Nardwuar the Human Serviette versus Micheal Moore

Film maker and author Michael Moore hit Vancouver a little while back to promote his most recent book, Stupid White Men. Moore is someone I always love to talk to so I immediately set up an interview with him. However, at the last minute, his publicist informed me that Mr. Moore would be cancelling all his interviews. This kinda sucked, until I got a tip as to where he was staying…

Nardwuar: Hi, it's Nardwuar the Human Serviette here in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada at an undisclosed location outside of an undisclosed hotel. We're waiting here for filmmaker Michael Moore. He's been in town, promoting his book, Stupid White Men. He's declined all interviews, but will he decline us?

[Michael Moore's handler walks up to Nardwuar, who is standing on the sidewalk, outside of the hotel.]

Handler: Excuse me, interview Michael, is that what you're trying to do?

Nardwuar: Who?
Handler: Michael Moore. Is that who you're waiting for? What are you doing?

Ivana Trump.
Handler: Why are you here?

Isn't Ivana Trump staying here?
Handler: I don't think so.

[The handler walks away. Minutes later, Michael Moore walks out of the hotel.]

Nardwuar's Friend Steve Pratt: There he is. There he is. Go, go, go.
Heeey, Mr. Moore. Can we ask you a couple of questions? Is that okay?
Michael Moore: Oh sure, yeah, yeah, yeah.

How are you doing there?
Doing where?

In Vancouver, here.
Where am I?

In Vancouver.
Am I in Vancouver? It's… ahh… it's a ahh… [pulls a note card from his pocket and begins reading mechanically, jokingly] "It's a beautiful city, Vancouver. It has a lot of nice people in it and I'm happy to be here. You like me. You like me. Thank you."

Do you mind, Michael Moore, if we ride with you to the airport and do an interview with you?
Why don't you ride with me right now to wherever this guy [his driver, the guy who ran interference in front of the hotel] is taking me.

Do you think we could?

We'd love to. Is that okay?
Yeah. C'mon. Let's go.

Me and my friend Chris Nelson, are going to come with you, Mr. Moore.

[They hop inside the van.]

So, Michael Moore, who are you?
I'm a dead man right now. I'm just… what city is this? Number forty-six?

It's almost over. You're missing Idaho. Are you skipping Idaho, Mr. Moore?
I'm definitely skipping Idaho. I'm not going there.

What is wrong with your mom's meat loaf?
[laughs sleepily] Oh, ho, ho, you don't want to go there.

You're brand new book, Michael Moore, is on Reagan Books. Reagan Books. That is pretty wild.
You know… are you Canadian?

I am.
You know, you guys are closer to the mother tongue than we are, but can you read that? It's not Reagan Books. It's Regan Books.

Okay, I say Nirvana, you say…
No, no. You're missing the "a."

I know. I say "Near-vana," you say "Nir-vana."
But it's spelled the same way. You just read the name of the title of the publisher wrong. It's Regan Books. It's missing the "a" that's in Reagan.

But I just think of, like, Ronald Reagan, because I'm an uneducated Canadian, unlike you, being an educated American.
Well, there's no such thing as either. [laughs]

But Reagan Books is pretty wild. Isn't Rush Limbaugh on Reagan Books, Michael Moore?
And Howard Stern and they put those wrestlers (like Mick Foley) out, too.

And you're all in a great company with them, Michael Moore.
[sarcastically] Oh yeah, that's some company to be with.

So, you're happy that your new book, Stupid White Men, is not airbrushed. Your last book was; not this book, correct? (Downsize This! Random Threats From an Unarmed American's cover had the dirt from Moore's fingernails removed digitally.)
That's correct. They see me with all my flaws and my inability to grow a beard.

I think this book tour is going great, especially because you're not doing it in big, chain corporate stores. You're only doing university gigs, right, Mr. Moore?
Just about. There's a couple of chain stores in there, but of the forty-six cities, I think, maybe, there's only, well, three. [laughs] Why won't they have me?

How much is your book selling for in Canada?
I have no idea. What does it cost here?

I think, like forty dollars.
No way. You mean forty, Canadian?

Forty Canadian dollars for your book, Michael Moore.
Ohh. Okay, that's like ten dollars, American, right?

Well, it's a lot for us Canadians. Forty dollars, especially in British Columbia, where they lowered the minimum wage. What do you think about that Michael Moore, lowering the minimum wage?
They lowered the minimum wage here?

Yes, they did.
What is going on with you Canadians? Why are you doing this? Why are you snipping away at your social safety net, you know? It makes no sense. You start punking on poor people in your country, you're going to end up looking like us. You don't want that.

But you've got to be nice to us, Michael Moore, because don't the Canadian parkas pay for you? They finance you, don't they Michael Moore?
The who?

The Canadian parkas. They're the guys who finance you, Michael Moore, your empire.
Who are the parkas?

The people. The people who paid for The Awful Truth (Moore's television series). The Canadian parkas. That's what you refer to them as.
The Canadian parkas? I've never heard that term.

You used that. The parkas paid for you.
When did I use that?

(Note: From <>: "Mike's Book Tour Diary: Sunday, 2/24/2002: Spent all day in the editing room on my documentary. The suits are coming to New York to watch it for the first time on Friday and I think they are going to like what they see. As they are coming from Toronto and not Hollywood, they cannot legally be classified as "suits" - more like, the "parkas" are coming, or the "beaverskins" are coming. This film has been entirely funded by Canadians and Germans, so it's nice to be dealing with a smart bunch of people who give you creative freedom and get where you're coming from.")

Okay, play along with me here, Michael Moore. Help me. Help me. The Awful Truth funded by Canadians.
No, I don't want any Canadians to buy this book. Not at forty dollars a book. Don't buy this book. That's outrageous. That's an outrageous price. I had no idea.

Steal this book.
Well, no, don't get in trouble, either. Just, you know, channel it somehow.

In your new book, Michael Moore, Stupid White Men, there's a lot of dwelling on toothpaste and zippers.
[laughs] Don't give away the ending to people, all right?

Do you that in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, where you are now right now Michael Moore, this is where Bill Clinton bought the cigar. He bought the cigar right here.
No way. Is that true?

Yes he did. He bought the cigar here.
It was a Cuban cigar, right? 'Cause we can't get that in America. He bought it here.

Yes. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. That's where it all happened, Michael Moore.

We're trailing you, kind of, and thanks so much for letting us come along with you in your voyage…
Oh, no, I'm happy to.

Have you ever been trailed by Inspector Clouseau characters? Like people running after you, trying to get a file on you, etcetera, etcetera?
Oh yeah. That happens every day.

Any fun instances in ditching them at all? We thought, maybe, since we were waiting outside, we fooled your driver by saying that we were waiting for Ivana Trump. [to the driver] You fell for that, didn't you?
Driver: Ahh, yeah. [laugher]

Do you have any little tricks at all for avoiding people or people who have chased after you, Michael Moore?
He wanted to meet Ivana Trump. That's the reason.

Ahh, good comeback there.
Yeah, well.

Have you requested your FBI file through the Freedom of Information Act or anything like that? Have you been able to do that or found any weird stuff on you? Like, I think there's even stuff on JJ from Good Times. There must be stuff on Michael Moore.
You know, I've never asked for my file. You guys should ask for it. Anybody can get it.

Didn't the Secret Service ask for an episode of The Awful Truth?
Yes, they did, actually. They demanded that we give it to them and we wouldn't.

Where are we going right now, Michael Moore? Can we follow you some more?
I'm going to go and do an interview, I guess. Right? Is that what we're doing? [Gets an answer from his handler.] See, I just go where I'm told. Come on along., is that okay?

[Nardwuar struggles with the door.]

I've got to get out? How do you get out? Okay, I'll go out this way.

[They get out of the van and walk into a television studio.]

Following Michael Moore as he jaunts around Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. By the way, your publicist said that you had cancelled all interviews today, Michael Moore.
I don't have a publicist. Who are you talking to, man?

Harper Collins, Canada.
They're not my publicists.

Okay. They set up all these interviews and you didn't do them. So, where are we going now, Michael Moore? Please, tell us.
They shouldn't have set up any interviews 'cause they're not my publicists.

And where are we heading, Michael Moore?
Well, I think I'm going to do an interview in front of a blue screen.

And what is this for?
It's for a blue screen shot, I guess.

Go ahead and knock 'em dead, Michael Moore.
All right. Thank you very much.

Oh, can we stick around, just get a few, couple of words after.
I only have a few minutes right now. I've got to do this.

Okay, can we just go in front of the blue screen for just, like, two seconds just to finish?
Television Interview Crew Guy: No. You'll have to leave now.

Michael Moore, I wanted to show you. Look, I just brought this to show to your family.

[Nardwuar's getting both pushed and led out of the studio.]

Your family survival guide to terrorism.
Television Interview Crew Guy: We're rolling. We're live.
Okay. I guess I'm doing this show now.

Is it better to be rich or poor?
Thanks a lot, guys.

Can we stick around, Michael? Or does this mean it's over?
Nardwuar, this isn't my studio. I can't tell you.

Okay, can we at least go doot doola doot doo... Thanks so much, Michael Moore, and doot doola doot doo...
Television Interview Crew Guy: You've got to go. C'mon.
Do doo la doot dooooooh.

Almost. Doot doola doot doo…
Doot doot.

Thank you.

[Nardwuar gets manhandled. He's screaming as he's being led out of the building]

Is it better to be rich or poor, Michael Moore?
[laughs in the background]

It is better to be rich or poor?
Television Interview Crew Guy: Is it better to be alive or dead?

[still yelling as he gets pushed out of the building] Michael Moore, are you happy that Sammy Hagar is back together with David Lee Roth. [doors shut] Thanks Mike. Appreciate it. [to camera] There we have it. An encounter with Michael Moore in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

[A few minutes later Moore leaves his television interview for a second to specifically address Nardwuar in the parking lot outside]

Well, I was pushed out.
But those were your people.

Wait a second. Let's just get a clarification here, Michael Moore. What happened here?
You were just pushed out by Canadians, not me. I love you, man. Those were your people who pushed you out, violently. Did you see that?

Yes, I did.
Your own Canadians did that. I'm appalled.

Thank you. Can I have a hug?

[They hug.]

I'm so sorry. These were Canadian producers, Canadian TV people who did this to this man. I'm outraged by it and next time, stand up to 'em, man. You play hockey.

Didn't I stand up?
No, no. You lost. They pushed you right out, man. You're the media. You're the truth.

Hey, remember I talked to you once before and you said that I was on crack?
No, no, you are…

Nardwuar the Human Serviette.
You are a national treasure, man.

Thank you. You remember the last time I talked to you, you said that I was on crack?
Yes, I do remember you. Yes.

One last thing.
I was disappointed that you weren't there last night 'cause no trip to Vancouver is complete without talking to you, so I appreciate you being here.

Well, thank you, Mr. Moore. We appreciate that, too.
Now I've got Canadians mad at me because I came out to hug you. [laughs]

Thanks Mike! Rock on! To be continued!

Thanks to Chris Nelson from Much Music's "Going Coastal"

Michael Moore/Nardwuar drawing by Robynn Iwata


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