Comedy you can BeGleib in

Comedian Ben Gleib will treat the Twin Cities to his playful brand of humor this weekend.

by Sarah Harper

What: Stand-up

When: Sept. 9-11

Where: Rick BronsonâÄôs House of Comedy at the Mall of America 14

  Cost: $15-19

To prankster Ben Gleib, nothing is sacred. He punkâÄôd brides and grooms on their big days in Ashton KutcherâÄôs 2007 TV show, âÄúThe Real Wedding Crashers,âÄù andoff the small screen, he pranked his very own grandmother. This guy canâÄôt be tamed.

Fortunately for Gleib, people get a kick out of his boyish antics. In college, his practical joking got him onto âÄúThe Tonight Show with Jay Leno.âÄù Last year, he landed a gig touring with Dane Cook. Nowadays, Gleib is charming his way through a bevy of projects. He took time out of his stand-up tour to get real with A&E about stand-up, politics and Chelsea Handler.

What can crowds expect from your stand-up routine?

If theyâÄôre expecting to laugh, theyâÄôre coming to the wrong show. I really like my crowds to be silent for the whole time and do as much non-laughing as possible. But if they laugh by accident at most of the things I say, IâÄôll be OK with that. ItâÄôs just not what IâÄôm going for.

No, uh, they will have a great time. I like to have my show be diverse, and random as far as the material. WeâÄôll cover all kinds of topics. IâÄôll talk to the crowd a little bit. WeâÄôll just have a good time and hopefully people wonâÄôt be able to breathe much for an hour. Which is not healthy, and thatâÄôs my goal âÄî to injure people in the crowd.

Three years ago, âÄúEsquireâÄù named you one of the six candidates to be the next Dane Cook. What do you think a writer from âÄúEsquireâÄù  would say about you now?

That I have failed them and they are very disappointed in their prediction âÄî but theyâÄôre still holding out hope.

Dane Cook made a movie with Jessica Simpson. Would you ever want to do that?

IâÄôd be happy to make a movie with pretty much anybody at this point in my career. Yeah, IâÄôm making a movie right now with Danny Masterson. And heâÄôs not as pretty as Jessica Simpson. So I would rather make a movie with Jessica Simpson than with dudes.

[The movieâÄôs] called the âÄúPolterguysâÄù âÄî itâÄôs a very funny movie basically about a team of ghost hunters that are trying to prove the existence of ghosts once and for all and help find a missing woman. And it is pretty hilarious âÄî and scary.

Any other projects in the works?

 Developing a couple of TV shows at the moment. And I have an album coming out, produced by Margaret Cho, called âÄúBen Gleib: Live From the Vortex.âÄù

I know youâÄôve talked a little bit of politics on NPR. If you were running for office, what would your campaign slogan be?

It would be âÄúComedy You Can Believe In.âÄù

And who would be your running mate?

I would be my own running mate. Mostly because then nobody would kill me because they would lose both president and vice president. So it would really just be an insurance policy. IâÄôd be the Sarah Michelle Gellar of presidents. That, or an enormous fat man that I can hide behind. One of the two.

So youâÄôve contributed to College Humor. Do you have any advice for aspiring comedians?

Write everything down. Write any funny idea that hits your brain exactly the moment it hits you âÄî whether youâÄôre in the middle of sleeping, or eating, or having sex âÄî because itâÄôll never come out as purely and as perfectly phrased as when it first hits you.

WhatâÄôs it like to work with Chelsea Handler?

ItâÄôs awesome. She is a firecracker. That woman is a force of nature. She is hilarious and so funny âÄî she always cracks me up. She keeps me humble because she loves to make fun of many different aspects of who I am. It keeps my head from swelling at all. She makes sure that it stays normal size or smaller.

Did you really have an affair with her building manager?

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