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Facing the Future with Lessons From the Past with Brian Brawdy – Episode 129

Bill Heid joins Off the Grid Radio from London today, where he is in studio recording a radio theater production of the book Under Drake’s Flag, a classic story by G.A. Henty about life on the high seas as seen through the eyes of young 16th-century teen.

History is not just dates and dead guys. There are a lot of things that we can learn from history and character traits like integrity and courage never grow old or go out of date—they’re timeless. Traits from men and women like Sir Francis Drake and boys like fictional Ned Hearne are the very traits that made the founding of this nation possible.

Off The Grid Radio
Ep 129
Release Date November 16, 2012

Brian:   Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Off The Grid News—the radio version of OffTheGridNews.com. I’m Brian Brawdy, here as always… Well, not technically “here” here, like here in Thompson but here as always—given the modern technology—with Mr. Bill Heid, calling in today from… Bill, there was your drumroll.

Bill:      Drumroll. Yeah. I’m across the pond there Brian.

Brian:   Well, you sound great.

Bill:      Yeah, we’re in London and the… We’re in one of London’s busiest studios. We’re in the Sound House studios in London and it is a very busy place with lots of different things going on. It’s sort of a place for the BBC to use and a lot of other organizations, corporations coming in and out but we’re one of a number of groups here recording today.

Brian:   Well, I know you’ve got some big news—we talked about it—for our listeners that follow along every week. They have a general sense as to why you are in London and I’m sure it’s not just to test out our Skype account. So why don’t you go ahead and give us a recap of what you’ve been doing and catch the listeners up?

Bill:      Well sure, Brian. We are here at the studio and we’re recording. We’ve got some actors here—and some famous actors—and we’re recording… What we’ve done is redesigned and adapted, adapted, adapted the book by GA Henty, Under Drake’s Flag and so we’re here recording that in sort of almost a radio theater presentation and that’s what we’re doing. It’s great because we’re talking about history. You know, Brian, I love history. I believe there is a lot we can learn by studying the past. I think there are dangers in not studying the past. I think that history is not just dates and dead guys, as we say.

And so to me it’s like just… I’m in heaven here, to be honest. I’m able to do this project with some wonderful actors, a wonderful crew and I’m in an area that I love probably as much as anything, talking about the past and some of the things that we can learn about the past. And what makes me so optimistic—and I know that there isn’t always optimism in the air—but what makes me so optimistic is things like integrity are timeless, right? Things like courage never grow old and that’s a little bit of the story that we’re telling over here.

Brian:   You know and that’s interesting Bill because when we talk about timeless, when we talk about—as you and I do quite often—about integrity and courage and honesty, there is no shelf life on it. So I’m really excited to hear the finished product when it’s done. And so give our listeners an idea of what the actual process is. We know you’re in the studio now but give us an idea of:  Who have you bumped into? What have you been working on? Are you like the director of all of this or is there someone else that directs and you’re just kind of a fly on the wall? Give us the rundown.

Bill:      Well, I’m actually… I’m the executive director of the program but I’m really kind of sort of overseeing things and the guy that’s doing it—John Fornof—is taking most of the directing role. So… But my son Nick and I are here and we are participating with the program so we’re sort of using our ability to kind of help out and do some directional changes as well. And it’s been really interesting. Now I finally—and you’ll appreciate this because I finally met… I thought you were Brian Brawdy on steroids but I finally met a guy named Brian Blest and Brian is Brian Brawdy on steroids. I have never been in a room with anyone like Brian.

Brian:   Does he spell his name with an “I” or a “y”?

Bill:      With an “i,” I believe.

Brian:   Okay, good. Good, good, good, good. I have a cousin who spells it with a “y.” I just discount Bryans with a “y.” But all right, that’s good to know. I’m a fan. I’m a fan.

Bill:      People that spell Hyde with a “y” and that would be a lot of Londoners—Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde—since I spell mine the German way—the proper way.

Brian:   The proper way? As I spell Brian and your friend there does—the proper way—with an “i.” But boy, I have to tell you Bill—when you just said “Hyde”—spelled it differently—that put you in a totally different light in my mind.

Bill:      Well, yeah. I’ve been in a [inaudible 0:04:47.0] light in your mind but I have to tell you that people that I’m running into here—you asked me that question—so one of the things I think is exciting for me is I’m now like one person away from a lot of famous English actors and I would say I’m one person away from Sir Laurence Olivier. We just had an actor come in who knew him personally and studied under him so that was really interesting for me. I’m not sure how far… close I want to get to Sir Laurence Olivier but… Also Doctor Who, we have our Drake in—Captain Drake—our character playing that role actually played… knows Tom Baker from the Doctor Who series personally and worked with him.

And believe it or not, I’m one person away from Her Majesty because Brian Blest actually has spent a lot of time with the queen and regaled us with a lot of stories about his time with the queen and some of that we’ve actually captured. We’ve almost created an entire reel of him just telling stories. Brian has been up on Mount Everest. He is going up into space with the Soviets here in about 30 days. He’s going to live in the space station for 28 days. And he’s a bit of a character. He makes a great GA Henty. He looks like him. He acts like him. He is an adventurer.

Interestingly enough about Brian—the Brian Blest over here—his father passed away when he was 14 years old so like a Henty character, he was cast out into the world as a young man and sort of set upon adventure early in life—had to sort of pull himself up and make his own way—and it really did create sort of a very interesting, robust personality with Brian Blest.

Brian:   Very cool. So he is… That’s kind of neat, in terms of Everest and most certainly going up into space. So you’re having a good time with him. Did every other actor fill your original understanding Bill, of what you wanted? Has it been…? Has the experience overall been like “They just nailed it,” in terms of the people that you chose? Are they nailing their lines and are you fired up about it?

Bill:      Well, they nailed their lines. Our friend over here, Philip, who did the casting just blew me away because he just nailed some of these roles and you know frankly, I’m watching behind the glass these actors do their thing and… You and I talk about sports—we like sports—and I’ve seen people dunk a basketball. We went over here and we watched the Arsenal play soccer and so forth and the great, skilled athletes. Frankly, I can see how people play basketball. I can see how people play soccer. It’s something very close to me and I love sports and it’s something I’ve participated in a lot. I cannot for the life of me guys see how people do this. And I look with awe. I watch with awe and I am just blown away because there just are not very many people in the world that can do what these folks do.

Brian:   Very cool. Well, I’m excited to hear—as I was even before you left—but now with everything that we’ve been discussing, I’m excited to hear the project. And what are you thinking Bill, in terms of a projected date? Do you have a general sense as to when…? I know you’re going to be wrapping here pretty soon but when you come back home and have everything finalized, what’s the first date we’re going to be able to get our hands on a copy or copies?

Bill:      Well, having something in the can—in this general sense—means one thing. Having a really smooth, edited piece… Now the music has to go along with this and we have a lot of production value that’s going to be added back in the states. So my guess is probably April, May we’ll start to really have something available. It’s a fairly big production. It’s a wonderful production. People are not going to want to miss this when it does come out because we’ve really spared no expense in terms of actors and production value. We’ve [inaudible 0:08:45.9]. We’ve got some of the best production people and the script is amazing.

One of the things you’d be tickled with Brian, is we had folks from the Henty Society come and you’d think that those people would sort of be stuffed shirts a little bit and they are teachers, educators and so forth and what we had heard is they absolutely all love how we have adapted the script of this Under Drake’s Flag Henty book. So it’s going to be very, very exciting. I think this is going to be… There is… I don’t think that there is going to be anything ever done like it. There have been some radio theaters before but taking on this Henty project really casts it in an amazing light and I think people are going to really be in for a treat when it does come out.

Brian:   Oh, very cool. I can tell by your voice you’re fired up about it and I know I’m looking forward to hearing it and I loved what you said earlier about honor and a sense of courage. It doesn’t have a shelf life, right? There is no planned obsolescence when it comes to the best qualities in humanity. So I think it’s going to be great. Speaking of great—and come back to this if you want to, Bill—but what’s going on? I haven’t had an opportunity to speak to you since the election here in the states. What’s everyone thinking about the outcome? Can you give us a sense of…? It’s always important… You read newspapers and websites from all over the world to get an outside looking in opinion but now actually being outside looking in, what’s everyone saying about President Obama’s reelection?

Bill:      Well, it is interesting and it’s the perspective among folks that are in Great Britain is very different than maybe the world that you and I live in. I think General—excuse me—President… I almost said Generalissimo Obama. It’s like a dictatorship, doesn’t it? That sounds like one of those [inaudible 0:10:33.3] he was elected in a fair election. But President Obama is generally well liked here and if you go to media outlets and you listen to radio or you watch television, you’re generally going to see a very favorable opinion of President Obama. They see him as a peacemaker. They see him as someone trying to bring sort of disparate political views together—maybe internationally.

I’m not saying that that’s what I believe. I’m just saying that’s what you get if you ask someone on the street. I’m not sure what you’d call Sally Housecoat over here. We’ll laugh about that later perhaps if you ask Joe Lunchbucket here, you’re going to get a similar view because people really… There’s probably less independent thought here than there is in the states in terms of media outlets—where do people go for their news? They basically go to just a couple sources of news. Whatever they say ends up being the gospel truth. So England is an amazing place. London is an amazing place. But I don’t see sort of the bandwidth for ideas that I maybe do in other places like… especially the states.

Brian:   So Bill, when we hear here in the states that everyone is upset that he returned the bust of Winston Churchill, that there is something about President Obama’s father and his interpretation of England as a military power—that’s all just kind of hyped up here if the general person—or as you say, in the media there—isn’t all that worked up about the likeness of Churchill being taken from the White House and sent back. Then are we just playing that up here too much?

Bill:      Well, I think sometimes you would be playing it up too much. That would be the view here. I think what you’re seeing here is most folks are politically correct and so Churchill is someone who is a historic figure and that’s about it. So it doesn’t really go too deep and really, unfortunately, the average knowledge of history doesn’t go too deep either. Just the folks that we’ve talked to about this, they’re amazed that someone like GA Henty lived.

Of course Henty was an Englishman during the Victorian days and more people know who he is in the states than know who he is over here. And so I really… I see sort of existentialism as being the operative mindset here. What do we…? What sort of political correctness do we have right now in the moment? And that’s kind of our guiding light or that’s our plumb line. That’s how we measure truth—by what this sort of zeitgeist is—and that zeitgeist for them again, tends to be quite liberal compared to what we talk about most of the time.

Brian:   Is there anything Bill, that’s really surprised you? I mean I should ask you—what did you think about the outcome of the election? That it was as close as it was and everything unfolded the way it did? For me personally, I was hoping that it means I would never have to hear Dick Morris again because he predicted a landslide going the other way but God love him—he’s still managing a way to get himself on camera, even though he was totally wrong. But what’s your take on how it turned out and how close it was—how the polls were wrong, how the GOP misread the tea leaves? What do you think?

Bill:      Well, I think [inaudible 0:13:59.5] but I think that… I actually did call the election way ahead of those folks and I think maybe even you and I talked about it. Really, at the end of the day, I don’t think it’s 47% that are maybe on the receiving side of the government largess. I see it more like 67% and when push came to shove, that’s really how it came down. People voted and no one wants their faucet shut off Brian and that would include what would probably be some very conservative folks as well. They want their continued flow of money. Ron Paul was writing about this. He thinks we’re way down the line, perhaps too far to bring it back even—not because of the numbers of the mathematics but because of the psychological and the belief system, the metanarrative, what we [inaudible 0:14:51.1] people, I think is maybe… And I agree with Dr. Paul that I think that we’ve probably gone a little too far.

Now as a Christian, what can I say? I don’t think that government in our life is in the hands of Congress and I’m not preoccupied with President Obama. I [inaudible 0:15:08.7] the election and I think probably a few too many people voted is my guess, than really were legalized… legal voters but I think he still would have won an election fair and square because of what I just said. I think most people want to receive instead of produce and he [inaudible 0:15:25.8] obviously very different than I would but really that’s my take on it. But I don’t [inaudible 0:15:31.2] government as my savior in any sense—even politically.

Brian:   All right. So what do you think the future holds for us now? Obviously the House stayed in Republican control, the Senate remained in Democratic control and President Obama has been reelected for another term. What do you think that holds for us as a country?

Bill:      I think it holds just a lot of what our country is all about and this is… Your weakness is your strength. Your strength is your weakness. The stability that we have in our country—and some people say, “Well, it’s a law jam. Then nothing’s going to happen.” And I know there is a sense in which that’s going to be our strength before this is over. So maybe nothing is supposed to happen. Maybe there is supposed to be a bit of a law jam. Unfortunately, I don’t see people really working together on either side of the aisle. I see them—Republicans really being mad at President Obama and his gang and I see the opposite to be true as well. That has continued to get worse and worse and worse.

But it’s interesting to see on some level where President Obama would go—what I call—go Bush. In other words, will he become more conservative? In other words, when Bush barely won his second four years, he didn’t really see himself there as really in some sort of overwhelming sense and so he became a very soft Bush, a gentler Bush. Remember his father wanted conservatives to be more gentle and so forth? And he didn’t veto basically anything and so he just signed every bill. He [inaudible 0:17:02.1] sailor and then… It’ll be interesting to see if President Obama gets more conservative trying to make a legacy or really become the ideologue, steering that ship down the Marxist river.

Brian:   Well, that’s interesting Bill, because I think a lot of people would say that he sort of went down that path in the beginning, where he wasn’t liberal enough and that’s why he was… So many people on the far side of his party were upset because he wasn’t that way. So you’re very… You could be very right. Maybe he does attack even more to the middle. But just a really interesting time. Just a really interesting time to be following politics in our country. Just… It’s been amazing. What else are you hearing from over there about our country as a whole or about politics or…? I mean if you want to, we could talk about everything unfolding with General Petraeus. That’s kind of like dominating, as you can imagine—the headlines over here. But what’s dominating the headlines over there? What’s everybody else talking about?

Bill:      What’s interesting is—and dominating the headlines here currently—is the BBC sort of letting some loose journalism take place and because it’s a [inaudible 0:18:15.5] organization, that tends to be kind of a bigger deal. They made some mistakes. The evening news over here—a BBC program—aired some information about someone that was ostensibly a pedophile and it wasn’t true and so there was a huge scandal over here with the BBC. I actually have… We have a BBC film crew in studio filming [inaudible 0:18:41.8] and so I’ve had a chance to talk to a number of those folks about it and it is really interesting just how they see it.

There is a different worldview here and sort of having nationalized—whether it’s nationalized healthcare or the BBC in that sense—is something that Brits really consider it theirs the same way they view Her Majesty. It’s something that they… It’s [inaudible 0:19:07.1] to them. “Hey, that’s my BBC.” And so Americans, on the other hand—look, it’s Fox and NBC and if NBC or Fox sort of promotes bogus journalism and they get busted for it, maybe they lose market share—and Americans basically say, “Well, I guess you’ve lost market share. That’s your punishment for what you’ve just done.”

Unfortunately, here—or fortunately here—that’s not how punishment is weighed out and so things become a scandal and there are these interlopes and what does the public think about that? And then who gets fired and so forth? And it’s really quite a big deal over here. They’re also preoccupied Brian, with American politics, believe it or not. There are a lot of challenges to the British media and sort of argumentation going on with respect to “Why did you cover this election?” and “Why did you make such a big deal out of this election?” and “We’re British and it doesn’t matter as much to us.” So there is a little bit of that sentiment in the air as well.

Brian:   Hmm. Very interesting. I would think that given the tightness, in terms of the relationship, in terms of them being an ally and the amount of money that exchanges hands and the things that we do together on the Security Council and the UN, I don’t… To me, it doesn’t surprise me that they may be a little more interested than some people would think.

Bill:      Yeah. Well, I’m interested in just how their reactions are because we are obviously one of their bigger allies and there is a lot of money that changes hand. London is a huge financial center and just the trade that goes back and forth between the two nations is enormous. So… And I think just the money that was spent in elections over here like we do. So it’s a little bit different. I think they see America as a little bit peculiar in that sense, where just huge amounts of cash change hands as a result of the political process.

Brian:   Well then, that’s something that we have in common with them then because you and I always talk about how peculiar it is that we spend that kind of money electing our public officials. And I would say especially when you look at everything Bill, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy—everything that the people in some parts of New York and New Jersey—what they’re still subject to. No power, lines for food, lines for gas, little if any water, cold temperatures—snow moving into some regions—so that when you look at what would it have taken to make sure that we would have been… a few more precautions in order… But we were busy spending all that money on purchasing commercials as opposed to putting precautions in place.

Bill:      Yeah, nothing about Sandy over here, oddly enough. It’s not really in the news, just… Syria is in the news, oddly enough. It’s one of the main things that they’re thinking about so… What makes news is really interesting compared to what makes news… I watched TV the other day. We haven’t watched much television here but interestingly Brian, right after this segment on “Did the BBC spend too much time in America?” there was a bit of a segment on… where a BBC journalist was driving one of these double decker buses and ran over some cones—some parking cones—and so that created a big to-do and they wonder why the BBC looks to America for news. Their second story was someone ran over some cones with one of these double decker buses and so I would imagine maybe we are an exciting country, I guess, if your second story is a BBC reporter running over cones.

Brian:   Were they like super big cones or…? Were they a special color? Was it like a…?

Bill:      They were just these little cones that—these sort of parking cones or cones that you would drive a car fast around through or a trial track or something.

Brian:   Okay. Did the cone union protest? Were there marches of cones on Parliament to protest that they had been treated that shabbily or what…? What was the deal around it?

Bill:      They were Her Majesty’s cones.

Brian:   Okay. Well I stand corrected. I’m sorry. That… Well, yeah. I guess that would be big, breaking news. What else is going on other than traffic cones, Syria and everything you’ve got going on in the studio? What’s something that you learned, Bill, that you didn’t know when you landed? What have you learned since you got there?

Bill:      Well, I think British people in general are very proper—one of the things that I have come to expect. We went, as I said, to a soccer game—it’s called football over here of course—but it’s called soccer back home. And the Arsenal team—of course my son Nick is an Arsenal fan—and we expected hooliganism on some level. Of course we wore Arsenal gear just to see if someone wanted to punch us in the head but oddly enough, there was a very well organized [inaudible 0:24:26.8] is a little different than sitting in the Heirloom Café. Sometimes you’ll sit in the Heirloom Café and you’ll hear French spoken or German or something but four different languages in this little area that we were in so folks from all over Europe to these games and they… Really the truth is—there are a lot of bobbies here—a lot of police and so the security is high but the truth is everyone gets along quite well and I also see London as a city that’s very cosmopolitan. There are all kinds of minorities that get along well, at least on the surface, with your standard British stock. So what I’ve seen thus far is very nice.

Brian:   All right. Very cool. Well, I would say then as far as your trip goes, everything you’ve done in the production house, everything that you’ve learned from the people—the one question that I have is with all that said, do they have a preparedness mindset? Have you learned from people—when people go, “Oh Bill, what is it that you do?” and you talk about—as I’m sure you have—Solutions From Science and backup solar generators and emergency food and the like, do you find the people of England have that same—I don’t want to say prepper mindset—but that same preparedness mindset or do you think they just… it kind of flies under their radar?

Bill:      Really government does take care of you in so many ways here and you get that with the BBC government or you get that with the underground—the tube—the transportation system and with healthcare and so forth. So you really have got a lot of governments here to help you and I think that that really… That mindset sort of is the main mindset in London. It’s certainly the mindset in Germany where I was last year at this time as well so I think that’s probably representative of Europe in general—somebody else is going to take care of you.

Brian:   So in other words Bill, you could say that given the outcome of the election and the number of people that voted the way they did, that that’s kind of like a prevailing attitude here as well—at least amongst a large percentage of our population.

Bill:      No, that’s very astute Brian. I think that that’s the point that I was making about what I’m calling the 67%. Most people just think that someone else is going to help you and that there is really no need and life will always go along pretty much the way it’s always gone on.  And unfortunately, I think that will even be the case for New Yorkers 30 days from now. People forget we have a fast paced, very quick moving society and everyone is working and then doing things just bang, bang, bang, bang. And so there’s not much time for planning. Of course you and I would make the case that the time we make for planning is some of the very best time that we can have and we talk about payoff in spades. Those that were prepared for Sandy were certainly much, much, much better off and in a position to help their neighbor, I might add, than those who thought that nothing would ever change.

Brian:   Yeah, and you know what Bill? It’s just heartbreaking. I saw a video report the other day of people that have come from New Orleans now to New York and said, “Hey, you helped us in our time of need so we’re going to go ahead and help you.” And although that’s very encouraging, there is an entire group of people now that think that the government should be doing that but when you look at volunteer groups, church organizations and just regular, good folks that are moving into areas in New Jersey and New York and helping people out there, that part is very inspiring. But it’s the flipside of the same coin. The other side is that people think the government should be doing it but the best progress being made Bill, in the aftermath of Sandy, is from people volunteering to go in and not just help their neighbors—unless you’re talking about neighboring states or neighboring regions of the country and then neighboring time zones—there are a lot of people moving into that area to help that have no government affiliation whatsoever.

Bill:      Yeah, that’s a wonderful thing. And let’s try to tie the two things together a little bit. We’re over here trying to convince people—through this trying to bring Henty alive and through this production—that history is important, that history is instructive, that we can learn from history. And so not only can we learn from history in this sort of greater sense but just… Look—Benjamin Franklin was talking at one time about “only fools refuse to consult history” so look about, look at Sandy, look at Katrina, look at some of the events that we’ve had and just say, “Man, do I want to consult that?” I mean that’s just as much a part of the historical landscape as Sir Francis Drake circumnavigating the globe, which is what we’re trying to tell the story of here.

And I think that we talk about history—when you do study history, when you love history, it humbles us in a sense Brian, really and it makes us realize that it’s not just us and it’s not just now—that there have been those that have gone there before, whether it’s historical figures long past or victims of Katrina and really, it’s a bit presumptuous for us to be existentialists and say, “Well, it’s just me now.” And so I find a lot of connections between what you’re saying and why we’re actually here to begin with.

Brian:   Well Bill, that’s why I have high hopes on a personal note. I have high hopes for the project that you’re working on now because I think we might have… And I had the opportunity yesterday to attend a Veterans celebration at my daughter’s school. You know they go in… If you’re a Veteran, you go in and they sing and they read stories and all the rest of this and it’s a tribute on Veteran’s Day. But I left kind of sad, thinking that there is an entire generation of people that don’t know some of those stories and that’s why I think what you’re doing now is going to be so cool. I can see Boy Scout troops and I can see large groups from all walks of life that are going to look at the project you’re working on and go, “Look, you kind of”—not encapsulated, although you did—but it’s kind of like a time machine, Bill.

And what you’re doing is that you’re not planting it in the ground hoping future generations open it up. You’re bringing stories of the past into a time where I think young human minds will really be able to benefit from it and you’re doing it—as it sounds to me and to be honest, I’m not privy to anything else other than what you’ve told me—but it sounds, with the accents and the actors and the energy and the passion, that you are bringing that time capsule into today so that folks that when the program comes out will be able to listen to it and there’s a chance that that lesson won’t fall away because you’re documenting it and keeping it alive in the minds of people listening and I think that’s pretty cool, to be honest.

Bill:      Well, thank you and it’s a good point that you make and I think… Listen, we’ve all been to school where history ends up being dates and dead guys. We’ve had teachers that have made something as wonderful as the past just boring and terrible. So our attempts here are something to… It’s really… It’s a couple-fold because we’re trying to bring it back and alive and make it fun and that’s for the younger crowd. But we’re also trying to do something that the thread of which runs a little bit deeper. Personally Brian, I think that history is so sort of politically correct in this sense that it’s become almost fiction. And so if you go to the average public school textbook, you’ll find largely fiction.

And it used to be this thing where Vladimir Ilyich Lenin had this idea where he said, “Well, if we take the… He who controls the present… If you can wrestle control of the present, you can wrestle control of the past. You can rewrite your history and therefore, you can send your children out into the future”—which was his point—knowing what their roots were, not knowing. And we all remember the story roots. We all have to remember what our roots are and the roots aren’t just genetic roots. I would like to think that our roots are bigger than that; more transcendent than that and that our roots are really spiritual, in a sense. And so I just see history as being—contemporary history—as being sort of cut loose from anything objective, from anything real and especially from anything transcendent or godly, which makes it basically propaganda today.

And I think what the listener has to take from this is if history becomes just a tool of the winner and it just becomes propaganda—sort of sanitized propaganda—what it does is reduce man from a creature—being made by God—to sort of a social animal and if that’s the case… If all man is is a social animal—fodder in a dialectic, historical process—if that’s all man is, it’s just a short train station away to Nazi Germany then, isn’t it? Because that was Hitler’s conception of people. So we went from having fun there to something very, very deep and really this project is about both of those things.

Brian:   Well, and it’s probably why you’re getting the energy you are from the actors. Well first getting the actors you are and then getting the energies from those actors because they have a sense of being a part, not just—as you said—how your present is going to change your past and then therefore your future. They’re getting a little bit of time travel on their own. They are able to bring the past into the present to make sure that the future doesn’t forget where we all come from. And that’s why I love the concept of what you’re doing. Let me ask you this before we get ready to run. Are you already envisioning in your mind the next one you’ll do?

Bill:      Well, yeah. Thanks for asking that and I think a lot of the actors—to tie that together again too—a lot of the actors are asking me that. They come in, they get inspired about these parts and they say, “Will you be doing another one?” I kind of want to be that people pleaser and say, “Yes, yes, yes.” Frankly, I’m not certain. I’ll have to… Once we get all this in the can, the hard job—as you know—is marketing all of this and figuring out a way to bring it alive to the consumer and making the sale so I guess the answer is really we’re at the mercy of the public if we can get the public to sort of say, “Yeah Bill, we agree with you. We think history should come alive and we think history is something worth inculcating. Good character-building, historical stories are something worth inculcating our children with.” If enough people agree with that boy, you’d better believe it—we’ll be back over here.

Brian:   Well, I would say Bill, that you’ve kind of gotten a peek into the future since we’re doing this whole time travel thing here. You’ve gotten a peek in the future that the actors are so fired up, right? Actors have their finger on the pulse of what the public is going to dig, right? I guess unless you’re doing like a—I don’t know—an Adam Sandler movie or something where you have no clue what the box office is going to be like. But that the actors are that fired up about what you’re doing, I think that bodes really well. I think when people listen to that…

And it’s odd. Soon as you were saying that, it made me think back sitting with my grandfather and watching Lawrence Welk or Guy Lombardo from Fire Island in New York—taking them back and keeping that whole sense of what was important to my grandfather alive. I think there are going to be all kinds of people that dig this and I think the litmus test already—the pre-litmus test—is that the actors do.

Bill:      Sure. And on another level, I think that it will be very easy for both you and I to gauge this since I’m really aiming this at my grandsons—Asa, Zaden—your son so very close to us. Where is the market? Well, it’s under our own roof so very often and so when my grandkids come I’ll let them listen to it and certainly your family will be listening to this.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      And we’ll be able to predict, I think—just by the responses that our own family has to it—just as to how well the whole thing will do.

Brian:   Very good. Well, I can hear it in your voice, my friend that it’s working out even better than you had first hoped and I think the listeners are going to appreciate it when they get to hear that. Bill, Jeremy and I are thinking that you get a little bit of time when you’re overseas on the account that we’re using and then it starts to fade because it sounds like we may begin to lose your voice. So how about we go ahead and wrap. Give us some final thoughts before we bring it back here to the states and then we’ll look forward to welcoming you back, I guess next week, in the studio live. But give us some final thoughts before we let you run.

Bill:      Well, just the final thoughts here Brian, that it’s probably MI6 that’s shortening our bandwidth on the film but no—after we get this in the can, we’ll just tell people we’re going to do a little bit of a treat for them. We’ve got something else up our sleeve for the following week. We’re going to Scrooby, a little bit north of here to sort of find out where Bradford and Brewster got their start, where the Pilgrims were worshiping and so forth.

Brian:   Oh cool.

Bill:      And then down to Plymouth where they left to sail to our country so I’m excited about this project but I’m also excited about visiting a part of England that’s very close to me and that’s where some of our forefathers… What were their thoughts? How did this whole thing originate? We wouldn’t be much if it wasn’t for the Mayflower bunch and so my heart is really with that—with the group of people. And so I’m on my way to go stand where they stood and stand on the great road north on the way to Edinborough and just relive some history on my own and with my son Nick.

Brian:   Very cool. Well, we hope you have a great time, as it sounds like you already are. And we’ll look forward to having you back in the states when you make it back. But congratulations again. I can’t wait to hear the program itself and have a great rest of your trip. To be able to stand there after all those years and be in that same launching place—not just physically Bill but psychologically and spiritually and the like—to look out over the vast expanse of the Atlantic and go, “Hey, you know what? I think I can do this.” I think that’s going to be really cool for you and Nick.

Bill:      Well, it is. The whole thing is humbling as well, as we said. And so I appreciate that Brian and I appreciate your time and for the listeners as well. [Inaudible 0:39:02.4] we have because it really is an unbelievable opportunity here and it’s been just a wonderful trip.

Brian:   Sounds good. Well Bill, travel safe my friend. I’m glad everything’s going great and we’re going to go ahead and wrap it from there. Ladies and gentlemen, you have been listening to a very special edition of Off The Grid News—the radio version of OffTheGridNews.com. Today Mr. Bill Heid is off the US grid. He was calling in from England. We really thank you for your time. We know how valuable it is and it’s truly an honor. Keep the emails coming. Keep the Facebook and the Tweets coming as well. Thank you so very much for spending a portion of your day with us here at Off The Grid News.

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