Land of Hope and Dreams

March 24, 2006
Photo: The Howard Stern Show

Howard brought up that Osama bin Laden’s niece, Wafah Dufour, is about to get her own reality television show and he wondered what everyone thought of the idea. Robin replied that she understood that giving Wafah a show simply because she’s related to Osama would upset some people, but, based on that criterion, people should also be outraged that Victoria Gotti has her own reality series for essentially the same thing. Although Fred agreed with Robin’s feelings on the matter, Artie said he didn’t like the thought of Wafah getting money just because she’s related to the man who masterminded the attacks of September 11. When the next guest, Howie Mandel, came into the studio, Howard asked for his opinion on Wafah’s show. Howie noted that he came to this country from Canada and is therefore a perfect example of a foreigner who was able to achieve the American dream. Because of this, Howie mentioned that he didn’t think there was a problem with Wafah being on television and that anyone who believed otherwise shouldn’t tune into her program.

Howie mentioned that he originally turned down the offer he received to host the NBC game show, “Deal or No Deal,” because he didn’t think there was much of a point to the show. However, Howie added that the program’s producers were so interested in having him host “Deal” that, after already being rejected, they decided to meet with him again at a deli in Los Angeles to make a more detailed proposal. Howie noted that he still wasn’t entirely convinced about the job, but that the producers told him he’d be perfect for the role given his ability to improvise with people. Howie commented that he accepted the job offer after the meeting in the deli and that his approach to hosting the program is to not make the show about him. Howard replied that Howie does have “a nice rapport” with the contestants who appear on “Deal,” but that he also keeps the show moving, a talent which Howard said he appreciates.

Howard admitted that neither he nor Beth was a fan of “Deal” at first, but that he got hooked on it after he saw a few more episodes. Howie responded that the show is “a killer in the ratings,” adding that it was recently the number one show in its time slot, and that it’s earned NBC some of the highest ratings the network’s had in five years for particular slots. When Howie acknowledged that he earns more than $1 million for hosting “Deal,” Howard jokingly demanded that he get out of the studio.

After Howie, who is known to suffer from Obessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), explained that he recently started shaving his head because it makes him feel “cleaner,” Gary asked him about an incident he had a few years ago with Halle Berry. Howie recalled that he was sitting in for Regis Philbin on “Live with Regis and Kelly” at the time, and that Halle, who was to be a guest on the program that day, had just been involved in a hit-and-run accident where she claimed she didn’t remember striking someone with her car. Given this, Howie told how, before Halle came onto the program, he announced that she bumped into him backstage, but that she just kept going. Howie then reported that, after his remark, he noticed a commotion going on behind the cameras, and, instead of introducing Halle as a guest, he found himself welcoming Robert Wuhl onto the show. Howie went on to say that, during the commercial break, he tried to apologize to Halle for his joke, but that her manager told him to “get the f’ away.” However, Howie also said that Halle eventually came onto the show and that she spent her entire interview “berating” him for his remark. Following the story, Howard claimed that he would’ve instructed Halle to get over herself, while Robin pointed out that Howie’s reaction probably made Halle feel she was right. Howie replied, though, that he didn’t want to get confrontational with Halle when she came onstage and that the letters the show received about the incident were largely in his favor.

Photo: The Howard Stern Show

When Mark the Bagger came back into the studio to meet Howie, who he said was his favorite comedian, Howie asked if his voice is real, which Mark said it was. Mark then added that he wasn’t truthful the first time he appeared on the show in January, and that he’s actually heterosexual and not bisexual. In fact, Mark claimed that the only homosexual experience he’d ever had was when one of the members of The Bloodhound Gang pulled down his pants and touched his penis. However, Howard proceeded to ask Mark if he’d ever had sex with a man in the back of a pickup truck, and Mark admitted that he and the man made out and used their hands on one another. Mark went on to say that he “finished” on the other man’s face, and that the guy returned the favor on him, but insisted that he was only “experimenting” with homosexuality. Mark added that he’s been with only one woman in his life, but that he prefers women to men. Before Mark left the studio, Howard took another call from High Pitch Eric, who yelled at Mark for a prank phone call he made to him during his January debut on the show.