Jim Gaffigan – Comedy – Television – New York Times


His shtick is no great shakes, but Jim Gaffigan sounds better grounded than most borderline-psychotic comedians. More public figures would do well to treat their audience with such appreciation, or even a little less contempt. Granting just a few minutes of attention results in a lot more fan goodwill, and often a standout memory for the ticket-buyer.

When asked later, during a midnight interview over a pulled-pork sandwich at a nearby pub, why he would subject himself to such a grueling ritual – he even asks those about to pose for cellphone photos with him whether they prefer him to use his mean face, weird face or straight face – Mr. Gaffigan said he was mindful of how his career had been languishing as recently as the late 1990s. On some nights he could be found polishing his act at a Midtown Manhattan restaurant called Hamburger Harry’s, where, he recalled, he would be lucky if he drew 15 people.

“I don’t take for granted that people are coming and paying over 30 bucks to see me,” he said, his expression, framed by a wispy, white-blond goatee, momentarily serious. “It’s so simple to shake their hand and sign their ticket.”

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