What's the deal with Randy?
Randy is one of my favorite parts of making Why Oh Why. In the universe of the show, he's my nemesis, and yet, I can't help but like him. He's the guy I shouldn't fall for but someone I can't get out of my head. As our editor Hillary likes to say, "I love to hate him." I hope that becomes your experience of listening to him, too.
What does he look like?
Randy's asked never to be photographed for the show. I'd say he looks a lot like Jon Hamm. He says he's 6'4", but he's probably more like 6'2". He'd tell you he's in his early/mid 30s, but we believe he's in his early 40s.
Here's a composite we made based on listener suggestions:
Where's he from?
Randy grew up outside of Poolesville, Maryland. He was raised by his Mema. He likes to hang out at a bar in Ocean City called Club Seacrets. (I always try to spot him on their live webcam.) He's currently living in or outside of the D.C. area, and spends a lot of time with his girlfriend Bridget (not her real name). He says she works at The White House.
How did you meet?
I met him at a bar (where else?) in Park Slope, Brooklyn in late 2013. For a period of time, Randy had a good job writing ad copy for a popular food chain and was living in New York. I thought he was with a big crew of friends that night, but found out later he'd been there alone the whole time. You can hear all about the first encounter in this episode: The Quiznos Guy.
Why would you give this monster any airtime?
First of all, I don't think everyone we hear on the radio must always be a model human being. I like listening to people and ideas I disagree with. It helps me clarify my own beliefs. I think Randy is a complex and interesting person, and I've learned a lot from our friendship over the years.
I also recommend that listeners don't take him too literally. These are stories that should be listened to with different ears than the rest of the show.
Is he... real?
I get this question all the time, and I understand why listeners wonder about this. It's something we ask ourselves on first dates, too: "Is this person who they say they are? How can I know for sure?"
But do you really wanna know? As Roman Mars from 99% Invisible once told me on a panel, "I never want to know about Randy. I like that tension."
How do I get in touch with Randy?
He'd love it if you would follow him on Twitter. (Don't tell him this, but I paid $5 for thousands of bots to follow his account a few years ago.) He thinks they're all his fans. He's also on e-mail: numberonelover453 at yahoo.com.