Jake Johannsen

There are quite a few comics that describe themselves as storytellers, but few are as adept at that style as Jake Johannsen. With a twinge of bewilderment and an everyman persona, he tells audiences about events from his life, liberally peppering those tales with hilarious punch lines. Johannsen stumbled onto his style somewhat by accident. "I guess it's a natural thing for me to ramble around and go off on tangents," he explains. "I remember when I was starting out MCing shows, I was working with Larry Miller. He said, 'You've got some funny ideas. Instead of getting one or two jokes out of them, you should talk longer.' I wouldn't say he's the guy that coached me into it or anything, but I do remember that conversation." These days he can even find humor in something as mundane as buying a toaster. The salesman, of course, tried to sell him the top-of-the-line eight-slice toaster. "Like I'm going to have the Brady Bunch over for toast. When do you need eight slices of toast now? He ended up with a one-slice toaster. "About a foot long and extra wide in case they invent some new kind of bread," he says. "So I don't have to upgrade my toaster. 'Cuz you know the Japanese are working on some new bread right now to make our toasters obsolete. They're over there with their 'wide loaf, high-resolution toast.'"
Aug. 13-16, 8 p.m.; Aug. 15-16, 10:30 p.m., 2008

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