Hello. My name is Paul Ogata. I am a stand-up comic. Or a comedian. Is there a difference? Famous dead comedian Ed Wynn once explained that, “a comic says funny things; a comedian says things funny.” But what did he know? Ed Wynn wasn’t even his real name. It was Isaiah Leopold. I say funny things funny. I hope. But at least I use my own name.
My job here in Afghanistan is done. I’m in the cockpit of an Air Force C-17, leaving Kandahar and riding off into the sunset. It’s like an old Western movie, except in this case the heroes are not the ones making the cinematic exit, they are staying behind. The comedians – Vargus Mason, Robert Zapata, Tamer Kattan and I – are heading out of Dodge with a greater respect and understanding for the sacrifices made by those heroes.
We became familiar with the various ways the soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen deal with the vast distances that separate them from their loved ones back home: video games, movies and the gym. But there was another, far more visible, more enduring pastime: art.
As US3 said, in their song Cantaloop, “Feel the vibe from here to Asia, dip trip flip fantasia.” I have no idea what that means.
What I do know is that I’ll be heading back to Asia for a couple of weeks this April! Catch me if you can. Here are the details: Continue Reading…
It’s a new year, and I’ve had a few comedians asking me if they should enter this comedy competition, or submit to that competition. Well, let me save time by telling all of you curious comedians at the same time: A comedy competition is a funny thing.
As a comedian, you really want to win these things. Sure, you tell yourself that winning isn’t everything, and just doing well would be enough. But the truth is you want to win. Badly. So you enter, and one of two things happen: Continue Reading…