I can hardly believe it’s almost 2024. Time flies when you’re not in prison, lemme tell ya. Seems like just yesterday I was heating up my coffee with a damaged electrical cord and making fun of Brittney Griner with Viktor Bout.
Much time has passed since then, but I’ll tell ya, prison will change your perception of time. I think part of it is just getting older too, but of course, these things happen simultaneously if you get locked up. When you are just looking ahead to your release date, and all the time until then seems to be wasted, days, months, and years take on a very different significance psychologically. You just want them to be over as fast as possible, and the mind accommodates this need.
It’s almost like getting black out drunk. You just lose time. You fast forward, in a sense.
When you get out, it’s not easy to slow down that time perception. You go from organizing your days around radio schedules and mealtimes set by bureaucrats, reading books and newspapers to stay informed, being locked in by 11pm for lights out, woken up at 5am for breakfast, this kinda thing. Suddenly you’re dropped face first into a world where everything is on demand and simultaneous and electronics are beeping at you. The idea that you might sit down and do nothing but read a book seems almost humorous. Limitless caffeine, all nighters, sleeping in, more information coming at you in a day than you could hope to consume in a lifetime. I am habitually shocked at how often I spend all day in front of a computer, and as my eyes begin to close involuntarily, I still have so much to do. It’s a big change from waiting for the days to pass, and it’s like gasoline on a fire for time perception.
In some ways, you don’t want to slow it down. I’m a much more patient man than I was four years ago. Having suffered the consequences of lacking patience earlier in life, this feels like a superpower to me. I can wait around a couple of years, no problem. How bout the other guy?
A fellow by the name of Blaise Pascal once said “All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”
Perhaps I can solve all of mankind’s problems. I’ve done quite a bit of that.
I’d not suggest that you take on this disposition toward the world and our time in it, though. Time is very valuable, and thinking this way makes it even more scarce. Whatever internal adjustments you might make, time keeps on ticking. If you’re out of step, you could make a pretty costly mistake.
We find ourselves in this position of you listening to me, largely because of something you could say was me becoming hyper aware of my own mortality round about a decade ago. I spent my whole life with no interest in having kids or getting married. I just wanted to have fun, and oh boy did I have a lot of fun.
A few things happened around that time.
I was rejected by two women I had fallen in love with. Another woman who had fallen in love with me back, we started talking about getting married, but she couldn’t have kids. The prospect of cutting off the option of having kids struck me like a baseball bat to the temple.
I got to thinking about what my life had amounted to in 34 years and the answer was not a whole lot. If I wanted to leave something behind, if I wanted my life to have any significance at all, I was going to have to change everything about myself. I was going to have to create a whole new life, and that’s basically what I did. In a sense, you could say I’m ten years old today, but my body would sure beg to differ, still skeptical it’s only 43 after all the abuse I put it through in my youth.
Being ten years old, and having spent nearly half that time held against my will, I’m pretty proud of what I’ve accomplished. Not including my other brands, just the Radical Agenda, I’ve produced no fewer than 648 episodes including this one. Assume that’s 2 hours an episode, we’re talking 1,296 hours of audio. I recently had all of those episodes transcribed by an AI application. Working with one sample transcript that came out to 29,242 words, let’s round down and say 29,000 words an episode, that’s 18,792,000 words.
The average single-spaced book manuscript typed in the 12-point font has roughly 500 words per page. That’s 37,584 pages of text in my audio transcripts, just from the Radical Agenda. The average adult non-fiction book is somewhere between 250-400 pages, according to Penguin Book Writers. Going with the high side of that, we’re talking 94 books in ten years. Not bad…
My gratitude to all of your for making this possible escapes my mastery of the English language. Despite vigorous efforts, I remain without a child for now. I’ll keep working on that, but until then this body of work is my baby. You are the mother I placed her in, and for this I will love you until long after both of us are dead.
Any idiot can talk all day. I’m not suggesting this voluminous store of data is the sum of my value, but for you young guys who listen, keep in mind that I do better as a warning poster than a role model. There’s value to be gained from my experience for sure, but you do not want to get halfway through your life and wonder what the hell happened. You do not want to curse the days and wish death upon them.
I recently heard about a lovely woman of German bloodlines by the name of Sylvia. She’s 96 years old and listens to this show with her son, Michael. She has COVID right now. Michael, he understands that a woman of that age, COVID or no COVID, she’s going to find out what comes next pretty soon. That’s as natural as a thing could be, but he’d understandably prefer that she be immortal.
If you are fortunate enough to make it to that age, you’re gonna be looking to hit the brakes on time. They are not going to respond. It’s more like a boat than a car, all you can do is ease up on the throttle, maybe steer a little bit, and hope for the best. To navigate a boat, you have to think about stopping and steering well in advance. Life is not so different. You have to do like Sylvia did. Find a good spouse while you’re still young enough to make that a good deal for somebody worth being with. Make a son, a couple of daughters. Love them their whole lives, and as you’re getting ready to move on from this world, see that love reflected back to you at the age of 96. If you can be satisfied in those moments, you won the game. Congratulations to you, Sylvia, and do pardon me if my envy is visible but I am trying hard to contain it.
For everybody else, whatever you may have accomplished in the last year, rest assured it was not enough. The one exception is if you’re a woman who gave birth to a child. In that case, thank you from the bottom of my heart for the most honorable service one can perform. Please do meet or exceed Sylvia’s valuable contributions and we might just avoid extinction. Short of that, you and me are both going to have to try harder next year. And for every year that you wasted prior to this one, you’re going to have to multiply that effort.
If you’re a young man, you do not want that burden placed on you at the age of 43, and much less so at 96.
So, dear listener, get your ass in gear, and let’s make 2024 an active, productive, powerful, world changing, and – time permitting – Happy New Year.
I hope you will give us a call tonight at 217-688-1433. Any subject will do. I just wanna hear what you have to say.
In the interim, I’ll pull up some headlines from the last year, and there sure has been a lot going on…
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