"I remember -- I didn’t perceive this until years and years later when I was in my 20s -- but I remember liking Mickey Mouse and Goofy, and thinking, “Oh, those guys are cool,” but I remember laughing at Bugs Bunny and Daffy. And I didn’t realize what I was being taught until years later, which is that everyone loves Mickey Mouse, but he’s not funny. Bugs Bunny is a prick, and he’s so funny. And Daffy’s a prick. They’re all douchebags. So it was this great primer… I think a lot of the comedy that came out of my generation, if you look at the kind of shows we created, if you look at stuff like Larry Sanders and The Office and Seinfeld, all the really good shows are just about pricks. And all of Albert Brooks’s stuff is about fuckin’ pricks, ‘cause I think they grew up realizing that, yeah, everyone loves Mickey Mouse, but he’s boring. I’d rather be a douchebag and make people laugh.
...it was just because those were those summers where I was working in these office jobs and I was getting offers… You know, the headhunters would come through college -- I was in college on a partial scholarship -- so these guys would come in, and the kind of life they were outlining to me seemed… The better they made it sound, the more horrifying it sounded to me, and they didn’t realize they were making it sound horrifying. They would go, “Oh, it’s great, I mean, I uh, I have a sports car that I work on. That’s what I really love. And you work 50 weeks a year, you get your two week vacation, you can scam a couple of sick weeks, you know, and I get time to travel a little bit…” And I was thinking, “Fifty weeks a year you’re going to the same room and you’re…” There’s nothing wrong with having a job, but for fifty weeks a year you’re doing someone else’s work, and it’s something that like -- I’m sure there are people that were lawyers that were excited about doing law, but these guys were just like, “I’m just gonna go in and help these guys do what they love to do.” Don’t you want to open your own little garage and pay people to do the boring shit so you can really work on…? You know what I mean?
...I just remember guys in San Francisco getting pissed off when Margaret Cho got her sitcom. And then someone pointed out, “Yeah, but uh, what Asian female role is she stealing from you that you were up for?” The only kind of success that bothers me is the kind of comedian who gets success that then, instead of enriching the field, it taints the field for everyone. Like someone like a Denis Leary, who -- I know this is an example that everyone points to, but it’s not only the thievery that bothers me, it’s that he skewed everyone’s vision of what edgy and dark was, so that when someone truly edgy and dark like a Bill Hicks came along, they would go, “Oh he’s just mean and gross. You know [who’s] edgy? Denis Leary, ‘cause everyone can agree on it.” Well then that’s… You’ve missed the fuckin’ point. That always bothered me.
...I just hate people that go, “Well, I wouldn’t have done that.” Yeah, ‘cause you didn’t. “I wouldn’t have done it that way.” Well you didn’t do it period so shut the fuck up. Where’s your better movie? Where’s your better TV show? You know?
...Okay, what I have to do now is readjust my standard of living so that I can live on seven thousand dollars a year, so I can only do this.” So I would literally, I learned all these tricks, like the bars to go to that you’d buy a single drink and then there’s a free buffet, or how to arrange carpools and split expenses, or how to like, “Okay I’ll just go and buy three pairs of jeans, eight black T-shirts, a sturdy pair of boots and that’ll be my stage uniform.” Button-up shirt over it, boom, there ya go. Learn how to live on nothing. Get books at the library. Get movies from the library. Just stuff like that. Swap stuff with people. And not be so focused on buying a million CDs or a million videotapes, because I don’t need a lot of stuff right now. What I need to do is to get on stage and not have to owe anyone any fuckin’ money, ‘cause once you start owing shit then you’re fucked: “Well, I’ll just take a job now.” The minute you go, “I’ll just take a job” it fucks you.
...I. Hate. Needy. Comedy. Ninety percent of comedy films, ninety percent of sitcoms, are the neediest, most desperate, please God, what can we do to make you laugh? Please, anything, what do you want? Whereas all the movies and TV shows that become classics and become huge favorites are the ones that are like, “Hey, we’re glad you’re watching, but let’s remember who’s here for who. We’ve got some stuff going that we really like and we think you’re gonna like it, too.”
...I hope all of you reading this are granted the gift I was given in the summer of ‘92 -- watching everything you believe to be true un-fucking-proven right before your eyes. I hope you get to face a blank page and no way back. There’s nothing more liberating, nothing more instantly evolving than to be proven wrong.
...I remember, one of the jokes I wanted to do, this woman said, “Yeah, I don’t about that.”
I said, “Can I not say that on television?”
And she says, “Oh, I just think it’s gross.”
I said, “Well, no offense -- I don’t want to get combative -- but I don’t care how you feel about it. Can I say it?”
“Well you can say it, I just don’t know why you’d want to.”
“Moving on.” I don’t know why we’re having this discussion. This is my one-hour special. It’s not called “Your Feelings.” If I do a show called “Your Feelings” then you can totally give me that note.
...isoS: My mom has a magnet on her fridge that says, “Yoga for the rest of your life.” She’s kind of a pseudo-hippie. Maybe your magnet should just say, “Comedy for the rest of your life.”
PO: [laughs] I have one of a little ceramic bagel with googly eyes saying, “What’s not to like, buhbie?” Maybe that’s not the same thing. "
Saturday, December 03, 2005
"What you’re striving for is independence, not success. People think that’s the same thing and it’s not. You want liberty, not freedom. "
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