I was aimlessly scrolling through Twitter this morning when I came across the headline What it’s like to date an NYC comedian. As a comedian myself and someone who has “dated” a few of my peers, I immediately assumed this was going to be a scathing exposé about the practice. I was very wrong :)
The article was written by a man and the banner image is of Harrison Greenbaum (who I’ve actually had nothing but lovely interactions with), sandwiched between two women laughing at a bar. Apparently, male comics get approached by women after a good set. I can confirm that this is true because I’ve done it several times!
“If you have a really good [comedy] set, you’re a superhero,” says Greenbaum, who says that his act doubles as an icebreaker.
Superhero may be a stretch but I’ve definitely used the “you were so funny!” line to flirt with male comics. If that is the type of person you are interested in, I encourage you to do this–it works. Another tactic is to follow + DM them on Instagram. Comics tend to excel at pointless banter so that’s a lot of fun! Granted, few of these interactions end with a last minute trip to St. Lucia as the article cites.
It continues to paint a rosy picture of the comedy dating scene. I’m not really sure who Billy Procida is (that’s not shade, I just can’t speak to his humanity) but it sounds like his podcast is making women wet all over the city.
Fellow comic Billy Procida, host of the Manwhore Podcast, says his brash sense of humor has made him a babe magnet who in the past has gotten up to “five hookup appointments” weekly.
Five hook up appointments weekly! I need to get my podcast more reach.
Toward the end, there’s a small quote from Carolyn Busa who warns that these men are not good boyfriends (lol).
I found that the headline has some inaccuracies so I fixed it.
The article goes onto say that women are taking improv classes to meet single men. Women reading this: I implore you to do literally anything else with your money. Save the $450! Book a trip to Europe! Buy an expensive vibrator (or 4)! Dating in comedy has ruined me.
You see, before comedy, I would hook up with people based primarily on looks and that was great! They were pretty boring and easy to get over usually. When you go for comics it’s hard because they’re fun, they’re interesting, and you want to be around them all the time. [Editor’s note: almost every single NYC comedian I’ve hooked up with has been devastatingly handsome. DM me for deets.] There’s also a lot more cyber-stalking to be done with comedians because they have a lot of readily-available web content. I’ve spent more time than I care to share watching sketches and listening to podcasts for this very reason.
I’ve hooked up with several NYC comedians and can tell you that it has not served me well. And my experiences have been mild–your classic one night stand after an improv festival or late night hook up with a guy who tells you he and his girlfriend are having problems and then you never hear from him again. You know! Normal stuff. I want to be clear, I entered into these situations as a consenting adult and I would never even label it as dating. Yes I’ve been on “dates” with a few but it was mostly a lot of texting and then some consensual sex.
My friends who have actually been in relationships with comics often have tales of narcissism, manipulation, and even abuse. But they make you laugh! I asked my friend to describe her relationship with a comedian and she said, “Um it’s like being assaulted by a squid that survives on validation.”
Do not be fooled by the New York Post. And I don’t mean just because the most of the guys drawn to this business are selfish-garbage creatures/sometimes-sociopaths. I want to say there are some good guys in comedy! (There are 3.) But many of them are already in relationships.
The actual logistics of dating a comedian is a nightmare. Most of the performing we do is at night and a lot of us have full time jobs to make money (since the first several years of doing comedy is basically volunteer work). Scheduling sucks and I was shocked to read that Harrison has time for 2 dates a week based on how much he performs. If you want to go to a lot of his shows to see him and rearrange plans constantly, dating a comedian is the life for you.
You will also be forced to lower your standards of social interactions drastically. In one particular instance, I attended the show of a comedian I liked/had hooked up with, expecting nothing. I was overcome with joy when he came up and said “hi” to me before it started. My friend saw me light up after the brief conversation and said, “Wow if him saying hi is unexpected, you’re setting the bar pretty low.” Yep!
Dating an NYC comedian also comes with a lot of disclaimers. Some include:
I’m not a good guy.
I’m really busy.
I’m really focused on my career.
I’m not looking for anything serious.
They are as emotionally unavailable as they are physically unavailable. It’s nice that they choose to warn you but that doesn’t really help once you’ve fallen for them. I’m only speaking from my 2 years of experience but I wanted to share these observations with you before any female in their right mind dives deep into the thankless cycle of dating comics.
Having shared all that, I will most certainly continue to date and hook up with NYC comedians (and maybe some from other parts of the country, as well).