For My Own Benefit is a monthly comedy night in Toronto, featuring Jordan Himelfarb and Joel Taylor, a couple of handsome, occasionally mustachioed geniuses known collectively as the New Humourists, as well as a rotating roster of somewhat less funny – though still implausibly funny – acts. All proceeds from the shows will go toward research into and treatment of pancreatic cancer, a disease afflicting some significant percentage of the New Humourists (namely, the 50 percent comprised of Joel Taylor).
Five things everyone already knows about the New Humourists:
- “In 2001, Jordan Himelfarb and Joel Taylor lived together in squalor. So profound was the disarray, Himelfarb explains in An Introduction to The New Humourists, the 2005 documentary about the duo, that on one occasion, while working on a particularly abstruse logic assignment – he and Taylor were both philosophy students at the time – he got up from the floor, which served as his desk, and paced briefly in contemplation, only to find upon his return that his assignment had disappeared. He and Taylor searched in vain for hours, but it was gone; the chaos had consumed the logic.” (From “Absurdity Identity Infinity: The New Humourist Decade”, 2011)
- In the decade following entropy’s triumph, Himelfarb and Taylor have coauthored fifteen works of dense, absurdist literary comedy that raise inconsequential questions about the morality and very sentience of their authors, while answering even the most profound teleological questions.
- Adonis is to body as the New Humourists are to mind, whereas Wittgenstein is to mind as the New Humourists are to body.
- If you are a woman or child, beware: the New Humourists are cripplingly jealous of you, as Himelfarb once disturbingly elucidated: “What is it that [women and children] have that I don’t have? And how do I get it such that they don’t have it anymore? I want to possess womanhood and have no woman possess it. I want eternal youth, and let no child be born unto a mother unless that child be me and I be that mother.” (From “Our Summer”, 2005)
- The New Humourists make friends easily, despite their personalities. They have befriended an oil baron named Pony Poni Poné (“America”, 2003); a monist, who showed that a raven is like a writing desk because a raven is a writing desk (“Infancy of the Clinic”, 2004); and the actor Dabney Coleman, whom they adopted, believing the great thespian to be two Chinese children (“The Actors”, 2006); among many others nearly as heroic and degenerate, insane and coquettish, overbovine and underlizardly as they.