me: drat! i've been sitting here drafting an email for the last two hours when we could've been having a pre-midnight conversation?
Michael: Indeed. Apologies for keeping you up late.
me: i'd be up anyway, no worries.
Michael: Excellent. I don't trust people who go to bed early.
me: why's that?
Michael: Going to bed early is so unthinkable to me that I must conclude that one who chooses to do so must have had some kind of cognitive injury.
me: that's where logic will get you. what people do you trust?
Michael: It is true that there are a lot of behaviors and philosophies that I just can't comprehend. It is likely a result of my narrow-mindedness. Either way, I prefer not to have to trust anyone. Then I don't have to think about whether I trust an individual or not. That is the only way I can get along with people who prefer early slumber.
For instance, I really don't like Billy Joel, yet Billy Joel attaches himself to my musical accomplishments, however objectively minor they are. He has a song about how it's just a "matter of trust" and I positively do not trust him.
me: Billy Joel attaches himself to your musical accomplishments?
Michael: Do you trust Billy Joel?
me: no, he's a drunk.
(hold on i gotta get a drink.)
Michael: He is a drunk that SPIN thinks I make lyrical shout-outs to and VH1 thinks I want to help celebrate by counting down his hits.
me: wait, what's that last bit?
Michael: http://www.spin.com/articles/motion-sick and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WkLwR-3oVo0 respectively, but my doctor asked me to reduce my Billy Joel perseveration, so perhaps we should move on.
me: okay but maybe we'll come back to your lyrics in a bit.
Michael: My Billy Joel shout-outs? Incidentally, I tried to contact that guy to ask him what he was referring to, but did not receive a response.
me: so you don't know which song he meant, even?
Michael: I haven't even the slightest clue. I probably spent two hours poring over the lyrics on that album to try and figure out what could possibly be perceived as associated with that guy.
that would be infuriating. also, now i want to pore over the lyrics on that album to figure it out. i probably know more billy joel lyrics than you do.
Michael: I should probably hire a private detective to solve the case. I like the idea of private detectives. I really like the classic American film noir stuff. I almost feel inspired to make a hard-boiled documentary/drama about the Billy Joel lyrics. Actually, this might be the first official announcement, but there is a small group of us working on a sitcom based on our lives. We have an assignment to outline episode ideas. This just might be one.
me: let me ask you something that keeps me awake at nights.
first i have to ask you the traditional first question.
Michael: These are the lyrics to the album in question by the way: http://www.themotionsick.com/alllyrics.html
I once wrote a song called "Destroy Tradition."
me: i know it may seem like a formality at this point. you've been featured in SPIN, after all.
but my mother will be reading and she has somehow managed to get this far in life without knowing you.
who are you?
Michael: For your mother...I am Michael J. Epstein. I am most well known for having a mustache and liking things on Facebook. Neither of those things is important to me at all of course, but the things that are important to me don't make for good sound bites. Declaring that a mossy patch of grass on the sidewalk is a national park and wildlife preserve for mummified squirrels does. So, your mom will only find out about the squirrel, the mustache, and the liking. Also, most recently, she should know that it's my birthday.
Mothers tend to like me for whatever reason. I guess I seem okay, at least on the surface.
me: that's useful. mothers usually do not like me. grandmothers, however, do.
Michael: Also, I bet you have more readers, and you certainly have more important readers, than SPIN.
me: ahhh and that's why mothers like you.
Michael: Yes. I do actually like SPIN, particularly SPIN.com, so I don't mean that as a dig at them. Not everyone can reach the acme.
me: i really have reached it, by the way. have you heard?
Michael: I don't know, I hear a lot of things (practicing lines for my noir sitcom episode).
me: (i like it.)
(i think this is the announcement, by the way.)
Michael: That is very exciting news! I am delighted to hear that!
me: all thanks to you, but we'll get back to that too.
Michael: This chat is like ten press releases in one!
Michael: I like to make an event out of everything.
me: and i think i have even convinced ashley to give me a weekly column on lyrics.
"column" - it'll be short interviews.
Michael: Ooh, I like that even more! Lyrics are very important to me. Back to distrust, I distrust people that don't pay attention to lyrics when they listen to music.
me: on this we agree.
Michael: How does your mother feel about this?