Harris: We are happy to welcome the woman who will be headlining The Paul Harris Comedy Concert For Children’s Hospital on December 8th, a woman who was named Funniest Standup Comic at the American Comedy Awards. Here’s Wendy Liebman. Hi, Wendy!
Liebman: Am I the fifth caller?
Harris: You are! Come down and get your t-shirt. Congratulations!
Liebman: Thank you.
Harris: So, how have you been, where have you been, what are you up to?
Liebman: Well, let’s see. I’m in L.A. now as you know and no earthquakes. I was in Hawaii.
Liebman: Yeah, I know, beautiful. I didn’t know that the show Hawaii 5-0, was because Hawaii was the 50th state. Did you know that?
Harris: I thought it was the police department there.
Liebman: So did I. Well, it was my favorite show, other than Hazel and Arnie, but now I am dating myself, aren’t I. But, I got my first bikini because I went to Hawaii.
Harris: Good for you.
Liebman: It’s a three piece. It’s a top, a bottom, and a blindfold for you. And you can’t see, but I don’t have much of a tan…because it was raining in the tanning salon. Oh, then I was in Alaska.
Liebman: Sorry, make that “Alaska 4-9.” I don’t know what Washington is. Washington isn’t anything is it?
Harris: We’re “Washington DC, not quite 5-1.”
Liebman: “Washington Zero.”
Harris: We’re between zero and infinity, we’re not quite sure what it is.
Liebman: Infinity, I think that’s what it is. No, you’re pi! No, but I was in Alaska 4-9 and I was there for 2 days…and 6 nights.
Liebman: And I can’t believe you got that. It was so cold there, you guys, that I saw a dog wearing a cat. I stayed at the One Season Hotel because it was so cold.
Harris: Ooh, that’s the four star one, isn’t it?
Liebman: Yeah, but only one season. They didn’t clean the rooms, they just defrosted them. That’s how cold it was.
Harris: Can you even go outside there?
Liebman: Yeah, but you have to keep your tongue inside your mouth or it will stick to anything.
Harris: Well, how did we find that out?
Liebman: Don’t ask! Don’t ask, don’t tell.
Harris: All right, fine.
Liebman: Then I was in Minneapolis. I’ve been traveling a lot. Oh, my god I’m tired. I was at the Mall of America, have you been there?
Liebman: They have a ferris wheel at that mall, they have a wedding chapel at that mall. A couple was getting married and they went to the Gap on their honeymoon.
Harris: Uh huh, very nice.
Liebman: That was a joke. Do you have a big mall there?
Harris: We have tons of malls. We have the Beltway and then outside the Beltway, we have a ring of malls.
Liebman: Well, I don’t stereotype, but like most women, I love to shop…lift. No, I would never shoplift…again. I won’t even take the towels from the hotels…unless they’re paper. Even then, I feel a little guilty. You know, I’m from Roslyn.
Harris: Yes, Wendy and I grew up in the same town on Long Island.
Liebman: That’s amazing.
Harris: That’s the reason we’re having you on the show this year because you and I have this deep-seeded thing that goes back 15-16 years ago.
Liebman: Oh really? I thought it was because I was funny!
Harris: Well, that too.
Liebman: I didn’t know you in high school, did I?
Harris: You were actually in my brother’s class.
Liebman: He was a year younger than I am. I had the most typical high school romance. I was a cheerleader…and he was on the faculty.
Harris: How did that work out?
Liebman: Good. “Go, Mr. Jamison!!” No, at this point I have never been married. I’m 36 years old and my father is offering a rebate…because he wants me to stop using his name. My mother wants me to marry a doctor…because she needs the medication. And I myself could use the kitchen appliances. And so I am actually thinking of getting married. You know, you guys, I am on the Keenen Ivory Wayans show this evening.
Harris: Is that right?
Liebman: I don’t know what time it’s on.
Harris: It airs here at 11:00pm.
Harris: You don’t need to know what time it’s on, you just need to know what time it tapes.
Liebman: I already taped it on Friday, but I had the flu.
Harris: So, they delayed it a day before it aired for your flu?
Liebman: No, no. I think they tape it a day in advance. And then they edit it and stuff. It’s a great, great show.
Harris: It’s the hot late-night show.
Liebman: Is it?
Harris: It’s getting huge numbers here in town.
Liebman: Well, he is such a sweetheart and he has always been a fan of mine…and I owe him $20.
Harris: Well, that’s…
Liebman: It couldn’t have been a better experience and the audience was so amazing that they actually laughed before each punchline. So they were psychic as well as amazing.
Harris: That’s like a Dionne Warwick audience then.
Liebman: Exactly. LaToya was there…and Kenny Kingston.
Harris: My god! Talk about pulling names out of late night infomercials.
Liebman: Well, I stay up late at night, because I’m a night person. Actually, that’s one of the reasons that my last boyfriend and I broke up. We were incompatible in that way. I was a night person…and he didn’t like me.
Liebman: You’re the best audience. I just worked in New York City at Caroline’s in Times Square. While I was there, I saw the show Tommy. Have you guys seen it? Well, I had really bad seats. I couldn’t see him, I couldn’t hear him, couldn’t feel him…I got nothing.
Liebman: I love you, I love you for laughing at that.
Harris: There you go! We love her — thanks Wendy!
Liebman: Thank you, Paul!
Copyright 1997, Paul Harris.
Transcript by Philip Egenthal.