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September 30, 2010

Greg Giraldo

Greg was a guy I knew from comedy. We hung out a few times, did a couple shows together. I was struck by his immense intelligence and good spirit. He died yesterday after an accidental prescription drug overdose. I’ve been upset about it since I found out: too many talented people die unnecessary deaths. Andy Richter found an interview Greg did for Psychology Today, which I am reposting here. It rings too true for me. Not that I have a drug or alcohol problem like Greg, but the constant feeling of never being good enough. I think a lot of us suffer from that, so I guess what I’m trying to say is: read the interview. The lesson I take away from it is one I hope I’ve been learning over the years: have gratitude for what you have and forgive yourself for what might have been. We are all failures in one way or another, but failure is more than the end of something. It is the opportunity to begin something else. Enjoy your successes, accept your failures. Move on from both. But keep moving on.

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/brainstorm/200905/greg-giraldo-failure

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Jen

I really needed this this week, MIB. Thanks. And I'm so sorry for the loss of your friend. <3

Darren

RIP Greg Giraldo. A brilliant comedian who will be sorely missed.

steff

my first instict when i heard the news was that it was a sick-joke, but when i realized it wasn't, i just felt sick. and then i cried a little. i thought he was a truly hilarious comic and, for that, we are all poorer for his loss.
the interview you linked to hits home in so many ways. it's kind of heartbreaking to read but, for the same reasons you mention in your post, i'm glad he put that out there because hopefully it can save the other Greg's out there from succumbing to the sickness of self-hate.

jay hinkle

Thanks for the post, Michael. Everyone that watched Greg knew he was very intelligent, kind, and authentic. As you shared, I think Greg suffered from what is a very human struggle. There are lots of good, caring, and well trained folk out there who work hard to try to engage others who appear lost by ineffective behaviors, negative self-talk, and such. Hopefully we can learn from Greg and seek help, encourage kindness and compassion, and lift each other up when we see that there's suffering.

Thanks

Jaime

I watched last comic standing, and I liked Greg on there. Funny, sincere, honest. Not always searing, not always soft handed, very even. I like what Jay said. It is very human, it is very real. And I love everything else Jay said too. Lift up your brother. Ditto to that. You're a gift. We all are. I know I treasure each time you unwrap all the little surprises from your gift box and fling them around like its a sparkle-wanded rainbow unicorn christmas event. Hugs and stuff.

Reen

I'm so sorry for your loss. It's heartwrenching to lose a friend. Grandparents, parents, yes, we expect it eventually - but never our friends.

I'm not familiar with Gregs work, but from what I did see, he was an insightful and funny man. We can all benefit from people like that in our lives. And that interview...painful, courageous, bullshit free.

People like Greg, and you, project a raw vulnerability that I find simultaneously depressing and appealing. I want to nurture, encourage, and attempt to protect you from your inner demons. As if anything I would say or do, even could. It's an inner battle between you, and you. And yet, I greatly admire and want to emulate the type of courageous and honest talk that Greg and you share with so many, through my everyday life.

It's fucking hard to crash down our defensive walls and really open up to our family and friends, much less strangers. I love that you can do that with yourself. You are helping people without even knowing it by taking risks, going first, and waving us forward.

"Enjoy your successes, accept your failures. Move on from both. But keep moving on."

Thanks, Mike.

Levi

Suck.

This is the first I've heard of Greg's passing.

I think anyone who has that distinct personality type that *has* to entertain people for a living goes through the kind of things Greg laid out in that interview.

Man. I'm going to be sad about this for awhile.

Mike

I was pretty saddened when I read the news about his death last week. I see all these stories of celebrities ODing. It makes me think "shit, why would anyone even want to be famous these days? You just seem to crash under stress and have your life cut short".

I enjoyed the interview you posted quite a bit. It's nice to see people well known for being funny talk in a serious tone once in a while. Let's people know that comedians aren't all jokes and laughs.

a

Thank you for this: "have gratitude for what you have and forgive yourself for what might have been"

It will stay with me.

Gordon Alexander

Fuck, man--that interview hit me hard. That's gonna be me if I don't get my shit together. Yet here I am, dicking around online instead of writing new material. Even if you told me I'll be dead in fifteen years, I'd probably still find a way to justify putting all my shit off til tomorrow. When potential is all you have, you let it go unrealized for fear of finding out that you never had it in the first place--that, in fact, you had nothing all along. So long as you don't make the effort you never really fail. You wait for the pieces to fall in place on their own--when they do, you ride it out for as long as you can. When the wheels of fortune come to rest, you go back to hating yourself. Fortunately, I'm too poor to have a drug problem (and too white to know how irrelevant that is).

Anyways, thanks for posting this. Guys like Greg rarely last long--the only thing you can do is be grateful for the impression he left behind.

Brian

I do not know how I linked to your blog, but I am glad I did. I particularly appreciate the reminder to keep moving. I struggle with that regularly, getting weighed down in the mire of my own doubt and depression. It is always sad news to hear when someone else gets lost in whatever it is they are going through. Condolences.

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I know this is really boring and you are skipping to the next comment, but I just wanted to throw you a big thanks - you cleared up some things for me!

Nicu

I just realized, that to tell truth and don't get others upset, but even make them laugh, you have to be a stand-up comediant.

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Hello, I'm interested in being a blogger. But, most people are discouraging me. Is it a lot of work to maintain a blog?

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Hold the laughter. Greg Giraldo died at a New Jersey hospital Wednesday, four days after being admitted following an accidental overdose of prescription medication. He was 44. The news was first reported by fellow comic and longtime friend Jim Norton, who tweeted a photo of the two and the message, "Rip Buddy."

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tomas

Wow! I've met plenty of entertainers who feel the same way! So great that Greg was honest in his responses. RIP Greg

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Greg Giraldo was best an American comedian. I love to watch his TV series. His TV series Just For Laughs is totally entertaining. He was mine one of the favourite stand-up comedian.

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Andi

My deepest condolences to his family. May his good soul rest in peace. I thought I'd share this site to his family which helped me get through a similar predicament four years ago when I lost someone very dear to me.

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