“The odd thing is, most of the drop dead funny people I know on camera are really quiet off camera. You’d never know Robin Williams or Drew was in the room if you didn’t talk [to] them. I think stage is a way for the shy nerds to let it out. Same for me.”
Mike Miner tells classic old-fashioned jokes. Heavy on the puns. He’s like those pieces of ginger they put on sushi plates for between bites of unagi — a nice crisp palate-cleanser that you don’t have to struggle to interpret.
We’ve gathered plenty more of our favorite of his tweets over here:
“I should really just make that the tagline for the website: ‘Fun and Depressing,’” laughed Ti, a 32-year-old Chinese-American, forced to stare deep into the Internet’s ugly, discriminatory depths several times daily for his material. “Totally out of nowhere, fun, and depressing.”
“I’ve stopped hoping of answering them all; it’s not even in the ballpark of possible,” he said. “I did not think anyone was going to look at the blog, honestly. I thought maybe 20 of my friends would check it out and it would be fun for a couple of weeks, and that would be it. I had no, and even still currently have no, real concrete plans for it. There’s no road map for it.
And it’s kind of mildly depressing that there’s enough material to keep it going.”
But it’s a credit to Ti that Yo, Is This Racist? is rarely actually dispiriting to read. In lesser hands, a Tumblr with its premise might be a soul-sucking slog—or an overly dry, academic take on race relations. But Yo, Is This Racist? is blunt, profane, and endlessly hilarious.
The comedy springs from Ti’s unruffled dismissiveness of race-baiting trolls, the Tumblr’s excursions into absurdism, and his casually frank responses. (“Q: Yo, why can’t we all just get along?” “A: One reason is how racist a lot of people are, but I’m sure there are others as well.”)
“I do wanna stress that I’m not at all an expert in this stuff,” Ti explained. “I’m just a guy with a slightly different perspective than a lot of people, and maybe a more succinct way of putting it. But there’s a lot of very educated people that have way more actual formal knowledge about race relations or social justice. That’s not my background.
“But also, I never say anything I don’t believe. I answer things in my own dumb goofy way sometimes, but it’s still an honest reaction, and I hope it’s helpful in some way.”
The Yo, Is This Racist? podcast has a similar modus operandi. Listeners call in—to an actual landline answering machine—with questions, and Ti tackles them, with help from a rotating cast of guest hosts that has thus far included the Sklarbro brothers and Howard Kremer of Who Charted? Ti’s answered questions ranging from whether white musicians covering hip-hop ironically is racist to whether Fruit Ninja fetishizes feudal Japan. Earwolf initially approached Ti with the idea of starting a podcast, and Ti responded by planning a show significantly more ambitious than the format he ultimately went with.
“My first idea was this concept that was horribly impossible to produce,” Ti recalled. “I wanted to this radio play-kind of thing that would be sort of a sketch show, with characters. And logistically as soon as it started to come into focus I was like ‘This is a bad idea that’s going to be impossible to do.’ The format we went with has been right for me. There’s always a new question to keep it moving, which is good for me because I can’t do that freeform talk-for-45-minutes thing that some podcast hosts can do.”
Part of why Ti struggles with that is that, well, he’s not a professional, and he’s well aware of it. Prior to starting the podcast, he’d had no real performing experience, and it’s an intimidating experience to go from never hearing your own voice to attempting to be funny alongside a crew of standup comedians. So far, though, Ti’s acquitting himself well.
Jerry Seinfeld has taken everyone from Larry David to Ricky Gervais to Danny DeVito out for coffee in his new Web series, Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, and the season finale reunites him with Seinfeld costar Michael Richards.
In this episode, the car is an old, rusted 1962 Volkswagen Bus with an interior of “gray vinyl and duct tape,” and the comedians are Seinfeld and Richards, who is best known for playing wacky neighbor Cosmo Kramer on the ‘90s sitcom.
The chemistry between the two hasn’t gone away at all, and they spend much of the ride around Los Angeles reminiscing about the Seinfeld days. Even when the mic isn’t recording, Seinfeld and Richards are still able to make each other laugh after all these years.
En route to their final destination, Richards wears a disguise—and meets his doppelganger—and attempts to find Sugar Ray Leonard’s house (while managing to find another celebrity’s home instead). Once they finally have their coffee in hand, the conversation flows as two old friends discuss everything from a savant chess player to how they each look at their craft of stand-up comedy.
Richards has largely stayed away from the comedy scene since an infamous racist tirade towards a heckler at the Laugh Factory in 2006, an incident which still haunts him to this day.
“I busted up after that event even years ago,” Richard said to Seinfeld. “It broke me down. It was a selfish response. I took it too personally. I should have just said, ‘Yeah, you’re absolutely right. I’m not funny.’”
Seinfeld encourages his friend to try to do stand-up comedy once again and as they leave the coffee shop they’re greeted by fans whose laughter shows that the comedians still have it.
“I’m all about shits and giggles,” blurts Grace Helbig, the affable My Damn Channel host.
In fact, in over the course of a 13-minute conversation, the 26-year-old comedian references “shit,” “poop,” or “fecal matter” nearly 10 times.
She’s talking about her show, the every-day-of-the-work-week vlog Daily Grace, wherein the Brooklyn-via-New Jersey comedian riffs on dry gin and shows you how to make meat cupcakes. But she’s also talking about her day. In fact, the subject of stool—and her ability to avoid it—has played a major role the course of how she’s met the morning.
“I got on the subway and noticed all these people at every stop would run into our car at the last minute,” she recalls. “I looked in the car next to us, and there was a homeless man with a variety of carry-on luggage that I assumed all smelled like fecal matter. I felt like the odds were in my favor.
“That’s how you know it’s going to be a good day. As soon as you avoid the shitty homeless person, everything’s coming up you.”
Helbig has been speaking publicly about poop since she graduated from college in the spring of 2007. Posting YouTube videos from her housesitting pad with her friend Michelle Vargas, Helbig amassed a quick following and drew the attention of My Damn Channel CEO Rob Barnett, who offered her a slot on the newly developed network when she 21 years old. The invitation manifested itself in the form of Bedtime Stories, a show in which Helbig would reinterpret well-known fairy tales with an R-rated, NSFW twist.
Her voice—a whimsical, meandering tone that’s hilarious, excitable, and knowingly naïve—developed through that, and by 2008, she’d moved on to a more personally driven format that would eventually come to be known as Daily Grace.
In the daytime, the mild-mannered receptionist works at an animal hospital. Then there’s that other side, the raunchy and outlandish persona that appears only in bursts of 140 characters or less.
“I have this Dr. Jekyll-Mr. Hyde thing going on,” said Charlene, who declined to give her full name to the Daily Dot. “I am sweet and helpful in person but a total cynical bitch on Twitter.”
Charlene, 27, lives in the Chicago area and was recently singled out as an “amazing tweeter” by Twitter’s funniest comedian, Rob Delaney—and with good reason. Even her bio for @IamEnidColeslaw (“now with fiber!”) has more character than her contemporaries, while her timeline offers a steady stream of hilarity on topics ranging from reincarnation and the truth about scrambled eggs to what really goes down at the Playboy Mansion every night. (cont.)
It took 23 days and more than a few unexpected amendments, but it appears as though the long strange trip that is Internet rights attorney Charles Carreon v. The Oatmeal proprietor Matthew Inman is now officially over.
Carreon dropped his lawsuit against the beloved webcomic creator Tuesday, Inman’s legal representatives at the Electronic Frontier Foundation announced. This apparently puts an end to a legal race to arms that saw more twists and turns than a 1950’s sock hop. (cont.)
“You can’t really rest on your laurels either in stand-up or on Twitter,” comedian Rob Delaney told the Daily Dot. “There’s always thousands of funny people out there.”
Indeed, Twitter is home to the most refreshing and hilarious new voices in comedy, some of whom have garnered external success thanks to their popularity within the community.
Ever one to share the spotlight, Delaney listed some of the comedians he personally follows on Twitter. The Daily Dot rounded up his top five, with a brief description and sample tweets from each account. (cont.)
The Daily Dot is the hometown newspaper of the World Wide Web. We report on the most important and relevant topics from within, applying tried-and-true principles drawn from community journalism to the growing cultures of the Internet, and allow our audience to read the Dot across multiple platforms, where they live, online.
Tumblr curated by Fernando Alfonso III (@fernalfonso), Aja Romano (@ajaromano) Gaby Dunn (@gabydunn), and Logan Youree (@loganwtf).