Ben Frank took a break from performing in the World Series of Comedy at the Punchline Comedy Club in Atlanta to sit down at the Comedy Roundtable and answer questions from episode categories Jobs and Can't Go Away Empty Handed.
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Alright ladies and gentlemen, this is a brand new episode of comedy round table comedy and conversations with some of the funniest and most interesting conversational comedians around the country. We are recording live this episode at the landmark diner home of the punch line comedy club in Atlanta, Georgia. I am Jamie Bendele, Jamie Hearn and Adam. Hey. Good to be home. So good to be back. And our special guests. This is my favorite part of the show. Comedians hate it. But we do it. We actually read from the bio, our guest Oh, this episode is comedian Ben Frank, stand up comedian and improviser, Ben, come back, come back come back. He currently resides in Shanghai, China, we know that that is not true. should update it. That bio, where he routinely takes the stage. Most importantly, he is in China, in part to help the National Basketball Association. Oh, develop a platform of NBA themed children's playground, right? Yes. Very glad to talk to Ben. Ben, welcome to the podcast. How you doing? Good. I'm very, very good. Just Just got off stage here. So let's put this in context. For you do I try to say that if I wanted to write the biggest bio that I could write about myself, I would say that I was in Shanghai, helping the MBA kids playground. Alright, so Ben, tell us about yourself. Now. You're back. So long story short, lived in China for seven years. That was where I started doing comedy cool. Did comedy there for about six years toward headline around China headline around Asia just move back. Now living in New York for the last seven months. moved back to pursue comedy more seriously, because I kind of hit the ceiling of what I could do out nasia Wasn't really another level up. So yeah, now now I'm back here and just doing doing comedy in America. So you're in New York now? Yes. And you're you're here performing in the worlds here as a comedy but you have any projects or things you're working on? Yes. I'm actually just putting out an album. Now. It's, it's available for preorder on the iTunes store. You can just search Ben Frank. Goodbye, Shanghai that was filmed at one of my last sets in Shanghai before I left. It's an hour long album of some of the material I did there some of the material I've done here over the years. And yeah, it's just kind of putting a bow on my on my time in China and showing some of my material from those days. That's cool. Go back to Shanghai. I would I would love to travel back there at some point. Yeah, let's just see. If you shake by Yeah, it was. Yeah, yeah. Seasoned. Yeah, kind of aloha. Sometimes. Well, that's that's literally the translation of the word goodbye. And China actually breaks down to see you again. Oh, it that's kind of it's kind of implied a little bit like I hope I hope I see Shanghai again. We added this episode. If you could do anything to make me seem less crazy, less unfamiliar with Chinese culture. Or the word goodbye but sounds like it's gonna be we're gonna be listened to be like, Wow, that guy doesn't know Chinese. What a douche. Right? You'd be surprised the comments we get if anything, there'll be like that guy knows Chinese. What a douche. You're you'll be fine. It's amazing. If anything, if anything, they'll hate me. Alright, so format of the show. Yeah, kind of lightning round question. We give you three topics to choose from. We're only going to use two okay, those three subjects are jobs board game conversations and can't go away empty handed who and you're gonna get to choose to and the other one is going to be discarded to the wind the wind, okay, never to be heard from again. Except possibly in another episode. You don't have to choose now do you just pick one. Okay, so jobs board game conversations or can't go away empty handed. Okay, let's, let's let's start with jobs. All right jobs. Now your first question is just a warm up kind of question. It's clockwise or counterclockwise clockwise, clockwise, starting with Adam. Excellent. So in my scenario, you've won the lottery, you have no need to work whatsoever. At this point, you have money for the rest of your life. What is the job you would like to try that you've never done? I've never done before, honestly, I think probably probably do more acting stuff. I've never really done act I've done like I've been a done comedy, but I've never really never really gotten into acting. So I guess that seems like the greatest gig ever. Yeah. And it's and it seems like if you have the whole money thing handled that would take most of the stress out of trying to be an actor. Yes, it is the greatest they're basically like, look, we wrote this for you. Here's your lines. You don't have to come up with anything just memorize these lines and repeat them what seems like a lot of acting is like we're gonna go be to camp together for some foreign country, some awesome location, and we're gonna hang out like that whole Ocean's 11 thing like I'm convinced that they only needed one of those but they've done now four of them because It's just a bunch of guys that like hanging out with each other. Yeah, and even just like the idea of pursuing something like acting like scares me because I feel like act like acting skill. I almost feel like it's a little more nuanced and subtle than like, comedy or stand up seal because like you can see on stage when someone's good, like you can tell, whereas I feel like you have to be kind of a trained, I'd be like, That person knows how to act interesting. Are you thinking? Are you thinking Broadway? Are you thinking movies? Are you thinking TV? At this point? I kind of feel like TV is where it's at, like kind of prestige. Yeah, let's do a Netflix series or something like that. I don't think I have the talent for for Broadway. I think you would need to have more diverse skill sets. You need to be able to dance and saying and those aren't really my strengths. Little fascinating that Netflix counts as TV. Right? Yeah, you want to be on TV? like Netflix? Yeah, that's the new TV. Netflix, which isn't actually on TV. Right. But to be on a Netflix show where they're like, another season out? Sure. Sure, or Amazon Prime, but we're they're basically like, another season. Yeah. We'll do it again. All right. How old were you when you had your first job? Probably 15. I think Yeah. What was the job? Was camp counselor. All right, camp counselor. If you could go back now in counsel at the same camp? Would you be a better counselor at the age you are now or worse? Probably better. Okay. I think I just, I don't think 15 year old guys are really that good at much of anything. So I I feel like I feel like saying I would have been better better at 15. I mean, I don't know maybe maybe maybe I was dumber, and I would accept being treated worse. easier. So maybe nice. Yes. Maybe I would have a worse attitude. Like if we're if we're saying I've had all the experience I've had Yeah, and I would feel like entitled like I deserved more than maybe I would be worse. I'm a fucking camera. You know how old I am. Right? You know how much experience I have exactly. Camp counts, you actually kind of be overqualified. I'd be like me balls, right? Maybe like I am actually an adult now being a camp counselor. Okay. So here's the challenge that I've had. Okay. Right. And you may not know this, you guys may or may not know this right now. There is a terrible summer lifeguard shortage. I did not realize or neighborhood pools. Ah, we should do a fundraiser for that. Okay. I actually have given some consideration to becoming a lifeguard to being a summer lifeguard. Wow. Gotta take a like 11 to one shift. As a summer lifeguard. I've always wanted to be summer lifeguard. I think that could be the greatest summer like New Jersey? No, in my neighborhood pool. Like I'd be creepy at all. I think that would be amazing, don't you? Like don't you think how fun is your wife? Look at you and you're like, you're like, honey. So I have this plan. I'm going to I'm going to shut down all these other stuff I'm doing I'm going to be a lifeguard. She's like two hours. Q two hours. Two hours a day. I'm on 11 to one. Yeah. 11 to one I'm at the pool. Incredible tan right. I will I wouldn't even declare an Adult Swim. I would be there for so short. I wouldn't even I don't even need an adult if you didn't need the job. You could just go perpetual Adult Swim. Like how many weeks could you go when they're like all time adults guy? Yeah, that guy 11 One never lets a swim now. I think I absolutely believe it could be. It could be the most fun summer. It could be a very fun summer. Summer. Yeah. I always thought like Waffle House Chef would be an incredible job. I think that you should keep bail money in your pocket. I would keep your money. If you're running that shift. You're fine but just like every time you get a paycheck just keep it in the little envelope that says bail money. But so I to your point to go back and say okay, something that was a summer it's youth oriented, just fun. You perceive right? Childhood differently as you become an adult probably approach it somewhat much like I would be I think a different life guard now. Interesting. 50 Yeah, in my slower. Whoa, whoa, shooter. We were running for a big hurry. Alright, so I want you to You don't seem like the kind of guy who has a lot of enemies. But I want you to think of like your worst man don't really know him that well. Right. All right. All right. And you can now force that person to work whatever job you want them to. What job do you put them in? Oh, what job would I put them in? Summer lifeguard at Amy's neighborhood? Yeah, that's tough. I might do one of those. I don't know maybe one of those like oil drilling type jobs, just something where they're some of the some of that some of that's dangerous with it. But that I mean, that could make a lot a lot of money doing that. Yeah. And so it's something where they're ghoul away and they're isolated. Yeah, I mean, I guess we're we're not including anything. That's like indentured servitude, or real job. You guys want to know pretty quickly. It's my question. Yeah. Yeah, I would want something so I mean, why like that? Because they're just something we're something where you're in danger. You're isolated. You're away from anybody who loves you, somebody somebody like that question, what's their name? So isn't that the answer? So hold on a second, wouldn't it be fair to say that if you're doing something you love, you never work a day in your life? Right? Okay. That's what people say. So people say, so wouldn't the answer to that question be whatever makes that person feel most like they're working? Maybe. Right. So what I think is a terrible again, you've taken an incredibly philosophical approach to that question we do here. That's what you do. That's what we do. That's why That's what we do know is pretty sure that's what you that's pretty much what you do. Right? But so much it's about which animals and when they attacked each other. And there was a toddler that came in and was trying to rob the train like that's, that's more of my question. But yeah, but I'm saying if I want to punish my enemy, and feeling like they have to do the thing for work, that least appeals to them. That's that's a job title of their own creation. Okay. I'm always telling outhouses. porta potties. Yeah. So this is a good one before you wander away from the comedy round table. Contemplate your enemy's worst day at work, and what that would look like for them. We'll be back with more of the comedy roundtable in just a moment with our guest, comedian. Benford. Stick around as you find yourself in China, in China now masking for childhood version of me. Did I fly by plane? Or did I dig myself there? You did not go tunnel through the earth. That is one of the greatest childhood myths that was destroyed in adulthood. Did you ever try that? Did you ever tried digging a hole? This is a true childhood story that will seemingly make a lot of sense to you perhaps as adults, okay, one of my favorite activities as a child was to dig giant holes. I love that I would dig I mean, I was I was digging pits Yes. of big holes. Yes. Just love to do right. Okay, so I have a question if we went to your childhood home, yeah. And we dug up your yard, how many bodies nobody's but I could show you exactly my dig and spot and you'd be like, oh, yeah, this is the place where you take care. And you realize now that they have satellite technology that they can look for things like where there would be buried bodies, and they're gonna be hovering over your house. It's true, it is true and they see the density of the dirt and they're gonna sit see all these holes and they're gonna SWAT team that house. No, no, it was perfect. It was we had a shed it was out of view. So it was kind of behind the shed. He couldn't really see it. That's never the ones that are suspecting. No, yeah, no, no, but that zone I had I love to do projects. And then the idea is like, if you dig deep enough, can I tunnel and I told you do you ever tunnel from one hole to another? No, I was always afraid of a collapse. We should dig a tunnel at my house like now. I'm not telling a fiction here when I say that it's entirely possible that at some point this summer, I am digging myself a big hole was just I would probably be so calming and soothing. Oh, right. Just to be like, Man, why don't I dig holes anymore? Right. It's meditative and I dug a hole. You live relatively close to a number of pubs. Yeah, so if you dug a hole from your basement that popped up into a pub, oh my god, that would be unbelievable. So cool. It's also like a speakeasy getaway when the feds come in the front door. You go to Adams House, right? You know, I tell you we do we invite El Chapo whoever right we're like we just want to hang out you know what while you're he just made it stupid. We were legitimately bringing it to another level you guys are on amateur level. You are an amateur level tunneled. Expert. No, no, we were playing I started off by saying jackhammer said you find your belts, and I confessed something that was honest about my childhood, which was my love of digging holes. Yes. And at some point, because I learned half of what I know, in the back of the school bus that if you dug deep enough, you could dig your way to China. Right, as all children did. And then you had the dirty that and then you destroy that childhood memory by turning this into some fictional tunnel system of some kind. I'll tell you, he opened up his heart to you like that. And you just made fun of you laughing at him on the inside? I will. I'm laughing at him on the outside too. Let's go back to the guest. All right, we are back with our final segment here with comedian Ben Franklin. We do appreciate you being here on the comedy roundtable. Jamie, Jamie and Adam, pull up a chair. Join us for comedy in conversation. Round two, your choice board game conversations or can't go away empty handed can't go away empty handed. Let's do that. All right. The first question is what is the best old relationship item that you still have that you took from an old relationship as old really didn't leave empty handed? I still have us I guess. My ex girlfriend got me a Tiffany watch and you still have it? I think So I think I still have it somewhere. I don't know if it works. You didn't walk away empty handed. No, I definitely had it after the relationship. I don't know if it survived the trip back from China, but somebody didn't say syphilis. Oh, that would have been. No, that's very legit. Yeah, my turn can't go away empty handed. Right. Your closest friend is whom? closest friend is. I would probably be my friend Steve. Steve. Steve. Steve unfortunately, abruptly passes. Oh, wow. And you are allowed to go into his residence. You're allowed to take one thing. What are you taking? that Steve has? Ah, oh. Don't say Steve's wife. No, no, no, no. Jessie's Girl what would I want from him? What does he have that's awesome. Or what are you taking that you know he has that you don't want his family to discover this isn't really an actual thing. I'll go really outside the box here and philosophy here. So he is not something I could physically but he he is a New York Giants fan. I am a Patriots fan and our senior year of college they face each other in the Super Bowl. And he actually got to go to the Super Bowl because of a connection with his friend and they actually enmities he got to watch his team win the Super Bowl so I guess what I would want most from him would be that opportunity to go and see my team win the suit. Yeah, you want a memory steal from Yeah, yeah, I want a memory steal. Steal you wanna if anything ever happens to Steve, by the way your suspect number one at this point? Yeah. All right. We hear applause in the other room and continued success. We gotta wrap it up. I don't want him to be left out if they're announcing his name. We appreciate it continued success find you online where you can find me at Ben Frank comedy on Instagram and Twitter. All right, yeah. Once again on iTunes search Ben Frank. Goodbye Shanghai. Awesome. We appreciate it very much here at the roundtable. Appreciate it guys enjoyed that episode with comedian Ben Frank. Do check them out. Check out the new album hopefully the comedian science it's a little bit of a different I know you may maybe people are listening to the episodes out of order. There's a bunch of comedians here in Atlanta doing a World Series A comedy thing. Ben is one of the competitors hope he's going back in to find out that he was successful. Check out World Series A comedy online very easy to search. It'll direct you to the website for Adam, Jamie and myself. This has been a another episode of the comedy roundtable. Go ahead and push tearaway. We'll see you next time we pull it back together.