EPI-66: Doug Stanhope: My Dark Muse
That’s a shot of me, Doug Stanhope and my brother, Randy about 5 years ago, maybe 6.
I can’t do justice to how excited I was to see Stanhope live!
See if you might feel the same:
And my brother hadn’t been to a comedy show with me since we’d been to see Dave Attell, a handful of years before that, which was another awesome show!
Here. Enjoy you some Attell right now:
One of the things I used to frequently wonder was whether or not I should pursue standup.
I’ve always had the ability to work a crowd. And I don’t get stage fright.
But upon deeper introspection, I realized I am more of a strategic comic, whose laughter-inducing skills only show when the muse is upon me. Something I can never just whip up on the spot.
There’s a mix of things that need to brew first, before I can launch into a screamingly funny tirade or drop that, oh so perfect, one-liner.
I have my moments.
I just can’t depend on them enough to turn comedy into a career.
But what I learned from this introspection would later develop into a cornerstone skill that I use all the time with clients of all stripes.
Wanna hear something funny? (Is that a situational double entendre?)
I was recently informed, in a completely unexpected, and very public fashion, that I am the guy that brings calm to the group!
I am the epitome of “wild child” and yet I somehow wield that excessively brash and loud persona to create calm from chaos.
I know how I do it, what I say, why I say it.
But it still feels odd, after all I’ve been through and how manic I once was, to be described as the one who brings the peace.
I’m not even sure how to end this note but I know this much: should we match, you’re going to learn things in a way you may have never experienced before.
And it will unlock doors in your mind and heart that hold the keys to all your growth and success.
We just need to be sure we match.
Just click the “READ MORE” text below for the transcript!
Hey, this is Ken Jensen. I beat bipolar disorder in an all natural fashion back in the mid 2 thousands. And believe it or not, that’s not even the coolest part of my story.
What I learned through that process and what came next and how that applied to bipolar and why bipolar was ever even part of the process, was mind blowing to say the least.
Bipolar has hidden within its strengths. I’m gonna show you what I mean and how they’ve shown up in my life so you can do the same. Well, on fellow storytellers. This is episode 66, Doug Stanhope, my dark muse.
How Apropos? As I went to record this episode, My mic stand just disintegrates. It it it pulls apart. I gotta boom. I gotta boom. And as I pull it to as I pull it to me, it just breaks off.
The microphone breaks off. The highly expensive microphone breaks off. And I take the thing up art. I used to be a a technician of all sorts and not to just required any fucking degree in trigonometry or physics.
And I see that the highly expensive boom arm, the little thing that holds the cradle with the very heavy microphone in it to the arm It was barely tack welded in place from the get go.
As I looked at it, there’s a whole every surface of this little thing that holds the cradle never never got welded.
There’s a little tiny thin thread on 2 out of the 3 sides that could have gripped on the exterior, just a hair’s worth of weld.
The whole rest of the thing that was untouched by the molten metal when they, quote unquote, welded this thing together right in the first place.
The I’m trying to keep my shit together as I do this because, well, there’s a lesson, of course, this shit’s just gonna keep coming.
And that was sort of my 0. 1 of my points I was gonna get into about my my whole last week, week and a half I’ve been under AAA low a workload in every area of my life, the likes of which, has just been unbelievable.
I I’ve been almost delirious with lack of sleep, manageable stress, and and and fatigue every day at this week. And I work hard or I work harder at home than I do at my day job.
Then I had in the back of my mind, the last the last episode I were I did I realized I had my mouth too close to the mic. There is something going on with my recording system that I’m lacking a a routine, a consistency.
There’s something that I used to be able to hear that I can’t hear anymore. And I got this mixing board with that that set up to, like, run an entire folk art band through, and I don’t need it.
When I see pros, A lot of them have these much smaller setups in a little in a little mic stand that sits on the table. Even Rogan, and I want something like that.
I don’t like this boom. My eye gets drawn to it. It blocks me when I’m trying to look at my computer. I can’t stand it. And it cost me a lot of money back when I had no money. And it got the show rolling.
It got 3 shows rolling, including this 1. It I got my moneys worth out of it, but I’m I’m ready to upgrade and for and for the first time in a long time, I can afford to upgrade, not as nice as I’d like, but nicer than this.
And with equipment that does not barely tack welded together, There’s if you go to my site by polar excellence dot com, and you look on this episode at 66.
I’m not gonna beat this 1 to death, but my mom had a I put together a go fund me page from my mom. Her house we did a we had rebuild going on in the bathroom, and it’s it’s it’s still not even done.
It’s been going on, I don’t know, a month and a half at this point. It’s still going on. It’s starting to really piss us all off. Anyway, the in the process, we find out the entire roof shot.
Then then recent and that that was a huge bill. Huge. I’m not gonna repeat what’s on the go fund me. If you will go if you go to go fund me and just punch up my name, Ken Jensen, you’ll see me and my dad, with my arm around my dad.
You’ll you’ll not watch me. And so In in the middle of all of this, I discover mom’s foundation is leaking. I was finding evidence of it, but I couldn’t find any water.
And I was like, Cripes, there’s fucking water showing up somewhere, and I can’t see where it’s coming from. I finally found it. It’s substantial. And I’m like, well, great. Now the Natto Foundation has to be sealed.
She finds out her air conditioning systems on its last legs. That’s, like, 9 grand It it just a bunch of things. Right now, 1 of the coolest things is between the GoFund Me, and this charity called build build homes for heroes.
There’s an actual homes for heroes. This isn’t that. There’s a build homes for heroes. They call me, and they’re offering to cover the roof and then some. They usually build entire houses for people for veterans.
And because my dad was a 21 year vet in the army and I’m a 5 year marine golf war vet, we qualify all the pieces and back. So Running the GoFund Me page has been it it’s it’s you’re basically building a website.
I got it, but there was a lot of things I test There was a lot of things I didn’t have in place until long after the original Fuhrer died down of people donating, and people have been absolutely awesome.
We’ve raised just shy of 10 grand and, like, I I don’t know. Little less than 2 weeks. And then it petered out.
And I’ve been researching that and learning about how to improve the the running of a go fund me page, plus building things on the page and editing it and then there’s a lot of hoops I had to jump through to satisfy the charity.
I’m I’m ready within 24 hours to give them everything they needed. In the process, I found out my dad was missing some very important paperwork, which is just not a thing he would do missing paperwork.
I have a feeling something got donated somewhere to make some other business thing happen, and he never got it back.
I I don’t know. So anyway, my head’s full. I’ve I’ve gone on almost no sleep this weekend, and I’m I’m not bitching. I wanna make this clear. There’s a bitchiness to it. I’m I’m fucking tired, and I’m being rung out. I’m being rung out.
But with everything in my life, But almost all of it is for the best of reasons and what I’ve got growing online for bipolar excellence it’s starting it’s starting to take on monster proportions and I’m starting to get really excited to wit I started a YouTube channel.
I built 1 many, many weeks ago, got that fine tuned, made it looked the way I wanted, put all the bits and pieces in that they told me to put.
And then I never turned it on and I ever added any videos because I didn’t have it in me to go up against the Internet trolls.
I just I just didn’t wanna hear it to get well from bipolar like I did almost 20 years ago. 1 of the key things I did was to remove negative people from my life.
To go public in any way online, but particularly some of the social sites and YouTube, you’re just asking for it. You’re just bending over reaching back, pulling the cheeks as wide as they’ll go and just saying enter roughly here.
And I didn’t have the guts to do that. Now I don’t give a shit. It’s gonna come. Let’s hope not for a whole you know, not not to a large degree, but I just don’t care.
I I I’m at a place now where my my both my annoyance and not getting this company to the point that I wanted to as fast as I wanted to combined with The confidence I’ve gained just in the last really, last year based largely in Parpo, what I learned on my day my day job, I just don’t give a shit anymore.
I don’t look forward to it. I’m gonna have my wife read things, and I’m just gonna have her I’ll tell her what to write.
To the positive comment. And would you see how it goes? Maybe it won’t be as bad as I fear. I just know anonymity brings out the worst in people.
Now as far as the worsen people, that brings us back to Doug Stanhope. Doug Stanhope is a comedian who he’s in a class by himself. There’s nobody like him. I have almost never met anyone who’s heard of him.
I think I have 1 friend who ended up catching a show with me. We saw Doug together a couple years ago. He was the only 1 I ever talked to who knew the name when I said it. Doug is fucking dark.
He’s self destructive. He’s a lot of things. He’s weird as shit. He’s brilliant. He has a super high vocabulary. Mixed with a forced oversimplification. And when you when you combine the 2, it just makes things funnier.
And he’s got an ugly He’s got a he’s got a bit of an ugly heart that comes from a rational look at a world gone mad, mixed with his own failings as a human being of of which he is Completely aware.
He’s he’s a beautiful mess. I got a cool picture on the website, bipolar excellence dot com. Go to episode 66.
You’ll see a picture of me and Doug and my brother Randy, we went about, I don’t know, 5 or 6 years ago. This show happened. It was before COVID. There’s a chick behind me doing something with her tongue that’s hot as hell.
She was a comedian. She was a disaster. She was a mess. There was 3 I think there was 3 different comedians besides Doug, and they were all all the material was nightmarish and hilarious.
I remember when we were standing in line to go to the to on the autograph line, I remembered the nicest little dark gay boy behind me. He told me he said to hold. He goes, you made this show.
Like, what are you talking about? He said, half the show was just listening to how you laughed. He said it was excellent. It just made the whole damn thing better. That just was like a cherry on top of my whole night.
And that was even before we we got our autograph from from Doug. The reason I bring up Doug is because I have a sense of humor that is is a disaster. To somebody, particularly if they’ve never met me.
I gotta be real careful how how much I share. You do that anyway. You got your public persona, you got your private. You know, you say what you say with your friends, you wouldn’t dare say in in in open public.
Not without context, not without people getting a chance to know you. I got a real severe case of that that I constantly have to hold and check.
It’s not like a struggle struggle it used to be back when I was closer to bipolar and in it. I I had no filter. I’ve learned how to be cooler about my thoughts and opinions at perspectives than that.
And I think 1 of the cool things I wanna make clear is you can have that in your makeup and still be a wholesome person doing good and positive, damn near holy things in the world.
You can. They don’t they don’t compete with 1 another. They just you just have different aspects of your personality that you enjoy expressing, and researching, and exploring, and that’s it.
1 of the things I don’t like about when sometimes when people heal from something, they take it too far. They wanna heal absolutely everything. And there there’s there’s there’s no need. If it works for you and you do this, then fine.
Don’t change a thing if if you like where it brings you and and you have peace, you win. Do exactly what you’re doing. But part of my struggle as I’ve done anything online is, like, how much of me do I just put out there?
Well, I still have to hold back because I can be insanely raunchy, insanely dark, massively offensive. If you know me and you’re in my inner circle, I will have you vomiting blood via laughter.
Because it’s a beautiful thing when I do it to a an understanding audience. But to the general public, there’s there’s no way. There’s no way. They’d burn me an effigy somewhere in some city square.
But it makes up a huge part of who I am. It flavors everything I share with you guys. Flavors, how I got better, if flavors, how I move forward. And I do a very, very, very light version of it in my public life just day to day.
And I do it strategically, and I have a great positive effect on people when I give them Ken Light. I have a I have a way of doing it then. I’m better at than ever before because I wield it like a sword or a paintbrush.
It’s my art. I love crafting the perfect flawed sentence, flawed perspective sentence stretching the line, pushing up against boundaries, saying something maybe you shouldn’t quite have said.
But if you pitch it, just right, it perfectly makes a point and it is received well.
Now depending on whatever you’re trying to do in life, you’re not gonna do, like, what I’m doing. You’re not gonna do this But you need to know what about me for when we work together.
I don’t wanna shock you. I’m not gonna hold back as much when we’re working together. I’m not gonna flood you with that part of me, but I’m just not gonna hold back as much as I do.
On this podcast and anywhere else online. For years, I thought I wanted to be a comic, not not for just on and off. I kept looking at them, like, am I hand up comic though. I got what it takes because I like I like working a crowd.
I have no stage fright. I don’t. And I have a lot of fun with talking to people, but I was like, no. I realized some time ago, no. That whatever I am, that ain’t it. I have my moments.
I have my moments, and it’s when the muse hits and someone like Doug is 1 of my muses every now and then I remember something that somebody said like Doug, that’s just just the worst and most beautiful thing, and it fits the the sis the situation I’m currently in with someone, and I put my twist on it probably water it down a hair and then I make the good thing happen from from from out of that.
And I like getting better at it all the time.
So that’s all I really wanted to say today. I’ve slept 5 hours in the last 2 days, and I’ve been on this computer till my feet are swollen. Which is starting to piss me off, but it’s I’m I’m almost out the other side of the rabbit hole.
My systems are getting stronger. I’m integrating them better. I’m learning I faster and faster, I see the light at the end of the tunnel, and I swear it feels like it’s only minutes away.
I can take whatever I gotta take to push through and turn this beast on bipolar excellence into something that’s gonna help so many people, which it already is. But it’s gonna scale.
It’s gonna scale, and it’s gonna draw people that are here in an episode like this and be like, jeez, that guy Ken. He’s my kind of fucked up. I need to with him because that’s what I say when I hear certain people speak.
That very thing, I’m like, jeez. I don’t know what the fuck happened to him in the past, but he’s awesome. He’s he’s working on something even as he tells me this beautiful, wonderful spiritual thing.
I can I can smell it? There’s, like, who who? He came through something rough, and I like how he’s talking to me right now. And that’s That’s what I am to you guys.
That’s what I wanna be. I’m only gonna change just so much. There’s a way you gotta be. But I am not gonna water myself down much more than what you’re already getting because it’ll just give me heartburn with the attempt.
You’re either in or you’re out. If you’re out, there’s no hard feelings we don’t match. And I don’t, you know, I don’t care nor should you. We don’t match.
Goodbye. I wish you well. But if we do match, my god. Are we gonna have a good time building out whatever it is you do. Also, I don’t do that this routine. I don’t do it with everything I do constantly as my mouth is working.
It’s just it has its moments and I find it to be very powerful in training and reframing perspectives and making points with crystal clarity so that I can help my people move forward.
This is the gift Doug Stanhope has given to me. I believe See, I I can’t I don’t even wanna move. I don’t get I can’t I can’t dare move and bump this microphone. I was gonna punch up Stan Hope.
I think it’s just stanhope dot com is his website. You’ll see some of his previews or just go on to YouTube and and look up Doug stanhope. And hopefully, enjoy. I’m gonna leave you with that and you guys be well.