If you do finish the book and are still scared of me and people of my ilk, then I recommend you schedule an appointment with a therapist. Either that, or try writing your own book
I am a political human being. I have - that's one of my interests. I studied political science in college. I was actually going to get my Ph.D. in poli-sci. And a lot of my material from early on in my career dealt with politics, so I've always considered myself as somebody who enjoys political humor. So I'm not going to stop.
Humor is always important. There are people who help us deal with difficulty or hardship; from the concentration camps to the court jester, there was a need for humor. As long as these kinds of things exist, with repressive regimes, you need it to deal with the weight of daily life.
You have to laugh at yourself. I do a lot of humor about all ethnicities that are at the show - Latinos, Asians, Indians... What I say is, 'We're laughing together. I'm laughing with you, not at you.' Never say, 'Oh, I'm better than you.'
Follow your heart. Do what you love. Because I was constantly struggling with that. If it's in your heart, go for it. Don't listen to other people.
I've always had a foot in everything. As a kid, I was active in sports and theater. Now, I'm learning I have to focus a bit. I'm trying to get to next projects, like writing a screenplay. Once that comes together, I could put my mind to another book - maybe a fun kids' book.
One thing about D.C. that's funny to me is that you end up running into famous political figures who you've seen on television who you think are not real until you see them.
I've made enough jokes about Iran's leadership that I'm sure if I showed up that I would get a nice escort - to the main prison - and then I could do a show there.
I wish more Americans would travel here. I always encourage my friends: 'Travel. See the Middle East. There's so much to see, so many good people.' And it's vice versa, and it helps stop problems of misunderstanding and stereotypes from happening.
Anyone who's gotten their passport in America will tell you, when you get it, it still says what country you were born in. So I remember getting my American passport. I was like, 'Woo-hoo! I'm going to travel.' And I opened it up. It said, 'Born in Iran.' I'm like, 'Oh, come on, man!'
Once you start listening to the comics, be they Jewish, Muslim, Italian, Filipino or whatever, the material often springs from the same source - the overbearing mom, the parents who want you to marry from within your community. That's why the 'Ethnic Show' works so well.
I remembered, like, when 'Not When My Daughter' came out, I'm serious, I think dating for Iranian men became a lot harder. Dude's name, Shahrokh - became Tony. Mehsud became Mike.