Sometimes it’s a real joy to listen to professional entertainers talk about other entertainers.

I’m not a big fan of podcasts. I think they’re a very good idea on paper, but they don’t really fit my lifestyle. To enjoy a podcast, you have to listen to a podcast — and pay attention. It’s not like listening to a music CD. I don’t have the time to spare to listen very much.

But I do find time to listen to Penn Jillette’s show as a podcast. I’ve never felt like I wanted a “refund” on any minutes I spent listening to them; it just hasn’t happened yet.

So. If I had the choice right now between buying the world a Coke or making the world listen to this particular segment (.MP3 file) from Penn Jillette’s radio show from Monday May 8, 2006, well, let’s just say lots of people would just have to go thirsty.

In this segment — almost 45 minutes long — titled, “Criss Angel Stops By To Discuss The Genius Of David Blaine,” much of the discussion is on the David Blaine Drowned Alive special. You might learn a few surprising things about the world of professional entertainment and entertainers. This isn’t the sort of thing you’re likely to read on most of the magic-related discussion boards, where navel-gazing often gets in the way of paying attention to the way the world of entertainment really works.

Here are few quotes to get you started:

“David Blaine is, I won’t say a friend because a friend is someone you really know well. But David Blaine is an acquaintance. You know, I’ve certainly broken bread with him, I’ve hung out with him. And he’s a good guy.”

“First of all, making fun of your friends is always a-okay. But second of all, and more important, David Blaine, what he wants, is for people to talk about his stunts, right? There’s no other purpose for them whatsoever. So as long as we’re talking about David Blaine it seems we can say anything we want.

(shouting) Stupid retard, David!

“I think David Blaine is very good looking, I think he’s a superstar, and I think his TV shows are wonderful.”
— Penn

“David Blaine is known for who he dates. I want to be known for what I do.”
— Criss Angel

“I respect David. He is a creation of television and did a fantastic job doing what he does. I’m willing — and I’ve said this before I think his biggest fear is me because I’m the real deal. What you see is what you get.”
— Criss Angel

“In his first TV special — the first David Blaine special, the street magic special — is, I believe, the finest magic special that’s ever been done on TV, not even present company excluded. I think it was a beautiful thing, it opened up a whole different way, and the genius behind that special was taking the attention off the magic and putting it on the people. And that’s an idea that no one else had had. And, Houdini didn’t have that idea, Copperfield didn’t have that idea, we didn’t have that idea, and it’s a really great thing to say, you know it might be more interesting to see people being amazed and people being blown away than to see what was amazing that was blowing them away.” — Penn

And those are just a few quotes I typed out at random. As you can tell from the quotes, points are made in typical Penn manner, which is to say provocatively but funny (at least to me.) Criss’s comments are part of “working the system” — Angel’s “David” to Blaine’s “Goliath” — but you really should listen to the entire segment to hear the compliments Criss had for Blaine.

I’ve seen written things on a couple of Internet discussion boards (and one comment in this blog) regarding what Criss Angel stated regarding David Blaine. Neither Penn nor Criss spoke disrespectfully about Blaine, and that’s one of the main reasons for me bringing this thing up at all.

Now, if that doesn’t get your interest up enough to willingly trade 45 minutes of your own life to listen to the show, well, I don’t think you’d be reading this blog to begin with.

I can’t wait for Tuesday’s show, though.