You sank your savings into a lovely house with a big yard to call your own, only to discover that the nearest neighbor who lives down the drive is a repeat violent offender who’s done time for attempted murder. Now you feel unsafe on your own property because you’re constantly stressing about the countless ways you might unintentionally set him off and turn yourself into a target. Where should you go from here? Welcome to Feedback Friday!
And in case you didn’t already know it, Jordan Harbinger (@JordanHarbinger) and Gabriel Mizrahi (@GabeMizrahi) banter and take your comments and questions for Feedback Friday right here every week! If you want us to answer your question, register your feedback, or tell your story on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. Now let’s dive in!
On This Week’s Feedback Friday, We Discuss:
- The felon down the drive makes it hard for you to thrive. Where should you go from here? [Thanks to executive security manager George Grant for helping us with this one!]
- Your deadbeat friend won’t kick in his fair share of the rent. Though you’ve known him forever, you can’t foot the bill whenever he decides not to pay up. What should you do? [Thanks to country lawyer Matthew McClanahan for guiding us through this one!]
- Are the concerns you have over your significant other’s narcissistic tendencies valid, or should you trust their interpretation of your overreaction?
- Your significant other has lost their chance at the dream job they’ve idealized almost since birth. Where should you go from here?
- How does a teenage atheist find comfort in the uncertainty of life, the universe, and everything?
- Have any questions, comments, or stories you’d like to share with us? Drop us a line at email@example.com!
- Connect with Jordan on Twitter at @JordanHarbinger and Instagram at @jordanharbinger.
- Connect with Gabriel on Twitter at @GabeMizrahi.
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider leaving your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
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Miss our conversation with elite counterterrorism undercover agent Tamer Elnoury? Catch up with episode 572: Tamer Elnoury | Undercover with a Muslim FBI Agent here!
Resources from This Episode:
- Diet Pills and Supplements | Skeptical Sunday | Jordan Harbinger
- Neil Woods | Undercover in the UK’s Most Vicious Drug Gangs | Jordan Harbinger
- Siddharth Kara | How the Blood of the Congo Powers Our Lives | Jordan Harbinger
- Sinai | Jewish Virtual Library
- What Is a Group of Camels Called? | Research Maniacs
- 15 Amazing Things to Do in Luxor, Egypt | Earth Trekkers
- George Grant | Instagram
- Home Security Systems | SimpliSafe
- Pathway to Violence | CISA
- Mending Wall by Robert Frost | Poetry Foundation
- Trouble Runs Deep with the Neighborhood Creep | Feedback Friday | Jordan Harbinger
- Marsupial | San Diego Zoo Animals & Plants
- American Psycho | Prime Video
- Matthew McClanahan | Instagram
- Joint and Several Liability | Investopedia
- Joint and Several Liability in California | San Jose Personal Injury Lawyers
- Solipsism: Your Mind Is the Only Thing That Exists | Philosophy Break
- I Want It That Way by Backstreet Boys | Amazon Music
- Sublimate | Merriam-Webster
- Looking Back on the Worst Chapter of My Life, Four Years On | Jordan Harbinger
- Forget Finding Your Purpose — Do This Instead | Deep Dive | Jordan Harbinger
- What to Do When Your Purpose Starts to Suck | Deep Dive | Jordan Harbinger
- Simon Sinek | What’s Your “Why” and Where Do You Find It?
- How to Get Your Foot in the Door | Jordan Harbinger
- Everything You Should Know About Thanatophobia | Healthline
- How to Pronounce Guillotine? (English & French) | Julien Miquel
- Fall Out Boy
- Jean-Paul Sartre | Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
- Steps to Overcome Your Thanatophobia | BetterHelp
- Death Anxiety: 9 Ways to Overcome Your Fear of Death | hims
- Psychedelics May Lessen Fear of Death and Dying, Similar to Feelings Reported by Those Who’ve Had Near Death Experiences | Johns Hopkins Medicine
- Because I Got High by Afroman | YouTube
808: Felonious Fellow is Harshing Your Mellow | Feedback Friday
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to Peloton for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:08] Welcome to Feedback Friday. I'm your host, Jordan Harbinger. As always, I'm here with Feedback Friday producer, the psychological spy balloon hovering over this landscape of life conundra, Gabriel Mizrahi.
[00:00:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: Well, wow, that was very timely. Yeah.
[00:00:22] Jordan Harbinger: Mmm.
[00:00:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: And just like that spy balloon, I'm assuming I, too, am about to be shot down at some point.
[00:00:27] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, you get ready for that, Gabe?
[00:00:28] Gabriel Mizrahi: I will.
[00:00:29] Jordan Harbinger: On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's 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 even inside your own mind.
[00:00:53] If you're new to the show on Fridays, we give advice, we answer listener questions. The rest of the week, we have long-form interviews and conversations with a variety of amazing folks from spies to CEOs, athletes, authors, thinkers, and performers. This week we had Neil Woods on undercover drug operations. Just an amazing, amazing set of stories from undercover work. Why drug policy doesn't work? Manipulation and psychology, just an incredible, incredible episode. I really love doing that one. And Siddharth Kara on how cobalt is mined. And this is quite horrifying if you haven't heard it yet. Both really, really good listens this week. Go back and check out those if you haven't had a chance to do so yet, and Skeptical Sunday airing this Sunday. So make sure you've had a look and a listen to all of that.
[00:01:36] Gabe, before we jumped in. I remembered a crazy story that I'd completely forgotten about until this week.
[00:01:42] Gabriel Mizrahi: Ooh, tell me.
[00:01:43] Jordan Harbinger: So this is like the year 2000, that sounds like the year Skynet took over. I was in Egypt. Well, I was originally in Israel. Crazy uprising started, all of the students from my program either went, well, most of them went home because the universities canceled their exchange programs. I was an independent, so I stuck around with a couple of other adventurers and we went to Egypt thinking the whole thing would calm down in like three weeks and—
[00:02:06] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:02:07] Jordan Harbinger: We decided to go on a longer trip, so we went to Eilat, which is in the south of Israel. We went to the Egyptian consulate and we got there maybe at like five or six o'clock in the morning. We basically stayed up all night, sat out in the cold, and just waited for the thing to open, laid down next to it. And as we got closer to opening time, which is probably eight or nine, the line was ridiculous and they were only going to be open for a few hours because it was a holiday in Israel. It was like one of these long deals or several days long. And we get our visas and they close the window for the visas at, you know, whatever time, shortly after a few people after us were done. We were waiting for a bus and like 50 people just didn't have time to get visas. And they were like, "Bye, good luck."
[00:02:52] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oof.
[00:02:52] Jordan Harbinger: And they were trapped for days in Eilat over the holiday weekend with everything booked up and/or closed. And one guy who was on the trip with us, not in our group, but with us from our school, he was a huge prick. Just one of these real entitled guys and he got a visa and we went on the bus. And as we're riding this 27-hour bus ride from Eilat that goes all the way through the Sinai Peninsula, all along the coastline, this guy, when we get to Egypt proper, the border agents come on the bus again because they're checking visas again because apparently, you need a different visa for Sinai and a different visa for Egypt. Well, we had Egypt visas. This guy who was a jerk to the guys at the visa window, he only had a Sinai visa.
[00:03:34] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh.
[00:03:34] Jordan Harbinger: Clearly, they had done this on purpose because he was an A-hole and they made him get off the bus after like the first, you know, 10 hours of bus ride, maybe even more.
[00:03:44] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh, that's so rough spot.
[00:03:45] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's bad.
[00:03:46] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. So he's in the middle of like nowhere between Sinai and Egypt. And they're like, "Nope," and it's like one o'clock in the morning and they make him get off the bus. And I'm like, "Holy crap, be nice to anybody in a position and double-check your documents folks." Just make sure—
[00:04:03] Gabriel Mizrahi: Good point.
[00:04:03] Jordan Harbinger: Like even if you can't read Arabic, which none of us could, obviously, you need to just look at what everybody else got in their passport and be like, okay, because his was green and ours were red. I mean, any sort of cursory examination of the documents would've revealed that he had something else. Anyway, my friend turned to me and goes, "If that happens to you or me, we're both getting off the bus." And I was like, "Of course." Because all his friends are like, "Peace, dude. Sorry. Sucks to be you. I'm going to Egypt."
[00:04:28] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:04:28] Jordan Harbinger: Have fun getting back to Jerusalem alone at night. So I was on this bus. By the way again, 27-hour bus ride, very slow. Everybody else on the bus was an Egyptian fisherman, aside from the couple of people that were traveling from our school. And they were like real salt of the earth guys. I mean, these are, again, fishermen from the Sinai Peninsula and/or Egypt, and they were like popping in these movies that were insanely anti-Israel and anti-USA. It was ridiculous like you'd see a woman would get like pushed down. These guys would walk in and these like 1985 overalls and they'd be like, "Yeah, we're here because we want this and this and this." And they'd be like, these cartoonishly stupid villains. And as soon as they showed up, they would zoom in on this giant star of David that they all had to wear as bling because, of course, otherwise, how would you know that they're Jews and the music would be like—
[00:05:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Sure.
[00:05:27] Jordan Harbinger: And I remember the guys who were watching the movies were like looking at us and shaking their head, and then they would tell the bus driver to change it. Because even these old, like 70-year-old fishermen were like, this is so stupid. I can't watch this dumb ass thing.
[00:05:40] Gabriel Mizrahi: Let's not hurt their feelings, these poor boys. Oh, got it.
[00:05:43] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. It was that but also it was so dumb. It was just so dumb.
[00:05:47] Gabriel Mizrahi: Uh-huh.
[00:05:47] Jordan Harbinger: That even they were like, okay, this is — now that other people who aren't 70-year-old Egyptian fishermen are watching this would realize how stupid these movies are. So finally, we wake up after literally over a day-long on this bus. The guys are playing backgammon or whatever it is and dice games on the bus all night long and chain smoking as one does. We go to, I think it was south of Luxor, we are really far south, as far south as you can go as a tourist without either special permits and/or a military escort. And I can't remember exactly what the deal was. So I wake up in my hotel and I hear screaming and wailing and I'm just thinking, what is that?
[00:06:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:06:25] Jordan Harbinger: And it's getting louder and louder. What is that? What is that? What is that? Is there an emergency? I should probably get out of bed now. This is not good whatever this is. And I walk outside and the wailing is so loud and I realize it's actually a funeral and they're holding up a giant photo of this older guy that's enormous. And all of the women in the funeral parade were grabbing their clothes and screaming at the top of their lungs and crying.
[00:06:50] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:06:50] Jordan Harbinger: And it was actually quite terrifying because I imagine a group of women that are wailing in mourning for somebody at the top of their lungs and walking through town. And I've never seen or any heard of anything like that at this point in my life. And I was like, "What is going on?" And people are like, "Relax. It's a funeral. It's totally normal." This is totally normal stuff when somebody passes away. I just could not believe it. That was one of those, like where am I right now? I'm really in another culture. Like the bus ride was one thing. This is even on another level. And as I walked to get out of the way of the funeral procession, I walked through a bunch of camels. What do you call that by the way? Is that like a herd of camels? Is there a word for this?
[00:07:29] Gabriel Mizrahi: I believe it's a caravan of camels.
[00:07:32] Jordan Harbinger: Oh really? That's what that word comes from. Okay.
[00:07:34] Gabriel Mizrahi: I don't know why I know that, but I do know that. And that's what it is.
[00:07:37] Jordan Harbinger: So there were a bunch of camels that were just tied up outside businesses. It's like the wild west. Instead of horses, it's camels because that's what people rode there mostly in this little town.
[00:07:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yep.
[00:07:46] Jordan Harbinger: And I stepped in a deep puddle of just hot sun-warmed camel piss.
[00:07:51] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh no.
[00:07:53] Jordan Harbinger: No, with my Teva sandals. And it got—
[00:07:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh, opened — you don't even have shoes.
[00:07:57] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah, no, no, no, you know, good old sandals.
[00:08:00] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh, no.
[00:08:00] Jordan Harbinger: I was like, ooh, that might be bad later. And I tried to wash my foot off and stuff, but it was, you know, it was hard.
[00:08:06] Gabriel Mizrahi: I hope so.
[00:08:06] Jordan Harbinger: Where am I going to do that in rural Egypt?
[00:08:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: I don't know. In the hotel? What do you mean? You can't do it in the hotel?
[00:08:13] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, but it was like, I didn't even have a shower in my hotel room. It was kind of just like this—
[00:08:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh, it's like that.
[00:08:18] Jordan Harbinger: —funky thing. So I go, I wash my foot off and I like put a bandage on some of the obvious blisters that I had from walking and stuff. And I ended up with a ridiculous blood infection because I was an idiot. And I had staph.
[00:08:31] Gabriel Mizrahi: Whoa.
[00:08:31] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[00:08:32] Gabriel Mizrahi: Wait, what? You got staph—?
[00:08:34] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[00:08:34] Gabriel Mizrahi: —infection from this?
[00:08:35] Jordan Harbinger: It was horrible. And what was weird is I remember my foot slowly just getting red, like over days and being like, that's probably not good. And then eventually, it was like, oh yeah, fever. This is nasty.
[00:08:46] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh my God.
[00:08:47] Jordan Harbinger: The doctor was like, this is bad. They gave me some kind of crazy methamphetamine medication to feel better. And I remember taking a train or a bus, I can't even remember what it was at this point. Taking the pill, feeling horrible, taking the pill, looking at the clock on the train and it just went, and four hours went by and then I got off the train. Remember I could barely get on the train. I got off the train and I was like, "Yo, let me help you guys with your luggage." And I carried everyone's heavy ass bags off this train. And I was like, whatever's in this works really well and—
[00:09:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:09:21] Jordan Harbinger: —it was definitely meth.
[00:09:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: We should take that before we record the show.
[00:09:24] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[00:09:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's what we need.
[00:09:26] Jordan Harbinger: That's what we should do.
[00:09:28] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, can you get your hands on some of that Luxor meth?
[00:09:31] Jordan Harbinger: Whatever it was, I should have kept the box, I'll tell you that. Anyway, there's no real point to this story other than definitely be nice to administrative officials who are going to give you a visa and—
[00:09:40] Gabriel Mizrahi: And doctors who might have to amputate your foot.
[00:09:43] Jordan Harbinger: And doctors who might have to amputate your foot and/or have the right to prescribe you something insane. And definitely don't step in camel piss. And if you do, don't be a moron. Wash your damn foot and put some Neosporin on everything. And I don't know, pour some vodka on it if you have to.
[00:09:59] All right. We've got some fun ones. We've got some doozies. I can't wait to dive in. Gabe, what's the first thing out of the mailbag?
[00:10:05] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hi, Jordan and Gabe. Three years ago, my husband and I sold our first fixer-upper and used the profit to purchase the home of our dreams in a coastal New England town, only miles from where I grew up. This house, which we love and which we know is our forever home is our nest egg, retirement, and biggest asset we plan to leave to our children. We put our life savings into it and set up our future with this house as the cornerstone. When we moved in, we hosted a huge barbecue for our friends, family, and neighbors, including an older man who lives on the lot down our driveway. He had a sketchy vibe but seemed harmless and nice enough. He spent the whole day in my house, ate the food I prepared and chit-chatted with all of our guests. After that, I drop off leftovers and Christmas cookies and participate in many conversations with this guy, thinking he was just a lonely old man in his '60s. Then recently, I decided to do some research on one of the lots we own, where we want to build a house, and which sits directly behind this neighbor's house. A little bit of digging turned into an absolute nightmare when I Googled him. As it turns out, an incident at his house five years ago left him convicted of attempted murder, an assault with a deadly weapon after a drunken episode. The story was very explicit and involved other neighbors on our street, something straight out of a horror film. I studied the timeline and we purchased our home only a few months after he got out of prison and then rehab. I ran a background check on him praying that that was the only thing I would find but alas, I discovered another attempted murder charge, which he served time for in federal prison in the '90s.
[00:11:48] Jordan Harbinger: Appropriate?
[00:11:48] Gabriel Mizrahi: Exactly. Yeah, totally.
[00:11:50] So our driveway passes his house with a clearance of about 30 feet. Anytime, I leave the house, we're always forced to engage with him, which I now do, just to avoid pissing him off or tipping him off to the fact that we know his past. I'm especially uneasy on days when I'm home with my kids and my husband is on the road for work. We're an active crew. We love to explore our property and play in nature, and we never spend a full day inside. I am furious. I also feel so ashamed and naive for giving this man handouts, letting my kids play with his dog and welcoming him into our home to meet our family and friends. How do I handle this guy now? How do I balance knowing his dangerous past with still engaging him without being obvious? Are we now putting our family's wealth above our safety? Signed, Feeling Sore About the Lore of the Gore Perpetrated Before By the Guy Next Door.
[00:12:46] Jordan Harbinger: Wow, coming in hot today, Gabe.
[00:12:48] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, sometimes it hits, I got to go with it.
[00:12:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yikes, man. This is quite a situation.
[00:12:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:12:53] Jordan Harbinger: What an insane discovery to make.
[00:12:55] Gabriel Mizrahi: Seriously.
[00:12:56] Jordan Harbinger: I'm so sorry that you guys bought this dream home. Welcome this guy in, settled into this beautiful life, and then learned that this neighbor is potentially dangerous. That's very unsettling. And yeah, I can definitely understand why it puts you on edge, especially when you and the kids are alone. We wanted to talk to an expert about what to do here. So we reached out to George Grant, executive security manager at a Fortune 40 company. George has also run personal protection for high-net-worth families, so he really knows his stuff. In fact, he and his team put their heads together and did a tabletop exercise about your letter to really think through how they would advise a family in your shoes. So you're getting true expert advice from a team that say, an actual billionaire would hire to protect their own family.
[00:13:40] So the first thing George said is that this is one of those situations where the knee-jerk response is often just to move. But the truth is we usually can't control whether we move in next to a criminal or a predator. Given your situation, it doesn't sound like you guys would want to move or that you even can. And anyway, it would be a shame to give up this amazing property and let this guy, well, win, so to speak, even though he hasn't done anything to you. So the real question in George's view is this — how do you handle your potentially dangerous neighbor now?
[00:14:14] And his take is that it comes down to a few very simple but very effective tactics. And those tactics are lock your doors, maintain your situational awareness, be a hard target. And post some simple cameras and lighting at your front and back doors, maybe even on the driveway leading up to the house, so that you have good visibility there. And you know, I have to plug SimpliSafe here. They're an amazing provider of security solutions for your home. Go to simplisafe.com/jordan for a discount to get started. It's one of those sort of systems that's going to be super easy to set up and add a little layer of protection here.
[00:14:46] The other thing George explained to us is that every targeted violent act has what he calls pre-incident indicators. And those indicators, they're much easier to monitor with a neighbor than with a total stranger. George and his colleagues actually use a model called the pathway to violence. In a nutshell, the pathway to violence says that most predators generally, they don't snap out of nowhere. They'll take predictable steps. So they go from having a grievance to having violent ideations to planning and prepping, and then finally to acting out. So even if this guy were to attack someone while he's drunk and has a target of opportunity, in George's experience, he'd probably have thought about it. He'd probably have created a real or perceived grievance in his mind. He might even have leaked something in a conversation or been caught prowling the house when the family was away. Not to freak you out, in fact, quite the opposite.
[00:15:39] George's point is there would probably be breadcrumbs leading to the event that you are now afraid of. And the phrase that kept popping up for George was good fences make good neighbors. So his other recommendation here, consider doing some landscaping , creative landscaping that would force this guy to intentionally overcome non-intrusive security measures before he can engage with you. That's a fancy way of saying, putting up maybe a five-foot hedge between your lot and his. That's short enough. You could still maintain some awareness, but it's tall enough that it would be inconvenient to have regular interactions. And Gabe, I'm imagining here a home improvement where he is always talking to the neighbor and he only sees the nose on up.
[00:16:21] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yep, that's exactly it.
[00:16:22] Jordan Harbinger: Now, in terms of how to engage with this guy from here out, George's advice is when you do interact with him, be friendly, but not personable and let the conversation die early and often In his experience, if you reduce the opportunities for him to have a problem with you guys or to fixate on your family, you're much less likely to be targeted. Which is really interesting because my gut response at first was actually the total opposite. I was going to say, oh yeah, go way out of your way. Make friends with this guy. Wave and smile every time you pass him on the driveway, ask him for advice on how to fix one of your kid's tricycles or whatever. Which is the exact wrong thing to do apparently. So I'm just over here attracting predators and psychos to my family left and right, I guess.
[00:17:04] But now, that George told us this, I do see his point because yeah, this guy obviously has a track record of violence, which is terrifying, although I'm really hoping that prison and rehab have helped him. I hope he doesn't pose the same threat to you guys, but you could live next to him and have nothing ever happen as long as he doesn't have any particular grievance with you.
[00:17:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right, and it's so interesting the fact that they treated him so nicely when they first arrived. I know that's disturbing in retrospect, but that might actually turn out to be kind of a blessing because now this guy sees them as friendly, right? They've been generous with him. They're not provoking him. So unless, he's truly a loose cannon, I mean like a truly unpredictable psychopath character, which I got to say, it doesn't sound like he is just based on the facts. I'm guessing he won't randomly turn on them for no reason.
[00:17:52] Jordan Harbinger: Right. This isn't, he doesn't sound completely unhinged mentally ill kind of guy where, you know, well—
[00:17:59] Soundbite: New card. What do you think? Whoa. Very nice. Good coloring. That's bone. And the lettering is something called Silian Rail. [American Psycho]
[00:18:11] Jordan Harbinger: Right. We're not dealing with somebody like that.
[00:18:13] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:18:13] Jordan Harbinger: We're dealing with somebody who sounds like they snapped in a moment of drunken anger, hopefully.
[00:18:18] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hmm, hopefully. Although Jordan, I got to say, it's so weird to me that one of these incidents, this attempted murderer and the drunken episode involved multiple neighbors in their area on their driveway and nobody said anything to this family—
[00:18:32] Jordan Harbinger: Ooh.
[00:18:32] Gabriel Mizrahi: —when they moved in. That's a little weird, right?
[00:18:34] Jordan Harbinger: That is weird. I actually didn't really put that together. I thought he had just snapped at random people. I didn't know that they were also neighbors. Well, that's, ah, not great.
[00:18:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: I mean, complicates the picture, but it also makes me think, why aren't these neighbors looking out for this? I mean, if somebody new moved in and there was some crazy guy who almost murdered you, wouldn't you be like, "Hey, I just want to give you a heads up. Paul is a little weird."
[00:19:00] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:19:00] Gabriel Mizrahi: Like why didn't they say anything? Well, that's what happened, I guess. So they just have to live with that, but—
[00:19:05] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:19:05] Gabriel Mizrahi: Also, I wonder if they could talk to some of these neighbors and ask them like, how scary is this guy now? Has he mellowed out? Do I need to worry when I'm on the driveway? How do you guys handle him? Like get some intel and also ask them why didn't you tell me that this guy, this convicted attempted murder guy is living next to me, but also putting that aside—
[00:19:24] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:19:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: —are we in any danger? I feel like these people have lived there for a while. They probably know what the deal is.
[00:19:28] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, Paul is fine. He, you know, just got a new wood chipper, which is a little weird, but I don't know. Otherwise, he pretty keeps to himself a lot. It looks like he's digging a basement out, which is a little strange. But otherwise, he's fine.
[00:19:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: It keeps him busy. Yeah. I don't know, man.
[00:19:44] Jordan Harbinger: I don't know. Yeah.
[00:19:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's strange.
[00:19:46] Jordan Harbinger: I think the key now is to be very careful not to make him feel like they're suddenly alienating him out of the blue. Because if you suddenly stop talking to him and you're like, Hey, I'm putting in some hedges.
[00:19:55] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:19:55] Jordan Harbinger: And then you tell your kids to look away every time you pass them in the driveway, you know, unless he's really dense, he's probably going to sense that. And maybe he'd take that as a provocation in some way. And I'm just imagining the worst case scenario here. Where the police are, like, "Why did you target that family?" "Well, they were nice to me, and then they started acting real standoffish. And so that's what made me really mad." It's like the irony of them having been nice to them in the first place, just, I don't know. "Like, oh, if they were nice to me, this would never have happened."
[00:20:33] Gabriel Mizrahi: You are soundboard happy today.
[00:20:34] Jordan Harbinger: I know. I'm losing my mind over here.
[00:20:36] Gabriel Mizrahi: It would be a shame if they undid all the goodwill they built up, and that's like all those canapés, you know, just wasted spanakopita, in my opinion.
[00:20:44] As for your last question, are you putting your family's wealth above your safety? Mmm, I don't know. I don't think you're quite there yet. If something ever did happen, I mean, if he threatened you or messed with your kids or you know, you open the mailbox one day and there's a squirrel in it or something like that. Right?
[00:21:02] Jordan Harbinger: I was about to say, major squirrel and mailbox vibes in this particular letter.
[00:21:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: A little bit, right? Except this guy seems less crazy and—
[00:21:11] Jordan Harbinger: That's true.
[00:21:11] Gabriel Mizrahi: —aggressive than that guy.
[00:21:12] Jordan Harbinger: That's true. Sorry, look, I'm not trying to freak this family. I know this is scary. It's just, you know, unhinged neighbor, criminal record, substance abuse issues—
[00:21:19] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:21:19] Jordan Harbinger: —my mind goes straight to squirrel in mailbox.
[00:21:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: But it's possible that these things never happen and that you live in peaceful coexistence with this guy and you figure out the right stance to take with him and it's all good. In which case, you're not putting your wealth above your safety, you're just living your lives and you're being smart about him. And you get to have both.
[00:21:36] Jordan Harbinger: You know, it's occurred to me that people might not realize I'm talking about a dead squirrel in the mailbox from a previous Feedback Friday letter because you know, live squirrels on the mailbox, no big deal. Dead squirrel in the mailbox, less welcome addition to the house. So, I agree, Gabe, but—
[00:21:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Very important distinction.
[00:21:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, kind of the key. If things ever take a turn, then I would definitely reevaluate. See if you guys need to put your safety above this house. I just don't think we're there yet. So I hope this helps. I hope you all stay safe. Of course, you might always deal with some lingering fear, even if nothing bad ever happens, and that might be the hardest part of the situation.
[00:22:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:22:10] Jordan Harbinger: But then you guys need to find a way to work through that fear, work through the anxiety, and follow Georgie's advice to feel as secure as possible. And if you do that, I'm pretty confident you guys will be okay. Also, this dude's in his '60s, he's led a hard life. I don't mean to be callous or dark here, but who knows how long this guy's going to be around? So if this is a long-term investment, just keep that in mind too. You all are on the younger side. This problem just might have an expiration date. So maybe remind yourself of that when things get stressful and we're sending you good thoughts. Wishing you a marsupial-free mailbox.
[00:22:42] Wait, Gabe, are squirrels marsupials? I don't even know.
[00:22:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Uh, I think technically they're rodents.
[00:22:47] Jordan Harbinger: Well, damn. I'm a double down on marsupials because I like the alliteration and I like the idea of a baby squirrel in a mom's squirrel pouch for a little squirrel section.
[00:22:57] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm. Nice image. Yeah.
[00:22:58] Jordan Harbinger: You know what will fit great in one of your pouches or really any orifice on your body at all, if that's what you're into? One of the fine products and services that support this show. We'll be right back.
[00:23:10] This episode is sponsored in part by Better Help. If you're going through a tough time, you are not alone. I've been there, we've all been there whether we admit it or not. In my opinion, therapy is one of the best things you can do for yourself. And Better Help is a great way to dip your toes in the water of therapy. I know people are like, "But you should, you're better off going to a real one in person, dah, dah." Either you're going to get therapy or you're not. And what I love about Better Help is it lowers the bar for people who are like, "I don't know, I don't have time. I'm really busy. It's not convenient. I can't find a therapist." I get that. It's hard to find a place to go. It's hard to find parking. It's hard to find time. Better Help solves those problems, even if you think like, "Oh, I can't do therapy over the phone." Also, therapy is vulnerable work. Better Help doesn't feel intimidating. It can feel really intimidating to go to a freaking doctor across town. It's a whole to-do. Better Help will also match you with a therapist tailored to your needs. If you don't mesh, you can find another one. There's no charge for that. It's not a big hassle. They've got over 94,000 reviews in the iPhone app if you're still skeptical. If you're on the fence, just dip your toe in the water. Seriously, just try it out. Talking to somebody who knows what they're freaking doing can be really, really, really helpful. I can't overstate this.
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[00:26:12] Now back to Feedback Friday.
[00:26:15] All right, next up.
[00:26:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hi, Jordan and Gabe. I live in California and I currently share a lease with my friend whom I've known since high school but lately, he hasn't been able to pay his share. Then, recently, I got an eviction warning email while I was at work, which freaked me out. I called him and asked him if he had a share to pay and he told me he didn't. Long story short, he told me he doesn't care and told me to eff off. Now, I'm stuck with an irresponsible roommate who doesn't or can't pay his share of the rent on time. I've talked to the leasing manager and explained to her what's going on. She told me they can't legally tell him to leave and that I should talk to him and have him agree that he no longer wants his name on the lease so he can move out. How can I get this irresponsible person who doesn't want to pay rent out of my life, and is my roommate still entitled to get his deposit back? Signed, Full of Hate, Tempting Fate with this Absolute Dead Weight.
[00:27:11] Jordan Harbinger: Ooh, this guy sounds like a top-shelf assh*le.
[00:27:15] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:27:15] Jordan Harbinger: He's putting you in a really terrible position, compromising your living situation and your finances, and he is just showing zero remorse. It's a little sociopathic, kind of. Like who can just calmly do that to somebody? He's just a free rider taking advantage of his situation, not cool. Really sorry this is happening to you. This type of stuff makes me want to just bust out a wrench and bash somebody's head. And I know that sounds disgusting, but I hate people like this.
[00:27:39] Gabriel Mizrahi: You sound like the neighbor from question one.
[00:27:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yes, exactly. There's one way to settle this. Ugh, yeah, this makes me want to go American Psycho on somebody. We wanted to run all this by an expert. So he reached out to Matt McClanahan. Matt is a landlord-tenant attorney, so he really knows his stuff in this department. And Matt said that he would need to review your lease to know all the ins and outs here, of course, as one does. But he said that you might have an issue because of a legal concept known as joint and several liability, which I'm very familiar with because we have that in Michigan. And deadbeat roommates back at university were a thing. So joint and several liability, that's a rule followed in some states, including California, I believe also Michigan, it's still in place. This person lives in California, right?
[00:28:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes.
[00:28:24] Jordan Harbinger: This essentially means where two or more parties can be held independently liable for the full amount of a debt, regardless of their respective degrees of fault. Or to put it another way, an injured party, in this case, your landlord, they can theoretically pursue somebody for the entirety of a judgment, even if that person were not a hundred percent responsible for the harm caused.
[00:28:48] So basically, your roommate cannot pay and you have to pay, and your landlord can sue you both. And then, if he wins, your roommate will go, "I don't have any money," and you have to pay. That sucks. So, Matt's take is you should try to have your roommate assign his interest in the residence to another more responsible person who can take over his rent payments, which would then free him to leave and get this guy out of your life. Now, who knows if he'd go for that, he might not care and want to move out, or he might just be sitting pretty running out the clock before he has to find another place knowing you're screwed and just not caring. if he can't pay his rent now, I'm guessing he has financial problems of his own. He might just see an opportunity to get free rent for a while, which is again, so infuriating and makes me want to line the floor with plastic bags if he catch my drift.
[00:29:32] So if he doesn't agree to this, then Matt said you have two options. Option one is you keep paying the full amount of the rent without any help from this dude. Obviously, not fair, not sustainable. Option two, you go to your landlord and you tell them, "Look, I'm a responsible tenant. I'm in a bad situation. I don't want to do wrong by you or cover this irresponsible roommate. So I'm asking you to do me the kindness of ending the lease early so that I can move out." That way, your landlord doesn't have to evict you, which is costly and time consuming, and you don't have to pay double rent and have an eviction on your record, which could be a real problem. Basically, you have to appeal to your landlord's decency and self-interest, and everyone wins.
[00:30:13] Now, there might be issues here, Gabriel, that I didn't think about, where you then can't get rid of the roommate even though the lease is over and then it's a squatter situation. So the landlord might be like, "Hey, I'm not jumping out of the frying pan into the fire on this one."
[00:30:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:30:24] Jordan Harbinger: My hope is obviously that the landlord lets you out of the lease to avoid missing rental income. Dealing with this huge headache of evicting someone, which can take months or even years, which unfortunately they might have to do anyway. They might just be like, "Fine, we'll end your lease early, find a new place, get this guy out, done," which would be a good outcome if your roommate is simply a deadbeat who plans on moving at some point and not an actual grifter.
[00:30:46] Gabriel Mizrahi: Agreed. But your landlord might still try to evict both of you in and this guy, which, ah, that sucks. Ah, I'm so angry.
[00:30:53] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:30:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Matt said, the big lesson here is choose a business partner or a roommate with the same discernment that you choose a spouse because in a very real way, you will essentially be married to that person — married to their decisions, married to their standards, married to their financial situation, their ethics, all of that. And I know that hindsight is 20/20, it's so easy to say that now you knew this person in high school. You probably thought you could trust him, but it is worth acknowledging for everybody else listening right now.
[00:31:20] As for your roommate getting his deposit back, Matt said that depends on the terms of the lease, but usually if you don't cause any damage to the apartment, then yes, anyone would be entitled to get the deposit back, which probably doesn't sit right given that this guy is shafting you here. But I wonder if you can work out some kind of arrangement where he hands over his portion of the security deposit to you if slash when he moves out at least, he could do, in my opinion, but that's a separate issue.
[00:31:46] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Something tells me the guy who told her to screw off when she asked for his half of the rent, that guy's not going to be like, "Yeah, I'd be happy to hand over my half of the security deposit to make up for all the rent I stiffed you on. My sincere apologies."
[00:31:58] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, probably not. I'm just saying it's an option.
[00:32:01] Jordan Harbinger: A remote possibility, yeah. I mean, this guy's just such a piece of work. He's a piece of something.
[00:32:05] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hmm.
[00:32:05] Jordan Harbinger: Our friend here might also be able to get the landlord to write one check for the deposit return and make that checkout to her. That way she can hang onto the money. Deadbeat roommate almost certainly is not going to sue because he's broke and he's also in the wrong anyway. So I'm really sorry this is happening to you. It sucks. It really does. It's an awful situation, but I'm holding out hope that you can find a creative solution here and I'm wishing you really good luck.
[00:32:32] Actually a friend of mine from law school, he who definitely isn't me, he had a similar issue where he rented a room for the summer or rented an apartment for the summer, split it with this dude and had to cover this dude's rent one month and then had to cover the dude's rent another month and then, they moved out and he's like, "I'm going to pay you back." And the guy just never did. So my friend hired a, let's think of him like Mike from Breaking Bad. It was just some sort of private investigator/thug and that guy called the deadbeat tenant's mother every single day at night. Not like at 4:00 a.m. but you know, like 9:00 p.m. where it's like, "What's going on? I better answer that." And said, "Your son owes money. He didn't pay his rent. Your son owes money, he should pay that money." And then, the mother would be like, "Who are you? Why are you calling me?" "Your son owes money. He should pay the money back. You don't stiff people like that."
[00:33:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh wow.
[00:33:25] Jordan Harbinger: And he just would do that. And then, eventually after, I want to say like three to five days, the mother called the son and was like, "You better pay the money because someone is calling me at night." And of course, that guy called my friend and was like, "What are you doing? You're harassing my mom?" And he is like, "Do you have that money you owe me? You owe me money." And it was just like, "Oh, okay. I get it. I'm not going to talk my way out of this."
[00:33:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Wow.
[00:33:45] Jordan Harbinger: The guy was just kind of a piece of crap who was used to getting anything he wanted.
[00:33:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:33:49] Jordan Harbinger: And was probably a spoiled, a-h*le of a kid. And so having actual consequences that his mommy couldn't help him get out of, and in fact, his mommy was the lever, that was enough where this guy suddenly started giving a sh*t. And so if you can find a lever like that where like maybe you call his parents and his parents are like, "What? Our kids stiffed you on the rent? We didn't raise that kind of — what's wrong with you?" Or they're also garbaged people, but they don't want to be woken up at 11:00 p.m. every night with a phone call about how their kid is a deadbeat. That could be a thing. Also, does he have an employer? Maybe his employer wants to know that he's got a deadbeat working for him. Now, you wouldn't want to make that call, but somebody could make that call on your behalf and you might know nothing about it. You know, that happens sometimes too.
[00:34:33] Gabriel Mizrahi: Wow, Jordan, you are really tapping into your inner cycle path this week.
[00:34:37] Jordan Harbinger: Sometimes you have to handle things in a different way. And I learned that from the A-Team. You remember that show? "If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you should hire — the A-Team," and then the machine gun shoots up the logo. I'm the machine gun, shooting up the logo in this episode of Feedback Friday.
[00:34:56] Soundbite: There's a plan in everything, kid. And I love it when a plan comes together. [Soundbite]
[00:35:03] Gabriel Mizrahi: Nice.
[00:35:04] Jordan Harbinger: Anyway, you can reach us firstname.lastname@example.org. Please keep your emails concise. Try to use a descriptive subject line That makes our job a lot easier. If there's something you're going through, any big decision you're wrestling with, or if you just need a new perspective on stuff, life, love, work. What to do if your boyfriend stole 70 grand from you and gambled it away? I'm not laughing at that. I'm laughing at how ridiculous some of these people are. Whatever has got you staying up at night lately, hit us up email@example.com. We're here to help. We keep every email anonymous.
[00:35:31] Okay, what's next?
[00:35:33] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hi, Jordan and Gabe. I've been dating my current boyfriend for a year and a half. He's kind sweet and incredibly responsible and reliable. He's someone I could see being a long-term roommate and a good father. The only problem is certain aspects of his personality. He seems to be under the strong impression that one, his line of work is more important and desirable than mine. Two, he is very interesting to speak to. And three, he is exceptionally well versed in a number of small matters. For example, whenever I talk about my or other people's careers, he unironically suggests that they made the wrong choice, or that they would eventually switch over to his line of work if they could. If I talk about a problem with my current work, he'll claim that it wouldn't be an issue if I were pursuing his career. And when I spoke highly of a friend's trajectory recently, he made a comment about how they, unfortunately, did not go into his line of work because they would've been more successful. I also mildly dread spending time with him and his friends. What often ends up happening is an in-depth discussion of his work. Or if that topic isn't raised, he'll often ask about their commitments. They'll launch into highly technical details sometimes, and these conversations tend to last over an hour. After one protracted discussion about the finer details of fluid mechanics, I made a deadpan comment describing the conversation as invigorating. He agreed but did not sense my sarcasm. At the same time though, he's also made comments about how many people in his line of work are dead and cannot discuss anything outside of work, which really irked me because that is exactly the type of company he is. On a side note, he also thinks he's exceptionally good at things that he really isn't. For example, he recently became mildly offended that I considered my friend's mother's cooking better than his. Once at a family dinner, when asked about the best meals he's ever tasted, he only listed his own cooking. His skills are intermediate at best. Most of the time, I find our conversations all right because I lead them into territory I find more interesting. But when I stay silent, I find he also tends to stay silent. Should I raise this with my boyfriend? Are we ultimately incompatible or am I just insecure and nitpicking at my fantastic boyfriend's slight lack of self-awareness? Signed, Cruise and Snooze Through my Boyfriend's Schmooze, or Lose this Dude Before I Blow a Fuse.
[00:38:00] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, man, this is awkward. I'm not going to lie, Gabe, if I were dating somebody like this, it would be pretty hard for me to stick around.
[00:38:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:38:08] Jordan Harbinger: I know that's harsh, but I don't think I could deal with this. I don't. If my partner did this kind of thing, I'd be like, "Okay, not my person. I can't sit here while you bore everyone to death and then turn around and talk about how everyone else in your line of work is dead inside." It's just too un-self-aware for me.
[00:38:27] Gabriel Mizrahi: Even though he's fantastic at all these other ways?
[00:38:29] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, kind of. Look, okay, he's kind, he's responsible, he's reliable. Honestly, that counts for a lot. I'm not dismissing any of that, but she's trying to decide if this is the person she spends the rest of her life with. Can you really listen to this guy, unironically, discuss the finer points of fluid mechanics for the next 65 years? I mean, shoot me, dude. Shoot me like a Chinese spy balloon.
[00:38:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Okay. I mean, I don't disagree. This guy's well, okay, he's not somebody I would necessarily want to hang out with for three hours.
[00:39:03] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:39:03] Gabriel Mizrahi: But that doesn't mean he has to be this way, right? He could change.
[00:39:07] Jordan Harbinger: No, you're right. He could change, but he sounds pretty freaking headstrong, doesn't he?
[00:39:12] Gabriel Mizrahi: Well, he sounds tone-deaf. I mean, after that whole fluid mechanics diatribe when she said, "Wow, that was invigorating," and he was like, "Yes, very invigorating indeed. Thank you. I agree." I mean like, I'm not going to lie, that was kind of funny.
[00:39:25] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:39:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: I think that paints a picture of a guy who just isn't very attuned to other people, I guess is how I'd put it.
[00:39:31] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. He just doesn't speak sarcasm at all or—
[00:39:34] Gabriel Mizrahi: Or he's just so self-absorbed. He can't even entertain the possibility that people might not be absolutely riveted by what he's saying.
[00:39:41] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. It sounds a little bit like narcissism, which might be kind of strong in this one.
[00:39:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Could be all of the above. We don't know. What we do know is that she hasn't really tried to talk to him about any of this.
[00:39:50] Jordan Harbinger: So worth the shot then, huh? No pun intended. Sorry. I don't know why that word keeps popping up. That one was not intentional. Yeah.
[00:39:57] Gabriel Mizrahi: Weird. It's nothing. Okay, fair, definitely. I mean, look, he's not taking a hint. So if she wants him to change, it's going to take an explicit conversation. But also talking to your partner about something that doesn't sit very well with you, you're struggling with it, helping them see themselves more objectively, that's part of being in a relationship, right?
[00:40:13] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that is true. Okay. This conversation is kind of terrifying to me, but that is true.
[00:40:19] Gabriel Mizrahi: So my vote is bring this up with your boyfriend and just be kind about it. Maybe you say, "Listen, I want to share something with you, and I hope you know that I'm sharing this with you because I love you. I really see us going the distance together if that's something you want to say."
[00:40:32] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:40:32] Gabriel Mizrahi: "You're fantastic. And you're fantastic in all of these huge ways that are super important to me. And if I were in your shoes, I would want my partner to tell me this too. So look, sometimes when we hang out with other people, I notice that you get really excited about work. And I love that you're so pumped about your career. That's amazing. But sometimes the way you communicate that excitement, yeah, it can come off as a little narrow minded, a little self-important. And I know that's not what you intend, but that's how it comes across sometimes. And it makes me feel like you think your work is more important or more interesting than mine, and that's not a very good feeling." And then maybe you point to a few moments where this happened. Like when you brought up your friend's good news, and he said that they, what was it? "Unfortunately, he didn't go into his line of work because they would've been more successful." It's a strange thing to say. You can help him see that that comes across as kind of presumptuous, maybe like a little solipsistic, and he—
[00:41:26] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay. Uh, wait, what is solipsistic? What does that mean?
[00:41:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Like self-centered, basically.
[00:41:31] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. Like I love how you're like, "It might be kind of presumptuous, a little solipsistic." You had to go with the SAT word, which is—
[00:41:38] Gabriel Mizrahi: It's the word.
[00:41:39] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:41:39] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's the word. That's the word for what he's being.
[00:41:41] Jordan Harbinger: All right, nerd.
[00:41:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's what it is.
[00:41:42] Jordan Harbinger: Fine.
[00:41:42] Gabriel Mizrahi: Okay. Brutal, brutal roast today. Okay.
[00:41:45] Jordan Harbinger: You're the one who chose the word, nerd. That's going to be a solid solipsistic no for me, dawg.
[00:41:50] Gabriel Mizrahi: Fair. Okay. Point is, I probably wouldn't do a postmortem of every single situation where he is acted like kind of a dick. But maybe you point to a couple of examples and you leave it at that just so he can understand what you're talking about.
[00:42:02] Jordan Harbinger: No, it's a good point because he's a pretty literal dude from the sound of it, right? So he's probably going to need to remember specific moments to realize that she's right.
[00:42:12] Gabriel Mizrahi: Exactly. And then, maybe you say, "Look, I know you're just really proud of your career and it excites you more than other people's jobs, and that creates a certain impression sometimes. But as your girlfriend and as your friend, I feel like I just want to let you know how it lands with other people." And then you can just say, "Does that make sense? Are you aware of this? Or is that what you intend? You know, let's talk about it." If you say all of that in a loving way, and he responds poorly, well, it'll tell you a few things. It'll tell you that he really is self-important and self-absorbed.
[00:42:39] Jordan Harbinger: Maybe a little solipsistic. Yeah.
[00:42:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: There you go. See? Look at you. You're using the new word.
[00:42:44] Jordan Harbinger: That's a good word. It's pretentious, but it's good. Sounds like a word of this woman's boyfriend, we're probably using casual conversation.
[00:42:50] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oof. Okay. I might need to retire that one now that you said that, but okay. But if he responds like that, it'll tell you that this really is a big part of his personality and that he's, yeah, defensive and maybe unwilling to change.
[00:43:02] Jordan Harbinger: Which would make this much more of a deal breaker?
[00:43:05] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes. And it'll tell you that he probably doesn't communicate very easily or take feedback very well.
[00:43:10] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:43:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: So yeah, significant.
[00:43:11] Jordan Harbinger: That's going to be the real problem. Not taking communicate feedback and all that well at all.
[00:43:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: But if he listens to you and he goes, "Wow, I had no idea I was coming across that way, I don't want to be like that. Thank you. I'll try to work on this." That is a great sign. And then he will probably get better and it will also set a precedent that when something doesn't sit quite right with you guys, you can just talk about it and everything will be okay and your relationship will be stronger for it.
[00:43:36] Jordan Harbinger: That's a good point, Gabe. I was being pretty brutal in the beginning because what she's describing is so objectively annoying. But you've convinced me.
[00:43:44] Gabriel Mizrahi: Sure.
[00:43:44] Jordan Harbinger: She should at least give him a shot at looking at this. I was just imagining how hard this conversation would be for me to have, and I was like, "Ugh. I'd rather break up with somebody than tell them why they're being absolutely insufferable." And also—
[00:43:58] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:43:58] Jordan Harbinger: —if someone's insufferable, is that really somebody I want to be with?
[00:44:02] Gabriel Mizrahi: I get it. It is uncomfortable and it's also important.
[00:44:06] Jordan Harbinger: What I'm still not sure about is whether she should bring up all this other stuff. Like the thing about his cooking and the fact that he's a boring conversationalist. Sorry, I know that's kind of harsh, but that's basically what she's saying.
[00:44:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: That is the harder conversation for sure.
[00:44:18] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Well, look, with the work stuff, she can go, "Look, honey, I love your work. You love your work, but it's coming across like this." But how do you tell your boyfriend, "Yo, you think you're a freaking Wolfgang Puck when you're barely Chef Boyardee. And if I didn't drive our conversations, you'd either bore me to death or we'd sit in silence for the rest of our lives. You think you're a Ferrari of a conversationalist, but at best you're a hybrid freaking Prius." That's way trickier. That's a little more like personal.
[00:44:44] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, that's really hard. So I guess my take is if you can connect the work stuff to this other stuff that Jordan just mention, you might be able to frame it the right way. Maybe you tell him that you see something similar in other contexts. Like when you were at your parents and you talked about the best meals you ever had, and he only talked about his own cooking or how when you said that your friend's mom's cooking is better than his and he was kind of hurt. "Again, honey, I love that you're so proud of your accomplishments. I really am. But can you see how other people might hear?" I don't know, honestly, I'm pitching this little script here, but yeah, this is awkward.
[00:45:18] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I'm wincing a little bit over here. Just imagining how he's going to react to that and be like complete disbelief that she doesn't love his Cheerios or whatever he cooked.
[00:45:28] Gabriel Mizrahi: Is that what he is bragging about? He's like, "I made a killer bowl of Cap'n Crunch the other day."
[00:45:32] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, the milk crunch ratio is perfect.
[00:45:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: "Perfect. Alana's mom ain't got sh*t on me." Okay, so maybe you don't mention Alana's mom and all that, but maybe that's besides the point. But the thing about only listing his own meals, I don't know why that's so funny to me that seems like fair game because that's literally the same quality as the "my job is better than their job" thing.
[00:45:55] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:45:55] Gabriel Mizrahi: If he can hear you about that maybe he can apply this note across his interactions and he can do that on his own.
[00:46:01] Jordan Harbinger: I'm just imagining doing that with literally anything else in life. Like, "Hey, what's your favorite song?" "Well, the other day I was in the shower and I just belted out Backstreet Boys' I Want It That Way, and I nailed it.
[00:46:11] Gabriel Mizrahi: Crushed it.
[00:46:12] Jordan Harbinger: So my rendition of that was definitely the best song I've ever heard or at least my top five.
[00:46:16] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey, what's the coolest place you've ever been in the world? Actually, my apartment is pretty amazing.
[00:46:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:46:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: I go there every day. It's the best place I've ever been on Earth.
[00:46:23] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, sometimes I just sleep there for hours.
[00:46:27] Uh, I agree. Look, she doesn't need to, yeah, prosecute him for every single faux pas. Just pick a couple of good examples of which there are plenty, and let him connect the dots. And if he keeps doing this, then she can decide whether to bring it up again. And I think that's right.
[00:46:43] Gabriel Mizrahi: I hope that gives you your way forward here. This is the hard part about being in a relationship. It takes practice. But look, if you're right about this, and he's willing to be even a little bit humble, even a little self-aware, I think you're going to be okay, and it could be a great moment in your relationship where you discover that you guys really do have the capacity for these difficult chats, and that's great.
[00:47:04] Jordan Harbinger: And I do think you have even more of a reason to do this because your boyfriend is great in all these other ways. If he weren't—
[00:47:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes.
[00:47:11] Jordan Harbinger: —then my initial reaction would probably be right. You know, he's just not your guy.
[00:47:14] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:47:14] Jordan Harbinger: But who knows? He might be. So it is worth trying. I hate writing people off even for really kind of bad stuff, or medium bad stuff like this. Also, it depends on how insufferable you are. I mean, maybe it's a match, you know? Maybe you're also really annoying. I'm not getting it from the letter, but you never know.
[00:47:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: I'm not getting that from the letter, but it's a good point. Yeah. But maybe don't do this conversation over a dinner he made.
[00:47:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:47:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: I feel like that could get dicey.
[00:47:37] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's a good point. Yeah. Maybe you talked to him about this on a hike or something.
[00:47:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:47:42] Jordan Harbinger: As far away from cooking and fluid dynamics as you can get. And then if he reacts poorly, you can just ditch them in the woods. Problem solves itself.
[00:47:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Done.
[00:47:50] Jordan Harbinger: Good luck.
[00:47:50] Gabriel Mizrahi: Done.
[00:47:51] Jordan Harbinger: You know who really is cooking up something great, Gabriel? The amazing sponsors who support this show. We'll be right back.
[00:47:59] This episode is sponsored in part by Peloton. As I'm getting up here in age, I've been paying a lot closer attention to my health, and one way is by being more active, especially because all I need to exert for work are my vocal cords, which is more tiring than it seems, folks. I'll have you know. But it is tricky for my schedule because I'm often on back-to-back calls, or I'm reading, researching, I'm preparing for my next interviews. I don't want to waste time getting in a car and look for parking just to get some movement in. I want to get the whole family to be more healthy and active. And I got to work around everybody's little schedule issues. That's one of several reasons why I love Peloton. First of all, one membership is good for the entire family. So I don't have to lie to them about sharing like I do with other streaming stuff. I'll leave it at that. You can have a friendly competition with each other. Also, the convenience factor can't be beat. Peloton makes top-notch machines and the classes are taught by world-class instructors that are really fun, entertaining, funny. Peloton is known for their amazing bikes. We have one of those, but they also make an incredible rowing machine, which is something that I frankly wasn't sure I would enjoy at all. But I find it great for a full-body workout. It's good for improving your cardiovascular endurance. It's actually a lot more fun than I thought it was going to be, and, and I prefer it now. I love that I can get my heart pumping in the morning before the kids wake up. I can get in a quick class if somebody cancels or flakes on a call, which unfortunately seems to be a thing now. Come on, people, get your ish. What's unique about the Row is that it gives you real-time form feedback. You can really screw up rowing, you can screw up any movement, but the seat and handle contain sensors. And during setup, you go through a roughly, let's say, five minutes-ish calibration process that enables a feature called Form Assist, which is a little collapsible window on the left-hand side of the screen where you can monitor your technique. Correct rowing form, for me, at least, was not intuitive. And doing it correctly can be a little bit harder than it sounds, especially once you start getting tired and your form takes a dive, which is true with any movement or exercise. Form Assist shows you a figure of yourself as you row, and when you screw up, that portion of your body turns red. And it's a good way to avoid getting super injured or tweaking something or overexerting something, and then not being able to work out at all, which actually stops a lot of people who are diving into working out for the first time or getting back into it after a long time, or just learning how to row. And at the end of the workout, you get a readout of how well you did in a breakdown of your most common mistakes so you know what to correct for next time. And also, like me, some people may feel comfortable working out at home or more comfortable working out at home rather than in a public gym setting. And not that I think other people are judging me, but there is a little bit of that depending on the dude bro level that day. There's no waiting for a machine. There's no dirty, gross, broken equipment. I'm not freaking wiping off other people's sweat and/or sneeze or drool that they've somehow slathered all over the place. Also, you can really go for it. You can be gross yourself, which is kind of the hallmark of a great workout anyway. I'm also often working out with my trainer and I have an online trainer. We actually incorporate the Peloton gear into my workouts, even with my online trainer, it's always a little bit weird doing that at a gym, even if the Wi-Fi's decent enough to make it work. That, and bringing my laptop to a gym can be a little awkward, not just because I'm setting it on this gross ground, but because somehow knuckleheads have managed to step on my laptop before, which I don't understand how they do this, but I guess if you're just staring, trying to make your abs stick out and looking at yourself all the time, you're not watching where you're going. Last, but not least, if you're one of those people who makes loud-ass grunts when you work out and you know who you are, home is a great place for you to do your workouts. In fact, never work out in public again. Please do stay home. We don't all need to hear that. Try Peloton risk-free with a 30-day home trial. New members only. Not available in remote locations. See additional terms at onepeloton.com/home-trial.
[00:51:35] If you like this episode of Feedback Friday and you found our advice valuable, I invite you to do what other smart and considerate listeners do, which is take a moment and support our sponsors. To learn more and get links to all of the discounts, all the deals, all the discount codes that we have here on the show, jordanharbinger.com/deals, or ask our AI chatbot for any promo code we've ever run during the show as well. Thank you so much for supporting those who support the show. It really does keep things going, and I love creating these episodes week after week, and that's what supports that as well.
[00:52:03] Now back to Feedback Friday.
[00:52:07] All right, what's next?
[00:52:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey guys. After seven years of prep interviews and tests, my fiance has been rejected from his dream career as an FBI special agent. He's crushed to say the least. Since he can't ask them why he got rejected, he's left with a lot of uncertainty. Now, we're trying to figure out where to go from here. He has a bachelor's in forensic accounting and military background, which would normally be great, but he's also hitting his mid-40s. How does he refocus and find a new dream? Is there anything I can do to help? Signed, Getting Through This Rough Patch After Losing Out on the Gold Badge.
[00:52:45] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man, this is such a bummer. I'm really sorry to hear the FBI didn't work out for your fiance. Seven years, that's a long time to chase a dream.
[00:52:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:52:54] Jordan Harbinger: And to be turned down after all that work, and I'm sure that that's very painful. Even more painful because he can't get any feedback on why this happened, which is a little odd. That would definitely make it easier to process, but without any intel, he's just left to deal with this in the dark. And that is really, really hard. It's like getting dumped and never knowing why.
[00:53:13] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:53:13] Jordan Harbinger: So my first thought is your fiance is going through a very difficult chapter right now. I love that you want to help him find a new dream. I'm sure that you can, but before you get there, you need to let him go through this. He's mourning right now and that's painful, but it's okay to let him go through a bit of a tough time for a while. If you chase the career for seven years and you don't get it, you're allowed to be sad. You're allowed to be angry, you're allowed to be disappointed and confused and scared, and you should. You have to go through that phase before you can go, "Okay, what's next?" So the best thing you can do right now is to just be a safe and loving space for your fiance.
[00:53:53] If he wants to talk, let him talk. If he wants to vent, let him vent. If he wants to freak out, let him do that too. Sometimes the only thing you need to do for your partner is be a good friend to them. Make some space to process what they're going through. That feeling of being crushed will eventually lift, but it's only going to lift if he lets himself feel it and if you let him, let himself feel it.
[00:54:14] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:54:14] Jordan Harbinger: Then, at a certain point, and it might be a month, it might be like three or six months, whatever it is, at a certain point he's going to go, "All right, I'm ready to figure out what's next." And that is when you can help him refocus and find a new dream. And I would let him lead because, of course, it's his career. But you can be a sounding board for him. You can be a source of support and confidence. You can be a friend to him as he channels his disappointment and sadness into a new goal. Just to give you a glimpse of the bigger picture here. What's going to happen is your fiance is going to redirect his energy into a new goal, joining another law enforcement agency, working in the private sector, going into foreign service, whatever it is.
[00:54:54] Or hey, maybe getting a few more years of experience and then reapplying to the FBI if that's in the cards if that's what he wants. We did some quick research and that does seem to be an option if he still meets the requirements, but whatever he chooses to do, he's going to end up somewhere really interesting and he's going to look back at this huge loss and he is going to go, "Wow, that really sucked, but that had to happen for me to get here." And as long as he works hard and continues chasing goals that are meaningful to him, it'll all make sense in a weird way looking back because it always does.
[00:55:26] So maybe that's something you can remind him of when things get dark, that there's a larger plan here. That's hard to see sometimes, but it definitely exists and you can hold that hope and confidence for him when he can't do it.
[00:55:39] Gabriel Mizrahi: I love that, Jordan. You're absolutely right. I would just add that the grieving process and the refocusing process, those two things might overlap, right? He doesn't need to wait nine months until he is not crushed anymore to make some new moves. Once the initial wave of sadness and disappointment passes, he can send out his resume, he can schedule interviews, he can reach out to his contacts, and he can do all of that while he's still dealing with the sting of the FBI not working out. In fact, continuing to push forward while he's working through all of this, that's a great use of these feelings. He can sort of sublimate his anger and maybe his sadness into the job search, and that's actually a great use of those feelings.
[00:56:18] Jordan Harbinger: Ooh, sublimate yet another SAT word.
[00:56:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: Dude, really? That's literally the word for what it is.
[00:56:24] Jordan Harbinger: Ah, fine. Merriam Webster over here, but, okay, so sublimate that means to like what channel something?
[00:56:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, yeah, basically, or to like modify or divert a feeling into something more productive.
[00:56:35] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. So instead of just punching a hole in the drywall because the FBI rejected you, you take that anger and you channel it into writing a really passionate cover letter or whatever.
[00:56:46] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes, exactly. You sublimate the feeling or the impulse into a higher level activity.
[00:56:51] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, that's a good point. You can feel the feels and you can still act. Actually had to learn that one myself when I lost the old show and I was pretty down. I was finally like, all right, I need to put this sadness into starting my new show. I don't need to wait till I feel better to get started. I got to get started, and that's what's going to help me feel better in the first place.
[00:57:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes, exactly. Classic sublimation. Now, on a more practical level, when your fiance is ready, the best way to refocus and find a new dream is to figure out why he was so passionate about the FBI in the first place, and then find new avenues to pursue that why. So for example, if he was really pumped to work for the FBI because I don't know, let's say he really wants to help keep people safe, which is what a lot of people in law enforcement say. Then, maybe he applies to work for another law enforcement agency, or he looks into careers in personal protection, or he works for a private company doing security and privacy or something like that. Or if he was excited to work for the FBI because he loves working on investigations, he could apply to consulting firms that do corporate forensics or he could join the in-house investigations department of a company or become a private investigator or something like that. Whatever his motivations are, helping him figure out the deeper thing that drew him to the FBI and then chasing that in a new way. That is a great approach.
[00:58:09] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Because then when he pivots to a new career, he's not giving up this goal he cared so much about, he's just changing his strategy.
[00:58:18] Gabriel Mizrahi: Exactly. And that's how you end up in the position, Jordan, just talked about a moment ago where you find yourself in a role that is very different from what you expected, but you go, "Oh, that's why that had to happen." Because you're still chasing what's meaningful to you, you're just chasing it in a different way.
[00:58:32] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. I love that approach, Gabe. So I hope that helps you support your fiance through this chapter. I love how much you want to help him. He's really lucky to have you. If he can stay connected to that deeper why, if he puts in the work to build relationships and get in front of new people, I'm very confident that he'll end up somewhere great.
[00:58:49] And on that note, we're going to link to a few episodes about finding meaning in your work. I think those would be great episodes for you and your fiance to listen to right now, especially the interview that I did with Simon Sinek, where he goes deep into the whole idea of finding your why and he's sort of famous for that. We'll link all of those in the show notes for you, sending you and your fiance our best thoughts. Hang in there. You got this.
[00:59:11] All right, next up.
[00:59:13] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey, Jordan and Gabe. I'm 15 years old and I would consider myself very lucky in life. I go to a private school and I have a loving family, but lately, I've been kept up at night by a sense of dread and hopelessness about how death is inevitable. There's no escaping it. Everyone who has ever existed has died or will die. I find the idea of nothingness terrifying. I don't want to not exist. I'm an atheist, so there's no comfort in the idea of heaven or anything like that. My mind is occupied by this every second, that I'm not distracted by something. I have no previous history of being this way. How do I deal with this? Signed, A Thanatophobic Teen, Living the Dream But Terrified of the Guillotine.
[00:59:58] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, so this is SAT word number three now, thanatophobic. Don't know what that means. Also, isn't it guillotine? Or I'm trying to decide where to roast you right now because there's so many options.
[01:00:11] Gabriel Mizrahi: I'm really making it easy for you today. Okay, first of all, this one wasn't me. Thanatophobic, I got to give credit to the guy who wrote in, he actually came up with a sign off himself.
[01:00:20] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[01:00:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: So well done.
[01:00:21] Jordan Harbinger: So it's not just you who's being super pretentious today. Got it.
[01:00:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: No, I mean, maybe [gē-(y)ə-ˌtēn] is pretentious and I thought that's how you say it. Do you say it [gi-lə-ˌtēn]?
[01:00:30] Jordan Harbinger: I would say [gi-lə-ˌtēn] but also you're talking to the guy who stepped in a giant puddle of camel piss and took like three days to wash it off. So don't take my word for it.
[01:00:38] Gabriel Mizrahi: Thanatophobic, that was all him. Well done.
[01:00:41] Jordan Harbinger: And that means what now?
[01:00:42] Gabriel Mizrahi: Thanatophobia is the fear of death.
[01:00:45] Jordan Harbinger: Interesting. I wonder if the word Thanos, the villain Thanos, does that come from that? That's got come from that?
[01:00:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: A hundred percent.
[01:00:50] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[01:00:50] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. I think this comes from Thanatos though, right?
[01:00:53] Jordan Harbinger: Now, you're once again, way above my pay grade slash brain power. So interesting. It's actually a really cool word.
[01:00:59] Well, this guy's obviously bright, which definitely fits with a 15-year-old who can't stop thinking about his own mortality. Gabe, I feel like you were probably like this in high school. No offense, obviously.
[01:01:09] Gabriel Mizrahi: None taken, honestly. You're correct.
[01:01:11] Jordan Harbinger: You seem like the sort of teenager who was sitting around thinking about the big questions, wearing a lot of black reading, Jean-Paul Sartre or whatever.
[01:01:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: Did you just say Sartre?
[01:01:22] Jordan Harbinger: I don't know. I was trying to guess.
[01:01:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Okay. Okay.
[01:01:24] Jordan Harbinger: Trying to go guillotine.
[01:01:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: Look, I wrote a lot of poetry if that's what you mean.
[01:01:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's exactly what I mean, actually.
[01:01:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Bad poetry too, just so you know.
[01:01:32] Jordan Harbinger: That's the only kind of poetry you write in high school as far as I know.
[01:01:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: It wasn't great. I still have my notebook somewhere. I just can't bring myself to look at them. It's too—
[01:01:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, too cringe?
[01:01:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: Too too cringe, way too cringe. And yeah, I definitely thought about death a lot, so yes, I was that kid.
[01:01:47] Jordan Harbinger: So you want to take this one since you were that guy in high school listening to My Chemical Romance and writing sonnets about the void and all that.
[01:01:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Sure. I was more of a Fallout Boy guy, but yeah, I'll take this one. So the first thing I want to say is, these thoughts you're having about death, they are perfectly normal. And I'm not so saying that because I did them. They're objectively, perfectly normal. I promise you are not the only one thinking about this. And these thoughts do tend to kick in around 14, 15, 16. Although the fact that you think about death this much, that you feel things this intensely that probably sets you apart from other people your age. And it probably means that yes, you care about the big questions more than most people. And I think that says a lot about you.
[01:02:30] The second thing I want to say, and I don't want to get too philosophical here, but death is a very rich subject because you're obviously right. There is no escaping it. And yeah, that's depressing. I can definitely appreciate why it gives you this sense of dread of hopelessness because it's like you already lost, right? The game is rigged. There is no hope. None of us are making it out of this thing alive. We know this. And that is a very heavy thing to come to terms with. But it also sounds like this idea of nothingness makes everything worse. You don't want to not exist, not existing is terrifying, I think as you put it. And you don't believe that there's anything afterlife. So it's kind of like, yeah, this is it. This is the end. I get why that keeps you up at night.
[01:03:11] Jordan Harbinger: Gabe, I really think you missed your calling as a motivational speaker. I can't wait to go attack the day now, now that there's no point.
[01:03:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: So this is the shooting me down like a Chinese spy balloon part, right?
[01:03:23] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:03:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Got it.
[01:03:24] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:03:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: Nice. I feel it. I'm grounded. Okay. But listen, there is a flip side to all of that, and the flip side is that being aware of your own mortality — I'm really self-conscious now about the, what you just said about the life coach.
[01:03:35] Jordan Harbinger: Ah, hey, go for it, man. Look at the end of the day, we are nothing if not completely real about how there's no point to it all, man. Play the XX album on repeat.
[01:03:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Damn. I love that band too. Okay, this is embarrassing.
[01:03:48] I'm actually going to argue the opposite of what Jordan just said. I'm going to say that there's a flip side to this, and the flip side is that being aware of your own mortality, that makes life finite, obviously, and the fact that life is finite is what makes it valuable. The anxiety that you feel to a certain degree, I think it's healthy and it's important. What you're feeling isn't just despair. It's the awareness that life is precious and that you have to make the most of it. Which again, yes, okay, a little depressing, but it's also significant, right? Dread and gratitude, death and meaning, those are two sides of the same coin. So I'm not going to just tell you to like only focus on one of those things, call it a day, move on. I'm just inviting you to recognize that those two sides exist and they are absolutely connected. And the point of life, in my opinion, is to be in touch with both of them.
[01:04:36] Jordan Harbinger: I got to say, Gabe, I'm really starting to see why you wrote all that poetry in high school. It's like so deep, bro.
[01:04:45] Soundbite: Because I got high. Because I got high. [Afroman]
[01:04:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Wow, Afroman. That's amazing. I've not heard that song in so long, so good.
[01:04:57] Well, yeah, I don't know what to say to that. I actually read a poem about death at the end of the year in my senior year in front of all my friends and family, which went over about as well as you can imagine.
[01:05:07] Jordan Harbinger: I bet your mom loved that. Oh, my son is looking forward to the future. What is he going to tell us? This must be—
[01:05:12] Gabriel Mizrahi: Weird car ride home, let me put that way. I believe the poem was called The Rope just to paint you a picture.
[01:05:21] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my God.
[01:05:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: Like my whole vibe, my whole vibe back then was pretty weird. Yeah.
[01:05:25] Jordan Harbinger: And you can just draw a straight line from that moment to Feedback Friday. Just right down the middle.
[01:05:31] Gabriel Mizrahi: I mean, probably you got to have some of the darkness in you to deal with it, right? You got to flirt with the void a little bit. In my opinion.
[01:05:38] Jordan Harbinger: Fallout Boy is also starting to make a lot more sense now but I'm sorry.
[01:05:42] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[01:05:42] Jordan Harbinger: I didn't mean to derail you. Continue.
[01:05:44] Gabriel Mizrahi: Still a great band. So anyway, look about this nothingness concept. We could talk for hours about that. I would actually challenge the idea of this nothingness, but we do not need to get into that. Probably half the people listening right now are just going to be like, yeah, no.
[01:05:56] Jordan Harbinger: No, I don't want to be there for that conversation either, if I'm honest. I'm good. I'm good, boyfriend from Q3. No, thank you.
[01:06:04] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[01:06:04] Jordan Harbinger: Let me steer the conversation any literally anywhere else.
[01:06:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: I can already hear people switching to another podcast, just like too much Nietzsche, not enough dead squirrels and mailboxes. Click. So I get it. I'm not going to get too deep into this, but here's what I'll say.
[01:06:17] I hear you that you're afraid of, not existing. But here's the thing, man, you do exist now, and if the idea of not existing is distressing to you, then the best thing you can do is make the most of the life you do have, which is your only real option. Because you can either spend your life agonizing over the fact that it's going to be over one day, or you can spend your life aware of that fact and use it to fuel you and to build a life that you're excited about and to decide what really matters to you.
[01:06:44] Jordan Harbinger: Definitely. And I don't think it's entirely bad that he's so concerned about not existing if he uses that thought the right way.
[01:06:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes, exactly. So that would be my advice. It might seem scary, but I say, go deeper into this thought about death and see what it's trying to tell you. Not just how it's trying to scare you, but how it's trying to guide you a little bit and decide what you want to do with it, because that part, that part you do get to control.
[01:07:09] Jordan Harbinger: Well said, Gabe. I love how interested he is in this stuff, but that can be hard sometimes. But he's also onto questions that could lead him to a very meaningful life way before any of his friends get there, if they get there at all.
[01:07:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: I agree. I just want to say though, if the despair ever gets really debilitating, like if you ever start to feel suicidal or you're struggling to stick with your goals or keep your grades up or stay close to your friends, please reach out to somebody — your parents, a teacher you trust, a guidance counselor, a therapist. Again, all very normal feelings to have at your age. So there is no shame in reaching out for help. I know I'm patting you on the back a lot for being a little bit dark, but being aware of your own mortality that's different from constantly obsessing about death or dropping out of life in a way that creates like a lot of anxiety and sadness and feels very heavy. So just keep an eye on that. And if things ever do get too heavy, reach out to somebody and talk about it. And by the way, you can always email us too. We're here. We can talk more by email. We're here for you.
[01:08:07] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, amen, Gabe. I'm glad you brought that up because I could see these thoughts going in a dark direction and I don't want him to spin out because you're spending his lunch hour every day of reading Jean-Paul Sartre like you did.
[01:08:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: For sure. Although there are worse things to read.
[01:08:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, like your high school poetry.
[01:08:23] But listen, as a 40-something-year-old guy, I want to thank you for writing in with this question because like I said, being aware of death, that is really what makes life precious. So I'm going to take that into my weekend. I hope everybody listening does the same. I'm going to go hang out with my wife and play with my kids now, and I'm going to enjoy it that much more because you wrote in and I hope you get to do the same because like Gabe said, there are other sides of this super heavy coin.
[01:08:48] I hope you all enjoyed that. I want to thank everybody you wrote in and everybody who listened. Thank you so much. Don't forget to check out Neil Woods and Siddharth Kara if you haven't had a chance to do so yet.
[01:08:57] If you want to know how I managed to book all these amazing folks for the show, it's about software, systems, tiny habits, mostly about tiny habits. It's our Six-Minute Networking course. The networking course is free. It's not gross and schmoozy. It's over on the ThinkIfic platform, jordanharbinger.com/course. Dig the well before you're thirsty. You can't make up for lost time when you're building relationships. If you try to build them when you need them, you are too late. This stuff, the sooner you do it, the better, jordanharbinger.com/course.
[01:09:23] Show notes at jordanharbinger.com. Transcripts in the show notes. Advertisers, deals, discounts, and ways to support the show are all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. Go try the chatbot at jordanharbinger.com/ai. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on both Twitter and Instagram. You can also connect with me right there on LinkedIn. You can find Gabe on Instagram at @GabrielMizrahi or on Twitter at @GabeMizrahi. And if you want to read some of Gabe's awful high school poetry, definitely, hit him up on social. Maybe he'll post a pick of one of his super depressing notebook.
[01:09:55] Gabriel Mizrahi: Ugh, not going to happen. I would never inflict that on anybody. But if you ask, we'll laugh. So that's fair.
[01:10:01] Jordan Harbinger: This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Ian Baird, Millie Ocampo, Josh Ballard, and of course, Gabriel Mizrahi. Our advice and opinions are our own, and I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer. Do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. Ditto, George Grant and Matt McClanahan. And if you'd like to connect with Matt, you can find him on Instagram at @country_lawyer_tn. That's country underscore lawyer underscore tn.
[01:10:29] Remember, we rise by lifting others, so share the show with those you love. If you found the episode useful, please share it with somebody else who could use the advice we gave here today. 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.
[01:10:43] Gabe, I've got Afroman in my head. Like I was going to do the show, but then I got high. I was going to record the close, then I got high. Now my producer is pissed and I know why, why man, because I got high. Because I got high.
[01:11:02] Jordan and Gabe: Because I got high. La la da da da da la da da da.
[01:11:07] Jordan Harbinger: You're about to hear a preview of The Jordan Harbinger Show with an undercover FBI agent posing as an Islamic terrorist.
[01:11:14] Tamer Elnoury: I lived with and grew up with the religion of Islam. After 9/11, and knowing full well that this was not the religion that was being portrayed, it kind of broke me a little bit inside.
[01:11:26] I was in law enforcement. I spoke Arabic. I'm a Muslim, and my knee-jerk reaction was to simply help. Working undercover, it definitely is an adrenaline rush unlike anything I could describe. Putting your arm around someone telling them that you're their best friend, getting them to believe you. But what attracted me a great deal to this case, or what blew my mind about this case, was the fact that he was arguably one of the smartest, most brilliant men I've ever been in front.
[01:11:55] This guy was on the precipice of curing infectious diseases. The sh*t that he talked about in his work was science fiction today. How could someone so smart, so brilliant, such a gift to humanity, turn into a f*cking killer, an absolute disgusting piece of garbage overnight? He was the epitome of evil.
[01:12:17] So we're going up to his apartment and it was right next to ground zero, and he put his arm around me and looked up to where the towers work, and he said, "Tamer, this town needs another 9/11 and we're going to give it to them." I've heard him say so much horrible things for so long that you think at that moment in time, I could have just accepted it and gone up and did my job, but I couldn't. I imagined killing him right there and there. I imagined stabbing him in the eye with a pen I had in my pocket and leaving him for dead.
[01:12:53] Jordan Harbinger: To hear more from Tamer Elnoury about what drew him to the exciting and dangerous life of undercover law enforcement work, check out episode 572 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:13:05] Special thanks to Peloton for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:13:09] This episode is also sponsored by Human Monsters podcast. Do you love true crime? If you're ready to take on another true crime obsession, check out Human Monsters. Fair warning, the show does not spare any details. Each episode, host Morgan Rector investigates some of the most shocking crimes going over the timeline and facts of each case and peeking into the twisted minds of the perpetrators. They don't sugarcoat things. These are in-depth accounts of well-known killers. If you're ready for a wild and frankly scary ride, check out Human Monsters' recent episodes on serial killers, Ian Brady and Myra Hindley, Britain's most hated couple, and sexual abuse among the Amish, which is, that's a thing, I guess, both fascinating and impactful stories. If you love the thrill of peeking into the dark corners of humanity, Human Monsters will be the show for you. Check out Human Monsters on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
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