Larry Miller’s The Secret of Skiing

Larry MillerWhen I was a teen, there was some comedy competition that ran on HBO or something. It was first done regionally. And then the winners of each regional one met. As I recall, Eddie Murphy won. Now I think Murphy is one of the best comedic actors ever. But I never thought much of him as a stand-up comic. It just doesn’t play to his skills. But in that competition, I discovered the comedian Larry Miller. He was interesting in one particular way: he was the only comedian who did a different routine in the final than he had done in the region — an indication of his greatness.

One of the routines he did was “The Secret of Skiing.” It was about 8 minutes long. But I found a version online that is 35 minutes long. I don’t know if the routine has grown over the years or if he just whittled it down to 8 minute for the competition. It doesn’t matter. It’s magnificent. He’s really an old style comedian. He reminds me of Shelley Berman, although I think Larry Miller is actually more talented.

You owe it to yourself to listen to this. After all these years, I laughed myself silly. Of course, my opinion of skiing is pretty much the same as his — and the goat’s (listen and you’ll know what I’m talking about).

7 thoughts on “Larry Miller’s The Secret of Skiing

  1. Larry Miller is amazing! I’ve been a fan of his for years. That skiing bit is great. If you like that, be sure to search You Tube for his “Five Stages of Drinking” bit which is hysterical.

    • So do I! Of course, with Miller, the comedy is most with his voice, so it isn’t as bad as it could be!

  2. Larry Miller is a class act. You know a great comedian when they don’t need to get in the gutter and use swear words just to get a laugh. I remember watching this HBO special when it first came out in the early 1990’s when I was on vacation in a hotel room. I couldn’t stop laughing. I’ve been trying to find a copy of his stand up act doing this routine with no luck for years. Listening to it without the visuals is still very funny but to get the full effect you need the video to watch his facial expressions which brings it to another level.

    • He is one of the greats. It bothers me that the comedians I most like have a relatively low-bar in terms of their success. Here are two more I really like:

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