“You’re gonna be very disappointed,” were the first words Larry David spoke as host of Saturday Night Live. “That’s what I do, I disappoint people.” The pumped audience was having none of it as David continued, in his best imitation of Jerry Seinfeld doing Larry David: “I’m a guest! I don’t host things. No one’s ever even been to my house!” He then ex-cogitated on the difference between then — when he was just a “poor schmuck” and now, when he’s a “rich prick.”
“Ever notice how prick invariably follows the word rich?” he said. “If you’re rich, you have to be a prick. Same way the word schmuck always follows the word poor. If you’re poor, you must be a schmuck, why else would you be poor?” After some old-fashion, if slightly updated, Borscht Belt humor along the lines of: No misdemeanor in a Jewish family could be worse than having an eating disorder, he concluded with, “Now we get to the part where I’m supposed to say ‘We have a great show for you tonight.’ I can’t say that. I don’t know if it’s a great show. Secondly, why raise expectations? What I should be saying is, “Ehhh, the show’s so-so. If it’s good, you can be surprised.” (As it turned out, the surprises were in moderate supply.)
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