Greg Giraldo: A (not so) funny thing happened on the way to the comedy club

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I don’t go to Stress Factory Comedy Club very often, and when I do it’s usually to see a big star.

This is the face I was expecting to see but didn't last night at Stress Factory./Photo credit Getty Images

In the past, I’ve been lucky enough to have seen Chris Rock AND Wanda Sykes try out new material on Central Jersey audiences. And last night I was there again, this time to see one of Comedy Central’s favorite roasters, Greg Giraldo.

Except that never happened. Following opener Melvin George, Stress Factory owner/comedian Vinnie Brand came on stage. But instead of introducing the headliner, he announced that Greg had been taken to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (also in New Brunswick). That was it; no other information was provided.

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You can’t take it with you: Three cheers for Wanda Sykes’ stance on organ/tissue donation

I’m a big fan of comedian/actress Wanda Sykes, but I sure was surprised when I saw her speak about organ donation in her new HBO special, “I’ma Be Me.”

'Wanda Sykes: I'ma Be Me' Sneak Peek: Organs
‘Wanda Sykes: I’ma Be Me’ Sneak Peek: Organs

“I don’t understand why more people are not organ donors,” says Wanda. “We all really should be organ donors. I mean, c’mon, why are you holding onto it? You’re dead! Give it up. Let somebody else use it.

“Some people say, ‘It’s my religion.’ What kind of religion is that? That’s the most loving thing you can do – to give of yourself. To help somebody.

“Is your God kinda crazy or something? Are you scared when you get to heaven your God is gonna be like, ‘Where the hell are your eyes?'”

I am intimately acquainted* to organ -and tissue – donation, so I was heartened by Wanda’s message. I had never considered using humor to get the message of donation out, but hey, what she said is totally funny and totally true. Donating one’s organs and tissue (such as skin, bones, corneas, heart valves, tendons and ligaments) has the potential to save or improve numerous other lives.

*My family donated my father’s tissue when he died Feb. 5, 2007. Through that experience, I have become acquainted with the people of the New Jersey Sharing Network and the Musculoskeletal Transplant Foundation, all of whom work tirelessly to give hope to both grieving families and patients in need of donations.

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