21 questions

Judah Friedlander Loves Carrie Fisher, Hates Arrogance

Name: Judah Friedlander, The World Champion
Age: 40
Neighborhood: Queens

Occupation: Stand-up Comedian. He’ll be doing four extra-special (for the ladies) Valentine’s Shows this Saturday and Sunday at Comix.

Who’s your favorite New Yorker, living or dead, real or fictional?
Detective Gino Felino.

What’s the best meal you’ve eaten in New York?
I still gotta go with the cevapcici with kajmak at Sarajevo restaurant in Queens.

In one sentence, what do you actually do all day in your job?
Well I got lots of jobs. Stand-up comedy I do every day. That’s at night. I sometimes film 30 Rock all day. And I’m working on my instructional karate book, World Champion Karate Book, by the World Champion, Judah Friedlander which comes out later this year from It Books, a new subsidiary of HarperCollins. Oh yeah, I also go fucking insane all day. Oh, and I just remembered: I also spend time explaining to people on Facebook and Twitter that it really is me that they’re talking to and not my assistant or publicist. I don’t have an assistant or publicist. So, yes, this is really me answering your questions.

Would you live here on a $35,000 salary?
Yes. I’ve lived here for half that amount!

What’s the last thing you saw on Broadway?
Carrie Fisher’s show Wishful Drinking. That chick fuckin’ rocks. Easily the best one-person show I’ve ever seen. Legitimately funny, heavy, and serious at the same time, without ever pandering, being cheesy, manipulative, or forced. Carrie’s the real deal — a great writer and a great performer — and naturally funny.

Do you give money to panhandlers?
Yes. But I also hook them up with single chicks and dudes: I give them models who can’t get boyfriends because they’re so attractive that men are too intimidated to ask them out; and I give them confused but confident NYU students who are trying to find themselves.

What’s your drink?
I don’t drink. No liquids at all. Just solids.

How often do you prepare your own meals?
I kill everything I eat. And I eat every day.

What’s your favorite medication?
I hook up with lots of hot female doctors, but I never take their drugs.

What’s hanging above your sofa?
I don’t have a sofa. But on the wall, above where a sofa could go, is a painting I made of Bigfoot holding a mermaid that’s part unicorn and has a freshly severed arm. Several feet below the painting is the floor, which has all kinds of shit piled up on it. It’s very messy. The Hoarders TV show was going to profile my living room, but they deemed it “too disgusting.”

How much is too much to spend on a haircut?
One dollar.

When’s bedtime?
About 6:30 a.m.

Which do you prefer, the old Times Square or the new Times Square?
The Old Times Square, because they had Playland. A 24-hour video arcade. They had ten Pac-Man machines next to each other, which were next to five Galaxian machines stacked up against seven Defender machines. And tons more. And all the games were a quarter. Come on, man, you can’t beat that. And there was pressure, because if you didn’t play well, the people watching would think you were a pussy — and they would let you know that you were a pussy by either expressing it to you verbally or physically, or both. And you couldn’t just play the same game over and over all day. Because the other people waiting to play would put their quarter on the arcade game, either by its marquee, or next to the screen. And that quarter meant that they had reserved the next game. Sometimes there’d be seven quarters stacked up there. So if you had a shitty game, you’d have to wait for seven other people to play first before you could play again. And you had to be careful you didn’t get your wallet stolen while you were playing the game. It was a very intense situation.

What do you think of Donald Trump?
I like Trump. He’s got a good attitude. Whether you agree with him or not, that man has an opinion. And he expresses it. And you gotta respect that. There’s too many people in this town now who don’t have an opinion or an attitude. They have to read an article or a blog or have a conference with their friends before they can have their “own” opinion. And also, a little-known fact about Trump: and he won’t admit this — but he comes to me for advice on dating women.

What do you hate most about living in New York?
Hipsters pretending to be cool, but really they’re just arrogant. There’s no need for arrogance. Everyone’s just trying to get through the day. Relax, everybody.

Who is your mortal enemy?
I have no enemies. And that includes people from Jersey and Staten Island. I’m a New Yorker who LIKES “bridge and tunnel” people!

When’s the last time you drove a car?
Five minutes ago.

How has the Wall Street crash affected you?
It has not. I don’t do Wall Street, and I don’t crash. But I did like the movie Wall Street.

Times , Post, or Daily News?
What are you talking about? New York 1 News all the way, kid! Channel No. 1.

Where do you go to be alone?
Not in my head. Let’s see. That’s a tough one. Probably the laundromat.

What makes someone a New Yorker?
Good question. I don’t know what it means to be a New Yorker anymore. I guess if you work for a giant corporation and you’ve lived here for more than six weeks, you’re a New Yorker now. I think I used to know what it meant to be a New Yorker. I guess if you don’t eat at Cosi sandwich shop you’re a real New Yorker. If you don’t go to Hopstop.com to find your way around the city, you’re a real New Yorker. If you make too much noise on the sidewalk at night and bother people living in overpriced apartments, you’re a real New Yorker. If you get mugged, and then immediately go eat a slice with the money hidden in your sock that they did not steal from you, you’re a real New Yorker. If you cross the street wherever and whenever you want, you’re a New Yorker. And if you walk fast, you’re a New Yorker. Nobody walks fast in this city anymore. Everyone walks slow, and then goes to Equinox.

Judah Friedlander Loves Carrie Fisher, Hates Arrogance