Why I will never make it as a stand-up


For as long as I can remember I’ve only actually wanted to do two things with my life — be a writer or be a stand-up comedian.

I gave up on the latter some time ago. It was the realisation that I’m not very good at telling jokes that convinced me to give up on that particular ambition. I gather an inability to tell jokes is something of a disadvantage if you want to be a stand-up comedian. ‘You can’t be a stand-up comedian if you can’t tell jokes, Matt. You can’t be a stand-up comedian if you’re not funny.’

I’m also not funny.

It’s those fast, punchy Q+A type jokes that I really struggle with. The ones that go set-up/punch, set-up/punch. The ones that 8-year-olds make up every single day on the playground to astounding effect. I can’t do them.

Q: What’s worse than finding a worm in your apple?

It’s much worse.

Q: What do you get if you have sex with a leper?
A: Half a worm in your apple.

It’s either a fact or something I made up, but basically lepers creep around your house at night inserting dismembered creatures into pieces of fruit while you’re sleeping. It’s their thing.

Just biting stuff in half and shoving it into fruit.

‘What are you doing?’
‘What’s that in your mouth? Is that — ? Is that half a worm?’

Q: What’s worse than finding half a worm in your leper’s mouth?
A: Nothing.

There is nothing worse than that.


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