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September 2, 2014

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Review: Rocky Laporte brings street-smart humor to the Improv

Comedian Rocky Laporte sounds like a street-smart trucker from Brooklyn. His monologue is sprinkled liberally with “dis” and “dat” “does” and “yooze” and wry observations accentuated by an occasional dirty word.

In fact the Brooklyn native was driving a truck in Chicago 20 years ago when he found delivering jokes was a lot easier than delivering freight.

Laporte is the headliner at Harrah’s Improv this weekend on a bill that also features Rick Delia and Ron Morey.

“Gas is going up too much,” he says. “I go to a station the other day and da guy says, ‘Fill it up?’ I go, “No, just give me $90 worth. That way I have 10 left for Starbucks.’

“My nephew’s getting married. They registered at Shell.”

The audience quickly warms up to Laporte’s friendly disposition and laid-back, easy-going temperment – an everyman who is both amused by stupidity, his own as well as the world’s.

“My kid asked me what a adverb was,” he says. “I said, ‘I doe no. I guess you got a verb, din you ad a nudder one.’ ”

He tells fans he skipped a grade in school. “From the fifth to the third.”

“I was in school forever. I was in the 8th grade when I was sent over to ‘Nam.”

He was happy about a report card he once received and ran home to tell his father.

“Hey Pop. I got a ‘B’ in reading.”

“That’s a ‘D’ you idiot.”

Throughout his routine he spreads little comments about various businesses beginning with “Hey ...”

• “I loved to eat at this Italian restaurant in Brooklyn. It was called ‘Hey, Eat This.’”

• “My uncle had a gas station. He called it ‘Hey, Pump This.’”

• “I used to work out at a gym. It was called ‘Hey, Stretch This.’”

• “My uncle owned a pool hall. He called it ‘Hey, Scratch This.’”

• “My uncle had a little animal shelter. He called it ‘Hey, Pet This.’”

He says he likes animals.

“I guess my favorite animal is steak.”

He doesn’t understand the physical fitness craze.

“They say ‘Hey, exercise and feel better.’ I go, ‘No, I feel better when I’m laying down eating Cheetos. That’s when I’m in the zone.’”

“My doctor told me to get my heart rate up, so once a week I got to the track and bet my rent.”

He had a few comments about the Las Vegas Zoo.

“It’s like four birds and a squirrel. Hey, at least get a lizard or something. ‘Hey, did you see the bird?’ ‘Yeah. Dat’s a nice duck.’

“It’s like two guys got together. ‘Hey, I got a dog and you got a bird, let’s start a zoo. Call Jimmy and tell him to bring his cat.’ ”

LaPorte says he wrote a book on etiquette for young people.

“I called it, ‘Hey, (blanking) Don’t Do Dat.’ I’m writing a sequel, ‘Hey, What’d I Tell Ya?’”

He thinks names are important.

“Don’t give your kids weird names. You know Hitler? If that guy’s name had been Chip, none of this (blank) would have happened.”

IF YOU GO

Who: Rocky Laporte with Rick Delia and Ron Morey

When: 8:30 and 10:30 tonight through Sunday

Where: Improv Comedy Club at Harrah’s

Tickets: $31.95; 369-5223

Upcoming shows:

July 1-6: John Henton with Kenny Bob Davis and Jim McCue

July 8-13: John Mulrooney with Vince Morris and Joan Fagan

July 15-20: Aries Spears with Joel Lindley and Howard Allen

July 22-27: Judy Tenuta with Jeff Carpi and Adam Richmond

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