NICKI MINAJ AND DRAKE DID IT, so, being people of equal street clout and international acclaim, Colin Quinn (also known as every famous comedian’s best friend) and I raised by interviewing one another… over a shared Diet Coke and intermittent barking by my poodle, Caesar, in the bushy enclave of Manhattan’s Battery Park (a few blocks from Quinn’s Tribeca digs).
Quinn and I have known each other for several years now, having met through mutual professional circles during my time at the Opie and Anthony and Ron and Fez shows. While my dog has slipped him the deep tongue during a particularly vigorous belly rub, there were still vaults of mystery we had yet to uncover from one another. Now:
Lil Gripes: Let me guess your favorite song of all-time…Is it “Peanuts” by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons?
Colin Quinn: No, my favorite song is “I’ll Be There for You” by the cast of “Friends.” Who’s your favorite Friend? I bet it’s Joey.
LG: JOEY??? You son of a bitch.
CQ: Haha, why? He’s the cute one! And “Episodes” is a great show on Showtime.
LG: Ok, that’s true. What is the most Top 40 song on your iPod?
CQ: The most Top 40 song on my iPod is “Rave On” by M. Ward featuring Zooey Deschanel–
Lillian mutters “Oh my god” under her breath.
—What’s the most self-consciously hip song on your iPod that you don’t like but feel like you should?
LG: Wow, that’s actually insightful. I think it has to be *quickly scrolls through her playlist*…oh, DEFINITELY “Eleanor Rigby!” I hate that fucking song so much. I do not care how many people I know insist it’s amazing. To me, it’s weird but not Bowie-weird, just “Grey Gardens”-weird. It lacks a catchy hook, has zero melodic build-up, and it’s lyrically inane. It has to be said that I love the Beatles’ other weirder stuff. Just…fuck “Eleanor Rigby.” I’m so sorry, Paul. No, I’m not. Your song sucks.
CQ: WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE “FRIEND”? I BET IT’S JOEY.
LG: JOEY??? YOU SON OF A BITCH…
LG: Quickly dig out your pockets. What do you got in them right now?
CQ: My pockets have my wallet, iPhone and mass card from funeral. And a card from a lobster place up in Gloucester, Mass[achusetts] because I had a gig there Saturday. What’s the thing in your bag that you refuse to throw out?
LG: I throw away EVERYTHING that I don’t need. Right now, my bag has Purell, keys, wallet, iPhone, a notepad, one pen, and a charm keychain my friend gifted me from her trip to London. I just don’t see the point of carrying waste around.
Now, we’re both big fans of “Modern Family.” I always picture you whenever Ed O’Neill is onscreen. You guys both got the sparkling Irish eyes, the gruff old-school New York accent, and that certain je-ne-sais-quoi grumpiness…
You once told me it’s one of the smartest shows on TV and it’s not just the acting or the writing alone. It’s everything and everyone jibing together so well…How do you think shows like that come together so well? Is it luck, the right producers at the beginning, the cultural zeitgeist at the moment…?
CQ: It has to be the showrunners. The creators. That’s the only way a show like that can be good and stay good. Always funny. What do you feel is the worst most popular show on TV the past five years?
LG: Oh, “Big Bang Theory,” please, easy one! No, actually, “Two and a Half Men,” with “Big Bang” a close second. Let’s talk politics, natural segue… Who do you want in the White House in 2017 and who do you see in the White House in 2017?
CQ: I don’t think that there’s a candidate that is out there yet who I would want or who will be President. I think it’ll be a wild card that we haven’t seen or heard from yet. Do you think there’s anybody that actually gives people hope anymore? Especially people your age?
LG: I think young people will always gravitate toward the person outside the system a little bit. Your Rand and Ron Paul’s. I was too young for this, but Ralph Nader back when. The truth is, l think there are so many smart, capable people from so many walks of life who will never have the opportunity to mount a Presidential campaign but should.
Who is more likely just out of these two–Hillary or Chris Christie?
CQ: I don’t think Hillary or Christie. They both seem exhausted already. But obviously between those two, Hillary would win easily. What do you think?
LG: She isn’t my candidate, but Hillary would destroy Christie in a vote by far. Sorry, Governor, but we don’t need another Taft. I don’t want other countries’ Heads of State looking over and seeing the United States President carrying a towel just so he can mop off sweat every five minutes.
Which body part are you most self-conscious about? Now, please do go into deep detail.
CQ: Most self conscious about my hands. I always wanted big hands and as my good comic friends point out–I have “hands like an old Irish lady.” How about you?
LG: My smile, definitely. People have told me I’ve got a great smile but I don’t buy it for a second. I hate seeing what smiling does to my face in the mirror. I look like a freak. I do the Victoria Beckham in pictures.
Do you consider yourself an optimist or pessimist?
CQ: I am optimistic but at the same time, I feel like evil wins a lot more in real life than in the movies. You?
LG: I like to think of myself as an optimistic pessimist. Or a pessimistic optimist. I see the worst in every situation, but I tend to believe in the best in people. Basically, I think people can make the best out of this shitfest called life.
Do you feel like you gripe a lot?
CQ: I like to gripe but why shouldn’t I? That’s what New York is supposed to be about.
LG: Well, you are also a comic. I just realized I actually don’t know your top 5 comedic influences. Feel like I’m burying a lead.
CQ: My top five were Pryor, Carlin–That’s 2 but in those days, there weren’t that many choices. Excluding me, name 5 comics that are making you laugh, if that many.
LG: Right. Excluding you. Um, Louis CK, Patrice O’Neal, Zach Galifianakis, Anthony Jeselnik, and Jim Norton. I feel like there should be room for at least two more in there, like Kevin Hart and Amy Schumer.
“I LIKE TO GRIPE, BUT WHY SHOULDN’T I? THAT’S WHAT NEW YORK IS SUPPOSED TO BE ABOUT.”
LG: Who was your first childhood crush?
CQ: My first childhood crush was when I was four. Anne Francis on “Honey West.” She had a leopard coat and a beauty mark. First thing I do when I die is make my move on her. How about you?
LG: Speedracer from the Saturday morning cartoons. He was so boyishly handsome and had a chiseled jaw. Was not happy with Emile Hirsch’s casting in the film. I need that square jawline!
Ok, out of all the “Grown Ups” gang– [Adam] Sandler, Chris Rock, David Spade, and Kevin James–Who was your closest boyfriend?
CQ: I love all my bf’s from “Grown Ups.” The earliest friends I had was Chris and Adam. From NY in the ’80s.
LG: Can you remember your favorite Twitter followers by name?
CQ: Yes, Stromboli.
LG: Do you think you’re doing something unique with your Twitter feed? I know others feel this way, but do you?
CQ: I guess it’s unique. It’s just fun to infuriate people with positivity. I guess I never knew I was a soccer mom.
LG: OK, plug time, sell your “Unconstitutional” show in 5 words. YOU CANNOT SAY “FUNNY.”
CQ: “Unconstitutional” in five words? Uninformative, lethargic, painful, tedious, masterpiece.
LG: Well, Colin. This was a successful interview. I’m proud of both of us.