One cool thing about NYC is you can show up to do a slot at normal Monday night "new talent" show and have three guys who've been on HBO there testing out material. Gary Gulman, Jim Norton, and Louis CK were all in the house at Stand Up NY last night and killed it. These guys can sell out big clubs but I think it's even more fun to watch them work a tiny crowd where many/most of the people there don't even know who they are.
Gary MC'd the night. It's interesting how he plays up his "cocky bastard" attitude onstage with his I'm so funny and so good looking schtick. Kinda the opposite of what most comedians do (i.e. obsess over their flaws). He mixes it in with some self-deprecating material and an aw-shucks persona so it works.
The funniest part of Jim Norton's set was the guy who was Amen-ing a lot of Jim's sickest (and presumably somewhat sarcastic) jokes. Jim: "It's awkward going with your girlfriend to get your AIDS test results because you can't really celebrate that much." Guy in back: "Aw, yeah. That's the truth!" Jim: "A guy can't stop fucking a girl once he starts..." Guy in back: "No, he can't! Oh damn, no way!" Best of all, this guy was on a date! WTF? I can only imagine what that poor girl was thinking at her loudmouth, STD-prone, rapist of a date.
Louis CK was the best of the bunch though. He was introduced by the MC and a bunch of people got up to go the bathroom which was amusing in its own way. Louis was just so smooth though. Chuckled about it and moved on. I usually can't stand comics doing jokes about their kids/marriage/etc. but his biting honesty on the subjects is a whole different can of worms. He did great bits about fighting with his wife, how having kids makes you understand how someone could put their kid in a garbage can, the differences between women and girls, etc.
Aside: I went to piss at one point in the night and some dude was in the can taking a dump while talking on one of those walkie talkie cell phones. First off, what the hell is the point of those phones? And why on earth would you use one while taking a shit in a public bathroom?! Then he hung up (or "10-4'd" or whatever). But apparently silence was not an option for this guy. After a few moments, he sighed, "Whoo!" Out loud. I guess so I could empathize with his efforts? Because no one actually has to exclaim out loud while shitting, right??? Hmm, maybe there's just something wrong with me.
Sandpaper Suit is NYC standup comic Matt Ruby's (now defunct) comedy blog. Keep in touch: Sign up for Matt's weekly Rubesletter. Email email@example.com.
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