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    Lesson from the World of Comedy!

    By Titmowse | Writer @ CozyFrog | JAN.10.2007
In my little town, we have one movie theater. The theater changes to a new feature once each week. If we don't want to see what's playing, we have to wait seven days for the next flick. We don't mind this setup too much because we still get to see stuff while it's in theatrical release, yet way before the thing hits the $1.00 cinemas. Also, we pay $2.50 for a ticket and the candy, popcorn and sodas are cheap. New movies, big screen, low prices and the floors and seats are clean. That's entertainment!

"Selling porn is like telling the Aristocrats joke. You're not selling something new. You're selling one of the oldest products in the world."
The unfortunate part of this arrangement is that, since it's a small town, there are quite a few films I know we'll never see at our happy, little movie theater. Oh sure, we could drive to the megaplex - twenty miles away - and shell out $40.00 or more bucks for two tickets, drinks and snacks. We've done that a few times for movies we've absolutely had to watch on opening day. However, although the megaplex boasts 16 theaters, occasionally some flicks won't be aired in my area of the country. We live in West Texas. Art-house films and limited-release pictures don't play well in Bush country.

When I read about a film called "The Aristocrats", I knew that I had to see it and I knew that I would have to wait until it came out on DVD to see it. It finally came out on DVD and I went and bought it, sight unseen. I watched it and I loved it.

What is "The Aristocrats"? "The Aristocrats" is a documentary. "The Aristocrats" is the name of a joke. An old joke. A bad joke. A joke with a lame punchline. However, among comedians, "The Aristocrats" is legendary. This is the joke they tell to each other, backstage or at parties. Rappers thrown down to prove their mettle. Politicians trade barbs, raise money and pull dirty tricks to demonstrate prowess. When comedians want to show off, they tell this joke.

    The joke is simple:

A father walks into a talent agent's office.

The father tells the agent "I've got an act. It's a family act. It features myself, my wife, our two children and our dog."

Then the father proceeds to describe the act. It's a horrible, disgusting, filth-ridden display of sex, incest, bodily secretions, bestiality and human degradation.

After the father is finished with his description, the stunned talent agent asks: "What's the name of this act?"

The father replies: "The Aristocrats!"

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However, the art of telling this joke has nothing to do with the punchline. What makes this joke funny is the buildup. The beginning and the end don't matter. It's the middle that counts. The description of the Aristocrat's Act is heart of this joke. The more outrageous and obscene the description, the funnier it gets. According to the documentary, Chevy Chase used to throw parties dedicated to marathon sessions of telling this joke. One comedian went for 90 minutes only to blow the punchline at the end. The Aristocrats is the joke comedians tell each other to prove who is the ruler of funny.

The documentary is all about this single joke. 100 comedians from Don Rickles to George Carlin to Sarah Silverman, discuss and tell their versions of this one, mythical joke. The result is hilarious but more importantly, an enlightening lesson on how each comedian personalizes the story. They all put their spin on it. The opening remains the same. The punchline rarely varies. But the description of the Aristocrat's's an education for everyone, even newbie webmasters.

Too many of you try to do too much. You'll join twenty different sponsor programs. You'll build a bunch of different sites in different niches or you'll create one mondo site, encompassing every niche imaginable. You try to do free sites, AVS sites and TGP gallery pages all at the same time. In your enthusiasm to excel, you go overboard. You spread yourselves too thin. You mistake quantity for quality. Don't.

Selling porn is like telling the Aristocrats joke. You're not selling something new. You're selling one of the oldest products in the world. You didn't invent adult entertainment. You aren't the only webmaster in the world expecting to get paid. No matter what niche you choose, you won't be the first webmaster pushing it on the web. The only way you're going to stand out is by perfecting your own, personal voice.

If you work on twenty different types of smut at once, it's going to take you twenty times as long to get to the payoff. Anybody can put smut on the net. Any comedian can tell The Aristocrats joke. The true artist works one gimmick at a time.

By Titmowse | Writer @ CozyFrog
Titmowse has a special lily pad as the head writer for CozyFrog and it's family of webmaster resources. She also writes text content for several websites and is the owner of her very own MowseBytes Newsletter.

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