- And I realizeshe's looking at a pig...
driving a car...
[dark electronic music]
[wind whistling wildly]
[cheers and applause]
- Hello, everybody, welcometo "This Is Not Happening."
I'm your host, Ari Shaffir,
and today all the storiesare about nostalgia.
[cheers and applause]
This first comic,what an honor to introduce him.
He's absolutely hilarious,a legend of stand-up comedy.
Please give it upfor my friend and yours--
Mr. Artie Lange, everybody.
[cheers and applause]
- My story has to dowith cocaine, and--
[laughter and cheering]
Yeah, yeah, yeah,listen,
I've had a love affairwith cocaine--
a love/hate affair,you know, it's--
I mean, I'm the only guywho ever got fat on cocaine,
I went to rehab for coke.
I swear to God--this is a true story.
I'm in group therapy,
and this black kidwalked up to me and said,
"What are you, pouring that shiton cheeseburgers?"
"God damn, you're the fattestcokehead I ever seen?"
That's how black guys talkedin my rehab.
I went to rehab in 1888.
Uh, so, okay, I--here's the story.
I come out here in 1995
to do a show called "MADtv."
It was a sketch-comedy show.
[cheers and applause]Oh, oh, thank--all right.
Thank you.I mean, you know, the show was--
it was fun, you know.
I was 27 years old,came out here,
and the first timeI was ever out here
was the screen testfor "MADtv."
And I came out here with a job,making, like, ten grand a week,
and it was great.
The problem was,I brought from New York City
a massive cocaine problem.
And I somehow hada coke problem
with $40 in my pocketin New York.
Now I hadten grand a week, okay?
And I literally would interceptthe checks at "MAD"--
I would go to the accountingoffice at "MADtv,"
before it went to my agent.
I would get the check.I would cash it.
I would send, like, four grandto my mother
'cause she needed it.
I would put six grandin my pocket
and walk around L.A. like I wasJack fucking Nicholson,
And, you know, I had a blast,but, you know--
I was on a trainthat was gonna hit a mountain,
you know, that was--moving real fast.
So a lot of the sketcheswe did on "MADtv," we did--
we did film parodies, okay,'cause that's "Mad"--
It was basedon "Mad" magazine,
and, you know,
you did these bad, bad puns
of movie titles,
and we'd have a pitch meetingto pitch this stuff,
and I would just say stuffas a joke.
Like,instead of "Dead Man Walking,
I'd say,"Ed McMahon Walking"...
as a joke, in the back.
Cut to me in three hoursof prosthetics
as Ed McMahon.
Stuff like--one time, I pitched--
They told usthat Tori Spelling
had agreed to doa guest spot on the show,
and I pitchedthe Tori Spelling Bee.
The Tori Spelling Bee,and she would, you know,
have to spell words,
and she would have to use wordsin a sentence,
and the one word she would haveto spell was "nepotism."
And then use it in a sentence,and the sentence was her
looking right at the camera,going, "I like nepotism."
So stuff like that.
So one of the sketches we didwas called "Babe Watch,"
and that was Babe the Pigin "Baywatch."
My hand to God.
So guess who playedBabe the Pig?
And there wasa lot of fucking money
for these sketchesat the time.
We had a big budget, so weshot it on location in Malibu.
It was a two-day shoot.
I go out there.I had to be there at 4:00 a.m.
to get three hoursof pig prosthetics--
a pig face, a pig snout,six teats,
the bikini top on each one--that was the joke, you know,
You didn't see us at the Emmysa lot back then.
So, anyway, yeah.
So six teatsand a pig snout.
Now, the womanwho did the makeup
was the best in the businessat this.
So three hours of prosthetics,I look like a fucking pig, man.
I looked in the mirror,and I was like, "My God."
I had a pig snout coveringmy mouth and my nose
and the ears and all that shitand the teats.
So I go backto my trailer.
We got about an hourbefore we're shooting.
I go back,and I start eating.
Now, I catch of glimpse of mein the mirror, eating.
literally, I'm going,"I'm a fucking pig."
I'm a pig eating.
This is not whyI signed up for this, you know.
I don't want to bein show business
to be this, you know.
So I really startedto freak out.
It was, like,a 14-hour shoot,
and I said, "I'm not gonna getthrough this without cocaine."
Not gonna happen.
So my coke dealer in New Yorkhooked me up with this guy,
a contact he had in L.A.who was a coke dealer,
and this guy--he was a Rastafarian guy.
I don't want to be,you know, racial,
but they just happen to dominatethat business, all right?
And he was the bestcocaine dealer ever.
He was alwaysright on time.
You called him, he was like,"I'm there," you know.
He was kind of--he was always at a party
no matter what timeof the day it was.
He was like Harvey Keitelin "Pulp Fiction,"
you know, the--[laughs]
The Wolf, like,"You sending The Wolf, baby?
That's Kool and the Gang."
So I call him.I call him from the set.
And I go,"Dude, you got to fucking--
You got to meet meon the Pacific Coast Highway."
We were in Malibu,by Oxnard.
"You got to meet me.I got to get something from you.
I got to get an eight ballfrom you," and he goes,
"All right, all right, can youget to this restaurant, Duke's--
Can you get to the restauranton the Pacific Coast Highway?"
And I'm like, "Yeah, yeah,I think I can."
So I hang up with him.I look around.
Now, I'm in every shotof this sketch.
I look at the--the assistant director's
not looking for two seconds.
I run to my car.
I get in my car,and I speed the fuck away.
I just speed away.
I'm doing, like,90 miles an hour...
looking, I'm telling you,
exactly like a pig.
I do, like, 90 up the highway,took about 20 minutes.
I get to Duke's. I pull in.He's already there.
The fucking guy--[stutters]
What, were you at a brunchat Duke's? What happened?
'Cause I mean, anyone herewho does drugs,
you got to score, you know--you know, coke or heroin or--
you know, we all knowwhat it's like
to score heroin, right?
I don't know.I was at a church social, sorry.
So, you know,they're never there.
These guys arenever there.
You're supposed to meet them,you know, in Brooklyn,
and you get a calla half hour later,
the guy goes--like,a Puerto Rican guy going,
"Yo, man,I'm in North Carolina now."
"Excuse me?'Cause I'm in Brooklyn."
"Yeah, man, I'm sorry.I fucked up.
Can you getto North Carolina?"
This guy was efficient.Okay.
So I get there.I get out of my car.
I run to him.He gets out of his car.
Now, I never told himI was on a TV show,
'cause I was afraid to, like,share my life with him,
and I forget myself.
He sees me getout of this car...
dressedexactly like a pig.
And he looks at me, and--It's so fucking--
I'll never forgetthe look on his face.
[babbling and laughing]
When I retell this story,
this might bethe funniest fucking part.
He goes--he looks at me,and he goes--
"Damn, man, what kindof crazy shit are you into?"
[laughter and applause]
He probably thoughtI was at some crazy drug party,
People dressed like pigs,like the--
like the "Eyes Wide Shut"orgy scene, you know?
What's the other password?
So I said--I had to come clean.
"Oh, no, I'm on a TV show.I'm doing a sketch.
Like, I'm paid--the pig--it's a long story."
And then he goes,"You're on a show?
What show you are on?"
and I go, "'MADtv.'"
He goes, "Oh, damn."
Look, can we talkabout this later?
I just need the coke,you know?
He was starstruckfor a second.
So I get the cocainefrom him.
I can't pay.I don't have anything on me.
But he was, again,the best drug dealer ever.
He took credit. He goes,"Fine. Don't worry about it."
So I grab the coke,and now I'm, like, so freaked,
I got to do some.
I have to do some immediately,
just to get myself readyfor what I'm going back to.
I get back in my car, and anyonewho's ever had a cocaine problem
knows what a key hit is.You put--
If you don't have a straw,you know,
you put some cokeon a key.
You know this, right?[laughs]
I apologize. You lookreally grossed out by me, but--
For a ton of reasons,but--
So I put some coke--
Again, forgettingwhat I look like--
I put some cokeon the end of a key.
I go to do it.
I can't get the cokethrough the pig snout.
I can't do it,so now I'm thinking--
[laughs] I'm the only onein the history of the world
who's ever hadthis problem.
So now, three hoursof prosthetics
I went through, okay?
And I'm trying to get
the fucking, you know, keythrough the thing.
I can't do it,so I'm like, "Fuck it."
I make a decision.
I break the fucking nose,
which meanswhen I get back there,
it's gonna be an hourof fixing it before we shoot.
I'm in every shot.
So I break the fucking pig nose.I do a couple of blasts.
I'm like,"Okay, I'm fine."
Now I get backon the Pacific Coast Highway,
I rush back towards Oxnard.
I stop at a lightat Topanga Canyon,
and I figure I'm gonna doanother hit.
It's broad daylight.It's, like, 8:00 in the morning.
So I do another hit.I got the--
I got it up to my noselike this,
I look over, andthere's this beautiful woman
in a Lamborghini.
This is the lookon her face...
And I realizeshe's looking at a pig...
driving a car...
Then I'm thinking,you know, "Fuck her.
"This is L.A.
It's probably the third timeshe saw that that day."
At this point, I have no--
I'm like, "Fuck it.I don't care who sees what."
So I do another hit. I drive.I get to the fucking set.
Everybody wants to kill me,
but they can't reallysay it yet,
because we got to do14 hours of shooting.
So they see that my fucking noseis fucked up.
They have to redo my nose,
and, you know,we start shooting,
and everybody couldn't stand--Look, I was a fuck-up.
Every two hours, I brokethe nose again to do coke,
and every two hours,she had to fix it.
And she knew what was going on.I wasn't fooling anybody.
So this happens.
We get through the day,and it's a nightmare.
So we had to shootthe next day.
They got us a little motelright on the ocean there,
which was next to the shoot,
So I go in.I fall asleep.
They rip all the shitoff me.
I fall asleep in the bed.I wake up the next morning.
At some pointduring the night,
every bad thing in my bodymust have just fell out of me.
I mean, yeah, I just--I shit the bed.
And I had a lot of badin me.
I wake up--you know the scenein "The Godfather,"
the horse's head, where hewakes up, he sees all the blood?
I was like...[screaming]
[laughs]I had shit all over the bed.
I was late.I had no time to clean it up.
I I tooka steaming-hot shower,
steaming hot, every--
took everything off,got dressed, ran out.
I had no time. We were checkingout of the hotel.
I had no time to clean up.
So I just threw the bedspreadover all the shit.
I mean, it wasa river of shit.
I just threw itover the fucking thing and left.
What could I do,you know?
I had no cash for a tip...
which is very rude.
And I got there.I got through the day.
Everything was fine.
So we're driving home,
and I'm thinking about thehotel, and I'm worried about it.
I'm like, "Ah, well, you know,
I'm just gonna have to beembarrassed by that,"
but then I realizedthe room wasn't in my name.
The room was in the name ofthe first assistant director...
This guy Josh, you know.
If they want to blame somebody,they're gonna say,
"This guy Josh, you know,shit the bed
and didn't clean up,"
which got me off the hook,but it made me feel happy/
It really did.
The Rasta guy,the coke dealer--
again, he was the single--the single coolest motherfucker,
as far as fast living,didn't care.
About two years later,I found out that he--
he wasin a metallic-blue Corvette
driving with this chickhe dated
up a winding streetup by Northern California.
He was doing, like,100 miles an hour, veered off,
hit a 18-wheeler, and just--the two people disintegrated.
That's how he died,so he's dead.
And I'll tell you what,in the weirdest of ways--
and this iswhy I'm a fuck-up in life
and I careabout all the wrong things.
In the weirdest of ways,I miss that motherfucker
more than anybodyI've ever met
in Los Angeles.
My name's Artie Lange.That's my story.