Writings

Paramount Hudson Valley

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Jews, Non-Jews and Weight Loss

A little more than four years ago, I was walking on Cashio Street and I dropped something on the ground. When I bent down to get it, let’s just say it wasn’t easy to stand back up. I was almost 200 pounds with a big puffy face. I was really starting to feel old. A day or two later, as I was being introduced to go on stage, Dom Irrera, a comedian friend, said to me, “Look how fat you are.” Soon after that, I was with another friend when he pointed to an old guy using a walker while crossing a street and said, “We don’t want to end up like that.” OK, message received: Lose weight. So the next day, I decided to crawl out of my fat suit and do something about it. It took a year, but I lost 50 pounds and have kept those 50 pounds off for more than four years. Losing the weight was not hard. It was exciting. But keeping it off is murder. I now exercise seven days a week. That’s good, but the food is where it’s at. I have been an overeater my whole life — still am and […]

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Two Jews Walk Into Israel

On Dec. 19 and 20, Jerry Seinfeld and I will be performing stand-up comedy at the Menora Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv. I have not been this excited about doing a gig in years. Jerry and I had talked about going to Israel to perform and, God willing, it’s now happening. Jerry and I have been touring together for more than a decade. Touring with Jerry is a total first-class experience. We travel in a private jet, which is a lot better than an El Al flight, where every 10 minutes people wake you up to join a minyan or some woman with 14 kids wants you to hold the triplets while she tries to get the other 11 kids out of the bathroom. We stay in the best hotels and we laugh more in a day than most people laugh in a year. Plus, the people who come to see Jerry’s shows are, by far, the best audiences on the planet. I expect Israel to be all that and more. For me, performing in Israel is different from performing anywhere else in the world. The people in Israel are more than just an audience. They are my brothers and sisters. They are modern-day heroes.  And now […]

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The Comic

The Comic, a new play by Mark Schiff and directed by Mark Herrier, is a poignant and hilariously realistic look at the life of a stand-up on the road. Larry Miller,

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Articles by Mark Schiff: The Nineteen Boxes

My mother died July 9,1999. I remember coming home that Friday afternoon from picking up Shabbat flowers. I was parking my car when I saw my wife walking out of the house to greet me.

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Something to Laugh About

An insider’s look at the world of Jewish comedy. “I’ll tell you. I don’t get no respect. My mother stopped breast-feeding me as a kid. She told me she liked me like a friend.” (Rodney Dangerfield)

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I Used To Have A Life

I was looking at my three boys the other day as they argued over the remote control. One of them yelled, “Hey, give me that, you little rat.” It made me think that if this is any indication of how they will conduct

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Purim All Year

“Comedy is when you accidentally fall off a cliff and die. Tragedy is when I have a hangnail.” – Mel Brooks People love to laugh. I know this for a fact, because that’s what I do for a living. I make them laugh. But, big hearty laughter, out in public, is not something that’s really accepted. If you see a person walking in the street laughing out loud to himself, you’d think he was an idiot or crazy.

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Rest In Peace

I don’t know what women have that is the equivalent to a man relaxing. My experience is most women don’t ever seem to relax. They don’t ever seem to stop doing things. Their reason, as my mother was famous for saying, is “If I don’t do it,

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