Patton Oswalt: These are mediocre times

photo / Zach Klein Patton Oswalt’s best joke is making this face 

That Other Paper contributor Ben Kharakh recently spoke with Comedians of Comedy featured comic Patton Oswalt, who amazed us all with his ability to answer every question in less than three seconds. Patton, whose new comedy album Lollipops and Werewolves drops this July, stars in the upcoming Pixar film Ratatouille.

That Other Paper Are alienation and outsiderdom essential components of being funny? How about in your experience?

Patton Oswalt No. Having an original take on life, whether you’re alienated or not, is essential.

TOP Do bad comedians know that they’re bad?

PO Thankfully, for them, no. Or there’d be a lot more suicides.

TOP What do you think are some indications of good or bad comedy?

PO My only indication is whether or not the person doing stand-up clearly enjoys just being able to do stand-up.

TOP Can you believe that remains an unregistered domain? *

PO These are mediocre times.

TOP When did you first discover the Internet and what did you think of it?

PO The summer of 1995. I remember being depressed ’cuz I’d just spent $1,000 on pen nibs for letter-writing.

TOP How has the Internet changed your life for better or worse?

PO Better: more porn. Worse: more porn.

TOP Some people first wrote off the Internet as a fad. What are some things that you’ve written off as fads that ended up sticking around?

PO Laughter and sleep.

TOP Did you ever get caught up in a fad?

PO Yes. Edible skateboards.

TOP Have you ever known someone who’s gotten involved in a pyramid scheme or scam such as Amway?

photo / sitterd Patton Oswalt, a sometimes-wearer of glasses and orange shirts 

PO No.

TOP I have a fixation with Amway because my father was a distributor for four years. Was there anything that your parents did that horribly embarrassed you?

PO Had sex.

TOP Is there anything that you do now that you realize was an unpleasant trait or habit of your parents?

PO Having sex.

TOP With tax season approaching, what do you recommend people do to relieve stress?

PO Go to the city dump and shoot possums.

TOP How would you like your tax dollars spent?

PO On a huge caramel sundae.

TOP If the people of Austin want to blow most of their tax return on fine dining, where do you recommend they eat?

PO The Lean Cuisine aisle at any supermarket.

TOP What do you like to do when you’re in Austin?

PO Harass Richard Linklater.

TOP As a comic book fan, how do you feel about the recent Ghost Rider film?

PO Didn’t see it, but I still feel bad.

TOP What comic books would you like to see adapted for film? What should be left alone?

PO Please adapt Little Lulu. And leave Archie alone.

TOP ABC recently announced it will be funding a pilot based on Geico’s cavemen commercials. What other commercials do you think could be adapted to 30-minute situation comedies?

PO How about the “whaaasssuuup” guys in prison?

TOP If people are going to be adapting commercials into sitcoms, what’s next?

PO Yeah, seriously? What’s next? Am I right, people? Ladies, back me up. Guys, take a breather.

TOP What’s the info on your forthcoming CD?

PO July 24, 2007. Lollipops and Werewolves. SubPop.

* Correction was registered in October, 1999 – conclusive proof that these are not, as Patton Oswalt stated, mediocre times.