Why Isn’t it Cool to Hate Me Anymore?

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By Dane Cook

What could I have possibly done so right to deserve this?

Let’s face it; I rocketed to stardom faster than anyone expected. Did I deserve it? Maybe a little, but a lot of it was just plain luck. I just happened to come onto the scene right at a time where I could make the biggest splash. My popularity rose as quickly as it would fall, but I never expected all of you to forget me so quickly. First you loved me, then you hated me and now nothing? I’m just cursed to walk this earth alone making millions of dollars a year until my last days? Lame. I deserve to be acknowledged. I’ll have you all hating me again if it’s the last thing I do.

I knew it was always going to end this way. No one becomes popular at such a young age and seemingly overnight without consequences. When you’re young and you get famous, you’re new. Fresh. You don’t have any dirt under your nails. If someone tried to dig dirt up on you they’d come up clean and then some. Seems like a good thing at first, maybe, but you’re going to make mistakes. No one gets from one side of this life to the other without making a few mistakes and believe me; it’s better to make them when you’re young and then it’s better if they aren’t public. Being as young and as famous as I was, I made some pretty public mistakes. First there was Jennifer, that stripper I dated that kept fucking my dad. Then there was that time I accidentally signed up for the KKK and then to top it all off I accidentally wrote 16 hours of stand-up material that was disingenuous, misogynistic and mediocre at best.

That’s when the downfall came. I don’t think I was ever a particularly bad comedian, though I am fairly sexist, homophobic and racist, it’s all in a vague, kooky fun kind of way. Listen, I know why it’s cool to hate me just like I know why it was cool to love me.

I got popular in the early 2000s in post 9/11 world. That might sound pointless to bring up, but I don’t think it is. This was at a time that our country had a newfound love for false patriotism. Everyone was all about American flags and the indiscriminate killing of a whole race of people was all the rage again. It was like the ’50s all over again and everyone just wanted to watch sports, get a healthy supply of entertainment that didn’t challenge their way of thinking during this confusing time and playing with one of those hoops with a stick. I was there just in time to supply the middle one. I could have handled the last one too, but I couldn’t find a stick. Eventually everyone remembered the shitty things about the ’50s, though, and it was back to entertainment that challenged our brains. Like anyone asked for that.

That’s when they turned. It was suddenly cool to make fun of Dane Cook. I was of course immediately shocked and hurt by the sudden about face, but then I understood it. Even eventually came to welcome it. By the time I appeared on WTF with Marc Maron and Louie starring Matt LeBlanc, I had fully realized my role as the villain in the comedy industry and I leaned into it as hard as I could. I peed on Stephen Wright’s shoe at a urinal, I accused some kid of stealing my essence and I punched a sea turtle in the back of the head. Twice. It died and I paid Sea World to put it on display with its dick hanging out and a sign next to it that read, “Dane Cook’s Bitch,” with one of those stupid little middle finger signs my manager made up.

Now no one even talks about me. They all pretend I never existed while I quietly make millions of dollars and cry myself to sleep. I don’t need to be loved or even reviled, just please have some sort of opinion about me. You can’t give me so much for such a short period of time and then take it all away. Do you have any idea what that feels like? Just look at me! Pay attention for two seconds to see if you hate it enough to get mad and post a status update about it! Please! Maybe I’m out there using the n-word, you don’t know! You don’t know because you don’t even care! You never did. I knew you didn’t but I finally have proof.

It doesn’t matter if you love me or not, the fact is that it isn’t your fault anymore than it is mine. The world just isn’t made with me in mind, not anymore at least. At least I got in there when the getting was good. The world’s different now. I could handle the world that loved me and even the world that hated me. I understood the world that hated me, I was ahead of the game in the hating Dane Cook game. No one could do it quite like me. For example; one time I’d just gotten back from a hike and I really tore into myself for being too in shape. Now I’m alone in my hatred. This world ignores me entirely and I can’t stomach it. I’m in the kitchen smashing plates and nobody’s noticing. There’s nothing that I can do to get your attention anymore.

I guess there’s just no place for Dane Cook in this brave new world.