Actor / Entertainer3) I am a standup comedian named Ari Shaffir. I have a double special out on Netflix called "Double Negative." Get it? Because it's 2 specials and also because it makes a positive? You get it. Ask me anything.
Jul 21st 2017 by AriShaffir • 40 Questions • 405 Points
I'll be 100% honest and answer as many questions as you guys can throw out. I'll give you, let's say, 2 to 3 hours. But ask me questions for me, not for other people. I won't tell you which of my friends have cheated on their wives or girlfriends, but just about anything else. Why would you even ask that? Ask shit about me, not my dirtbag friends. And I mean, ask whatever you want. Ask me about standup in general. Ask me for romantic advice. Ask me about sports. Ask me about my own standup. Ask me about your chlamydia. I don't know. There's a shitload you could ask. You think of the questions, idiots. And I'll answer all of them. 2 to 3 hours. The more fun I'm having the longer I'll go.
I have a podcast called Ari Shaffir's Skeptic Tank
Here's a story of me having a weed scavenger hunt at the Mall of America.
I have another podcast called Punch Drunk Sports
Proof: Twitter post or
Hey Ari, congrats on your new special man! From what I've gathered listening to you and JR's podcats, I really dig your outlook on life. I have a question and then something to share with you.
Of all the places you've visited while backpacking, which place could you have definitely moved to if you wanted to?
Also! I made an animated short yesterday to go alongside a portion of the podcast titled "Ari And Joe Go On A Hike" - the part where you and Joe come across some rocks that look like animals.
Have a good AMA and keep doin you man!
I posted it on twitter hours ago. Good job. DM me your paypal and I'll send you $20.
Okay then... So what exactly happened between you and Comedy Central that led to them having Roy Wood Jr. host your show instead? I'm really bummed out we're not getting anymore Ari Shaffir & Friends TINH stories. And I don't live in the US so I can't go see your storyteller shows.
Is it as simple as CC being pissed because you sold your special to Netflix instead of them, or was there more behind the scenes?
Second question: Any plans to do another Asian tour? I had heard that you were possibly doing a show in Hong Kong back in May but that it didn't pan out. I just moved to HK a few months ago, would love to be able to see you do a set here.
I'm not an executive at Comedy Central so I can't tell you what was in their minds. That's a question you'll have to ask them.
But know that if it were up to me, I would have done the show for them forever.
Would you share some insights you got from the mushrooms?
Damn. There's so many.
I'll give you a couple.
1) We're all meaningless. In the grand scheme of history, we are a blink on the timeline. A blink. So I took that to mean I should live what makes me happy before I'm dust.
2) I can tell people what I think about them when it's a good thing. I was holding it back too much. After my first real shroom trip, I sat in my car on the way down and texted Chris Fairbanks to tell him that I thought his delivery style was really unique. Things like that. Why keep it to yourself.
There are hundreds more. These are just a deep one and a simple one.
Hey Ari, first off loved the special. Fucking pregnant from a tinder date?!
Anyways, I wanted to ask what it was like for you losing your religion. I grew up in a pretty religious family and have become pretty agnostic over the last 5-10 years. Im not really atheist, because who fucking knows, but I really don't believe in the traditional idea of religion. What was it like for you and did it put a lot of strain on you and your family?
It put tons of strain on me and my relationships with the people in my life. I only knew orthodox Jews. It was the hardest thing I had ever had to do at that point and my first real decision as a man.
But agnosticism, that's just immaturity. You only say "who knows" because so many other people believe in it. You're not saying "who knows" because you've seen some studies on it but you're not quite convinced. There's zero proof the other way. And yet you're letting them off the hook only because there are a lot of them. Well, there are a lot of rapists but you wouldn't say "maybe they have a point" just because there's lots of them. Make your own decisions. Grow up. You know the answer.
Because I kept getting injured and catching ring worm (twice) and staff (once).
Ari, what's the most savage thing you have done out of revenge in your life?
Also, loved Double Negative and it was the first special I got work friends to check out. They loved it too. Thanks for your world view!
Thanks! I'm glad you liked my special!
One time I waited for a year after my friend ratted on me. Waited till he thought I had long since forgot about it. And then we took a trip to San Diego. Super fun couple of days. And then I left him there. Drove back to LA on my own and left him a note that said "rat" on the outside. On the inside was a photocopy of the letter he had written ratting me out a year before. #neverforget
He ratted on me for doing what I did to Bobby Lee's car. Even though he's the one who did it and I just helped.
I just looked for the clip of what we did. It's the last 19 minutes of my Passive Aggressive special. If you find it, share it. If it's in the whole special, please make a standalone clip of it.
Was the omission of the J in Luis' name in your special on purpose just to fuck with him?
I have no respect for that J. None. When I got him to sign a release form to allow me to use his name (because of past problems I've run into) he said yes on the condition that I use his middle initial, too. I outright refused.
And this "doggie" thing he's got going right now is even worse. Fuck Gomez.
They're not mutually exclusive. #botharefat
When you were in Southeast Asia, what did you use to find hostels without bedbugs? Word of mouth doesn't seem like it would be trustworthy enough.
Legitimate question. There are two sites. Hostelworld and Agoda. Both have reviews. And word of mouth actually does kind of work. A bedbug rumor is the worst thing that can happen to a hostel and when it happens, word spreads fast. Like chlamydia around the Comedy Store fast.
Ari, fellow depression sufferer here. You are an inspiration to me as someone who has found their way to happiness after a brutal depression. Are you still medication free? What helps more career success or doing what you really enjoy?
Depression actually helped me find career success and the ability to commit to doing what I really enjoy. Not the other way around.
I hope you get better, dude. I know how much it sucks. I just lost a friend to hanging and I think I could've done something if I knew how bad it was.
Try to take in some sun every day. Like 15-30 minutes of direct sunlight. Every day. And stay on the medication until you and your doctor are ready to go off as a team. And when you do go off, challenge the people in your life to stay up on you and to tell you when or if they think you're starting to slip.
I'm sorry this is happening to you.
What do you think is the best part of South East Asia to visit?
Also, I think your podcast is great.
Thank you. I don't think you can say there's a "best" part. It comes down to what you're into. Thailand has a way bigger party scene than Myanmar, for instance. So if you're into partying, I'd go to Thailand. But Myanmar is far less mapped out. So if you're into exploring, I'd say Myanmar.
Each country is its own thing. And the experiences you have will depend on your attitude, who you meet, and even things like the weather. So find some place that interests you and realize that no matter where you choose, it'll be the right place because you'll be traveling.
Watched Double Negative the day it came out - really enjoyed it, I'm a big fan - have met you a few times around LA and you've always stopped for a quick conversation, so thanks for that.
I too am a big fan of camping/mushroom trips, and you've mentioned going to Malibu Creek State Park a few times.
Have you been inside the watertower there? It's accidentally one of those soundwash/resonators and is my favorite place to end up doing mushrooms at.
That sounds awesome. No, all we did was hike to find the abandoned MASH set. And we failed at that. So we just walked and walked and then walked back when the sun came up.
When I was in Nashville, Bert Kreischer showed me a really big check he had just gotten. He hadn't been home yet to cash it. And he was really proud of the large dollar amount. We were all hanging out in his hotel room. And he came over and was like, "check this out!" and handed me this massive dollar amount check to look at.
So I tore it into a hundred pieces.
Who would you Marry, Fuck, Kill? Steve Rannazzisi, Big Jay, Bert
Marry Steve (nicest home), Fuck Bert (softest ass), Kill Big Jay (worst taste in music).
Who would win in a fight? Tom Segura or Burnt Christhairs?
I believe Tom would win. While Burnt outweighs him considerably, Tom is the only one of the two who has boxing experience. And Christhairs main move is his laugh, which I don't see him being able to properly use as a weapon.
All of your travel shenanigans have really made me feel attempting to go on my own adventure. It's completely possible if i just save 20 bucks a paycheck or so for half a year. I'm going to try and make it happen ! I really enjoy the content you put out. There is something so genuinely unique about you. Where would you recommend traveling to in the future? What would you recommend to someone who doesn't know how they want to spend their time doing things before they die?
if you ever need inspiration, i recommend the series tengen toppa gurren lagann, its a lot at first, but worth it.
You'll probably have to save more than that. $20 a paycheck is $500 a year.
I'll refer to some paraphrased advice from "Vagabonding" by Rolf Potts. Once you decide you want to travel, stop by EVERYTHING. Make no new purchases. Every shirt you don't buy puts you closer to being in some faraway place. Every lunch you pack from home gets you a little closer to crazy foreign street foods. Every pregame session and snuck in flask put you that much closer to drinking a local beer in a new country.
You can save way more than you think. But you gotta stop making all purchases. And spend as little on recreation as you can. You can save up thousands like that in no time.
And you could go to SE Asia for 4 months on $5,500. Guaranteed. Flights included.
So do you want that or the new iPhone?
Have fun on your trip.
What's the best thing a fan can do after a show? Worst thing? Buying the comics a drink, asking for pictures, etc? What do you love and what is annoying/downright awful?
Don't care for pictures. They're so impersonal and it's just annoying to have to line up and fake smile over and over and over. I know people want a picture, so I do it, but it's not enjoyable at all. My brain completely shuts down and I lose an hour of my life. But I do it for the fan experience.
Heavy handshakes are pretty great.
Yes. Very soon. In August for sure.
Not yet. What do you think of it?
Hello Mr Ari. You have always been seen here and elsewhere as a horrible person. I'm saying this from podcasts that I've listening too and personal stories from people who have met you. Examples being You screaming at fatman on lunch drunk sports , punching bobby lee in the head , not paying Tommy Buns for the bet you set with him and also you making Whitney Cummings cry. With all this being said you also have your annual shroom fest. My question is are you still this horrible person that people make you out to be or have psychedelics changed you and these traits being something from the past ?
Hahah. I'd say a lot of that "horrible" stuff is misunderstanding of the details from people who weren't there. That mixed with me almost never defending myself to people I don't know.
But if I was really such a horrible person, I feel like more comics would have stopped being friends with me, no? People like Bobby, Buns, the fat man, and Whitney would avoid me instead of laughing with me. Right? Or no?
I've generally found in life that when someone does something and my reaction to it is "That's crazy" there's almost always details I didn't know about. Because generally people aren't crazy. Generally they're all pretty normal in some range. So when something doesn't add up it's because not all the inputs were included. Next time you hear a woman say "He just started screaming at me for no reason" think if that seems likely. Was she talking about a deranged homeless person? No? She was talking about a normal guy? And he started screaming at her for no reason? Sounds fishy.
But I used to believe that stuff at first glance, too, so I don't hold it against anybody.