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Jerry Seinfeld Came to My Town


This was the stage at the conclusion of Jerry’s set. Sorry, no pics of the man in action – I was restricted from flash photography and yelling Hello Newman. 

Among my passions, besides napping, eating cherries, and watching people hurt one another inside hockey arenas, is the realm of stand-up comedy. We were lucky enough to see Seinfeld, the other night.

He ran out onto the stage a la Letterman and straight into his routine. 90 or so minutes of inspired hilarity that only Seinfeld could pull off. I wouldn’t dream of burning any of his material; suffice to say his set was polished and accompanied by his dynamic movement across the stage. This punctuated his routines to excellent effect.

This is the uncharacteristically somber promo pic for his latest tour.

His style, as you know, is a patter. It is a patter that he originated, and has been appropriated by so many comics that it has become, perhaps, almost ‘hacky’, as they say in the industry. This is why he becomes a target for much criticism by (whom else) critics. Were you at the show that we attended, there certainly was no shortage of appreciation, and the laughs were frequent and quite explosive. He took frequent water breaks, out of a glass, poured from a bottle, of course. 

His frequent target is us, and our hypocrisies and ridiculous-seeming indulgences. We become cast as likable, but imbecilic idiots, and we love him for pointing it out to us. No one brings that recognition of abhorrent and absurd behaviour home like Jerry. A case in point was his lambasting of ‘binge watching’. “You’ll love this series, but the first four seasons are garbage”.

There is an absurdity nicely folded into much of what he espouses, and this, above all, is what appeals to me about Jerry, apart from his Everyman persona. Bob Newhart had this quality as well – another genius IMO.

Jerry does not riff as much as his pieces are too finely crafted and calibrated for maximum laughs for that. There were some inspired uses of wordplay that clearly came from his ‘Sein language’ days. An example is of a common practice of using the same word twice to emphasize a point (i.e.: it IS what it IS, if it HAPPENS it HAPPENS, etc). He does not end there, but garners further laughs by including a series of these into a funny narrative.


At about the mid-point of a 75 minute set, he ‘changed gears’, and delved into his own personal life, to this point. This is fairly new territory for this observational comic. He is married with 3 children and, at 64, moves about the stage with a grace that belies his age. The tone was never mawkish or sentimental in any way, and complemented the preceding material nicely. On being 64: When you’re in your 60s, if someone asks you to do something, you can just say ‘no’. When I’m in my 70s, I don’t think I’ll even answer. And I don’t lie in restaurants anymore. They ask, How is everything? I say, I don’t like it. Do you want the cheque? No, I intend to press charges.

Jerry takes the minutiae of all our lives, and presents it to us in the harsh light of day in all its absurdity. Love him or hate him, you cannot deny the monstrous influence he has in comedy and stand-up.


I am a Sansei, with two teens, and a hamster. This blog is a repository for ideas and observations, expressed in cartoon form, by and large. A bit of a journal too. Feel free to follow me on INSTAGRAM @ WILTOONS, (the Twitter for people who like to go out) where I post a journal comic. Thanks for dropping by! The pic is of me and my boy Peter Noone of Herman's Hermits. (not really a fan but he wanted his pic with me) © Wilton Sugiyama and Wiltoons, 2009 to 2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Wilton Sugiyama and Wiltoons with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. So there.

2 thoughts on “Jerry Seinfeld Came to My Town

  1. Thanks for sharing! I love Seinfeld. Little known fact, I once attempted to write a Seinfeld episode, I sent it off to somewhere by courier. God only know if they received it. It was before the internet was widely available for searching information. In any event, needless to say I never heard back. I did learn that they never accepted ideas for the show. So there you have it. In any event, I would LOVE to see him live!

    1. Interesting about that episode that you wrote. I protean episode for the Simpsons that, surprisingly, never saw the light of day.
      Seinfeld was like a well-oiled machine – old school all the way. Yes, Anne, make sure you catch him if he’s in your area. My second time seeing him! My mother (who I went with this time, first time with my wife) never stops quoting him from his TV show!

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