Ramy Romany (@ramyromany) is an Emmy Award-winning DGA director and cinematographer, a world-renowned Egyptologist, and the co-author of Conspired: The Evil One Shall Not Live Again.
What We Discuss with Ramy Romany:
- The period we consider “Ancient” Egypt spans thousands of years. For perspective, consider this: by the time King Tut was alive, the pyramids of Giza had already been around for about 4,500 years.
- Only about 12 percent of ancient Egypt’s history is preserved in artifacts that exist today. Is the rest lost forever or just waiting to be discovered?
- Ramy has been making documentaries and exploring ancient places since he was an eight-year-old in Egypt — when he would assist his filmmaking father and local archaeologists.
- How figures from Egyptian history run parallel to some of the most treasured stories from The Bible.
- How much truth is there to so-called “curses” that claim the lives of people who dare to open long-sealed tombs and disturb their residents (and treasures)?
- And much more…
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider including your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Jordan Harbinger Show receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you for your support!
Sign up for Six-Minute Networking — our free networking and relationship development mini course — at jordanharbinger.com/course!
This Episode Is Sponsored By:
- Peloton: Learn more at onepeloton.com/row
- TurboTax: Visit turbotax.com for more information
- BetterHelp: Get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/jordan
- HVMN: Go to HVMN.com promo code JORDAN for 20% off Ketone-IQ
- Congressional Dish: Listen here or wherever you find fine podcasts!
Miss our conversation with Steve Elkins, the real-life explorer and discoverer of the Lost City of the Monkey God? Catch up with episode 299: Steve Elkins | Finding the Lost City of the Monkey God here!
Thanks, Ramy Romany!
If you enjoyed this session with Ramy Romany, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
Click here to thank Ramy Romany at Twitter!
Click here to let Jordan know about your number one takeaway from this episode!
And if you want us to answer your questions on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at email@example.com.
Resources from This Episode:
- Conspired: The Evil One Shall Not Live Again by Ramy Romany and Emily Hache | Amazon
- Ramy Romany | Website
- Ramy Romany | Twitter
- Ramy Romany | Instagram
- Ramy Romany | Facebook
- Ramy Romany | IMDb
- Egypt Timeline | World History Encyclopedia
- King Tut | National Geographic Society
- The Great Pyramids of Giza | Khan Academy
- How Hungry, Hungry Hippos Started a War in Ancient Egypt | Ancient Origins
- Rami Malek | IMDb
- Ramy Youssef | Twitter
- Ramy | Hulu
- Uncovering Secrets of the Sphinx | Smithsonian Magazine
- Great Sphinx of Giza Tunnels and Chambers | Madain Project
- The Mummy (1999) | Prime Video
- Akhenaten: Egyptian Pharaoh, Nefertiti’s Husband, Tut’s Father | Live Science
- Imhotep: A Sage between Fiction and Reality | ARCE
- Egypt in the Old Testament | Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Religion
- The Christian Coptic Orthodox Church Of Egypt
- Egypt’s ‘King Tut Curse’ Caused by Tomb Toxins? | National Geographic
- Mummies Unwrapped | Prime Video
- Egyptian Cobra, the Mythical and Deadly Asp | Snake Facts
- Destination Truth | Prime Video
- Josh Gates | Twitter
- Sharra Romany | Twitter
- The Arab Spring at Ten Years: What’s the Legacy of the Uprisings? | Council on Foreign Relations
- Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood | Council on Foreign Relations
- Yass Alizadeh | Iran Protests | Out of the Loop | Jordan Harbinger
- Baksheesh | Wikipedia
- Esperanza – Awards – IMDb
- Short Film “Esperanza” Wins Emmy Award For Outstanding Topical Documentary | My IRSteam
- Space Archaeologist Sarah Parcak Uses Satellites to Uncover Ancient Egyptian Ruins | Smithsonian Magazine
- Dr. Sarah Parcak | Twitter
784: Ramy Romany | Unwrapping the Mysteries of Ancient Egypt
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to Peloton for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:04] Coming up next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:07] Ramy Romany: But the mummies, literally, I would call them like servers of data that have saved all this information for thousands and thousands of years. And no one touched them because they saved them, because they mattered. And today, we do have technology good enough to tell us so much about these mummies, so much about the past that we never knew before.
[00:00:31] Jordan Harbinger: Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people. We have in-depth conversations with scientists, entrepreneurs, spies, and psychologists, even the occasional legendary Hollywood director, former cult member, drug trafficker, or tech mogul. And each episode turns our guest's wisdom into practical advice that you can use to build a deeper understanding of how the world works and become a better thinker.
[00:00:57] If you're new to the show or you're looking for a way to tell your friends about the show — and I always appreciate it when you do that — our starter packs are a great place to begin. These are collections of some of our favorite episodes organized by topic. They'll help new listeners get a taste of everything that we do here on the show. Topics like China, North Korea, negotiation, communication, persuasion, influence, crime, cults, and more. Just visit jordanharbinger.com/start or search for us in your Spotify app to get started.
[00:01:22] As I mentioned in some previous episodes, our AI chatbot is new and working really great. We're still working out some kinks. I'd love to hear from you if you find a kink. You can basically type in any question or query that you want. It will comb all of our episodes. We're going to be indexing our articles and show notes soon as well, and it will find anything if it's in Feedback Friday, if it's in an interview, you can type in how you might find out if something's a financial scam, how you draw a boundary with a parent, how to get an addict some help, what's a promo code for Better Help — all of that will work and the bot will return a result for every question in a really neat and friendly interface. I love this. I think it's going to make the show so much more useful. I encourage you to try to break it or trick it. Go to the website, jordanharbinger.com, click AI at the top and give it a go.
[00:02:05] Today, Emmy-winning Egyptologist and documentarian, Ramy Romany. I love Egypt. It's a super fun place to check out and have a little adventure. I went there in my early 20s and just had a blast. It seemed a little bit sort of untethered. Egypt is having a rough time right now, and I wanted to highlight the country in a positive light instead of just focusing on recent political chaos. Today, we're talking about something that everyone can get psyched about Ancient Egypt. We'll talk pyramids, tombs, mummies, using technology like satellites to uncover amazing finds beneath the ground and a whole lot more. This episode's going to get you curious like you were when you were a kid. That's what I love about it. And you, it's going to get you excited about what they're going to dig up next over there. I've really enjoyed this conversation. Kind of a feel-good change of pace. Nobody got murdered or abducted — well, there is a coup involved, never mind. I take it back. Anyway, I know you all have some fun with this one just like I did. Now, here we go with Ramy Romany.
[00:03:02] Thanks for coming in, man. I wanted to do a show about Egypt, and then I was like, oh, let's do something of like, there's famine, there's military, there's civil unrest. And then, I was like, you know, actually maybe we do something positive about Egypt. Maybe we mix some of that other stuff in there. But I wanted to go back as far as I could to something that everybody knows and loves about Egypt, which is ancient Egypt. And you know, that's where you come in for the most part. It's kind of too low-hanging fruit to be like, tell me all of the things wrong with the country where you're from. And it's like, come on, man. They had an empire before people were invented the fork.
[00:03:36] Ramy Romany: That's very true. Well, that's also very hard to talk about. A lot of people do not realize that ancient Egypt as a civilization is far too long to try and explain or say something brief about. You know, from the first ancient Egyptian king recorded in history to the last ancient Egyptian king recorded in history is more time than from the last ancient Egyptian king to today, which means ancient Egypt was more ancient to itself at some points than—
[00:04:10] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:04:10] Ramy Romany: —it is to us today. That's how long that civilization was. And if you talk about any other place in the world just a hundred years ago or 200 years ago, how different things were. Can you tell me about America 200 years ago? Everything was different.
[00:04:24] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, yeah, yeah, nothing.
[00:04:25] Ramy Romany: That's 200 years ago. We're talking about 6,000 years of history.
[00:04:31] Jordan Harbinger: It's hard to wrap our mind around that. As is people that live 80 years or whatever and haven't quite gotten there yet, and only live once. That means the ancient Egyptians had ancient Egyptians.
[00:04:42] Ramy Romany: King Tut came in 1,500 BC around that time, which is about 3,500 years ago now. King Tut went and visited the pyramids, the Great Pyramids of Giza which was about 3,000 years older than King Tut himself.
[00:05:00] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my gosh.
[00:05:01] Ramy Romany: King Tut is nearly as old as the pyramids were for King Tut. So for King Tut, he was going to visit his ancient Egyptian ancestors of the Great Pyramids of Giza for this ancient sign, just like us going to visit it today.
[00:05:16] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:05:16] Ramy Romany: That's how long this civilization was.
[00:05:19] Jordan Harbinger: It's so hard to wrap your mind. I think about that whether he goes there and goes, "Man, owner of aliens build this? That's what we do when we go there, right?
[00:05:28] Ramy Romany: I can bet you King Tut did not think aliens built his grand ancestors' pyramids.
[00:05:34] Jordan Harbinger: During the time of King Tut then — this is probably a dumb question, but that's why I'm here — were they still building pyramids or were those like, "Man, we can't do those anymore. We just got to do tombs. We don't have the time and the resources."
[00:05:46] Ramy Romany: It's very interesting because the Great Pyramid of Giza, for instance—
[00:05:49] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:05:49] Ramy Romany: —is one of the seven ancient ones of the world.
[00:05:52] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:05:52] Ramy Romany: The most ancient one of them all and the only one surviving.
[00:05:56] Jordan Harbinger: The other ones were with the hanging gardens of Babylon, which—
[00:05:59] Ramy Romany: Correct. Everything disappeared. The lighthouse of Alexandria, everything has is in ruins, disappeared. It couldn't stand time and nature and humans.
[00:06:08] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:06:08] Ramy Romany: But the Great Pyramid of Giza did, and the reason it was one of the seven ancient wonders of the world. So it is one of the seven ancient wonders of the world is not because it's one million blocks, each of which is three to five tons, each stacked on top of each—
[00:06:21] Jordan Harbinger: It's a million blocks.
[00:06:22] Ramy Romany: Absolutely. Yeah.
[00:06:23] Jordan Harbinger: Stacked on top of each other in a perfect triangle. It's a perfect pyramid shape with no glue attaching them and have lasted all these years. They use pressure to take the air out between each stone so they can stick together for 6,000 years.
[00:06:37] Ramy Romany: I figured they put limestone in there or something. No?
[00:06:40] Jordan Harbinger: No. It was the air pressure and it's a very simple method that has been redone today to check it out, but it's very simple. You make them wet and as they get dry, the air gets sucked out and they attach together forever.
[00:06:54] Ramy Romany: Crazy.
[00:06:55] Jordan Harbinger: But does Egypt get earthquakes?
[00:06:57] Ramy Romany: Egypt has earthquakes. I've survived a couple. I've had lost friends too, but never affected the Great Pyramid of Giza.
[00:07:03] Jordan Harbinger: That is so, because you would think, okay, well, an earthquake will take care of this because it's over 6,000 years old. That's a lot of earthquakes. And the thing just looks like, I mean, aside from the external cover of limestone or whatever it was that was supposed to make it white and shiny—
[00:07:17] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:07:17] Jordan Harbinger: —they're in pretty good shape.
[00:07:18] Ramy Romany: Absolutely. It is mind boggling. I do understand why people would go there and say, "It must be aliens. Humans couldn't have done this." I do understand it. I do understand why I'm flattered by it.
[00:07:32] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[00:07:33] Ramy Romany: Because it is unfathomable to your human brain to go in there and say, "How could they have done this 6,000 years ago?" It's somehow demeaning to think that us humans were capable of this 6,000 years ago and we still haven't made it this far.
[00:07:51] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:07:52] Ramy Romany: If we were just as good as they were 6,000 years ago and kept getting better at what we did, we would have been so much further ahead.
[00:08:01] Jordan Harbinger: You would think so. Yeah.
[00:08:02] Ramy Romany: But we hurt ourselves along the way often.
[00:08:05] Jordan Harbinger: A lot of plagues, a lot of wars, genocidal stuff that gets rid of cultures and civilizations and knowledge and things like that. It's just really crazy. I mean, looking at how Egypt is now from a government perspective, kind of a mess, I think, probably been that way for a while, but having a historical perspective that goes back thousands of years, it's almost like any chaos that Egypt is going through right now is just the blink of an eye in terms of Egyptian history. I mean, like this is a footnote in an Egypt civilization book that focuses on whatever came before and then the whatever comes after.
[00:08:37] Ramy Romany: Absolutely. And ancient Egypt went through multiple problems and multiple fallouts after the Old Kingdom — ancient Egypt is separated into mainly Old Kingdom, Middle Kingdom, and New Kingdom. And the Old Kingdom is like the Great Pyramids of Giza and all that stuff. The Middle Kingdom is people that you haven't heard about too much. The New Kingdom is King Tut and Ramesses and Akhenaten and all these famous ones too. But between each kingdom, Egypt went through horrible times. It's been invaded by the Hyksos people that came from the north, that took over Egypt that were very rude. We found letters that said that king of the Hyksos who invaded Egypt was yelling at the other king of Egypt who was in the South telling him, like, "Quiet your hippos," a thousand kilometers away. That's 700 miles away. "Quiet your hippos. I can't sleep at night." Stuff like that an actual hieroglyphic inscription. And these times, if you look at them, when I studied them 6,000 years of history, I think of the Hyksos times as a moment. But you look at those times, and some of them were 200 years, 300 years—
[00:09:39] Jordan Harbinger: God.
[00:09:39] Ramy Romany: People have lived and died—
[00:09:40] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:09:40] Ramy Romany: —when Egypt was just a complete chaos in between being the strongest civilization ever.
[00:09:46] Jordan Harbinger: And people lived probably to age 30 back then. So when you're talking 200 years, this is a lot of generations.
[00:09:51] Ramy Romany: A lot of generations, yeah.
[00:09:52] Jordan Harbinger: And it's funny that they took the time to inscribe on some tomb wall or some pyramid wall in hieroglyphics. Basically, the equivalent of I got beef with my downstairs neighbor, that asshole is super loud and he's got a fat ass. It's like, am I translating this correctly? This guy is just yelling about his neighbor's bullsh*t.
[00:10:12] Ramy Romany: Absolutely. The things that make it though.
[00:10:14] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:10:15] Ramy Romany: Because it wasn't inscribed on a tomb or a wall, it was actually a letter—
[00:10:18] Jordan Harbinger: A papyrus.
[00:10:19] Ramy Romany: —that we found, a little pottery letter inscribed with it that we found. But it's funny because. 6,000 years of history and everything you see about ancient Egypt today, everything that we've discovered is calculated to be about just 12 percent of ancient Egypt. Everything you've seen at the museums, the Egyptian museum is four stories filled of ancient Egyptian stuff, pyramids, temples, all that is only about 12 percent of what ancient Egypt has. Still, 88 percent of ancient Egypt is still hiding under the sand.
[00:10:53] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. That's exciting actually. Multiple Emmy wins. You're the first Egyptian to win an Emmy, which is, congrats on that, 23 nominations, nine Emmys. I mean, that sounds like a lot, but now, unfortunately, you're not the only Egyptian Emmy winner. In fact, you're not even the only Egyptian named Ramy to win an Emmy.
[00:11:11] Ramy Romany: I'm very unfortunate. Correct. Yes.
[00:11:13] Jordan Harbinger: 100 percent of Egyptian Emmy winners are named Ramy.
[00:11:16] Ramy Romany: Ramy, yes.
[00:11:17] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, Ramy.
[00:11:18] Ramy Romany: It's very correct.
[00:11:18] Jordan Harbinger: It's a very unfortunate coincidence here.
[00:11:20] Ramy Romany: I used to say I used to love it, but now I can't even say I'm the only Egyptian named Ramy to win an Emmy because of Rami Malek.
[00:11:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:11:28] Ramy Romany: And another Ramy—
[00:11:29] Jordan Harbinger: He's pretty good.
[00:11:30] Ramy Romany: Ramy Youssef.
[00:11:31] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[00:11:31] Ramy Romany: He's also won an Emmy Ramy Youssef, show on Hulu, Ramy.
[00:11:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:11:35] Ramy Romany: Great show. You should watch it.
[00:11:37] Jordan Harbinger: So your dad used to produce, was it Discovery Channel documentaries about Egypt? So the family business then is what documentaries and—
[00:11:44] Ramy Romany: Correct.
[00:11:44] Jordan Harbinger: —historical stuff.
[00:11:45] Ramy Romany: I grew up in Egypt. And I remember I was always with my father and with my mother on set and set is ancient Egyptian ruins, tombs, never been discovered, with Discovery Channel, National Geographic, BBC Documentaries. I'm making documentaries about ancient Egypt. And I remember starting to work with him at the age of eight or nine. My father was the only person in town that was doing it right.
[00:12:09] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[00:12:10] Ramy Romany: Yes, he was really good at it. He was called the fixer, which to many Americans sounded like a drug deal, but—
[00:12:16] Jordan Harbinger: It does sound a little bit sketchy.
[00:12:18] Ramy Romany: But it's not. It's just the local producer, a person that can do everything you need to make a documentary happen—
[00:12:24] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:12:25] Ramy Romany: —in the country. And I remember I was, what, 13 when he left me alone with the BBC production because he had another one that he had to do. My mother had another one they had. And I was what, 13, 12? Going around, going to the Great Pyramids of Giza, seeing the general manager, the director of the Great Pyramid saying, "Hi, my dad sent me. We were going to film here today."
[00:12:47] Jordan Harbinger: But he must have been like, "Are you kidding me?"
[00:12:49] Ramy Romany: No, he knew me—
[00:12:50] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, he knew your dad.
[00:12:50] Ramy Romany: —all the long, and that's what I had that no one else did as well, is I was spoiled. I had all the—
[00:12:56] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:12:57] Ramy Romany: —contacts and the trust, which matters so much in Egypt from all these people in the place. And I did documentaries growing up with my father all the way through.
[00:13:06] Jordan Harbinger: Were you like a location scout? Is that kind of what's fixer/location scout.
[00:13:11] Ramy Romany: The fixer is a combination of a line producer, a production manager, a location scout, and whatever else a fixture does—
[00:13:19] Jordan Harbinger: Whatever needs—
[00:13:19] Ramy Romany: To talk about on air.
[00:13:21] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Yeah. Like smuggling equipment heading through customs, there's probably some of that. Maybe we'll get to that.
[00:13:28] You have your first credit at 11 years old and some BBC documentary that must've been really awesome. Or were you so young you didn't even kind of understand what that meant at that time?
[00:13:36] Ramy Romany: I was very proud of it, but I took it around. It's cool. I showed it to everyone and no one cared.
[00:13:43] Jordan Harbinger: No?
[00:13:44] Ramy Romany: No one understood what that was—
[00:13:47] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:13:47] Ramy Romany: —or what it meant. And I thought, holy cow. I have credit. I didn't think I am 11 and I have credit on a BBC documentary as the location manager. I just thought I have credit on a BBC documentary.
[00:13:58] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I'm in a movie. My name is in a movie.
[00:14:00] Ramy Romany: And no one cared at school. All the other 11-year-old boys were interested in soccer and I wasn't as good, so that didn't matter.
[00:14:08] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I guess Egyptian child labor laws are a little flexible over there. If you're 11 and you're working on a movie like, "Don't worry about school, just go to the pyramids alone, well, with a crew from another country."
[00:14:20] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:14:20] Jordan Harbinger: "And have them film it and then you can make up the homework later," I'm sure.
[00:14:23] Ramy Romany: Absolutely.
[00:14:24] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. That's so funny though, that your dad just left you with a client at that age.
[00:14:28] Ramy Romany: I do remember a story when I was young as well with my father on Location. They were doing, I think it was a National Geographic or BBC, a documentary about a shaft that goes underneath the Sphinx. And it was a newly discovered shaft. It hasn't been opened in hundreds of years. We were all down on, like filming the discovery of the shaft. No one knows what's down there yet. Dr. Zahi Hawass, who is one of the greatest Egyptologists ever, to live and still alive, he is my godfather of Egyptology as we say. But we were down there and I was still a young boy in the shaft. It's two football fields down behind the butt of the Sphinx.
[00:15:10] Jordan Harbinger: It's two-foot underground, two football fields.
[00:15:12] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:15:13] Jordan Harbinger: Wait, they dug that deep underneath?
[00:15:16] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:15:16] Jordan Harbinger: Why did they do — is that because the sand is unstable or what's the deal there?
[00:15:20] Ramy Romany: Well, the reason they mostly dug that deep for tombs and places and it always came later in time, pyramids were, at the beginning they would make the tombs and pyramids.
[00:15:29] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:15:30] Ramy Romany: But then as time passed, they would make the tombs more hidden and dug inside and the reason is the most obvious, tomb raiding was not—
[00:15:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:15:38] Ramy Romany: —something of the modern times. Tomb raiding was something of the ancient times as well. That's when it started. And a great pyramid right in front of you is the sign that says, "Come here, there's treasure."
[00:15:49] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:15:50] Ramy Romany: And since then, tomb raiding was horrific, especially during the Hyksos time, especially during all the invasions, when Egypt fell apart and came back, every one of these places were completely emptied. You know, there was nothing found inside the great pyramid in modern times.
[00:16:07] Jordan Harbinger: That's such a bummer, yeah.
[00:16:08] Ramy Romany: Not a single piece of gold. Nothing was found inside. And that's one of the reasons why a lot of people saying, "Well, what was it really for?" It was the tomb of the pyramid. But it was ransacked.
[00:16:18] Jordan Harbinger: Right, for hundreds of years over and over, again, probably.
[00:16:21] Ramy Romany: As a matter of fact, not a single tomb or temple that we've ever discovered in the modern times wasn't ransacked.
[00:16:30] Jordan Harbinger: Really? So have we never found a tomb that is just, they didn't find it?
[00:16:34] Ramy Romany: The closest ever was about a hundred years ago and it was King Tut's tomb.
[00:16:40] Jordan Harbinger: That's what I thought. I thought that was the big deal about that.
[00:16:43] Ramy Romany: And still it was ransacked, just a little bit during a specific time they took the oils because they were most precious. But it was closed. But that's the only reason King Tut's tomb is famous. Because King Tut didn't live that long, doesn't have a great story. He wasn't a great king, was a child, only did it for 60 years. His tomb is the smallest tomb ever to be found in the ancient, in the Valley of the Kings. He had the least stuff ever. The only reason he's that famous is because King Tut's tomb was not touched.
[00:17:16] Jordan Harbinger: So this is like aliens come by Earth in a thousand years and they're studying automobiles and they dig up a Ford Fiesta, and they're just like, "Look at this." And everyone who knows cars is like, "Dude, you don't understand. This is not the epitome of our technology."
[00:17:31] Ramy Romany: Pretty much. King Tut is the Ford Fiesta of ancient Egypt.
[00:17:36] Jordan Harbinger: Sorry, Tut. You're still important. You're the only one that was intact.
[00:17:40] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:17:40] Jordan Harbinger: So it sounds like you grew up around tombs, mummies. Did tombs full of body not rattle you a little bit at age 11?
[00:17:47] Ramy Romany: It's funny because I only started getting scared of mummies later on.
[00:17:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:17:52] Ramy Romany: Not when I was a kid hanging out with mummies all the way through.
[00:17:54] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:17:55] Ramy Romany: It's when I started watching American movies about mummies, when I actually got scared—
[00:17:59] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:17:59] Ramy Romany: —from mummies. It was a beautiful movie, but then I went back to the tomb and I was like, "Holy cow, that thing might move and kill me."
[00:18:05] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Yeah. Those little bugs are going to come up from the sand to eat you or whatever those scared things.
[00:18:10] Ramy Romany: Great movie. Yes.
[00:18:10] Jordan Harbinger: Did you ever think maybe they sent you in the tomb first to see if there was anything dangerous in there?
[00:18:16] Ramy Romany: Well, now I think about it actually.
[00:18:19] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:18:19] Ramy Romany: The rest of that story when we were down in the two football fields down—
[00:18:22] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, yeah.
[00:18:22] Ramy Romany: —under this Sphinx's butt and that tunnel was that we went all the way down and Dr. Zahi is on camera finding everything, and then he finds a shaft, a little shaft at the corner of the bottom, the bottom ground was filled of water, underground water.
[00:18:38] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, that makes sense. Yeah.
[00:18:39] Ramy Romany: And there was a tomb of a god in the middle of it. It's sarcophagus, beautiful, beautiful stone sarcophagus. That's two football fields down. We can't barely breathe. It feels like we can breathe, but we're starting to like not talk because there's not enough oxygen down there. And then there's a little shaft up in the right corner and they started trying to reach in there. They couldn't really reach in there. It's too small. And I know you know where this is going.
[00:19:05] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:19:05] Ramy Romany: And that was the case. There was no robots back at the time yet to send them in. And Dr. Zahi just looked for a small child around.
[00:19:13] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:19:13] Ramy Romany: And that was me. They sent me in, they carried me up. It was an up in the corner, right corner. They carried me up, put me inside that shaft, and I crawl in and that was before I watched the movie The Mummy.
[00:19:25] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:19:25] Ramy Romany: So I was still fine going into little shafts under this Sphinx.
[00:19:30] Jordan Harbinger: Not claustrophobic or anything?
[00:19:31] Ramy Romany: No, I was very—
[00:19:32] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my god.
[00:19:32] Ramy Romany: —excited. I was very excited. I crawled all the way in until they couldn't see me anymore. And I was yelling back about things that I'm seeing. Nothing exciting yet. And then, I found at the end there were like a limestone, it looks like a little gate but it's not. It's a limestone false door and it had a couple of hieroglyphic inscriptions on it and I yelled them out to Dr. Zahi.
[00:19:53] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, because you could read it even then. Yeah.
[00:19:54] Ramy Romany: Well, I knew about the hieroglyphic inscriptions. I was still studying them. But Dr. Zahi was helping. I was yelling out the shapes and he was helping, and—
[00:20:02] Jordan Harbinger: Bird, cat, sun, ankh.
[00:20:04] Ramy Romany: Poop emoji. Yes.
[00:20:06] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Poop emoji. Exactly.
[00:20:07] Ramy Romany: And then, I came back out and, you know, it wasn't significant discovery, but the feeling I had at that moment. That was the feeling. Holy cow.
[00:20:19] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:20:20] Ramy Romany: Discovering something.
[00:20:21] Jordan Harbinger: That no one living had ever seen that.
[00:20:23] Ramy Romany: That's me—
[00:20:24] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:20:24] Ramy Romany: —and me, I've discovered it, and it's such an addiction that you can't stop doing it for the rest of time. There's a funny story about how archeologists was a joke. Our archeologists walk around and they always walk around looking down, just looking for things all the way through. If you look at any archeologist walking in the middle of the desert of the pyramid, they're not looking up at the Great Pyramids of Giza. They're just looking under their feet as they walk because they could find anything at any time, and it's a feeling that they want so bad.
[00:20:54] Jordan Harbinger: I see. I would not send my kid into a 200-yard-deep underground shaft. But again, you know, he knew the feeling you were going to get and maybe he wanted you to have that gift. How do you know it's safe to go in there? And it's not going to collapse when you walk in there?
[00:21:10] Ramy Romany: You do not.
[00:21:11] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Yeah. You couldn't.
[00:21:12] Ramy Romany: You do not know, man.
[00:21:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:21:14] Ramy Romany: But at least get the confidence in the fact, this thing has been here for 6,000 years.
[00:21:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:21:20] Ramy Romany: I have to be so unlucky.
[00:21:22] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:21:22] Ramy Romany: That the moment I go in, it collapses up 6,000 years.
[00:21:25] Jordan Harbinger: That's true. I suppose there's rules like, "Hey, if you see a big rock, don't push that big rock out of the way because it might be holding up the rest of the tunnel.
[00:21:32] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:21:32] Jordan Harbinger: There's probably some rules like that that you follow.
[00:21:34] Ramy Romany: Absolutely.
[00:21:35] Jordan Harbinger: It's just got to be such an incredible feeling. I understand now what you mean by that. Now, do you go to school for this at any point or do you just learn on the job? Because you said you were studying hieroglyphics, you got flashcards or what?
[00:21:47] Ramy Romany: I did go to school. It's funny. I loved what I was doing as a kid. Obviously, I was really lucky to be in that industry.
[00:21:54] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:21:55] Ramy Romany: And discovering things, and my job is taking me to places that no one has discovered before. Every new discovery, I'm there first. So I was enjoying it so much that I did not want to go to college or university. I just wanted to keep doing it.
[00:22:07] Jordan Harbinger: And you kind of already had the dream job though. Like people go to school for that, get a PhD and then they start doing what you're doing at age 11.
[00:22:14] Ramy Romany: That's exactly how I felt.
[00:22:15] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:22:15] Ramy Romany: And in Egypt, if you do not go to university, you're considered uneducated, nearly illiterate.
[00:22:22] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:22:23] Ramy Romany: It's a thing that you have to do. So I thought about it, I was, "What university can I go to that is easiest, that I don't have to worry about that I might not even go physically be there so I can keep doing what I'm doing?" And I thought, wait, all the professors of archeology, I get them in to interview them. They love me.
[00:22:40] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:22:41] Ramy Romany: They know me. If I go to archeology school, I can bet I can pass because I have an in with all the professors. So I'm going to go to archeology school.
[00:22:51] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:22:51] Ramy Romany: And I did. It was a five-year school and you learn about hieroglyphs and ancient Egyptian history all the way through. We have modern history of Egypt, which is anything 2000 years and that's modern history.
[00:23:03] Jordan Harbinger: That's so funny. The modern history is just a mere, the last 2000 years, everything else is old.
[00:23:08] Ramy Romany: Everything else is old. And then of course, a year into it, I learned so much more than I thought I knew. And then, the passion starts kicking in because the stories are so fabulous.
[00:23:19] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:23:20] Ramy Romany: And the drama and the stories too are so fascinating — the father marrying his daughter and the son killing his father, it's like Game of Thrones.
[00:23:29] Jordan Harbinger: It's like Game of Thrones and the Bible, except it's—
[00:23:32] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:23:33] Jordan Harbinger: —not fiction.
[00:23:33] Ramy Romany: So it's so fascinating that I ended up being completely obsessed and I finished with straight A's, aside from the fact that I knew the professors.
[00:23:44] Jordan Harbinger: You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Ramy Romany. We'll be right back.
[00:23:49] This episode is sponsored by TurboTax. Go to TurboTax and don't do your taxes. Meet with an expert who will do them for you. TurboTax experts can relieve you from the stress of taxes and file for you so you can do not taxes. Show your eyes things that are not taxes. Unpack a moving box of not taxes. Taste not taxes, sing not taxes a lullaby. Hope not taxes sleeps through the night. Grab a saddle and ride not taxes into the sunset. With TurboTax, an expert will do your taxes from start to finish, ensuring your taxes are done right guaranteed so you can relax. Feels good to be done with your taxes, doesn't it? Come to TurboTax and don't do your taxes. Visit turbotax.com to learn more. Intuit TurboTax, full service products only. Video meeting while expert does your taxes required. See guaranteed details at turbotax.com/guarantees.
[00:24:35] This episode is also sponsored by Better Help. Hey, if you're going through a tough time, please know that you're not alone. I see it in my email inbox, my Feedback Friday inbox, but you certainly don't have to deal with this stuff on your own. I highly recommend therapy for literally everyone from the craziest of kooks to the sanest of normal Joe's like myself. Well, maybe, I'm not that sane, you all drive me crazy. Better Help is a great option for everybody. That's my point. It's convenient, it's flexible, it's affordable. It's entirely online. They've got 93,000-plus reviews on their iPhone app If you're skeptical. They've also got a journal feature in the app, which you can write in. Your therapist can share with you. You can text your therapist at any time, and I know it can be therapeutic. Bouncing your issues, you know, all family and friends. A therapist can help you develop coping skills. I've said before, don't vent to your friends. Feel free to vent to your friends, just don't only vent to your friends. Therapy is vulnerable work. You don't want to be messing with your friendship relationships by just turning everybody into your therapist. And Better Help knows you're not going to mesh with everyone just like you pick your friends, you can pick your therapist switch at any time. Real easy to do. Choose from email, chat, phone, or video sessions. I am more comfortable at home. I like to go on a walk and do my therapy. Take this advice as a sign to give therapy a try.
[00:25:44] Jen Harbinger: If you want to live a more empowered life. Therapy can get you there. Visit betterhelp.com/jordan to get 10 percent off your first month. That's better-H-E-L-P.com/jordan.
[00:25:55] Jordan Harbinger: Hey, if you're wondering how I managed to book all these authors, thinkers, creators every week, it's because of my network. I actually got this guest selection from one of you who heard of the show through another sort of node in my network as well. These are really high value relationships. I recommend you build your own network, and I'm teaching you how to do that for free over at jordanharbinger.com/course. It's down to earth. It's non-cringey. It's not going to make you feel gross like you need a shower. It's just going to make you a better connector, a better colleague, a better friend, and a better peer. Six minutes a day, not even that. The course is free, jordanharbinger.com/course.
[00:26:29] All right, back to Ramy Romany.
[00:26:32] This is like the lazy route for you, right? It's like when you take French as a, as your major, but then your parents are both from Paris.
[00:26:38] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:26:38] Jordan Harbinger: I see what you're doing. I see what you're doing here.
[00:26:40] Ramy Romany: That's exactly what I did.
[00:26:41] Jordan Harbinger: Like, oh, I probably don't even have to show up to class. This is going to be great.
[00:26:44] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:26:44] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I heard you're a beast at math though, as well. Why not study that if that's so easy for you and interesting?
[00:26:51] Ramy Romany: I love math.
[00:26:52] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:26:52] Ramy Romany: Math is my toy. I enjoy math so much.
[00:26:56] Jordan Harbinger: I cannot relate.
[00:26:57] Ramy Romany: You know, my wife says the same thing, but I enjoy it so much that it is my hobby.
[00:27:03] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:27:04] Ramy Romany: The fun time I have. I sit and do math puzzles. I have three kids and my youngest is like me. You give him an iPad and he opens the calculator app and he stays on it for 30 minutes at a time.
[00:27:16] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[00:27:16] Ramy Romany: That's how I felt.
[00:27:17] Jordan Harbinger: That's really interesting.
[00:27:18] Ramy Romany: Yeah. I loved the numbers. I loved combining numbers when I was a kid, I loved all that stuff. That I remember at school. My parents would say, "Okay, you got to stop studying math and you can only do it on your off time. And that was the thing, I only did math on my off time because I enjoyed it so much. Yet, math professors hated me because I also enjoyed finding their mistakes all the time. I was the kid that they kicked out as in class all the time, but I love math. I love math games, I love poker.
[00:27:46] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:27:47] Ramy Romany: It's all math and I'm sorry if you don't feel the same way.
[00:27:50] Jordan Harbinger: No, I would love to. I'm not judging it, it's just that man was I not good at it. And so you know when you're not good at something like that, it becomes something you develop almost a fear of—
[00:27:59] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:28:00] Jordan Harbinger: —at that point. And it's funny because I was in honors math, but I was the worst kid in honors, so I was like, "I'm not good at this." And then I do math elsewhere and I'm like, "Oh, this is not hard." But then after that, in college I had roommates that were all studying accounting and stuff, so I'd always go, "You guys handle the check and just tell me what I owe." I'm a product of that environment where—
[00:28:17] Ramy Romany: Jordan, you're the worst of the best.
[00:28:19] Jordan Harbinger: Worst of the best, yeah, exactly.
[00:28:21] Ramy Romany: Which is much better than most.
[00:28:22] Jordan Harbinger: Right. But you don't feel that way.
[00:28:24] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:28:24] Jordan Harbinger: It's kind of like if you were an Olympic athlete, but you always came in dead last, never medaled. You're just like, "I suck at this."
[00:28:30] Ramy Romany: But you're—
[00:28:31] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Still in the Olympics, buddy. So archeology is math. Do you apply the math to your work as an archeologist?
[00:28:39] Ramy Romany: One of my obsessions in archeology is applying the math and the timeline of archeology. It's funny because ancient Egypt is mentioned in so many different sources of history. One of the sources is obviously on ancient Egyptian walls.
[00:28:54] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:28:54] Ramy Romany: But one other very famous source that everyone has read is the Bible.
[00:28:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:29:00] Ramy Romany: And if you considered the Bible just a historical book and nothing else, and of course, it's religious and emotional and stories. So—
[00:29:09] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:29:09] Ramy Romany: —the history is not made for history. The history is not completely right, but it mentions ancient Egypt and it mentions stories that took place in ancient Egypt. Yet, no one has been able to align both histories. The Bible does not align with ancient Egyptian history as we know it. We don't know when Exodus happened, if it happened, or when it would've taken place.
[00:29:28] One of my obsessions is to align those timelines to try and find the similar stories, because here's what I personally believe. I personally believe that the Bible stories, whether completely true or not, they were always inspired from true stories—
[00:29:47] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:29:47] Ramy Romany: —at least. Everything in history is like that. Even ancient Egyptian history itself, the stories are not completely true. We've seen King Ramesses winning this battle and destroying the Hittites and Phoenicians, and we go to the Phoenicians and the Hitite temples, and they have destroyed the ancient Egyptians. History is written by the winners—
[00:30:03] Jordan Harbinger: Sure
[00:30:04] Ramy Romany: —and by their writers. So the Bible is also an example of that, where the stories in there could be inspired from real stories if they're not completely true. Now, there are very similar stories in the Bible and in ancient Egypt history as we see it, which can be a theory that a lot of mainstream and strict archeologists would shy away from, but I find it fascinating.
[00:30:28] There's a story about a king named Akhenaten. You would know him because he's King Tut's dad.
[00:30:34] Jordan Harbinger: Mmm.
[00:30:34] Ramy Romany: But he was a rebel. He was a rebel that left ancient Egypt as we know it, and decided that all the gods of ancient Egypt didn't matter and there was only one God that matters. And it's the god with the power behind the sun disc.
[00:30:49] Jordan Harbinger: Was it Ra?
[00:30:50] Ramy Romany: The god, Aten.
[00:30:51] Jordan Harbinger: Aten, okay.
[00:30:52] Ramy Romany: Ra was the sun disc itself.
[00:30:53] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay.
[00:30:54] Ramy Romany: God Aten was a newer god and it was just the power behind the sun disc. He was closest. King Akhenaten was closest to what people believe in today. The power behind the sun disc somewhere, and only one God. Ancient Egyptians had many, many gods, but he said only one god. He decided to leave the capital of Egypt, Luxor, Thebes, where the Valley of the Kings is.
[00:31:18] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm..
[00:31:18] Ramy Romany: And move somewhere else and he took his followers with him and he crossed the Nile to the other side. The other side where people are not supposed to be only the dead or the other. The Nile splits ancient Egypt between the living on the east and the dead on the west.
[00:31:33] Jordan Harbinger: I know.
[00:31:33] Ramy Romany: All the tombs are on the west because that's where the sun sets for the living, but rises for the dead and for their day. And the east is where the sun rises for the living and that's where the temples that they pray in. But Akhenaten went and crossed the Nile to the other side, decided to put everything on the west for the living and the tombs on the east. So he just crossed wires. Everything was very different and he was very hated back in the capital, Thebes were all the priests, all the strong religious leaders were completely against him. And they're very influential because he's basically deciding that they don't matter also.
[00:32:07] Jordan Harbinger: Right. He's going to eliminate your job. You're going to figure out a reason to get rid of him.
[00:32:09] Ramy Romany: Yeah. And they're very, very influential and very strong. Akhenaten goes to a place and says, "I find this place. This is the promised land," as written in ancient Egyptian text.
[00:32:21] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:32:22] Ramy Romany: "This is the promised land, and I will be here." And he decides that this is the new capital and builds the capital there. Akhenaten disappears at some point. He gets probably killed by the ancient Egyptian army that went back and took his son, King Tut, and brought King Tut back to Thebes. And King Tut then changed his name to King Tutankhamun as we know him today. But his name was King Tutankhaten, which is the god that his father.
[00:32:47] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, interesting.
[00:32:48] Ramy Romany: So he changed his name and became a part of ancient Egypt. But if you look at the Bible as well, who else believed in one god took his people and his followers and crossed in the Torah. It never says the Red Sea where Moses crossed. It actually says a sea of reed, uh, body of water with reed. That's the actual translation. The Red Sea is actually—
[00:33:13] Jordan Harbinger: Reeds as in the plant.
[00:33:15] Ramy Romany: Yes. Yes.
[00:33:15] Jordan Harbinger: I see.
[00:33:16] Ramy Romany: The Red Sea was a mistake that we currently think about today.
[00:33:18] Jordan Harbinger: Uh-huh.
[00:33:18] Ramy Romany: But it was never Red Sea even in the books.
[00:33:20] Jordan Harbinger: This is like a Moses parable then.
[00:33:22] Ramy Romany: Yeah, there's—
[00:33:22] Jordan Harbinger: Of the Jews.
[00:33:23] Ramy Romany: —a lot of parallels with Moses and Akhenaten, very similar stories—
[00:33:27] Jordan Harbinger: Huh?
[00:33:27] Ramy Romany: —there. The army followed him and he crossed the Nile and he kind of defeated the first wave of the army. All these parallel stories are there. There's another story with Imhotep, the guy that invented the idea of a pyramid. His name is Imhotep, which means "I come in peace." Sounds alien but it's not.
[00:33:47] Ramy Romany: Yeah. Somebody told me to ask like, "Ask him about the "I come peace" story. It's amazing. I was like, he was going to turn into as Islam alien sh*t.
[00:33:53] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, yeah.
[00:33:53] Ramy Romany: Yeah. But Imhotep was not an Egyptian, and he ended up becoming the secondhand man to the king, translating the kings' stories of the days of famine ahead, which is very similar to the Bible story of Joseph of the Bible and his brothers. If you remember the story of Joseph of the Bible of his brothers, when Joseph was the youngest brother, that his dad loved him more than the rest of his brothers. And then, his brothers took him aside and killed a sheep and went back with his clothes and said, "Dad, we lost Joseph, his dead. But they sent Joseph to Egypt, and then Joseph became the secondhand man to the king, translated stories to the king about famine and became the strongest. It's a very similar story to Imhotep as well.
[00:34:36] Ramy Romany: So all these stories kind of align between the Bible and ancient Egypt, and I'm working on a project right now, very secretive on my side, but I'm trying to finish the alignment of religious history and ancient Egypt.
[00:34:53] Jordan Harbinger: That's going to go over pretty well, I think, because a lot of people want to believe that stuff, anyway. And that's always a good market to hit.
[00:35:01] Ramy Romany: I agree but I worry because also with religious history—
[00:35:06] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:35:06] Ramy Romany: —it is religious.
[00:35:07] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:35:07] Ramy Romany: And people don't want—
[00:35:08] Jordan Harbinger: That's true. Some people are going to think, "Who is this guy to change—?
[00:35:12] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:35:12] Jordan Harbinger: Or try to change people's belief.
[00:35:14] Ramy Romany: They want to talk about the Bible as a holy book, not as a history book.
[00:35:19] Jordan Harbinger: That's a good point. And you're a Christian as well, so before people get those angry letters,
[00:35:23] Ramy Romany: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
[00:35:23] Jordan Harbinger: You're — is it a Coptic Christian? What does that mean? I don't even know what that means. I know it's a type of Christianity, but I have no idea what.
[00:35:30] Ramy Romany: Correct. I am a Coptic Christian, born Coptic Christian in Egypt. And Coptic Christianity is specifically Egyptian Orthodox Christianity. The word Coptic actually means Egyptian. It's the—
[00:35:43] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay.
[00:35:43] Ramy Romany: It comes from the word Aigyptos in Greek. Coptic actually means Egyptian, but it became the sector of Christianity, which is very strict. And growing up it was always called the original Christianity is because when Jesus was in Egypt—
[00:35:56] Jordan Harbinger: As one does.
[00:35:56] Ramy Romany: As one does, yes. So, it's also very strict. We had a very, very strict Christianity. You have to fast most of the year.
[00:36:05] Jordan Harbinger: Most of the year?
[00:36:06] Ramy Romany: Most of the year was fasting.
[00:36:07] Jordan Harbinger: Oof.
[00:36:07] Ramy Romany: Yeah. Every Wednesday, every—
[00:36:08] Jordan Harbinger: Brutal.
[00:36:08] Ramy Romany: Yeah, a lot of fasting took place, and my uncles are priests. My uncles are priests. So I grew up as an altar boy too. So I'm very Christian before anyone starts that.
[00:36:19] Jordan Harbinger: They put you to work, dude, Altar boy, mine shaft or ancient, you know, tomb shaft explorer, fixer. You had no free time. No wonder you weren't good at soccer.
[00:36:29] Ramy Romany: Yes. That's the issue. Math was my free time.
[00:36:33] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, man, I'm getting a picture of your childhood here.
[00:36:35] Ramy Romany: Actually it was great. It was a great childhood.
[00:36:38] Jordan Harbinger: No, it sounds awesome. It just sounds very unique.
[00:36:39] Ramy Romany: Yeah. I didn't go to parties.
[00:36:41] Jordan Harbinger: No.
[00:36:41] Ramy Romany: I want to go to parties now. Maybe that's what I should do now.
[00:36:44] Jordan Harbinger: I don't think so.
[00:36:44] Ramy Romany: Okay.
[00:36:45] Jordan Harbinger: I'm 42. I don't know how old you are, but parties are, they're overrated.
[00:36:48] Ramy Romany: They're very hard.
[00:36:49] Jordan Harbinger: Ancient Egypt over parties any day, so, okay. I realize how silly this question is, but in the movies they often show someone getting a crazy illness after going into a tomb. I'm not asking if there's a mummy's curse or whatever, but it does seem plausible that you could get sick after going into what's essentially a grave full of water, even if it's a hundreds, hundreds, and hundreds of years old, there's got to be some crazy mold in there or whatever. I mean, it seems very possible, or some gross spiders, I don't know, maybe they don't live that far down there.
[00:37:19] Ramy Romany: I can't diss the curse of the mummies too much—
[00:37:21] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:37:22] Ramy Romany: —for multiple reasons. Reason number one is that there is actually truth to it, chemically, scientifically. There is truth to it, the curse of the mummies. It's not an actual curse that comes out and attack you.
[00:37:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. You're going to have to qualify that.
[00:37:36] Ramy Romany: Yeah, of course. Of course not. It's not an actual ghost of King Tut that comes out, but leaving it tomb closed for a thousand of years—
[00:37:44] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:37:44] Ramy Romany: —with live organic material inside.
[00:37:47] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:37:47] Ramy Romany: And then opening it for the first time, going inside, is not healthy.
[00:37:53] Jordan Harbinger: The air itself is just stale from the dead.
[00:37:55] Ramy Romany: There's a mold that has been building and it's not healthy.
[00:37:58] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:37:58] Ramy Romany: You're very likely if you take that first breath in, and people didn't wear masks back at the time—
[00:38:03] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:38:04] Ramy Romany: When they're finding these things, they're very excited. People having very hard time wearing masks today when they know there's a pandemic out.
[00:38:10] Jordan Harbinger: So, you think anti-mask is strong now?
[00:38:12] Ramy Romany: Yeah. So, a lot of that happened when people died after opening tombs for the first time. Chemically, it makes sense. I also can't diss the curse of the mummies too much because I think I've been cursed at some point in my life.
[00:38:26] Jordan Harbinger: How's that?
[00:38:27] Ramy Romany: I was on my show, Mummies Unwrapped—
[00:38:30] Jordan Harbinger: I see what you did there.
[00:38:32] Ramy Romany: —on Discovery Channel, it's a great show, but I was on my show, Mummies Unwrapped, and I was in Egypt and I was at a tomb in Amarna. Amarna is the place where Akhenaten had built the city, the new city he had built.
[00:38:46] Jordan Harbinger: I see. Okay.
[00:38:47] Ramy Romany: And it's in ruins today. And it looks like it's been in ruins for a long portion of time because it got destroyed by ancient Egyptians but they're finding new tombs there every day. But most of the tombs they find they close and they never opened them again. Not much people go to Amarna. And if those tombs were in a city with no history, they would be the most visited tombs ever.
[00:39:09] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. Yeah.
[00:39:09] Ramy Romany: But next to the Great Pyramids of Giza and King Tut's tomb, no one goes there. I went there because I was trying to know more about Akhenaten. I went in inside that tomb and that tomb literally has not been opened for 600 years or so.
[00:39:24] Jordan Harbinger: Oh wow.
[00:39:24] Ramy Romany: That, you know, all the guards that have been there never opened it. There was a story I was following and I wanted to go inside. A guard comes in, wake him up from his bed, find his key, lost somewhere. They have to break the lock to let me in and the first thing he does after he breaking the lock, he actually goes, "One second, I have to knock on the door." And I was like, "Dude, come on."
[00:39:45] Jordan Harbinger: Pretty sure there's nobody in there.
[00:39:46] Ramy Romany: Yeah, pretty sure nobody's in there. He's like, "No, I'm not talking about people." I don't like, he's going to go about the ghosts. He's like, "I'm not talking about ghosts. Ghosts are elsewhere. He believed in ghosts."
[00:39:54] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:39:55] Ramy Romany: But not in there. He said there's snakes.
[00:39:57] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, I didn't think about that. There's snakes.
[00:39:59] Ramy Romany: I was like, "Oh yeah. I was making fun of you then for a second, but please knock on that door as much as he wants."
[00:40:04] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:40:04] Ramy Romany: He does knock on the door and you hear the snakes rattling and coming out, and he knows what he's doing. So he knocks on the door a couple of times before opening it, so when he opens it, the snakes don't jump out. When he opens it, the snakes know, he then opens the door and we back up a second. Snakes come out of different types. They were living next to each other. You know, snakes love loft.
[00:40:25] Jordan Harbinger: Ancient Egypt had the asp, right?
[00:40:27] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:40:27] Jordan Harbinger: Is that a real snake?
[00:40:28] Ramy Romany: Yeah. Yeah.
[00:40:28] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. Yeah.
[00:40:29] Ramy Romany: In crossword, they call the asp all the time. It's the Egyptian cobra, which is—
[00:40:33] Jordan Harbinger: Ah. Okay.
[00:40:33] Ramy Romany: —the version of the asp.
[00:40:35] Jordan Harbinger: Oof.
[00:40:36] Ramy Romany: I don't like snakes.
[00:40:37] Jordan Harbinger: No. Nobody does.
[00:40:37] Ramy Romany: I'm not sure about you.
[00:40:38] Jordan Harbinger: Well, not nobody, very few people do.
[00:40:40] Ramy Romany: Yeah. They're sick people.
[00:40:42] Jordan Harbinger: Especially in enclosed spaces.
[00:40:43] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:40:43] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:40:44] Ramy Romany: But we get them all out and then we go inside and start filming and I go under that tomb and I find things, and I'm breathing really heavy and everything, and there's bats inside and the smell is so horrible. When I left that tomb, I did not feel well.
[00:40:59] Jordan Harbinger: Is it just a moldy smell?
[00:41:00] Ramy Romany: Bats. There's bats.
[00:41:01] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, bat guano smell.
[00:41:02] Ramy Romany: Yeah, there's that. Ammonia smell, you know that ammonia—
[00:41:05] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:41:05] Ramy Romany: —bat urine smell, along with there's been snakes in there, along with this just very strange smells all going in and your body is telling you, "Stop breathing."
[00:41:16] Jordan Harbinger: Get out of there.
[00:41:16] Ramy Romany: This is not good. And the dust is collecting all that stuff coming up because we're walking in there for the first time. All this dust is settled.
[00:41:22] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:41:23] Ramy Romany: We're just walking, bringing it up. And I'm like, I'm a host on Discovery Channel. I'm yelling at the camera.
[00:41:28] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:41:29] Ramy Romany: I'm being very excited and I'm breathing all this crap in—
[00:41:32] Jordan Harbinger: Literally crap, probably.
[00:41:33] Ramy Romany: Literally.
[00:41:34] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Snake and bat crap.
[00:41:35] Ramy Romany: Yes. And maybe the curse of the mummies.
[00:41:37] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:41:37] Ramy Romany: Mixed in. And then, we leave. And literally, a day later, I was in a horrible shape in bed. I had fevers that went up to 107, which—
[00:41:48] Jordan Harbinger: Whoa. Aren't you supposed to die before that point, actually? That's terrible.
[00:41:52] Ramy Romany: Absolutely. We had doctors coming in. I was coughing blood, I was hallucinating. And my kids and my wife traveled with me around the world.
[00:42:01] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:42:01] Ramy Romany: My wife was really, really scared for me. And I don't know how I survived it. That was late 2019, just six months maybe before COVID or something. You never know. Maybe I brought it out of the tomb, but the reason I'm telling you the story is because it is true. The scientific curse of the mummies is very true. I just opened a tomb that was closed for only 600 years, let alone for the 6,000 years one.
[00:42:27] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:42:28] Ramy Romany: And I was in a horrible shape the next day.
[00:42:30] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man.
[00:42:30] Ramy Romany: So the curse of the mummies do exist scientifically.
[00:42:35] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. It seems like. That's really a bad fever. I mean, you must have just inhaled a lot of — did they figure out that it was, "Hey, you inhaled a bunch of essentially sh*t dust and it just coated your lungs and infected your lungs."
[00:42:48] Ramy Romany: None of the doctors really knew what I had. They put me on a bunch of antibiotics and I explained to them all where I was and they said, "Well, bats, snakes, dust is not a very good combination for whatever it is. It could be anything. We have not seen this combination of symptoms, but hopefully these antibiotics work," and they worked.
[00:43:08] Jordan Harbinger: Thank god.
[00:43:08] Ramy Romany: I'm alive.
[00:43:09] Jordan Harbinger: Lucky you.
[00:43:09] Ramy Romany: I'm here today.
[00:43:10] Jordan Harbinger: You came back with something else growing on you after one of your shoots, namely, the woman who became your wife.
[00:43:16] Ramy Romany: That's the final reason I cannot diss the curse of the mummies.
[00:43:21] Jordan Harbinger: That's right.
[00:43:21] Ramy Romany: It was 2009. I was doing a show for a sci-fi channel app called Destination Truth with Josh Gates. Josh Gates still does shows today on Discovery Channel Expedition Unknown. He's a very funny man. He's a good friend of mine. But we were doing an episode about the curse of the mummies King Tut's tomb specifically. And one of the crew members was a very nice, annoying woman that had a fight with the day she landed in Egypt because she was fighting me over equipment and serial numbers. She remembers that story better than I do, but it took three days and she was in love with me.
[00:44:05] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:44:06] Ramy Romany: But not the other way around.
[00:44:07] Jordan Harbinger: Gotcha. I'm sure she remembers the story a little differently.
[00:44:11] Ramy Romany: It took three days. We liked each other a lot.
[00:44:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:44:14] Ramy Romany: And then she had to leave after Egypt.
[00:44:16] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[00:44:16] Ramy Romany: Go to Bhutan.
[00:44:18] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, cool.
[00:44:19] Ramy Romany: Yeah, which is a beautiful country. And then, back to LA where I was already there waiting for her.
[00:44:23] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:44:24] Ramy Romany: We spent four months together and I asked her to marry me. Four months in, that's all it took. She came to Egypt—
[00:44:30] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:44:31] Ramy Romany: —looking for the curse of the mummies and gets — guess what she found?
[00:44:34] Jordan Harbinger: And she got it. Yeah. So, you guys decide to live together in Egypt, which I have to say is quite a move for her especially because I don't know a ton about Egypt, of course, but to be a white woman that moves from Los Angeles and is like, "Yeah, cool. Let's live in Egypt." She's not moving to France. There's a big culture shock. There's a lot of different things that she has to get used to, I would imagine in a place like that.
[00:44:57] Ramy Romany: Absolutely. Egypt is not bad as you think you do. You watch a lot of news on here in the US and it could sound like Egypt is this horrible place to be in, but the reality is if you are having a happy life in Egypt, you are living like a king.
[00:45:16] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:45:17] Ramy Romany: And it was a part of the problem. And it is a part of the problem. I was happy in Egypt. I had a very happy life. I lived in a beautiful palace with people that helped in the house.
[00:45:30] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:45:30] Ramy Romany: It sounds horrible, but that was the life you get in a country where there's discrepancy between people.
[00:45:38] Jordan Harbinger: Big wealth gap. Yeah.
[00:45:39] Ramy Romany: Massive wealth gap. That's what a lot of people hear in the US try to fight and make sure that never happens because that destroys every part of society.
[00:45:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:45:49] Ramy Romany: Egypt has that. Egypt has a massive wealth gap. There's really rich people and they're very — a lot of 90-some percent very poor.
[00:45:58] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, wow. It's that bad? I didn't realize it was that big of a gap.
[00:46:01] Ramy Romany: Yeah, and the rich are living on yachts and having very fancy cars and they live, have very nice houses, but also Egypt is a tourist destination. And everyone knows that Egypt's economy is based on tourism.
[00:46:15] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:46:16] Ramy Romany: So they have to appeal to tourists. So you could go to Egypt as a foreigner, as a tourist, and be very respected and very happily going around. You can do whatever you want. You go drink if you get caught with drugs that people are going to let you go. You're never going to be at fault.
[00:46:33] Jordan Harbinger: I'm not going to try that one but I take your word on that.
[00:46:36] Ramy Romany: Yes. You're not going to be at fault as a foreigner in Egypt because the relations matter so much.
[00:46:41] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:46:41] Ramy Romany: The way Egypt looks as a tourist destination has to stay that way. That's why any terrorist attack was always a massive problem economically for Egypt, because tourists do not come and tourism is the second source of income for Egypt after Suez Canal. Suez Canal said the massive—
[00:46:57] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:46:57] Ramy Romany: Right. And both of them are based on stability of the country.
[00:47:01] Jordan Harbinger: Right. That's a good point.
[00:47:02] Ramy Romany: Any terrorist attack is a massive problem. That's why after the military took over the country in the most latest phase of ruling, of reign, which I can't even talk about too much for obvious reasons.
[00:47:15] Jordan Harbinger: Because you have to go back to Egypt.
[00:47:17] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:47:17] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:47:17] Ramy Romany: It's different. You can't talk anymore.
[00:47:19] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[00:47:20] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[00:47:23] Jordan Harbinger: I'd like to talk about the Arab Spring a little bit, if possible.
[00:47:23] Ramy Romany: But historically, I can talk about the Arab Spring, yes.
[00:47:25] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, yeah, historically. We won't comment on current government, whatever. You know, that's not a problem. I completely understand that but overnight the country just kind of falls apart or the government in the country just kind of falls apart. This is 2011 for people who don't know, because for those who don't remember slash weren't watching the news back then, and who knows? Maybe were 10 years old if they're listening to this at the time. Arab Spring was a series of uprisings and revolutions in primarily Middle Eastern/Arab countries that ended up overthrowing the government of those countries. And Egypt was one of those places where this happened. And Hosni Mubarak was the leader for decades and decades, and then one day. he's kind of just gone. Growing up under a leader like Mubarak, right? I assume you think, "Well, this guy was president when I was born, he's probably going to be president in a hundred years from now or after I'm gone." Even though that's not really physically possible. Somebody like that, you just think, this guy's never going anywhere.
[00:48:16] Ramy Romany: He was god.
[00:48:17] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:48:17] Ramy Romany: I lived—
[00:48:17] Jordan Harbinger: Crazy.
[00:48:18] —lived all my life under one president. I've seen in the news in countries like America where they have different presidents every four to eight years.
[00:48:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:48:26] Ramy Romany: And it was the most fascinating. How's that even possible?
[00:48:29] Jordan Harbinger: Right. How did they get anything done?
[00:48:30] Ramy Romany: How did they, how does a president just let go? How does a president go and shake hands of the next president and say, "Hey—"?
[00:48:39] Jordan Harbinger: It's your problem now. Yeah.
[00:48:41] Ramy Romany: To me, that was just so out there.
[00:48:44] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:48:44] Ramy Romany: That I had one president all my life and that president had elections, but no one would run against him. And he would win by 99.9 percent of the vote. And sometimes someone would be up against him that gets to 0.1 percent of the vote that then that person goes to jail and gets killed. And that was normal. No one had problems with that. It was just life. It was so far that we could even change that. That no one had problems with it anymore. They just accepted it. And I lived my life that way. That when I married my wife in 2009 and she moved to Egypt and we had our daughter, Sophia, she was six-month-old then when the revolution started. My wife is white.
[00:49:23] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:49:23] Ramy Romany: My wife is half Jew and my wife is very different looking than Egyptians.
[00:49:29] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:49:30] Ramy Romany: My daughter is as well. A protest starts boiling up on the streets on January 25th, 2011. And I think to my wife, this is beautiful. Students are going out.
[00:49:41] Jordan Harbinger: Yay. Revolution.
[00:49:42] Ramy Romany: It's so lovely to have protests and people speaking freely about what they want, and it started not against the president because that's too farfetched, too.
[00:49:50] Jordan Harbinger: That's too far. Yeah.
[00:49:51] Ramy Romany: It started because one kid was brutally, brutally treated by the police, tortured by the police for no reason as well until he died and he was a 16-year-old kid.
[00:50:01] Jordan Harbinger: This is like what happened in Iran recently.
[00:50:03] Ramy Romany: Exactly. Just one little thing can spark it. And when the people went out on the streets, my wife was watching and my wife said, "Hey, I'm not too sure about this." And I said to my wife, "Hey, I'm the expert here. Nothing is going to happen." I've lived video all my life. All these kids will be gathered—
[00:50:21] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:50:22] Ramy Romany: —from the streets and they'll be in jail and nothing will ever exist. But social media existed. That was the difference. And that's what I didn't think about. The next day on Twitter, it was craziness. Everything on Twitter where everyone is, and everyone is going out on the street and people can't get the news from TV anymore because TV is the governments.
[00:50:47] Jordan Harbinger: State run, yeah.
[00:50:48] Ramy Romany: So everyone is getting their news on Twitter. So the next day people went, hopped on the street and the police started stopping them. Police brutality started happening on the streets.
[00:50:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:51:00] Ramy Romany: On Twitter where people can see it now. Videos are being posted.
[00:51:04] Jordan Harbinger: I saw a lot of this stuff. It was scary. You'd see a military vehicle just deliberately running young people over and you're just like, you're angry. You're very angry watching this.
[00:51:13] Ramy Romany: Correct. And that was a police vehicle. We going to make a massive difference between the police and the military at that time because they held very different jobs. The military decided to stay on the side, not help the government and not help the people yet because they are a different branch of the government.
[00:51:31] Jordan Harbinger: Got it. Okay. Yeah, I just looked like a military. Yeah. They couldn't be militarized police, but that's the SWAT van basically.
[00:51:35] Ramy Romany: But that's what was happening all around. And then, the government made the dumbest mistake of their lives by, first of all, not doing anything about it, and instead cutting off the Internet.
[00:51:47] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:51:47] Ramy Romany: Cutting off Twitter. and that was the day we freaked out. We opened our phones, opened the Internet to check what's happening because we can't know what's happening. And Twitter is out. Internet is out.
[00:51:59] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:51:59] Ramy Romany: And guess what happens? How can people know what is happening Is by going out on the street.
[00:52:05] Jordan Harbinger: Going out the street. Right. Oh, I didn't think about that.
[00:52:07] Ramy Romany: An hour later after they dropped Twitter, an hour later, every human being was on this street. We're a country of a hundred million people. A city of 20 million people, Cairo. Everyone was on the street. No police force with weapons. And Egyptians are not armed. Civilians are not armed. But no police force with as many weapons as you would want.
[00:52:31] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:52:32] Ramy Romany: That also consists of Egyptians—
[00:52:34] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:52:34] Ramy Romany: —will be able to stop everyone or have the heart—
[00:52:39] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:52:39] Ramy Romany: —to start shooting their fellow Egyptians. So they had no choice but to do something very scary in that country. Take their police costume off and hide.
[00:52:48] Jordan Harbinger: Go watch TV in their living room. Yeah.
[00:52:50] Ramy Romany: Which means an hour later we had a country with no police on the streets.
[00:52:55] Jordan Harbinger: That's kind of scary.
[00:52:56] Ramy Romany: And that went nuts. It was lawless. The streets were crazy. And my wife is a US citizen. So the embassy called all the US citizens that knew that they lived in Egypt and told my wife, "Hey, it's time. It's about to get much worse in hour. We have a plane going out to Cyprus. And from Cyprus you can find your own way. That leaves in two hours. You need to go now." She then asked them about our daughter, Sophia and me. She said, "My husband and my daughter are with me." And they said, "Do they have American citizenships or residents?" And I never applied. I never planned to go—
[00:53:33] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:53:34] Ramy Romany: —somewhere else. We were living in Egypt for rest of my life. My daughter is an American citizen by birth because she was born to an American citizen.
[00:53:41] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:53:42] Ramy Romany: So she said, "Yes, my daughter has it, but my husband only has a travel visa." And he said, "He cannot come on that plane."
[00:53:48] Jordan Harbinger: Oh geez.
[00:53:49] Ramy Romany: My wife, I remembered that she didn't think about it. She responded and said, "Don't count us in. We'll find our way out," instantly. She said, "I'm not leaving you."
[00:53:59] Jordan Harbinger: You must have been like, "Get out of here. At least, I can blend in."
[00:54:02] Ramy Romany: I wanted nothing but for them to get out.
[00:54:04] Jordan Harbinger: Hell yeah.
[00:54:05] Ramy Romany: But she said, "That there's no way I'm leaving you behind." My wife is badass.
[00:54:10] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, she's badass. I know my wife, she would be like, Peace. Good luck, man. It's for the safety of our child. Bye." I'm not sure if she can hear me.
[00:54:21] Ramy Romany: I could see you're still smiling even though she can't hear you because—
[00:54:24] Jordan Harbinger: She can hear me.
[00:54:26] Ramy Romany: Okay.
[00:54:26] Jordan Harbinger: She can. Yes.
[00:54:27] Ramy Romany: And then we started our own venture into leaving the country at the time and the country was a complete mess at the time. There's another SEC of the country called the Muslim Brotherhood.
[00:54:38] Jordan Harbinger: I was going to ask about the Muslim Brother — because they kind of commandeered the revolution and it was like, "Hey, we're revolution." And then they were like, "Actually let's make this some Islamic extreme kind of deal."
[00:54:47] Ramy Romany: You put it exactly how it was. They did not start their revolution and they were always the little opposition that was kind of illegal, but kind of not.
[00:54:54] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:54:55] Ramy Romany: And we don't have healthy opposition in Egypt, of course, it's the dictatorship. So the only surviving opposition was of an opposition that could use religion. But the Muslim Brotherhood are not like Muslims. All my friends were Muslim. I grew up with Muslim friends all the way through. 90 percent of the country are Muslims. So my best friends are Muslims. But the Muslim Brotherhood, they used religion to become the Muslim Brotherhood.
[00:55:17] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:55:17] Ramy Romany: So people with less education could believe that they are the way. The one thing worse than fascism is religious fascism.
[00:55:26] Jordan Harbinger: Theocracy. Yeah. Mm-hmm.
[00:55:27] Ramy Romany: It is horrible. The Muslim Brotherhood took over the revolution really quickly because they were the only organized opposition. The Army stepped in to protect the people and decided to decide with the people. At the time, the president of the country, Hosni Mubarak, 16 days in, decided to step down.
[00:55:46] Jordan Harbinger: That must have been kind of jarring, like, "Wait a minute, you're leaving?"
[00:55:48] Ramy Romany: It was unbelievable.
[00:55:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:55:50] Ramy Romany: It was unbelievable. I had already left the country at the time. I was with my wife in Syracuse, New York at my father-in-law's. We were thinking, we're going to go back in two weeks.
[00:55:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:00] Ramy Romany: And then, he came out and he resigned. Hosni Mubarak resigned.
[00:56:04] Jordan Harbinger: To go back to your original point, you're a Christian, you've got a white wife, and you're living in this upper class or upper middle class, whatever neighborhood in Egypt. Not a great look when Islamic fundamentalists take over the country and the military or the police apparatus, or whatever their goals were at the time, which was probably everything.
[00:56:21] Ramy Romany: Between a day and night—
[00:56:23] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:23] Ramy Romany: —all of a sudden, white people became spies. Christians became infidels.
[00:56:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:27] Ramy Romany: Rich people became ex-regime. I was the three.
[00:56:30] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm. Yeah. You checked every box. Exactly.
[00:56:32] Ramy Romany: I checked every box and it just wasn't safe for my daughter anymore.
[00:56:36] Jordan Harbinger: Oof.
[00:56:37] Ramy Romany: Egypt is home.
[00:56:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:39] Ramy Romany: Dude, Egypt was home. My wife left the greatest country in the world—
[00:56:44] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:56:45] Ramy Romany: —to come be with me in Egypt because that's where we're spending the rest of our lives.
[00:56:49] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:50] Ramy Romany: In between a day and night, it just goes away.
[00:56:53] Jordan Harbinger: It really sounds like what Iranians who left in 1979 say about their country, like, "Wait a minute, we went from secular—" and they had the problems because they had the shah and everything. Then, suddenly you're faced with the prospect of becoming like Iran.
[00:57:06] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[00:57:06] Jordan Harbinger: No, thank you.
[00:57:07] Ramy Romany: Yes. And that's a part of the reason why you can't judge what's happening in Egypt right now because they have made a decision and the people have made that decision to not let the Muslim Brotherhood stay. And they were willing to go as far as let's let the military take over the country again and not have the Muslim Brotherhood. Because Egyptians are not like the rest of a lot more conservative parts of the Arab World.
[00:57:34] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:57:35] Ramy Romany: Egyptians do like fun. They like having fun, they like going out smoking hookah pipes on the streets. The women are stronger. The women go out on the streets wearing skirts. They don't want that taken away from them.
[00:57:48] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:57:49] Ramy Romany: And that's why within a year of the Muslim Brotherhood rule, people went back out on the streets.
[00:57:53] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:57:53] Ramy Romany: And numbers bigger than January 25th. And the army sided with the people again, and then performed a coup. And you could have never called it a coup at the time because it was a big, big, big, big no no. Don't say that.
[00:58:05] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:58:06] Ramy Romany: It's the people's revolution, but it's technically a coup because of the people.
[00:58:10] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, hey, you all got a sneak preview of the Islamic Republic 2.0.
[00:58:13] Ramy Romany: Correct.
[00:58:14] Jordan Harbinger: And everybody went, "Nah, it's not really—"
[00:58:16] Ramy Romany: It was quick too.
[00:58:16] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:58:17] Ramy Romany: The things on TV, people coming out on TV saying how anything else other than Muslims or infidels. Women that have their hair showing on the street deserve to be burning in hell.
[00:58:30] Jordan Harbinger: Oh god.
[00:58:30] Ramy Romany: It was so quick.
[00:58:31] Jordan Harbinger: Scary too.
[00:58:32] Ramy Romany: From a country where like wearing in bikinis on the Red Sea.
[00:58:36] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:58:36] Ramy Romany: Drinking tequilas and having fun to, if you hair is showing you are going to burn in hell
[00:58:43] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:58:43] Ramy Romany: And you better cover every part of your body.
[00:58:45] Jordan Harbinger: So you're stuck during this protest initially, right? And I know you spent the night in a food storage locker, which is kind of hard to imagine. What is that? Like a big walk-in refrigerator kind of thing?
[00:58:55] Ramy Romany: Well, we lived in a three-story home, beautiful, beautiful home. And it's Roman style. So the top story is like a pyramid shape.
[00:59:03] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:59:03] Ramy Romany: Basically, the top story.
[00:59:04] Jordan Harbinger: You love your pyramid over there.
[00:59:05] Ramy Romany: I love my pyramids. And when the revolution started, when the embassy called my wife on the phone, the embassy knew that something was going to happen that was worse than what we were watching, and that's when the police left and the country fell apart. And you know, if Los Angeles has no police on the streets—
[00:59:20] Jordan Harbinger: Well, yeah.
[00:59:21] Ramy Romany: A very safe, not safe, but a very civilized and first-world city, one day later it's going to be a—
[00:59:29] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:59:30] Ramy Romany: —a place that you want to hide with your gun somewhere.
[00:59:32] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. I mean, you've seen the videos of the LA riots probably at some point.
[00:59:35] Ramy Romany: Exactly.
[00:59:35] Jordan Harbinger: It's going to look something like that.
[00:59:36] Ramy Romany: So now no police in Egypt, Cairo, there's a lot of bad people out there and they target rich neighborhoods first. The neighborhood I lived in was the same neighborhood that the son of the president was in.
[00:59:48] Jordan Harbinger: Oof.
[00:59:48] Ramy Romany: It was a nice, fancy neighborhood and we lived on 16 acres of mango trees and it was just beautiful with our pool. Our bubble, I lived in a bubble that I didn't see what was happening.
[00:59:58] Jordan Harbinger: It's a gated community, yeah.
[00:59:59] Ramy Romany: Gated community is lovely, lovely place but it was a part of the problem, that later story.
[01:00:05] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:00:05] Ramy Romany: Anyway, of course, very quickly people started jumping the gates and they're going to attack all these places.
[01:00:11] Jordan Harbinger: Oh gosh.
[01:00:12] Ramy Romany: And I have my wife and my daughter, and I don't know the art of fighting very well. I lived a very privileged.
[01:00:19] Jordan Harbinger: It wouldn't matter if you did, man.
[01:00:21] Ramy Romany: I don't know what to do. My wife on the other hand. She said, "Let's go inside the food storage locker." We went inside that room and we put the deep freezers in front of the door.
[01:00:32] Jordan Harbinger: I see.
[01:00:33] Ramy Romany: So no one can access that room. Even if they came in, they can take everything in the house, but they can't take my wife or my daughter or hurt us. And there was only one circular window at the top that's accessible. So, my wife just goes into action so quickly. She had gathered sand from the land and she put it in pot with oil on it, and she started boiling oil and sand.
[01:01:01] Jordan Harbinger: You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest, Ramy Romany. We'll be right back.
[01:01:06] This episode is sponsored in part by HVMN. You may have heard a little buzz about ketones supplements and how they can boost your workouts by helping your body use fatty acids for fuel. Not an energy drink, by the way, but I take a shot of HVMN'S Ketone-IQ supplement before my morning workout. It's very focused energy. It's not the same thing like caffeine. It's more like in the zone without anxiety or jitters of coffee if you get jitters from caffeine, which I definitely do. Ketone-IQ also comes in portable, convenient shot type of glasses, which is perfect for cycling rides, super long runs. If you get a long day, the taste is bitter. I've covered that ground before. I know a lot of my elite athlete friends use this. They kind of like the bad taste, but those guys, they always like a little bit of pain, right? They're the "cold plunge type" crew. So if you're training for something, or even if you're not, give Ketone-IQ a try and let me know what you think.
[01:01:52] Jen Harbinger: For 20 percent off your order of Ketone-IQ, go to HVMN.com promo code JORDAN. Again, that's HVMN.com, and use promo code JORDAN for 20 percent off Ketone-IQ.
[01:02:04] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is also sponsored by Peloton. A lot of people ask me how I'm able to stick to my fitness routine, especially since I have such a bananas schedule. For me, it's really creating a routine that is sustainable and can be duplicated on an ongoing basis. Consistency is the key, right? And Peloton helps me have a sustainable fitness routine because there are thousands of classes to choose from. It's also 24/7. I've always got time for it. I might only have 15 minutes in between calls, but I can still fit in a Peloton class. Peloton is really famous for their bikes, but they also make a top-notch rowing machine that stores upright, which you think no big deal but when you try to have a rower on the floor, you'll be so glad this thing goes upright. If you're a newbie to rowing, the Peloton Row has sensors that can track your movements, that shows you how your form is doing, and it warns you if you're doing something wrong that could injure you or whatever. And right now is the perfect time to get rowing with Peloton Row, we can promise you've never rowed like this before. Peloton Row offers a variety of classes for all levels and game-changing features that help you get rowing or advance what you can already do. Explore Peloton Row and financing options at onepeloton.com/row.
[01:03:08] This episode is sponsored in part by Congressional Dish podcast. Do you want to know what's really going on in Congress? No matter what political party you belong to? Congressional Dish podcast is for you because facts are facts, and that's hard to come by in media. Nowadays, it seems like all our information comes from polarized, corrupt, and deceitful sources that twist facts or only report on events or information that will persuade viewers to think or vote a certain way, or they only report the big newsworthy stuff. But there are a lot of important issues going on in Congress that isn't being shared in the news. Congressional Dish podcast is about government, not politics, hosted by Jennifer Briney. She will fill you in on the must know information about what our representatives do after the elections and how their elections can and will affect our day-to-day lives. She aims to find out what Congress is doing with our money — good luck with that though — she does a lot of research and always includes her sources in the show notes, which of course I appreciate. you all know me, I nerd out on the sites. Check out episode 266, contriving January 6th to hear the most important January 6th committee testimony about Donald Trump's attempt to remain president, focusing on the Trump team's actions that led up to January 6th as opposed to focusing on the riot. Subscribe and listen to Congressional Dish wherever you listen to podcasts.
[01:04:13] Hey, if you like this episode of the show, and I expect that you do, I invite you to do what other smart and considerate listeners do, which is take a moment and support our amazing sponsors to learn more, all of the deals, discount codes, we put them all in one place. jordanharbinger.com/deals is where you can find it. You can search for any sponsor using the search box on the website, or better yet, use our AI chatbot right there at jordanharbinger.com. Thank you so much for supporting those who support this show.
[01:04:37] Now for the rest of my conversation with Ramy Romany.
[01:04:42] Wait a minute. This is some medieval siege-type sh*t.
[01:04:45] Jordan Harbinger: With my wife, you don't want to anger my wife. Trust me.
[01:04:48] Nah, she'll Braveheart. You can go Braveheart—
[01:04:51] Jordan Harbinger: Scary place. Yeah.
[01:04:52] Ramy Romany: But she then, boiled sand and oil and got it ready because anyone that tries to climb that one axis window, if she pours the sand and oil, the sand apparently will stick to you—
[01:05:04] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my god.
[01:05:04] Ramy Romany: —until you burn to death.
[01:05:06] Jordan Harbinger: I would imagine at the time you are boiling sand and oil for home defense, you're pretty freaking terrified.
[01:05:06] Ramy Romany: It's my daughter. That's the reason, really.
[01:05:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Yeah.
[01:05:15] Ramy Romany: Because at the end of the day, you know, at some point I felt I should go out on the street and be with the people.
[01:05:19] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:05:20] Ramy Romany: I don't know if I would've ever done that, whether I had family or not but none of that matters. All you are thinking about really—
[01:05:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:05:28] Ramy Romany: You have kids?
[01:05:28] Jordan Harbinger: I do.
[01:05:29] Ramy Romany: Do you know how it works now?
[01:05:30] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:04:30] Ramy Romany: It's like all of a sudden — I'm a young, selfish person and you are a young, selfish person. And then you have kids.
[01:05:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[01:05:36] Ramy Romany: And your selfishness becomes more about your family. You're still selfish.
[01:05:39] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:05:40] Ramy Romany: But you're selfish for more.
[01:05:41] Jordan Harbinger: It includes them.
[01:05:42] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[01:05:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, it includes them.
[01:05:43] Ramy Romany: And then your child, you go into that, I think it's biological, I mean, it's natural. The instinct of you want to protect that child from anything. So that's all I can think about. How can we save her? And it was very scary.
[01:05:59] Jordan Harbinger: So, okay. At that point though, you didn't have to throw boiling hot oil and sand on anybody, hopefully.
[01:06:05] Ramy Romany: We did not. She was very excited about it but we did not know.
[01:06:08] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Once in a lifetime opportunity. But then, you've got to get out of there still.
[01:06:12] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:06:12] Jordan Harbinger: You're stuck in there. So how do you find your way out of this mess? I mean, people are hopping the gates. It's time to bug out.
[01:06:19] Ramy Romany: The next morning, we decided to find our own way out. Get in our car and drive straight to the airport to get out. Now, I know everyone is going to the airport. Everyone is trying to get out. But also I know the streets are the worst place to be on right now. Even to get to the airport is the scariest thing to do because what happened at the time. When police abandoned the country is that everyone started creating their own vigilante groups.
[01:06:44] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. Like neighborhood militia kind of things.
[01:06:46] Ramy Romany: Yeah. So every neighborhood, 17-year-olds will go out on the street, create a checkpoint to make sure anyone that enters that neighborhood is trusted. But there is problems with that strategy, with that structure. It’s that first every neighborhood has different ideology—
[01:07:04] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:07:04] Ramy Romany: —of what is trusted or what is. Also, 14 to 17-year-olds are not the best judges of character.
[01:07:13] Jordan Harbinger: No, no.
[01:07:13] Ramy Romany: Including myself.
[01:07:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:07:14] Ramy Romany: I'm not judging them but they're not.
[01:07:16] Jordan Harbinger: Slightly impulsive group of guys, generally.
[01:07:18] Ramy Romany: Impulsive is the correct word. They act before they think and were hearing on the radio incidences of people stopping at the checkpoint and everyone getting killed in the car.
[01:07:30] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man.
[01:07:31] Ramy Romany: Now, my wife, white, half Jew, my daughter in the backseat six-month-old. I put a veil on my wife's head. I remember.
[01:07:40] Jordan Harbinger: That's a good idea. Yeah.
[01:07:40] Ramy Romany: I said, "Just so you can look less white, I guess." We didn't have a veil—
[01:07:46] Jordan Harbinger: It's an emergency situation.
[01:07:47] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:07:49] Jordan Harbinger: We can't be PC about this.
[01:07:50] Ramy Romany: Yeah. So, we didn't have a veil. We used a baby's blanket. It was a baby's blanket. It looked like a veil. We used a baby blanket. She put the veil on top of her head and we're driving through neighborhoods to get to the airport. I knew the neighborhoods well. I know that I could stop at that checkpoint and this neighborhood will look at us and they're like, "Respectable people. You can go," but there is that one neighborhood.
[01:08:12] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:08:13] Ramy Romany: Before we get to the airport that I know is very much Muslim Brotherhood-leaning neighborhood. And to them trusted and safe is not the same thing.
[01:08:25] Jordan Harbinger: Right. It's definitely not a Christian dude with a white wife in a car.
[01:08:28] Ramy Romany: No. And it's not even a respectable, just like normal guy. It's more of really high-energy kids that have been fed that Muslim Brotherhood is the way and that kill everyone else is the way.
[01:08:42] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man.
[01:08:43] Ramy Romany: And they believe that they are doing this for the good of the world.
[01:08:46] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[01:08:47] Ramy Romany: And you are getting into that place.
[01:08:48] Jordan Harbinger: They're righteous at that point.
[01:08:50] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[01:08:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:08:50] Ramy Romany: They are the ones. No one else was going to kill these people other than us. We're going to save the world. So it gets into their head and they act. Before that neighborhood, we're in the car. My wife in the backseat, my daughter in the far right backseat in the car seat, were driving and I see the checkpoint, the neighborhood has created a bunch of 14, 16-year-old kids. And I see a kid with a sword walking towards—
[01:09:16] Jordan Harbinger: A sword?
[01:09:17] Ramy Romany: Well, they're using whatever they have.
[01:09:18] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. I guess that makes sense. Yeah.
[01:09:19] Ramy Romany: And there was a sword, everything on that day, looking at the streets, it looks like a scene out of the movie.
[01:09:25] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:09:25] Ramy Romany: Like it is just unbelievable. Fire — and Egyptian streets on a normal day are crazy.
[01:09:30] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I was going to say that sounds like normal rush hour traffic in Egypt.
[01:09:34] Ramy Romany: This was really, it's just really crazy day. And a kid with a sword is approaching the car, you know, pointing up with us or using it as a pointing up and saying, "Hey, stop. We're checking the car." And I look back at my wife, I said to her, "Baby, we're not stopping." And she looks back at me, she's like, "You do what you think is right." And I remember after I made a decision, I'm not going to stop. I remember my thoughts and that I know that the decision I just made, what it means and how my body's going to act. And I started training myself and all that with it. Like, they are a hundred meters away.
[01:10:09] Harbinger: Yeah. I mean, you're going to run these guys over if they don't move, right?
[01:10:12] Ramy Romany: Yeah. I remember my mental, my brain was training my body what to do because, you know, if you're driving a car—
[01:10:19] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:10:20] Ramy Romany: —and you hit something by mistake, before you think to stop, your body has stopped you on the brakes.
[01:10:25] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. Right.
[01:10:26] Ramy Romany: So I was trying to tell myself to not stop, I was trying to tell myself if, when, keep hitting the gas.
[01:10:32] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:10:33] Ramy Romany: I had to make that decision at the time. And I remember I started driving and I looked the kids straight in the eye, all his friends around, and I started increasing my speed. I looked him in the eye and I'm begging him without talking, begging him to jump away because I'm going to kill him. And I remember I drove straight and he raised his sword up and he started yelling, seeing me coming at him now, started yelling at his friends, and he raised his sword up and I'm going, and he scrapes the side of the car, falls on the sidewalk. His friends start gathering and I hid through their checkpoint and I go all the way through. You hear one of his friends had a pistol, fired a pistol up in the sky, and the kids started running with the swords, but I'm gone. I'm out of there. I think I did not hurt him.
[01:11:16] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. Oh, god.
[01:11:17] Ramy Romany: Maybe I hurt him, but I don't think I killed him.
[01:11:19] Jordan Harbinger: No. Yeah.
[01:11:20] Ramy Romany: He stood back up when he ran.
[01:11:22] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:11:23] Ramy Romany: And we were out, we left straight, we went to the airport and the airport was a complete mess.
[01:11:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I'm surprised—
[01:11:29] Ramy Romany: Everyone is trying to get out of the airport, but a part of my job was airports. I got gear in and out of the country.
[01:11:35] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[01:11:36] Legally through airports. So I knew all the people in charge. There's a culture in Egypt — I can't say the word here because it's so horrible, but it's a culture of thank you with money.
[01:11:49] Jordan Harbinger: Is it called baksheesh?
[01:11:50] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[01:11:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I learned that word in Egypt, baksheesh. It's like a tip.
[01:11:53] Ramy Romany: It's a tip.
[01:11:53] Jordan Harbinger: It's a little bit more of a spin on it.
[01:11:55] Ramy Romany: These people are not taking this money and building palaces. They're literally going to buy dinner for their children—
[01:12:02] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:12:02] Ramy Romany: —because of it. They're underpaid. So it's a culture of thank you with money. I mean, a lot of people will be shocked by you going to a restaurant and paying a tip at the end of the day after paying a bill.
[01:12:11] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. Right.
[01:12:12] Ramy Romany: But in America, that is the culture.
[01:12:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:12:14] Ramy Romany: It's a very similar thing, but in Egypt, you do it with everyone. We go in and the airport is a mess. Lines until to forever. We go into the Egypt Air office and they can't use their credit card machine because—
[01:12:27] Jordan Harbinger: I was going to say, how do you buy a ticket?
[01:12:28] Ramy Romany: Yeah, the Internet is off.
[01:12:30] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:12:30] Ramy Romany: The government cut off Internet. So the credit card machine is not working. They try to use the phone to give the credit card—
[01:12:37] Jordan Harbinger: Oh wow.
[01:12:38] Ramy Romany: —with a bank.
[01:12:38] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[01:12:39] Ramy Romany: And of course, all the banks, the phones are busy. Like that's the only thing working, a landline phone.
[01:12:43] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[01:12:43] Ramy Romany: So that's not working. And my wife, again, just a week before anything had ever taken place, we had a couple of thousand dollars in cash that I just brought in. Cash is normal in Egypt. It's not anything strange. Everything is paid in cash. And the credit cards weren't really a thing. So you pay your invoices in cash and you have money with you and you put them in bank and then bring money out and pay with them.
[01:13:04] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:13:05] Ramy Romany: So I had $2,000 in cash with me and, and she said, "Hey, let's just keep those in cash here. You never know." But she said, "Let's just keep them on the side just in case." And I was like, "Baby, come on. The idea is you come up with—“ "No, what are we going to do with all cash? We just leave them. Rats are going to eat them. We're going to hide them under?" She said, "Just let's leave them." I was like, "Fine." She has no clue in my head. And then, I was the one that had no clue, obviously.
[01:13:32] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:13:32] Ramy Romany: Because we had that money with us when we go to the Egypt Air desk and they can't buy us a ticket with any credit card or phone call. We had that money and they said, "There's only two seats open on the haul flight," that is supposedly going to New York on that. And we're like, "We'll take it." Our daughter was an infant, six months, she can ride on our lap child.
[01:13:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:13:51] Ramy Romany: We paid, we had the cash. I was like, "We have the cash." And they're like, "You have the cash?" And we're like, "Yeah, we have cash." Yeah, so we paid for it right there and right then, we took the tickets. I had the baby in a BabyBjörn right on my chest.
[01:14:01] Jordan Harbinger: I know, yeah, got one of those, the chest carriers.
[01:14:03] Ramy Romany: They're great. They're great.
[01:14:04] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:14:04] Ramy Romany: We're running around at the airport. And then, once we had the tickets, we now are walking into security, but this line is not moving. We're going to miss—
[01:14:12] Jordan Harbinger: Of course.
[01:14:12] Ramy Romany: —the flight.
[01:14:13] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:14:13] Ramy Romany: And all the flights are getting canceled and a guy yells from the back, "All the flights are canceled. No one needs to come." And I'm like, "I can't stay in this line."
[01:14:21] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:14:21] Ramy Romany: I took my wife, went through the back door. The back door is where all the gear comes out.
[01:14:25] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:14:25] Ramy Romany: So I knew the guy. I went in, I was like, hoping I know the guy's face. I found the guy. We had a conversation and then, he let us in.
[01:14:33] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:14:34] Ramy Romany: Let us in. We went all the way inside. We got straight on the plane. The plane was one hour away from taking off and we made it to the plane, which we're very happy. This is the time, safe, calm down. The flight attendants said, "We can't take off because the pilots can't make it to the plane."
[01:14:51] Jordan Harbinger: Oh no.
[01:14:52] Ramy Romany: So there's half flight attendants and the plane is empty. This is 300-passenger plane probably with 16 people on it.
[01:15:01] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my god.
[01:15:01] Ramy Romany: Well, no one can make it to the plane.
[01:15:03] Jordan Harbinger: Because the security lines are too long.
[01:15:03] Ramy Romany: Just no one can make it to the plane. And then, we stay on that plane for two hours, three hours. I can't even remember. And then people are trickling in. We're about 30 passengers on the plane. Then the pilot walks in, closes the door, doesn't announce that he's leaving, takes off, and we're up in the air and a flight attendant comes in and says, "Water or champagne."
[01:15:26] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my gosh. Champagne for sure, man.
[01:15:28] Ramy Romany: We went for the champagne and the horse meat. I think it was the meal.
[01:15:31] Jordan Harbinger: Horse meat?
[01:15:32] Ramy Romany: Yeah, it was champagne and horse meat.
[01:15:33] Jordan Harbinger: That's an interesting choice of airline food, but I guess you take what you—
[01:15:36] Ramy Romany: Yeah, yeah.
[01:15:36] Jordan Harbinger: That must have been the sheer sense of relief. The exhale when the plane is taking off must have felt pretty good.
[01:15:44] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:15:44] Jordan Harbinger: Although you did leave your house. Where'd you put your car?
[01:15:46] Ramy Romany: We left it. We just left it in the airport.
[01:15:48] Jordan Harbinger: You left it in the road?
[01:15:49] Ramy Romany: Yeah. Well, you know, we had drivers and I hoped at some point in the future if no one takes the car, if no one breaks into the car, one of our drivers is going to come pick it up. So I left it at the airport and—
[01:15:59] Jordan Harbinger: And is still there to this day?
[01:16:01] Ramy Romany: Couple of months later, someone went and picked it up and it was still there. I mean, it was broken into and something—
[01:16:05] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:16:06] Ramy Romany: —it was still there and—
[01:16:07] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:16:07] Ramy Romany: Yeah. Took it back. My parents were in a boat in the middle of the Nile. I tried to call them. My mom was so upset that I was leaving, but their boat started getting attacked by Nile Pirates.
[01:16:18] Jordan Harbinger: I've heard that there were pirates on the river.
[01:16:20] Ramy Romany: They were on the river, they were pirates on the Nile, which never existed, ever. But you know, it was just people trying to take over. It was a beautiful boat with a hot tub on it.
[01:16:29] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay, it's a yacht.
[01:16:31] Ramy Romany: Sail, a sail yacht.
[01:16:32] Jordan Harbinger: A sail yacht with a hot tub—
[01:16:34] Ramy Romany: They're called Dahabiya .
[01:16:35] Jordan Harbinger: By the time, you got a hot tub on the boat, it's a yacht, I was just saying.
[01:16:38] Ramy Romany: And they stayed on there for six months before they were able to land on safe ground.
[01:16:45] Jordan Harbinger: This is crazy.
[01:16:45] Ramy Romany: The country was a complete mess. We left, we went straight to Syracuse to my father-in-law who housed and I thought in my head, "It's going to be three days, baby. We're going to go back. Everything is going to be fine."
[01:16:54] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Right.
[01:16:55] Ramy Romany: And my wife goes, "Hey, at this point you are a completely addict judge."
[01:16:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[01:16:59] Ramy Romany: "You have no clue what's going on." I was like, "But it's Egypt. I lived here all my life. I just can't imagine."
[01:17:03] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:17:04] Ramy Romany: I lived here all my life.
[01:17:04] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:17:05] Ramy Romany: I can't imagine it's gone. I cannot imagine.
[01:17:07] Jordan Harbinger: I get it. That would happen to me here. I'd be like, "It's not a revolution. This is America. What are you talking about? It's going to be fine."
[01:17:13] Ramy Romany: Isn't that crazy?
[01:17:13] Jordan Harbinger: The police are going to retake control of the city. It's going to be fine.
[01:17:17] Ramy Romany: That's a shocking realization there though.
[01:17:19] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:17:19] Ramy Romany: Would it happen to us here?
[01:17:20] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, anything can happen.
[01:17:22] Ramy Romany: No, but would it happen to us that we wouldn't see it still and we would not leave?
[01:17:25] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, definitely. You might now have learned your lesson after that first time.
[01:17:30] Ramy Romany: I'm going to tell my wife, "Hey, it's going to be fine. I've lived here for 10 years."
[01:17:32] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:17:33] Ramy Romany: It's completely fine. My wife was going to say, "Let's get out of here."
[01:17:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. So were you able to get your money out of the bank in Egypt or were you just like stuck in Syracuse like, "Hey dad, can I borrow some money?" And he's probably like, "I told you not to move to Egypt with that guy."
[01:17:49] Ramy Romany: But her dad was very supportive after our marriage. Not before, of course. I mean, think about it. His girl goes to Egypt and is going to, "Hey dad, I found an Egyptian guy. I'm going to marry him four months in—"
[01:18:00] Jordan Harbinger: He's a filmmaker.
[01:18:01] Ramy Romany: Yeah. If this was my daughter, I would definitely be very upset. But her dad was very supportive and we have a great relationship. No. Our money was completely stuck in the country.
[01:18:13] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. Right. That's what I thought.
[01:18:14] Ramy Romany: The banks are closed. No one can get money out of the banks. If you're in Egypt, there's a limit to an ATM machine. No one knows the value of the money anymore. That's the other problem. The country is completely, there's no government.
[01:18:26] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my god.
[01:18:26] Ramy Romany: —so you don't actually know the value of the money. So if you want Egyptian money, how can you convert it to US dollars? We don't know the value of it. Everything is closed and nothing exists.
[01:18:35] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Oh, man.
[01:18:36] Ramy Romany: Because it was valued at five something, every five Egyptian pounds were one dollar when I left.
[01:18:41] Jordan Harbinger: Right. And now it's like, well, does Egypt still exist?
[01:18:43] Ramy Romany: Yeah. No one knows.
[01:18:44] Jordan Harbinger: Is this still valid? Yeah. Oh, man.
[01:18:46] Ramy Romany: Somehow though, not being able to access a lot of money, not being able to access anything, I had one credit card that somehow worked. I thought it was a mistake or a loop of a problem, but it's working. We would spend from it and at the end of the month, they would take it from my bank account. And I don't know how that works.
[01:19:05] Jordan Harbinger: That's incredible.
[01:19:05] Ramy Romany: But it was not one credit card.
[01:19:08] Jordan Harbinger: Really? Was it like a Visa or a MasterCard?
[01:19:10] Ramy Romany: It was a MasterCard.
[01:19:11] Jordan Harbinger: Because you got to hand it to them for keeping it.
[01:19:13] Ramy Romany: It was a MasterCard. Yes, thank you, MasterCard at mastercard.com.
[01:19:16] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Sponsored by nobody, but I mean, you got to give them credit. There's a revolution, but still we got you.
[01:19:22] Ramy Romany: It worked. It worked all the way through and that's how we lived for the next three months. We stayed in Syracuse for two weeks — when I saw the president, that was the moment for me. When the president resigned, I thought, "Okay, we got to start over." That's when I applied to have a work permit and a green card in the US, only when the president resigned.
[01:19:46] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:19:47] Ramy Romany: When he resigned, he's a god, wait, god is gone. And then it struck me, we got to start over.
[01:19:54] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:19:54] Ramy Romany: So I took my wife, my daughter went straight to LA because that's what I know.
[01:20:00] Jordan Harbinger: Right, film.
[01:20:00] Ramy Romany: I know how to make documentaries and that's where my wife is from. She worked in there. My wife landed and the next day she was on a show, shooting a show. So she started working. A credit card is working. I kept trying to find a job, which was very hard in LA because—
[01:20:14] Jordan Harbinger: But how is that possible? You have so much experience, you know, like, "Hey, I worked in Discovery Channel since I was 11." BBC, they should be like stoked. Most production assistants are like, "I smoked weed all day and I'm kind of interested in movies."
[01:20:26] Ramy Romany: There is a saying in LA that I only knew later. If your experience is not in LA, it's no experience. By the time, I was in LA I was 25, 26, 27 years old. I have already had over 15 years of experience.
[01:20:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, you'd think that counts for something.
[01:20:43] Ramy Romany: And none of it mattered in LA. It was just a new place, so I started over. I hate not working. I live my life working. I didn't go to school the way kids went to school. I enjoyed working. I think I do. I love it. My wife started working straight away and I was home. So I found a great source on the Internet. It's called The Craigslist.
[01:21:05] Jordan Harbinger: Craigslist, I've had heard of it. Yes. It's where you can find all kinds of people to clean your house naked or whatever.
[01:21:11] Ramy Romany: Yes. But you can also find Egyptian camera people to come to your quinceañeras.
[01:21:17] Jordan Harbinger: Your quinceañeras. Yeah. I was going to say like, were you doing, filming bar mitzvah or something like that?
[01:21:22] Ramy Romany: I did, dude. I did. I would apply for like a thousand of these jobs because there's like endless list and 90 percent of them is fake.
[01:21:29] Jordan Harbinger: A scam.
[01:21:29] Ramy Romany: Probably.
[01:21:30] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:21:30] Ramy Romany: Yeah. But I thank Craig for making this list.
[01:21:33] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:21:33] Ramy Romany: I would apply for like a thousand of these jobs every week. I did count it once and it exceeded 2000 across the time I was applying for those stuff.
[01:21:42] Jordan Harbinger: Geez.
[01:21:42] Ramy Romany: And I went, like filmed. We had a camera with us, so that's what I used. I would go film like a birthday party and edit it, and then take that money and pay it to the babysitter.
[01:21:53] Jordan Harbinger: Right, right, right.
[01:21:54] Ramy Romany: Babysitters in LA was probably a better industry. I should have got in.
[01:21:58] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:21:58] Ramy Romany: They made so much more money than I did at the time but then, one of these jobs that I did was in a conference. I was filming at a conference. I met a guy, he's like, "Hey, what do you do?" We talked, he was nice.
[01:22:10] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:22:10] Ramy Romany: And he realized that I come from a deep background of documentaries in Egypt. He's like, "I do documentaries all the time, and I'm doing one next week in the Dominican Republic. I have my team, my DP, and my director already, but we'll chat." A week later, he called me, he's like, "Save me. My DP and my director flaked on me because something horrible happened to them. Can you come to Dominican Republic in a week so we could do a documentary together?" And that was like my first real job.
[01:22:38] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:22:38] Ramy Romany: And I was like, "Dude, I'll go anywhere." We went to the Dominican, did a great documentary called Esperanza, which is Spanish for hope.
[01:22:47] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:22:47] Ramy Romany: And it was about microfinancing and how these ladies broke the poverty of cycle, changed their life, changed their whole neighborhood because they got a microloan worth of $200, ended up building all these big businesses.
[01:22:58] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:22:58] Ramy Romany: And it is an awesome story. And these are really strong ladies. The women are allowed, the men are not, by the way, in the microfinancing world in Latin America, they don't give money to men.
[01:23:07] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[01:23:08] Ramy Romany: Because of experience. Every time they give money to the men, the men spend it on drinking or whatever it is.
[01:23:14] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:23:14] Ramy Romany: They're not responsible. The only ones that are responsible enough are the women. The women that have kids because they will do it. And—
[01:23:21] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:23:21] Ramy Romany: —it's a fascinating story. And that was my first Emmy.
[01:23:25] Jordan Harbinger: So you won an Emmy because you took a bunch of crappy odd jobs off Craigslist.
[01:23:31] Ramy Romany: I mean, Craig, thank you. Craig—
[01:23:33] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:23:34] Ramy Romany: —got me an Emmy.
[01:23:34] Jordan Harbinger: Do you feel like being so different from Americans, especially, look, and you know this, when you live in LA and you work in production, you're supposed to look like a person who lives behind a dumpster. I guess there's an unwritten rule. You know, do you think that worked for you somehow, that you didn't look like this?
[01:23:51] Ramy Romany: Like a dumpster?
[01:23:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:23:52] Ramy Romany: No.
[01:23:52] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, like you have to look like a street person with a $1,200 iPhone.
[01:23:54] Ramy Romany: It was a mistake that I did.
[01:23:57] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[01:23:57] Ramy Romany: Actually, when I first came in, I thought, I got to blend in. I was worried about how I'm different.
[01:24:06] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:24:06] Ramy Romany: And I did wear dumpster-style clothing.
[01:24:10] Jordan Harbinger: You did? Oh, so you tried to blend in that way?
[01:24:11] Ramy Romany: Yes, of course.
[01:24:11] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:24:12] Ramy Romany: I wear a t-shirt. It's very strange. I wear the same thing all my life.
[01:24:17] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:24:18] Ramy Romany: My blue shirt and my wife's jeans much more comfortable, women's jeans.
[01:24:22] Jordan Harbinger: Are you wearing women's jeans?
[01:24:23] Ramy Romany: Oh my god. Yeah. They had the stretch. They're very comfortable.
[01:24:26] Jordan Harbinger: It's good for crawling around 2000-year-old mine or tombs.
[01:24:30] Ramy Romany: Yes. Yeah. Trust me, dude. Go try your wife's jeans when you get back home.
[01:24:34] Jordan Harbinger: My wife is five feet tall, even though, you know, okay, I'll give it a shot.
[01:24:38] Ramy Romany: Okay. But they're very comfortable. I wear the same shirt every day, same hat. And that's how I look.
[01:24:45] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:24:47] Ramy Romany: And that's how I feel. It works for me. I don't have to think about it. No waste of time.
[01:24:49] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:24:49] Ramy Romany: Thinking about it, I'm a director and directors are very, you know, how many directors addiction change the light bulb?
[01:24:54] Jordan Harbinger: No, I don't. How many?
[01:24:55] Ramy Romany: It's four.
[01:24:56] Jordan Harbinger: Four?
[01:24:56] Ramy Romany: No, wait, it's three. Wait. No, it's two. Wait, let's go back to four. They can never make their mind.
[01:24:57] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[01:25:01] Ramy Romany: Right. They always change their mind. So if I had to do that every day, I would just be out of time. So I wear the same thing every day, but when I first came here, I did think I should blend in and I did not feel myself all the way through until I stopped. And one day, I stopped. I said, "I'm going to be myself." And I wore my stuff again and I wore my hat again. And I went out on the street and I felt like, do this. And I felt like everyone was looking at me, but then it took five minutes—
[01:25:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, sure.
[01:25:29] Ramy Romany: —of me being worried about it. And then, I felt like myself and I could do what I do. Nine Emmys later—
[01:25:36] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:25:36] Ramy Romany: —the blue shirt worked.
[01:25:37] Jordan Harbinger: The blue shirt worked, man. Yeah, I mean you're working with, among other folks, Mark Burnett, who's, you know, responsible for Shark Tank. I think Survivor. Was that one of those too?
[01:25:45] Ramy Romany: Correct. Yeah.
[01:25:45] Jordan Harbinger: And this is like Hollywood royalty, you know, you're hobnobbing with the best of the best at this point.
[01:25:50] Ramy Romany: Correct. Yes.
[01:25:50] Jordan Harbinger: And then, I know you mentioned you're working on Mummies Unwrapped, and one thing that was interesting that you said was in another interview was, "Mummies unlock other ancient myths in history," which I thought was kind of fascinating, right? So you discover one thing and somehow their keys to other parts of history. Can you speak to that a little bit? I think that's really interesting.
[01:26:10] Ramy Romany: Well, I think the key to our future is in our death.
[01:26:14] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. What do you mean?
[01:26:16] Ramy Romany: People do it today. You really go through autopsy and you really just make sure you know everything about how this person died so you can know how, what happened, or—
[01:26:27] Jordan Harbinger: That's true.
[01:26:28] —what killed him? And the pandemics, you go through it today. You studied dead to make sure you're prepared for the future, right?
[01:26:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yes, that's true.
[01:26:35] Ramy Romany: Science.
[01:26:36] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, you look at someone's heart and you say, "Wow, you had a heart disease. Well, what did he eat?"
[01:26:39] Ramy Romany: Now with that technology that we have today that we study our dead with, we take it back thousands of years.
[01:26:45] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:26:45] Ramy Romany: We have the dead thousands years ago. We have mummies. They're just dead people. They're not toilet paper-wrapped ghosts walking around.
[01:26:54] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:26:54] Ramy Romany: They're actually dead people with all their biological parts still in there.
[01:26:59] Jordan Harbinger: I thought they put them in a jar.
[01:27:01] Ramy Romany: You mean the intestines and stuff?
[01:27:03] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:27:03] Ramy Romany: Yes. But their DNA material is still there.
[01:27:05] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[01:27:05] Ramy Romany: Skin is still there. Teeth is still there. Their hair is still, you look at those mummies, some of them look, they do—
[01:27:10] Jordan Harbinger: Still fresh, yeah.
[01:27:11] Ramy Romany: Because they, their skin is still there. Wrinkles on their skin is still there. And all that is DNA evidence. And what archeologists struggle with all the time is if I start digging into this mommy today—
[01:27:23] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:27:23] Ramy Romany: —to unlock secrets of the past that would help us in our future, am I doing it too soon? Am I hurting this mummy? Am I getting rid of evidence that I could even know more later with more technology?
[01:27:34] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Sure.
[01:27:34] Ramy Romany: Like think if they started digging into those mummies to find evidence a hundred years ago, we would've not had it for the technology we have today.
[01:27:42] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Yeah.
[01:27:42] Ramy Romany: Right?
[01:27:43] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:27:43] Ramy Romany: Now, what if we start doing that now. And a hundred years from now, we can know so much more with just a little bit of that mummy. That's the archeologist dilemma all the time. You want to dig, you want to find more, you want to know more about the past, but if you dig now with the tools you have now, you might hurt some of the data that is stored into all these little pieces, just a grain of sand—
[01:28:08] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:28:07] Ramy Romany: —can tell you more if you would waited a hundred years, but if you extracted data from the sand, then you solve the mysteries today. It's a massive dilemma that archeologists have to deal with. But the mummies, literally, I would call them like servers of data that have saved all this information for thousands and thousands of years and no one touched them because they saved them, because they matter. And today we do have technology good enough to tell us so much about these mummies, so much about the past that we never knew before.
[01:28:41] Jordan Harbinger: I heard now you use satellite images and things like that to find maybe not pyramids under the sand, well, yeah, maybe pyramids under the sand, or at least tombs under the sand. How does that work?
[01:28:50] Ramy Romany: It's very simple. Like Google satellite images.
[01:28:52] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:28:53] Ramy Romany: If you look at those images, you have to have the premium service, but that's it. But if you look at those images at different dates, dates where after wetness, after rain, the sand itself, you look at it and the thing with the sand, for instance, is that it looks different, different colors every time it's drier. So let's say a day after a rain, you take a picture, satellite image of this part of the desert, and you look at it, and let's say there was rain, and let's say there's a pyramid—
[01:29:24] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:29:24] Ramy Romany: —under the sand, the top of that pyramid would be closest to the surface, and the sides of that pyramid are deepest from the surface, which means if you see a square of dark sand that gets lighter in color—
[01:29:39] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[01:29:40] Ramy Romany: —as it gets in, the sand in the middle got dries fastest because it's least dense and the sand on the outside is getting dries slower because it's more dense. Hence, you just found a pyramid under the ground.
[01:29:52] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:29:53] Ramy Romany: We used that technology with a fascinating archeologist. Her name is Sarah Parcak. She's not one of the best, she is the best. They call her space archeologist because she can find the pyramid to under the sand. We used that technology, we wanted to prove it right. So we did take it to the Egyptian government and asked, "Hey, we believe there's a pyramid under this sand." They said, "You're crazy," but with enough studies, we were approved to start digging and there was a pyramid under the sand.
[01:30:20] Jordan Harbinger: Crazy.
[01:30:21] Ramy Romany: Undiscovered pyramids.
[01:30:22] Jordan Harbinger: And it's just buried under the sand.
[01:30:24] Ramy Romany: And you can't even see them. The sand is all the same. Undiscovered pyramid under the sand.
[01:30:28] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:30:28] Ramy Romany: And it was laying right in front of us all this time. And the amazing part, the fascinating part, is that we didn't need to dig for hundreds of years around this area to find a pyramid under the sand, we just looked at Google images in our phones.
[01:30:42] Jordan Harbinger: Unfreaking believable. That's so crazy. So when you're on a dig like that, when you go and dig, I assume you need security and stuff like that to dig in the middle of the desert.
[01:30:51] Ramy Romany: Yes. You'll find it shocking. But what comes as a side effect of police brutality is complete safety.
[01:30:59] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[01:30:59] Ramy Romany: So when I lived in Egypt and we had very strong police and brutal, uh, is a good word for—
[01:31:05] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[01:31:05] Ramy Romany: —police. It was very safe. I left my car open. There was no thieves.
[01:31:11] Jordan Harbinger: Huh?
[01:31:11] Ramy Romany: And no one dared to do anything.
[01:31:13] Jordan Harbinger: Because they'd go to prison. Yeah.
[01:31:13] Ramy Romany: Yeah. But I mean, that is the side effect of police brutality.
[01:31:17] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Oof.
[01:31:18] Ramy Romany: Right. Which is not a good thing, but—
[01:31:20] Jordan Harbinger: No.
[01:31:20] Ramy Romany: —you get that.
[01:31:21] Jordan Harbinger: Right. The police stayed. Yeah. The upside is security. The downside is lack of freedom.
[01:31:25] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[01:31:26] Jordan Harbinger: When I went to Egypt, this is more than 20 years ago now, we went all the way down as far south as you could legally go or safely go.
[01:31:32] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:31:33] Jordan Harbinger: And then there was a military convoy that took us up in Jeeps, and I went on the last Jeep because, I don't know, I was dicking around.
[01:31:40] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:31:40] Jordan Harbinger: And this is because this group, Abu Simba or something, had killed a bunch of Greek tourists thinking they were Israelis. So they put me in the back of the truck with some soldiers and some other tourists and they said, "Don't fall off." And he was definitely not joking because they were gunning—
[01:31:53] Ramy Romany: Flying?
[01:31:53] Jordan Harbinger: —down the road and we would bump up and we would fly up in the air and I'm like, oh no, I could really fall off. And they're not checking like, I'm going to just be in this road as dirt road. And then what? I don't know, just stuck there. That was really scary because especially when you're at the end, you realize you're at the end of the security thing.
[01:32:09] Ramy Romany: You are not exaggerating.
[01:32:10] Jordan Harbinger: No.
[01:32:10] Ramy Romany: That is a hundred percent true story.
[01:32:13] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:32:13] Ramy Romany: That's how they did it to make sure you are safe and they are safe.
[01:32:16] Jordan Harbinger: They were flying, man. We were gunning it fast.
[01:32:18] Ramy Romany: There was a time in Egypt where they couldn't control that area—
[01:32:21] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:32:21] Ramy Romany: —from terrorism. And there's a time in Egypt right after the Muslim Brotherhood got all, like the government have declared the Muslim Brotherhood an illegal party, which means anyone that is a Muslim Brotherhood would go to jail.
[01:32:33] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[01:32:33] Ramy Romany: It's very silly. It's a very silly thing to do because you just called 20 percent of the people—
[01:32:37] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:32:38] Ramy Romany: —criminals.
[01:32:38] Jordan Harbinger: Criminals, yeah, essentially making them guilty. Yeah.
[01:32:40] Ramy Romany: You also make them criminals if they're not.
[01:32:42] Jordan Harbinger: That makes sense and it's kind of terrifying—
[01:32:45] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:32:45] Jordan Harbinger: —for what that sort of implies for the state.
[01:32:49] I know we're running out of time. There's a couple of things I want to make sure I ask. When I took a felucca up the Nile, which is a small sailboat—
[01:32:54] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[01:32:55] Jordan Harbinger: —you'd have to stop and go to the bathroom. And there was one time where we saw a little structure on the side of the Nile. This is in the middle of absolutely nowhere. So we get out and I'm like, "Well, okay, we're done peeing. I want to look in this thing." All it was essentially a bush, a little structure, and a staircase that went straight down. And I think there's probably water in there because it was next to the Nile, but I don't know, there's hieroglyphics, there's still colored. Everything was absolutely incredible. And I thought, I can't believe we're seeing this. This's just like open. It's probably been that way for a thousand years or more. And I'm looking and we've realized that we probably should not just go down an ancient staircase—
[01:33:30] Ramy Romany: Mm-hmm.
[01:33:30] Jordan Harbinger: —into a tomb or whatever that was in without any light. So we started to go back up and we realized the entire ceiling, which we thought was moldy, was just bats, furry little bats.
[01:33:40] Ramy Romany: No.
[01:33:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Oh, it was really interesting.
[01:33:42] Ramy Romany: You are lucky, man, that you came out of that without the curse of the mummies.
[01:33:47] Jordan Harbinger: Well, that and also just like how dumb are you to go down a staircase in the middle of Egypt that's been there for a thousand years.
[01:33:53] Ramy Romany: But ancient hieroglyphs. That's the addiction. You want to discover something, you want to see something that no one has seen.
[01:32:57] Jordan Harbinger: It was pretty freaking cool. What is that though? Are there tombs just with stairs that go down? Why would there just be stairs that go down? I've always wondered what that was. The captain had no idea because he goes, "I don't know what that is."
[01:34:07] Ramy Romany: The tombs with stairs going down, you're saying?
[01:34:09] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. It was just like a structure.
[01:34:10] Ramy Romany: Yeah.
[01:34:10] Jordan Harbinger: Like a nothing structure—
[01:34:11] Ramy Romany: Yes.
[01:34:11] Jordan Harbinger: —with a staircase that went just down as far as you could see.
[01:34:14] Ramy Romany: The elevation from a pyramid to tombs buried under the ground happened because of tomb raiding.
[01:34:20] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:34:20] Ramy Romany: So once tomb raiding took place, people stopped making their tombs obvious.
[01:34:25] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:34:25] Ramy Romany: They had to dig down all the way and create a whole structure, like a whole burial chamber, multiple burial chambers under the ground to keep it safer from tomb raiding. Lock the top. So even the priests that would take that body to bury it, they have specific amount of time before they get out and a big block would come in and lock it and no one will be able to access that tomb whether they wanted to or not later on.
[01:34:48] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[01:34:49] Ramy Romany: So yeah, it got harder and harder to get back into a tomb because of tomb raiding. So you went into a place where you were not supposed to go in.
[01:34:58] Jordan Harbinger: Definitely.
[01:34:59] Ramy Romany: And you are lucky that you have not been cursed.
[01:35:01] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I suppose that's true or at least bitten by a bat. Thank you very much, man, for your time. I know we got to wrap it up. I really appreciate, super interesting conversation. Super appreciate it, man.
[01:35:10] Ramy Romany: Thank you so much. This was awesome. Thank you so much for having me.
[01:35:16] Jordan Harbinger: As usual, I've got some thoughts on this episode, but before we get into that, I wanted to give you a preview of one of my favorite stories from an earlier episode of the show. My friend Steve Elkins found a lost city in the jungle that most people never even knew existed. I'm not even kidding. It sounds insane. This has to be one of the most incredible stories I've ever recorded on the show. I know you're going to love this one.
[01:35:39] Steve Elkins: The legend of Cuidad Blanca, or White City in English, goes back probably 500 years to the best of my knowledge, people have believed that there is this civilization out there, and the local indigenous people have their own legends. It has about five different names of which I can't pronounce, about this culture, this civilization that lived out in the jungle at one time. One of the other monikers for the city in current times is Lost City of the Monkey God, maybe there's some truth to this legend. I kind of felt there was something to it.
[01:36:13] The Mosquitia Jungle, where it's located in the eastern third Honduras is one of the toughest jungles in the world, and by accidents of geography and history, it's remained pretty much unexplored until recently. I have a map made by the British in the 1850s, and on that map it says Portal del Infierno over that part of the jungle. It was called the Gates of Hell because the terrain was so tough.
[01:36:36] A lot of people have gone looking for it. Some went in and some never came back. A director friend of mine introduced me to a guy named Captain Steve Morgan, and he was a lifelong adventurer, explorer, treasure hunter, raconteur, nice guy, very pretty smart. And I said, let's go, and then in 1994, we headed out to Honduras for an unknown adventure, looking for the lost city.
[01:37:04] Jordan Harbinger: For more with Steve Elkins, including the details on how they discovered the city and made one of the most important archeological discoveries of the century, check out episode 299 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:37:17] Man, going from tomb raider to bar mitzvah cameraman and back up to the top for that matter. I bet now it cost a pretty penny to get Ramy to film your kids' quinceañera these days. I've really enjoyed this conversation and I don't know about you all, but this makes me want to go back and visit Egypt one more time.
[01:37:32] Big thank you to Ramy Romany. Links to all his stuff, all his shows and books will be over in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com. Check out our chatbot, jordanharbinger.com/ai. You can find any book, any sponsor, hopefully, anything useful from the show will be right in there. Definitely, let me know if you find a bug in there. Transcripts are in the show notes videos on YouTube. Advertisers, deals, and discount codes are all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. Please consider supporting those who support this show. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on both Twitter and Instagram. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn.
[01:38:06] And I'm teaching you how to connect with great people and manage relationships using the same software, systems, and tiny habits that I use every single day and have for years. That's our Six-Minute Networking course. That course is free over at jordanharbinger.com/course. I want you to dig the well before you get thirsty and build those relationships before you need them. Help other people systemize it, make it not feel like work. Many of the guests on the show subscribe and contribute to the course. Come join us, you'll be in smart company.
[01:38:33] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Millie Ocampo, Ian Baird, Josh Ballard, and Gabriel Mizrahi. Remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is you share it with friends when you find something useful or interesting. If you know somebody who's into history, ancient Egypt, or would just be fascinated by Ramy's episode today, share this one with them. The greatest compliment you can give us is to share the show with those you care about. 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.
[01:39:06] Special thanks to Peloton for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
Sign up to receive email updates
Enter your name and email address below and I'll send you periodic updates about the podcast.