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On September 25, 1993, CHARLES BARKLEY, the reigning NBA MVP and Michael Jordan’s most recent victim, hosted Saturday Night Live for the first time.

The musical guest, NIRVANA, had just released their third LP, In Utero, a few days before.

The band and the Chuck Wagon got to know each other in Nirvana’s green room before the show.

What follows is a partial transcript of the conversation between the Seattle Rock Legends™ and Sir Charles.

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DAVE GROHL is passing a joint to PAT SMEAR. Someone knocks on the door.


NOVOSELIC opens the door. CHARLES BARKLEY walks in.

BARKLEY: Hey, guys! What’s up?

GROHL: Hey, man! What’s up? Want some weed?

BARKLEY: I don’t do drugs.

KURT COBAIN: Oh, it’s not drugs, it’s just weed.

BARKLEY: Shit, what are you talking about? Pot’s not drugs? You must be on pot to think like that.

ALL: Silence.

NOVOSELIC: You want a beer?

BARKLEY: Now you’re talking.

NOVOSELIC hands BARKLEY a can of beer. BARKLEY opens beer. BARKLEY points at COBAIN.

BARKLEY: Hey, you got a hole in your jeans. Don’t know if you noticed.

COBAIN: Oh, thanks, man.

BARKLEY: Aren’t rock stars supposed to be rich? Can’t you afford some new pants?

ALL: Silence.

COBAIN: You’re a basketball player, right?

BARKLEY: That’s right.

COBAIN: You must know Michael Jordan.


COBAIN: That’s cool. You guys ever hang out? What’s he like?

ALL: Silence.

BARKLEY: What the hell, man? Why would you say that?

COBAIN: I’m sorry, I — we’re not really into sports.

BARKLEY: Mike just beat me in the Finals. Two months ago.

ALL: Silence.

COBAIN: Sorry, man. I didn’t know that.

BARKLEY: That doesn’t really help.

ALL: Silence.

GROHL: You sure you don’t want some weed?

BARKLEY: No thanks. So you guys do rock?

COBAIN: Yeah, pretty much. Punk rock.

BARKLEY: That’s cool. Punk rock — is that like Boston? I like those guys.

COBAIN: Yeah, something like that.

Originally published at how’s your morale?.

Written by

Graham Isaac and Peter Johnson

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