CWJJ Episode 54: Jim Schauer & James Cross
April 22, 2021

CWJJ Episode 55: UPSCO, Connections for Life

Thursday, April 30- Another mash-up episode with the UPSCO guys joining Jim & James discussing the value and experience of the shows they do. It’s been a long year, and all of these guys are getting continuous positive feedback from people on what these shows mean to them.

Quick Links:

Chad Cuvo on Linkedin
Ted Peet on Linkedin
Joe Serrett on Linkedin

Episode Transcript

Jim Schauer:  [0:23] Welcome everyone to this very special mashup or smash up, depending on how you do your potatoes…

James Cross:  [0:29] No.

Jim:  [0:30] edition of “Coffee with…” ah, you see what I did there? “Coffee With Jim and James” and “Connections for Life.”

[0:37] Before we get started. As I normally do, I was thinking about our, you know, coming up on our year anniversary of doing our first mashup, and I was thinking about how we all met or how I met everybody. 

[0:48] And it goes back to James, you know, TGA we connected on LinkedIn beforehand. And when we got to TJA we literally embraced.

James:  [0:56] Lovingly. Man hugs.

Chad Cuvo:  [1:00] Like that?

Jim:  [1:01] Man hugs.

James:  [1:02] It was a different time. That was pre‑COVID.

[1:04] Chad; OK. OK.

Jim:  [1:06] That was years ago. Ted and I’ve just met virtually. Might be some issues there.

Ted Peet:  [1:11] A lot of times. A lot of times.

Chad:  [1:13] Be thankful. Be thankful for that. You’ll be thankful for that.

Jim:  [1:17] And, we were at the Kentucky Gas Association Expo and we passed by each other saying. [inaudible] something in your copies. Like, what is going on? You’re like oh that’s just Jim’s Tammy. No. Tammy’s Jim, that’s what it is. 

[1:31] And then there comes to Joe Joe Serrett. I think it was San Francisco. A origami and yoga convention.

Chad:  [1:39] I thought it was New Orleans. September 9th, 2009.

James:  [1:42] Oh, call back.

Jim:  [1:44] We never spoke of that again, but how wonderful it is to bring everybody together for a little touch base on our year anniversary, just coming up on our year anniversary.

James:  [1:57] One month away. We, we just looked it up in the pre‑show. Which, by the way, I don’t know about y’all but the pre‑show is becoming a lot more fun than the show every time we…

Ted:  [2:09] It always is. We literally were talking about that with our last guest the other day. We were like, We should just start recording and then mix all the stuff together.”

James:  [2:17] If we weren’t all such liabilities. Yeah.

[2:19] [crosstalk]

James:  [2:22] The record button is our buffer to reality.

Joe:  [2:24] Can we just put TV MA up in the corner?

James:  [2:27] That’s the five dollar version. You pay for that.

Joe:  [2:33] No, I just I want to say, thanks, guys. You guys put this together. It’s awesome as always. It’s great seeing you. It’s incredible how much things have changed but also stayed the same. I think, a year ago when we were doing this, we couldn’t imagine that we’d be a year away, doing it still, right? 

[2:49] I think it was kind of like a temporary Band‑Aid to help us integrate and and with our, with our customers and with our peers and that was really the whole design, I think, for both of our shows. 

[2:59] I think one of biggest things for us is, you know, what we’ve gotten out of the experience. And I just want to ask you guys specifically, like, coming out onto a year and, actually, over a year now, since we started this, what have you guys learned? What’s been the most rewarding thing for you doing this, doing the show?

James:  [3:18] You know, just getting the hang out with y’all. Really.

Joe:  [3:22] Without lying. Without lying.

Ted:  [3:24] That is not my response.

James:  [3:26] Better poker face.

[3:27] Jimmy, I’ll go first. You know a personal mission of mine over here in the past two or three years, and in even since I got in the industry, was trying to find a voice that was uniquely mine. But you know, still authority and was able to, you know, reach as many people as possible.

[3:48] And this was almost like the the fast forward button, in a way, and and that was exciting for, for myself personally to see. Also, you know, going back I’m sure y’all did it as well at different times, going back and looking at your episodes and seeing the growth and comfort, you know, that a lot of it just comes from a comfort level.

[4:10] Today, thinking about a year ago and probably how much prep went into recording. Even then it was fun. But now, knowing we got on with really no script in mind, and really the pregame, the pre‑, you know, the pre‑show was just that, you know, hanging out and getting comfortable and getting ready.

[4:33] The Comfort level is just off the charts, which then opens your eyes to everything else that you might be able to do. So, you know, that’s been a cool by‑product is finding a space where you’re able to effect change and be yourself and doing it, I think, for myself.

Joe:  [4:49] Yeah I agree. I think the the craziest thing is, and I want to just touch on what you just said. You know, when you first start this you’re really focused on what you’re trying to say and how to say it. And I, and and you you lose some of that genuineness because you’re so hyper focused on trying to, you know, get through something. 

[5:06] And and now that, you’re right, you’re in that little box. And I think the thing that makes our shows awesome and incredible is the fact that we aren’t doing that. 

[5:16] I know the feedback. I’m sure you guys have gotten it too, and Jim, I’ll pass it over to you to answer the question in a second, but the feedback we get all the time is, “We love the show because it’s not scripted and…”

[5:25] [crosstalk]

Joe:  [5:27] It’s not, it’s just an open format. And I think that some people really enjoy the ability to watch that and have the comfortability. There’s been people that have come to us from watching our show that said, “I’ve known you for a long time, but now I feel like I really know you.”

[5:41] And I think that was the ultimate compliment to be able to get who we are onto a screen, onto a recording and not have it be, you know, just so tight and tense and scripted. So that was a big win for us, I think.

James:  [5:54] That’s all, that’s also something I really loved about y’alls show, is that first part. I told you [inaudible] we’re losing right there. You guys are killing it on that part. 

[6:05] I like the looseness of it and that conversational, because again, our original, just like y’all, when we went out there was to try to recreate that, you know, those over coffee moments or you know, at the bar moments, that that we experienced, and sadly were ripped away, right? So.

Joe:  [6:24] Yeah.

James:  [6:24] What about you, Jimbo?

Jim:  [6:26] Well, it’s a couple. It’s twofold. I would say first is just the connections that I have in the industry. As you all know, I have a few. So it’s keeping up with them. And I tell you the, the keeping it real portion, Joe and guys, you know, like my little wacky intros. 

[6:43] People, I get calls and texts all time. “Hey, it’s good to see that you’re still in good spirits, or you’re still your old self,” because everybody that knows me at trade shows or wherever, could be meetings, I’ll still crack some jokes, because that’s just who I am. 

[6:57] I like to lower the walls. I like people to be like, “OK, we’re going to, we’re going to unwind here.” Because it’s a business meeting, let’s just take it easy. Let’s relax. 

[7:07] So, it’s nice to be able to get that through to people. And I know that this whole format, had it not been for this format, I think our industry would be really lacking over this last year. 

[7:18] We bring a lot of education, a lot of fun facts, a lot of interest about our, and awareness, about our industry to people. And it’s not just the energy folks. It could be somebody in communications or wastewater, or whatever. Like, “Wow, that’s kind of cool. I never knew that about the energy industry.”

[7:35] You know, if we can help educate people and let them learn one thing, why that’s a check mark, right there. That’s a good thing.

James:  [7:42] 100 percent.

Joe:  [7:43] For sure. I mean, that was, that was kind of what we were….You know, we did the expos, right? That was the whole premise of it. It wasn’t, had nothing to do with like the exposure. It was just trying to keep that education moving.

[7:54] [crosstalk]

Joe:  [7:54] And just, yeah, and just being engaged. I don’t want to steal your thunder, ‘cause [inaudible] and Teddy, I’d like you guys to answer too. Like the last year, from from your perspective, what has, kind of all that meant? 

[8:06] Chad, you want to go first?

Chad:  [8:07] Yeah, I’ll go first. So we’ve kind of, when I, when I told these two guys my idea back on, probably April like 10th or something like that of last year, they kind of both were like, “You’re crazy.”

[8:17] And at that point I’d already had, like, I had a podcast of my own that was personal. So I kind of knew a little bit about that, I’ve since given that, that hobby up, because I talk too much.

[8:27] But, so I kind of knew what it looked like a little bit. I never did it on YouTube but, man, you know, for the first, up until three months ago, I kind of did all the video editing. I tried to, at least, and I’ve grown exponentially from it.

[8:40] And, and the ability to just have conversation with myself, essentially. I mean I know you guys are there but really I’m sitting here talking to myself. It’s pretty interesting.

[8:50] I think what we’ve done has been so impactful for industry, like you guys said. I mean, not that we’re the most entertaining guys, but at least, you can turn it on and find some education and find out some things that you probably didn’t know before that.

[9:02] And last and probably my favorite thing about all of it is that, somewhere in here I’m leaving…I don’t want to call a legacy, but something for my kids. My kids, and I know that means a lot to Joe, too.

[9:13] Because, like, our kids watch these things, as strange as that is, you know. But that means a lot to me because I’ll be, probably be on YouTube for the rest of YouTube, until that goes away somehow.

[9:23] So it’s been awesome. It’s been amazing, really. I mean all these things we’ve done in such trying times but it’s been really cool and a lot of fun.

James:  [9:33] Teddy.

Joe:  [9:34] How about you, Teddy?

James:  [9:36] We did schedule this in the middle of his nap time, too.

Chad:  [9:39] Yeah, he has his truck green screen going again.

Ted:  [9:43] I’m really good at this truck green screen. I changed the angle of it, but…

James:  [9:47] Real smart. Innovation.

Ted:  [9:51] That’s one thing that I’ve learned in the last year is how to be lazy. All right. It’s what you got to do. 

[9:58] But no, seriously, I did think it was a little off the wall when Chad brought the idea up to us. But I, I think Joe and I will both agree to this. We both go, “Yeah, it’s really got some great legs. But can we pull it off? Can we come in and make it happen? Can we do it?” 

[10:15] Because we’re idiots, in one regard. Like we’ve never done anything like this before and…People listening to us talk? And then we were nervous and like, “All right, well, hold on, we got to stay, toe the company line. We got to be like…” All right, you know? 

[10:32] Like we were talking about like you talking about the pre‑call shows and the pre‑productions and stuff like that. I mean we would, I would make an agenda.

Chad:  [10:39] Yeah

Ted:  [10:39] With the questionnaire, literally piece of paper that I would we would send out to everybody before it and go, “Joe, you read here. Chad, you answer here.”

Chad:  [10:47] And then one day you didn’t do it, and this is what we ended up with.

Ted:  [10:50] That was literally it. Like, one day I had something crazy go on. I was like, “Guys, I didn’t get an agenda made.” And we were like, “Let’s just wing it. We got it.”

Chad:  [10:58] Yeah, “Put the questions in. We’ll be fine.”

Ted:  [11:00] That’s it. And that’s all we’ve done for the last 49 episodes. Because I could only do it for like two weeks because I’m not that good at stuff.

[11:08] The other thing though is, is really watching and I want to give credit where credit is due. Chad had some forward thinking on this. Joe had some forward thinking on this. We were kind of the first, and you guys were right there. I don’t know who went first out of us.

Chad:  [11:23] We were literally like almost the same exact date.

Joe:  [11:25] Same exact date.

Ted:  [11:27] So then to see, like now, now a year later, there’s other things popping up in the industry like “Hey, we’re going to have a coffee hour.” “Hey, we’re going to do a virtual talk show. “Hey, we’re going to have a virtual learn…” and it’s all connections and it’s really funny to me because I’m like, “Yeah, we did that first.”

James:  [11:50] Coffee For Life.”

Joe:  [11:51] Yeah, that’s a good one. That’s what we should name this one.

Chad:  [11:55] It should be called “Connections for Jim and James.”

Ted:  [12:00] There’s that, and then the one other thing I will say is, you know, some of the, like I’ve been getting back out on the road, as you can tell from recent episodes. And the feedback is genuine.

[12:11] Like, guys are like, “I love your episodes.”

Joe:  [12:14] Yeah.

Ted:  [12:15] Like I didn’t think that there would be any value to this when you forwarded me the link for it one day. And I was like, “What is Ted sending me…” and they’re like, “Now I want to see you guys pick on each other every week, and then I want to hear the informational thing at the end of it, and then, how do you get these people to talk to you? Because they are way above your pay grade.”

Chad:  [12:34] That is a normal, very normal thing. 

[12:37] [crosstalk]

James:  [12:43] That’s funny you say that, because…I’m sure you all run into it as well. It’s no secret to anybody who’s done any kind of interviews or shows like this, but it’s funny how scared those folks, the guests are to be on mass media.

[12:58] And, you know, they are, they have an awesome title or they’re, you know, leading a company doing far scarier things, but we’ll have two or three, you know, pre‑shows to a pre‑show to a recording to make sure everybody’s good.

[13:13] And, you know, I think that personal touch is what’s been, you know, success for both of us, but it is funny to think of the comfort levels, like, like, we joked about. Us just rolling in and doing this.

Chad:  [13:23] Yeah, you don’t even think about it.

James:  [13:25] Now, we don’t even think twice about it, right? And, and for folks that are just kind of scratching the surface…

Chad:  [13:31] We had one like that last week.

[13:33] [crosstalk]

James:  [13:33] There’s a lot behind the scenes that goes on, to book guests, to, you know, produce them, to get them done, to promote it. The whole package is a big…And I know Jim and I are blessed to have a, an awesome team that’s been, you know, there with us doing, doing a lot for us.

[13:51] But as the show has grown in popularity and we’ve kept this pace, it’s going to be interesting as we start navigating and you know, Ted, getting out there and some of us, how’s the circuit going to look? But things like this I think is the exciting part.

Ted:  [14:08] Me too.

James:  [14:08] Doing these live, from two different spots, three different, you know five in a show like this, but on the road. How cool would that be?

[14:18] And I’ll tell you, one last thing. Jimmy and I actually, what two weeks ago now, Jim? Jim came into the office and we got to see each other and for Jim and I, that was the first time we’ve seen each other since…

Chad:  [14:33] Did you guys hug actually, like pre‑COVID?

Jim:  [14:36] Well, I was wearing a mask.

James:  [14:38] And I was half‑vaccinated, so I think we were fine.

Joe:  [14:42] With your history, you should have been wearing like one of those divers helmets.

[14:45] [crosstalk]

James:  [14:48] We wore two masks. Yeah, we wore two masks around Jim before it was cool.

Ted:  [14:54] I was going to say, double can gas mask.

Joe:  [14:58] I just I wanted to say one thing about what you touched on, James, about the, about the guest uncomfortability, and how nervous they get. I think that’s one of the other awesome things about our shows is that, because we’re so loose in those pre calls, it allows people to feel more comfortable with being themselves.

[15:14] And I think that’s a huge part of the success and why people are so comfortable being on the show, is when they watch past episodes, because they, if they don’t know going in and they watch a few, and then they go, “All right, like these guys are, you know, kind of just shooting the, you know.”

Chad:  [15:26] I know what you were going to say. You almost did it.

Joe:  [15:28] I didn’t do it, though.

James:  [15:34] Fix that in post.

Jim:  [15:37] To build on that, Joe, a couple things. One, everybody with the pre‑ and post‑production for a 20 minute episode people think, “Oh, that’s easy. Just hit the record.”

James:  [15:46] Checkbox, right? Episode. Done.

Chad:  [15:49] That’s how you screw it up.

[15:53] [crosstalk]

Jim:  [15:53] goes into it, you know. But also like you said the comfort level. One thing that I write to the folks or tell them, pretend that the three of us or five of us are getting together at a trade show. Haven’t seen each other for a while and we’re just catching up.

[16:07] Just don’t think about the audience. Don’t think about this going all over the internet, everywhere. Just think about us just catching up and having a discussion.

Chad:  [16:15] It’s funny though because I take that all for granted. I really do take it for granted that it could go all over the internet and everybody everywhere can see me have a virtual [inaudible]

James:  [16:23] Again.

Chad:  [16:24] Like, see to me, though, to me it doesn’t matter. And I think sometimes with our guests, like, we had one a couple weeks ago that it was like, you know, you can just tell on comfort level a little bit and you’re like, “Look, we’re gonna do literally what we’re doing now. We’re just going to do it now and nobody’s going to curse.”

Joe:  [16:45] I didn’t get to answer my own question. I wanted to say for me, the biggest the most incredible thing for me is kind of what James said. Is that I love the fact that I’ve met so many more people, that probably traditionally, I would have never had an opportunity to have such meaningful conversations with.

[17:06] And and be able to know that when, when and if, not if, but when this ends, I can go back and have dinner or drinks with people that probably in the past, wouldn’t have allowed me to even have a conversation with them because we just came from different areas of different spectrums. We didn’t do the same things.

[17:23] But they’re, you know, there’s that mutual friendship and respect of those people that come on, that I think that like, that’s one of the things that I’m so excited for, let’s say trade, trade show season to like, go again. Because I want to be able to go see people that I become friends with over a computer screen.

Chad:  [17:38] Yeah.

Joe:  [17:39] That’s been a cool, cool thing for me and it was the one thing that I never even thought about we would get out of this, but it’s probably the most rewarding thing that, that we, that for me that we’ve gotten out of it.

Chad:  [17:53] I’ll never forget,I’ll never forget Joe, when you called me on like, after episode 8 or 9, you were like, “What are we going to do? We’re going to do this for a year? What do we do?” And I was like, “I think we’re just going to keep doing it.” And you were like, “I don’t know if we can.” And I was like, “We’re just going to keep doing it.”

Joe:  [18:07] I [inaudible] freak out artist, that’s for sure.

[18:08] [crosstalk]

James:  [18:11] Go ahead, Ted.

Ted:  [18:12] What I was thinking, when you said that, I don’t know if we’re going to wrap this right now, but that spurs our whole thought process of, like, to take it down a little bit of a direction where…

[18:22] Like, we got kids, and stuff like that. And our kids have grown up in a generation where they have friends with people via their mobile or…

Chad:  [18:33] Yeah.

Ted:  [18:36] Distance, right? My kids have a ton of friends that they’ve never met, right?

Chad:  [18:40] Same.

Ted:  [18:40] We’re full grown…That’s their normal. We’re full grown adults during a global pandemic and now we’re like, “All right, how do I…Do I say hi to this person when I see them, because we talk all the time.”

[18:52] [crosstalk]

Ted:  [18:52] I’m like, that’s how we are, but imagine being a kid going through that.

Chad:  [18:59] Makes sense, though, right?

Ted:  [19:00] It was a crazy. I don’t know how my brain…

Chad:  [19:02] Yeah, that’s the first time it’s ever clicked all the way for you. Good job. I’m proud of that, too for you.

Ted:  [19:09] I’m going to be quiet now before I ruin a good…

James:  [19:09] That was the Connections for Life part. The connections part. We’re going to get you there.

Joe:  [19:15] He just beamed up to the mothership.

Jim:  [19:19] Let me jump in real quick. I just want to expound on this. One thing with this whole pandemic, and this whole video comfort‑ality. That’s a new word, James.

Joe:  [19:27] That is definitely your coined term.

Jim:  [19:29] Comfort‑ality.

Chad:  [19:32] I think it’s comfortability, but that’s OK.

Jim:  [19:35] Just nod your head and say, “He’s on a rampage.”

[19:38] But it was…Before the pandemic if somebody wanted to have a business meeting with our customer somewhere, they would get on a plane, go ahead with the meeting, and it would be one‑on‑one, two‑on‑two, or whatever. 

[19:48] I’ve been on more, you know, business associate calls lately, where there’s 8 people, 9 people, 10 people, all different values. And in the past, we couldn’t have done that, just because of logistics. 

[20:00] And now we’re being able to be included in this, and they’re really wonderful.

Ted:  [20:03] I mean, Friday Ted. Friday, for example, with you, we were talking about that. You said, you know…

[20:07] [crosstalk]

Chad:  [20:10] 22 people. You’re not, you’re not even allowed to have 22 people in one room anymore. Like, to have them on a call. Yeah, it’s amazing. It’s absolutely amazing. It’s changed, it’s changed the way we do things forever.

James:  [20:21] Let me ask you one question, just for my own fun, to see if I’m the crazy one or there’s other people like me.

Chad:  [20:28] Should be good.

James:  [20:28] Are you, so how many of you are podcast people? Like you listen podcasts, audiobooks things like that?

Chad:  [20:34] Yeah.

James:  [20:35] Jim’s not.

Joe:  [20:36] Jim has traditional…

Chad:  [20:40] No wonder he’s so bad at this.

[20:43] [crosstalk]

Ted:  [20:44] Tammy reads…

Chad:  [20:47] Tammy reads to him.

James:  [20:48] Let me ask you this. Being somebody who, I think you had the same kid of thing happen [inaudible] you learn Photoshop, things like that.

[20:59] So did it kind of ruin podcasting a little bit for you too, in listening, because you dissect it and you’re like, “Oh, man…” Or in a really good way, right? Like you, you find a cadence of people using…

Chad:  [21:12] Both.

James:  [21:13] Right? So I think, like I just listened to some on the way home traveling this past weekend, it was the same kind of thing. Like, I just picked it apart.

Chad:  [21:22] Who did you listen? What did you listen to, James?

James:  [21:25] I watch the, what’s the one Theo, does from…? It’s pretty popular. I don’t remember which one it is.

Chad:  [21:32] Great job.

James:  [21:33] Yeah, I’m really good.

Joe:  [21:34] No, no free ads.

James:  [21:36] No, please. We’ll talk about that in another episode.

Chad:  [21:39] I like that. Yeah, no, go ahead.

Joe:  [21:44] Yeah, for me, I listen, there’s a few that I really love and there’s a few that I…I tend to get lost in them, almost like books. Like I don’t really spend too much time critiquing other people, but I do listen and think of, “Man, that was a good idea. We should try that.” Or, or, “That was really unique how they did that.”

[22:04] Yeah. You know, as most, at least these two guys know, like I’m an absolute, like, dreamer. So like my, my sights are like set on getting Connections For Life on NBC Primetime. You know, when these guys are like, “Can we just get through the week?”

[22:18] And, and so I just, and it’s so true. But, but…and sorry I said NBC. No free ads. We’ll be charging you.

[22:27] But, but no, I don’t really, I spend a lot of time just really being engrossed in the conversation or the dialogue from the podcast, because a lot of the ones that I listen to are similar to the format to our show, where there are a few people and they’re interviewing people in a specific industry or for sports, and things like that. And I just like tips and tricks I get from them, I think, more than anything.

Chad:  [22:47] Oh yeah, I find the same way you do, James. I, when I listen to them I kind of go two different ways. There’s times where I listen to the same podcast, I’ve listened 270 episodes to, but now because they do it all the time. I’m like, “OK, like they could have done without this 20 minutes.” Like it’s just boring and awful and nobody wants to hear it.

James:  [23:06] Or when you get one of the…And I hate to say any guest is bad, but someone who’s a, who doesn’t talk, you know, and you gotta draw it out and, and it’s your first time to really experience that or someone kind of makes a mistake and shuts down, and, trying to work through is a talent.

Chad:  [23:24] It is.

James:  [23:27] [inaudible] too. But…Go ahead.

Ted:  [23:29] Have you guys ever been like in the process of conducting an interview and, and, and realized it was going the exact opposite of how you thought it was going to go? Where you were like, “This person is going to be no problem,” and then you’re struggling with them. Like you were just so wrong?

Jim:  [23:44] We’ve had one or two of those.

James:  [23:45] No, our guests are awesome. I don’t know what you’re…

Joe:  [23:48] I don’t know where this is coming from. That’s never, I’ve never had that.

Chad:  [23:52] It did happen to you once, Joe. It did happen to you once. I’ll tell you afterwards.

Ted:  [23:54] I know who it is.

James:  [23:59] I don’t know why we went down this path. This is bad.

Jim:  [24:02] You started it. Those type of problems we’ve had, actually, the opposite where, like, sometimes we’re like, “OK, we have to keep this…”

James:  [24:10] Joes.

Jim:  [24:11] Yes.

James:  [24:11] We call them Joes. When somebody’s being a Joe.

Chad:  [24:15] We call them Tims, which is weird.

Ted:  [24:18] I call it a Joe. I call it a Joe as well.

Jim:  [24:24] We’re like, “OK, we’re going on for hours. We got to [inaudible] now.” You know?

Joe:  [24:28] Yeah, we’ve had a few people where, like, it’s turned into like one question turned into a 26 minute answer and you’re like…

[24:35] [crosstalk]

Ted:  [24:36] And I’m like, I’m in the chat box going, “Guys. Come on.”

Joe:  [24:40] But the, the thing about that is typically, like, I don’t want to cancel their conversation, because it’s all really good.

James:  [24:51] Yeah. That’s why we’re starting to walk that line. It’s all the same thing about, you know, do you have a podcast and you record the pregame, or you record this too, and on the good one…You know, balancing that and trying to figure out how you provide all this.

‘[25:06] Cause I’m just like y’all, the pre‑show sometimes is the gold. You get into a conversation then we always say it. We said it today. “Man, we should have been recording.” 

[25:16] [crosstalk]

Chad:  [25:18] I tell people all the time when we get someone, when we have like a pre‑call before we actually record. I’m like, I’ll tell them what the question is going to be and they start to answering. I’m like, “Whoa, no. I don’t want you to answer the question. I want to hear about it the first time when you tell me.” So.

Ted:  [25:31] Yes, yes.

Joe:  [25:33] I can’t believe it’s been a year. It’s been a year guys. You know, 53, 54 episodes, something like that, right? Crap.

Chad:  [25:41] I don’t know.

Ted:  [25:43] I think, I think I won for having the most different recording locations, though. I definitely won that.

Chad:  [25:49] You won for not doing the most out of all.

Joe:  [25:52] That doesn’t make you a winner.

Ted:  [25:54] No argument, Ted.

Joe:  [25:55] I have one for you guys. You know, as the world starts to turn back, vaccinations become more popular. Travel’s definitely opened up. I mean, I was gone last week, I’m leaving this afternoon to go down to Pittsburgh to see the one and only Mr. Chad Cuvo.

[26:11] I’m just wondering, like, what is the next…Let’s, I mean, if we had to be a prognostic, prognosticate, like what dos the next 12 months look like, what are you guys, what do you guys think is going to happen? You think we’re still going to be kind of a hybrid version of this? Will we go back, full steam? Just just kind of curious what your thoughts are.

James:  [26:29] Yeah, we built this into kind of our goals, rolling into this year for the, for the show, and that was to figure out what this look like long‑term and, secondly, what it looked like in, when we get back to traveling. 

[26:42] So, you know, is it a hybrid where we actually have live you know slots at our booth that we’re bringing people on? Is it a show that you bring to a reception or part of the agenda? You know, how do you, how do we work that in? So we’ve been to work on that.

[27:00] We’ve also been trying to get the technology where we want it to be, so that we’re as mobile and consistent with our product as possible.

Jim:  [27:09] Yeah.

James:  [27:10] And honestly that’s a testament to the team behind Jim and I, is they want to be able to get them out. They want to get them out quick. They want to get them out in high quality and consistent, and we’re all for it because it makes our life easier.

Jim:  [27:24] Right.

James:  [27:25] So we’re, we’ve been working on it. I think moving to a podcast was a big move. We also wanted to kind of go through this rebranding of it, personally, ourselves, to really set it up, set up the case for this thing to be long‑term, right? 

[27:41] Not that we had to, I felt like, but once I saw the real version that was in our head, like, like you Joe, we live pretty far ahead.

Joe:  [27:49] Above the clouds.

James:  [27:52] Yes.

Joe:  [27:53] Again, it’s been 53 episodes. How do you stop now? You just turn it off? It’s kind of…I feel like, I feel like a responsibility to continue doing it. You know, to the people that watch the show.

James:  [28:05] As silly as that sounds, right? But it’s true. Yeah. All the ones standing in line outside my window, waiting for this episode.

Chad:  [28:15] That’s just your children, trying…

James:  [28:16] Yeah, they just want snacks. You know, it’s interesting though. I, you know, if we wouldn’t have, we were very deliberate this year in trying to figure that out. And I, I feel like we have a model that can work. Now we’re ready to test it, really. Like how do we go [inaudible]?

Joe:  [28:32] Same.

James:  [28:34] What we’re trying to do on the back end, really, is the boring stuff, is try to make it sustainable. Because once we do start traveling, where we can record a set of these at a time because the, on the fly and stuff is going to be a lot harder once we get out there.

Chad:  [28:49] Sure.

James:  [28:50] And I’m sure that’s a lot of…

[28:51] [crosstalk]

Chad:  [28:51] he’s been traveling.

James:  [28:52] Yeah. So.

Chad:  [28:54] You can see, he’s in the car.

Joe:  [28:55] We were always, we rely solely on Apple, for all of our recordings.

Ted:  [29:00] I’m gonna get fired pretty soon. I gotta bail from the show.

James:  [29:04] The good thing is you’re already in the car, so…

[29:06] [crosstalk]

James:  [29:09] What about y’all? What’s y’alls plans as we move on?

Chad:  [29:13] You know, I don’t know, I don’t want to speak for the group.

James:  [29:15] But I will.” I don’t want to speak for the group, but I will.

Joe:  [29:20] Because they’re not going to say anything. Chad’s going to…nah, whatever.

[29:23] No, what I was going to say was, I want our show to be more mature. And I don’t mean that from, like, mature from us goofing around less or being…I mean it as far as like being educational and mature enough to be able able to bring good talking points for the viewers so it’s something that they want to engage in. 

[29:49] And I think one of the thing that bugs me the most about our show, and we talk about it all the time, is that we have so many people watch it, but hardly anyone comments. And I’m like, I love comments. I want people to tell us like, “That was awesome.” “That was terrible.” Or, “You know what you should try?” to get better. 

[30:06] So I want I want to be able to build the show to a point where we have on guests that are those mature guests that can have those, excuse me, conversations about kind of what’s going on, what’s going on in the renewable market with fossil fuels, with greenhouse gases, with the government? 

[30:23] I think that that’s a really good foundation to have because there’s a lot of rhetoric around, you know, you hear people talking about things that just aren’t true, or they don’t understand the facts. And I want to be more fact‑based, and I want the people that come on to be more fact‑based to educate, not just the people in our industry, but everybody who’s listening.

[30:41] To understand why both have their place, you know, fossil fuels and renewables, and how they marry together to be a better, you know, just so we have a better a better country overall from an energy perspective. That’s kind of what I’m thinking. 

[30:54] The reality is, I don’t know if we can get there. It’s a lot of work. I mean, I know, like you said, James, like people see a 20, 30 minute video a week, and they think, “Oh, those knuckleheads just put, you know, talk to it.”

[31:05] There’s so much that goes into it, from booking…

James:  [31:07] And then we [inaudible] the knuckleheads, too.

Joe:  [31:09] Right. It’s like, well, the first thing, that comes comes easy for us.

James:  [31:12] Flip a switch.

Joe:  [31:14] I don’t know. That’s kind of, I think, I just want to show if I could say in 12 months from now that we had, that we were successful, I could say that we’re, we’ve matured, and we’ve brought higher level content to people, you know, than we have in the previous 12. That’s kind of, you know, my thoughts…

James:  [31:30] I like how, I like how Joe called out the lurkers, though. Because…

Joe:  [31:35] Yeah.

James:  [31:36] Man, we just want to engage, man.

Chad:  [31:38] It’s really tough. LinkedIn, if you do any, you know, most of our stuff is on LinkedIn as you know. If you do any research on LinkedIn, that’s all LinkedIn is based on, is lurkers, so it’s very, it’s hard to get comments.

James:  [31:48] But we hear good stuff. We, you know, we get it all the time when people are, “Oh I love this show,” and you’re like, “Well, why don’t…”?

Chad:  [31:55] The first time was like, “What are you talking about? What show?”

Joe:  [31:59] I’m gonna pump this guy out a little bit. I’m not going to say who he is, but there’s a guy from New Jersey Natural that I had lunch with not too long ago, a couple months ago, and I sat down at the table and we were ordering and we went to order lunch and he said, “What are you doing here?” 

[32:13] And I said, because I was with, with our sales rep. He said, “What are you doing here? Aren’t you supposed to be on TV?” And I said, “What are you talking about, I’m supposed to be on TV?” He’s like, “You know, your show, your TV show.” 

[32:23] And I was like, I was still lost. Like, I was in salesman mode, you know? And he was like, “Yeah, I’ve been watching it from the beginning.” It was just such a weird conversation. I was like, “I would have no idea because you’ve never…”

James:  [32:34] Your reality show.

Joe:  [32:38] Yeah. It was just funny.

James:  [32:39] [inaudible] on that one time.

Ted:  [32:41] That’s a really cool thing, Joe. Like, I’ve only had one, one or two things come up like that, but it was more random, where a guy who was at one of the utilities I’m at was like, “Hey, man. My kid’s a basketball player, too. That’s so awesome.” I’m like, “How do you know about my kid?” “Oh, your show.”

Chad:  [32:59] Then you’re like, “What show?”

Joe:  [33:02] Do you guys ever feel like, that you forget that you put this out? Like I don’t know how to say that. Like you just do that, you do a show and then people will, you’ll talk to people and they’ll ask you like about this part of a show or this part. I’m like…I don’t even really remember what we do.

James:  [33:20] I haven’t watched it since I did it.

Joe:  [33:22] I haven’t watched it.

Chad:  [33:24] Actually, it’s funny you say that because Lindsay will be like, “You, do you know, like what you’re gonna…” I’m like, “I black out through the whole thing. I really do. For the most part, I black out through the whole interview, like, and what we do.

Joe:  [33:33] Yeah, but, in your defense, you’re pretty much always blacked out.

Chad:  [33:36] That is true. It’s awesomely true.

James:  [33:40] You know we, we kind of leaned into the seven habits thing because it’s something…

Chad:  [33:44] Yeah, I saw that. That was good.

James:  [33:44] we teach and do. But we’ve been doing those a lot, and that’s kind of what happens during those, because it’s not, it’s a topic that I don’t even have to…We could go live right now and talk, about it, right? And just also it just starts…

Joe:  [33:56] It’s organic.

James:  [33:58] So like, “Oh, I loved what you said about that.” I’m like, “I have no clue. I have to go back and watch it myself.

Joe:  [34:08] But I feel like that’s, that’s what makes it good. That’s because it’s so organic. It’s not a force…You don’t have crib notes that you have to go, make sure you check off points. You’re just kind of…

James:  [34:13] Not anymore. 

[34:14] [crosstalk]

Joe:  [34:17] And you can see the delineation in our show where that changed.

Ted:  [34:22] Just given the attire. The attire that our show started when we were, began our recording. Everyone was in a button down and…

Chad:  [34:30] People tell us all the time, “Don’t change what you do. Don’t change anything of what you do. Wear the sweatshirts. Wear the hats. Wear like…Be you.”

Joe:  [34:36] We need some more EWN stuff so we can can start…

[34:38] [crosstalk]

James:  [34:38] We’ve been waiting for this episode, so. As long as y’all do an unboxing on one of y’all’s…

Chad:  [34:49] Oh, I’ll do an, we could do a live unboxing. That’s a great idea.

Jim:  [34:49] Who did we send it all to last? Didn’t we send everybody…

Ted:  [34:52] You sent it all to Ted.

Jim:  [34:52] Oh, to Ted.

James:  [34:54] Oh.

Jim:  [34:54] Basketball kids are wearing the swag right now.

[34:57] [crosstalk]

Ted:  [35:05] You guys didn’t know that? I’ll tell you guys, it’s funny though, because one of the comments we do get all the time from YouTube and it’s like, “Chad, great hat. Joe, loving the shirt. Ted, do you work for us? You wear our sweatshirts every week.”

James:  [35:18] [inaudible] guest.

Jim:  [35:19] He’s like, “These guys are wearing your stuff more than ours.”

Chad:  [35:25] We don’t, but we don’t have stuff.

James:  [35:30] Hey, the good news though is we will ship out new swag because we got new coffee mugs since y’all were on. And they’re, they’re real…’cause I don’t have one in front of me. Jimmy, you have one? Oh yeah.

Chad:  [35:39] I still use mine.

Joe:  [35:40] Old style, new style.

Ted:  [35:42] My wife is still, that, she drinks out of the old style every single morning. She’s like, “This is my favorite cup.”

James:  [35:48] This one, this one is my favorite cup, the one that Jim has. I just don’t have it in front of me.

Jim:  [35:51] this new one.

James:  [35:52] It’s, man, it’s a good drinking vessel.

Joe:  [35:54] We’ve been talking about getting merch, but it hasn’t happened.

Jim:  [35:58] This is a good one.

Ted:  [35:59] Well they could, that’s because they put me in charge of getting the merch, and…

[36:02] [crosstalk]

James:  [36:02] We had to do it because there was a big black market surge of merch going out that was not really authenticated.

Chad:  [36:12] Approved. Black market merchandise. Did you have some Louis Vuitton that you…handbags?

James:  [36:18] I was like, “We did not make that.

Joe:  [36:21] I don’t know guys, I just, I mean, we probably talked long enough. I just, I just want to say thanks. I mean, not just for this stupid recording and not for doing the show. 

[36:35] I want to say, thanks for, like, being our buddies and challenging us. Because, you know, I look at your stuff and I’m like…

Ted:  [36:40] Yeah. You’re so good. Wish we could have done that.”

Joe:  [36:45] That was so good. And I just, I just wanted to say thank you for always challenging us. And it’s kind of cool to have, like, I don’t want to say competition, because it’s not competition. I don’t look at that in any way, but just peers that you can collaborate with, and do something unique with.

[37:00] And you guys do some cool things. I know that we’ve done some cool things you’ve probably been like, “Why didn’t we think of that,” right? But it drives that level of creativity. And I just want to thank you guys for helping us with that. 

[37:12] And, and also congratulations on your show and the one year. It’s like incredible, I never, ever thought a year ago that we would still be sitting here.

James:  [37:21] Never, ever thought that Jim and James would make it a year. Likewise.

Chad:  [37:24] I didn’t think Jim would get a promotion somehow, either.

Ted:  [37:26] Well, he did.

Joe:  [37:28] All he did was change his t‑shirt.

Chad:  [37:29] Yeah, he just changed his…

Joe:  [37:31] He hasn’t done anything different.

Jim:  [37:34] It’s all up here, Joe. It’s all up here.

Joe:  [37:36] No, and all kidding, aside guys, it’s fantastic. You know, I can’t wait to see you guys again, sometime soon, hopefully.

Ted:  [37:44] Maybe.

Joe:  [37:45] I know it’s coming up at the end of the year. You know, I’m really hopeful for AGA, we come down there and knock that out again. We have some cool stuff planned for that, so I think you…

James:  [37:55] We’ll have to do a live mashup at AGA.

Chad:  [37:59] Oh, we will.

James:  [37:56] That would be fun. That would be real fun. 

[38:01] Likewise with y’all. You know, we just, we wrapped up an episode I think last week on seven habits, so I’ve got that kind of on my mind, but I think we went into this with an abundance mentality, right? I mean, all of us did.

[38:15] So everything we learned and, you know, we get, we pass e‑mails back and forth all the time asking how, you know, “How did you all do this,” and vice versa, and trying to make all that work so that we can bring you these shows. And it’s, it’s definitely taken a village to get here. 

[38:29] So you guys, y’all inspire. If you do nothing, just never get rid of that first part of the show, that’s my favorite part.

Joe:  [38:39] Appreciate it.

James:  [38:39] I turn it off after that, but…

Chad:  [38:41] Appreciate it.

Joe:  [38:41] That’s cool. You turned it on. At least you turned it on.

James:  [38:44] No, I’m just kidding.

Ted:  [38:45] There’s one of the couple thousand views.

Chad:  [38:48] Thank you.

James:  [38:49] I’m one of the…

Ted:  [38:50] It’s funny because we’ve actually tried to kill that part a couple times. We’ve had discussions about, like, “Let’s not talk so much about ourselves. Let’s not do…” Like, you know we kick those ideas around and stuff like that, and then everything, it just, we come back to it naturally each week. And I don’t know why, but it just, that’s how it happens.

James:  [39:07] It’s the part that’s always missing and, you know, I feel so vested in, you know, Chad’s hockey. You know, like everything. I just know all about…

Chad:  [39:15] Do you mind sending a check? I’ll give you my address.

James:  [39:18] Not that vested.

Joe:  [39:19] He’s not financially vested.

[39:20] [crosstalk]

Joe:  [39:24] All good stuff. Jimmy, what do you think?

Jim:  [39:27] I, I’m…

Joe:  [39:29] Speechless?

Jim:  [39:30] I am speechless. I’ll tell you why I’m speechless, is because this is the epitome of everything that I live for in the industry, is having positive relationships that foster good things by people getting together. 

[39:45] One idea leads to another, and it might be two people at two different booths that are not competing, but they’re just talking about stuff. And it’s, this is what we’re doing. And to continue on with it, and to know that our relationships are helping each other and more so, helping the industry, just does leave me speechless.

[40:01] And I am blessed each and every day to be part of it, and to be part of your show, and lives, and everything.

Joe:  [40:07] Yeah, for sure.

James:  [40:09] Hey, you made this connection right here, Jimbo. So this just personifies it right here. Two shows that…

Chad:  [40:16] It was actually Tammy. It was actually Tammy.

Joe:  [40:19] Actually, I knew Jim before Tammy.

Chad:  [40:20] Jim doesn’t do anything. Jim doesn’t do anything. Shh, Joe, don’t tell him that.

Joe:  [40:24] Give credit where credit’s due. Jim’s a pretty dynamic guy, and I think we need to like appreciate that about him. You know, a lot of what you guys do, I know is, comes from the, your noggin and, you know, you’re a little eccentric and wacky, but we love that about you, you know.

[40:37] Chad Why we like you.

Joe:  [40:38] I just can’t wait to see you in a blue blazer again, my friend.

Jim:  [40:40] Me too.

Ted:  [40:42] The blue blazer.

Jim:  [40:45] I’ve been ironing.

Chad:  [40:47] Every day for the last year.

James:  [40:49] But that has to be the biggest mix‑up of 2020, was when he says, “Tammy, I need to look like I’m in the ‘70s,” and she’s on the phone and goes, “OK,” and makes him look like he is 70. Big difference. Loved it.

Jim:  [41:06] I came out I’m like, “What did you do to me?” She goes, “Now you look like you’re 70.” I said, “No, not 70. The ‘70s.”

James:  [41:14] From the ‘70s.

Jim:  [41:15] I had a moustache…

Joe:  [41:15] I put you at 68, that’s it.

Chad:  [41:19] It was great.

Ted:  [41:20] Don’t look a day over 69 to me.

Jim:  [41:23] Easy. Let me wind this up, guys. Let me put this all together because something’s in my head right now, and I might end it with a little bit of wackiness, but I want to thank everybody in the audience for tuning in today to, ready for this? Connections for Jim and James and Coffee for Life.

Joe:  [41:40] I love Coffee for Life.

Jim:  [41:42] See what I just did there?

Joe:  [41:43] You’re dyslexic now.

Jim:  [41:44] I am.

Joe:  [41:46] That would be a cool t‑shirt to give out.

James:  [41:48] I agree, it would be a cool t‑shirt.

Joe:  [41:49] Be a cool t‑shirt to give away.

Jim:  [41:50] I think we’re setting something up for next time. Let’s stay tuned for the next time. 

[41:55] But on behalf of Connections for Life and Coffee with Jim and James, we are absolutely honored and pleased that you tuned in today. That means that you are getting something out of it. We are all thrilled about that, and we are all here committed to making our world a better place. So, until next time on either one of our…shows? Programs?

Chad:  [42:12] Platforms.

Jim:  [42:14] Stay safe, have a great week, and we’ll see you all soon. Take care.

Chad:  [42:17] Thanks, guys. 

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