I had a comedy show Tuesday night so regrettably I have to do a post that falls short of the usual in terms of length, originality, and overall cromulence. Some quick links and other things mixed up into a salad of mediocrity, because who doesn't love salad?
1. There is a stunningly large number of "comedians" in 2011 who base their acts on A) imitating ethnic voices (and not in a remotely sarcastic / satirical way; in the straight "Hey, Asians talk real funny!" way) and B) how women are stupid bitches who should shut up and stop yapping so much. Sometimes I feel like I am surrounded by the smartest people in the world when I'm doing comedy. Other times I feel like it's 1957 and I'm watching Henny Youngman's opening act do the late show in the Catskills.
2. I saw my pal Matt Gilbert, who is balls funny but didn't have his best night, absolutely destroy a heckler. Hecklers are best ignored or briefly mocked, but this person definitely deserved what she got. It reminded me of the excellent documentary Heckler, which explores the issue in depth. It's amazing how ignorant some people are. Even when the performers suck, the $5 you paid at the door does not give you carte blanche to get hammered on appletinis and start yelling shit at people on the stage.
3. Mike – yes, THE Mike Konczal, the famous guy from Time Magazine – nails this discussion of one of the biggest but least-discussed problems with the current labor market. The understandable focus on unemployment obscures the even bigger issue: a lot of the jobs that are still around suck. They suck not merely from the perspective of being low paid and offering no security or benefits. They suck because they're petty, dehumanizing, dull, dangerous, mindless, and generally demeaning. Kinda undercuts that whole "Dignity of Work" argument, no? No one who has worked a minimum wage service industry job would argue that it's a positive, character building experience, even compared to sitting at home with one's thumb stored rectally.
4. Way to not sound like a cranky, out-of-touch old white guy, Alan Simpson:
I think, you know, grandchildren now don't write a thank-you for the Christmas presents, they're walking on their pants with the cap on backwards listening to the enema man and Snoopy Snoopy Poop Dogg, and they don't like them.
Sometimes it's hard to believe that this stuff is real, that I live in a world where this person has power and I am not merely hallucinating.