Susan Murray on Saying the Un-sayable
Is anything un-sayable these days?
In the land of Frankie Boyle and Tramadol Nights, it would seem not so. I have to say I actually really like Frankie, professionally and personally but I do think his humour is the equivalent to a wee boy chasing you with shit on the end of a stick. I can see where he’s coming from, us comics are a complicated breed. Neurotic, paranoid, warped insomniacs who drink too much in the main part.
I’ve always liked dark humour, despite being raised on the family friendly stuff of Dave Allen and Jasper Carrot. Me and my older brother would listen to the slightly risqué Billy Connelly vinyl albums from the ‘70s when my Glasweigan parents were oot . Then the cruel and childish world of The Young Ones blew me away, add some Bill Hicks and Richard Prior and we’re up up and away.
It’s hard to know what shapes your own humour.. A malicious older brother who did nothing but pretty evil prank phone calls where the folks were out? It’s probably ones teenage years. People spend thousands of pounds trying to find their inner child, I’m honestly struggling to find my outer adult. I have some jokes that ONLY work backstage with other comics. They are technically brilliant, but audiences only hear trigger words and don’t listen to the actual meaning of them. Madeline McCann, the Holocaust – you know, the happy go lucky stuff. It’s been said that humour releases tension- well, this sounds about right as comics aren’t right in the head. We’re pretty tense people and we’d rather put ourselves through the intense stress of standing in front of an audience for 20 mins a night than 35hrs of low level bullshit from bosses and tedious work colleagues. “You’re really brave being a comic” says the woman at the gig. No, you’re really brave being able to handle a fucking day job. I’d be dead by now if I had to work with people like you. I like being able to stand on stage and tell it how it is; Women are mental and men are useless. There someone had to say it. Why does the world get run by men when most men I know can’t run a bloody tap? Or run a hoover round the living room, or run a shopping trolly round Asda. How does THAT work? All mine can do is run up credit card bills.
This is stuff I want to say on stage but generally can’t - what would be the point in a room dominated by stag dos who’ve been on the beer since 5pm. They already think you’re shit purely because you’re a woman and you have to work twice as hard and not be a “man hater” to win them over. I think these types of men think that women aren’t funny because the women they hang out with (and of) must be the kind of vacuous dolly birds that gives us clever ones a bad name. My stature means I can’t say anything about large people, but fat comics can do jokes about breaking thin people. Hey Susan you’ve got a couple of threads hanging from your skirt- oh sorry those are your legs aren’t they? My nickname at school was Cambodian on a diet. And you wonder why I became a comic. Type II diabetes is the self inflicted one so why shouldn’t we take the piss. It’s not random like lung cancer, it’s the Too Many Cakes Disease. My neighbour commented “There’s five people in this street been diagnosed with diabetes type II in the last 6 months. I reckon it’s the pylons”. I reckon it’s the pilling on the pounds. Fat women hate me- honestly the look I got off one of these so called jolly people at a gig watching a band because I accidentally knocked into her, would have turned milk sour. Listen love if you don’t want to be bumped into, don’t take up so much bloody room. It’s tricky doing this stuff in the current climate of increasing obesity. Lardy bloaters are well touchy.
Read the inteview with Susan Murray here.