Comic coal! Mike Birbiglia mines jokes from despair

The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

If self-deprecation had a crown, Mike Birbiglia would be wearing it.

The “This American Life” regular has gained fans for his long-form narrative jokes, which mine his awkward adolescence and other embarrassments — personal, career or otherwise — much to our amusement.

On the heels of his 2009 one-man show, “Sleepwalk with Me,” which is also now a book and, in the works, a movie, comes Birbiglia’s much anticipated new one. Titled “My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend,” it opens Off-Broadway in time for Valentine’s Day, fittingly, but the comedian’s been workshopping it all over town lately.

Next up is Union Hall. The Park Slope venue and frequent stage for the comic hosts Birbiglia for two nights, on Dec. 27 and 28, during which he’ll share some new and not-so-new stories. That should include the one that gave him the name of his forthcoming show — a nod to his popular bit where he tells the story of his first girlfriend, a not-so-nice girl who already had a boyfriend, unbeknownst to our comic. That is, until he meets both the boyfriend and his parents one day.

“It’s a very strange thing, meeting your girlfriend’s boyfriend’s parents for the first time,” says the comic in his usual droll, contemplative delivery. “Part of you is angry for obvious reasons, and part of you still wants to make a good first impression.”

The endearing thing is, you know exactly what he means.

Mike Birbiglia at Union Hall [702 Union St. near Fifth Avenue in Park Slope, (718) 638-4400], Dec. 27 and 28 at 8 pm. Tickets $20 (standing room only). For info, visit

Updated 5:22 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: