC: That’s fantastic. So, when working with that, I mean, you’re producing, do you take projects to the company, or do they sort of decide a season, and you then take something on?

0:15:36 WB: That’s a good question. So, the way we work is we have a production company, and so, those people are the producers. So, if you get hired as a producer, then you are on the production company and you choose the season for the following year. So you do, you bring in shows that you like, you champion shows that you like, sometimes I guess it’s something that you wanna be in, but sometimes it’s not. Often it’s just this is a story we need to tell. And I didn’t bring “My Children! My Africa!”, but my friend did, who is also on the production committee, but when I read it, I was like… I champion that show so much because it really has so much to say. It’s so timely right now, and such a beautiful piece of theatre, I don’t know if you know it very well.

0:16:16 CC: I am not familiar with it.

0:16:18 WB: It’s by Athol Fugard.

0:16:20 CC: I thought it was a Fugard.

0:16:21 WB: Mm-hmm.

0:16:21 CC: Okay.

0:16:21 WB: And it’s about a teacher in South Africa during Apartheid, and he has a black student, and then there’s a white female student, and a black male student, and they come together to work on this inter-school competition, and they become friends, and she kind of had… You know, gets over some racism that she might have had, and he finds that this white girl, that they actually really feel like they’re connecting. And they form this wonderful friendship, but then of course Apartheid happens, and he has to make a choice. He wants…

0:16:56 WB: He’s identifying with the struggle, and so it kind of breaks their friendship up. And it brings up so many great questions. It brings up questions of violence versus non-violence. When is non-violence enough? It brings up that question. It brings up questions of, “Why can’t we be friends if we’re of different races? Who’s telling you that we can’t be friends?” And so, he has to struggle with that. Being a friend with her looks, to the struggle, it looks like it’s hurting the struggle. So, it’s… Wonderful, wonderful, themes in it, it’s really great, so.

0:17:34 CC: That’s fantastic. So, when you’re producing for the theatre, what exactly does that entail? What do you do, as producer for the theatre?

0:17:45 WB: It’s not as creative as some producers would be, it’s pretty much, you get your budget and you hire all of your designers, and actors. The director is usually already hired, but the production committee has a hand in who’s hired. And then, you create the space. What’s awesome is when you’re producing for theatre companies you don’t have to go out and rent your space, its already there, you’ve already got your lights, you’ve got so much at your fingertips which is awesome.

0:18:14 CC: That is great.

0:18:15 WB: And so… And so, basically then you make sure things are running well, you make sure everybody is communicating, that kind of thing.

0:18:23 CC: Uh-huh. So, obviously you and your husband, Will, met in school? Did you guys start dating in college?

0:18:31 WB: Yeah.

0:18:31 CC: Yeah?

0:18:32 Speaker 4: Yeah.

0:18:33 WB: We did. You wanna talk about that?

[laughter]

0:18:37 S4: Man, that was so many years ago I don’t remember that.

0:18:38 WB: I know. That was like years ago.

0:18:39 CC: Where did you guys… Where did you meet?

[overlapping conversation]

0:18:41 S4: We met at Texas Tech.

0:18:42 CC: Was it in a class or was it in rehearsal?

0:18:44 S4: Actually, no. My brother who was a year above me…

0:18:50 WB: We have two different stories on how we met, by the way, go ahead.

[laughter]

0:18:52 S4: My brother who is a year above me had a crush on her, and they were in, I guess Annie, together or something like that, they were… A production of Annie, and he invited her over to watch Star Trek or something, and so I met her watching Star Trek. And I wasn’t a huge Star Trek fan, but she was, my brother was, so I thought she was pretty cute, but my brother was… Had a crush on her, but then my brother transferred to University of Texas and suddenly there’s this cute girl that still wants to come over and watch Star Trek, and the rest is history, I guess.

0:19:24 WB: That’s right.

[laughter]

0:19:26 CC: Star Trek gets ’em every time.

0:19:26 S4: That’s it.

0:19:27 CG: That’s right. That’s right. I love Star Trek.

0:19:29 S4: Chick magnet.

[chuckle]

0:19:30 WB: Well, see, I actually met him earlier than that because he…

0:19:33 CC: So now the truth…

0:19:34 WB: The truth is that he was dating a girl when he came to Texas Tech, and she lived on my hall in the dorm and she would have guys over to her room like every day, spending the night when they weren’t supposed to spend the night, and I remember they were breaking up at the time, and I remember meeting Will and he looked miserable, just miserable, poor guy, so…

0:20:00 S4: And she fixed me.

0:20:01 WB: And I fixed him.

0:20:02 S4: So I appreciate that.

0:20:03 CC: Yay!

[chuckle]

0:20:05 CC: Yay for being fixed.

0:20:06 WB: Yeah.

[chuckle]

0:20:08 S4: Not in the dog sense…

0:20:10 CC: Oh, right. No…

0:20:11 WB: Yeah. No, no. Apparently not, we have two children.

[laughter]

0:20:13 CC: We’re fine on that, huh?

0:20:14 WB: Yeah, yeah.

0:20:15 CC: On that count. You also have an interesting story about your proposal.

0:20:22 WB: Yes. That was interesting.

0:20:23 CC: Yeah. Tell me that story.

0:20:24 WB: Well, we’ve been dating seriously, but we had never mentioned the word marriage, ever, never even said it, never even, never even said the word, and Will just surprised me and on stage, at the end of ‘Guys and Dolls’, dressed in a wedding dress ’cause I’m Adelaide at the end. Its like [singing] And then Will goes, “Stop the show!”, and I’m like, “What is going on?”. And he runs down and says, “Adelaide, Nathan doesn’t want to marry you,” ’cause he was playing Benny Southstreet, “I do and I figured your wearing a dress, a wedding dress already, Catherine will you marry me?” And I was like, “What?” Anyway, of course I said, “Yes,” and then later thought about it, “Do I really wanna say yes?”, and I was like, “There’s no reason to not say yes.” So, we’ve been married for… I don’t know.

0:21:21 S4: Almost 18 years.

0:21:22 WB: Yeah.

0:21:22 CC: Wow!

0:21:23 CG: Did anybody know you were gonna do that?

0:21:24 S4: Yeah. I had to get permission from the Department of Theatre and they loved it ’cause it was promotion for the show, so they brought in…

0:21:33 CC: Free advertising.

0:21:34 WB: Seriously, right.

[overlapping conversation]

0:21:36 S4: Reporters, and it was even on Good Morning America the next day.

0:21:38 CG: Wow! I got a very tougher time with you.

0:21:42 WB: Really?

[chuckle]

0:21:45 CG: Why? I’m Fred’s baby. Fred…

[overlapping conversation]

0:21:47 WB: Uh-huh. Sure.

0:21:48 CG: I’m Fred’s baby, Fred was very anti him.

0:21:53 WB: Oh. Really?

0:21:54 CC: Fred wasn’t anti me.

0:21:55 CG: Oh yes, he was, darling.

[chuckle]

0:21:57 CC: Fred loves me alright. Fred [0:21:59] ____ loves me.

0:22:01 CG: He did. Only it took us, I think being married about 10 years for him to be okay with you.

[chuckle]

0:22:04 CC: He also just started to recognize how much of a screw up I was.

[chuckle]

0:22:05 WB: That is so funny. That is so funny.

0:22:10 CG: I’m still Fred’s baby, but yeah, so Fred… Well, Fred has this general rule, he doesn’t want any of his kids getting married.

0:22:19 WB: Uh-huh. Really?

0:22:20 CG: Because it… He just… He knows its a tough business, and he knows.

0:22:24 WB: It really is.

0:22:24 CG: He knows if you get married then that’s one shackle right there. If you start having kids then that’s…

[overlapping conversation]

0:22:31 CG: And it just makes it more difficult, and he just knows how tough the business is, and he knows you have to be willing to move around and pick up your life and go where the opportunity and where the work is, and so he was just concerned that I might slow down, and I told him I’m progressing, I’m not gonna slow down.

0:22:47 WB: Yeah.

0:22:48 CG: And I drag him with me.

0:22:49 WB: Yeah. And it works out great. It worked out great.

0:22:51 CG: And it worked out fine.

0:22:52 WB: Yeah.

0:22:53 CC: Speaking, jumping up from that, of once you’re in for a penny you’re in for a pound.

[chuckle]

0:23:00 CC: And you do have to go where there’s work, where there’s opportunities. How did that sort of direct your life? Like, in going to Virginia and then coming out here. How did those sort of decisions get made?

0:23:16 S4: Well, I mean, we had an easy decision to make right after we graduated from Tech because we had a job available in Virginia at a theatre, the Barter Theatre, Resident Company, not Resident Company at the time, it was gonna be the Intern Company, the Player Company, as it was called back then. First Light. That’s what it was called.

0:23:35 WB: I think it was First Light. That’s what…

0:23:36 S4: And so, yeah, we’re gonna go, and I remember the first week we were there, we both got our paycheck of 80 bucks and we were like, “This is it, we’ve made it.”

[laughter]

0:23:44 WB: Yeah. Seriously. We walked to the car in complete silence, and got in the car, it was like, “I can’t believe we got paid. They’re gonna change their mind.”

[laughter]

0:23:55 WB: So funny.

0:23:56 S4: It was awesome. But, I mean, in Virginia too, those jobs, went a long way. The rent in Virginia is pretty cheap. And later, I guess a year later we joined the Resident Company as equity actors and the $80 went up quite significantly. And I don’t know… We were comfortable there for about five years.

0:24:15 WB: It’s a really wonderful company there.

0:24:18 CC: That’s what I hear.

0:24:19 WB: It’s so amazing. Well, Wendy Mitchell’s there.

0:24:22 CC: Oh really?

0:24:22 WB: Yeah. She actually came out to do a show, ’cause I was doing a show and they had somebody drop out and they needed a dancer to come in, and I called her. And she said, “Oh, I just don’t know if I can come,” and she called me back five minutes later and she’s like, “I don’t know why I’m saying no. Of course I’m gonna come.” So she came and met a dear friend of mine and Will’s, Nick, and they fell in love and got married, and now have two children, and both live in Virginia, and work at the theatre, yeah.

0:24:50 CC: Wow!

0:24:50 WB: It’s awesome.

0:24:52 CC: Fantastic.

0:24:52 WB: Yeah.

0:24:52 S4: And actually, John Hardy is kind of the guy who brought us out there. He was the head of the…

0:24:59 WB: Player Company.

0:25:00 S4: Yeah, the First Light Company owner, and he’s a Texas Tech grad as well.

0:25:03 CC: Oh, okay.

0:25:04 S4: We didn’t know him at Tech. I guess he was there a couple of years before we got there.

0:25:09 WB: And he got his PhD there.

0:25:10 S4: He got his PhD there. So, it’s kind of a, “Hey, Tech-Virginia highway”, I guess.

0:25:16 WB: Yeah, I guess, yeah.

0:25:17 S4: Not mass droves of people, but there is definitely a connection.

0:25:20 WB: It’s just, it’s a small world.

0:25:21 S4: Yeah.

0:25:22 WB: Such a small world. So we were in Virginia for five years and then Will got this bright idea that he wanted to go to film school. So, I guess he followed me to Virginia and then I followed him to film school, and then when you graduate from film school then this is where you come, is Los Angeles.

0:25:42 CG: It is where you come.

0:25:44 CC: It is part of the plan, yeah.

0:25:44 CG: You’ve got LA and you’ve got Austin.

0:25:47 WB: Yeah, right.

0:25:48 CC: Where did you go to film school?

0:25:49 S4: I went to Florida State, in Tallahassee.

0:25:51 CC: Tallahassee?

0:25:52 S4: That was awesome. It was great. The quality of that school is as good, in my opinion, as USC, UCLA, NYU. But there is some sort of “in-state tuition” type of arrangement that they have with five or six different states in the East Coast. And since we were living in Virginia, I got in-state tuition in Florida for my subject.

0:26:14 CG: Nice.

0:26:14 S4: So I’m in debt, but not as in debt as I would be.

0:26:17 WB: That’s right.

0:26:18 CC: Fantastic. So how long were you guys in Florida?

0:26:21 S4: Two years. It was a two year…

0:26:22 CC: Two year program?

0:26:23 S4: Very quick program.

0:26:24 CC: Fantastic.

0:26:25 S4: Yeah. Non-stop, no sleep, pretty much 365, you’re just going, going, going, learning as much as possible. And I went in as green as you can get. I had a video camera and I shot some little stupid movies here and there. But when I applied… Basically, I was put on the waiting list. I didn’t get accepted right off the bat because I was a little riskier, because I didn’t have any knowledge, any background in film whatsoever. But I came in through the theatre side. I had done acting and I had done some stage combat direction and stuff like that. And I had done a little bit of directing on stage, but they saw something and, “Okay, well this… He’s gonna bring the theatre side into the film school and we’ll see what that does.” And it was a welcome element. It really helped me. As far as being a film director, everything I know has a foundation from theatre.

0:27:17 CC: That’s great.

0:27:18 WB: Yeah.

0:27:19 CC: Speaking of that, of taking what you know this foundation of theatre and then transferring it to a different medium of film, how do you make that transition? What skills are you actually using from your theatre training?

0:27:35 S4: Well, I mean, when you go to the theatre, you sit and you look straight ahead and there’s a proscenium and there’s stuff going on. Same thing with film, you just move that proscenium wherever you want it to be. And you have to look at it through that viewpoint. And also, the proscenium is this close to you. It could be inches away from your face, so it restricts you from going too big, too. You know what I mean? It’s more intimate, but all of the foundations that you get from acting training and stuff like that, of how to make a moment real or how to react to someone talking to you. And how to dig into a character and make choices and all of that stuff, it’s the exact same language.

0:28:14 CC: Right.

0:28:15 S4: But that proscenium arch is constantly moving.

0:28:20 CC: Right. It’s an adjustable…

0:28:21 S4: Yeah.

0:28:21 CC: An adjustable proscenium arch.

0:28:22 S4: Exactly.

0:28:23 CC: That’s fantastic. You guys work together a lot, as writer, director, producer, etcetera, performer. Do you find that you work together easily? Do you have any sort of conflict when you work together?

0:28:43 WB: Oh, we work very well together. We prefer that, by far.

0:28:46 CC: Really?

0:28:47 WB: Yeah. When we were at the Barter, we were both actors and working together and on tour. I mean, our first year of marriage we were on tour in a van with four other people and us everyday. And it was awesome. We work really well. We found out then that we work really well together. Then when we moved out here, there was a good section of time where we didn’t work together, because I hadn’t yet moved into the film world at all. And Will was directing films and things, and so, only really recently have we started a production company, and we now work together everyday, all the time.

0:29:25 WB: And I feel like we work best that way. We have skills that… We each bring our certain skill sets to the table and we can work together that way. We’ve written several scripts together, we have different clients that we work with and produce film projects for them now, and so we’re constantly talking about projects. We’re constantly talking about script ideas. We’re constantly talking about what location, what cast, what are we doing here. So I think it works really great.

0:29:57 CC: Mm-hmm. Yeah. Within your production company, do you have like, sort of a break down of responsibilities or you just kind of merge across the…

0:30:06 S4: We know what needs to get done and if I’m focusing on something, she’s focusing on the other. You know what I mean? But for the most part, she handles the producing. She makes sure the location is taken care of, that the cast knows what’s going on, that the call sheets are there, and all that kind of stuff. The food, whatever needs to happen. She takes care of that and I take care of the shot design, kind of the creative look of it and then we collaborate on what the creative look is gonna be and then on the day of, she takes care of everything behind the scenes and I take care of everything behind the camera, for the most part.

0:30:43 WB: Yes. And then, there’s times when we say, “Hey, I need your opinion, what do you think?”, or “Hey Cat, come look at the shot”, whatever, we kind of work together in that way too. And then Will does the editing and if we do an interview or something often, I’ll transcribe it and or we’ll talk about the story beforehand, but yeah, I don’t know, it’s worked really well for us.

0:31:06 S4: And then Cat is always the fixer too.

0:31:09 WB: I’m the fixer?

0:31:10 S4: Yeah, the fixer, as in like the final product is never a final product until she steps in and makes it better.

[chuckle]

0:31:18 WB: So you need to just change this here or…

0:31:20 CC: Right.

0:31:21 S4: And then, the thing with scripts too. The way we write scripts together is…

0:31:24 CC: Sort of like the final eye that come in like, “Hmm, no, not quite… ”

0:31:27 WB: Sometimes, that doesn’t quite say what we wanna say yet, let’s try this…

0:31:32 CC: Or let’s give a little tweak here or…

0:31:33 S4: Exactly right. And that’s the way we write scripts as well, and sometimes I was the fixer on the scripts. She would take a first draft and then hand it to me and I’d fix it or…

0:31:43 WB: Or vice-versa.

0:31:43 S4: Or vice-versa. So, I think… And I think she has strengths where I have weaknesses and vice versa on that as well and so, makes a pretty good team, I think.

0:31:52 WB: Yeah, for sure.

0:31:53 CC: Excellent. Yeah. See, this way I feel Carmen and I, we’ve got different skill sets that…

0:32:00 WB: Compliment?

0:32:01 CC: Yes. Compliment. She laughs…

[laughter]

0:32:04 CC: At the mention of skill sets, and me on the weak…

[laughter]

0:32:10 CG: I didn’t say a word.

[laughter]

0:32:13 S4: But yeah. I’m much more the artistic, free thinking, touchy feely, actor crap, kind of guy and…

0:32:21 CG: That’s my treatment phrase by the way…

[laughter]

0:32:25 CC: And Carmen is the no nonsense business gonna come in and kick things until they fall into line.

0:32:33 CG: Well, I mean, the bottomline is that if it not for those, the organizational people, the creative people can’t be free to be creative.

0:32:40 CC: Oh, absolutely.

0:32:41 WB: That’s so true.

0:32:42 CG: That’s just the bottomline which is why… And I’m completely OCD and my mother jokes that I left the room much or more organized than I found it.

[laughter]

0:32:55 WB: Oh, that’s awesome. We need to have one of those feather.

0:32:57 CG: Because I’ve just always been that way. I’ve always… Fun for me when I was little was organizing the house.

0:33:05 WB: That is awesome.

0:33:06 CG: The bathroom doors, the kitchen doors, the jump doors, the doors by the closets.

0:33:11 WB: Wow! Uh-huh. I do sort of find that fun too sometimes.

0:33:13 CG: That was me. That was fun. So, I think that’s why I finally became a production manager. I’ve always been a non-performance anything.

0:33:26 CC: Do you find as being married creatives that… And that’s the term that I like.

0:33:32 WB: I like that.

0:33:33 CC: Creatives. That you support each other in ways that somebody that is not part of the business would be able to? Is that too hard of a question?

0:33:44 WB: No.

0:33:44 CG: No. I mean, sometimes I look at couples who, the wife is an actor and the husband is an accountant, and I’m jealous because they have some stability where… We don’t have stability.

0:33:59 WB: You mean financially?

0:33:59 S4: Financially, if nothing. Yeah, no. We are stable in other areas.

[laughter]

[overlapping conversation]

[background conversation]

0:34:13 S4: No. But they have their financial stability, they have job security, whereas people, the creatives, do not necessarily have that job security. But we both know, I guess what the light at the end of the tunnel is for each other and we understand the struggles and why it’s worth struggling to get there, you know what I mean. And we speak, we have the same vocabulary too. So, that makes talking easier.

0:34:40 WB: Mm-hmm. I think so too, yeah. And we have the added dynamic too of children, so that’s always interesting as well.

0:34:47 S4: And they are in the business too.

0:34:49 WB: They are actually, yeah. And not on purpose really, like in theory, I don’t want my children to be actors or anything like that. I want them to have solid jobs, but yet that’s what we do. So, we are always doing family projects together like commercials, we’re like, “Hey, I’m gonna shoot a commercial for the Girl Scout Cookies.” Okay. So, the kids, we get the kids together and Lily is learning to use the camera. She was using the slider and they were both the actors and everything. Lily made a movie recently ’cause she wanted to make one, so we helped her make a movie and she had her friends in it and…

0:35:25 CC: That’s fantastic.

0:35:26 WB: So, you know.

0:35:27 S4: Yeah. My goal is by the time Lily is 12, she’s gonna get all our stuff.

[laughter]

0:35:31 WB: Yeah. She’s gonna be the editor.

0:35:32 CC: Yeah. Have your built-in editor in house.

0:35:34 S4: That’ll be great. I’ll be on the couch, thanks honey.

[laughter]

0:35:37 CG: Anyway to save money.

0:35:39 WB: Right, exactly, totally.

0:35:40 CG: I think that’s absolutely best though because being someone who’s now been faculty or staff or some combination of both at three different colleges now, I see the lack of support in so many of my students from their families.

0:35:55 WB: Really?

0:35:56 CG: Because their families want them to do something that is stable, that they know they’re gonna get the same paycheck from it. It doesn’t matter how much you tell them until you’re blue in the face, that like, “Look, you can make a living doing this.” I know tons of people, they do it every single day.

0:36:12 CC: It’s not easy.

0:36:12 CG: No, it’s not easy. And, I never tell my students it’s easy. In fact, I’m constantly telling them, “Guys, you have to want this with everything in you or… ”

0:36:20 WB: There can’t be anything else that you could possibly love doing.

0:36:24 CG: Yeah, because if there isn’t something else that you possibly love doing, then go do it.

0:36:28 WB: Mm-hmm, right.

0:36:30 CG: But, I do constantly see, especially when we lived in Florida, in Panama City, I had tons of students that their parents did not want them majoring in theatre. Tons. And, I have a lot of students here, shockingly.

0:36:43 WB: That is interesting.

0:36:44 CG: And, in University of California that they don’t want their… I have so many talented students that I wanna do things with, that their parents are making them be, pull up for science majors or math majors, just something that “makes sense”…

0:37:00 CC: What was it like when you guys were going into school? How were your families about the whole acting thing?

0:37:07 WB: My mom was pretty laid back about it, and very, very supportive surprisingly…

0:37:14 CC: Where are you from again? Sorry.

0:37:15 WB: Well, so, I grew up in New Mexico. But, she lives in Virginia now, and moved back to be with her family. My dad passed away when I was young, when I was 13. So, it was just her and I. And, she moved back to be with her family when I went to school. She was extremely supportive. And, Will’s family, too. Will’s brother is even in the business.

0:37:35 S4: Yeah. For the most part, they were. I mean, they highly encouraged that I get a double major. And, I did. I got a double major in Theatre and in Mass Communications. In retrospect, I kind of wished that I would have gotten my double major in Theatre and in Business, because this is the theatre business. It is the film business. And, there was a lot of stuff that… A huge learning curve that I had to find my way through in order to make a living in this. You know what I mean? Make a decent living in this.

0:38:09 CC: Yeah. Let’s talk about that a little bit, because that is something that I’m extremely interested in. And, it’s sort of the wide gap of knowledge that is missing sometimes in our education, especially in the creative arts. What was sort of the biggest surprise, eye-opening surprise going out into the real world from getting a degree? And you’re like, “Oh, wait. I’m not prepared for this at all.”

0:38:41 S4: I think for our first five years after getting our theatre degrees and all, not too many surprises. Life surprises. We had to learn how to budget [chuckle] our personal finances and we had to live together. I had to learn how to iron, that kind of stuff.

0:38:55 S?: Being an adult.

0:38:55 WB: We had a pretty stable job, which is unheard of…

0:38:58 S4: It is unheard of.

0:38:59 WB: In acting.

0:39:00 S4: But, we were consistently working actors for five years. Most people…

0:39:06 WB: In theatre.

0:39:06 S4: In theatre. Most people, just getting their degree, walking out, going to auditions, and stuff like that. They’re gonna have to figure out a way to pay the rent while they’re trying to start their career. And, I mean, I know a lot of very talented actors and designers that are no longer doing theatre because of those first five years.

0:39:25 CC: Absolutely.

0:39:26 S4: Because they had to figure out something, and they got stuck in that something. I imagine they enjoy that something, because they’re still doing it. But their dream of, “Let’s go do theatre,” it’s no longer there. So, I think that… And I think that the classes were there. I just don’t think I paid attention to them, because they’re not as fun as the ones where you roll around in the floor, and explore your emotions, and stuff. But, the classes of how to manage that career, how to… I don’t know. Like, how to find that audition or find that theatre company or how to market yourself, I think there could be some more emphasis on that.

0:40:06 CG: Well, and actually, I think Texas Tech does a better job of that than a lot of the other places that I’ve been. Because, Texas Tech actually does have a degree in theatre management, which… When I got there, it was new when I got there.

0:40:19 WB: Well, maybe it was there, and we didn’t know. But still…

0:40:21 CC: I know that was…

0:40:22 CG: It’s a master’s program.

0:40:23 CC: It was a new program under Doc Donahue.

0:40:29 WB: Oh, okay good. Oh, right.

0:40:31 S4: I think it was just starting when we were just…

[overlapping conversation]

0:40:32 WB: It was just starting when we left.

0:40:33 CG: Yeah, yeah. But, you can actually get your master’s in Theatre Management.

0:40:35 CC: Deborah Martin, I think, was one of the first…

0:40:37 S4: Yeah, yeah.

0:40:38 CG: But, even for actors because I thought you took it, and maybe you didn’t take it. But, there was a class on them.

0:40:47 CC: It was an auditioning class…

0:40:50 CG: Yeah. There was something else. It was actually about building your resume, and the way to make yourself look a certain way, and have a certain presence, and what kinds of things to look for when you get out there. I don’t know.

0:41:02 WB: Yeah. I took a class from Dr. Donahue.

0:41:03 CG: I was… The design and that thing, so I was gonna take in that class. But I just took whatever Fred told me to take. [chuckle] That was my life at Texas Tech…

0:41:12 CC: There you go.

0:41:12 WB: “Fred, what do I do?”. “Take this, this, this.”

0:41:15 CG: Yeah. Because, even if you went in with ideas of what you wanted to take, Fred would say, “No, you’re taking this.”

0:41:21 S4: He’s a smart guy. And now, he’s on a boat, right?

[overlapping conversation]

0:41:23 CG: And now he’s sleeping on a boat in the Caribbean.

0:41:26 WB: I know, right? What more could you ask for? Really, yeah.

0:41:29 CG: The man has done something right. He keeps telling me, I need to visit him on the boat.

0:41:32 WB: You should.

0:41:33 CG: I know. Oh my God, I know.

0:41:34 WB: Can I go? [laughter]

0:41:36 CG: I will tell him. I’ll say, “Can you swing through like Panama Canal and come back up to California?”

0:41:39 WB: Yeah, right, totally.

0:41:41 CG: Would slow the boat.

0:41:43 WB: Yeah, with people.

0:41:44 CG: With former Texas Tech people, just loaded the boat.

0:41:45 WB: Party! Yeah.

0:41:48 S4: And, on the film side of things, it was the same kind of scenario. I love the education that I got at Florida State. And, they do prepare you in some ways of like, “This is what’s gonna happen when you go out there.” But I honestly think they need to have a class in how to sell a car because the way this business works, if you can sell a car, you can sell a script. I can’t sell a car. That’s not part of my, I guess… That’s not who I am, I’m not a salesman necessarily. Since then, I learned to become a salesman but I really think probably right after film school, if I would’ve gone and worked at a used car lot, I’d be a lot more successful than I am right now.

0:42:31 CG: I think that’s really interesting and I don’t… Why are we not teaching these classes?

0:42:36 CC: I don’t know. But hey, we are in a unique position to be stalwarts of the future.

0:42:43 CG: I got a lot of that stuff but I don’t…

0:42:45 CC: Is that thinking too high-handedly or…

[chuckle]

0:42:47 CG: I don’t know that I really got it in class or if it was just constantly designed… My design professor saying, “You have to sell yourself because you’re not gonna sell somebody on a pretty picture that you’ve spent how many hours rendering, or a pretty model. You have to sell you.”

0:43:05 CC: Yeah. There is a lot, I think, of that being able to present yourself in a certain way that should be taught, from a business standpoint of theatre film, whether you’re acting, directing, design, whatever, so that you can stand in front of a group of people and discuss your ideas clearly and…

0:43:31 WB: Sure. Well, one of the things that we learned a lot, I felt I grew so much as a producer. We have a screenplay that we are seeking financing for right now, and we created a business plan, and that was awesome. I’m super proud of it and then, when we went to start pitching it, we practice that pitch and understood all the numbers and I got to see it from a whole another side, and I learned so much from that. We haven’t had a no yet, so I feel like it’s a really good project, good solo project, and we’ve successfully been able to champion it, so to speak. We haven’t had a yes yet either, but we also haven’t had a no.

0:44:17 S4: Haven’t had a no. That’s…

0:44:19 WB: So I feel like in this business, that’s positive.

0:44:21 S4: I also think, like in the university setting, it would be great to have a little bit more but a lot of this is school of hard knocks too.

0:44:28 WB: True.

0:44:30 S4: I do think that… I did a reality show a few years back and the first challenge we had on that reality show, it was for directors where you competed, whatever.

0:44:41 CG: And, we watched it.

0:44:41 CC: Yeah, we watched it. Yeah, we were fans.

[overlapping conversation]

0:44:44 S4: The first shipping, you remember it? The first challenge was pitching, you had to pitch, you had three minutes to pitch a feature idea to some judges. That was the second time in my life that I pitched. In my life. The first time was for thesis at the Florida State. I pitched for my thesis filming and then I pitched in front of America. It was like, “Good Lord!”

0:45:05 WB: I think your acting background served you well though.

0:45:07 S4: It did. I did it as well as I could, and it worked. I think that anybody who is going into the film industry pitched everyday. Pitch to some, pitch to your neighbour, pitch to your dog, it does not matter.

0:45:21 WB: Practice, practice.

0:45:22 S4: Create a story, even if it’s a bad story, pitch it and see if you can sell that bad story to your dog. Just practice. And then on the theatre side, or actor’s side, I guess, audition everyday. It doesn’t matter if you’re auditioning the back of a cereal box, audition it. Just practice that monologue and try to find a way emotionally to get into those cornflakes or whatever you’re doing. But that is the sales, you’re the car that you’re trying to sell, learn how to sell yourself. So, that’s my advice.

0:45:54 WB: I think there’s also something to be said too, for creating… Just… You know how, people will say, “Nobody else is gonna do it for you.” I guess, that’s not really what I’m looking for but just make something, be creative. Because a lot of the time, people come out here and they’re waiting. They’re waiting for that thing, they’re waiting for that audition or that production job, or whatever it is. And what’s awesome about our theatre company too, Actors Co-op is that, if you have a play that you wanna produce, we’ve got two or three slots in December time where you can come in, its a much smaller budget but you can produce a play, and you can be creative.

0:46:39 WB: They’ve done new works before, they’ve done Shakespeare, they’ve done a little more racy stuff, we do a little more racy stuff than we do on our main stage. And so, it’s just a a really… Just don’t wait for somebody else sometimes. Like for us, we are like, “Let’s make a commercial today.” “Okay.” I mean, nobody’s ever gonna see that, it’s not gonna make us any money but at the same time, we’re being creative and we’re learning, and our kids are learning and we’re… Which is awesome.

0:47:03 S4: Yeah.

0:47:04 CC: Absolutely. Yeah, I know. I mean, I think that that’s one of the most important things is to get out of the idea of somebody else is going to make it and then they’re going to come and hire me for it. Instead of doing what you’re saying and saying, “Make something. Just go make something right now.” It doesn’t have to be the best thing that’s ever been made, but you’re making something, and that’s… You’re using your skills, you’re using your creativity, and you’re not sitting and waiting for magic to happen.

0:47:37 WB: Yeah.

0:47:38 CG: And that’s the thing that I always try to tell my kids is that, “Unless you’ve already made it, nobody head-hunts in this business. Nobody calls you. Nobody looks at a stack of resumes and you’re just… Your head shot happens to be the one that you dropped off with an agent and they see it and like, “Oh, my God!”

0:47:54 WB: Yeah, right.

0:47:55 CG: That does not happen.

0:47:56 CC: Finally!

0:47:57 WB: Finally! Yes, exactly.

0:48:00 CG: This is the five foot eight brunette that I’ve been looking for.

0:48:01 WB: Right. Yeah, totally. Yeah.

[laughter]

0:48:04 CG: It just doesn’t happen. You have… And I try to tell people that constantly, too. If you’re an actor then audition constantly, because there’s no way to get better at it. I think one of the things that we don’t do for actors that I did get more of because I was design, production, stage management, I was all that kind of, we were taught a lot about how you go in and you present yourself and how you go in and how you talk about an idea, and what you should say, and what you shouldn’t say, and like certain buzz words and things that can help and that can…

0:48:37 WB: That’d be helpful to have.

0:48:38 CG: I got taught that a lot actually, but I think actors don’t because they do get… It’s so much emphasis on the performance, that 60 seconds of monologue, that you forget about that 20 seconds of slating beforehand. Where you’re suppose to just be you. And they tell you, “Hey, you’re you for 10 seconds.” When you say your name and your number and then… But then how do you be you if nobody’s really taught you that?

0:49:04 WB: Yeah.

0:49:05 CC: Yeah. I actually always found that…

0:49:06 CG: Does that make sense?

0:49:07 CC: Yeah, I’ve actually found that the slate was actually a much more important part of the audition process than the monologue itself.

0:49:13 WB: Yeah.

0:49:14 CC: That that first five seconds of introducing yourself, says more to the casting people than what you’re going to do in the next 30 seconds.

0:49:25 WB: Mm-hmm. True.

0:49:26 CC: There’s so much, I mean I think there’s so much communicated in just how you present yourself as you. Not as a character, but as you.

0:49:34 S4: When we first came out here, I was doing commercial acting and stuff like that too, and I [chuckle] I would book the ones where I was completely hungover or exhausted. And the ones where I was desperate for the job, never.

0:49:48 CC: Never.

0:49:48 S4: Never would I go. But I’d walk in and I’d be like, “I just wanna go home.” “Okay. Hey, my name is Will. How’s it going? Let’s do this thing.” We’d do it and I’d book that one. And so, alright. So maybe…

0:49:57 WB: I don’t know. What does that say?

0:49:57 S4: So maybe just be natural and just get it done.

0:50:00 CC: Yeah. It does seem to be that like it’s always when you don’t… When you’ve given up and you don’t care about the job, that’s when you get the job.

0:50:08 S4: Or when you buy tickets for Disneyland and…

0:50:10 WB: That happens every time!

[laughter]

0:50:11 S4: It’s like, “Alright. You booked it!” “What? No!”

0:50:14 CC: “We’re finally going!”

0:50:14 S4: “I just spent $5,000!”

0:50:15 WB: That has happened like three times. That’s ridiculous. What is that?

0:50:19 S4: I don’t know, but if we’re desperate for jobs, I’m going to Disneyland.

0:50:22 WB: We go to Disneyland.

0:50:22 CG: I was about to say, if you’re desperate for jobs, buy some tickets for Disneyland.

0:50:24 WB: Yeah. Totally. It’s like, “You’ve gotta be kidding me”. So yeah, that’s happened.

[chuckle]

0:50:32 CC: So at this point, what would you want to do? Like, if you had sort of carte blanche to do whatever project you wanted to do Cat, what would you want to do?

0:50:44 WB: Well, our screen play that we’re pitching, I want to get the money for that and make that. I mean, we… I love what we’re doing now. I love creating these projects that we’ve been creating. They’re very… Especially the ones for one of our clients in particular, they’re very creative outlets, which is awesome. We do a lot of interviews too, which are not as creative but also fun. Telling the story, I love that. But I’d love to move to the next level and have ours… And you know, be able to produce our screen play and we’ll be able to direct that. So that’s… That would be our goal in the next five years.

0:51:15 CC: Is that anything you want to talk about right now or is it too early?

0:51:17 S4: I don’t know. Right now it’s in the hands of an investor, so it may be a little too early. Hopefully we can talk about it next week.

0:51:23 WB: Yes.

0:51:24 S4: In detail.

0:51:24 CC: You never know.

0:51:25 CC: Well, let’s keep our fingers crossed. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

0:51:27 S4: No, but it’s a very personal project that we’ve been working on for 10 years.

0:51:31 CC: Wow!

0:51:31 S4: And actually, I wrote the first draft, a very, very, bad draft, when I was at Texas Tech. Then it sat on…

0:51:39 WB: It was the play version.

0:51:40 S4: The play version. And then it sat on a shelf for many years. Then it became a film version. And it’s been… And every project that we do, we grow.

0:51:50 WB: Yeah.

0:51:51 S4: And so occasionally we’ll go back to it and we’ll put those years of experience into that script.

0:51:54 CC: So this is the [0:51:54] ____ feature link script?

0:51:55 S4: It is. And we’ll put those years of experience into the script and it gets better and it gets better. And now it’s at that sweet spot where it needs to be made. It, you know, the fruit is ripe and…

0:52:05 WB: It’s ready to be made and it will. I really have no doubt it will be made. So, in the next five years, I think it will be. And Will actually just directed a movie. We didn’t produce it or anything, but he directed a movie that just came out on Video on Demand a couple of days ago. So that was exciting.

0:52:20 CC: The A-List?

0:52:21 S4: The A-List, yeah.

0:52:22 CC: So that’s out now on…

0:52:23 S4: It is. It’s available on…

0:52:24 CC: VOD?

0:52:24 S4: It is. ITunes, Amazon, Hulu, and all the…

0:52:28 CC: Fantastic. Excellent.

0:52:29 WB: Which is awesome.

0:52:30 CC: So we’ll put a link up on the website to that as well.

0:52:33 WB: Great! Great!

0:52:33 CC: So that people can see that and buy it and maybe get a few shekels in your pockets.

0:52:39 S4: They’re you go.

0:52:40 WB: Oh, yeah. We didn’t produce it, but you know still, it’s alright.

0:52:43 S4: We gotta make a lot of shekels in order to make shekels.

0:52:45 WB: Yeah, but that’s okay. But still, but it’s a good movie. Will did a very good job directing it.

0:52:50 S4: That was an interesting experience, ’cause I was brought in for a meeting on that, and a month and a half later we were shooting it.

0:52:57 CC: Wow!

0:52:57 S4: Which doesn’t happen very often in this town.

0:52:58 CG: No.

0:52:59 WB: But yet, sometimes it does, you know. You find that something comes up and then you’re moving…

[background conversation]

0:53:08 S4: But that was… It was an interesting experiment, I’ll say that. Because I didn’t write the script. I gave about two rounds of notes on it and then we were shooting that thing. So really, I guess, where I watch the movie and I feel the most pride is in the visual look of it, because that’s where I had the most influence and the most control. And it’s a teen comedy, but I was able to shift it into a world that’s a little bit more heightened and so visually we’re able to take it in interesting directions, so.

0:53:37 CC: Cool.

0:53:37 WB: Yeah, he did a good job visually. It looks lovely. It looks really good. We had a great DP and…

0:53:42 S4: Yeah, it was awesome.

0:53:43 WB: And it was fun to go to Portland. I got to go to Portland and hang out on set with him for a little while. It was fun.

0:53:47 CC: Fantastic!

0:53:48 S4: And eat lots of good food. Portland’s awesome.

0:53:49 WB: Yeah. Portland’s the best.

0:53:51 CC: Yeah, we’ve never been. Can’t wait.

0:53:52 WB: Oh my gosh, you’d love it.

0:53:53 CG: Oh, I have.

0:53:54 CC: You’ve been to Portland?

[chuckle]

0:53:57 CG: Gail got married in Portland. That’s the only time, my best friend, Gail. She got married in Portland so I was there for a weekend. But I pretty much just saw the airport, and the hotel, and the chapel, and the hotel, and the airport. Because… And I was at Texas Tech, but this was before we started dating.

0:54:16 CC: Yeah.

0:54:17 S4: When we go up there. It’s not too far.

0:54:19 CG: We knew each other, but we weren’t dating yet, so, yeah. But, I had gone up there. But, that’s the only time I have ever been to Portland, so, don’t be jealous.

[laughter]

0:54:29 WB: It’s like, why didn’t you take me?

0:54:30 CG: I didn’t get to… I mean, it was a very beautiful drive from the hotel to the chapel. I remember that, but otherwise…

0:54:38 CC: Right.

0:54:38 WB: How long have you guys been married?

0:54:40 CG: It was 11 years this past March.

0:54:42 WB: Oh, wow!

0:54:43 CC: Yeah.

0:54:43 WB: That is awesome.

0:54:45 CG: So, we’ve been together since September, 13, 2001.

0:54:49 WB: Wow!

0:54:49 CC: Yup, yup, yup.

0:54:53 CG: And then, we got married in March of 2004.

0:54:55 WB: Oh, cool. We got married in 1997, December. 1997.

0:55:02 CC: When did you graduate?

0:55:04 WB: ’98. So, May of 1998. So, we had a semester where we were married at Tech, and then we left, yeah.

0:55:11 CC: Right. I couldn’t remember the timeline.

0:55:14 WB: Yeah.

0:55:15 CC: Of course, that was a long time ago.

0:55:17 WB: Yes. Right.

0:55:18 CG: Well, see. And I didn’t get there until 2000. Fall.

0:55:22 CC: Yeah.

0:55:23 WB: So we were gone… Yeah.

0:55:24 CG: So, fall of 2000. Yeah, I got there in the fall of 2000.

0:55:27 CC: Yeah. Me and Ryan and Barb were sort of the overlap between the…

[chuckle]

0:55:31 WB: Yeah.

0:55:32 CC: Between your class and the much later class. We were sort of the seven year bridge.

0:55:39 CG: Well, and that’s basically how I met Chuck was ’cause I got to be good friends with Barbie.

0:55:42 WB: Oh, really?

0:55:43 S4: Was he still there? He hasn’t graduated yet, right?

[laughter]

0:55:46 CG: Nope.

0:55:48 CC: He’s on the 24 year plan…

0:55:49 CG: He was gone, but he was hanging out. And so, I met him through Ryan Hart.

0:55:55 CC: Oh me? Yeah.

0:55:58 CG: Well, I met you through, you just showed up in the shop one day.

0:56:01 CC: Yeah.

0:56:02 WB: Yeah.

0:56:03 CC: Because I was taking a semester off, and so I just went to hang out in the same shop, like you do, on a day…

0:56:09 CG: Well, see that’s it. He left and I came in. And he was gone. And I happened to become friends with all the people he was friends with not even knowing he existed. And then, he came back.

0:56:18 CC: I came back at that time and it was like, “Hey everybody. Hey, who’s this?”

0:56:21 WB: Yeah, who’s this?

0:56:22 CG: And then, well, ours was kind of, it took us a little while because my room mate, who was an undergrad student there, my college room mate, we shared an apartment, she had a crush on Chuck.

0:56:33 WB: Oh.

0:56:34 CG: And so, the day Chuck and I met, Chuck does not know how to flirt.

0:56:39 WB: A lot of guys don’t.

0:56:40 CG: So it became very obvious very quickly that he was interested because he didn’t know how to be, like, sly about it.

0:56:43 WB: Oh, how funny.

[laughter]

0:56:47 CC: I don’t know. I thought I was pretty sly.

0:56:49 WB: You did? Yeah.

0:56:50 S4: You just tackled her or something? Is that it?

0:56:51 WB: Yeah, that was it.

0:56:51 CC: Pretty much.

0:56:52 S4: Okay.

0:56:53 CG: We were having a party that night at Ryan Hart’s house, Chinese New Year for [0:56:55] ____ Jowa. And he just kept going, “Are you going? So you’re going to go? So, you’re going to go tonight? So, I’ll see you tonight?” He just kept…

[laughter]

0:57:04 WB: That is so cute.

0:57:04 CC: I do remember that.

0:57:08 CG: He just kept doing that. And then, later on, I was with my room mate, and she goes, “I heard Chuck was in town.” And I said, “Oh, yeah. I met him earlier today.” And she’s like, “I like him so much. He’s so cute.”

0:57:15 WB: Oh, my gosh. How exciting.

0:57:15 CG: And so, my friend was like, okay then we’re not going there because Stephanie likes him, and it’s girl code.

0:57:22 WB: Right. Right.

0:57:23 CC: So, in turn, off limits.

0:57:23 CG: We didn’t get together for a long time, and he didn’t understand. He was like, “Steph, I don’t like Stephanie.”

0:57:28 WB: Yeah.

0:57:28 CC: Well, does that matter?

0:57:30 CG: It doesn’t matter if you don’t like Stephanie. I live with Stephanie.

0:57:31 WB: Right. Right. That is so funny.

0:57:35 CG: So, yeah. So we didn’t start dating for eight or nine months, I think, after we met.

0:57:41 CC: Did you guys know, who’s the one who has the feeder company in New Mexico now?

0:57:45 S4: Amelia?

0:57:46 WB: Amelia.

0:57:46 CC: Amelia, yes.

0:57:48 WB: Yeah. So, she started an equity theatre company in Albuquerque, actually.

0:57:51 S4: She was at the Barter, as well.

0:57:52 WB: And she was at the Barter.

0:57:52 CG: I don’t know Amelia.

0:57:54 CC: Yeah. Amelia Ampuero.

0:57:55 WB: Ampuero. Exactly. So, she may be one to talk to, too, because she started a theatre company in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Yeah.

0:58:03 CC: And that’s not too far. So, that’s probably within my non-existent travel budget.

0:58:06 WB: Yeah. Take a road trip. Right, yeah. Well, you know, you could go to New Mexico, go skiing, and then…

0:58:12 CG: He’s been to Vegas already for this thing.

0:58:13 CC: That’s true.

[overlapping conversation]

0:58:14 WB: Yeah. Come on. Just keep going. Well, it’s, actually Albuquerque’s not that far from Lubbock, so you could go visit Lubbock.

0:58:19 CC: There you go. My dad is actually still in Lubbock.

0:58:22 WB: What? See, there you go.

0:58:24 CG: Really, he still lives there?

0:58:25 CC: Yeah.

0:58:25 CG: Really, well when we…

0:58:26 WB: Really.

[overlapping conversation]

0:58:28 CC: That’s my one tie to west Texas now.

0:58:31 CG: Well, and Texas Tech, they’re having that reunion.

0:58:34 CC: Well…

0:58:34 WB: At Texas Tech?

0:58:35 CC: Yeah, it’s happening this summer.

0:58:36 CG: It’s this summer and it’s the theatre and dance department reunion. It’s like, it’s going over 15 years of classes or something.

0:58:44 WB: Did I know about this?

0:58:44 S4: Yeah. We got an email about it.

0:58:46 WB: Oh, we do?

0:58:47 CC: Yeah, it’s in July, end of July I think.

0:58:49 CG: Something like that.

0:58:50 CC: Yeah, and I think we’d looked about it, looked at it, but we just can’t afford to travel, you know? Especially with the two of us having time off at the same time is…

0:58:56 S4: Yeah.

0:59:00 CG: It’s a very… We can’t get time off at the same time. It’s pretty close to impossible.

0:59:05 WB: Yeah, I’m sure.

0:59:06 CG: It’s pretty close. My mom is actually going to try to come visit us in September.

0:59:08 WB: That’s nice.

0:59:10 CG: She’s going to try to come out here because the two of us trying to get time at the same time.

0:59:16 CC: Yeah.

0:59:16 CG: He told me, he’s like, “I’m taking vacation in June,” and I was like, “Okay.”

[laughter]

0:59:19 WB: Great. Yeah. Have fun.

0:59:22 CG: He’s got to take vacation time…

0:59:23 WB: Yeah.

0:59:23 CG: You know, or he’ll lose it.

0:59:25 WB: Yeah, so you better take it. Yeah.

0:59:26 CG: So, he’s got to take it. He’s like…

0:59:28 CC: So, my vacation’s going to be the best vacation of all.

0:59:30 WB: Yeah. You’re going to be like…

0:59:32 CG: And he said, “I’m not saying we’re going anywhere,” and I said, “Well, that’s good because we’re not going anywhere.” [chuckle]

0:59:34 WB: Because I can’t. Yeah. That’s so funny.

0:59:38 CC: I plan to record lots of podcasts. [chuckle]

0:59:40 WB: Yeah right.

0:59:41 CG: He’s going to stock up.

0:59:42 WB: Yeah, totally.

0:59:43 CC: I’ll just travel around and record a bunch of podcasts.

0:59:46 WB: Sure.

0:59:48 CC: Well, guys. We’re actually reaching the end of our hour.

0:59:50 WB: Awesome.

0:59:52 CC: So, thank you so much again for… This is a Twofer one!

0:59:55 WB: Yeah, it’s fun.

0:59:56 CC: I love it. So, before I cut you guys loose… Since we do have a Twofer, I’m gonna actually ask this from both of you. I’d like to close with some words of wisdom. So, for people out there that are either coming into the business or maybe heading a little bit of resistance and need a little bit of positivity.

1:00:20 WB: My advice would be you can’t ever give up, because if you give up then you lose. And there are some times where you feel like it’s dark and you don’t see the future and you have to keep creating, you just have to keep creating.

1:00:37 S4: Mine’s gonna get a little more complicated but I think there’s an equation and at the right side of that equal sign is your goal. And you either fit in that equation or you don’t fit in that equation. If you want to have that equal sign equal your goal, then either change yourself or change the equation, does that make sense?

1:00:58 CC: Yes.

1:00:58 S4: Okay, good.

1:00:59 WB: I think you should… I don’t know. Does it make sense?

1:01:01 S4: It doesn’t make sense to you?

1:01:01 WB: No.

1:01:03 S4: Basically…

1:01:03 WB: Give us an example.

1:01:05 S4: If you desire to be an actor and you are a certain type, just make sure that that is the equation that’s on the left of that equal sign. Don’t try to fake your square peg in a round hole. Don’t try to be the 50 year old man if you’re a 15 year old girl. Know who you are and play to those strengths. If you wanna be tha

0 year old man make some changes, change that equation.

[chuckle]

1:01:31 CC: Start with that 50 year old man.

1:01:32 S4: That’s right. That’s a little hard to do but, basically, whatever your goal is, you either need to change what that goal is according to who you are or change who you are in order to get that goal.

1:01:44 WB: So you’re saying, know thyself.

1:01:45 S4: Know thyself and to thine own self be true.

[laughter]

1:01:48 S4: Or to thine own self be a 50 year old man.

[laughter]

1:01:49 WB: Don’t try to be something you’re not. Yeah.

1:01:51 CC: Fantastic. Thank you guys so much.

1:01:55 WB: Thanks, this was fun.

1:01:56 CC: This is your curtain call, so take a bow.

1:01:59 S4: Yay!

1:02:00 WB: Thank you.

[music]

1:02:17 CC: Hello there, folks. This is Chuck Clay, your host of Curtain Call Podcast. I just wanted to take a quick second to say thanks for listening. And if you enjoyed that podcast as much as we enjoyed recording it, please, take the time to give us a listener review. Here at Curtain Call Podcast we want your feedback, so please guys, gals, take a few seconds when you get done with the podcast and go to iTunes, Stitcher, Pocket Casts or whatever fine purveyor of podcast you use and please give us a listener rating or review. Trust me, it goes a long ways in getting us new listeners and new eyeballs, and that’s always a good thing in the land of Curtain Call Podcast.

1:03:02 CC: Also folks, if you enjoy what you hear on Curtain Call Podcast every month, please visit us at curtaincallpodcast.com where you can explore all things Curtain Call Podcast, including listening to past episodes, you can leave us a comment or a suggestion or you can connect with us on social media. On Facebook we are Curtain Call Podcast and on the tweets we are @CurtainCallPod. More than anything else, if you enjoy Curtain Call Podcast please share us with your friends, your family, your colleagues, your co-workers. Find us, friend us, share us. And finally, here at the Podcast we have nothing to talk about if we don’t get out and do it. So please, go out, see, do, live some theatre. Thanks. Have a great month.

[music]

1:04:10 CC: And remember folks, when you find people who not only tolerate your quirks but celebrate them with glad cries of, “Me too!”, be sure to cherish those people because those weirdos are your tribe. Till next time, tribe. That’s all for Curtain Call Podcast.

Free Podcast Transcript: Football Is America

June 12th, 2015

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0:00:50 Ron: Hey everyone, this is Ron from Football is America, and we are inviting you to check out our website, footballisamerica.com, catch up on all the shows and interviews right there.

0:00:58 Keil: We really would appreciate it if you check this out. We’ve had a lot of work put it into it. We’re very proud of our product. We really, really need you to get on there, take a look at our links. Get on our GoFundMe if you got some spare cash you can throw at us. Check out our Amazon links. Check out our Audible links. We’ve got so many great, great things to give to you. Use that Amazon search bar when you’re going to be buying on Amazon. It doesn’t cost you anything extra, it’ll take you right to the Amazon page as if you had searched through Amazon itself because it is Amazon itself. It just helps us out when you come to make your purchase and no extra effort is required on your part.

0:01:39 Ron: Yeah, a reminder that we do all of this for free but, unfortunately, is not free to do, so anything you can do to help us out would be great. Don’t forget to also keep commenting, sending us those tweets, those emails, those Facebook comments, or rate us on Reddit. Without your interaction, we can’t fix what you think is wrong or keep what is right. Let us know how we are doing, and you can always just get on there and tell Kyle he is a horrible hellspawn and needs to go back to his creator, Lucifer.

0:02:06 Keil: I prefer to think of Mondo Jesus as my creator. But to each his own, we won’t know until you hit that comment button. Get on there, give us your thoughts, your opinions, your ideas, we really enjoy hearing them. I might berate you for it, but that doesn’t we’re not all having fun.

0:02:23 Ron: That’s right. Hey, enjoy the show!

[music]

0:03:00 Ron: Hello everybody, and welcome Football is America with Ron and Kyle. I’m Ron.

0:03:05 Keil: I’m Kyle. Today we are going to be doing just a little bit of draft review. We’re of the opinion that if you want an in-depth analysis of the draft, you’re already getting it from wherever you get your football information. We don’t have that kinda time, so we’re just gonna touch on it a little quicker.

0:03:23 Ron: Yeah, we wanna thank you for listening. First off, we are not draft experts, like Kyle just said. We’re gonna be having a draft review show here in a little bit, coming up, probably in the next few weeks. And then that’ll be kind of our June revival, which kinda brings us to our next topic, which is that I’m gonna be gone for three weeks. So, we’re gonna be taking the next time off, and we’ve decided at this point that this is going to be our annual hiatus. We will do a little draft review show. And then from then on, we’re gonna take the rest of the month off, and we will be back in June, first week of June. We’ll do a little bit of a welcome back show. And then Trevor Woods from SB Nation, he will be joining us to go over and get into every draft pick that is of importance to him and to us and really get onto who was, who had the best draft class, all that kinda stuff. So stick with us and take the summer and have some of your own vacation time. You don’t have to rely on us. And if you’re relying on us to get you through your day, [chuckle] you have a lot more problem than just downloading our show.

0:04:22 Keil: I’m assuming things are really bad, like for that guy like, “It’s been a rough week. I know what’s gonna make it all better, Ron and Kyle using their sweet angelic voices to lull me into a full sense of security and comfort.” That’s a bad answer. That is a sign that things have gone wrong. Actually, I think we should be honest and say the reason we wanna go on hiatus is not just you’re going to be gone for three weeks. It’s after doing all those interviews and all the editing. I mean, way more for you but even my wife is like, “Damn! This takes up a lot of your time.” And then that just meant for Ron, it’s like, “This is my entire life now.”

0:05:01 Ron: Yeah, I spent about 30 to 40 hours a week working on the show, working on the interviews, editing, preparing for the interviews, getting everything done, getting it out to Nick, getting him to produce it, getting it back, getting it posted. And then in that time, we also started a new website. We have a new media partner. We have all this stuff going, and it was a lot. Plus, I, as many of you know, am a full-time student, so I’m taking 16 credit hours on top of that. It was just a lot to take on. I just need some time to myself. My wife and I were going on a cruise.

0:05:31 Keil: And then, his wife has a parasite inside of her, I mean… You know.

[chuckle]

0:05:35 Ron: That’s also a called a baby.

0:05:37 Keil: Yeah. By the way, Ron’s wife is pregnant everybody, yay! So, go ahead and send your money.

[chuckle]

0:05:44 Ron: Get on the Amazon link for God’s sakes.

0:05:45 Keil: Yeah, do that. And we know what you’re wondering. Alright, 30, 40 hours a week, why does this show suck so bad? Alright, valid point. [laughter] But…

0:05:56 Ron: Yes, that is a valid point.

0:05:56 Keil: But… Actually, I got nothing. I don’t know why this show sucks so bad. [chuckle] I assume it’s just we… Just go with, we don’t want you to be happy.

[chuckle]

0:06:08 Ron: Well, with that said let’s Kyle, let’s go ahead and get into this, shall we?

0:06:12 Keil: Alright. Everybody we gotta have this a little bit unstructured. The draft is a massive event. There’s too much to go over, so it’s just gonna be all over the place and you can just deal with it.

0:06:23 Ron: That and I’m also joining you from my inlaws’ house. It’s a big room. It’s full of echo and we didn’t wanna make this a big spectacle. We just wanted to give our opinion on some of the things we saw during the draft, some of the things that we didn’t see during the draft, and kind of what our take is on everything, whether it be from the people booing Goodell, to everything else. So that is why we’re here, but like said we’re gonna be doing our more in-depth stuff come June.

0:06:51 Keil: Yep. So, first thing we should talk about, and actually I’m only just now thinking of it, draft was not in New York, it was in Chicago. I thought the venue was very beautiful and all that, blah, blah, whatever. I did not like, however, no green room. I always enjoyed seeing the parents of the kids who are getting drafted looking super-happy, all the moms super-proud of their boys and knowing, “I don’t have to work again.” I missed that.

0:07:20 Ron: Well, they still had kind of a setting, similar, where the people are sitting at tables and stuff like that, not everybody goes into that green room and I’m okay with that. I did find it a little weird that for the first round, the second round, and I believe the third round the teams were in their little war rooms. And then after that when the fourth round started on Saturday, they had just like a little area roped off with all 32 teams at tables. And I get that that’s pretty much how they do it be… How they did it at Radio City Music Hall, but it just seemed real weird to me and also because I mean what’s the point? Why do they have to be there if all the draft picks aren’t there anyway?

0:08:00 Keil: A little confusing, but I think the idea is, “Look, by the fourth round we need to make this a little uncomfortable for everybody. We gotta speed this along.” We…

0:08:09 Ron: Well, they did change the amount of time that you had to take a… You had for picks.

0:08:13 Keil: Oh yeah.

0:08:13 Ron: I mean, they changed from five minutes to I believe four minutes, at least in the seventh round, right?

0:08:18 Keil: Yeah, definitely reducing the time overall and you definitely noticed that quite a bit. Like just watching the first, I think that was the only round that when it was on we were watching that and doing nothing else, but those picks are just coming in one right after another. The only team that really took a long time was the Jets with the number, what was it, six overall? I mean, they were the only ones who were kinda down to the wire and still had their pick in with 30 seconds left. I get it, they were probably trying to trade their pick and didn’t get a great enough offer. But, I mean, it was just, “Hey, this picks in. And so is the next one, and so is the next one.” Really liked the tempo of the draft.

0:09:00 Ron: Really. And it seemed like, towards the end of the first round, picks were coming in faster and appearing on the screen before they could even come out and announce them. Like it was… They were just coming in so quickly, and it’s… I haven’t seen that in a draft in a… If I have, it’s been a really long time, but I can’t even remember a time when it’s been like that, not to that extent.

0:09:18 Keil: Well, and I suppose we should also probably talk about the means in which we watched the draft. Now, I have cable. Ron is a horrible communist who doesn’t. [chuckle] So, I was watching on NFL Network, looking at Rich Eisen’s beautiful bald head and all the knowledge therein giving me the information that I need. Problem was, I was getting about a minute faster of a feed than Ron was, as he was watching online on his Xbox with the ESPN app. Alright, cool, so I get on my Xbox and I start watching with the NFL app, that’s behind the ESPN app. So then Ron has me download the ESPN, that doesn’t work, so then he downloads the NFL. And I don’t know the names of the guys on the NFL app, but it seems like the NFL said, “Hey, if you’re watching this you’re on your computer or something, you’re a nerd, so let’s get the nerdiest dudes we know who like football and have them be the ones announcing it.” And it was just God awful. It was so bad.

0:10:25 Ron: At one point, I was so frustrated that they were still talking because they were so terrible. I get that you want to appease to a certain type of person or a certain generation or whatever, I get that. But, I mean, come on, these guys were awful and when I… I’m so used to seeing Boomer out there just losing it with his deep voice and his really, really, really, really big bags underneath his eyes and stuff like that. I’m used to that kind of thing. That’s what I wanna see and if I can’t…

0:10:54 Keil: Yeah, cocaine’s a hell of a drug.

[chuckle]

0:10:57 Ron: And when I can’t see Rich Eisen and his glorious head out there telling me everything I need to know. And Rich Eisen, he talks so smooth and it’s so nice.

0:11:07 Keil: Girl, he treat you so fine.

[chuckle]

0:11:10 Ron: And then they give us these two guys, who were… Who could barely speak. I mean, we’re better than they were. I mean, essentially Kyle and I could’ve gotten up there and been like, “Yeah, we know better than these guys.” Because I remember them messing up names, they didn’t have positions right. I mean these guys, these guys were horrible and I hope the NFL fixes that, but I know they don’t listen nor care what we have to say, but…

0:11:28 Keil: And they don’t need to. They don’t need to, but they could. I did, however, like the part through the NFL app. They got the impression that, “Look, this is a certain type of fan watching. We can be a little more free.” They had some wild stuff going on. And I wanna say it was Michael Bennett of Seattle was there, for some reason, in some capacity, and I believe he was talking about Vic Beasley defensive end selected by the Falcons and talking about how he didn’t like how the guy was dressed. And the ladies with us were like, “Whoa, what’s going on? You know, you’re hating on him a little bit.” He’s like, “No, he looks good. I mean he looks good. I mean, it’s just he looks like he’s dressed up to go to a ghetto prom.” [chuckle] And I enjoyed that immensely. You would never get away with that on the Main Draft, “Oh, this is offensive.” No. Online it’s like, you don’t give a [beep], you probably have said worse things. You know?

0:12:27 Ron: Well, what about the dude that showed up in a dress? Who was that?

0:12:30 Keil: That was Danny Shelton.

0:12:31 Ron: Yeah, that’s right.

0:12:32 Keil: It wasn’t a dress. I mean it was, but is…

0:12:35 Ron: There was nothing… That was a dress. It was a dress-ity dress dress.

0:12:37 Keil: It was a pick up dress. Okay, it was a dress. He was dressed weird as hell. I get it. You’re from some weird Pacific island and you’ve got some cultural heritage. But here’s what Ron and I both said as we watched man dress there, man dress it on up. Like, “If you’re gonna wear the traditional man dress, why are you wearing like Italian leather shoes?” It really weird…

0:13:00 Ron: With high socks. With high socks.

0:13:01 Keil: Yeah. Yeah. Like, why not wear sandals and have a bone through your nose and a spear to throw, so that we know that we as [beep] who are better than you.

0:13:10 Ron: Well, we have just stereotyped the [beep] out of that, so let’s go ahead and get on with that.

0:13:14 Keil: Yeah, I’m just trying to give you things to edit.

0:13:19 Ron: Let’s start, Kyle, with the Cowboys not taking a running back at all, either.

0:13:25 Keil: Definitely an interesting point. Especially with that whole, “Well, we want Adrian Peterson. We don’t want to give up a first for him.” Hey, it’s a deep class. And on top of losing the great running back into Marco Murray, you figure you’ve got to go somewhere with it. Nothing. Nothing at all.

0:13:46 Ron: Yeah. I mean, it looks like at this point they’re gonna be like, “alright, let’s take this great offensive line and see what Darren McFadden can do with it.” And it’s just… It’s not gonna turn out good. I would assume that they’re gonna be targeting a lot of undrafted free agents and maybe still trying to get a trade for somebody. It’s still possible that they could do that. Especially with Adrian Peterson not showing up to voluntary workouts and stuff like that. I can’t foresee their running game being very good and that’s just something that they need in Dallas to be successful. I mean you saw how much of an impact that had this last year. Without it, there’s just no way that they are even half the team that they were last year.

0:14:23 Keil: We talked about this a little bit in our last show. Not just like the running game and all that. But I, like when we’re talking about the Steelers and we were talking about their defense like, “Oh hey, the Steelers’ defense is gonna be so bad. You’re gonna have to put up 40 points a game just to keep up.” And you can’t do that, you know? Tony Romo looked so good because people were prepping to defend the run giving him a lot more favourable looks, for the passing game. If that’s not gonna happen, I mean, it’s a bad look for Dallas. Definitely a confusing thing for them to not take a running back because there were some great running backs this year.

0:15:02 Ron: Both Melvin Gordon and Todd Gurley were out there, and they didn’t trade up for either one, and I get that it takes a lot to trade up. But at that point, when you realize that you have a position that is needed that much and it’s a key position like running back, you just have to make the trade. You gotta pull the trigger. I don’t… I get that Greg Hardy’s suspended for 10 games and you wanna go after an undersized defensive end and Randy Gregory three rounds later. But at that point Todd Gurley’s still on the board, 10th pick comes up, he goes off the board. The next thing I’m doing is making phone calls to get Melvin Gordon. I mean that’s it. As a GM, that’s what I’m doing.

0:15:40 Keil: There were a lot of other running backs, not just those two. For crying out loud, there were two running backs taken in the first. There were two taken in the second. There were four taken in the third round. There were some quality backs and the Cowboys had nothing to do with any of it. You could make the argument, it was too early for a lot of those guys to be taken in the late second. A little bit ahead of their time, hard to trade down. Fine, but what are you going to get more out of? Randy Gregory, a very undersized pass-rusher, situational guy with a lot of questions about his emotional state and ability and all that. Or do you wanna take a running back, who has been proven? I mean running back I wanted for my Colts, all through the draft, Tevin Coleman, dude managed over a thousand yards with a broken foot. 2,000 yard season with no offensive line or passing game to speak of. He would’ve been an amazing talent in Dallas and they had no interest. And when you say, “Who are you going to get more out of, Tevin Coleman or some equivalent or Randy Gregory?” It’s like, “Come on, man.” You know? “It’s not too late to trade Tony Romo for Johnny Manziel too by the way, Jerry.” I mean keep going with your pal.

0:16:58 Ron: Yeah, it’s not gonna be good for Dallas this year. But let’s go on to the Bears, they take a wide receiver with their first pick. I was not happy with that at first. I was shooting flares of hatred from the rooftops.

0:17:13 Keil: You were pissed.

0:17:16 Ron: I was not happy. I was really high on Landon Collins at the time. There were so many other needs that could be addressed, with the defense that has been the worst for two years running. I just, I couldn’t understand taking a wide receiver. And then some of the breakdown stuff came out, Kyle was one of the people that texted me and said, “Just so you’re aware, outside of Alshon Jeffery, the rest of the Bears receivers have 24 combined receptions.” And I was like, “Hmm.”

0:17:42 Keil: For career.

0:17:43 Ron: For their careers.

0:17:44 Keil: Not just like last year, but like for life. So, it was definitely interesting because initially you were like, “Every year. Every year they do this to me. Every year.” The receiver they took, I want to say, Kevin White, correct?

0:17:57 Ron: Yes.

0:17:59 Keil: Yeah, now, he was one of those guys, had just kinda one great season, not a lot before that. So there’s some question marks there, but the talent is there. And initially, you were very sceptical of that talent, with good reason, I think.

0:18:13 Ron: Yeah. Yeah.

0:18:13 Keil: And especially when you’re looking at number seven, best nose tackle, best defensive tackle, all those guys are still there. It’s one of those, “Hey, why don’t you get Danny Shelton? That guy’ll be a force. Right up the middle, he’ll plug those holes. He’ll do great.” “No, we’re gonna skip on that.” “alright, well, Landon Collins. You get a great safety. I mean, a little early for him, but why not?” “Nope, get that wide receiver,” and it seemed confusing. But when you look at what else is going on there, it does kinda make sense. And you were having a big conversation with Larry, and Larry brought up some good points to the lack of concern for not addressing defense. One thing that definitely helped Ron out, he goes to our main man, Larry Dyer of Chicago Bears Review. Love you, Larry. And Larry did point out, maybe a little over optimistically but still valid. Like look, you’ve got Vic Fangio in here, and he has taken the San Fran defense from laughing stock to powerhouse. Now, you could say the talent was still there. It’s not there in Chicago. But still, there’s reason for optimism. I did, however, enjoy you just being so pissed for like an hour. [chuckle] I’m like, “This is gonna be bad.”

0:19:25 Ron: No, it wasn’t that bad. I was definitely irritated, as I am, as I always am with Chicago’s first run picks. And I haven’t had to deal with one for a few years, because we traded all of our first round picks to get Jay Cutler. So, I mean, there’s that…

0:19:38 Keil: Wait, who was it you traded them for?

0:19:41 Ron: Jay Cutler.

0:19:42 Keil: And he plays what position again?

0:19:46 Ron: I don’t want to talk about it.

0:19:48 Keil: And he is how good?

0:19:50 Ron: I’m pretty sure I said I don’t wanna talk about it.

0:19:52 Keil: Yeah, that’s right.

0:19:53 Ron: Anyway. They did go out and redeem themselves with their second round pick, and they got themselves their nose tackle, like I was really hoping for. They went out and get Goldman, and that was a good grab. Now I think we can kind of start building our defense up. It’s gonna be a good time for them. They were rated as like the third or fourth best drafted team with their class, so pretty happy with that. But let’s go on to what made me happy and laugh, which was when the Bears didn’t take Landon Collins. All I could think of was, “This is awful. How could they do this to me?” Blah blah blah. And then Kyle was like, “Landon Collins is gonna fall all the way to the Colts, and the Colts are gonna take him.” And all I could think of is, “Oh man, this is gonna suck so bad. I’m never gonna hear the end of it. This is always what’s gonna be the talk for the rest of the year.” And the pick comes, and who do the Colts take but Phillip Dorsett, wide receiver out of Miami.

0:20:51 Ron: And if you… I’m not even joking. To all of our listeners listening right now, I’m not even joking when I said, “I’m going to change my pants. Because when they don’t take Collins, I’m going to laugh so hard I’ll crap them.” And then they didn’t take Landon Collins. I did not crap my pants, but I did laugh incredibly hard. Because not only had they done this same thing to Kyle that they had done to me, but they took a wide receiver that was just not even as good as the wide receiver that we took.

0:21:17 Keil: Yep. And it was made… Like the sequence of events went essentially like this, Bears make a mistake, I begin to laugh. Colts have a grand opportunity, Colts wastes that opportunity, Patriots pick up opportunity. So, the Colts picked up a wide receiver instead of the best safety in the class, instead of the nose tackle Malcolm Brown out of Texas, who the Patriots were 100% certain the Colts were gonna take. They’re like, there’s no way you don’t, why would you not? The Colts have one of the most stacked wide receiver groups in the league. I’ll probably say the most stacked. I think we can say that now. And the worst part is, this guy, Phillip Dorsett, he’s a TY Hilton clone. He ran a sub 4340, so he’s incredibly fast. He’s 5’9, like 180 something, so he’s a little guy. So he’s TY Hilton 2.0, which is confusing mostly because the Colts have TY Hilton 1.0 on roster, and then I just mailed a whole bunch of [beep] to Boston.

[laughter]

0:22:35 Ron: Well, I’m glad I get to cut that out. Alright.

0:22:39 Keil: You don’t gotta cut that out, it’s fine.

0:22:41 Ron: Yeah, well, I don’t want you making terroristic threats on this show.

0:22:45 Keil: Okay. Alright, for the purposes of law enforcement, I didn’t do that at all. So, if there is some jack-wad who does mail [beep] to Boston…

[laughter]

0:22:56 Ron: Stop it! What are you doing?

0:22:58 Keil: I’m just… I’m covering the bases! I didn’t do it! So, now if somebody does it, nobody’s gonna be like, “Oh well, look at that ass bag Kyle. He did it, then he bragged about it.” First off, I’m not smart enough to do it. Second off, if I do have [beep]… It’s like…

[laughter]

0:23:13 Ron: You’re just making it so much worse.

0:23:16 Keil: I’m not making it worse! I’m fixing it!

0:23:18 Ron: This is…

0:23:20 Keil: You wanna let me fix it? Just… It’s fine, okay?

0:23:23 Ron: You just dig your hole to China, like ’cause that’s pretty much, at this point, what you’re doing.

0:23:27 Keil: That’s a brilliant escape plan, though, fool! So, anyway, if I do have [beep] in my possession, I’m sick with it and then dead, and so that doesn’t work. And so, everything’s fine, we’re good to go. I don’t have [beep]. I didn’t mail it to Boston. And if you do, you’re wrong. Unless you take out a certain individual, who we will not name, but his initials are Tom Brady. [laughter] In any case, look, also kinda like the Bears, the Colts did do an alright job later on in the draft, traded down their second with the Buccaneers, pick up a third in the team, swap fourth rounders, get a quarterback from Ford Atlantic in the third, get two Stanford defensive line men, and Stanford does run a three-four. They picked up Henry Anderson, to defensive end, in the third, David Perry, a defensive tackle in the fifth. Both are incredibly highly graded by a lot of people. And it’s just one of those, they didn’t have maybe the incredible upside of some of the other picks, but the floor is real high. So the Colts did alright aside from the fact that they took a player they already had in the draft. I think he seems like a good kid and whatever and fine. I’m excited for him, but at the same time when you’re there and you’re like “alright, just don’t mess this up. They softball this into you, Ryan Grigson, don’t mess this up. All you have to do is do the thing that everybody wants. Don’t mess it up.”

0:24:56 Keil: And even if you’re taking a defensive tackle instead of the safety, you would’ve been like, “Oh well, you know, it makes sense.” Okay, one way or the other. But the defense, the defense, we got the defense. No, when you take the position you’re strongest at… Yeah. Now, Ron was talking to me about this earlier and he said, “This is a dumb pick,” and I have to agree with him. The only mindset… ‘Cause as a fan you start doing the rationalizing and convincing yourself that it isn’t the worst pick. That’s gonna lead to your home been foreclosed on and you kids dying in the street and whatever, like you gotta do that. So the mental gymnastics I have done, essentially, is that this isn’t a pick to beat The Patriots, it’s a pick to beat all the other teams and somehow they’re going to beat the Patriots anyway? I’m thinking Wizards.

0:25:41 Ron: [chuckle] So, what did you think about Landon Collins falling out of the first round and going to the Giants at the very beginning of the second round?

0:25:49 Keil: It was one of those things where, for the longest while, he was just considered the top safety, and there wasn’t exactly a whole lot of reason for it or for other people not being the top safety. And it just seemed to be like one of those, “Oh, this is what all the draft experts have foretold and that’s just how it is.” And then the day of the draft, things start coming out. Well, there is real concern about his ability to play coverage, and he’s essentially just a run stopping safety, and this that and the other. And I guess some of that stuff was always a concern just not being voiced, and that’s probably why he didn’t get picked up. There were probably some legitimate play concerns and the article his mom wrote about how he’s a butt hole and doesn’t listen to her and listens to his draft people probably didn’t help. I’m sure he wants to go ahead and thank her for the millions of dollars he lost. But he goes to the Giants, that’s something.

0:26:45 Ron: Well, he goes to the Giants. They play a in the box safety style of defense. It will be good for him there. He’ll develop well there. I think he’ll definitely be using his strengths in that division where he’s gonna have to stack up against DeMarco Murray. He’s gonna have to stack up against the run the Redskins are attempting to put together, and then whatever run game that Dallas is going to try to do as well. It’s gonna be a good spot for him there in that scheme, I think. Quick little hit on here before we get into the main story of the draft was no quarterbacks taken until the fourth round. And Huntley, who was considered the third or fourth best quarterback, ended up being taken I think as the fifth or sixth quarterback. And he went to the Packers in the fifth, which is a big time bummer for him ’cause he will never see the field.

0:27:36 Keil: And as soon as he was taken, all of a sudden this avalanche of hatred on him like, “Well, he doesn’t make his progressions very well. He takes too many sacks. He throws too many picks.” Like, essentially, he’s a big athletic talented guy but not very good. Like he’s an athlete not a quarterback, if that makes sense. And when your NFL comparison is Josh Freeman, it’s bad.

0:28:04 Ron: It just was a really bad year, for quarterbacks in general. There wasn’t anybody that was super flashy. Even the first and second round picks of Winston and Mariota, I guess, were far superior to those others. But I mean, we all know what everybody’s thoughts are on those two guys too, and we’ll get to that here in just a little bit but tough year for QBs. That’s for sure.

0:28:24 Keil: It really is and everybody still has this idea that every year there’s got to be x amount of talented quarterbacks. There really doesn’t have to be. Look back at the 2013 draft class. There’s very few decent players, let alone good players. I don’t think anybody from there is elite. It just doesn’t happen sometimes, and this year just not a year for quarterbacks, and I blame all the butt-huggers who really want that spread style, crazy style college offence to be the standard there. It doesn’t work. Your best guys, your Johnny Manziels suck-diddley-uck when they get to the NFL. So let’s stop doing things the wrong way, which is your way, start doing it the right way, which is the Ron-Kyle way, and you will cleanse that colon to success.

0:29:09 Ron: And I don’t wanna hear all the fans talking about how Russell Wilson has transcended scheme and made it popular. No, Russell Wilson has had Marshawn Lynch and he is the exception at quarterback not the rule. I mean, let’s be completely honest here. I mean, you can’t take a traditional spread option quarterback, put him in the NFL where he has to line up under the center rather than in the gun all the time, and actually expect him to be able to read a defense and everything. Like most people don’t understand what goes into the transition from a spread to a pro-style quarterback. When you’re in the gun, you get to see everything. You have a running back beside you, you can read the defense, check out their shifts, everything. When you have to snap the ball from center, you can’t see the defense always. You can really only see the first few guys, maybe the second level, which is the linebacker level. You have to read that defense while dropping back just before throwing the football.

0:30:08 Ron: Why do you think Jay Cutler sucks so much? Because he can’t do that. A lot of these guys that are smaller, can’t do that. A lot of these guys who turn the ball over a whole lot, don’t do that well. That is the problem. And so when you take a guy that has never had to be under-sender, snap the ball, drop back, read the defense and get rid of the football in three seconds, it’s just not gonna… It’s just a recipe for disaster. So you can tell me all you want about how in college it worked so well. Yeah, in college it does work so well. Why? Because half the players that you’re playing on that other… On the other side of the football field aren’t the best in the country. When you get to the pros, they are. So even the guys that are third string, guess what, they’re still the best at third string than anybody else in the country, at any college ever or anybody else in the world. Because if they… If somebody else was better, guess what, they wouldn’t be on the football team.

0:30:56 Keil: More often than not, you can take the worst team in the NFL and they will beat the best team in college football. More often than not, that will happen. So, and also in addition to the Russell Wilson thing… Just like Robert Griffin, when you start making that guy play pro-style, the way that is routinely successful and doesn’t result in you getting injured, he is terrible. He is bad. He throws a ridiculous amount of picks. And then what ends up happening is in the fourth quarter, they go back to college style and essentially he’s a more talented Tim Tebow, in that regard.

0:31:34 Ron: Right. Better delivery on the football.

0:31:36 Keil: Wow, that is a horrible thing I just said about Russell Wilson.

0:31:39 Ron: But it’s the truth. I mean, when all else fails with the run game and with the traditional pro-style game plan, we talked about it all the time last year, they switched to that spread out, let Russell Wilson just go nuts offence. And they have a team that executed it well, better than the Redskins did. So good for them. Now, we got move on here though. Let’s talk about La’ale… Is it La’el, La’ale, Lae’el… La’el Collins?

0:32:08 Keil: Lonnie, Lonnie Collins, because you know what? La’el, you go ahead and have your own nick-cage name to be sort of birthright, whatever. We’re just calling you Collins from now on. So anyway, Collins, you know the story, ex-girlfriend murdered, taken down to Louisiana to answer questions…

0:32:29 Ron: And she was pregnant too.

0:32:30 Keil: Yeah, pregnant. Kid might have been his, we don’t know. The child did not survive. Ron, you got way more on this than I do.

0:32:37 Ron: It’s a big mess. Basically, the cops asked him to come down there and kind of clear up some situation. Never charged him. Never claimed he was gonna be charged. They just wanted to question him and ask him what he knew because he could be paramount in helping figure out this case. In fact, it came out to a point where they realized that he couldn’t even have been there, so there was no evidence even remotely, even circumstantial supporting that he was there for it. He just went down there to help answer some questions…

0:33:04 Keil: To help, yeah.

0:33:05 Ron: To really just to help, and that has ended up costing him an entire draft. Millions of dollars. He doesn’t have draft insurance. He didn’t need it. A few days before the draft, he got screwed. It’s a complete matter of terrible circumstance and until I hear anything about him being charged, anything about his involvement, anything about him paying somebody to do it, anything about her being crazy and him having… Even the slightest bit of evidence, I’m going to feel this way. He got f’ed. That’s what happened.

0:33:33 Keil: He really did. He seems like a decent enough guy. He was more than willing to help the police and he could’ve said, “Look, you guys, either come at me with a warrant for questioning,” which they wouldn’t have done because he’s not a suspect. Or he could’ve just been like, “Look, I have nothing to do with this. I about to be drafted. Why don’t you just shut the hell up about it for one week and then I’ll come help you.” He did the right thing and he’s being punished for it, and NFL teams don’t know what do right now. The NFL feels largely bad about it too. But nobody wants to take a guy if he’s gonna, one, resent being picked too late. And you don’t want to waste a first or second round pick on a dude who might not be there, it’s a bad policy, so he’s getting hosed. The NFL needs to do the right thing, announce him as part of the supplemental draft. Just understand there are extenuating circumstances and that since he was not involved, even remotely, in any wrong doing as it seems… Alright, well just supplemental that guy out. He’ll be a… At the very lowest, a second round supplemental guy. He’ll get his money. I’m sure of that. But it’s just… I mean, gosh, it’s just tough right now.

0:34:50 Ron: Yeah, a bad situation. The NFL could’ve allowed him to remove himself from the draft. They denied him the ability to do that, and I thought that was kind of a dick move on the NFL’s part as well. They could have let him leave the draft, remove himself and re-enter next year, but they didn’t. They wouldn’t and… Or even just go into the supplemental draft during the summer and they didn’t let him do that either. And so it was kind of bum deal, and I understand the NFL’s position. I mean, they don’t know what’s going on and with all the issues they’ve had with Aaron Hernandez and Adrian Peterson and Greg Hardy and the Ray Rice thing, I mean, they just… They can’t take changes right now, so I understand their position. This sucks and we’re really sorry, but we just have to do what we think is best for the league. And that’s what they’re doing, but unfortunately in this case, I think they did it to the wrong person, at least, initially that is my thought. Like I said, with more evidence or with more information, I might change that opinion. But right now, at face value, that’s what it seems like.

0:35:48 Keil: On the plus side, I mean, definitely not a plus side for Collins or anything like that, but teams really did a good job of sorta staying away from character issue players. If you had something negative going on, you aren’t getting drafted where you were projected. I mean the guy who got the closest, Shane Ray, was taken I think 23rd overall by Denver. He was projected as a top 10, possible top five pick, like six overall. And obviously, that didn’t happen because of some marijuana concerns. And there’s a lot of stuff that is just not being tolerated anymore, and I love that, I think that’s great. Because telling the kids in college, “Hey, you can’t do this. It will cost you money.” They don’t care. They show up to the draft wearing $100,000 watches ’cause their agents will buy them for them. The guys who you need to get on board with this mentality are the agents. Because when they start going, “Yeah, you’re smoking pot, dropping you as a client, good luck with that buddy.” All of a sudden the kids will get the point and people act right. So it’s a slow going process, I like it though, stop doing the drugs.

0:36:58 Ron: Hey Kyle, let’s go through a few of these draft picks, at least we’ll get to the first round here. We don’t have a whole lotta time, so we can’t spend like too much time on it. But let’s jump…

0:37:05 Keil: And nobody… Like we’re gonna talk about some dude in the fifth round like we have any sort of knowledge about it. Like, “I don’t know, he’s maybe good but he’s maybe terrible.” That’s how every round after the third is. It’s a crap shoot.

0:37:17 Ron: So let’s go over at least the first round picks here and kinda see how we thought about them and what the overall opinion versus our opinion was, but we can’t spend too terribly much time on this. So let’s start with, of course, the number one overall pick, Jameis Winston goes to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as expected. Florida State 2013 Heisman Trophy winner. Kyle, your thoughts.

0:37:39 Keil: I like the part where was at his home. First off, I like that. Spent time with the family, especially when you hear his reason for being at home was grandma wasn’t in good enough health to make the flight and he wants to have grandma in on the moment. Good for you, young man, I like it. The part I really, really, really like is when he put up a photo on Instagram of him eating crab legs.

0:38:02 Ron: [chuckle] Yeah. And a lot of people were kind of up in arms about that and I didn’t understand that. They were like, “Well, is he putting crab legs up because he’s trying to be funny and make fun of himself, or is he doing it… ”

0:38:10 Keil: Yes, he is. Alright, the time to get concerned is if he’s showing himself pinning a woman down and taking advantage of her, that’s to be worried about. But if we’re cool with letting a potential rapist be number one overall, I gives two craps about crab legs.

0:38:25 Ron: [chuckle] alright, so…

0:38:27 Keil: Your thoughts?

0:38:28 Ron: That you summed it up very nicely, so let’s go on to number…

0:38:31 Keil: Number two overall, kind of a surprise to some people. Taken by the Tennessee Titans, 2014 Heisman Trophy winning quarterback out of Oregon, Marcus Mariota, little bit of a shake up there.

0:38:42 Ron: It seemed like up until the very last second they were trying to see if they could get what they wanted for him, and they basically go, come out and said, anything less than a top 16 pick was a no-go for them. I think they wanted a little bit more than that. Teams just weren’t willing to give it up, and they said, “You know what? Fine. We’ll take Mariota. We’ll turn him into a franchise quarterback and to hell with all of you.” Good luck with that, wasn’t [0:39:01] ____, I think that you’re gonna have a really tough time with a lot of the decisions you’ve been making. It seems at this point that the Titans are just kinda throwing it all away. I get that Mariota was the second best player pretty much, at quarterback I guess. Still…

0:39:16 Keil: Questions abound.

0:39:20 Ron: Yeah, I just… We’re gonna get what we were talking about the first week of the season. We’re gonna get the Winston versus Mariota thing, I get it.

0:39:28 Keil: It sucks for Zach Mettenberger because despite the fact that he’s the sixth round pick, he has this NFL size. He wasn’t that bad when you consider the total lack of talent around him. I think he deserves more of a… He’s better than Johnny Manziel, at least. So he could go to being very good trade bait, he could be worth a fifth or maybe even a fourth round pick to the right team, so that’s a big upswing right there. But yeah, for Marcus Mariota, you wish him all the best and all that. But it just seems very unlikely that he’s gonna reach the kinda lofty levels he reached in college. I mean, let’s just… I don’t see the… Especially with a team as bad as Tennessee.

0:40:12 Ron: So you’re trying to tell me that Zach Mettenberger is good enough to go to the Browns.

0:40:16 Keil: Yeah. I mean as depressing as that is, yeah. He’s good enough to go to the Browns. [chuckle] Go ahead and tape another name to that big old jersey there.

0:40:26 Ron: Let’s go on to number three, Jacksonville Jaguars, they draft Dante Fowler. Good pick there. This is just a filling a position they need. They had some struggle on the outside defending the run, pass rushing, all of that. So this was a good pick. I’m gonna go ahead and skip here to number four to the Oakland Raiders drafting Amari Cooper, wide receiver out of Alabama, 2014 Fred Bil… I can never say this.

0:40:53 Keil: Biletnikoff.

0:40:54 Ron: Biletnikoff award. So Kyle, your thoughts.

0:40:58 Keil: Well, my first thought is, as a Chicago fan, you should be all about pronouncing those crazy Polish names, that’s number one. And number two…

0:41:06 Ron: We never have to ’cause we always have sausage in our mouth.

0:41:08 Keil: Sausage, right.

0:41:10 Ron: That’s the route I went, yes, okay.

0:41:12 Keil: Okay. Well, I gotta leave that alone and we’re all just gonna call me a great human for leaving that alone. [laughter] Good for Oakland. You take a great wide receiver to pair with your young, up and coming quarterback. It’s a smart move. It’s a smart pick. He wasn’t gonna be around much longer. I mean, it’s a good play for them. And I don’t see any negative with it. The only thing I wanna know is does this buy any additional job security for Reggie McKenzie?

0:41:43 Ron: I would say that it does at this point. For right now, it looks like a great pick. If the Raiders come out and they win more than four games, and it has a lot to do with the Derek Carr to Amari Cooper connection, that will be a big time lift in everybody’s opinion of him. And then the Raiders at this point, they’ve been so bad that they did… They had just a great draft, to be honest. They went after the positions they needed to go after. Going for Cooper in the first round was brilliant because they knew what they had to do to improve what they saw from Derek Carr last year. And with an actual vertical and top in passing game, now they’ll actually be able to run the football better. That and the not having Darren McFadden anymore, that helps a lot too.

0:42:27 Keil: Well yeah, but they replaced him with Trent Richardson.

0:42:29 Ron: Well, I think Trent Richardson’s more of your rotational guy. I think this is gonna be more of a Latavius Murray.

0:42:35 Keil: Trent Richardson’s not a rotational guy, unless the rotation is rotating from offence to defense. [laughter] That’s where Trent Richardson specializes. Well, let’s just say the really cool thing about Amari Cooper, he’s not a gimmick wide receiver. He’s not just about speed or outrunning. He’s kind of a jack of all trades wide receiver. Pretty fast, pretty good routes. Not like the absolute best at necessarily anything, but he can be a true number one and that is super-rad. And the Raiders really need to nail the draft, because they’re still not getting it done via free agency.

0:43:10 Ron: Yes. I just realized we are not going to have enough time to go over all these, so we’re gonna go top 10.

0:43:14 Keil: Well, we’re… Okay, we could do top 10 and maybe a couple interesting ones. Number 5, 2015 Outland Trophy winner, offensive tackle out of Iowa, Brandon Sheriff or Scherff. We’ll just call him “Sheriff” because it’s fun. Lot of people not too thrilled with this pick here at five, Ron.

0:43:34 Ron: Yeah, I think that was more or less because he is a tackle, taken high, who was most likely going to convert to guard for the time being. For some reason, the mentality on offensive linesman is, “Well, how could you ever take a tackle that you’re gonna convert to guard with the fifth overall pick?” Well, it’s because you’re gonna convert him to guard so that he can be prepared to play tackle later. And everybody’s saying, “Well, he’s not a left tackle.” Well, you know who else wasn’t a left tackle? Ben Grubbs. And you know what he ended up being? One of the best guards in football.

0:44:03 Ron: So, I mean, you can say whatever you want. And I guess, I just don’t understand everybody’s mentality about offensive and defensive linesmen. “You know, you never take them that high. You just don’t take them that high.” Well, if that’s your biggest position of need, and you know this is the best guy at the position of need that you have, why not just go ahead and take him, if you know he’s gonna be gone come your next pick. It doesn’t make any sense to take somebody else and then trade… Have to spend a… Sell the farm to go up again to get somebody else that you really wanted before somebody else get him. It doesn’t make any sense. Go after the guy you need. They went after the guy they needed. The Redskins have a lot of problems on offensive line. He’s going to help solidify those problems, and maybe prevent RG III from obliterating another knee. I mean, that’s the point here, right?

0:44:49 Keil: You and I have talked off the air a lot about the line. And when you’re a running team, your guards are really, really stupid important because they’re the one’s creating the lanes. So for a team like the Redskins, that really needs the run game to be successful, they really need to get that up and going again. Yeah. Maybe a guy who will be a tackle in two to three years being a guard right now, not the worst thing.

0:45:17 Ron: New York Jets, number six. They go after Leonard Williams, defensive end out of USC. Lot of people talking about how this wasn’t a great pick for them. I’m in complete disagreement. Kyle is on the completely other side of the fence. My reason is that if you’re strong…

0:45:32 Keil: Well, no…

0:45:33 Ron: If you’re strong upfront, and you know that you have a weak secondary, you build your strength on strength. Now you have three guys up there that are going to terrorize an offensive line, no matter the offensive line. These teams in the AFC East are going after Tom Brady. That is the point of Leonard Williams. It is to go out there and demolish Tom Brady. If you have a rotation of Muhammed Wilkerson and, I believe, is it Sheldon Richardson?

0:46:03 Keil: It is.

0:46:04 Ron: And Leonard Williams. That’s a pretty hefty, hefty rotation.

0:46:09 Keil: It is. And that’s where a lot of the criticism comes in like, “Why not address a position in need?” But, I mean, I get it. Like you said, “Go ahead. You pile up.” These guys are in contract years and all that. The security against injury. There’s a lot to like about it. Plus he’s a solid pick, as long as he doesn’t just Jadeveon Clowney it up in here, it’ll be fine.

0:46:32 Ron: Yeah, definitely.

0:46:33 Keil: Now, looking at number seven, we’ve already talked a little bit about this. Chicago Bears pick up Kevin White, wide receiver out of West Virginia. A lot of people were debating between him and Amari Cooper as the top wide receiver in the draft. That might just be those draft nix trying to get some page views or whatever. Still, probably a very solid pick for the Bears.

0:46:51 Ron: Less I’ve said about it now, borderline happy. Obviously the Bears are going to need some help and from what you and I have talked about at length, Kyle, is that if the Jay Cutler thing isn’t going to work, at least now you’ve built yourself for some success later on for the next guy coming in there. So, good pick there.

0:47:10 Ron: Number eight, Atlanta Falcons started their draft off the right way by going after Vic Beasley, outside linebacker from Clemson. 2014 ACC Defensive Player of the Year, great linebacker, definitely a position they needed to sum up. I don’t know a ton about him. I don’t know if you know a ton about him, Kyle, but it was definitely something [0:47:29] ____ needed to do.

0:47:29 Keil: I know he dresses up as though he’s going to ghetto proms. [chuckle] Aside from that people were saying, “Look, this guy, he might not be the top linebacker. He might not be the top defensive end. What he is is quite possibly the top pass rusher.” So maybe he doesn’t have the coverage skills, he might not be a three-down linebacker. That’s fine. The Atlanta Falcons have had trouble on pass rush for a long time. This is a huge need being addressed, and it’s a great pick up for them.

0:48:01 Ron: Number nine, the New York Giants go after Ereck Flowers, offensive tackle, Miami. This is a great, great pick in my opinion because the Giants have had a few issues with offensive line, and by a few I mean a lot. It seems like forever they’ve never… They haven’t been able to protect Eli Manning. I think, I feel like he’s getting mashed quite a bit and had it not been for Victor Cruz going down and Odell Beckham really emerging. I think last year would’ve been a completely different story with coaches fired and everything. They’re going to bring him in. I don’t know if he’ll play tackle or if he’ll play guard to start, but he’s going to be a direct contributor right away for that offensive line that has needed an anchor in the middle, which is why I think he’ll play guard.

0:48:44 Keil: The people who have the opposite view, a pessimistic view, are kinda saying, “Look, if Brandon Scherff is kinda a reach at five, then to take this guy at nine, that’s terrible.” They really wanted to get Brandon Scherff or whatever, didn’t work out. I think he’ll be fine. I think you’re right, let’s roll on. Number 10, St. Louis Rams make a huge, huge splash taking running back, Todd Gurley, out of Georgia. Definitely a surprise given his ACL tear and the running back talent already there in St. Louis. But I think this is them kind of announcing to the NFL, they are ready to start competing for real in the very tough NFC West.

0:49:28 Ron: Well, they needed a quarter back before they can do that.

0:49:30 Keil: Well, they have Nick Foles, which you and I both agree he’s been highly overrated and been kind of exposed. But I think he’s more dependable than, at the very least, Sam Bradford, and he at least gives you a competent starter. So he’s at least decent, that’s something.

0:49:48 Ron: Well, they’re also a run for his team. They’re gonna be running the ball pretty much out the gate, probably 20, 30 times a game. They’re not going to ask Nick Foles to play a crazy hybrid college offence. They’re gonna ask him to drop back, release the ball, check down when he needs to, make his first, make his second reed, check it down if he has to. Hopefully Gurley’s gonna be the guy he’s checking down to. But it does cause a little turmoil in St. Louis with Todd Gurley being drafted, Tre Mason and Zac Stacy were both very unhappy and immediately were talking trades, the moment he was drafted.

0:50:20 Keil: So butt-hurt?

0:50:21 Ron: Yes, yes, very much so.

0:50:25 Keil: Cool. Well, let’s keep going because a lot of these are just like, “Yep, sure, whatever,” such as Trae Waynes, first corner taken out of Michigan State goes to the Vikings, and all I can say about that is, “Yep, he sure did.”

0:50:37 Ron: Well, they’ve had a lot of issues with secondary. You play in a division where Matt Stafford throws the ball a lot. Jay Cutler throws the ball a lot, whether it’s good or not. And then, of course, you have Aaron Rodgers to deal with. You gotta have a strong secondary.

0:50:51 Keil: Right.

0:50:52 Ron: It’s just something that you have to have.

0:50:54 Keil: If nothing else, you need to take advantage of all those bad Jay Cutler throws and have somebody who can take that and make it a turnover, so fair enough. Cleveland Browns, pick him at 12, were able to pick up Danny Shelton, defensive tackle out of Washington. Came out gave Roger Goodell a great big hug, scooped him up actually lifted him up. Great pick up for Cleveland, shame for him he’s got to go to Cleveland.

0:51:18 Ron: Well, the Cleveland Browns had a pretty good draft as well. They went big on both the offensive and defensive lines. I think what they’re trying to say is, “If you’re going to beat us, you’re going to have to beat us with your secondary. You’re gonna have to beat us with your passing game,” and I don’t understand that…

0:51:33 Keil: No, you’re just going to have to beat us by the fact that you have anything resembling an offence or anything even slightly resembling a defense, because the problem now for Cleveland is they’re all in on Johnny Manziel.

0:51:44 Ron: Yes. Yes, they are.

0:51:44 Keil: They’re all in. We have put all the chips, for this year at least. I mean next year is a different story, but it is 100% Johnny Manziel. Because, what, we’re gonna expect Josh McCown to go out there and be the guy in Cleveland without Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall. No. It’s not happening. So good for them, for taking a great defensive player, they have a lot of other needs, and I don’t know.

0:52:09 Ron: Well, let’s go ahead and we’re just gonna read off here. Andrus Peat, offensive tackle from Stanford goes to the New Orleans Saints. Great tackle there, probably gonna be a convert. If nothing else a right tackle. Miami Dolphins, they take DeVante Parker, wide receiver. They obviously have, need a wide receiver. They did get Brandin Cooks. They do have Greg Jennings, but they need a young guy there as well.

0:52:31 Keil: They made a smart pick because their defense is very well settled through free agency. They are making a run at Tom Brady. Good, good selection. Number 15, San Diego Chargers take Doak Walker, award winner of 2014. Running back Melvin Gordon, out of Wisconsin, traded with San Fran. Melvin Gordon is a great running back. They wanna recreate the sort of success they had when Damon Thompson was there. That’s big shoes to fill, but a very good pick for them. They are trying to make a run while Philip Rivers is still able to do so and not being full of babies.

0:53:08 Ron: Well, not just that, but while he’s there. The more and more it looks like they’re going to LA, the less and less likely it is he’s going to play there, so it’s kind of next year or never at this point.

0:53:17 Keil: True enough. Number 16, Houston Texans select Kevin Johnson, corner back out of Wake Forest. A lot of the reading I have done on this is indicating that Houston’s goal was to finally get somebody who can stop TY Hilton from gashing them for 200+ yards and outing, which is funny because as we already discussed the Colts picked up TY Hilton 2.0, so that’s funny to me.

0:53:43 Ron: Well, and also they have, I believe, Johnathan Joseph. He’s going to be on his way out next year. He’s going to be in a contract year. You’ve got… You just signed… I can’t remember, the name evades me right now. The young guy there, he just signed a big contract, so this is gonna be an eventual replacement for Johnathan Joseph.

0:54:01 Keil: It’s a good pick.

0:54:02 Ron: Yeah, definitely a good pick.

0:54:03 Keil: It’s a good pick for Houston. They have a really strong pass [0:54:07] ____ ration defensive line. Now they need to improve the secondary, this shows they’re making those steps. San Francisco, we all thought they were gonna be going linebacker, instead they went defensive end, selecting Arik Armstead out of Oregon. A lot of people not liking this pick. A lot of people have been poking a lot of holes in Armstead’s game. There are a lot of questions about this, so this is really going to be a very, very defining pick for this new regime in San Fran. Because when you take your defensive line coach and promote him to head coach, and the first player drafted is a defensive linesman, that’s a signature move right there. So, this is going to be a very critical thing for San Francisco.

0:54:51 Ron: I think this is going to be the determination. His success is going to hold the key as to whether Trent Baalke and Jim Tomsula are returning after this next year.

0:55:02 Keil: Well, I would not be that shocked with the one and done. What I was shocked by, was at 18, the Kansas City Chief selecting corner back Marcus Peters out of Washington. Went all of last year without a passing touchdown to a wide receiver and did not pick up a wide receiver. So, interesting thing, maybe they felt they’d did enough free agency. You can never have enough corners in this league, so probably a good signing, could’ve been better. I think we just keep rolling. At 19, the Cleveland Browns pick, again due to the Sammy Watkins’ trade of last year’s draft, and they select Cameron Erving, offensive line or center, from Florida State. He was a center for the Florida State Seminoles. He was very, very, very good. They’re going to be projecting him as a guard for the first year, which makes sense. You don’t wanna throw a rookie into center if you don’t have to. He’ll do just fine, I think. It is a very, very scary thing how many good offensive linesmen the Cleveland Browns have. It’s good for Johnny Manziel. It’s good for the Browns. I like this pick.

0:56:11 Ron: The other thing is that he’s a huge guy, like… I think they said he was like 6’5″ or something like that. Big, huge dude. And it’s hilarious to see how short Johnny Manziel is versus his linesmen are gonna be towering because he has all these big, huge linesmen there. So, it’s gonna be tough for them.

0:56:27 Keil: Don’t drop that soap there, Johnny.

0:56:30 Ron: [chuckle] Number 20, and this’ll be the last one we can really get to today.

0:56:33 Keil: We can do them all, you go [beep] yourself.

0:56:35 Ron: No, we’re gonna get to 20 here and then we’re gonna have to… We’re gonna have to kinda cap it off here. Nelson, I’m gonna say Agholor, isn’t that how they say it?

0:56:44 Keil: Agholor.

0:56:45 Ron: Agholor, wide receiver…

0:56:46 Keil: Which sounds like a Dungeons and Dragons’ goblin or something like that.

0:56:50 Ron: [chuckle] He’s a wide receiver out of USC. Philadelphia Eagles go wide receiver when they realized that all of their hopes and dreams of Marcus Mariota are gone. So, they’re going to try and build…

0:57:00 Keil: The fun fact is Chip Kelly stays in the Pack 12.

0:57:05 Ron: Yeah. But I also think he realizes, “Well, since I’m probably gonna have Sam Glass Bradford out there, then I need to give him targets that are quick and can get into their cuts quick and devise a game that’s going to get the ball out fast,” and so that’s what he went. He went after that.

0:57:23 Keil: Sam Bradford is going to be the first player to be wearing Kevlar body armour on under his pads.

0:57:30 Ron: [chuckle] alright. Well hey, that’s gonna have to wrap us up. Everybody, thank you for joining us for this quick little draft review. Sorry, we couldn’t get to all 32 picks. But like I said, we’re gonna be getting into these in depth later, so this was just our quick little reaction to them. For all of you out there who are like, “Hey, you didn’t get to my pick.” We’re gonna get to you. Alright, we’ve talked about it a little bit…

0:57:45 Keil: That there are no other picks that are that like, “Oh wow! Let’s talk about this,” aside from the fact that Denver traded, and we briefly touched on that. I mean, there was some good picks and some fun stuff. We’ll talk about this again. Hey, let’s briefly mention kudos to the Baltimore Ravens for trading up in the second to take tight end, Max Williams, best tight end in the draft, just before the Steelers had a chance. Not only getting your guy, but keeping him from your rivals, that’s a win-win and that is funny.

0:58:16 Ron: Yeah, lots of good players that I have on my board of just to talk about. So we’re gonna get to a lot of these guys, everybody, and a lot of these trades and a lot of the devious moves that were made. Don’t worry, this will be all stuff that we’re going to cover in the future. Thank you so much for joining us. To our listeners, we appreciate everything. To our military, we also appreciate you, everything you do. Come home safe. If you’re out there, you’re listening right now. You’re on duty. You’re on guard, whatever you’re doing. You shouldn’t be listening, first of all, to the radio while you’re on guard duty. You’re doing that wrong. But…

0:58:45 Keil: Well, yeah you should! Don’t listen to this boring narc. You do whatever the hell you want, you defender of freedom.

0:58:52 Ron: So we also wanna thank all of our sponsors: Amazon, NatureBox, and of course, audible.com. All of those guys are great. Go on our website, check that out. Of course, our website, footballisamerica.com. Check that out, you can email us right there. There’s a contact form or just send your emails to ron@footballisamerica.com, or keil@footballisamerica.com. Or you can send them to team@footballisamerica.com. If you wanna send them to both of us, that will work out too. You can check us out on Facebook. Football is America podcast on Twitter @fbiapodcast. We’re also on Pinterest and Reddit, and all of those places you can think of. We’re on all of those places. Go there, check us out, Google Plus, We’re everywhere. Whatever your social media of choice is, we’re there.

0:59:31 Keil: Yeah, it’s pretty rad.

0:59:32 Ron: Well, you normally do the Twitter and… Or you normally do the Stitcher and everything.

0:59:36 Keil: Oh yeah, well, we are there with the Stitcher and the Pocket Cast. Obviously, the iTunes. I mean, come on, this is America. [chuckle] We definitely want you to check us out. Tell your friends, tell your family or don’t. But if you’re already suffering, why suffer alone? Get your loved ones in on it. Listen to us at the gym, it is a good time. Everybody around you will appreciate it. When you were on the treadmill and you fall on your face, because you’re laughing, and then you… Treadmill has that motion that slams you into a pile of weights and you break your leg. So, due to us and our hilarity you will get a sweet, sweet class action law suit. Bam! There’s $20,000, player. I got you.

1:00:19 Ron: Also, thank you to our producer, Nick Wright. He does great work for us. We appreciate everything he does. Go to his website, sound-wright.com. That’s W-R-I-G-H-T. Check that out. And I think that pretty much covers everybody, right Kyle?

1:00:33 Keil: Yeah. We appreciate everybody joining us. We’ll have more later. This is just a particularly tough draft to talk about, because it was one of the most logical drafts in recent memory, and it really does not have that much controversy.

1:00:50 Ron: Yeah, definitely. So, check us back. Of course, like I said, we’re gonna be on hiatus, at least three weeks, possibly a little bit longer. We should see our next show up…

1:00:58 Keil: Emphasis on high.

1:01:01 Ron: [chuckle] We’re gonna be seeing you all back the first week of June. We appreciate it. Thank you so much for all the support you’ve given us all year. We have to really… We need a break. We need to take some time for ourselves. We have families and stuff, too. So, we appreciate everything that you have done…

1:01:15 Keil: Shit, I’m not taking a break for myself. I’m about to go beyond mountaintops in Alaska for like three months. [chuckle] I’m about to make money, fool.

1:01:22 Ron: Alright, everybody.

1

:23 Keil: I’m gonna make money, because none of your butt holes are getting out there on the Amazon, like it’s just the webpage. You go to our webpage, search the thing, and then you’re on Amazon and then you buy it, and then we get the money. Why is it so difficult? [chuckle] We add one step to the transaction you’re already going to do. This is giving us money. We’re not asking you to go help out at a homeless shelter. No, you’re not doing that. I’m not doing that. I’m not asking you to do that. I will ask you to do one extra click, because you get the same price, it’s just you’re giving me money. Alright? And because you don’t give me money I have to be gone for three months on mountaintops in Southwest Alaska.

1:02:01 Ron: Alright. Well, now that Kyle is done being angry, that is going to wrap us up. Thank you, everybody. Have a goodnight.

1:02:06 Keil: Thank you.

[music]

Humans Are Better Than Machines For Transcription

June 1st, 2015

machine-vs-human-14312853 (1)Transcription services are known worldwide today. With an increase in awareness about the benefits it can reap, transcription is going global. Today companies, businesses want to reach every corner of the world and transcription services can definitely help them in doing so.

We know that technology today is making any thing possible. Many opine that with the advancement in technology, transcription can be completely automated and there is no human intervention required. In fact speech recognition softwares are used by many transcription service providers but despite that these companies do require humans just to ensure the quality they promise to their customers.

Heres why Scribie still does get the transcription work done by humans.

  • Speech recognition is only 40 – 50 % accurate for real world conversations which is usually the kind of files Scribie gets. For e.g interview transcription , webinar transcription etc.
  • Machines do not have emotional Quotient, in especially video transcription many a times you understand what is being said by gestures and facial expressions which can not be done by machines accurately.
  • Machines cannot understand different accents unless they are trained for it which is time taking and today might need a lot of investment as well and thus takes away any benefit it might provide.
  • Medical Transcription that heavily uses speech recognition softwares still gets at least 2 – 3 rounds of quality check done by humans since there are no place of error in medical field.

While these automation softwares can definitely be used as a supplement, but at this point of time technology is not advanced enough to completely replace humans. It can be used to increase the productivity of transcribers since instead of typing out the whole content they have to work on a raw transcript done by a machine. There is no guarantee though as to what extent the contents are accurate. Also transcription services rendered through human ensures quality and creates a trust factors for customers.

At Scribie, we have hired highly skilled and experienced people who undertake a formal training and examination so that they can provide with unmatched transcription services. We have an in-house quality team that scans through each and every word to make sure our customers receive accurate files.

Such great effort cannot definitely be replaced by machines anytime soon. Yes, they can be used to make the process run smoothly and efficiently.

Please send me a mail at support@scribie.com or you can chat with us directly for any further queries

Importance Of NDA For Transcription Service Providers And Customers

May 9th, 2015

Non-Disclosure AgreementIn new age, we are a part of wide spread network. This network can make private and confidential data go viral in public. The data we have also travels through this network only. Transcription services are delivered online and data security and confidentiality becomes major concern for a client as audio transcripts and videos they are sharing, might have company’s discussions and future plans. Such videos or audio files are highly confidential. It becomes necessary to keep them safe from breach of security. Transcription has become a part of business procedures and meetings now. Every industry is looking for transcription service providers who can keep their files safe and intact. With this need for safety of data, at Scribie we have a process of signing an NDA document.

Know about NDA agreement

NDA is commonly known as Non-Disclosure Agreement. This agreement is signed for a purpose of protecting and preserving the patent, trade secret and other proprietary rights in information to be disclosed or provided by clients to service provider for transcription.

Valid points to be followed in NDA

  • Proprietary information, confidential business, technical information, commercial information, marketing or any other business information is protected by organisation against unrestricted disclosure or competitive use. Whenever the information is disclosed verbally or visually then it has to be given in writing within 10 calendar days, referencing the date and description of the propriety information disclosed. It can also include invention and confidential disclosures.
  • The “Purpose” for which proprietary information shall be disclosed is the use and evaluation of Proprietary Information in connection with: transcription of “X” individual interviews conducted as part of “Study Name”.
  • It is understood that both parties are subject to U.S. export control laws and regulations including , International Traffic in Arms Regulations (“ITAR”, 22 CFR 120-130) and the Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”, 15 CFR 300-799).
  • Proprietary information remains the property of the disclosing party. Upon written request of the disclosing party, the receiving party shall immediately return or destroy the Proprietary Information supplied by the disclosing party, including any and all copies including all analyses, compilations, summaries, studies and other material prepared by Transcription provider or its employees.
  • This is agreed between client and transcription provider that Proprietary information does not grant any rights, to be expressed by implication, estoppel, or otherwise to intellectual property or any other right or license. None of the Proprietary information that may be submitted or exchanged by the parties shall constitute any representation, warranty, assurance, guarantee, or inducement by either party to the other with respect to the violation of trademarks, patents, copyright, or any rights of privacy, or other rights of third persons.
  • Unless earlier terminated, this Agreement shall continue in full force and effect for so long as the parties continue to exchange Proprietary information. This Agreement may be terminated by either party at any time upon thirty (30) days written notice to the other party. The termination of this agreement shall not relieve either party of its obligations with respect to proprietary information received under this agreement.
  • Neither party will use the name of the other in any advertising or make any form of representation or statement in relation to this agreement which would constitute an express implied endorsement of any commercial product or service without first having obtained written permission of the other party.
  • This agreement does not create any agency, partnership, joint venture, employment, or independent contractor relationship between the parties.

Once such agreement is signed between service provider and client, it delivers the responsibility of data security on service provider shoulders. We at Scribie, works on client’s data and take care of each and every point mentioned in NDA document.

Data Security is enviable in this new age world as cyber hacks are increasing and becoming prominent. We work on safe platforms ensuring data safety and security. Our process is designed such that it makes data more secure.

Please send a mail to support@scribie.com or you can chat with us directly for any further queries.

Next Generation Technology Aiding Transcription

April 25th, 2015

Technology transcriptionTranscription is an indispensable part of business. It helps in reporting, predictive analysis and much more. It also helps enhance business web presence. For perfect transcription many are using next generation technology to help them in entire process and to make transcription more flawless and accurate.

At Scribie, the motivation behind our service is to deliver perfectly transcribed files in most convenient and hassle free way. In one go, our clients can take a look at their files getting transcribed and the delivery timeline. Perfect transcriptions is not easy and they are delivered to our customers with the help of special tools which aid our team in entire transcription process.

With time we have gathered a lot of data and we use this curated data to develop some tools that can be used along with different technologies. Such technologies make entire process of transcription very efficient and reliable. We have a list of technologies used that can make transcription process easy.

  • Deep Learning: Deep Learning Technologies can be very effective as it works on deep structured learning mechanism. This technology works on generative models of speech like speech recognition, natural language processing, audio recognition. Data we have along with Deep Learning Technology can be very effective.
  • Natural Language Programming (NLP): This allows users to access data and convert it into information. NLP is widely used in health care. Patient data is cultivated into information and it helps provide a structure to raw data. Natural language processing of transcribed medical records creates organised databases that can be used for search, coding, indexing, XML exporting, and integration by multiple end users.
  • Algorithms: There are also many algorithms available that help our transcribers and quality team to correct mistakes in less time thus further reducing their time and effort overall.

For timely and instant services, these tools are just like magic wand. To ensure the results are up to our benchmark, we send these file for proof reading and quality check, as at Scribie we cannot risk the accuracy.

Together with technology, transcription is going to next level. We cannot substitute human with technology completely but as a friend, technology serves us good. At Scribie, we provide perfect transcribed files in various fields. Just upload your files and get high quality transcripts.

Please send us a mail at support@scribie.com or you can chat with us directly for any further queries.

Scribie’s Delivery Limit And the Rationale Behind It

April 21st, 2015

delivered_on_timeDelivery is an important aspect for transcription service. The results of transcriptions are time bound. It has to be delivered on or before time to make it worth for customers. There are a lot of inquiries about delivery limit in our customer’s mind and here are a few details which might help you understand the reasoning behind it.

The most prior reason is to serve all our clients impartially. Every file is first transcribed, reviewed by proof reader and then send to the client. As correctly said “every good thing takes time” so does our QA team. They go through each and every word of the audio file to ensure you get perfectly transcribed files with no corrections or inconsistencies. They are there to ensure that you get high quality transcripts.

Scribie provides various delivery TAT.

Express
In this category, for a 2 hour file turnaround is 12 hours. There is a delivery limit of ordering only 2 hour audio file per day for each customer.

1 Day
We also have a day delivery in which transcripts are delivered within 24 hours if the order is placed before 2:30 PM EDT (US), or within 48 hours if ordered after.

Flexible Week or Day

If our client opts for flexible week or month then the delivery date will vary anytime within the week or month as opted for.

Bulk Order Delivery

For bulk order Delivery, we don’t want to overwhelm us with lot of files so we try to keep a pre informed way of handling them. We always want to deliver best for all our esteemed customers and in a fair way. Hence, for bulk orders the delivery dates will be adjusted depending on the number of hours ordered. We impose a delivery limit of 2 hours of transcripts per day per user. If you order more than 2 hours of transcripts in a day then the deliveries are divided in a way to receive around 2 hours of transcripts per day.

How does our delivery model works? Here are some examples based on hours of file.

  • If you have three files of an hr each and TAT chosen is 1 day, then the first and the second file will be received on next day and the third file will be received the day after.
  • If you have ordered 10 hrs of files with turnaround time of 2 – 7 Days, Then the first two hrs will be delivered on 7th day and then the next 2 hrs on 8th day and so on.
  • If you have ordered 4 hrs long single audio file with turnaround time of 1 day and then the complete file will be delivered only on 2nd day.
  • Similarly, for 2.5 hrs. With turnaround time of 2-7 days. Then the files will get delivered only after the 3rd day.

Rationale behind our strategy is that our proofreaders can work only on a 2 hour file each day and we would want only one proofreader to work on same file to maintain flow which causes less errors more consistency. Hence a 4 hr long single file will take 2 days to deliver.

Everyone is in hurry so we serve equally to everyone without any partiality. Files with poor audio quality, distortions, non-native speakers or difficult accents may take up additional days since it take 2 -3 rounds of proofreading before it reaches our quality standard.  We intimate our clients about the delay through email notification. In case we fail to transcribe we refund their amount.

Please send a mail to support@scribie.com or you can chat with us directly for any further queries.

A Lot Can Happen With Transcription – Captioning/Subtitling

April 5th, 2015

SubtitlingTranscription has provided numerous benefits to companies. What is beyond its advantages is that transcription can act as an add-on to various other things. We are talking about captioning/subtitles.

We all know transcription is a process of documenting. It could be either for video or audio transcription. The world has gone completely digital. Every person is carrying their digital connect in their hands in the form of smart phones. Companies like You tube have earned millions from videos and people have made it bigger with videos that showcase their creativity. Audio and video files like movies, documentaries are in various languages or accents. Transcripts of these video files are used for subtitling which in turn makes viewers understand and interpret it completely. This also increases page views and video likes on internet.

Google has web crawlers which look up to various files while a user searches a query on web. User’s query is matched with content in web and search results are displayed. Thus adding transcripts in the form of subtitling and captions can improve website display and ranking.

Beyond ranking, these transcripts makes web accessible to individuals with disabilities, including visually and hearing impaired people. Blind individuals often use screen readers, which is software that uses audio output to interpret and “read” the content, such as transcripts, out loud to the user. Hearing impaired individuals may depend on captions and transcripts so they can access audio by reading.

You can understand the need for transcripts and captions if you keep in mind how people may access content. The transcript posted along with the audio recording also works well, especially for people who simply prefer to read instead of listen, and is useful when it’s not possible or convenient to play the sound.

Let’s see world and enable other to see it well with our transcription services which are unmatched in quality and delivery.

Please send a mail to support@scribie.com for any further queries or you can chat with us directly.

Why Most Online Companies Prefer Pre-payment

March 26th, 2015

Online-Payments

Transcription services are much needed service today. Many companies are getting successful at sky rocketed pace. Transcription can do wonders for your business as it might give you an analysis or draw your attention to some key points which you were missing from past few weeks. Companies hire transcription service providers to shoulder their burden of converting audio/video content to text. At Scribie, we provide improved and accurate text out of conferences you upload on our website. Transcription services should be with hassle free delivery and delivered on easy to use website. We offer a great deal to our clients with unmatched services like integrated conference call and recording services, integrated editor and various order option with features like progress tracking. With many good things in our plate of offerings, we would like to opt for pre- payments.

Pre-payment is a reliable and most efficient way of payment. It is a well-thought-of payment structure as client pay before acquiring services on terms and conditions defined. This saves client as well as the service provider valuable time. This payment system works well with standard procedure of service delivery which can’t be changed as the standards are set as per industry. Clients will find accurate and most honest pricing done for projects as there is no room for cheating or quoting high prices.

Many transcription providers fool around clients by offering them customisable services in which they quote high prices in form of hidden charges. They may not deliver you the best and charge you for any small change you ask them to make.

At scribie, one major purpose of asking for a pre- payment is for our resources which are freelancers, as soon we assign them project, we pay them which keeps them contented and dedicated towards this work. We charge on a real time basis and we have skilled people connected with us which require instant payment.

Post-payment may have a benefit of paying after receiving transcripts but at scribie, you won’t feel the difference as quality is not bounded by payment. It is beyond what you pay. We believe in a long term relations with our esteemed clients.

Please send a mail at support@scribie.com or you can chat with us directly for any further queries.