SF Sketchfest: Kevin Smith Regales With Tales of "Rectal Adventures" and Care for the Dying
What's typically billed as a light, stream-of-consciousness rap between two old friends and colleagues strewn with pop culture references took a surprisingly strange focus Sunday night that made us want to leave early -- but it ended on an intimately somber tone that made us glad we didn't. It was Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier recording their weekly SModcast live at Cobb's Comedy Club.
For the first 15 or 20 minutes, the talk moved along at a clip so swift that you might miss the subject if you paused to dip into your nachos. And then, for the next hour or so, the man whose celebrated filmography includes titles such as Clerks, Chasing Amy, Dogma, and the recent Red State joined his buddy and longtime collaborator in fixating on their asses.
Smith was asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight in Oakland in 2010 because of his size, an incident that is not only outrageous, it has seemed to take more than a fair toll on his self-esteem. Even if it was just for schtick, which it probably wasn't, Smith made frequent jabs at his body that got increasingly more uncomfortable.
It got to be shocking how long the two lingered on topics such as enemas, hemorrhoids, and anal fissures, which Smith lumped together under the umbrella of "rectal adventures." Stories were punctuated with laughs here and there, but it was far from punchline-driven -- 20, 30, 40 minutes went by, but the two didn't veer from the rear.
With all the ass talk, we were fiddling with the handle of our purse and really considering cutting the night short. Finally, Smith changed the subject to talk about what he said was the most profound thing he's ever had to go through: caring for Scully, his ailing, 14-year-old dog.
It seems everyone except Smith has given up on Scully, who can no longer walk but still can wag a tail of happiness. After the vet told him that he should think about putting her to sleep because everyone has "things to do," Smith said he doesn't have more to do than write, smoke pot, Tweet, and sleep. And he has taken on the messy and immersive challenge of helping Scully live out the remainder of her days as comfortably as possible.
We appreciated hearing about such a personal travail and feel all the more endeared to Smith that he told it. Though a sad note, it was a better one to close the night.