How Quarantine Has Affected Our Family Dynamics

Welcome to Ear Biscuits, I'm Link And I'm Rhett

This week at our respective tables of varying lighting in our own homes, we're gonna be talking about relational dynamics during quarantine I'm tellin' ya man We're gonna open a can of, well not a can of Whoopass, I'm talkin' about a can of worms, that's what I was thinkin' about How many cans are there? Hey, listen, there's worms there's Whoopass, I can open a can of Whoopass

You want me to come over and whoop your ass? I'd like to see you try I need to whoop somebody's ass right now I'd love to see you come over here and try Talkin' about relational dynamics, there's a couple times I'm just walking around my house and I just, I just Sometimes I hug my kids and it's turned from an affectionate hug into how hard can I squeeze them before they start to panic I don't know if that's a good thing to admit, but I mean, it's not like Lando's eyes were bugged out or anything

My wife was whispering to me I think What are you whisperin' about? If she's gonna talk, tell her to speak up Yeah, see, this is what happens This is a show See, this is it

Shepard's on a call with his teacher and I'm doing this, there's tension in the air, man I mean that's what quarantine's all about, it's about tension in the air and There's Whoopass, there's worms, and there's what else? I mean is there another can? I've opened cans of knowledge for people before Oh gosh Give me a break, man You know what? It's expired

I'm gonna open a can of knowledge on you That's not one, nope We're still at two, that's not one I thought you were gonna say Well, maybe there should be one a can of beans

But that's too literal, too literal Yeah, sometimes I do go to cans of beans, I have been tryin' to do dry beans on my own, but I do have cans as a backup Interesting thing about cans of beans is that I find myself trying to get my beans to taste as good as the canned beans It seems that that is the goal of every bean recipe is just to taste as good as canned beans because those people at Busch's, man, they figured it out Dude Prefect is selling their own beans

When you found out about that did it make you mad? Yeah, it was like a trick shot to the heart It made me a little mad I was like, "Hold on, we should be selling beans" Does this mean we can't sell beans? I think we should undercut Dude Perfect We should

What's it called when you back in, when someone goes up for a rebound and you back into them and then they fall? Let's use their terminology That's boxing out Let's box them out on their own beans

Let's buy their beans and undercut them That's a difficult Okay, you're using, you've got three analogies going now I'm on, see, I also have tension and now look at me, I'm taking it out on Dude Perfect The people on the internet that are like, the ones that invite the least amount of ridicule

All of the sudden I'm picking a fight with Dude Perfect? This is what's happening I mean, I've been looking forward to this conversation because, Rhett, I look forward to our Ear Biscuit every week, 'cuz it's one of a handful of lifelines that I have and Ear Biscuiteer listening, if you feel like this show is a lifeline in this quarantine, don't put so much pressure on us But I'm glad to hear it But I'm trying to figure out, there's another part of me that I think it could be therapeutic to get this out, but I got, there's some stuff in this past week, a little bit more that I don't know, as we start to talk about relational dynamics in my home, I just might I guess I'm gonna go there I think it'll be, I'd like to verbally process You don't have to Well I think we're about to open a can of knowledge I think we're both gonna go there

No, I think we're both gonna go there and I think You can open a can of ear Okay Open a can of listen Ear cans, that's just another name for big headphones I think we're both gonna go there, I think this is about, this is a little commiseration

Both with each other, but also with a mythical beast and it's interesting because I see people talk about, "Oh, it was cool when you guys talked about movies "because it was lighthearted" Or, "When you talked about hobbies during quarantine, "it was lighthearted "and I needed that" And I'm not saying this is not gonna be lighthearted, but we're all processing together Yep And so it's gonna be what it's gonna be

Whatever kind of cans need to be opened up, Whoopass, knowledge, beans, what was the other one? Ear cans Cans of listen, cans of listening But even before that, worms Worms, yeah Yeah, yeah, yeah, one of the originals, one of the original cans

Yeah, that's right Now we're gonna spray those cans down and then we're gonna wipe those cans down and then we're gonna move them to a disinfected area, and then we're gonna proceed to open them, one by one Before we get into talking about, well actually this is a relational dynamic, I mean I think I wanna start by talking about my relational dynamic with the most important member of my family and that is Barbara Of course And our relational dynamic has changed during this time

Barbara is, first of all I think Barbara is confused that I'm around so much Yeah And I think that I've lost a little of my spark for her Oh? I mean one of the things that I've noticed is that I mean I hate to admit this, but it's very true My wife is the favorite of Barbara

In fact, Barbara loves my wife so much that she will, the thing that she's doing right now is you know how I get down on the floor every single morning to do my back stretching routine Of course, yes And traditionally, that has been Barbara's cue to get down on top of me She doesn't do that anymore? That's what she does Well now what she does is when I get on the ground, now Barbara sleeps at the foot of the bed most nights

Barbara stands up, looks at me and then goes and starts licking Jessie's face So it's like oh, now I need to go have human contact, but why jump down there with that bearded maniac when I could kiss this clean faced woman? Have you talked to her about it? And that's what's happening Have I talked to Barbara about it? Yeah Yeah Well I begin to beg

I have a thing that I do, I start going Oh Barbara And what does she do? She looks at me and then she begins to nestle into Jessie even more She's afraid There she is right there, she just came over here to look She's like, "Yeah, yeah

" You're responding to me right now? You want some love? You can't have any Jade, come here Jade I'm having a similar thing with Jade because if you watched our Mythical Society Car Vlog, we do those once a month, well, before all this happened I shared that Jade is not sleeping in the bed with me anymore because she would get up in the middle of the night to drink water and she would only do it if she had an escort, which will be me, but it would wake up me and Christy, so and sometimes she would need to go to the bathroom, so we started crating her in order to retrain her to go all night without food or water, or peeing, and then just do it in the morning, Jade

But then, over this break, she started sleeping not in the crate, but with Lincoln And I'm really starting to feel jealous because we're letting the kids sleep in later, so it's 10:20 right now Lincoln got up like 20 minutes ago, which meant Jade didn't get up until 20 minutes ago I don't know if she's peeing in his bed or what Naw, he just took her out

So all that quality time I used to have with my dog, I really miss Jade and I wanna put her back in my bed, but now Lincoln is starting to say that he's the favorite The dynamics are changing here, even with the dogs Well, and I think it's representative of larger things that are happening, but one of the concerning things that's happening with Barbara, of course, Barbara is a small bushy dog I don't know if that's the correct term, technical term, but she's got a lot of hair That's a breed, yeah

She needs to be groomed And she's got some, I don't remember what she is, but she's a mut, but she's got something in her that she would, her hair would grow very very long, like even down to the floor Whoa But she's got some Poodle in her, so it's curly, so I don't know what would happen, but it would fro out and it would be very big So she gets regularly groomed, but of course, nothing like that

I mean, regular grooming is not happening for me, as you can see, and also for anyone in this house, including Barbara Now, I don't care Yeah, me too And I don't care that she's got dread locks and there's other things happening in her hair and it's like I was just like let's let it ride, you know what I'm saying? Okay And we'll fix this at the end of this

Gives us something to look forward to, but Jessie wasn't having it, so she bought a grooming kit on Amazon Like clippers? Yeah And proceeded to begin to shorn our dog and let me just say, I think it's worth paying the groomers to get your dog groomed based on what Barbara came out looking like There's just something about the Can you get her? I wanna see what she looks like Well, it was really, it only lasted for about 48 hours, it's like now you can't really tell, but It wasn't that short She did something with the like The groomers, they know about balance, right? So you've got, she's got these furry legs and they're supposed to maintain their width as they go down and they maybe even flare out a little bit at the end, but it gives the dog sort of like it's got sort of like a

These are things you don't ever think about until you do it wrong So Jessie went with a tapered jean look, like an 80's tapered jean look Jessie is like watching me talk about her right now

She's got some pegs She's got the peg pants It gave Barbara like a top heaviness that looked like she was about to tip over at any time Yeah And I was like how is this dog even standing up straight? It's a hair illusion

I also realize how shallow I am because I didn't like Barbara for about 48 hours, I was like, "You're not cute anymore" She knew it too The only reason I like you is because you're so cute She knew it man Now you know why

And also in the back of my mind, yeah, she's not getting on top of me in the morning anymore, so The chicken and the egg Oh, but one of the things that, oh, we thought about it at the time when the grooming was happening, we're like I think there's something with the anal gland

I know they do something with the anal gland, but I mean, of course, we're not gonna do that They express it, that's what they do Yeah, they express it And I was like of course we're not gonna go there But the other night, we're all watching television together and Barbara comes in the room and we immediately notice the smell of

It's like somebody took one of those bottles of fish oil that you Vitamins? Take for your cardiovascular system and they left it out in the sun for like 72 months and then they brought it inside and then they opened it up, that's what it And I figured that that wasn't what had happened And so I just said, "Is that the anal gland?" It is, yes And then Jessie proceeded to grab Barbara and just slightly lift her tail for a moment and she confirmed it was indeed the anal gland Now typically, they'll do the butt scoot and that's also a sign that the anal glands are not properly expressing Yeah, and after I went on YouTube

And looking into this Small dogs especially Our dogs are not natural, our dogs are so far from the just natural canine species by this point that it comes with some complications, including they need humans there to do things like express their anal glands on a regular basis in a way that large dogs apparently don't need as much And so I um Yeah because typically in the wild 'cuz I was curious about this a year ago and 'cuz I never to Jade to the groomer and that helped me justify doing it because I was curious, but I didn't wanna put my fingers where my research was, you know what I'm saying? But I found out that like not to get graphic, but when a dog that's functioning properly poops, it expresses the anal gland is like part of that– Yeah, so the poop will stink even more And I don't care to know exactly why, it's probably got to do with some sort of aromal communication, but it's abhorrent to me, so I'm done talking about it But go ahead Well, I'm not because I haven't finished So I watched the YouTube video and it looks so easy

The woman was like get a pair of gloves and just sort of put your fingers on each side of the anus and you squeeze and pull at the same time– 10 o' clock and two o' clock? She showed, I think it's more like three o' clock and 9 o' clock, but she said this is what, she showed on a paper towel or something, like this is what will come out and it will smell awful Oh ho And so we gave Barbara a bath and I proceeded to put on, the only gloves I had, which were dish gloves I reached in there, Barbara seemed Hold on, before, before you gave her a bath or after? Uh, no before Okay, good

Like during She was in the sink getting ready to get wet Barbara looked at me like, "Well now" Yeah, you're pinching her anus And but she also didn't seem to mind too much, which I guess it was like oh you also do this

I've had this done regularly by that lady at the groomer, but you also do this? Okay, lots of new things happening Familial bonus Nothing came out And I think what we concluded at the time was, "Oh, she must have already expressed herself Earlier, that's what happened when we were watching television

Now I said I wasn't gonna talk about it, but just to interject my experience here, I was experiencing the same Jade was doing the scooting, I gave her a bath a week ago and I remembered as I was giving her a bath, she's been scooting, I need to try this And it just so happens– You need to try scooting? Eric, the guy who used to be our friend who then we fell out of contact with and then he started texting us about our Lost Years Podcast

After that, he sent me a text and he was like this is what I'm doing today or something and then it was like a Wikihow picture of expressing a dog's anal glands Everybody's having to figure this out And that image popped into my head and I thought it was 10 and two, but that's when you're driver's ed And you know what? I just reached under there and I gave it as little pinch and I didn't even have on gloves Oh god, why? Because at sometimes my nana comes out in me and my nana, you know my nana, she's like sometimes she doesn't care

She'll walk around naked or she'll like she'll do the walking farts and she doesn't apologize for anything When she taught me how to blow bubbles– What does that have to do with touching your dog's butt without a glove She would chew up the gum, poke her tongue through it and then take it out of her mouth and then put that slot where her tongue was, over my tongue and then tell me to blow and that's how I learned to blow bubbles She grew up on the farm She doesn't care about stuff like this

You touch a dog's anus And then you're washing the dog, just immediately wash your hand and I just did that And I know that seems out of character for me, but I'm like screw it, we're in wash mode, let's go for it Hold up, but did anything come out? I couldn't tell No pun intended

Well, I certainly could tell in that YouTube video and I couldn't and so nothing came out with Barbara, but then literally as we were getting ready to record this, 30 seconds before we pressed record, Jessie was standing right over here and said, "I'm smelling it again" So I think the fact that if you can smell it, it's a problem and I think I'm gonna have to go in again You're gonna have to go in deeper It's a, you need a deeper pinch And don't wear gloves

You really need to bond with your dog What is wrong with you? Anyway, so that's, you know, relationships are changing Yeah Conventions are changing I mean, if I can figure out how to do this are we gonna take

Our groomer's gonna go out of business My groomer's not gonna go out of business because this isn't something I want to make a regular thing This is something I wanna do only in times of desperation

It might be like a Dr Pimple Popper thing, you might experience some pleasure associated with a victory, with success Don't count your chickens before the can opens You might like it Oh gosh

Okay, we're gonna talk more about relational dynamics and I don't think we're gonna talk anymore about anuses, dogs or otherwise But first, we're gonna talk about these mugs Mythicalcom is the source for everything you need to express your personal mythicality I mean, we have occasion– Could you not use the term express

Oh Just don't use the term express Let's just not use the term express for the rest of this That was totally sub-conscious I feel like we have When you look at our mugs, don't think about your anus

a connection You know, we're connecting through this conversation I feel like you're a part of it even though you're pretty quiet And you'd feel even more a part of it if you were drinking tea or coffee or any beverage you want It could be like anal grand excletions for all I care

You just said "anal grand excletions" That's a great band name That's how Lock used to talk when he was a toddler Ain't no grand excletions Excletions, he would change words like that, right? Yeah, still does from time to time

Mythicalcom Yeah, get your mugs Connect with us, make it a complete embodiment experience Wear the shirts, wear the necklaces, wear the perfumes, wear everything we sell and then sip from the things we sell

Okay, before we dive into this, I will say we're gonna be talking about this from the standpoint of people who are in a family and trapped with them And I know that there are a lot of single people who have maybe the opposite problem, which is no one to connect with and so there's, I think there's a loneliness That's not something that we can speak to personally at this point But I do wanna recognize there are a lot of people in that particular situation I'm glad you're bringing that up

Yeah because I think there's gonna be some complaining coming from us And I don't know, maybe if you're in a different situation, maybe it'll be helpful for them to hear about how it's not that great for us at times, either But it is a good acknowledgement and we feel for you if you feel isolated or lonely and we wanna encourage you to do whatever you can to break out of that And I know I can imagine that might be difficult at times to pick up the video chat into initiate I don't know, it may be more for guys to say, "Hey, I'm just Facetiming you "because I feel lonely

" It's not the type of thing that what I didn't feel like that was a thing as a guy, that I would give myself permission to say years back Yeah Good acknowledgement So I found a couple of articles that I think speak to this One of the thing's that's happening of course is couples who have never spent this much time together are now spending this much time together and the question is what is that going to do for relationships? What is that doing for families? I mean when you think about our situation, which I think is probably a pretty typical situation in the world and in America is that a lot of dads are spending a lot more time at home than they normally would

And this isn't just dads, its– Working mom's Yeah, working mom's Anybody who has spent a lot of time traditionally outside of the house is suddenly there and it's like one of those, if you think about when you go on vacation and we've talked about this dynamic before When you go on vacation, even with the distractions of vacation, being in a foreign land of some kind Yeah Having a schedule, having a pool that you could lounge next to and stuff like that, even with all those amenities, still by the end of a week long vacation, most people are like, "I gotta get away "from my family" You know? Yeah But we're all on extended vacations of indefinite length and we don't have, we actually have the most familiar surroundings and we don't have an option to really experience, most of our neighborhoods are becoming much more familiar, I mean, I have walked, I could draw you a map of my neighborhood at this point

That doesn't actually sound impressive, but okay You couldn't draw a map of your neighborhood before this? Okay, that's fine That's, no judgment No, I mean have you been, my neighborhood's got a lot of weird streets and there's no system There's not a grid

And so I'm just saying now I feel I I've been on streets that are less than a mile away that was like, "Never been on this street, "never been on this street" I've been on all the streets now, multiple times

But I'm just saying that the level of familiarity with our family and our surroundings is at an all time high Oh yeah And it's creating some different dynamics There was an article in the Well, I've seen a few articles that talk about what's gonna happen? Is there gonna be a Coronavirus baby boom? Because all of these couple are at home together and everybody's having sex, like, "Ooh ah, it's just "a sex party all the time" I know how babies are made And then the other theory is well actually there's gonna be a boom in divorces I think most likely you're gonna see both of those things happening, hopefully not in the same families together at the same time

Hopefully they're happening in separate families I think there was the honeymoon phase of quarantine that was like, "Hey, let's sort the mail, "this'll be fun" Right And then a few weeks later it's like, "What are you? "We don't have any mail!" I checked the mailbox! And I walked straight from the mailbox to the recycle bin because everything that was sent was junk! For those of you who may be confused or you're maybe you're a new listener to Ear Biscuits We can have inside jokes Don't explain it I have to explain it because I care about those people Sorting the mail is a euphemism, only on this podcast for sexual intercourse

I know how babies are made Don't ask us how that happened, but it did It involved getting locked I'm gonna review from an article in my bedroom, ironically This is an article in the New York Post, which is not typically a publication that I frequent, but they had an article about the surge in divorces Copped up New Yorkers are flooding lawyer phone lines with divorce inquiries, with an avalanche of filings expected once the courts reopen "People are realizing that they can't stand each other," said Manhattan lawyer, Suzanne Kimberly Bracker, who like many in her field has already seen a Coronavirus divorce uptick In the middle of the night, I got a call from a client who now realizes she has nothing in common with her husband, but the children, and how he knows nothing about the children

So, it's like And this is something that again, this is sort of a stereotypical tropy thing, but you've got the dude who's been off at his job and then he comes back home and he is like, "Oh, now I've got to engage with the kids "more than just like hey, I'm home, "Dad's home, let's shoot some basketball "for 30 minutes and that makes me a great dad" But you know what I'm saying? Yeah

Now you're expected, and a lot of people are continuing to do their jobs from home, which can be a little bit disruptive I mean, even right now, we're sitting here in the middle of our homes making everybody else be relatively quiet while we do this Yeah, typically Lily will roll out of bed and she'll walk in here and she'll see me doing this and then she will just slump over, roll her eyes, and go back into her bedroom because she realizes she can't make breakfast because it makes too much noise And I told her she could tiptoe around and make the breakfast, but you know what? She's being ultrasensitive I mean, not sensitive, but considerate and she's not doing it

But it's like yeah, so our work lives coming home is a severe inconvenience to our families You're in the freaking middle of your living room If somebody wanted to watch TV this morning, that ain't happening– There's other televisions Well, it wouldn't be on the big one on your left Exactly

Yeah and one of the things that's happening too is I think that a lot of people are seeing their working parent or their working spouse in work mode in a way that they haven't This is in an article from the Washington Post This woman, Laura Norkin, Deputy Editor of In-Style Magazine, tweeted the funny thing about quarantining is hearing your partner in full work mode for the first time Mm, mm hmm Like I'm married to a let's circle back guy, who knew? It's like let's circle back

It's like I've never heard somebody use that We can take this offline And then circle back on it later and then we can close the loop when we've taken the pin out of it, but for now we're putting the pin in it Put a pin in it Now I will say there are some positives from this, so as you know we have our company wide meeting and there's not really a place in my house to get away even when you go into the most private of places, which would be our little guest bedroom

The crack under the door is like an inch, so you can hear everything that's happening in there And Jessie was working outside on her computer right outside the room and we had our meeting, we have it every two weeks where everybody in Mythical gets on a video chat and we talk about business and also just connect with one another And I come out of the door and she was like, "You sound like a good boss" That's nice You sound like a good boss

She's like, "You sound like a nice, nice boss" Was she surprised? And I was like, "Oh, thank you" I think that she knows that I'm not, neither of us are those typical chew your head off bosses, that's just not in our character, disposition But I think listening in on the meeting and again just hearing my side of it So I didn't come out and she said, "Oh, you're a circle back guy," she said, "Oh, you're a nice boss

" I was like, "Well, good, yeah" I'm gonna get a mug that says I'm a nice boss As I'm setting things up for Good Mythical Morning or for this show, I notice Christy was home, she'll like look at me and like she's assessing me Even just right before we start recording, she comes right over the camera, she pokes her head around from the kitchen She's like, "Are you okay?" Now that's a loaded question

There's a little more to it that I could get into it a little bit, but I'm like, "I'm fine" She's like, "You look pale" I'm like, what I'm thinking is, I get stressed out right before I do something, especially when there's all these people and groceries came in this morning again, oh, good Lord Oh yeah, that'll throw you off Don't get me going

I'm like yeah I'm pale I get pale before I start anything because I'm frigging stress spiking and then I get my robe on and I sit down and I'm like, "All right, all right" And then I mellow out a little bit and then I get in the zone The auto zone But she's like, "You are so worked up

" Not a sponsor I'm like, "Yeah, I get worked up" That's why it's called work I get up for it So I didn't get it

You're a good boss, but she's not listening in on our– Oh, I've gotten other things too In on our "all hands" meeting as we used to call it at IBM Now before we, before this takes a trip to the dark side, I'm gonna talk about a lot of the positives because I think that this has been a really positive time for our family in a lot of ways, I made a little list here, so I wouldn't forget Now Jessie and I had a date night before where we would go out once a week, but we're continuing to do that Date night is our takeout night where we get some takeout and send the children away

They can be anywhere, but anywhere near us And we put on some music, change the lighting a little bit Still in the kitchen, I'm not talking about the bedroom yet Okay, that's where it begins Where the sorting of mail is happening, and we just have a nice dinner and we talk about the nature of our relationship, we actually talk about how we talk

I think that's been good We got our family movie night that we do every Friday night where we all sit down and try to agree on a movie, which has been going pretty well Really? Watched Tombstone the other night, that was a hit Mm hmm Val Kilmer's performance, Not on your list, but

One of the best ever Kurt Russell, a little uneven acting in that movie, but he's Kurt Russell We're also like you, we're watching Survivor, that's something the family is connected on

Lock and I have our horror movie night on Saturday nights Shepard and I are starting an art project based on the golden ratio, Fibonacci numbers, and we are playing HORSE and having putting contests, there's a lot of family interaction that's happening at a higher volume that has been great, but of course, with all that interaction with the good comes the bad Yeah, we've had I mean, you know how the Neal's are, they like to stay hydrated and when we go in on something, we go in deep, we go in hard Boy, that sounded weird We fully commit to something And there's a dark side to that We started watching Survivor and as we discussed before, we started at season 17 because I knew that if everyone got hooked on it and we got aligned on this thing, we needed a whole bunch of seasons to just start binging through because we wouldn't want, we just wanna keep going down that rabbit hole

So now we're over halfway through season 18 and everybody's so excited about it, it aligns us, it's a beautiful thing It's kinda magical Everyone loves it Lately, it's the only thing we've been willing to do together, like there's So here I am already going to the dark side I mean, yesterday, I'm filming, we're doing an AMA for the Mythical Society peeps and I guess to them it just looks like I'm typing on my computer, I'm not filming anything, and they're outside in the garage playing ping pong, which that's another thing that we do, but now that's become a source of contention I didn't finish the Survivor thought The thought is, Survivor's the only thing that we end up doing every single night, so we don't have enough variety and it's like– You're watching Survivor every night? Every single night and it's too much

It's a problem Yeah And then we're not having enough other positive outlets as a family, so I'm doing the AMA and their outside playing ping pong and then, this is not the first nor the second time this has happened in the past three days, but all of the sudden, I hear Lando screaming And a lot of times when he's screaming, he's screaming, "Delete it! "Delete it!" What? "Delete it!" And he comes in here and he runs to me and he's like, "Dad, Lincoln took video of me and he won't delete it

" I'm like, "What's he gonna do? "Is he gonna post it online?" He's like, "He might" I was like, "Has he ever done that?" Then Lincoln walks in and he has this Lincoln grin on his face He thinks He is enjoying this moment This is what he's doing it for Yeah He's a big brother To drive him crazy

You would of thought that Lincoln filmed Lando confessing to a murder It's like that's the level of intensity And then the more that Lincoln just grins at him, the more he just goes ballistic And I get to a point where I'm like And then three hours later, I'm queuing up Survivor, okay, finally we can have our positive time together We can agree on this, we can at least be in the same room, but not at each other's throats And I'm like, they wouldn't come and they wouldn't come, so I've got this technique where I start playing Survivor really loud And then they'll stop what they're doing and they'll all run in, they'll get off their phones or whatever and run in

Well this time, instead of that happening, it was, "Delete it! "Delete it!" And they ran in and you know what? Without thinking about it, I was like, "I don't wanna hear it! "You two go back out of the room and handle it!" And then they stood there, kinda like bumfuzzled, and I was like, "Go out of the room "and handle it!" And I looked at Christy, who I was talking with before they came in and she was like, she had this disappointed look on her face at me Yeah, yeah And then the boys left and I'm like, "What were you saying?" It's like at a certain point the button's been pushed so much that it won't pop back up You know that? You know that type of button? Where it gets pushed in and then it gets lodged underneath something, so it's like Or you think that the button popped back up, but really like you push it and instead of it popping back up, you push it and then you watch it, I don't think the button And then all of the sudden it starts to come back up a little bit and then stops

That happens with literally every keyboard that we put in our kitchen Jelly Because no matter how many times I tell my kids to wash their hands before they type, they don't, they won't

So we go through one magic Apple keyboard every seven months You talk about being a good boss? It's part of my budget And the way that we talk to our employees, sometimes it gets familial There's a good level of family atmosphere and team atmosphere, but if I talk Man, I'm just being honest You'd be shocked if you saw some of the things that I exude, especially in this time- Well, okay And to support you in this I've already said that I've squeezed my kids, but that was a joke

Well, but in terms of the losing it and yelling And first of all there's people who are in families where that doesn't ever happen Right

And it's great for you And also you might be shocked when you hear, "Oh, you guys yell at your children?" 'Cuz I know, I know that my kids have friends whose parents never yell at them and that's just not our family I'm not proud of it, it's just the way we are And like Jessie will be working with Shepard, getting him to do Now again, she's homeschooled the kids for forever and they've only been in school for three years now, but of course she thought she was done and now everybody's homeschooling, right? And they're doing the distance learning thing, but with Shepard, especially, that doesn't mean that he's just gonna do the work You've gotta stay with him and make him do the work, keep him from being distracted And Jessie is more patient than me and tries to engage with him in a fruitful way, in an effective way Yeah, we both married much better people than we are

And that's a wonderful thing for us And then she will But then I'll come out of a meeting or podcast, or whatever I happen to be doing and she'll say, "Your turn

" And this is not something that happens when I'm at work, but when I'm at home working, it does happen on a regular basis And then I'll go in there and I'll enter into the situation with Shepard with some patience at the beginning that is exhausted I think my patience tank needs to be repaired, it has several leaks

And as soon as I fill it up, Shepard finds a way to pull the plugs out and basically I've gone from trying to work with him to just telling him Just basically shaming him That's ultimately what yelling at somebody does

You're trying to use shame to get them to do it And I know it's not effective When I'm doing it, I know it's not effective, but that's what I end up resorting to very quickly– In my mind And your tank gets smaller and smaller and smaller the more time that you spend together In my mind I'm thinking and I did once I did tell Christy at that point, I was like, I figured this was worth a shot After I said, "Just resolve it yourself, "handle it!" And they left the room and I was like "What were we talking about?" The I was like I yelled in a calculated way because I want 'cuz we don't yell that often I mean it's not something, I mean there are family cultures where little subcultures of families where they yell more and it's just like everybody's got a thick skin when it comes to that and it's a form of communication, everybody knows how to handle it and I don't think it's absolutely a horrible thing to raise your voice

I would imagine that there's home climates where it can just be, you can be expressive, but it very quickly goes into a danger zone and that's what we feel in our house and so the goal is to always remain in control and not to raise your voice I mean, we all agree on that over here And that's I wouldn't put that standard on anybody else 'cuz I'm not a psychologist, but for me, that's where we've landed So it does make me feel like a failure when I do yell, but I thought it was worth a shot for me to say, "This is a calculated yell," for me to express how much of an impact this ongoing quarrel has on me It's like, "Oh, dad must feel strongly about this "This is impacting him" Yeah

I mean, it wasn't that compelling of an argument, but I tried Did it work? No, it wasn't that Christy was mad at me I mean, we just, she helped me talk through it and then I was like– No, did they resolve their conflict and come back in? Yeah, well, I didn't hear it anymore They shut up Which again, that was my goal

It was like stop impacting my quality of life It was that selfish stance of I don't care, as long as you guys can shut up somewhere else and I don't hear it, I will be fine But then later on we called them back in there and we had a 10 minute discussion that was more like, "Hey, how do we get to the bottom of this?" Now, in retrospect, I might, could've added an apology about losing my cool and raising my voice, especially when you make the point about shaming because I think that's a good point Maybe I'll revisit that But we at least had a constructive conversation about how they can own what they're doing and what their motives are and

'Cuz Lincoln's doing it on purpose and now Lando's developing this coping mechanism of yelling at him, and this is a new thing So it's like trying to get to the bottom of that But I mean and this came at the end of a long day

I mean, at the beginning of the day, in a different way than Shepard, but we're having, we're just trying to get Lincoln to be more motivated to do his schoolwork It's very difficult to do schoolwork in this environment and he comes in this morning and he's like, "Mom, dad, I've done some research" And I'm like, I perk up, I'm like my boy's done research This is great I immediately felt proud

I was like I've never heard him use that phrase before I've done some research And he says, "The LA Unified School District "says that the grades that you had when you left "for quarantine, they can't make your grade lower "than that, so I'm not gonna do anymore schoolwork" I was like well this took a turn And then Christy was like, "Who told you this?" Yeah, that's some high school rumor, man

Well my friends aren't doing their work 'cuz they said that's true And she's like first of all, we're not in the LA Unified School District, so you need to do more research And so we on and off all day we were bantering, getting into that and then Lando and him are at each other's throats because I won't let them be on screens all day and I force them to go outside and play together and then they come in at each other's throats And Lily had her own I'm not gonna tell Lily's story on here, but it was something that, Lily suffered a disappointment, like she got some disappointing news, something she was looking forward to, it went the other way And this was like months of looking forward to getting this news And so it was a bit shattering for Christy and I, as well as for her So it's like that was also yesterday

You have these ideas that things are And on previous podcasts we talk about this mindset of seeing things as an opportunity and not being Pollyanna about how things are going in the world or even in our homes, but feeling like, okay, you know what? We can find the silver lining, we can see the opportunities in this, we can like the things that you listed out And then knowing at the end of this that we're going to see it as a precious time because we do love each other and thank goodness we care about each other and we're not

There's a lot of people who a) don't have anybody or they're on the outs of a relationship or they were about to break up There's lots of more nightmare situations than the ones we're in We've got it really great with our families

But it just gets to you, man Well and I think that it's, I mean, I do think that it's important to recognize that because I'm sure you could say something, and I'm sure someone has written something like this where it's like it's not that being cooped up in your home is going to cause a divorce, it's that being cooped up in your home is going to reveal the reality of whether or not you actually connect That's the kind of BS that somebody would say because the fact is is that regardless of the nature of your relationship, regardless of how healthy it is, this is going to be difficult for almost everyone and that doesn't mean that you should break up or you should get a divorce, or you're not compatible Now, that also doesn't mean that there will be some real discovery and real discussion during this time that you realize you got some things to work on or maybe you do realize that you've come to an impasse that you can't get through, but I think it's helpful that you're, that it's incredibly normal to respond to this situation in a negative way and have to resist being selfish and being self interested, and also think there is some, depending on your personality, I mean, for me, as an introvert, it's like it's not a negative thing when I think, "I gotta get away from these people" That doesn't make me a bad person, it doesn't make them bad people, it just means that the Rhett-ster needs to ejector himself from this situation Right

And go on a solo walk In fact, Jessie and I were talking about this yesterday because Jessie is a One of the biggest differences between the two of us, we have so many things in common, we enjoy so many things, we connect in a lot of different ways, but she is a hyper-extrovert and I'm not a hyper-introvert, I present as an extrovert to most people who get to know me for the first time, but in reality I'm energized by being alone, so I'm an introvert

But, so when I talk about things like I'm gonna go work out The first week she was like, "You wanna work out together?" And I'm like, "No! "I don't wanna work out together" For like seven reasons, the least of which being that we're not gonna do the same stuff in the workout, but the main reason being that it's a time for me I put on, I listen to a book I don't listen to pump up music when I work out, I listen to books on tape and when I walk around the neighborhood by myself, today, I listen as well, but it's like– You got a Walkman? A cassette tape? No, I just have, I've just got earphones and an iPhone

Yeah it's your time and you need that recharging And I need it Even today or yesterday when Our days right now consist of doing something in the morning and something in the afternoon that's work related typically, right, every weekday? And even something as simple as like, okay, let's record two episodes of Good Mythical Morning today Like there's been some days where we've recorded one in the morning and one in the evening, or one in the afternoon and you would think oh, two episodes of GMM, that's, well what else have you got going on? That's an easy day But the setup and then the getting it all right and then the meeting before and the doing it and then the taking the thumbnails and then uploading the footage Before you know it you've taken all day to shoot two episodes of GMM And that is not me time Right, exactly, but I had a little window in between the other day and I said, "I'm gonna take a walk by myself" It was sunny outside I was like, "I'm gonna take a walk by myself

" And then Jessie said, "Okay" And then she told me this morning, "When you said that," because we were talking about this dynamic before we recorded this, she said, "You know, my instinct is "is to be like I wanna go on a walk with you" Like, "If you're gonna go on a walk "let's go together" But then she's like, "No, I stopped and realized "that no, that's what he needs, "that's good for him" And it's not saying anything about me

Like she was like that's not saying anything about her that I need to get away from her, it's saying more about me Yeah, it reminds me of the same principle, but Christy made a comment to me at the end of the night last night, after we had gotten through Survivor and then I think there was, there was still I said something sarcastic while everyone was going off to bed and she said, "You know what, I think the only person "that doesn't annoy you is you

" And then she turned to the whole family she's like, "You know what, I think your dad "might need to camp in the backyard, "he might need to do a little camping time "by himself" And I'm like, all right, first of all, all right tit for tat, I was sarcastic, so message received and I laughed and it broke the tension It didn't escalate it, de-escalate, she was doing that to de-escalate and it worked But yeah, I think that was her observation, we're coming to grips with that too that I've been getting up an hour or an hour and a half before everybody else and I've been meditating Today was 30 days in a row I've meditated

Wow Yeah, so it's like, it keeps a record of it on the app, so it motivates me to do it, like I said I don't know, it's not enough I don't know, it's like I still suck at meditating by the way, so I'm not bragging It's just like I am getting insights, but

Insights into myself and how to cope, but I'm not quite engaging those lessons enough, but the other thing I haven't mentioned yet as far as relating to Christy goes, I think it's been a real challenge and you know this, that Christy's been sick for over two weeks And it was a mild fever everyday for the past over two weeks that hasn't broken 100, but when it's like that for days and days and days, and weeks, she's been in conversation with her doctor and there's been stomach issues, so loss of appetite So she's lost over 10 pounds because she hasn't been able to eat with diarrhea

But those are the only symptoms, so the doctor was saying well that's, COVID was weird and it manifests in different ways in different people, but they didn't think that's what it was, but then finally after a week and a half, I took her to get the test, like a drive though test and I gotta say, I got a thrill out of her taking the test because it's like a pipe cleaner, it's like a freaking pipe cleaner that's like that long And they said you'll drive up and you can stay in your car and we'll do the throat swab and so Christy was thinking it was a throat swab, but the way that they access the throat is through the nose Oh gosh And so I knew this, she didn't know it, so and I didn't know for sure she didn't know it until I saw the look on her face as it started to happen The dude reaches in, he's like, "Now I'm gonna "count five seconds "It's gonna feel a lot longer than five seconds, "but I'm just gonna count" And then the guy took the pipe cleaner, put it in her nose

Her eyes got huge, her feet started beating the floor board of the car and she said that it went all the, she said, "If I would have opened my mouth "and looked at you, "you would've seen the thing go past my throat, "down there and start" And then he's counting to five and he's twisting it Yeah

And then he's pulling it out and I'm sorry, I got a kick out of her being so surprised not because it hurt because it was, I wouldn't say it hurt, it did hurt, but it was more uncomfortable It's like when

You've experienced it, we've both experienced it because when we went to the plastic surgeon to do the commercial and he showed you how to look down at your throat, well they did the same thing to me at EMT when I was having some throat issues a couple years ago And again, it goes through the nose And I have a deviated septum and my right nostril you can't get in there and the left nostril is open, but prone to bleeding, so I just, I don't wanna have to get tested

I hope they come out with I want one of the less invasive ones Two days later we got the results back, they were negative

She was still having the symptoms and I mean, she started to develop pain in her chest, like it was like I think I'm having trouble breathing and I was She had had that similar symptom earlier in the year and she got checked out for that and we thought it might be a heart thing or something She got all checked out and she was fine

We realized that anxiety was driving a lot of her symptoms at the time and then I was making the point that those, I think anxiety might be manifesting this symptom now because even though your test was negative, the doctor did happen to mention that it's possible to have a false negative That she could have COVID, but that And they said if you start to have breathing problems, you need to call us and then we might need to take decisive action

And then I observed that she started to say that she was having breathing problems She woke up in the middle of the night I woke up three nights ago at like 3:30 in the morning and she was having a panic attack, but she didn't know if she just couldn't breathe And it was, I don't, I mean I was kinda groggy, I'm not the most supportive at 4 AM, I was trying to be supportive, but I mean ultimately yesterday she went in for a lung x-ray just so the doctor could make sure she didn't have it We didn't go to the emergency room that night, I kinda talked her down and helped her calm down

But then the next morning, which was yesterday, she went in The test results for that were totally clear, her lungs are totally fine, which is more support that this is, I don't know if I would say psychosomatic, maybe that is the right term, but it's caused by her heightened anxiety associated with being in this pandemic where, here's the connection for her, over three years ago and she's told this story on Science Mike's podcast about how she hit her head, she had the concussion, she still suffers from post-concussion syndrome, but the thing that I think we're coming to grips with is that because of that she's suffering from PTSD She now on a sub-conscious level, believes that if something so, if the odds are so low for her hitting her head on a limb walking into the Trader Joe's can then three years later have a dramatic and drastic impact on her life, then well when this virus starts sweeping through town, she's gonna get it She just knows it That's the survival technique that I think she's learned

So it's been difficult With a couple of days of a flare up of symptoms and anxiety, we can work together, but when it's over two weeks, it starts to become very difficult to be empathetic 'Cuz it's frustrating It's really frustrating for me because I feel like I don't have the magic words to get through to her or I don't have the techniques to fix her And she's not asking for that from me

She's asking for an open ear and she's asking for I think she wants empathy and she just wants me to be there for her as she goes through this and be supportive because she does have a therapist, she does have a brain doctor, she does have a normal doctor, and she has other friends that provide a support structure too, so it's like she doesn't need everything from me, I don't need to be the silver bullet, but everyday it gets increasingly more difficult, especially when I see that her symptoms are getting better except for the anxiety So it's And she gave me permission to talk about this by the way

She's like, "What are you gonna talk about on Ear Biscuits?" And I was like, "We're gonna talk about relational dynamics She's like, "You can talk about this because" And I applaud her for it that the things that I'm sharing are not things to be embarrassed about, they're actual conditions that people suffer from

Whether it's depression, anxiety, post-concussion syndrome, all types of silent illnesses, I think she encouraged me to share this story because just to remove that stigma, but you know– And I can speak on behalf of hypochondriacs everywhere, which I think people who would relate to and I talked to my dad who, my dad is like me and presents himself as invincible, but it's like okay, the very first So I went a long time in my life without thinking that, not believing, like I'd refuse to believe that you could feel something physical, in your body and it not be real Like, but in the past 10 years, I have felt so many specific things; injuries, and sicknesses, and then it turns out not to be anything and it's because and so with Coronavirus, the first week that we were home, I swear to you, 'cuz I was consuming so much news, I had pain, legitimate pain in my chest

And I kep telling Jessie, I'm like, "I think I've got it" I was like I don't have any other symptoms, but like when I breathe in it hurt, my chest hurts I was like literally I can point to it, it's hurting right here and it's hurting right here and I was like and it comes and it goes and I've had it for a week And then I talked to my dad and he was like, "I've had Coronavirus 20 times "since this whole thing started," He was like it's just in our genes for it to manifest itself in that way, so I mean, it doesn't mean you're crazy, I think it's very normal and you can actually And I've had a couple panic attacks I'm not crazy You're saying it doesn't mean that my wife is crazy? Right Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

There's a couple of like and that whole feeling like you can't breathe thing and like a couple of times in the past few weeks I've woken up in the middle of the night and I've been like, "I think I'm not getting a full breath" And the moment that you think that, it's very difficult to get out of it, it's very difficult to get out of it And again, I'm not telling people that they should ignore their symptoms, I do think that for me a lot of times doing what Christy did and like going and getting the x-ray so you can be told, definitively, sometimes you do need that, you need that Like oh no, there's actually nothing wrong with you because hypochondriacs like me will keep thinking, "Yeah, you're just telling me there's nothing wrong "with me, but in reality there is, "and you just don't want me to think about it And sometimes you do have to go to that place

It can get to a place where you're having to have all these things confirmed all the time, but I just say that as somebody who hasn't had nearly the issue, the struggle that Christy has had and I haven't had the post-concussion syndrome or anything like that, but I am a hypochondriac and I have thought that I had Coronavirus already and I was sure of it It's just so difficult to be empathetic because I'm not great at it in general, but then, and I think when we were talking about our highlights from the year, I might've talked about the dynamic of, I end up I'm not sure, but whenever she says I'm concerned about this, whether it's physical symptoms related to this or it's related to the kids or something else, whenever she expresses anxiety towards something my knee jerk reaction, without actually hearing her is to just minimize or try to make it disappear entirely, like to dismiss her instincts or her concerns

And I told her it's like at a certain point if something's really concerning, she'll be like, "You don't seem concerned at all" One time I was like, "If you cry wolf too many times "then the farmer's not gonna come," or I don't know how the story goes And that was not a sensitive thing to say, but it was an honest thing That like it's a struggle to continue to hear her and to empathize with her when it's so foreign to my own experience that I think I live with my head in the clouds sometimes maybe Is I think how she feels about me because our experience is so different in this way and it's, so it's

But it's very frustrated to not be able to fix it and then whenever I start to say well that's not what I need to do, I just need to be there, then it's hard to access the energy to because it's against my instincts to interact with her in that way So after over two weeks of that, again, that was the last thing of the past two days that was like okay, this is difficult Just to close the loop on it, what was the corporate saying? Circle back

I don't wanna have to circle back on this later, so let's close the loop now This morning, I took my meditative time to think more about her and about just to have an exercise in empathy and then afterward, it gave me the capacity to go upstairs and to apologize for how I wore my frustration on my sleeve and there was no yelling with Christy, it wasn't like that It was more of like a just you could sense the frustration and it seemed like annoyance But I think we've had a good conversation this morning and clear the air about that and I know that she is pulling on resources and seeing ways that she can, there's additional treatments and therapies and things like that will help her through this That it's not and I can be there to help her wade through that stuff, but I mean I know she's in that process too, so we're not stuck and we're not

And so we had a moment We had a good moment this morning where it was like a reconnection and just being honest, so that's just to close the loop on that but Given the There's a lot of things about this particular situation and the things that we continue to read about the virus that make it a very specifically difficult situation for people who are hypochondriacs because the symptoms are, they don't know anything about it

It's like you read one article and it's like okay, well it seems that it presents this way in most people, but and for some people it's just like this and some people all the sudden they go There's all these little things that I think people who write these articles and again, they're not, you don't, when you're writing about it, you don't have hypochondriacs in mind and actually hypochondriacs need to learn how to deal with, I say this as a hypochondriac, I need to be able to engage with information in a way that doesn't immediately make me think that I have it But it's very difficult because it manifests itself in so many different ways and we've been told it's super contagious and you're out of your normal routine, you gotta

All a lot of us are doing is just reading the news and sitting around and thinking And it's like that could be a really bad combination So I do think it's important that, and again, for the longest time I just thought that my mom was a hypochondriac and I was like well that's not me and then I realized, no, you know what? Actually, I am

And now talking to my dad, oh and also my dad is It's like we all have this tendency to immediately internalize it, so I just think that it's okay It doesn't make you abnormal It's such a common thing, but it is important to realize it and address it I mean, with me, I got a therapist I can talk to about it

I think that that continues to be really important for a lot of people There are resources, there's mental health resources that are available in this very difficult time for a lot of people and we just encourage you to continue to seek those out Not a sponsor They were a sponsor at one time, but I know there's better help, which is like you basically can have a teleconference with somebody, which is what we're all doing with our therapists right now anyway, but there are services like that, we just encourage you to, if you feel like you need somebody to talk to and don't have somebody that you can talk to, who will listen and be helpful and again, like Link's talking about, it's like none of us are trained in this and a lot of times don't know what to say and will say the wrong thing Finding somebody who can actually help you think through this and work through this in a healthy way is important

Yeah It's helpful to talk about it here I think it's, with Christy's permission, it's calculated to talk about it here because I know a lot of people, like you said, relate to it and yeah We're not in the business of providing answers, but we're in the business of just being honest and sharing our journey, and it's helpful to me to do that, so I appreciate opening the can of listen, it's your wreck Yeah, so I'm gonna wreck a book that I listen to during my workouts and my strolls

Okay And it's called Underland by Robert MacFarlane And I didn't know about this Robert MacFarlane guy, I didn't know he's a writer from the UK who sort of specializes in writing about nature So it's nonfiction, but the way that he writes about his experience, specifically in Underland, which I've always been fascinated with geology and also just underground things in general, but this is this incredible multiyear journey where he went underground, basically, into like caves and mines and underground systems under cities and met the people who know about these places and visited them himself and his way of bringing you along for the ride, but it also becomes a story about the earth and the environment and what's happening in the world Top 10 favorite books of all time

What and it's not even, it's nonfiction? Yeah And again this isn't for everybody, but if you happen to be interested in the way that I described that, if that piques your interest at all, there's nobody that I'm aware of who can write in a more compelling way Almost a spiritual way There's like a spiritual experience in the way that he approaches this stuff that it's again, it's been super meditative to walk and listen to this, these stories about these people and it's sort of like really tapped into my sense of adventure, which I feel like I haven't been feeding for a long time We do a lot of crazy things, our lives are pretty

We could do a lot of amazing things, but just this guy's commitment to going out into the world and then talking about it in a compelling way So that's Underland Underland

Okay Yeah, all one word All right, thanks for hanging out with us this week We'll speak at you again next week You know we love you

To watch more Ear Biscuits, click on the playlist on the right To watch the previous episode of Ear Biscuits, click on the playlist to the left And don't forget to click on the circular icon to subscribe If you prefer to listen to this podcast, it's available on all your favorite podcast platforms Thanks for being your mythical best

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