Serious Comedy Talk
Jan. 31, 2023

Episode 139: Niko Lukoff

Niko Lukoff recently appeared on tour with Bill Burr thanks to a Twitter conversation, a testament to his phrase it doesn't hurt to ask. Nico created the Facebook group Displaced Comedians during the pandemic when comedy clubs were shut down, and it quickly became a hub for over 10,000 comedians to get booked on online shows. Scott was an early adopter of the group, but he didn't interact much. Nico explains that the group not only provided a platform for comedians to connect, but it created connections and friendships that still stand today. Nico believes that taking time to relax and enjoy things like the Eventbrite show with Judah Friedlander is the perfect Sunday afternoon activity.


Niko had just started doing stand up comedy seven months before the pandemic hit, having done around 30 live open mics while traveling for their job in sales. He had never done comedy in his home comedy scene in Idaho, so the pandemic provided the perfect opportunity to pursue it. Niko noticed that one of the comedians they had met, Carol Freeman, was doing a Zoom open mic, so they decided to check it out. Niko was then introduced to Rachel Rothenberg, a great comic from Salt Lake City, who was doing a Zoom open mic with 25-30 comics.


Niko talked about how they first got into virtual comedy, which was by watching other people do sets in their living rooms and cars. After seeing Carol do her set, Niko decided to figure out how to do a set of their own, despite not having the proper equipment. They used their laptop's camera and picked an angle of their garage to show to the viewers. Niko then joined various Facebook groups for various comedy scenes and did sets in different cities such as Portland and Seattle. They figured out how to utilize virtual comedy while they were in the midst of the pandemic, which was an unknown at the time.


The conversation focuses on how Niko created an online platform to organize open mics during the pandemic. He noticed that many people were doing Zoom open mics, but there was no central hub for information about them. He created a Facebook group and a Google Sheets list to provide this information, including the time, location, hosts, and sign up process. He also wanted the group to be a community, so he invited anyone interested to join. This platform has been a valuable resource for comedians and fans of comedy alike in the absence of live shows.

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Niko Lukoff

[00:00:00] Scott Curtis: Stoked to have my guest during the pandemic. When comedy clubs were shut down and comedians had nowhere to go, but virtual shows, Nico Luko created the Facebook group. Displaced Comedians became the hub for over 10,000 comedians from all over the world to get booked on online shows.

[00:00:16] Scott Curtis: But more importantly, it created connections and friendships in the standup community that still stand today. Recently, Nico parlayed a Twitter conversation into a guest spot on Bill Bo on Bill Burs tour, which is a testament to the phrase it doesn't hurt to ask. Here comes Nico Loff. Nico, how are you?

[00:00:37] Niko Lukoff: Hey Scott. Doing well, man. How are you? This lovely morning. It's great to have you on. Hey, thanks for having me. Been wanting to do this for a while. I'm glad it

[00:00:45] Scott Curtis: works out. Yeah, so I think I think I was fairly early to jump in to displace comedians, but I didn't I didn't interact a whole lot. I just kinda watched what was going on and I was one of those guys that didn't do a ton of online shows.[00:01:00]

[00:01:00] Scott Curtis: I did the Plano thing and then I did a few feedback mics and stuff like that. But yeah, I just didn't I didn't do a whole lot, but I watched quite a. And I'm gonna jump on the one you're doing here later with Judah Freelander on event Bris, because I'm a bachelor this week. And , I got nothing to do, but what I wanna do there's a ton of things I should be doing, but I'm just gonna kick back and watch

[00:01:27] Niko Lukoff: that.

[00:01:29] Niko Lukoff: I think you should be doing exactly that. Scott, I think you're doing the perfect thing for Sunday afternoon to yourself.

[00:01:34] Scott Curtis: Yeah. I just I just need to take some time off. But yeah, I I thought displaced comedians was really cool and some of the things has happened there that's happened with this podcast.

[00:01:44] Scott Curtis: Can you talk about, first off, what gave you the idea to create it? And then just tell me what's come of it for you and other people and some things that you've heard from other people from it. .

[00:01:57] Niko Lukoff: Yeah, sure. I appreciate it. I appreciate you being a part of it too.[00:02:00] And being, and like you said, even not doing some of the shows.

[00:02:02] Niko Lukoff: Cause not everybody wants to do a zoom's weird , it's a different thing. So like, when I meet people they like, and when it comes up, like they're almost don't wanna feel like they're insulting me sometimes. Oh no, I didn't do any cuz I'm like, dude, relax. I don't, everyone does their thing.

[00:02:14] Niko Lukoff: , and so I had just started doing standup about seven months before the pandemic. I had done about 30 live open mics. I did it while I traveled for my job in sales. I had never done it in my home comedy scene. I'm in Ido, so Bo Boise's my scene here. . I'd never been a part of that scene though prior to prior to the pandemic.

[00:02:30] Niko Lukoff: And what just happened was when everything shut down, I had, I had just started. So I just got that first hit. I was like I couldn't stop. I would've, I don't know what would've had to explode. Like I just, that wasn't a possibility for me to. working on this. So it was I think a combination of the right timing and some of my naiveness.

[00:02:47] Niko Lukoff: I think that kind of led to . Yeah. In making this thing. It was a perfect storm in that sense. So yeah, some was at home and just was like, Hey, I still need to do this. And I noticed that somebody one of the comedians, Carol Freeman, who I met in Tacoma, [00:03:00] Washington, which one of the areas that I'd done some open mics at was doing a Zoom.

[00:03:03] Niko Lukoff: She was hopping on a Zoom, and I just wanted see what it was about. I just wanted to see, is this something. that I, could do or worth doing or whatever. I just wanna check it out. I dunno if you remember Rachel Rothenberg from the early days Yeah. Of Zoom, zoom land. , she ha she was doing her Zoom open mic and she's out Salt Lake City, Utah.

[00:03:20] Niko Lukoff: Great comic that, she's in New York now and she had a really cool thing she was doing and had 25, 30 comics, I think on there doing five minutes and watching people do sets in their living rooms or were cars and everyone was just figuring it out. Saw Carol do her set, and I'm like, this is pretty neat.

[00:03:35] Niko Lukoff: This is something that I need to figure out. So I thought, okay, I, I didn't have a webcam or any, equipment other than my laptop with the crappy webcam built that I didn't have a good one. And I was like, all right, what angle of my garage can I show people? And how do I stand here and tell jokes for a while?

[00:03:50] Niko Lukoff: I didn't understand virtual backgrounds yet. And I went on and I did a set which I actually watched like a couple years later and it was painful to see , but . I talked for five minutes and worse [00:04:00] things had happened before, I didn't feel like I had a, I crushed it at some live thing or anything, but I'd gotten up to go, okay, this is something, it's definitely not the same thing cuz duh, no one thinks it is cuz it's not.

[00:04:10] Niko Lukoff: But it's not nothing. , I was like I gotta figure out how to utilize this with this however many days or years were, in this situation. Cause we, we had no idea at the time. And so I started doing hers and then I realized there were a couple different people from different scenes because as and I don't know, what you're.

[00:04:27] Niko Lukoff: Visitor viewers, if they're not comedians, might not know. There's all these different Facebook groups for basically every comedy scene. Yeah, there's a group. So when you, when I travel for work the northwest is my sales region. So I was in like Portland and Seattle area where I did most of 'em, some in California.

[00:04:41] Niko Lukoff: So I would join those groups when I would go visit those scenes to try to see what opened mics to go to, what, what's going on there. But then when everything shut down, I was watching each of those scenes and each of those scenes, there's oftentimes like one or two people that were like, Hey, I'm doing a Zoom.

[00:04:54] Niko Lukoff: Hey, I'm doing a Zoom. And I was like, oh, so there's several people doing this, but people in different scenes just don't know about it. [00:05:00] And those people in those scenes are focusing on their friends that are just like, Hey, we're doing an open mic now just this way just because we're not doing it live.

[00:05:06] Niko Lukoff: , great. But then I was like, someone's gotta organize this or we're not going to there's value to organizing this and us knowing what's going on. So you can go, oh, here's this mic over here, this one, at that time there's four or five. And I was like, oh, there's so many. Then came out to be hundreds, eventually

[00:05:21] Niko Lukoff: Now back down to probably that four or five-ish range, but. , it's it's my supply and demand. So I just was thinking, all right, someone's gotta organize this. And I was actually chatting with Rachel about that cuz she was talking about maybe doing something like that and then she just didn't really want to or wasn't into it.

[00:05:34] Niko Lukoff: And then I was like I'm gonna do that by this weekend. And I did. I made a Facebook group. I made that, that ridiculous. I really enjoy the cover photo. Just a stupid Yeah. . It's Jack Nicholson in The Shining, and then it's got, and I don't know how to do any graphic stuff, so it's just me just drawing displaced comedians.

[00:05:51] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. .

[00:05:52] Scott Curtis: I'm glad you kept that. I like that. Yeah. .

[00:05:54] Niko Lukoff: Thanks man. I'm glad you do that. It's just it's just like the roots of it is just it's just a silly weird ass thing. [00:06:00] And then I made just one post in the group like a main pin post or whatever the hell, they've changed the name over the years of just, here's the list of the zoom open mics when they are.

[00:06:09] Niko Lukoff: Were they're based out of. Cuz some people were like, oh, it doesn't matter where they, I'm like, it does cuz you get to be in different scenes. And then to an extent, who's running them, how much time you get, are they streaming? Are they not, the information I thought would be pertinent.

[00:06:18] Niko Lukoff: How do you sign up that pertinent to, to, to accessing it? It ended up being just a really long post on Facebook. Whenever I had add one, it just took so long to update. So then I made the Google Sheets thing and I didn't wanna make it. My initial thought on that list was not, I didn't, I kinda wanted to need be in the group, not as like a gatekeeping thing but I wanted it to be of a community.

[00:06:37] Niko Lukoff: , not just like a website out there that doesn't live, but then it was like, all right, this has gotta, just spread. Share it where we want to. Here's a spreadsheet and then I would just fine hosts that were looking, that were doing stuff and interrogate them. And sometimes I'd be like, why is this guy asking me so many questions?

[00:06:51] Niko Lukoff: because I was good at the time. I think some sort of the value in it, but some were just like, what's this guy doing? And then it is built and then it turned the reverse where people were then sending me a bunch of information eventually after [00:07:00] I had interrogated people and seek that out.

[00:07:02] Niko Lukoff: And I started inviting, allowing anybody who wanted to join the group join. Cuz I just thought if you saw this group it's cuz you were a comic or a fan of comedy. Someone who thought they'd wanna start comedy. And that's really what I was making it for. Cuz I got friends that are like just personal friends that aren't comedians.

[00:07:16] Niko Lukoff: But I like them being there just cuz they got to see behind the scenes. And some people that are just comedy fans, it's fine. If they're not actual comedians then a lot of people on there are never gonna do a comedy in life form. And that's fine. Just a way to connect and then it just blew up and had a few hundred people in a couple of days and then I was pretty excited about that.

[00:07:31] Niko Lukoff: And then, . And then I started actually paying attention a little bit to everyone that I was clicking on . And it grew and grew. And as of right now, I think we've there's still people do request to join and I let a lot of it in. I used to try to block off some spam stuff and then have to beat that away when it gets in.

[00:07:46] Niko Lukoff: And, but we're, we've been at that 10,000, 10,200 mark for I think a few months now. And and it's just grown and been a place to connect. And as you've seen and and you asked what I get from it or kinda, yeah. And what's been for

[00:07:58] Scott Curtis: me, and I think it's pretty [00:08:00] cool that you were only seven months in when you started the group.

[00:08:06] Scott Curtis: So you did quite a few of the virtual mics and things like that. How did you, did, do you feel like you came out of it better at what you do than when you went into it? Oh

[00:08:20] Niko Lukoff: yeah. I had like maybe two minutes of Okay. Material. Outta Zoom. I had, more than that, but it was so weird because I lived in this for so long, like my first, I dunno how many sets in my the comics in my local scene could tell you probably.

[00:08:36] Niko Lukoff: But I sounded what I was told. Like I seemed, I wouldn't say polished, like I was like at that stuff I was saying was perfect. I just mean like I sounded like I knew what I was saying or it was clear what I was doing. But my timing was so weird. Cuz on Zoom, I know after this doing that Zoom show's gonna mess with my brain cause I haven't done it in a little while.

[00:08:52] Niko Lukoff: Cuz the timing's different. If one person laughs it takes over the whole Zoom. It can, and then, someone could just take a bong, rip and open a bag of chips and there [00:09:00] goes your punchline, your internet drops, like kids running in. That doesn't happened a while, . just all these things that I think Zoom, I think I know that Zoom gave me material and connection.

[00:09:12] Niko Lukoff: It didn't make me a better performer on live stage. . , I had to peel away a lot and I'm still working to today to be doing that. Cause I've been back to doing live stuff for, gosh, a year and a half, two years now, I think. About a year and a half-ish. Been pretty consistent. But I was doing zooms like one to three a day was not out of norm for me at the time.

[00:09:31] Niko Lukoff: So I was just lived in there and Yeah. Absolutely. Better comic if I hadn't been doing this. I can't even imagine what would've happened if I didn't. But if I just, but if I didn't, I, there's no way to have had any material. Yeah. Yeah. Recipes, but not get to taste it and share it with people to see how it goes this wouldn't have happened. Yeah.

[00:09:47] Scott Curtis: One thing I found is that

[00:09:52] Niko Lukoff: you really

[00:09:53] Scott Curtis: need an outlet to say the words that you've written out loud. Once in a [00:10:00] while just so you can hear 'em back. And I'm, one of the things I've done that isn't necessarily online comedy, but through your group, I've made connections with people where I'm on online writing groups.

[00:10:13] Scott Curtis: And the nice thing about that is, is you come in with a premise or whatever and it's kinda like the thing I'm doing on here now is this anything where you go through it, they give you tags, they tell if, tell you if it's funny or not, and stuff like that. So I'm on one, active on one that Dan Blitz started that we Oh, nice.

[00:10:31] Scott Curtis: Do on Sunday nights. And it's really refreshing because it's good people and it's people who are a little bit more seasoned especially more than I am. And it's really cool to be able to bounce that off people and then take it. To a mic or a showcase or whatever, and it's a li you're a little bit more confident of what you're bringing forth and just saying it out loud really helps.

[00:10:57] Niko Lukoff: Absolutely. Honestly, that is my, [00:11:00] that's like top favorite thing about this whole thing was those experiences. I'm glad Dan's doing that. He's awesome. I talk to him all the time about stuff and get advice on things and that guy, funny comic and and the workshop stuff like the the folks doing the hot breath stuff.

[00:11:15] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Joe Byers group and the people involved with that. They that was awesome. You go on and you just have an hour. Everyone's doing five minutes, they got three minutes of feedback. You're just being honest. You're not kissing anyone's ass. You're not just looking, you're just being honest.

[00:11:28] Niko Lukoff: Wanted to help each other get better. And I ran a couple of zooms, not a lot, but I did a couple where that's what I did is where I think I saw a thing about a year ago is like the first one I did where I just invite some people in. We have five or six comics. I would make sure to have at least one or two like very seasoned comics that do this all the time.

[00:11:48] Niko Lukoff: . And we would just go around and do sets, do five minutes each, and then just take as long as we needed to discuss any feedback from anybody. And that's one thing I liked also about the doing the mics on the shows is that, like right now I [00:12:00] have OneNote open on my laptop. It's way easier to do that.

[00:12:02] Niko Lukoff: Cause when you're at a live show, it's a little more awkward at taking a note. You look kinda like an asshole on your phone. Yeah. , but I'm like, oh, my friend just said something and I just, something clicked that was different. I have a different perspective than they do. They have a different perspective than me.

[00:12:12] Niko Lukoff: If we're connected, we're helping each other, how much better could e could we all get if we just helped each other? Yeah. Because yeah, we're good at coming up with stuff on our own, but we're stuck in our own thing. And then if someone's over here saying something, you might think of something so it then zoom.

[00:12:26] Niko Lukoff: I love just noting something down. And then usually those people have, we've communicated with, so it's not just like some, someone completely random, but sometimes it is like, Hey mind if I throw you a thing? I thought of something during whatever. Yeah. And they're like, usually they're like, great.

[00:12:36] Niko Lukoff: And if they're like, no, fuck you or whatever, I'm like, I don't. Okay. I don't care. And same if they throw, wanna throw me something? Obviously I might not use it, but like it's Just how much better can we be? So when you're in that environment, when you're sitting and you're actually focusing like the ones you're talking about and I was talking about too that's that's powerful.

[00:12:50] Niko Lukoff: And some of the locals here in the scene have talked about doing some workshop stuff, but if we do that, and I'm a part of it anyway, that's the format I want. We actually do it on stage, not just cuz like right now, I know we're gonna talk some bits [00:13:00] back and forth and that's great, but if you're as a group doing it, I think, hey, let's just do stats, how you would do 'em, and then let's talk about it in between or after whatever.

[00:13:08] Niko Lukoff: I like that a lot. So I'm glad that you got the value out of it. That's

[00:13:12] Scott Curtis: awesome. Yeah, and it's really cool that when you get different perspectives like that I've had jokes that come from. A certain perspective mine and only you got, I get these other perspectives and I've actually retooled jokes that still have the same spirit of the joke and maybe even the same punchline, but I've brought it around to where either it's more universal for all audiences or it it hits on things that I didn't even think about, but is still once again in the spirit of the joke.

[00:13:48] Scott Curtis: And that is so helpful to get that type of feedback that you can move on with it.

[00:13:55] Niko Lukoff: I love that so much. And that's, I had that happen recently where I did a set that I was pretty [00:14:00] happy with. I knew it needed some work. Was chatting with the comic cuz was doing this, for a decade or longer, whatever, so way longer than me.

[00:14:06] Niko Lukoff: . And just was really good at it. And they looked at, watched the video and gave me some honest things that part of it was like, oh, I wish they were just like, it's so great. Of course, but like it was, that doesn't help you grow, but it was like, this stuff was good, whatever. But these are the things that, to think about in perspective that I didn't have at all.

[00:14:23] Niko Lukoff: Cuz like I said, you're, you on me we're not going to have someone else's.

[00:14:27] Scott Curtis: Yeah. My biggest problem is if I do pop culture references I'm going back too many years. Sometimes

[00:14:34] Niko Lukoff: pop culture . Yeah, no, it's,

[00:14:38] Scott Curtis: yeah. And like TV shows and stuff like that. I've got one where I mention Anson Williams from Happy Days and it's, I lost almost everybody that was like under the age of 45 and

[00:14:54] Niko Lukoff: I watched that Nick and Knight, I couldn't tell you who that person is.

[00:14:57] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. .

[00:14:58] Scott Curtis: Yes. Yeah. And it's [00:15:00] etched in my brain. So if I'm doing a show that everybody's 55 plus, I'm totally cool with it. But any, if it's a mixed audience, no, it's not gonna work. Yeah, that's great. And one of the cool things I saw out of displaced comedians is that the connections that were made during the pandemic have come over to real life.

[00:15:23] Scott Curtis: And yeah. People know people now, people know bookers, people pe you know, there, there's actual business being done because of the connections made on displaced comedians. And that's gotta make you feel pretty good.

[00:15:39] Niko Lukoff: It really does. That's I just, it, I love so I still travel for work and I'll go somewhere like I, I did an open mic in it's near, near Seattle.

[00:15:47] Niko Lukoff: I forget the name of the city was blanking on it, but I just did an open mic, like just a standard like bar open mic, with 10 humans in there and a handful of comics and a bartender, which actually that's a lot of, that's actually a lot for a real audience. [00:16:00] Uhhuh had an open mic.

[00:16:01] Niko Lukoff: And I got off, after the thing we're all hanging out and some dude just came up to me and it was like, Hey man I've been doing your zooms, I've been on your Zoom stuff. Like I, we had never met, I had never been on the same zoom that I re we didn't remember it being on the same zoom, but knew some of the same people who do a lot of the same zooms.

[00:16:15] Niko Lukoff: So we were like, we had that connection that no one else around us at that moment did. We're like, oh my gosh, you saw the thing. But we weren't to, but like the fact that we hadn't connected directly but did know the same people like very recently and were around people who like had no idea about this world.

[00:16:28] Niko Lukoff: , which just so fun to just like meet and hug and take pictures. Ah, hey, I made and then I've met people who I have hung out with and done stuff with. And then, and and that's been really cool. So it's been. , that's the fun, emotional side of it, but the on business side, yeah, I think that's really neat that people have been able to do that.

[00:16:45] Niko Lukoff: And it's been beneficial to me too. I don't know that there's a specific like booking because, I run a Facebook group or whatever, but it's certainly got me to different avenues. There's actually one thing that I hadn't really been very public about the monetary side of it, but a couple years [00:17:00] ago there was a production company outta LA hit me up that was doing something with variety and partnership with Facebook.

[00:17:06] Niko Lukoff: A black history month. They were showcasing professional black women comedians and interview and having them on with, they wanna have some black women comedians on the Zoom to be able to like, talk about. Their life and their what they're doing and getting advice and stuff like that.

[00:17:20] Niko Lukoff: So like a big thing that was streamed to a bunch of people. And each of those comics that they brought on got a decent handful of cash and I got a little money too. Great. So that was just fun, . I was like, oh, sweet. Hey honey, look. All that time I spent in my garage on computer, there's some money on that.

[00:17:36] Niko Lukoff: Yeah, . And it was doing something neat and it was fun. So connections like that have just been really cool. And I'm very fortunate to be able to be connected with so many neat people all over and work together. Yeah.

[00:17:47] Scott Curtis: And one of the main, things of the, they talk about in marketing yourself and marketing in general is.

[00:17:55] Scott Curtis: When your name is mentioned that somebody remembers it for something, [00:18:00] and, hopefully something good. But, just that name recognition really helps. And, I know you've done that for yourself and I know a lot of people out of the group have been able to do that as well.

[00:18:10] Scott Curtis: That's great.

[00:18:10] Niko Lukoff: I'm really glad I, but I got up to a couple open mics when they announced me and they explained displaced comedians or try to Yeah. And it's always amus. It's, and I love it. I'm not upset about it. It's funny. But then I just go up and I just go so I started that. So first I wanna say, sorry guys, that was all my fault.

[00:18:24] Scott Curtis: Yeah. That's great. I wanna get in, I want to get into the Bill Burr thing because I yeah. I read so I read your post about it, but I also read your the two articles you have on Medium. And I think it's one of those things that it really cements the fact you don't get anywhere if you don't ask as far as comedy's concerned.

[00:18:43] Scott Curtis: So can you go through the you don't have to get into the minute details, but then I got couple people I want to ask about. But I want to oh, and before I get into this, I got introduced to a guy and I'm helping him launch his podcast from Boise, Chris Foster.

[00:18:58] Scott Curtis: Yeah. Hey Chris. I don't know if he's [00:19:00] watching. Yeah. Yes. Awesome. Through you. And he said that you mentioned me at some point and we, he listened to one of my episodes and liked it. So he sent me a note and he said, yeah, I'm thinking about starting a podcast. And he said I'm starting podcast consulting, so let's get together and talk about it.

[00:19:15] Scott Curtis: And so I'm helping him. Oh, cool. Put everything together for that. So I thought that was cool, but back to Bill. You was so fun. Yeah's great.

[00:19:23] Niko Lukoff: Oh, sorry. Just real. We're gonna, so I actually hung out. I hang out Chris all the time cuz we go to the same, mikes and shows and stuff. Uhhuh. I was there a couple nights and he recorded his first episode and I was hanging out with him and the comic we just interviewed on that episode and was talking about you.

[00:19:35] Niko Lukoff: And he is all, he's all stoked and really appreciate your help and stuff too so awesome.

[00:19:39] Scott Curtis: I love it. It's neat to make connections like that wouldn't have happened. Yeah. If I didn't know you and the group. So the whole bill berth thing, Give a synopsis of what happened and how it happened and how you ended up actually getting on stage.

[00:19:53] Scott Curtis: So we read

[00:19:54] Niko Lukoff: the articles, I'm not great at Synopsis, but I will do my best. Yeah. ,

[00:19:57] Scott Curtis: You can gimme a long version. I'm not going

[00:19:59] Niko Lukoff: anywhere[00:20:00] . It started, it was just I that open mic in Boise, we got great open mics. The host and producer, Haley Lenhardt Weis, the Blue City Comedy was announcing Nathan Scott Ford, very funny comics, doing it for 22 years.

[00:20:12] Niko Lukoff: Great dude. And he is hearing in our Boise scene and she was announcing just come up in the open mic and he had mentioned like having a dream that he got to open for Bill Bur or something like that. So she was announcing him and was like, Hey everybody right now, get your phones out and tweet at Bill Burr.

[00:20:25] Niko Lukoff: Tell him that Nathan Scott Ford, comic Night Ford should open for you at, when you come here in December. And she was just like getting amped about it was fun. And, couple days past and I had tweeted like five times ever. and I don't have like notifications on my phone for Twitter still or anything.

[00:20:39] Niko Lukoff: I just, but I just went on, I was like, oh, I'll just see who did it. But nobody did. I was like, what? You just click. How hard is it to fucking what? Any, whatever. Yeah, and I get that some people I don't the thing inside you that goes don't ask you might be a shit, whatever.

[00:20:53] Niko Lukoff: It just isn't a thing that's ever been inside this. So whatever. And then I just did, I was like, Hey bill Burr, comic [00:21:00] eight, four, my friends is very funny. You should open for you or something, something like that. Great opener for you. And he come. And then I was just fucking around a couple hours later, looked at my phone and he replied, and I was like, what the hell?

[00:21:10] Niko Lukoff: This is insane. And part of it was like, I'm so new. I'm like, is this normal? Is this how it, I'm sure I'm not the only person ever Reach out to a celebrity comedian, get to do something with him. I didn't know what level of oh, okay. I guess that's something they do I dunno.

[00:21:25] Niko Lukoff: And I guess it's not really as common as, as a thought, I think, I dunno. But then he replied and in such billboard fashion he just wrote, he said he replied and said, I heard he's a self-promoting cunt. Yeah. . And I was like, that's a credit right there. To be able to be like, come mc Nate for Come to stage was recently called us up Promot, like Bill on Twitter would've been a great credit.

[00:21:46] Niko Lukoff: But then then he replied again and just said, I'll give you five up top and the way on Twitter, how you reply and it copies both people. I acted, the little, I saw an opportunity that's real. I dmd I'm like, so you talk about me too, cuz like we're both in the thing. [00:22:00] and I just DM said, either way, really appreciate it.

[00:22:02] Niko Lukoff: So at this point, I think I'm gonna go buy a ticket for a hundred bucks and go see my friend Nate Ford open, and I'm just gonna have a amazing time. I'm so excited. But then I, I DMD Bill Burr and then nine days he replied, nine days later he's he just wrote I'll put you, I'll put both of you bums up, Uhhuh

[00:22:18] Niko Lukoff: And I was just like, oh, that's pr that's so great. I'm so ha. And then, and I posted about it and I got nervous cuz then the venue was like, why are you posting about this? Who says you're on this show? I'm like, oh, don't make anyone mad. Sorry, nevermind. closer to the show actually did post about it Taga.

[00:22:32] Niko Lukoff: But, and then and then so for we're like, okay, we're doing this is awesome. We're all excited. Then like a couple months past, it was six months of excitement and fear because I was always, oh, so Bill ended up following me on Twitter, which I. I think might have still been an accident and he just doesn't know yet.

[00:22:47] Niko Lukoff: I don't know, . So I was, the six months, I was like, I never really tweet anyway, but I just really gotta make sure to don't post any of them. Makes the guy go be like, fuck these guys. . . And every time I message him, I'm like, at any point it could just be like, these guys, this isn't worth it. So I'm also [00:23:00] like strategizing with Nate sometimes, and I'm messaging with them like, because we wanna get the info.

[00:23:04] Niko Lukoff: I'm like, I can't just go to the show and be like, Hey, bill said let's let me in. Yeah. Like, how do we actually do this? And he is I'm gonna send you this info. And then that didn't happen for a little while. And then I reached out and then again, and then it went back and forth and then got it all, did the whole thing.

[00:23:17] Niko Lukoff: And got to go do a handful of minutes on stage in front of nine to 10,000 people in Idaho at a place that's mostly does rodeos. Yeah, and meet Bill Burr and watch him. So my material didn't hit how I wanted . It was mixed results. It definitely get, got good reactions from a lot of people, but.

[00:23:37] Niko Lukoff: It's probably the most divisive stuff I do a little bit of roasting religion a little bit and not the demographic necessarily for that unless you just wanna see what happens and that's what I did. But I got those actually, just meeting and talking with Bill and watching him perform was incredible and getting to see Nate go up and kill it, it was just awesome experience.

[00:23:53] Scott Curtis: Did you get to experience the whole thing about playing in a large auditorium like that? Of [00:24:00] the laughs starting from the front and going to the back and getting that feedback?

[00:24:04] Niko Lukoff: It was so weird. Yeah, it was so it was an arena, so it's like just massively tall and it was, yeah. Yeah, it was weird, the delays cuz part of me going on was like, oh, zoom trained to me for this for years I've been talking to just a vast open space and hoping, but, and having weird timing, but even doing it still, I got off stage and was like kicking myself out.

[00:24:22] Niko Lukoff: Next time I'll do better on the timing cuz even though I knew. Logically what to do when it was happening. I still paused a little too long between lines just to be just how it was all working and in that moment. . But yeah, it was weird. Like in a weird way of zoom, cuz you have just a big vast space where you just can't see shit.

[00:24:39] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. A lot of shows you can't see anything, but I didn't have as bright of a light in my face directly as I felt like I do at a normal show. And then just see on the corners in the stands to see people and then, f first, couple of row you could see. But other than that it's just a big open space where you're floating.

[00:24:53] Niko Lukoff: And honestly, the nerves leading up to that day was way more than actually walking on that stage. Walking on that [00:25:00] stage. Like it was actually, that was the easiest part of the whole thing. Yeah. I was terrified. I'm gonna drop my mic. What's gonna I spent all day, like I took the day off my day job and was like pacing in the living room.

[00:25:09] Niko Lukoff: I have my mic in a stand and I'm like rehearsing. I'm like, what if I screw up this line? And that wasn't any of the issue. Uhhuh cause I've done that at regular shows, screwed up lines that I've done a million times. But that part wasn't a problem. It was it was just, it was interesting.

[00:25:22] Niko Lukoff: And

[00:25:22] Scott Curtis: it was neat. Yeah. And you had logistics that you had to think about because they gave you a mic and you had did you bring Nate up and then Nate had to bring up Dean or how was it the other way

[00:25:34] Niko Lukoff: around? So you know, they around, so Nate goes up, they hand him a wireless Mike, he does his set that he's to announce me.

[00:25:39] Niko Lukoff: He announces me, give him a big hug. He gets off stage and I. That's my favorite self-promoting cut cuz he had brought that up at the beginning of his set too. Uhhuh and Dean Delray is walking on stage, the feature and I had just announced I was having the, I was just feeling great. Just, getting to shout that and just announcing all this energy.

[00:25:58] Niko Lukoff: I'm walking off stage [00:26:00] and I'm like starting to hand it to him and he's no, I got this. So 10,000 people seen in you seen me be like, oh damnit . So I tried to act Cool. Yeah. And we had some friends that are comedians in the audience and I was explaining it and they're like, oh that's what happened.

[00:26:14] Niko Lukoff: I'm like, yeah, you saw that. He's I don't know if like regular people noticed that as much. the comics definitely did cuz they had a different mic and then while I'm walking off stage, I'm holding the mic in my, that I had, I'm like, I'm sure they cut the mic but what if they did? And so I'm like, put it back in the stand that I'm next to the stairs and get the fuck out of the way.

[00:26:30] Niko Lukoff: Uhhuh before I started just losing. It was so cool too cuz then he's on stage going and then his we're just a couple of sofas off stage. We're a couple, we're on a couple sofas off stage with a monitor showing the front view of the act because we're off to the side and a curtain separating us from the audience.

[00:26:46] Niko Lukoff: And it's just me, my buddy Nate and Bill Burgess fucking around on our phones at a show waiting for our thing . Like it was just like, this is incredible. And then getting to see Bill go up and this one too, cuz while Dean was up, like we hadn't taken a picture together [00:27:00] yet. We had just hung out with Bill before in his restroom before, before it eight, nine went up.

[00:27:04] Niko Lukoff: But then Bill just goes hey we should take the picture now just cuz he knew that we wanted to but didn't wanna make it awkward for us. Yeah. And like it was just he's just a class act man and I've always been a fan of his, and I'm not just saying this cuz he let us do this, but just how he acts like just leveled up even further my book.

[00:27:22] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Of just how he is as a person and yeah, that was cool. Yeah. He's one

[00:27:26] Scott Curtis: of those comedians that really like comedy and. It's a testament, he, he gave you guys a shot and that, that's great. Can th this is totally off comedy subject, but can you talk about club Soda Kenny?

[00:27:39] Scott Curtis: Because I know who he is and I've heard so many great stories about him just about how he acts and stuff. What was it like, cuz he's Bill's manager, so what was it like? Yeah. Interacting with him?

[00:27:52] Niko Lukoff: The day of, he's the one that emailed us actually. So the back and forth about the show we got the final Yes, it's happening [00:28:00] in our souls nine days before it Uhhuh

[00:28:03] Niko Lukoff: So we're just like freaking out. So he's who we're emailing with, then he is yeah, we'll send you the information, like the when to be there, whatever, like couple days before the show. Then five hours before the show we get an email, like we're at a park and go and we're like, alright, right now we ready to go.

[00:28:14] Niko Lukoff: We're in the dressing room and it's probably, I think it's like right about eight. The show is sparked Spar eight, but of course didn't, started by about eight 30 and we're in our dressing room. And and this tall dude who's obvious, just seems like a tall New York dude with a black jacket on a with a Brad Garrett kind of guy.

[00:28:34] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. By Garrett. . So we're, in a way, it just comes in just very solemn, but very, just everything he says has a purpose. Everything. He does have a purpose, but he's not being pretentious or aggressive or. Yeah, like putting anybody down in any way. He just comes in, he just he knocked on the outside door, the door that was open.

[00:28:53] Niko Lukoff: Then knocked again and we're like, what the fuck? And we're like, oh yeah, come in. Cause we couldn't see the way the room was. And he came in and he is oh, hey guys. He, and we [00:29:00] obviously, we knew who he was just from our communication, but he's Hey, yeah, I'm Ken. I'm like, oh yeah, we've been emailing.

[00:29:05] Niko Lukoff: Hey, thanks. How's it going? You have Nate, I'm Nico, da. He's cool guys. We're gonna start the show at about eight 30. Is that okay? I'm like, just treating us like respectable. Like we're just, we're pierce, we're all just doing this shit together. , and he is, we're like, yeah, I guess that'll be okay. . And and then he is just, talking about how we'll bring each other up. And someone had explained a little bit before he, touched on that, how it was working, and then he goes just totally chill. He like, so you guys wanna meet Bill?

[00:29:31] Niko Lukoff: We're like yeah I guess I'll be all right. . And he introduced this to him, so he was ju he was just chill and nice. And you could just tell that if he's gonna do something that's gonna be done right, and you're all right with him. . And I think also some of that was, he's probably just really good at diffusing stressful situations.

[00:29:50] Niko Lukoff: And here's two guys who have never done this capacity, but thing before when he probably knew that. , getting to made sound, like theaters and stuff. But like both of [00:30:00] us, this is the biggest thing. Audience-wise, he'd never done so just a nice guy. We didn't really have a whole lot of communication after that.

[00:30:06] Niko Lukoff: He just we're all hanging out in a room talking with Bill and Dean and eventually at one point he just goes Kenny just says, Hey, so you guys wanna start the show? And we're like, I gu Yeah. All right, let's do, I guess we can do that. . Yeah. And then took us out and he's the one that took our picture too, and just just a good solid guy.

[00:30:22] Niko Lukoff: And and then I'd, and then I look, looked up some stuff about him and, I was him being called Club Soda Kenny and stuff. And I learned more about him and I'm like, that dude's a badass. .

[00:30:31] Scott Curtis: Yeah, he is. He is. Yeah. I learned about him. I used to listen to Opie and Anthony all the time on Sirius xm, and he was, A regular on their show, and they would just give him shit just mercilessly and he took it all. And ver he very rarely like, would fight back or anything like that. And, but he knows what he is, and Yep. And that's it. And he's probably one of those guys that could break e either [00:31:00] one of 'em in half at any point he wanted to, but he know, he knows he doesn't have to.

[00:31:04] Scott Curtis: And I, I've always thought he's a cool guy.

[00:31:07] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Like a guy who doesn't have to say what he is just that much more powerful too. Yeah. . Yeah.

[00:31:14] Scott Curtis: It's a good dude. Was this your first time to watch Dean Delray?

[00:31:19] Niko Lukoff: Yeah I never met him. I never seen him before. I do, like a lot of people since then have pointed out some stuff that he's done.

[00:31:25] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. But yeah, no first thing, anything with him or of him.

[00:31:29] Scott Curtis: Yeah. I love, I love that guy. He he used to work with mark Maron quite a bit. Yeah. And they do a podcast together. Yeah. And I watched it was in Grand Rapids, I think Michigan. I went to see him and he opened for Marin. And I just think he's great.

[00:31:47] Scott Curtis: Very underrated. Oh, man. He was fantastic. So you've had this stuff happen and you've been pretty serious about comedy before that. How did getting on an opening for Bill Burr, how [00:32:00] did that change your outlook in comedy and what kind of goals do you have coming out of that? .

[00:32:06] Niko Lukoff: Oh, these are great questions.

[00:32:07] Niko Lukoff: It's funny going in. I was like, all right, going in. I'm either gonna retire afterwards, just be like that. That was it. That was fun. , I had a good time because I've got a real job, and honestly, do I think I'm ever going to have a be full-time professional comedian and not have, probably not. , I, I got married, got three kids.

[00:32:24] Niko Lukoff: I, I have, I'm not going out there taking big financial risks. . But I'm also having a lot of fun and figuring out ways to put these things together. So after that, it's been it's been neat, obviously being able to talk about it and then people know about it.

[00:32:36] Niko Lukoff: I've been posting about it. As far as professionally, I don't know how much it's changed, what I wanna do. , it just opens my eyes up for what could be potentially. Does that mean I think I'm gonna, I'm going to headline that venue someday. I have no idea. Most statistically not gonna happen, but am I gonna try to get up again on somewhere like that?

[00:32:57] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Yeah. And have I [00:33:00] tweeted at some people on behalf of a couple of the people not for me to get up, because places that I couldn't even get to because why not? Yeah. With with the consent of those people that I'd be, communicating about. Yeah. Cuz I swung the first time and I hit it, so I know it could happen.

[00:33:16] Niko Lukoff: And if I hadn't hit, then I might not be swinging somebody. And every swing after that might be amis. Every single one. Yeah. I never ha never tweet at somebody who gives somebody a spot ever again. That's very possible. Yeah. But more recently, the bit that I was working on there that kind of turned into a thing where this needs to be some merch on this.

[00:33:34] Niko Lukoff: So I'm thinking more about the business side and how I can help finance. Cuz some of those, shows that you drive several hours to don't pay enough to do the gas in the hotel Yeah. And the whatever, but might still wanna do it. And ways to supplement that. And I've always just been entrepreneurial since I was a kid.

[00:33:52] Niko Lukoff: I've always been a salesperson and been doing something business wise. And, run businesses that did ship things small items, , [00:34:00] but this is just a little bit different. Yeah. And realizing, hey, the business side is Yeah. Selling tickets and whatever, but selling merch selling booze and it's in the way of being the entertainer that night.

[00:34:09] Niko Lukoff: So if I can, bring some merch with me and make some money on that and justify that trip a little more and have some experience, I don't know where it's gonna go. , I do think. , I am gonna be able to headline at some point. I'm not saying like theater wise, like normal humans hear headline.

[00:34:24] Niko Lukoff: They might think like opening and being someone that everybody knows. That just means doing 45 to 60 at some venues and being able to actually do it and have a good time and do it successfully. Yeah. And and actually just a couple months ago I finally decided to myself or told myself that I was gonna do that at some point.

[00:34:42] Niko Lukoff: I had never even thought about it really. I just thought I was just gonna have fun and see what I can do. Do 10, 15 here and there. Just try to get really good and have a lot of fun. So just trying to balance both those things and if it pays for the trips to do comedy and maybe a little more for my household and That's awesome.

[00:34:57] Scott Curtis: Yeah. Yeah. And one of the things [00:35:00] that almost every comedian I've talked to that has done it for a number of years is, . It's gotta be fun. And you've talked about you've mentioned that it's fun so many times that if it becomes to the point where it's not fun for you and all you're thinking about is a business, then you probably shouldn't be doing it anymore because you're not gonna get any better and you're not gonna enjoy it and you're gonna end up just despising everything you do that's comedy related.

[00:35:27] Scott Curtis: So keeping it fun is definitely one of the more important things about Oh yeah. Actually surviving and standup and honestly,

[00:35:35] Niko Lukoff: business is fun for me. Figuring out the puzzle pieces of merchant and shipping and all these different things I'm thinking through right now, different website shopping cart systems, how I want to do it.

[00:35:45] Niko Lukoff: And it sounds boring, but it's exciting to me. Yeah. So I think if I can get that part of my joy from that and still be able to work on just the comedy itself it's great cuz when I travel for work, . I don't travel as much as I used to for work, but when I did, [00:36:00] about every other week I might be gone for three to four nights.

[00:36:02] Niko Lukoff: I could sit in my room watching Netflix or just go out and talk to strangers and try to have fun and make people laugh. And that's, I'm very extroverted on and off stage. So that's just, it feeds

[00:36:13] Scott Curtis: me. That's great. That's great. I really respect what you did both with displaced comedians and the fact that you you just parlayed your way into a opening spot for Bill Brewer.

[00:36:25] Scott Curtis: I think that's great. And that's one thing. So being in sales, I'll say that I've been in sales for most of my life as well, and being in sales I think gives you a little bit of a leg up in comedy because it makes you not afraid to ask, because a lot of comics are very artsy.

[00:36:41] Scott Curtis: They're very introverted and they. They never feel like it's the right time to ask. And the funny thing is you know, in sales, you gotta get like a hundred nos or whatever to get a yes or to do that. So we don't care how many people we ask. And yeah, we [00:37:00] know that the person that says no isn't going to make us feel, they don't think about us after saying no.

[00:37:08] Scott Curtis: So you could go back to that same person six months later and then they'll say yes because it's the right time and the right place. But yeah, sales definitely, I guess it gives you a thicker skin about stuff like that. And you, the nos don't mean as much and the yeses are fine, you gotta get to the next one too.

[00:37:29] Scott Curtis: Yeah.

[00:37:29] Niko Lukoff: So it's, it, I'm glad you said it's interesting cuz like I'll reach out so like I'm going to Portland next month and It's neat because every show I've done there in the last several I've been there several times last year, and every time I go, I on different shows with different people.

[00:37:41] Niko Lukoff: A lot of times when the comics on that lineup is producing a different show , so it's just next time, hey do. But the producers that haven't seen me in a while, or even if that comic hasn't seen me in a while, I'll shoot 'em a clip or whatever. And then if I get turned down, what I liked for them to say, yeah, sure.

[00:37:55] Niko Lukoff: But guess what? In six months I'm gonna be a better comedian. . I'm gonna send you another clip and [00:38:00] say, Hey, coming through again on this date, just checking to see if I might be whatever. Like it's not, it's, I'd rather be told Yes, sure. But it's like sales, asking for the sales. Kinda I assume I was reading kinda like it's the punchline.

[00:38:13] Niko Lukoff: It's the most exciting part till you've done all the work. Yeah. And it's this is gonna work, or this is going to do it or it's not. Right now, can we, you'll get this sale, we place this order for you, blah, blah, blah, whatever. I'm asking you right now to laugh at all this shit that I built up.

[00:38:27] Niko Lukoff: And if you don't. Shit, I'm gonna try again and las soon and I might tag it. So not the exact same thing. And while the experience of doing sales does give you a thicker skin, I think that's also just you do sales because you have that prior. Yeah. You develop it and enhance it too.

[00:38:43] Niko Lukoff: But that does just the whole thing, building that and being that and just not really giving a shit. Like I said, a zeis when some, I'd rather win or whatever. Yeah. But it's like, all right, next time I'm gonna be better at it. And there's been some shows that I've been excited about that have been like, turned me down and then I'm like, okay.

[00:38:58] Niko Lukoff: And then I was on afterward and then [00:39:00] made it even, even that much sweeter. Yeah.

[00:39:02] Scott Curtis: Yeah. Most definitely. So we're at a point in the show that's my new favorite part of the show, and I don't have a sounder for it yet. I don't know if I'm ever even gonna do one. It's called, is this anything where we each bring a bit or two to the To the podcast and we give each other notes on it.

[00:39:19] Scott Curtis: So since you're the guest, you get to decide if you go first or I go first.

[00:39:26] Niko Lukoff: I'm gonna have you go first on this, and I'm looking forward to this too. Okay, excellent. Both of us looking forward to, but yeah, so

[00:39:31] Scott Curtis: mine is, this is one. I don't think I've said it out loud in this particular way. It's an old joke that I did way back when I first started, but it never really hit the way I wanted it.

[00:39:48] Scott Curtis: And so I wrote this differently. So I love doing that. And you

[00:39:52] Niko Lukoff: go back when you're a better comic and it's oh shit. Yeah.

[00:39:54] Scott Curtis: I can make this better. So here it goes. The world may be a burning hell, but one thing you kids. One [00:40:00] thing you kids got is your pot is so much better than I had when I still had hair and a positive outlook on life.

[00:40:06] Scott Curtis: You got the hybrid, you got strains for about any feeling that you want, and most of all, you got quality control. We had two varieties of weeds when of weed when I was a kid, mostly seeds and mostly stems . One thing the marijuana industry hasn't been able to do though, is in fixing the mystery of how an edible is going to hit.

[00:40:29] Scott Curtis: It's never exactly what you want. If I take an edible before a party just to take the edge off my social anxiety, I end up being found to sleep on the dog bed the next morning. And when I just want to chill and watch some X-files before I go to bed, you'll find me at 2:00 AM arranging the food in my fridge, by the way it sounds when I chew it.

[00:40:52] Scott Curtis: and end joke.

[00:40:55] Niko Lukoff: That's awesome. How close to the, what's, what was the original version, do you

[00:40:58] Scott Curtis: remember? It was it was [00:41:00] only really the first part, but I went into more stuff about hybrids and strains and vaping and all that kind of stuff. And the punch was mostly Cs, mostly, or mostly steps.

[00:41:14] Niko Lukoff: You stopped right there. Yeah. Which, that's funny. But then you keep going and that's, I really like the detail of the, by the way it sounds That's so great. Just all that . Yeah. How it makes you feel. . Oh man. That's good waste to improve it though. Something I thought of when you were saying the world's burning, something about the world burns and you burn trees.

[00:41:35] Niko Lukoff: Burning trees. Burning trees for smoking weed, burning trees. There might be something fun in there. Yeah. Everyone, there's a lot of diet conscious people and part of my diet, my, my bit, one of the bit I'm gonna talk about is thinking about that is I don't know, I was thinking something about also worrying about how many carbs you're in a gummy or something like that.

[00:41:51] Niko Lukoff: I gotta worry about this. Yeah. And I don't know, I dunno if that's a thing.

[00:41:56] Scott Curtis: and they're actually developing strains now that don't give you the [00:42:00] munchies. They call it diet pot and what, yeah, and diet

[00:42:03] Niko Lukoff: pot. Diet pop. Yeah. No diet Pop . Alright. That's awesome. . Yeah. I, it's weird cause as an adult I get less mu I'm able to push past the munch phase a little more as an adult than I was as a teenager.

[00:42:18] Niko Lukoff: I was like, I just gotta eat now. I'm just like, all right. I've consciously thought about that. I might eat a shit ton right now. Yeah. But I can it's interesting. Yeah. And it's, it is different. And man, I would. I do that on stage in a second. I'm not going, you, I say go on and Yeah.

[00:42:32] Niko Lukoff: I'm gonna release that as a mic or something. Yeah,

[00:42:34] Scott Curtis: I'm gonna try it tonight. There's a mic tonight and I'm gonna try it. But it's funny, I, in most cases, we don't wanna turn this into pot talk, but in most cases I'm pretty good about Sting off the Munchies too. But last night was awful.

[00:42:49] Scott Curtis: I was watching movies, and it was it was like one in the morning and I ate six Eggo waffles.

[00:42:58] Niko Lukoff: dude. Put that somewhere in [00:43:00] it. Yeah. . Six Eagle waffles. And now I'm doing this, like they're, yeah, I would throw something like that and then organizing the thing. And it's not funny to say you pushed back much.

[00:43:08] Niko Lukoff: It's funnier. Yeah. To come And utilize it, obviously. Yeah. . . All right. I don't know. We, it's weed. It's a weird, neat thing because like people say, oh, that's a pot comic, but dude, it's hilarious. There's so many fun things. Yeah. And the way the world's changing, we can all connect in a different way. Yeah.

[00:43:25] Scott Curtis: it's super fascinating and really for younger audiences, when I get on stage it, I look. A professor or something like that. So they don't expect me to be somebody who would talk about weed and so it takes 'em off guard and that gets 'em listening. But I've got another story that, and I'm not gonna even try it, but I'm working around, The telling my kids the story of the first time I tried cocaine because it's a great story and it's fantastic, but I'm still getting around the [00:44:00] fact of I'm waiting until they both turn 30 cuz my son turns 30 this year.

[00:44:05] Scott Curtis: I'm waiting until they both turn 30 because I didn't want to influence 'em into into doing something that I told 'em was cool when they were younger. But after they're 30 it's not my problem anymore, so I, yeah. And that I got that dialed down, but the whole story part is probably like maybe an eight minute bit.

[00:44:27] Scott Curtis: So that takes a lot of work. So yeah it's. That's

[00:44:31] Niko Lukoff: fun. If you ever feel like it, I, you won, ever do it and shoot it to me, I'd love to hear it. Yeah. And tell you any thoughts on it.

[00:44:38] Scott Curtis: Yeah. This is one, I'm actually gonna have to write down this one. Oh yeah. Cause I don't write everything down.

[00:44:43] Scott Curtis: I'll just write the premise down and play with it. But this one I'm gonna have to write down almost like a blog and then sounds like it. And then cut out the bad stuff after that. Yeah, that's,

[00:44:53] Niko Lukoff: that. That seems like you should I, that sounds like a great way to do that. One on the seeds and stems too, because [00:45:00] I think some audience either they might not know.

[00:45:04] Niko Lukoff: or it'd be just funny to point out and be like, by the way, seeds and stems are these things where, cuz they might have never even fucking seen a seed or a stem Yeah. On we before because it's so perfect in that. And you can comment on like, how perfect in that container. It's like these perfect, those don't grow on trees folks.

[00:45:19] Niko Lukoff: They don't. They do. Yeah. But first they have this Yeah. Or whatever. There's wheat doesn't grow in tree.

[00:45:27] Scott Curtis: Yeah. There's more to the plant than the beautiful bud that you guys get as the end product. And back in

[00:45:34] Niko Lukoff: my day, we have to carry this stock 20 miles in the snow. We blow up, we breathe on it to dry it out.

[00:45:41] Niko Lukoff: We would , we wait 72 hours for some dude to show up that we hoped didn't rob us. Yeah. . Just so we could feel better. Yeah. , little bastards. Having luck. Have a good, oh man.

[00:45:54] Scott Curtis: Yeah. I could, I, I could add a shit ton to that because I had a lot of, bit of experiences, so [00:46:00] Yeah. Excellent. Okay. It's your turn bud.

[00:46:02] Scott Curtis: And you said that you might bring a couple and that's totally cool. I'm not going anywhere.

[00:46:06] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. So the one that is a little more further through that I've been doing That I've been doing a bit. I can do the shorter version of it here, but just thinking of just different ways to go with it.

[00:46:16] Niko Lukoff: Where I was talking about experience I had where I'm might even say it the same way as the actual bit, just talk about the bit, a little bit. But basically I'm, I was raised Jewish. I don't really follow any particular religion. My wife's a full-on pagan, witch, all that stuff. And then our oldest son, he's 13.

[00:46:28] Niko Lukoff: He did a while back he was like, Hey guys I'm Christian now. I'm gonna be Christian. . And we're like, oh shit, this is gonna be crazy. When he did tell me this, I was like, all right, we gotta figure this out as a fam, like how do we approach this? Not saying you're a bad per, someone's a bad person for being any religion, but we're not that religion, so whatever it is just a different thing to deal with, so when I gave him a big hug and I was like, it's gonna be okay, we'll get through it. And some of my best friends are Christian, trying to relate and but couldn't you just be gay? Something that'd be very cool, like something different , way easier to deal with. [00:47:00] and then going into about how, my wife's a witch and how that's just makes it a weird a weird dynamic and a turn that I've been working on a little bit recently in that is it's my, you my, we got a Pagan, a Jew and a Christian, we're a joke.

[00:47:14] Niko Lukoff: We're a punchline. We're or we're a hacky Netflix series. Uhhuh. , yeah. We'd call it that Son of a witch , which is silly and dumb, but I love it. I love silly wordplay and stuff. Uhhuh, and then going through it and then we're like, oh, where'd we go? Wrong? Maybe it's just a phase.

[00:47:31] Niko Lukoff: And then the whole thing, where the last part is where I which is I've been doing pretty much mostly the same way since I've been doing it. Is saying is is there maybe like some kind of camp we could just send them to? , cause that's the conversion therapy I'd be supportive of.

[00:47:44] Niko Lukoff: . And if he came back and he was into guys what if that was a trade off? Like he, he went to a camp and he wasn't Christian anymore, but now he's in the fellas. I dunno, maybe they'd be better, maybe they could just gay the prey away. Uhhuh , . And that's a line that usually [00:48:00] goes pretty well.

[00:48:01] Niko Lukoff: Uhhuh, . And then I add a little bit to that because I, before the, I, that's the bit that I did at the Bur show. . And before that I did that. I'm like, I gotta tell my kid I'm doing this. Like I've never, I told him that I was working on this and I was a little scared cuz I then I'd get to talk about, I just told my kid that I was doing this on stage or that I was doing at this show tonight because I needed to tell him about it.

[00:48:22] Niko Lukoff: And I was a little nervous. Cause what if he told me he didn't want me to? What if he's just dad, please don't talk about this on stage. Then I would have to lie and tell him that I wasn't, because I'm definitely going to . . then he actually watched a video of me doing this set.

[00:48:34] Niko Lukoff: Like he watched me because he was supportive of it. And he did come back from being Christian, whatever. Now he's like back to being Pagan. But just was worried that peop he, he liked watching it, but he was worried that people would think he was Christian. I'm like, that's the part you have a problem with

[00:48:47] Niko Lukoff: That's the really okay . And then he like, but he's dad, what? How do they know I'm not Christian still? I'm like, and then he's I'm like, I don't know. At the end of it, I never really figured out how to tell people after the show when they come up and ask. Cuz a lot of people come up and talk to me about it [00:49:00] and wanna discuss the whole thing.

[00:49:01] Niko Lukoff: And I'm like, oh, he is not anymore. Da. He's tell me this then. And then my son, my third turn old son said, dad, tell them that the camp worked . And I'm like, oh dude, I love you so

[00:49:11] Scott Curtis: much. Yeah, , that's good.

[00:49:12] Niko Lukoff: And then he is but try to make also I'm not gay, but then I'm like, I can't just say, but he's not gay at the end.

[00:49:17] Niko Lukoff: That's the, that's doesn't, that's not that's not fun. , , then I just added some stuff to her. I was like made some stuff of her. So oh. But tell him all that the camp worked and I go, Hey everybody. His girlfriend doesn't like that cuz she's oh, everyone's gonna think he's gay.

[00:49:27] Niko Lukoff: And I'm like, could be worse. Good. Think he's still Christian. Yeah. And I just, and then it was funny too cause I got off stage and this actually happened in person cause I actually brought him to a show where I did this Uhhuh . And he's just dad, you should have, you didn't tell him what I said.

[00:49:41] Niko Lukoff: What do you mean? He was like, you didn't tell him that I was gay. I'm like, I couldn't just say he's not gay. I had to make it a thing. Dude, I made you way cooler. Now I made up that you have a girlfriend? Yeah, . So this whole thing and after the birth show, somebody came up to me and was saying nice stuff and was like, Hey, I liked your set and you really talking Mia and Nate, all of us.

[00:49:59] Niko Lukoff: Hey, great job, [00:50:00] love. Then he's oh. Sorry for wasting your time. I'm like, dude, I will spend all night standing here. You, yeah, we, this is why we. There's way easier ways to not make money than standup comedy. This is what I will cancel my Uber and go star other friends right now to stand here and talk to you all night.

[00:50:14] Niko Lukoff: Ah-huh . And while I'm doing that, this lady comes by and she shouts out who, a lady who didn't like it, she shouted at me and she slammed the door and drove off and she shouted, I'm a Christian, cuz she was at the show. . She's just mad. Cause a lot of people at the show were mad about my bit.

[00:50:29] Niko Lukoff: Shout, she yell, I'm a Christian, slams the door and drives off. So she shouted something she wanted me to know but didn't wanna discuss it. She was a Twitter post. . And I in, in the bit, like I, I shouted at her. It's gonna be okay. All gay for you. Yeah. just trying to play and I'll pray for you in the beginning when I tell my son it's gonna be okay.

[00:50:48] Niko Lukoff: I was trying to call back to that. So I've been playing with bits and p pieces of this and I know I butchered it and because I'm doing, I do it different ways every time I'm talking about this and it's the thing that made this merch. , I dunno. [00:51:00] Is it back? No, it looks straight this way. Yeah, it does.

[00:51:03] Niko Lukoff: Gave the prey away, gave the pray away. This got, yeah after Luke off. And I'm, I've been selling these recently and I'm given 10% of the money, the Trevor Project that helps people who aren't straight with crisis prevention, suicide prevention for young people. Got a close friend and a comedian who lost their son to that last year.

[00:51:19] Niko Lukoff: And just thinking of I kinda felt like I was appropriating, making merch, making money off a thing that is not a thing that I am. Then I was like, oh, wait, I can give to something and make it like Yeah. Help something.

[00:51:28] Scott Curtis: Yeah. I love that. So a couple notes that I came up with on this is so you don't, you and your wife don't have any desire to set foot in a church, but your son doesn't drive yet and.

[00:51:41] Scott Curtis: He needs you to take him. So I can picture you guys just rolling past a church and kind of pushing him out of the car while it's still moving and saying we'll be back in an hour and a half and please walk down a block from the church so we can pick you up there. Oh. Cause

[00:51:57] Niko Lukoff: we're so embarrassed.

[00:51:59] Niko Lukoff: Oh, that's really, [00:52:00] dude, I'm so glad we're doing this. Cause I would've never thought of that. Yeah.

[00:52:03] Scott Curtis: Yeah. I, that's awesome. I was thinking about that and it's funny because, my kids and I went through the same thing cuz you know I'm an atheist, but we sent our kids to Catholic school for a while cuz we, we didn't like the public schools.

[00:52:17] Scott Curtis: But the, and I've been thinking about doing a joke about this too, because they both turned out to be almost exactly like me. And they've got some spirituality, but they're not. They don't think Christianity's all that. But, and were you scared

[00:52:30] Niko Lukoff: about that going in? Were you worried oh shit, this is wor it's worth it, but maybe was there a little bit of that?

[00:52:35] Niko Lukoff: Oh

[00:52:35] Scott Curtis: yeah. I didn't want 'em to get programmed or indoctrinated or anything. That's my fear.

[00:52:40] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Yeah. But from anything,

[00:52:41] Scott Curtis: whatever it is. But yeah, I always taught, my wife and I always taught 'em to have their own mind. We never really, of course pushed anything down their throats.

[00:52:48] Scott Curtis: I think that helped. But yeah, there was some fear there, but there was also fear they wouldn't get an education if they went to the public school .

[00:52:55] Niko Lukoff: That's fair. Yeah. I actually knew a lot of Jews growing up since I grew up Jewish. A lot of [00:53:00] Jews went to Catholic school because they had a little buddy.

[00:53:03] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. And they wanted the best education possible. Yeah. . That's where they believe that to be. Yeah. Yeah. That's pretty cool. Makes sense. If you wanna use any of this stuff, if it helps at all, that Jews go there too. I don't know.

[00:53:13] Scott Curtis: Yeah, I like that the, you don't have to be Catholic to go to CA Catholic school.

[00:53:18] Scott Curtis: No, and I was thinking about. So that you can incorporate the fact that your son isn't gay. Just being a little disappointed that you don't have that gay son that you can talk to your friends about and be shown as a progressive parent, just, it is man, he's into the girls.

[00:53:39] Scott Curtis: We're hoping that's just a phase and and we can finally have that showcase kid that we can talk to our friends about. Something like that.

[00:53:47] Niko Lukoff: There might be something there. Yeah. That fun , because you're

[00:53:51] Scott Curtis: thought yeah you're still telling folks what's real, but then you can also throw in the fact, eh, we're just a little disappointed and [00:54:00] Yeah.

[00:54:00] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. It could be cool if he was . Yeah.

[00:54:04] Scott Curtis: So what else you got?

[00:54:06] Niko Lukoff: So the other one that's a much less baked I guess I might. say how I do it. Yeah. So I, so I've been losing weight. I talking about I've been losing weight on purpose. The last 14 months I've lost 70 pounds and usually they go oh yeah.

[00:54:20] Niko Lukoff: Then I'm like, oh. I went all to my head. . And the way I'm thinking about is hold my head something. Bottles went old to my hair too, cuz I had shorter hair in the beginning of all this Uhhuh, . And that I tried different diets. Oh no, sorry. next part of that doing is saying one thing I really like about it is I actually fit normal clothes.

[00:54:35] Niko Lukoff: Now I really like getting just like a solid side, like in this bike, a shirt or whatever and just be pretty sure it's gonna fit. , cause I got to a weird sigh as I got to a two and a half X, which a two and a half X is where you try to pull your two x shirt over your body. Uhhuh, , it's like trying to pull an empty balloon over a basketball.

[00:54:54] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Something's gonna break and none of these things were meant to do what you're doing with them. It's [00:55:00] just nothing. And then a three x shirt, you're just flapping in the wind. So that, that's nice. And I different diets. I started out looking at I did Weight Watchers for a bit, which was neat cuz they give you points based on your weight and all these things.

[00:55:11] Niko Lukoff: And you eat those, eat the food, eat the points like a fat man, PAC Man. And you eat those points and you succeed. You win the level, you lose weight, but then they give you less points like some bullshit golf diet, , I don't think that's the exact term there, but there's something there in there where I'm like, this is stupid.

[00:55:27] Niko Lukoff: I get less points now. Uhhuh, then I was doing keto, but you gotta track so much stuff. You gotta track your ketos, I'm sorry, gotta you gotta track your carbs your macros, your medic glor . And I'm like, oh, that's where I tried to figure out what my nerds are at. Yeah, it was a trap. Uhhuh, . And then, but then I just did this thing where I just stopped eating carbs.

[00:55:49] Niko Lukoff: That's what I did. Basically what I did is if I saw loaf of bread, I just. Wouldn't eat it. And if I saw a glass of milk, which I love milk, it's fantastic. I would just wait to look. [00:56:00] Arrived at its superior state cheese. Yeah, because cuz cheese is just someone saying milk. You could do betters, gets the carbs out of that.

[00:56:08] Niko Lukoff: But the, but I did, I do miss pizza. I love pizza. Pizza's fantastic. I missed it a lot. And there's all these recipes for keto pizza. There's all these ones that are basically just cheese. You make a cheese crust and more cheese and sauces and toppings, which is a great, delicious way to have a heart attack,

[00:56:23] Niko Lukoff: But what it's not is pizza. It's not pizza. There's all these recipes for pizza lookalikes, but none of them are a pizza taste. Oflike, none. . . And so they actually have a name for the thing I'm doing. It's called Dirty Keto. It's, I think it's a stupid name. I think the same person who made up the DARE program's name made up that name just to try to sound cool, dare to keep kids off drugs, dare to keep middle-aged men pretentious.

[00:56:49] Niko Lukoff: And it, it does that second one, . But then I lo I like drinking. So I went to a bar and I was like, oh I can't have, I'm not drinking this Happy Bread juice that we know is beer [00:57:00] right now. , unfortunately I love it, but I'm not doing that. So I go up to the bartender, I order a whiskey and a Diet Coke Whiskey and Diet Coke is, I'm a badass.

[00:57:07] Niko Lukoff: . And they're confirming my drink and he confirms my drink. He says it's beautiful thing. The bartender says, oh, whiskey Diet

[00:57:18] Niko Lukoff: Is that the most beautiful, shortest song I've ever heard in my life? Is that whiskey diet? Is that what I am doing? I am definitely calling it. The whiskey diet . That exact Yes. Yes. I would like that, but I'm feeling extra healthy, so please make it a double. Yeah, , that's what , and that's what I got for that.

[00:57:39] Niko Lukoff: That's the whiskey

[00:57:40] Scott Curtis: diet bit. I love it. So going back to Fran I have just a couple notes. So the the whiskey diet thing I think is a great way to end it. It's perfect And I would I would end it. The fact I'm Nico Luko, and you can go to whiskey to to find, to sign up for [00:58:00] your own personal whiskey diet plan, which, oh my God, I should do this.

[00:58:05] Scott Curtis: I'm gonna do this. Yeah. Whi, which may include such great flavors as bourbon, scotch, and just go down the line of blended whiskey, whatever whiskey you want, you can have. And I like that. The other thing is I love the two and a half xl. And one thing that you could add to that is, yeah, now that I'm down to regular sizes, I can go into TJ Max and actually buy clothes because there wasn't anything there that fit me before.

[00:58:38] Niko Lukoff: Yeah. Do they not have big clothes? I've never even been to A T G M X before

[00:58:42] Scott Curtis: Together. Yeah, it's actually, so I do one about my height and I haven't done it forever cuz it's not that funny, but I, cuz I'm six five and there's no tall clothes there. Very rarely. And I just say, yeah, you guys are lucky to be normal height.

[00:58:56] Scott Curtis: The only thing I can buy at TJ Max is socks. And it's [00:59:00] never really hit, but I think in your case, the fact that you could go to a normal, you, you could even say Walmart. I can go to Walmart and get clothes that fit because the three XL was too much and the two XL wasn't enough.

[00:59:14] Scott Curtis: And now I can just get an L and be happy about it. Something

[00:59:20] Niko Lukoff: like that. I can get an L and call it a W.

[00:59:23] Scott Curtis: Yeah. Ooh, there you go. Yeah. Yeah. I like that. Yeah.

[00:59:30] Niko Lukoff: I love this kind of shit, dude. I

[00:59:32] Scott Curtis: could do this forever. Yeah. Yeah. You've do you that definitely has legs. You just have to and I can't tell you how to put it all together so that Sure.

[00:59:42] Scott Curtis: It just you've got tags throughout, but That's part

[00:59:46] Niko Lukoff: of just doing it. Yeah. Yeah. and I've done it a couple of times. Always. Couple times different, little different. And that is actually, I think I'm gonna do that on the website thing cuz that is a merch item that I'm planning on is my next merch Uhhuh.

[00:59:58] Niko Lukoff: Design is a shirt that [01:00:00] says Whiskey diet and has like a glass of whiskey or something on it. Yeah, I think that'd be

[01:00:03] Scott Curtis: Fun. Yeah, I like it. Yeah that, that's definitely got legs. And if you didn't do it, I'd probably steal it from you cuz I, I do whiskey and diet too . So

[01:00:13] Niko Lukoff: nice. I was worried cuz I'm like, has anybody talked about cuz because I usually don't do stuff that people have that I've worried that someone's talked about.

[01:00:20] Niko Lukoff: Cause I'm usually talking about a specific experience that isn't a super normal experience. It's probably among the most relatable things cuz everyone's tried to diet or had a thing or whatever. Yeah. So I'm excited to keep playing with it and do it at at a show in Portland where where it's.

[01:00:36] Niko Lukoff: it's at a place called the Bourbon Lounge and they have like liquor sponsors on the show. . Yeah. So I'm looking forward to playing with

[01:00:43] Scott Curtis: it then. Yeah, that's great cuz you have that drink in your hand and you can do a diet. Yeah, you can do a visual as you do it. That's fantastic. Yeah. This has been a fun talk.

[01:00:53] Scott Curtis: I know you got a comedy show to get ready for that. I'm gonna be the audience. But where can folks find you online [01:01:00] and all that good stuff?

[01:01:03] Niko Lukoff: Yeah, I think so. Laugh your Luke off. Lemme see on the thing there. Dot com is my website right now. It's just a link tree page with links to just socials and stuff.

[01:01:11] Niko Lukoff: Basically I'm Laugh your Luke off, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, all the places if you're a comedian or an aspiring comedian or just a comedy fan that would like to see a little behind the scenes of a bunch. Weirdos on the internet, join display comedians. And I'm, if you happen to be in Portland, Oregon next month between February 9th and 17th, I got four shows just spread out during that time.

[01:01:31] Niko Lukoff: That I'm really excited to get to hop in on. And if you want any of those stickers, shoot me a message. Got him on Venmo right now, putting together a website to be able to order those. some other stuff online and just want to connect in your comedian, want to talk. Love to.

[01:01:44] Scott Curtis: Excellent. Appreciate it. Excellent. Thanks so much for being on the show. I'm glad we could c could connect. All

[01:01:50] Niko Lukoff: right. Thanks Scott.