2 April 2007, California, USA
At moments like this I would like to quote my good friend Carl Reiner, who has often said to me: “You don’t give awards to comedians”. First of all, comedians don’t need awards, awards are for people that are looking for work, we’re not looking for work. If you’re any good as a comedian, you’ve got tons of work. We’ve all got wrinkled suits and smelly shirts from packing and unpacking and schlepping all over the goddamn country doing 10 million different kinds of gigs.
And secondly and even more important is your whole career as a comedian is about making fun of pretentious, high minded, self-congratulatory B.S. events like this one. The whole feeling in this room of reverence and honoring is the exact opposite of everything I have wanted my life to be about. I – I – I really don’t want to be up here. I want to be in the back over there – somewhere over there saying something funny to somebody about what a crook this whole thing is.
And I don’t want to give you the wrong impression. I don’t want you to think that I’m not honored by this, because I’m, I feel very, very honored, and it’s – but it’s just that awards are stupid. Every real estate office has some framed, five-diamond president’s award thing by the desk, every hotel check-in has some gold circle service thing; every car salesman is a platinum jubilee winner. It’s all a big jerk off. It is, the hotel sucks, the real estate person is stupid, and the only thing the car salesman is good at is ripping you off.
And why? Because awards don’t mean a goddamn thing. It’s stupid, they’re all stupid. All of the award shows on TV. Honestly, it’s beyond me that we feel the need to set aside a night to give out these jaggoff bowling trophies six times a year, so all these people can pat each other on the back about how much money they’re making; boring the piss out of half the world. And if I hadn’t already won all these awards, I would not be talking like this.
The truth is that the comedians should be the only one getting awards. We’re the only ones that have to actually think of something original and funny, and interesting to say, you know, how hard that is? Do you know how hard it was just to write what I’m saying to you right now? It was hard, this took a long time, but we can do it, we can do it.
I’m just you know, sick of all these actors and you know, I don’t know why we’re so fascinated with actors in this culture. They haven’t got a thought in their stupid bed-head hairdo mini brains. Why are – we must honor this man, why? He pretended to be Bob Johnson. He is a genius, I tell you, it’s genius what he is doing, playing dress up and pretend is not genius ladies and gentleman, it’s not genius.
Roll the cameras, put on these clothes, stand there ready? Say what we told you to say! Fantastic, he did it! Give this man a huge golden trophy, he is a goddamn genius, walking down the red carpet in these ridiculous outfits like they are senators from Krypton, it’s just so stupid, but what can I do, I have to thank HBO, I have to.
All comedians, every, these three guys and me, oh, HBO, we owe them, that’s why they are here. You think these guys want to do this, they don’t want to do this, they owe. They gave me a one-hour HBO special, they were the first people that ever thought I should be on TV for more than six minutes. And I was introduced on that show by Carl Reiner.
And I don’t, you know, so that’s it, what can you say about it. And I’m very proud of this and it’s a thrill, I hope they do it again next year, this could be it, I don’t know. But this is a great, important, incredibly, you know, sweet thing and meaningful thing in my life. Thank you very much HBO and thank you all for coming.