Judd: …I’ve been doing it ever since and it’s literally like I spent my entire life directing movies just so I could get better spots in comedy clubs. (187)
sometimes it’s not the destination, but the journey. and sometimes you wake up and the destination has become the journey, or the journey has become the destination.
key and peele are only ones to refute seinfeld‘s advice (though i forget what advice now)-and encourage you not to need an agent, just to go and do some things. i also like that they ask which sketch does it for people when they come up to them and say they love them because they want to know their demographics (since they cover so many). in case you’re reading, fellas-it’s michael jackson halloween party and gay marriage all the way for me.
(Jordan) Peele: The best moments I’ve ever seen in improv are funnier than the best stand-up bits that I’ve ever seen. There’s something that can only happen between two people collaborating, and I just think that two people with the same vision is better than one. (252)
um, obvi. and way to end it on a high note with keanu. 23 jordan over 45 jordan, all day. (i can’t even believe i’m picking a jordan-but it’s an era now…well, it’s been eras for lots of folks before this point, but i am just getting there now).
Judd: At any moment, some joke you make in the middle of the night can end your career. It’s a very different time for humor because you have to assume, with any great joke, it’s going to anger a certain percentage of the audience-and those people now have a way to communicate their rage. You can unleash the lunatics no matter what side of the issue you are on. (345)
he’s talking about twitter, and yea-it’s kind of amazing how volatile things are. how meaningless yet catastrophically meaning-full.
Michael (Che):….And the next comedian that gets onstage is me. I’m like, Fuck you. But you know what? It was good. And you know why? Because that crowd had seen ninety minutes of the best comedians in the world. I could not ruin their night. There was nothing I could say that was ever going to wipe that smile off those faces, man. (351, on following Chapelle and Rock)
ah, the politics of going on before or after the superstar, how we rank superstars, whether the programs are there to frame the commercials or the commercials are there to frame the programs…life-so circular and yet, so linear.
This man is so connected emotionally, so moved by human beings and touched by our struggle. That was his genius. He was completely plugged in to the human experience and what was dramatic and humorous about it. I miss him. (363, about Mike Nichols)
as i said yesterday, i think this is what apatow has actually achieved, and what i will no longer write him off for, ever again. (i just had strong reactions to knocked up, ok?!)
There’s something that my wife said to me once: Just because you don’t yell doesn’t mean you’re not mean. That’s actually the interesting lesson that I took from my marriage, which is when you’re married to an actress, they’re very emotional and they’re expressive, and as a weird nerd writer who likes hanging out in his room watching The Merv Griffin Show, I’d be kind of quiet, and so I thought I was always right in fights just because I didn’t get upset. I was in a superior position because she was getting upset. And then actually that realization was kind of a big moment in our marriage. She convinced me that I’m the dick. (429)
mmhh. so i’m not sure about this-it sounds a bit like arguing the biological proof of gender (which is a construct), but if leslie mann can stand it, who am i to say?
Spike (Jonze): I think it’s-there’s a number of things. One is that you’re not told how to skate. In other sports, someone’s telling you: ‘This is the way to do things.’ There’s a discipline to it. In skateboarding, you can create your own discipline. You’re in a bank parking lot with your friends at night and you keep throwing yourself down a set of stairs trying to land a trick. Your friends are skating, too, and you are all supporting each other, but you keep slamming and getting up becuase you want that feeling of mastering it and rolling away. There’s no coach. Also, and this is in other sports, too, when you’re trying to land a trick, the methodology of getting that-it’s like this sort of OCD thing, where you’re getting closer and closer every time you flick the board. The way you’re sort of visualizing your body doing it. (439)
currently, i am mastering my matcha techniques. i discovered this morning that if you mix with a fork, the space between the tines can be like the whisk (that i don’t have). so what if i discovered this because all my spoons were dirty with matcha? i also discovered that almond milk is better than coconut milk. and now i have to find something to do with the coconut milk. (sigh). but yea, DIY all the way-i believe it’s the only way we actually learn anything.
Judd: In the writers’ room on Larry Sanders, we would always have this debate: Would you rather work with someone who is easy and not as good or someone who is a pain in the ass who is a genius? There were writers in that room that would say, ‘I’ll take the easy guy, life’s too short.’ I was always like, ‘Nah, you’ve got to go with the genius.’ (449)
yup, me too. although i do demand some degree of genius be proven before i go widdit.
Stephen (Colbert): I don’t know if there was necessarily a moment. I remember when I was younger-I knew a guy, a great improviser, and I’m not going to name his name because of the advice he’s about to give me in this little story. He said, ‘You have to see the world differently than the audience does.’ Like, you have to put yourself in a state where you see the world differently than the audience does, because then you will surprise them with your choices. Comedy is all about surprising the audience with your choices. It might be something that is familiar to them, but they’re surprised you’re willing to say it. He said, ‘If you have to do heroin, do heroin. I would recommend you do heroin.’ (456)
also, his perspective of his dad and two brothers dying in a car crash-this would be a different way to see the world. this, along with judd’s own story of his mother abandoning the family and racking up a $30G credit card debt that they didn’t have shines new light on the role that abandonment plays on art and life and personal achievement.
i’m so blessed once again to be so blown away by this year’s books. woot.