I managed to catch Chris Rock during one of his impromptu unannounced club appearances at the Comedy Cellar this summer as he prepared for his first stand-up concert tour in almost four years. A lot of this stuff already was hitting very well, and here are some notes from a 90-minute set delivered late Sunday night (11:45 p.m. start) and early Monday morning (ending at 1:15 a.m.) at the Comedy Cellar, the latest jokes in development from Chris Rock…who opened with a Michael Vick reference…"I was just at home killing some dogs this week."
On how much white people love animals: "You know how much better Seabiscuit’s life was than my grandfather’s?!"
On Barry Bonds: "Who wouldn’t take a pill to do better at their jobs?…If you pay me Will Smith money, I’ll take needles in my anus right now!"
"If Mickey Mantle had Advil, he would’ve hit more home runs."
"Babe Ruth had 714 affirmative action home runs."
"It’s not a sport without black people. It’s just a game. It’d be like, ‘I won the marathon, but no Kenyans were running.’"
On trying to wipe your slate clean with one good deed, as they say of baseball by letting Jackie Robinson play: "If OJ saves a cat from a tree, he’s still a murderer."
On the real-life history of the people on American money: "Next time you’re getting change, why don’t you ask for three murderers and a rapist."
On how Bush’s war in Iraq has killed more Americans than 9/11, speaking as Bush: "You think you can kill Americans? I can kill Americans!"
On how people are stupidly in debt. Example: Ringtones. "The phone used to ring for free! Never have so many people been stupid at the same time." Rock speculated that the government would figure out a way to sell us phones that don’t ring, forcing us to buy ringtones. Other examples: Sony’s PlayStation, which now comes with just one controller. The KitKat, which comes with four bars instead of five. "What happened to my other bar!"
On being a black celebrity in the suburbs, living in Alpine, NJ. Rock noted the only other black people in his neighborhood are Gary Sheffield, Patrick Ewing and Mary J. Blige, all hall-of-fame caliber artists at what they do. "You know what the white guy who lives next to me does? He’s a dentist. Not the best dentist in the world…He didn’t invent bonding…He just yanks people’s teeth out…It’s a true story. I live next to a dentist."
On reality TV and the success of Flavor Flav. Rock admits the show is funny, "but as an educated black man, he has to die. You can’t have Barack (Obama) running for president and this n—– running around. One of them has got to go….We went from ‘The Cosby Show’ to a b—- taking a s— on the floor…No wonder Bill Cosby has gone out of his f—ing mind. Not only did they show it, but they turned it into a plot point!"
On Who’s Your Caddy? (which I reviewed for the Daily News): "It was so bad I don’t think they should let black people make movies anymore…They didn’t even get the good guy from OutKast…It’s so bad, I recommend it!…And it’s not like I’ve made the greatest movies of all time, but God damn!"
On Australia: "Black people there are the Aborigines. Did you know it was legal in Australia to hunt the Aborigines until the 1920s?!…As a black man, you have to know where you’re traveling. I’m a high-school dropout, but I know all these little things."
On Walmart: "Walmart is the AIDS of stores."
On how debt isn’t like cancer: "Debt doesn’t go into remission. I just ate right and prayed every night…"