Caged Heart

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Caged Heart[1]
The Other Side
Original Broadcast Date
Larry Block, Debi Mae West, Milton Schindler, Jack Kornfield, Joe Frank
Karma Style, 58 minutes
Preceded by: Sunday Morning Service
Followed by: At The Dark End Of The Bar (Remix)

"I was at rehearsal and everything was going along pretty well."

Caged Heart is a program Joe Frank produced as part of the series The Other Side. It was originally broadcast on December 17, 2000.


Larry Block mis-reads a line at rehearsal (he's in Seattle), gets angry when others correct him.

3:10: Larry laments his despair, says his family is glad to have him out of the house.

5:40: Larry fantasizes about working at a business that unloads cars from trains, living a working-man's life.

12: Other Joe Franks[1]

17:50: Milton Schindler recites the 23rd Psalm (sounds of a restaurant in the background).

18:40: Schindler tells of 'coming out of an etherized session when I slit my wrists at Cedars of Sinai'[2] in 1986.[3] The physicians and his mother were there. They asked him what he wanted to do with his life. He told them he wanted to be a rabbi. He claims that he was always interested in the spiritual life, that Lesley[4] shares that.

21:10: Jack Kornfield talks about how aversion results from disappointment, eventually we end up caging our hearts.

25:10: Kornfield tells a joke about Jesus getting mad that all sorts of unsuitable people (gamblers, drinkers...) are in Heaven. He upbraids Peter, who tells him that his mother is letting them in through the back door.

28:40: Debi Mae West tells of woman who died in her apartment: she had put a lobster up her vagina.[5] Then she tells of her difficulty masturbating.

31: Larry cuts down on the grapefruit juice when he's drinking tequila.

32: Kornfield tells the fable of a woman sent by Buddha to get a mustard seed from a home in which no one had died.

34: Kornfield reads from Sharon Olds's poem, "I Go Back to May 1937", about preventing her parents from meeting.

35:50: Kornfield asks what it means to see things as they are, how he tries to see everyone's eyes as Buddha's.

36:50: Debi Mae tells of neighbor addicted to women: he needs to 'conquer' every woman he meets. (She greets Joel with a kiss in the midst of her conversation.) He picks up on a friend of hers, Debi warns her about him, she tells him, Debi and he get into a fight.

40:50: More other Joe Franks[1]

48:40: Kornfield talks about accepting that we're going to lose everything, die.

51:30: Kornfield tells about the Buddha taking up teaching after his enlightenment.

53:30: Kornfield tells about Carl Jung and the patient who decided she was going to marry him.

56:50: Larry's unhappy at the library, passes a Presbyterian church, goes in, hoping for a little peace, doesn't find any, goes home and drinks a bunch of tequila.

Legacy Synopsis
  • Larry arguing with his director and playwright, then realizing they were right.
  • Larry, despondent about his family, reads 2 of his poems.
  • Larry describes watching cars being unloaded from a train. He fantasizes of being one of those guys.
  • We hear from other Joe Franks across the country.
  • A guy recites Psalm 23 and talks about his spiritual views.
  • Jack Kornfield on betrayal, disappointment, dukkah, "a cage for our heart", tells a catholic joke.
  • Debi Mae West tells a horrific Internet story about a woman and a lobster.
  • Larry: mixing stiffer and stiffer drinks.
  • Jack: "be with what is so"; great Buddha story.
  • Debi: a guy she knows who's addicted to women.
  • More Joe Franks.
  • More of Jack's reflections.
  • Larry: looking for peace in a church and not finding it.


Shared material


  1. 1.0 1.1 originally aired in Joe Frank's America.
  2. a hospital in Los Angeles
  3. He was born in 1925.
  4. He met a masseuse named Lesley in No Angel
  5. An urban legend