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I'm Not High by Jim Breuer

I’m Not High

I'm Not High by Jim Breuer
Paperback
Sep 06, 2011 | 288 Pages
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    Sep 06, 2011 | 288 Pages

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    Oct 05, 2010 | 280 Pages

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Author Q&A

What's the most surprising thing about being a father? Does having a sense of humor come in handy when you have three daughters?

Every day is different. In the book, near the end, you'll see that I made radical changes in my life after my girls were born. I wanted to make sure I enjoyed every second of their childhood. They teach me something new every day, and they are the most imaginative, least jaded people on the planet. So it is easy and fun to play games where I scare the living crap out of them. Our home has been open to a lot of my relatives for the last decade, too. So in addition to raising three girls, I've "raised" a lot of adult children, too. Some of their diapers are more brutal. Having a sense of humor definitely comes in handy with three girls, but its key in all of life's circumstances that are thrown your way.

What does the phrase "Got Family?" mean to you?

The phrase "got family" means that if you've "got family," whether it's parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins etc., you will be able to relate to my comedy and my book. Your family is everything you have in life, and ideally they'll always have your back—even if sometimes they drive you completely insane in the process. There are stories here of my wife going bananas and finding Jesus, my dad crapping his pants, my brother dying when I got my first TV gig, my mom getting her heartbroken, my nephew moving in after prison, an RV-trip gone awry…; Family is ever-present. Then there's extended family, too. Like the nuts I originally did comedy with in Tampa, and even the cast of SNL. There's never a shortage of squabbling or drama, but there's love underneath it all.

You are known for your impression of Joe Pesci—can you describe what it was like to meet the real Joe Pesci in person?

He played a pretty funny trick on me when I met him. It's in the book. Needless to say, I worship the man, and was on pins and needles walking into the SNL green room to meet with him about doing the show, at the height of his playing-mobsters-for-Scorsese-era. Meeting him was a dream come true. As a kid, I said I wanted to meet the big three: Pesci, DeNiro and Nicholson. I completed my list!

Your dad is apparently a real firecracker. Has he gotten you into any trouble on the road?

My dad says things to people on the road that quite frankly only children and elderly can get away with. And that is when he is sober! There have been times when he has accidentally gotten blitzed. He's got a great sense of humor, though, and going on the road keeps him young. If you meet him, tell him you're a member of the Elks Club, and you'll be fine.

Do you find you always have to explain to people that you're not high? What's it like to have a reputation that's totally out-of-line with the person you really are?

My droopy eyelids and people thinking I'm always "high" works to my advantage. It drops people's expectation level. "Oh, gosh, this poor guy is baked to the gills. Hide the Twinkies." The only direction I can go from there is up! People walk away scratching their heads saying, "He was actually very lucid."

You've been doing standup for two decades, are there any comedians who took you under their wing and showed you the way, and is there anyone you've taken under your wing along the way?

There were no real specific comedians that ever "took me under their wing"—people like Steve Harvey pulled me aside and gave me solid advice. That's in the book. Then all of the experiences I had with Dave Chappelle, wow, those are things you learn and grow from. Also, guys like Lorne Michaels, obviously teach you a lot. I got to say Norm MacDonald and Tracy Morgan, both who have huge roles in the book, taught me a lot about comedy, and, more importantly, life. There is a countless amount that have encouraged and helped me tremendously along my way. I do my best to do the same for all upcoming comedians as well.

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