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SEPT. 30-OCT. 3
Comedian Lewis Black and I are discussing the new Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, which happens to be Black’s hometown: “The new Blair is the most psychotically placed school in the history of mankind anywhere—and I travel now,” he observes. Why, Black wants to know, was the school placed “three blocks from the entrance to that other piece of psychosis, the Beltway? Why would you ask for all of that traffic in that area? It’s hard enough getting a sub sandwich….That that occurred makes me truly wonder about the village I was born in.” Black’s local and comic roots are equally deep, going all the way back to the late ’70s. “I helped start the comedy scene in Washington, in a way,” he says, not at all boasting. “Paul Brookman had this vision of putting comedy in Anacostia.” Black was among the first to take the stage at the fabled El Brookman’s, from whence several headlining comedians sprang. Now, his “Back in Black” segment is a highlight of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, which airs opposite the “real” newscasts. Black’s hyperventilating screeds are a far more genuine reaction than others’ carefully modulated concern. Combining James Finlayson’s sputtering stupefication with Edgar Kennedy’s silently boiling anger, Black delivers his punch lines with overcaffeinated outrage. I’d love to print his hilarious account of his fledgling movie career (rent Jacob’s Ladder and watch the dog), but there’s only room left to urge all Springbrook alums—and anyone who yells at his or her TV—to show up at 8:30 p.m. Thursday and Sunday and 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, from Thursday, Sept. 30, to Sunday, Oct. 3, at the Improv, 1140 Connecticut Ave. NW. $12-$15. (202) 296-7008. (Dave Nuttycombe)