by Damon Wayans


by Damon Wayans


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Nothing is too outrageous for Damon Wayans. Whether he's talking about family, celebrities, racism, relationships, politics, or sex, Damon takes no prisoners. And in Bootleg, he brings it all on, uncut and uncensored:


What are the scariest words known to man? "Till death do us part." Why not until my car breaks down? Or until I run out of money?

I hate marriage counselors. This is the biggest scam in the world. Someone figured out a way that women can do the things they love best at the same time: talk and spend money.

Thoughts on celebrities, like Oprah, Mike Tyson, Dr. Kevorkian, Gary Coleman, and...

There's something worse than having HIV, ask 0.J.Imagine being alienated from the world, totally alone with no one wanting to have anything to do with you. I'll take the Ebola virus over what he got.

When I found out that Steven Spielberg has two black kids, I was amazed. Where did he get these kids from? Were they props left over from The Color Purple?

"The Dozens, a Favorite Childhood Game...

"Damon, your mother is so fat she has to take her pants off just to get into her pockets."

"Yeah, well, your mother's so poor she can't even pay attention."

"Oh, yeah, well your sister is so ugly, they have to tie a pork chop around her neck so that the dog will play with her."

"Yeah, well, your mother is so black every time she goes to night school the teachers mark her absent."

Living in LA...

I'm afraid of earthquakes, especially because I have kids to think about. I remember once after a big earthquake I was standing outside my house, butt-naked, thinking, "Man, I hope them kids make it out here. And I hope they're smart enough to wake up their mama, 'cause this place is shaking."

Black Leaders...

I must have been asleep the day they elected Al Sharpton as the black representative. He is the only leader in history to show up to a rally wearing a tight red velour sweat suit with a roller in the front of his hair.

Filled with laughs, craziness, and lots of truth, Bootleg will leave you hurting for more!

Who went and told Magic Johnson that he should do a talk show? Anybody who repeatedly says "bassetball" doesn't have any business doing a talk show. I'm sure that sometimes in his life someone tried to correct him. When he was a little boy his mom must've tried:

Magic's Mother: Hey, Earvin, what are you going to be when you grow up?

Magic: I wanna play BASSETBALL.

Magic's Mother: Now, Earvin, its called BAS-KET-BALL. BASKETBALL.


Magic's Mother: Well, baby, I hope you can play it, 'cause you sure can't say it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062030085
Publisher: HarperCollins
Publication date: 12/15/2023
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: eBook
Pages: 208
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

About The Author
Damon Wayans starred in the groundbreaking television sketchcomedy program In Living Color. He performed characters like Blaine Edwards, the gay film critic, Handi-Man, the first handicapped hero, the Head Detective, and Homey the Clown. He then went on to make some films, including The Last Boy Scout, Mo' Money, Major Payne, and a movie even his own mother didn't like, Blankman. He's had three HBO specials, One Night Stand, The Last Stand, and Still Standing, and continues to do standup around the country. Born in Manhattan with nine siblings, Damon now lives in LA with his wife, four children, two dogs, and a pet roach named Luther.

Read an Excerpt

I was very sad to see my brother's show get canceled because out of the three black talk shows — Keenen's, Sinbad's, and Magic's — I think that Keenen had the best one. At least he was good looking, articulate, and occasionally funny. Sinbad is a good friend of mine, and I love him, but, I just think he's too yellow to be on TV. I never had to use the hue button before on my remote control until he showed up in late night. The first time I watched the show I said to my wife, "Is something wrong with my hue? My tint must be off. Is the brotha supposed to be pink with freckles? And the damn contrast must be broken' 'cause I can't believe that he's wearing a purple, red, and green outfit."

Sinbad should have fired everyone in the wardrobe department. One time he came out with balloon pants, a tuxedo jacket, and sneakers. Even Prince used to laugh at the way Sinbad dressed. And another thing, Sinbad thought "talk show" meant he's supposed to talk during the whole damn show. Have you ever watched Sinbad do an interview? He asks a question and then answers it. All the guest can do is shake his head.

Sinbad goes off like, "Man, I saw you in your last movie. You was good, too, and, man, you had that pretty girl. What's that pretty girl's name? 'Cause I worked with a pretty girl that looked like that pretty girl, she had big breasts — Plow! — and butt all over the room, HA HA HA. She was fine, too, but hey, do you do your own stunts? 'Cause I know somebody that did that, fell down, broke his back, he ain't worked since. They replaced him with two midgets, HA HA HA. Man, I would never do my own stunts, 'cause I ain't gettin' any younger and neither is this interview. Listen, we out of time. Why don't you come back and do the show again?"

"Uh, yeah I . . ." the guest would try to answer.

Sinbad would flap his arms, saying, "I'm sure you can. Everyone give him a hand. Up next a funky fresh fella from Philly that never fakes the funk. He's the original funk master funkateer, Bootsy Collins."

Then, there was Magic. Who the hell told Magic that he should do a talk show? Anybody that says "bassetball," repeated says "bassetball," doesn't have any business doing a talk show. I'm sure that sometime in his life someone tried to correct him. When he was a little boy his mom must've tried.

Magic's Mother: Hey, Earvin, what are you going to be when you grow up?

Magic: I wanna blay BASSETBALL.

Magic's Mother: Now, Earvin, it's called BAS-KET-BALL. BASKETBALL.


Magic's Mother: Well, baby, I hope you can play it 'cause you sure can't say it.

Magic went through college. He was in the NBA. Someone had to sit him down and try to make him say it correctly. I'm sure when he was with the LA Lakers Coach Pat Riley must have pulled him aside.

Riley: Magic, if you're gonna represent the game you have to say it the right way. It's called BASKETBALL. BAS-KET-BALL. Now you try.

Magic: BASSETBALL. BAS-SET-BALL. Danks, Toach!

Riley: Ah, yeah, well, I'm glad you can play it 'cause you sure can't say it. That's enough practice for today. Tomorrow we'll work on saying "coach."

I was actually sad to see his show get canceled because it gave me a lot of laughs, most of them for the wrong reasons. But I'll take comedy any way I can get it. I wanted to be on his show so that I could sit down and be the one to figure out what he was saying when he went to commercial. It always sounded like, "Y'all dick around and mill be might back after a bird from our bonsor."

I'd sit there thinking, "Did he just say 'might back' or did Buckwheat just grow up and get a talk show?"

I saw one show where he had Howard Stern on as his only guest. Howard Stern prides himself on being a jerk. Then, he talks about how flat his ass is, how big his nose is, and how tiny his dick is. So, he doesn't leave you room for retaliation. He was very disrespectful to Magic. He asked Magic if he had fun contracting HIV, and Magic just being a nice man sat there and tried to smile it off. If that was me, I would've spit in his mouth right in the middle of that question and I wouldn't have stopped there. I would've leaned over and bit him and drew blood and then asked him, "Now, did you have bun catching HIB? Y'all dick around we'll be might back after a word from our bonsor."

After that show, Magic should have fired everybody that worked with him. He was ill advised. I knew Magic's show was in trouble from the start. His first show Magic picked Arnold Schwarzenegger as the lead guest — another man who can't talk! I didn't understand either one of them during the interview.

Magic: Oh, Arnold, you beally great man. I dor yo lass moobie. It was babulous. The way they blow you up, man, that was fantastic. I fell like I was watching Michael Chordan duckin' fro the free trow line.

Arnold: Oh yeah, Magic. OH AHH EHH OH OOH SEE.

Magic: Juss hole on, Ahnol. We want you to binish your dory. But we wanna pay a bill right naw. Y'all dick around we'll be might back with Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, and Mike Tyson after a bird from our bonsor.


On Wednesday, May 19th, welcomed Damon Wayans to discuss BOOTLEG.

Moderator: Welcome, Damon Wayans! Thank you for taking the time to join us online this evening. How are you doing tonight?

Damon Wayans: Mucho gusto! from xx: With this book out, you are riding that wave of comedians that put books out. Question: Is this book funny? Is it more like Seinfeld's, Drew Carey's, or Joan Rivers's new book?

Damon Wayans: Yes, it is funny, do buy it and see. More like Seinfeld's book in terms of every place you open the book there is some humor. I didn't bore you with the drama of my life.

Kate from Baltimore: Were you the class clown growing up? Did you always know that you wanted to be a comedian?

Damon Wayans: I was the class clown, and I got thrown out of many classes to prove it. I actually went to three different schools and got thrown out of three different high schools, but I was funny at all three. No, I didn't know what I was going to be until 1982. My mother told me to be like Keenen -- whatever he should do I should follow -- because he had it all together. from NJ: Do you ever feel like you are going overboard? What does Sinbad have to say of your depiction of him in the book as being pink with freckles?

Damon Wayans: [laughs] It is just funny. I am sure Sinbad, being a comedian, must have to laugh and has to go get a tan.

Skeeter from Queens, NY: Are you happiest when you are acting? Do you prefer stand-up or acting? Or writing?

Damon Wayans: Stand-up, because I feel like I am on the edge and I really have to use my gift every moment when I am on stage because you are only as funny as the last thing you said.

Dr. Steven Rothman from California: You portray marriage counselors in such a negative light. I think you need a good marriage counselor. If interested, feel free to contact me. I can give my email address if you want.

Damon Wayans: Is this for free? No? Then that is why I don't like marriage counselors.

Doug S. from Studio City, CA: Do you miss working on "In Living Color"? Any chances of hooking back up with Jim Carrey and the cast for a reunion show?

Damon Wayans: I definitely miss "In Living Color." There are so many different things we could be doing: O. J., Bob Dole, Michael Jackson, Bill Clinton -- there are so many things we could have so much fun with. I don't think it is possible to do a reunion show -- there are too many egos now. Now it would be about money and position, who the star is, and what planet do we pay Jim Carrey to be in it?

Paul from Morris Plains, NJ: What do you think of Howard Stern? Do you think comedy goes too far sometimes? How do you determine what is too far?

Damon Wayans: Howard Stern I think is really funny, and what is funny is that he is an asshole and committed to being one. I do think sometimes people go too far, but I do feel it is a comic's job to push the envelope, and who you are determines where you draw the line.

Carly Lockard from Oakwood, IL: Hey Damon! I just wanted to say how cool you are, and I was wondering: If you had a pet monkey and you caught him choking your chicken, would you spank your monkey for choking your chicken? Peace --out!

Damon Wayans: Get a life! And stay away from the zoo.

Shana from Philadelphia: Your No. 1 tip for women is "Don't fake orgasms." Why's that, brother?

Damon Wayans: Because you make a man think that he did something. You have to challenge a man and make him have to work for you. If you fake it, then you miss out because guys can't fake it -- we leave evidence.

Niki from Do you ever worry about your younger brothers or kids in Hollywood? Child stars sure do have a tough life, or so it seems from recent incidents.

Damon Wayans: No, we abused them enough as children to give them a tough skin. I think it comes from not knowing abuse and rejection and fear of being poor -- all of which my younger brothers have overcome and the greatest thing my family has is each other.

Quentin from LA, CA: I loved you in "The Last Boy Scout." It was the ultimate badass action flick -- very underrated in my opinion. With that football experience, did you want to audition for the new Oliver Stone football flick, or were you originally signed up for the movie, until they realized you threw like a girl like what the NY Post reported as being the reason Puffy isn't still in the movie?

Damon Wayans: Thanks for the backhanded compliment. No, I was never signed up for "Any Given Sunday." I thought it was a great script, but I think everything happens for a reason and I never trip for somebody else working, especially when I am working.

Katie from Washington: What's the most important thing Bill Clinton could learn from your book?

Damon Wayans: That as the head of state, "head" shouldn't be your main goal in life.

Lane Williams from Detroit, MI: I first want say I love you and your work. What's next for Mr. Wayans, and are you going on tour any time soon? If so, are you visiting Detroit? We would love to have you. Keep up the great work and have a great day.

Damon Wayans: Thank you, thank you, and thank you! And yes, I will be going on tour starting June 11th and I will be in Detroit in July or August. I will be shooting a concert film.

Your #1 Fan from USA: How has your life changed since having children? Also, how is it mixing a family with Hollywood? Are you ever freaked by press?

Damon Wayans: Having a family has been the greatest thing in the world for me -- a great motivation. To have something that you love more than yourself is great; also I have some free labor around the house -- someone to wash the car and do laundry and all that stuff. And yes, there are times when the press is not friendly and, you know, it irritates you, but there is nothing you can do but have a great relationship with your family. And as long as you can huddle and say everything is cool, then everything is cool.

Brian from DE: Any plans of movies in the genre of "I'm Gonna Git You Sucka" and "Don't Be a Menace..."? I loved them!!

Damon Wayans: My brother is actually directing a film they just wrote, "I Know What You Did Last Summer and I Hear You Scream and It Was Friday the 13th When Freddy Krueger Chopped Your Ass in Half." They are shooting it in June.

Trixie from New Jersey: I think you are so funny. Will you be coming out with any movies or TV shows soon?

Damon Wayans: Yeah, I just did a movie called "Harlem Aria" and it will be out soon. It is a dramedy, independent film, meaning I didn't get paid anything.

Texter T from AOL: Say there, Damon, what do you think of ODB from the Wu-Tan? Does he fall into the rapper portrayal you write about in the book? Loved BOOTLEG!

Damon Wayans: I think ODB is funny. I think he changed his name to Baby Jesus or something. There is comic relief in these big rap groups and he happens to be the guy. He is the '90s version of Flavor.

Terry from Chicago: How did you get your start in comedy? Was "In Living Color" your first big break?

Damon Wayans: I started at a comedy club -- going late night and bombing a lot, trying to figure out my voice. I went from Richard Pryor to the guy at the door at the comedy club to Eddie Murphy to my own voice. I am glad I did, because the guy is still working the door at the comedy club.

Steve from Bellingham, WA: Have you seen any good movies lately? Are there any new movies you are psyched to see?

Damon Wayans: "The Matrix" was amazing -- the story was shit and the acting was horrible, the special effects were off the hook. It raised the bar in terms of action films like "T2" did; it will be hard to duplicate that until they do something new with technology.

Megan from New York: Love that tip for let's get some advice for the brothers! What's your biggest tip to men?

Damon Wayans: Don't let her stick her finger in your ass.

Lane from Detroit: I love your work first of all. What is it like now for the Wayans family, and who do you get along with the best?

Damon Wayans: Right now it is fun. My little brother's show just got canceled so we are all at the point now where we are coming together as a family and working together. The most fun we have is working together. I get along with all of them differently for different reasons. My younger brothers are just fun, it is all about jokes with them, they don't have the responsibilities.

Charlie from Mobile, AL: Do you read a lot? What is the funniest book Damon Wayans has ever read? I loved you on "In Living Color"!

Damon Wayans: When I was younger it was CATCHER IN THE RYE. Older, Richard Pryor's book, and yes, I read a lot.

Janine from Richmond: What do you think Hollywood is doing right these days and what's it doing wrong?

Damon Wayans: Right? It is really taking advantage of technology and the synergy is wonderful. Wrong? Making bad movies and letting lawyers and people with no creative bones in their bodies make decisions and make movies and think that if you mix one star with a director, you have a hit. People want to go to the movies to see people do something they haven't seen them do.

Terrence from San Fran: How would you describe your personal style?

Damon Wayans: Hopefully, funny first with a bit of cool, a dash of handsome, and teaspoon of horny.

Greg from Reno, TX: What are some of your favorite TV shows these days? Do you ever think we will see you teaming up with your brother in another sitcom?

Damon Wayans: I like the "Tom Green Show" -- I think he is insane; I like "South Park." No, you will never see me and my brother team up for another show.

Patty from California: My husband and I love your comedy. Really miss "In Living Color." Great to hear you have a book -- look forward to reading it. I understand that you have four children -- any humor on the crazy life parents lead in your book?

Damon Wayans: Yeah, there is a whole section on raising kids and raising kids that are comedians. It is hard for me now; my son actually told me, "Daddy, I shouldn't go to school because we are rich." I told him, "No, you are broke, you got socks and those are borrowed."

Moderator: What are your plans for New Year's Eve 1999?

Damon Wayans: First thing I am going to do is check my bank accounts and then if that is all intact, I will have some bubbly and hang out with my family.

It's Lane again from Detroit: How would you compare Damon Wayans now to Damon when on "In Living Color"? By the way, I catch every rerun I can.

Damon Wayans: I think I am more mature and probably a little more outspoken. I don't really care about making it any more. I think, also, I have a little less hair.

Moderator: Thanks for joining us this evening, Damon. Do you have any closing comments for your online audience?

Damon Wayans: Be smart about what you take in, be smart about what you put out. And if you meet that little girl in the chat room, let her stay there.

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