Carlos Mencia: "I Live in a Positive World"
I think that I'm better prepared for the next time this happens. It looks like within the next few months I'll probably have a TV show, and when this one happens, I think time is going to move slower. I know I'm going to be better at it and more mature. I'm in such a positive place that I really believe that it's going to show.
Believe it or not, I've known a couple that have come to see me perform in West Palm Beach for the last 18 years, and the last time I was there, they came up to me and said, "You've never been funnier." I feel like I'm at my best right now. And interestingly enough, I don't offend as many people as I used to. People don't walk out of shows anymore. But I feel like I actually say things that are way crazier than what I said before. I just think before maybe there was a hint of grandiose.
Are you a little nervous that, getting back into the limelight, some of this hatred will rise again, or are you past it and to the point that, even if it does, you don't care or are maybe just better equipped to deal with it?
I really don't care. I really don't care whatsoever. I've dealt with it. Mind of Mencia was in production a year before it aired. I was supposed to go on after Chappelle. I was supposed to follow Chappelle. Do you understand what a dream that was when they told me that? That I was going to follow Chappelle's Show? Chappelle's Show was the number one show on cable, and I was going to follow it. Then Chappelle said he wasn't going to do the show anymore, so they put my show on and then a lot of Chappelle's Show fans were like, "Why the fuck are they replacing Chappelle's Show with this show?" And I was like, replacing? You guys don't understand.
I fought that fight. I fought the fight of: No, no, no, listen, I record all of my shows. I can tell you when I wrote that joke. No, listen, I have it recorded. I did that joke a year before --
I fought that fight. I don't wish to fight that fight anymore. I do things that I think are funny, and I put things out there I think are entertaining, and that's me. There are thousands of other comedians. There are hundreds of TV channels. I suggest that everybody out there watch what entertains them -- what makes them laugh, what makes them feel good and happy. If it's not me, God bless them. But I spend no time on trying to live in a negative world. It doesn't do anything for anybody. It just creates more negativity.
And, you know what, through the moments of darkness -- whether they were suicidal or homicidal -- through all of it, the one thing I'm proud of is you can go on the internet, and you can read about how people don't like me, or comics don't like me, or comic think this or that, but one thing -- the one thing you can not find on the internet is me speaking ill of any of those guys. Any of the comics, any of the haters, any of it. Through all of it, I was able to stay away from that. And I'm proud of that. And now I don't care. Like what you want. I'm happy for you. You made a choice in your life to be happy. Go for it. Be happy.
Looking back, do you think it was all coming from a place of hate? Or can you put yourself in the shoes of some of the people that were accusing you of things, and do you think they were trying to do the right thing?
No, not at all. I think all of that came from...[pause] Well actually, you know what, to be honest with you, I really don't know. And I was going to try to answer that and have a hypothesis about it and whatnot, but at the end of the day I have no idea what drives other people to do or say what they do. I really don't.
But what I do have control over is how I react to it. At the end of the day, that's my role in this dance. Where it came from? I don't know. I have no idea. Where that hate came from, where it goes -- I don't know. That's a question for them to answer. For me, I'm proud of the work that I've done, and I'm even prouder of what I'm doing now. That's where I love. I exist in that beautiful place called I make people laugh and happy for a living. That's my job. What a wonderful, wonderful job.
See Carlos Mencia at the West Palm Beach Improv May 22 through 25. Tickets cost $30.00 plus a two drink minimum. Call 561-833-1812 or buy tickets here.