What’s The Difference Between? With Tyler Lemco

Each week in Give A Little Bit, we’re talking to funny people — comics, writers, cartoonists, senators — about the first time they got a laugh. This week, Tyler Lemco discusses vagina jokes, texting himself, Andy Kaufman and a script due in 2022. 

Your first bit…

I’ve had schtick since I’m a little kid. I doubt this was the first one, but I can remember being 9 or 10 years old and I used to have this reoccurring joke with my older brother where I’d say “What’s the difference between you and (insert any word here, literally any thing),” and then follow it up with “It doesn’t have a vagina!” So it would go something like “Hey Adam, what’s the difference between you and that nicely mowed lawn over there? That nicely mowed lawn doesn’t have a vagina!” Then, 20 minutes later, ask “Hey, do you know what the difference is between you and this toothpick? This toothpick doesn’t have a vagina!” He hated it, but it never got old for me. It was certainly worth the ass-kickings.

My writing process is…

I’ll usually think up a funny premise and then just build off of it from there. Often times it’s hard to force ideas, though. I find the best stuff just comes naturally, almost out of the blue. I’ll often wake up in the middle of the night to voice memo something, or have to text myself a note while I’m out at a bar because I thought of a good idea that I want to remember for later. It never really happens when I sit down and say “okay, I’m going to write something funny now”. One thing I like to do is throw one some old-school wrestling while I’m trying to write. I don’t know what it is about grown men in tights with mullets grappling with one another, but I usually do my best thinking with some classic wrestling on in the background to distract me.

My influences are…

Alright, so Andy Kaufman is easily one of my biggest influences, yet I’m not such a fan of his standup. It might sound strange, but I never really found his written comedy material that great. I’m just such a huge fan of the person that he was. The way he acted and portrayed himself and the reputation he built, that speak to me more than anything. I also grew up idolizing Tom Green. The way his brain works amazes me. I’m also heavily influenced by Hunter S Thompson. He’s a huge reason why I always try to be unconventional and push the envelope. Comedically, Norm Macdonald is my all-time favorite. Just his delivery alone is so good that the joke doesn’t even have to be funny and people will laugh. He doesn’t even have to say a joke at all, he just has to talk and the way he says things is hilarious.

I wish I wrote…

Oh, there’s been plenty. You know, I always break things down into two categories: “I could have done that” and “I don’t think I could have done that”. The latter is always the stuff that really impresses me and blows me away. Like, I’ll watch South Park and think “This is pure genius. I can’t even imagine being a writer for this show. I could not have come up with this.” Then there’s some other shows where I’ll think “This is really funny, but I could have done this.” Then there’s the odd time where someone makes something so incredible and so obvious that you just think “of course!” I remember watching Kyle’s interviews on YouTube and thinking “Dear lord, why didn’t I come up with this? I wish I did this.”

A new bit…

I’m still doing a lot of writing for sites like Playboy.com, Thrillist.com, BroBible.com, NationalLampoon.com and a number of others. I’m also working on a feature-length movie script, which I’m sure will be finished some time before 2022, plus I’ve started writing a lot of standup material and plan on jumping into that ring in the very near future.

Tyler Lemco is a writer, humorist and his life goal is to be the first person seriously injured in the NBA Celebrity All-Star Game. Follow him on Twitter.

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