Did you know that Teller of Penn and Teller actually speaks? Not only does he speak but he speaks very well. Arriving at the Geffen Playhouse on yet another ridiculously perfect day in Westwood, California, I had no idea what to expect. “Hi, I’m Teller,” he said to me. He greeted me with warmth and a firm handshake. I was caught slightly off guard. Maybe I thought he would communicate with me in some other way than simply speaking to me. He noticed my shock and put me at ease immediately. He probably has to do this with some admirer at least once a day — A repetitive cycle, no doubt, as each person not in the know uncovers this fact about him: he speaks.
He sat next to me, leaning back on the plush sofa. But he really isn’t the kind of person who sits back and makes you, the interviewer, do all of the work. Not long after he sat down he leaned forward, even adjusting himself on the edge of the sofa – engaged, interested, with the kind of active mind that misses nothing. Don’t act like an idiot, I told myself, and you can converse with him, clearly one of the smartest people on the planet.