I had a sort of secret desire as a high schooler to be a comedian. I didn’t know what that meant.
There is no secret society out there, that will tap you on the shoulder one night and show you the way.
We’re working really hard to make jokes about ideas.
The lawyer for Google would read these statements that I said on air and I said, well I didn’t say that.
Stephen Colbert’s Top 10 Rules For Success
Evan: He’s an American comedian, writer, actor, and tv host.
He currently hosts a late night television talk show on CBS.
His book, I am American and So Can You, was number one on the New York Times, best seller list.
He’s Stephen Colbert and here is my take on his top 10 rules for success.
Rule number six is my personal favorite and make sure sure to stick around all the way to the end for some special bonus clips.
Also, as Stephen is talking, if he says something that really inspires you, please leave it in the comments below and put quotes around it so other people can be inspired as well.
Rule #1: Seize opportunity
Rule #2: Find your passion
Rule #3: Connect with your audience
Rule #4: Create your own path
Rule #5: Serve others
Rule #6: Love what you do
Rule #7: Be bold
Rule #8: Stand for something
Rule #9: Do something different
Rule #10: Tell great stories
Rule #1: Seize opportunity
We’d only been on 32. I think we hadn’t even done 50 shows.
And so, I call Jon Stewart and said, Jon, I just got invited for the correspondents dinner, do you think I should do it? And he said, what, to like attend?
And I said, no, they want me. ’cause they want you to be the guy?
Like to stand next to the president?
Do they know what you do? And I said, I don’t know.
And I said, I think I have to do it. You have to do it! Like right now, you have to do it.
So don’t pay attention to the approval ratings that say 68% of Americans disapprove of the job this man is doing. I ask you this, does not that also logically mean that 68% approve of the job he’s not doing? Think about it, I haven’t.
Rule #2: Find your passion
Interviewer: Why did comedy kind of become of your thing, do you think? Or did comedy kind of pick you?
Well that’s a nice way of putting it. That’s a nice way of putting it. I would say, I can’t under emphasize how important comedy’s been to my life and how important certain opportunities that came along to my life and they all, many of them seem sort of accidental.
For instance, like second city, I didn’t think I was going to be a comedian. I had a sort of secret desire as a high schooler to be a comedian.
I didn’t know what that meant. You know, I just really liked being funny and from one of 11 kids and we’re a funny family and being funny is important.
The king of the room was who ever was funniest, you know? And I remember as a child, I seen comedy help, my family had a tragedy when I was younger, my father and two of my brothers died and I remember my sister making another one of my sisters laugh so hard on the way, the car away from the cemetery.
Accidentally met some people
One of my sisters made the other sister laugh so hard that she fell on the floor of the limo. When of those big floors with the rumble seat facing each other and she fell on the floor laughing and I remember thinking, I want to do that. And I don’t know whether it was specifically when the context of dealing with tragedy because I don’t think, I was also 10.
But I remember specifically thinking, I want that, I would have loved to been able to do that right now and then I fell asleep every night for years listening to Bill Cosby, Wonderfulness, Very Funny Fellow, David Frye, Richard Nixon, A Fantasy, George Carlin and Class Clown, Let’s Get Small, Wild and Crazy Guy, back when you could stack albums.
Stack so many of them, the top one kind of played slow as it went around and then I went to college to be an actor. But an actor actor. I wore black and I had a beard and you know, I was like, let me share my misery with you. Poets slash jerk kind of actor.
And then I accidentally met some people from second city and took some classes there and got invited to audition and accidentally.
Just sort of a happy accident, fell in with some great people and I still, I quit second city four times in order to go do straight black box, avant garde kind of theater in Chicago. Which that was what I was going to be.
I kept on returning to do comedy
I was going to live in a studio apartment with no furniture and a futon on the floor, that I stuffed myself with yak fur and just drank and be single, with the beard and you know, sandals and a dashiki and I was going to drink from a san malvar that was constantly bubbling in the background.
But one day I was back stage and I kept on returning to do comedy and I was backstage one night and this is really the thing that made the decision for me.
I was backstage with a guy named Dave Risowski, who does a, what’s it called? He does podcast, does a great podcast.
What do you kids do, your podcasts? He’s a great guy. We’re backstage, somebody was on stage and they were supposed to do a very simple blackout.
“If failure of this scale can cause this much joy for anyone, than this is the healthiest thing that I could do with the rest of my life and I will do nothing else and I have never looked back from that moment.” – Stephen Colbert
And a blackout is a very short, it’s got one joke and then the lights go out. This is second city. It’s a pace keeper for the show. She goes out there and the blackout is this, she goes, you know.
You’re supposed to say, I’d like to do a song for you now. Welcome to the no exit cafe. I’d like to do a song for you right now.
Agony of her failure
A song for the whales. You tune up your guitar for a long time. This is a song for the whales. And then you go, very simple, you do whistling and clicks and everything.
It’s fine, not a big, not a great laugh but it works every time. She goes out there to do it. I’d like to do a song for you right now. I’d like to do a song for you right now.
She goes into her whistling and her clicking and we’re backstage waiting to go on for the next scene, me and Dave, and we’re not getting any laughs.
This is foolproof. No laughs at all, what’s going on? Something’s wrong. And then she goes, oh I forgot, it’s song for whales. And we burst into laughter backstage and we threw our arms around each other in the agony of her failure. And we’re just laughing.
Healthiest thing that I could do with the rest of my life
We fell like a collapsing teepee. We just fell to the ground and Dave’s feet went out onto stage like this, as we held each other like lovers.
The most intimate, joyful experience at her pain, that we all knew and she could hear it happen and the audience could see our feet and she started laughing at how wonderfully she had just failed.
And I thought at that moment, this is what I want. If failure of this scale can cause this much joy for anyone, than this is the healthiest thing that I could do with the rest of my life and I will do nothing else and I have never looked back from that moment.
Rule #3: Connect with your audience
Interviewer: What is the goal? In your mind, what was the goal of political satire?
To make people laugh. You know, I would make jokes about politics because my model was the news and I care about politics and I care about current events and I’ll always do jokes about that.
I mean, the new show has that as well. We’re definitely, that’s big part of the new show, especially going into a presidential election.
“You can’t imagine, however great your joke is, that it’s going to change things. What it does is just make a connection with any audience who’s feeling the same way you do.” – Stephen Colbert
But the goal is to make people laugh. I mean, politics is incredibly frustrating, the news can be incredibly depressing.
If we just make your day a little bit better, you know, at the end, because we make jokes that show, yeah, we feel the same way you do or like, or rather we curate for you, our feelings about the news and maybe you agree with our jokes or what’s funny about the day’s news.
That sense of connection between the performer and the audience is the entire intention. You know, why does anybody, what does anybody want?
Not to be alone and I think a performer gets on stage and says the things that are in his mind, in is own particular way, to me a connection with an audience so he doesn’t feel so alone. And hopefully the audience feels the same way.
It’s not conscious, it’s here, not here. And so that’s got to be the goal. That connection’s got to be the goal and the making somebody laugh has got to be the goal. You can’t think that you’re satire is going to change things.
Peter Cook famously said, a great satirist, worked with Dudley Moore, and in beyond the fringe, he famously said that the greatest satire of the 20th century, was the Vimart Caberet and boy, they just stopped Hitler in their tracks.
You know, you can’t imagine, however great your joke is, that it’s going to change things. What it does is just make a connection with any audience who’s feeling the same way you do.
Rule #4: Create your own path
While traditional paths may seem harder to find, that also means that you may learn, sooner than most generations, the hard lesson that you must always make the path for yourself.
There is no secret society out there, that will tap you on the shoulder one night and show you the way. Because the true secret is, your life will not be defined by the society we have left you.
To paraphrase Robert Bolt, society has no more idea of what you are, than what you do. Because ultimately, it has only your brains to think with.
“There is no secret society out there, that will tap you on the shoulder one night and show you the way. Because the true secret is, your life will not be defined by the society we have left you.” – Stephen Colbert
Every generation must define itself and so make the world that suits itself. So, if you must find your own path and we have left you no easy path, then decide now to choose the hard path that leads to the life and the world that you want.
Rule #5: Serve others
In my experience, you will truly serve only what you love because service is love made visible. If you love friends, you will serve your friends. If you love community, you will serve your community.
If you love money, you will serve your money. And if you love only yourself, you will serve only yourself and you will have only yourself. So no winning, instead, try to love others and serve others and hopefully find those that will love and serve you in return.
Rule #6: Love what you do
Interviewer: I was just wondering if you had anything left on your career wishlist?
Sure, I never know what’s going to happen, you know, even tomorrow. I just got to spend the week with some of my favorite creative artists with The Hobbit. It was unbelievable, what a workshop. Made my own hobbit feet. Next week, I get to sing with all these wonderful artists, doing Christmas carols.
I’ve done my own Christmas special. I’ve had a rally on the mall. I’ve testified before congress. I may or may not appear in The Hobbit. I get to, the nice thing about my show, and whether or not I do the show forever, I mean everything ends.
I got to stop and try and do something else
But whether or not I do the show forever, the nice thing about my show, as the host and executive producer, I get to ask of myself, anything that I want to try.
And but that also means I have to do everything I know. And so, it’s just this tremendous sort of refreshing gift. As tiring as the show sort of is. ’cause I’m kind of decaying before your eyes. It’s in the same way, it’s also rejuvenating. The show is only what I want it to be.
I can always say no to myself or ask myself something new. But beyond this, I just want to work with people I like. I love the people I work with, I love what we do and I just want to be able to do it with joy and the moment I can’t do that, I got to stop and try and do something else.
Rule #7: Be bold
You and I have both hosted the White House correspondents dinner.
Man: Yes, and I have to say I was very inspired by Stephen. When you called President Bush your nigger, I could not believe you did that, Stephen.
Well, very few people appreciated the courage that took me to say it.
Man: I thought it was very brave. I kind of stole it from you. I just wanted to give you props man.
You got it, baby, you got it, you got it.
Man: You got it, baby!
That is a really tough room. What people at home don’t understand is that all they ever see on TV is like the dais and a couple people in the front row. It’s 3000 people in there, it’s a huge room. Do you know Harry J. Lennix? Do you know who Harry is? Harry is –
Man: Oh, actor! He’s an actor.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, no, he’s awesome.
He’s a great actor. He’s a very dignified, very talented African American actor. We went to Northwestern University together, but I had not seen Harry in like 20 years and he was there the night I did it.
And I’m on the dais and I’ve just finished and nobody’s looking at me. Like no one will make eye contact and Harry comes up and he’s at the dais and everybody’s still up there and he goes, hey man, that was really good.
I said, Harry, it’s really great to see you, I don’t think these people liked it. And Harry’s so wonderful, so dignified, and just got a fantastic voice. He leans back and goes, f*ck these people.
Man: He said it there?
That was good.
Both: He said it there.
Man: Oh my god, that’s fantastic.
So Larry, fuck these people.
That was good.
Man: That’s what I’m talking about.
Rule #8: Stand for something
Interviewer: What’s interesting about, I think there is union in your character and you personally. You’re very supportive of the troops and I remember when you were in Iraq, right? You got the president to order you to get a haircut. Pretty serious?
That was fun, yeah, sure, yeah. I knew I wanted to have my head shaved, ’cause I thought that’d feel good in the room. That’ll feel good with all the troops and I said, who could shave my head? The General. Who’s going to make the General do it? The president and everybody said yes, it was really lovely.
Interviewer: And I think this work you’re doing with the troops is fantastic. Was there some reason, in sort of growing up or something, that you felt that way or was it just a genuine patriot about this stuff?
I don’t know, I’m a genuine patriot, I love my country and I think patriotism does not require focus on the troops. Do you know what I mean? There are other ways to be patriotic, other than association with the military. That being said, I think not enough attention is paid to the men and women who make the sacrifices that we have collectively decided they should make and then ignore.
Interviewer: Yes, I agree.
You know what I mean? We’re all responsible, we all are sending the troops orders, you know what I mean? And we did it without a lot of thought but with a lot of emotion, 10, 11 years ago. And not a lot of discussion, and then we thought our job was done.
And so, because I talk about it a lot, or used to talk about it more, when it was more in the consciousness, especially in the news consciousness because my show was a shadow of the actual news and I’m, in some ways, very reactive that way. I felt at a certain point that I had a responsibility, along with my responsibility to be funny, to take opportunities that came to me, to talk about the troops when I can.
I have an ’82nd airborne flag in my office because very early on in the show, a young man and his wife came and she had to speak for him because he had such bad brain damage and he still could hear, but he couldn’t really converse and he enjoyed the show and he gave me the flag and all he could really get out was, don’t forget us. Please keep talking about us.
So I’ve got it on my wall and I think about it and we don’t nearly do enough and we don’t help as much as we should. But certainly, when you have an opportunity that fits within, I still have a responsibility to do a comedy show. When I can fit those two things together, we’re more than happy to try and make it happen and as I said, we should do more.
Rule #9: Do something different
When I came back to The Daily Show, Jon was the new host and it was a totally different show, ’cause Jon invited all of us who were on the show. Doing good jokes is a virtue in of itself, but he said, have your own opinion.
Bring your own passion to the show. I want everybody to invest their own ideas and I didn’t realize I had political opinions. I didn’t realize-
’cause were you political before then?
No, no, I was always a news junkie, but I worked very hard not to do any political humor because there wasn’t a lot that I enjoyed.
I like George Carlin, which was certainly satire.
And social satire, not a lot of political satire and so I really admired George Carlin and kind of wanted to be him or be him or Steve Martin. But didn’t do political things. I made a very specific choice in all my work to not even reference real world events or real places or who the president was.
Because I wanted people to enjoy my joke a year from now, as opposed to right now.
And you didn’t think that current would be relevant a year from now?
Well, there also wasn’t a lot of it I liked. I thought there was a lot of too many Ted Kennedy drunk jokes.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Do you know what I mean? Which is very flippant.
But isn’t really, there’s not a lot of intellectual sweat that goes into that joke, so I wanted to do something just different than that. But, Jon-
I like that term, intellectual sweat.
Because that really is what your work is. It’s kind of intellectually sweaty.
Yeah, well we’re working really hard to make jokes about ideas.
Rule #10: Tell great stories
Speaking of which, again, many Googlers have been asking questions about your upcoming YouTube show.
Yeah, what is that? I have an upcoming YouTube show?
Yes, we have all decided that you have to have a YouTube show, of some kind.
Okay. Does that violate my contract with Viacom to have that? ’cause you guys had a billion dollar lawsuit against each other, you realize? And Sumner Redstone would rather see your head on a stick.
You actually asked us on television, to give you the money, you forget?
No, I don’t forget. You never gave it to me.
I know, I know.
If you gave the money, I’d be knee deep,
we discussed this
In hookers and blow and I’d forget. No, no, I was deposed. I was deposed for that lawsuit.
I know you were.
And I’ve got a good story if you’d stop talking. I’m sorry, what was your question?
Tell your story.
Okay, okay. So, it’s been a few years and I don’t think I’m violating it, but I got deposed for the YouTube Google thing, the Viacom thing, ’cause boy, they were mad at you guys. They were so mad at you guys and so, your all’s lawyer, brought me in to say, well, how isn’t YouTube great and wouldn’t you not have a show, if it wasn’t for YouTube? And all those kind of questions and the lawyer for Google would read these statements that I said on air and I said, well, I didn’t say that. And he goes, no, you said it, you said it on this broadcast.
I said, no, my character said that and my characters not under oath right now. and they said, if your character were here, what would he say?
And so, I would say, okay, well, I’ll tell you what, I’ll tell you what. If you ask me questions that my character has to answer, as opposed to me, I’ll move my coffee cup to the other side of my place here and then you’ll know I’m speaking as my character.
And so, they’d ask me a question and I’d keep my cup over here. And then in the middle of the question, I’d start moving it over to the side, ’cause I’d realize they were asking me something from my character and the person would go, let the record reflect, the coffee cup is now on the left side of Mr. Colbert.
You have a question?
My characters answer was always like, I don’t know what you’re talking about, I don’t know what you’re talking about, buddy.
Evan: Thank you guys so much for watching. I hoped you enjoyed. I made this video because Adam Jyun, I hoped a pronounced that okay, asked me to.
So, if there’s a famous entrepreneur that you want me to profile next, leave it down in the comments below and I’ll see what I can do. I’d also love to know which of the clips had the biggest impact on you.
What are you going to change in your business or life? How are you going to apply some of the advice Stephen had to yourself? Leave it in the comments and I’m super curious, ’cause I want to join in the discussion.
I also want to give a quick shout out the Ola, from empiretrafficacademy.com. Ola, thank you so much for picking up a copy of my book. It really, really, really means a lot to me. So, thank you guys again for watching.
I believe in you, I hope you continue to believe in yourself and whatever your one word is, much love guys. I’ll see you soon.
EmCee: No one is safe, ladies and gentlemen, here with a special edition of The Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert.
Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. Before I begin, I’ve been asked to make an announcement. Who ever parked 14 black bulletproof SUVs out front, could you please remove them, they’re blocking in 14 other black bulletproof SUVs and they need out. Wow, wow, what an honor.
The White House Correspondents Dinner. To sit here, at the same table, with my hero, George W. Bush. To be this close to the man. I feel like I’m dreaming, somebody pinch me. You know what? I’m a pretty sound sleeper, that may not be enough. Somebody shoot me in the face. Is he really not here tonight? Damnit, the one guy who could’ve helped.
By the way, before I get started, anybody needs anything else at their tables, just speak slowly and clearly into your table numbers, someone from the NSA will be right over with a cocktail. Mark Smith, ladies and gentlemen of the press corp, Madam First Lady, Mr. President, my name is Stephen Colbert and tonight it is my privilege to celebrate this president. ’cause, we’re not so different, he and I. We both get it.
Guys like us, we’re not some brainiacs on the nerd patrol, we’re not members of the factinista. We go straight from the gut, right sir? That’s where the truth lies, right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut, than you have in your head? You can look it up.
Now, I know some of you are going to say I did look it up and that’s not true. That’s ’cause you looked it up in a book. Next time, look it up in your gut, I did. My gut tells me that’s how our nervous system works. Every night, on my show, the Colbert Report, I speak straight from the gut, okay? I give people the truth unfiltered by rational argument. I call it the no fact zone.
FOX news, I want a copyright on that term. I’m a simple man with a simple mind. I hold a simple set of beliefs that I live by. Number one, I believe in America. I believe it exists. My gut tells me I live there. I feel that it extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific. And I strongly believe it has 50 states and I cannot wait to see how the Washington Post spins that one tomorrow.
I believe in democracy. I believe democracy is our greatest export, at least until China figures out a way to stamp it out of plastic for $0.03 a unit. As a matter of fact, Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong, welcome. Your great country makes our happy meals possible. I said it to celebration. I believe the government that governs best, is the government that governs least and by these standards, we have setup a fabulous government in Iraq. I believe in pulling yourself up by your own boot straps.
I believe it is possible. I saw this guy do it once in Cirque du Soleil. It was magical. And though I am a committed Christian, I believe that everyone has the right to their own religion, be you Hindu, Jewish, or Muslim, I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal Savior. Ladies and gentlemen, I believe it’s yogurt. But I refuse to believe it’s not butter. Most of all, I believe in this president. Now I know there are some polls out there saying that this man has a 32% approval rating.
But guys like us, we don’t pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking in reality. And reality has a well known liberal bias. So Mr. President, please pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half full. 32% means that glass , it’s important to set up your jokes properly, Sir. Sir, pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half empty.
Because 32% means it’s two thirds empty. There’s still some liquid in that glass, is my point. But I wouldn’t drink it. Last third is usually back wash. Look folks, my point is, that I don’t believe this is a low point in this presidency. I believe it is just a lull, before a comeback. I mean, it’s like the movie, Rocky, alright? The president, in this case, is Rocky Balboa, and Apollo Creed is everything else in the world.
So 10th round, he’s bloodied. His corner man, Mick, who in this case, I guess, would be the vice president. He’s yelling, cut me Dick, cut me. And every time he falls, everyone says, stay down Rock, stay down. But does he stay down? No, like Rocky, he gets back up and in the end he actually loses in the first movie. Okay, doesn’t matter.
Doesn’t matter, the point is, it is the heart warming story of a man who is repeatedly punched in the face. So don’t pay attention to the approval ratings that say it’s 68% of Americans disapprove of the job this man is doing. I ask you this, does that not also logically mean that 68% of approve of the job he’s not doing?
Think about it, I haven’t. I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message, that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound with the most powerfully staged photo-ops in the world.
Now, there may be an energy crisis. Well this president has a very forward thinking energy policy. Why do you think he’s down on the ranch cutting that brush all the time? He’s trying to create an alternative energy source. By 2008, we will have a mesquite powered car. And I just like the guy. He’s a good Joe. Obviously loves his wife, calls her his better half and polls show, America agrees. She’s a true lady and a wonderful woman, but I just have one beef, ma’am.
I’m sorry, but this reading initiative. I’m sorry, I’ve never been a fan of books. I don’t trust them, they’re all fact, no heart. I mean, they’re elitists telling us what is or isn’t true or did or didn’t happen. Who’s Britanica to tell me that Panama Canal was built in 1914? If I want to say it was built in 1941, that’s my right as an American. I’m with the president, let history decide what did or did not happen.
The greatest thing about this man, is he’s steady, you know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday, that he believed on Monday. No matter what happened Tuesday. Events can change, this man’s beliefs never will. As excited as I am to be here with the president, I am appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media that is destroying America. With the exception of FOX news.
Fox news gives you both sides of every story. The president’s side and the vice president’s side. But the rest of you, what are you thinking? Reporting on NSA wiretapping or secret prisons in Eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason. They’re super depressing. And if that’s your goal, well, misery accomplished. Over the last five years, you people were so good. Over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming.
We Americans didn’t want to know and you had the courtesy not to try to find out. Those were good times, as far as we knew. But listen, let’s review the rules. Here’s how it works. The president makes decisions, he’s the decider. The press secretary announces those decisions and you people of the press, type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put them through a spellcheck and go home.
Get to know your family again, make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration? You know, fiction! ’cause really, what incentive do these people have to answer your questions after all? I mean, nothing satisfies you. Everybody asks for personnel changes.
So, the White House has personnel changes and then you write, oh they’re just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. First of all, that is a terrible metaphor. This administration is not sinking. This administration is soaring. If anything, they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg. now it’s not all bad guys out there. There’s some of the heroes out there tonight.
Christopher Buckley, Jeff Saks, Ken Burns, Bob Shieffer. I’ve interviewed all of them. By the way, Mr. President, thank you for agreeing to be on my show. I appreciate it, I was just as shocked as everyone here is, I promise you. How’s Tuesday for you? I’ve got Frank Rich, but we can just bump him. And I mean bump him. I know a guy, say the word. See who we’ve got here tonight.
We’ve got General Moseley, Air Force Chief of Staff. We’ve got General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. They still support Rumsfeld. Right, you guys aren’t retired yet, right? Right, they still support Rumsfeld. Look, by the way, I’ve got a theory about how to handle these retired generals causing all this trouble: Don’t let them retire! Come on, we’ve got a stop-loss program; let’s use it on these guys.
I’ve seen Zinni in that crowd on Wolf Blitzer. If you’re strong enough to go on one of those pundit shows, you’re strong enough to stand on a bank of computers and order men into battle, come on! Jesse Jackson is here, the Reverend. Haven’t heard from the Reverend in just a little while. I had him on the show. It was a very interesting interview, very challenging interview.
You can ask him anything, but he’s going to say what he wants at the pace that he wants. It’s like boxing a glacier. Enjoy that metaphor, by the way, because your grandchildren will have no idea what a glacier is. Justice Scalia is here. Justice Scalia, may I be the first to say, welcome, sir. You look fantastic, how are you? Just talking some Sicilian with my paisan. John McCain is here.
John McCain, what a maverick! Somebody find out what fork he used on his salad, because I guarantee you it wasn’t a salad fork. This guy could have used a spoon! There’s no predicting him. By the way, Senator McCain, it’s so wonderful to see you coming back into the Republican fold. I’ve actually got a summer house in South Carolina. Look me up when you go to speak at Bob Jones University.
So glad you’ve seen the light, sir. Mayor Nagin, Mayor Nagin is here from New Orleans, the chocolate city! Yeah, give it up. Mayor Nagin, I’d like to welcome you to Washington, D.C., the chocolate city with a marshmallow center and a graham cracker crust of corruption. It’s a Mallomar, I guess, is what I’m describing, is a Mallomar, it’s a seasonal cookie. Joe Wilson is here.
Joe Wilson, right down here in front, the most famous husband since Desi Arnaz. And, of course, he brought along his lovely wife Valerie Plame. Oh, my god! Oh, what have I said? Ay, gee monetti, I am sorry, Mr. President, I meant to say he brought along his lovely wife, “Joe Wilson’s wife.” Patrick Fitzgerald is not here tonight, right? Okay, dodged a bullet.
And, of course, we can’t forget the man of the hour, new press secretary, Tony Snow. Secret Service name: “Snow Job.” Toughest job, what a hero! Took the second toughest job in government, next to, of course, the ambassador to Iraq. Got some big shoes to fill, Tony.
Big shoes to fill. Scott McClellan could say nothing like nobody else. McClellan, of course, eager to retire, really felt like he needed to spend more time with Andrew Card’s children. Now, Mr. President, I wish you hadn’t made the decision so quickly, sir. I was vying for the job myself. I think I would have made a fabulous press secretary. I have nothing but contempt for these people.
I know how to handle these clowns. In fact, sir, I brought along an audition tape and with your indulgence, I’d like to at least give it a shot? So, ladies and gentleman, my press conference.
I have a brief statement. The press I destroying America. Okay, let’s see who we got here today. Stretch, Sir Nerdlington. Sloppy Joe, Terry Lemon Meringue Pie. Oh, Doubting Thomas, always a pleasure. And Susanne Malhello. Yes?
Will the vice president be available soon to answer all questions, himself?
I’ve already addressed that question, you.
Walter Crumbcake, the noted CBS anchor.
Ah, no, he’s the former CBS anchor. Katie Couric is the anchor the CBS Evening News. By the way, how do you guys feel about that? You, toppled hair, guy in the back. Are you happy about Katie Couric taking over the CBS Evening News?
No, sir, Mr. Colbert, you?
Oh look, we woke David Gregory up. David, do you have a question?
Did Karl Robe commit a crime?
I don’t know, I’ll ask him. Karl, pay attention please.
Do you stand by your statement from the Fall of 2003, when you asked specifically about Karl and Elliott Abrams, and Scooter Livy, and you said, I have gone to each of those gentlemen, and they told me they are not involved in this. Do you stand by that statement?
Nah, I was just kidding.
No, you’re not finished, you’re not saying anything. You stood at that podium-
Ah, that’s where you’re wrong, new podium. Just had it delivered today. Get your facts straight, David.
This is ridiculous, the notion that you’re going to stand before us, after having commented with that level of detail and tell the people watching this and somehow, you’ve decided not to talk?
I’m sorry, what’s that David? If I can’t hear you, I can’t answer your question. I’m sorry, I have to move on, yes, Terry.
After the investigation began, after criminal investigation was underway, you said . All of a sudden, you have respect for the sanctity of the criminal investigation?
No, I never had the respect for the sanctity of a criminal investigation. Activist judges, yes, Helen.
You’re going to be sorry.
What are you going to do, Helen? Ask me for a recipe?
Your decision to invade Iraq has caused the deaths of thousands of Americans in Iraq. Wounds of Americans and Iraqi’s for a lifetime. Every reason given, publicly at least, and turned out not to be true. My question is, why did you really want to go to war?
Helen, I’m going to stop you right there, that’s enough. Guys, no, I already said no. Guys, guys, please, don’t let Helen do this to what was a lovely day. No, no, no, no, no, I’m not listening to you. Look what you did, Helen. I hate you. I’m out of here. There is a wall here. It reeks in there. Ridiculous, I’ve never been so insulted in my entire life, stupid job. Condy. Help me.
Security: There seems to be a problem, sir.
She won’t stop asking why we invaded Iraq.
Security: Hey, why did we invade Iraq?
No! No! What a terrible trip, Danny. Take me home.
Buckle up, hon.
No! Helen Thomas, ladies and gentlemen. Mr. Smith, members of the White House Correspondents’ Association, Madam First Lady, Mr. President. It’s been a true honor, thank you very much. Good night.