Michael Palascak explains ghost babies and the best jobs for English majors.
So great to see all of you.
Great to see you, too, uh...
I was staying ata hotel recently,
and usually peoplethat work at hotels,
they want you to feel good.
They want to take care of you,make sure everything is okay.
But sometimes they don't.
Like one time, I tried to geta late check-out at a hotel
and the lady, the lady,like, freaked out.
I was like,"Can I get a late check-out?"
She's like,"Oh, I don't have that power."
Can we summon someone who does?
By the power of Hotelskull!
I wanted to be like, "You got tobelieve in yourself.
"Maybe you do have that power
and you don't even know it."
One time, I was in a reallysmall town,
and they didn't have hotels.
So they put me upat a bed and breakfast,
which is the exactsame thing as a hotel
except at someone's house.
Like, a familyalready lives there.
I felt like an orphanthat had a new family.
I wanted to rebel immediately.
What time do youwant breakfast tomorrow?
"I know how to live my life!
I'm going to leave tomorrowand never come back."
They were nice people.It was a nice place.
They just had a lot of antiques.
And antiques are great,but they're old,
so maybe justget rid of them. Yeah?
Maybe just get rid of them.
Like in the corner of the roomthat I was supposed to sleep in,
was a small empty antique crib.Yeah... yeah.
Just in the room that I wassupposed to sleep in.
Just an empty... crib.
Empty wooden crib. That's...that's not something
I requestedwhen I checked in.
"Sir, is everything okay?"
Yeah, but can I get a place fora ghost-baby to sleep?
I really want to playpeek-a-boo all night long
and not even know it.That's how I sleep at night.
I can't sleep with a possibleghost-baby in my room.
I don't know how I'd take careof a real baby,
let alone a ghost-baby.
Like a real baby cries,you give it food
or you walk away quickly.
A ghost-baby cries, there's waymore to it than that.
There's revenge issues.
There's a reasonit's not at rest.
But at the same time,it's a baby,
so it doesn't know how tocommunicate very well yet.
I just end updriving around like,
"Which hospital burnt down?
"Point at it as we pass!
"I can't understand youwhen you just yell...
"You better be in your car seat.
You can't just say wordsthat happen to be true
and ignore the problem.
I can't do that. I know that.
When I was a kid,my mom'd be like,
"Michael, how comeyour dad's the only one
taking out the garbage?"
I'd be like,"Because no one is helping him."
I'm glad that I could provide
that informationto you right now.
I feel like I have metall the requirements
of this conversation.
Okay, I'll go help.
I'm Catholic, my mom's ancestryis Irish Catholic,
so she's super Catholic.
(scattered whooping)Yeah? Right?
Whenever my brothers or I didsomething wrong
when we were kids,that's when all
the religious ragewould come out, yeah.
She'd be like,"Who broke the fish bowl?
Jesus, Mary and Joseph."
My brother would be like,"Wow, we should
go tell her it was us."
I'd be like, "No, we're not evenone of the top three suspects.
"We're not even in the line-upright now. We're fine.
"And shut up, we're Catholic.Jesus died for our sins.
He won't mind taking the heaton a fish bowl."
It's in the Bible.
It's hard being Catholicas you get older.
There's a lot of rulesthat are hard to follow.
Like if you're Catholic,you're not supposed to
have sex tillyou get married.
Which is good, I guess, if youdon't want to have kids,
or get diseases. What happens ifyou die before we get married?
That's not fair.
Then you go to heaven a virgin.
And you might have tohave sex with a terrorist.
I don't make the rules.
I just mixthem up in my head.
the other day.
I'm a big fan of their music.
On this day, I went in thereand ordered
a bagel and cream cheese.
And I went to sit down,and I realized
that they had given mea spoon to eat that with.
Just a spoon, a bagel, and alittle thing of cream cheese.
And that's not how I eat that.
I don't scoopthe cream cheese in my face
and then bite the bageland just shake it up.
I'm like Cody from Step by Stepmaking chocolate milk.
It's a very specific reference.
If you didn't get it,that's on me.
I think it was J.T. anyways,uh...
So I went up to the lady, I wentup to the lady, I was like,
"You gave me a spoon.I need a knife."
She said, "We are out of knives,so I gave you a spoon."
You just said most of the samewords I said as the problem.
But you said it as ifit were a solution.
Are you a barista or a Jedi?
"These are not the knivesyou are looking for."
They're spoons, I said that.
A lot of my friends arehaving kids, having babies,
and it must be exciting.
They get to, uh, they get tomake a lot of decisions
for their kid's future.
Like, they get to decidewhether they're going
to have their childon a leash harness or not.
It's always weird for meto see in public,
just a mom tied to her son.
Was that motherin the delivery room like,
"Yeah, you can cut that cordbut I ordered my own.
"And it looks like a monkey.
"And now I have a baby and amonkey. I always wanted both.
In my opinion, the only timeit makes sense
for a parent to have their childon a leash harness,
is if that parent is blind.
Then we're all working together.
Give the dog a Saturday offand see where
the seeing-eye-child takes you.
You can give him a littleT-shirt, says
"Don't make funny faces at me.I'm working"
I don't mean to judge,like, if you
have your kidson a leash harness.
Maybe they're fast.I don't know.
It's just not somethingI grew up with.
My parents nevertied me up, like...
They gave my older brothera whistle one time
when we went to Sea World. Yeah,they gave my older brother
a whistle whenwe went to Sea World.
And that must be scarier to getthan a leash harness.
Like, at least with the leashharness, the parents being like,
"Look, if you're going down,then I'm going down with you."
With the whistle, it's like,
"We're probably goingto lose you.
"So when we do,start blowing this whistle,
"and when thedolphin show's over,
we'll come find youright away."
most part, Indiana...
(crowd applauds)Yeah... oh, wow.
It's well represented.
I, uh, it's weird,I grew up in a small town.
It's weird growing upin a small town
because everyone still triedto be cool in high school,
even though no onereally knew how.
Like, one of my friends in myjunior year of high school
got a hoop earring in one year,which is fine,
do whatever you want.I don't care.
Next week, came back,he had a hoop earring
in the other ear, too.I was like,
"Oh, someone is not sureabout something."
I must inquire.
I was like, "Why'd you get ahoop earring in one ear
"last week, and now you havea hoop earring in both ears?
This week was one on layaway?Like what's going..."
My friend said this, he waslike, "Well, the guy said,
"if you get a hoop earring inone ear, that means you're gay.
"If you get a hoop earringin both ears,
that means you're straight."
I was like, "I don't knowif that's true.
But that is a great wayto sell earrings."
They should do thatwith other products.
Right? Like, "How manyiPhones do you own?"
"I'll just take one iPhone."
"Oh, so you like guys."
I went to college.I was an English major
when I was in college.(scattered whooping)
Yeah... Oh, yeah. Yeah.
A lot of Indiana Englishmajors today.
I was an English majorwhen I was in college.
I didn't get a lotof job interviews,
being an English major.
I should have saw that coming.
My mom thoughtI was going to be a teacher
'cause she was a teacher.
We'd be likea mother-son teaching duo.
You know? Saving the worldfrom dangling participles.
She'd be, like,
"Michael, are you goingto be a teacher like me?"
I'm, like, "No..."
"I'm going to dowhat I went to school for."
"I'm going to be English."
(British accent):"Would you like some tea, sir?"
"Bloody nice lift, eh?"
I had one interviewwhen I finished college,
but it wasn't even for,like, a real company.
It was, like,one of those pyramid schemes,
where they try to intimidate youinto working there,
'cause they're not reallygoing to pay you at all.
It's, like,"Michael, if we hire you,
"in ten to 12 months,you could be owning
"and running your own company.
Does that scare you?"
I'm like, "No,but it should scare you."
I was an English major.(chuckles)
The only thingI know about capitalism
is if I see a period,
the next lettershould be bigger.
(applause and cheering)
because I really loved themand I had no money.
And... I really loved them,and I had no money, uh...
It was weird 'cause we wereon different sleep schedules
'cause they had jobsor whatever.
And, like, sometimesmy dad would call me from work,
and he'd wake me up,and you get upset.
I don't know what he expected.
He'd be like, "Michael,it's 1:00 in the afternoon.
Why are you just waking upat 1:00 in the afternoon?"
I'm just like, "Well..."
"I forgot to putmy cell phone on silent."
"Michael,you're better than this.
I'm like,"I know, it's a rookie mistake."
When I finished college,I drove my parents' car
back from collegeto their house,
so I thought that meantthat that car was mine, um...
They didn't think that.I don't know
what their problem was.
So, I finally had to buy a car,uh, and it was hard,
to decide what kind of carI wanted to buy.
'Cause I wanted to buy a car
that was really goodfor the environment.
But I also wantedto buy an SUV...
so I could see the environment
before it's destroyed by SUVs.
It was tough, like,
'cause they-they, make, like--all the things I read--
like, they make hybrid SUVs.
But everyone...everything I read, was, like,
"Well, it's not likethe most awesome SUV."
"And it's not, like,the best hybrid."
It's like, "Here's a donut.It's healthy.
Just eat the middle air part."
Zero caloriesin that air right there.
Smells just like a donut.
I ended up test-drivinga bunch of cars.
I test-drove an SUV,
and I felt like a manfor the first time ever.
So, I immediately just startedconvincing myself
it was goodfor the environment anyways.
It's like,"V8, that's a healthy juice."
That's why the sky's orange.It's beta carotene.
You should look at it.It's good for your eyes.
Rabbits don't wear glasses.
One of my friends is, like,"Michael, you got an SUV?
What about the glaciers?What about the rainforest?"
I'm, like,"I got four-wheel drive.
We can go where ever you want."
"No, Michael, what aboutour carbon footprint."
"Whoa, how do we even knowthat's our footprint."
Maybe we shouldn't take creditfor that footprint.
Maybe that's whereJesus carried us.
It's a much happier endingto that poem.
"Jesus, where were you?"
"Yeah, that's when I picked youup in my Escalade,
and we wentand got McFlurries."
(laughter and applause)
"Through the drive-thru,I carried you."
I liked my car a lot. It hada GPS that updated for traffic.
Which is great. Sometimesit wasn't great, though.
Like one time,I was leaving Chicago,
and it updated for traffic,
and it took me downa part of Homan Avenue
where three people that morningwere shot and murdered.
Yeah... of coursethere's less traffic.
There are three less peoplealive in that area
to get into traffic.
in the dorms when I wasin college, and it was fun.
One of my friends was the RAof our dorm
my sophomore year of school.
It was cool. Sometimesit's weird, 'cause
he'd push the RA information onus on how to keep people safe.
Sometimes he's, like,"Michael, listen up.
"Michael,stop playing Mario Kart.
"Just listen to me, Michael.
"I don't care if it's RainbowRoad. Michael, listen to me.
"I don't care if it's Bowseron Rainbow Road, which is hard
"'cause he falls off, takeslonger to get going again.
I understand that as an RA.I'm still a person."
"Michael, did you knowthe most common song
for a college student to commitsuicide to is 'Freebird?'"
Yeah, I was, like,"Wow, that must take forever."
(laughter, applauseand cheering)
That's a really long song.
You could die of natural causestrying to kill yourself.
"He had a heart attackduring the third guitar solo.
"It was the live version.
He died of irony."
"I know it's irony, 'causeI just came from English class
where we learnedabout irony. Yeah."
"Wow, I just learnedabout irony,
"then I foundan ironic situation.
I wish there was a wordto describe that."
I had a girlfriend in college.I liked her a lot.
I remember on our first date
when we were leavingthe restaurant,
she showed methat she had stolen
the two glassesfrom the restaurant.
I was like,"We're going out again."
"We're going to Best Buy."
"Right now,put on some cargo pants.
We're going Christmas shoppingfor my parents."
"Yeah, Oliver Twists..."
It's weird dating someonein school, though,
'cause you graduate,and sometimes
you go your separate waysfor jobs or whatever.
Like, I got a job living at homewith my parents, and, uh...
I aced that interview.
I was like, "I'm your son, andI don't have a place to live.
"Help me move thisPac-Man video game machine
into the dining room."
It's really heavy.
"Michael, that's not goingin the dining room."
"Whatever, that's where we eat.That's where he eats."
(applause and cheering)
because at any point in time,you can go online
and look at pictures of girlsyou used to date.
Like, if you're boredor have nothing to do,
or that's how you fall asleepat night.
For me,it always starts out simple.
I'm just like, "Oh,I wonder what she's doing."
And then five minuteslater, I'm, like,
"I wonderwhat they're all doing."
"Girls I dated,girls I thought I dated,
but she just neededa ride home a lot." Like, ah...
I think it's hard sometimes'cause I travel a lot.
And sometimesI meet someone, and I...
I don't know that personthat well, and I have
to make conversation with them.
And sometimesit's hard, you know?
And one time, I was hanging outwith a friend,
and then her friends startedhanging out with us.
And it was fine, and then,they needed a ride home,
so I was giving thema ride home,
and one friend--they'd been drinking--
my one friend just sort ofpassed out in the back seat.
So, I had to make conversationwith this new person.
And I kind of freaked outa little bit.
Like, in my head, I was, like,"All right, I have siblings.
"I'll just ask herabout her siblings.
"Whatever she says, great.
"And then I'll come back withmy awesome sibling stories,
"and she'll be, like,'Oh, my gosh.
"'He has something to relateto what I just said.
"'What an awesome guy.
That-That's a great person.'"
So, I was, like,"Do you have siblings?"
And she was, like, "No."
Yeah. It wasn'tjust a "no," though.
It was, like, a "no," like, a...
As if... as ifshe used to have siblings,
and me asking that questionwas like a landmine of truth
that explodedand murdered everybody
that ever made her happy.
So I didn't come backon my sibling stories.
It just didn't seem right.
It was just quiet in the car
for, like,the next five minutes,
and then, she was, like,
"Both my sisters diedin a car accident."
Yeah. That sucks for her,obviously,
but it kind of sucksfor me, too. Like...
There's no wayto make that situation lighter.
But I drop her off.
Like, "Oh, we made it!"