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“Everybody Loves Raymond”

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August 2008

Internationally headlining comedian Shaun Eli on stage at Cape Town Comedy Club in South Africa
The Ivy League of Comedy’s Shaun Eli headlining a show at South Africa’s Cape Town Comedy Club

Some stories from Shaun Eli’s international world of stand-up comedy

At a corporate show a drunk in the front would not stop interrupting. I did all I could to shut him up- jokes about his annual performance review coming up next week, announcing upcoming layoffs starting with the loudest, etc. Nothing stopped him (and his boss wasn’t there).

There are limits to how mean a comic can get with a disruptive audience member at a corporate show.

Finally I said “I’ll bet you twenty dollars you can’t shut up till I’m done” and I put a twenty dollar bill on the table right in front of him. He put his money down.

25 minutes later, he’d been silent for 25 minutes and I was done. I said Thank you. He said “Ha! I won!” and grabbed the cash.

I said “Best twenty dollars I ever spent!” and got offstage to great appreciation and applause.

On my way out the door 3 different guys stopped me, said “Good work” and slipped me money!
(I explained and gave back the last two)

The best twenty bucks I never spent.


After watching comic after comic deal with a loud & obnoxious drunk woman at the back of the room, when I took the stage and she interrupted I asked her for her name. It’s been my experience that once hecklers realize they’re no longer anonymous it’s psychologically tougher for them to continue.

So after Nancy interrupted I asked what she did for a living and she bragged that she had been a comic, that she used to perform all the time at Pips Comedy Club.

I said “That’s probably why they went out of business.”

She behaved for the rest of my set.

And no, I’m sure she wasn’t ever a pro comic, she probably performed on their amateur talent nights or at their open-mics.

Performing at a private fundraiser I was able to accurately guess the wealth of individual donors by the size of the age difference between husband and wife.



Prosecutor: Have you ever been convicted of a felony?

Me (potential juror): If it’s been expunged I can say No, right?

Prosecutor: Did you have a felony that was expunged?

Me: I don’t think you’re allowed to ask me that.

Prosecutor (to judge): Dismiss for cause, judge?

I won’t be called again for six years.