Hello, thanks for checking out the transcript for That Was Genius Episode 2: Touched by a Goddess.
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Sam: Did you get touched by a goddess?
Tom: I did with. But yes, she touched me and maybe look brawny. And my thighs have never looked so good. I've got a wonderful town now.
Sam: Well, you are a personal trainer in your day job, so I have absolutely no doubt.
Tom: I don't practice what I preach. That I've got very fat, very lazy on. I have horrible posture.
Sam: Marvelous e. There's nothing. There's nothing I can really say that is there. It's been a while since we actually saw each other. You know, the photos on your website could be several years old.
Tom: I found out from one kind, who I trained, that she was on tinder and she saw a picture of someone she knew very well. It was one of the best friends husbands on the photo he was using on tinder was actually one of their wedding photos where he put out his wife. Uh, classy. Stay classy.
Sam: Now, maybe actually a topic for an episode coming up. Sneaky historical sidelines. That's
Tom: no, no, that's good. Historical tinder dates. We could go for Cleopatra.
Sam: Oh, come on. Now, some blame tomorrow. Some blame to Marc Antony. Hello, Tom.
Tom: Hello, Sam. How are you?
Sam: I am very good. Thank you. How you doing this? Fine. Fine. Friday afternoon slash Morning.
Tom: I'm wonderful. I'm wonderful. It's definitely my evening. I'm fairly sure that
Sam: it's definitely my morning. I'm sat here in my pants as bloody per excellent during a snowy view out over Manchester.
Tom: Yeah, I can't say the same here. I'm looking out in the dark, but it has been a sunny day. It's been a sunny day out in New Zealand that you probably explain why it's my evening. Yes, I'm tuning in from New Zealand.
Sam: So for those who are new to this podcast, which is pretty much everyone, since this is probably gonna be episode number one, Um, this is that was genius. A podcast in which two men on different sides of the world, but united by a love of history surprise each other with a story about history. I am in the UK. Tom is in New Zealand. We are in many ways completely opposite people. He says, Tomato, I say tomato. Let's call the whole thing off for assemble. A group of bishops split our churches on result in 400 years of strife and socio economic deprivation.
Tom: I like it.
Sam: Did you like that?
Tom: They do say Tomato in New Zealand, though I think sorry to ruin it. Sorry to ruin it.
Sam: Shit Cut. It started again. It's
Tom: not all over again. So what's our topic for this first week? I think we chose it last week, didn't we?
Sam: Yeah. So last week we did a pilot which may or may not ever get released, and you probably won't ever hear if you're listening to this. But we decided that the topic for this week is going to be. You wreak her moments. So the form that's pretty simple. We each take it in turns to tell each other historical story or and wonder we interrupt. We swear a bit. It basically becomes a fantastic podcast. On this week. We are doing eureka moments or moments when people said,
Tom: Oh, excellent. Is it worth defining Eureka moments? Because I I found this quite difficult, Sam, because I was thinking about Eureka moments, and there was some quite well known ones on, but I wanted to be a bit more creative because we've all heard of, For example, Isaac Newton Hemmingway sitting under the apple tree on Apple falls on his head and he goes, Oh, gravity, which call me a cynic. But I doubt that's how it happened. I'm sure he was pondering the concept of gravity long before an apple fell on his head. So it's Are we okay if we broaden the definition slightly, make it so it's, you know, sudden moments of inspiration or discovery. Intuition, I suppose. Is that OK?
Sam: That's absolutely fine. I feel obliged to say that that is absolutely fine. Because from the fact that you're already three minutes into the podcast looking for loopholes that no stick rigidly to the rules, this might fuck up this entire thing. Absolutely. You go for it.
Tom: I haven't got anything prepared if we don't do that so that that's good. I'm glad to reflect. A Bally reflects Will host. Thank you.
Sam: My pleasure. The flip side of this is that I'm gonna make you go first.
Tom: Oh, no, that's all right. That's quite fine. I'm quite happy to go first. Did incidental Sam, do you know the origins of the word eureka?
Sam: I do. But let's fill people in
Tom: X. I think we should I think we should just
Sam: No, I tell a bloody life because I know about the thing in the bath, but I don't know why, he shouted, Eureka! I don't know why that word.
Tom: Let's take ourselves back to I think it was 1/3 century BC in Syracuse, which was in Sicily on it was sort of independent. I think it's more the Greek state than a Roman state. We're actually talking about Archibald Mendez or Artoo to his friends on Dhe, since the third century B. C has been bastardized into common parlance is Arkham Edie's. But I prefer to call them. Archie was
Sam: actually Archie.
Tom: No, it wasn't That's that's silly. I just think it reads better as our party. Mendez. It's a sort of, you know, when you know when you first read Harry Potter and you have no idea how to pronounce Miami. Yeah, and yeah, it's a little bit like that when you read our comedians for the first time. It looks like Archie Medevaced, isn't it? So are comedians, was a great mathematician of ancient romantic grease on dhe. Hey was well known, has been a mathematician in an engineer on the king off Syracuse had a bit of a problem. He was in a bit of a pickle. He had asked for a crown to be made of gold, and he had a sneaking suspicion that the chaps that were making the crown had made some adjustments to it, made the gold less pure by including some silver, and that basically pinched some gold on DSO. Thinking wanted a way of discerning Whether or not that I've been the case, so are comedians was pondering this. Andi hey, sort of went and had a bath, and he was sort of playing with his rubber duckies and putting a load of bubble bath. And he was burned all over his face and pretending to be father Christmas, like we all do on Dhe realized that he had displaced a lot of water. And then he thought, Wow, There you go. That's it. That's my eureka moment on the water Displacement Could be my tool for working out the mass off the crown is on. I'm gonna be honest with you now, Sam. I don't know very much about physics, chemistry or fluid mechanics, so I'm not gonna try and explore this anymore or explain how water displacement can allow you to establish whether or not metal has been made less pure. But we'll leave that you can go and research that yourself and try and comprehend it. But our comedians, when he works this out, he jumps up and shouts Eureka! Which is ancient Greek for I've got it and then, like your eye or any normal person would do. He decides to celebrate the discovery by streaking through the streets of Syracuse.
Sam: To be fair, though, the Greeks didn't really wear many clothes. Anyway. I've seen a few Greek pots in my time on dhe. If there's two things the Greeks love, it's not wearing any clothes and shagging goats whilst they're not wearing any clothes, that is, that doesn't apply to modern Greek people. By the way, I'm not being racist. This is purely the ancients
Tom: peeling. The agents loved a goat and love to be the nudity. So you might be right, Sam, you might. It might have been not quite as novel as it might be. For example, in Newcastle two in the morning, on a cold Friday night on someone streets streaking through the streets,
Sam: we've all been the examining fluid Dynamics in an alleyway, Newcastle at two o'clock in the morning Friday top eyes placing fluids all over our shoes along with
Tom: Excellent. So like with the story of Isaac Newton, I'm I'm not convinced there are comedians actually discovered it that suddenly, but it's it's a good storytelling tool. And then these eureka moments have been used in a lot of stories. Going back to her mind if you, um if Reggie Harry Potter books haven't you, Sam,
Sam: You know, I'm ashamed to say on almost like you're proud to say that I have never read a Harry Potter book.
Tom: Oh, dear,
Sam: I am so culturally blind Tom Isil Greece for the first time last weekend,
Tom: out in May.
Sam: But don't don't bother explaining the backstory of this, because I know that most of the listeners are not a zoo ignorant, Threatening says, I
Tom: am totally credits. I like that on one of the books, one of the early, but I think it's the third book, the Chamber of Secrets, or I'm gonna get some Harry Potter enthusiasts being very unhappy. If I'm wrong with that, it might be the second book. There was a moment in there where her mind. He realizes that the battle ISC is is killing lots of people in Hogwarts, and she has. Her Eureka moments is very, very common in literature because it allows for a dramatic turn of events on that. I think that's kind of what's being used here with our comedians. And with Isaac Newton, you know, it's it's a sort of storytelling tour.
Sam: I am glad that you brought it back to history from Harmony because I would probably have raised issue if, in a history based podcast, your eureka moment off choice to discuss was the Chamber of Secrets.
Tom: Yeah. No, no, don't worry. Don't worry. We are. We are getting onto. I do, So I just like taking my time. Sam, I like taking the scenic route to my my story. So, Sam, now, this is where the link comes in. I decided I would go to the from our comedians and h increase. I would go even more ancient Greece on. I would go back, back and further back to the eighth century B C. To the second oldest book in Western literature. Do you know what that is? Some
Sam: I have no idea. I'm trying to think of a comedy book to think off, but I can't find one
Tom: said right now, something with a rude title that so it's actually the Odyssey, and that will give you clues to what's the oldest book, which is the iliac by both by the Bard Homer and also yet back in the eighth century BC. I think it was probably sunk, not written, because it comes from a long tradition, as far as I understand. Anyway, The Odyssey has lots off sort of eureka moments in the final Chapters used its literary tools from just a dramatic finish, and I'll go into a bit. I'll give you a bit of background to the Odyssey, just for those who have read it and forgotten all those who have never read it. So The Odyssey is the story of Odysseus returning from the Trojan Wars, and we have all heard about trading mortar migrants, details on that on Dhe he's got. He was at the Trojan Wars for 10 years, and it took him 10 years to get home, largely his own fault because he pissed off Poseidon. And if there's one thing I've learned from reading the Odyssey it's Don't piss off Poseidon. You know
Sam: there is the God of the Sea.
Tom: Absolutely, absolutely any piss of Poseidon by poke in one of his sons in the eye and blinding him just to, you know, make things worse. That son was Polly FEMA's, I think policy Miss only had one Ike's heaves a sigh crops. So you know, the only had one eye to lose on. Odysseus goes and pokes it out. So he takes 10 years to get home to Ithaca, which is in Greece. On when he gets home to Ithaca, he finds out his wife, Penelope, and his only son, Telemachus, are having some real problems with a bunch of suitors who are basically basically taken over. It issues his home andan eight in all of its wine, drinking all of his wine on basically trying to bunk Penelope. So it's all a bit of a pickle, Really, Sam, that's a bit
Sam: forward, isn't it? That's a little bit rude. Not only am I going to come and try and seduce you, but I'm going to do it whilst it's camping out in your house, eating all of your food?
Tom: Absolutely. That
Sam: doesn't scream in future husband material, does it?
Tom: No, no, it's no, it's not very chivalrous. I don't think it's not so these suitors just being a pain in the ass. Basically, they think that this uses dead because he's been away for 20 years, and these aren't that concerned. He's he's gone. A lot of the other heroes of the Trojan will have returned successfully, while most successful actual mom died. But anyway, let's jump to when he arrives in Ithaca, having had lots of adventures for 10 years. So he arrives in Ithaca, washed up on the shore, largely thanks to Athena. So he's pissed off Poseidon. But Athena, the goddess, is on his side. So he does have one of the gods on its side, which is good. Andi, He goes to the hut off his old swine hood. Hume es es Onda dishes, pretends that it's just the beggar it is, pretends it is what it doesn't let anyone know who he is. And this is where the good revelations and the Eureka moments come from. Whilst he's at this hut who turns up. But Telemachus, his only son, who's just narrowly avoided being killed by the suitors so they really are a rather horrible bunch. Sam. What
Sam: a bunch of wankers. Where on earth if you wanted to marry a woman, would you go out of your waist, Try and kill her son? I scream marriage material to me as if eating out of house and home wasn't bad enough.
Tom: I know, I know. And they're bonking all of you a lot of his and her mates as well. So all the maids in the house they're joining in the fun it's just is chaos. And quite frankly, it's chaos. And there's only one man that we want to come sort out. There's only one man who can sort out and his name is a dis use.
Sam: I was gonna go, No skipping a bit. I'll edit that
Tom: out. You're gonna go Mr T. Anyway, So we've got the first revelation, the first moment where Odysseus reveals himself to his son, Telemachus. And it's a It's a rather emotional moment, and Athena is there to lend a helping hand. She does. It's a lot on the Odyssey. Let me read it. As she spoke, Athena touched him with her golden one. At this year's first, she clothed him in a fresh cloak and tunic, then restored his stature and youthful vigor. His bronze town returned. His jaw filled out in the beard, grew dark on his chin. Her work done. Athena disappeared, and the dishes went back into the hut. His son gave him a look of amazement, then withdrew his eyes for fear that he might be a court and said with words that were Winged, Stranger, you're not the same now as before anyone. There's a revelation of this year's soon points out. I'm not God, actually. I'm your dad's Telemachus. Dad's home, eh? Go on! They put they have a bit, they have a big cuddle. And you know, Odysseus does dad like things like blow raspberries on Telemachus, his stomach and all that sort of thing.
Sam: He's been gone for 20 years. How old is absolutely come here. 30 year old son. Let me blow raspberries on you and change your nappy
Tom: raspberries on your hairy stomach filled with lint. Yes.
Sam: This does explain why the suitors might have been trying to kill him. Yeah, yeah, something of something of a leech it.
Tom: Hey, no. Still haven't got a job still left home. So anyway, you have the Tellem IQ, Telemachus Revelation and the two of them that make a bit of a plan. They basically decide they're gonna go give all the suit of six of the best they're gonna go and they're gonna sort them all out, Which is far sunk. Seems pretty good. So they decided. Dishes decides he's gonna disguise himself as a beggar, and he's gonna go into his old home on just scout around, sniff around, find out what's going on, find out, find out who's good. Final was bad, and then it killed them all. Regardless, it isn't. Actually what happens
Sam: somewhat point the Segway. The story Let me kill you on. Anyway, we're gonna do a little bit of an assessment on you.
Tom: You're absolutely right. And I've got another good, quite this is. Here we go. There, several. Here we get Athena now appeared before Odysseus on urged him to go around collecting scraps from the suitors and so learned to distinguish the good from the bad. Though this did not mean that in the end she was to save a single one from destruction. She was gonna die anyway. It didn't matter. They were ruthless. They were absolutely
Sam: also I have to say all this effort feel has gone to touching him with a magic wand, making him or beautiful again. And all this is just gonna grow is bared out right away again. Dress up is a bigger again and start off back home. I think given the she's just performed a miracle on him that seems somewhat ungrateful.
Tom: Absolutely. I mean, she does this a lot of things, but actually it's actually a very temporary spell. She does a lot of sort of turning up in. People's dreams are whispering in their ears. He doesn't honor this stuff, but I particularly
Sam: so do I.
Tom: You with you one now? Yep. Where the tide. So we have a Really I like this encounter sound. This is an account of the chap called Milan Thea's who also you is technically one of Odysseus is on servants on Bill Anthea sees the bigger heart. The fellow cried One villain leading another. A case of birds of the feather Tell me, you miserable swine owed. Where are you taking his dirty pig of yours is nauseated, bigger and plate liquor at the feast Just the sort to stand scratching his back against the door post, begging for scraps. I never asked him for swords and cauldrons. I love that. That's that's a good insult, isn't it? That's that's a cracking put down. I like that. Put him in its place. Milan Theus. Little dismal. Anthea Snow. That Vicious is gonna give him a bit of the and, uh, he's gonna He's gonna give him a usually give him one
Sam: quite right too. Picking on the homeless like that
Tom: absolutely is gonna get a knuckle sandwich or two. When it comes to it, we have another little revelation. So we get August the hound soon after this. So when a dish is about the end to the house, now goes his old hound, who again must be about 20 years old,
Sam: if not more,
Tom: if not more so. August The Herald or sitting on a I know the the poor thing has been left. It's not being cared for. You starve any sitting on a mound of dung outside the building. But August recognizes that this is just raises an eyebrow and gives a smile, but hasn't got the energy to run up to him. So that's probably the least dramatic of the Eureka moments when someone realizes who Odysseus is.
Sam: I'm not sure we construct to allowing a eureka moment.
Tom: There could be no way, Camino. Really. Sorry. Disappointing. Sorry. Poor August.
Sam: I feel sorry for August. Poor old might know teeth.
Tom: Yeah, I do as well. I mean it, to be honest with you. I mean, his choice to sit on the dung was probably his. So there is an element of him needing to take responsibility for his life.
Sam: I mean, dogs do love done
Tom: that. They love they love for
Sam: Yeah, the air Fox poo particularly. Oh, my God, if you don't, if you ever come across a dog who's rolled in Fox, it is just the worst smell in the world. But they do it with such a massive grin on their face. They're so they're so proud. And they just want to share their This is like a real eureka moment for a dog is discovering that fox poo is Rollerball in there so excited? It's a reverse eureka moment because they have a eureka moment. Run naked through the streets and then you have to give them a bath.
Tom: You like nice life. I once when I was in India, I once saw a stray dog attempt to hump a straight
Sam: needs must.
Tom: There was there was no Yeah, absolutely. There's no sort of beautiful misty sunrise over the Ganges for May. Now I was watching dogs. Hunter
Sam: takes everything in Newcastle.
Tom: We? Yeah, Yeah. Nice. So we've got a nice little moment here with another beggar called Iris who turns up at the hall as well and additions. I mean again, Iris doesn't realize that this year's is that this year, so he starts picking on him or what? A mistake of the maker. And so we basically get an opportunity where one of the one of the worst of the suitors decides. All right, let's settle this with a fight. Go on, then, you beggar who happens to be this year's have a little scrap with Iris, and there's a nice description here, but I like they all approved of his words, So this is tucked up his rags around his loins and bared his fine massive thighs. His broad shoulders in his chest and brawny arms were now revealed. Athena herself stood by and filled out the limbs of the shepherd of the people. As a result, all the suitors were lost in amazement in significant glances of comments were exchanged and that she is again, you know, just given a little bit of help. Just making this thighs look nice. Filling out his shoulders make him look good
Sam: these days. Paying homeless people to fight each other is frowned upon. Yes, The Greeks had a very strange moral code, didn't they?
Tom: Absolutely, Absolutely. Wasn't. I think you're absolutely right. That wasn't Every YouTube channel was a website like, 10 years ago. That was pretty repulsive.
Sam: There was. And I can't I can't remember because I was just thinking about this. And I can't remember if it actually existed, which I think it did, or whether it was used as a whether it's part of story line for a TV series.
Tom: I think I should Sorry.
Sam: I think it might be both.
Tom: I okay. You think I mean, but anyway, for what was supposed to be like hide podcast, I think we should probably never relevant topic. So So we have way now. No additions has got lovely. Lovely on, Sam. Well, let's be honest. We all like to admire another man, Stites. We don't really like to admit it, but we've all done it. We've all seen another man size and Oh, yes. Good, good, lovely, lovely quartz. So we get this till we get this, like beggar turf war, then we get another revelation. This is another good ones. This is I'm not pronounce the name runs You're eclair Who's a disease is old maid on by all accounts on old lady by now. So I think he may well have brought up a dizzy issue had been like a wet nurse. From what them that issue of says on Dhe. She notices that it's Odysseus when she's washing his feet on that sees a scar that only had issues would have because it was from a boar hunt when he was younger on DDE. What would you do, Sam, if you know someone who's ah loving made of your family you haven't seen for 20 years suddenly discovers you, do you Would you presumably give Rog?
Sam: Well, obviously I would. But I'm predicting, since this is a Greek epic that he either kills her or turns her into some kind of animal
Tom: could not quite that bad. But he's really rather nasty. Sir is not the nicest person to her nurse. He said, Do you want to ruin me? You who suckled me at your own breast? I'm indeed home after 20 years of grief in trouble. But since the God has revealed it to you, keep your mouth shut and let not a soul in the house learn the truth. Otherwise I tell you plainly and you know I make no idle threats. But if the gods deliver these find suitors into my hands, I won't spare you. Though you're my own nurse on the day when I put the rest of the maze in my palace to death. Well, hold on. There might Well, with this year, So I think you've got a different Reacted a bit much. I'm not sure that was a proportionate Medicis. We then get their cool moment where Odysseus plots to kill all the suitors. So he's got a little bit of help from some of his. From some result, loyal servants who shut the doors and make sure the armory is locked so that suitors can't go and get themselves on.
Sam: This is the montage in the film version, isn't it? This is the I'm preparing skyfall
Tom: always just leaving that the bit we always used to like in 18. Yeah, it's that bit it is. And so we we get the moment with the boat so we get a challenge laid down which of the suitors can in string a dis uses old bow on, then fire an arrow through 12 ax hits and they all try they fucking up. Telemachus gets closest cause hey, he's a disease is Sonny's guys. He's got good genetics, Got lovely legs himself.
Sam: The family thought,
Tom: Sammy you absolutely. On dso eventually addition it says, or what can I have a go? And all the suitors go puffed You're you're a little beggar, but lo and behold, the strings of both fires it through It doesn't sell himself with just firing it through the access he decides. Now it's time. And so we get this kill bill moment where just violence is let loose and they're about 100 suitors. I think they were slightly over 100 suitors on Telemachus, Odysseus, Andi, I think that's a couple of their little servants get involved as well. Just go fuckin ape ships and they go crazy and they just kill everyone. That's not really relevant to a eureka moment. But it's fun because we because we don't like the suit, is do they sound like a right bunch of pompous prats? And then we get the final one. We get the final revelation that the 4th 1 that I've touched discussed there are a few others, by the way, he reveals himself to a few of his some servants. And by the way, when I say reveal himself, I can hear you sniggering Sam. I think this isn't This isn't our comm. Edie's okay.
Sam: He shows of his golden one, doesn't
Tom: reveal himself
Sam: not just got fantastic thighs.
Tom: Telemachus, have a look at this. Oh, God.
Sam: No again, Dad.
Tom: It was like
Sam: all those on the day photos from when we were younger in the seventies.
Tom: Oh, yeah. Or the eighties when everyone had short shorts. Real short shorts.
Sam: Yeah, My mom's proudest photo in our house is a photo of May, about three years old, completely naked from the waist down on a beach in France, with a baguette in each hand wearing nothing but a T shirt, a sun hat.
Tom: Well, that sounds for it to sound. That sounds like a bit of French art.
Sam: Yes. Yes, it is. On A LL. Visitors get shown it
Tom: it Is it big? Is it about six foot wide and six foot tall in the hallway?
Sam: Well, it's not that big. I was only two or three years old. Very good, but still generous. Very good, lads.
Tom: So we get the final revelation, which is where Medicis introduces himself to Penelope reveals himself to Penelope, his wife. I should actually point out also that he his infallible proof of this is when he points out that the bed that they used to sleep, it was made out of an olive tree that was still planted. So that's his bullets. Sort of secret. Bit of knowledge. That was the sort of eureka moment, Penelope. Yeah, It sounds like a nice piece of furniture does, presumably still growing. I mean, you could maybe sort of pick up, pick an olive in your sleep and just have a chew
Sam: eyes. It's got it's got stones living in
Tom: twirling through the shop. How It was a good idea at the time, having a live tree for a bed, but I went to school, will start running over here, but and anyway, so we get this boat, we get this moment, I'll go go over again at his words, and these began to tremble on the heart melted, and she realized it had given her infallible proof. Bursting into tears, she ran up to it did Odysseus threw her arms around him, threw her arms around his neck and kissed his head. There we get there. Is that the beautiful final moment? The sort of culmination of the of the Odyssey where poor older this year's finally gets home? Having killed a few suitors on the way, I had some lots of adventures. So there you go, something that was my my Siri's of literary eureka moments from the second oldest text in Western literature.
Sam: I like that. And and from Harry Potter, a cz well, something for the King.
Tom: Absolutely. You learned something about Harry Potter when I said when I said earlier in podcast about not knowing how to pronounce the Miami, there wasn't mine. A hesitation wasn't there, and you just sort of went the extra five. If I play along, nobody's gonna quest that I will never read. Harry Potter isn't
Sam: my any name from Greek literature.
Tom: I think it is. I couldn't tell you where I'll be perfectly honest with you, but Yeah, I said, as far as I'm aware it is. And there are a lot of other ones. I'm trying to think of one other one that came across when Severus Severus,
Sam: Ron Ron from the Rania. See that famous Greek epic
Tom: he was. I thought Ryan was one of the gods. Got wrong. God of Ginger's.
Sam: Oh, nice God of the sun rise.
Tom: How about you? That's good. That's good, eh? So you have several several snaps? Never. Severus was a Roman name. There was some emperors of Rome course. Severus.
Sam: Marvelous. Bringing the ancient to the modern. So that's a great as neatly from the old to the new. And I'm gonna do exactly the same, Tom, because I'm going to talk to you today about Charles Goodyear on the completely accidental invention of rubber. You know about rubber, Don't you Tell me if you've heard of rubber,
Tom: I have. And I'm also making the connection between rubber and Goodyear. Is that a connection? The organ, Um
Sam: Well, actually, you know what? It's not a connection. No,
Tom: is it not? So this is nothing to do with the tires.
Sam: No, we'll come to this sort of at the end of the story. This is the end of the story. Charles Goodyear had nothing to do with Goodyear tires. Goodyear tires were named in honor of Charles Goodyear on the reason will get to know a bit more about that is or the reason that there's kind of a loose connection there. Good yet very successful company. A very big company. Charles Goodyear. Absolutely king. Useless businessman, but very, very keen on rubber. So I'm gonna take you back to the early 18 hundreds. Yes, very keen on rubber. There are plenty of jokes coming. Don't you worry. Yeah, s so I'm gonna take you back to really the early to mid 18 hundreds. The 18 twenties in the 18 thirties, when rubber as this kind of tree sap that comes out of trees in the Amazon and rain forests around the world was first being discovered and people loved it. It seemed like the wonder material off. It's time you could turn it into into boots. You could turn it into a life vest. It was waterproof. It was stretching really magical, magical stuff. People were going bloody mad for rubber on. American investors were putting millions and millions of dollars into rubber factories, rubber manufacturing, rubber design. The problem is that rubber waas shite, it waas useless Tom.
Tom: That's disappointing.
Sam: It is. The problem is that everyone was so keen on Robert that they never really gave it time and rub. It works really well in spring and autumn, but if you hung around long enough to watch rubber in the summer or winter, you would realize that it had some really quite serious problems because it melted at more or less warm day temperatures on it collapsed and crumbled in winter so you could have a rubber life vest and many ships did on. It would work fantastically well, as long as your ship sunk between the months off March and June or October on November, any other time of bizarre. Yeah, any other time of the year, your life vest would either disintegrate into the sea underneath you, or it will melt around your waist on in case you as you went down into Davy Joneslocker. Same with boots. Same with pretty much anything else. Rubber was being used for.
Tom: On the plus side, you'd look a bit like a gimp when you drowned.
Sam: You. Did you go down looking hot
Tom: looking? Yeah, absolutely. Looking. A little bit like 50 shades of grey. Yeah, indeed. Have you read that, Sam? Have you read 50 shades of Grey?
Sam: No. No, I haven't. And even if I had, I would deny it.
Tom: No, I haven't either. Have you watched the films? No, no, no. I have.
Sam: That was That was a conversational cold attack, wasn't it way. So what we're gonna talk today about is the invention off a better kind of rubber? Because Charles Goodyear bloody loved the stuff. He first discovered rubber in about 18. 34 on Dhe. He got interested in it. He thought this seems like a really good material. He could use this for all kinds of things. And so he went on a bit of a tour of rubber factories. He, by the way, was an engineer at this time. He was making agricultural implements, knew absolutely nothing about rubber, but thought this is the future. And he thought This is the future, as everyone else who had invested in rubber was thinking, Oh, God, we've lost millions upon millions of dollars. But then child could hear was a terrible businessman. So he visited this factory in New York that was making rubber life vests on the factory owner was quite open with him on told him that Robert was awful, that it wasn't working, that he was losing millions upon millions of dollars. He took him to a warehouse full of life vest that just melted into a puddle on a warm day. Really, anyone with any sense whatsoever would have been put off by this. But Charles Goodyear being the king useless businessman, he wasthe, thought, I'm having me some of this on. He became an absolute rubber obsessive. It should be noted, by the way, that the factory he visited was in the process of hiding tens of thousands of dollars worth of ruined rubber materials in a giant hole so as not to scare off its investors. Nice. Charles Goodyear looked past all this on DA, decided to invest literally everything the family had ever earned into rubber and making it a better material that could withstand heat and could withstand cold.
Tom: Sorry to stop you there, Sam. But this this giant, this giant hole full of rubber. Has anyone tried toe? Yes, you know, get back up again because surely that would be the biggest bouncy ball in the world.
Sam: Well, it would be, except that it's probably melted or disintegrated by now because it's setting his old rubber. Ducky doesn't like heat or cold.
Tom: Such a ship product. Yeah, I think
Sam: it's such a shit.
Tom: Wasn't listening, Sam. Sorry. Yeah, let's say that
Sam: that's quite all
Tom: right. Very, very
Sam: few people did
Tom: say this shit product. Sorry, I wasn't paying attention. A carry on.
Sam: So anyway, Charles Goodyear spends the next five years absolutely ruining his family's life. And when I say ruining his family's life, I mean absolutely ruining it. It's never a good thing when you discover your father is into Rubber Tom. It's even worse when it's in a mad scientist way rather than in a CD back
Tom: alleyway. Is it worth some? I have eyes it I'm not. Yes, I mean, maybe, I don't know. I've not experienced either. Maybe there's a listener, Sam, who has experienced both and they can. They can maybe call in.
Sam: Yes. Hey, listeners, do you live in pampas grass fronted suburbia? Does your father like to disappear the weekends and come back with slight rushing around the neck? If so, get in touch with us at that was genius on Facebook.
Tom: Your pool balls keep going. Missing. Well, that answers the phone. Is he always muffled Lord? Oh.
Sam: Huh? Does he break into a cold sweat in that scene in Pulp Fiction? Yeah,
Tom: that's good. Scene
Sam: is a great scene. Anyway. Charles Goodyear really bloody like rubber. He spent literally everything that the family had ever earned on putting shit into rubber and mixing it to try and get it to stay in shape. It should be added. Charles Goodyear was not a chemist. He hadn't got a flipping clue what he was doing, so he would grab anything he could find, mix it into rubber and try and make it work. Everything from lime to paint stripper to dies, everything. He sold his children's school textbooks to buy more rubber with. He ruined everything.
Tom: That's better than I thought it was for you to say sold his children for a moment. There I thought You gonna tell me? He sold? It's
Sam: still quite, but But nearly Hey sold all of the family furniture. He ruined every pot pan and teacup. They owned mixing rubber. He was sent to debtor's prison for not paying his taxes, not paying his debts. Hey, smuggled rubber into prison and spent his time in prison playing with rubber in his cell.
Tom: Now I've never been in prison, Sam and I don't think you have either. But I imagine showing an interest in rubber objects probably isn't the best thing to do as a young, vulnerable
Sam: mail. Well, quite. Although to be honest, I imagine people are probably scared of him because if they got too close, he'd have tried to turn them into better rubber. But remarkably, through absolute chance, he did manage to make some improvements to rubber. Over the five years where he was selling the family silverware in spending time in prison, he did manage to make it a bit prettier. He managed to make it a bit smoother, but he didn't manage to make it less shit and melty. There are no words for how much this guy absolutely loved rubber, itwas his thing. He waas Mr Rubber,
Tom: you've got to admire his persistence. Seven year. I mean, it is clearly sees potential in this.
Sam: Really? Absolutely did. Yeah, and And he did have some business success along the way. He designed a rubber mail bag, which he sold to the U. S. Postal service, which on hot days melted over all of the mail. Uh, on the times when he was really destitute and needed money to buy rubber, he got by by getting a job in a rubber factory. I mean, he really, really loved Rubber Tom there. There are no words for how much Charles Goodyear loved rubber. I mean, God, he loved Robert.
Tom: He loved rubber. Yeah.
Sam: In fact, he loved it so much. It said that he was flailing around madly one day in a shop whilst giving a sales pitch on unsurprisingly rubber. This was in 18 39 and the story goes that lost. He was flailing around. He accidentally spilled some rubber, which he mixed with sulfur onto a hot stove on dhe. At this point, there was a eureka moment. Fantastic, because he didn't want to lose his rubber samples, so he scraped it off the stove on discovered that actually, it hadn't melted. What actually happened is that it? It's gone hard and completely by accident. After five years of trying, he had spilt some rubber onto a stove, would have been mixed with a little bit of sulfur, and he had created the perfect rubber. It no longer melted in, no longer cracked. It was smooth. It could be easily molded and designed into things. And most of all, it was really cheap to improve it. That's fantastic. He nearly killed himself along the way. He made himself sick several times from inhaling noxious fumes, its oldest kid's textbooks. But he had made fucking rubber, and he made it good.
Tom: You know, sometimes, Sam, you're just gonna make that commitment. Having you, you know, you gotta be willing to destroy everything. Everything you hold dear,
Sam: sometimes you do
Tom: in a desperate attempt to prove all you doubters wrong.
Sam: Yeah, in the quest to make a better welly yet, there can be no sacrifice too. Great.
Tom: That's Yeah, that Q Elton John, that's that is an excellent story. Where did you find this one? Outside. Because that's an excellent eureka moment. I've certainly never heard off.
Sam: You know what? I don't really know. I've heard about it some point in the past and thought that it was a great story, so I did a bit more reading into it. The story isn't quite done yet. Carry on. It's not a good story for the remainder of it. The conclusion is, Ah, I'll be honest. It's something of an anti climax, but it does go to show what an absolutely terrible businessman Charles Goodyear, was, despite his moment of luck. The process, he named it Balkanization after Vulcan, the Roman god of fire on Till
Tom: it comes Full Circle
Sam: King Circle, doesn't it? On the process is still used today. Everything that we make out of rubber today from tires toe rubbers is made by balkanizing rubber by heating, sulfur infused rubber. And so you'd think that, given that it's such an important invention today, it's used in so many things that he would have made an absolute fortune off it, wouldn't you?
Tom: You'd hope.
Sam: Well, no, Tom, No. I have mentioned several times that Charles Goodyear waas an absolutely terrible businessman. Andi, this is just how much of a bad businessman he waas He sent samples of his new mega rubber toe, all of the big rubber manufacturers, to help drum up sales and interest. He was hoping he could, you know, sell the license to make it. Unfortunately, he sent it without any kind of paperwork, without establishing any kind of Peyton's anywhere outside the U. S. A. On
Tom: Ah, a
Sam: couple of the British engineers he sent it to very quickly noticed that there was a yellow tinge to it. And so he done something with sulfur. Reverse engineered it on, painted it throughout Europe on most of the rest of the world. Goodyear sued. Goodyear lost. Do
Tom: you know why Goodyear lost
Sam: again? This is It's kind of a sign, No, but this is how much of a useless businessman he waas. The two English engineers basically admitted what they'd done and offered to settle out of court and pay him a 50% royalty on on everything that they made. Yeah, which, which would have made him an absolute fortune, that he was so angry that his invention had been stolen, that he decided he would pursuit through the courts and try and get them for everything they were worth which point they basically went to court and said, Look, there's no possible way that just by looking at this rubber and seeing that is yellow, we'd know how you did it. We completely invented it ourselves. It's serendipitous that it happened at the same time and he lost,
Tom: You know, when they needed some,
Sam: they really needed to go absolutely ham with a bow and arrow and 12 ax heads. Unfortunately, we're all made of rubber and just bounced off
Tom: on gorgeous Melted in the hot Difficult
Sam: just melted. Yeah,
Tom: I'm not sure if it is actually worth. It will roll with it.
Sam: He unfortunately died in 18 62 $100,000 in debt, and I haven't done the Modern the modern conversion off that. But I think that's, you know, that's a couple of $1,000,000 in debt. His family did eventually get some money from royalties on dhe. All of the other Peyton is that he made along the way for rubber related inventions on, Of course, the Goodyear Tire Company was named in his honor, but he really waas on absolutely terrible businessman and a useless chemist who happened to have one happy accident spilling some rubber over enthusiastically on the hob on that is the end of the story.
Tom: So I'm guessing someone that you know when he was bankrupt is all his checks bounced.
Sam: Hey, so I did that.
Tom: I thought that out about minutes ago, Sam. Just waiting. Just waiting for the right moment.
Sam: You have been very patient.
Tom: Thank you. I think your brain. Have you heard of the musical Eureka moments? There's a good one from Paul McCartney with song yesterday for the Beatles. We heard that one
Sam: eyes this the story when he he was asleep and he dreamed it.
Tom: He and he wakes up, and I think he speaks to John Lennon and says, What song is this? You know, they discover it's not anyone else. Song is actually just something he's dreamt up, and they then get to work on the Solomon Loan. Behold, they produce the song yesterday on by all accounts, is this isn't a unique thing that's happened to quite a few musical artists. Have you ever done it? Because I remember is about 12 year old waking up from a dream with a really cool rift in my head on dhe I haven't it? One of our brothers And he went shop. I went back to sleep. That could have been me, made
Sam: what you were. In fact, coming, though, is into the sand. Man,
Tom: I think a lot of these Eureka moments are actually that they come about through a slower process on. Then that's just the sort of quicker breakthrough where someone goes, Yeah, that's the thing I was looking for. Well,
Sam: who knows? I mean, it's It's all part of a rich storytelling history, isn't it? I mean, Eureka moments definitely happen. You've got Alexander Fleming coming back from holiday and discovering that he'd accidentally and
Tom: our dependency. Yeah, yeah, I did hear that was a good year. That is another good one. Maybe I'm wrong, Sam. Maybe.
Sam: I think you're a skeptic, Tom. You're You're a healthy skeptic, but a skeptic nonetheless.
Tom: So I'm definitely escape.
Sam: You're the kind of person who doesn't believe that NASA put men on the moon.
Tom: They didn't sound.
Sam: That's That's five.
Tom: They didn't sound. I read on a website they didn't.
Sam: And the Internet never lies. Tom, the Internet never lie.
Tom: Elvis is still alive. The world is flat. Yeah, and that's What true? Because I read on the Internet.
Sam: Got it all from info wars. Thanks, Alex Jones.
Tom: Nice. So, what are we gonna set a topic for next week?
Sam: Why the fuck not? Let's give people something to look forward to in the bleak midwinter slash. Wonderful summer, depending on where in the world you're listening from. And we do value all of our listeners. So thank you. All three of you.
Tom: Even those who think you get autism from getting your MMR facts.
Sam: Ah, uh, you're so sure about them? Take him or leave him.
Tom: You think you believe like I like your style, Sand. I like what you stand to. Amount of principle.
Sam: I certainly am.
Tom: I've had some ideas, I reckoned. What about journey Journeys on? Not the rock band. You can't go down the rock band
Sam: well apart. Anything else that is journey singular. But yeah, I like journeys.
Tom: Excellent. Right. Well, how about that, then? You happy to settle on that connection?
Sam: Let's talk their journeys next week. Let's do journeys. And that's a good one. Thank you so much. Everyone for shooting in Do come back next week for Episode two, in which we are discussing great historical journeys. Until then, it's goodbye from snowy but lovely Manchester.
Tom: And it's goodbye from a rather sonny but dark New Zealand
Sam: rather sonny but dark.
Tom: Oh, it's sorry. It was a real sorry. Sorry. Yes, it's the middle of summer, So we haven't some. We haven't been lovely days, but the day has gone. Sam, the sun has set on dit is nighttime
Sam: the fire God. Ron Weasley has dipped his head below the horizon. I'll see you next week.