Men in Gorilla Suits
Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 152: Last Seen…On Vacation

A woman splashed by ocean waves - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 152: Last Seen…On VacationNo, the title of this episode doesn't mean the Gorillamen have bolted into the trees to take a vacation hiatus from the podcast (although Christopher is taking his last vacation day of the year as this week's episode is being put together). With so many people taking time off at the end of the year, we decided to dedicate an episode to taking vacations.

* * *

We begin with our earliest memories of vacations and where we went (and what we did), and then we define what constitutes a vacation in our minds. After that, we discuss our best -- and worst -- vacations.

When people think "vacation," they often think of exotic locations that cost a bit of money for the trip. But can you take a vacation when you don't have much money?

We are connected more than ever, and that can mean an issue when announcing you are taking a vacation in certain areas. People you may know, there, want to see you, but all you want is to get away from it all and spend time alone, with your significant other, or your family. How do we deal with this situation? Find out!

Some people love taking vacations with family and friends, while others like keeping it to a significant other or immediate family. Find out if we like vacations with a group of friends and family, or just with our wives. Also find out where we like to go on vacation: beaches, exotic locations, cities, or the middle of nowhere.

Solo travel can be a wonderful thing. We chat about whether or not we've taken a vacation with nobody else...and then we talk about a growing issue with vacation: being constantly connected. With it being the end of the year, many workaholics are using up the vacation time they didn't take during the year. We know people planning to work at least a little bit over their vacations or, at the very least, keeping up with email daily. (How that isn't work is beyond us.) Is the actual getaway vacation a thing of the past when living in an always-connected society?

Traveling can be expensive, and sometimes when you finally get a break from work or the busy pace of life, the last thing you want to do is manage an itinerary and still have a schedule shoved in your face. Many people opt for a "staycation" when they have time off work. Is the staycation a valid vacation and, if so, do we like them?

The world is a big, wonderful place, but there are still dangerous places out there. Find out if there are places we'd love to see, but are afraid to visit -- and then find out what our dream vacations are.

We wrap up this week's episode by discussing our next planned vacations.

Have you had a wonderful vacation you'd love to chat about (or a tale of a vacation gone wrong)? Tell us about it in the comments!

Direct download: migs152.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:51am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 151: Last Seen…Using Social Media

Various social media icons - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 151: Last Seen…Using Social MediaIf stats for Men in Gorilla Suits tell us anything, it's that many of you are reminded about new episodes through social media.

Chances are, your parents and even grandparents are on Facebook. Once "the next big thing hits," and is proclaimed the killer of the previous network or app, something new comes along to take its place.

Our desire to communicate in short bits of information seems to know no boundaries. Social media now drives revolutions and political campaigns. It's a way to stay in touch with people all over the world or sell the things you make. What was once seen as a risk by companies is now an asset.

But it's not all a wonderful thing. Some studies show that social media makes many people feel bad. Despite being connected in ways we never imagined, it leaves many feeling more lonely than ever. But is that the fault of the social networks, or the person using them?

It's a topic that interests us enough that when Shawn pitched this show, Christopher thought, "We've done that one already..."

But we haven't (we just talk about social media a lot). So, finally, it's a show dedicated to social media.

* * *

We kick it off talking about the first social media platforms we ever used -- going as far as why we joined the particular site. Then we chat about Facebook: when and why we joined.

Many people use social media to stay in touch with friends. We chat about which friends we stay in touch with through social media, and then talk about whether or not we have friends who refuse to use social networks.

It seems with each new network that a lot of hype surrounds the launch of new things. Does social media live up to its hype?

There are people (like Christopher) who tire of it all and take breaks. We discuss how often we take social media breaks, going as far as covering if there are some networks we avoid more than others. But even those taking breaks return: we talk about why that is.

Like it or not, social media is part of life. We chat about how life would be different without it, and then jump to the goofiest -- and best -- uses for social media we've seen. We also talk about the most annoying, tone-deaf use for social media.

We wrap it all up as we often do, talking about the future -- this time, the future of social media.

Comments are just another form of social media, and we'd love to hear what you think about it all in the comments for this episode.

Direct download: migs151.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:38am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 150: Last Seen…Creating a Body of Work

Pile of cut logs - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 150: Last Seen…Creating a Body of WorkWhen we look at something big, our minds are conditioned to say, "Damn, that's big!" Many people will never look at something big and see all the tiny pieces that make up the big thing. Because of that, it seems some people think creating substantial things is beyond them. For every thousand people who say, "Someday I'll finally write the best selling novel I know I have in me," is a person who probably actually does have it in them, but believes it's simply beyond them for a variety of reasons.

  • "I don't know how to start..."
  • "I don't have that kind of luck..."
  • And the biggie: "I don't have the time..."

There are busy writers people look up to who shoot for 250 words a day. Over the course of a year, they have a novel. Inside a couple years, they have a body of work.

But not everything takes as long as a novel. A handful of paintings for a gallery show can be a body of work. Sure, we may not see all the paintings and sketches that got the artist to that point in what they do, but even those sketches in a pile compose a body of work.

With podcasting, one might hear that 7 is a magic number -- that if someone hit 7 shows, they will probably hit 20 or 25. Some shows have an arc that ends, and some are open. Some people have recorded thousands of episodes. We've recorded 150 episodes, which is enough that we decided -- in celebration -- to make our 150th episode all about what goes into a body of work.

* * *

We kick off the episode talking about the first body of work we ever created and quickly jump to what we think is the most impressive body of work ever created. Next, we discuss which body of work we've created that is our favorite -- and our favorite body of work produced by another person. What makes up a body of work -- how big does something have to be? We chat about that, as well as the benefits of producing a body of work.

The world is full of people who want to make things, but don't. We devote some time to why we think some people have a hard time creating a body of work -- and offer advice about how to get started.

Recurring elements appear in most bodies of work. We talk about how important consistency of theme is in creating a lasting body of work, and then chat about the strangest body of work we've ever seen.

After that, we hop into our imaginary time machines to discuss who we'd go back in time to watch work if we could, and we wrap it all up by discussing the next bodies of work we plan on making.

We'd love to hear about what you've made in the comments. (Feel free to link to stuff -- we love seeing what others are up to.)

Direct download: migs150.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 3:52pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 149: Last Seen…Being Collegiate

College footbal team from early 1900s - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 149: Last Seen…Being CollegiateFrom a young age, many of us are primed to believe that college is a thing that will happen after high school. Despite the staggering debt many carry after graduating college, you are more likely to earn more over your lifetime with a college degree. At the same time, many of the wealthiest people out there have dropped out of college or never attended at all. Some have such fond memories of college that they have a hard time leaving it behind, going to their graves die-hard fans of their old school's sports teams and towns; others have no problem leaving it all behind.

We've spent our time in colleges, so we decided to dedicate this week's show to college.

* * *

We begin by talking about where we went to college and when we started. After that, we discuss the major social movements at the colleges we attended.

Find out if we ever lived on campus and how much what jobs we held while attending college. Also find out how many different colleges we attended.

We then chat about all our different majors and why we chose them (and changed them). Next, we talk about how long we attended college -- and whether or not we graduated.

A college degree is the thing many of us are told, from a young age, is the only thing that can lead to success. But is that really true? We then devote some time to whether or not our degree/lack of degree has helped or harmed out careers and also talk about whether or not college is even a necessity?

Before wrapping the episode up, we cover our best -- and worst -- college memories. Finally, find out what we'd do differently if we had our college years to do all over again.

Whether you've been to college or not, feel free to chime in in the comments.

Direct download: migs149.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 5:00pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 148: Last Seen…Changing Lives

A person standing on a mountaintop - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 148: Last Seen…Changing LivesFor some, it comes as an epiphany: just like that, their lives are changed forever. For others, it can be triggered by a place or event. For most of us, it comes slowly, but it happens to all of us at some point.

Our lives change.

We hope it's from something wonderful, like in the movies. In a flash, everything is wonderful and makes sense forever. It's long been the stuff of entertainment, the promise that we matter and that life is wonderful. But for most of us, it comes through harder things: a life-threatening illness, or the sudden loss of a loved one.

Life changes, and that's what we're talking about this week.

* * *

We begin by talking about the first time we felt like we experienced a life-changing event, and then we jump to the age we feel most people experience the most change in life. After that we discuss whether or not we stop having life-changing events by the time we reach adulthood, or if that's when we're most likely to have them.

Next, we chat about the biggest life-changing events in our lives and the effect they had on us. Find out if we've ever changed somebody else's life, and which books, movies, or other things have affected us deeply. Then we get specific and talk about some other bigger life-changing events in our lives.

We devote some time to whether or not the relative safety of suburban existence creates more or fewer life-changing events, and then talk about bucket lists: are they all they're cracked up to be?

Some people fear the changes we go through as we age. We discuss whether or not we fear the future, and if we believe that life changes when we reach milestone ages in life.

We close it all out with the life-changing events we haven't experienced that we hope to experience sometime in the future.

How has your life changed? Feel free to discuss it in the comments.

Direct download: migs148.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 5:32am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 147: Last Seen…Procrastinating

Lazt view of feet while lying down in a park - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 147: Last Seen…ProcrastinatingWhen we started Men in Gorilla Suits, we made an agreement to post episodes on Thursdays. It works out that we usually post on Wednesdays, though...with the rare Thursday posting.

With a holiday week in the states, we're posting on a Tuesday. It is not wasted on us that there's a certain humor in us posting an episode about procrastination two days early.

* * *

We begin this episode talking about if we are (or have ever been) procrastinators. After that [spoiler alert] we discuss the reasons we procrastinate -- going as far as chatting about the worst thing we've put off for later.

If you listen that far into the episode, you'll know we see strength in proper procrastination. We devote some time to when procrastination has been the best course of action in our lives before talking about the last thing we put off.

If you've ever wondered, "Who is the worst procrastinator the Gorilla Men know?" -- we answer that question. We also answer this one: "Why do humans procrastinate?"

We close out the episode discussing whether or not procrastination is generally a good or bad thing.

As always, the comments section awaits your feedback; you know, whenever you get around to it...

Direct download: migs147.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 4:32pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 146: Last Seen…Being Powerful

The power we wield because of this podcast is staggering. We stand like two gods above the masses, our voices swaying your every thought!

Okay, so not really to any of that. We're just two guys with a podcast. (No one's ever done that before!) Some might say the listeners hold power over us; that if you didn't listen, we would have nothing. (Of course, if you listen regularly, you know we'd do this even if no one showed up. This podcast is simply about a good friendship, which -- to us -- is one of the most powerful things out there. We're like My Little Pony, without all the colors and cutie marks...although we both have tattoos (Shawn far outnumbering Christopher...we might even talk about that in this episode...we record often enough that it all kind of runs together. Sometime, recently, we talked about tattoos.))

Anyway...this week is the power-talk mashup. We talk about power as a thing many crave, but we also talk about power as physical strength and even pure energy. You even get to hear tales of minor (and not so minor) electrocutions. (Self inflicted, at that! We never claimed the power of intelligence, but where the power of curiosity lies, we are thunder!)

Christopher loved that damn game...

* * *

We begin this episode with our first memories of something powerful...and then go right into whether or not we crave power. After that, we talk about how we deal with powerful people.

Then we hop into time machines and discuss what act of power in history we would love to go back to witness. Want to find out the most powerful things we've ever done? We cover that before sharing stories of our [stupid] encounters with electricity. (If nothing else, our heads seem fairly impervious to electric shocks. But not really. And those shocks so close to our brains might explain a thing or two about the show.)

Find out not only what super powers we'd love to have, but why we'd choose them. And then we throw out another random power topic: what's the most powerful animal? We also share when we feel our most powerful.

We get a little serious and talk about how much a problem the abuse of power is in society...and the best ways to prevent those abuses. And we wrap it all up with how power of all sorts will change in the future.

You have power of your own in the comments if you so choose to make that power known...

 

Direct download: migs146.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:55pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 145: Last Seen…Being Philosophical

How do you know you're really reading this right now? (We mean, other than you are sitting there reading and comprehending it.) So scratch that opening -- that kind of thing is not what we're into when talking about more philosophical things. We understand that at some point, many of those kinds of questions needed to be asked, but...that's not the kind of philosophy we're chatting about this week.

Every week, we drag philosophy into the show...even when dedicating an hour [and a special added interview with Christopher's mom] about poop! But it's not philosophy in the way you remember it in high school or college. Chances are, you have been philosophical about something today. And you will be tomorrow. So...we decided to finally dedicate an entire show to philosophy!

* * *

We begin by talking about the first time we were aware that there were different schools of thought in life, and then we jump right to what "philosophy" means to us. After that, we discuss the major school of philosophy we most -- and least -- identify with.

Some people consider religion and philosophy separate things (funny thing, semantics). Find out if we believe that, or if we think religions are just other philosophies. Then we chat about whether or not a philosophy can become a religion (and how it happens).

We tackle whether or not philosophy is a scalable thing (or if it's meant to be personal), before moving on to what personal codes we live by. Next, we talk about which or our core tenets have changed as we've moved through life...and which have remained the same.

As we near the end of the episode, we discuss whether or not we've taken any formal philosophy classes (and if they helped in some aspect of our lives), and then we wrap it all up with this question: "Is philosophy still relevant in today's society?"

We'd love to hear your philosophical thoughts in the comments.

Direct download: migs145.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 10:05am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 144: Last Seen…Talking about Tools

These are just some of the tools we use to create an episode of Men in Gorilla Suits:

  • Our brains
  • Smartphones
  • Web-based email
  • Cars
  • 2 Audio Technica ATR-2100 microphones
  • 2 Gator Frameworks tabletop boom mic stands
  • Zoom H6 digital recorder
  • Computers
  • The World Wide Web
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • morguefile.com or unsplash.com (for images)
  • Skype (on occasion -- like this episode)
  • Audacity
  • Auphonic
  • This website
  • Libsyn

Tools can be as complex as the International Space Station or as simple as a stick used to dig holes or defend yourself. What some deem as tools, others claim are something else. (Are our brains really tools?) But there's not a person alive who won't use a tool of some sort today. So...we decided to dedicate an entire episode to the things that make life a little better.

* * *

We begin this week's episode talking about the first tool we remember seeing, and then...the first tool we ever used that helped define who we are.

After that, we discuss a tool we regularly use that many might not consider a tool. Next, it's back to school, where we ask if the use of traditional tools was taught to us at any point during our educations.

Most people associate tools with work. We dedicate some time to talking about working jobs where we've used what most would consider traditional tools, and then we jump to the one tool we cannot live without.

We constantly find new ways of doing things, and that usually involves new tools. We talk about some recent tools we've incorporated into our lives in recent years before chatting about the most badass, tough tool we've ever used.

It's not uncommon to use tools to make new tools to fit one's needs. Find out if we've ever invented or repurposed tools for other things, and also listen to us discuss out favorite tools of the trade. After that, it's on to the one tool we do not own that we'd love to have in our possession.

We close out this week's episode talking about the future. (Big surprise, huh?) Find out if we think humans will use more tools -- or fewer tools -- in the future.

And please consider the comments section your tool for telling us what you think about this episode.

Direct download: migs144.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:14am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 143: Last Seen…Talking about Pets

We can't think of one person we know who didn't grow up with a pet of some kind. Whether a dog or a cat, fish, or something exotic, some of our earliest friendships are with animals. For many of us, we learned about the pain of death from losing a pet. Some of you are probably reading this with a pet in the room -- maybe even on your lap.

Scroll down on our About page and you'll see photos of Shawn's dogs -- we consider them part of the podcast crew.

It's about time we finally talked about pets!

* * *

We begin by talking about the first pets we remember having, and then jump to the first pet that was considered our own. Next, we discuss not only how many pets we've had, but we devote some time to the first pet we had that died.

We chat about our last/current pets before talking about whether we prefer dogs, cats, or something else entirely.

It's no secret that Shawn has a tiny Wolfpack living in his home while Christopher currently has no pets. We discuss why we have/don't have pets before talking about which we find easiest to relate to: pets or people?

We round out this episode sharing our favorite story about one of our pets and what kind of pet we'd have if we could have any kind of animal we wanted.

Definitely feel free to share a favorite pet story in the comments...hell, even links to photos!

Direct download: migs143.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 7:36am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 142: Last Seen…Listening to Live Music

ARE YOU READY TO ROCK AND ROLL?!?! (Or maybe just listen to something nice and soothing in person?)

We've been listening to live music ever since people began humming tunes and banging out a beat on whatever they found available. Music has been said to fill the soul, and live music can transcend what it is to be human. So of course we had to eventually get around to an entire show about listening to music in person!

* * *

We begin by talking about the first live music event we remember attending. After that, we discuss why live music has the appeal it has.

From there, we move on to the best -- and worst -- concerts we've ever attended...and why we feel that way. After that, find out if we prefer live music to listening to music at home, in the car, or while working.

We then talk about how often we hear live music these days and why we think we used to attend more live shows than we do today.

If you've ever lied awake at night thinking, "I wonder if Christopher or Shawn have ever been part of a live music show of some sort?" you finally get your answer. You'll also find out what we consider our favorite live music experiences.

Next, we wonder if one kind of music lends itself to a better live experience than others...and what music does it for us.

Near the end of the show, we discuss which live music experience we wish we could travel back in time and see -- and then we wrap up this week's episode talking about the future of live music.

What's the best concert you've ever attended? Let us know in the comments.

Direct download: migs142.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:41am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 141: Last Seen…Talking about Conflict

Political season in America has started. (It seems to start earlier and earlier each election cycle.) A peek into the world of the Internet reveals -- surprise, surprise! -- that people are out there arguing about politics.

Conflict might be our national pastime, so conflict is the topic for this week's show!

* * *

We begin by talking about the first time we became aware that people sometimes didn't get along. After that, we chat about the first conflict we remember having with someone.

Find out if we're the kinds of people who gravitate toward conflict, or if we avoid it whenever possible. We share our tricks for avoiding interpersonal conflicts with acquaintances -- and even those close to us. But sometimes conflict is unavoidable. We devote some time to talking about how we handle conflicts we can't avoid.

We also share the worst conflict we've ever had with another person; then we chat about whether or not we find ourselves running up against the same kinds of conflict over and over.

Want to find out if we've ever been able to resolve a long-standing conflict? We talk about that. Have we ever said or done something that conflicted with our beliefs to avoid or end a conflict? We chat about that, too.

We close it all out with this question: why do humans -- who have had many thousands of years to learn how to deal with each other -- keep having conflicts?

We'd love to hear about how you handle conflict in the comments!

Direct download: migs141.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 12:57pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 140: Last Seen…Talking about Star Wars

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...

Okay, not so long ago (1977) and not so far away (Earth) a little movie called Star Wars came out. And it's safe to say it changed movies as we know them.

It was a franchise that spawned sequels, a ridiculous amount of merchandise, and even this:

We've talked about Star Trek many times on the show, but this week it's all about Star Wars!

* * *

We begin by talking about how old we were when we first saw a Star Wars movie...and what the experience was like. After that, we move on to how important Star Wars was in our lives when we were younger. Now that we're adults, do the movies carry the same weight?

Did you know there are grown friggin' men who fume about the Star Wars prequels, going so far to say the prequels ruined the original trilogy for them even more than Ewoks in Return of the Jedi? (Ewoks are worse than Jar-Jar Binks, people!) Find out what we think about those who let other things ruin the movies they love. (Although it's probably more than evident with these lines...and if you've listened to the show enough, you know our answers already.)

Another thing people say destroyed the franchise was George Lucas constantly tinkering with the original trilogy. Find out our thoughts about a world full of computer-generated effects juxtaposed with people in rubber masks!

Next, we discuss our favorite -- and least favorite -- Star Wars characters. (Hint: Shawn's entire back is covered in a giant Jar-Jar Binks tattoo and Christopher has Watto tattooed on his chest!)

When talking about the structure of the original trilogy, one can't claim it's a very complex thing. Based on the Hero's Journey concept culled from Joseph Campbell's The Hero with a Thousand Faces, we talk about whether or not the structure of the original trilogy works for us.

We get a new Star Wars movie in December. We talk about the teaser trailers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens and whether or not we're looking forward to the next Star Wars movie.

In between the movies, fans have read Star Wars books, played video games based on the movies, and watched Star Wars cartoons. Find out how much of the Star Wars expanded universe we've consumed. (And laugh as Shawn introduces Christopher to this:)

Near the end of the episode, we get geeky and talk about which one Star Wars character we'd be if we could...and why.

And like so many episodes, we wrap it up by talking about the future -- this time, the future of the Star Wars franchise.

As always, we'd love to hear your thoughts about Star Wars in the comments.

 

Direct download: migs140.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:23am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 139: Last Seen…Talking about Criminal Justice

Depending on who you ask, the American justice system is the best in the world, or it has a long way to go to clean up its problems. Probably no surprise that we lean toward, "We have a lot to fix, but it could be worse."

Friggin' optimists!

But we're not Pollyannas because we probably spend more time this episode talking about what is wrong with justice in America than what's right.

* * *

We kick it off with a couple questions: Have you ever had an experience with the American criminal justice system? If so, what was the first?

America loves court-room dramas, so we jump on the bandwagon and talk about whether or not we've ever been to court as a plaintiff or defendant. (Since we've posted Shawn's mugshot before, you at least have a good guess with one of the Gorillamen...)

Shawn Kupfer's Mugshot
Shawn shot a man in Reno...just to watch him die. That, or he might have just had a traffic warrant he got hauled in on. (Or he led a suicide cult to the grand comet in the ether...listen and find out the truth!)

Then we jump to whether or not we have turned to the American justice system for any sort of legal recourse.

We talk about our impression of the American criminal justice system before devoting some time to whether or not our courts work...and what might work better?

Americans like to think we are fair, but do we really practice what we preach? (Innocent until proven guilty, reasonable doubt, etc.?) Also, do we think most people found guilty of crimes actually committed them?

We devote some time to whether or not mandatory sentences are good things, before talking about if we sentence people too harshly, too light, or all-out inconsistently.

Americans are often all, "USA!!! USA!!! USA!!!" but is it merited for the U.S. having the best justice system on the planet, or do other countries put us to shame? (Like...maybe at least a dozen or so?)

Finally, we wrap it up with how we'd change the current system.

We'd love to hear about any run-ins with the legal system (or just what you'd do if you were in charge) you've had in the comments.

Direct download: migs139.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:12pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 138: Last Seen…Playing Role Playing Games

You hold in your hand a rectangular device with a smooth glass screen.

Are there any buttons on it?

There appear to be, yes.

I press one.

The screen lights up with a passcode message.

I make a hacking roll.

[The Game Master mutters to self: Okay, unfamiliar device modifier -1, but universal hacking kit (electronic) +2. Simple code +1...]

Okay, you need a 13 or less.

[Player rolls 3 6-sided dice. A 9.]

You make it past the passcode block. On the screen before you are rows of icons.

I look for one that says Podcast.

You find it.

I tap the icon and subscribe to Men in Gorilla Suits.

Wise choice. Give yourself a million experience points!

Ah, role playing games. Most people, even if they've never played one, have heard of Dungeons and Dragons. But D&D only scratches the surface of the world of role playing games (RPGs). We take our dice bags from our belts and roll a critical hit on this episode of Men in Gorilla Suits.

* * *

We begin with the first role playing game (RPG) we ever played...and how old we were when we first played it. After that, we discuss the effect RPGs have had on us.

We knock out our favorite -- and least favorite -- RPGs...and why we made our choices. Want to find out the most obscure RPG we've played? We share that as well.

After talking about the one RPG we'd love to see that hasn't been made yet, we talk about how RPGs have helped us as writers. On the subject of writing, find out if we've ever thought about writing for RPGs.

Also find out if we've crossed the threshold into Live Action Role Playing Games (and what we think about them). Then we go online and talk about World of Warcraft and other massively multiplayer role playing games (MMORPGs). Find out if we've played any...and if so, which ones. Before stepping back to our paper character sheets, we talk about how MMORPGs compare to tabletop RPGs.

And we wrap it all up talking about what the future holds for role playing games. (Somehow, Christopher totally forgot to mention Storium in this episode!)

Feel free to share your favorite RPG moments in the comments...and may all your rolls be 3s or 20s, depending what game you're playing...

Direct download: migs138.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:45am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 137: Last Seen…Talking about Marriage and Relationships

Marriage is one of those things we're conditioned to accept as our future from a young age.

We can both remember relatives talking about, "When you're older and get married..." for almost as long as we've been able to retain bits of the past in our brainmeats! It's a thing we're just supposed to do as humans.

This leads to all kinds of wackiness: people spending more on weddings and honeymoons than they can afford; people judging how much a person loves another by the size of an engagement ring. Some people say, "What's wrong with them?" about people who aren't married, as though marriage is the only thing that defines us in adulthood. Hell, some people (even those married multiple times who can't seem to get it right), fume that same-sex couples who have been together for decades and had to hide their love for many reasons are now able to [FINALLY!] legally marry. (So far, the damage to my marriage -- and all my heterosexual friends -- that was promised if same-sex marriage were legalized hasn't happened. Funny how that worked out...almost like love is stronger than ignorance and those into fear mongering.)

But marriage can also be wonderful. Since we're optimistic guys, we tend to lean that way, and decided to make marriage (and relationships) the topic of this week's episode.


* * *

We begin by trumpeting our massive dating prowess. Or...we would have if we had any actual moves in the past. Really, we open up this episode amazed we're not steeping in our own waste and wondering how we ended up with intelligent, awesome women in our lives. But before marriage, there were dates. We discuss out first dates before chatting about how good we are at dating (based on a scale of 1-10).

If you listen to the show regularly, you know we're both married. Find out how long we've been "officially" married in society's eyes; then find out how long we've been with our wives.

Some movies portray love as this pure thing where there is just a one and only, but [unless you're Christopher, who almost peed himself at the mere thought of talking to a girl, let alone actually doing so] most people have had a boyfriend/girlfriend (or two) before meeting the person they married. Also, find out if we were ever convinced we'd marry someone other than our spouses.

Running with the idea that we're conditioned to have views about marriage from a young age, find out if marriage is what we imagined when we were younger -- or if it's much different than we were led to believe. We then talk about whether or not we feel we are in good marriages.

People love to give unsolicited advice and opinions. We talk about the best -- and worst -- pieces of marriage advice we've been given. After that, we talk about the best -- and worst -- things about being married.

We wrap up this episode by looking toward the future and asking, "If you were to be single at some point in the future, would you date/marry again?"

We'd love to hear funny/sad/wonderful relationship and marriage stories in the comments -- including some of the best (and worst) bits of advice you've ever been given.

Direct download: migs137.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 4:51pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 136: Last Seen...Watching Online Video

Chances are, if you've taken a peek at any social network or news site, you've seen an online video today. Chances are good that it began playing all by itself. Maybe you have things you subscribe to on YouTube. Or perhaps your thing is the Netflix binge-watch.

Online video has not only changed the way we watch news, entertain ourselves, or even take part in production -- there are still so many horizons to be crossed as technology improves.

This week, it's an audio show about online video.

* * *

We kick it all off back in the days of extreme buffering issues and downloading things from Usenet as we talk about the first online videos we ever saw. After that, we leap to the present and share how often we watch videos online.

Next, we move on to the appeal of online video and how online content has changed the way stories are told with video cameras. We share some of our favorite online videos...stuff like this:

And this:

Made by Hand / No 2 The Knife Maker from Made by Hand on Vimeo.

And hell, even this:

Turns from Breakwater Studios Ltd. on Vimeo.

Oh, and why not this (Not Safe for Work):

Or this (We are not classy individuals):

After sharing some of our favorite online videos, we talk about videos we've made for online viewing.

While we've made videos and put them online, we are far from famous. Some people, though, have turned online video into very lucrative careers. We talk about the phenomenon of YouTube superstars and discuss if they are real celebrities...or something else entirely. We also chat about our feelings about something that seems to bother a lot of people: those who seem to constantly document their lives with video.

For some, online video is really about marketing. Online video changed content marketing; we discuss whether or not it's ever worked on us.

It seems there is always some new way of sharing video online. Find out if we think apps like Meercat (you remember that, right?), Periscope, Blab, and others will eventually give YouTube a challenge.

Online video has been around long enough that it has become a media staple. Now that it's been around a while, can it become as important as film or television? (Has it already reached that point, or even passed it?)

We end this episode as we typically do -- looking toward the future. What is the future of online video?

We'd love to hear your feelings about online video in the comments...and even see videos you've made or appeared in.

Direct download: migs136.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:05am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 135: Last Watching True Crime TV

Earlier today, old-school wrestling legend, Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka was arrested for the 1983 death of his girlfriend. (Figured if we're providing a link about the story, it may as well be a TMZ link!) Soon, the story will be a thing on a variety of true-crime television shows.

True crime TV is so big, entire cable networks are dedicated to the stories behind the murders and capers. It doesn't matter if it's unknown people in a no-name town or a huge celebrity trial after a low-speed chase in a white Ford Bronco -- the viewing population has a hunger for crime stories.

So we decided to talk about it on this week's episode of Men in Gorilla Suits.

* * *

We begin by talking about the first true crime TV shows (or "Murder Shows," as Shawn likes to call them), we remember watching. After that, we talk about the most recent murder show we've watched. (And it will become apparent why Shawn pitched this topic.)

Everybody needs a favorite murder show, right? We talk about our faves, and then we discuss if it's a problem that there are so many of these shows that an entire network can run them 24/7.

Then we get a little more specific and chat about the following crimes we've seen on these shows:

  • The most interesting murder tale.
  • The saddest murder tale.
  • The goofiest murder tale.
  • The biggest murder tale.

If you watch enough of these shows, patterns emerge. One such pattern is that more than a handful of Eagle Scouts have gone on to commit murders. We talk about why that might be -- and then move on to revealing if we've ever worried that our spouses might have thought about killing us for insurance money.

We wrap up the weeks episode talking about the show we wish would just go away.

Do you watch true crime television shows? If so, please share your thoughts in the comments.

Direct download: migs135.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 4:41pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 134: Last Seen…Moving

It was Christopher's turn to come up with the week's show idea. He had plenty to choose from, but as he's been helping his mom move to a new place, the idea came:

We've all moved, so...why not do a show about moving?

And so it came to pass that this week's show came to life.

And it was good...

(Except all the singing in this episode. Our [vague] apologies...)

* * *

We begin this week's show talking about the first time we ever moved...and the first time we actually remember moving. After that, it's on to how many times we've moved in our lifetimes.

After that, find out the best -- and worst -- places we've ever lived. Then we discuss where in America -- and the world -- we'd move to if we could. Since the places in America Christopher considers comes from places he's visited while working, we then talk about whether or not we've ever moved for a job.

Moving is a mundane act. Box after box is packed, moved, and eventually unloaded. Along the way, though, sometimes interesting things happen. We share some moving stories before moving on to our favorite -- and least favorite -- things about moving someplace new.

As many times as we've moved, we talk about where we might move to next...and then we wrap up the week's episode talking about the future of moving. Will people move more (or less) in the future?

We'd love to hear your favorite places and moving stories in the comments.

Direct download: migs134.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 3:25pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 133: Last Seen…In Space

Pillars of Creation - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 133: Last Seen…In Space[We apologize in advance for all the links to songs and videos. (But not really)]

* * *

"We're on a space race, baby..."

Space...it's been called the final frontier...

"Open the pod bay doors, HAL..."

It's kind of hard to believe we've gone 132 episodes without dedicating an episode to space.

Oh, sure, we talked about space in our first episode (and so many episodes since that time), but have yet to do a show completely about space.

* * *

We begin this episode talking about the first time we were aware that the earth was nothing more than just another planet in space. In this part of the show, you get to hear Christopher sign some of this. His voice will not go high. It is a terrible moment. He apologizes for the auditory agony inflicted on you. (Come on, that song is like being subjected to the music from the Hobbit cartoon over and over and over. It's not a pretty thing...)

Next, we talk about when we first became interested in space...and when Americans, as a whole, seemed to stop caring about space.

Space exploration has given us things we first only imagined in movies and on television. We chat about the coolest things space exploration has brought to Earth and...the coolest development in space technology in our opinions. But we stick with the "important" theme and talk about the best space-related event in our lifetimes/memories...as well as discuss the next most important thing we should do in space.

Mars Science Lab Landing
Christopher and his wife monitor the landing of the Curiosity science lab (all while live-texting Shawn).

But dumb things have happened in space...and we talk about some faves before devoting some time to the weirdest space-program story we've heard.

So many of us came to love space through movies. We wrap up this episode with our favorite movies about space (Star Trek and Star Wars excluded), and go deeper into the void as we talk about the future of space exploration.

We know there are space-loving geeks out there who would just love to leave a comment, so...have at it, cosmonauts!

And always...ALWAYS remember this:

Direct download: migs133.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:55pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 132: Last Seen…Talking about the Aughts

Ah, the aughts. Full of flagpole sitters and work riots. The assassination of President McKinley and man's first powered flight.

Such times...such times...

Wait, not the early 1900s...

We all got a taste of the future in...the year 2000!

Things were much different in the year 2000...

* * *

We begin this episode (the last in our series about decades we've lived in) by talking about our best — and worst — memories from the aughts. After that, we discuss some favorite things from the time: music, movies, and television in particular.

What did we think were the big news stories about the 00s? It's pretty obvious, so we instead talk about where we were when we heard about the attack on that Tuesday morning in September, 2001. Then we discuss what we consider the technological events of the decade.

After that, we imagine we have a time machine and the power to change the world. Find out what we would do if we could go back to the aughts and make one change about the decade. Then we talk about our greatest accomplishments in the 00s.

We devote some time to the best and worst things to come out of the aughts, and then we wrap up the episode talking about the one word we’d use to describe the decade.

We know we have an audience spanning many decades; we’d love to hear your thoughts about the aughts in the comments.

Direct download: migs132.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:25am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 131: Last Seen…Talking about the 90s

We were going to write a dope intro, here, but we're too apathetic.

Meh...

Some band in the 90s said it best:

Here we are now, entertain us...

Meh...

* * *

We begin this episode by talking about our best — and worst — memories from the 90s. After that, we discuss some favorite things from the time: music, movies, and television in particular.

What did we think were the big news stories about the 90s? Find out before we discuss what we consider the technological events of the decade.

Then we imagine we have a time machine and the power to change the world. Find out what we would do if we could go back to the 90s and make one change about the decade. After that, we talk about our greatest accomplishments in the 90s.

We devote some time to the best and worst things to come out of the 90s, and then we wrap up the episode talking about the one word we’d use to describe the decade.

We know we have an audience spanning many decades; we’d love to hear your thoughts about the 90s in the comments.

Direct download: migs131.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 5:03pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 130: Last Seen…Talking about the 80s

Twist away the gates of steel and step into the future...by taking a walk back to the 1980s. (The last decade Gen X was ever happy!)

Burn out your retinas on all that neon!

Hear synthesizers and drum machines in your sleep.

Remember how cool hanging out at the mall was? (We wonder what happened to that guy who mastered Dragon's Lair at the mall arcade -- what is he doing today?)

Oh yeah, don't forget the shadow of complete planetary annihilation hanging over us all ("Damn, commies!")  during what many consider the happiest times America has ever seen...

We begin this episode by talking about our best -- and worst -- memories from the 80s. After that, we discuss some favorite things from the time: music, movies, and television in particular.

What did we think were the big news stories about the 80s? Find out before we discuss what we consider the technological events of the decade.

Then we imagine we have a time machine and the power to change the world. Find out what we would do if we could go back to the 80s and make one change about the decade. After that, we talk about our greatest accomplishments in the 80s.

We devote some time to the best and worst things to come out of the 80s, and then we wrap up the episode talking about the one word we'd use to describe the decade.

We know we have an audience spanning many decades; we'd love to hear your thoughts about the 80s in the comments.

Direct download: migs130.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:44am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 129: Last Seen…Talking about the 70s

Disco!

That's what many people think about (or remember) when asked to recall anything about the 70s.

Others think about long, blocky cars and gritty movies. Obviously, Nixon and Watergate drop into the minds of others. Vietnam was still going on, and soon those long, blocky cars would be in winding lines waiting for gasoline.

The 70s were an interesting time -- in a way, it was a decade that had a great affect on the decades that followed. (We were driving head-first into some big issues and didn't turn or hit the brakes; some might even say we stepped on the gas and are reaping much of what we sowed in a decade that defined America.)

We begin this episode by talking about our best -- and worst -- memories from the 70s. After that, we discuss some favorite things from the time: music, movies, and television in particular.

For many, the big news story of the 70s was the end of the Vietnam War and Nixon's impeachment following the Watergate scandal. But for us, other news stories bubbled up.

Near the end of the 70s was the beginning of a technological boom that would change the world forever. Find out what we consider the technological events of the decade.

Then we imagine we have a time machine and the power to change the world. Find out what we would do if we could go back to the 70s and make one change about the decade. (Don't worry disco fans, we would not get rid of the music...) After that, we talk about our greatest accomplishments in the 70s. (Which is kind of funny, considering Shawn was born mid-way through 1978!)

We devote some time to the best and worst things to come out of the 70s, and then we wrap up the episode talking about the one word we'd use to describe the decade.

We know we have an audience spanning many decades; we'd love to hear your thoughts about the 70s in the comments.

(We'll now return you to the funk...)

Direct download: migs129.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 7:50pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 128: Last Seen…Reading Children's Literature

Most of us have memories of the earliest stories read to us...or stories we read on our own. We often carry lessons from those stories into adulthood. Children's literature kickstarts imagination, and reminds the adults reading to children that maybe they'd do well to slow down a little and let their imaginations run wild.

This week's show is all about children's literature.

We begin by talking about the first book we remember from childhood. Was it a work of children's literature, or something else? After that, we move on to the first book we remember reading on our own. We wrap up the intro to the show listing some of our favorite children's books. (Shawn just might win, were it a competition!)

At some point, books move on from pictures and simple tales to something more complex. We discuss what transitional books affected us when we were younger.

While we rarely plug our own books on the podcast, it's not a big secret that we both write. Find out if we've ever had a desire to write children's literature.

Fantasy worlds are often used in children's literature. We discuss why we think that's so common before we talk about our favorite -- and least favorite -- things about children's literature.

Good stories feature good characters. Find out who our favorite characters are from children's literature...and whether or not either of us have bought children's literature or picture books as adults.

We close out this week's show by talking about how children's literature has affected us as adults -- and what the future of children's literature is in a digital age.

We'd love to hear what your favorite works from childhood are...chat away in the comments!

Direct download: migs128.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 5:55pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 127: Last Seen…Talking about Work/Life Balance

The people of Dothan, Alabama are no-good slackers! But first...

At least in the United States of 'Murica, many of us had a long weekend last weekend because of the 4th of July holiday. Oh, sure...many didn't, but if they wanted it badly enough, they'd WORK for it, 'cause that's what we do in America, right?! (Obviously, that's sarcasm...but not so obvious, since we felt the need to call that out as sarcasm...)

Anyway...last weekend was a holiday for so many, a rare time when people who work hard got a little bit of a break.

America is full of people eating at their desks and answering email at 11:00 p.m. If you work in a warehouse or factory, you probably work weekends.

Work/Life balance is askew for many, so we decided to devote an entire episode to such an important thing...

We begin by talking about the first time we heard the term "work/life balance." After that, we discuss our early years...specifically, when we were introduced to someone, how often was a job the first thing they mentioned about themselves? Find out how often that occurs now -- and, when we introduce ourselves, how soon we bring up our day jobs.

Find out how much time we work each week, sleep each week, and have time to ourselves each week. (The answer to that last one might have some CEOs wishing they could pay us for free time.)

Also, find out how fluid our work schedules are before we discuss how available we make ourselves to coworkers outside of working hours. (Christopher is a right asshole, but he does not mind. Shawn is the coworker you want.)

After that, we talk about whether or not our work/life balance is in harmony, or if it is more weighed toward work or slack. Also find out, among people we know, if their work/life balances are healthy.

We wrap it all up with the future of work and life...and how they will balance...or fly apart.

We'd love to hear your thoughts about this important topic in the comments. And...we'd love to hear how you feel about Dothan, Alabama...

(Really, we LOVE Dothan, Alabama...)

Direct download: migs127.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:37pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 126: Last Seen…Talking about Change

Last week was a week of change in America. The Affordable Healthcare Act stood up (again) in the Supreme Court, and marriage equality is now a thing in all 50 states. Some people are elated; others feel like the very foundation of all they know is crumbling down around them. No matter where you stand on any issue, it's pretty clear that -- given enough time -- things change. So we decided to devote this week's show to changes of all kinds...

We begin this week's episode talking about how we feel about the Supreme Court of the United States overturning the ban on same-sex marriage. (It's probably evident where we stand on this if you've listened to any of our past shows about social justice.) Some people, however, are anything but pleased that two people of the same sex now -- finally -- have the same legal protection that Shawn and Christopher have with their wives. We devote a bit of time discussing how people can change the hearts of those standing on the precipice of being buried by history.

Almost everybody has heard the saying, "The more that things change, the more they stay the same." Find out if we think that's true -- and then hear us talk about the first big change we remember in our lives. After that, we chat about the proudest change made in our lives...and the one thing we still intend to change. Also, find out what we'd change about this podcast.

While summer in Texas seems to run from Cinco de Mayo to Halloween, seasons do occur, here. We not only discuss our favorite seasons, but why they are our favorites.

Tastes change over time; we talk about some personal changes in tastes before getting back to something more serious: how to deal with advances in technology affecting human industry and population.

Were the "good ol' days" really better than things are today? How do we think the world will change in the next 50 years? And, if we could change one thing about the world, what would that be? Find out in the final part of this week's show.

And the final final question of this week's episode: if you had a time machine and could go back and make one change in our lives, find out what those changes would be...?

Direct download: migs126.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:22am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 125: Last Seen…Talking about [Gender] Equality

Hey, we hit episode 125! In honor of that, we'll get right to it: this week, we're talking about gender equality!

We begin by talking about how old we were when we first realized that men and women were treated differently. After that, we move on to the event that made us think, "This imbalance in equality just isn't right." Next, we talk about why women generally make less than men at work.

We don't cut ourselves slack in this episode -- find out if either of us have ever made what could be deemed a sexist statement (and what those statements were). The flip-side of that: find out what feminist statements we've made. (Hell, Christopher once wrote this.)

We devote some time to whether or not anyone's ever given us grief for our stances on gender equality before discussing the most enlightened -- and unenlightened -- people we know when it comes to gender issues.

We wrap up the episode as we often do: talking about the future of the week's topic. In this case, we close with what we believe will be the solution to gender equality.

We'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Direct download: migs125.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:48am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 124: Last Seen…Setting Boundaries

In honor of this episode, when Shawn went to Christopher's place to record, the gate at the apartment complex where Christopher lives was closed.

Shawn could not get in... (The horror!!!)

He faced...a boundary...that lasted all of a moment when another vehicle came in, opened the gate, and Shawn followed them in...where he then parked in Christopher's spot under a carport.

That spot belongs to Christopher and his wife. Anyone not supposed to be parking there can be towed at their command...although Christopher and his wife have never exerted that power.

Boundaries are strange things. Some people require a 10-foot invisible bubble of personal space, while others are fine packed together tightly with strangers. Some people hide who they are deep down inside, while others are open to the point of some finding those people uncomfortable. (If you listen to this podcast, we're guessing you're fine with open people because we will talk about anything...even devoting an hour, once, to talking about poo.) Some people think it's money well spent to build a wall between America and Mexico, while others (i.e. not racist douchenozzles) can think of a bazillion better uses for that much money.

This week, we're all about boundaries...

We begin by talking about the first boundary in life we each remember, and then...we drop a [philosophy] bomb on y'all by talking about what seems more limiting to us: physical or mental boundaries. (While Christopher often writes these show notes in third person, he has never used "y'all" in an entry. That he knows of. After almost 125 episodes -- and some aging -- it all gets hazy...)

Personal space. Barring those with dragon breath, we discuss whether or not we have problems with people getting all up in our personal space. Next, we leap to how important boundaries are in our lives...and also: how important national boundaries are to us. (i.e. how utterly fucking stupid is the proposed wall with Mexico? Which probably gives away our answer...and might stir up the bile of some neo-cons, which -- let's be honest -- is not difficult at all. Shit, they are really more sensitive and easily offended as extreme liberals...which is really saying something. But we [Christopher] digress...)

Then we get all techie...and talk about digital rights management, software keycodes, and boundaries like that. Then...we talk not only about boundaries we are comfortable breaking, but we also share our favorite trespassing stories (where you learn that Shawn was a good boy in that regard, and Christopher really was a little shit-monkey! Like a bonafide bolt-cutter trespasser...)

Find out what we feel is the worst breach of a boundary, and then find out what boundary we would eradicate from the world if we had the power. (Another bit leaning more toward the philosophical, rather than some stupid, physical thing in the world.)

But let's pretend we're in Colorado and totally toasty and talking about space and time...which is funny, 'cause even if a life like this were legal, neither Christopher or Shawn would partake in the herb...even though we are all for legalization.

Anyway...assuming we colonize other planets, how will boundaries factor in to human development in space?

And then we close it out with this question: as we move forward as a species, do you think boundaries will become more or less important...or the same as it ever was? (Same as it ever was... Same as it ever was...)

ANYWAY...feel free to break down that boundary of the Internet and have your say in the comments. And, as always, thanks for taking time out of all you could have done with this hour of your life and listening to us instead of myriad other things. We really do appreciate it.

Direct download: migs124.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:58pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 123: Last Seen…Aging

As you read this sentence, you're getting older. Now you're even older than when you started reading this entry. You can step away and turn your head, hoping to not be reminded that you are aging, but time marches on.

Forward...

Always...

This week, we're talking about aging!

We begin by talking about the first time we realized that childhood was temporary -- that one day we would become adults. But aging is not all bad...we discuss the first time we were aware of our bodies aging in positive ways. After that, though, we talk about some negative things we're felt or experienced as we've aged. We also talk about age-related problems we've noticed...and age-related problems that scare us.

Hundreds of years ago, we'd probably be dead by now. We devote some time to the positive and negative effects of longer lifespans in modern times -- and then talk about how old we want to live to be.

We also chat about some benefits of getting older and whether we consider ourselves old, middle aged, young, or something else entirely.

We wrap up this episode on the front lawn (chasing off those damn kids!) to discuss whether or not we are, indeed, getting "too old for this shit!"

As always, we'd love to hear your thoughts about aging in the comments.

Direct download: migs123.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:43am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 122: Last Seen…Hacking Things

Last week, friend of the Gorillamen, Rick Coste, had his site for the Evolution Talk podcast hacked. Rick half-joked that an upcoming episode of Men in Gorilla Suits should be about hacking and hackers, so...here it is!

We begin the episode by talking about the first instance of hacking -- whether real or fictional -- that we remember seeing. After that, it's confession time: find out if we've ever hacked anything (or known people who have).

There's a lot behind hackers and the reasons they do what they do. We take some time to discuss what makes someone become a hacker, and then devote time to chatting about why even people who despise hackers are often fascinated by stories about hacking things. Next, we ask if there's ever a good reason to hack something.

"Hack" has become a word applied to many other things. Find out what we think about lifehacking and other so-called types of hacks.

We've talked about technology at length before, and we return to tech talk for a moment when we talk about whether or not we're concerned about hacking as we begin creating computer-controlled implants, like some pacemakers. How secure is a controlled heartbeat in the big city? Keeping in the spirit of things very big to people that can be hacked, we know voting machines can be hacked -- we talk about whether or not we think we'll see a major election stolen from hacking...or if it's happened already.

Groups like Anonymous are sometimes praised and often scorned for their efforts. Find out where we stand on groups like that. Also find out if we've ever been hacked or had personal data compromised.

With so much national infrastructure relying on technology, how has hacking become a weapon for some nations? (Find out how we feel about this.)

There's no denying that technology will only get more complex, and that people will figure out ways to compromise the integrity of systems and items. Find out if we think we'll ever stop hackers.

As always, we'd love to know how you feel about anything from this week's episode on the comments section.

Direct download: migs122.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:34am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 121: Last Seen…Joining Cults

Oh, cults...you all so wacky! With your indoctrinating and control and all those other culty things. Which makes one wonder...where is the line drawn when it comes to cults?

With Josh Duggar in the news, recently , one must even question if even Christianity can have cultish sects. (Seen people defending him and molestation -- gah, people...what the fuck is wrong with you?! And should you be like, "It's liberals picking on conservatives!" instead of, "Holy shit, that's wrong," -- at least Christopher (and he's guessing, Shawn) would like to go on record as saying Roman Polanski (and those who'd work with him -- [probably] mostly liberals), [probably] Woody Allen, Jimmy Page, and a whole lotta other famous people are also vile and cannot be defended, so stop trying to defend a child molester, neo-cons! And also: we don't give atheists a free ride in this episode, so chill if you think we're picking on Christians. People in clusters can be the most awesome thing on the planet...and the scariest!)

The point: cults are probably much more common than many of us like to consider. So...it seemed a worthy topic for the week.

We begin by talking about the first time we ever heard of a cult, and then move on to why humans seem so fascinated by cults. After that, we discuss the most disturbing cult story we remember hearing or seeing. But it's not all doomsday and craziness -- we also talk about the silliest cults we've heard about.

But it's mostly doomsday and craziness because cults are dangerous things. We chat about the most dangerous cults we know of, and then talk about groups that aren't technically cults, but that we'd consider very cult-like. (If not full-blown cults in their own rights.)

The big question is what makes someone join a cult? We talk about that before talking about if we've ever known anyone who's actually been in a cult.

Is there a cult either of us even partially kind of agree with? And if we had to join a cult, find out which one we'd join.

We close out this episode talking about what kind of cult we'd start (what we'd call it, what the basic tenets would be...all kinds of nifty things like that) if we had to form a cult of our own devising.

If you're so inclined, join the Cult of a Divine Gorilla Suit by leaving a comment about this episode. We promise a ride on a comet, or something as equally far-fetched. (Although humans have landed a spacecraft on a comet, so maybe one day we can all don Nike space boots and one-up the Heaven's Gate cult with a groovy comet ride that doesn't kill us. Unless, you know...space mishap!)

Direct download: migs121.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:15pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 120: Last Seen…Being Narcissistic

The problem with an audio podcast is you can't lay your mortal eyes on just how damn good looking we are! That might be to our advantage; we're such stunners that you all would do nothing but think about us all the time if you had to actually watch us speak. Really, just letting you hear our golden voices is a gift you should cherish.

Okay, so we're average looking guys with average voices, but for some people, the self-love-fest is in constant effect! From Narcissus admiring his reflection in a pool of water to Kim Kardashian releasing a book of carefully composed selfies, narcissists are around us all. It's a fascinating topic, so...we of course decided to make it the topic of this week's episode.

We begin by talking about when we first became aware of narcissism -- and quickly move on to what causes some people to become narcissists. After that, we discuss whether of not we consider ourselves narcissistic...and if others might.

Most of us at least have one feature or thing about ourselves that we love. We talk about the closest we lean toward narcissism before talking about why some are so quick to label others narcissists.

There's no denying that social media can feed into a narcissistic routine. We discuss how social media has affected narcissism and even devote some time to discussing the rise of the selfie.

If you've ever been around a truly narcissistic person, you know it can be tough dealing with the constant self-love-fest. We talk about the hardest aspect of narcissism to deal with, and then devote some time to chatting about the most narcissistic person we know.

Narcissists can make great characters. We talk about our favorite narcissists from film, television, or literature for a bit. After that, we discuss if there are any benefits to being a narcissist.

We wrap up this week's episode pondering this: will there always be narcissism in the world?

If you can tear yourself free from the looking glass long enough, we'd love to hear your thoughts about this week's episode in the comments below.

Direct download: migs120.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 5:02pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 119: Last Seen…Being Disciplined

What do you think of when you hear the word discipline? Here at Men in Gorilla Suits, we hope it makes you think of mental and physical focus -- not spankings and other forms of control. While that would make for an interesting show (and possibly a sad one, evoking memories from Christopher about a messed-up woman he once worked with who seriously once said, "I miss Daddy and the days when he brought out the brush or belt..."), this week, we're talking about the kind of discipline that drives people to do bigger things.

We begin by discussing what we think of when we hear the word discipline. After that, we talk about how old we were when the concept of mental or physical discipline was introduced to us...and which kind of discipline we first experienced.

If you've ever wondered what the hardest things we've trained our minds to do, we talk about that -- and then move on to the hardest things we've ever trained our bodies to do. Next, we talk about the areas in our lives where we are most disciplined...and the least disciplined.

Find out how we feel we compare to the average person when it comes to being disciplined (hint: Christopher will have this episode online before he begins his work day (with time to spare), and we've never missed a week of Men in Gorilla Suits in 119 weeks so far); and then find out who are the most disciplined people we know.

We wrap up this week's show by talking about the one thing we wish we had trained ourselves to do and then discuss if discipline is going away or still in abundance in modern society.

As always, free to chime in with your thoughts about discipline in the comments below.

Direct download: migs119.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:09am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 118: Last Seen…Being Quotable

Odds are, if you've looked at Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media platform in the past week, you've seen a quote of some kind. People seem to love quotes over pretty photos even more than they once loved books containing quotes before the Internet was really much of a thing. There was a time when it was hard to not see a motivational quote on a middle manager's wall meant to inspire all those who entered, no matter the reason. Some people even quote themselves.

So...we decided to do an episode about quotes.
- Christopher and Shawn

We begin with the first quote we remember reading or seeing, and then talk about whether or not we're fans of quotes.

Most quotes are attributed to famous people, but must that always be the case? And speaking of managers with the dreaded Successories motivational poster in a frame on the wall, how does business speak differ from quotes...if they even differ at all?

No matter where you stand on the quote fandom spectrum, at some point, quotes can become little more than platitudes. We discuss where that point occurs before discussing the worst platitude we've experienced or seen. We take it even further and discuss whether or not motivational quotes can be damaging.

After that, we talk about social media's affect on the popularity of quotes; then: are people who dislike motivational quotes inherently negative people? And...who decides that a quote is worthy of sticking around?

We close out this week's show with the funniest quotes we've ever heard and our all-time favorite quotes.

Feel free to quote yourself and reply about this episode in the comments below.

Direct download: migs118.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 10:17pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 117: Last Seen…Showing Respect

Respect means different things to people. For some, it is something to be demanded; others respect everyone until they are given reasons not to. Some people respect others so much that they have a hard time respecting themselves, while megalomaniacs often respect only the person they see in the mirror. It's a fascinating thing, respect -- so much so that it's the topic for this week's episode.

We begin talking about when we first became aware of this thing called respect. After that, we discuss what people need to do to earn our respect...if anything at all.

Next, we dedicate a bit of time to talking about whether or not we have self-respect before talking about how important respect is to a functioning society.

If you've ever wondered what we most respect about ourselves, we cover that...and then move on to why we think so many people have a hard time respecting themselves.

Find out if we've ever found ourselves in situations of conflicting respect before we get all sappy and share what we respect most about each other.

If there's one truth in the world, it's that "kids these days" have no respect...or is that something unfairly put upon them by disrespectful older people?

Find out who we've respected most -- and least -- in our lives before we wrap it all up by asking if respect for those around us is on the decline, the rise, or the same as it's always been.

Show some respect (or even disrespect) in the comments below.

Direct download: migs117.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:17pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 116: Last Seen…Becoming Obsolete

The 5 1/4" floppy disk. Holding just over 1 megabyte of information, they were the proverbial shit. Until 3.5" floppies became all the rage! Somewhere in a closet, Christopher has an old tape drive...and even better: a Zip Drive.

Yes, there was a time when you could hold 100 megabytes of information on single disk!

Of course, all those storage methods are now obsolete. We can now access well over 100 gigabytes on a micro SD card that's a choking hazard to a two-year-old kid. (The past was such a safe place...never had to worry about a child choking on a copy of Zork!)

This week, we talk all about obsolete things. We really had a great time with this episode!

We begin by talking about the first thing we owned that ever went obsolete. After that, we jump to things that were around when we were younger -- that doesn't exist anymore...but we wish did.

Consumer products come and go (and a few lucky ones stick around a long time). We discuss our favorite failed consumer products, as well as those we wish succeeded...and those we were glad to see become obsolete and go away. Also: we talk about the consumer product we wish had failed, but still lingers on.

But it's not just things that become obsolete over time. We talk about places we went to when we were younger that no longer exist. After that, we talk about people you don't see anymore -- and the type of person we wish would fade away.

There are more things made today than any other time in history. We discuss whether new things have a shorter life span today, or if it's still about the same as it's always been. After that, we talk about the "next big thing" we were surprised to see fail.

Things are becoming obsolete right now. We talk about recent memories of things fading into obscurity and wrap up this episode discussing the next things to vanish from our lives.

There might be a day when comment sections on blogs are obsolete, but as of today, they are still a thing. We'd love to hear your thoughts about obsolete things in the comments below.

Direct download: migs116.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 10:13am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 115: Last Seen…Watching Series Television

Binge-watch.

A few years ago, it meant nothing. Now, for many, it's a way of life: streaming television shows -- episode after episode. Last weekend, by lunch time, Christopher had watched all 13 episodes of Netflix's Daredevil. Shawn has watched time pass by in episodes of House of Cards. We both go back to different Star Trek series.

Technology has changed the way people watch television, and with that, television itself has changed...and even changed us. Ongoing storylines hook people, bringing them back and keeping them talking about TV more than ever. That's what we're talking about this week.

We begin by talking about the first series television shows we remember seeing, and then we jump to the biggest draw of ongoing storylines. After that, we talk about what kinds of stories seem more suited for series TV than others.

Sometimes, shows move along great and then...fall apart. We talk about some of the problems series shows can face, and then we talk not only about our all-time favorite (and current favorite) series shows, but why we like them so much. After that, we discuss how cable TV and Netflix/Amazon have changed series television.

Salman Rushdie has praised series TV. Other big writers are just as hooked. Some of these writers have stated that if they were starting out writing now, they've go straight to series television. We talk about how series television has affected novels, and then talk about the effect series TV has had on other media.

Being the geeks that we are, we devote some time to talking about things we'd love to see turned into ongoing television shows -- and then we talk about things we've written that we'd like to see as a series. (We even share loglines and the dreaded "It's Weekend at Bernies meets On Golden Pond" mash-up line we'd use to describe our show.)

We close out the episode talking about the future of series television...and how we'll view shows in the coming years.

As always, feel free to share your feelings about this week's topic in the comments below...

Direct download: migs115.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 1:02pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 114: Last Seen…Being Political

Vote Kupfer and Gronlund sign - Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 114: Last Seen…Being PoliticalIt's still a long way off until the next American Presidential election, and already, wooden [and balls-out stupid] people [at least one from Texas] are standing up and proclaiming their intentions to run for office.

Politics!

We're told politics and religion are things we shouldn't discuss, but why is that? Why not discuss very broken things in the open, for all to see? That's what we're doing on this week's episode!

We begin by talking about the first time we became aware of politics, followed by what political party -- if any -- we align ourselves with.

Find out the first election we voted in...and who we voted for. After that, we discuss whether or not we've ever volunteered to work for a political campaign (and if we've ever given money to any campaigns).

For many, political views are first formed by one's parents. Find out if we followed our parents' political views...and how we decide to vote for a candidate (if we decide to vote at all).

After that, we talk about the current political system in America (the Electoral College, campaigning, and all that other good stuff). Find out if we think it works, or if it can stand some improvements. (And, because we're muthafuckin' Americans and it's our prerogative: what we'd do to improve American politics.)

Have we ever not voted in an election...and, if so: why? Find out! After that, we talk about how involved with politics we are compared to our younger selves. And we wrap it all up talking about the future of politics in America.

So step into the comments' booth and be heard below!

Direct download: migs114.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:35pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 113: Last Seen…Pooping

While it is April first (at least somewhere in the world at the time of posting), this is no joke. We have speculated that we can talk about anything for an hour: even an hour dedicated to poop! We recently mentioned that ability again and got challenged to finally prove that we can keep a talk about feces interesting for an hour.

We have accepted that challenge!

In fact, we not only talk about poop for an hour...at 1:05:09 into this week's show, Christopher interviews his mom about pooping when he was a baby...and many other things. Yep, for the first time ever, there is another person featured on Men in Gorilla Suits -- the person who brought Gorilla Christopher into the world! (It's one of Christopher's favorite moments in any podcast he's ever done.)

But before the chat with Christopher's mom, we begin with this important question: when is the last time you shit yourself?

With one half of the podcast solidly into middle age and another climbing that direction, we chat about whether or not we're more concerned with regularity than we've been in the past.

But we never make a show all about us...

There's no classy way to address the turd in the urinal seen by most men in a restroom while on a road trip. It's one of life's greatest mysteries -- and we devote some time to talking about how and why this phenomenon exists! After that, we stick around public restrooms and talk about whether or not we are people who fear pooping in public. (Also, whether we're fond of the courtesy flush when pooping.) Then it's all about the worst public restrooms we've ever seen. (And a tale of an open cesspit in Canada into which campers were expected to defecate.)

Poop has smeared its way into pop culture; we spend a bit of time discussing our favorite songs about poop before talking about our favorite poop scenes in television and film. After that, we take a wild guess at how many words we've read in our lifetimes while pooping.

Find out why we think poop is used so often in humor...as well as naming our favorite euphemisms for pooping.

We all have favorite poop stories, right? Well, even if you don't, we do...and we're not afraid to share them.

We wrap it all up by having what might be the only serious moment in this week's show...when we talk about...THE FUTURE OF POOP!!!

We almost fear saying, "Share your best poop stories in the comments below," but if you make it through this episode (and the interview with Christopher's mom after the usual outro music), you've earned the right to write on our online bathroom stall wall...

Direct download: migs113.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 2:27pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 112: Last Seen…Talking about Self-Image

How do you feel about who you are? Are you pleased with the person you've become, or do you think there's so much room for improvement that it affects the way you look at yourself? How do others view you -- and how do those you meet shape who you are and how you look at yourself? There are just a few things we're talking about this week on Men in Gorilla Suits.

We begin by talking about how the concept of self-image was introduced to us. (Shawn shares a particular devastating story, here.) After that, we discuss how accurate our perceptions of ourselves are.

Next, we talk about how we arrived at our current self-images.

Others shape who we are in so many ways. We chat about others making observations about us that, while true, went against the way we looked at ourselves. After that, we talk about who has the most accurate image of us: ourselves or our wives.

Find out if we ever project images of ourselves that is different in any way of what we feel are our "true" selves. Then we move onto other people: if we polled those closest to us, would their images of us match the way we look at ourselves? Would it be more positive, negative, or a bit of both?

Then we talk about other people. Find out if those we know view themselves better (or worse) than the people we see. After that, it's back to us. Do we have a positive or negative (or even aggrandized) image of ourselves?

We wrap it up with two questions:

  • If you had to describe yourself -- your personality, your actions, your character -- in one word, what would you choose?
  • What one word do you think others would choose?

Tell us who you are in the comments below...

Direct download: migs112.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:11pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 111: Last Seen...Talking about White Privilege

Why did two white guys from the suburbs decide to talk about white privilege for an hour? You'll have to listen to find out.

Maybe you want a hint about what we talked about? Fair enough...

We begin by talking about when we first heard the term white privilege. From there, we move on to discussing if either of us have been accused of being privileged in any way...and how we reacted to it.

After that, we chat about if anyone's actually leveled the term "white privilege" at us...of if we've ever been told to check our privilege in any way.

Then, the question that made Shawn think about this episode: does the idea of white privilege hold any weight for us?

Next, we talk about where the idea of white privilege originated, before moving on to the last two questions:

  • Do we think we are guilty of any sort of privilege?
  • Is "white privilege" a subtle (or not-so-subtle) form of racism?

If you're a regular listener, you've probably noticed this episode contains about half the usual talking points we shoot for. It's a much more conversational episode, and we hope you like it and take a moment to comment about the episode below...

Direct download: migs111.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 10:03pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 110: Last Seen…Talking about Rap and Hip Hop

"Four and three and two and one, and when I'm on the mic, the suckas run..."

Hip hop and rap -- styles of music that seem to be either loved or hated. We're on the love side, and it's entirely possible that if you're on the hate side, we might win you over by the end of this episode.

We kick it off talking about the first rap or hip hop we remember hearing. After that, we move on to what we say to those who tell us they can't stand rap and hip hop (even going as far as saying it's inferior to all other music). Want to know what songs we play for those who say they hate all rap and hip hop? We tell ya!

Rap gets a bad...rap for being sexist and homophobic. While it's not something exclusive to the style of music, it's definitely prevalent enough that we spend a little bit of time to talk about that. And while we're on that roll, we discuss the use of "nigger" and "nigga" in rap and hip hop. (Hint about our feelings: just typing that seems sooooooo wrong. This part of the show devolved into talking about the awkwardness and desperation of Quentin Tarantino.)

Rap and hip hop have been influential enough to have offshoots like nerdcore and trip hop. We discuss that for a bit before jumping to how rap and hip hop have influenced music in general.

We take a little detour and talk about the best live rap or hip hop shows we've seen, and then it's on to a one-minute lightning round where we rattle off all the rap and hip hop we like as fast as we can.

We'll be the first to admit that not all rap and hip hop is good. We devote some time to the worst tunes before wrapping it all up by discussing what the future holds for rap and hip hop.

We'd love to know how you feel about the music; feel free to comment below.

Direct download: migs110.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 11:24pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 109: Last Seen…Committing Crimes

As you read this, we're stealing your wallet or purse. Now...we're breaking into your car. Shawn just might assault you for the sheer joy of committing a crime. Christopher just stole your identity...

Okay, so we're not criminals, but crime is a fascinating topic to us; we're surprised it took us 109 weeks to finally get to it.

We begin the episode talking about the first time we remember hearing about crime; then we jump to whether or not we've been victims of violent crimes or any property crimes.

We couldn't do a show about crime without coming clean and talking about anything we've done that can be deemed criminal activity...or things we've done that -- without a doubt -- were criminal. After that, we talk about the worst crimes we've committed (at least, according to the law).

It's easy to jump online and convince yourself that you will be a victim of crime on any given day, but...is crime more or less of a problem today than when we were young? And what do we think contributes to the perception that crime is running rampant right now?

Criminals can be stupid and, sometimes, outright hilarious. We discuss the craziest crime stories we've heard and then put on our poorly-made super hero outfits and talk about if we've ever had a desire to fight crime. (Oddly enough, it wasn't, "Oh, yes...I always wanted to be a cop." Nope, we go straight to vigilantism.)

Crime in America is on the downswing, and has been for quite some time. We talk about what we believe has led to the overall decrease, and then we discuss where we believe the most crime-ridden places in the first world are when it comes to violent crime.

We wrap up the episode -- as always -- looking toward the future. Will humanity ever wipe out crime, or is it something that will always be around?

As always, confess any of your criminal activities, or share your thoughts on crime, in the comments below.

Direct download: migs109.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:45am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 108: Last Seen…Being Apathetic

Meh...

Yawn...

We almost didn't do this episode because we just didn't care...

We were feeling rather...apathetic.

But then we remembered that apathy sometimes gets a bad rap, so we decided to stand tall and defend it.

Sort of...

We begin by discussing what we think the average person thinks of when you ask them what apathy is. After that, we talk about the first things we remember being apathetic about.

Why do some people become apathetic in the first place? We chat about that before asking if we've seen people use apathy as a defense.

If you listen to the show, you know there's a facet of apathy we embrace. We talk about the power of controlled apathy a bit, and then move on to when apathy can become a problem. Find out if we've ever seen apathy damage someone.

Another popular form of apathy is voter apathy. Are people who don't vote because they don't care part of the problem, or are there reasons some people don't vote that go beyond simply not wanting to go through the motions?

Next, we talk about how to overcome damaging apathy...and what we think can make one person obsessive while others become apathetic. Along the same thought, we discuss if a person can be apathetic in some aspects of their life while being very active in others.

We wrap it all up wondering if humans will always be apathetic.

If you care enough about this episode, please leave a comment below. If you don't, we get...it's cool...

Direct download: migs108.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:37pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 107: Last Seen…Being Corrupt

It seems everywhere you turn -- government, corporations, religion, education -- there's corruption. So much so that many people seem to think that honesty is a thing of the past. (These people often forget that the past was full of just as much corruption...maybe even more.) Are we all doomed to live in a world where the little guy is crushed beneath the boots of those cheating their way to the top, or is that view of the world not really justified? That's what we're talking about on this week's episode of Men in Gorilla Suits.

We begin the episode talking about the first example of corruption we can remember (hint: Christopher was born in Chicago and raised in the area). After that, we discuss the first time we were on either side of something corrupt (as the victim or the one actually being corrupt).

We get a little bogged down in semantics when we talk about whether or not absolute power corrupts absolutely -- and then we talk about how big a problem corruption is where we live.

When most people think about corruption, they think about government. We talk about how big we think corruption is on a federal level, and then jump to corporations (including if we've ever seen corruption at any of the places we've worked).

We step away from the idea that corruption is reserved solely for the powerful and talk about other forms of corruption worthy of concern. Next, we discuss the most corrupt organizations we've heard about.

It seems like every week (or several times a week) there's a new video of corrupt police activity. We talk about whether or not police departments are more corrupt today than they were in the past, and then...we jump to the National Football League. (Because why not?! Actually, it was a talk about the NFL that triggered this episode for Gorilla Shawn.) If we were made commissioner of the NFL, find out if we'd give in to corruption...and how long it would take either of us to become corrupt.

We wrap up the episode talking about what we can do in the future to slow down or even stop corruption...or if it's just something we'll always live with.

Leave a comment below and we'll be sure that if either of us are ever made President of the United States, we'll give you the cabinet position of your choice!

Direct download: migs107.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 2:53pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 106: Last Seen…Talking about Family

If you're reading this -- whether you like it or not -- you have [at some point in your life] been part of a family. Chances are you're still part of a family. (We have met very few loners in life who have eschewed or lost all family.) It's something we all have in common, but what constitutes a family can be very different depending on who you ask. That's what we're talking about on this week's episode of Men in Gorilla Suits.

We begin by talking about our earliest family memories and then jump to how large our immediate families were (and are).

There are those who say, "My friends are family!" Does that hold true to us, or can only actual relatives be family?

The Brady Bunch introduced many people to step families at a time when it wasn't as common as it is today. We discuss our experiences with step families -- and then talk about in-laws...are they as bad as sitcoms and movies make them out to be?

Find out if family is the most important thing in our lives; then we talk about our best -- and worst -- family memories.

Families are not perfect things, and sometimes there are relatives who are just very hard to deal with. Find out if either of us have ever written off a family member.

With more people having children later in life (or not at all), "fur-kids" has become a term many use to describe their pets. We some time to talking about how important pets are to family.

It seems even the most Leave-it-to-Beaver families have some degree of dysfunction going on. We ask if there even are any normal families out there, or if it's all an ideal that can never exist.

Finally, what constitutes a family has changed over the years. We talk about the future of the family and the challenges faced (and -- hopefully -- the acceptance that family is really what we make of it...).

If you feel compelled to join in the conversation, have your say in the comments below...

Direct download: migs106.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:28am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 105: Last Seen…Podcasting about Podcasting

This coming Saturday marks a fairly big day for the Men in Gorilla Suits podcast. On February 7, 2013, we loaded our first episode. Over a hundred episodes later, we're still going strong.

What better way to celebrate this milestone by podcasting...about podcasting!

We begin with the first podcasts we remember listening to and then jump to how we describe podcasts to those not familiar with them.

Most people into podcasts are familiar with Serial. It's one of the only podcasts we can think of that people at work talk about, but has it really gone mainstream (as many podcasters claim)?

Regardless of Serial's standing, there's no doubt that it has opened people's eyes to podcasting and influenced people. Find out how we feel the success of Serial has influenced podcasts.

Find out if either of us did any podcasting before Men in Gorilla Suits -- as well as what made us want to podcast.

Within podcasting, some argue that content is the most important thing while others say production matters so much that they will not listen to even a great show if it doesn't sound like it was produced in a studio. Obviously, a mix of both things is ideal, but if we could choose only one thing, find out what matters more to us: content or production quality.

Beyond that, find out what we feel is the most important thing when doing a podcast -- and also, find out how podcasting has changed our lives.

Clearly, we like podcasts. We talk about some of our favorite shows, including particular episodes that stand out as our all-time faves.

Finally, as we usually do, we look toward the future -- this time speculating what the future holds for podcasting.

Whether you've been there since the start of Men in Gorilla Suits, or if this is the first episode you've listened to, we thank you so much for letting us into your ear holes! We'd love to hear what some of your favorite podcasts are in the comments below...

Direct download: migs105.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 9:28pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 104: Last Seen…Evolving

There are those who do not believe that animals evolve. Not just evolution about certain animals based on the strongest evidence we have, but outright -- people who believe nothing evolves.

This is probably not a show for those people...even though we'd argue that it really is.

Evolution. No nice way to say it: some people (usually neo-conservative people who fear science), don't believe in even the facts surrounding evolution. Fortunately, most religious people, liberals, and actual conservatives we know DO believe in evolution. (Because only a very stupid person -- or a person with an agenda -- would look at the facts about evolution and deny them.) Obviously, evolution is the topic of discussion in this week's Men in Gorilla Suits. (We're probably not doing our side any favors by using a baboon in a top hat as the image for the week, but...BABOON IN A TOP HAT, PEOPLE!!!) So stretch that back, stand upright, and evolve with us...

We begin with what has probably been more than established with that introduction: do we believe in the theory of evolution? (Christopher doesn't even like prefacing that statement with the inclusion of "theory" ... find out why.)

Find out when the concept of humans evolving from other animals was first introduced to us, and find out the moment when we actually pictured ourselves evolving from another primate.

Also clear by our introduction: some people don't believe in evolution. Some of these people have come up with some very wacky "arguments" against evolution. Find out the craziest anti-evolution arguments we've ever heard.

What do we feel are the most evolved forms of life on the planet? We talk about that before jumping to what evolved intelligent life on other planets might look like.

We throw humans out of the mix and talk about what we feel is the apex predator out in the wilds...and then we talk about the next step in human evolution. We also talk about how humans have changed in the last 100,000 years or so, before we talk about whether or not we believe humans are evolved...or just a stepping stone to something else down the line.

We wrap it all up talking about the future of the human race (from a biological point of view).

We'd love to hear what your evolved fingers can type about this topic in the comments below.

Direct download: migs104.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 7:57am EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 103: Last Seen…Sick and Injured

Poor, poor Christopher. New Year's Eve he felt it...a slight scratching in his throat. The thought went through his head: "That EVIL family that came in late to the last Hobbit movie, sat up front, and THEN...saw the seats next to me and SAT IN THEM...the hacking girl who should NOT have been out an about...IT'S ALL HER FAULT!!!" (Not even knowing her Christmas must have been spent being miserably sick summoned compassion from a very compassionate individual because...poor, poor Christopher began the new year SICK!!! As in, missed two days of work sick...when I didn't plan to take ANY time off until late April.)

But let's talk about Shawn and all his broken noses. His cauliflower ear. A semi-professional fighter in all kinds of fighting styles in his youth, Shawn is not a stranger to injury. Hell, in this very episode...he friggin' bled all over the place from the side of his head! Not kidding...we were chatting away and he rubbed at a shaving injury. BOOM! It looked all Helter Skelter! Were Christopher not used to goofy, bloody injuries himself, he would have insisted on Shawn stopping and cleaning up...but Christopher's only regret was that he did not get a photo of all the blood.

"What the hell?" you might be thinking? "This is no way to begin show notes for an episode!" But you have probably figured out by now that we are talking, this week, about sickness and injury...

We kick this episode off talking about our earliest memories of being sick or injured...before jumping to the sickest we've ever been. (Christopher apparently ate a shit sammich in Chicago in the mid 90s...)

Injuries. It's not like we plan them. We discuss our most surprising injuries before talking about...surgery! Find out if we've ever had surgery and, if so...why we let someone cut into our bodies.

Medicine. Some say, "Great stuff -- LOVE medicine!" Others...not so much. Find out where we stand on medicine and, if you've ever really wondered, find out what medications we take on a regular basis.

Many who are not fans of medicine push holistic cures even more quickly than the most prescription-happy doctor. Find out where we stand on natural remedies (although we probably just showed our hands with that last line).

Do we consider ourselves sickly or healthy? Find out before we jump to mental health. Is mental health an illness, or all in the heads of those who experience it? Find out where we stand on that and then...find out if either of us are hypochondriacs.

After that, we talk about the illness or injury that most terrifies us.

We close the episode out talking about our weirdest health boasts and what the future holds for illness and injuries.

Want to chime in? Feel free to talk about anything in this episode (or anything we missed that you wished we talked about) in the comments below...

Direct download: migs103.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 10:56pm EST

Men in Gorilla Suits Ep. 102: Last Seen…Playing Fantasy Football

If you listened to our episode about sports, you know we like sports well enough. We have games and players we like, and we enjoy watching these games and players...but if sports one day ceased to exist, life would go on for us. The thought of a world without sports, for some, is the thought of a world they could not live in. We've argued before that sports fans have the potential to be more geeky than any comic book fan, and with the rise of fantasy sports, that geekery is taken to new levels.

There are fantasy leagues for so many sports, but the biggie -- by far -- is American football. So much, that we're dedicating this week's show to fantasy football. (Also because we played fantasy football this season.)

We begin by talking about when we first got into football in general, and then jump to when we first played fantasy football. Who roped us into playing? Find out!

There are people who live for fantasy football, to the point that some speculate it costs workplace productivity 13 billion (yes, BILLION) dollars a year. Find out how often we checked our lineups and how much time we lost playing. Fantasy football consumes weekends for some; we talk about how invested we were in our teams on game days.

It's clear fantasy football isn't going away. We talk about why we think it's only grown in recent years before dedicating some time to our own strategies: how we decided what to do. (Were we into stats, or did we play from the gut?) We also talk about the lessons we learned from our season of fantasy football.

For some, fantasy football is all about winning -- and as silly as it sounds (especially when playing friends) -- a win can feel good. We talk about our best wins (and most heartbreaking losses) of the season.

Anyone listening to Men in Gorilla Suits knows we are fascinated by why people do things. We talk about the appeal of fantasy football to non-football fans and the most die-hard fans...which really comes down to this question: do you even need to be into football to enjoy fantasy football?

Many sports fans equate sports to life, so...we wrap up this episode equating our fantasy football season to a life lesson. (Because SPORTSBALL!!!)

As always, we'd love to hear your thoughts about this episode in the comments below...

Direct download: 102.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 10:28pm EST

You hear a lot of people say that people don't go outside anymore, but whenever we go outside, whether it's a state or national park, or just a walk around our neighborhoods, people are always out and about, enjoying nature. We hear people at work say things like, "I wish I could get outside more." We've seen backyards that, while they may be a bit manicured, fall away into wide fields with views of nothing man made. It's our experience that humans crave being outside.

So that's what we're talking about this week: nature!

We begin by talking about our earliest memories of nature, and then jump right into what we love best (and hate most) about nature. (Spoiler alert: Christopher hates these possibly more than stinging insects. And THIS is the most accurate image of a wasp ever created!)

After that, we discuss how important nature is in our lives -- and talk about some of our favorite memories in nature. If we had complete dominion over nature, find out what we would change about it...and find out the scariest things that have ever happened to us outside. Next, we jump to our favorite natural places visited...before talking about where we would visit (and what we would do) if time and money were no object.

While it's sometimes just "You kids get off my lawn!" curmudgeony hype, it's true that -- at least in America -- kids are urged by busy parents to stay inside more. Latchkey kids were once more an exception than the norm, and we discuss what kids who don't get to go outside frequently lose in the trade for what is often only perceived safety. And adults aren't immune; after all, they are usually the people telling their kids to stay inside...and as busy as they are (or have at least convinced themselves they are), they also gain something by being outside. We talk about that for a bit, and at least Christopher urges you to go check out Alastair Humphrey's blog and, ESPECIALLY, his #microadventures YouTube videos.

We wrap up this episode talking about what the future has in store for nature.

As always, we'd love to hear about your favorite places, best (and worst) experiences outside, and your favorite things about nature in the comments below.

Direct download: migs101.mp3
Category:Pop Culture -- posted at: 8:19pm EST

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