After a hurricane hiatus, we return this week with a guest who serves Houston much needed relief in the form of intoxicating libations and banh mi sandwiches. Olay, who works at an undisclosed dive bar in the West Houston area, shares his story of working a normal gig as an accountant and transitioning to what he considers a much more fulfilling career as a bartender. He shares the hilarity that comes along with his profession, as well as his experience growing up in a family that moved to America from Nigeria before his birth. Olay graduated from Midwestern State University and if you ask really nicely I'll refer you to that absolute best dive bar in Houston (that doesn't have a pool table, seriously somebody fix that).
This week, the podcast returns with author Steve Ebling calling in to talk about his book, "Holy Bible - Best God Damned Version". This work is an effort in translating the Bible into vernacular and vulgarities that will appeal to the common man. If you were wondering, yes, the biblical texts do indeed have vulgarities, and a great deal of explicit content (Ezekiel 23:20, Judges 19 anyone?). Noting that biblical literacy is fairly weak through Christendom, Steve's book aims to inform the reader about the actual content of scripture, while also poking fun at some of the more difficult questions the Bible leaves us with: Who did Cain and Abel marry? Why is Genesis supporting a geocentric astronomy? Why do some parts of the text appear to espouse polytheism, yet others do not? Who created God? Why would it REALLY defile someone to sit in the same chair a menstruating woman sat in? This episode is completely NSFW/ life/ or children, and by far the most episode recorded to date. Steve, though not exactly an atheist, is not a Christian either. Although humorous and a fun guy to talk to, Steve's message is a great deal more inflammatory and hostile towards faith than mine is, and it was interesting to get his perspective on skepticism, and why he is so passionate about wanting to impune the holy text. It was great getting to talk to Steve and hear how after working all his life he decided to [...]
This week, Uber 47 AKA Rick AKA Head Barber of the Secular Barbershop Podcast stops by to talk about minority voices and the non-white secular community. This has been one of my favorite episodes to record so far. The Secular Barbershop is a podcast you should be checking out: http://www.thesecularbarbershop.com, The Adults Only section has a series of interviews with adult films stars, male and female, which are pretty interesting and stand apart from the other episodes in a way. While I still don't have my responses segment ready, this episode incorporates a lot of advice given to me over the past few months. I'm really proud with how this turned episode turned out.
This week, Kemo4Emo guitarist, Regular Dude Report co-host, and my friend, Jake Rawls stops by to talk about K4E, Houston Punk, and my awkward young days as a minister. Jake's band has been praised by Houston Free Press, and lasted longer than any of my relationships (so far that is). Also, Benny Hinn's IRS trouble, tour adventures, and the joy of being a regular dude! Kemo 4 Emo's music can be found here: kemoforemo.bandcamp.com/ The Regular Dude Report podcast be found here: www.regulardudereport.com/ Also a Kemo 4 Emo video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkRR7vS_Bdc Jake also did a rendition of my opening song to close the episode, which might be the first time Pop Punk has felt truly felt personal.
This week the Lipstick Yogi herself, Carrah Quigley is on the show to talk about Feminism and whether or not spirituality is for the non-theistic crowd. With folks like Sam Harris praising the virtues of meditation, it seems that there are some in the atheist community who see the benefit of disciplines that could be called "spiritual". This can generate a narrow look from both believers and non-believers alike. I confess that while I think there is a lot more reading for me to do on the matter, I'm not going to be darkening the doors of any yoga studios anytime soon. That being said, Carrah raises some good points about the benefits of meditative practices, and thinking openly. Aside from that Carrah addresses issues Feminism. While there is little I can really add to the topic, I'm well aware that statistics say that 1 in 3 women will experience some form of domestic or sexual abuse in their life. The numbers for men aren't acceptable either. Feminism has never aimed at treating women better than man, but has been aimed at equality since the beginning. While I can see some of the audience already wanting to tune out, I encourage you to think why these topics generate less interest than they deserve. At the very least it'll help my new segment responding to positive and unkind emails that I've been getting.
Julia Claire Wallace: On Performance Art, The Houston Scene, Experimental Action 2017, And Contemplating Nudity
This week artist Julia Claire Wallace stops by to talk about Performance Art, the scene it has in Houston, and her role setting up the Experimental Action festival I was invited to earlier this year. We talked about the functions of Art, and what makes Performance Art stand out from performing arts such as music and theater. Julia along with other dedicated folks such as Evan McCarley are the kinds of people that make Houston special: Dedicated people who will work, even if they lose money, all out of love for their craft. This conversation is down to earth and really accessible for those who aren't knowledgeable about Houston's art scene, something the folks at Experimental Action have worked diligently on. Julia's site can be reached here: http://www.juliaclairewallace.com/collaborative.html An example of a performance art piece can be found here, a piece by Abel Azcona: https://vimeo.com/89459627 The site for the festival I attended and wrote about can be found here: https://experimentalaction.com/ Further information about Houston's Performance Art scene can be found here: http://www.performancearthouston.com/ Here are some extra pictures of Experimental Action and the fun I had afterwards, also Sean PenAlber's lovely orange hat pops up!
Debi Jackson is the founder of Gender Inc, and the mother of Avery Jackson, who is the first transgender person to appear on the cover of National Geographic. She is an advocate for the trans community, and the recipient of a lot of nasty threatening emails condemning her and her family. This week she stops by to share her journey, and how she has come to be so vocal and supportive of a community that is particularly misunderstood and mistreated. For someone who has been shown so much hate and has faced threats of harm to herself and her family, Debi is full of love and acceptance in such a surprising way. Anyone would be blessed to have a parent who loved them as much as she loves her daughter and son. It was a joy to have her on and learn about her family's journey. You can find Avery's book "It's Okay To Sparkle" at this link http://averyjackson.rocks Debi apparently gets a lot of hate mail, so all haters are welcome to come on and talk their issues out on my show or in text by contacting me via email.
This week, a guest name "D" stops by to talk about his job as an air traffic controller, life in the military, the myth of America as a Christian nation, and the importance of separation of church and state in reference to See You At The Pole prayer events at local schools where some teachers are allowed to interact inappropriately in a religious capacity with students. This episode has considerably less listening and more talking on my part, and I'm really happy with how this conversation played out. Because of job concerns and previous threats my guest has received his identity is being kept anonymous. Also a live recording error left in and a passage from Thomas Paine's "Age Of Reason"! D is a freethinker and a true patriot, it was an honor to have him on my show.
This week, the Taylor Swift of boxing himself, Cam F. Awesome stops by to chat boxing, the importance of getting whooped, why the news is a total bummer, the God question, and what he has in common with Plato. This is by far the most casual episode of the show, it was great to have Cam on. The quality was a little bit buggy this time, which is an equipment error I'm lining out now. Cam Awesome is a boxer with a slew of titles, as well as a comedian, speaker, and a surprisingly good guy to talk to. You can check out Cam's podcast here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/awesome-talks/id1210572685?mt=2, and his twitter here: https://twitter.com/camfawesome?lang=en
If you care about freedom of speech, civil liberties, activism, the right to call an officer of the law a name unbecoming of his mother (not that you should do such a thing), or think that the LGBTQ community deserves the same basic rights as anyone else, then you may have heard of Ray Hill. This is one of a few recordings we did. This week Ray talks about activism and ways we can get involved in making Houston a better place to live. Also discussed, is his experience leaving a career as an evangelist (a topic covered more in a future episode), and coming out of the closet as a gay man who would later become an important part of Houston's LGBTQ community. Soon we will put up Ray's story of being a Christian evangelist and what led him to leave that profession. Ray Hill is a treasure and I'm lucky to have had him as a guest. If you have not I have his CV attached at the end of this post: Sorry for the length but it is worth the read to understand just how much of an honor it is to have him in Houston and as my guest. Seventy-six year old native Houstonian. Graduated from Galena Park Public Schools; Attended Steven F Austin State University, University of Houston, Tulane University, New Orleans, no degrees. Came out as a gay man to my family and at Galena Park High School in [...]