[music playing] [audience cheering] [music playing over dialogue] Thank you. Thank you. It’s nice to be back in the States. It’s been a year since I’ve been here. It’s changed a bit. I like what you’ve done with the place. I think it’s good that you’re going through this change though, right? Because finally different jokes will be made about you. I’m not going to be one of those foreign comics that comes over and stereotypes you. I think that’s very unfair. There are 300 million Americans. You cannot stereotype 300 million cunts, right? It can’t be done. I don’t mind if you stereotype Scotland. There’s seven of us, it’s probably accurate. I drink, and I’ll punch you in the face, on nothing. Sick of the stereotypes that you guys get. “All Americans are stupid.” “All Americans are stupid.” Not true. Absolutely not true. I’ve met several of you, far more intelligent than I am. That’s not necessarily a compliment. But it doesn’t negate the fact. Right?
Same thing with all Americans are fat. “All Americans are fat.” Again, absolutely not true. It’s just that when you are fat, it’s fucking impressive. Like… We get obese in the UK, I’m like: “Yeah, if that’s your life, you live that.” Proud. Over here, I see fat people, I’m like… “Wow! How did you do that? Like, that took effort. That took plotting. That didn’t happen overnight. Like, there must have been days when you woke up not hungry. But you are like, I’ll get through it. I gotta get me that scooter. Only losers walk around Disneyland.”
It’s a big old country, too. It’s fucking massive. So massive and I like the fact that it’s so big that you’ve color-coordinated it. You’ve just given people certain parts of the country. We don’t have that system in the UK. In the UK, we just let our idiots roam free. We have free range stupidity, but you’re very efficient. You just gave them parts to live, just feel like: We hate the gays. Okay, this is where you live. Here you go. Here you go. You stay over there. We’re not going to sell them cake. Okay. I still go to red states. Just ’cause I don’t necessarily agree with you politically doesn’t mean you’re necessarily a bad person. I like to go out, talk to them, right? See if I can understand.
Couple years ago I went to Indiana. It’s a beautiful state. The people there are very kind. Except for one of them. One of my favorite jokes I have, me, personally, I’ve always been an atheist and that’s just because both my parents are educated and… I… I grew up in a very religious family. I have an uncle that’s a minister. He’s 5’2″. We called him a mini-ster. Religion was something that you were allowed to poke fun off when I grew up, and then I came to America, and I’m like: “It’ll be the same here.” [imitates alarm] I phoned an American agent and I’m like, “I can tell the atheist joke in Indiana, right? And she said, “Under no circumstance tell that joke in Indiana,” so I went to Indiana and I told the joke. Right? Because wet paint. That is wet paint. That’s why they put the sign there just to let you all know. I’m used to having jokes I do not go down as well as I wanted them. Well, what I was not used to was the reaction. My first punchline of many in Indiana. Got to the first punchline. Forty out of a hundred people immediately left the room, right? Yeah. And not in the British way of like, “Ooh, this isn’t for us, we should quietly and respectfully leave. They left in the American way of like, “Fuck you!” And gone. And it’s important to note that the 60 people that remained weren’t all fans. Okay? Some of them were just very stubborn. Like, they hated me, but not as much as they loved saying “damn.” There was a real moral dilemma for them. They’re like, “This is awful. But I do love this. This is, this is excellent.” No, I’m not an intelligent person by any stretch. So I was like, “Maybe I’ll win them over with the harsher punchlines.” Oh, God, I’ll get them.
No, not at all. There’s a man in the front row who was so upset by the joke, his only way of letting me know how angry he was, was to lift up his shirt, show me his gun and say, “You’re lucky I don’t shoot you.” Now where I come from, we don’t call that luck. We call that society. I run my mouth off every day, never been shot in the head, right? I’ve never seen a gun in my life, in my life at this point. He’s just there, pointing at his dick. I’ve always found that weird. All fucking gay. Is that why you’re all circumcised? [imitates gunshot] Now what have I done? I’m terrified. I’ve never seen a gun before.
And this is what I love about your country, right? So I think there is one stereotype that is true for most of you and it’s the friendliness, right? There is just that sense of friendliness and there’s another American man, he was realistically as upset by this joke as this man, but he stood up for me and he did so in the most American way possible. Proper, big American, big beard. Looked like he ate pancakes and shat freedom. He stood up and went, “Hey, you, hey, little boy.” A bit condescending. “Lil’ boy. Hey! I might not agree with what you’re saying. Loved you in Home Alone. Thought that was spot-on. I may not agree with what you’re saying, but this is America. This is the land of the free speech. So you keep telling your joke and you just ignore him. ‘Cause if he shoots you, I’ll shoot him.” Not before? Like, if you’re taking requests… Before really works for me.
Now I will tell you the joke. Obviously, I have not learned any lessons. It was a very simple premise for a joke, as are all my jokes. It was basically, you know, as a parent… I’m not a parent, but I do like speaking on behalf of people. Because I’m white, middle class and male. And that’s what my people do. I imagine Christmas morning as a parent is very difficult, especially if you’ve young children. It’s Christmas morning, seven a.m. They bashed out of the rooms, they run downstairs, they’re so happy. They’re so filled with joy. It’s Christmas day. It’s the most magical day of the year. To them, magic literally happened overnight. They wished for shit, shit’s there. What the fuck? That’s insane! I’m seven years old, but I’m pretty sure that tree shits presents. But you as a parent, you know, the time, the money, the organization, the stress that’s gone in to make this moment so special, but when you see that smile on their stupid fucking face. Makes it all worth it. Then they look up at you with those big blue eyes that you hope resemble yours. And who do they thank? Santa. “Thank you, Santa, for these presents. Mommy and Daddy, isn’t Santa amazing?” As a parent, you’re not willing to shatter your child’s imagination. You must have to stand there and be like… “Yeah! He worked really hard this year, didn’t he, the fat fuck.” You know that disappointment that parents feel in that moment. That is exactly how doctors feel whenever you thank God. “Mr. Darcy, we are delighted to announce that your cancer has gone into remission.” “Oh, my God, this is wonderful news.” “I know it’s been a long, hard journey, but we got through in the end. We all couldn’t couldn’t be happier for you.” “Oh, thank the Lord.” [whines] What? No, sorry, it’s just funny. I just couldn’t see his name anywhere on this fucking chart. Um… I can see my name right at the top there. Dr. Michael, sat with you through two and a half weeks of chemotherapy. You’re welcome, by the way. Dr. Connors, her name’s there, she spent six hours cutting a tumor out, you fucking lump. I’ve got the names of all the nurses and radiologists here, all their names. Can’t seem to find the Lord’s name anywhere on it. I’ll tell you what. Maybe in my haste to give you the good news, maybe I skimmed past it. I’ll have another look. Oh, so weird! No God! Yes, but the Lord sent you. I don’t think he did. He certainly didn’t chip in for that medical degree. In fact, if I remember correctly you came to me, I diagnosed you and then I… specified the treatment, in fact… if I cast my memory even further back, he’s the one that gave you cancer. Why? Maybe because you’re an ungrateful cunt.
Forty people gone. Now. I was not proud of that. Sorry, allow me to clarify. I was not proud of the reaction. I’m obviously proud of the joke. It’s fucking excellent. I’m very talented. Not proud of the reaction, my job is not to offend people. It’s not something I tried to do and it’s not something I take any pleasure in when it happens, but it will happen. I’m a very opinionated person. Every opinion I have is not going to resonate with 100% of people that attend 100% of my audiences. Which is why I make sure that I craft and tell my jokes in such way that if you are offended by them, it’s because you are wrong. But nonetheless, just because we believe different things happen to us after we die doesn’t mean we can’t be kind to each other while we live. One of the first things my uncle ever taught me.
So, after the show, I went out to see the people that left. Not to apologize. I had nothing to apologize for. I told a joke in a comedy club in the Land of the Free Speech. I was fucking golden. But I was trying to humanize myself for these people, make them understand that it was just a joke. Yes, it was a bit personal, but it’s just a joke. Big mistake. I walked out halfway through a man complaining about my set. What he said we’ll stick with me till the day I die. These are his words. To a member of staff, not me. That boy is awful. That boy is disgusting. He’s exactly what’s wrong with this world, okay? Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the first two-thirds of his routine. I thought the first two-thirds were great. First two-thirds of the show, by the way, bunch of pedophile jokes. Isn’t that weird? Isn’t that weird? But then again, we all know how easily the Catholics can forgive pedophilia. Awful! Awful!
But then he did that blasphemy. That’s blasphemy, and blasphemy’s never funny. You can make fun of the blacks. You can make fun of the queers. You can even make fun of the colored ones, but nobody makes fun of Jesus. I know. And he didn’t appreciate one of them took the time out to explain to him that technically Jesus was… one of the colored ones, and that is not up for debate. We can argue about the existence of God all day long. We’ll never know whether there is a God in heaven until it’s too late for me. But if you’re Christian, you believe that Jesus was born in Bethlehem. That’s in the Middle East. Had he been white, that would have been the fucking miracle. He would have been the only white guy for 400 miles, and it would have blown people’s minds. Look, he’s turning water into wine. He’s a different color! Why is no one mentioning this? We live in the desert. The sun is always in the sky. Somebody’s got the complexion of a fucking snowman. Whatever those are. Because the sad fact is… If Jesus was alive today, he would not get through American customs. You could be as uncomfortable as you want, it’s still a fact. He’d get to TSA and then things would get a little bit tense. One of the guards being like, “Come on through, sir. That’s great. Just take your shoes off, put in that… Thank you very much. And you, ma’am, if you could just just take your belt off that’d be great. Thank you very much. And… oh. Um, if you just hold right there, sir. Two seconds. David. David. David. David!” Yes, Beauty McSandals. Who else? Who else would I be fucking talking about? And then Jesus would get there, and they’d make him do this… and he’d be like, “Really, guys, we’re doing this again? Unbelievable. Unbelievable. I’m the son of God.”
To any religious people in the audience and at home, I would sincerely hope that you’re aware that I’m just being a dick for the sake of being a dick. They’re just jokes in the end and surely, my silly little comedy routine isn’t enough to rock your lifelong faith. Surely you’re stronger than that, but I get it, faith is a very personal thing, I don’t get it. I don’t have it. I get jealous sometimes. That’s all I say, if you’re religious, anyway, don’t leave here sad, upset. Leave here smug. Leave here arrogant, because if you’re as truly faithful as you claim to be, look on the bright side, when you get to heaven, I’m not going to fucking be there. Like, isn’t that the ultimate revenge? Because let’s be honest, how pissed off are you gonna be if you get to the Gates of Heaven, and I’m just stood on the other side like, “I know. He forgave me. What’s he like?”
Also to remember that I’m not intelligent. I just sound it. It’s the accent. Not a smart person. I sound like my parents. My parents are very intelligent people, so I know how to talk like them, but with none of the facts to back up. My parents are huge geniuses.
My mother has a PhD in microbiology and biochemistry. She’s the only person trusted to be outsourced by the UN to travel around the world giving lectures on Mercury emissions and greenhouse gases, and about how we, as species, can help reduce our carbon footprint on this planet. All right? Yeah, very impressive. She flies to all of those gigs, which is a little bit hypocritical. She loves the polar bears, but not as much as she loves the air miles.
My father’s computer programmer who currently has ten patents to his name. And he’s the only person I know of that was banned from the British version of Robot Wars. Because he made a robot that was, and I quote, legally a weapon.
Those are my parents. Just honestly, for two people… I think we can all agree who had no right to ever get laid. They met, fell in love, they got married they consummated that marriage and three months later, I was born. And… My mom’s had four kids and you can tell that she loves us all the same, but after the first two, she kind of stopped giving a shit. Lost the magic. She was always going on about how she was blessed with me, that she was gifted with my sister, then she had my brother. And she’ll always remember the day that she was diagnosed with the other one. We were all intentional, though. My mother has a very healthy outlook to contraception, which is good because her sister is anti-abortion, which is a cruel nickname, but she’s had five. All right, let’s discuss that one. No, let’s discuss it. Some of you are clearly letting the subject matter of that joke get in the way of how expertly written it was. And that’s not fair to comedy.
When my mother was at diagnosed with my youngest brother… Don’t laugh, it’s serious. She still has him. She went to one of those pregnancy classes. You know the pregnancy classes that women can go to practice overreacting. [cackles] I love it. I love watching everyone going just like, “I’ll fucking kill you.” She went along with my dad and there was an opportunity where the dads could get up and try the gas and air. The nitrous oxide that women are given during labor. The reason they are given this opportunity is just in case, during the labor, the wife takes it, she gets a bit spacey, and the dad doesn’t freak out. So my dad, much to my mother’s surprise, he goes, I’ll give it a go. My dad’s a massive nerd… Never done drugs. Barely fucking drinks. He says, “I’ll give it a go.” He gets up, takes couple puffs, sits back down beside my mom. She said, how do you feel? He said, “Nice. It’s pretty good that.” My mom leans over, punched him in the dick and went, “Still hurts, doesn’t it?
They’re good people. Very liberal as well, my parents. It’s not good to having liberal parents growing up, it’s really not. Especially in your teenage years, because you can’t rebel. They love you no matter what. It’s real fucking annoying. Gone through my teenage years. I’m ready to stick it to man and my mom’s like, “Stick it to the person.” It’s very annoying.
I remember being like 15, but I just got all the stupid boy testosterone… I’m fucking hate everything. Just want to rebel. Go to my mom and be like, “Mom, Dad, I’m gonna start drinking.” And my Mom’s just there like… “Yeah. You’re 15. This is Scotland. What are you… We were just wondering what was taking so long, you fucking pussy.” You’ve watched me drink your whole life. You think I’m going to be hypocritical and say you can’t drink? Of course you can drink, all we would say is when you start drinking do it upstairs with your friends, just so we can keep an eye on you because that’s part of being adult, it’s learning how to drink responsibly. But of course, go ahead. What? Good. That’s exactly how I wanted this conversation to go, but I’m not done ’cause I’ve got more things and I’ll tell you what, missy. You could be none too pleased.
I’m going… Oh, I know. Screw science. I’m gonna be a comedian. That’s amazing. That’s a chance to combine that creativity and that passion we know you have and turn it into something you love, and that’s all we’ve ever wanted for you is to do something that you love. How about the first three years of your career we even let you live with us rent free and we’ll drive you to all of your gigs? What the fuck is happening? How am I ever going to be an artist if you keep supporting me? All these other comedians, their parents are dead or drunks or abusive. You guys have never tried to touch me. Touch me!
Fine, Leslie, you want the big guns? I didn’t want to bring them out so soon, but here they are. You listening? Listening, bitch? Sorry, I didn’t mean to call you bitch. You listening? I’m gonna start having sex. My mom’s just there like… [laughing] Okay. You let us know how that goes. [laughs] Martin, have you heard this shit? I know, with who? [laughing] You should be a comedian. That’s fucking excellent. That’s real… That is whoa! You know, I was reading his diary the other day. Yeah, under the pillow, good hiding place. Do you know that he calls his penis the Sloss Ness monster? Yeah, because no one’s ever seen it.
Am I right? I know I’m right. You should be more intelligent than this. With their intelligence, their upbringing, I should have been the guy that cured cancer. I’m not. I’m the 27-year-old who last year put mouthwash on his penis. Yeah. Just gonna let that sink in. Much like I did at the time.
Just so you understand what level of stupidity I’m currently functioning at. I’ll give you the story, right? I was at the nightclub, I didn’t do it there. I’m not a total weirdo. Hey… Freshen your breath, milady. None of that. None of that. And I’m in this nightclub and in this particular night club is a woman who’s willing to fuck me. And women willing to fuck me are very rare creatures. A lot like unicorns. You have to approach very slowly and very quietly. Have a net. We get chatting, we get flirting, we get drinking and about two hours later, she’s like, so… What do I… What do I have to say to get you into bed? And I was like… That. Fucking nailed it. What are you? Did you practice in front of a mirror? That was immaculate.
We go back to my place. We’re about to get down to the… I always find it weird talking about sex on stage and not because I’m not crushing it, but… just because I’m very aware that this is my face. It’s not a good face for sex stories. It’s too young. Look at this baby face. Twenty-seven. Not a fucking hair. I can’t grow facial hair. God knows I’ve tried it. There’s nothing. Nothing. Apparently when I hit puberty, all the hair in my body had a little bit of a tactical meeting to work at how best to cover me. And the first guy who done it before was… I reckon, we start in the crotch. Start there. Just above his bits and then move on to his legs… Maybe on his chest, maybe we give him a little bit of a snail trail. Maybe go on to his chest, make him a little Wolverine. Maybe his back. We’re definitely get under his armpits. He needs hair there for some reason we’re still not aware of. Then we get to his chin and under his nose. How does that sound? Then the second guy, and this was his first day, was like… All right. All right. Just his ass. And the first guy was like, “I’m listening.” Just all of it, just… Are we gonna move out later on in his life? Ha! No, no, no, no, no. Let’s make it look like Chewbacca’s family portrait back there. I want it to get to the stage that if he’s ever on a plane and he fidgets, he saws his own asshole shut. Is that something you reckon we can do as a unit?
Ladies. I realized it because I’ve been in a nightclub for a couple of hours, ’cause it was a hot, sweaty, underground nightclub. And obviously I had been fucking throwing shapes. If you’re not laughing, it’s ’cause you’re turned on. And doing that, in order to seduce her, I realize that I was no longer… You know, pristine in the Sloss Ness, so… I decided to excuse myself to go to the bathroom to do the gentlemen’s wash that we all sometimes do just before sex, just in the sink, just to make it all fresh and make sure it’s all… hmm? Right. Fuck you to every guy that just bailed on me. You absolute full of shit liars. Every last man, sitting beside your wives, “I’ve got no idea what he’s talking about.” I know you’ve done it. I know every single man in this room has washed his dick in a sink. That is a fact. Lie to your partners, do not lie to me. I know you. I know you. You’ve all got the same brain as I do, right? One day, you walked into the bathroom and you saw the sink. You were like, “Why is it that height?” That’s why it’s that height! If it was only for your hands, it would be up here, so you could see the dirt. But it’s not, is it? It’s in no-man’s land. “Choose Your Own Adventure.”
So, I’m in there. And I’m sprucing the place up. I’m getting it guest ready. And I was drunk. I was very, very drunk. And my drunk brain saw the mouthwash… And went… Oh! That tastes way better than soap. And he had a point. And the smart part of my brain wasn’t there to tell me I was being a fuckhead, right? The smart part of my brain was also drunk and sat in that meeting. He was just sitting there. “That is a fucking excellent idea. Oh, man, chivalry is not dead. This is awesome.” So having consulted both of my brain cells, we decided to go ahead with the endeavor. I thought the best way to do it was, I can’t just free pour it… I’m not made of money. I thought the best way economically was to be like aftershave. Like, yeah, you know, just like… [moans] Never know. If your girlfriend laughed to that joke, you’re a lucky man. You’re a lucky man! You buy her a car tomorrow. So I’m in there. I’ve done it… Now… There’s only two things that I’ve not really thought through. Only two, you’d be be surprised to hear. The first one was the sensation. It was like burning and cold. Like, at the same time. I don’t know if you’ve ever fucked a microwave during a blizzard, but… it’s unusual. The other thing that I had not thought through, my tiny little man brain had not thought through, was that she was… You know, she was gonna notice. Because that’s not what penises taste like. She wasn’t going to go down there and be like… “Oh, yeah, I know. I’m in one. Of course. Yeah. I love when this happens. Yeah! Num-num-num-num-num! Of course, in high school, we’re taught that one in ten men have a minty dick. I always thought that was just an expression. But here he is… Lord of the mint cock, I just…” She didn’t say anything, though. Bless her cotton socks. Didn’t… She didn’t say anything, but that was one point during, uh… During the… [stammering] You know, during… Guys, the or… You know, the… The blowjizzle, where… She’s, like, 30 seconds in, she kinda just went… It’s better than the alternative. Penis-flavored penis.
And I can see some of you want a bigger punchline there. There’s not one. And that’s because it’s a true story. It’s a painfully true story. Some comedians will tell you these amazing “true stories,” and at the end of these “true stories” is a perfect punchline. It’s a mixture of a callback and a pun. Perfectly ties the whole joke together. Do you know how they come up with those punchlines? They fucking lied! And I would never do that to you. I think comedy comes from truth. I don’t like to embellish my jokes. I don’t like to lie about my jokes. It’s honest, too. I could be one of those comedians. I could be, don’t act like I couldn’t. I have the potential. I just chose not to because I’m a real artist, okay? I could, but I won’t. I could… I could stand on this stage right now and say… And that’s why the ladies call me Dental Sloss, but I’m better than that. I’m better than that. And I will not lower myself for a cheap joke.
I think… I’m not a parent. So therefore all my opinions on parenthood are null and void. That being said, still got some. I don’t think your job as a parent is to shelter your child from the world and then stop them seeing it… You can’t stop someone living their life in a certain way because you don’t agree with that. Your job isn’t to stop that person, it’s to explain to your child why you’re against that, and if they don’t believe you, tough shit, but you can’t stop people living their lives.
One of the ones I hate most, this is a level of controversy. It happens every single fucking year in the UK, at least. You get X Factor over here, like the singing shite? I don’t watch the show, but fortunately, I know what’s going on because everyone on Facebook watches it, and all the parents have the same controversy every year. And it goes… Basically they’ll have like a… A female guest singer on like Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Beyoncé. And she goes to sing and dance. It’s wonderful! So I’m told. And the next day, there’s a certain group of parents that reacts like this. “Oh, my God! Did you see the X Factor?” No. Well, did you see Beyoncé? No. “Well, did you see what she was wearing?” Yeah, no, I googled that. Yeah. [laughs] She was a scantily clad. “It was disgusting!” Fucking wasn’t. But why do you care what she was wearing? She was there to sing and dance and as far as my way, she did that to the best of her abilities. Why does it matter what costume she’s wearing? “Well, she’s a role model. She’s a role model.” I’m inclined to agreed with you, don’t know too much about Miss Knowles, but from what I’m told she’s a singer-songwriter, entrepreneur. She was in a very successful band, Destiny’s Child, then she went solo and went fucking astronomical. She married Jay-Z, and she’s much more talented and famous than him, right? She sings a lot of songs, and she’s very famous. She uses that fame and the money to not only give to charity but to become ambassadors for said charities. To help raise awareness of all of them together. And she also sings very empowering songs for women and young girls, letting them know that it’s okay to be confident in your body image. In my book, that’s a pretty good role model.
The things that you’ve said… “But the children…” What about the children? “The children are gonna see her dressed in her sexy clothes, and then they’re gonna wanna wear the sexy clothes.” Don’t buy them the clothes then. Your nine-year-old doesn’t have a job. The only nine-year-olds I know with jobs are the ones making the clothes. Go make a fucking difference, then. Let’s live in your hypothetical world. Let’s say children are wearing sexy clothes. They’re not. You’re a moron, but let’s say they are wearing the sexy clothes. Why do you give a shit? They are children, they express themselves in weird and unusual ways. That’s what makes them pure. Let them wear it. Who gives a shit? Why do you care? “Well, well, well… Pedophiles.” Where? Well, people are gonna see the children in the sexy clothes. And then you’ll be tempted to be pedophiles. No. Right.
The reason I don’t fuck kids… No, I agree. I should never have to explain this, but clearly I do, for some reason. So allow me to make it crystal clear. The reason I do not fuck children is because it’s wrong, disgusting, immoral, and I don’t want to. It’s not their fashion choice. That’s so far down the list of reasons why I don’t fuck kids. You can dress a child however you want, I’m not gonna suddenly change my mind and be like, ‘Wow! Dora has explored her sexuality. Get in there, you sexy fuck. No matter how you dress a child, I’m always going to be able to tell it’s a child. You know how? ‘Cause it’s a fucking kid! For the same reason on Halloween, when a child turns up to my door dressed as Batman, I don’t go, “Holy fuck! It’s Batman.” And then kill both of his parents.
Just because you can make something look kind of similar to something else does not mean it’s the same thing, and I will always be able to tell the difference, right? It’s like vegan food. But it looks like chicken, but it taste like buttholes. And not in a good way. I’m obviously not comparing pedophiles to vegans there. That was not the point of that routine. Because vegans are worse. Of course, they are. Look, at least pedophiles don’t brag about being pedophiles. And I could take a pedophile to way more restaurants. I’ll have to keep an eye on them.
I didn’t want to call the show “Dark.” I don’t consider my sense of humor to be that dark. I’m aware that it is. I’ve had enough complaints in my life. But it’s just that this is… It’s what makes me laugh. And I know I got that from my parents. Maybe it’s the fact that you don’t grow up in a relatively normal, but still slightly unusual household. I have three younger siblings, two younger brothers and my sister Josie. She’s not this height. She’s in a wheelchair. You can be uncomfortable as you want, doesn’t change the fact that it’s a fact. Josie has cerebral palsy. I’m gonna assume the most of us know what cerebral palsy is. For those who may not know, it’s a disability that comes in a very wide spectrum of severity. You get some people with cerebral palsy who still lead very normal lives. They can walk and talk, so they’re happy. Josie is a bit more on the other side of the spectrum. She’s two years younger than me. She can’t walk. She can’t talk. She’s still a very happy, joyous young woman. She’s arguably the happiest person I know. She’s got a laugh that’ll light up a room and a fart that will clear a church And people sometimes get uncomfortable when you talk about disability. And I know why that is, it’s because you’ve not experienced it every day. It’s a bit unusual. I cannot stand the fact that I have to tailor the way I talk. People say to you, disability is never funny, never funny. What the fuck are you talking about? Disability can be hysterical. You just have to make sure that you’re on the right side of the laughter. If you’re laughing at the disabled person, congratulations, you’re a pile of shit. But if you’re laughing with them, what a joy. But to say disability is never funny, to me, that is dehumanizing. You are saying that these people are not capable of doing something which you are capable of doing and that’s laughing at the situation you’re in. Of course, they’re able to do that, they’re human beings. The reason you say disability is never funny, because it makes you uncomfortable and you don’t know how to deal with that. Instead of dealing with it rationally, you’ve nominated yourself to be offended on behalf of people who you think are weaker than you, so you decided to stand up for them. And nobody asked you to do that. My sister’s disability has made me laugh so fucking hard sometimes. And we’re never laughing at her. Sometimes we are laughing at her. But she just sees us laughing, and she joins in.
People tell me the language that you can’t use. I say she’s got special needs. That was what I was taught to say when she was born. Special needs. You cannot say she’s got special needs. I’ve met her. And I can assure you. She’s got special needs. Dictionary definition, special needs. She’s got needs that are very special, very unique to Josie. Those needs include needing to watch Pingu for nine hours of the fucking day. You don’t get that show over here, and you’re so lucky. It’s a shitty claymation penguin, and he’s a fucking asshole. All he does is go… [squawks] And then fuck every one’s day up. He’s the worst. But she loves the show, so I have to watch with her all the time.
One of her other special needs is when including Josie in conversation and you want to get her to laugh, which I recommend you do, it’s one of the best laughs. Just do the penguin voice to her. She loses her mind. And to everyone else, well, to me and her is very fun, but to everyone else, makes the condition look like it’s hereditary or contagious.
When I was nine years old, Josie was seven, and we were driving up to the north of Scotland. Obviously we weren’t, my parents were. Can’t change her own nappy, but she can change gear like a motherfucker. We were going to north of Scotland, and we were involved in a car accident, the front tire of my mom’s car burst at 70 MPH, and we went straight into a ditch and flipped three times. My mom and dad turn around immediately to make sure me and Josie are okay. Now, at this point, Josie had never been in a car crash before, so she wasn’t really sure how to react. When Josie doesn’t know how to react to something, what she does is she runs through her Rolodex of memories, finds a similar incident that she’s experienced to this one and engages her reaction off of the previous incident. Nine times out of ten that works a treat. Except for this one. Because the closest Josie has been to a car crash before is a roller-coaster. And bitch loves roller-coasters. So the cars just flipped three times, my mom and dad turn right immediately to make sure me and Josie were okay and Josie is just there like… [cheering] Greatest day of her life so far. Best roller-coaster she’s ever been on. Like… Three flips, no queue. Are you fucking kidding me? That’s insane! That’s unheard of. Even with Fast Pass. She’s ready to go again. She knows where the cameras are. She’s going to be like… She’s loving it. Meanwhile me, fully aware of what’s going on, crying my eyes out. Because I’ve just been woken up and this isn’t grams house. So my dad gets out of the car. He picks me up. My mom gets out the car. She can’t get Josie’s wheelchair out of the back. So just gonna have to scoop Josie up like the pile of wet towels that she is.
Who are you being offended on behalf of? It’s not you. It’s not me, you’re being offended on behalf of my sister. My sister. She didn’t ask you to do that. I didn’t ask you to do that. When you get offended or react like that to the way I talk about my sister, subconsciously it’s your way of letting me know that you think the way I talk about my sister comes from a malicious or angry or hateful place. You have no right to tell me how I feel about my sister. I’m very aware that I love her. So I’ll describe her in anyway anyway I fucking please, get off your high horse. Nobody asked you to be Batman.
So my mom scoops up Raggedy Ann. And… We walk out to the side of the door to get some help. Fortunately, a lovely man had been in a car behind us. He saw this whole car crash taken place. He starts printing down the road towards us, to make sure we’re all okay. Beautiful gesture, but… imagine that from his perspective. He’s just seen a car fly off the road at 70 MPH into a ditch, when he comes to check on the passengers, he sees my father holding me, who’s crying, while my mother… cradles my sister’s limp body and he just goes… No! And my parents died laughing, right? And I mean, losing their shit. My mother was laughing so hard, she had to put my disabled sister down at the side of the road. Like the most heartless mother that’s ever existed as she tries to explain to this poor man like, “No! She’s always been like this. No, this was also the before photo.” She’s arguing with the best person to be the car crash with. She can’t get more disabled. Who? Who? Shut the fuck up.
Couple weeks after that car crash took place, it was a Sunday, the Lord’s day. And I remember it vividly ’cause I was very excited for school for the first time ever on a Monday, ’cause we were gonna go on a class trip to Edinburgh museum, a new museum. And I was very excited because I was a horrible child, and I was ready to fuck this museum up. I was going to steal some shit. I was going to kick a dinosaur in the shin. It was going to be the best day of my whole goddamn life. I go to bed early. I want a full day’s energy, full nice rest. I had about two hours into my sleep, my dad comes into my room, not to molest me. He went, “Hey, buddy, just to let you know that Josie’s just been rushed to hospital. So me and your mom need to go and make sure she’s not fucking around. So grab your school bag, go stay with the neighbors and don’t be a dick. I’ll see you tomorrow.” And the reason my dad is being very casual about this is part of Josie condition means that she’s in the hospital quite regularly. She get seizures, she gets fits, she gets epileptic fits. I’ll be honest with you, sometimes bit of an attention-seeking cow. She knew I was excited by the museum. She knew I needed my rest. Did she respect that? Did she? Fuck. She’s has to be all diva about it. So she’s off making it about her. I go over the road to my neighbors. My neighbors are used to this. This happens once a month. I knock on the door and they’ re like, “Is she?” And I’m like, “Yes, she is.” And I go up and stay in the spare room. Next morning I come downstairs fully dressed, very excited for school. My neighbor sat at the bottom of the stairs and she’s crying. Which catches me immediately off guard because I’m nine years old. The only grown woman I’ve ever seen crying before is my mother and this didn’t have anything to do with alcohol so… But I’m nine years old. I’ve not fully developed empathy yet. So I’m just like, “Can you make me toast? I need toast, ’cause I’m gonna go…” And she sees me and she’s like, “Daniel, you should go home.” I’m like, “But toast…” And she went, “Go home!” And I’m like, “Wow, you don’t have a toaster.” So I go across the road. Mom’s always good for toast. She works from home. My mom works for the UN, but her office is at home. So I’m used to seeing her there. What I’m not used to seeing is what I’m suddenly confronted with when I walk into my living room. My mom’s there, my dad’s there, home from work. I’ve got aunts and uncles from all across Scotland. My grandparents down from the North, my other grandparents in from the West. No Josie. And that was the moment that my mother told me that my sister died.
Now… Obviously a very big part of my life. If I’m being honest with you, I don’t really remember too much of the day. According to my parents, I collapse on the floor, and I cried for about five minutes and then after five minutes, I picked myself back up, put my school bag on and I was like, “Fucking museum’s gonna be weird.” I tried to go to school, and my parents had to be like, “Fucking no, dickhead.” We’re not going to go to school today. We’re going to stay home and cry for more than five minutes, you sociopath. Does that sound funny, does it, Hitler? Yeah, it does. And I kept trying to leave the room and not because I want to go to school necessarily, but just because I didn’t want to be in that room anymore because in that moment, I no longer recognized my family and not just because of the gaping hole that my sister left, but just… I have a very funny family. A viciously funny family. I’ve been called a cunt since I was five years old, right? That’s just how my family works. If you love someone, you insult them over and over and over and over and over again until they hate themselves, and then they need you to love them more. Family. Right? And in this moment, none of them were being funny. My mother, one of the funniest people in the world, nothing, just a straw. My dad’s so dry, always so sarcastic, nothing. I couldn’t stand it. Couldn’t stand that. I was young and naive, I decided to try and assume the position. I tried telling jokes. Start doing impressions… Didn’t really work. Tough crowd. This is the moment my mother very… She looks back fondly upon it. Being like, and that’s the moment I knew that you were going to be a comedian, which is lovely, but horseshit. My dad gets much closer to the truth when he says that’s the moment I knew you were going to be a comedian because even though your sister was dead, you still wanted to be the center of attention.
There’s still a bit of tension in this room. I’ll only bask in it for a few more seconds. This is my favorite part of the whole show. Just a whole audience’s butthole sealing. Everyone’s assholes just going… [grunts] That’s the moment when my mother told me that my sister died. Aww. “What… what do we do? Do we laugh?” Don’t you fucking dare laugh. Don’t you fucking dare laugh. “I don’t know what to do. Do I look up?” Don’t look at me, I might cry. “Okay, I’ll look down.” Don’t look down, that’s where she is. “Aww, fuck. Aww! Oh, God. Should I look up?” Don’t look up. He doesn’t think she’s there, either. “Can we leave?” I can’t. I’ve physically swallowed the chair. If I stand up, it’s all…
Honestly, that guy from Indiana was right. The first two-thirds were great and then it really just drops off towards the end there. Don’t feel bad about your reactions. It’s entirely justified. I manufactured and told that joke in such a way that you literally just found out that my sister died in that moment. I’m going to be honest with you. I’ve known for fucking ages. I’m 27. She died when I was nine years old. That’s 18 maths, years. I’ve grieved, I’ve laughed, I’ve done everything. I like telling that story in that way because it’s a bit of a sadistic nostalgia if I’m honest with you. I drop in that moment, you’re like… [gasps] And I’m like, I remember that. It’s all because that’s better than the other reactions.
I hate the… I know it comes from a good place, but the sorrys are just the fucking worst. My sister died. Oh, my God. I’m so sorry. I’m British. If you apologize to me, I’ll apologize back. It is a reflex. I am sorry. I know it comes from a good place. But it’s not good. If you’ve lost anyone in the past couple years, you’ll understand what I mean when you get bored of the sorrys. In the future, when you lose someone, which you all will… Spoiler alert. Everyone you love will die one day, and there’s nothing you can do to prevent except for maybe die first. Stop yourself the pain and give them. Fun, fun, fun. But when you inevitably get rid… Get bored… Sorry, of the… Of the sorrys. Here’s the best way to get rid of it, right? You go, “Sorry I’ve not been in touch. My dad died a couple of weeks ago.” Oh, my God, I am so sorry. Why? Did you do? Mom, we found the guy! They’ll never fucking say it again.
That’s a big thing I remember about my sister’s death apart from the obvious, you know, dead thing. I hated how much everyone else treated me differently, right? Something had changed and I needed everything else to stay the same so I could process the difference, but that doesn’t happen when someone dies, people start wrapping you in bubble wrap. They start being very sensitive or changing how they treat you. They treat you… I went back to school after two weeks. I was picked first in sports. I was like, “What the fuck just happened?” That’s never… People wouldn’t say… People say sister around me and they go… [gasps] As if I was going to be like… [groans] I couldn’t stand it. I hated it so much. And in that moment, I made a vow to myself, that if I ever knew someone who lost someone close to them that I would not change, I would remain a constant in their life, and what that means is just being a dick the whole time. It’s very important. I call it being a wanker-anchor.
There’s so much anger in death, just be the punching bag. Let them take out on you and it works a treat. A couple of years ago, my best friend Jean, her dad died. Obviously, very, very sad. But Jean and I have one of those relationships where what makes us laugh the hardest is saying the most awful things at the most inappropriate moments, normally while making this face. Just because her dad was dead, didn’t mean she was off the hook. So… You’ve really got to time a dead dad joke. You’ve only got one good shot at it. You really gotta nail it first time. Otherwise, it just gets a bit bullying. I nailed it, I really did.
Next day after dad died, she went downstairs and she’s making phone calls, funeral arrangements with her mother, and me and my other best friend Kai, we were upstairs being very supportive and getting high. It’s the only thing to do, and after about 45 minutes, Jean comes upstairs with red eyes. We’ve also got red eyes for different reasons. And she sees us laughing. Just giggling. We were losing our shit. I can’t remember why we were laughing. We were either laughing at a squirrel or the word squirrel. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the word squirrel written down, but it’s a very funny word because there’s an S and there’s a Q, and then there’s a U and then two Rs. And those are all really near each other in the alphabet. So it’s like a family reunion of a word. We were high. We’re sitting there giggling, and Jean comes upstairs and goes, “Oh! Well, I’m clearly missing something.”
None of you are better than me, you all thought the same fucking joke. Sitting there, being there like… I just had the courage to do it. I’m a comedian. You think I’m missing that open goal of a joke? She went, I’m clearly missing something. Yeah, a father. Fucking nailed it! We can walk these paces. This is easy. This is so easy. And she laughed. She did. Very much the laugh you all did. “Ha-ha… oh, no.”
But she needed to see that I was still there. The Daniel that she’s grown up with. Not this weird saint that she’s never met in her life. And I was sympathetic the whole day before, the whole day after. You just gotta make those jokes every now and again. I was a good friend later on.
Kai had gone to London to do some gigs. It’s just me and Jean, and we decided what was the best way to deal with it was to get about three bottles of wine, order a bunch of pizza, get shitfaced and just cry and complain about how unfair death truly is. So I ordered the pizza, I decided to pay for it because… Guys, her dad’s dead. It’s what he would have wanted. Half an hour later, pizza comes to the door, I take the pizza. I pass it to Jean, take a bottle of Coke and pass it to Jean. I take the tub of ice cream, and I pass it to Jean. I turn right and pay the guy, tip the guy, ’cause I’m a fucking legend. And then I turn back around, Jean is suddenly furious. Anger in her face. She’s like, “You’re an asshole.” Now… I am. You’re never going to hear me debate that at all. But at this point, I was unaware of how she had arrived at that conclusion. Like, she hadn’t shown her working. I thought, what have I done? It’s not what I said earlier, we laughed about that. I don’t know what it is. I’m trying to work out what I’ve said or done. And before I can answer, she holds up the bottle of Coke and it says, “Share a Coke… with Dad.” Which is fucking hysterical. Are you kidding me? Of all the days, all the different names and all the different bottles. This bottle, this day. For a solid second, I believed in God. For a full second. I was like… [cackles] “You sneaky bastard!” I’m crying with laughter. I’m on the floor, I’m dying harder than her dead dad. I am in… Because that’s such an awful coincidence. There’s nothing you can do apart from laugh at how horrible that coincidence is. Jean is still not laughing. I’m confused because this is exactly what we laugh at. So I’m replaying, what have I done wrong? Why is this… Then I realize she didn’t say, “Oh, my God, look at this horrible coincidence.” She said, “You are an asshole.” That is an accusation. She thinks I set that up. That’s how much of a piece of shit she thinks I am? That I scheduled… Here’s what Jean think’s happened. Yeah, Domino’s? Yeah, I’d just like to order some pizza. My friend’s dad just died. So, you know, pizza. Is there like a discount code you offer? # dead dad. 50% off. That makes sense. Can I get an extra large Hawaiian with no pineapple? All right. A bottle of Coke and some ice cream. Yep, yep. Anything else? Do you have anything with Dad written on it? Yeah, her dad just died, so I really want to fucking ram it home for no apparent reason. Yeah. A bottle of Coke, that’s great. She’s not that observant, though. Any chance you could spell out with ham on top of the pizza? Yeah, I’ve got a better idea. If I email you a picture of his face… Can you make it in cheese on top of the pizza? Yeah! So don’t burn it, he’s being cremated tomorrow. That’d be in poor taste.
Laughter is not the opposite of sadness. Happiness is the opposite of sadness, all right? Laughter is a reaction. It’s free to exist in both. If your way of dealing with sadness is to grieve and to cry and do whatnot, congratulations. I’m glad that works for you. Doesn’t work for me. When I cry when I’m sad, I just feel shit, makes me spiral, I don’t feel any better. Laughter is what brings me happy. It makes me much, much happier.
Often the hardest times you laugh is when you pulled from the other side of sadness, and I’ll leave you this final example. Couple of years after Josie died, I was 13 years old and on the anniversary of my sister’s death every year obviously becomes a very sad time in our house, just as we all remember this life that was taken away far too young. I go upstairs to check on my mom, to see how she’s doing. You know, she’s doing how you’d expect. She’s in her room surrounded by flowers and cards, and she’s just crying. Just crying as hard as a mother who’s lost a child can cry. I don’t know what to do. I’m 13. I don’t have the emotional maturity to deal with that. I don’t have the emotional maturity now to deal with that. I’ve got no idea what to do. So I do the British thing. I’m like, I’ll make her a cup of tea. I’ll just make a cup of tea, and I’ll hug her, that might make her feel better.
Just as I was leaving the room, I turn to check on her again, and I realize at that moment that my mother is crying, but with laughter. She’s really… Tears streaming down her face and I’m just like, “Fuck, she’s gone insane.” Oh, God. I’m gonna have to put her in a home. I’m 13, I can’t afford a home. Getting her put down is going to be cheaper. And if I’m going to get her put down, I’m not going to let some strange doctor do it. I’ll do it. She brought me into the world. I’ll take her out of it. That’s the deal that we made that she’s not aware of. And if I’m going to kill my mom, I’m not going to smother her. She’s got good upper body strength. I feel the best way to do it is like an old farm dog. When they’re just on their last legs, take her out to a nice, long walk take her down the beach to her favorite spot. Take her home, big glass of wine, steak dinner. “What’s all this about?” Nothing! Take her outside. Just let her watch the sunset just when it’s going over, the most beautiful day of her life. Just… [sobs] Go out and find a new mom that looks slightly similar before my dad gets home.
I cannot work out why my mother is laughing so hard. “What’s so funny?” She’s laughing too hard. I’m like, “What’s so funny?” She just thrust this bouquet of flowers into my hands, and I’m like… Flowers. “To my darling Jennifer. I love you with all of my heart. These past four years have been the best of my life. Here’s to the rest of our lives together. Yours forever, Michael.” I don’t think these are for us. Just between our laughs, my mom finally manages to say, “No. But can you imagine what was written on the card that Jennifer got?”
Ladies and gentlemen, you’ve been a pleasure. – I’m Daniel Sloss. Thank you very much.