It’s January 10th, 2022, and The Jordan Harbinger Show team is bereft at the loss of cultural icon and beloved comedian and actor Bob Saget. It was an absolute honor to have him on the show for episode 372, and we extend our condolences to his family, friends, and fellow fans who are in grief at his passing. R.I.P., Bob.
Bob Saget (@bobsaget) is a comedian, actor, director, host of the Bob Saget’s Here For You podcast, and author of Dirty Daddy: The Chronicles of a Family Man Turned Filthy Comedian.
What We Discuss with Bob Saget:
- The shared age at which Bob Saget and Richard Pryor knew they were funny.
- How Bob’s sense of humor developed as a mechanism to avoid pain.
- Why Bob has reinvented himself repeatedly over the course of his career — from the wholesome family man he portrayed on Full House to the dirty lecher he played on Entourage (and all points between).
- The big breaks that can come from life’s worst disappointments.
- Bob’s proven remedy for dealing with the haters (and we all have haters).
- And much more…
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Bob Saget may be best known for his role as Danny Tanner on ABC sitcom Full House (and its Netflix sequel Fuller House), and as one of the longest-running hosts of America’s Funniest Home Videos. But these are just two blips in a career that has spanned three decades and crossed genres of standup comedy, film and television direction, Broadway, writing (Dirty Daddy: The Chronicles of a Family Man Turned Filthy Comedian), and now podcasting as the host of Bob Saget’s Here For You.
We thank Bob for being here for us on this episode in which we discuss humor as a coping mechanism for pain, the necessity of reinvention for career longevity and fulfillment, what the legendary Rodney Dangerfield taught Bob about comedy, what happens when a squeaky clean TV dad gets caught being unexpectedly blue behind the scenes by a live studio audience, how getting fired from a forgettable morning show gave him the opportunity to become a piece of unforgettable television history, Bob’s surefire remedy for dealing with the haters we all have in life, and much more. Listen, learn, and enjoy!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
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Miss the show we did with Jack Barsky — author of Deep Undercover: My Secret Life and Tangled Allegiances as a KGB Spy in America? Catch up here with episode 285: Jack Barsky | Deep Undercover with a KGB Spy in America!
THANKS, BOB SAGET!
If you enjoyed this session with Bob Saget, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
And if you want us to answer your questions on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resources from This Episode:
- Bob Saget’s Here For You | Apple Podcasts
- Dirty Daddy: The Chronicles of a Family Man Turned Filthy Comedian by Bob Saget
- Bob Saget | Website
- Bob Saget | Instagram
- Bob Saget | Twitter
- Bob Saget | Facebook
- Full House | Prime Video
- Fuller House | Netflix
- Entourage Season 8: A Look Back with Bob Saget | HBO
- Critical Condition | Prime Video
- Richard Pryor | Website
- America’s Funniest Home Videos | ABC
- Jeremy Beadle | Wikipedia
- America’s Funniest Home Videos to Be Inducted into NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame | Business Wire
- Don Rickles | Website
- Rodney Dangerfield | Website
- Jackson Browne | Twitter
- The Morning Program with Bob Saget, 1987 | CBS
- Caddyshack | Prime Video
- Bob Saget | IBDB
- Rollin’ with Saget by Stu Stone and D-Sisive
- Ray Romano | Website
- Jim Gaffigan | Website
- Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones | Netflix
- George Carlin | Website
- Licks Off Of Records by Martin Mull featuring Glen Campbell | Glen Campbell Forums
- John Stamos | Instagram
- Dave Coulier | Twitter
- Chris Rock | Twitter
- Amadeus | Prime Video
- Elon Musk | Twitter
- The Comedy Store
- Jerry Seinfeld | Website
- The Groundlings Theatre & School
- Half Baked | Prime Video
- Tom Shales | Wikipedia
- Dirty Work | Prime Video
- Norman Lear | Website
- How ‘One Day at a Time’ Came Back from the Brink | The New York Times
- Eckhart Tolle | Twitter
- George Clooney | Wikipedia
- Kelly McGonigal | Website
- Neil deGrasse Tyson | Astrophysics for People in a Hurry | TJHS 327
- Bill Nye | Radical Curiosity Saves the World | TJHS 366
- China Is Harvesting Organs from Falun Gong Members, Finds Expert Panel | Reuters
- Julie Gerberding | Answering Your COVID-19 Questions | TJHS 341
- Dennis Carroll | Planning an End to the Pandemic Era | TJHS 320
- BoJack Horseman
- Doug Ellin | Twitter
- ‘Wet Markets’ Likely Launched the Coronavirus. Here’s What You Need to Know. | National Geographic
- The Chris Farley Show: Paul McCartney, SNL | NBC
- The Wellmont Theater | Montclair, NJ
- Mike Young | Twitter
- Strange Days with Bob Saget | Prime Video
- Muhammad Ali | Wikipedia
- John Mayer | Twitter
- Seth Green | Twitter
- Dr. Ruth Westheimer | Twitter
- Loveline | Wikipedia
Transcript for Bob Saget | How Comedy Continually Changes His Life (Episode 374)
Bob Saget: [00:00:00] No matter how rich or successful you are, we're all gone to the same place. But I just think -- be kind to as many people as you can while you're here and when you're gone. If you think when you're gone, you go on. Wow, that is a lyric I'll never use. You won't be using that as a soundbite for this episode.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:00:25] Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's sharpest minds and most fascinating people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you. We want to help you see the Matrix when it comes to how these amazing people think and behave. And our mission is to help you become a better informed, more critical thinker. So you can get a much deeper understanding of how the world works and make sense of what's really happening. If you're new to the show, we've got episodes with spies and CEOs, athletes and authors, thinkers and performers, as well as toolboxes for skills like negotiation, body language, persuasion, and more. So if you're smart and you like to learn and improve, you're going to be right at home here with us. For a selection of featured episodes to get you started with some of our favorite guests and popular topics, go to jordanharbinger.com and we'll hook you up.
[00:01:14] Today on the show, one of the most famous faces in America, he was on Full House Danny Tanner, America's Funniest Home Videos. He's in your living room. This guy has been in your living room for decades growing up if you're 30, 40, 50 years old. For Bob Saget, joking around was about avoiding pain. He lost someone important every two years as a kid, moved around a lot, and many of his uncles died around age 40 from heart attacks -- which freaks me out because I'm 40 and I really hope I have a lot more time left. When he started standup at age 17, he was careful about his language because it helped him get TV shows, which is kind of funny if you've ever seen Bob Saget's standup comedies -- not so careful now. He was opening for musicians like Kenny Loggins. It was kind of funny for him to go full Danny Tanner and then become known as one of the dirtiest comics in the scene, at least for a while. And if you saw him on Entourage, he was a caricature of himself and it was something extra. Bob doesn't consider his reinventions comebacks, but opportunities to redefine yourself. And that's part of what we'll talk about here today on the show, and him doing whippets and a prop closet on the set of Full House with John Stamos and Dave Coulier.
[00:02:20] And if you want to know how I get guests like Bob Saget and try to get them to open up like a real person, it's about rapport and networking. And I've got a networking course for you, which is free and always will be, it's called Six-Minute Networking. It's over at jordanharbinger.com/course, and most of the guests on the show, they subscribe to the course in the newsletter. So come join us. You'll be in smart company where you belong. Now, here's Bob Saget.
[00:02:46] So congrats on being the first comedian to launch a podcast here with your new show, by the way.
Bob Saget: [00:02:51] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:02:52] That's a breakthrough.
Bob Saget: [00:02:52] It's huge. And every kid across the street has a podcast as well. So it's literally -- there are contractors across the street doing construction. They have podcasts on how to nail boards, how to do rebar -- it has everything. It's doing very well. The goal was to make people feel good -- probably what you're trying to do -- is inform and get people through stuff.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:03:12] A lot of people were surprised that your podcast has any element of seriousness to it. They were like, "Oh, he can be serious." Like people weren't expecting that from you, I guess.
Bob Saget: [00:03:21] Well, yes, they never saw me do any acting outside of Full House, but I've done a bunch. Not Entourage, that's a bad example, but I've been on Broadway a bunch of times and always ended up with a serious role. I've been in a bunch of movie things and always ended up with a serious role.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:03:37] You started standup at age 17, according to the book -- which we'll link in the show notes, Dirty Daddy -- according to the book you started at 17, when did you know that you were funny? Like, were you a class clown the whole time, or was it --?
Bob Saget: [00:03:48] Last year.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:03:49] Last year, yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:03:50] No, the truth of it is, and I've thought about it a lot. I did a movie with Richard Pryor and I had been friends with him -- acquaintances from The Comedy Store. And then when I did the movie called Critical Condition, I got closer with him. And I asked him that one day and we both had the same time -- said four. We knew we were funny at four years old.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:04:08] Really? From reactions from adults, you mean?
Bob Saget: [00:04:11] No, not adults. Sometimes from adults, but I was pretty obnoxious. I was just like, you know, I would dance like real fast and hyper and I should have been on Ritalin or they would've put me on it. But like just all the kids in kindergarten, I'd make them laugh. And I remember little girls kissing me and stuff. I do remember them, Jodie Klavins, Beth Cohen, Marcy Wasserman. I knew all of them and I had crushes on all of them, Denise Nelson, and every one of them had four. And I would watch James Bond movies at six and want to be him. I was a horny little bastard. So at four, I knew I was funny, I was really funny. I was making movies since I was nine, eight-millimeter stuff. And then I wasn't funny for years and that was all the hard high school times and stuff.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:04:58] It's got to be hard to get famous -- because you met your first wife at age 17, right?
Bob Saget: [00:05:03] Ah, you know too much, I'm going to have to kill you.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:05] I know, I read your book.
Bob Saget: [00:05:06] When I get there, I have to kill you.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:08] Yeah. We can hang out when we can get this plague -- when the plague lifts.
Bob Saget: [00:05:11] Oh, I can't wait.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:12] So you met her when you were 17-year-old. You're like this random -- I don't know -- nerdy, Jewish guy, trying comedy, hoping that it worked. And you went through this phase or segment of your life where it was like -- one of the most you, Dave Coulier, John Stamos, et cetera, probably like the most famous, some of the most famous people in the entire world at that point. I mean, they had Full House in East Germany for crying out loud.
Bob Saget: [00:05:33] They did. And when I was on the video show, it was the number one show in China.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:37] Wow.
Bob Saget: [00:05:38] It was that and CNN were the two biggest imports from the US.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:42] Wow.
Bob Saget: [00:05:43] And I think that turned off CNN. But seeing people get hit in the crotch, they were fine with that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:47] Yeah, they loved that. Like going down the slide and your pants come off like that just doesn't get old --
Bob Saget: [00:05:51] Oh my God.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:52] -- no matter what language you speak.
Bob Saget: [00:05:53] Just get hooked on a nail. But what's weird is a lot of countries have their own hosts. Like England had Jeremy Beadle. He was a famous two hosts and especially a nice man. And I think Australia had Australia's Funniest Home Videos and they would do an exchange program. And so that was interesting. We just got inducted, Vin De Bona, Tom Bergeron, Alfonso, and myself just got inducted into the TV Hall of Fame.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:16] Congratulations.
Bob Saget: [00:06:17] Thanks. We did a Zoom thing and we did a Zoom Acceptance, Zoom Conference and it'll be available for the people in the TV Academy or Nat TV or whatever. I don't know what it is, but it's a lovely thing. It's real.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:29] You mentioned in the book that you have to take shots at yourself before taking shots at anyone else. So it's like comedy as a defense mechanism.
Bob Saget: [00:06:34] Well, I do, some people don't.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:37] I just meant like, as a comedian, it's like comedy as a defense mechanism.
Bob Saget: [00:06:40] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:41] But I get that man, like when someone's about to criticize your work, there's definitely some relief by beating yourself to the punch or like ragging on yourself first. And I think I can relate to that even as a podcast host. And I think anybody who creates anything can really relate to that. Like you put stuff out there and it's like, I don't care what anyone thinks," but you really don't mean that most of the time. You're just like, "I hope people like it." And every day I get new reviews of the show and they're almost universally good, but I do get worried when I see bad ones and I will ruminate on that stuff and I'll ask --
Bob Saget: [00:07:14] We're not supposed to. You know, you're not supposed to read the good ones or the bad ones.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:07:17] I know you're not supposed to.
Bob Saget: [00:07:18] But when someone sends me some devilish something, I block them on everything.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:07:22] Yeah. I'm not doing that and I won't do negative. I'm actually, that's my new closing song. It sounds like a joke, but it is. It is actually my new standup when I do it again. I can't do it. I can't let people in that are bad for me. And I can get constructive criticism. Like I did a show in London and I had a song I was doing and it offended some people. So I took it out because I got to review. They said, "He was great, except for this one thing." And it didn't have enough empathy to it. I wasn't thinking about the people that I was making fun of it, but it meant in a good way.
[00:07:56] But some comedians that I've always loved. Don Rickles is a big influence. He would make fun of himself, but not really. His thing was he's full of love, and he's going to make fun of everybody. And then Richard Pryor would tell you all of his faults. And then he really didn't make fun of people. You know, he wouldn't attack anybody, but he would attack the way people are. He would attack racism. He would attack what his truth was, and it was a huge influence for me. And Rodney Dangerfield is who told me, "Make fun of yourself first. And then you beat them to the punch." And Jackson Browne, one of my favorite comedians -- Jackson Browne, the singer, if you guys don't know it, any of the younger people. You got to go back and listen to it all because he's brilliant and beautiful and inducted into that Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. That he's sharing ideas that's true with some people. Tell people their accolades, but he is just an amazing artist and writer.
[00:08:47] He had a lyric in a song. It's like the lyric was, I believe, "Don't confront me with my failures. I have not forgotten them." It's like no one needs to tell me what I'm doing wrong or what's annoying or what my mistakes are or how they perceive me in a negative way. I know it. I'm the first worst judge of myself. And I'm trying to correct it. So people should just let people work on themselves.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:14] I couldn't agree more. I mean, it is tough. It's weird how a lot of the people who are the most sensitive to criticism, and I don't mean that in a negative way either, but just the most, maybe vulnerable, are also putting themselves out there and taking this massive risk and going and doing stand-up routines and getting heckled, or like putting a show out there and having people be like, "Ah, stick your standup, Saget," you know, or whatever kind of crap you might see. I would imagine it takes almost the majority of your career before you can be like, "I'm just blocking that out because I've never gotten any value from it."
Bob Saget: [00:09:45] That's been my whole career and I agreed with love a lot of it. And that's why I've changed so many times. That's why I'm morphed into different things. That's why even my new--where I was headed and where I will be with my work is a little more storytelling, I guess. I can't really analyze it. It's just more of this. And that's why the podcast is so valuable to me because I love this medium. I've been doing it forever. I mean, I started before Full House, I was on CBS as a broadcast or doing the CBS Morning News against the Today Show and Good morning, America as the sidekick on the CBS morning program. And I got fired after five months. So we know I'm good at broadcasting
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:22] Five months, that's a short run, but then you got picked up and did Full House for --
Bob Saget: [00:10:27] Yeah, I thought I was done working. When something works, like I do you do something now that works -- the show works -- have If you ever thought, "It's never going to happen again for me, I'm just done."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:37] Oh, I mean, yeah, of course, yeah. I used to be a lawyer. I technically still am. I got laid off because the economy went down and I was like, "Jesus, I barely got that job. What am I going to do? I don't even want to do it." And then I started the show and then I had a falling out with my business partners and then I just started the show over again by myself/with the support of all the people in my network and my family and things, of course but had to start over again and build it again. So, yeah, I know what that's like. I know that feeling that says, "You're never going to get there. You're never going to get back on top."
Bob Saget: [00:11:05] Right.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:00] "So maybe you shouldn't try," and then you try anyway. And if you're lucky, you get some success. Yeah, I know exactly what that's like.
Bob Saget: [00:11:12] Well, you have to try it because you're young and there's no time limit on it. I mean, I keep telling people, Rodney Dangerfield, and they know because they -- a lot of people saw Caddyshack or Back to School or Easy Money. He was 58 when he got Caddyshack.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:25] That's crazy.
Bob Saget: [00:11:326] This is a career of doing standup forever, doing The Tonight Show, starting on Ed Sullivan, working his ass off and, you know, being put down for so many years.
It's a big deal. People put a lot of energy and emphasis into it has to happen when you're young, especially now. Because I think people are going well, the world's not going to be around long anyway, and people aren't going to be around long anyway, and you can't have that attitude.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:51] You see like YouTube folks and influencers and stuff like that being, and they look young and you go, "Well, crap, I'm 30. I can't do that. These kids are 15. Look at what they're doing."
Bob Saget: [00:12:00] Right.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:00] Like that comparison game is not going to work. I mean, you sort of discussed that a little bit in the book as well. I mean, you talk about working with child actors on Full House, which those people were super talented.
Bob Saget: [00:12:12] Right.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:13] And you know, you were an adult, there must have been a party. That's like, "Man, I'm the "old guy" on the set. Like, look at these folks."
Bob Saget: [00:12:19] I'm the 30-year-old and nine-year-olds are telling me my lines.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:23] Right. Yeah, like, "Hey, get it together."
Bob Saget: [00:12:26] I do believe I have talent. I just don't have a photographic memory. Like when I'm acting in something, especially if you do something like a really good play and you're on Broadway and it's like a big deal and may it come back? Oh my God, we feel so off from that time when we all get to come back to this stuff. But that is the true exploration of a character and understanding it. And a good movie role where you can really sink your teeth into and not be yourself. A lot of people just want to be famous and rich. And yes, money makes life easier for people, but fame is bullshit. I mean, it helps you if it sells you being, doing more of what you want, but to let it go to your head -- the moment you're cocky is the moment you've lost me as an audience. A lot of people are attracted to it. You know, if I didn't know that secret as a teenager, I would have had a lot of girlfriends or just been quite the stud because the key was not to care and not to be scared and it just doesn't matter. And anything that's happened good for me just happened by itself. I didn't even push for it. Like the podcast just happened. I had five offers from five big companies. I wanted to go with all of them. A couple of my friends own a couple of them. I went with Studio 71 and I'm really thrilled to make them three a week right now -- I'm going Monday, Wednesday, Friday. How often do you do yours?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:13:47] I do Tuesday, Thursday, Friday? Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:13:49] So you're doing the same deal. You're living it.
[Jordan Harbinger: [00:13:52] Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It's a lot of work, obviously. You know, like I got to read 10, 12 hours of stuff to prep for a show and get a good interview out of it, but I like it. I like it doesn't feel like work.
Bob Saget: [00:14:01] Don't you just do what I do? You google and then print out the whole IMDb and Wikipedia and just hold that and let's look at it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:07] No, no. I read the whole book. I watched a ton of your comedy. I re-watched old montages. Before this, I was watching a video, which I'll link in the show notes of you and like -- is it Jimmy Kennedy or James?
Bob Saget: [00:14:21] Jamie Kennedy, yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:21] Jamie Kennedy and it was like Rollin' with Saget. I was watching that stuff. I mean, I've got some deep cuts.
Bob Saget: [00:14:27] That was a half-a-million-dollar video, just the video cost half-a-million dollars. You can't even get that for an independent film sometimes these days.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:33] That's crazy.
Bob Saget: [00:14:34] You can't do any of it right now, obviously, but that was for the MTV show called Blown' Up with Jamie Kennedy and Stu Stone. The whole basis of the show was they were going to make a music video with me. Talk about something stupid!
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:49] Talk about lofty goals!
Bob Saget: [00:14:51] But I love them and that song played well. You know, it did fine. It was taken from another very famous rap song.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:58] Your first material was really dark. It came from a dark place, I guess because you moved a lot as a kid, you were moving around.
Bob Saget: [00:15:03] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:15:04] And you mentioned that you use, like your first 10 minutes of comedy on TV talk shows for years afterwards and you said, "Comedians' first 10 minutes usually stay with them for years or longer." Why is that? What's going on with the 10 minutes? I don't understand.
Bob Saget: [00:15:18] From my experience, It's kind of like all of the life you lived up until then culminated into a certain resin of who you are. When you're new, it usually deals with you make fun of your name, you're talking about where you're from, or you would come out and talk about the world and how you see it. Those comedians have always been the most impressed by -- I'm more of a personal comedian, but personality comedian. Like Ray Romano would talk about it. Jim Gaffigan, you could sit and listen to his kids and his white stuff forever. And then you've got Dave Chappelle, the great Dave Chappelle, who comes out, and in the beginning of the whole damn thing in Sticks & Stones says, "It's your fault. This is all your fault." And that is not talking about -- he does talk about his family. He does talk about his kids, but it's dealing in a much more philosophical level. None of like one of the completely different ways but at the same design is George Carlin, who would say "Here's where we're at, and here's what's really screwed up right now." So I get moments of that in there, but I also want to entertain people. I mean, not that they're not, because they are. You know, George is brilliant. Dave is amazing.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:16:36] You've reinvented yourself. And I don't know if this is quite the right term, but like from, would you say club comic to television comic and then back to live standup again? Is that accurate?
Bob Saget: [00:16:45] Yeah, I've never stopped doing standup since I was 17, and I did comedy songs in the beginning. Another idol was Martin Mull because he was this great comedian that I saw and he did musical comedy. And I wasn't copying it, I just happened to be writing songs and I wrote 60, 6-0 serious songs that were so bad and that I registered with the library of Congress, copy wrote them -- they're the worst songs ever. I mean, I was like, I wrote one called When I Was a Boy and I was 15, so what? Martin is actually working on a documentary about him, which is on hold right now because we can't film anybody.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:17:20] Film anything, yeah, no kidding. Working with a bunch of child actors on Full House, looking at some of your comedy and things like that, did you have to compartmentalize? How did you not slip, let loose with the flurry of profanity around all these child actors?
Bob Saget: [00:17:32] I did let loose and sometimes I would do it and the moms would come downstairs to go, "Bob, the girls are watching the monitors in the classroom," and I'll go, "Well, turn them off. I'm working." You know, I was trying to be like I never got caught. It was really like a nine-year-old boy or a 10-year-old boy. Except I did deal with making Dave and John laugh, which went into very adult male-oriented type things.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:17:53] Of course, like you're standing there with John Stamos, Dave Coulier, and you think no one can see you and you're doing what's called blocking, which is like when you're moving around a stage set. And I heard that there was a life-size child-size doll.
Bob Saget: [00:18:07] Yeah. Let's forget this one. This was painful. I didn't know the cameras were -- I was trying to make the crew laugh. If you give me a rubber doll that's two and a half feet tall, what am I not going to do to that thing? Nobody's there. It's just grownups. I didn't know the television sets were rolling upstairs. I didn't know that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:18:26] So they're sitting in another room and they can see like stage monitors or something like. What's going on the set?
Bob Saget: [00:18:31] Yeah, they see me doing stuff and, you know, it happens.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:18:35] Yeah. I mean, it's not easy to be on camera all the time, eight hours or 10 hours a day, or however long with all your buddies.
Bob Saget: [00:18:42] Well, it wasn't even that long. It was all about rehearsal. So that was just rehearsal. It felt like a joke to be talking to a test dummy and having to do my lines so they can set the shots to a three-foot-tall -- literally a test dummy. They were made of rubber. I guess they would use them for CPR or for me to work with.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:02] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:19:02] I don't think you can give me that. I don't think that's something I should have.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:06] What skill sets do you think translated back and forth from TV and standup, like obviously humor, but are there things that you worked on with standup that translated to Full House and things you took from Full House that translate even now to you doing live comedy?
Bob Saget: [00:19:20] Well, I'm so known for Full House. It's like, you can walk around saying, "I don't want to talk about it." And then I spent a couple of specials where there was always some five to seven minutes Full House bit, whether it'd be the eight by 10 that John Stamos didn't know about the whole cutting them out or the donkey that was on the set that did his business. So that was in different specials and in a different hour that I've been out rolling. But one of the things that I heard from people that were well known when I was starting -- one of the big advice things I got from several well-known people was that once people know who you are, it's the luckiest thing in the world because you already have the audience. Now your obligation is to tell them something worthwhile, whether it be, you know, have a great meaning to it or bring people together or getting them upset about something because you want to wake them up or just frankly, make them laugh. And that's kind of where I'm at.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:20:18] Comics and writers have this unique skill or seemingly have this unique skill of both having an experience and then commenting on that experience at the same time.
Bob Saget: [00:20:26] Right.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:20:26] Was your mind doing standup before you took it to the stage? Like, or you in line at some pizza place and you're thinking about making comments to yourself or out loud about how this is happening in real-time. Like George Carlin kind of did that in a way. Did you find yourself doing that same thing?
Bob Saget: [00:20:41] Well, his was so eloquent because his was well thought out and all rehearsed and all done, word perfect. He was a word Smith and he was beyond brilliant. Mine was different. Mine was more narcissistic, more neurotic. Mine required therapy and I got it. And I think maybe, now that I'm over 60, I'm more into talking like a person when I'm not as -- and now we're halfway through the interview and I'm finally starting to become a person. So it's like, I'm pretty hybrid first. That's just my nature.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:21:18] Plenty of people were doing all the right things and still failed. You actually noted this in the book, Dirty Daddy. You said, "Plenty of people around me, we're all doing the right things, and they still failed." So that sort of brings out the question, like what percentage of your success do you think was hard work? Because your dad, you said he was like a super hard worker, so --
Bob Saget: [00:21:37] it's all hard work. It's all hard work. Sometimes I work really hard to sell something, really hard. I over-prepare, but if I'm in the zone, for some reason, if I'm in the zone and everything's right and everything aligns properly, then it's the most wonderful thing. I did a movie a couple of years ago, very low budget, and all the actors were great and did a lot of favors. And it was a good script and I only had 15 days to shoot it. It was good. It wasn't great. You know, it wasn't something I wanted to give myself an A-plus for it. Everybody was wonderful and worked so hard because I hired great people. I barely hired them. People were working for college credit but it's very hard to get in the zone and then have it work. But if it works on some level and this did -- I mean, it made its money, which is a big deal. But the other point is there are other things I've done that just went over the fence and I didn't even do anything. I just showed up and swung. Some things just happen and some things, you work, you work, you work, you worked 10 years to try to sell something and it doesn't sell.
Peter Oldring: [00:22:47] You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show. We will be right back.
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Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:30] Where's that from? Is that the Big Lebowski? Yes. Right?
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[00:26:12] And now back to The Jordan Harbinger Show.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:26:16] It is funny to see how now, of course, opportunity feels like it's probably automatic. You're turning things down because you just don't like that area where they're doing it. Or you're like, "Oh, I don't really like working with these types of things." Or, "Eh, that doesn't really speak to me." But like in the beginning, there had to be a percentage --
Bob Saget: [00:26:32] I turned down things that are just too dirty.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:26:34] They are too dirty?
Bob Saget: [00:26:35] Because they're not like done by the A-Team, so they're not -- not to put down people because they're just trying to get something made they find funny. But sometimes people do things just for the sake of film and that's how they view me sometimes because they've objectified me from, "Oh, well you did that special and you were dirty and you said the F word a lot. So you'll do that." And I was like, "No, that was where I was at, at the moment. And people liked it and it was good." And when in the zone, any performer is in the zone. You know, if you're an athlete, you're in the zone. It's the same thing as a performer, except athletes are better and so are musicians.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:10] What percentage of your success do you have -- you probably can't even calculate this -- but I'm wondering what percentage you feel like might be luck? Like getting fired from CBS and getting picked up as Danny Tanner. There's an element of "Holy crap, I got fired from a radio job and ended up being on the number show."
Bob Saget: [00:27:26] No, that was a television job. That was a TV --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:29] I see.
Bob Saget: [00:27:29] I'm not in camera.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:30] Okay.
Bob Saget: [00:27:30] But it doesn't matter because I was the third wheel and they wanted me out. But I was the original choice for Danny Tanner and I wasn't available because I was doing this show in New York. And then when I got fired, my manager called the executive producers of Full House and said, "Bob is available." So they went, "Okay." So I did a quick screen test, and then I was with Dave and John. And I'd known Dave for a few years already.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:55] Dave Coulier, yeah. When you're younger, when you're trying to make it, or even if you're older and you're trying to make it -- when your friends are getting big breaks around you and you're still doing standup every night, or you feel like you're stuck in a routine, but like your friend gets a show, your other friend gets a show, your other friend --
Bob Saget: [00:28:08] That was my life and still is sometimes. You know, I go like, "Wow." You know, there's been a couple of movies I've been up for.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:28:15] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:28:15] I went for like the biggest director and then a friend of mine got it. And then I was like, "Now I'm wise enough to know. Oh, good, he's better for it."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:28:23] Right, yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:28:24] Because I've directed stuff and I understand it all. It's like, "Oh, he's much better for it." And I didn't want to do that nude scene. Good for him.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:28:30] Yeah, you did. But how do you stop from getting discouraged?
Bob Saget: [00:28:34] How do you stop from getting discouraged is a good question.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:28:37] Yeah. Or letting it get to your head or letting it mean something like, "Oh, I'm never going to make it because I didn't get the part in this, you know, Chris Rock movie.
Bob Saget: [00:28:45] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:28:46] Like it could mean something instead of just being, "Oh, you know, he's better for the part." It could be like, "I knew it. No one thinks I'm funny. I'm washed up."
Bob Saget: [00:28:53] Yeah, But you can't think like that. That's called work on yourself and it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks of you. It just doesn't.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:01] Did you just learn that through experience though or does --?
Bob Saget: [00:29:03] Yeah, I had a joke about it. One of my first jokes is my mom said, "When you grow up, not everybody's going to like you." And I said, "I need names. I want names." And I have them. I know who doesn't like me. They either tell me online or well-known people go, "No, I don't like him." And then your agent calls you back and says, "They don't like you."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:21] Wow. Who doesn't like you?
Bob Saget: [00:29:23] I've got books. I have giant books of them. I have phone books.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:27] Do you have like a nemesis in Hollywood? That's like, "Oh, him and Bob Saget don't get along."
Bob Saget: [00:29:31] All my nemeses are dead.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:33] That's a good record to have, I think.
Bob Saget: [00:29:35] It just happened. It just was an accident
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:37] As it, as it were, As it were.
Bob Saget: [00:29:39] Well, you find that no matter how rich or successful you are, we're all going to the same place. But I just think -- be kind to as many people as you can while you're here and when you're gone. If you think when you're gone, you go on. Wow, that is a lyric I'll never use.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:56] Yeah. I don't know if that's going to bubble up to the top of your --
Bob Saget: [00:30:00] No.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:30:00] -- Twitter feed is one as one of your --
Bob Saget: [00:30:01] You won't be using that as a soundbite for this episode.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:30:04] No. That will not -- actually, now that you said it, maybe we have to, I don't know. And then fade into the episode.
Bob Saget: [00:30:10] That would be great.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:30:11] It's not bad. It's not as bad as it stands. How do we get happy for our friends' successes and not start resenting it? Because you said, "Now, I'm old enough to say that's okay. They were better for it." But there had to be a point earlier where you went, "Oh man, you know, this means something about me and now I'm kind of pissed off at them. I wonder if they sabotage me." Like all these things are going through my head.
Bob Saget: [00:30:29] That's insanity, that's immaturity and, and they should watch Amadeus and watch Salieri resent F. Murray Abraham's character presented by Tom Hulce is playing Mozart. That's called stupidity and not knowing what's important in everybody, and there are geniuses out there that are going to surpass you unless you're in the top five and you know who you are. The top five know who they are because the world knows who they are. You know, the Elon Musk has something to say: you're going to listen even if you don't like him, you're going to listen.
[00:30:58] For me, I'm at the point now -- there's one guy, that's an actor, and he was really rude to me last time I saw him and I've known him for a long time. So it was like, "Well, I'm not so thrilled to watch his work now." And then I watched something that he's done and it's one of the best things I've ever seen. So I went, "Good for him." It had nothing to do with me. Who knows? Why the hell does someone ignore you? Maybe they're legitimately concerned. Maybe they had an emergency in the family. Maybe they're a total asshole and just want to go talk to somebody to further what they're working on. Maybe they're doing something. Maybe they don't like you. Maybe learn not to interrupt, you know, maybe you just shut up and just take care of your business because I'm so happy to see great work. And I'm so happy. Why do I have to be friends with somebody? If they're not my friend, they're not my friend.
[00:31:53] People always go, "So have you met so-and-so? Are they nice?" I went, "Yeah." Or sometimes, "Well, actually, no, that person is not nice. I know a couple of people that have been betrayed by that person." Or, "A couple of ladies that have been treated bad by that person." Or, Everybody knows that about them, but they take it with a grain of salt because they're so talented because if they're famous, people are talking about them, but the basic thing is who gives a shit, who cares? It just doesn't matter.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:32:21] You don't think it matters to be -- do you think it's important to be a role model or an example because you're so visible?
Bob Saget: [00:32:28] I think it's important if it means something to you, but I don't think certain people feel like they have any obligation to certain people. That's why you hear about athletes that are acting like jerks to fans. The fans are like, "I can't believe he treated me like that." And sometimes that same person is the very first person in line to go see a Make-a-Wish kid in a wheelchair. So you can't really just pin it like that, but some people are just not nice and think my job -- and you hear it in a lot with actors, they think, "My job is to act. It is not to be your little fanboy or a fangirl."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:05] How do you get feedback on your creative work or whatever or your acting role as your comedy while also not letting people discourage you or getting too much influence on what you're doing? Like you've got to be able to take feedback but --
Bob Saget: [00:33:18] Well, I don't have any of that problem anymore.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:20] No. Why is that?
Bob Saget: [00:33:21] Too old for it. I've been around for too long. I know too much. I mean, I'm not smart. But I genuinely love humanity and I want to see it rise to its highest. So for me, to walk around scared of thinking about people that are trying to hold me back. Nobody is holding me back. If anybody's holding you back, it's you, you know -- not you, not you, Jordan.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:43] No.
Bob Saget: [00:33:43] If anyone's holding me back, it's you, Jordan. This podcast is really holding me back.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:48] This podcast is going to -- you're going to see a massive onslaught of listeners for your show. It's going to double in size from four to eight.
Bob Saget: [00:33:56] You mean, Bob Saget -- you're taking Bob Saget's Here for You is going to get eight more people.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:59] At least eight more people are going to start listening as a result of the show provided we don't blow it in the last quarter here. Or the last, you know, 10 minutes here or whatever.
Bob Saget: [00:34:07] No, that's impossible. Well, we got more than that. We're at an hour and 12 and two of those minutes have to be cut.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:34:13] That's true. Yeah, there is that. You know, a lot of people go, "Oh, you're going to interview Bob Saget. That's going to be so interesting. It's exciting. What is he doing now?" And I said, "Well, he's working on this and this and this." And some people go, "Oh, why does he still work? Because he definitely doesn't need to, right?" And that's an interesting question. Because I think for a creator, it would be weird not to do any work.
Bob Saget: [00:34:33] I have to work till I'm dead.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:34:35] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:34:36] I don't understand what it's like not to work. I'm not a lazy nothing. I mean, if it was like sitting back and watching my kids' kids all day. They don't have kids. I was born to do this and I'm just getting to do what I want to do now. I'm just getting to be able to pick up the phone and say to somebody, "I'd like to do this." "Okay. Let's see if we can make this happen."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:34:57] Did you ever actually want fame though? Like, was that part of the thing? Or was it you just wanted to be able to do comedy, but you didn't necessarily care about the fame part?
Bob Saget: [00:35:05] I wanted to work. I got fired from the show in New York. In the beginning, I wanted to be a movie maker. That's all I wanted. And being a movie maker doesn't mean fame. It means you get to make movies. So I went to USC grad school for three days and I quit because The Comedy Store, the owner Mitzi Shore said, "You should work here." I said, "But I'm going to go to USC grad school." She said, "No, you should come here and be a standup because you got it." And I ended up emceeing there for eight years. And everybody that's anybody was there at the time in 1978 and I'd won the student Oscar. And I thought that I was going to be a giant filmmaker. And then I started taking acting classes. Jerry Seinfeld recommended me into an acting teacher, Daryl Hickman, and then I did the Groundlings workshop for a year, and that was quite an experience. So I had a background in improv already in Philadelphia, and I had a background in stand up because they've been doing that. So I was always doing like five things. I just didn't know how to act. So I really learned what it meant to be as real as possible and learn how to develop character and learn why. Then I found out I loved acting. I really only took acting classes to learn how to direct, to understand how actors work, but I love acting. I love everything I do. And I put a thousand percent of everything I have into it. I'm loving this podcast right now. It's just wonderful to reach out to people and to get to hear from them. That's the other thing.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:36:30] Yeah, it's more of an interactive thing. Like with Full House, I would imagine you get people kind of yelling at you or what -- actually on that note, you're known for being Danny Tanner in Full House, but you're also -- I don't want to say equally known -- but the guy in Half Baked that says, "Nobody's sucks for marijuana." That's like a 15-second cameo, and I feel like 50 percent of people know you as Danny Tanner, at least as well as they know you as the guy standing up in that meeting.
Bob Saget: [00:36:53] Well, they know me as a comedian. I think that was another thing that was for people of your generation, a turning point for people like, "What? Was that Bob Saget?" And the line was, "I used to suck dick for coke." And then another comedian, Dave Edwards, I believe his name is, he goes, "I've seen him." And that's the funny part, but it was Dave Chappelle's movie. And that's when we first became friendly. I don't know, I do a bunch of things. I don't just do one thing. I'll never just do one thing. After Full House and the video show ended a year later, I said, "I don't want to be on camera anymore." So I directed TV, movies --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:28] Why? Why is that?
Bob Saget: [00:37:29] I'd had it. I'd had it with the whole getting recognized all the time.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:32] Really.
Bob Saget: [00:37:33] I had it with being thought of by those guys. You know, "Oh, you're the host of a TV show. You must sell dog food." People hated me on Full House. I never got a good review ever.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:42] Really?
Bob Saget: [00:37:43] People hated me on the video show. I woke up one morning on a Sunday morning and a guy named Tom Shales who loved a lot of people. And he was a big Chicago Tribune, I believe. And it was syndicated to The L.A. Times. I woke up on a Sunday morning. I had made a VHS tape for America's Funniest Home Videos, home videos it was called, and it was one about babies and one's kids and one about animals. And I was in a house with a cat and I told them I can't be here, guys. We can't film here. It's too late. It's locked down. Eight hours, I couldn't breathe.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:38:14] Oh, you're allergic to cats.
Bob Saget: [00:38:15] Literally, I couldn't breathe. Neck closed up. Eyes turned. I couldn't think I couldn't breathe. I'm on Benadryl. There was nothing funny. It was horrific. And there were two VHS tapes that came out. VHS never even DVDs. And this guy, Tom Shales hated me so much. And he was a highly respected television critic and probably a really nice guy, but he hated my guts or hated what I did. And he went and took out -- I was on the front page of the calendar section in The L.A. Times, which is like the front page of the arts in The New York Times. And it just said, "Bob Saget ruins America's Funniest Home Videos video." And he went out of his way to find -- it's like finding microfiche. You know, it's like finding -- he made fun of my work on a VHS cassette, and I wanted to go, "Dear Tom, I was allergic. I had terrible problems." But when you wake up on a Sunday and your color picture's on the front -- some people say any press is good press. I don't think so. But I agree. It was horrible. I was terrible, but I begged to get out of there, but they didn't let me get out of there. They insisted they should have shut down, called it a sick day, and we should have done it a day where I could breathe. But that doesn't matter. I mean, they say don't read it, but it was a Sunday morning and you're having your coffee and you open the paper and it's the whole damn paper, but everybody is woken up and seen.
[00:39:39] I mean, I got a phone call. The producer was like a Saturday morning. The movie we thought was crushing in a theater and I went to go see it. I'll tell you what it was. It was Dirty Work with Norm Macdonald. And I went to seven movie theaters in 1998 in L.A. We went to seven theaters and the movie was killing. Huge laughs. And it's a cult favorite now and it was just unbelievable how we said we got a hit. And the next morning the producer called me and said, "Sorry, buddy. Didn't do well. Take care."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:40:07] Man.
Bob Saget: [00:40:08] And that was the last time I talked to him until I was late for lunch. And then he stormed away from me then. So you do remember these negative things.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:40:14] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:40:14] But the point is, if you give them energy -- I'm telling you about them because it happens to everybody. There isn't anybody this doesn't happen to. And then if you stay positive and you just do -- you've got to do great work, you just have to do great work and do everything you can to do great work. And then be proud of yourself that you did as good as you could possibly do. That's all.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:40:36] I think it's interesting that you wanted to work and now it almost sounds like you didn't say this exactly, but you got more than what you wanted, right? You became -- it's called too famous. Like you walk into a place --
Bob Saget: [00:40:46] I got famous for being one thing and people love to pigeon hole. You and I even said in standup, once pigeonholing is a terrible thing to do because it's horrible for the pigeon, but there's a lot I want to do. And I got plenty of time as far as I'm concerned. Some people go, you know, a 15-year-old will go, "You're so old," and I go like, "Well, why don't you try yourself at my age? I bet you'll look like a skag." No, I don't say that to a 15-year-old. I would never say that, but --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:41:13] Give up now.
Bob Saget: [00:41:14] Nah, I mean, I have friends. I always name drop Norman Lear who's 97 and he's amazing. He's producing One Day at a Time for Pop Network and it's his old show that was on CBS and it's all-Latina cast now. And it's an amazing thing that he made it happen. He had to sign a three-year deal. So when he's a hundred, the deal will have to be redone.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:41:35] Jesus, good for him.
Bob Saget: [00:41:37] He is. I think he's close to Jesus. He is one of the coolest people and most wonderful friends and most brilliant people that could answer all of your questions. Because what he taught me, what he teaches me and you hear it a lot by anybody smart, Eckhart Tolle, anybody you read of any intelligence -- All we have is this moment and now it's this moment. And if you go and project what's going to happen, if this. Or how did that person get that? You're just wasting your brain. You're not even using any. You're using nothing good about your brain. You can try to figure it out with the neurotic mind. You can try to figure out why things didn't work, and try to go, how can I correct that? So I don't do it again. And here I am 63, about to be 64 and I'm going, "Okay, so don't interrupt people, Bob," and there's nothing wrong with that. It's me going, admitting my stuff and going, "I got to stop doing dumb shit."
Peter Oldring: [00:42:35] This is The Jordan Harbinger Show. We'll be right back.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:42:38] This episode is sponsored in part by Better Help online counseling. It's extraordinary times and if you're dealing with stress, anxiety, or depression -- well, first of all, you're not alone, you're in good company. Better Help offers licensed professional counselors who are trained to listen and help. The last thing you need during this time is to have to go through a list of insane Yelp reviews to find someone who's going to listen to you. Simply fill out a questionnaire to help assess your needs. Get matched with a counselor in under 48 hours, secure video, phone, chat, text sessions, unlimited messages. Don't worry about that. And if you don't like your counselor -- and it happens -- request a new one at any time, no additional charge. You can get professional help when you want, wherever you are in pretty much every dang time zone on the globe. Peter.
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Jordan Harbinger: [00:44:48] Stay tuned after the show, we've got a trailer of our interview with Jack Barsky, former KGB spy, who posed as an American in a truer than life version of a Hollywood movie. This is one of our most popular episodes of the show. Jack not only dodged the FBI for decades but also defected from the Soviet Union secretly becoming a real American. We'll learn how spies were recruited and trained during the cold war. And what skills Jack used to assimilate seamlessly into American culture. That trailer is after the cut coming right up.
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Jordan Harbinger: [00:46:06] it's got to be kind of tough to look back at a career that's so public, right? Because any mistake you made is magnified in a way that doesn't happen for normal people and anything you do in public -- like you were talking about before you walk in all the eyes are on you from everyone. I mean, do you just try to ignore that or what?
Bob Saget: [00:46:22] No, I usually try to be pleasant about it. Stamos always made fun of me like, "Oh, Bob thinks he's more famous than he is." And I would walk into a restaurant and a few flashbulbs would go off and then George Clooney would walk in and a billion flashbulbs would go off and then Stamos goes, "Now, will you calm down a little bit? Nobody really cares about you." And I was like, "Yeah, you're right. You're right." But I'm totally different now. I'm calm in my skin now. I just changed. I had therapy but worked on myself a lot. I don't know if it's evident during this thing. If I'm so calm, why the hell was I clicking this chopstick? I'm demonstrating --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:46:57] Yeah, man.
Bob Saget: [00:46:58] This is what you're hearing -- but you were hearing it in a much slower clicking.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:04] It was like a hypnotic pattern for the listener.
Bob Saget: [00:47:07] So I put your listeners to bed.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:09] That's right. Or, well, I don't even can.
Bob Saget: [00:47:11] Go ahead. You can get that way. I bet you're not that dirtier talker or I bet you don't go into Groucho Marx kind of lascivious comments.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:20] Probably not as much on the show because you know, I'm like -- first of all, it depends half the time there's a scientist on here. And if I say something that's ridiculous, they'll just be like, "Wow, how the hell did I get booked on this show with this idiot?"
Bob Saget: [00:47:34] What do you learn from scientists? What scientists have you had on lately and what have we learned?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:38] Oh, man. I mean, I've had quite a few there's one coming on pretty soon named Kelly McGonigal, she -- I mean, I've had Neil deGrasse Tyson and Bill Nye, the Science Guy, of course. But like I've Kelly McGonigal, she's talking about why stress is actually good for you if you actually harness it and use it right. But then I've got a doctor coming on. He's talking about how in China. They're actually executing people who do this Falun Gong, which is like a religion. They execute them and they sell their organs. And it's not like a conspiracy theory. It's like a real thing.
Bob Saget: [00:48:06] You're talking about their body parts, not their musical instruments.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:48:09] Right. Not the musical instruments, their body parts. Yeah. It's just crazy. So I try to get kind of off-topic or off-beat people to discuss things. There's another guy coming on who's talking about--he's going to break down how fake psychics look like they actually are psychic. He's going to break down the tricks they use and sort of exposed that for the audience. So I try to get a lot of variety of personalities on here, but science-based information as much as possible
Bob Saget: [00:48:32] Have you had a lot of stuff involving the whole pandemic?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:48:37] Yeah. I had the former head of the CDC on the show. I had the guy who works for the World Health Organization chasing influenza around the world and trying to prevent pandemics. It was like a month before corona and he goes, "You know, I'm really worried we're going to get an animal-based virus that we don't have immunity to." And like weeks later, we had coronavirus, it was crazy.
Bob Saget: [00:49:00] I don't like -- maybe I'm alone here, but I don't like coronavirus.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:49:03] And the upside is it's really easy to book people who would normally have better things to do. Like there's in an alternate universe where there's no coronavirus, Bob, you are on Full House season number 38, and you don't have time to do the Jordan Harbinger Show.
Bob Saget: [00:49:16] No, I don't have time because I'm doing a show that I did 30 years ago. That's right. And the last episode of the new season, which comes out June 2nd, I'm on a lot. And that's why it's the best one.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:49:27] Ah, yeah, well, they saved up their budget for that. You play a kind of parody of yourself in Entourage. Is that a fair statement?
Bob Saget: [00:49:33] Yeah. Yeah. Doug Ellin wrote that with all my friends that worked on that show. Originally, it was supposed to be a guy who was more down on his luck and my wife got all my house. She took my house and the other house. And then I said, "I can't do that. That's not even accurate. I'm not playing. What's the moose show? What's the one where he's always--oh, BoJack Horseman. He's not a moose. I'm not that guy. I've got to be like, I've got more money than anybody. I'm happy about everything. She can have it all. That was how we -- Doug Ellin said, "I'm going to make you the ballsiest -- " I can't curse that much, but he did.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:08] Yeah, you can.
Bob Saget: [00:50:08] I can curse?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:10] Yeah. You can do whatever you want.
Bob Saget: [00:50:11] Well, it's a little late to tell me. I mean, it's over.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:13] Yeah, that's true.
Bob Saget: [00:50:14] What are you going to do tonight? Are you cooking or is your wife cooking?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:18] Yeah, my wife is either going to cook or will order some sushi, you know?
Bob Saget: [00:50:21] How do you order sushi during this? You'll have it sent in.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:24] Oh yeah, of course. Yeah. Yeah. Get it delivered. What are you talking about? How do I order sushi? You have it delivered.
Bob Saget: [00:50:29] Right, but it's sushi. So do you trust raw fish during this?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:33] Well, yeah, I mean, you don't get coronavirus from raw fish. Although I do see your point now.
Bob Saget: [00:50:39] I mean, it's not a fish.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:41] No.
Bob Saget: [00:50:42] But we don't have wet markets in downtown L.A., right?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:45] No, we don't. At least not with like bats and pangolins and other stuff that you haven't heard of. No.
Bob Saget: [00:50:51] What the hell happened? I don't know if we'll ever know. I don't know what happened. Do you?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:50:56] I think it was probably the wet market. There's a lot of conspiracy theories out there, you know, like, "Oh, it's engineered in a lab." I don't believe any of that. I think this is pure human negligence and stupidity.
Bob Saget: [00:51:08] And things we shouldn't be eating.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:51:10] Things we shouldn't be eating in a weird coverup by the Chinese Communist Party because they don't want to admit that they're wrong because it makes them feel bad about themselves or like makes the country look bad. You know, they lose face as they call it in Chinese and they don't want to do that. And so we end up with this pandemic, which is ruining people's lives, unless you're, uh, yahtz like you or me, who's got a job they can do digitally or money from a previous career in the bank. We're lucky in that respect. I try to remember that. I heard John Stamos tell you that same thing. Like he feels really bad and he's realizing how fortunate he really was to be in the position that he's in. I feel the same way
Bob Saget: [00:51:47] I do too. I'm just most concerned about my kids who are in New York City, Brooklyn, and in downtown New York. That's what I'm scared of.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:51:54] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:51:55] I never knew. And they started saying the wet market. I just thought it's like, where old people go and they can't hold it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:01] When you leave your house -- like I'm trying to sort of wrap my mind -- like when you leave your house, do you think --
Bob Saget: [00:52:05] You mean in April?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:06] in April, in previous, previous --
Bob Saget: [00:52:07] Next year.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:08] Yeah, in 2019, when you were able to leave the house. Is there a part of you that's like, "I hope I don't get recognized right now. Like I just want to go and buy a gallon of milk."
Bob Saget: [00:52:17] No, I don't even think about it. I introduce myself. "Hi, I'm Bob." I don't even -- I've never lost that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:21] That's good.
Bob Saget: [00:52:22] People don't understand what fame is for people that walk around. That's their life. I've been famous more of my life than not.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:30] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:52:31] So what's the difference, you know, it just doesn't mean anything. It's other people going, "Wow, you're famous. What's that like?" It's like the Chris Farley Show, Remember Paul McCartney, he was with the Beatles. And he goes, "Yeah, yeah." And he goes, "Damn it. Why did I say that?" You know?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:45] "Stupid!"
Bob Saget: [00:52:46] God, you're so great. But yeah, I just want to do good work. I just want people to see something I've done and go, "I love that movie. That was so funny." Or, "l love that special of yours. That was so great." Or, "My wife and I just saw your show, and that made me feel so good. She made me come. I didn't want to come. I thought you were going to be this guy." And I've been getting a lot of great feedback on the podcast that makes me so damn happy. It's the best.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:11] It's got to be nice to be recognized for that. For me, I put myself in your shoes as best I can. And I go, I would be almost paralyzed to leave the house and worry that someone's going to be like, "That show sucks." But you have to get over that, right? Or you can't function.
Bob Saget: [00:53:24] No, no, I don't know where you're coming from. Nobody says anything mean to me in public.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:28] That's great. That's really good. That restores some faith in humanity.
Bob Saget: [00:53:31] I mean, why would they do that?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:33] I don't know.
Bob Saget: [00:53:34] Why would they? No, they're happy to see me. I'm fairly well-known in the US and in Canada.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:53:40] And in Japan.
Bob Saget: [00:53:41] And Mexico. And in some places, not really in England or in France, but in Spain, I'm told I am. I haven't been there. And in Australia, I get treated really nicely. I toured there. I want to go to New Zealand. I was in Scotland and I wasn't recognized. It depends on where your stuff is. Haters don't usually say -- it's usually nice stuff. I mean, it's usually just like -- for three days, I told you I had no Internet. And these young girls were driving by the house. So I was on the street trying to send a business email. I had one bar of service, no Internet, and the young girls drove by in a Volkswagen. And we're giggling. "Hi, Bob." And I went, "Hi," and I'm sitting there like a homeless guy on the street. I had V-neck --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:26] Trying to get Wi-Fi.
Bob Saget: [00:54:27] -- shirt all ripped up. I looked literally, literally homeless. I had on sandals and torn shorts. I mean, it looked like I didn't live there. You know, it was really weird, but people treat me like they know me already. I'm really lucky. People have asked -- you know, I can't compare myself, but people used to ask Jack Nicholson, "What's it like being so well known?" And he would say, "It's like being the mayor." But that's the mayor and old school terms. Right now, if you're a mayor, you might get people yelling at you, depending on what city you're leaving.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:58] Yeah, now, it gets worse.
Bob Saget: [00:54:58] But it's like If I was this popular in high school, I would have been a happier guy and it comes from them having laughed at me, or I brought them happiness during some moment in their life.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:55:08] I guess I just assumed that being famous for a famous person is like Twitter for a normal person where you look at it and you go, "Oh, these people are terrible. Why did I come on here? I don't want to deal with this." I guess I just figured there were times in your life where it's like -- there was a time -- and I bring up this example for a reason. Like I can imagine you just wanted to go to a charity event and play like charity softball or charity ice hockey or whatever it is, and people are yelling like, "Bob Saget," the whole time. And I know that that's happened to you because I did that with my friends in the early 200s when I was young and stupid as opposed to right now.
Bob Saget: [00:55:42] To me?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:55:43] Yeah. And eventually, you turned around and you were like, "Hi," in this totally exasperated just like this was --
Bob Saget: [00:55:47] Where? Where was this?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:55:49] This was in Michigan.
Bob Saget: [00:55:50] Oh, was this for the Red Wings? Was this when they lost those two wonderful players in that limo accident? And then Dave Coulier and I did a celebrity hockey thing.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:01] I think that might've been it. And I went with my friends and my friends were drinking heavily and they just kept screaming your name as loud as possible.
Bob Saget: [00:56:07] But they weren't saying it with hatred, right?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:10] No, they just wanted attention from you.
Bob Saget: [00:56:12] Well, I'm happy to give it.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:13] Yeah, it just seems exhausting.
Bob Saget: [00:56:15] No, it's actually, it's not even -- I don't even skip a beat. It doesn't mean anything. If it's like you suck, I just never hear that.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:22] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:56:23] I haven't heard that for 20 years. There were a couple of shows I've done where I was in one theater where I wasn't -- I didn't take my half-hour. I was working too hard. I was doing gig after gig and I was doing this one theater. I remember where it was. I want to say what theater it was The Wellmont, I believe. And I wasn't prepared. I was talking to people half-hour before showtime. You're not supposed to do that. I didn't get my head --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:46] Why not?
Bob Saget: [00:56:467] You can't get your head together. You can't work on your stuff. My job is to work on my stuff, to get my new stuff up and running, and then present it to the audience in the best way possible. And if you're out talking to people, what are you doing? It's not watercooler time. It's work time. It's like, you know, what do you want to see your pilot before the flight doing? You know, just the screwing around?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:57:08] What do you do before you go on stage? I'm so curious now. because I guess I just thought --
Bob Saget: [00:57:11] Well, I spent two hours of prep. I get to the theater. I do a soundcheck. The doors are locked to the theater. I then go and go in the dressing room. I go through all the new material that I'm working on. I maybe try to write a song, I'll go through some of my comedy songs. Maybe I'll talk to one of my kids. And by that time, it's showtime. And then my buddy, often Mike Young will go up. In different cities, it's sometimes someone else. In Canada, it was going to be Todd Allen. It will be again, but I mean, I have an opener friend, Mike Young's a really good comedian that I tour with. And then we kind of talk about jokes. I go, "Is this funny? Is that funny?" And then that's showtime.
[00:57:50] So this one gig -- it must've been 15 years ago, but the Wellmont, I was doing one gig after another, every night, a different city. And I wasn't good. And I wanted to impress these guys because they'd been on a show called Strange Days on A&E. It was just weird. I wanted to impress these guys. I talked to them before the show and I should have worked on my show. So somebody in the audience and that's the same stuff you did last time. And it was like five minutes of the same stuff, but they weren't wrong. I mean, they should have gotten what they -- my job is to entertain those people. That's my job is to make them have one of the best nights they could have and bring the room together in a unity of laughter and maybe some heartfelt emotion, you know.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:58:35] it must be a really awesome gift. To not only have people treat you like they know you but generally have positive feelings towards you because you were like their cool sitcom dad. And also like, remember that positive time in their life and that you made them laugh and you get to kind of -- I mean, there's just so much, that's a blessing from that. I guess I just figured there was another side that was a lot of pressure to be someone that maybe you don't feel like you are, but it sounds like you've become one with that.
Bob Saget: [00:59:03] No, I have to love my life. I have to love my life. People treat me wonderful. I mean, I can't think of going somewhere where people treat me terrible and I wouldn't go there anyway.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:59:14] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [00:59:14] Fans are fans, you know, they're nice. I always find it weird when someone gets all out of breath and excited. They're meaning like -- like when I met Muhammad Ali or something. They're getting like that and I'm like, "Oh, I'm sorry. I'm just some guy on a sitcom and I tell jokes." And then, there are certain people that are the biggest stars in the world that you meet and you feel like you know them their whole lives and they just talk to you because they're genuinely great people. And they exist.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:59:39] Well, Bob, this is great. I could talk your ear off. I mean, imagine this show is popular, so I have no doubt, your show will be popular too.
Bob Saget: [00:59:47] This show, your shows are incredibly popular, because I wouldn't have gone on it because I'm a star. And that's how I function. I only talked to you with that can help my career in a big way. I don't know. I keep doing it. I know why you're doing it three days a week. It feels great.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:00:01] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [01:00:01] I know you said you're lucky because it's a job. I don't look at it as a job because I'm naive to it. I'm a newbie. That's why it says it's the first podcast done by a comedian ever. In laurels, like it's the Cannes Film Festival on the poster, but it seems to be doing well. I'm getting a lot of nice feedback. I have great guests coming up, John Mayer.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:00:20] Wow.
Bob Saget: [01:00:21] Jim Gaffigan and I mean, so many people that I just love. Seth Green is really quite brilliant. Well, my friends -- it's really my friends and then talking to the public. That's what I love doing. And I've got a show coming up with just a monologue. I just talk for an hour. We know I can do that. I mean, I didn't let you talk enough.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:00:39] That's okay. I'm here every week, three times.
Bob Saget: [01:00:43] Okay, I'll call in/
Jordan Harbinger: [01:00:45] There you go.
Bob Saget: [01:00:45] Do you take calls?
Jordan Harbinger: [01:00:46] I could. We could definitely do that. We have an advice segment every Friday where we get advice for people that write in with specific stuff, it would be really funny to have you call in and give advice for certain things.
Bob Saget: [01:00:57] I would love it. I would love it very much. I want to be the new Dr. Ruth. I want them all to be sex questions.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:02] We can get you sex questions for sure. We can do that. There are tons of those.
Bob Saget: [01:01:06] And the answer is either face up or face down. That's the answer.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:09] That's how it always was. I grew up on Loveline with Dr. Drew and Adam Corrolla.
Bob Saget: [01:01:13] I was on that show quite a bit. And then I was so embarrassed with the questions they would get. Here I was being some R-rated comedian or whatever people thought and they would ask terrible things. "I think I've got a fissure." It's like, "Oh my God, I can't be here."
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:27] And that's before you had Google image search, imagine if you had Google search.
Bob Saget: [01:01:31] image, imagine if you had anything. Oh my God. What world are we in? Well, we got through this without them digging up my Internet cable. So I'm excited.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:39] I'm excited about that. I wish I could meet you and shake your hand, but who are we kidding? I read your book. I probably would have caught something.
Bob Saget: [01:01:45] No, I'm clean. I'm clean. I haven't done anything to a bat.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:49] Well, I do look forward to meeting you at some point. Hopefully, we can do something else again.
Bob Saget: [01:01:53] I look forward to it. When I'm doing standup also -- you talked to Michael?
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:57] Yeah, I will.
Bob Saget: [01:01:58] You know, Michael?
Jordan Harbinger: [01:01:58] Yeah.
Bob Saget: [01:02:00] Michael is my publicist. He's not some guy that lives under a bridge. Just talked to Michael about a thing and he'll give you a quarter pound. Hope you like lunch meat, but come to a show, bring your wife, get a sitter, do all that stuff.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:02:13] Thanks to Bob for coming on the show. He's got his own podcast now. It's called Bob Saget's here for you. We'll link to that in the show notes. Rodney Dangerfield gave him the advice to just go like a tank and go he did -- making one of the most iconic careers in comedy. So much so that people from Russia and Japan say things like I learned English from Full House, which by the way, if you think about it, that means that grown men from the far east are walking around saying things like, "You got it, dude," probably in that little Michelle voice. This guy has decades more media experience. And I couldn't see him. But he could see me -- this for me was like some sort of military training exercise for interviewing where I'm given a handicap. It's like, "Okay, but you can't use your right arm. So he's coming at me with everything and I can't even see him. So he's making fun of me. There's a lot of asides that we actually had to edit out because they were a little extra. Some of them we left in, but he's just going after me. And yeah, if you couldn't guess by the way, by the story he wanted to avoid. So there was a doll in the room on the set of Full House and it was a kid-sized doll and they use it for blocking. So like walking around, talking with somebody, you use it to rehearsal. You're not just talking to thin air. And he was clearly pretending to do some dirty stuff, pretending to bang this kid-sized doll. He's making the crew laugh. He's making the other folks on the set laugh. But on a sitcom, if you've never been to a taping, there are monitors everywhere and the audience can see everything going on, on the set. And there are just monitors everywhere in the backroom where the kids' parents are because child actors, the parents are usually onset -- you know, housing snacks and. Talking to each other. The entire audience and the parents of other child actors could see what was going on. So this was not the highlight of his career. He really did not want to tell that story but I told him that I was going to tell you in the close because you can't leave us hanging like that.
[01:04:03] Worksheets for this episode in the show notes, transcripts in the show notes. There's a video of this interview on our YouTube channel and yes, you will see both him and me. We fixed it and posted as they say. And you can find that video on our YouTube channel at jordanharbinger.com/youtube. I'm trying to teach you how to connect if you would just listen to me, go to our course at jordanharbinger.com/course. It's free. It's about digging the well before you're thirsty. Build that network before you need it. Even if it means starting from scratch, don't procrastinate or you'll stagnate. And you know, it's true because it rhymes. These drills take just a few minutes a day. I wish I knew this stuff 20 years ago. Find it all for free at jordanharbinger.com/course. And most of the guests you see on the show and that you hear on the show, they're in the course. They're doing it. It's good advice. Just take it. In fact, speaking to building relationships, you can reach out and/or follow me on social at @JordanHarbinger on Twitter and Instagram. Add me on LinkedIn, we might just become your connection. If I can get the damn thing to work. I think I invited too many people. You could add me now, but I can't add you back. I can confirm it. That's all. So you have to add me if you want to connect. I'm not sure why.
[01:05:07] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. This episode was produced by Jen Harbinger. Jase Sanderson is our engineer. The ads are fun because the Peter Oldring show notes and worksheets by Robert Fogarty, music by Evan Viola, and I'm your host Jordan Harbinger. Our advice and opinions and those of our guests are their own, and I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer. I'm not a doctor. I'm not a therapist. I'm obviously not a comedian. So do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. And remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is that you share it with friends when you find something useful or interesting. If you know somebody who -- I don't know, is it trying to come up in the comedy scene or just as a huge Full House fan? I don't know, share this with people who like good entertainment. Hopefully, you find something great in every episode. So please do share the show with those you love. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
Jack Barsky: [01:06:02] I was untouchable. I was above the law. I was always bypassing customs and passport control. So the young person that really feels good because I never liked rules.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:12] How did you flip to eventually becoming full American? I know they tried to call you home. Can you take us through that?
Jack Barsky: [01:06:18] They called me back as an emergency departure. They've done this in the past, they've called back an agent. And as soon as they step on Soviet soil, they are jailed or even executed. I was stalling the Soviets, and then one day they sent one of their resident agents. And he said to me, "You got to come home or else you're dead." It was a threat. I decided I would defy them and tell them that I'm not returning. I will not betray any secrets and please give the money on my account to my German family. End.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:50] Tell us how you got caught because the story is just not complete until you -- like you said -- had to face your past.
Jack Barsky: [01:06:57] I was stopped on the other side of the tollgate. It was a state trooper who said, "We like to check your license and registration. And could you step out of the car?" I stepped out of the car and still not having a clue what was going on. Out of the corner of my eye, somebody approaching me from the back. The fellow introduced himself. He says, "Joe Riley, FBI." And he showed me this badge. "We would like to talk with you." The first question I asked her, "Am I under arrest?" And the answer was no. Then I said, "What took you so long?"
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:28] For more from Jack Barsky, including how Jack was finally caught by the FBI and what happened after that, check out episode 285 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
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