Curb Your Enthusiasm | Struggle With Addiction | Restaurateur - Mark Guido

February 09, 2024 Jacqueline Hanzl & Mark Guido Season 1 Episode 13
Curb Your Enthusiasm | Struggle With Addiction | Restaurateur - Mark Guido
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Curb Your Enthusiasm | Struggle With Addiction | Restaurateur - Mark Guido
Feb 09, 2024 Season 1 Episode 13
Jacqueline Hanzl & Mark Guido

Mark Guido is a father & restaurateur who is the owner of Frank Guido's Little Italy in Kingston, NY. He is carrying on the legacy that his father built 55 years ago with ~28 restaurants. Jackie & Mark discuss Curb Your Enthusiasm, Season 9, Episode 3, A Disturbance in the Kitchen.  Mark talks about working in the restaurant business, his struggle with addiction, & the importance of family.

Watch full episode here:

Hosted & produced by Jackie Hanzl


Music written & produced by Jeff Kadlic

Show Notes Transcript

Mark Guido is a father & restaurateur who is the owner of Frank Guido's Little Italy in Kingston, NY. He is carrying on the legacy that his father built 55 years ago with ~28 restaurants. Jackie & Mark discuss Curb Your Enthusiasm, Season 9, Episode 3, A Disturbance in the Kitchen.  Mark talks about working in the restaurant business, his struggle with addiction, & the importance of family.

Watch full episode here:

Hosted & produced by Jackie Hanzl


Music written & produced by Jeff Kadlic

Jacqueline Hanzl (00:06.306)
Hello everyone and welcome to Made with Jackie Hanzl. My guest with me today is Mark Guido and we are discussing Curb Your Enthusiasm Season 9 Episode 3, A Disturbance in the Kitchen. Mark is a father and local restaurateur. He opened

Mariners Harbor on the Rondout in Kingston in 2001 and since then has bought and sold a few other restaurants. He is carrying the legacy his father, Frank, AKA Butchie Guido built 55 years ago, which adds up to around 27, 28 restaurants. Yeah, about that. Yeah, something like that. So welcome, Mark. Thank you so much for doing this. you for having me. I've known Mark. Thank you for having me. And let me preface this. I hate this stuff. I'm not good at it.

and I guess it was the slow news week. But again, you're one of the only people I would do this for. So just say no. So I mean, it's not like an honor to have me, but honestly, no, it really is an honor for you to ask me. Thank you. Thank you. I've known Mark since we were 12. Actually, I think I did meet you when we were 11 because our sisters were friends. Yeah, our sisters were very good friends. And they're like five years older than us, right? I think. Yeah. Yeah.

Yeah. All right. So let's get into Curb Your Enthusiasm. I'm going to give a series synopsis for those of you who have never watched it. I think I got it from Wikipedia. It was released back in October of 2000. And each episode's plot and subplot is established in an outline written by David and the dialogue is largely improvised by the actors, technique known as retro scripting. So.

The series stars Larry David as a fictionalized version of himself. Like the real life David, the character is well known as the co -creator and main co -writer of the highly successful sitcom Seinfeld. Although Larry maintains an office, he is rarely shown working. Episodes frequently center on Larry's ignorance of or disregard for well -established social conventions and expectations and his... Just laughing, I know, just thinking about it. No, it's, yeah.

Jacqueline Hanzl (02:25.55)
and his insistence that others adhere to rules of which only he seems to be aware. The social ineptitude combined with his inability to let even the most minor grievance or annoyance go unexpressed often leads him into awkward social situations and draws the ire of his friends, family, and total strangers. He is also routinely the victim. Wow. Labyrinthine. I don't even know how to say that word. Labyrinthine. So, you know, obviously.

Yeah, I know. I'm analyzing it here. Yeah. The theme is misunderstandings when people think he has done something immoral or disgusting. Yeah, that's him. For the first half of the series, Larry David character is living a married, child -free life in Los Angeles with his wife, Cheryl, who's played by Cheryl Hines. David's main combatant on the show is his manager and friend, Jeff Green, who's played by Jeff Garland.

Suzy Aspen plays Suzy Green, Jeff's short tempered wife, who's frequently at odds with Larry. Many of the show's frequent guest stars are celebrities and public figures who will usually play fictionalized versions of themselves. Among the more frequently recurring guest stars are Larry's longtime friend, Richard Lewis. Doesn't even seem to like him, I'm sorry. As well as Ted Danson and his wife, Mary Steenburgen. Did I that right?

The show is set and filmed in various affluent Westside communities of and occasionally in downtown Los Angeles, as well as in the adjacent cities of Beverly Hills, Culver City, and Santa Monica. David's hometown of New York City is featured throughout some of the episodes in season eight. Okay. So just think it, all I have to do is pick your hand when I start laughing. Okay. So the episode recap of a disturbance in the kitchen is from, I got it from Entertainment Weekly. It's written by Dan Sniersen.

S -N -I -E -R -S -O -N. Larry reached a new, this is so funny, nadir, and his breaking point as his friends canceled golf games and ditched his poker nights and text chains because they did not want to be associated with his walking death, with this walking death threat. So he has a fat toit. A fat toit. A fat toit. Yep. Let's go get into it. And that, you know, if you don't...

Jacqueline Hanzl (04:42.382)
Basically, you have to watch the other episodes. What a Fatois is is basically a bounty put on your head by a religious leader, which usually comes from, like, it's based on what he did. He wrote a play called Fatois, and it was based on Salman Rushdie's novel called The Satanic Verses, which I believe he wrote in the late 80s. And he just got...

He just almost got killed. Some of us, we almost got killed like a year ago by somebody 24 years old who wasn't even born when this Ahtzva was ordered. So for him to even go into that subject is wild. So it's crazy. Yeah. And we've learned that basically, I think the first episode of this season about the... Yeah. So it's good you were like, watched some episodes before because I would have been like, what is going on? Yeah.

Yeah. Yeah. So.

Oh, this is the part. So but then he could he realized that there was a man who could truly understand his plight, the subject of his musical Salman Rushdie. He just said it. It says the highlight of the entertaining, if uneven episode proved to be David's meetup with Rushdie, a man with an actual fatwa still hanging over him. So Salman Salman, it's actually pronounced Salman, whatever. Yeah, I like that they talked about the pronunciation. He goes, oh, the syllables on Salman is the stress.

Yeah, yeah. I appreciated that as a speech pathologist, too. He shined as Larry's fatwa fatwa guru by extolling the benefits of the fatwa, getting out of obligations, the sex, aka the best sex there is and encourage encouraging Larry to lose the disguise. Oh, my God, the disguise. Oh, my God. You start picking up unattainable women who are attracted to his dangerous predicament. Oh, and he also pitched Larry on having Hugh Jackman.

Jacqueline Hanzl (06:39.342)
play him in the musical instead of Jason's. Enter Elizabeth Banks as a highly off kilter, self -obsessed version of herself. She scored first by constantly comparing the death of her cat, Mr. Noodle, to Suzy's little sister going missing. Now, little sister means like big brother, big sister program, not actually Suzy's little sister. Yeah, exactly.

And then by delivering a dreadful performance of an alibi after Larry accidentally damaged a cop car belonging to an officer who's played by Damon Wayans Jr. who had ticketed Larry for beeping at him. Larry lost the appeal, partially for you -hooing for a judge, but also for an overwrought and unsuccessful monologue about the donkey. Slack jaw gaze.

There were plenty of standout lines, again, I didn't write this part, that they're repeating. So before Swat breaks our back and pulls us like a human wallet, let's have the court stenographer read back the evidence that was presented in a disturbance of the kitchen. Okay. So basically, yeah. Yeah. He, okay. Basically, basically, this man, like I chose this series, like I chose this episode because a little bit, because of the restaurant thing a little bit.

But it's just so much bigger than that. Like there's so many other things going on. It's really not about the kitchen. It's more about the Fossum and all that. But this man is, the brilliance of this man, I mean, Seinfeld, who he's responsible for, people argue is the best sitcom in the history of television, which I think her enthusiasm is so much better because of, it's on HBO. Because you get a whiff of more, like there's nothing off limits.

There's so he gets away. He's a lot more freedom. Yeah, and like if you're a fan of Seifeld even if you're not like If you watch it like his brilliance is is is you just can't even explain it and the way they do it Like there's no there's no script so it but it's not improv like you said like you said it's not improv But there's no script like he does the storyline he sees the way he wants it to be done and and so like they do improv they ad lib and

Jacqueline Hanzl (09:00.526)
But they'll do like 30, 40, 50 takes for one scene just to get that scene right. That's how much of a perfectionist he is. And he's just brilliant, he really is. And the show, this one series just doesn't do it justice. There's so many more series. He hits, and he's not afraid of any subject. He hits on everything. Obviously, Radical is like that. It's a very...

I mean, it's obviously very, I mean, he hits on the Me Too movement. He hits on race. He hits on, there's nothing off limits. But he does it in such a brilliant way that, like, I know like Family Guy, I know South Park, I know those guys, they get away with it and they go overboard, like for shock value. So I think that's why they get away with it. So over the top. And in a cartoon, being a cartoon helps. But the way he does it, like, you know what mean? Like he gets away with it and it doesn't really offend anybody.

and in the world we're living in, and the culture we're living in, and the climate we're living in, I think we need that. I think we need to laugh. I think not everything needs to be this serious, especially as a comedian. I mean, people are ruining people's lives going back 10, 12 years on Twitter for something somebody said, and then you got to ruin their life. Trust me, 10, 12 years from now, somebody's got to go back on your Twitter and find something atrocious. So I wouldn't be so, you know what I mean? Nobody's perfect.

But he sees that, he sees the absurdity of that. And again, it's not political, it's not, you know what I mean? That's why I love it. It's brilliant. And again, life is tough enough. I like my TV to be an escape. But you need to laugh. He makes fun of Catholics, he makes fun. There's nothing about limits. And I don't get offended, I was raised Catholic. You what mean? He makes fun of white New York Jewish people. That's what he is.

You know what I mean? So, the brilliance is amazing. The show, if you don't watch the show, if you ever watch the show, it's something I really, really, really recommend. Yeah. Because it's amazing. So, clearly your favorite character is Larry. Oh, yeah, by far. Herman and Susie. Susie is the best. Yeah. Jeff's wife is the best. But Larry, Larry is, why I love Larry, he's like the antithesis of me.

Jacqueline Hanzl (11:21.614)
Like I'm the least confrontational person in the world, but he says whatever's on his mind. He says what everybody wants to say to people, but just they don't have the bravery or whatever you want to call it to do it. Calls everybody out. He's the every, like you said, the rules he thinks that are, that should be in place. He calls everybody out on it. And 99 times out of a hundred, he's right. You just can't say it. It's just socially not acceptable.

And I just love the fact that he just does that. I mean, he does exactly what people want to do, but we just can't. In a civilized social society. And he's the exact opposite of me. Like, I would love to be able to tell people things he says, but I could just never do it. Yeah, of course, Maul. Yeah, it's tricky. Yeah.

Well, I was gonna say, who do you relate to the most? If you feel like you're the opposite of him, but do you feel like you relate to him also? I mean, I mean, at the same time, you do relate to him because he is such a, he's so cerebral. I mean, he's such a deep character that he is good. Like, you know what mean? Like he always is like all that bad stuff. Like, but there always is, like he always has a good intention behind him. Like he's got a big, he's always helping people out. He's always trying to do the right thing also. So.

Like, you know, it's this very complex character that he's not just this terrible human being, but he does like, like, and a lot of the things he thinks he's doing is for the greater of human good. Yes, he does. Which I agree with, which I agree with. Like he's doing things that if people is that, let's don't act like that because you're not supposed to. It's better for the human race. Right. So I like to think that I'm, I have empathy like that. I like to think so. I relate to in that way. I do. Yeah.

I wanted to get to the line, a disturbance in the kitchen, because they didn't really talk about that in the recap. So basically, that was really wasn't what it was about. But it starts off, he said, he's at a restaurant, and their food is delayed. And the manager or the host comes over and says, there's been a disturbance in the kitchen. I don't know who that guy was, but he was fantastic. He's the manager. Yeah. And he just kept like, going back to that. And Larry kept asking and trying to get specifics. He's like,

Jacqueline Hanzl (13:45.326)
Well, the disturbance once it's, whatever. Larry just couldn't let it go. He had to know. He went in the kitchen and asked, started yelling at the chef. But I don't, now you had mentioned to me, we talked before this, there was more behind that. I didn't, like, I just took it as surface. See what it is, I think, see what it is, like, like, like.

In the restaurant business, we'll catch ourselves like, we don't tell the customer. We have to, we have to, like, you know what I mean? Like say, just like, it'll happen like in the next couple of weeks. We'll have Christmas is coming, my staff, my employees, everybody works so hard. I'll put a sign on the door and say closed for kitchen renovations. That's not true. You know what mean? Like, I'm just telling people that because I need to give my people a break.

Right. But the disturbance in the kitchen thing is that he's in a disguise. He has a bounty on his head. He's scared to death. The adetola has issued a fatwa on him, but yet he still can't let what that answer go. So you gotta be like, he puts everything aside to find out what a disturbance in the kitchen is because he's not satisfied with that answer.

Because he knows he's being lied to and he wants to know he can't let it go. He'll let everything else go to get to the bottom of that. And that's who he is. And that's what makes it hilarious. It's got nothing to do with the... And that's who he is. Yeah, it's great. And if you just, if you haven't seen this episode or this season, if you just Google him, if you Google him in that disguise, like you'll just die laughing. I mean, the terrible wig and the huge mustache and...

It just, he looks in different glasses, I think he has. It's great. You know, when I go to a restaurant and they say sorry for the, if they come and apologize for the delay, that's usually it. You don't get a reason, which is fine, whatever. Have you ever used that excuse? No, I never used that excuse. I mean, I never really used that excuse. I've used, I mean, because to be honest, as for businesses,

Jacqueline Hanzl (16:08.59)
Say you're a customer and you come into my restaurant and something bad happens. You don't care about what bad happens. You don't care that I'm understaffed. You don't care that a girlfriend, one of the waitresses' boyfriends just broke up with her so she walked on the floor. You don't care that somebody cut their pinky off in the kitchen. That's not your problem. You want your food. You know what mean? And it shouldn't be your problem. So there's ways to deal with that.

we'll be apologized, we don't really offer excuses because nobody wants to hear them. They want to hear answers. Listen, your food, I'll buy you a drink, your food will be out in five minutes. I'm rushing it. That's what I mean. But I've never used like an excuse like that because customers don't want to hear that. And Larry David is proof of that. But he wants to know. I just some other notes I had when he gets

when he doesn't get pulled over when the cop comes to his door, because he honks, he starts to say to the cop, with all due respect, and I thought actually, Marlon Waynes was going to say something back about that comment, with all due respect, but with all due respect, I was thinking it's funny, no offense. Yeah. You know, can I be honest with you? Yeah, like there's all, it's just one of those sayings.

If somebody says, with all due respect, you know you're going to hear. Yeah, then you know something just offensive. Yeah. Yeah. No offense, but yeah. And then I just had. The court scene that I was just I was dying. Yeah, which is great. Yeah, it's just great when he compares himself to. Yeah, I also there's like three or four court scenes in the in the series that every single one of them are phenomenal that he's he it's it's there's one called that there's an episode called The Carpool.

which is great, which he picks up a prostitute because he doesn't want to wait in the, he doesn't want to wait in the regular traffic. So he picks up a prostitute to go in the HOV lane and then he gets caught and then he has to go to, then he has to go to court with, with the prostitute. And so, and the judge just happens to be African -American and the prostitute is also, but like, like a year before that, he stood in front of the same judge and he was trying to get out of jury duty. And he said,

Jacqueline Hanzl (18:35.726)
something very, very, very racially offensive to try to get out of jury duty. So like it all connects. It's oh my gosh, like anything just for his convenience. Anything. I also I like how it all came like full circle. I could think I think at the end. Yeah, they make a disturbance in the kitchen. Exactly. Exactly. Yeah, of course. Of course. Of course. The bank. So yeah, it's great. She asked. No, I mean, it's just it's brilliant. It really is. It really is. It's crazy. Yeah.

It's great. And it never gets old. I mean, I watched that series. I can watch it any time. And I could. I watched each one, each episode. Who knows how many times I could keep watching it and watching it. Yeah. So. I guess let's get into you. So, yeah, no, no. How did you start? I mean, I kind of know how you started doing what you're doing. Did you always? Did you? Like growing up, did you?

Basically, was it understood? You're gonna... No, no. This is... I mean, the restaurant business is in my blood, obviously. I mean, my father did this forever. Like you said before, he had 27, 28 restaurants. So I did do this from whatever. You know what mean? This is all I know. But I did... I bounced around a few colleges because I had no idea what I wanted to do. I went to Pace for a while. I went to Boston University. I went to... Then I...

did like a year at Ulster and I got to travel. And then, so, and then finally I settled at UNLV. I moved out there with a couple of friends. I settled at UNLV, which is like, besides Cornell, probably has the best hospitality, hospitality program in the country. But I wanted, like I was interested in the casino business. So I went for like hospitality, so I, it was, it was like a dual major.

with hospitality and casino management. And what I was planning on doing, so I got an internship for the Venetian. And they were building a casino in Macau, which is off the coast of Hong Kong. And Macau is China's Vegas, basically. So that's really what I wanted to do. That's what I planned on doing. But in April,

Jacqueline Hanzl (21:01.646)
of my senior year, I forget, it was 99, I think, my father got sick. So my father got sick. But to my father's credit, he came out, he told me, and he basically begged me not to come home, not to do this, not to do what you want to do, follow your genius, blah, blah, blah. But I thought about it, listen, I can't, I could always do what I had to do. With this man and my family's done for me, I have to come home because we didn't know what direction it was going to go in. So I came home, we had a place in Red Hook.

was called Mariners Harbor Inn. I ran that for a couple of years. And then the deal with Mariners came up in 2001. And then my father, myself and my cousin Sal opened Mariners in 2001. And then the rest is history. And you know what though, as much as I wanted to do something, I'm happy I stayed here because of the way my life turned out, my daughter, my family.

I'm happy. So, and my father's better. So, and my father's fine. So, which is the most important thing. So, it all worked out. It all worked out. And I have no regrets. I have no resentment. I have no nothing because I'm good. And I know I said to you too before to try to get you to come on. You know, some people might think, oh, he was handed this, you know, but you have to.

You were, but you have to keep it going. You know, I have, I have no work and hard work. I have no, I have no, I have, I know that I am, uh, I know I am a person of opportunity and privilege and I know I was handed a lot. I know, I understand that and I have no, I'm not going to apologize for it. I mean, it is what it is, but, but again, it does, there's two sides to that. There's a lot of pressure.

And but I don't want anybody to feel bad for me either because I was given a lot. But but again, like my father built this from nothing. I mean, he comes from nothing. So they were poor. He built this. And he built this from nothing. If he didn't think I was capable of doing this, wouldn't have let me do this. And so and so again, again, I was handed a lot. I had a lot of opportunities that people would die for. And I'm not going to deny that.

Jacqueline Hanzl (23:28.686)
But at the same time, you play the cards are dealt, I guess, for lack of a better term. And I could very easily go out of business tomorrow. So I think I'm very capable. I think I do what I do well. I'm not my father. I don't want to be. He doesn't want me to be. So I kind of got to do my own thing. But I feel obligated to carry on this legacy of what he built and what he did.

for us, for my family and for my sister and myself. And because he really is, because earlier in my life, I resented his success. I had problems with it. But now I'm in awe of it because he's, I can't explain the man he is. He's the most selfless, caring man. I never remember him doing something for himself. I mean, the customers love him because he's so genuine.

So, and I know that that's not really me, because I'm more introverted, but now I see the passion and what he did and how he made this work. And it's real, it's not phony. It's amazing, it really is. And he's my mentor, he's amazing. And all those feelings went away. I'm so grateful he's my father.

Because I could have done a lot worse and again, he's been so good to me for my whole life and but but the whole story the real Hero of the soul story is my mother because I wasn't easy and my lord knows my father wasn't easy So my mother is the hero in the story. My father's my mentor, but my mother's my hero. Oh Yeah I will say, you know growing up we would go to

Mariners, but that was there one in Highland? Yeah, yeah, that's where yeah, yeah from 90. What's right started from 81 and 96. He was in Ireland. Yep. And it that was the first one. Yeah. And it always it was like, it's very special. And yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yep. We would get dressed up and everything and it was on the water and he did he always treated. He always makes you feel special. And yeah.

Jacqueline Hanzl (25:48.334)
you know, he'd throw in like a free something. There'd be like, oh, drinks or dessert or something. And that really does matter. Like you feel it. And we've had parties at your places and always, always well taken care of. And it's always been easy. Yeah. Like I can't even go out to dinner with him because he knows every single person and stop and talk to every single person to have a conversation. Like, oh, I know your grandmother. I worked with your grandfather here. I know this. I know that.

And people are amazed that he knows this and because of the passion, because he cares. He wouldn't know all that stuff if he didn't. So he's just a natural at this. And it just comes so naturally. And I'm so grateful for the knowledge that he's given me and the start and the opportunity that I've been given because of him. So I know that you cook because you, I didn't realize that you cook. Not if I don't have to. Not if you don't have to. Okay. Did he cook too?

He cooked, when we were in Highland, he did cook. He was on the line, he cooked. He's a good cook. I'm not gonna lie, I'll cook if I have to. I'm busy, I work a lot of hours, but I'm not gonna sit here and act like I do everything. The people that work for me are the real people that do all the work. I'll come here and tell them about this and give direction and do this and do that and do this and do that, but they're the real people that do the work and they're...

who I owe everything to. Luckily, I'm at that level professionally that I don't really have to cook. I don't have a real job. I come in as a customer and basically see what's right, what's wrong, and give direction. That's basically what my function is. But I'll do whatever I have to do. If I have to cook, if I have to hose, if I have to do anything, I'll do it. Did he teach you to cook? Yeah.

Or you just kind of? You kind of pick it up. Pick it up. You kind of pick it up. Do you? Because I don't know. Yeah, yeah, yeah, you kind of pick it up. I'm learning by as most as I guess. I think if you got it in there somewhere, it's better. Yeah, I guess. Yeah, yeah. Like me. So I wanted to talk about, you know, you said you you weren't so easy for your mom and there's been no some struggles for you. Yeah, yeah.

Jacqueline Hanzl (28:14.638)
Yeah, there I mean, there has I mean, I have obviously I have. I've got like I've got addiction has been an issue for a large part of my life. And whatever again, I'm not asking for anybody for sorry for me. It was a series of bad decisions, a series of things that I've seen of people I've got involved with a bubble. You could blame it on whatever. But again, it was my decision. And then then you get to a point that.

you're sick, you know what I mean? Like you can't, some people, like most people can just do what they do and then stop or whatever and then they're good. I'm not that person. I so I, I, I, I waged I threw out, I'm going to say 10, 12 years of my life of, with like real, real, real addiction, like straight up addiction, not just going out and partying, like addiction, like running my life addiction. And I'm sure the pain that I've caused,

my family and my mother and that's why I'm so grateful and so blessed that I can't even express the gratitude I have. Like my ex, the mother, my child, Melanie, like we're not together. We're married for six years, but she's such an amazing person. She didn't give up on me when she probably should have. We have the most beautiful daughter. She's my best friend, my wife, my ex -wife. Her brother, you want to call her? I don't...

But um, I mean we're going on vacation together. We I just had Thanksgiving with her and and What so she sees something in me that she doesn't have to? So yeah, so again like the gratitude I have for like everybody could have it should have turned their back on me a long time ago my friends Oh my god, you know my friends, you know who they are I'm not gonna name any of them because I don't want to leave anybody out But but they were all there for me. I cut them off

out of embarrassment probably for years. But again, my family, they never ever gave up on me. And again, the gratitude I have is, I just can't even explain it because I really shouldn't be here. And because I've been around a lot of deaths, like three of the closest people to me, I've probably had are dead, that very easily could have been me. It's just a lifestyle that you don't ask for.

Jacqueline Hanzl (30:41.166)
But I mean, it happened. And see, now that I look at it now, you surround yourself with the right people and you do the right thing and you can only help yourself. Nobody else can do anything for you. But now it made me who I am. Like I can't change the past. I can't predict tomorrow, but I can learn from it and I can only live for today. So I think it made me the man I am. It made me the father I am. It made me the brother I am.

It made me, you know what mean? It made me the boss I am. So that adversity and that trauma and that all that, I almost, there is almost something in me that makes me feel like I needed to go through it to make me, because like when I was younger, I opened Mariners at 24, 25 years old, you know, you're making money, you have an ego, you think you're invincible. And then, you know what I mean? You need to be knocked down a few times. And I was, trust me, I was knocked down a lot of pegs.

And I needed that humility and I got it. And there is a lot of people struggling out there. And the problem is with it, there's this stigma that you're a dirtbag or like, oh, just to pull yourself out of it, you're weak. That's not true. Because if I could have done that, I would have done that so long ago. There's so many people I know that would have done that, but they just can't. It's just not what they do. It's not how it is. It's not how it works.

And it's, I mean, like, again, I would have never spoken about this a few years ago, but now it's part of who I am. It's not a secret anymore. And me talking about it, if it helps one person, it helps me, it's worth it. Because I luckily, and again, like, I'm not gonna lie, I'm not the poster boy of recovery. I'm not the poster boy of I'm not perfect, I'm not this. But if you saw where I was seven, eight years ago to where I am today,

It's a miracle. It really is. And I owe that to a lot of everybody around me. To a lot of the people that never gave up on me, that should have. So again, it is what it is, I guess. I mean, do I wish it was different? Of course. Of course. I mean, my mother and father probably didn't sleep for 10 years. So the pain I caused, so of course I wish it was different. But again, I can't change the past.

Jacqueline Hanzl (33:08.814)
I can only go forward. Do you mind me asking, excuse me, the progression? Like what went from what to what? Yeah, well, I mean, I mean, the progression, it just sneaks up on you. So and again, I'm leaving out people's names. So so like like I didn't really like to be honest, I was a late bloomer. Like I didn't drink in high school. I didn't really do anything in high school. I started a little later. I started a little later. You start with.

of course, like drinking starts and then blah, blah, blah. Then when I moved to New York City, like I hit that ecstasy boom perfect. Like I had friends in like the club industry and when ecstasy first started getting big, like that's when I was around. So like ecstasy was like my first thing. But like I can't pinpoint the addiction and then the addiction and then the ecstasy goes to something else. Then it goes to something else. And then like I can't...

I can't pinpoint the time that I was a user to a hard user to a straight up addict. I I'm going to tell you right now that people say a drug is a drug, is a drug. That's not because once because there's drugs, but once opiates and that come into play, that's a whole different world. It's a whole different world. Like that, that, that,

I mean, that's the end all. So, I might have been a drug addict before that, before opiates came into play, but that definitely was my downfall. And that made me straight up, I knew I was a drug addict when that happened because it runs your life. It runs your life and you put everything else is second. And then it's...

And it takes time for it to get out of it. But then, I don't know, you have an epiphany. Something happens, whether it's your bottom, whether whatever it is, whether it's a spiritual experience, whether it's something, I don't know what it is, but something just hits you and says, I just can't live like this anymore and I got to get the help I got to get. And then you got to do what you got to do. And then, I mean, or else you got to live that way. There's two ways out of that. It's death or jail. It's mostly death.

Jacqueline Hanzl (35:34.028)
You know, I to jail if you're lucky. So that's really, like, I'm not gonna get into, like, what, like, my rock, like, my, the exact situation that made me realize that enough is enough. I'm not gonna get into that. But it was bad enough to make me realize that this is it. I gotta do something. How many times did you go to rehab? Three or four, I don't even remember. Like, the first guy,

The first couple were like these ridiculous, like, I don't know, like almost country club. There was masseuses and saunas and this and that. And you know what I mean? I guess whatever. They got their place. They got their place. But then the last time I went, I'm like, this ain't working. I'm like, I need this. So I went up, I went, I tracked myself into a straight up, like a real, real, real rehab that like, that...

And not to say I don't want this to come off the wrong way, but I wasn't the typical patient. But when I was there, I realized the only difference between me and them is my upbringing. So if I didn't have what I had, I would have been them. So again, like that ego, that humility finally just went out the window when I realized like,

I'm a product of my environment and who am I to judge? so I needed that and So like that that that's the last so hopefully that's the last time I'll ever go. Yes, so but but anyway anyway, that's um, that's that's basically the that's basically the the addiction story and It was it's a big part of my life and it continues to be it always will be It it hurt relationships it

It's you know, I mean it ruined relationships. It almost made me lose my daughter. It almost made me lose my livelihood. But again, I mean, there's it didn't. So yeah, that's all I can say. That's all I can say. How so you went to the first rehab got out then how long after that did you go to the second one? I mean, after the first one, I was at sea. This is what happens. The first time you go, you think you're clear. You think you're cured. Yeah, they call it the pink cloud.

Jacqueline Hanzl (37:59.438)
You come out, you got your 28 days, you think everything's good. You think, oh, I'm good. I'm cured. Blah, blah, blah. No big deal. And you don't really want to do any of the work or anything. And then, and then it's just very, very, very easy. All of a you slip back in. You slip back in and then, and then I don't know, whatever time goes by you realize, because you're in denial and then you go back again. And then the same thing happens. I mean, some people get it quick. Some people get it after one time.

Some people, I mean, most people don't get it after once. I don't know too many people that went to rehab once. I mean, I know people that went 20, 30, 40 times. So, I'd say over like a 10 year stretch, like detox and rehab, probably four.

detoxes that we has maybe four or five. Okay. I would, I guess that would be my guess. And it sounds like to, you know, going to one that's like a spa, you're in, you're in an environment that is not real life. I mean, not, you know, and so you're then when you come back out, it's kind of like real life happens. Yeah. And it's like getting reacclimated into, into real life.

tools even though they tried to do this thing with rehab. Rehab gets you clean, it gets you dry, then it's your job to stay that way once you get out. You have to do work and you need to and I struggle like I was a militant atheist my whole life and where to get me? Right. You got me into rehabs? So until you actually admit that there's something bigger out there,

Like whether I don't I'm not gonna say what it is that doesn't matter what I think it is It doesn't have to be what you think it is. Yeah, it doesn't have to be what anybody else thinks It is it doesn't really matter until you think that there's something bigger out there that can that can help you that can you're not gonna get it and and so So until I broke down and I still don't know I still don't know what's out there, but I'd rather be wrong and Alive than right and dead. Yeah. Yeah. So what good is it me? What good what good is it?

Jacqueline Hanzl (40:12.11)
for me to say, oh, there's no God, there's no this, there's no that. So, again, I don't know what it is, but there is something else, there's gotta be. And I see it from so many people. When did that click in for you? Probably when I saw my daughter born. I would think that there's something bigger. I would guess when I saw my daughter born. I think that because...

Because when you're doing bad, like when you're doing emotionally bad and when you think the worst of you, and trust me, that's how you think. And when you went through what you went through, if you're a good person and you go through what you go through, and then you see a kid being born and I'm half of that. And that you created, yeah. I'm not all bad. I'm not all bad. So I made half that. So that was very, very...

And again, I still messed up after that. But again, it brought me back to where I needed to be eventually. Because it's always there. It's a struggle. It's a struggle. So there is no magic bullet that cures this. You know what mean? Like it's a disease, but again, there's no magic cure. And what works for some... Exactly, exactly. But the only...

The common denominator is nobody in the world is going to change you unless you want to change yourself. So like those three or four times, like those couple of times, I probably went to appease other people, shut them up. I probably knew deep down, but maybe not on the surface, but deep down I probably knew that I wasn't done. So, you know what mean? Because I wasn't ready to come out and face what I had to face and do what I have to do. But...

But eventually, hopefully that hits people. And again, so that's really, that's basically what it is. And again, there's a lot of people out there that helped, that have been through this, that have been in much, much worse condition than me, that are 10 times the people I am, that help so many people. So there is a way out. There is, there is. You feel helpless, but there is a way out. And...

Jacqueline Hanzl (42:32.718)
And I'm living, I mean, I'm doing good. I see my daughter. I see my daughter. I see, I mean, I'm financially, I'm okay. You have amazing friends. Yeah, I have amazing friends. I mean, I, including me. So there's really exactly, exactly. So there's really, there's not really nothing I can, I can complain about. Yeah. So this last place you went that you were like, I needed this because it was sounds like hardcore.

Yeah. That's it was almost like jail. OK, so that really helped. Did they teach you tools, though, too? Or it's just like everybody you get taught the I could recite these tools like these programs and these programs. They're all almost basically the same. Right. I mean, there are like they are what they are. Yeah. You know, it'd be like how many different tools can you have? Right. But then but you get but you get these special relationships with certain people.

that hit you different. You know what I mean? I don't know what it is, I'm not gonna explain it, but there's certain therapists, or there's certain other patients, or there's certain people that relate to you differently. your people. Exactly. So recovery is recovery, the 12 steps are the 12 steps. Everything else...

is yeah, so they can only teach you so much, but but until you like, you know, I mean, like you have to like, I don't know, I don't know, I don't know how to explain it. That's not higher power. That's not higher power thing. Like, you know, I mean, like that's a higher power thing. And, and that's really that higher power thing. And I remember one time, and this is, this is what I first started thinking about a higher power. So I went to detox one time, and I was gonna leave.

I was like, I'm out of here. I'm like, I'm not doing this. I'm not waiting. I can't stay here. I can't stay here. So Sunday, there was a speaker. So the speaker walked in and I've known him for like 25 years. And he's like, and I was about to leave. And he was like, Mark, stay for this. And then if you don't want to stay for after I talk, then you can go. I won't stop you, but at least stay. And then I stayed and I ended up staying there for like, I don't remember how long, for a long time.

Jacqueline Hanzl (44:59.022)
So like that was weird. Like it came in at that exact moment. And I still talk to him to this day. So it was kind of, it was weird. It was a little, you know what I mean? Like that's hard to explain. Like that's bigger than me. I mean, it could be a coincidence. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. But again, who am I to say? Who am I to say? I don't really believe in coincidences, I think. Yeah, me, yeah, I don't know. I don't know, yup. And what was I gonna say? I mean,

Something about so the people did you connect the most with the people at the last place you were at? Yeah, yeah, I really did. I really did. I really did. I mean, I still I still there's a couple of people I speak I still talk to. There's a couple of counselors I talked to there. I did relate to them more. I really but but but again, it might not just be where because I was there. It was because I was just so tired and so fed up that I just played. You were at.

Yeah, I think I was at the right place at the right time. I don't know if I had anything to do with them, but I just think I was at a place that I was just exhausted and I just couldn't live the way I was living. And I just think that that made me connect and made me do the work that made me believe and made me, you know what I mean? So that's that's that's probably that has something to do with it. Did that was it a difference? Obviously, it was like a different style there. What did it feel more real to you? Like did?

They feel more real than the other places? more real because you don't get to go outside, there's no gyms, it's very industrial. I mean, it was just... And there was people in there that were going to jail for 10 years when they got out. And so it was just... And there was no amenities, there was no... You know what I mean? It was just... It was what it was. Right.

And again, and again, like, like, I just think I needed that at that time. Yeah, and, and so that's just just the way the way it happened. It's funny. I had on here, spirituality, like what? Yeah, spiritual. Yeah. So you can't answer. Yeah. I mean, there is I mean, I'm not a religious person. I'm not sure about whatever. Right. But I know I'm not the most important thing in the universe. So that's all I need to know. Right.

Jacqueline Hanzl (47:21.452)
That's all I need to know. I have the fluffy questions now. Do you have self -care? What's your self -care? Well, actually, you know what I wanted to say. To be honest, self -care is really not my strong point. I work and then... Well, I don't mean like exercise, health. I mean like, actually more like, what do you do to just... Decompress? Yes.

I mean, I'm not really that type of person. I don't really know. like to watch TV, you said. You did say that. You said that's your escape. I read a little bit. I mean, the best time I have is with my daughter. That's one of my happiest. That's my best. That's all I need. That's really all I need right now. Again, wherever my social life brings me, whatever happens, happens. But I don't really care right now because I'm doing the right thing.

running a successful business, I'm a good father. So all that other stuff is secondary. I need to get my house in order because I still have a lot of work to do. I have a lot of work to do. But again, my daughter is bigger than anything. And again, like I said, I can't talk good enough about how my sister and my parents and Melanie and how these people should buy me and didn't need to.

and and and probably shouldn't have. And so again, I like again, it's just like my family is everything to me and my daughter and my eulogy. The only thing I said in my eulogy is that my daughter says I couldn't ask for a better father. I'm good. I don't care about any kind of money. I don't care about any kind of legacy with restaurants. I don't care about any of that. Right. That's that's really what I care about. That's really what's important to me. Yeah. Yeah.

I hear you. Also, like her happiness. That's I know when you're, you want your kid happy. Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's all I need. That's all I need. I could have the worst day ever and I come home and she hugs and kisses me and I just forget about everything. Everything else is noise after that. Yeah. You know what I mean? Everything else just puts everything in perspective. Yeah. What can't you leave the house without?

Jacqueline Hanzl (49:44.59)
Like what can I leave the house without you have to have my necklace, my my necklace that with an R for Raya. Yeah. There's a dog tag with her birth date and Buddha. Nice. It's Buddha's head. Nice. So I don't, I never not wear that. Did you study Buddhism at all? I did. I read a lot. I see that. Like I was, I've been fortunate enough. I spent a lot of time in Southeast Asia over the past 20 years or so. And the beauty of Buddhism, it is a religion.

But it's also a lifestyle. And so there's like two great books. There's a book called Buddha, When Buddha Walks into a Bar, and another one that What Makes You Not a Buddhist. So what it is, and it tackles like you don't have to be a straight up Buddhist to live Buddhist lifestyle. And it's like, you can drink, you can eat meat, you can do this, you can like all that stuff that they all that stuff.

but you can still, the lifestyle you lead, it's about, and it all connects with all other religions. It's all basically the same. I just related to the Buddhism thing because it doesn't have the dogma and the, without not offending anybody because, I don't know, the stories and the biblical stories and the fantasy. And the guilt. I don't know if it's true or not. Because the supernatural isn't really evolved.

in the readings I read. It's more of a lifestyle. So that's how I relate to that. And Siddhartha, who's Buddha, doesn't claim to be a god, he was a real person. So it's something I relate to. And it makes a lot of sense. But I'm not calling myself a Buddhist, because I'm not. It's just something I study and something I'm interested in.

And it's something that helped me spiritually and helped me to be a better person. Yeah, that's great. What can't you live without? And this can be deep, it could be food, a thing. I mean, what can I live without? I the obvious choice is family. My family. All right, let's get superficial. Something superficial. On a lighter note, I couldn't live without Chinese food. OK.

Jacqueline Hanzl (52:10.508)
I love Chinese food. I eat it like three days a week. I eat it like three days a week. Well, different or? My family's been bringing me to Engs for 48 years and I still go there. I love it. It's my favorite restaurant in the world. What's your favorite dish? They are good egg rolls. They have a dish called beef and noodle that nobody else has, which is unbelievable. And tomato rice too. That would be if I was on death row.

If I was on death row, that'd be my last meal. No doubt about it. Good to know. I'm gonna have to try that. I don't think I've ever been there. It's like a East Kingston thing. Yeah, okay. Like a Kingston thing. My father grew up there. They've been there since like the 20s. Wow. Yeah, we've been going there forever. That's cute. I wanted to tell you that back when I was moving back here from the city,

to come and go to grad school. I think we had our 10 year reunion. And yeah, that's in Glasgow. Yes. And, you know, I needed to get out of the city. I was done with it. I wanted to go to grad school and everything. But pardon me was like, oh, my gosh, I'm leaving the city. I never thought I'd leave the city. I loved the city. And I saw you at the reunion and I told you, I said, I'm moving back. And you're like, it's not that bad here. It really isn't. And no, it's not because I lived in New York for a couple of years.

I knew it wasn't bad, but it just, it really was comforting. And I'll never forget you said that to me and it was just really nice. Cause I was anxious. Yeah, that. Because I went through that too. Like I lived in New York. I moved to New York in like 94. I was there for a few years and I moved to Boston and then I'm like, I'm never going back home. I'm never going back home. But then when I did, it's, I mean, it's home. You always have a soft spot for home. I don't care where we are.

Yeah, I mean, there was this thing growing up in Sorgetis was a small town was like, I can't wait to get out of here. No, yeah, you never thought I'd come back. But then I did. But you say that to me and I don't know. It's something I always remember. So no, it's true, though. It's true. It is. It's again, I think a lot of people go through that. Most people do. But I think when they realize that home is home. Yeah. And and now like, like, you can't.

Jacqueline Hanzl (54:36.878)
Duplicate like the time my daughter to suspend with her grandparents. Yeah, because they're not gonna be here forever I had a kid late I had a kid at 42. You gotta be my first kid at 42 or 43 even so my parents were not young So like that time that they're spending together if I was living somewhere else Yeah, you know, I mean she would miss out on that and that's something I wouldn't need I can't even imagine I can't even imagine her missing out on that both sides. I'm both. Yeah For my daughter and for my parents. Yeah, so

And again, and again, not for nothing. And I mean, I made a decent life for myself too. So, I mean, so I really don't have any complaints. Yeah. I mean, I had my child at 40 and my parents are 40 years older than me. So, yeah, yeah. So you're in the same situation. Yeah. So if I hadn't been back here, yeah, I can't imagine. So happy. Yeah, I can't imagine. Like you think about like what my life would have been if I did say no to my father and make that move and like.

Who knows? I mean, who knows? Who knows what would happen? And I wouldn't trade my life right now, even what I've been through. Yeah. I would like for anything, for anything. For the people that are around me, just because of the people that are around me and the people that supported me. And so I really I'm blessed. I wouldn't trade it for anything. Yeah. Well, I think I should end there. All right. Here we go. There we go. All right. Thank you very much. Thank you so much. Anytime. Anytime. All right. All right.

Have a good holiday. Thanks. Bye. Bye.