Mike Birbiglia: The New One (2019) Movie Script

Hey! I wanna get better
I didn't know I was lonely
Till I saw your face
I wanna get better
Better, better, better
I wanna get better
I didn't know I was broken
Till I wanted to change
I wanna get better
Better, better, better
I wanna get better
I didn't know I was broken
Till I wanted to change
[cheering and applause]
[music fades]
Thank you!
Thank you so much. I'm gonna put this on.
You gu... you guys
can turn off your things.
And, uh... and we can start this up.
Thanks for, uh... thanks for...
thanks for making it here,
to this big, beautiful theater.
I'm gonna...
I'm gonna tell you a story tonight.
But first,
I want to tell you
about my couch.
I love my couch.
It's first thing
I ever dropped money on in my life.
In your twenties,
you just sort of get a couch...
on the street.
Like, it's garbage.
And then, you bring it home
to your six roommates.
And they're like, "Nice!"
And then, you reach an age...
For me, I was... I was 25.
I was living in Astoria, Queens,
and I was just like, "I'm a goddamn man.
I'm gonna buy a goddamn couch."
And I went to a department store
and I was like, "Wait.
How much is it?
A thousand dollars?
Is there gonna be a sale?
This is the sale?
Do you think you might go out of business
at some point?
You are going out of business?"
I thought about this a lot.
I think the reason a couch is so expensive
is that it's a deceptively sophisticated
piece of technology.
It's a...
It's a bed...
that hugs you.
Right? It's like,
"Do you want to watch TV?
Do you want to eat pizza?
You sure do like eating!
But I like that about you."
And beds are comfy.
But they know it.
They're like,
"I'd like to be called a 'king.'
I'm gonna need a box spring."
I'm like, "For what?"
They're like, "I don't touch the floor."
"Get your hands off that tag.
I'd like this room named after me."
Couches are humble.
They're like, "This is about you."
"Do you want to take a nap? Be my guest.
Do you want to have sex with my arm?"
I'll think about it.
I feel terrible. How...
I'm gonna pause for a moment...
and point out that you seem younger
than some of the other audience members.
Is this your mom?
[woman] Yes.
I know sometimes it's a rude question.
How old are you?
Before we proceed...
I want you to know
that I am not doing anything wrong.
You... you just have bad parents.
-[laughs] I, uh... No.
They're wonderful parents,
but there may be some things
they need to explain later.
Or in seven years.
But I'm thrilled you're here. I, uh...
[laughter continues]
My wife and I got married
almost exactly ten years ago,
here in New York City.
Actually, at City Hall,
which is about 56 blocks that way.
And, uh, it's a great place
to get married.
If you have a chance,
very convenient, lots of subway lines.
We took the subway home.
We took selfies on the subway.
We ate pizza and hamburgers
at this place in our neighborhood
at the time, called Big Nicks,
and then we took a nap...
on our couch.
We've spent thousands of hours together...
on this couch.
We've watched classic films on the couch.
We've eaten 20 birthday cakes
on the couch.
We've laughed hysterically on the couch.
We've cried in each other's arms
when we realized we were gonna
have to put our cat, Ivan, to sleep
on the couch.
It's soft, yet firm. Filthy, yet spotless.
Colorful, yet no one can agree
on what color it is.
I think it's green.
My wife thinks it's gray.
I looked it up...
Which isn't a color...
But it's fitting,
'cause there's chocolate in it.
I love being home on my couch,
but I travel for my job.
I do this in, sometimes,
a hundred cities in a year,
which is more cities
than there are.
Some of them are just an Applebee's
with a dream.
And I-I love the shows,
but the travel can be rigorous.
Often, when I return home,
I'm entirely empty.
Just bones, and garbage, and Diet Coke,
all strung together
by those plastic ringlets
that bind sodas and strangle ducks,
and I collapse on the couch,
and I say to my wife,
I say, "Clo..." Her name's Jen.
leave me by the side of the road.
But she doesn't.
She revives me.
Jen has a soft, sweet voice.
It has a thread count of 600.
It always seems
like she's telling you a secret,
like, "I'm gonna make tea."
I'm like, "I won't tell anyone."
So, we'll lie on the couch,
and she'll order me
a chicken kabob platter
and scratch my back,
and we'll snuggle with our cat Mazzy
and watch a documentary about murder.
And that's what love is.
And it all takes place...
on the couch.
In October of 2012,
I'm doing a show in Boston,
and I'm staying with my brother Joe.
My brother Joe used to be so cool.
-And then he had two kids.
And now he's a loser.
-No, he's not a loser.
I will say, like, it's just less fun
to visit his house.
Like, I'm trudging through living room
and there's crap all over the floor.
I'm trying to eat breakfast
at the kitchen table
and I realize there's one of those sticky
yogurt pouch containers underneath me,
and the table's filled with wet Cheerios,
and sippy cups, and Aquaphor.
And Joe's trying to show me
this video of his son,
but his son is sitting right there,
and I'm like,
"I got Henry live!
-I don't need Henry on tape."
And the video itself... underwhelming.
-You know, like...
"This is a 12-minute video
of Henry picking apples."
-I'm like, "Nobody wants to see that."
There's so much great content out there.
I mean, I...
I was on YouTube, I saw a 90-second video
of a cat giving another cat a massage.
Don't waste my time...
...with Henry picking apples.
And as I'm watching this,
actual Henry starts
whacking me in the eye
with this foam bat,
and I'm like, "What game is this?"
And my...
My brother does nothing.
He's like a world wrestling referee,
like, "I don't know.
He's not supposed to do that."
I don't know what to do.
I hide in the bathroom
and I'm trying to pee,
but they have the child-proof circle
inside the circle, inside the circle,
like a carnival peeing game
that I'm losing badly.
And then Henry pushes in the door.
Now I'm peeing into the wall...
which has pee on it already.
And then...
I lock the door.
I'm standing in Joe's bathroom
for 15 minutes,
doing no activity
other than avoiding his family.
And I pull out my phone.
I'm looking up things
going on in town that night.
I walk out, I go, "Joe, we should see
this band at the Paradise."
He says, "I can't go to a concert, Mike!
I have kids!"
I said, "Sorry."
And he says, "Don't apologize.
It's the most joy I've ever experienced."
Congratulations on your ambiguous tone.
And so...
So we don't go out.
We stay home
and watch these Baby Einstein videos,
which have yielded no geniuses
to my knowledge. There was...
There's nothing about
the theory of relativity in the one I saw.
It was a pig playing a xylophone,
and then a dog barks,
and a lady's voice goes, "Pillow!"
-And then...
my nephew spits yogurt on his shirt,
and my brother's like, "He's a genius."
And I'm like, "I'm not seeing it, but..."
I fall asleep around 7:30 p.m.,
because being around children
makes me want to be unconscious
at all times.
-And then...
I'm wide awake around 4:15 a.m.
with this fierce cold from sleeping
in this Petri-dish house, and this...
ringing foam-bat headache,
and I hobble onto a 6:30 a.m. flight,
and, sure enough,
there's a baby across the aisle,
screaming at the top of his lungs.
And in that moment...
I can't defend this, but in that moment,
I remember thinking,
"That baby doesn't need to be anywhere!"
-You know what I mean by that?
I can't even begin to defend it.
It's just how I felt.
I was like, "It doesn't know
it lives in Boston!
It doesn't know what New York City is!
I'm wearing noise-canceling headphones,
-which apparently are not enough.
You need baby-canceling headphones,
which are condoms, I guess. But I...
Look, I think we've got to get babies
off planes.
I feel like we got rid of smoking
in the '80s,
we can get rid of babies now,
or bring back smoking,
get these babies some cigarettes,
'cause they're...
They're so stressed out.
And so, I land...
I land at JFK,
I take a cab to our apartment,
I collapse on our beloved couch,
and it hugs me.
Jen gets me some mint tea
and some hot-and-sour soup,
and I say, "Clo...
people with kids...
are miserable."
And look, maybe I have
a low tolerance for children, 'cause...
I've lost a lot of great friends to kids.
Because it really is
like a disease in some ways,
but it's worse than a disease,
'cause they want you to have it, too.
They're like, "You should have kids, too."
"I'm watching you do it
and I'm thinking I'm gonna not do it."
They're like zombies.
Like, "You should eat brains."
"I'm watching you eat brains
and it seems like it ruined your life."
And the way you kill zombies--
You probably know this from the movies,
right? Is you shoot 'em...
-in the head...
with a shotgun.
you chop off their heads with a machete
or a samurai sword,
which is also
the way you kill anyone.
So I'm talking about this with Jen,
and she laughs,
and I laugh, and we laugh...
as one.
And then she says,
"But if we had a baby,
I think it would be different."
And I was like...
[imitates gun being cocked]
You got bit!
I tried to remain calm.
I said, "Clo, I was very clear...
when we got married
that I never wanted to have a kid,"
which, by the way, gets you nothing.
Being very clear...
is apparently useless,
because she said I was clear.
I didn't want to have a baby at the time,
but that I might change.
And I said, "I was clear...
I would never change."
She said,
"If you don't want to have a baby,
maybe I'll have one on my own,
and we can stay married."
And I said, "Oh, that'll be a good look."
Just you, and me, and this kid
that's a cross between you
and some grad student
jacking his way through SUNY Purchase.
I mean, you can't...
You can't have a kid on the side, like...
-"We keep him in the shed!"
I mean, people do it.
I've seen the documentaries.
It's just... those aren't my role models.
And then people will be like,
"You guys have kids?"
I gotta be like, "She does."
She says a baby wouldn't have
to change the way we live our lives.
I said, "Did you get...
less smart?
Because you used to be so smart,
and what you're saying currently, it...
-is factually incorrect."
By the way, I've never wanted to have
a kid for seven specific reasons.
Number one, I've never felt like
there should be more of me in the world.
Don't get me wrong. I think one is funny.
You know? One...
Ha-ha! Good one!
You know what I mean? Like...
"Let's get tickets." But...
But I believe in survival of the fittest,
and this is not the fittest.
-Like I...
I have the body of someone
who's just about to start P90X.
And then, doesn't. And...
And I have a long medical history.
I had a malignant tumor in my bladder
when I was 19.
I was very lucky.
Uh, they took it out.
Uh, it hasn't come back, but every year
I go for what's called a cystoscopy,
where they take a rod about this long,
with the width of a Twizzler
and a camera on the end,
and they stick it
through your urethra to look at--
I know!
While you're awake.
I should say
while other people are awake.
I get knocked out for it. But I didn't...
I didn't the first time. When I was 20...
my urologist, Dr. Kaplan,
stuck me in the chair
with the leg stirrups,
and he put on
a local anesthetic and some jelly,
which was quite cold. And the moment...
The moment he made contact,
I go...
And he said, "Relax your butt."
And I said, "You relax your butt!"
By the way, if you ever find yourself
in a situation
where you need to convince someone
to relax their butt...
one thing I would suggest not saying...
is, "Relax your butt."
I feel like it has
almost a reversing quality. I...
Look, if that's your end game,
maybe throw a curveball like,
"Relax your ears!"
You'd be like, "Oh, my butt feels
pretty loose!" And then, it just...
Then it just slides right in there,
which is all to say...
I get knocked out for this every year.
Last year was particularly eventful,
'cause I went for my physical,
and I was nearing 40,
so they asked to do the prostate exam,
which you probably know,
is a finger in the butt
and one in your mouth
if you're close to the physician. And I...
I think that's what it is. I couldn't...
I couldn't handle it. Like...
He went for it, and I was like...
"Oh! No, thank you!" And so...
So, when I went for my cystoscopy,
I said to Dr. Kaplan, I go, "Hey...
while I'm under...
um, do you mind...
sticking your finger...
in my butt?"
Dr. Kaplan goes, "Yeah, I can do that."
And I thought, like,
I might be a medical genius.
Like, I never...
I never went to school for this,
I barely finished Our Bodies, Ourselves,
-and I just...
invented the Urology two-for,
which if it catches on,
should be renamed the "Birbiglia Bonus."
And so...
So, I had bladder cancer.
I have a life-threatening sleepwalking
disorder, which is very extreme.
I mean, 13 years ago, I jumped in my sleep
through a second-story window
of a La Quinta Inn.
Yeah. When I say "through,"
I mean "through the glass."
The glass was double-paned.
I ended up with 33 stitches in my legs.
The glass was a centimeter
from my femoral artery.
Had it struck there, I could have just
bled out on the front lawn and died.
I was diagnosed with a very rare thing.
It's called REM Behavior Disorder.
So when I go to bed at night,
I take medication
and I sleep in a sleeping bag...
up to my neck.
And I wear mittens...
so I can't open the sleeping bag.
And that's my life!
Yeah, there are details in my life
that are both setups
and punchlines. And...
I make a lot of jokes about it,
but it's a very serious thing.
There are people who have what I have,
who, in rare instances, have been known,
to physically harm the person
they're in bed with
while remaining asleep.
Uh, there was a news story
a few months ago,
which people were tweeting at me,
which, by the way...
-Don't do that. Where...
A guy goes camping with his wife.
He has a dream
there's a wild animal in the tent,
and he's punching and kicking,
and he wakes up.
It's not an animal, it's his wife.
And she's dead.
-[audience gasps]
-I know.
So I don't think
that's a great quality in a dad. So...
So I had bladder cancer,
I have a life-threatening
sleepwalking disorder.
My health is not trending upward.
Last year, I went for my physical.
My doctor took blood and he called me.
He said, "You have Lyme disease...
I was like, "One at the time.
Everybody's gonna get a chance."
-It was like...
It was like going
to a parent-teacher conference,
and they're like, "Your son's getting D's,
and he's been molested by the gym teacher.
We're gonna need separate meetings.
I couldn't believe it.
Thirty-nine years old,
diagnosed with type-2 diabetes.
He said, "Is there anything in your diet
that might be spiking your blood sugar?"
I said, "Sometimes, I eat pizza
until I'm unconscious."
He said, "I think that might be it."
So I had Lyme disease, diabetes,
I'm generally devoid of joy.
I really am. I try.
Like, I was listening to this TED Talk
about how to find joy in your life.
And the host said,
"One thing everyone enjoys...
is confetti."
And I thought, "Oh, no!
I hate confetti."
To me, confetti is just garbage
that we throw into the air.
So I had cancer,
life-threatening sleeping disorder,
Lyme disease, diabetes,
I dislike joy.
I'm not exactly handing off
A-plus genes here.
Number two...
I love my marriage, and I feel...
I really do, I feel so lucky
to have found my wife.
And I don't fall for these clichs
at weddings,
where they'll say, like,
"Two becomes one."
But I do feel, if you're lucky,
in a relationship, there are moments...
And I mean...
Like, this is a moment.
That was a moment.
There are moments...
where you feel like your souls
are colliding
in a way that two souls have never
collided in the history of humankind.
And you think, "How did I get this lucky?"
My wife and I hate going to parties,
but we love driving away from parties.
A few years ago, we went
to our friend Katie's birthday,
and this lady got up and gave a speech,
which isn't a thing.
that's why I remember it so well.
She said, "Last year,
Katie and I went scuba diving,
and her oxygen tank
got stuck on the rocks,
and I wriggled it free,
and I may have saved her life.
I saved your best friend's life."
Jen and I lock eyes from across the room,
and we project the sentence,
"We're gonna talk about this for years."
And we have. So, here's...
Okay, here's how it comes up.
Whenever Jen and I do
something sweet for one another,
like if she zips me up
in my sleeping bag before bed,
what she will do, and she'll say,
"It's time to put you in your pod!"
And I'll say, "Thanks."
And she'll say,
"I saved your best friend's life."
It's never not funny.
It literally has never not been funny.
And I don't want to give that up.
I don't want that to change.
I don't want a third person showing up
like, "What about me?"
I'm like, "We don't even know you!"
Number three.
I don't know anything and I'm not ready
to teach the children.
I mean, I've read hundreds of books.
I've retained very little.
In third grade,
they taught us photosynthesis,
and I thought, "This is not gonna stick."
And it hasn't.
I'm not 100% sure why it rains.
I'm not sure you are either.
I don't know anything for certain.
I think it's entirely possible
consciousness is a hallucination.
How do I explain that to a kid?
"See that juice box?
Don't be so sure."
I can't explain existence.
I was raised Catholic,
but I didn't really believe in God.
I just believed in my mom.
And my mom believed in God.
It was like I was in this weird
three-way with God,
where I'm like, "It's okay if He's here
while you're here,
but and I'm not gonna do anything
with just me and Him."
To be clear,
I've never had sex with my mom.
Or God, or had a three-way.
So it's a true metaphor.
Number four, I have a cat.
-Number five, I...
I have a job.
That's what we're doing here.
It took me a long time
to figure out anything I was good at.
I wasn't good at video games, or archery,
or whatever the hell kids do.
And then, I figured this out.
I don't want to give that up.
My brother's like,
"Mike, you can have a kid and a career."
And I said,
"Yeah, Joe, but it'll be worse."
If we're being honest with ourselves...
kids hold us back.
My best example of this
is the history of women.
Stay with me.
I feel like women are smarter than men,
their brains are more sophisticated,
and they make 21 cents less on a dollar.
I think women are smarter from birth.
You ever talk to a two-year-old girl?
Two-year-old girls are like,
"Would you like to have a tea party?
A two-year old boy is like, "No!"
And it doesn't get better. I mean...
Marginally better. If I were a woman,
I'd be furious at all times.
I'd be like, "These morons are in charge
of anything?
How did this happen?"
The answer is "children."
Which brings me to number six: I don't
think there should be children anymore.
Nothing drastic. I think the current
children can see through their term.
I just think maybe we cut it off there,
Look, we were given the Earth
and we failed.
At a certain point we got to call it,
right? I mean, I...
And I live here with you guys
in this supposedly liberal city.
If we're honest, we barely recycle.
-I mean, come on.
It's like there's the garbage,
and then the blue bin,
which is basically like,
"Is this anything? Like...
Here are some batteries
stuffed in an ink cartridge,
could you turn that into something else?"
-And then...
And then we just throw it on trucks
and ship it to Pennsylvania,
which is fine,
till New York sinks into the ocean,
and we all have to move
to Pennsylvania, like...
"I'll sleep in the almond milk jug,
and you can sleep in the packing peanuts.
Someday we'll move to Blu-ray Mountain."
I mean...
In Germany...
In Germany, they recycle 45 percent
of their garbage.
Thirty-eight percent of their garbage,
they incinerate.
Granted, their history of incineration,
not great, and...
Obviously sensitive, I get it.
Germans are always like,
"We're not Nazis."
I'm like, "Yeah, but you know some."
I mean, I don't...
I don't know any.
How many do you know?
Some? I think that's enough
to exaggerate for humor.
Which brings me to number seven.
People aren't great.
Not just Nazis. I mean,
people in general are not great. And...
And look, you guys seem fine.
And the conventional wisdom
is that people are generally good.
But are they?
I'm not sure.
Like, I think women are okay.
I think men are on thin ice.
I mean, historically, right,
if you zoom out a little.
if you zoom back in, and then...
And then, personally,
think about the men you know,
think about the men you've met
in your life.
When I do that, I think, like,
two or three are horrible.
Really, unspeakable.
Just a few, two or three. Most are decent.
I think that's sort of the ceiling
for men. I think...
I think "good" is aspirational.
I think "great" is a fantasy.
If you're with someone who's great,
get out of there.
The men we used to think were great
were priests, politicians,
and gymnastics doctors. It hasn't...
It hasn't ended well for "great."
And look...
I think sometimes it's hard to tell.
When I was 23, I was in Amsterdam
with a friend of a friend,
which is a cautionary type of person.
A friend of a friend is someone
you murder people with, or...
buy steak knives from.
And we're walking...
through the Red Light District.
This is how naive I was at 23.
I didn't know what that meant.
If you don't know,
it's a neighborhood in Amsterdam
that has literally
hundreds of prostitutes in windows,
illuminated by these red lights.
And I'm walking
with my friend of a friend,
I'm thinking these are bars
or strip clubs,
and I say to my friend of a friend, like,
"Should... should we go in one?"
He says, "Yeah,
but we gotta choose carefully."
I said, "How come?"
He said, "It's expensive."
I said, "How expensive?"
He said, "It's about $200."
I said, "$200...
to go into a strip club?
He says, "No...
They're prostitutes."
I said...
"We gotta choose carefully."
I wanna be very clear.
I don't want to tell you...
this story.
It's the only story I'll tell you tonight
I genuinely do not want to tell you,
but I feel like it's essential
to the larger story I'm telling.
I chose someone
who didn't have a long line.
There was something about the line
that made it too real.
Like, if I were waiting in line,
I could imagine thinking,
"The line for this prostitute
is outrageous!" And I...
I chose someone
who sort of looked like me.
She was a cross between Matt Damon
and Bill O'Reilly. And...
She walks me up these rickety steps
into this room
that's brightly lit and spare.
There's only a bed
in the shape of a gurney.
She says, "Take off all your clothes
and sit on the bed," and I did that.
And my body...
was not excited.
Which is, of course, a euphemism...
for my penis.
And I... I thought that would be it.
Like, she called it, like an umpire.
Like, "Rain delay."
But-but that's not...
That's not what happened.
What happened was that she took
a condom and she put it on the thing.
Which I didn't know
was physically possible.
I grew up in Massachusetts,
and we had health class in seventh grade,
and we put a condom on a banana,
but never on a water balloon.
So she puts the thing on the thing,
[stammers] and then...
starts fellating the thing.
And then, if I were to guess,
I'd say about 40 seconds later, I just...
And then, she said, "I guess you're done."
And I said to her...
and I'll never forget this.
I said, "Can't we just hang out?"
I'm telling you this long,
embarrassing story to make the point...
that I consider myself...
So I explain all this to my wife.
Because it's part of my larger point.
I said, "Clo...
Why would you want to bring a child
into this world with me?
I'm a walking pre-existing condition,
the Earth is sinking into the ocean,
we're about to be living
in the movie Waterworld,
which did terribly at the box office.
People are horrible, and I'm not great."
She gets real quiet.
My wife is a poet, like an actual poet.
So, she'll say one line,
and then there's a lot of space.
She says, "I know all of that.
And I think you'd be a good dad."
So that night,
we have sex without a condom,
which, if you haven't tried it...
by all means, give it a chance.
Not with my wife, but with your partner.
It's a...
It's a phenomenal activity.
There are videos of it online. And...
But I was anxious.
When we were doing it,
I was like, "I'm not sure!"
Which is not sexy language.
That's right up there with
"Is the oven on?" And...
"I'm gonna wear my shirt." And...
I was anxious, 'cause I'd never had sex
without a condom,
which is a shocking thing to do
for the first time.
It's like going on a road trip,
and halfway through the trip,
the car just flies, and you're like...
"This is better!
There's no traffic!
And we can go anywhere!"
And so...
So it's exhilarating,
but also nerve-racking.
The next day, I call Joe.
I'm like, "I am freaking out,
'cause I'm flying the car."
And he says, "What's the worst thing
that could happen?"
I said, "I don't think
you're following the analogy. I...
[stammers] I'd have a kid.
Is there anything I should know?"
He says, "You can't know what it's like
to have a kid...
until you have a kid."
And I say, "Can you be more specific?"
And he takes a long, deep breath...
and he says, "It's relentless."
I say... I say,"What do you mean
by 'relentless'?"
He says, "You know how you go to the gym
and you push, and you sweat,
and it sucks?"
I said, "Yeah."
He says, "When you have a kid,
you can't even go to the gym."
And then he says,
"But I'm not worried about you, Mike,
'cause whatever happens,
whether you have a kid or not,
it's not gonna be better or worse.
It's just gonna be new."
So, Jen and I attempt to conceive
for eight months, and it does not work,
'cause like I said, my body is a lemon...
and my boys don't swim, which killed me,
'cause if I'd known that in my twenties,
I would have had a much better time.
-In my twenties...
I treated my sperm
like it was plutonium. Like...
"Don't let that sperm
anywhere near those eggs!"
Like, there'd be this infestation
of tiny neurotic Mike Birbiglia toddlers,
like, "Why would I slide down the slide
when I can walk down the steps?"
It turns out I do not have plutonium,
I have flat soda.
-And, uh...
And my boys don't swim,
which isn't surprising.
I mean, I don't swim.
-Uh, I...
I swim, but in circles.
I'm always ordering hot dogs
at the side of the pool.
Which is not a quality you want
in your sperm,
that hungry, lethargic quality.
You want your sperm to be like,
"I swim from sea to sea!"
Like the Ryan Lochte of sperm
without all the fake robbery.
But I found out...
'Cause I... [stammers]
I went to Dr. Kaplan,
and he asked me
to masturbate into a cup.
I said, "That's rude."
And he said,
"No, it's a medical procedure...
called 'masturbating into a cup.'"
I said, "If it's for science,
sure, I get that."
Two things about masturbating
into a cup at the doctor's...
I will limit it to two.
I could talk about this for six hours.
everybody knows what's happening.
Doctors, nurses,
people in the waiting room,
the UPS guy down the hall.
And you're trying to play cool.
You're like, "Oh, yeah,Brexit."
-You know what I mean? Just like...
"Sea levels rising rapidly."
Everyone's like, "You're about
to ejaculate in Tupperware."
They give you porn,
and it's the most extreme porn
I had ever seen.
-I was...
I was like, "Easy, medical porn."
Like, here I was...
all these years,
thinking I'm taking in the USDA
recommended levels of porn,
and they're like...
"You're gonna need a lot more than that.
You're gonna need to take a multi."
And so...
So I go in and I do the thing.
Dr. Kaplan calls me a few days later
with the results.
He says, "Mike, you're gonna have
to come back in...
-and masturbate into a cup."
Again? And now I'm like, "Is this a joke?"
I mean...
Really, 'cause I'm in the jokes business,
-and actually...
that would be a pretty good joke,
you convince a stranger to masturbate...
into a cup,
and then you're like, "He did it!"
They're like, "He did?"
"Yeah, now what do we do?"
"Ask him to do it again."
"Ask him to do it again?
Why would he do it again?"
"I don't know. I don't know
why he did it in the first place.
This whole thing is a sham!"
A cup, by the way, being the least
conveniently shaped receptacle.
One could masturbate into a cup,
assumes a level
of composure and accuracy...
that is so rare in this activity.
A cup assumes
the precision of an archer, like...
When, in fact, you're like,
"It's everywhere!
Put some in the cup.
Get me some gloves!"
And now everybody knows. And so...
So I go in and I do it again.
This time, I waive off the medical porn.
I say, "I'm gonna use memory porn,
'cause I'm a...
I'm a Christian." And, uh...
Dr. Kaplan calls me at the office
a few days later with the results.
He says, "Mike...
If you want to get your wife pregnant,
you're gonna have to have
what's called a varicocele repair.
I'd never heard this term.
He said,
"We cut an incision in your abdomen,
we go into the vein adjoining a testicle,
we squeeze out the excess blood,
we patch you up,
and you can't walk for about a week."
I said, "I don't even want to have a kid."
Like, I...
I had to level with him because
it was escalating so rapidly, and...
I was like, "Dr. Kaplan,
I wasn't gonna tell you this,
but I don't even really want
to have a kid,
and now you're describing
a Black Mirror episode, and I don't...
I don't want to be in that one." And...
Dr. Kaplan says to me something
I never expected anybody
to say to me as an adult,
never mind a medical professional.
He says, "Mike,
here's what they don't tell you.
No men want to have kids."
And I go, "That's not true.
Tell me more."
He said, "Our wives want us to,
we all go along with it.
It's the best thing
that'll ever happen to you.
You'll call me and you'll thank me.
It is the most joy...
you will ever experience."
And I stumbled out of his office
in a daze.
I mean, I nearly wandered into traffic.
And then, I turned around...
and I walked back in,
and I make an appointment
for a varicocele repair.
And they ask you to sign
some pretty extreme forms.
Like, "We may accidentally
cut out your balls."
I'm like, "Do your best, Mike Birbiglia."
"We may replace your balls
with Chinese yin and yang balls."
"Namaste, Mike Birbiglia."
The night before the scheduled procedure,
I made the mistake of going
on a surgery message board. And...
Oh, I know!
Okay, a gentleman
who had had this exact procedure wrote,
in all caps...
which I found aggressive...
D-- [laughs]
"Do not have this surgery.
Your p-- [laughs]
Your penis will never work again."
Also all caps.
I call my doctor,
in the middle of the night,
and I say, "Hey, I was just
doing some research,
and I was talking to this one guy,
-and he was shouting about...
how his penis doesn't work.
Is that possible?"
He goes, "Mike, a lot of these people
are getting this stuff done by amateurs."
Which I pictured immediately, like,
"I like huntin',
I like fishin',
I do varicocele repair
down in the garage."
At this point, Jen didn't think
it was a good idea.
I didn't think it was a good idea.
I remember sitting up
in the middle of the night,
thinking, "My wife would be
a great mother,
and I don't want to get
in the way of that.
So, I'll let him tinker with my balls
for a few hours."
Well, tinker they did.
The next morning, after several hours,
I limped out of outpatient surgery.
For eight days,
I walked around New York City...
like a cowboy in the snow.
People were like, "What happened?"
I was like,
"Unnecessary ball surgery."
But it worked.
At that point, I'm shooting firebombs,
-slinging rockets...
in every direction, laser accuracy.
Everyone I'm even shaking hands with
is walking away pregnant.
One of those people...
was my wife.
[audience] Aww.
[cheering and applause]
I'll tell you, I was more excited
than she was.
I came back from a trip
to Appleton, Wisconsin,
and she said, "I'm pregnant."
And I said, "Yes!"
'Cause I'd forgotten
I didn't want to have a kid.
I mean, that's...
that's how dumb my brain is.
Like, even though
I didn't want to have a kid,
when Jen said she was pregnant,
I was like, "We got a win!"
"Now, what?" And...
She was pregnant for about 75 months.
-And I'm not sure...
of the exact amount of time,
but it was a long duration,
and it was a brutal pregnancy.
It was hard for her, too.
There was...
No, there are just a lot...
there are a lot of extremes.
The first one I learned about
is in a woman's first trimester,
her hormones double...
every three days.
That's so much! And...
The first hint of this
is when we interviewed this OB-GYN,
and she seemed very sharp.
We walked out, and Jen said,
"She's a fucking monster!"
And I said, "I totally agree.
She's not good at being a doctor."
And that was not enough.
She said, "No, she's a fucking monster!"
And I was like, "Yeah!
She's a fucking monster!"
And now I'm screaming
at the top of my lungs,
in broad daylight,
on the corner of 29th and 1st,
about a doctor who I think is pretty good.
When we get home, Jen says,
"Will you go to the grocery store
and get me some pretzels?"
I said, "Yeah, I'll head over there
in a few minutes."
And then, what happened...
is that Jen starts crying
the most I've ever seen her cry
in 15 years of knowing each other.
I... I go, "Clo, what's wrong?"
She says, "I need the pretzels now!"
So, I sprint to the store
like a snack-food superhero,
and I take photos
of three types of pretzels,
and I text them to her,
and she writes back, "All of them!"
And I wrote,
"I saved your best friend's life."
My neighbor spots me
photographing the pretzels.
He goes, "Mike, what are you doing?"
It was early, we weren't telling people.
So I had to be like,
"This is something I'm into.
I got a lot of secrets, Tony!"
He said, "When my wife was pregnant,
she craved pretzels."
I said, "That's irrelevant."
That's all she could eat for a while,
was pretzels.
She had this awful morning sickness,
and it continued into the second
trimester, which is more rare.
So then, we're Googling,
"What happens when it doesn't stop?"
The internet's like, "That isn't a thing."
And we're like, "But it's happening."
And it's like, "Try the other internet."
And we're like, "There isn't one."
And it's like, "Exactly."
-And then...
Jen said, "I found this one site
that says that blowjobs
can cure morning sickness."
Which wasn't on WebMD. It was just...
in the comment section. You know...
Heroes aren't always the people
you expect.
It's not just the firemen
or the first responders.
it's a guy with a laptop
and a convincing username.
One night, Jen wakes me up
in the middle of the night,
and she says, "I'm bleeding. A lot."
And we jump in a cab.
We rush to the hospital
and the doctor explains
that it's her placenta that's bleeding.
And I said, "Is it gonna be okay?"
And she said, "Its going to bleed more,
or it's gonna stop bleeding."
I thought, "That's like what I would say
if I was pretending to be a doctor."
Like,"It's gonna bleed more
or less!
I prefer cash!"
The bleeding continued for weeks,
and on top of the bleeding,
Jen had hypermobile hips,
which meant she might break
or dislocate her hip during labor,
which is obviously not great timing.
-And we were...
so worried that we went
to this holistic birthing education class,
which wasn't a great fit,
because it was too much optimism for us
-at that moment.
The instructor was like,
"What's the most exciting thing
about having baby?"
Which is a new thing for us
where they don't say "the" baby,
they're just like, "Baby!"
We were like, " We just want baby to live.
We don't... we don't have high
hopes for this thing,
'cause we went to hospital,
we spoke with doctor, and...
she did test, and it's touch-and-go
at moment. And that...
That wasn't anyone else's answer.
One lady was like, "I just want
to hold baby skin-to-skin."
And one lady is like, "I just want to see
the world through baby's eyes."
And I was like, "See the world
through baby's eyes?
How did you make this about you?
-It's another person!
Now you've invented
this futuristic eye surgery?
Get a hold of yourself!
What happens if the baby is blind?"
Feel so bad for himself,
like, "My mom only had me
for my baby's eyes.
They don't even work!"
At one point, the instructor says,
"When baby comes out,
they'll try to take her away
and check her vitals...
but don't let them."
I was like, "I think I'm gonna let them.
They're called "vitals," not "optionals."
I think I might go with the grain
on that one."
One night, we were walking home
from birthing class,
and Jen starts making out with me,
because the same hormone
that causes hypermobile hips
causes some people to crave sex.
And so, we got home, we have
this magically pregnant sex
with all these contractions
and these very loose hips.
It was like having sex
with Space Mountain.
-I was like...
-"Hold on!"
We were both so worried
that any moment, she might give birth
-into my penis, which...
they never discussed in birthing class.
Like, "I just want to see penis
through baby's eyes."
In the third trimester,
the bleeding stopped,
which was a huge relief,
and the morning sickness went away.
And Jen started eating
like a college freshman.
Just hot dogs, and ice cream,
and mayonnaise.
At one point, she's eating
three hot dogs, all at once.
She's a vegetarian. And...
She looks up at me...
and she says,
"I feel like I understand you now."
I said, "I think that's the most offensive
thing you've ever said to me.
Is that... is that how you have viewed me
all these years? Just...
this ogre who swallows
buckets of hot dogs,
and ice cream, and mayonnaise?"
Yeah, that's a part of me, but that's...
that's not the whole picture.
One morning, we were lying on the couch,
and we're sharing a pint of double
peanut-butter chocolate-chip ice cream,
and I'm rubbing Jen's shoulders,
and she says,
"It's hard for me to breathe,
or speak,
or move."
I said, "That really limits your options.
That's my big three."
She said, "I feel...
like a mammal."
I said, "You've always been a mammal.
[stammers] We're both mammals. And, uh...
But what do you want to do?"
She said, "I want to go
to the Museum of Natural History...
with the other mammals."
So that's what we did.
We went to the Museum of Natural History.
And I... and I took photos of Jen
with her exposed pregnant belly,
next to porpoises,
and walruses,
and narwhals, and dolphins.
Then we get to the big blue whale.
And she says, "I want you to know...
I know you never wanted to have a kid,
and I want to make sure this doesn't
change the way we live our lives."
And I said, "Thanks."
And the next morning, at 10:04 a.m.,
our daughter was born.
Which is a reality-bending experience,
because two colossal events
occurred simultaneously.
One is that a human being
enters the Earth.
And the second is that my wife,
this person I love and cherish
and know better than anyone,
in front of my eyes,
becomes a mother.
And I...
pretty much stayed the same.
And that was really the strangest part,
because I'm watching this go down,
and I'm thinking, "That's nuts.
I don't know what I could possibly do
to help.
I guess I'll just write an email
to anyone we've ever met,"
which is the chief responsibility
of the dad.
The mom births a living fire hydrant
through her vagina,
and the dad knocks out an email
to his list.
She does the physical.
And I do the clerical.
I forgot to write the email.
Not proud of it. Uh...
[stammers] I was stunned
for those first ten hours
by the trippy hospital lights,
and chlorine smell,
and I'm wearing the art school smock,
and the shower cap.
At a certain point,
they hand me this monkey.
And I'm like, "But we're humans."
And they're like, "This is what it is."
And then I'm like,
"Can we speak with a manager?"
And they're like, "There isn't one."
And I'm like, "That's the problem.
There's no accountability." And...
And then you have to take it home.
I mean, it's completely frowned upon
to leave it there. And...
They tried to dress it up.
They're like, "We'll put a striped blanket
on it, and a beanie.
We'll make it look like E.T.
You can give it a name."
So we... so we called her Oona.
Which means "one."
As in, "We're only having one."
I've been very clear.
And then, we bring home this monkey.
And she wouldn't sleep for a year.
And that's when I remembered
I didn't want to have a kid.
[audience gasps]
[cheering and applause]
It's a little bit like this...
where people send you...
all this crap!
They're like, "This is a chair
that shakes the baby!
This is a blanket that smothers the baby!
This is a Magic Sleepsuit!"
This is an actual item.
A Magic Sleepsuit!
You're so desperate
for your child to sleep...
you'll believe...
in magic!
And that's not all! There's the Boppy!
There's the Breast Friend,
which is what I thought I was!
There's this worm!
There's bibs, and balls, and binkies,
and Slumber Buddies,
and a Baby Shusher,
which is an owl that tells you
to stop talking.
There's a Moses basket in case you want
to ship your baby down a river.
There's rattles, and a rainstick
in case your baby's a shaman.
And none of it works!
Everybody tries to give you advice.
They're like, "Have you tried
sounds of the ocean?"
I'm like... [yells] "Yes, we've tried
sounds of the ocean!"
"Have you tried massaging her legs?"
[yells] "Yes, we've tried
massaging her legs!"
"She should be sleeping."
[yells] "I know she should be sleeping!"
[yells] My wife hasn't slept in weeks!
Though I'm sleeping pretty well,
Well, I had a doctor's note.
As you know...
I have a rare and dangerous
sleep disorder.
[laughs] And Jen... and Jen...
Jen and I were...
Jen and I were both very worried
about this.
We went to my sleep doctor
after Oona was born,
and we said, "Is this dangerous?"
And he goes, "Oh, yeah!"
He said there are people
who have REM behavior disorder
who have dreams their son
is a football,
and they kick them through the goalposts,
which are above the fireplace.
And I said, "I wish you hadn't put
that image in my brain,
but I see your point."
He said, "One thing you might consider
is sleeping in a separate room
from your wife and daughter,
and installing a chain lock
from the inside."
So we did that.
And then, to supplement the sleeping bag,
I created a fitted
sleep sheet,
that fits me
into my mattress.
I cut out a hole for my head
and one for my wife,
though she never used it, and then...
I secured the sheet under the mattress
with a rope...
and a camping clasp.
And so, now, I'm like
a relatable Hannibal Lecter. And...
This is real.
And, uh...
Yeah, I brought this from home.
This is a double-sided zipper,
in case I'm suffocating.
So, that's fun. And, uh..
I made this.
I took it to the tailor on my corner.
And I said, "Can you make more of these?"
And he said, "No!"
And he walked me out of the store,
'cause he clearly thought it was
some kind of S&M sex sheet
for Orthodox Jews, which it isn't.
-It's a...
It's a homemade medical device.
You might remember
that we also have a cat.
And, uh, her name is Mazzy,
and she was a street cat.
And so, she wakes us up every morning
by scratching our faces,
which is, I believe,
a survival instinct from the streets,
but in a domestic setting, it's much less
charming and can be dangerous.
You can't have that around an infant,
so we locked Mazzy
in the bedroom with me.
You can see where this is going.
And so, every morning,
she wakes me up by scratching my face,
but I can't protect myself,
'cause my arms are bound by the sheet.
I'm like, "Outta here, street cat!
Nobody wanted you!"
And she's like,
"Well, well, well!
Cat's got your arms!" And...
If you have a cat, you know
that we had to keep the litter bin
in the locked bedroom.
In the first week,
I forgot to scoop the litter,
and Mazzy peed on this linen chair.
I don't know if you've smelled cat pee...
but it's a little bit like
if regular pee...
took a shit.
It's... [laughs]
It's the most...
rancid smell.
Before we had Oona, Jen said to me,
"This baby isn't gonna change the way...
we live...
our lives."
[stammers] And I feel like it has.
I sleep in a straitjacket...
in a room that is chain-locked
from the inside,
filled with cat litter dust and super pee,
and every morning,
I'm awoken by a wild animal...
that is trying to murder me in my sleep.
I feel like this baby has changed
the way we live our lives.
One morning, I'm walking home
from Rite Aid with cat litter and diapers,
and I walk into our apartment,
and Jen is crying on the couch a lot,
like "pretzels" level.
And I say, "Clo,
what's wrong?"
And she says, "Oona is never gonna be
in my belly again."
That's how close
Jen and Oona were.
One day, I found this.
This is a... a short poem
that Jen had written.
This is one of her actual
poetry notebooks.
This is called Little Astronaut.
"A newborn rests her head
on the earth of mother.
Everything else is outer space."
This is the most profound level of love...
I had ever witnessed.
And I was there, too.
It's almost like I didn't know
what "nothing" meant
until I became a dad.
And then, I was like,
"Oh, that's what nothing is."
I was so nothing.
I was this pudgy, milkless
vice-president of the family.
Huge title, no power.
Also oversees Congress.
My whole job...
was to be around
and have no opinions.
Like, if I expressed a hint of an opinion,
everyone was like, "What's that?"
I'd be like,
"I was just mumbling to myself...
about the news." Like...
I was the intern of my own family.
I was like, "Does anyone need coffee?
I'll clean up your crap.
Someday, I hope to be a member
of the family." And...
I was a good intern. I showed up on time,
I worked hard, but it would always be
junior level activities.
Jen would put Oona down for a nap,
stick her in the stroller
and say, "Take her for a walk,
and when she wakes up,
return immediately."
So I would do that.
When I wasn't interning,
I was on the road,
in every Applebee's with a dream.
And one night,
I'm in Weatherford, Oklahoma,
which is a direct flight from nowhere,
which is why, after the show,
I drove a rental car
four-and-a-half hours down to Dallas.
I caught the first flight in the morning,
but we were delayed
from thunderstorms all... all day, so...
After 26 hours of travel,
I walk in our apartment at 1:00 a.m.,
and I make my way
through the living room.
And I'm drenched,
and exhausted,
and empty.
And I get...
[whispers] to the couch.
And Oona is asleep...
on the couch.
And I tiptoe
into the kitchen.
And I say, "Clo,
it's not a big deal,
but that's my couch."
Jen says, "Great news.
That's where Oona likes to sleep."
I said, "I totally get it.
As a short-term solution,
I think that's phenomenal,
but long-term,
I think Oona should sleep in a crib."
Jen said, "We decided
that Oona doesn't like to sleep
in a crib."
I said, "Who's in 'we'?"
She said, "Me and Oona."
I said, "I'm not in 'we' anymore?
I'm a founding member of 'we'."
It is a shocking revelation
when you are evicted...
from your own life.
So I decide I'm gonna win back my wife...
from my daughter.
The next day,
we're strolling Oona through the park,
and I said, "I was thinking
we should set aside one night a week
and get a babysitter."
And Jen looked at me like I was suggesting
we sell Oona into slavery,
and then, Oona starts screaming,
like the meanest heckler
I've ever encountered.
Like, a heckler
not only hates what I'm saying,
but every word individually
in any context, and...
Jen looks at me and says,
"Oona doesn't like it when we talk."
This baby isn't gonna change
the way we live our lives...
but she doesn't like it when we talk.
And then she started to talk
when she was six months old.
Jen said, "Hi!"
And then, Oona said, "Hi."
And I said, "Hi!"
And Oona said...
When she was eight months old,
Jen wrote this...
"An infant reaches for something.
I don't know what.
Pushes it farther away
and cries in frustration
each time she reaches,
without realizing
she is crawling for the first time.
She is just like her father."
That's a poetry burn. And...
When she was 13 months old,
she was teething.
As far as we could tell,
she was growing 234 teeth.
The only time she wouldn't scream
was when she was suckling my wife's boob
with her freaky shark teeth.
One morning, we're at the kitchen table,
and Oona is just sucking all the life,
and food, and energy out of my wife.
Which is what I want to do.
But I can't,
'cause I'm doing the dishes.
She says, "You're doing a great job."
And I say, "Thanks."
Sometimes, I'm not sure.
She says, "Not you."
Two hours later, Jen has to pee,
and she hands Oona to me.
The moment I take her, it was like holding
the angriest thing I'd ever held.
It was like... it was like holding my dad.
She was like...
I was like, "How do you think I feel?
I don't know what I'm doing.
I don't know anything."
At that moment,
the church bells on our corner
start chiming the song Ave Maria.
[church bells chime Ave Maria]
And she stops crying.
Looks up.
Starts bobbing her head.
I said, "I know.
It's a classic."
She's bobbing her head,
and I'm thinking,
"She's got a really good rhythm.
Maybe she could be a drummer, or a DJ,
or an agreeable person.
Maybe this'll help her sleep.
She won't need the Slumber Buddies,
or the Dream Dust, or the...
Magic Sleepsuit.
And the song ends.
She's looking at me,
and I'm looking at her,
and we both know...
it's about to go down.
So, I go...
Ave Maria
I don't know the words, and so I go...
There will be a Jesus
In your womb
It's actually a pretty big honor
It's more like an Oscar than an Emmy
Eventually, I run out of lyrics,
and she's staring at me,
and I'm bracing myself,
and she looks me in the eyes and says,
[audience] Aww.
For that moment,
I was the pudgy, milkless vice-president
with record high approval ratings
for no reason.
Ten hours later, I'm back on the road,
but this time, I have the flu.
And when I get the flu,
it is worse
than when other people get the flu.
I'm backstage
at the Byham Theater in Pittsburgh.
I'm lying on the floor in the darkness.
My cheek is pushed up
against the cold tile,
my throat feels
like I've swallowed broken glass,
and the tour manager
opens the door a crack.
He says, "Mike, we have to start."
And I roll off the floor,
and I hobble onto the stage.
I didn't know what to do.
I was looking at the audience
like I'm looking at you now,
thinking, "Should I tell them?"
Like, what would Springsteen do?
Like, "This might take the fun
out of 'I'm on Fire'...
but my ass is on fire. Here we go!"
Everyone would be, like, "Bruce, no!"
I made it through,
but the next morning, I'm even sicker.
And I'm driving home,
I pull over to Starbucks,
I don't mean to be crude,
to use the restroom aggressively.
Which I believe is the rudest thing
one can do
at someone's place of business.
They're like, "We've got muffins,
we can make you a latte."
-You're like, "That's all well and good...
but what I'm gonna do...
is go into this private room
you have in the back
and unload the most vile substance
my body's been able to conjure
in 39 years of existence.
Then I'm gonna leave
and I'm not gonna purchase anything.
And I'm gonna drive
as far away from this location
as physically possible
to forget this ever happened.
Do you have the code?"
So now...
Now I'm driving,
I'm sweaty and flu-ish.
After seven hours,
I walk into our apartment,
I collapse on our beloved couch,
and it hugs me.
Jen walks in, who has the sweetest,
softest, thread-counted voice.
And says,
[yells] "Get the fuck off the couch!"
I said...
I said, "Clo,
I have the flu."
She said, "If Oona gets the flu,
I'm gonna be up all night
holding her until my arm is numb,
using the other arm
to rummage through the darkness
for the baby Tylenol and the thermometer.
And I've tried to make it so this doesn't
change the way we live our lives.
I don't wake you up,
I change the diapers, I give her baths,
but right now,
you're in the way."
You tell that story about me
breastfeeding at the kitchen table,
and the only part that isn't true...
is that you do the dishes."
I roll off the couch,
and I walk into my dungeon,
and I lock the door.2
And I get into my straitjacket...
and I can't believe my own thought.
I think,
"I get why Dads leave."
And I'm only comfortable saying that,
because I'm not gonna leave.
I love my wife.
And where would I go?
Who's gonna zip up my sleeping bag?
I'm not gonna be out on the town,
like, "What do you say we get out of here,
and you put on my mittens?"
"Do you mean a condom?"
"Not exactly."
I'm comfortable saying it,
'cause I'm not gonna leave,
but for the first time in my life,
I get it.
And I know that's a sensitive subject.
especially if your dad left.
But if your dad left, I want you to know
it is not because of you.
It's because...
you exist.
And I'm gonna clarify that,
'cause it's a very subtle distinction.
It's not because of your personality,
or that you don't deserve love.
It's that your dad
maybe didn't want to be a dad,
and he doesn't understand causality
that well.
And now, you're alive.
And I think that's great.
So who cares if your dad's around,
'cause who needs a guy like that anyway?
That said...
I get it.
Because this person who I have sworn
to spend the rest of my life with,
this person who I've spent thousands
of hours on a couch with,
who has saved my best friend's life...
is in the greatest love affair
of her entire life
that I'm watching through a window.
And all day, people come up to me
and they say,
"Is it the most joy
you've ever experienced?"
And I have to say,
"It's the most joy.
I didn't know what joy was...
until now.
And now I know what it is.
It's this."
I'm literally empty bones,
and garbage, and Diet Coke,
and people say, "Are you full?"
I have to say,
"I'm so full."
So I fall asleep and I have the best sleep
I've had in a year,
because I've accidentally
locked Mazzy out of the bedroom.
And in the morning,
I wake up and I open the door,
and I smell the most unmistakable,
heinous stench,
because Mazzy has peed all over the couch.
-[audience] Oh.
-I know.
So, I order a pizza...
to compete with the smell,
and when the delivery guy shows up,
I pay him $20 to carry the couch with me
out to the street.
And that's where it died.
I'm in the bedroom for four days
with the flu,
and on the fifth day,
I wander out at 4:30 in the morning.
And I wander into the kitchen.
And I do the dishes.
And I enjoy it.
That week, Jen started writing poems
for Oona
for when she gets older,
and I found...
in our house, there is always
a congregation of ants
summiting around a noodle,
or carrying their weight in popcorn
across the kitchen floor.
And in the sink,
there is always a pile of dishes.
But this morning,
your father...
did the dishes.
And it made me want to fuck him."
And I'd like to think that was for me.
That week, we took Oona...
to a department store,
and she spots this couch.
It was blue.
My wife thinks it's green.
[chuckles] I looked it up...
Oona loves the couch. She goes, "Couch!
She's a genius.
The three of us sit on the couch
in the department store.
Oona is hiding behind each of us.
And we go, "Where's Oona? Where's Oona?"
She's clinging into my back as I spin.
The more she clings,
the more I'm committing. Like...
"Where is Oona? Where is she?"
And she starts laughing so hard,
like the hardest I've ever seen anyone
laugh in my whole life,
and I'm in the jokes business.
At this idea that she's tricking us,
the people in power,
the people who know everything.
She's fooled us completely,
at least this once.
And look, I know she's gonna grow up
and find out that the Earth is sinking
into the ocean,
and we might have to live
in an almond milk jug in Pennsylvania,
people can be horrible,
but as I'm staring
at this monkey on a couch,
I feel like she might be one of the people
who changes that trajectory.
She's laughing so hard
that I start laughing in a new...
way, from my perspective,
and Jen's perspective,
and Oona's perspective all at once.
We're laughing...
as one.
And in that moment,
I feel...
I've seen the world...
through baby's eyes.
[cheering and applause]
I wanna get better
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
-[cheering and applause continues]
-Thank you, guys!
Ave Maria
Thank you!
Gratia Plena
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
There will be a Jesus in your womb
It's actually a pretty big honor
It's more like an Oscar than an Emmy
There will be a Jesus in your womb
It's actually a pretty big honor
It's more like an Oscar than an Emmy
- Yeah
- I wanna get better
I didn't know I was lonely
Till I saw your face
I wanna get better
Better, better, better
I wanna get better
I didn't know I was broken
Till I wanted to change
I wanna get better
Better, better, better
I wanna get better
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
There will be a Jesus in your womb
It's actually a pretty big honor
It's more like an Oscar than an Emmy
There will be a Jesus in your womb
It's actually a pretty big honor
It's more like an Oscar than an Emmy
- Yeah
- I wanna get better
I didn't know I was lonely
Till I saw your face
I wanna get better
Better, better, better
I wanna get better
I didn't know I was broken
Till I wanted to change
I wanna get better
Better, better, better
I wanna get better
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena
Ave Maria
Gratia Plena