As our friend Jeff Harmon says, you know a city’s great when it welcomes you with a fist… A big, black fist. It’s right in your face. No explanation. Just… “Guess what. Somebody, while you’re here, may or may not punch you in the face, and this is what the fist will look like when it comes to your face.” Yeah, it’s Joe Louis’. Look it up. Bye. White castle. I need to get a little drink of beer before I do this, maybe two.
Ladies and gentlemen, my good friend and someone who is probably the funniest person I know. Please give a good, loud, warm Detroit welcome to Kathleen Madigan.
Wow. Thank you. Thank you guys so much. And how about one big hand for a guy working for $500 tonight… Mr. Lewis Black? Thank you guys so much for coming out, and this took me 25 years to have enough say-so to… “Well, where do you want to tape your special?” “Well, you have to go here. You have to go there.” And now, finally, I’m old enough where I go, “no, no. We’re gonna go where I want to go.” And they go, “where do you want to go?” I said, “I want to go to .” And they said, “why?” I said, “two reasons. I’m not sure I’m fond of all of you, and I know that in Detroit, at any given moment, something weird and bad could happen to all of you. And second of all, the people of Detroit… perhaps for those of you who haven’t read a newspaper… are the most optimistic people. They’re still there. Do you understand? They are still there.” “60 minutes” has covered it. 20/20″ has covered it. The New York Times has covered it, and what is the conversation at the dinner table? Well, something’s gonna happen. It’s got to turn around. I mean, I don’t know when, but I’m certainly not leaving yet. I have hope. I mean, that Kwame Kilpatrick was crazy, but you move on. You do, you move on… And you find a better man.”
I do love this city. And, you know, I don’t know if this is progress, but normally, and this is my city included, we’re usually flip-flopped in number one and number two in murder. It’s usually Detroit and then St. Louis, which is why I feel so close to you people. I understand the element that you live with, that at any moment, shit could get weird. Just driving down the road. You don’t know. Things could get weird, but this year, no, no, no, no. Number one, Flint. Yeah. I’m like, “how? How is that possible? There’s not even any people there.” Are they just shooting people that drive by and counting that? Are they, like, tricking people to Flint? “Free money!” And then they shoot them and go, “there’s another one. We’re so gonna win this year.”
And I don’t think it’s fair that Detroit dropped to number three just because you’ve actually shot everyone. Just because you did a good job doesn’t mean you should lose gold ranking. Because there’s lovely parts of Detroit. Here, this whole area. People don’t know that, though. They only know what you see on the news. You know, like, “are you afraid to go to Detroit?” No, I’m not afraid to go to Detroit. I’m not afraid of normal things. It amazes me when… My friend is a DVD distributor, and he’s like, “you know what people love? Horror movies, ’cause teenagers… They love to pay to be frightened.” I go, “that’s because they have not lived long enough to know that real life will scare the shit out of you.” There is no reason to go pay to be scared, ’cause at this age, I could care less if a vampire walked in my house. I truly wouldn’t even blink in an eye. But look at this mole. Yeah, that scares me. Look at that mole. Yeah. It’s got ridges on it now. It didn’t three weeks ago, but I don’t have time to go to a doctor, so I just ask other comedians. Like, “hey, does that look fucked up to you?” And they go, “no.” I go, “cool.” And then I go have another beer and forget about it.
Yeah, really, you’re gonna pay to be scared? I’ll scare you. Here’s a letter from the IRS. Do you want to open that now or after you’ve eaten lunch and you can vomit your $8 lunch special? I’m not afraid of a burglar. I’m afraid of the mailman. That’s who I’m afraid of. That son of a bitch hasn’t brought anything good to my house since I was ten. That’s the last time I got a birthday card with money in it. That was it. Ever since then, nothing.
But I do love the post office, which is a bit of a dichotomy, because I cannot believe at this age, I have friends that when they raised the price of a stamp, my friends will go insane. Young people in their 30s and 40s. It’s not old people on a budget. 30-year-olds. “My god, they raised the price of stamps. “Jesus Christ, this is highway robbery. This federal government…” Really? It’s 49 cents. You’re angry about that? ‘Cause I feel the exact opposite way. I cannot believe, to this day, that I can walk into a building with a piece of paper in my hand and look at a full-grown adult and go, “hey… “49 cents… Will you take this to Alaska?” They go, “yes, ma’am. We’ll have it there in two days. Is there anything else you’d like?” “More stamps. This is crazy.”
And then the government’s cutting some of the post office. That makes me sad, ’cause then there’s always that big argument. Should the government pay for programs like that or not? I don’t know. I feel back and forth. PBS… Mitt Romney said cancel it. No. That’s Sesame Street. You can’t do that. But you could do PBS better than it’s being done. I can tell you… I don’t get it. I know in hotels it’s always the channel that’s on. So, like, I’ll come home from a show. Maybe I’ve had two or four glasses of wine, and maybe it’s late, and maybe I’m in a sentimental mood, and that’s what PBS does. They show sentimental concerts. It’s those three old people sitting on a couch. It’s like they’re talking directly to you.
“Hey, Kathleen, welcome home from the show. Did you have a good time tonight?”
“Yeah, yeah, I did. I had a good time tonight.”
“Would you like to hear a little John Denver this evening?”
“Yes, I love John Denver.”
I don’t tell people that. It sounds geeky, and I’m still really angry at him for not putting enough gas in his airplane. I don’t understand… I don’t understand how you do that. You’re an American icon. Check your gas Gauge. All right, okay.
“But, yes, I’d like to hear some John Denver.”
“Would you like to hear John Denver sing ‘Sunshine’?”
“Yeah. I love ‘sunshine.'”
And then, bam, they blast you to red rocks. There it is, Colorado, red rocks, 1978. There’s John Denver singing it. Sunshine on my shoulders makes me… And then he’s gone, and it’s the old people again.
“Hey, Kathleen, were you enjoying that song?”
“Yeah, yeah, I was.”
“Would you like to hear John sing the rest of ‘Sunshine’?”
“Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, I would.”
“Well, here’s the thing. We are $84 short, and we got Peter, Paul, and Mary coming up next, and I know you don’t want ‘puff the magic dragon’ interrupted, so why don’t you just go ahead and put $250 down on your credit card and enjoy your evening?”
You wonder about our government spending money.
You wonder who makes these decisions, ’cause Lewis and I have gone to Iraq and Afghanistan over and over, and we… Please, don’t. That’s very kind that you clapped. Yeah. I don’t even say that for applause, ’cause, really, I wouldn’t go if I remembered the number and didn’t pick up. It’s just I’m too catholic, and I’m too guilty to say no. I can’t lie like that. I’m a terrible liar. They would know I was lying. No, I just go. But Afghanistan, I mean, with the… Unbelievable. I don’t even understand. You get there, and you’re like, “what, what, what are we… What are we going for here?” ‘Cause they… It’s a horrible, horrible place. It’s freezing, which you would never think, because on the news, when you see the Taliban guys, they’re always just in a sheet. They don’t have, like, a… They don’t wear a parka and mittens and stuff. It looks like fall, and you wear your sheet wear, and you run around and… It looks like fall, and I always thought that’s why I would be a horrible terrorist, because I’m already prone to naps, and if you put me in a sheet all day, my god. Forget it, I would never leave the cave. I would be the worst terrorist ever. I’d be like, “yeah, I know everybody’s really mad, but I’m just gonna guard the cave while you guys go do that, and I’m gonna take a nice nap in this thread count. Have you felt my thread count? And I have a pillow conveniently located on the top of my head.”
It’s freezing. It’s, like, ten degrees in Afghanistan, and there’s sand flying in your face at all times. I don’t care what direction you look. There’s sand flying in your face. So, it doesn’t even make sense. In my Midwest mind, if sand’s flying in my face, I should be in a swimming suit, holding a multicolored alcoholic drink I forgot I loved, where’s I’m like… “Rum! I love rum! I haven’t had this since I vomited in high school. I… This is delicious.” It’s just, it’s freez… ’cause my brother goes, “how bad was it?” I go, “here’s how bad it was, Pat. Here’s what I want you to do. Go out into your garage. Take off all your clothes. Get into your walk-in freezer, and then, every 15 minutes, I’m gonna come out there and throw sand in your face.” Yeah.
They flew us around in Black Hawk helicopters. The doors are open. People are shooting at you. You can see the ground, ’cause that’s how close you are to the ground, which is creepy, and at one point, we… And it’s very loud. You have these headphone things on. We flew over a bunch of camels just running around, and Lew goes, “are those wild?” I said, “I don’t know what you mean by that, but I don’t see saddles on them, and I don’t see tiny monkey jockeys, and I don’t see a betting window, so I don’t think we’re at a camel track. Yes, I think they’re wild.”
He goes, “where are we?” It’s like, “I don’t know, but from what I can see, I’d say we’ve flown to the Bible.”
“And the old testament, Lew, the bad Bible, where shit’s on fire for no reason. God is a lunatic. ‘You’re misbehaving. I’m throwing locusts at your heads.’ bleh, bleh, bleh! Not the new testament, Lew. Not the fun Bible, where there’s wine-and-cheese parties and people are getting risen from the dead.”
“Hey, I’m back. I’m back. I’m Lazarus. I was dead an hour ago. I don’t understand what’s happening. Where’s the wine? I heard he’s making wine somewhere. That guy…”
“Love that guy.”
That’s how horrible it is, and you go, “really? This is what we’re spending our money on?” And they go, “Kathleen, you know, we hardly ever have female entertainers. You should go down to the female marine tent and have a little talk with them.” I said, “okay.” So, I go down there. I go, “what do you ladies do all day on the base?” They go, “we go into the local Taliban-run town and speak to the women, the locals, about women’s rights.” I go, “really?” I go, “do you speak Afghani or whatever it is?” And they were like, “no.” I go, “do they speak English?” They were like, “no.” I said, “let me get this straight. Our federal government is paying for you to go into a Taliban-run town and play a game of charades…” “With a lady dressed up like a beekeeper…” “And try to trick her into leaving her husband, who thinks it’s the year 11, by the way, and he liked that year.” That was a great year if you were a dude… 11. I just don’t see that happening. Call me a pessimist. I just don’t see that lady whipping that burka off and going, “that’s it, Mohammed. Seriously, I’ve had it. I’ve had it. I’m leaving you. Seriously, as soon as this country gets a road. I mean, we don’t have any roads yet, but as soon as those dumb-ass Americans build us a road, I am so out of here with it.”
And it’s not just dumb-ass Americans. No. Everybody’s involved in Afghanistan. It’s a whole NATO thing, ’cause when you get on the base, they tell you, first of all, you’re gonna be bunking with some Afghani soldiers. “Really? I’m not totally comfortable with that. There’s some Canadians. Maybe we could switch them out, ’cause those are nice people, and they like beer, and I can talk to them about Wayne Gretzky or something. Why… why can’t we do a switch-a-rooni?”
They take you on the tour of the base. What’s even more surprising than the Afghanis is they go, that’s the Canadian soldiers’ tent. That’s the French. That’s the Germans. That’s the Belgians.”
I’m like, “back up. Did you just say the German soldiers’ tent? When were they allowed back in the game? I think there should’ve been a vote. I don’t understand how they’ve snuck back in. Do you people not have the history channel? They can’t be trusted yet. Every 50 years, they get together and have too many beers, and things get weird worldwide, not just in a bar.”
They said, “well, no, you know, that’s the deal.”
And you go to your tent, and there’s no alcohol in this country. That’s the number-one reason I would be angry if I lived there. The more I was around these people in their homeland, the more I understood their anger and their willingness to blow themselves up. There’s no alcohol at all. And it’s not like, ha, ha, sneaky, sneaky. No. None. Then, when you go to bed in your bunk, and for… Over loudspeakers, every four hours throughout the entire country, so there’s no escaping it, you will hear this… And then it turns into “landslide.” And the landslide brought… Okay, no, it doesn’t, but it did in my head. I made it do that every night in my head. I’ve been afraid of… My god. My god. And the first night, I didn’t know what it was, and I jumped out of my bunk, and I put my glasses on, and Lew’s still sound asleep.
I’m like, “wake up. What’s happening? What is that man singing? What is… are we being attacked? I knew we shouldn’t have left our helmets in the Van. I didn’t trust that man. I wanted my helmet.”
He goes, “Kathleen, you’re crazy. It’s just their call to prayer. Get back in your bunk and be quiet.”
I said, “sorry.” I go back to my bunk, but I noticed all the Afghani soldiers did it. Boom, as soon as they heard that man, they got their prayer mats out. They jumped out, and they all got down, and they faced left. It was… I don’t know what direction it was. It was left to me. In my world, that’s a hard left from my bunk, right? I’d always do a left ’cause that’s what I saw first. But I thought, you know, no wonder these people are angry. They have no alcohol, and they’ve never slept eight hours in a row. I mean, are you kidding me? This goes on every four hours? But I couldn’t believe their obedience. Think whatever you want to think about their religion. Look at their obedience. I am catholic. That whole program would last… One night. That would be it. One night. They would try it one night, and then the excuses would start, and that would be my favorite part.
“Well, here’s the thing. I had a mat, and I loaned it to my brother Bob, and let me tell you what. That son of a bitch doesn’t return a thing. I loaned him a lawn mower back in 1978, and I still haven’t seen it. Haven’t gotten any overtime and can’t afford a new prayer mat. You can’t… it’s not right to do it without the mat, so I’m just gonna sit this one out for a decade.”
Wow, this is the whole… This is the whole war. This is what we’re doing, and we didn’t even spend the money, ’cause they go, “if you’re gonna take a shower here, in the shower building, you might want to wear your tennis shoes and extra socks, ’cause if you’ll notice, this is all Russian equipment.” It’s from the ’70s. We didn’t bring new stuff. The Russian stuff is still there. I’m like, did we learn nothing? Really? The Russians, the toughest people on earth, people who tricked Hitler into a snowstorm were freaked out by these people. These people in the middle of the night went, “holy crap, they’re crazy,” and ran home like girls and left everything. They left tanks. They left barracks. They left apartments. They’re like, “here’s the keys, man. You want to give it a whirl? Seriously, we are sneaking out at midnight. This is insane.” And they told us, “if you’re gonna take a shower, wear your socks and shoes, because, we don’t publicize this, but we’ve had quite a few cases of electrocution.” I was like, “well, I’m out. I’m done showering. You think I’m gonna trust my life to socks and a pair of pumas I bought at Marshalls for $57? These aren’t even running shoes, you moron. They’re just cute. They’re accent shoes. I’m not gonna trust my life…”
It’s horrible. I didn’t shower for, like, I don’t know, 13, 14 days. I know, it’s gross. It’s even gross to admit, but I’m admitting it. Then they drop you off in the D.C. airport, and you’re on your own to get yourself home. Fine. I need to go to St. Louis for Christmas. I go to the airport bar at 6:00 A.M. I still haven’t showered. There’s nowhere to shower. I have glasses on, no makeup. My hair is in a baseball hat that they’ve given me that says “uso.” It’s a free, just, hat. I go in the bar. There’s one guy. He’s about 70, and he’s hammered. I thought, good for you, sir. I don’t even know how this happens or why it happened, but it’s 6:00 A.M. in D.C., and you’re at the airport, hammered. I don’t even know what the story is, but I’m a fan. I like it. I wish I had that kind of time. Hey, you want to go get drunk? Hey, let’s have some fun. Let’s go to the airport and not have to fly anywhere. That’ll be stress-free and fun, for once.
So… I don’t want to talk to him, though. I don’t want to talk to anybody. I just… I’m tired, I’m crabby, I’m filthy. I just want to eat American breakfast and speak to no one and get on my plane, and I look down, and I hear from the other end of the bar… This is all I hear… And I kept looking down, and I thought, wow, that’s the greatest pickup line… Ever. You can’t not look at that person, after that person just did that. Now, I don’t know if you’re a bear and I didn’t look right. Or are you a pirate? What is happening? You can’t not look up. So I look up, and he goes… “I see your hat, honey. “It says ‘uso.’ are you, are you with them?” I said, “I don’t know what you mean ‘with them,’ sir. “I just, I just went to Afghanistan and did some shows for the troops.” He goes, “you did some shows? “What are you… “What are you, like, a showgirl or a stripper?” I was pissed for, like, half a second, and then I was like, “I should marry this guy.” Are you serious? “I have head lice right now, sir. “My hat’s moving. “My hat’s moving on its own, “and somehow, you look through all this, “and you see showgirl, stripper, cleaner-upper. You can see…”
Wow. I did go home. I went home to St. Louis for Christmas, and I walked into my parent’s house, which I hadn’t been into in about, I don’t know, six months, and unbeknownst to me, they changed all the light bulbs in the house into those energy-saving light bulbs. So, when I walked in, as if I haven’t had enough weird lighting in Afghanistan, they’re sitting in this weird, dim, hazy lighting, and I’m like, “hey. What’s going on, guys? We, we having a seance?” My dad goes, “no, no, we’re not, Kathleen. Your mother thought it would be a good idea at our age, when our eyesight is failing… To make the house as dimly lit as possible, Kathleen… Because she’s upset because Al Gore’s upset because there’s no more polar bears. Well, you know what? I’m 69 years old. I live in Missouri. I’ve never seen a polar bear. I don’t care if I ever see a polar bear. What I’d like to see is the coffee table. That’s what I’d like to see.”
Then that starts the side argument. “It’s not because of Al Gore, Jack. They just don’t make the regular light bulbs anymore. I can’t find the regular light bulbs. When did they stop making regular light bulbs, and why weren’t we notified in the mail by the government? I mean, we’re only gonna live ten more years. I could have bought enough light bulbs for the rest of our lives. I would have bought extra and sold them out of the back of the truck to other old people who didn’t know. I could’ve jacked the price up.”
My god. They’re up all the time. It doesn’t matter what time you call the house. One of them is up. Yeah, it could be 2:00 in the afternoon, 3:00 in the morning, 5:00 A.M., 11:00. Hello? Yeah, they’re up. They call me from weird places. It’s 6:00 A.M. where I am. It’s 5:00 A.M. where they are.
“What are you doing?”
“More importantly, what are you doing, mom?”
“Well, we’re at home depot’s parking lot. We… We thought they opened at 6:00. They don’t. They… So we’re just going to sit here for an hour and look at the other old people that were confused by the ad.”
I said, “mom, why aren’t you sleeping anymore?”
“Well, don’t tell your father this, ’cause he’ll be embarrassed, but now we’re afraid we’re gonna die in our sleep, so we’ve decided we’ll just stay up, and one of us will be up, and then we’ll nap, ’cause you never hear of somebody dying while they were napping. You don’t hear, ‘he died in his nap.’ “You hear, ‘they died in their sleep,’ but if we both fall asleep, we won’t know the other one’s dead, and that’s how things get out of hand.”
“Okay. Okay. Okay, mom.”
I went to Target with her. My mom was a nurse for 30 years. She’s retired. I said, out of nowhere, while we’re pushing a cart, “god, I have a splitting sinus headache.” She goes, “here,” and roots through her giant purse and goes, “take this.” And I took it, and about a second later, I hear, “” I said, “what… what was that all about?” She goes, “you swallow that?” “Yep. Sure did. Swallowed it.” “What color was it?” “I don’t know, mom. I don’t know. I didn’t look at what color it was.” “Kathleen, why didn’t you look at what color the pill was?” “Why? Why? ‘Cause you’re not somebody I met at a party.” “You’re my mom. “You were a nurse for 30 years. “I bought the whole story. I did. I trusted you. I ate it blind. I just ate it blind.” I said, “well, if you had to guess, what kind of pill do you think I ate?” She said, “well, I don’t know. It’s hard to tell. “It came out of the blue, unmarked bottle “that your father and I call the ‘all-stars,’ and…” “It could be anything from pain medication to blood-pressure pills, Kathleen.” I said, “what if it’s his blood-pressure medication?” She said, “you’re gonna pass out, “and that’s why we should abandon our carts and leave this target immediately, because I can’t drag you out of here with this bad knee. “That knee replacement did not work. “I don’t care what he says. “It didn’t work. “And you’re not gonna want me to drive home, Kathleen, “’cause it takes forever, because I don’t make left turns anymore.” Really? Wow. Now I don’t even care what kind of pill I ate. Now I just want to understand why she doesn’t make left turns anymore. I was like, what? “It’s not always lefts. “It’s anything into oncoming traffic “where you have to cross lanes to get to your lanes. “U.p.s. Doesn’t allow their drivers to do it, “and they save millions of dollars. “Your father and I are retired. We have that kind of time. “You drive to the next light, “and you cautiously make a u-turn, Kathleen. That’s what you do.”
They are starting to do crazy things. About, I don’t know, four days later, I went back into her purse to get a little something else out of that all-star bottle… Which turned out to be delicious, and I thought I had one of my nephew’s guns in my… And it was like a toy, but it was kind of heavy, and I was like, “” she goes, “careful. That’s loaded.” I go, “really, mom? You just walk around with a loaded pistol all the time now?” “Yeah.” I go, “really? Why?” And without missing a beat, she goes, “rape.” “Really?” I go, “wait a minute, mom. Wait a minute. “You mean you think you’re gonna get raped, “or do you mean “you think we’re gonna stumble upon a rape in progress “and then shoot the rapist and become CNN heroes and get to meet Anderson Cooper?” “Because at 70, mom, I’m not saying “you’re still not as cute as the devil, “’cause you are, but I think you’ve slipped “out of the, ‘holy crap, I got to rape that lady right now’ category.” “I think you’ve dropped down into ‘I think I might steal “that lady’s Cadillac at walgreen’s “’cause she leaves the keys on the pharmacy counter for at least 37 minutes every time she shops, “then she goes out “and can’t remember where she parked the car. Still doesn’t know if she has the keys.'” it is cool to so see your parents get older, though, and not care anymore. ‘Cause there are seven kids in my family. They were as strict as you could be, but now they’re grandparents. My one brother’s got three boys. They’re four, two, and nothing, whatever you call that. I don’t know. He’s new. And my parents volunteered to babysit for three days while him and his wife went away. I said, “I’ll come down and help you for a couple days. I’m off in the middle. Sure, I’ll help.” And my dad, very patient. My mom, still not even to this day. She told the older one, “Patrick, I need you to put the iPad down.” He goes, “no.” Wow! Look at the guts on him. She told me to eat a pill, and I just did it. At this age, like, I don’t even… I don’t even… no! I didn’t even look at what color it was. That’s how obedient I am. Wow, look at this guy. Look at this guy. Four. “No.” She said, “Patrick, I’m not kidding. I said, put the iPad down.” He goes, “no,” and he shut the door right in her… Right at her. My mom unravels. “Jack, Jack. Did you see what he did? Did you see what that little son of a bitch just did?” “Vicky, Vicky, you are 70. He is four. “Get a handle on yourself. Get a handle on yourself. “We can’t re-parent these people in three days. “I don’t care what goes on here. “It’s our job to get out alive, okay? I don’t…” “I don’t care if he eats the iPad. I don’t. “We’ll buy another iPad. That’s what we’ll do. “All I know is, two hours before they get home, “we’re gonna shower the three of them, “put them on the couch, and go, ‘they were lovely,’ “and then we’re going to the casino. “That’s how this is gonna end. That’s how this is gonna end.”
Yeah, they’ve gotten more liberal the older they’ve gotten, which is weird, ’cause usually parents go the other way. Like, the very first Obama election, I wanted Hillary. My parents are old-school democrats, but my dad does not like the Clintons. He hates the Clintons ’cause of NAFTA. He is never gonna get over NAFTA. “How could you think about supporting that woman? She was with him the whole way on NAFTA, the whole way.” And if you’d like to know exactly what’s wrong with NAFTA and the problems that it has caused this country, you can call 573… 348, blah, blah, blah, blah, ask for Jack, and you will get a two-hour dissertation on why exactly this country is falling apart. They wanted Obama. I just never… I voted for Obama, but I never… I always thought, I think he thinks we’re a little bit more of a team than we are. Like, here’s the thing, sir. We get you elected, and then you do shit, and then you tell us about it. That’s how I thought this was gonna roll. No, not with Obama. See, he’s on the TV all the time. “America, I’m going to need your help on this.” Sir, sir, sir, sir, sir, we are busy, okay? Shark Week is on. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that. That’s not something you tape. You got to watch that live. It always sucks on tape.
Doomsday Preppers, I have eight episodes I have yet to watch. I don’t even watch reality, but if you have never seen that show, I think it’s the craziest you could be. They are preparing for the end of the world, these people. They all think it’s something different… A dirty bomb, the government’s gonna take over, or they have cra… all these ideas of how the world’s gonna end, but they’ve prepared differently. They have bunkers. They have medicine for life. But what’s even more bizarre than what they’re doing is, every single one of them is married. Wow. Really? I have normal, nice friends that can’t get a date, and you, you… How’d you throw that out on christianmingle.com and get a hit back? That’s all I want to know. How do you just toss that out there like it’s normal? “Hobbies… Preparing for the end of the world.” But you can’t throw something else in. “Tennis.” I mean, what? No. And then somebody hit you back. “OMG, me too. Meet me at Costco. Lots of things to buy. Can’t wait. This is gonna get weird. Waiting for shit to get weird. Waiting for shit to get weird.”
Obama, he’s always reaching out. God love him.
“America, if you agree with me on how to solve this financial crisis, I’m gonna need you to email your congressman and representatives.”
I’m like, “well, then, I’m gonna need you to email me who they are.” Because unless they’re hosting Shark Week or preparing for the end of the world, I am probably not familiar with their work, ’cause the ticket didn’t say, “Obama, Madigan.” The ticket said, “Obama, Biden.” So, if you need some help, I suggest you get that smiling Irishman you hired out of a bar… Who is my favorite person on the planet, by the way, ’cause there’s a reason he’s always smiling, ’cause he was smart enough to go for vice president. Yes, all the alcohol, none of the problems. That is the job you go for if you have… What do you want to be number one for? Bleh, bleh, bleh, bleh, bleh, bleh, bleh. Bring… cut your ego down a level. There’s nothing wrong with Air Force Two. Same plane, different number. Same plane. Yes, yes, and you don’t even have to answer anything.
“What do you think about the finan…?”
“I don’t know. I don’t really want to talk about it. The ice in my Margarita is melting, though, and I have to go to a funeral in Turkey of a person I’ve never heard of, and I got to act sad, so I’m gonna need a few more drinks, and I’ll talk to you guys later.”
Obama, I really think… He starts out on such a high intellectual level sometimes. I saw him two months ago on TV. He just gave a random speech.
He goes, “America, I’m here to update you about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.”
Really? It’s gonna start right there? Well, I’m here to update you, sir. That’s funny. I have an update too. Up until six months ago, I thought Fannie Mae was a candy factory in Chicago. Thank you. And I couldn’t understand why a candy factory was allowed to hand out home loans, and then I really couldn’t understand who thought to go there. Like, that’s brilliant. Like, “well, hey, the bank said no. Why don’t we go down to the candy factory and see if they’ll…? They seem to be doing well.”
And… and I thought Freddie Mac was a candy bar that they made I hadn’t yet tasted, and I thought, “I’m gonna look for that at the airport, and I hope it has caramel in it.” ‘Cause they speak about these things as if we’re all updated. The deficit… they say that as if it’s a real, tangible number.
“The deficit is 3 trillion… 7,804. Now is the time to get concerned.”
Really? Now? Why? Why now? You’re in charge. You didn’t panic at 2 trillion. I think you’re bullshitting. I don’t believe you. I don’t believe you. I don’t believe you. And I can’t even fathom $1 trillion. None of us can. I mean, we can’t. You can’t. It’s not a tangible thing. I would be more frightened and motivated to action if I saw one of those… One of the important politicians come on TV and go, “the deficit is mashed potatoes.” What? Wait a minute. What did he say? What is he implying? Are we running out of mashed potatoes? That’s ridiculous. That’s my favorite thing in the whole world. If that is true, then someone get Idaho on the phone right now and go, “hello, you were in charge of two things… crazy militias and potatoes, and if you can’t keep that together anymore…”
I don’t even understand the difference between the deficit and the debt, and my brother’s a financial advisor, and he’s younger than me, and he knows how to speak, like, you know, down to my level. And I said, “Pat, in an easy way, explain to me, what is the difference between the deficit and the debt.”
He goes, “okay, I will. Just pay attention.”
And he started talking, and I don’t know how far in it was. I would say… I would say probably the 40-second Mark, I drifted out a lot, right? But he didn’t catch me until about the 90-second Mark, and he’s like, “are you even paying attention anymore?”
I go, “no, but I got to tell you what I have been doing. I heard about this, and now I’m doing it, and you have to do it at work, ’cause it’ll make you smile and laugh so hard. If you go to Google and type in ‘Batman cat’ and then hit ‘images,’ my god. It’s the funniest thing I ever seen. It’s real, pat. It’s not a joke. It’s a real cat. It’s a long-haired black and white, and they combed his hair, and it looks like the Batman mask. And, yeah, I mean, they’re holding him up, but that’s not cheating. I mean, they’re just holding him, and if… I don’t know if it’s for sale. Like, I don’t even want a cat, but I want that cat, so every morning I’d wake up, he’d be on my chest.” “I’m Batman.” “Yes, you are! Yes, you are!” “I would never not have a happy day if I owned that cat.”
He’s like, “Kathleen, I’m at work.”
“Yeah, whatever. I got to go. I got to go.”
Yeah, but that’s what we’re doing all day, Obama. I don’t have time to help you. The Batman cat… Is trying to get some popularity going, and, you know, I wish… Like, I try to pay attention. It’s also just too difficult. I mean, you know, a long time ago it wasn’t hard. There was the morning newspaper and then the evening news, and the evening news wasn’t a joke. No, they didn’t talk about the Kardashians or Paris Hilton. It was just some old, mean white man who’d come out smoking a cigarette, always very angry.
“Hello. Welcome to the ‘Nightly News.’ Tonight we’re gonna talk about Korea, and if you don’t know where Korea is, get a goddamn map, you unpatriotic son of a bitch.”
And you’re like, “my god! “My god, where’s Korea? Hurry up. Find out. He’s gonna know we don’t know. My god, I’m petrified of this person.”
Yeah, now there’s a million news channels. There’s a million websites. CNN.com… “here’s Obama’s health care plan.” Boom, it’s right there. 1,087 pages. Okay. And then right next to that, there’s a video. It’s 2:17 long, and it says, “baby owls live in teacups.” Hello. Yeah, I realized I’ve never seen a baby owl, and I don’t know why, and I want to see it. And why is it in a teacup? And why is this crazy old lady allowed to do this? And why isn’t PETA over there, beating the crap out of her? There are so many questions I have about this video. I’m interested.
It’s too hard. There’s too much information. Facebook, Twitter. Dear god, when does it stop? I don’t do Facebook as much, ’cause people… You can type as much as you want, and that’s the problem. People don’t know when to shut up. It’s like diarrhea of the fingers. Like, somebody… Like, a mob person should come in with a hammer and just break their fingers and go, “you’re done. You’re done.” “Well, I had a bagel this morning. I thought about having a doughnut, but Dr. Oz says they’re really the same thing. It depends on what you put on top of the bagel. I like that thick cream cheese. Sometimes I’ve seen people put salmon on top of a bagel. I find that so perplexing. I’m from Wisconsin. I can’t imagine just slapping a walleye right on my thing. Maybe it’s a Jewish thing.” Dah, dah-dah, dah! My god, no, no.
That’s why I like Twitter. It’s 140 characters, and then they kick you off. You don’t have to approve people. You can follow me. Yeah, there’s all kinds of… It’s like a mobile baby Jesus. People just sign up, follow me all through town. Great. Fine. 140 characters, that’s all you get. And I actually got in an argument with Lewis, my friend, ’cause he goes, “that’s terrible. Is that what society’s come down to? 140 characters, that’s all your thought can be?” Yeah, Lew. Yeah, and I think it’s wonderful, and I think if you think about it, if anything was really important throughout history, it could’ve been said in 140 characters or less. If they had Twitter whenever, “look, here’s a tweet. ‘The British are coming. The British are coming.’ There you go. Do you need to know anything more? No, you don’t. You don’t need to know anything more than that. ‘Heads up, Nagasaki. Not kidding a second time either. #hopeyouhaveahat. Things are gonna get weird.’ ” Yeah, I’m just saying, warnings, things like that.
Mitt Romney said, after many, many months, many, many months of thinking about why he lost the election… And you can Google this… He said he realized that it was mainly ’cause he didn’t tweet enough. Really? That’s what you’re gonna tell yourself before you go to sleep at night? That you were just one tweet away from winning? It’s amazing how people can fool themselves. I didn’t vote for Mitt Romney. It had nothing to do with politics. I didn’t vote for Mitt Romney. I will never vote for Mitt Romney because he said, and I know he’s telling the truth ’cause they would have proved differently, the press would have, and he’s a devout Mormon, so I completely believe him, that at age 65, in his life, he had never had a drink, a drug, a cigarette, or a cigar, ever. As an Irish catholic, that sentence couldn’t even go in my head. Error, error, error. Invalid information. Invalid information. Rephrase question. Rephrase question. Check Gauge. Check Gauge. Check Gauge.
So I said to my brother, “think about it, Pat. The only people that we know that can truly say that are babies.” “And that’s just because they don’t know yet. “Yes, they like juice, but they haven’t had a Bud Light. They don’t know.”
And I judged him for that, and that’s not fair to that man, but I did. I did, I judged him, because to me, a glass of wine or a cigarette or maybe a Lunesta… One of my favorites. If you’ve never taken a Lunesta, but you’ve seen the commercial, I’m here to let you in on a little secret. That neon butterfly is real. Yeah. Wow! Green, pink. They’re beautiful. But those are the ways a normal adult relieves stress, to me… With a cigar, maybe some pot, whatever it is you do. And if you don’t do any of those, any of them, my mind goes to an alarm state, where I go, “alien, alien. I think you’re sleeping with a goat.” That’s how weird it is to me. That’s not fair to Mitt Romney.
I don’t smoke pot. I never cared for it, but I’m very happy for my pot friends that use. This year, finally, in government something did change. A little bit of pot became legal in certain cities. Yeah, because I have plenty of pothead friends, and they’re very nice people. They don’t do anything bad at all. They don’t really do anything at all. Like, they’re just low-key people. They don’t bother anybody. They’re not a pain in my ass. My drinking friends, yeah, they’re a pain in my ass. I don’t get calls from my pothead friends at 3:00 in the morning, “can you come get me? I’m in jail. I’m so dead. I hit a lake. When did they put a lake on highway 40? That’s ridiculous. There was no lake there, seriously. You got to bring 10 grand. Can you do that?” What?
It was always the argument against pot that I always found so… It was just so fantastical. People would go so crazy. “You cannot legalize marijuana. It is a gateway drug, for Christ’s sake. It is a gateway drug. If you legalize marijuana, the next thing you know, after a person smokes pot, they will be shooting heroin in a crack house in Cleveland with a dog named Banjo they didn’t purchase.” What? What? That’s crazy. And it’s a bad premise. Not everything’s a gateway. That’s where your premise is bad. Okay, when you were five and you stole a candy bar and you ate it, and it was delicious, was your next thought, “you know what? I’m gonna kill a drifter”? No. No.
I’ve smoked cigarettes a lot of my life. I finally quit. I didn’t want to quit. People who have never been addicted to anything never truly get it. Like, “my god, you quit smoking. Do you feel better?” No. No. I’d love to shove your face through glass just for saying that and then smoke whatever’s left on the other side. That’s how irritable I am right now about the fact that I can’t smoke a cigarette.
I’m just not that healthy of a person. I joined a gym, and then my gym closed, and then I had to go join another gym. That’s a pain in the ass, ’cause you can’t just pay and go in. You have to have a meeting and a consultation with somebody.
“Really? I don’t want to.”
“Well, you have to, Kathleen. You have to meet with Cindy.”
Cindy is 21. Cindy is in shape. Cindy is happy to be alive. Everything is going great in Cindy’s world. Happiest thing ever, but her voice is so high. The tone and the pitch… When she spoke, all I heard was a yorkie barking. I swear to god. Like, that’s all I heard.
“Ruff-ruff-ruff-ruff. Hi. Welcome to the gym. Ruff-ruff. Fill out this form. Ruff-ruff-arrr-arrr, rrrr!”
It’s like, “really? I got to speak to this lady? Like, I have money. Can’t I just go in?”
“Okay, Kathleen, before you can get in and everything, okay, we have to write down some of your goals.”
“Cindy, Cindy, I don’t have any goals here. Maybe that’s weird, but I don’t have any goals. I’m not here for offense, Cindy. I’m here for defense. There’s a big difference. I am here to try and pull a fourth-quarter hail Mary pass out of my ass before things get weird. Now… I don’t know if that’s possible, but I’m willing to pay $62 a month to not come here and find out.”
“But, Kathleen, but, Kathleen, that’s so sad. Ruff-ruff-ruff. Arrrrrrrrr.”
“No, it’s not sad. It’s just…”
“Well, I have to put something on the form, or I’m going to get in trouble.”
“Okay, here’s my goal. Ready? Ready? Here’s my goal. I am here to delay the date and severity of my impending stroke.”
“It’s so sad you don’t see the gym as a fun place.”
“Well, I don’t, Cindy, and I think, at my age, I think I know what’s fun to me, and I think I know what’s not fun to me. A bar is fun to me. Trust me, year after year, I reprove it and reprove it. I really have a lot of fun at a bar. A gym, no. No, no.”
I’ve never stayed at a gym so long, I got kicked out. Never. I never worked out so hard, somebody had to take my keys ’cause I was crazy.
No. No, no. I don’t have good habits. I don’t. I have changed my diet none whatsoever since I was a kid. I still drink whole milk every day. That’s weird in a lot of places now. Like, even in… I went in Starbucks, and the kid’s really nice, and I know they have whole milk ’cause it’s in a silver container and it says “whole milk,” and there’s one right next to it that says “skim.” It’s for your coffee, but they’re not selling whole milk, and I said to the kid, I go, “I know this might sound weird, “but if I gave you money, would you give me some milk?” And he goes… “Would you like to try our soy milk?” I said, “I don’t know. “I went to bed at 11:00 last night, “and I didn’t watch the news, “and you’re the first person I’ve spoken to “since I woke up today. “While I was asleep, did all the cows in the world die?” “Because if so, “I would like to try your soy milk. “If not, I do not understand why that was thrown out as an alternative to my original request.” If you want to feel better about your health and you want to feel like a really in-shape, healthy person, even if you’re not, go on a cruise ship for a week. Lot of drinkers and eaters on those ships. It’ll drink and eat you into feeling great. I… wow. I had never been on a cruise ship, ever, and Lewis black booked a comedy cruise and made me go. And I got to Miami. I’d never even seen a cruise ship up close. They’re humungous. It holds 4,000 people. It’s gigantic. My sister goes, “what was it like? Maybe me and Matt will go.” I go, “here’s what it was like. “Picture if we were all in Las Vegas, “standing in the Bellagio, and all of a sudden, it just sailed away.” Yeah. Yeah, the whole building, and nobody panicked or acted weird. They’re like, “see you, bye!” “Hey, want to try a monkey-ass rum punch?” “Yes. I love monkey, and I love punch.” Seven monkey rum punches later, you hear, “and now we will be doing the safety drill.” What? What? I’m hammered. We can’t do a safety drill. “It is on your muster station, “which is located on the back of your key card. It will not match your deck or room, so please pay…” What, what, what, what? Now there’s math involved? This is a terrible vacation. There’s no math on vacation. I finally found my room, and I was next to these lovely people from Wisconsin, and they had balloons all over their door, and I was like, “hey, is it somebody’s birthday or anniversary?” And the guy goes, “no. “We just get so hammered on these ships, and these rooms all look alike, so we decorate our door.” “And the good news for you, sweetheart, is, “every time you find this door, you got a 50-50 chance of finding your room.” Yes, I do, Mr. Milwaukee. You are my new best friend. Don’t tell me alcoholics are lazy. Look at that energy. He had to get tape, balloons. He had to stop smoking for four seconds to blow them up. There’s a lot of activities. Yeah. You get on the ship, and there’s this giant, neon board. It looks like a Vegas sports-betting board. You’re like! This is totally overwhelming. You’re like, “that looks fun, that looks fun.” Well, if you’re a sleeper-inner or a drinker-later, you will not be involved in any of these activities, because these will require you to be up at 6:00 A.M. With a Fanny pack on, ready to jump in some dinghy with your new friends from buffalo, and, no. My friend shay wanted to do it all, and I’m like, “no. “I am not getting up at 6:00 A.M. “To go to stingray village. “I don’t have it in me. “If someone puts the stingrays in my bathtub, “I will pet them, but I am not… “I’m not doing that. I don’t care enough.” Her and her husband, Mike, they did every activity. “You sure?” And she’d check back in. “You sure, Kathleen? Tomorrow we’re going to zipline through the Mexican jungle.” “Yeah, I’m sure. “There is nothing I could think of “that would make me projectile-vomit more quickly “than to be hot and hung over “and shot through a Mexican jungle on a rubber band. “No, no, I’m good. “I am good right here on this chair “with my monkey-ass rum punch. “And you know what? “You can call me crazy, shay, “but I question the safety of that apparatus. I truly do.” “No, no, no. They make you sign a form.” Really? What form? Who made those up? Juan and Julio in the Van that won’t be there when you come back with your flesh-eating bacteria wound that there’s not hospital around? Hope you have a good time with the ship doctor getting your bacteria-eaten leg fixed up. If you’re a drinker or a sleeper-inner, your activity adventure will consist of getting off that ship at about noon, into some sad, little Mexican town, where you’re gonna hear a guy in an alley go… “Psst, psst!” And you don’t know why, but you’re gonna go over to that guy ’cause you want to hear what he has to offer. And you’re gonna go over there, and he’s gonna show you a clipboard with pictures of pretty fish, and he’s gonna tell you he can take you snorkeling there for $20, and you’re gonna say, “$10.” You don’t know why you would’ve said that, and then he’s gonna say “$15,” and the next thing you know, you’re gonna be on a rickety-ass partridge family bus going to Christ knows where. Because that’s when lew got the maddest he’s ever been at me, because we were the only two that agreed to this adventure. He was like, “this is stupid. “This is the stupidest thing you’ve ever talked me into. “We don’t know who the fuck that man is. We don’t know where this bus is really going.” I said, “I know, lew. “That’s why this is a real adventure. “Those people on that royal Caribbean ship know exactly what time they’re coming back tonight.” “We may never come back tonight, lew. “Do you understand the level of excitement “I have provided for $15 a man? Come on.” The worst thing about a cruise ship, though, is they have a TV channel on your… A little boat channel, and in the afternoons, when I first turned it on, it’s a picture of where you are in the ocean, ’cause there’s cameras on the outside of the boat, and you go, “isn’t that lovely?” It’s just the sea and nice spa music, but in the morning, no. When you turn that channel on, it’s not the lovely ocean with spa music. It’s a picture of your bill from the day before. Right. How mean is that? What kind of buzz kill is that? This is vacation. I don’t need to review my bad behavior on a daily basis. What kind of sadist is running this ship? That is horrible. All that can wait till sad sunday, when it’s check-out time, and I see the bill, and I go, “my god!” And then I become alarmed, and I have that conversation that I seem to have with myself about once a year, when I see it on paper. I go, “holy Jesus Christ. I think you’re an alcoholic.” “Hey, hey, shh shh shh shh shh shh shh. “Hey, it was vacation. “Yeah, you bought drinks “for those nice people from buffalo. The drinks were overpriced.” “I think you need to take that alcoholic test online.” “Don’t you dare. “Don’t you dare. “It’s all true or false. “You’ve never done well on true and false. “You always guess wrong. “They don’t let you explain anything. “The world is black and white to those people. “The world is not a black-and-white place. “The world has gray areas. “Question number four, example… ‘Do you drink at home alone?'” “true.” “However… “I used to go out and drink with my friends at bars, “and then they said I couldn’t drink and drive, “so now I stay home sometimes “and drink and watch ‘shark week.’ “so, am I an alcoholic, “or am I just a really good citizen who loves America? I love America!” Thank you. Good night. That’s it for me, guys. Cheers. Thank you so much. And I have a present for you. Yeah? Yeah? You have…? Yeah. I’m terribly sorry. It’s the best I could do. At the last moment, she… It’s all ones. It’s all ones. It’s all ones. Yeah. So, we could either take care of a check, or we could head down to 8 mile. I think, wherever you think. Wherever, you know, we can make it rain. We have all night left. And I’ve never said that. Anywhere, anytime. It’s where I want to be… On a horse going down to pluto… Where they’re looking at the stars… Dancing on saturn… I’ll go everywhere with you… Nah nah nah nah nah nah… Nah nah nah nah nah… Take me to Atlantis… That’s where I want to be… Nah nah nah nah nah nah… Nah nah nah nah nah… Yeah.