The Bitterest Pill is a podcast operated by Dan Klass, an actor / comedian /house-husband operating out of a rather strange upper middle class community in Los Angeles. I get regular Schadenfreude kicks from the stupid incidents that make Dan miserable, particularly because some of them have happened to me and made me miserable too. Recently he's been complaining about how he and his two wonderful kids become invisible to the people around them; or alternatively, conversations he starts with a neighbor suddenly halt horribly, the neighbor having nothing to say. A resonant example occurs when a few friends are complaining about how to deal with their nanny being on vacation.
“What do you do when your nanny is on vacation?” he is asked.
“We parent our own kids, we don't have a nanny,” he replies.
Now that ought to START a good conversation, but instead that ends it. His neighbor is speechless, apparently incapable of imagining such an existence. Dan rails on about this. Why? What does he have to change? Is it his bald head? Being overweight? Wearing inadequately expensive clothes?
I couldn't resist sending him a suggestion, especially since he feels that our email responses to his podcasts help to keep him from losing it: Dan, you must recognize that you're a round peg in a community of square ass-holes. The people you associate with have a bizarre life-style that needs to be wrapped in layers of self-justification to prevent its quick collapse, but you routinely threaten to puncture their protective coating. Their only protective response, beyond silence, might be: "does not compute." LA is a big place. It must have some other nice round peg souls here and there. If you can find them, you'll be glad you did.
By the way, I recommend listening to Dan Klass even if you don't feel you need a Schadenfreude hit every few days. He's well-spoken, intelligent and thoughtful, and has some interesting adventures to discuss, and original observations to make.
I'm still trying to post daily except Saturdays, sorry there have been some missed days lately. Yesterday, Blogger would not let me log in!