Funny, not funny

Things that make you go, “Hmmm…”

I fell asleep the other night thinking about a couple people I’d like to have on The Gearhead Project one day; people who, for whatever reason, I feel I’d like the program to be a little bit more polished before bringing them on.

Not to suggest guest so far have been anything less than exceptional—I haven’t been THIS excited about Gearbox Magazine in years, frankly, and it’s in large part due to the quality of the people I’ve been speaking with to this end. Just that there are a couple folks out there I’d like to get really, deeply meta with on the subject of gearhead parallel, that’s all.

Part of me said, “Just get them on the show and have fun. That’s what it’s all about. Besides, these people will likely be on several times over the years. And how much more polished do you really need this to get, anyway?”

My mind shifted to thoughts of how I might up my game in the podcast department… A case for my Blue Snowball mic so I’m not taking it on-location in the flimsy, cardboard box it came in. A pop filter to block the dreaded “plosives.” An adjustable arm to position the mic just right for more consistent sound quality.

But why stop there? I thought about how Andrew and Brad have multiple microphones for hosting multiple guests, and how they all wear monitors (headphones) to get everyone on the level. I thought about how buttery smooth Justin Gray’s Driven & Co. podcast intro is, and how James Altucher tweaks his own voice to sound more “radio-y” in the intro to The James Altucher Show.”

I wondered what my garage podcast setup might look like in two or three years as I work toward those squad goals. Would I have sound dampening materials up to reduce sounds-like-he’s-in-the-bathroom reverb (echoes).

Would I still be leading off with my almost-trademarked, “Recorded live from a Phoenix garage after the kid goes to bed” schtick? What am I going to do come summer, when it’s still over 100° at 9PM? Will I have noisy fan? A small window air conditioner?

Maybe by the end of summer I’ll be including the temperature so I can point back to the early days of The Gearhead Project and say, “If I can stay up until midnight on a work night in a 100-degree garage to do this, you can start a business from your garage.”

“Recorded live in a 100° Phoenix garage after the kid went to bed, this is The Gearhead Project.”

Or, “Recorded live in a Phoenix garage after the kid went to bed, this is The Gearhead Project—and it’s 100° in here tonight.” You know, document the hustle for prosperity’s sake.

Lying there in the dark, imagining what my situation might look like in a couple years, I pictured myself being considerably more professional about things than I am now. And that’s when I heard myself say it.

“It’s 100° at 10PM on a Tuesday night. And you’re listening to The Gearhead Project, on the Gearhead Podcast Exchange Network.”

The “Gearhead Podcast eXchange Network.”

Abbreviated “GPXN.”

Lulz. (Damn these ideas.)

Funny, not funny.

10 things my first 10 podcast episodes taught me

More or less in order of importance.

1. I talk too much.

2. I’m really getting better at this. Because I’m reviewing every minute of what are proving incredibly important conversations and can’t help but feel compelled to be a better host.

3. This is preserving a record of the automotive Zeitgeist. It’s a look into the life of the post-modern gearhead; empowered and handicapped by unlimited access to information.

4. Which means these conversations are the closest I’ve probably ever been to real, actual journalism in going on 10 years of running my own magazine.

5. I made it harder than it had to be in the beginning. And it got better as it got simpler.

6. The better the episodes go, the more motivated I am to hurry up and get them buttoned up and published. Momentum is a hell of a drug.

7. I’m pretty sure, most of the time, both my guest and I discover something new in the process. It’s an exciting experience.

8. I need to do a better job of marketing these conversations. They deserve a wider audience.

9. These conversations prove work-life parallel is in all of us—but we don’t always recognize it.

10. Gearbox Magazine just turned into Work-Life Parallel Evolution II, imo. #stoked

I wonder what I’ll know when I hit 20 episodes…

Million Dollar Idea: 1:1 Scale R/C

Discovered while recording TGP with Robert Fuge the other night.

If modern cars have electronic throttle, steering, and brakes, shouldn’t somebody offer a black box that plugs into the CAN bus port allowing remote vehicle control with a modern, 4-channel Airtronics or Futaba radio?

$2,000,000 idea if it’s scalable to a web connected app. James Bond style.

EDIT: Interestingly, I wrote this in Google Docs. The next day, Google suggested I read an article about a guy who built his own, full-scale R/C Honda Civic. #theylive