Cities without landmarks
Niagara Falls, U.S./Canada
On Monday night, Jerry Seinfeld and David Letterman ditched the car and the coffee and engaged in an hour-long discussion of Seinfeld’s Emmy-nominated series, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” in front of a small audience at the Paley Center for Media in New York City. And perhaps one of the saddest moments for Seinfeld fans was the realization that Jerry Seinfeld thinks you are boring.
Comedians, or, as Seinfeld puts it, people who wake up “irritated by the world” and are “able to articulate” why, are basically the only people worth talking to. “I pretty much engage with only funny people or weird people or, you know, kind of ‘off’ people,” he said. “Anybody who is a little normal — even, let’s say, a normal actor or actress, I’m lost. I’m not curious, I’m not interested…you got a show, I don’t care.”
Seinfeld later told Letterman a joke that only another comics would get, which is a great way to appeal to fans who desperately want to be in on all of your jokes:
“A comedian gets a job at an Alzheimer’s Clinic. Guy says to him, ‘Look, these people are very sick, they have alzheimer’s, but we’re so happy to have anyone here, just some kind of entertainment, if you could just go out — whatever you could do, we’re just so grateful to have entertainment.’ The guy goes out, the comedian, he’s very nervous, he tells his first joke — gigantic laugh, massive laugh. He thinks for a second, he tells the same joke again. Another laugh! Even bigger than the first one!”
Seinfeld broke for a second to warn the audience, again: “The punchline of this joke is not going to get a laugh, I’m just telling you.” (As you can guess, everyone laughed at the punchline).
“So he tells the same joke again. And again. And he’s killing the place, they’re screaming, they’re falling out of their chairs. All the time he’s doing the show there’s a guy in the back just doing this [rests back with a pensive look, hand on chin], just watching the set. You know, no laughing, just watching. Comes off, thunderous round of applause. Standing ovation. Everyone congratulating him, this other guy comes over, he says, ‘That was quite a show you just did there.’ The guy says, ‘Thank you very much.’ He says, ‘Let me ask you a question: How do you remember all that?’”
If you didn’t get the joke (you didn’t), here’s the explanation: “Only comedians know — for some reason, this is the big question that a regular person will ask you after a show. ‘How do you remember it?’…I don’t know why they ask that. You don’t have anything else to remember!”
If you laughed and you’re not a comic, you’re probably too overeager. And this makes you boring. And normal. And hey, that’s totally fine — but just know that Jerry Seinfeld will never talk to you, let alone get in a car with you.
Watch a clip below, or view the entire discussion at the Paley Center’s Web Site (the joke comes on the site’s video at 33:52).
Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at email@example.com.More Prachi Gupta.
Niagara Falls, U.S./Canada
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Mount Rushmore, South Dakota, U.S.
Eiffel Tower, Paris, France
Colosseum, Rome, Italy
Taj Mahal, Agra, India
Siena Cathedral, Siena, Italy
Christ the Redeemer, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Arc de Triomphe, Paris, France
Lost City of Petra, Jordan