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THERAPY GECKO - Interview

I feel like I have a levity of things that go on. Some people want to talk about serious stuff, some people want to talk about diarrhea, but I want to treat both situations the same in how I approach them...

Interviews
Interviews
THERAPY GECKO - Interview
ETHEREAL.PRESS

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Date
August 20, 2023
Read
22 mins
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ETHEREAL.PRESS

Talk to us about the Therapy Gecko.

THERAPY GECKO

The Therapy Gecko is a thing that I do. Where I as a gecko talk to strangers on the phone, on stage, & on the streets all over the world about their lives.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

How did you first become a Gecko?

THERAPY GECKO

I first became a gecko from a video that I had come up with back in 2019. It had nothing to do with the Therapy Gecko, but it involved a lizard costume. So I had the lizard costume left over from that video.

Then when the pandemic happened and I was living in my mom's basement with nothing to do, streaming on Reddit became very popular. I decided I wanted to f*** around on Reddit by taking calls in the lizard costume I had.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

During many of your shows, you act like an intermediary hearing some of the most outrageous personal experiences and anecdotes. What do you make of the diversity of strange calls? Does it tell you anything about the human experience?

THERAPY GECKO

It tells me that everyone's got some sort of a thing going on, and that if you ask the right questions, I think then people will let you know what their thing is that they've got going on.

But everyone has one. Undeniably.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Yeah. 100%. It's almost like an unnameable thing. It's like a quirk or like just something that makes you different from everyone else. I don't even know what language I would put on it.

THERAPY GECKO

I feel like I have a levity of things that go on. Some people want to talk about serious stuff, some people want to talk about diarrhea, but I want to treat both situations the same in how I approach them.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Do you have an interest in becoming a licensed therapist? If so, do you have an approach you would take with your clients? (We are propionates of Jung to no one's surprise).

THERAPY GECKO

I Googled it. I Googled it once or twice.

A) It would be way too much school. B) It's way more fun to be a fake internet Gecko guy. You know?

Dude, also honestly, I really struggle with a lot is the fact that the show is called Therapy Gecko.

People associate it with me trying to solve their problems. Which is not really what it is. I go out all over the world to interview people on the street, and those interviews are not at all me trying to solve people's problems.

It's just me trying to meet and talk to new people. I think on the Phone call podcast, there's a little bit more people who want to talk about problems. But, I also don't want to give any idea that I know how to solve any problems because I don't. I don't know how to solve the problems. I don't try to advertise myself as knowing how to solve problems.

Someone last night asked me - how do you make yourself more emotionally available? And I was like okay buddy when you find out let me know. I have nothing for you. I can't know.  

I like talking to people. I think it's fun, but that somehow got kind of misconstrued with this idea that I have solutions.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

On your show you've had several exciting guest appearances from Lil Yachty, Zack Fox, and many more - Can you speak a bit to some of your favourite celebrity interactions?

THERAPY GECKO

I think everyone who's gotten in the Gecko suit and come on the show has brought their own unique vibe to it. There are some people who I think just really get it though, who really like understand the vibe of the show and understand that.

Everyone can kind of be on a different wavelength. There are a lot of people who've shown up at the studio who I feel like have really gotten it. Lil Yachty was one of them. I remember after that stream being like, damn. He was funny when it called for it to be funny and a little bit more present when it called for it to be slightly more serious.

I felt the same way about Zack too. Zack had that kind of ability to meet people where they're at when they were trying to explain something.

I think some people kind of get it naturally and then other people, it takes them a second maybe like, a half-hour into the podcast to kind of understand what's going on. Everyone usually leaves the studio having had a really fun time.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Celebrities have to do so much shit for PR and (your show) is definitely one of the cooler engagement formats. It definitely feels like for your show it takes a very specific type of person and once you get it, it's like what you described.

THERAPY GECKO

I don't think that there's that many times where for a lot of these artists where they're speaking this directly to fans. It is an interesting thing to see.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Switching gears, during your visit to Guatemala, I loved when you pointed out the dude's shirt with the crocodile on it, that was one of my favorite parts of that entire thing.

(click video below - clip is timestamped)

THERAPY GECKO

Hell Yeah.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

One of your subs stated the following in your comments,

"Lyle was so happy when he thought everybody was recognizing he is a lizard, because in the US everybody thinks he's a frog. He's going to be very disappointed when he learns that "sapo" actually means toad."

How often do you get called a different amphibian or reptile - than the gecko you're trying to portray?

THERAPY GECKO

Yeah, I remember that. Most people think I am a frog. And you know what? I get it. I look more like a frog than a gecko. People who don't know me from the Internet are usually like, hey, that's a great frog costume. I like your Yoshi costume. Oh, you're a very cool green dinosaur guy.

I actually almost never get Gecko. I think me as a person, I'm probably more frog-like than gecko-like. Like if you were to just look at me as a stranger.

[...]

It's unfortunate. I don't know why I used to get upset by it. But now I've just accepted that I look like a frog. I used to correct people & tell them I was a gecko, but now I'm just like, yeah I'm a frog. Then I can go through my day with that - not having affected my life in anyway, shape or form.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

I feel like when you can see the hands and the feet it's more obvious.

THERAPY GECKO

You know what it is? The tail.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Oh, S***. You're right.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Continuing on with travel, you've been going all over the place recently from Central America, Europe, Australia, Etc.

What's your favourite international location you've visited thus far?

THERAPY GECKO

Guatemala was really cool. Japan was awesome. Japan was really, really cool.

I was actually looking back at the Japan video that I made, and there's a lot of footage from that that I recorded that's awesome that I haven't even put out. The Japan stuff was really great because I really, really, really enjoyed getting to connect with these people and interview people who didn't speak the same language as me.

It felt like a rare opportunity to get to talk to so many people who I really never would have talked to if I was a tourist. I probably would have ended up only meeting people who speak English who are tourists.

The fact that I make these videos where I do interviews where I had someone from my stream to help me translate - It was a great opportunity. That's the beautiful thing about traveling. I always had a thing about traveling by myself before I started doing the gecko.

I wanted to get into wacky scenarios and meet people and stuff. The gecko has been a really beautiful ticket into doing that in a really wonderful way. This costume, it gives people a reason to walk up to me.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Living abroad for 5.5 years you realize the perception of Americans, at least where I was, is overwhelmingly negative. I think you see that in a lot of other countries as well. However, I have never been treated poorly abroad just because I was American.

But I was wondering if you had any interactions like that where people were like more hostile towards you because of that or not?

THERAPY GECKO

No, Nobody's been hostile toward me at all.

Yeah, I just did this tour in Europe and in Australia, and I would interview people. I would ask that question a lot more. What do you think of Americans? And what would always happen?

When I asked that question somebody would look at me who turned the other way, look back and go, Are you sure you want to know? Right? Or they would say, Do you want me to tell the truth?

A lot of people around Europe had a negative perception of Americans from what I found and a lot of people in Australia. It's unfortunate. I would speak to multiple people who genuinely were afraid that if they went to America, they would get shot.

You know, they thought they would just get shot walking along the streets. You know that's a big problem here in America. I think it's like me saying if I went to Australia, I'm going to get bitten by a poisonous tarantula, you know, like obviously of course that happens.

I think if you travel to America, you'll be fine. There are much worse places to live.

The one thing I noticed about America when I travel to different places is that the thing I hate about it is, most of the American cities have just really bad public transportation. You have to have a car in America. Maybe there are a handful of big cities where you don't need to drive a car, whereas, in Europe and Australia, there is a lot more options.

Australia and Europe are still pretty 'similarish' to America. I want to go to places where it feels a lot more foreign to me and, talk to people as the Gecko there.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

I think it would be so cool for you to do shows in Southeast Asia and Africa.

THERAPY GECKO

Once my tour is over, I want to do a lot that next year. My plan is to do a lot more of that stuff.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Did you have your Gecko suit custom designed?

THERAPY GECKO

Nope, it's on Amazon. If you're reading this, you too can become the Therapy Gecko if you have 60 dollars.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

How many costumes do you currently own?

THERAPY GECKO

More than 6 and less than 20.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Do you ever get that shit dry-cleaned or anything like that?

THERAPY GECKO

I used to. But now I just put it in the regular laundry.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Talk to us about your live tour - how has it been?

THERAPY GECKO

My life has been awesome, man. I think it's been something like 60 shows this year and each show is completely and utterly different and it's just been amazing, man. This whole thing really didn't feel real until I started touring. Nothing compares to being able to, like, actually go and meet all the people who are listening to the podcast and see that they're actual real human beings.

I love seeing that. It's all kinds of people from a very diverse age range. I've also been really impressed with like people coming up on stage and sharing their stories because I was worried that it might not really work.

There's something empowering about the anonymousness of the call-ins. The exact opposite of an anonymous phone call is talking in front of 300 people. Everywhere I've been, people have come up on stage to talk and share stuff. It's kind of cool when they start out very nervous but then once we're done they're comfortable.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

Each of your live events are like one of a kind. I saw Marc Rebillet last year & found out every single set he does is improvised. It's different. No matter how many times you see that person, every show will be different. It's such a cool format.

THERAPY GECKO

The whole thing of doing a fully improvised show is it's obviously intimidating. Because every single show I write before it starts, I'm like, Dude, I don't know if this is going to work. And lots of times it does not work.

It's a double-edged sword because you allow space for potentially nothing to happen while in the same space you allow for everything to happen. You're leaving things up to chance and it has the potential to go wrong. It's the same thing that creates a show where people go like, I can't believe I was there to witness that!

Doing 60 of these, like, if I were a standup or a musician, I would be f***ing tired of doing my own material.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

What's next for the Therapy Gecko?

THERAPY GECKO

Well, I want to experiment with like renting a gallery space and putting a bunch of trash from my room up for auction. Seeing if I can raise money for charity or something like that.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

I like that idea. That could be really interesting.

THERAPY GECKO

Okay. I'm glad you said you liked it, because I have only spoken that idea aloud to somebody else like, once, and they thought it was a good idea. And now that you think it's a good idea too. I might actually do it.

So right now I'm looking at an empty Celsius can and a Mr. Beast bar and I just taped them together.

ETHEREAL.PRESS

You see that f***ing banana taped to the wall haha?

THERAPY GECKO

Yes!

I just want to try something that is not Gecko related. I want to travel all over and make some videos. Now that this monster tour is coming to an end, I'm definitely going to prioritize doing that.

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ETHEREAL.PRESS