Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Greg Geraldo 1965-2010
While we're on the subject of great dead comedians, I need to mention Greg Geraldo. For some reason, not too many people have even heard of him. (If I had to venture a guess, I'd say it's because he's just too defeated for most people to relate to.) Whatever. Greg Geraldo was the epitome of a professional comedian. And I mean that in all possible ways, mostly good.
He was an astute observer of human behavior, had an excellent imagination along with the vocabulary to express it, and, just as importantly, the deep despair to not give a damn about anything. He was easily the top roaster on Comedy Central, but couldn't quite create a persona to distinguish himself enough to gain a real following. The affectations he did have - the battered leather jacket, the t-shirt, the 3-day beard growth- weren't flashy at all, but seemed cheesy nonetheless. They didn't fit his personality or style of humor. He wasn't some tough dude who didn't care. He was a nice guy who gave up early in life, but kept on hoping for something.
His humor, while often dark, was always on pulse with the times, even ahead of it. (At one of his last roasts, David Hasselhoff's, one of his lines to Hasselhoff was, "Your liver is so shriveled, black and dead, if you put your ear to your side, you can hear it go, 'What you talking 'bout Willis'?". This was right after Gary Coleman had passed away.)
Like many of the most astute comics, he grew up religious and had a life-long attraction and aversion to authority. He couldn't keep up relationships, and had little self-control. And while he had no trouble pointing out other people's flaws, he was as just as quick in exposing and ridiculing his own.
Punching in day in, day out, to roast other, less talented people, while he plateaued at the relatively low level he did, must have really bothered him. So, I think it's only fitting to roast him for a change:
A big hand for Greg Geraldo!
You know, some people think Greg's just another 40-yr. old, bitter, depressed, jealous, insecure, dead-end, no-name comic... But they don't realize: Greg has a tatoo on his forearm.
Lemme see that tatoo, Greg. What is that, a ring of bullets? Very cool. Does each one represent a time you've gone to sleep without crying?
Ha Ha! Kidding. You know, I admire you. No, really. I really admire your work ethic. You must know by now that your career is going nowhere, yet you still come in every day, hoping it'll be all different. You got to admire that...that...child's sense of wonder.
In all seriousness though, here's to an honest, very funny man. A good man. Your mother would be proud. Greg Geraldo everybody!
P.S. If you want to listen to something funny, get your hands on a copy of Greg Geraldo's 'Good Day to Cross a River'.