i saw man on the moon the other day on dvd. my girl didn’t like it(though that may not count, since she’s australian, and they still worship midnight oil like they’re Gods down there) and i’d heard from a friend at work that it was terrible. nevertheless, i enjoyed it. in case you’ve forgotten, the movie was released in december 1999 and is the biographical story of the comedian andy kaufman, starring jim carrey. carrey has kaufman down, in an eerily accurate portrayal. i can sort of see why people who hadn’t experienced kaufman at the time he came upon the world might think he was unfunny, unsophisticated(e.g. “foreign man”), weird, etc. but i saw him on snl, the improv, and letterman as they happened. he was one of a kind. his act wasn’t typical stand-up comedy and more like performance art-comedy without the pretentiousness. that’s what made him so magnetically watchable. you didn’t know what he was going to do next. he wasn’t just setup-punchline. i had totally forgotten about his magician persona, a fakir, and the whole fridays fiasco. tony clifton, his(and bob zmuda’s) really bad and vulgar lounge act, was my favorite. i just can’t get his interpretation of the lounge lizard classic, volare, out of my head. one interesting thing i learned from the movie and the web page i link to, is that he hated taxi. i loved that show and it was so highly acclaimed at the time, but kaufman thought sitcoms were the lowest form of entertainment(“the people who are laughing are dead”, he once said). and while the whole wrestling thing was a great and funny schtick, you have to blame the man for the resurgence in popularity of professional wrestling.

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