It was Friday, Feb. 1 around 8:50 p.m. Strong Auditorium was almost packed with students, faculty and others there for the show. I was sitting with friends in the fourth or fifth row, eagerly awaiting the main attraction along with everyone else.

The anticipation in the auditorium was tangible and excited whispers filled the room with a quiet buzz.

The audience sensed the time was growing near. Our host made a final, short introduction and a torrent of applause erupted from the audience as Bobcat Goldthwait walked onstage.

The first words from his mouth were “Hello, I’m Janet Reno,” which was immediately followed by him collapsing like a rag doll on the floor.

While perhaps in bad taste, this little bit of slapstick humor brought a flood of laughter rolling from the crowd. Bobcat has changed a little from what those of us who knew him remembered.

He had lost some weight, lost lots of hair and was getting older. Still, there was no mistaking him, especially that odd, almost bumpy voice of his. His jokes hit on the copious number of a cappella groups on campus, the large number of science majors here, and this newspaper.

He made fun of his old neighborhood, hunters, their “male-bonding” and “nerds” who take sci-fi movies way too seriously.

He also joked about his relationship with his daughter, the reason for him being fired from Hollywood Squares and the commercials he had to do for community service.

Though off-color, riddled with profanity, and often bordering on the offensive, Bobcat’s humor had people short of breath from laughing so hard.

There were periods in his act when he seemed at a loss for material, but he always got the ball rolling again and earned himself another round of applause.

Some comics ignore hecklers in the audience, but Bobcat engaged them, working their comments into his act.

Bobcat’s performance was preceded by an opening act. The audience listened to well-done covers of some popular songs, including Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen and Beautiful Day by U2, as done by After Hours, one of our a cappella groups, formerly known as Charivari.

All in all, it was a hilarious evening. It had its rough spots, but they never lasted long and despite them, Bobcat never lost his entertainment value. Bobcat’s humor is not for the easily offended, but any people who could take a healthy laugh at themselves left the auditorium in high spirits for the rest of the night. Bobcat may be older, but he is just as funny as ever.

Soler can be reached at

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