“Speaking other languages is a way of reaching people and saying I respect you to want to speak your language.”
Eddie Izzard just schooled every person who lived in my area code growing up. The British comedian has long performed in French but is now adding German and Spanish to his routine, with Arabic and Russian in the future. Each language requires a different way of telling jokes, so Izzard is taking on a tremendous amount of work (linguistically, culturally and comically) which I hope to understand in at least one more language than I do now.
Of course, using him to show up all the idiots I grew up around is pretty pointless since they wouldn’t have listened to anything said by a) an Englishman, b) a person born in some Arab place (Aden), or c) a transvestite… so we’re back where we started with a whole bunch of ignorant rubes. Damn!
German’s on my own list of languages I’d like to speak, primarily ’cause it’s hilarious and secondly because I’d like to appreciate “The Funniest Joke in the World” on another level.