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April 25, 2007 8:59 AM   Subscribe

Hobo Expert, MeFite, Daily Show Resident Expert, and reluctant celebrity John Hodgman's recent appearance on This American Life is truly inspired stuff. "He tells the story of what happens when celebrity hunts you down and finds you...on your living room couch, pushing 40, and a couple sizes larger than you want to be." Apparently Bill Gates isn't a fan. His loss.
posted by chuckdarwin (60 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
GARFIELD: OK, well, Bill Gates, thank you so much for joining us.

(Silence)

GARFIELD: Can I just have a clean goodbye?

(Silence)


Gates is one hardcore, stonewallin' mofo.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:09 AM on April 25, 2007


In related news This American Life Completes Documentation Of Liberal, Upper-Middle-Class Existence.
posted by drezdn at 9:19 AM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


Very funny and smart monologue by Hodgman. Thanks!
posted by Turtles all the way down at 9:26 AM on April 25, 2007


In defense of Gates, the interviewer was being a bit of a prick as well.
posted by Dr-Baa at 9:26 AM on April 25, 2007


drezdn - that was even more brutal than most onion parodies.
posted by chuckdarwin at 9:27 AM on April 25, 2007


The Onion article is genius.
This American Life is now lauded as the definitive source for material about getting an autistic teenager admitted to Harvard
posted by stbalbach at 9:30 AM on April 25, 2007


What's his username here??
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 9:35 AM on April 25, 2007



What's his username here??


Mathowie.
posted by spicynuts at 9:37 AM on April 25, 2007


as an anti-tv fanatic who only downloads (commercial-free) TV off the web, i take pride in saying that i had no idea John Hodgman was the PC guy until this episode of TAL. (self-righteous rant over)
posted by TechnoLustLuddite at 9:37 AM on April 25, 2007


dude, gates doesn't get it - i would much rather be the guy who looks like he has a job than the homeless-looking hipster - those ads are keeping me on a pc...
posted by pwily at 9:41 AM on April 25, 2007


Who would win in a fight? Hodgman or Gates?
posted by humblepigeon at 9:42 AM on April 25, 2007


Who would win in a fight? Hodgman or Gates?
Hodgman. He's a dirty fighting hobo loving ass kicker.
posted by bayliss at 9:46 AM on April 25, 2007


The one Mac vs. PC ad that got me was the "Gift Exchange" one. Anybody who can read and comprehend a C++ GUI programming guide probably has a steady job to brag about, at least.
posted by pax digita at 9:46 AM on April 25, 2007


TechnolustLuddite: as an anti-tv fanatic who only downloads (commercial-free) TV, i take pride in saying that i was able to locate John Hodgman's image on the intarweb, promoting in advertising his book. Or can't you see ads at all?
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 9:47 AM on April 25, 2007


(self-righteous rant over)

The Daily Show is good, but Hodgman's bits are often the best part of any give episode.
posted by chuckdarwin at 9:49 AM on April 25, 2007


Actually, here is the referent of advertising I mentioned.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 9:49 AM on April 25, 2007


humblepigeon, my money's on JH.
posted by chuckdarwin at 9:57 AM on April 25, 2007


I miss the Little Gray Book Lectures.
posted by milquetoast at 9:58 AM on April 25, 2007


The TAL piece is pretty funny, espcially the bit about trying to buy speaker wire in the small town Radio Shack®, only to have the kid freakout on him.
posted by R. Mutt at 9:59 AM on April 25, 2007


...How is refusing to comment on the ads of a competitor any indication of Gates' personal feelings?
posted by Deoridhe at 10:05 AM on April 25, 2007


I enjoyed that. Thanks.
posted by Dave Faris at 10:06 AM on April 25, 2007


I was at that show, the Royce Hall show where this was recorded. Not all of Hodgman's performance made it on air, but most did. Great show, hilarious guy.
posted by jonson at 10:52 AM on April 25, 2007


I disagree with the interviewer that Hodgeman is supposed to be Bill Gates.
posted by NationalKato at 11:18 AM on April 25, 2007


I'm with milquetoast. He is more entitled to oversized royalty checks than most- preferably delivered by Ed McMahon- but John, if you're reading this, we miss you.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 11:36 AM on April 25, 2007


Um. Er. I mean John Hodgman deserves oversized royalty checks. Not milquetoast. Or maybe milquetoast does to. But they would be for services I am as yet unaware of.

Done in by vague pronoun reference again, dammit.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 11:38 AM on April 25, 2007


Um. Er. I mean John Hodgman deserves oversized royalty checks. Not milquetoast. Or maybe milquetoast does as well. But they would be for services I am as yet unaware of.

Done in by vague pronoun reference again, dammit.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 11:38 AM on April 25, 2007


You can't buy a sense of humor, eh?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 11:51 AM on April 25, 2007


ZenMasterThis - I guess not...
posted by chuckdarwin at 11:59 AM on April 25, 2007


I disagree with the interviewer that Hodgeman is supposed to be Bill Gates.

That was my exact same reaction, but the more I listened to the snore podcast at Advertising Age and hunted Google images for this, maybe he's onto something. That other guy, though, he's no Woz...
posted by Ogre Lawless at 12:00 PM on April 25, 2007


Rich and powerful people seem never to have a sense of humour about themselves. It makes me sad, just like when I look at the pictures of big eyed crying children rendered on velvet.
posted by Belle O'Cosity at 12:43 PM on April 25, 2007


I REALLY need to get me some oversized royalty checks. Dammit. Is there like an Oversized Royalty Checks R Us or something anywhere around?
posted by miss lynnster at 1:10 PM on April 25, 2007


What always baffled me about the Mac ads is why they had the Mac played by a caricature of a hipster and the PC played by the lovable and hilarious John Hodgman.
posted by justkevin at 1:24 PM on April 25, 2007


justkevin, it's likely because those ads aren't directed toward you. They're directed to the audience who has no idea who John Hodgeman is nor what a hipster is.
posted by NationalKato at 1:28 PM on April 25, 2007


Hey, maybe he's the guy who got JohnH before I could?
posted by JHarris at 1:35 PM on April 25, 2007


Bruce Sterling could learn a thing or two from John Hodgeman.
posted by Dave Faris at 1:44 PM on April 25, 2007


Dave Faris writes "Bruce Sterling could learn a thing or two from John Hodgeman."

What's the connection? Besides being chubby, bespectacled nerds that is.
posted by brundlefly at 1:50 PM on April 25, 2007


There's no "e" in Hodgman. That is all (tm).
posted by tristeza at 1:53 PM on April 25, 2007


hodgman is only a MeFite in the most technical sense. He hasn't posted anything in five years, at least under that username.
posted by EarBucket at 2:13 PM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


How is refusing to comment on the ads of a competitor any indication of Gates' personal feelings?

It's not. That's the beauty of negative constructions. You can say he's "not a fan" or that he's "not amused" or that he shows little good will toward hobo documentarists-- but you still have just said nothing.

This is the standard tactic of the frustrated, desperate journalist who has little to show for.

Alternatively, one could use that interview to accurately state, "Bill Gates will not admit to liking Apple Commercials".

Hooray for language!
posted by honest knave at 2:33 PM on April 25, 2007


He hasn't posted anything in five years, at least under that username.

His computer probably has a virus, or he's too busy programming in C++.
posted by drezdn at 2:49 PM on April 25, 2007


i would much rather be the guy who looks like he has a job than the homeless-looking hipster

I don't think a more succinct comparison between the 90's and 00's could ever be written.
posted by psmealey at 3:15 PM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


While it is true that the humans I am raising are glad to eat fat royalty checks, I cannot agree with milque-hog more. I also miss the Little Gray Book Lectures.

Someday they shall return. I promise.

That is all.
posted by hodgman at 5:48 PM on April 25, 2007 [7 favorites]


I thought Metafilter had a strict anti-hobo policy.
posted by Dr. Zira at 5:56 PM on April 25, 2007


I always feel like I'm late to the party:

What are the Little Gray Book Lectures?
posted by JHarris at 6:32 PM on April 25, 2007


JHarris: Little Gray Book Lectures.
posted by jmhodges at 6:57 PM on April 25, 2007


Oh, and excerpts
posted by jmhodges at 6:58 PM on April 25, 2007


Heh. Welcome back, Mr. Hodgman!
posted by EarBucket at 7:09 PM on April 25, 2007


Lordy you people are kiss-ups.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:13 PM on April 25, 2007


Venue Songs. O, Mr. Hodgman. I have not yet upward begun to kiss.

RETAIL.

And it can't and it won't and it don't stop. The deranged millionaire gonna make yo pants drop.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:10 PM on April 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ambrosia Voyeur - the only ads i see are print ads. I don't own a TV-B-Gone yet, but i would be one of those jerks who covertly turns off the bar TV during the superbowl. (hence, my username) No, i have never seen the apple vs pc commercials, only a parody or two, or a 200px screenshot on some random blog. I knew it featured a pudgy nerd. When i heard the TAL bit, it all clicked.
posted by TechnoLustLuddite at 8:39 PM on April 25, 2007


Admittedly, I'm willing to kiss up to TMBG. So ya got me there.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:31 PM on April 25, 2007


hodgman wrote - While it is true that the humans I am raising are glad to eat fat royalty checks, I cannot agree with milque-hog more. I also miss the Little Gray Book Lectures.

Someday they shall return. I promise.

That is all.


Little Gray Podcasts, perhaps?

Also, I meant to tell you that elements of The Hobo Network have somehow been alerted to my new location in rural England.

When I got up this morning, all my tins of baked beans and bottles of Fink Brau were missing. There was a crude ~H~ (pretend those are sunrays) scrawled on the wall of my kitchen. Should I invest in bear traps? TIA for the advice.

Also, let me take this opportunity to say 'nanny-nanny-boo-boo' to Earbucket who assumed that
'hodgman is only a MeFite in the most technical sense. He hasn't posted anything in five years, at least under that username'!
posted by chuckdarwin at 2:01 AM on April 26, 2007


Oh me of little faith. Now I have seen the holes in Hodgman's hands and side, and I believe!
posted by EarBucket at 4:56 AM on April 26, 2007


Earbucket was absolutely correct. I have long been absent, my closest association to Metafilter in the past half-decade being the Matt Haughey Incident of Portland, 2006. You can look it up, if you are inclined.

Otherwise: I am a ghost.

That is all.
posted by hodgman at 7:42 AM on April 26, 2007 [2 favorites]


Oh Jesus, we're being haunted by John Hodgman.

So hey... are you the poltergeist "I move stuff" type of ghost? Because there's a cup of coffee just out of my reach and if you could just move it a little closer then I won't have to get up...
posted by miss lynnster at 8:25 AM on April 26, 2007


[sips coffee]

Wow, you're good. Thanks, John Hodgman! :D
posted by miss lynnster at 8:27 AM on April 26, 2007


I like to imagine that John Hodgman and other "stars" of metafilter have secret meet-ups that they travel to with their jet cars, gyrocopters, hot air balloons and bicycles.

While there they give shout-outs to the secret cabal of metafilter members who only post comments in the 43 letter alphabet of the gods. they drink on wines of vintages so fine that wine enthusiasts only dream of their taste. They eat steaks made from unicorns grown on ranch just outside of New Paltz New York, in a spot that has been blacked out from satellite's eyes since the unfortunate events of 1998.

They discuss world events that will make headlines five days from now, telling tales of their wild times partying with the Bilderburgs and how the accommodations in Atlantis are no longer as comfortable as they used to be and that the dolphin butlers are becoming quite rude.

Conversation stops for a moment when an attempt is made on mathowie's life, but it is quickly put down by his machine elf body guard.

There is also a nice cheese platter.
posted by drezdn at 11:56 AM on April 26, 2007


Wait... the "stars" of metafilter? wtf? There are 50,000 people on this site... why are the famous ones more worthy of jet cars, gyrocopters and secret meetings? I mean, especially if Dizzy is going to provide the date bars... I'm totally hopping in my invisible plane for that!

I guess I believe that "stars" of metafilter should be the people -- rich & famous or poor & unknown -- who contribute great posts and comments & add so much of themselves to make this site cool. That said, perhaps I lived in LA too long so I just think of entertainers as fellow people. Leastwise, I generally don't freak out when they walk into Radio Shack to buy speaker wire. (I do when they get me fired from jobs, though. Freakin' Fogerty.)
posted by miss lynnster at 12:39 PM on April 26, 2007


John Fogerty got you fired?
posted by chuckdarwin at 1:37 AM on April 27, 2007


Hi JH! I used to help out with the Little Grays, in the back room of that converted mayonnaise factory in Brooklyn.

Thanks for all the funny.
posted by milquetoast at 11:35 PM on April 27, 2007


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