Tom Arnold – comedian

Tom Arnold & Family Spend Christmas Day On The BeachVenue: Comedy Zone
Date/Time: Friday, August 22, 8pm & 10pm Saturday, August 23, 8pm & 10pm
contact: www.comedyzone.com // 904-292-4242 (HAHA)

I’ve always felt that Tom Arnold and I were part of a unique brotherhood. You see, I was also once married to Roseanne Barr. Well, not THE Roseanne Barr, but she may as well have been. This is not an insult–at least not to my ex. She adores Roseanne and would watch the Nick at Night Roseanne marathons with religious fervor almost nightly, and thus would wear any comparison to her with a badge of honor.

Arnold and I also are both recent, proud fathers to sons whose names end with an “x” (my 2-year-old is named Rex, Arnold’s 15-month-old is named Jax). Like myself, most of Arnold’s free time these days is spent doting over said son, whom he obviously adores.

“There’s a lot of things I learned from my dad,” says Arnold. “You know, you don’t give up on your kids. Also, I think about my mother in the way I’m raising my son. I’m very aware that my son can tell if I want to be around him or not. So I use both the positive and the negative to help inspire me to be better on a daily basis with my son. The great thing with a child is that their needs are so imminent that you don’t have to sit there and stew in your own bullshit.”

Most Baby Boomers and Gen Xers will remember Arnold mostly as the ex-husband of Roseanne. Of course, the two will be forever linked in Hollywood, but if you were to ask someone born after Roseanne went off the air, it may be a toss up–just as many of them may know Roseanne as the ex-wife of Tom Arnold. Even when he was a writer on her show, he was underrated. Arnold served an important role on the show as the only writer on the staff who had the ability (and gonads) to reject what he considered Roseanne’s bad ideas. His influence could perhaps be more appreciated during his absence than while he was there.“Even before the Roseanne show, I met her when I was 23,” says Arnold. “I loved her stand-up, and I loved her character that she did and her point-of-view, and it was so easy for me to write for that. I started writing jokes for her before she went on Johnny Carson. It taught me to write for someone in a different voice. When I came on the show, I looked out for her vision. We built the writing staff that way. I was also the person who could say no to Roseanne. I think every creative person needs someone they can trust who can say no to them.”

Along with family, TV projects, movie scripts, and a myriad of other projects, Arnold is also taking his show on the road, performing stand-up in various cities throughout the United States. Don’t be fooled into thinking that his present day act is all about the triumphs and tribulations of family life, however, as Arnold still draws plenty from his often dark past for his current routine. “The thing about me is, a lot of comics just do jokes, and I respect that, but I talk a lot about my life,” explains Arnold. “But people know a little something about my life, so I have to be pretty honest, and there are stories that people may know about, but I was there so I tell my version. The nice thing about my life is–and I think the audience knows this–things are going well in my personal life. If things are going well, and they know that, then you can go back over all the crap: this went wrong and this went wrong. If it’s still going wrong, that’s the worst thing. But if you can have fun with it, it’s good.”

You can catch Arnold at the Comedy Zone August 22nd at 8pm and 10pm. Check out www.comedyzone.com for more info.

About Richard David Smith III

writer, lab rat, and purveyor of fine energy drinks. pro Oxford comma.