Updated: Jan 30, 2021
What comedy most inspires you?
I love it when comedians take their personal pain and struggle and find the humour in it then use that to build bridges. Hearing comics like Patton Oswalt and, especially Maria Bamford openly discussing their mental health issues was a huge eye opener for me. As a gay man, as well, it was a huge deal, just in the last 20 years or so, to see other gay men being open about themselves and their lives in comedy. Its pretty magical how laughter can really bring you into the world when you feel isolated and alone.
Which comedian inspires you?
So many...I would probably say Maria Bamford because of the endless creativity she brings...she has so many tools to make you laugh, from her voice and her vulnerability but she's also just a really good joke writer too. She can do no wrong in my mind.
Which comedian scares the shit out of you because you know you'll never be that good?
Again, so very many....I mean, I love really good joke writers...not necessarily one-liners but people who really know how to structure a bit for maximum effect...so there's like Anthony Jeselnik, Todd Barry and Sam Morril but I think I will go with Sarah Silverman because of her versatility. She can work really blue or play it very clean but she just always goes for the jugular and that's impressive.
Why and how did you get into comedy?
When I was a young boy, my grandparents, who were farmers living here in rural New Brunswick, Canada, had an album by Bill Cosby. Granted, this was long before we knew what sort of man he was. However, I adored that album and I grew up always knowing that there were people out there whose job it was to get on stage and make people laugh. I was in awe of that. Comedy struck me as something noble to do and that never left me. I always tried to be funny, especially when things weren't going great for me throughout my life. I just never had the confidence to try stand up. That changed when I was living in Whistler, British Columbia and going through a dark time, feeling lonely and hating my job and life. In that moment, out of sheer desperation and not knowing how much longer I wanted to be around, I decided to give it a try. Luckily, the national comedy chain here in Canada, Yuk Yuks, had a great amateur night program at its Vancouver club and all it took was an email and I was off.
What drives you to do what you do?
Pure love of the game. I've never encountered any other thrill sport or substance that makes me feel as good as I do when a joke that I wrote and told hits. That's not all though...the Aspergers side of me loves the patterns and flow of a well structured joke, which is why I tend to spend all day going over my set in my head, trying to find more efficient ways of wording certain parts and that's very satisfying as well. It all feels like something I was made to do....I fit there, if that makes any sense. It's an addictive feeling.
Describe your perfect Tuesday.
Well, sleep in until noon for starts because that is an important start to any perfect day. Leftover pizza for lunfast (I think that's more appropriate than brunch when it happens after noon). A long leisurely walk in the local park with my shih tzu, Maggie. Much of the afternoon spent napping and managing my twitter jokes that are going viral, then off to a packed house at a show not far from my bed, where I finish the day with more pizza and many hugs from Maggie.
Describe your worst experience on a coach.
That's a challenging question because there are so many terrible people riding them....sometimes that includes me. So I will say it was when I was living in Vancouver and returning home with several heavy bags of groceries. There must have been a delay in the transit system, of which I wasn't aware of but the coach was more crowded than usual that day and the driver continued to pack more people in until I was pinned in the centre of a very sweaty, unhappy group of people...completely immobilized. This triggered a massive panic attack and I needed to get off. At the next stop, I clawed and yelled my way through the people, leaving most of my groceries behind and just barely made it to the sidewalk before falling to my knees and throwing up. A very kind lady passed seconds later and asked if I was OK. As a proper Canadian, all I could think of to say was "I'm very hungover, thanks"