T & F Q & A
We quizzed Tim about his life in the fast lane of international comedy…
Q: When did you first realise you had a knack for performing?
A: When I managed to convince those cops I’d never seen that seal-pup in my life.
Q: What words of wisdom will you share with aspiring comedians?
A: Comedy’s like a cold-sore – it doesn’t happen by itself.
Stop ‘aspiring’ and just do it. If you fail, try antiseptic cream.
Q: Can a comedian be trained, or does it come down to having natural talent?
A: Comedy’s all in the training. With a lot of small fish and a garden hose, you can train anyone to do anything. The Reward/Punish System has its naysayers but, dammit, it gets results.
And frankly, if comedy required natural talent, I couldn’t do it.
Q: What was your most embarrassing moment?
A: From 1991 to 2008.
Q: Do you crack jokes in the mirror in the morning?
A: Not jokes, no.
Q: Got any comedy career tips?
1. Sleep with producers.
2. Irony doesn’t work in print.
3. Berlin is not a good place to try out new material.
Q: Do people stop you in the street to reminisce about the popular Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush days?
A: Once a guy thanked me for sending him to Hawaii.
And a lady complained that she never got her Siamese cat back (which was for some reason a bad thing).
But, if I learnt one thing it’s ‘Never make a show with a sentence for the title unless you want to hear that sentence for the rest of your life.’ If you wanna know where my toothbrush is, buddy, I left it in your mother’s girdle.
Q: You’ve worked in so many different areas of the arts, do you prefer to be on stage and in front of a camera, or working more behind the scenes as a writer, producer etc?
A: Honestly, I’d prefer to be a critic – the only pressure is on your spelling and grammar. Cheap seats are comfortable seats.
A: Your work has always been political, but it’s hard to tell if you are Left-wing or Right-wing.
Q: If you didn’t become a comedian what career do you think you would have ended up in?
A: I always wanted to be a newsreader. Ah, the credibility!
If that didn’t work out, the porn industry is always a good fallback – a ‘second strong to your bow’, as Mum used to say.
Most of all, I would’ve made a good Japanese businessman.
Q: What’s the biggest misconception people have about celebrities?
A: That celebrities are real people, just like everyone else.