Q&A: Eugene Mirman on Pesky Parking Tickets, Crying for 45 Minutes Straight
Bob’s Burgers star Eugene Mirman is set to release I’m Sorry (You’re Welcome) on October 30, and the Lexington native’s latest comedy album is by far his most absurd endeavor to date.
The 9-volume, 7-LP set is filled with outrageous sound effects, songs, and of course some stand-up comedy. Highlights include a 45-minute-long recording of Mirman crying (yes you read that correctly), binaural beats that are meant to mimic the effects of drugs, hundreds of made up orgasm sounds—and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
The comedian will also be releasing the album on vinyl, as well as embedding all of the tracks on a collectible chair, which is somehow possible in 2015.
Check out what Mirman had to say about the ambitious project, his frustration over that New Hampshire parking ticket, and what to expect from his next show in Boston.
You made headlines over the summer for the ad you took out about that pesky parking ticket in New Hampshire. Did you get any backlash for it?
It turns out that, in general in Portsmouth, parking is a hugely contested thing. I think that within the city there’s a lot of frustration. Also, to be clear, my frustration was that they have a law that, like in Cambridge for instance, there’s a garage in Harvard Square that has a sign that says, “Front end parking only.” All they need to do is put up a sign to let people know of their ordinances. I was disappointed that they don’t let you know. I think some people were mad at it, but not really.
You ended up paying the ticket, though, correct?
I had paid the ticket long ago. When you hear the bit, I say I paid the ticket. I think when some people just saw the letter they didn’t know. I wasn’t going to rent a car to drive back to New Hampshire to contest a $15 ticket. I paid it and then made fun of them.
What was more difficult: crying for 45 minutes straight or coming up with hundreds of orgasm sounds?
Crying for 45 minutes is really, really hard in a way. The orgasms were also hard, but they were more over time. I’d do like five minutes of weird sounds. The thing about when I recorded those, my friends who I were making the album with, they’d have headphones on, so part of me was trying to do this thing and make them laugh. They were both sort of weird.
There’s a portion of the album dedicated to digital drugs. Where did you hear about that concept?
I definitely happened upon this really funny newscast from I think Ohio. I think if you Google “Channel 9 digital drugs danger” you’ll find this video and it’s this very funny fear-mongering thing like, “Your kids may already be addicted to digital drugs.” It seemed really ludicrous.
Have you ever gotten high off of digital drugs?
I don’t believe so, but I can’t vouch for everyone. If you look at the video I’m talking about, it’s literally children and teenagers with towels over their eyes, writhing on the ground. It’s really ludicrous in a way that I hope that people lie down with a towel on the ground and listen to my album. I’m sure it will feel somewhat disorienting, but that’s the extent.
Are you going to perform any of the more absurd material from the album when you come to Boston in November?
It’s going to be a mix. I’m going to try and do some of the album live for the tour that I’m doing. My friends who I made the record with are going to come with me on tour. I’m also going to have Derrick Brown, who’s an incredible poet and really funny, he’s going to perform. Also this British comic who’s super funny, Josie Long, is going to tour with me. It’ll be a really exciting, great, very unique show.
Eugene Mirman brings his album release party to the Paradise Rock Club on November 19. Tickets are available at paradiserock.club.