Today I thought about the very first joke I told on the fly and as much as I hate to admit to a lack of progress, it’s still one of my best. I want to say I was about 12 at the time I said it, though I could have been 8 or I could have been 16. Whatever the case, it was way before I’d ever considered a career in standup comedy.
I was sitting on my parents’ bed and noticed something weird on my mom’s neck. “What’s that?” I asked.
“What’s what?” She responded.
I grimaced and pointed to her neck. “That thing on your neck.”
She felt around for it then said, “Oh it’s nothing. It’s just a little growth.”
I said, “It’s not just a little growth, it’s very growth.”
Thank you. I’ll be here all week. Try the veal.
I have to hand it to singer Katy Perry for her insanely infectious tune, “I Kissed a Girl,” which has rocketed to #1 on the singles charts. The title alone guaranteed it would be a hit and I’m disappointed that I wasn’t as clever as Katy. See, I’ve never kissed a girl, a fact that I regret because I believe that if I had done so in my prime, I’d be far richer and more successful today.
In my youth I was not aware that two girls kissing possessed more power than a nuclear explosion or that it was as effective at granting wishes as Paris Hilton’s Christmas list. It wasn’t until I was much older that I learned how apeshit guys get over that and how most would rather watch two girls together than be a participant with one of them. And the more anti-gay a man is, the more lesbian porn you’re likely to find on his computer.
If I could go back in time, I’d befriend a stripper named Tiffany- not one of those “I’m paying for college” types but a really skanky one with a serious crack addiction. Then I’d wave that little $10 bag of crack in her face anytime I needed some assistance, like at the mechanic.
“Three hundred bucks for a set of tires? Surely that’s not the best you can do.” Then I’d grab Tiffany and plant a wet one on her, making sure to expose a little tongue. If he only dropped the price by $100 I might have to include a grope of one of her obnoxiously large fake breasts. That should lower the price by at least another C-note. Subtract Tiffany’s crack and I would have saved $190.
I’d use it in my comedy career as well. “What do you mean chicks can’t close? What if I brought along Tiffany to open for me?” After which I’d rub Tiffany’s thigh- but only if she were wearing pants or if I had on a pair of STD-proof gloves. I’d have been headlining across the nation my second month in comedy. I wouldn’t even have to write any jokes, I’d just pull Tiffany onstage for a smooch anytime there was a lull.
Mistakes, mistakes, mistakes.
Let this be a lesson to all the young girls reading this: a boyfriend is nice, particularly when you need furniture moved but a girlfriend will get you all new furniture- and more guys than you need to move it for you.
The comedy world has lost a true pioneer, George Carlin. In fairness I should disclose that I didn’t think Carlin was the funniest standup comedian but he was a brilliant satirist who will best be remembered for his “Seven Dirty Words You Can’t Say On Television” routine. Sadly, he passed before our society took its collective head out of its ass and realized how harmless words are. As an avid proponent of the First Amendment who despises the FCC, I appreciate and applaud his efforts.
Here he is with the revised version of his list:
When I returned from my Afghanistan/Paris trip, I mentioned here that I’d never been so happy to come home and I wasn’t joking when I followed that by saying within 24 hours I was trying to get back out again. I contacted a friend who not only books monthly comedy tours in Iraq, he performs on each one. He happened to be in Iraq at the time I emailed him so he sent a brief response that we would do a tour together but didn’t give any specifics. I got really excited about the prospect and especially going with him because I know we’d have a blast. He’s the only person I’ve ever taken a true spur-of-the-moment road trip to Vegas with, after a conversation at the Improv about gambling landed us on that familiar stretch of the I-15 less than an hour later. Who knows what kind of fun little detour we might take from Iraq?
One of my mistakes in the comedy biz is that I’ve never been good about staying on top of bookers (depending on how you interpret that, it’s actually two mistakes). I don’t know what the fine line is between following up and being a pest so I tend to err on the side of caution, which is why it took me so damn long to book the Afghanistan tour. But I’m trying to be a little more aggressive when it comes to gigs I really want so I just checked in with him again and he reiterated that we’d do a tour but that he didn’t have any open slots until next year. Of course I was bummed that I’d have to wait so long and then I was totally ashamed. Ashamed because my initial thought was, “Next year?! With my luck the war will be over by next year.”
What I learned is that I’m both incredibly selfish and unbelievably optimistic. And what all of you need to learn is that if you vote for McCain then my selfishness wins. Don’t let that happen.
The reason I don’t get enough work done is because I suffer from a rare combination of ADD and OCD. I haven’t been clinically diagnosed (nor do I actually know if it’s rare) but since I’ve already figured it out for myself, why should I pay some quack 200 bucks to confirm it? How it works is I flit about from one topic to the next until I settle on one and spend an inordinate amount of time on it. Even back in college I used to do this at the library and anybody old enough to remember the Dewey Decimal System can imagine how much time such flitting took. Needless to say, I never accomplished anything at the school library but I do know a lot about a bunch of useless stuff.
I’ll take you through the process that brought me to the main topic for this post. I was discussing with a friend the fact that The Bachelorette picked up her date in a helicopter. This put me in ADD mode, which made me think of the helicopter rides I took when I toured the Balkans. In turn I was reminded of the private flights I took in Afghanistan (I think I mentioned the flight on the C-5 with two passengers but neglected to mention my long flight as the sole passenger on a C-17). Then I was curious if one of those had indeed qualified as the largest private jet in the world. This got me reading up on C-17′s and C-5′s and even C-130′s (which I rode on a previous tour). Then I looked up a list of the world’s largest aircraft and found that the C-5 is seventh with some ahead of it now defunct. So basically, it’s quite possibly the largest plane anybody’s ever likely to ride on with just one or two passengers. Why does it matter? It doesn’t. It will never matter unless I meet Donald Trump and decide I want to throw that in his face. Like I said, I look up useless crap.
On the top of the list of largest aircraft ever built is the Hindenburg. This is where the OCD kicked in. I realized I knew nothing about the Hindenburg other than the fact that it had something to do with a blimp and that a news broadcaster covering the story popularized the term, “Oh the humanity!” (real humanity, none of that Gwyneth Paltrow garbage). As incredibly stupid as this is going to sound, I think I intended to look up the Hindenburg awhile ago but I confused it with the Lindebergh baby and learned all about that incident instead. I remember thinking at the time, “How the hell does a blimp fit into a kidnapping?” In my pathetic defense, they happened around the same time and the Lindebergh baby’s father was a renowned aviator, thus adding to the perplexity. If it weren’t for Leonardo DiCaprio’s films, I’d probably have the Titanic’s iceberg intermingled in there too- and I’d still be wondering if Hugh Hefner flew the Spruce Goose before or after starting Playboy (yes, I actually had the HH’s mixed up at one point- I’m really sounding like a ‘tard here).
So I spent a long time reading about the Hindenburg and the various conspiracy theories surrounding it before it occurred to me that the video would be available on YouTube. It is unbelievable seeing this gigantic aircraft crumble into nothing in mere seconds. Even more remarkable is the fact that only 35 of the 97 on board perished- I don’t know how the rest got out so fast. In case there’s anybody else who hasn’t seen it, I’ve put the original version below but it’s also available in a colorized version that’s spectacular. But if you’re anything like me, be careful visiting the YouTube site or you’ll end up clicking one link that leads to another that leads to footage of Japanese kamikaze pilots bombing warships. Then a couple hours will pass and you’ll ask yourself, “Am I really here as a result of a conversation about The Bachelorette?”
As someone who often has to backtrack when the words I say don’t come out the way I intended them to, I’m somewhat forgiving when others do the same. Ok, maybe it doesn’t seem that way in here because I tend to exaggerate the foibles of celebrities but in reality when someone makes a retraction I let the offending statement slide. However, I do think there’s a limit to how much stupid shit a celebrity should spew in the course of an interview before one of their lackeys gives them a nudge and whispers, “Dude, you’re coming across like a jackass.” Gwyneth Paltrow could have used such as an assistant during her interview for the July issue of Harper’s Bazaar. Some excerpts:
On pregnancy: “I may force myself to do it one more time because the result is so worth it.” She has to force herself? Is she talking about creating life or eating brussel sprouts?
On adoption: “I do feel we’re so fortunate, and we kind of owe it to humanity.” Narcissistic much, Gwyn? If by “humanity” she means “tabloids” or “comedians,” then I’ll concede that the Kabbalah-worshiping, macrobiotic-dieting mother of Apple and Moses does indeed provide an invaluable service to “humanity.”
On Obama: “I think that having a president called Barack Hussein Obama in 2008 says that we are part of the world.” Yes, there’s no factor more important in a president than his name. America will be loved by the whole world if Obama can just find a running mate named Fidel Hitler.
On working out: “I don’t want to look like a mother who doesn’t care. For myself, for my work and for my relationship, I want to look good.” Because nothing shows your children you’re a mother who cares like rock hard abs.
On regrets: “My dad said to me that his only regret in life was that he had only two children and he didn’t have more.” At least we see where she gets her diarrhea of the mouth from. Am I correct to believe that’s a stupid thing for a parent to say, particularly to his child? Granted, my parents never fail to remind my twin brother and me that we were mistakes but at least they have the decency to follow it up by saying we were the best mistakes they ever made (then they wink and point at my brother so I don’t know what that’s all about).
And finally, some words of wisdom: “If you don’t have time to go to the waxer, then shave your legs.” Oprah better watch out- there’s a new oracle in town!