Where do you live and how old are you? Currently living in NYC, but I also have a place in LA. I’m 41 ½. Or 8 ½ years from 50. However you want to look at it.
How did you get good at standup? Doing it all the time. Non-stop. As well as putting on blinders and not paying any attention to what other comedians are doing. Just focus and do what you think is funny.
For how long have you been able to support yourself as a comedian? 9 years. To supplement things along the way, I was an assistant at the director Sam Raimi’s production company, a barista at a coffee shop and probably a few other things I’m forgetting.
Do you have any employees? I have one assistant. His name is Aaron. He’s the very best. His day at the office includes going through my mail, bills, getting my oil changed, making travel arrangements for me, updating website/social media, grocery shopping, picking up my lunch, rides to and from the airport, returning things that are broken, listening to stories of my dating life, researching for my podcast and the list goes on…
How many copies of Live have been purchased since it went on sale in early October? Around/over 100k
How much did you make last year? In 2011, I was not in debt, had excellent credit, a savings account, a retirement fund and could literally afford to tell people to “keep the change” when buying a sandwich and not think twice about it. So yeah, bigger than a breadbox, but less than 20 million cash.
What’s the best part of your job? I love being my own boss, but to be honest, sometimes I think I can be a little too bossy. That being said, stand-up has still never felt like a job.
What’s the worst part of your job? Endless situations where people at hotels, venues, car services, etc. feel like they have to make small talk. I cannot stand small talk. “You ever been to Alaska? It gets cold here during the winters.” Thanks for the inside scoop. “L.A., huh? Boy, the weather sure is warm there, isn’t it?” That’s correct. “So, what brings you to Des Moines?” Mainly just trying to catch up on some small talk with strangers. “Comedian? Tell me something funny.” Buy my CD.
Would you recommend this line of work to anyone else? If they’re naturally funny, don’t mind small talk with strangers and love sandwiches, I’d say go for it.