SEVEN DAYS: I understand you just got back from a cruise.ALONZO BODDEN: Yeah. I start out the year doing charter cruises. I did a jazz cruise. This last one was an ’80s cruise. They had artists on like the Romantics, Men at Work, Tiffany, Belinda Carlisle. It was fun.
SD: Tiffany! Wow. I went on my first and, I hope, only cruise about a year ago. Mine was a work thing, this southern-rock cruise with a bunch of has-been bands. So, my view of cruising might be tainted. But you seem to enjoy them.AB: I tell people about cruises, what I've learned is that you've got to do the right cruise. I love jazz, so that's good for me.
SD: That's actually why I brought it up. I was wondering how much you have to adapt your material for that audience.AB: It isn't so much about the cruise crowd. The thing is that people are on vacation, versus coming to a comedy club, so I don't hit as hard. And since I do two shows a week for basically the same audience, I do a lot more improv and crowd work. I'm not going to do as much social and political content.
SD: Just a word of advice: I'd avoid southern-rock cruises.AB: [Laughs] I will, thanks.
SD: On your latest podcast, you had a riff about how you would have declined to host the White House Correspondents Dinner had you been asked, which you weren't. Can you expand on that?AB: So, the thing about that is that whenever people read something on Facebook — which is both the best and worst thing to ever happen to us — they read what they want to read in something. What happened was that TMZ posted a hypothetical question to a bunch of comics: If you were asked to host the dinner, would you?
SD: I don't know about that. But why would you turn it down?AB: Because doing anything in D.C. now is, to me, endorsing this administration. To do that gig, even though you're making fun of Donald Trump, would be an endorsement.
SD: The last president to skip the dinner was Reagan … because he'd been shot.AB: And Trump will say, "I'm Reagan-esque." And his followers will be like, "Yeah, he is!"
SD: Can we start a petition to have Jeff Ross host it?AB: [Laughs] He was one of the comics TMZ went to and Jeff said of course he would do it. But it would be a waste without Trump there. But he would be good. It's like when Lewis Black did it during the Bush administration, and even though Bush didn't go and Cheney went, it was still great because Lewis skewered him. Lewis joked about being scared to tell jokes with Dick Cheney close enough to punch him in the dick. Which is a scary moment.
SD: Did you ever think we would get to a point where George W. Bush comes off like a wise elder statesmen?AB: Two things scare me about this administration. One is that I apparently agree with Kim Kardashian on immigration issues. The other is that I agree with George Bush on press issues. Those are two people I really didn't want to be in a camp with.
SD: You have a great bit in "Historically Incorrect" about health care, having recently donated a kidney to your brother. Given that experience, were you as surprised as Trump apparently was about how complicated the health care system is?AB: The thing about health care is that, whenever you call a doctor, the first thing they ask you for is insurance. Not what's wrong, or how you're feeling. How are you going to pay up? The whole situation is broken.
SD: And then there are the folks who don't realize that Obamacare and the ACA are the same thing.AB: I don't know who said it, but I love the quote, "People are smart. But the people are stupid."