Jim Gaffigan: Kittens and Poutine

They wouldn't let us photograph the show, so here's a shot of outside the theatre. That guy clearly disapproves of his friend firing up a smoke.

They wouldn't let us photograph the show, so here's a shot of outside the theatre. That guy clearly disapproves of his friend firing up a smoke.

If you know anything about Jim Gaffigan, it’s that he likes to eat, and he loves to talk about food. Last night as he took the stage at Sony Centre, his opening line, delivered upon ample applause, got straight to it:

“That makes me feel less fat.”

We moved to Toronto from Columbus a couple of months ago and listened to Gaffigan’s stand-up routines on the drive north. In a sense, he moved here with us. His affected laziness and self-deprecation were comforting, like cookies and ginger ale.

When a hotel concierge gives Gaffigan a box of donuts, he’s not rude. “I’m not not going to eat those,” he said.

Poutine flabbergasts him. “I mean, I eat unhealthy…but that’s kind of irresponsible,” he said. “My heart was like, what are you doing? Are you mad at me?”

In his mind, one thing is certain. “Mexican food is the best thing that people have ever done.”

Midway through the performance, Gaffigan paused. “You guys are nice, I should have showered,” he said. He then compared bars to nursery schools and Victoria’s Secret to a Greyhound Bus station.

Naturally, there were gender jokes. He sympathized about how much easier it is to be a man. “All men have to do with their hair is not have a mullet,” he said.

He explained that the Lifetime network exists solely to document horrible things that men have done to women, and that the concept of weddings is absurd. This is because weddings create fake kingdoms where people register for china that can only be cleaned with white kittens.

There was only one way Gaffigan’s routine was going to end. Hot Pockets. His legendary massacre of those microwaveable bricks of nutritional fury have become his trademark. His breathy, high-pitched “Hottttt Pockets!!!” battle cry was met with raucous cheers.

Tom Shillue was the opening act. If you grew up in the 70’s (like we did), you’ll appreciate his comedy. After positing about slow motion golf and Darth Vader dads, he knew what he had to do. This was a Gaffigan show. He talked food. This included non-PC advertising campaigns like that twisted old Armour Hot Dogs jingle and Frito Bandito, “the most politically incorrect spokesman in the history of salted snacks.”

Thanks, Jim, for last night’s laughs. And for moving to Toronto with us. Poutine gets easier on the heart the more you eat it.