Comedy Spotlight Q&A: Tom Arnold

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I chatted with comedian Tom Arnold about his career and fatherhood.

Q: When did you know you wanted to be a comedian?

I was in grade school. Growing up without a mom in a small are going to be assholes anyway. I remember being in class making a joke about diarrhea, and the kids who hated me started laughing hysterically. I thought to myself “Maybe I’ll try to do that.” When I got older, and working at a meat packing plant, I would go to open mic nights and get trashed on Everclear punch. At first, it was just to try something new, but all these years later you realize you have a a gift. You realize you have a story to tell.


Q: What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done in your life?

Jesus! ::laughs:: I have a son that’s about to turn three, and a daughter who is two and a half months old. I get together with buddies now and we tell these kinds of stories. They were AWESOME when we were all single, but absolutely horrifying as parents. There was a 150 foot water tower right near my house.  I remember getting drunk, and climbing on top of it. You had to let go of the ladder and fall back on this ridge thing. I woke up the next morning with a cop hitting me with a baton, while my dad stood over me. Dad asked “Tommy, did you climb Memorial Park Tower?” “Of course not!” I replied with spray paint all over me. It was so funny, so stupid, and so dangerous.


Q: You were HILARIOUS in “True Lies.” What was it like working with Arnold Schwarzenneger, Jamie Lee Curtis,  and the rest of the cast?


Oh, I had such a great time. It’s one of those rare Hollywood where we’ve all stayed friends. That doesn’t always happen. “True Lies” was my first true film experience. I see Jim Cameron and Arnold a lot, and Jamie from time to time. Always fun to catch up.


Q: What was it like working with Snoop Dogg in the upcoming season of “Trailer Park Boys?”

I’ve known Snoop for a long time now. We did the classic film, “Soul Plane” together. ::laughs:: I’ve been a fan of the show for almost a decade, so when the opportunity arose, I took it. Bubbles walked me through a scene where I’m supposed to smoke pot, and I SWEAR
I was in the pot smoking scene from “Animal House.”


Q: How hard is it balancing your home life with your acting and stand up careers?

Luckily I can pick and choose WHEN I work, and don’t have to be on the road 24/7/365. The traveling part isn’t awesome. The being away part isn’t awesome. But I LOVE what I do. It does something good for my soul.


Q: Are you excited about your show here in Baltimore this week?

Yes! Very excited. I’ve been to Baltimore many times, and the city and it’s people are so eclectic. I hope people come out!


Tom headlines The Baltimore Comedy Factory Friday and Saturday

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