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Demetri Martin – Person

February 6, 2009

I think it would be cool if you were writing a ransom note on your computer, and the paper clip popped up and said “It looks like you’re writing a ransom note……. need some help?…… you should use stronger language, you could get more money…..”

demetriI want to buy a bunch of hermit crabs and make them live together.  People will say, “are those hermit crabs?”.  Not any more…. those are mingling crabs…. very rare.

This summer I learned…. at a party…. that there’s a small, but important difference between peeing in the pool….. and peeing into the pool.  Location location location.

“Sort of” is such a harmless thing to say.  “Sort of”.  It’s just a filler, it doesn’t really mean anything.  But after certain things, sort of means everything…… like after…. I love you…. or…. you’re going to live… or…. IT’S A BOY!…..

I like video games but they’re very violent. I wanna design a video game…. in which you have to take care of all the people who’ve been shot in the other video games….  Hey man, what are you playing? ……. Super busy hospital…… please leave me alone, I’m performing surgery on a man who was shot in the head 57 times…

This kid is the freshest thing in comedy today.  His stand-up comes with crafty one liners, what if’s and situational observations such as how lame paper is in rock/paper/scissors and he offers a viable alternative.  He’ll sometimes use large presentation pads to relate his findings, like good vs. bad pony tail locations or his breakdown of people that own hummers or why he thinks the glass half full half empty argument is pointless unless the contents of the glass are considered.

He also uses the pads, ostensibly to reinforce jokes that weren’t funny the first time around, like his thoughts on his cactus plant and fruit baskets and his discussion on the guy who was raised by the guy who was raised by wolves.

He’s enlisted his friends to dress up in silly costumes to help you visualize while he potificates on where jokes come from, and where they go.  He’s even brought his proud but embarrassed mother and grandmother on stage to make a point.  His drawings (art) will leave you rolling.  Sounds dumb I know, but it works.

Standing or sitting comfortably, sometimes in his pajamas, he delivers his lines with forethought, thought, and afterthought.  He’ll even resort to playing the guitar or piano as he expounds on his ideas that make you think; such as why aren’t there any B batteries?  He doesn’t just ask the question, which is plenty funny by itself, but he goes into why he thinks there aren’t any B batteries.  He goes farther than Seinfeld and Stephen Wright.  He’s quite proficient with word play.

He’ll discuss the easiest way to add insult to injury, how people underestimate exit only doors, how hiking is just walking where it’s OK to pee, and how it’s weird the way finger puppet sounds OK as a noun, and he’ll ask how fast a zebra has to run before it looks gray.  Don’t worry, I’ve mentioned only a tiny bit of his repertoire.

Several years ago, not being satisfied with his future, Demetri became a law school dropout and felt the funny come over him and took it to the comedy clubs neighboring NYU.  He did the club circuit for a bit got a gig on Comedy Central’s stand-up showcase in 2001 and did a stint as a writer for Late Night with Conan O’Brien.  Demetri started making appearances on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart in 2005 and got stage show specials which appeared on Comedy Central.

And now, he’s got his own show.  Important Things, begins Feb 11 on Comedy Central.  Check it out.

Listen to NPR’s Fresh Air interview of Demetri Martin.

Get his DVD titled Person and his CD These Are Jokes at

Maggie Williams

2 Comments leave one →
  1. wavefunccollapse permalink
    February 11, 2009 12:20 pm

    I really wish I used Microsoft products just to play this “what if” game.

  2. February 6, 2009 1:45 am

    funny, thanks for intrioducing him


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