(first of all, if you are looking for something scientific, related to metadata, or whatever, you may want to close the page)
Well, why? One could ask…
- Cause this is my blog and I can!
- Cause after watching one of his shows, I felt like I really should…
I found Louis C.K. some time ago, 5-6 years I think, and I was taken aback immediately. I became, almost instantly, part of his “clan” or whatever. Started off with some of his classics that I watched over and over again, downloaded them from his website for my personal archive, and now I am just searching from time to time to find some new clip from a show or something. There’s no line, no joke that I could pick out to begin explaining how brilliant this man is. There’s none, cause there are too many! In the end, I feel like this is just one of these experiences that you have to experience firsthand, to understand what I am saying.
For those of you that are already aware (and I guess you’re quite the crowd, but anyhow), off the top of my head I remember the part with the bat in the house (the bat man), the part about the Bible (“this is definitely going to be in the Bible”), the jokes about his daughters fighting, etc. Hundreds of jokes, on the verge of decency, and even beyond it. Especially beyond this limit is where I find my favorite ones. “Of course, children who have nut allergies need to be protected, of course… But maybe, maybe if touching a nut kills you, you’re supposed to die…” (clip here). If you haven’t watched his work, this may be a good point in time to start. What amazes me to that day, is how rich his material is and how he can fill up an entire hour of jokes, all on the same level, like a song that is upbeat throughout with no pause or slack.
Today, as I was watching one of your latest gigs, I found myself being quite relieved of problems that have been in my mind for the past months. As you were going on and on about everyday problems, about old age, death and so on and so forth, I caught myself laughing hard about things that usually cloud my mind and make me feel sad. But not when you were talking about them. Not when you were interpreting them through your own eyes, translating them into jokes that contain all these hard truths, through the humoristic scope or outlook.
And as I come to think of it, I think that this is the secret that you can use to cope with everyday. With all the inconvenient thoughts that enter your mind more than once every single day. Humor is the answer to many things that are really hard to digest. And I think that this should be one of the goals of comedy and more specifically standup. That is to convey this positive outlook on life, even by cursing or nagging. Even in this concealed sense that may seem weird at first but in the end, it’s as liberating as anything else.
Of course it’s not with the same ease that anyone can interpret reality like that. If it was, we would all be standup comedians. But what if we were? Does it have to be really good? No, it doesn’t. I am confident that each and every one of us, in our own sense, we can do some standup with our own lives. And this fact alone can help us cope with them in a better, or a more relaxed way. Instead of getting caught up in a fight with this weird guy at the taxation office, we can all create a caricature of him in our minds and laught about it while we wait patiently in line so that he can waste our time with complete non-sense.
I am pretty certain that we can be as funny as you at times, cause laughter comes also from familiar things put under a different perspective. Our parents, our children, our friends, our lives in general. Why be so serious about everything and so prejudiced? How about flipping situations over on their head, and looking them upside down for a change? Are they still so serious, or have they gotten a bit funnier? No? Then try again from a different angle. By the end of this search for the comic aspect, maybe, just maybe things will be easier to digest altogether.
I guess that this is the whole purpose of this small letter to you. To let you know that if this is one of the messages you’re trying to get across with comedy, then the message is received loud and clear. If not, well, tough luck. That’s what I got out of it… Closing the letter here with a bit “thank you” for all the laughs that you have graciously given to all of us.
Louis C.K. is a really good starting point if you’re new to standup comedy. Starting from him you may continue exploring other great standup comedians. To be honest, I started from the great George Carlin who’s probably the funniest person ever, and then moved to other great ones like Robin Williams, Jerry Seinfeld, Jim Gaffigan and Ricky Gervais just to mention a few!
The next post will be about something more professional. Till then, I would advise you to watch some standup. It will do you good!