Bert the Conqueror to appear at Fat Fish BlueWritten by Mighty Wyte (Matt Feher) | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Many may recognize Bert Kreischer from his popular TV show on the Travel Channel, aptly named “Bert The Conqueror,” yet few may recognize him for his stand-up comedy. Kreischer said his comedic style is based on one principle: “If I experienced it, other people have, too.”
In a recent interview, Kreischer said his sense of humor was developed as a survival strategy.
“I went to an all-boys Catholic school in the ninth grade. My friends growing up were the kind of friends that if you couldn’t hold their attention with a story or make fun of them you were screwed. So I got really good at telling stories,” Kreischer said.
“I remember being in the eighth grade on a school trip and a friend of mine had me listen to this Sam Kinison tape. I remember just laughing so hard. Laughing back then had to come from someone falling or stepping in dog shit or something. It blew me away that someone could make you laugh just by talking,” Kreischer said.
The TV show host/stand-up comedian said that he tailors each of his acts to the crowd.
“I don’t have too many speeds where I can switch up the show. However, if it’s an early show I might not curse as much, but if it’s a late drinking crowd I’ll loosen it up. I tend to improv about 50 percent of the show,” he said.
Kreischer said his mix of improvisation and predetermined stories was designed to stave off hecklers in his New York audiences.
“I know what jokes I have to do but I can’t just do that; it gets stale. If you just tell those jokes and you get heckled, you’re screwed,” he said. “At any time, the guy in the front row could be going to prison tomorrow and he’s just out to have a good time. It’s so depressing when you see someone go into a bit after getting heckled.”
Between traveling to shoot “Bert The Conqueror” and his stand-up career, Kreischer isn’t home very often.
“My support system at home is forgiving,” Kreischer said. “I’ve been doing stand-up the entire time my wife and I have been married. In a weird way we get along better when I’m on the road. When I’m home too long you can tell she starts getting to the point where she’s like ‘Get the hell outta here’.”
Kreischer said the travel is a little harder on his daughters, who are still young and have a harder time with daddy being gone so often.
“They eat it up when I’m back,” he said. “They are all over me when I get home, and you can see the panic in their eyes sometimes when I leave, like if they forget to give me a hug or something.”
As host of “Bert The Conqueror,” Kreischer said he has been able to complete a bucket list of vacations that “could never be duplicated or done better.”
“I never enjoyed heights before and now I appreciate a good view. I would never have ridden a roller coaster in a million years but now I enjoy them.”
Kreischer said he fully enjoys people-watching.
“I think people-watching should be a ride,” Kreischer laughed. “Whenever we’re down or not shooting, I will just sit down somewhere and watch. Like, look at this guy, who told him he should wear short shorts?”
Traveling and experiencing some of the most thrilling and horrifying rides and activities has desensitized Kreischer to a point.
“My wife will say things like ‘what can we do in Hawaii?’ I’ll run down a list and she will get excited and say she wants to do these things. I’ve already done them,” Kreischer said. “Vacation to me is sitting around the house and doing nothing. When my wife says things like, ‘let’s go to Home Depot, I freak out because being around the house and doing things like growing grass really gets me excited.”
Despite time away from family, Kreischer said he enjoys performing stand-up because of the feeling he gets onstage.
“I get nervous about things like flying, but when I get up onstage it’s so comfortable and warm. It’s like the biggest down comforter. I feel like nothing can go wrong, I just get in a zone,” he said. “There is nothing better than coming up with an idea in the morning, working it out during the day and trying it out at night to find that it works. I don’t get that feeling anywhere else. It’s overwhelming.”
Kreischer will perform at the Funny Bone at Fat Fish Blue from July 28 through July 31. Show times and ticket prices vary. Visit the website www.toledofunnybone.com for more information and to purchase tickets.