Archive for Point of View

Oui 2 PR Firm Rocks Two Huge Events In One Day

For the past 15 years Rob Goldstone and David Wilson founders of Oui 2 Public Relations have been creating HUGE events and representing even bigger stars! They have a national and international network of connections.

Even in his early days, Rob was a force to be reckoned with. Originally from the U.K., (which is where he got that great accent! LOL) he traveled with Michael Jackson, as the only journalist personally chosen by Michael to cover his “down under” tour in Australia, and was chosen to accompany Bob Geldof to Ethiopia for his Band Aid Relief Fund concert back in 1985.

While living in Australia Rob represented almost every major international artist touring that country; from Cyndi Lauper to Julio Iglesias, James Taylor, Tracy Chapman, BB King, Marianne Faithful and Poison! Among his corporate clients were Saatchi and Saatchi, The Hard Rock Cafe, Chess: The Musical, Richard Branson’s Virgin Megastores, and HMV Music Stores.

After returning to England in 1991, he moved to The States the following year as the Head of International Marketing for HMV Group, (part of EMI Records)- a position he held until 1998. In this capacity, he oversaw the international marketing for the world’s largest music retail corporation, from the U.S. and Canada, to the U.K., Ireland, Germany, Japan, and Australia. His work led to close working relationships with artists, managers, and record labels across the globe.

David Wilson made similar moves, starting out in Northern California where he grew up, and winding up in Sydney, Australia, where he began his PR career at Rob Goldstone’s company, Crawford Goldstone Corporation, which at the time was one of the leading entertainment/lifestyle PR firms in the country. He moved first to London and then to NYC where he worked with a cross section of both music and entertainment heavyweights including Joe Cocker, Lisa Stansfield, Warner Bros. TV, Atlantic Records, HMV Records, and the New York Friars Club.

Which brings me to the purpose of this post. Yesterday I personally witnessed the talent of these two Oui 2 guys as they pulled off two HUGE events in the same day! I first attended the red carpet event for the Friars Club Roast of Betty White, and finished off the day by covering the red carpet for the Caron Foundation event at Cipriani’s on 42nd STreet, in honor of Clive Davis and Judy Collins.

Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV with Gilbert Gottfried at the Betty White Roast!

Needless to say, (then why am I saying it? LOL) both were star-studded events, and packed with press. David and Rob made sure that everything ran smoothly, and you could see how hard David was working by how wet his shirt was! LOL Despite the tremendous pressure, and various demands made on him, he was still very accomodating.

The actual red carpet was so crowded with photogs and press, that David was kind enough to set me up with a spot at the end, so I could get some great video interviews for Comedy Matters TV with legends like Dick Cavett, Larry King, and Abe Vigoda, as well as Prior of The Friars Club Stewie Stone.

Larry King, making a point to both Uggie from The Artist, and Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV at the Betty White Roast!

Old friends Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV and actor/singer Dominic Chianese at the Friars Roast for Betty White!

Although I didn’t get to talk to Betty White or some of my old pals like Norm Crosby,(who just didn’t hear me when I called out to him! LOL), and Liza Minelli, I did get to talk to Donny Deutsch, who was shocked that I had met his parents at a comedy event I produced at the Westbury Country Club, Dominic Chianese who was shocked that we hadn’t seen each other in so long, and legendary talent agent Don Buchwald who was just plain shocked that I wanted to do an interview with him, (he’s just very humble!LOL)

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Donny Deutsch at the Friars Club Roast of Betty White!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with the legendary Liza Minelli at an earlier event! I missed her at both the Roast and the Caron event!

After the Roast, I went home to change my clothes so I wouldn’t be dressed the same in both events, got hold of a second DP to shoot the Clive Davis/Judy Collins event, and headed over to Cipriani’s where I got to interview not only Clive, and reminisce with him about the time I got him invited to his first Friars Roast, but also Laurie Dhue the MC for the evening, my old friend Chris Lawford, Geraldo Rivera, and Judy Collins, who pleasantly surprised both Geraldo and I by coming over to join us during our red carpet interview. It turned into a fantastic three-way, you should excuse the expression!

Patrick McMullen’s photo of Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV interviewing both Geraldo Rivera and Judy Collins at the same time!

MC Laurie Dhue with Stephanie Seymour on the red carpet for the Caron Foundation event honoring Clive Davis and Judy Collins!

Geraldo Rivera with his wife Erica at the Caron event honoring Clive Davis and Judy Collins!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with honoree Clive Davis at the Caron event at Cipriani’s!

I also got to reminisce with Geraldo about an evening we spent with Salvador Dali many years before at the St. Regis Hotel in the King Cole Lounge where Dali held court whenever he was in New York!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV reminiscing with Geraldo Rivera at Cipriani’s about an evening long ago with Salvador Dali!

You’ll see lots more when the video is posted, in the meantime I just wanted to give props to Oui 2, and Rob and David, for their amazing accomplishment!

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Jeffrey Gurian on National Lampoon Radio Interview Show With Brian McCarthy

I ran into Brian McCarthy from National Lampoon Radio’s Interview Show recently at a party, and he reminded me of when we first met back in the 90’s.

He was kind of new in town, and said he used to see me at many parties and events with spectacular women, and always wondered who I was, but was too nervous to come over and say hello! (LOL)

Then one day he realized we had a mutual friend named Chris Walsch. Chris and I had a comedy sketch troupe that disbanded before we got to do any performances, but we were always hysterical laughing, and I wish I knew what ever happened to him. Brian asked Chris who I was and he told him to the best of his ability! (LOL)

Thankfully the ensuing years have given Brian more courage because the evening I mentioned above, he did come over to say hello, and we had so much fun reminiscing that he invited me to be a guest on his interview show. He and producer Marty Dundics do this really fun show, and I was a guest for about an hour.

Brian McCarthy, the host of National Lampoon Interview Show, showing that he has nothing in his hands, but still does magic with Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV!

Brian McCarthy, host of National Lampoon Interview Show and Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV, pointing each other out to the police, when asked “Who did it???”

You can check it out in the video below! We really had lots of fun!

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Billy Crystal Replaces Eddie Murphy To Host Academy Awards

A lot of people were excited that Brett Ratner was producing the 2012 Academy Award ceremony. And then Brett added to the excitement by asking Eddie Murphy to host. It would have been a challenge for Eddie, cause you gotta be amazingly funny hosting The Oscars, but I understand he had already called in teams of writers to help him prepare. Then Brett went on Howard Stern, and it all ended. I wonder how many people have gone on Howard’s show and said something they later regretted.

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Brett Ratner at The Friars Club in NYC!

Howard has a way of tapping into everyone’s need to be “cool”, and with guys it can be devastating. To me, it all goes back to high school. Most people, especially those who are rich and famous now, did not feel cool, or like they really “fit in” in high school.

You hear it all the time when people write about their lives, how high school was an endless pit of depression and desperation. I always say, if high school was the best time of your life you should probably kill yourself!

Anyway, Brett was on Howard, and wound up saying things like he “banged” Olivia Munn a few times, and then forgot who she was when she came to audition for him. That sounds like the kind of statement high school guys make when they’re trying to impress each other with their supposed conquests of the fairer sex! There’s no other reason to say something like that.

But I’m sure Brett only said it because Howard said something that made Brett feel like he had to embellish upon who he was. All his success, respect in the business, power, and money did not feel like it was enough to make him feel secure, and keep that stuff to himself. Howard, who says he always felt like a geek, especially in high school, revels in getting people to say things that could potentially ruin their lives, or their careers.

Most people want to protect their friends from saying anything publically that might hurt them, or come back to haunt them in some way. On Howard, that seems to be the point of going on. To get people to say or admit something they never had any intention of sharing with the millions of people who listen. And once it’s said, there’s no taking it back. It’s great for Howard’s ratings but not so great for the person’s life who uttered the remark.

So when he asked Brett about rehearsing and Brett said something like “Rehearsals are for fags,” it was taken as a gay slur. In my wildest imagination, I could never believe that Brett, with his position in Hollywood, could have a homophobic bone in his body! He was probably just trying to be cool. He’s already cool, but must have forgotten that in the heat of the moment. I’m sure he knows lots of people who are gay, and probably socializes with people who are gay, and looked at his appearance on Howard as if he was on some kind of Roast or something. But in this day and age, you have to watch every word you say. Instead of bringing us together and being more inclusive, it’s separating us and creating more divisiveness.

Sometimes when non-comedians are trying their best to be funny, and time is of the essence like when you’re on the radio, they come out with something stupid that they wish they hadn’t said. Especially if the host says something provocative, and you want to respond in a funny way that people remember, plus come across as being “cool”, Professional comedians do it too, but not as much!

Anyway, as a result of those remarks, and others, Brett stepped down, and Eddie Murphy quickly followed. I wonder if Brett is sorry he went on Howard’s show. It would have been interesting to see how he produced The Oscars. Now we’ll never know!

The good news is that 9 time Oscar host Billy Crystal has agreed to step up and host for the 10th time, for first time Oscar producer, and Academy Award winner Brian Grazer, who will be co-producing with longtime pro Don Mischer. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented on Feb. 26th, 2012 at the Kodak Theatre in L.A. and televised on ABC.

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Billy Crystal in LA in his office at Face Productions!

No one is worried about how Billy will do because he always kills! He’s the consummate showman. When I interviewed him recently for the book I’m doing on the 35 year history of the legendary comedy club The Comic Strip, he shared some great stories with me. One of the most memorable was on the best advice he ever got in his life. It was from Jack Rollins who was managing him in the early days, along with Woody Allen and Robin Williams. It was Jack who first introduced me to Billy so many years ago. I was a dentist at the time, and Jack thought Billy would be perfect to play me in a sit-com about a dentist who wanted to be in show biz!

Anyway, this was Billy’s best advice story. It was early in Billy’s career and Jack had come to see him perform. Billy killed it. The audience was roaring with laughter, but when Jack came back to see him after the show, this is what he said: “ I enjoyed tonight, but I don’t think you’re doing yourself any good with the kind of material your doing.”

Billy said, “So now I’m trying to butter my toast, and at the same time not stab him.” And I say , “ Whaddaya mean?” And he goes, “ It was all funny, and you can do very well with this stuff and you will, but you never once told me how you felt about something. I never heard “I” in it. Toys and games was what I heard. The audience really liked it, so take this if you want. But here’s the thing. You didn’t leave a tip! Always leave the audience something of yourself to remember! Always leave a tip!”

According to Billy that changed his entire way of performing. From the next night on he started talking about himself, and after a few weeks of awkwardness had written a whole new much more personalized act. He said it was the best advice he had ever been given!

And as far as his reason for hosting the Oscars again he said: “I am doing this so that the young woman in my pharmacy will finally stop asking me my name when I pick up my prescriptions.”

Billy Crystal pointing to his teeth, because when he first met Jeffrey many years before, Jeffrey was a dentist, who Billy referred to as “the funny dentist!”

Tune in on Feb 26th for the 84th Academy Awards!

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When The Light Turns Green, …. MOVE SCHMUCK!!!

As a driver who usually has a destination when I get into the car, I’m constantly baffled by the number of people who don’t fucking move when the light turns green. I personally hate red lights. They are the bane of my existence, so when the light turns green I step on the gas right away so I can continue towards my destination. It’s the reason I got into my car in the first place! I have someplace to go!

I don’t just suddenly find my self in my car not knowing how I got there, and with no place to go! Who are these other fucking morons who seem to be on a tour! Are there actually people who get into their cars with nowhere to go? Just cruising around Manhattan? Not these days, especially with the price of gas!

Which is why I can’t figure out the people who sit at a green light.

The light turns red and they start reading a book, or planning their next vacation. It turns back to green,and they stay lost in thought, until suddenly it dawns on them that they’re in a car and have someplace to go. Very often that doesn’t happen until I honk my horn, and wake them the fuck up!

And I’m not one of those lunatics who honks the horn second the light changes, but if five seconds passes by and you haven’t begun to move yet, you’ve basically lost touch with reality, and are no longer cognizant of the fact that you’re on your way somewhere. Red lights are just to let the other guys go, not for you to detach from reality!

That’s why we have traffic! Because too many drivers are stupid! In every traffic jam there has to be a first car? if that car never slowed down, there’d be no traffic, so except for the event of an accident or road closure, traffic is basically due to stupidity and to people with slow reflexes, who can’t figure out what to do when one lane closes and merges into another.

Their synapses are not firing the way they’re supposed to, so they have to stop and stare, basically waiting for a “Stop” sign to change to “Go.”

So stay aware, and keep your foot near the gas so when the red light is finished being red, you can progress on your merry way and not drive other people crazy! It’s New York dammit, MOVE!!!

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Jeffrey Gurian’s Learning Annex Class on How To Write and Perform Comedy

I was honored by The Learning Annex, the nationally known adult education forum, by being asked to teach an online class for them on Writing and Performing Comedy!

This is the link on U-Stream! Hope you will check it out! I did two other classes for them which I will be posting as well!

These are some of the people I’ve been fortunate enough to meet and work with over the years!

A rare 4-in-1 photo of me, Richard Belzer and Paul Shaffer, holding a photo of me, Richard Belzer and Paul Shaffer, holding a photo of me, Richard Belzer and Paul Shaffer, holding atill a 4th photo of me, Richard Belzer and Paul Shaffer taken by Richard Lewin at The Friars Club!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Colin Quinn on Broadway at his hit show directed by Jerry Seinfeld, “Long Story Short”!

Paul Provenza, trying to teach Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV how to do to The Aristocrats pose! It’s not going well! LOL

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with JB Smoove in Montreal at the Just For Laughs Festival!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Billy Crystal in Billy’s Beverly Hills office after the interview for the book on The Comic Strip that Jeffrey is writing!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Chris Rock at The Comic Strip after HIS interview for the book that Jeffrey is writing!

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A Humorous and Energetic Look At The Republican Debates -My Spot On Fox News Channel

Thanks to Goldman/McCormick, the top PR agency, I was asked to participate in a panel on Fox News Channel hosted by Megyn Kelly to review what I think was the 3rd or 4th Republican debate. This one was held in Orlando, Florida on 9/22/11.

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV on set at Fox News Channel with host Megyn Kelly!

On the set of Fox News Channel''s America Live with Megyn Kelly!

I’ve never been one to be particularly political, because I have become very cynical. All politicians seem to be liars. It’s a big phony thing, just like Wall Street. Every day one fear or another causes the market to go up or down, ( mostly down!), and the only ones who make money are the traders! The average schmuck like you or I makes a few dollars one day and gives back twice as much the next!

Back in the 1700’s, or 1800’s MAYBE the politicians were honorable, but today all you have to do is read the paper to see all the crime and fraudulent, “behind the scenes” activities they’re involved in.

There’s too many favors to repay if you get elected for anything. When the country was small you didn’t have to know that many people. Today there’s too many groups to appease.

I remember running for President of the Freshman Class in college, and every single person wanted to know what I would do for them if I got elected! I actually won that election, and that’s a whole other story for a different day!

People are tired of double-speak. Politicians learn to answer questions without answering them. They twist the words like high powered lawyers and come out with some BS answers that only their press people would be proud of. They’re afraid to commit to anything because they’re afraid it will cost them votes. That’s why I could never vote for anyone who had been an Ambassador. They’re too used to putting a spin on things and sugar coating what they say so as not to offend anyone, … especially our enemies!

Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV as part of the panel on Fox News with Megyn Kelly to discuss the Republican debates!

From a personal point of view, I think you have to be very sick to want to be the President of a country! To want that much power. It’s hard enough to take care of your own family. Who wants the responsibility of taking care of an entire country? Especially when it’s the greatest country in the world, the United States of America! Good old USA! But I guess it would be even worse if no one wanted to do it! I guess I subscribe to the theory some genius came up with that says,
“Politics is show business for ugly people!”

Up until this year that might have held true, but in this coming election there are some stylish nice looking people! So when I was offered the opportunity to evaluate the Republican debates, I jumped at it. I even cancelled my plans to attend a party, and stayed home to watch it so i could feel well prepared, not like one panelist who only watched the part that pertained to jobs, and refused to discuss anything else, because he felt that was all he was qualified to give an opinion on!

Having worked within the Alternative Medicine field for many years using “Energy” as a form of Healing, I decided that I would come prepared to discuss the “energy” and personality aspects of each of the potential candidates, since that is rarely discussed. I didn’t get to go into much depth on air, although as you’ll see in an upcoming video I did get to make some points I thought were important!

Then I realized I could address everything I wanted to in my Blog, Comedy Matters. There were 9 potential candidates, so here goes, one by one, and let me remind you, these are only my opinions!

1. Rick Perry – the most Presidential looking of the candidates. He’s distinguished looking,handsome, and has great hair. Most men, … especially politicians, … wear their hair like they’re embarrassed for having any. It’s almost like an apology,… ” Sorry I have hair. I’ll try and wear it flat or in a way you won’t notice!” He has great presence, powerful energy, and a strong first name. Rick is a good name for a President. He waved with his right hand which is a sign of strength and foreward thinking! He lost points on trying to defend reduced college tuition for the children of illegal aliens, and made the mistake of calling people who didn’t understand that “heartless.” Those who DID understand might be accused of being brainless! I was disappointed because I was excited about his prospects, but we need someone strong on immigration, so now I don’t know!

Texas Governor Rick Perry who I thought looked the most Presidential!

2. Mitt Romney – I was prepared not to like this guy. First of all, what kind of President has a name like Mitt??? A mitt is for catching a baseball, not for running a country! He waved with his left hand which is acceptable if he’s a lefty. If he’s right-handed it’s a sign of weakness! When he’s standing at rest he puts out weak energy, but to his credit when he speaks about something he’s passionate about he recovers and is very strong. I came away with a new respect for him as a person, and he was very strong on Israel which I respected!

3. Michelle Bachman – She wore red which is the color of the first Chakra and a color that most women fear! It takes a very secure woman to wear red and she wore it well as did Megyn Kelly who also owns her power as a woman! She spoke well about the need for a true Conservative in office, but she waved with her left hand, so I’d also be curious to know if she’s left handed or right handed!

A powerful, and attractive Michelle Bachmann wearing red and owning her power at the Republican debates!

4. Rick Santorum – Also has a strong name,… “Rick”. But a little too “tight” looking to be President. He doesn’t really carry Presidential energy. He did very well on confronting Rick Perry on immigration and on staying strong in Iraq. He also was great on saying he’d change the rules of engagement which are almost at the point where we ask the enemy if we can shoot at them. First we give them a warning so they can duck down, and then we say, ” Is it okay if we shoot now???” No one has ever won a war like that. We owe it to our fighting men and women to win as fast and as quickly as possible so we can bring them home to their families. We owe the enemy NOTHING! He actually said we should go to war to win, and not for politics!

Rick Santorum chastising Rick Perry for his action or non-action on allowing children of illegal immigrants to go to college as resident students!

5. Newt Gingrich – If I thought Mitt was a bad name for a President, Newt is ten times worse! Newt is a cartoon lizard! Newt Gingrich! Where do these names come from? He’s like a caricature of old boy politics. Just what you’d expect to see. Weak chin,( at least 2 or 3 of them!), high voice, mouth turns down, thin lips, and his hair is like a hat or helmet. His hair should come with a chinstrap!

Newt Gingrich, the consummate politician! Just what you'd expect!

To his credit he was the first to have the nerve not to play the “game” of choosing one of the other potential candidates as a running mate. He took back the power on that one, and that is a difficult thing to do, to suddenly stop and say, ” I’m not doing that.” So kudos to Newt for using his experience to know he didn’t have to follow along!

6. John Huntsman- the former Governor from Utah- I don’t think a guy from Utah is worldly enough to be President of the United States. Huntsman proved that by showing up with a weird vibe. He’s stylish and nice looking, but he has the presence, demeanor, and facial movements of a stand-up comedian. Plus he was appointed by Obama as the Ambassador to China! Ambassadors are like P.R. people to the tenth degree! They learn to put a spin on the truth. It comes too easily to them. We’ve had enough of that. Plus he blinks too much and comes off like a retired actor. That’s why he kept mentioning his family. He started out by saying, ” It’s an honor to be here, and then mentioned that his wife came from that state. Later on, he mentioned his daughter and that she has Juvenile Diabetes. It came across false, like he was using his family to get attention or sympathy, which is exactly what I would expect from an Ambassador!

Btw, since i mentioned Obama,let me say this about him, … the only thing I like about Obama is that he’s Black! It’s great that we were able to elect a Black president, but we need a president who can do something, besides being Black!

7.Herman Cain – He looks like a great guy, and if there was a national office for “Great Guy” he’d be perfect, but unfortunately there’s not! He’s not Presidential at all, even though he speaks strongly about certain things. And I think his PR people have to step away from his connection to “Godfather’s Pizza”. I don’t know if I’d want to associate my President with a fast food. Maybe they should just bill him as a “successful entrepreneur”! That might carry more respect. Former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza doesn’t do it for me, or for lots of other people. What if he had run a national chain of something called ” Vinnie’s Pizza”, of ” Carmine’s Pizza”, or something else like that. Would they have used that as well?

8.Ron Paul – If they ever do the Burgess Meredith story, Ron Paul would be great to play him! In case you don’t recall, Burgess Meredith played Mickey in the Rocky movies. He was Rocky’s trainer. He also played The Penguin in Batman. Ron was the worst of the nine as far as I’m concerned. Energy wise he was very weak. He came across as old, out of touch, his mouth turns down, his lips are non-existent, his teeth are badly worn which usually means he suffers from stress, and he looked like he was wearing a sweater instead of a suit jacket due to the cut of the jacket. What made him even more grotesque was that he didn’t think that Iran posed a threat! I wonder what he would have thought about Hitler after reading Mein Kampf!

9. Gary Johnson – Governor of New Mexico – John Huntsman looked like the comedian but Gary Johnson told the best joke, which I understand he lifted from Rush Limbaugh who said it earlier in the day! He said his neighbor’s two dogs have created more shovel-ready jobs than President Obama! He had weird energy, waved with his right hand, which may have been his only plus, and he is a Libertarian, whatever that means!

One other point! They asked Rick Perry what he would do if he got a call at 3 A.M. that Pakistani nuclear weapons had fallen into the wrong hands! He never answered that question, and I don’t blame him. First of all if anyone were to be asked that question, it should have been asked of EVERYONE, because it’s such a dangerous question. How could anyone answer that properly? It’s like asking what you would do if you were awakened to find out that Pakistani terrorists had launched a nuclear warhead at us. Is he supposed to say he’d wipe them off the face of the earth? What good answer could he have given? Instead he made some comment about keeping close to India, and our other friends in the region. He side-stepped it but only out of necessity!

That’s my brief, (or not so brief!) foray into politics! I’ll be posting the video very soon> I was able to make what I thought were some good points!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV making what he thought was a good point!

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Jeffrey Gurian Former Stutterer, Discusses His Cure For Stuttering on TV and Radio

I never know whether to write about myself in the first person or third person, but it’s MY blog, so I guess first person is fine.

People who know anything about my story know that I was a severe stutterer.  I started stuttering at about age 6 or 7 and it made my high school and college years miserable.  Only another stutterer has any idea of the embarrassment and humiliation a stutterer feels when not only are they stuttering, but even worse, when nothing comes out.

That’s how it was for me.  To this day, I’ll never forget the day in high school, when I was called on in class and I stood up to answer, which is what we had to do in those days, and absolutely nothing came out.  Not a sound.  And I felt the redness of embarrassment coming over me, and I can still feel it today. That’s how powerful the experience was.

I always knew a lot of kids and I didn’t let my stutter make me isolate, but it made me very unhappy.  I couldn’t even say my name which is a problem for many stutterers.  ( Not to say MY name to say their own names! LOL)

So when I got to college, and it was a huge college made up of kids from many high schools in NYC where I grew up, I made the decision to run for Pres. of the Freshman class, telling myself that if I could win the election and be President, I wouldn’t  have to stutter anymore, because it would prove to me that kids liked me, and that I was okay.

Somewhere along the way I must have picked up the idea that I was flawed in some way, and I had a very negative self-image.  Since I wasn’t able to say my name I appointed other kids as my campaign managers, and they introduced me to kids I didn’t know yet, and once I got a few words out I was able to speak.

Btw, my belief is that stutterers have a hard time saying their names, because your name represents your identity, so if you’re not happy with who you are, it’s not going to be easy for you to tell people who you are.

Anyway, I won the election and I was the President of the Freshman class of Hunter College and I still stuttered.  It was a great lesson for me.  It taught me that outside validation doesn’t work.  It doesn’t matter how many people tell you you’re fantastic, and gorgeous and talented, it matters what you think of yourself.

I became obsessed with stopping stuttering.  I had been to many types of therapy and none of them worked.  As a matter of fact it made me worse being surrounded by stutterers worse than myself. I took the next two years and worked on myself constantly.  I think that was about the time I was given the Grace to figure out that I didn’t stutter when I was alone.

Most stutterers don’t.  That means there’s really nothing wrong with you.  What a revelation.  If you can speak fluently some of the time, you can speak fluently ALL of the time. I created the stuttering problem myself!  And anything you create you can un-create.  It took me a few years of very hard work, but it was worth it.  One of my greatest accomplishments is being fluent.

I think about it every day and every time I speak.  I’ve been doing radio and TV shows for years and I challenge myself all the time, and stand up to the fear.  Stuttering is a bully that wants me to stay alone and not accomplish anything in my life.

With the popularity of The King’s Speech, which I thought was incredible, I was asked to do several public appearances to discuss Stuttering and my cure.

I’m including both of those video clips here, one on the Joey Reynolds show , ” All Night With Joey Reynolds” on NBC,  and the other on Valerie Smaldone’s show Valerie’s New York, on WOR Radio.

One of my greatest gifts is working with other stutterers to teach them what I did and how NOT to stutter.

If anyone who is reading this happens to stutter or knows someone who stutters, after watching the two videos in this blog, please ask them to read the Stuttering page on my website, at and if it makes sense to them, which is important, because a lot of my cure is about knowledge, ask them to contact me at [email protected]


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Politicians Should Have Normal Names!

This post is in no way political.  It has to do with names.  Strictly names.  Names have power. As an example just think of James Bond.  When he introduced himself to people, especially women, all he had to say was “Bond.  James Bond.”  And women would swoon.  He couldn’t have gotten that reaction if his name had been Jimmy Binder.  Try it.  It sounds horrible.  “Binder.  Jimmy Binder.”

Jimmy is not a name for a President.  Think Jimmy Carter to help me make my point.  Jimmy is a name for a window washer, or a janitor, no slam on window washers or janitors, that’s just what you think of when you hear the name “Jimmy.”

In the Black community your “Jimmy” is your “Johnson”, so if your name is Jimmy Johnson, you’re totally screwed!

What brings me to talk about this were some of the names I read of the Republicans who might be running for President.  Mike Huckabee?  Jeb Bush?  Mike Pence?  John Thune???  Are you kidding me?

How are you supposed to beat a strong name like Obama, ( which rhymes with Osama, btw) with a name like Huckabee???  Huckabee is a name you might see on the old show Hee Haw.  The Huckabees, are not a family you’d want to see in The White House.  You’d expect to see The Huckabees with The Clampetts, maybe as a spin-off of Beverly Hilbillies, with a guy named Jeb Bush as the gardener!

C’mon, y’all, we’re going over to The Huckabees for a taste of that new moonshine they just made, and then we can sit around by the fire, and spin some yarns, while Jeb Bush plays the kazoo.   You can’t have a President named Huckabee!  The rest of the world will be laughing at us.

And now, President Huckabee, backed up by the little Huckabees, one playing the washboard, the other switching off between the comb and the spoons!

John Thune?  Is “Thune” even a legitimate name?  Does he play the bassoon? Newt Gingrich?  Are you kidding me?  Where do they get these names?  Aside from the fact that he looks like an elderly woman, Newt is the name for a lizard, not a President.  And certainly not The Pres. of The United States.

Mitt Romney?  It sounds like a made up name?  Mitt?  That’s what you use to catch a baseball!  When I was a kid there was a German couple who ran an icecream store and when you’d come in and order let’s say a vanilla cone, the guy would say ” Mit”???  That’s how he pronounced the word “with”!  Like the Katzenjammer kids, if anyone remembers who they were.

Mitt?  And I’d say, “Mit shprinkles!” because that’s what he wanted to know.  What do you want “Mit” the icecream?  “Mit shprinkles” of course!!!

And it’s not only Republicans who seem to have cornered the market on ridiculous names, it’s Dems too!  Steny Hoyer?  It sounds like something you could get on your leg!  You better go to a doctor.  I think you’ve got StenyHoyer!

Whose parents looked down on their baby in a crib and said, “You know what? Someday he’ll probably run for President.   Let’s call him “Steny”!  He’d make a great Steny, don’t you think?”  Aaaah yes, Steny, the name of many great men throughout history!  Not in this country.  Somewhere in the world maybe, but nowhere I know of!

Tim Pawlenty?  Tim is the name of a weakling. You think Tim you think “Tiny Tim”, not only from the famous Christmas story but from the lunatic who played the ukelele and got married to Miss Vicki on Johnny Carson 400 years ago.   Maybe he could find a running mate named Good and they could run as ” Good and Pawlenty”!!! ( a popular candy from years ago- Good and Plenty, for those of you who are newborn!)

The President of The United States should cut a dashing figure and have a strong name.  A powerful name.  I could handle a Mitch Daniels as a name, and Chris Christie is a fine name, but the best name I’ve heard come up so far is Rick Perry.

“Rick” is a cool name and “Perry” is like Steve Perry from Aerosmith.  Rick is the Governor of Texas, strong in his beliefs, and a good looking guy with a great head of hair, who’s not afraid to wear it so it looks stylish.  Unlike some of the other potential candidates, he doesn’t look like he needs hormone shots!

Most men, especially men in politics wear their hair like they’re embarrassed for having any. It’s almost like an apology.  Sorry I have hair.  I’ll try and wear it in a way you won’t notice!  Let me try and flatten it out, or grease it down, or maybe even cut it off completely!

They’re trying to convince Rick Perry to run for the Presidency, and on his name alone I think he could win!  I for one would vote for him in a second!




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Stop Kicking My Seat Or I'll Kill You!

Most of Comedy Matters is about celebs, and the comedy world, but I also want to include my own personal viewpoints on different subjects.  Subjects that are meaningful to me.  Like some schmuck who won’t stop kicking the back of your seat!  That drives me crazy!

Have you ever been in a theatre or at a talk or presentation of some kind and some idiot behind you keeps kicking your seat?  The first time, you just write if off. It can happen to anyone.  Just an accident.  Maybe even the second time, but by the third time you want to rip the guys leg off, and shove it up his ass.

How can’t you not notice that your foot is hitting something hard?  What are you fucking numb?  What did you go to a foot dentist, and get Novocaine injections into your feet, so they have no feeling?

I say it’s impossible to keep kicking another person’s seat without realizing that you’re doing it.  You simply HAVE TO know that your foot is making contact with another object.  Unless you’re dead, no one can be that detached.

The thing is they just don’t care.  It’s self-centeredness, pure and simple.  I was at a meeting the other day, and trying to pay attention when the kicking started.  The first time I didn’t say anything.  Nor did I say anything the second time, but when it started happening with a kind of rhythym, as if he was keeping time to some imaginary song in his head, using the back of my seat as a drum pad, I turned my head sharply as if to scold the guy, ( and it’s usually a guy!) thinking he’d see my action and realize the error of his ways.

I got a glance at the schmuck.  He was tall, and thin, with a very strange look on his face, and was sitting in his seat at a weird angle,  like a woman with one leg dangling over the other, the way most men can’t do because they have “an appendage” in the way.  Not this guy.  He didn’t seem to have that problem.

He was sitting there, as I said, on this weird kind of an angle, as if he was the tallest man in the world, and just couldn’t possibly fit his immense frame into the confines of the space of just one seat.

He had to branch out into other people’s spaces, while making little kicking motions with his foot, that ended up on the back of my chair.  Finally when I could take it no more, I turned to him and said directly into his face, ” Can you PLEASE stop kicking my seat?”

He made some kind of conciliatory expression as if I was asking too much of him, but he’d try his best to comply with my outrageous demand. It absolutely infuriates me that someone can be so callous, and so fucking numb that they can’t tell what an enormous bother they’re being to someone else.

I pictured myself having a long sword and turning around and saying,” I know and appreciate the fact that you’re very tall, but if you kick my seat one more time, I’m gonna chop off you’re fucking leg, you dweeb!

The whole rest of the meeting I was on edge expecting him to kick it again, and thinking of what I would do if he did, because after all he WAS the tallest man in the world, and a regular person’s space could not possibly be enough for him, but then as the meeting ended, and there were no more kicks, I felt vindicated, only to get up and see that the reason there were no more kicks was because he had left early, and took his numb fucking leg with him.

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