you use a good laugh? If so, you’re in luck because Todd Armstrong is hilarious
and also one of the most educated cannabis comics on the scene. His web series
Permanent Comedy is taking off and Todd has been traveling the countryside
cracking up crowds at comedy clubs for the last few years. Straight forward and
with a strong knowledge of medical cannabis production, processing and
consumption Todd’s comedy is just what the doctor ordered, hard-hitting and
Tell us about your
comedy in the last few years.
I’ve been pretty blessed; I started comedy as a way to get
over my way of anxiety of public speaking because I was going back to school to
be a teacher. Then on my bucket list for 2010 was to just try comedy five
times. So I tried it a few times and I started doing really well. It was really
cathartic and it helped me kick start my life and six months into it the big
comedy club Helium opened in Portland which is their premier comedy club. They
asked me to open for Bill Burr on their grand opening weekend, so I’ve been
very blessed with opportunities but then also then just taking every
opportunity that I can and running with it. I’ve been a finalist at most of the
comedy clubs around here but I work the clubs a lot which is a real nice thing
because its consistent audiences and I can travel and they pay me a bunch
instead of traveling and working for free. I didn’t start comedy until I was 31
and I had no idea how deep and in-depth and involving comedy was and once you
start it really does change your life like eating the pill in The Matrix.
What is Permanent Comedy
I like to talk about what comedy is about and I feel that
most comics are putting on a front or a façade of trying to be funny or to be
relatable or try to get press out. When someone gets tattooed they can’t be
fake, they are themselves it’s a very visceral, it’s a very revolving thing. I
have quite a few tattoos and I’ve always enjoyed the conversations I’ve had
with my tattoo artists, so the anchor of the show is I’ll interview one comic
or someone in the industry, whether it be pot or comedy, about how permanent
choices in life and how they really affected them. Basically if you could talk
to yourself at 10 years old again, what do you wish you could give yourself in
fortune cookie form? We also mix in live stand-up and build things here and
there, and we also cover the basis of what comedy is and why jokes are what
Where are you
traveling to and performing at these days?
I just got done headlining the Seattle Underground for 4/20 in
April and the Tacoma Comedy Club is having the Comics Eating Brownies which is
their “pot themed show.” Down in Oregon, I do a lot of private shows for places
like the Dab Lounge, I’m also doing the private party for the San Francisco
Cannabis Cup and the TGA Seed folks want me to headline a party. It’s a
combination of a lot of cannabis folks and a lot of one-nighters throughout the
Northwest, L.A. and then over to New York.
What’s your favorite
part of the comedy industry?
I really like being on stage, I like the psychology of it.
It’s like jumping off a bridge into water without having to swim back. It’s
really just a rush! It’s kind of crazy. I started this because I’m just getting
too old to really surf, wake and skate the way I want. This is a way for me to
get that adrenaline rush out without having arthritic pain for six hours
How can cannabis and
comedy come together to help patients?
Their benefit of life is increased and it goes hand in hand
because you laugh. I love performing for patients at the Cannabis Café! They
need to laugh, they are literally patients. They don’t want to be there if you
really think about it, no one wants to be a patient. They got there because
they are hurt or their quality of life is affected, so if you can make those
people have a great time and laugh about some stupid shit then that’s the
reciprocity I enjoy. I always joke and say that laughter is the best medicine,
but patients have the real medicine.