Episode 200: Al Jaffee
It was important to me that we have a special guest for episode 100. They Might Be Giants fitted the job perfectly, a band that played an incredibly important role in the early development of my musical tastes, as strange and idiosyncratic as they might ultimately become. With episode 200, the camera gets pulled make even further, to a man and a magazine that, for better or worse, let an indelible mark on my impressionable young mind, as they have for generations before and since. Weeks before I sat down to record this interview in Al Jaffee’s amazing Manhattan studio, upcoming guest Kid Congo Powers made reference to a club “looking like a scene out of Mad Magazine.” I knew what he meant immediately. The strange cross section of the human experience filtered through the lens of the Usual Gang of Idiots. And at their center is Jaffee. The cartoonist is now 95 (“closer to 96,” as he handily points out during the interview), with his signature fold-in having appeared in virtual every issue between 1964 and 2008, along with his other mainstays like "Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions.” The longest working cartoonist in history kindly agreed to sit down for wide ranging interview about life, death, cartooning and the importance of a steady gig. It’s one my absolute highlights of doing the show and great way to spend episode 200.