467. Adrian Grenier: Trading Celebrity & the City for a Homestead of Higher Purpose

Adrian Grenier

DISCLAIMER: This podcast is presented for educational and exploratory purposes only. Published content is not intended to be used for diagnosing or treating any illness. Those responsible for this show disclaim responsibility for any possible adverse effects from the use of information presented by Luke or his guests. Please consult with your healthcare provider before using any products referenced. This podcast may contain paid endorsements for products or services.

Adrian Grenier, entrepreneur, filmmaker, actor and activist talks about his journey from celebrity to homesteader and changemaker. We discuss his personal evolution and service to humanity, his experience as an artist, and his humble perspective on environmentalism.

Adrian Grenier is a filmmaker, actor, entrepreneur, environmental activist, investor, and farmer living in Austin, TX.

DISCLAIMER: This podcast is presented for educational and exploratory purposes only. Published content is not intended to be used for diagnosing or treating any illness. Those responsible for this show disclaim responsibility for any possible adverse effects from the use of information presented by Luke or his guests. Please consult with your healthcare provider before using any products referenced. This podcast may contain paid endorsements for products or services.

You might know today’s guest, Adrian Grenier, for his superb acting on the smash hit show, Entourage. However, how I know him and what you'll soon learn, is that he's a man deeply committed to personal evolution and service to humanity. His journey from celebrity to homesteader and changemaker is truly inspiring. I find Adrian's vulnerability and honesty, so refreshing, especially after spending a couple decades in the entertainment industry myself. 

Here are just a few of the ideas we explore. We share the story of how we first met on a sacred hunting trip here in Texas and Earth Speed, his documentary series and lifestyle platform. He tells us about his ranch complete with a small vineyard, llamas, a mini pony and a bunch of chickens. We talk a lot about his 2002 documentary, Shot in the Dark, about tracking down his estranged biological father, how the lack of masculine influence shaped him into who he is, and how he regained that part of himself. We explore his rise to fame as an actor, how the role he played bled into his real life, his experience as an artist; separating the purity of creativity from the ego trappings of fame, his humble perspective on environmentalism, and so very much more.

 Our man Adrian does not shy away from the depth of the human experience, and that's one of the many stellar qualities he possesses that makes him unique and interesting. Be ready to be inspired to refine your life's vision, follow your dreams, and become the best version of yourself with Adrian Grenier. You'll find show notes with links to Adrian's awesome project, Earth Speed, and all the other work he's up to at lukestorey.com/adrian.

DISCLAIMER: This podcast is presented for educational and exploratory purposes only. Published content is not intended to be used for diagnosing or treating any illness. Those responsible for this show disclaim responsibility for any possible adverse effects from the use of information presented by Luke or his guests. Please consult with your healthcare provider before using any products referenced. This podcast may contain paid endorsements for products or services.

00:05:22 — The Sacred Hunt: Connecting with Nature & Our Food
  • The sacred hunting trip experience that brought Luke and Adrian together
  • The lasting impacts of witnessing the life and death process in nature 
  • Taking karmic ownership in the life and death process for animals we consume
  • Hunting for sport versus hunting for consumption
  • Separating mindless cruelty or entertainment from the natural order of nature
  • Having presence, connection and gratitude for your food
00:33:37 — From Activism to Action: A Journey Toward Environmental Stewardship
  • Adrian’s shift from the celebrity facade of activism to actually doing the work 
  • The reality of many of us being raised disconnected from nature
  • What Adrian has learned as a permaculturalist about environmentalism
  • Read: The World Without Us by Alan Weisman
  • The physiology of laughing and crying
  • Instagram: @earthspeed
  • The livestock and agriculture on Adrian’s farm
  • How Adrian’s learned to be a steward of the land
  • Drinking culture in Austin and Luke’s decision to stop drinking alcohol
01:01:46 — Adrian’s Evolving Views on Fatherhood & Masculinity
  • Dropping out of film school and creating his documentary, Shot in the Dark
  • Adrian’s view of fatherhood and how it has evolved
  • Being raised by a single mom & how being a feminist was destructive to his personality
  • Intentionally cultivating masculine energy to protect and support his family
01:22:04 — Exploring Boundaries, Identity & Authentic Creativity
  • How to differentiate passivity with diplomacy
  • Setting boundaries and defending them
  • The potentially dangerous naivete that comes from seeing the good in people
  • How to practice confronting conflict 
  • Adrian’s relationship with his father now
  • Watch: Teenage Paparazzo
  • Reconciling pure creative expression with the egoic identity and how its perceived
  • Three teachers or teachings that have influenced Adrian’s life and work

More about this episode.

Watch on YouTube.

[00:00:00] Adrian: And it's crazy to think back on it. I really believed that I was going to save the world because I cared enough. I had a heart big enough that I could use my status to do something about it. And so I started to do all the things I thought I could do but it really was, you can't change the world from the same mindset. This is Adrian Grenier, and you're listening to The Life Stylist Podcast.

[00:00:31] Luke: I'm Luke Storey and this is Episode 467, trading celebrity in the city for a homestead of higher purpose with Adrian Grenier. Now, you might know Adrian for his superb acting on the smash hit show Entourage. However, how I know him and what you'll soon learn is that he's a man deeply committed to personal evolution and service to humanity.

And I got to say, his journey from celebrity to homesteader and change maker is truly inspiring. And I find Adrian's vulnerability and honesty, so refreshing, especially after spending a couple of decades in the entertainment industry myself. I mean, this is the type of dialogue I always craved when I was working with brilliant and creative artists.

But, unfortunately, few were able to go there, or at least with me. But our man, Adrian, does not shy away from the depth of the human experience. And that's one of the many stellar qualities he possesses that makes him unique and interesting. You'll find show notes with links to Adrian's awesome project, Earth Speed, and all the other work he's up to at lukestorey.com/adrian.

 What you're about to hear today is much more a fluid, spontaneous conversation than it is an interview in the classic sense. But here are just a few of the ideas we explore, so you know what you're about to get into. We share the story of how we first met on a sacred hunting trip here in Texas; Earth Speed, his documentary series and lifestyle platform.

 He tells us about his ranch complete with llamas, a mini pony and a bunch of chickens; and we talk a lot about his 2002 documentary shot in the dark about tracking down his estranged biological father; and how the lack of masculine influence shaped him into who he is and how he regained that part of himself; his rise to fame as an actor, and how the role he played bled into his real life; his experience as an artist, separating the purity of creativity from the ego trappings of fame; his humble perspective on environmentalism, and so very much more.

So as we get into this, be ready to be inspired to refine your life's vision, follow your dreams, and become the best version of yourself with Adrian Grenier on The Life Stylist Podcast. And if you enjoy this conversation as much as I did, do us a favor and text it to a couple of friends.


So Adrian, my friend, here we go.

[00:02:53] Adrian: Here we go.

[00:02:54] Luke: We're finally getting it done. I love episodes that take time to come to fruition. We've been talking about it for, I don't know, maybe a year or something and it's like you live what, 45 minutes, an hour away?

[00:03:07] Adrian: An hour 15.

[00:03:08] Luke: An hour 15 from here. Yeah. Which is funny because you're to anyone in the world that's close, but when you're busy and you live in Texas, I don't know, everything takes longer. It's a slower life here.

[00:03:19] Adrian: Yeah. Well, the conversation we would've had would've been superficial because we didn't know each other as well. 

[00:03:27] Luke: That's true. 

[00:03:28] Adrian: We were one year less friends.

[00:03:31] Luke: Yeah, that's true. I was thinking about, I don't know if it was the first time we met because we might have been introduced before that, but my first experience of you was a couple of years back on our sacred hunting trip.

[00:03:43] Adrian: Mm-hmm.

[00:03:45] Luke: That was my initiation into Texas, which was a pretty hardcore way to land. I mean, I wasn't totally unfamiliar with that world because my dad's from Colorado and that was his whole life. But, um, yeah, it was interesting to drop into an experience like that with you. And I knew Preston a little bit because we had recorded and I brought a friend of mine from LA. There's a small group of us and I knew Mansal, but to dive into something that intense is a great way to get to know people.

[00:04:15] Adrian: Yes. That was a profound and important experience for me.

[00:04:21] Luke: What was that like?

[00:04:24] Adrian: Well, having grown up being an animal rights activist, being vaguely or no, maybe overtly rather anti-violence, anti-gun, very liberal New Yorker coastal mentality to come into an experience where we're actively pursuing an animal to kill it with a weapon was, it took a leap to, um, embrace that experience.

 And I think for good reason, because a lot of times I think people don't have a level of respect and maturity and sacredness to that life death process that we all are contributing to on some level, so to have a sacred hunt in which we bring hunting into the realm of the sacred, really, uh, landed for me because it allowed me to connect more into how to respect and appreciate and honor the lives that we take for our own subsistence, for consumption, for food.

[00:05:39] Luke: What was your experience of the first night when I shot the boar?

[00:05:45] Adrian: Yeah. You came out, uh, of the gate strong. Does the audience need context for this whole thing?

[00:05:51] Luke: I did an episode, we'll put it in the show notes with Mansal. Uh, I also did another guest appearance with Daniel Vitalis on the Wild Feed Podcast where I unpacked the whole meta version of the experience, but many people-- we'll put that in the show notes you guys, which will be lukestorey.com/adrian, A-D-R-I-A-N. But no, many people will have not heard this story, so go ahead and contextualize it at will.

[00:06:20] Adrian: Yeah. Well, we did the Sacred Hunt with Mansal. And the whole idea is to not just hunt for sport or for trophy, but to, uh, more greatly honor and respect animals. And you have to really build a skill, the skill to have the capacity to kill an animal with complete compassion. Because if you're at all unsure or incapable of carrying out that deed, you'll often hurt the animal and make it suffer. Maybe you'll wound it, but you won't kill it, and it'll end up bleeding out and suffering over a period of time.

 And so to the audience, you're the only one who actually killed an animal. We were all part of that. We all supported the hunt, but we all had an opportunity to pull the trigger. But I never actually pulled the trigger. I didn't feel like I had the right moment to truly do it right, to harvest the animal in the most respectful and honorable way.

 But that was okay because having been by your side, having been a witness to you pulling the trigger and taking down the animal was enough for me to feel it fully in my body and my heart and 

 to bear witness to that animal leaving this earth. And it stayed with me. And we harvested the animal from snout to tail all the way. And we all took some of that animal home and we've been eating it for the past year.

[00:08:15] Luke: Yeah. I've tried to articulate what the energetics of that moment were when I took the shot and we all approached the boar. I think it's called a boar. Pig. Giant Wild hog. There you go. Wild hog. There was a feeling in the air that was so intense and so palpable and the word that comes to mind sometimes is psychedelic, but that's not the right word. It's because there's just a profound essence to a psychedelic experience that's so unlike our normal waking day typically. Maybe it's like ephemeral or something and it's just--

[00:08:54] Adrian: Psychic.

[00:08:55] Luke: Yeah, it's like, what is happening? I mean, I get chills right now. I'm going to get goosebumps just thinking about walking up and time just comes to a halt and there's this openness and this timelessness, and everything just gets really different.

And then, of course, all this adrenaline, and I'm like, I wasn't looking at you guys because I'm just with that animal, just praying with the animal and doing my thing. But I mean, tears are coming down my face, but it's not guilt or shock or sadness per se. It's just intensity or just feeling energy move in such a powerful way.

And I've always imagined that there's a similar feeling that takes place at the presence of a birth. But I've not experienced any other than my own, which I obviously don't remember, but I'm looking, I'm looking--

[00:09:50] Adrian: Your body does.

[00:09:51] Luke: Yeah, totally. Maybe that was some of that. I'm like, ooh, we've been here before where a life force is leaving a physical vessel or coming into a physical vessel or into the world. But yeah, I just remember that just being so intense.

[00:10:05] Adrian: It's transformation. Yeah. The one thing that I've come to realize now that I've been living on land and living closer to nature is there is no death in nature. There's only transformation. Something transforming from one state to another. A phase shift from one embodied existence into another manifestation of that thing in a different form. And, um, that's happening all the time everywhere. We're just not tuned into it. 

And most animals, most things in nature are always continuously living on that razor's edge between life and death. And we are too. We are in that space. But we've repressed it and we've used society and culture and human devices to take us out of that experience, to shield us from that death awareness. I think that's what you were feeling. You're feeling that extreme presence.

[00:11:17] Luke: Yeah. 

[00:11:18] Adrian: It is always there, the nowness which is so deep, and expansive, and infinite, but we're often in this very thin layer of narcissism or indulgence or escape or, uh, numbness. So maybe that was it. We really just dropped into the moment.

[00:11:38] Luke: Yeah. I mean, there are a few things. I equated it to some of the peak experiences I've had using plant medicines and such, but it could also equate to a moment of deep present in an orgasm or any other situation in which you're like, what I'm feeling now is so overwhelming that I feel everything.

It's just like this all-encompassing sensory overload thing. It was really, really profound. And, uh, anyway, I was happy to share that with you and get to know you a bit more. And I think on the second day, I believe it was the second day, we split into two groups and you guys went off and hunted deer.

And then we went over to this area where there were more, uh, wild hogs and you guys missed a total shit show over there. I mean, that was the hardest part for me because things went awry and animals were injured and wandered off, and God knows what happened to them. That was really difficult for me to reconcile on the second day, much more so than a clean shot with very minimal suffering involved.

[00:12:48] Adrian: Yeah. And to me that was a huge take away, um, because there was someone in the group who felt to me, didn't do what was necessary to make sure that the animal didn't suffer and that everyone was safe. And it became very unsafe very quickly. And the contrast between those two moments stood out for me.

[00:13:13] Luke: It did.

[00:13:15] Adrian: Yeah. Because I didn't feel safe with that guy, energetically. There's something that just didn't feel like he was in his body. He wasn't in that present moment. He was hesitant. And so my nervous system felt like I couldn't trust. Whereas you, you exuded a tremendous amount of stability. And I just think about that in my everyday life. Think about the amount of people that go around where who aren't trustworthy. And it's because they're not willing to do the thing that is necessary in the moment, and to own the moment. People who are not embodied, who aren't taking charge, who aren't in charge of themselves end up creating a lot of destruction. And then you get swept up in it. And in that situation in which, well, you can tell the story, I wasn't there, but I heard all the hogs were running. And then it became increasingly more chaotic and destructive and dangerous.

[00:14:22] Luke: Yeah. There were hogs running in every direction. I mean, it wasn't anyone's fault per se. It's just when you can hear them and you can't see them, you don't know exactly where they are, and how many they are, and what size they are.

And they were all up on this cliff side, almost like goats. I mean, I couldn't believe they were walking on some of these verticals. It was really strange. But yeah, a shot was taken and that scattered them and they ran in every direction. And then the secondary guide was trying to protect us.

So he starts shooting at them with pistol. And I mean, it was just like, it's a combat scene. It was a combat scene. I mean, I didn't feel personally threatened. No guns were pointed in my direction, and I was able to evade the--

[00:15:10] Adrian: No, but many of the animals ran off the cliff and perished.

[00:15:16] Luke: I didn't see that take place.

[00:15:18] Adrian: Maybe I'm making that up.

[00:15:20] Luke: Yeah. I didn't that happen. I just--

[00:15:22] Adrian: Maybe the other guy told me.

[00:15:23] Luke: One was hit in the side or something and it didn't take it down. So it scattered off. And then at least one other one was shot in an effort to deter it from running us over basically.

[00:15:35] Adrian: Right. So on my journey into self, this was profound for me because I think about all the things that I've done in my past that were ignorant or destructive, and how that has not only affected me, but those around me. And all the wounded animals that I left in my wake, and I wasn't a hunter. But I was hunting in my social life, I guess.

 But when I think about that experience, it was like, okay, I would imagine that a wise man would maybe have not pulled the trigger, reading the room, seen the cliffs, understanding their position to the animals. All the things. You'd calculate all the inconceivable aspects of that particular moment to maybe be more reserved.

I mean, stuff happens, maybe you're not as adept as you could be. And so I took my shots very carefully because I didn't feel like I understood the weapon enough. I didn't understand hunting enough. So I was very conservative. And I think a lot of times in society, a lot of people are so cavalier and gung-ho. They're taking shots that they don't have any right, they have no permission, they have no right to be taking.

[00:17:11] Luke: I'm m thinking about my past too.

[00:17:15] Adrian: Right. Well, we get it.

[00:17:18] Luke: A lot of subjective experience in that realm. Yeah. I remember when we spotted the first one on the first night. Another really interesting part about it was, because I've always been a non-violent person. I've been in two fights my whole life. I'm not into war, violence. It's just not my scene. I was raised by a mom predominantly too, like you, and we'll talk about that. 

But, uh, there was something so innate and primal that when I had that animal in the scope, in the cross hairs and I knew that was the exact spot, there was almost no way I couldn't have pulled the trigger because it was like that second was the second, and that was it. It was a really interesting lesson now that you speak about it more broadly and metaphorically. It's like knowing when to take your shot is as important as just taking it.

[00:18:14] Adrian: And these instincts that are innate within us to hunt and to kill for survival have been abstracted in society because the killing has been relegated to factory farms. We let other people do our dirty work or the military. We let them kill for us. And so that part of us is dormant, but it's still playing out in bars around the country or in business rooms where people are making the kill.

You killed it buddy. All that rhetoric just speaks to that part of us that needs or that wants to, um, be a part of that dynamic. And I think it's very important. And you said this, you were anti-violence, so was I, and I really believed in the utopia that violence isn't-- we could be world without violence.

And I just don't believe that anymore. I think that it is incumbent upon us to find the dangerousness, the capacity to kill within us, um, lest it come out in destructive ways that are outside of our control, that are not within the realm of our ability to, uh, own it. Seeding our power to meat factories that I think harvest animals in often cruel and destructive ways.

[00:19:50] Luke: Yeah. Horrific man.

[00:19:51] Adrian: Abusive to the animals that are unhealthy, the meat. And we take on that karma because that's our karma. Every time you buy a conventionally raised and harvested animal in mass factory farms, you're actually taking a piece of that karma because you haven't taken the initiative and taking ownership of that whole life death process.

And so that was another thing I took away from it. It's like if I'm going to eat meat, I need to really own it and know that every time I put that in my mouth, I'm taking in that karma. That death is mine. And whether it was done ethically, mindfully, sacredly, or if it was done in ignorance and violence, but I didn't see it, it's still mine.

[00:20:46] Luke: Yeah, I think about, um, no shame, everyone is raised with a different set of cultural norms and values, and it's not necessarily their fault. But I think about, um, the portion of the hunting population that actually just kills a bunch of animals that they never have any utilitarian purpose for, just for fun.

And they literally enjoy killing stuff. I don't get that. I wouldn't say that I enjoyed the moment that I did it. I mean, there was an inner understanding of it and there was a pushing of my inner boundaries that I enjoyed and just the intensity of the experience and the lessons involved. But there's nothing fun about causing any pain to another sentient being, for me at least. But for many people, uh, there is, which is really interesting.

[00:21:37] Adrian: Well, I don't know if they're having fun. I think it's on some level sick and sadistic. Uh, look, I'll go on a limb and say, yeah, we all have our cultural whatevers, but when people, as regal as it is, it seems when you're hopping around on a horse with your gun and they send out the dogs and then the birds fly up and you just shoot arbitrary animals and now you have a bunch of geese that you haul off and maybe that's tradition. 

But the thing that I learned from the Sacred Hunt is if you are not connected spiritually to that experience, if it's all just for show or for sport or for comradery and the animals are, uh, a tool of your indulgence in that that you're creating, I think, negative karma on some level.

[00:22:35] Luke: Yeah. Did you ever see, uh, I forget the name of it, but it was a documentary, God, maybe 20 years ago, um, that was narrated by Joaquin Phoenix, and it was about factory farms and, oh God, it was about this idea of speciesism, a racism, speciesism, where we have this, um, dominionistic relationship with the animal world.

And so it was very pita pro vegan, but it was so impressive because they showed all of the ways. I mean, now I think it's a misguided, um, ideology from my perspective now. But at the time, I became a vegetarian for many years. Just from watching that, I was like, I'm out. I don't want any part of this.

But what was interesting about it is, um, God, what was that freaking-- can you look that up for me, Brandon? I'm going to do a Joe Rogan thing. Pull that up. Uh, it's a Joaquin Phoenix animal welfare movie or vegan movie. But one of the things that was interesting is they showed all of these different categories, uh, in which humans exploit animals.

And one of the ones that-- they talked about animal breeding pets and things like that, right? But one of the things that was really interesting to me is they covered, uh, rodeos as a sport. And I grew up around rodeos. My dad was a major rodeo guy, and I never got into it because I was a California kid and soft and raised by a mom and whatnot. But, uh--

[00:24:05] Adrian: Pink shirt, man.

[00:24:06] Luke: Yeah, here I go. I haven't changed. Um, now I hunt with a pink shirt on, but, uh, they showed these animals and just the torture and bull fights and stuff like that. And chasing the bull in Spain and all this. And I just never contextualized it that way because it was normalized to me. But now, um, I was recently, uh, binging on, um, what's the-- Montana Yellowstone.

And watching that, I was cringing and wincing just with them pretending to run cattle and the things that they do, branding them and all of this stuff. And, uh, I think that left a huge impression on me. And it's been a process of over time reconciling the fact that in nature everything is eating everything all the time.

Right now millions of organisms are eating me and living off my body. And that cyclical nature that you talked about. But how to extract or separate mindless cruelty or entertainment versus just the natural order of nature. 

[00:25:05] Adrian: Yeah. And that's something that everybody has to decide for themselves. Just because somebody brands an animal, that doesn't necessarily mean that it's an act of cruelty. And I can't say for sure, but on mass, if you have a mass market, the distance between the end consumer and the animal is so far that it leaves open room for shenanigans.

[00:25:39] Luke: Right. Totally.

[00:25:40] Adrian: And you can't entirely be aware. You can't take accountability because you know that piece of meat got shipped from five states over. Um, so yeah, it's a tricky thing,but this just goes up the whole hierarchy chain between us and government. Our government doing right by us. Are we giving our power to them to make good decisions on our behalf and tell us who we're going to war with or not?

Are we taking responsibility for that? I think that we have to just-- and when you're on-- I mean, I've been living for the past two years on land. Not only is there death everywhere because I find bones continuously, but I see death too. We have chickens. We've lost many of them to other predators, animals. And some of them we've gotten very close to, and we've had to say goodbye, but even the animals that get sick, we have goats and it's been tough.

It's been something that we've had to come to terms with is that death. And then also recognizing that we aren't vegetarian. We do eat meat. So can we continue to increase sensation and feeling and sensitivity to that process so that we're not numbing ourselves to it so that we can feel it more. And like you said, you were so connected to that animal. And one thing that was really profound to me is the idea that your destinies were aligned.

[00:27:20] Luke: Yeah.

[00:27:21] Adrian: And Mansal was asking us to journal and to start to call in that moment in which you meet that animal, and you start to dream of the animal, and you start to connect with it, and you actually start to feel it's suffering. 

You feel it has a mom, maybe it has children. And you start to really, truly respect and honor the animal more than just it's a piece of meat to be harvested or exploited or murdered for our benefit. But no, every time I take-- and that's why that brings on prayer before a meal to a whole new level.

You're not just saying some words because you believe in God. You're saying, I truly appreciate and respect and honor the life that has been given so that I might live and you have the experience firsthand. You know what it smells like, what it tastes like, what it feels like to be so connected to that animal that when you say thank you,it's relevant because you had a connection with that animal.

[00:28:33] Luke: Thank you for that reminder. Alyson does that every time she eats anything. 

[00:28:36] Adrian: Mm-hmm. 

[00:28:37] Luke: And I just, I don't know, stopped noticing that because you just see it every day a few times.

[00:28:43] Adrian: Yeah. 

[00:28:43] Luke: But when I have seen her do that in the past, like, oh man, that's a great idea. I got to do that, and then I forget. But that is in an in and of itself, a great practice.

[00:28:51] Adrian: It is so hard to stay connected.

[00:28:52] Luke: Yeah, it is.

[00:28:54] Adrian: We just want to be like, oh yeah, yeah. I've said five graces this week, I'm not going to-- you just

 go by rote versus no, really connect into the farmer that toiled away and overcame great adversity to bring me this millet. Whatever it is, we are part of a value chain that is passed on.

And if we don't have that connection, we don't respect it, we don't honor it, we don't support it in the right way, and then you get shitty cheap food that's made with bad practices and environmental destruction and animal cruelty and all that because we're not continuously connecting in, and feeling it, and honoring it, and truly appreciating it.

[00:29:41] Luke: What was the impetus for you giving up your, well, I don't know if you entirely give it up, because you're still doing acting gigs here and there and whatnot, but you definitely took a departure from the standard Hollywood lifestyle and, uh, bought a bunch of land and teaching yourself how to be a steward of the land.

I mean, I was telling you the other day when we were together, I was like, dude, respect man for going all in. Because when I think about doing that, I'll be honest, I'm like, yeah, I mean, I would like to have a piece of land and animals and grow food but I'll just hire a bunch of knuckleheads to do it and I'll just keep living the same life I'm living now with people outside doing all that shit for me, which is what I'm already doing.

I just don't know them because I go to Whole Foods and all of those people in the chain, as you just said, are out of my, um, field of experience. So what dissatisfaction or motivation started to arise within you to be like, you know what, I'm out. I'm changing course in a big way.

[00:30:39] Adrian: Yeah. Well, I mean, I've-- because I did that for 20 years. I've been an environmentalist for 20 years, and I rose the ranks to become a UN environment ambassador. I've started nonprofits to tell consumers how to behave better or tell businesses how to be more environmentally friendly on behalf of consumers, or tell governments to make laws or regulations to hold consumers or businesses accountable. But it was all out there like, you guys do it, but I'm just going to continue as normal, living the way I live. I had a garden. I never once stuck my fingers in the soil.

[00:31:24] Luke: Where was that?

[00:31:25] Adrian: In New York. Because I was like, everyone in New York should have a garden. 

[00:31:29] Luke: On your balcony or something?

[00:31:30] Adrian: Oh, I was lucky enough, I live in Brooklyn, so I had a little parking lot. So I had a couple of planters.

[00:31:36] Luke: Oh, cool. Okay.

[00:31:37] Adrian: It was small, but I was paying, I don't know how much, way too much money to hire someone to come do it, just so that I could take pictures of it and show the lifestyle that everyone should be living.

[00:31:49] Luke: That's great. That's good.

[00:31:53] Adrian: And what did Bill Gates say the other day? He's like, well, I can fly private because I'm investing in all these carbon credits or something. Or I'm investing in the technology that will solve climate change. So I can be a part of the problem. And that was my mentality in that, well, I'm a UN environment ambassador.

I'm making tremendous change in the world, so I don't have to actually walk the walk or do the work. I don't have to do the work. That was, do the work. It's the hard work that you don't want to do. And that was just one example of all of the things that I was doing in a Hollywood celebrity lifestyle that was more lazy, more disconnected, more indulgent, more escape-- it's more escapism. 

And I realized in order to become a man, to grow the fuck up, I had to wake up from my slumber, show up and start cleaning up because no one else was doing it. And so I had to bring myself to the place where I could find the motivation and the inspiration to do the fucking dishes, plant the fucking garden, and then stay with the garden, be present and reliable enough to, when there's a drought, show up and make sure that irrigation is happening. 

When there's a freeze, are you going to get whatever tarps and blankets to shield? You're got to take care of these crops, this food, and then the animals. So if I was going to expect others to do it, I had to be able to do it myself. So I haven't hired anybody for two years and I've lived through some successes, but mostly failures.

[00:33:52] Luke: Incredible.

[00:33:53] Adrian: Just like, this shit is fucking hard and fucking kudos and respect to the farmers out there that turn to an herbicide or a pesticide because their entire livelihood is about to go up and smoke because there's some condition that's going to undermine that harvest that year.

 And I'm over here being like, oh, you can't use chemical fertilizers and blah, blah, blah because it's bad for the environment and it's going to mess up my lifestyle and whatever. It's like, no, no, no. Now I get it. I have to show more respect and again, back to more sensitivity and appreciation for it, because now I'm living it so that I'm not standing on a soapbox preaching from something that is just an idea, an abstract ideal. It's from something that you are grounded in and you know. So I decided I wanted to be the change. When I was young, I wanted to change the world, and I got wise and I decided to change myself.

[00:34:55] Luke: I love that. Yeah. I love that about your perspective. I mean, we have so many things in common, I think, especially around our sensitivity and empathy and compassion and the way that we view the world and try to find solution to these problems that entail suffering. But it's also interesting to observe that we have so little control over the behavior of other people. 

So to try to get consumers or corporations, or government agencies to align with our values is a fool's errand. And also in my experience of getting save the worldism, can also be a great distraction from actually facing those things within oneself that are preventing you from having the level of presence and deliberate intention that you describe. It's like there's a spiritual bypassing and we got to change everyone out there. 

And the picket signs and the protest and the blame involved. It's a really interesting just human psychology observation. But when you start to get into what you're talking about wherein one's individual consciousness and thus the behavior that results from their consciousness is what elevates the rest of the field of consciousness and solves the problems ultimately. But that requires what you're describing is the introspection and the self-discipline and the self-honesty and the humility to go, wow, look at me sitting in New York City.

I mean, I saw a meme the other day that was really funny in this regard. It was a, um, high altitude shot of Manhattan. And it said, these people right here are telling these people over here how to save the environment. And it shows a bunch of people living on a farm. It's like, these are people that have no contact with the natural environment, relatively speaking, between the two coasts, telling all of these people how to save the planet when they're probably not doing that themselves.

[00:36:57] Adrian: Yeah. And I was raised in that culture. You are disconnected from nature in concrete Jungle. Growing up in New York, I didn't know what it meant to be in the soil or in nature, or I couldn't even see sky. You could barely see sky. And even if you could see sky when there's a break in the buildings, you were looking down or looking in a mirror.

[00:37:19] Luke: Try not to bump into people or have eye contact.

[00:37:21] Adrian: Right. Or looking at that cute girl that you might bag that night. Totally disconnected from self, from nature, disconnected. And to that point, I had the ego, the narcissism to think that because I'm relatively educated, smarty pants, thought I could tell the world, um, how to be. And because I was rewarded with fame and fortune, I believed because my wealth said it was so, that I somehow was uniquely positioned to do what's right.

[00:38:00] Luke: Right. Yeah.

[00:38:03] Adrian: And it's crazy to think back on it. I really believed that I was going to save the world because I cared enough. I had a heart big enough that I could use my status to do something about it. And so I started to do all the things I thought I could do but it really was, you can't change the world from the same mindset. So I was raised without being capable of even understanding the complexity of the challenge. 

So I reduced it to something that was a sound bite or seemed like, oh, the solution is just we all need to get together, or something like that. Or just recycle. Or climate change. All environmental issues have been reduced to climate change and carbon. Now that's like the catchphrase, if we just reduce our carbon, without understanding that the resilience of nature is so complicated, it's so complex. That's what makes it resilient.

That's what makes it so robust, is it's complexity. And we come in with this, and I think it's just an extension of colonialism in which we come in and we think we are going to just dominate and control otherwise nature people and then exploit them for our benefit, use them up, disregard, throw away, discard.

And now we're going to save the planet. We're going to come out and we're going to save it. As opposed to being like, wait a minute. Take a step back. Get out of that mindset of dominance and exploitation and knowing everything. Environmentalists, man, they know so much. They know we're all going to die. So you need to--

[00:40:05] Luke: Pay more taxes.

[00:40:06] Adrian: Pay more taxes. You need to drive electric cars. You need to not do this and do this and reduce your whatever. So such knowing, such certainty, put that aside. Be curious. Don't know so much. Open up your creativity and your curiosity so that you can come at the world in a different way. And what I found is, oh, I'm not going to tell the world how to be. I'm not going to dominate nature and tell it how to be. I'm going to work within it.

 And as nature is complex and interconnected and interdependent, so am I. I come from nature, I'm part of it. So now how can I be part of that flow, that process, that natural process so that, um, as a permaculturist, as a steward of the land, I might be able to nudge things in a way that nature does what it does best without me, with the least amount of inputs, the least amount of control as possible. Because by the way, all your control things, your control issues, you make a plan and nature laughs. 

[00:41:18] Luke: Yeah. Totally. And you can see that when-- I've always loved the post-apocalyptic genre when civilizations have crumbled and that kind of thing in films and whatnot.

[00:41:29] Adrian: Who doesn't?

[00:41:30] Luke: And I love the part of it where when they show a metropolis that's just been grown over. And there's even places on the planet for real.

[00:41:39] Adrian: There's a great book, I think it's called The World Without Us.

[00:41:42] Luke: Oh, really?

[00:41:43] Adrian: Really good. Yeah. Basically, just in great detail, it describes-- so the conceit is day one, humans don't exist. You don't ask why. They just don't exist. And then it just proceeds to describe all the different human civilization things that are being overgrown in great detail.

[00:42:02] Luke: Oh, wow. Cool.

[00:42:04] Adrian: First, there's a shift and then there's a crack in the wall, and then a bug gets in, and then the bug builds a home. And then it opens, and then there's a little light. It just goes in great detail to describe the whole world as nature takes over.

[00:42:19] Luke: Yeah. That's the funny thing. And I'm very pro-human. I think we're meant to be here. Um, so I don't want to get rid of us, not the least of which being myself or anyone I love. But it is interesting that no matter how much humankind builds and constructs on the planet, if it's left alone, the planet just eats it all. It just goes back into becoming--

[00:42:40] Adrian: There is no death only transformation. 

[00:42:42] Luke: Yeah. Exactly.

[00:42:43] Adrian: It just transforms.

[00:42:44] Luke: Exactly. Yeah. On the naivete of I'm going to change the world, there's a great quote, and I think it's by, um, Ramana Maharshi, and it says, don't bother-- I'm going to paraphrase it, but the gist of it is this, don't bother trying to change the world because the world you see doesn't even exist. Which I take to mean the world that I see is based on my perception and my preconceived ideas and notions. 

So it's like you could have one person sitting here with me that thinks that right now on planet Earth in 2023, it is absolute utopia. And the world is having a spiritual awakening. And we're moving into this utopian haven where all is fair and equal and everyone's happy.

 And then you could have another person sitting here looking at the same world that thinks we are literally in the end stages of a tyrannical, destruction of the entire civilization. And it's the same world out there. It's just whose eyes are perceiving it.

[00:43:43] Adrian: I mean, just go down dirty six. You'll go from a college bar to a biker bar, to a muscaria. It's like all of our minds are just different bars perceiving the world in different ways, just different expressions of the same thing. I don't know why I thought of that. 

[00:44:03] Luke: Um, is Dirty Sixth Street in Austin.

[00:44:06] Adrian: Yeah.

[00:44:07] Luke: Oh, okay. I've never heard it called that name.

[00:44:09] Adrian: It's like sixth street and it's bar after bar after bar. Just tightly compressed into their own street.

[00:44:17] Luke: I went to a comedy gig down there one day. I didn't even know that part-- 

[00:44:20] Adrian: You went to see Joe Rogan? 

[00:44:21] Luke: Um, no. Actually it was, uh, this guy, Dean Del Ray at the Vulcan, I think it's called.

[00:44:27] Adrian: I think Joe invested, or he was part of comedy club in--

[00:44:30] Luke: I'm looking forward to that. I used to dig onto the comedy clubs in LA. Because you could just go on a random night and you're like, who are these guys? They're hilarious. Really great comedians. I mean, not all of them, but every couple you're like, holy shit, why isn't this person on TV? Maybe it's also just the collective consciousness of humor too. Maybe if you watch it on Netflix, you'd be like, this guy sucks. But when everyone in the room is wanting and expecting to have a good time and laugh--

[00:44:58] Adrian: You're getting permission to laugh.

[00:45:00] Luke: Yeah. And I thought, man, this is a great spiritual practice. The last time I took Alyson, I was like, we got to do this all the time. When do we actually just laugh this hard, a belly laugh?

[00:45:09] Adrian: Have you ever done laughter yoga? 

[00:45:11] Luke: No. 

[00:45:12] Adrian: Oh yeah. 

[00:45:13] Luke: What's that?

[00:45:14] Adrian: It's a practice in which you falsely induce yoga until it becomes real, becomes infectious, and then you start laughing because laughter has a lot of health benefits, spiritual, psychological, physical benefits because you're releasing endorphins and oxytocin and all these good things that help benefit longevity and wellbeing. So you just--

[00:45:45] Luke: I've not-- 

[00:45:46] Adrian: So I'll show you. You just go ha, ha, ha.

[00:45:53] Luke: I love it. I love it. Keep going. And listeners at home, join in. As long as you're not driving. Uh, I've not done that laughter yoga, but you just reminded me of something which I haven't done in a while, because of the past three years, public speaking has not been, um, very accessible, but to combat nervousness before giving a talk, and I don't even remember where I learned this or if I just made it up, I'll go in the bathroom or somewhere, no one's around and I'll fake laugh myself just to change my mindset. And I'll do that exact thing in my car on the way to a gig, to just like, ugh, just to shake that anxiety out and just change my state. So that's funny. I didn't even know that was a real thing.

[00:46:38] Adrian: Yeah. It's just stuck energy.

[00:46:40] Luke: Yeah.

[00:46:40] Adrian: It's like potential anxiety is like, what's going to happen next? Like, oh, this is happening.

[00:46:46] Luke: Yeah. I mean, if you think about the physiology of laughing and crying is not all that different. And you think about the cathartic healing nature of crying, laughter's got to have a complimentary--

[00:46:58] Adrian: I cried on my way over here too.

[00:46:59] Luke: Did you?

[00:46:59] Adrian: Just a little bit

[00:47:01] Luke: You were so excited, man, I get to see Luke again. I'm so grateful. It's funny we're promoting your new movie that came out 25 years ago, but I just, for some reason I'm doing my research on you and stuff like that, uh, outside of just what I know about you personally and, uh, I was like, oh, this sounds like a really interesting documentary. So I watched it and I want to talk about that. But before we, uh, move on, I haven't been out to your property in, I don't know, a month, I think since Alyson's birthday. And thank you, by the way, for allowing us to congregate there on, uh, on January 1st.

Yeah. So that's when it was. At that time you had, I think a couple llamas and a mini little jackass or pony or something. And then you had chickens. But then I saw on the Earth Speed Instagram, a goat situation. So what's the current animal count and what are you up to out there? Oh, a baby goat. Oh my god. Look at those floppy ears, dude.

[00:47:56] Adrian: Yeah, you need to cut away of that.

[00:47:58] Luke: Oh my God, that's so great. Wow. Your dog looks so happy too. Your dog's like, we got a new dog with big ears.

[00:48:07] Adrian: 

[00:48:07] Luke: So for those that want to watch the goat video--

[00:48:10] Adrian: Earth Speed. 

[00:48:10] Luke: Yeah. Earth speed. @earthspeed on Instagram. Yeah. So you got a goat? Is anything else happened since I last, uh, visited?

[00:48:19] Adrian: Yeah, well, so we have light livestock. So basically I'm taking this very early moment in my farming agriculture career to just learn as much as possible. I am an apprentice of the land at this moment. So we have in permaculture, it's Zone 1, which is the area just outside of your main house.

And we have a number of projects that we're working on cultivating as a laboratory to practice. So we have food, forest fruits, nut trees, we have our annual garden for vegetables and the like. And then a little vineyard, about 30-- yeah, we have about 30 vines cultivating wine, some herbs, medicines, medicinals.

And then we have a few animals. And just that small footprint. I mean, it's got to be less than an acre. An acre maybe with the animals. They have some grazing pastures, like maybe few acres. Just that alone is like a lot of work, a lot to do.

[00:49:26] Luke: Dude, I can't imagine. I mean, I'm in a suburban maybe a little under half an acre and it's like, just managing this freaking house to make it functional is I could literally hire someone as a part-time house manager.

[00:49:41] Adrian: Well, I mean we have the food production and all those experiments, but then we also have the house. And then we have the freeze, and then suddenly I have four wells. When I first moved here, we had that big freeze and I was like, oh, we're sitting pretty, we have well water because a lot of people in Austin lost water because of the freeze. But I was sitting pretty because I have a well. Well, suddenly I turn on the water and there's nothing coming out. I'm like, what the hell's going on?

[00:50:08] Luke: Oh, you too? 

[00:50:08] Adrian: Yeah. Because our well had froze.

[00:50:11] Luke: Oh my God.

[00:50:11] Adrian: And I'm like, what's a well head? So I learned real quick how a well works. Every time there's a problem, that's when the greatest amount of learning occurs. It cost me time and money, but I'm gaining so much knowledge and understanding so that I have, at the very least, I'm not an expert, but I have a working knowledge and an understanding of how things work from planting, to harvesting, to pruning, to animal husbandry, to all the different elements so that when we start inviting people to come live with us on the land, and if I need to hire someone, for example, it's not an extension of my ego or my narcissism to go make the thing look pretty so that I look good.

It's like, no, I'll help you. You help me. We'll have an exchange of value, but we'll do this together and I hire people as just mentors. Will you come build this thing with me and I'll just work under you and learn? Because there is so much learning to be had.

And then eventually, ideally we'd have a community of 30 or so people, all expert in their own right doing different aspects of the farming. So we'll have a CSA, so we'll create maybe two or three acres of food production for not only our community, but also for local restaurants or community. We have a CSA. We can do a delivery box of different fruits and vegetables. We'll expand our wine operations so that we'll have our own libations. It's not just all work. It's also you want to have a little fun too, and we'll create our natural wine. So it'll be low intervention, uh, a 100% natural Texas grown wine.

[00:52:09] Luke: Awesome. 

[00:52:10] Adrian: We'll have--

[00:52:11] Luke: I wish you could make a non-alcoholic version so I could try it.

[00:52:16] Adrian: There's a lot of good ones actually.

[00:52:18] Luke: One regret I have. I mean, overstating that, but I never drank wine for the appreciation of wine. I grew up in the wine country in Sonoma County. I drank wine to just get hammered, straight out of the bottle.

[00:52:30] Adrian: Carl Rossi, the big jugs.

[00:52:32] Luke: Whatever. Anything. I was a busboy there when I was 17. And we'd have the-- it was an Italian restaurant and we'd have these big banquets and they'd always leave half quarter full bottles of wine. So when I would go bust the tables after they left, I'd stock my trunk. So I just had a trunk full of wine. But now, all of these years late, I mean, I haven't had a drink in 25 years-- no, 26 years now. Shit. It was 26 this month. 

Um, sometimes I see someone at dinner like drinking a glass of red wine and I go, that's probably really nice. I blew that opportunity to appreciate it for what it is. It looks like a really, not just culturally, but it feels like it would be a really nice thing just to have with the meal.

[00:53:16] Adrian: Do you drink kombucha?

[00:53:17] Luke: Um, not very often. Every once in a while.

[00:53:21] Adrian: It's a good substitute maybe.

[00:53:24] Luke: Yeah. I mean, I've managed to do it for this long. It's just like, I remember when I--

[00:53:29] Adrian: Actually kombucha has like little alcohol.

[00:53:30] Luke: It does, yeah.

[00:53:32] Adrian: I don't know how--

[00:53:32] Luke: There are former alcoholic purists who won't touch kombucha.

[00:53:35] Adrian: Who won't even touch it.

[00:53:36] Luke: And I remember when kombucha first hit the scene, I started making it at home in LA in my apartment. 

[00:53:41] Adrian: Slippery slope. 

[00:53:43] Luke: Yeah. And then, uh, yeah, and--

[00:53:44] Adrian: It's a gateway drug.

[00:53:45] Luke: My sponsor at the time was like, what? There's alcohol in that. So I stopped. But then there was like, as the kombucha market blew up, there's kombucha that intentionally has more alcohol.

[00:53:56] Adrian: Hard kombucha.

[00:53:57] Luke: Yeah. All this stuff, you have to be a bit mindful. In fact, a couple years ago--

[00:54:00] Adrian: I can't believe you moved to Texas. Texas or Austin in particular is a very drinking heavy city.

[00:54:06] Luke: Yeah.

[00:54:06] Adrian: You go to the dentist and they're like, you want a drink? 

[00:54:10] Luke: It is a different culturally here. Yeah. Um, a couple years ago I was at Carl's house, uh, for just a gathering of the homies during the day. And I grabbed a kombucha out of the cooler and I took a drink and I was like, this is nasty. Why is the taste weird? But I just let sit there and I had a couple more drinks and I thought something, just my intuition was like, better read that bottle. 

Because I had looked at the can or whatever and been like, oh yeah, I don't see alcohol because I knew some guys were drinking. But I took a few good swigs of it just to see if I could get used to the taste and I thought something's off. And I looked at the can and it was like, whatever, 5% or whatever. It was--

[00:54:51] Adrian: Seems like nothing.

[00:54:52] Luke: Legit alcohol. I was a little buzzed and it was actually a really cool moment because I realized that the thing that I used to spend so much energy chasing, which was a lot of drugs, but also I was a full blown alcoholic for long, long time, I actually didn't like the feeling. It wasn't like, oh no, I'm not sober or something. It was just like, ah, I don't actually like this, which was really liberating in that there's something that's fundamentally changed on such a deep level within me that what used to be my nectar of the gods is like, ugh, just didn't appeal to me.

Even if I could "get away with it", I don't think I would really like to get drunk. It didn't resonate. Same thing when I've had pain pills over the years. I was addicted to heroin and at various times I've taken an opiate for surgery or something and I'm like, oh my God, I hate this feeling.

[00:55:50] Adrian: To feel nothing.

[00:55:51] Luke: Which is good news. It's like, oh cool. That means there must be much less pain under the hood here. If you don't need anesthesia and you take anesthesia, it doesn't really do anything for you, I guess, is what I'm getting at.

[00:56:03] Adrian: Awesome. 

[00:56:04] Luke: Okay, so I watched your documentary as I said, called Shot in the Dark, last night. And I really enjoyed it. And this came out, what, 25 years ago or something?

[00:56:14] Adrian: I think it came out in '99. No, no. I shot it in '99. Nobody wanted to put it out. Well, for the audience, it's a rugged film shot on one those old VHS cameras. I had a camera, you could pop tapes into it. Big VHS tapes, or actually it was a little bit more sophisticated than that. But still this is before digital cameras, before the quality of consumer cameras was anything. And I just took that camera, I took a XLR cable attached to the end of some random mic that I had, literally taped it to the end of a broomstick.

I kid you not. And we went out and made a documentary. I dropped out of college. I was going to school for filmmaking. I went to film school. And I went one year and they gave me a book on film, the techniques of film, film philosophy, whatever. And then they gave me a bowl x one of those old crank super 16, black and white film cameras an said, go make a film and then we'll bring it into class and we'll critique it.

I was like, I don't need to pay you all this money to do that. I could read the book just like I can read the book and I can make a film and then have my friends critique it. I don't need to go to college for this. So I dropped out of school and decided to make a film. Literally, I got, and I was very much into indie films and just the different qualities of film and video that were not pristine, but were a little raw and visceral.

Uh, I saw this documentary called Sherman's March. This director, Ross Mc Elway, had a grant to make a documentary about, uh, General Sherman's siege in the South during the Civil War. And he took that money and he made a documentary about his personal life instead.

So I was like big, big into rebellious films that were doing things different. And anyway, I don't know why I mentioned that, but I decided I was going to make a film using whatever tools I had, and I had this little camera. And then we went out and I went to go find my father. I went to find my estranged father, who I hadn't seen in 20 years. And yeah, I found them.

[00:58:43] Luke: There were so many moments in that dude that there's so much to extract from that experience and just I think what's made you who you are and so many things about which I also relate. But the awkwardity of the moment that you and your dad met after all those years, I mean, I was sitting there going, how is Adrian just hanging in there with this?

 It was so, tense isn't the right word. Just awkward. That's the word. And I think you even said it. You're like, oh, this is awkward, huh. But there were so many moments in there where I'm just like, how is this guy keeping his composure with this level of awkwardness? Even meeting your grandparents, your, uh, paternal grandparents.

And when you finally, um, meet what would've been your stepmom who had been a barrier to contact with you and your dad, and I'm just like, oh my God, this is shadow work, man. These are the things that humans hate to face so much that they anesthetize themself and totally check out.

And those cycles of familial trauma and patterning that just carry on and on. So I really enjoyed just that you put a punctuation mark in that story. So I'm certain that when you become a father, the experience of your kids is going to be exponentially different. It's like a broken chain.

There's a chain of lineage that just gets, boom, pattern interrupted in such a profound way. And the seed of it is really having the courage to go, oh my God, this is awkward, this is painful, and walk through it. But not only that, to document it and show the world you going through this deeply personal stuff, I mean, I was like, embarrassed at different times. 

Even your friend in it at one point was like, well, you know me and all the guys think you're a pussy dude. You're weak sauce or whatever he said. And I was like, why didn't Adrian edit that part out? His friend's totally dissing him. So there was so much vulnerability in it. And this took place way before social media vulnerability was acceptable and commonplace as it is becoming increasingly so, which I really enjoy.

[01:01:01] Adrian: Maybe I should re-release it on social media.

[01:01:04] Luke: Totally.

[01:01:05] Adrian: Actually not a bad idea.

[01:01:06] Luke: Re-purpose it to a bunch of short TikTok videos.

[01:01:08] Adrian: Okay. Good. 

[01:01:09] Luke: But anyway, so that's my Roger Ebert review. 

[01:01:13] Adrian: I appreciate that. That's kind.

[01:01:14] Luke: Yeah. It said a lot about your character actually at that young age to be looking for answers, a, because many people don't look cause it's too scary to look, but b, to actually invite the public into that experience. That's very, very vulnerable.

[01:01:30] Adrian: I don't know if you've seen Teenage Paparazzo.

[01:01:32] Luke: No, I haven't. I didn't get to that one.

[01:01:34] Adrian: I have within me a trilogy, and Shot in the Dark was the first installation. Teenage Paparazzo is the second, and there's a third I haven't made yet. And so Shot in the Dark was me rebelling. Even though I was going to find my father, the premise of the film, and I think I said it, is I want to prove that I don't have to care.

I want to prove that I don't need a father. And I did. I proved that. I don't need you. I don't need him. Father's just a construct. There are all different kinds of families. My mom is my mom and my dad to me. And when you make a film and you set an intention, uh, thesis, you inevitably are going to construct a story to fill that thesis.

 And so I feel like I need to revisit what that-- if I were to make that film today, it would be a totally different thesis and conclusion. Because I very much think that I needed a father. I very much think that we as beings need that positive male masculine parental force. Hopefully it's a positive one. 

Um, and now that I'm getting to an age where I want to have children myself, I very much know that I not only would never leave my children, but I know how important it is that I can be a healthy, divine expression of father for my kids. So yeah, I need to finish that trilogy. It needs the final installation. I don't know what that film is going to be, but it's coming.

[01:03:28] Luke: I think it's going to be when you're a dad and you're having the experience of being the father that stays. There were a lot of things, as I said, I related to, but I had a dad present in my life much more so than you, although my parents divorced when I was really young, but I was really raised by my mom and my dad, that polarity of having the masculine and feminine energies instilled in you, and I think in a healthy and perfect dynamic, a child learns how to use both of those energies in a balanced and appropriate way. 

But I very much was leaning into the feminine energy, and there's so many great things about my personality that or attributes that I got from my mom. But my mom was a feminist and raised in Berkeley, and there was a lot of unintentional emasculation.

And then the masculine model in my life, my dad and God bless him, we're good buddies now. He's done a lot of work for the past 40 years, so he's a very integrated person and balanced himself now. But he was a tough customer. I mean, he was a rough guy, uber masculine. No crying allowed rodeos, hunting, fishing. He is a rugged dude.

[01:04:42] Adrian: And you've got none of that. 

[01:04:43] Luke: Well, the first thing is well, I don't mean to talk about myself too much. This is going to develop into a question about you as the featured guest, but I'm trying to articulate that I shared from your experience, it seems, the benefit of those sensitivities and artistic expression and those things that are great for a feminine mom to instill. But there is also not a great modeling of the masculine energy. So I became a musician and an artist and--

[01:05:11] Adrian: Well, and my mom, she said, I'm your mother and your father. And I'm like, mom, you were a shit father. I love you that you had to survive or you thought you had to, whatever her upbringing, psychological makeup. And she did. She fucking killed it. And made a living in New York City raising a son as a single mom. But she was not capable as a woman because her nature is feminine. But as she was not able to fully embody that true masculine sense. She couldn't do both. You can't do both, I don't think. 

[01:05:48] Luke: Yeah.

[01:05:49] Adrian: Fully.

[01:05:49] Luke: So I guess my question out of that is, what are some ways that you've learned to identify and cultivate those masculine energies within you? Because I feel like I've spent years just learning how to actually bring out the more assertive part of myself, like the get shit done part of myself, the protector, the person who's capable of holding space in the middle of a storm, those positive attributes, have taken a lot of work. What are some ways that you've learned to bring up that side of the scale as an adult?

[01:06:23] Adrian: Well, these days this kind of conversation can be quite controversial about masculine, feminine energies and what is a woman, all that stuff. 

[01:06:34] Luke: Yeah. 

[01:06:35] Adrian: But from my perspective, I was very fluid, very post-modern and like, well, you could be anything you want. I was open to all sorts of sexual experiences and I was very in touch with my feminine and I fancied myself a feminist. And I think it became a very destructive part of my personality to the point where I was such a feminist and I believed so much in the equality of men and women that at 2:00 in the morning, when a girl was leaving my house, and I didn't live in the greatest neighborhood, it was pretty rough in Brooklyn, uh, especially at 2:00 in the morning.

I would let her walk to the train station and get on a train and go home all by herself because, well, women can take care of themselves. They don't need me. And also secretly I was a little scared.

[01:07:41] Luke: That's good to admit. Yeah.

[01:07:43] Adrian: I mean, I was like you, I did not fight. I was not a violent person. I didn't have the fighting skills to take care of myself to-- I was not a violent person. So if I was confronted by a gang or somebody that wanted to pick on me, I could not defend myself, let alone a girl. So I had to realize that as much as I was a feminist, I was actually not stepping into my role as a masculine man to protect women and their interests and to take care of them being the fact that men are biologically born more physically apt to do so.

 And so  I think that's how feminism in my life, growing up with a mom who is strong, who had to survive, and was a feminist, and also on some level emasculating me to be not destructive or violent or hurtful, partly because I think my mom experienced a lot of masculine destructiveness. So bred that out of me so that I could be safe, so that I was safe.

 But it actually disempowered me out in the world and also disconnected me from my role as a man to be a protector, to step further into my masculine so that I could not undermine the legitimacy of a woman's autonomy or independence or strength, but to play a role in which I was actually serving and protecting women.

 So part of my journey is learning how to hunt, learning how to pull that trigger, cultivating my own proclivity and capacity for violence, not so that I could go be destructive, but so that I can take ownership of the moment and stand what's right in the face of maybe forces that are destructive. 

 Other humans that want to do wrong or do ill, that I can stand up against them. Um, yeah, I can find the part of me that is decisive, that makes decisions. Talking about my feminine qualities that were cultivated and really indulged by my mother, I was extremely creative. And I think the feminine energy is about creativity and connecting to potential chaos, and having the ability to connect into potential and then create from nothing.

[01:10:32] Luke: Like a higher level of sensitivity or refined sensitivity.

[01:10:35] Adrian: Yes. Whereas the masculine is choice, is decisiveness, is discernment. So I was always in the flow, in the chaos and just playing with fire. And that really served my creativity and when I was in acting or in music, it was really helpful. 

And I excelled in that and I excelled in it so much that I went to Hollywood and that creativity was rewarded. But that masculine part of me hadn't been cultivated or defined. So there was a part of me that was craving that and was looking for that. And I found that in destructive expressions of masculine. Peter Pan, uh--

[01:11:23] Luke: yeah. Totally. That's a great, uh, great archetype. Yeah.

[01:11:28] Adrian: I became Vincent Chase. I Fuck. I mean, went straight for it. So I would--

[01:11:33] Luke: Life imitating art situation. Yeah.

[01:11:36] Adrian: I was cast for a reason. And then I was getting external validation like, you are the man. But I wasn't an embodied man. I wasn't a divine expression of man. I was the man because I had money and fame and status and all these things, but I was being highly destructive in these ways, and I was not being a divine expression because I wasn't making decisions. I was being extremely, loose and non-committal, too many sexual experiences, indiscriminate and not loving and protecting and honoring the people I was with.

It was very selfish and indulgent. And then it wasn't until I got older that I realized not only that I had to step into my own capacity for physical aggression to do work, but also to take personal responsibility and ownership for what's truth, and then be discerning and make choices. And when you make choices, suddenly all the other things fall away. You can't have everything. You can't go everywhere. You have to stand for--

[01:12:51] Luke: Right. There's an inherent discipline built into that. Yeah.

[01:12:54] Adrian: And then I got married. I chose to be in a relationship, to fully commit my entire self to my wife and my future children. And to me, that is the most divine expression of masculine, which is to just devote yourself to a woman so that she can feel safe, so that she can feel protected, so that you can give your life force to her so that she can relax her nervous system just enough that she might be able to open to bring new life into the world. 

And, wow, now we've gone full circle because when I'm lucky enough to have a child and my wife gives birth to my son or my daughter, then I can be the father that I never had. I can truly be present, not leave like my dad did. And I can be a protector to my wife and my children. That I have the skill enough to teach them how to connect with nature and to have a respect for the animals that give their lives so that we may live. 

I can give them the sense of presence and awareness that I never learned growing up from a single mom without a father in a city that didn't believe in God, that was all about indulgences and consumption and narcissistic vapid lifestyle. And so for me, that's what being a man is today.

[01:14:36] Luke: Yeah. 

[01:14:37] Adrian: And that might be the final installment of the trilogy.

[01:14:41] Luke: I think it's very, uh, appropriate. Yeah, it makes sense to me. One of the words that came up a lot in that film was passivity. I think that's one of the things your homeboy in the film is like, yeah, we all think you're really passive. Then your biological dad that you tracked down also had that quality. And I thought, well, you didn't see the scenes with, uh, his wife, not your mother, but his second wife. Uh, but it sounded like she was wearing the pants and acting as a firewall between he and you.

 I guess where I'm going with that is how do you differentiate passivity with diplomacy? Because I think in my own experience, being diplomatic and just wanting peaceful resolutions to conflict is a really great quality, but it can also veer into the shadow where it's people pleaser. And just putting up with shit because--

[01:15:42] Adrian: And you undermine your values just for this.

[01:15:44] Luke: Yes, exactly. And, um, you mentioned how your relationship is really a great, um, resource or vehicle for you to start to bring out these other energies. And I've experienced that too, where when I think I'm being fair and diplomatic in a situation, there's been multiple occasions in which it's made, um, an environment where my wife doesn't feel safe. And she's been like, yo, what the fuck? Stand up. And I realized in those moments I was actually being passive and creating a lack of safety--

[01:16:19] Adrian: Oh, I've been there.

[01:16:19] Luke: In our home. Just dealing with contractors or whatever, just people from outside and not even understanding how to hold that space of, um, protector, is this a strange word. It sounds like, I don't know. It's easy to misconstrue that, but energetic protector, of keeping a sacred home in a sacred space that could use some diplomacy. But people pleasing and passivity is the gateway that destructive energies use to enter your field.

[01:16:51] Adrian: Right. So as a divine expression of man, I'm just going to say that, for me, last line of defense is your physical strength and aptitude. But before that, you have to create lots of boundaries so that it doesn't get to that. And I think we're similar in that I was also passive and a people pleaser because that was how I survived. I would subordinate myself to the bullies so that I didn't get beat. And I would, oh, I'll make a joke or invite them in, be, now you're my buddy.

Oh, come on, we're cool. I'll do what you say just don't hurt me. As opposed to standing up for what you're doing is wrong and I'm going to challenge you. And so I think part of it is having the courage to stand up for what's right and face danger, confront uncomfortable and dangerous circumstances for what's right. And there's a certain amount of risk that comes with that. Physical bodily harm potentially or just any number of--

[01:18:10] Luke: Legal threats. 

[01:18:12] Adrian: Listen, I had a guy speaking of boundaries, I had a guy come on our land because there was a part of the land that had been abandoned for a long time so people used to come on and going fishing in our pond. And he came on and Jordan was like, someone's on our land. And I'm like, oh. That my passive instinct is like, oh, he's not hurting anyone. He's just fishing. She's like, no, no, I want him off. I don't feel safe. So now I have to find it within myself to go confront this guy. 

He had a dog that felt unstable. It was just a bulldog of sorts. And who knows, we're in Texas, he could have a gun. And I had to approach him and tell him to get off my land. But I didn't have-- I'm not familiar with the way in which you carry yourself when you are putting up a boundary. So I had to learn that. And it was so uncomfortable to me, because I'm like you, I just wanted to be like, oh, it's okay. You're okay.

My mom taught me that people are good. Deep down inside people are good. And that seeing the good in people was a high value. The greatest virtue is to see the good in people. So I learned that.

And that's, to me, I think that's a feminine trait. It's like, you're going to love your child no matter what. I'm going to love my baby no matter if they poop or if they pee, or if they're naughty,oh, come here, it's okay. I'll clean it. Whereas the masculine comes in and says, no, what you did was wrong. 

And this is a boundary and it's not okay. It's discipline. I never learned that. So I was always forgiving people for the worst behavior, and I was inviting in destructive forces, humans that were up to no good. And because I saw through all of that at their core, the wounded little boy, the wounded little girl that they were when they were a kid.

[01:20:10] Luke: Dude, I relate to this so hardcore.

[01:20:13] Adrian: And so I had to learn to take a stand for what was right and what was wrong, make a decision about that. First you choose like, no, I have my value system and this is it, and you've crossed this boundary and now I'm a stand for that.

I don't care what happened to you as a little kid. I understand that you're deep downside a good person. Sure. But all the layers of the outside are not okay with me. And so I'm taking a stand and now I have to find the courage to put myself in a scary situation my nervous system's not used to to say no and learn how to speak the rhetoric that conveys that I mean it. Not betray myself by, hemming and hawing, oh, well. It's like, whew. 

And that's practice, I think, on some level. Just like you got to practice how to shoot your gun so that you can make sure that when you shoot an animal it doesn't suffer. When I go to that guy who's on our land, he has to feel that I mean it, and he has to retreat. Besides what I say, he just has to feel my energy so that he decides to retreat and he doesn't come at me and like now want to, I mean who knows what, fight or something.

[01:21:28] Luke: That's beautifully articulated. Yeah, I think there's a really valuable piece in the naivete that comes from seeing the good in people. And being able to compassionately see what you perceive to be their possible backstory. 

[01:21:45] Adrian: You continuously spiritually bypass all the shit that they're doing and excuse it away because they're God's children or something that. 

[01:21:53] Luke: Yeah. No, this has been a huge lesson for me, uh, as of late. And I've found the stakes to be much higher in those situations when there's someone that I deeply love involved who is now getting the blow back from my lack of boundaries or lack of discernment. And if it gets to the point where she has to be like, dude, you need to deal with this, we're too far.

[01:22:21] Adrian: And listen to your wife.

[01:22:24] Luke: Oh man.

[01:22:25] Adrian: Listen, I realize my wife is Oracle. She tells me-- because they are connected into energetically everything that's going on and they know something isn't feeling right because their intuition is fucking well established. And so when my wife says something's not right, as much as I'm like, yeah, but he's cool, I have to be like, oh really? First of all, that's disappointing to me because that means I might lose a friend and friendship is like important to me because I'm a people pleaser and I want to be acknowledged or liked because my dad abandoned me.

So I want people to like me and stay. And when people leave, it makes me feel abandoned or makes me-- that triggers that core wound in me. I have to trust her and be like, okay, I trust you. Okay. And then I have to go execute. I mean, I see it like, women are the navigators and men are the drivers. If a woman's like, no, we got to get out of this neighborhood, hit the freeway. Okay. You do it.

[01:23:37] Luke: Alyson and I had a conversation, well, not about this, but we enacted this very dynamic that you speak of last night wherein I was being a bit loosey-goosey and ignoring some red flags. And she was getting very uncomfortable about a situation because I was just passively letting it, eh, it's whatever. They're cool. That exact thing. And it was like, I wouldn't have a fight or anything. She's just like, hey, I need to talk to you. This is the thing that's happening. This is how it feels. I don't like it. How can you fix it? 

But I look at those situations now really as a gift because she's really inviting out of me the highest version of myself. She's saying, oh yeah, that sweet part, the sensitive part of you, great. Love it. You're very kind, patient, considerate. You're very caring.

But that doesn't work when there's some threat to my energetics and I don't feel safe, then that part of you is not very valuable. So how can we cultivate that part of you, that caringness to use as motivation to become strong and to hold boundaries and to keep--

[01:24:41] Adrian: When she's telling you, you're not making me safe,you're just a pussy, you're a wimp. When she's emasculating you and telling you what you're not doing, you don't get the praise. Isn't that right?

[01:24:52] Luke: I think that-- I know, I think that that's happened in the past. I think because of who she is, it's never really framed in that way.

[01:25:02] Adrian: I was being dramatic.

[01:25:03] Luke: Yeah. But I have had experiences in relationships where that was the case, but that's because that person had their own wounding and projections that were going on. In this case it's just an honest statement of facts. This is way I feel and I'm inviting you to step up. But it's really--

[01:25:20] Adrian: That's a gift to you.

[01:25:22] Luke: That, it's like, oh my God, thank you so much. I mean, I bow to that because it's bringing out parts of myself that have been dormant that have also caused my life unmanageability and conflict and problems.

So it's like even if we weren't together, that's a life skill that I would eventually be forced to cultivate through my own failures anyway, so great. Bring it on provided my nervous system in that moment has the capacity to really hold that and hear that with an open mind.

[01:25:55] Adrian: And that's why men's work is so important. Because it's a dojo, a practice arena to meet up against conflict and try it on. Roughhouse. Battle things out with other men so that you can cultivate the skillset to be able to confront it out in the real world.

Uh, it's something I'm working on in men's group. It's like, how do I stand up for myself? Because even in men's group, I'm perfectly safe. I trust these men, but I still don't want to tell them how I really feel because I don't want them to dislike me or I don't want them to-- there's some powerful figures in men's group. And they might bite off my head, or they might argue against me or they might yell at me or something.

[01:26:39] Luke: Well, in our little group, I mean, I noticed right away being late is not on the agenda. They're task masters and I have a very feminine fluid relationship with time and space. It's like, oh, whatever, it's 9:00 AM I mean, that means between nine and 10. And I learned quickly, oh no, there is structure here. And even that little thing is different, and I wouldn't say intimidating, but, oh, let me lean into that. Why do they hold that value? And what am I missing in my life by not examining that value?

[01:27:12] Adrian: Being on time is very important to me as well. It's one thing to say, oh, a man should be present and show up for his kids, but it's like, okay, show up when? I I was like, well, I'll be there in 20 years, the same case for my dad. It's like, no, no, be there means be there now. And whatever now is, if you decide that's what it is, you do it.

[01:27:39] Luke: Yeah. And not only physically but with a deep presence. I think that's-- 

[01:27:45] Adrian: Not be there but on your phone. 

[01:27:47] Luke: Right. You're at the kids' little league game and you're over there scrolling, doing email, and no shame to the parents who check out. I'm sure it's difficult. I don't have that experience yet.

[01:27:59] Adrian: You get to decide.

[01:28:00] Luke: I'm just going to spoiler alert it because it came out a long time ago. If it was like your new film, I wouldn't do that, but you can find Shot in the Dark, you guys, what we were talking about on, uh, Amazon Prime. But, dude, at the end, after you and pop reconciled and despite it's the awkward nature of it, and it wasn't like, oh my God, I love you, man, let's hang out every weekend.

You were like, oh, this is going well. As well as it could be. And then you threw in this scene, this fake scene where he drives up and he is like, I can't do this anymore. I don't want anything to do with you. And then he gives you like a Pez dispenser or something as a birthday present. I totally bought into it and I was like, what the fuck. What is wrong with this guy? I totally fell for it and it was extremely disappointing.

[01:28:48] Adrian: By the way, that brings me so much joy. I'm so happy that you fell for it.

[01:28:53] Luke: Oh, dude, I was in shock. I was like, wait. John is his name, right? John is coming around and he's very introverted, so you couldn't really read him, but he was being friendly and somewhat open. And you guys are talking and there's progress being made in rekindling that relationship. And then he's just like, I'm out. I was like, oh my God, what a shitty ending to a movie. And then you guys, of course, are like, psych we're cool.

[01:29:21] Adrian: Well, I mean, it was more than that. I mean, it was, psych we're cool and then let's play out the other story. So there are these two narratives. Comedy, tragedy. And we're all always projecting or playing those out in our minds, but reality is so much more complicated and complex and nuanced.

 The beginning quote in the film is, there are atoms in empty space. All else's opinion. So the idea is that we as humans, as meaning making machines, as narrators of our own lives will create these extreme versions of reality. What'd you say that is like, the reality isn't--

[01:30:08] Luke: The world you see doesn't even exist.

[01:30:10] Adrian: Doesn't even exist because we're playing out these storylines. And so when you ask people, what is father? It's like, oh, father's the best. It's playing ball. It's doing all these things. What is father? Oh, well, if your father wasn't there, father's a meanie or whatever. And he abandoned me.

So I was playing out those stories in reflection of people's reaction to me when I told them that I didn't have a father. When I would tell people I don't have a father, they'd be like, oh, I'm so sorry. I'd be like, I'm fine. What are you talking about? Or they'd be like, oh, you found your father? Yay. So we played out both of those versions, those extreme storylines of the romantic reunion of the father. And that's how we close the film where we come together and everything's perfect--

[01:31:04] Luke: Running down a grassy and hug. 

[01:31:06] Adrian: Happily ever after. And then you play the shadow version. But both of those are just fantasies. They're not real. The true story is much more complex and weird and awkward and nuanced. And then after the film was done, because we filmed it and we shot it and we edited it, now my dad's in my life. Now what? You haven't asked since I made that film 25 years ago, there's been 25 years of me having to deal with my dad. It's like, be careful for what you ask for.

[01:31:37] Luke: That was my next question. Yeah. Because we've never talked about it. Have you guys been in contact?

[01:31:42] Adrian: We have, yeah.

[01:31:43] Luke: With some regularity?

[01:31:44] Adrian: To some degree. But he's still my dad. He's still not quite present. Every once in a while he does a feeble attempt to reach out like, hey son, happy birthday. But he doesn't have the presence that I crave from my father. He hasn't jumped on a plane to come see the farm, to meet my wife. That's okay. You have peace with that. But people want those absolute endings. They wanted it to be all good now. But real life isn't like that.

[01:32:26] Luke: I got one more question for you because another part of my whole topic range was around artistic expression, and Hollywood, and ego and all of this. But we don't have time for that. We'll do another.

[01:32:40] Adrian: And you have to watch Teenage Paparazzo since now you're a fan of my films. Teenage Paparazzo is the second installment, but it's all Hollywood. And you know about Hollywood.

[01:32:49] Luke: Yeah, 17 years of working in that industry. But my question is, and this is I think just a broad question for anyone that's creative and has gifts to share. It's like, the dilemma of having creative freedom to express your unique gift. We all have our own unique gifts. And if that happens to come out in the form of-- your creativity comes out in the form of some art form.

Then it would be a disservice to the world to not share that. Where is the intersection of authentic creativity and expression and the promotion that it requires to get out there, and an egoic identity with your personal self-valuation being based on what that creativity manifests as and how it's received. 

[01:33:42] Adrian: Trying to calculate that question. That's a tough one, especially now. Um, I mean, I do believe that we're all creative. We all have the capacity to be creative. I think this idea of being an artist is a bastardization on some level, especially now that it's become commercialized. Back in the day before television, people would get around, families would gather around the piano, and they all knew a little couple of tunes and they would play music together. And that was their evening activity.

 People would journal. They'd have their own ability to write and express themselves through writing or any number of creative expressions, arts and crafts. And then it became a profession. It became a specific field of focus. And then obviously television and the commercialization of art and music. And now it's a career and you're in business, and you're selling tickets, or you're selling clicks, or you're selling CDs. You're selling, what do they call them? Mp3? No.

[01:35:03] Luke: Yeah. MP3s.

[01:35:05] Adrian: You're not even selling that anymore. You're selling just views or something.

[01:35:10] Luke: Yeah. Clicks, downloads.

[01:35:12] Adrian: I would just say if you are a creative person, go out and create. You have all the tools, things are inexpensive. I went out and I made a film with a camera that I had in my closet, and it looks scrappy but it's poignant. You were moved by it. It cost me very little. Under 50,000 bucks. It took me eight years to do but I pieced it together over eight years. You can play music. You don't even need an instrument. Just use your voice. It's the question I always ask people.

Because people come up to me like, I want to have a career like you. How did you, blah, blah, blah. How'd you get to where you are? And I have to ask them, I was like, do you want to act or do you want to be famous? 

[01:35:56] Luke: Yeah, exactly. Well, that right there is the crux of my long-winded question. Is like, is the motivation because you're just so full of ideas and expression that it has to come out. And if it's going to come out, you might as well share it versus like, when I wanted to be, um, a rockstar and moved to Hollywood at 19, I loved music. I've had a passion for music, but I had such low self-worth and so much shame from all of the unresolved issues in my life that I actually thought I needed that identity to be worthy of walking the earth.

[01:36:33] Adrian: Mm-hmm.

[01:36:34] Luke: So my motivation was not that like, oh, I have to--

[01:36:37] Adrian: It was the validation.

[01:36:38] Luke: Yeah. A lot of it was just like, well, I'm not worth anything unless I get a number of other people to tell me so.

[01:36:44] Adrian: Yeah. Well, that's why this-- in many ways this society is constructed in a very, uh, faulty way because not only is our community's broken down, we don't have that tribal sense of belonging where you can be validated by your community, your friends, your family.

 You're basically seeking the worldwide web for validation and all the attention is funneling to a few people. The influencers or the famous people get all of the attention and you as a human being in previous times were allotted a certain amount of attention because you belong to a tribe or a community or a family.

Now with broken families, you don't have that. So you're looking for the validation that you think you deserve, and it needs to be exponential, and you need to get a billion likes in order for it to even feel significant. And your creative expression is now indulged even when you have low resolution expression because you're using the readymade tools that these social media apps give you so that you can be creative at a high level. But you're not really tapping into a discipline or your true creative potential. 

You're just basically a button pusher to all of these different apps and tools that do it for you so that you can create a piece of content. But you're not actually gaining skills or getting better or becoming more creative. You're just basically a, yeah, you're like a secretary for your own content on some level.

And so these people are getting all this attention for doing very low resolution creative tasks, and they feel empty because the validation isn't genuine, isn't true, isn't connected to anything tangible. And then they're not even gaining any creative skills. So I would say be wary, be leery of the social media industrial complex. And find the things that are uncomfortable and subtle and interpersonal, and the things that make you feel something in the body.

[01:39:27] Luke: Amen, brother. Who are three teachers or teachings that have influenced your life and your work?

[01:39:37] Adrian: Hmm. I give a shout out to Jamie Wheel. He's a friend and a mentor. I'm going to give a shout out to my farm mentor, Mike Tyner. He's a multi-generational homesteader farmer, and he's taken me under his wing and I just feel so grateful to know someone who's so in the lifestyle and has taken an interest in teaching me.

 And then finally, my wife. She is such a gift. She was the first person that demanded more of me. She wanted more from me and required that I level up in order to be lucky enough to spend my life with her. And she really saved my life. 

[01:40:49] Luke: Beautiful. I relate. She's a good lady. You got a good one. We're two lucky dudes.

[01:40:53] Adrian: Yes, we are.

[01:40:55] Luke: Yeah. I do my best to never forget that.

[01:40:58] Adrian: Yeah.

[01:40:59] Luke: Yeah. Well, thank you man. Thanks for, uh, making time to come by today. Great to hang out with you. When we've been together in the past, there's always other people. It's the first time we've ever gotten to just dial in one-on-one, which has been really fun.

[01:41:11] Adrian: Thanks, brother.

[01:41:12] Luke: Yeah. And I appreciate it, man. Thanks for dropping in today with me and Adrian, y'all. Although we got to know some of Adrian's wisdom and experience, we didn't have much time to touch on some of the other great work he's up to in the world, and I wanted to share that with you.

So here are a few other tidbits on his various projects. As an investor, he's backed companies and entrepreneurs that he believes can change the world for the better through his impact fund DuContra Ventures. And as an activist, Adrian founded the Lonely Whale Foundation dedicated to bringing people closer to the world's oceans through education and awareness, inspiring empathy and action for ocean health and the wellbeing of marine wildlife.

He's also a UN ambassador where he helped the UN Environment Program launch Clean Seas, a campaign to end marine plastic pollution. And, uh, that's something my friends I can really get behind. To learn more about all these projects and more, visit lukestorey.com/adrian for the complete show notes, resources, and links.

And here's what's up next on The Life Stylist. We've got number 468 and this one is bananas. It's called Manna from Heaven, Cracking Alchemical Codes of the Earth's Most Potent Substances with David Reid from Manna. 

Now, just when I thought I had discovered pretty much everything that could possibly be good for you out there in the world, I was recently introduced to Manna and its creator, David Reid, our guest on next week's show. This guy has spent years traveling all over the planet looking for the best Shilajit, Ormus, and sea minerals. And he does a great job of explaining the alchemy of these nutrients and the relevance of sacred geometry, and the earth's many energy centers.

 This was a mind-blowing conversation and one about which I am so excited to share with you. To get next week's episode dropped into your inbox on Tuesday morning, here's what you do. Go to lukestorey.com/newsletter, and I'll do the rest. Bless your life, and I'll see you next week.


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