Quarantine Queen (and Kings!): Episode 08

When This is Over, We Deserve A Parade: Jim Gaffigan’s Lockdown Life

Quarantine Queens is back with another episode as we continue to muddle through this weird time of isolation and the ongoing search for the elusive “new normal,” including; when is it okay to take a break from the seriousness of it all to have fun and laugh? Enter this week’s guest, best-selling author and award winning comedian Jim Gaffigan. Like Jen, Jim is quarantining with his spouse and 5 kids, but unlike Jen, they literally can’t go one step out the door—as Jim describes it—“taking out the trash is my ‘me’ time.” Like so many of us, Jim and his family are navigating completely unknown territory where questions of “what’s next” with jobs, school, trips and obligations remain vague at best—and he’s graciously invited us to take a peek at how his family is handling it all with his hilarious online series “Dinner with The Gaffigans.” If you think you deserve a parade because you cooked 3 meals for your family in a day while in quarantine, or because you changed a water filter without calling anyone, Jim and Jen are your staunch advocates. Ultimately, they discuss what they hope we’ll walk away with from this unsettling season, and Jim even gives Jen a pep talk about the pros and cons of launching a new book during a pandemic. 
Welcome to our special Quarantine Queen Series on the For the Love Podcast. We are in this weird moment of isolation, and some of you are alone. Some of you are with a whole gang of other people, like my family. And we're all sort of figuring out this new normal and figuring out how to break up these days, figuring out how to connect with people--now that our normal channels are not available to us. Figuring out how and when we can laugh because that still matters. 

I reach for humor. Humor is my number one outlet. It is my favorite thing in the whole world. I have loved it forever. All my heroes are comics and comedians. So I don't even know what to say. Today's guest is just... I have been such a fan for so long, and so having him on the show right now at this time means the world to me.

Guys, Jim Gaffigan is here today. Jim Gaffigan on the show. It's the greatest. He has been making us laugh for so long, and sincerely, Jim has been this connecting point with me and my family for years. We took Gavin to see Jim's live show for his 13th birthday, and he turns 22 next week. So I'm just thrilled that he came on today, and he makes us laugh. He's going to make you laugh in this episode, of course. He can't help it. He just can't even help being funny. But it's also a really earnest conversation.
Jim and I both have five kids, and he's in New York and they literally cannot go out of their front door. So we talk right now about what this moment looks like for him and for his wife Jeannie and their five, and what we're hanging onto, and what we're letting go of. He is just as great as you would want him to be.
In case you've been living under a rock, Jim has countless award-winning comedy specials, for his standup shows, for his books, for his spots on CBS Sunday Morning , which is my favorite show. And now (and we have the links below), he's been filming this nightly show at home during quarantine with his family called Dinner With The Gaffigans. It's exactly what you think it is. It's on his YouTube channel. You can follow along in real time. It's just so endearing.
So he tells us during this interview that while he is in quarantine right now, he feels like he is running a diner. And I'm like, "Bro, solidarity." Basically this is his new routine, waking up, eating, cleaning, then arguing. And he has a lot more to say. What he hopes we'll walk away with from this season, what he hopes it'll mean for Americans and for America, and how he's getting through, and what's making him laugh. This whole conversation is delightful and I feel lucky to have had it.
So I am so happy to bring it to you, my favorite listeners on Earth, my conversation with the just hilarious, fantastic Jim Gaffigan.

International Justice Mission  is the largest anti-slavery organization in the world. They work to rescue people out of slavery and sex trafficking and walk with survivors until they are thriving in freedom. I actually traveled to Rwanda on a joint trip with IJM and Noonday Collection. And when I saw their work up close, I was in awe of what they’re able to accomplish with local officials.
So in times like these, IJM's stories remind us that on the other side of tragedy, there can still be hope.
On Lake Volta in Ghana, Gideon and his brother were trapped in slavery for years—they don’t even remember how old they were when they were trafficked. The boys endured countless horrors, and they never imagined they would escape.

One day, when Gideon was fishing on the lake, another boat pulled up next to his, and it was full of IJM investigators trying to discover how many kids were working on the lake. Gideon told investigators, “Don’t leave me with this man. He is wicked.” It took an entire year of searching with authorities, but Gideon was rescued from the lake. Later, his brother was rescued, too.
IJM helped Gideon settle in at a shelter, where he could begin to heal and he enrolled in vocational school. IJM staff walked alongside Gideon every step of the way, even at his graduation when he received a special “best in literacy” award!

Right now, you can go ijm.org/shareshopenow to watch more stories of hope—and share them with your friends.


Quotes from this Episode
“There is an overall maturity that is being thrust upon--I think the American psyche--which is very much...we're a culture that worships youth and beauty. And now it's like ‘I don't know about you but when Fauci talks, I want to hear what this guy says.’"
- Jim Gaffigan

“I think that if anyone has free time, we have to be organizing, getting meals to these healthcare workers. Do you know what I mean? If we can't get them PPE, we can at least get them coffee.”
- Jim Gaffigan

“We were consuming so much news that we were finding dinner a break from the stark reality, which is just some normalcy. So we were doing the YouTube feed so that people could watch something that wasn't news, so that there was some kind of fun.”
- Jim Gaffigan on his YouTube show “Dinner With The Gaffigans.”  

“Not being able to go on Good Morning America and talk about your book in person is not as big as the safety and the security of your children. And so that's where there's this maturity where you're like, ‘Yes, you know what, it's a creative accolade. I wrote this book. This will be known as the coronavirus book, but we never had any control of anything.’ And suddenly we’re reminded why we do these things--there is a reward in the process.”
- Jim Gaffigan encouraging Jen about launching a book during a pandemic

“Releasing this book is important because I do think that we need a break from this stark reality. But I'm saying that just as watching standup, watching movies, watching Dinner With The Gaffigans--mindless stuff--there is the respite or vacation from this reality that people can find in a book.”
- Jim Gaffigan

“We call them ‘cincos’--people that are dumb enough to have five kids--because you're ‘syncing.’ But of course it's Spanish--it means cinco.”
- Jim Gaffigan