Last Friday, viewers of David Letterman's Late Show witnessed one of the finest, heartfelt monologues ever on American late-night TV, by an emotional Norm Macdonald. A few years ago, I wrote a piece called We don't seek your perfection, only your authenticity, featuring a TED talk by Brene Brown. Brown says in her book The Gifts of Imperfection that, "Staying vulnerable is a risk we have to take if we want to experience connection." What Norm Macdonald did in his final appearance on the Late Show was beautiful, honest, and as authentic as it gets on stage. Comedian Rob Schneider called Macdonald's performance "...comic perfection and grace." I don't want to give anything away, but if you have eight minutes, please watch the monologue below.
I've long been a fan of Norm Macdonald. He's always seemed to be the most genuine of standup comedians. He never became a household name, though he is certainly successful by any definition. The comedian from Ottawa may best be known for his five years as an SNL cast member and anchor for Weekend Update. Clearly the standup community respect and admire him. As with standup, so it is in life: the most genuine and the most authentic people are the ones who touch us the most and are the ones we remember.
Thank you, Norm, for showing us how it's done.