When I was younger, history was my worst, and least enjoyable subject. But as I got older, I began to realize that history isn’t just about who fought who during what war and which president was in charge during said war. History is a blueprint of the stones that were put in place which allow us to appreciate any particular aspect of our society. And what I appreciated most, is the comedy, because without comedy, anger and negativity will overpower and poison our minds. There would be no such thing as a “brighter side” of a situation. So, with that said, I wanted to share a few of the African Americans who made, and continue to make it a little brighter, inside and out! Laughter soothes the soul and keeps the body young.
African-American comedians both past and present. From Paul Mooney and Richard Pryor in the 70’s, to Eddie Murphy and Bill Cosby in the 80’s, to “The Original Kings Of Comedy,” African-Americans have played a defining role in the scheme of American comedy. By providing a humorous voice to narrate the African-American experience, and breaking down racial and social barriers along the way, each of these comics has brought a unique perspective to the ever-changing tableau that is comedy in America.
“I am really enjoying the new Martin Luther King Jr. stamp – just think about all those white bigots, licking the backside of a black man.”
“Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in hospitals dying of nothing.”
“When that fire hit your ass, it will sober your ass up quick! I saw something, I went, “Well, that’s a pretty blue. You know what? That looks like…FIRE!” Fire is inspirational. They should use it in the Olympics, because I ran the 100 in 4.3.”
“You’re telling me that when I’m a slave, I can be in your house. But now that I’m free, ‘I don’t want you in this neighborhood.’ So, you’re saying if slavery came back tomorrow, you’ll just say, ‘Welcome home’?”
“They got a character on Sesame Street named Oscar; they treat this guy like shit the entire show. They judge him right in his face. “Oscar you are so mean! Isn’t he kids?”, “Yeah Oscar! You’re a grouch!” It’s like, “Bitch I live in a fucking TRASH CAN!”
“Got to be careful. They say having casual sex nowadays is like playing Russian roulette. And I know I’ve thrown my dick on the crap table many a night.”
“Barack, man. He doesn’t let his blackness sneak up on you. Like if his name was Bob Jones or something like that, it might take you two or three weeks to figure out he’s black. But when you hear “Barack Obama”, you picture a brother with a spear, just standing over a dead lion. You picture the base player from The Commodores.”
“I said to a guy, ‘Tell me, what is it about cocaine that makes it so wonderful?’ and he said, ‘Because it intensifies your personality.’ I said, ‘Yes, but what if you’re an asshole?'”
On the “Cha Cha Slide”: “I can’t stand that dance. That’s the easiest f***ing dance! It’s like ‘2 to the left! 1 to the right! Stop! Think About it.’ Get the f**k outta here… I know the ghetto “Hokey Pokey” when I hear that s**t.”
“My mother wanted me to be a lawyer and I wanted to be an actor. So I went to school, majored in theatre, and said ‘Mom, I have to choose my own destiny. I want to be an actor.’ A couple of weeks after I graduated college I called my mother up and said ‘Can I borrow $200?’ and she said ‘Why don’t you act like you’ve got $200.'”
“I don’t have pet peeves, I have whole kennels of irritation.”
Cedric The Entertainer
“Gas is high for real. That was my costume for Halloween last year, I dressed up as a gas pump. None of the kids got it but I scared the sh*t out they parents! I had $6.15 on my chest, they were like Ahhh!”
“White folk, y’all got the littlest dogs I have ever seen in my whole life… ‘Her name is Peppers. She weighs three pounds and cost $2000.’ Well you should have named her Cocaine.”
“I couldn’t be no criminal, I could not be a criminal. Because if I did some shit with you, if get caught? WE got caught. ‘Come on, I’m hiding!’, No you not! They got US! They got US! You could escape to Japan, I’d call you in Japanese like “[jibberish] Bring yo’ ass back the f**k home bitch! We got caught!”
“‘Mother-f****r’ is a word that black folks have been using for years. It’s about expression. Don’t be ashamed of the word ‘mother-f****r’ Because ‘mother-f****r’ is a noun: It describes a person, place or thing.”
“I was watching Maury Povich the other day. They had the episode, ‘Is it Male or Female?’ And I’m sitting there with an erection, ‘Oh, all of them are good.'”
Keenen Ivory Wayans
“Everything was a joke [in my family]. If you got a whippin’, when you got back to the table, you heard nine other people doing impressions of your screaming.”
“I know I’m not good at sex because one time I called my wife and was baby why don’t lick your fingers and play with ya nipples…outta no where I heard, ‘daddy you want me to touch mines too?'”
For more, please see the Documentary “Why We Laugh” by Robert Townsend.