The first time I interviewed a comedian after a show, I was surprised when he dropped his stage persona and morphed into a businessman. In time, I came to expect it. Still, I kept looking for what my naive idea of a comedian is — the funniest guy you know, who finally, after all of his friends said "Man, you should be a comedian," actually pulled it off.
Now I've found him. He's Demetrius Nicodemus, a half-black, half-Greek comedian from Toledo. When I spoke to him after his show, he didn't shift personas, didn't give a crap about who I was or what I was writing, and was still funny as hell.
Some folks might not relate to Demetrius's drug and sex references, but they really resonate with me. He caught my eye many years ago at Timmy P's Comedy Nights at the Heidelberg, where he recounted how his friend told him the government is taping everybody's phone conversations. "Really?" he replied. "Can I have them get some of that shit I said when I was high? 'Cause that shit is funny."
One of the problems with writing about comedians is you don't want to give away too many of their jokes. Otherwise, what's the fun in going to see them? So I've decided to give you excerpts from the jokes Demetrius told when I caught him at the Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase. That way, I won't ruin it for you, but you'll still see how freaking hilarious this guy is. Ready?
| "I own a five-year-old Lab, a boxer, and a loaf of bread."
"You do not accidentally poop in fourteen pair of shoes."
"My ass is acting up."
"I thought my girlfriend's vibrator was a lint remover."
Demetrius spends a goodly part of his time recounting conversations he has with his friends. My favorite was the one with his deaf friend, who had just broken up with his girlfriend. When Demetrius asked why, he wrote, "I just couldn't take the bitching." Demetrius pauses, looks around in amazement at the audience, and asks, "Do you know how much you have to bitch at a deaf man to make him leave you?"
Demetrius Nicodemus returns to the Comedy Showcase on Saturday, July 5.
[Review published July 2008]