Joe Hieronymus

live at helium, june 10, 2014

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on June 15, 2014

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live at curious comedy theater, may 2014

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on May 19, 2014

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stupidity for dummies

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on March 4, 2014

An economic historian named Carlo Maria Cipolla is famous for essays about human stupidity, such as The Basic Laws of Human Stupidity. He studied and viewed stupid people as a group, as opposed to individually. Cipolla concluded stupid people, collectively,  are exponentially more powerful than organizations like the Mafia and the industrial complex which, without regulations, leaders or manifesto, somehow manage to operate to great effect and with incredible coordination.

These are Cipolla’s five fundamental laws of stupidity:

“1. Always and inevitably each of us underestimates the number of stupid individuals in circulation.

2. The probability that a given person is stupid is independent of any other characteristic possessed by that person.

3. A person is stupid if they cause damage to another person or group of people without experiencing personal gain, or even worse causing damage to themselves in the process.

4. Non-stupid people always underestimate the harmful potential of stupid people. They constantly forget that at any time anywhere, and in any circumstance, dealing with or associating themselves with stupid individuals invariably constitutes a costly error.

5. A stupid person is the most dangerous type of person there is.”

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because i drink to forget

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on January 15, 2014

Previously I posted my jokes in written form from my first two years of performing comedy. This is an update of what I have written in the year since. Enjoy.
  • Thank you for being here. It’s so much easier when you congregate all together like this. It’s way easier than me trying to find each one of you. I don’t even know where most of you live. Ding dong! Time for jokes!
  • My name is Joe Hieronymus if you have a current subscription to Twitter’s magazine. If you are on the karaoke circuit, you may know me better as Joe Mama or, if the list gets too long, Joe Daddy Too, because I want to sing two Nirvana songs.
  • Kurdt Cobain used to call into radio stations to request his own music. I’m pretty sure that’s how Nirvana became famous. I’m going to start doing the same thing. Going to comedy shows and shouting, “Hey! Tell a Joe Hieronymus joke!” That’ll be my path to fame.
  • If you are missing any fingers or toes, you can count on me.
  • This is a haiku.

Maybe you don’t like haikus.
Well, you just heard one.
That’s called “Snarky The Haiku.” Sorry. Here’s one more:
How catastrophic
is it for claustrophobics
inside outdoor stores?

  • Ever try to tell a fart joke and have it come out as a poop joke? Yuck.
  • Honey buckets are NOT honey buckets. As disappointed as you or I may be to learn that information, you have to consider the literate bear out there. Wandering around wondering, “Rawr! Why did I even go to second grade? Rawr!”
  • I think the bravest Americans are those who mastrubate without porn.
  • Whenever I type on the internet I used to use all lowercase letters as a not-so-subtle protest against the inherent evils of capitalism. It didn’t work. Now I’m just another grammar Nazi.
  • I love baseball. Whenever I am watching a game and get too excited, I have to start thinking about sex.
  • The more you get into butt plugs, really the more butt plugs get into you.
  • The best part about dating a praying mantis is I don’t have to buy her dinner first.
  • I met my dream girl. She told me to wake up.
  • Is that book, He’s Just Not That Into You, is it about having sex with a man who has a really tiny penis?
  • I hope my last words are “Oh, you must be my new butler.”
  • I am debating whether or not I should apologize for not being Bill Murray.
  • I’m so indecisive. Wait. No, I’m not.
  • Instead of talking about what’s wrong with me, let’s save time and with a shorter list about what’s right with me.
  • A girl held the door open for me today. Take that, patriarchy!
  • I hate gossip. I mean, even my butt talks behind my back. It stinks.
  • It’s so rude we only talk about elephants when they are not in the room.
  • Turtles get away with so much sassiness. Oh, snap!
  • Hey. Are you thinking about something right now?
  • My humility knows no bounds.
  • If I were to be completely honest, I’d be a horrible liar.
  • The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was a rabbit out of his hat. I thought it was an empty hat. Hail Satan!
  • No other segue here other than “Satan Claus!”
  • I see these children lining up at shopping centers to sit on Santa’s lap, but where were they on Veteran’s Day?
  • I told a kid Santa didn’t exist and they said I will never see Nirvana live. Guess who cried?
  • Hey. Here’s a thought…Different joke, same punchline: If you like brief incomplete thoughts, then you are going to love…
  • Don’t worry. my reverse psychologist said, “Everything is going to be ju-u-ust fine.
  • I wonder how vegans feel about getting butterflies in their stomach.
  • Famed food author Hummus S Thompson was renowned for his garbanzo journalism.
  • I was dissing hipsters before dissing hipsters was cool.
  • Insomniacs hate me. They’re always asking, “How do you sleep at night?!”
  • Went on a date with this girl named Payback. Contrary to popular belief, she was real, real nice.
  • People often ask me for dating advice. I say, “Don’t…date…me.”
  • Pythagoras was once in a love triangle, but everyone involved was a square.
  • One word that is not in my vocabulary is schmalalubbin.
  • Airbrushing blows.
  • I want to go on a vacation. I think the first place I’ll go is the airport.
  • Superman is the first superhero. Thank goodness his authors did not have him flap his arms when he flew or else we would have no more superheroes.
  • In the museum of bad ideas: short-sleeved sweaters, the name She-Hulk and monotheism.
  • Right before the shortest Bible verse, Jesus cut onions.
  • There are too many number. Think about it. There’s one, then two, and three, four, (sigh) five, six, seven, c’mon eight? Nine? Ten?! Eleven? Twelve! You guys, that’s a really hard bit to commit to all the way to the end.
  • I’m more of a “It’s none of my business, man” businessman.
  • Relish is an arrogant name for condiment.
  • Deciphering the real meaning well-written rant can be a real cross word puzzle.
  • My best acting credit is when I hide my feelings from the girl I love.
  • I tried to teach my dog how to read. He just kept pooping on the newspaper.
  • Can we stop calling fourteen year-old boys “fresh men”?
  • When riding in a helicopter, don’t sit in the ejaculation seat. It just gets messy.
  • I want to change my last name to King. I am Joe King.
  • Somewhere out there on the internet is a real smug person…who is absolutely right.
  • I have a friend who says he is bi-polar. Well, sometimes he says he’s manic-depressive. Depends on his mood.
  • According to research, Airplane! is the funniest film of all time. It gets three laughs a minute. I will make you laugh at least nine time with the three minutes I have been allotted.
  • Wherever you fall on the issue of gun control, I have a compromise. Keep your guns, but instead of bullets, we use shrink-rays. That way if someone is giving you grief, you can shrink them.
  • Went to the doctor. He said, “Open up and say ‘Ahh.’” He diagnosed me with a depressed tongue.
  • Olive oil is made from olives. What’s baby oil made from? Extra virgins. How can you be extra-virgin? Is my shirt extra-medium?
  • The best address for a homeless person is “Hello!”
  • Equally important to consider is not getting a wad in your panties.
  • Video poker currency should be aluminum cans.
  • Call me old-fashioned, because I am muddled sugar, bitters, whiskey with a twist.
  • Forgetting was invented before reminders.
  • Don’t mean to get political here, but my least favorite Canadian baseball player is Larry Walker. Hey! Fuck you, Larry! Might seem like an unprompted attack, I’m just saying let’s bring home the troops.
  • If anyone objectifies my body, they can kiss my butt. My fit, firm, sculpted butt.
  • I need to rectify my jokes about butts.
  • I don’t know if it’s exist I think it is inherently funny when women wear fake moustaches, but I know it is sexist we call it penetration rather than enclosure.
  • I m sorry to bring a a subject that is a dead horse to so many, but is on all our minds: wood glue. I know what you’re thinking: “What wood glue?” or maybe “What would Jesus glue?” Probably himself. If I insert a good carpentry joke here, then you could say I nailed it.

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live at the boiler room

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on January 14, 2014

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live at alberta street pub

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on January 13, 2014

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my comedy biography

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on December 1, 2013

Joe Hieronymus is irresistible*. His humor is honest, intelligent and absurd. Hieronymus’ style slyly traverses politics, pop-culture and social mores with a ridiculous love affair with language. He imaginatively includes everyone while hilariously skewering all topics. Widely regarded as one of the funniest and friendliest comics alive, he is known for his own brand of “Joe Hieronymus’ jokes.” Hieronymus hosts, performs, produces, volunteers, writes and makes friends in Portland, Oregon.

*(Hieronymus does not typically participate in festivals as part of a plan to cultivate mystery, but changed his mind because audiences kept laughing and approaching him after shows saying how much they admire him and his work. He feels he owes it to the comedy world to perform. What a guy, huh?)

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Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on October 15, 2013

Hi ladies and Eric and Matt. Is it okay if the I talk to my boyfriends first? It’s just…I miss them so. Cool? Thanks, I will write specifically to you in a minute.

Hey E. I miss you. How is Em? She is writing her thesis right now, yes? How are the cats and dogs? Can your cats go to your bookstore? I know you are fairly busy, but are you keeping up with baseball? Of course you are.

I wish I was watching some of this Cardinal-Dodger playoff series with you and Matty. It has been three really good games so far. In all honesty I am hoping it goes seven. Both former Kansas City Royals Carlos Beltran and Zack Greinke1 are still fun to watch. Yasiel Puig2 reminds me of when you gave me a much-discussed album in 2001.3 As in, “Oh, this is the music I have been reading so much hyperbole about in Spin magazine?” What I am saying is Puig is doing for major league outfielders what The Strokes did for hipsters. Did I mention he plays for Don Mattingly and Magic Johnson in Los Angeles? He’s practically in Hollywood already. Someone please text Barbara Streisand because a star is being born.

Speaking of stars being born, here’s to you, Papa Matty. I am excited to meet your new son. I heard you might not name him Joe. No big deal. Ha. Hahaha. Ha…Ha. Anyways, how are D and Hattie? How many chickens do you have not counting the ones before they hatch? Can your chickens go to Eric’s bookstore? Oh yeah, before I forget…how are the football Chiefs doing? Ha. Hahaha. Ha…Ha4 I heard rumors of trading for former college basketball star Tony Gonzalez. I have missed him. I miss you.

Okay, celebrity sisters. I am a fan of all your work. Well, most of it. Well, I have not heard most of it. But what I have listened to seems nice and better than opera. First, Miley, you have so much talent and your fans sincerely care about your success, which I think is cool. Sinead, you have mine and millions’ respect and admiration for always keeping us not only thinking but also…thoughtful. Amanda, your modern perspective is intriguing and comforting. I cannot call myself a feminist because I am sure someone will get upset, but I am glad the three of you are at least provoking and having a discussion. Also, have you heard Alison Gold yet? What do you think? Finally, would you pitch to Hanley Ramirez instead of around him?

Look, all of you. Keep up the good work. I will watch your careers with great interest.5

Love, Joe

PS — I am sorry, but this letter has footnotes.

1Um, I spell Greinke correctly and already know his on base average this year was .409 without looking either up, by the way. Am I bragging or am I just sad?
2I can spell Yasiel Puig now, too.
3Included was a bonus Rough Trade label sampler with Hope Sandoval and Sufjan Stevens songs. The Moldy Peaches were also on it, but Juno outright ruined The Moldy Peaches for me.
4Of course I know the Chiefs are 6-0.
5My apologies for closing with some of the last lines of the worst Star Wars film, but it is just coincidence. Not the force or anything like that.

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This is about you: Secret Weapon

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on September 26, 2013

It is the last Wednesday of the month. I arrive at Mississippi Pizza for Secret Weapon, a monthly sampler of the amazing Portland comedy we keep hearing about. The stage is in a large room adjacent to the pizzeria, comfortably seating the thirty people in attendance. The bar is in a separate back room, greatly reducing most extraneous noise.

Co-producer and host of our evening entertainment is Andie Main. She is that rare Portland native who acknowledges her own embodiment of some sweet Stumptown stereotypes. For instance, Main is vegan and atheist. She also paints, with work being featured in several local art walks and galleries. She loves punk rock and drinks beer. She crafts great jokes.

Main greets us with a few minutes of original material, simultaneously intelligent and goofy with a spot-on impression of a prostitute you might see on Downton Abbey. As she ends her short set, we are reminded the show is only getting started.

Opener Xander Deveaux immediately denounces “sad-shaming,” then somehow justifies internet cat memes as the solution to being sad. It becomes even more interesting to watch as you learn he is in the midst of working out an entirely new set. Much like his first collection of jokes, on last summer’s Obsessive Repulsive, Deveaux’s new stuff is well-timed and unexpectedly acted out.

Secret Weapon co-producer Christian Ricketts is already gaining regional following. He is one of our comedians worthy of the national narrative of Portland-as-comedy-hotbed. Tonight he uses his stage time to take us down the rabbit hole of interacting with a particular downtown street salesperson. His articulate storytelling makes you giggle and then giggle again a few days from now.

The show continues with the alter-ego of Nariko Ott, a character named Gordon Kapow. An odd fashionista, Kapow utilizes video presentation and, considering the media involved, the tech does get a little glitchy. Ott is able to keep it together, however, with little to no distraction. He concludes with a brilliant bit on animal fashion to uproarious laughter.

Rising Vine star Steven Wilber‘s absurd yet intricate humor delivers some of the more memorable NSFW lines of the night. He reads a shocking letter he wrote to himself and pitches several blockbuster movie ideas. Wilber seems to be getting accustomed to the applause breaks his set can warrant.

Anthony Lopez is one of the hottest acts in the Pacific Northwest these last two years. Lopez’s likability is off-the-charts, as is his imagination and formidable joke-writing. He is grinning throughout his twenty minutes, contradicting conventional thoughts on alcohol consumption while emphatically worrying about the fate of the Millennial generation’s style of protesting.

An unlikely twist to close out the night’s showcase is musical comedy duo Delaney and Paris, singing explicit lyrics over folk guitars. It is a silly and sly coda to the best funny our city has to offer in the middle of the work week.

I do not mean to mistake recognition with hyperbole. I am certain most who were in attendance will be re-telling the jokes they heard to many of their friends. They should bring those friends to the next Secret Weapon.

(For Shawn Fleek‘s preview of this show, click here.)

CC: Willamette Week

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This is about you: Funny Humans

Posted by joehieronymus ©®™ on September 24, 2013

About twenty-five people are gathered to watch live stand-up comedy on a rainy Monday night for Funny Humans at Bar of the Gods in southeast Portland. It is enough of an audience to fill most of the seating, but there is also a rowdy group playing on a pool table in back who continue to talk loudly even as host Dan Weber begins the show.

Weber smiles and addresses the distraction by asking directly, “Why are you still playing? It’s been over twenty minutes. If you can’t finish a pool game in twenty minutes, you suck at pool and must hate it to play it so poorly.” The approach works as everyone’s focus shifts to the acts at the front of the room.

First up is Jay Flewelling, an improviser and producer. He regales us with a funny short bit about attending church as an adult for the first time. His experience includes insight into the irony of homophobic choir directors and what an awful time slot church has compared to other “shows.” This show is off to a good start.

The next comedian is less-experienced, however, than most showcase guests. His detailed tale about being locked out of his hotel room naked is silly, yet felt like it was missing some key information. The evening’s momentum is slowed, but not derailed.

Helium and Harvey’s regular Jacob Christopher appears with his jokes being polished and smooth. His story about requiring three kidney transplants as a child wins the crowd before he admits to feeling more shame as an Insane Clown Posse fan than as a crack addict.

Frequent sketch actor and character-creator Scott Rogers rolls out a new incarnation named “Big Ed Barnum.” Big Ed invites us to buy lawn ornaments and honey baked hams. It is an extraordinarily well-written piece, yielding the biggest laughs from the entire audience so far.

Podcaster and karaoke jockey Scoot Herring guides us through cheesy pick-up lines then concludes his set by reciting Lil Wayne lyrics in the voice of David Attenborough, his juxtaposition working really well. The more I see of Herring and watch the material he writes, the more certain I am more folks should know about this weird and funny dude.

The night’s shortest set belonged to Xander Deveaux who discusses marriage equality and what it means for past generations of homosexuals. Deveaux is always unpredictable and has earned the coveted “absolutely-do-not-miss-this” distinction. He delights a young woman seated in the front row by holding her hand, looking her in the eye and asking her to scream with him.

Tim Hammer‘s feature act is a series of brief jokes designed with wit, wordplay and a winking nod to the audience. He is often described as a one-liner comic which, while not wholly untrue, is incomplete. His willingness to experiment with solid written material is fantastic to watch, given his deliberate, non-threatening delivery. His self-effacing jabs describing his own act radiate a charm, keeping us all on-board if a rare joke misses.

Headliner Sean Jordan thanks us for our participation and patronage. His easy-going persona is once again on display as he lampoons family reunions before delivering a series of what Jordan calls his “deep cuts” or old jokes he seldom tells. He continues to speak about family, walking the delicate line between advocating and antagonizing his father’s alcoholism. His slicing commentary is fun, yet somehow sensitive. Jordan continues to expand his act-outs, one while eavesdropping in a coffee shop line seems like only he could pull it off.

For the price of free, my entertainment for ninety-minutes was live local stand-up. The jokes were thoughtful, well-timed and accessible. The night flew by as this show’s pace never really slowed down once it got going after a rough start. Like most good comics, they got us to listen, then they got us to laugh.

CC: Willamette Week

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