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ANTHONY BOURDAIN PARTS UNKNOWN
Miami. Aired 9-10:00p ET.
Aired May 6, 2015 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANTHONY BOURDAIN, PARTS UNKNOWN HOST: Miami speaks up on you. Or do we change and find ourselves sneaking up, washing up, ending up in Miami?
Miami, it's a big place, bigger and more multi faceted than it given credit for.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Miami, where you are?
BOURDAIN: We tend over the years to focus on Miami's -- how shall I put this? Party zone.
It's the kind of place we say, "That could never be me." And then it is.
It's a temptation that's almost irresistible, the seductions of flash, of palm trees, balmy nights, deco architecture, the manufactured dreams of many television shows made real. But across the causeway, a few miles down the way there are other worlds, older ones. I think it's safe to say better ones.
Way out west, 20 miles from the airport, tucked in yet another strip mall, is Islas Canarias. And you go there because, well you need coffee. And because Cuba, respect, and because Michelle Bernstein is there.
Is this what happen? It was a long time getting here.
MICHELLE BERNSTEIN, CHEF: You need a car in Miami. And yes, this is like the heart of Miami.
BOURDAIN: Michelle is one of my Miami's most iconic influential chefs, born and bred her.
When people say, "Where did you grow up?" What do you say? Out...
BOURDAIN: Where in Miami?
BERNSTEIN: This is way out west.
BOURDAIN: OK. BERNSTEIN: I mean, you can't get much further west than this.
BOURDAIN: What's beyond here?
BERNSTEIN: Swampland. Not much.
BOURDAIN: Body disposal?
BERNSTEIN: Yeah. Well, you can say that. I can't. This restaurant, we would actually come here for the seafood and it would be elegant.
BOURDAIN: Well, you have the waiters in the little bolero jacket-type things or a bow tie.
BERNSTEIN: You should get a bow tie. Yeah. And there's still some Cuban places in Miami that still have that.
BOURDAIN: This is how you drink coffee in Miami.
BERNSTEIN: In the real places give you the milk first and then the coffee.
BOURDAIN: What do they call this again, those tiny little chip (inaudible)?
[21:05;01] BERNSTEIN: Colada.
BERNSTEIN: The colada are big cup with little cups.
BOURDAIN: It is basically like the coffee version -- the caffeine version of a one-hitter. I mean, you basically -- so I'd have one of those. And then at the next place, I'd have another. And I basically, you know, get increasingly jangling as I head towards work or whatever my final destination.
BERNSTEIN: I grew up on the colada. At 4, I had my first, I think, colada. We all give our babies coffee. They put their finger in it to taste it and they all grow up loving coffee.
BOURDAIN: That's good. So this is a nonjudgmental land, Miami?
BERNSTEIN: You know what? It is. You can pretty much get away with almost anything.
BOURDAIN: It's good coffee.
BERNSTEIN: I'm so glad you like it because a lot of people don't like it.
BERNSTEIN: Well because they think it is too sweet.
BOURDAIN: Have many of you watching who are generally aware of Miami and this sandwich thing they call a Cubano, that you may or may not have had before, you're thinking, yes, a Cubano sandwich, but you'd be wrong. This is not a Cubano sandwich, strictly speaking. This, my friends, is a medianoche. Close, a cousin. Like a Cubano, it has roast port, ham, Swiss cheese, pickles, a little mustard. And like a Cubano it is pressed until hot and runny inside. But...
BERNSTEIN: You see the bread, it's darker and it's sweeter.
BERNSTEIN: So you have a real contrast with the salty pickle and the pork and the bread. See how juicy that is? That's the telling it's not a Cubano sandwich.
BOURDAIN: You know what this is, people try to improve on this.
BERNSTEIN: A lot of people try to improve on it. You can't fantasize Cubano (inaudible). How is it? Is it yummy?
BOURDAIN: It's good. A lot of thought is given to the structure of the sandwich, you know?
BERNSTEIN: It is all about the layers.
BERNSTEIN: Not much of everything.
BOURDAIN: So for you, this is the perfect breakfast, right?
BERNSTEIN: It's good. Right. Yeah. And I always go for the salty, never the sweet.
BOURDAIN: I don't care about sweet things. If I have to give up one course of the meal, dessert, you know.
BERNSTEIN: Well of course.
BOURDAIN: Like cheese over dessert any day.
BERNSTEIN: Yeah. Actually I'm rather have steak over dessert, but maybe that's because my mother is from Argentina. I don't know.
MAC KLEIN, OWNER MAC'S CLUB DEUCE: This is my world away from the world. To me, it's my little king's domain.
BOURDAIN: There's one place I keep coming back to. It's a place where, if you look deep enough, ask the right Questions, you can get a whole history of Miami from one man, this man, Mac Klein.
KLEIN: You're going to have to remember you're speaking to 100-year- old man.
BOURDAIN: I know. You look good.
KLEIN: Raise your voice a little bit. BOURDAIN: You look good. If I look that good when I'm 60, I'll be
KLEIN: You know the amazing thing about being 100 is? Last year ago, I was 99. Nobody paid attention to me. Didn't care. I became 100, my God.
BOURDAIN: Mac Klein, the owner, proprietor and regular bartender at Mac's Club Deuce, turned 100 years old this year. Yes, 100. He's still here. The cigarette smoke and dark, dank atmosphere, really good for a guy that's seen it all.
KLEIN: That's 73 years ago, Fort Benning, Georgia. I was the 2nd Armored Division.
BOURDAIN: Mac came to Miami in 1945 from New York's lower east side by way of the battle of Normandy.
KLEIN: I came here because I was wounded, so the warm weather was much better for me.
BOURDAIN: Well there were a lot of G.I.s here during the war here, right?
KLEIN: The Lord made Miami Beach, but except for the reason that people were station here and all of a sudden, they saw a world that they didn't believe.
BOURDAIN: During World War II, Miami saw a massive influx of military personnel. Hotels, which had seen a sharp drop in business, made a deal with the government to house troops at the empty resorts.
KLEIN: They told their parents about it, the parents came down, sons came down. They opened businesses here and they were basically Jewish at the time. And that's how it started.
BOURDAIN: By the fall of 1942, more than 78,000 troops were living in more than 300 hotels in Miami and Miami Beach.
[21:10:00] How long have you been running the Deuce?
KLEIN: I took over in 1964. Half of my life I've spent here. Miami Beach has turned over, at least six times since I've been here. All that neon is "Miami Vice." They put it in here.
KLEIN: This was their favorite bar.
BOURDAIN: Yeah, but it makes sense, too.
KLEIN: Well, it's still -- it was very flattering. The same as how flattering it is to have you here.
BOURDAIN: I love this place. I mean I love it. It's my favorite bar in Miami. To many more. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
BOURDAIN: The dreamers, the visionaries, crooks and con men who built Miami envisioned many different kinds of paradise, a New Jerusalem in the seemingly infinitely expanding real estate. Just fill in where there's water and you've got property, or as in Coral Gables, build a new Venice, complete with a tabloidish (ph) fantasy architecture and grand canals. Gondolas to ferry the new seekers to their palazzos in the sun.
The dream was as expandable as the space. Where there was water, there was now magically terra-sort-of-firma.
And in the '80s, where there was decline, a vacuum, suddenly, there was a new and vibrant economy, one that raised all boats, filled Miami with new buildings, shiny cars, swanky nightclubs, floods of cash and a new reputation for murder and criminality to go with it. Cocaine. Say what you will.
[21:15:00] Cocaine altered the skyline of Miami forever. It made, for better or worse, Miami sexy again.
Going back to the very beginning, was Miami always a criminal enterprise? But I mean not in a good way. Outlaw culturalism, a very deep part of American culture.
BILLY CORBEN, MOVIE PRODUCER: Nicole Hinson (ph) says, "You know, in Florida, we don't produce or manufacture anything but oranges or handguns." There is no indigenous industry. We sell sunshine.
ALFRED SPELLMAN, MOVIE PRODUCER: We sell you a drink.
CORBEN: The only jobs we have are in hospitality, in restaurants.
SPELLMAN: Real estate.
CORBEN: Real estate. It is all to sell the dream to the next people.
BOURDAIN: In 1981 the FBI called Miami the most violent city in America. The drug industry brought in an estimated $7 to $12 billion a year. And that's of 1981 money. That is a lot of trickle down. One of the most successful documentaries in the history of film is "Cocaine Cowboys," which tells that story. The film made by these guys, Alfred Spellman and Billy Corben.
So things were in decline. Cocaine sort of saved the city?
SPELLMAN: Well you say...
CORBEN: You say so. Am I going to get in trouble? Am I going to get in trouble for it? You said, yes.
SPELLMAN: But, you know, by 1981, you had a murder rate, you have 365 homicides here. 25 percent of those bodies had automatic weapons bullets.
We talk about the uncomfortable reality of where a lot of the modern Miami came from over something you just have to hit hard when in Miami in season, stone crabs.
CORBEN: The Federal Reserve branch in Miami had a $5 billion cash surplus, at mostly $50s and $100 dollar bills, all of which had trace elements of cocaine on them.
SPELLMAN: And the guys in cocaine trafficking in the '70s and '80s who got busted and went to prison got out, and are now big Medicare fraudsters.
CORBEN: We're whispering because they're probably here.
BOURDAIN: So where's the money now? How's business in general in Miami and where is that business coming from?
SPELLMAN: Well remarkably the rebound from the great recession, I mean people thought it would take almost a decade for all the condo inventory to get absorbed. And it seemed to happen almost overnight. By 2010, 2011, things had turned around here. We're in the middle of another huge boom. So who is buying? It's wealthy foreigners, a lot of flight capital from overseas, from Latin, South American, Russians.
BOURDAIN: Russians, with it's money moving from another country, do we care? Trickle down to it. Trickle down.
SPELLMAN: It has propped up Miami once again with another inflated, a bubble. And the question is, how long will it last?
BOURDAIN: There's history and there's the more immediate needs of the present. I need food presently and perhaps some fine bourbon. And when I need good food in a city not my own, more and more these days, I call somebody who, if they weren't good at enough things already, has become something of an expert on food around the world.
Every time I check Instagram, you're eating with one of my culinary heroes. You've eaten had gyros...
AHMIR KHALIB THOMPSON, QUESTLOVE: Yes, he inspired this.
BOURDAIN: Although he seems to like you much better than me.
Ahmir Khalib Thompson, known to most as Questlove.
You've been to this place before?
THOMPSON: I live at this place.
BOURDAIN: Yard Bird quickly became a Miami favorite, serving over- the-top Southern classics to well-heeled bonveva (ph) like, well, us.
The old joke was that James Brown was the hardest working man in show business. You make him look lazy. Let's review, OK, band leader, producer, a teacher...
BOURDAIN: ... deejay.
THOMPSON: Yeah. I mean, we're counting, I have -- technically, I have 16 jobs right now.
BOURDAIN: Deviled eggs with fresh dill and trout roll will be so over next year, but right now, I want 10 more. Delicious. Fried green tomatoes with pork belly, this is the perfect thing for a guy looking to squeeze into a size 28 Speedo tomorrow and hit the beach.
How often are you in Miami?
THOMPSON: Three to five times a year.
BOURDAIN: What makes the Miami sound different from the Detroit sound, the Philadelphia sound, the New York sound, whatever?
THOMPSON: You can't say something specific like, well, Philadelphia had (inaudible) strings in their arrangement whereas Stacks Records had organ in theirs. But I do consider the sound of Miami to be the beginning of really great dance music.
BOURDAIN: Once called 77 Elvis pancakes? Chocolate chip pancakes, bourbon maple syrup, banana compote and peanut butter. Even if you're not the king, you'll want to die on the toilet like he did after this carbo load.
[21:20:06] And what I really do in the Elvis experience, right, I should be eating a fistful of Percodan with that, right?
Yard Bird's signature fried chicken comes with spiced watermelon and cheddar cheese waffles. Here, they brine the chicken for a day, 27 hours to be exact, in a spicy bath that includes cayenne and black pepper, garlic and onion. Tender inside and perfectly crispy on the outside.
To me, I like waffles and I like chicken, but I don't understand waffles and chicken together.
THOMPSON: You still don't understand?
BOURDAIN: No, look, I understand people deeply love them and I do like waffles and I do like fried chicken. I guess, put them on separate plates and I'm OK.
THOMPSON: You don't want your food integrated?
BOURDAIN: Shrimp and grits, a southern classic made with Florida shrimp, Virginia ham and South Carolina stone-ground grits. One of the other subject, I mean about, reading your book. Is it Curtis Mayfield you have bad associations with?
THOMPSON: Whenever I hear Curtis Mayfield's Freddie's Dead...
THOMPSON: ... just as a kid, that particular structure always frightened me.
BOURDAIN: "Aqualung," Jethro Tull, whipped into a murderous rage right away.
THOMPSON: Even now?
BOURDAIN: Even now. I'm angry that that band ever existed. I hate that whole Englishy old, bar minstrelly, stand-on-one-leg mother -- I hate that (inaudible).
Yeah, I mean, you never know when you play (inaudible) music, you know, were they molested by a rodeo clown to that song.
BOURDAIN: And Jethro Tull, live version of that.
[21:25:32] BOURDAIN: Who got here first? Who, other than, say, some early Native American tribes and Spaniards? Caribbean blacks, most of whom were Bahamian. Bahamians figured heavily in the early development of south Florida, which began in earnest with the construction of railroads in the late 19th and early 20th centuries by this guy, Henry Morrison Flagler, the industrialist and tycoon largely credited with being the father of modern Florida.
Flagler's dream was the Florida East Coast Railway, which would run from Jacksonville to Key West, connecting the ports of Miami to the rail system of the rest of the United States, creating along its route, new towns, new cities, new (inaudible), where America's rising middle class could frolic and play. He also agreed to lay the foundation for a city on both sides of the Miami River.
As more and more whites moved in, segregation took hold and much of the Bahamian community was forced into black neighborhoods like Overtown and Liberty City. So if you're looking for old Miami, original Miami, you're looking, to a great extent, for black Miami.
These days, Liberty City is mostly ignored by developers, but back in the day, it was the epicenter of the black community. A lot has happened since then.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (inaudible) piece of pancakes, smoked sausage, boiled eggs and (inaudible).
BOURDAIN: What do you usually get? LUTHER CAMPBELL, RAPPER & ACTOR: Oh, man the fishy grits. See,
that's a Bahamians dish.
BOURDAIN: Your parents were Jamaican and Bahamian?
CAMPBELL: Yes, my mother was Bahamian, my father was Jamaican.
BOURDAIN: Today, I'm having fish and grits at MLK Restaurant with this guy, Luther Campbell.
A lot of good cooking tradition in the family.
CAMPBELL: Oh, yeah. One night, we'd have rice and peas, the other night, we'd have peas and rice.
BOURDAIN: Otherwise known Uncle Luke or perhaps Luke Skywalker at various times. Luther is something of a musical, political and legal legend, credited with pioneering what would be called Miami base. Maybe you know him from such hits as Two Live Crews, Me So Horny and Do Wa Ditty or the groundbreaking fair-use Supreme Court Case Campbell versus Acuff-Rose Music.
How do you end up different -- growing up in Miami than you would have grown up in L.A. or New York?
CAMPBELL: People would say, "Southern people, your all south, you are (inaudible)." Or whatever you want to call us. But in all actuality that would be we're an island town. I mean, Miami was made up of Bahamians that really fill the city of Miami, so now you have a different culture.
BOURDAIN: Bohemian, South American and...
CAMPBELL: Very different.
BOURDAIN: Very, very, very, very different.
BOURDAIN: How has that mix? How has that impacted the music?
CAMPBELL: It's everything in the music. It's everything. I mean, when people think about me, they always said, this guy makes bootie- shaking music. You know, everybody is dancing. Everybody is dancing in a sexual way. You know, Jamaicans, they wind. You know, the girls are standing up on you and (inaudible). The girls stand up on you and put your butt on you and start winding, you know.
BOURDAIN: I've seen this on television.
CAMPBELL: It's no different than a lap dance.
Among your other accomplishments, you ran for office?
BOURDAIN: About 70 percent residents of Miami speak Spanish at home? Enormous African-American and Afro-Caribbean community. How come this thing keeps electing conservative white guys?
CAMPBELL: Those Southern white guys, they're(inaudible), don't' say nothing. Don't energize your people.
[21:30:02] So you have a whole quiet community, you didn't get them excited about voting.
BOURDAIN: It's the opposite of get-out-the-vote program, it's a don't bother to vote.
CAMPBELL: Don't bother to vote. You take the governor's election. You know African-Americans voted at 20 percent. If we would have voted at 50 percent, Charlie Crist would have won the governor's race.
BOURDAIN: Right. He was selling Miami to somebody, what's the best thing about Miami?
CAMPBELL: Best weather.
BOURDAIN: Yeah. How do you handle the cold if you have to tour or something, you got to spend a week or two weeks in New York or Detroit or Chicago? I mean...
CAMPBELL: My mind-set is, I don't have to deal with this every day. I'm going back to sunshine. So when I got in on my mind, you know, I can go (inaudible) actually into a blizzard. I know I'm going out. You all stay here.
BOURDAIN: This is really good.
Back in land, another world of flavors. Little Haiti. Just in case Miami didn't have enough tasty stuff from elsewhere. The B&M Market is a grocery store with a four-seat cafe of sorts, tacked away in the back and they serve some of the dishes that make me happiest, jerked chicken, who doesn't love that? Curry goat, roti and this, this, cow foot soup. The real deal took flavors and textures, some next level stuff.
That was, by the way, unbelievable. Look at that just...
BERNSTEIN: That's not jelly.
BOURDAIN: So good. What's the best thing on Miami?
BERNSTEIN: The mix of cultures, something like that.
BOURDAIN: What's the worst thing?
BERNSTEIN: You know, what really pisses me off? I walk on the street and then say hi to people, (inaudible) like how I am.
BOURDAIN: Right. BERNSTEIN: And then, I don't get a hi back a lot here.
BOURDAIN: So, what do attribute this?
BERNSTEIN: The transient part of this. People don't (inaudible). They're all from South American, Central America. Their whole plan is to come here, do as they can to send their family money to buy the homes of their dreams and then, go back in live with them, which is great. I will probably do the same thing.
BOURDAIN: If I were to think about coming to Florida to live, what would seem attract them to me? I mean it's absolutely, fins some place on the beach and just sending in to, you know, my liver spotted crocodile skin, you know, late era George Hamilton face and, you know, walk in the (inaudible) my metal detector with, you know, shorts up to here. I mean, well, that would be me. But what I find, people who go to live that dream, after few years, they don't go to the beach.
BERNSTEIN: Ask me when is the last time I went to the beaches?
BOURDAIN: When is the last time you went to the beach?
BERNSTEIN: Twenty-year and a half ago.
BOURDAIN: What the (inaudible) is up with that?
BERNSTEIN: We're working.
BOURDAIN: If you weren't working, do you think you'd be at the beach more often?
BERNSTEIN: My dream is to have a house on the beach. I don't know why I never go. But I love it and I always say, I would never live in South Florida if I don't live near water. And I live near water. And I do leave my doors open a lot and I get the breeze but I don't go to the beach. I barely even go in my swimming pool. But I know it's there.
BOURDAIN: Before Miami base, before the Miami sound machine, there was a Miami sound. The music, the original Miami sound we're talking about came from this man, Willie Clarke and this place.
What was the space originally?
WILLIE CLARKE, DEEP CITY RECORDS: Well, this side was a little restaurant, smaller than this and we were on the other side with the ricochet (ph).
BOURDAIN: Now, it looks like a nondescript barbecue joint. But back in 1963, it was the home of Deep City Records.
Willie Clarke and his business partner, Johnny Pearsall started Deep City recording and promoting local talent out of Johnny's record shop. They labeled him a showcase for artists like Betty Wright and Helene Smith, Frank Williams and the Rocketeers, Johnny Killens and the Dynamites.
Everything you've ever created before, before you did producing or writing, it is a very, very long list, had amazing list.
CLARKE: It's about 1200.
BOURDAIN: Twelve hundred drums (ph).
CLARKE: It just flows and I'm like -- what should I call it, song mechanic. You bring it to me, I'll help you fix it.
BOURDAIN: Willie and his writing partner Clarence "Blowfly" Reid wrote such classic such as "Clean Up Woman," "Rocking Chair" and Willie enable (ph). Deep City was Miami's answer to Motown, the unique sound.
In 50 years, hundred years from now, if you were to do an internet search and punch in the Miami sound, your name is going to come up right away, as principle creator of the Miami sound. What would the distinctive features of the music you were making that separated it from Motown, Philadelphia, New York?
CLARKE: The culture was a mixture of Bahamian, Jamaican and that some people will come down from Georgia and Alabama. But the Bahamian influence would dominate.
CLARKE: We have a bands like the (inaudible) band and they would march from over town, all the way to the liberty city and back and there were a big parades. And so this influence of the dance and then the moving and the marching, I would said, that was the main (inaudible).
BOURDAIN: And you were teaching school, doing a lot of this...
CLARKE: Yeah, I was school. I'll would walk in the front door of the school, look around, put my sign in and walk out of the back door. And go straight to the studio. But, you know, the principal I knew what I was doing.
CLARKE: I did most of the Deep City music using that technique.
[21:40:17] BOURDAIN: And you're still out there, so your songs are still being played?
BOURDAIN: Still being sample.
CLARKE: Yeah. BOURDAIN: Which is good, right? I mean that's...
CLARKE: That's great. If it weren't for the sound, I don't know what I would do. The (inaudible) industry that kept us alive was Europe.
BOURDAIN: The collectors must go crazy. (inaudible) collectors in Europe and Japan.
CLARKE: If I had known back then, if John (ph) and I have known in our heart we were there, I guess we were still be over there and have the biggest motel or bigger.
BOURDAIN: So this is an island isn't it?
BOURDAIN: Really in this kind of an island.
CLARKE: I think is worst than an island.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Darling, I'm willing to forget about our past darling. Darling, I'm able to make our love last. I'm a one man's woman and I'm willing and able to be loved. Oh yes, I am yeah, yeah, yeah.
[21:45:11] BOURDAIN: Another day another country, Miami is like that. You could eat your way across the Caribbean and do all o Latin-America and then over to Africa if you like. It's all there. (inaudible) plaza is Venezuela. And if you know anything about me, you know I love few things forward and big new unusual, come somewhere else, mutant versions of the giant hamburger.
This one. This one is something special.
BERNSTEIN: OK, so this is the deal, you can have this one, which means, kind of protein on protein on protein on protein and it's all about a lot of sauces.
All right, so we're going to do the Doralzuela.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everything on?
BERNSTEIN: Absolutely, right? OK.
BOURDAIN: What is this day (inaudible)?
BERNSTEIN: Some people call it Doral, some people call it Doralzuela, which is (inaudible) Venezuela. And yeah, you're way wet. And you'll pretty much hear everybody speaking Spanish, there's almost no English spoken.
BOURDAIN: Most people in Miami speak Spanish at home.
BERNSTEIN: Absolutely. BOURDAIN: A lot over (inaudible).
BERNSTEIN: Yeah, even if they're not Latin.
BERNSTEIN: Because you can't really get a job if you're in service industry, (inaudible). You have to speak Spanish.
BOURDAIN: Meat on meat is something of a Venezuelan specialty and this one has got what? A beef patty, ham, egg, 60 varieties of sauces, crispy nut stick potatoes and cheese. It's big. Big I tells you. You got to demolish it in stages like you're imploding a casino or like a hyena grabbing an antelope on the huff. You try and channel through the soft parts first.
This is a sort of a an engineering challenge.
BERNSTEIN: A larger mouth possibly.
BOURDAIN: I mean, I'm going to stop crying, like you get that thing. All right, I'm going to in. Good god.
BERNSTEIN: Yes or no?
BOURDAIN: It's delicious, but...
BERNSTEIN: Is a little much, right?
BOURDAIN: There's no way this thing is holding together than the last bite.
BERNSTEIN: All right, I can't even get the whole thing. (inaudible).
BOURDAIN: This is open till 4 a.m. So there's definitely a time of day when that seems like a perfectly reasonable idea.
BERNSTEIN: If you drink too much, this will pretty much take care of everything that ever (inaudible) you.
BOURDAIN: Longer refuge for people from all over the Caribbean basin in Latin-America, Miami was also an inviting place for Americans who just wanted to get off the grid, live differently, make their own rules. If you've ever read the excellent Travis McGee novels of John D. MacDonald, you'll remember Travis, the mystery solving boat bum who lived on a houseboat in Miami, the Busted Flush.
People used to live like that. Less and less today.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When my wife passed away a few years ago, I was living in a condo and didn't want to do that anymore. Now I'm (inaudible).
BOURDAIN: Bob (ph) (inaudible), aka Captain Bob (ph), however is still here and still living on his boat in the Miami River. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We shoot out here and we look like we're enjoying ourselves, but it's really hard work. You know, just sitting here, looking pretty. It's not for everybody. No. But, yeah, it's a good life.
BOURDAIN: I have many friends over the years who live on boats, work on boats, but these were just degenerate wind addicts...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.
BOURDAIN: ... you know. This is more of a life style (inaudible) for you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is. It's got a machine shop on board and I kind of wanted to get down into the Bahamas and let the boat pay for itself, earn it's own teeth. And of course the economy tanked. And now, I'm living on it.
BOURDAIN: It's a 25 tons steel hold achievement doesn't do much moving around these days, but it might have to soon.
Who else lives like you?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It used to be very common.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's getting scares.
BOURDAIN: So how long do you think you got?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Six months a year.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That complex that's going to up right there, you see all the tower frame, we sit here and watch them put the buildings up and they're...
BOURDAIN: Coming closer.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... they're (inaudible) this way.
BOURDAIN: Yeah. You're not moving on a land anytime soon, if you get...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. Here, you know, live keep flowing by. The waves keep on keeping on.
BOURDAIN: Miami is a kind of place you say that could never be me. And then it is.
So you've been here how many years now?
JAMES OSTERBERG, SINGER: 15 years.
BOURDAIN: 15 years. You were Floridian.
BOURDAIN: When I was young this man, was a role model, an ideal, a road map for bad behavior. His music, it turned out was this soundtrack for most of my life. Still is, James Osterberg of Muskegon, Michigan known still all over the world as Iggy Pop.
You grew up in Michigan? You lived in New York for one period...
OSTERBERG: (inaudible) of Michigan to London. I work from London to Hollywood, which was rough. Hollywood to Berlin, which was great. Back to London and then New York from '79 to '99.
BOURDAIN: Was it a conceivable option at any point earlier, you want to say, no, I can live in Florida.
OSTERBERG: Yeah, it wasn't for me. I was hassling, hassling in a big city. It just kind of happened by chance. I had of shady friend who owned a condo here. And well this is a nice little trashy hang.
[21:55:04] You could just pull up to the beach anytime you wanted and look out and see the end of complications. And anybody could do that, it was safe and free. And that's -- this is beautiful.
BOURDAIN: Do are you eating healthy today?
BOURDAIN: What do you like here?
I wouldn't thought back then in my dorm room that all those years later, I'd be eating healthy with Iggy Pop. Barbecue shrimps for the godfather of punk. I get wild and crazy with some roast pork. A little white wine, our only tilt towards the debouches of previous lives.
I will remember the first (inaudible) album coming out, the context of the time. This was '69...
OSTERBERG: '69 in August.
BOURDAIN: In a lot of ways, as far as looking after my health, your music early on was a negative example.
OSTERBERG: I hear you.
BOURDAIN: And I'm looking at my own lifetime and career, I'm pretty much known for traveling around the world that recklessly drinking and eating to excess.
OSTERBERG: Yeah, sure.
BOURDAIN: What does it say about us that you're sitting in a healthy restaurant? I just came from the gym and we're in Florida.
OSTERBERG: Listen, if you just flamed out, you're in, you know, you're in such voluminous and undistinguished company.
And then all your works will flame out quicker with you.
BOURDAIN: What's a perfect day in Miami?
OSTERBERG: It's a clear morning, hot, hot humid, no moderator or any of that crap. I mean, hot, hot humid. The sun comes up then a hazy tropical orange orb. And you're working. You're not at a schedule and you have no meetings, which you have somebody fun to spend the time with. And then you would go to the beach when the sun isn't right overhead yet, because the beach faces east. The sun sparkles on the water. The sparkle was very nice, so positive.
BOUDRAIN: Do the template for the rocks are -- I mean the other (inaudible) are sort of looked to you and figure out how should I behave along with that? Look, even if you're broke, you were a guy who had various once in life, has pretty much when you've been able to have a lot of things? Ordinary people would never have many, many adventures.
OSTERBERG: I know.
BOURDAIN: Given that, what thrills you?
OSTERBERG: The nicest stuff right now, is just a very embarrassing but it is really -- being loved and actually appreciated the people that are giving that to me.
I don't see any birds at all.
BOURDAIN: And the day is so quiet. Is this the reward phase of your life or is it just dump?
OSTERBERG: It has been mostly, I think, the reward phase for stuff I did up till the age 30. Stuff you had to do on instinct, not on intelligence.
BOURDAIN: See, I think you deserve it. But when I look at my own life, you know, I'm actually -- I mean, (inaudible) and I mean, I'm still not so sure, you know.
OSTERBERG: I'm still curious. You seem like a curious person.
BOURDAIN: It's my only virtue.
OSTERBERG: There you go.
BOURDAIN: All right.
OSTERBERG: Curious is a good thing to be, you know. That seems to pay some unexpected (inaudible).
BOURDAIN: And I guess that what it comes down too, all of it led here. Write a book, I get a TV show. I live my dreams. I meet my hero. Two old man on the beach.