Jay Mohr tells me he signed a new contract to stay on through 2015 at the South Point, where he performs this Friday through Sunday.
That means the actor-comedian also signed up his wife, actress Nikki Cox of NBC’s old “Las Vegas,” to keep writing jokes for Vegas audiences.
“She writes half my act,” Mohr said.
“That is a direct benefit of her having complete insomnia, and watching TV, and writing things down. She hands me a spiral notebook, single space, completely full, and then I read it, and I go, ‘Wow. That’s hysterical.’ I go on stage, I say exactly what she wrote, and it works out perfect. It’s good when you’re sleeping with the writer.”
Cox’s sleep dent is real.
“My wife has been awake four days in a row, at one point. I told her, ‘If you were a Navy SEAL, they would pull you off duty.’ ”
To tell you the truth, I know all about their personal lives already because I listen to his/their frank podcast “Mohr Stories,” averaging 100,000 downloads per episode.
I reminded Mohr about a funny porn talk she gave him. Mohr repeats it for your reading pleasure.
“She said, ‘Is it important to you?’ No one ever asks somebody if porn is ‘important.’ The word ‘important’ makes it so disgusting. I was like, ‘No, not at all.’ She said, ‘OK, good, because you realize I’m kind of a sure thing.’ And she’s right. I’ve never been rebuffed.
“My wife has the libido of a 15-year-old boy. I’m on the other side of the fence. I’m like an 80-year-old Jewish woman. I need to be warmed up, kiss my neck, tell me you love me, make me some nice warm soup.”
Here’s one of their defining stories as a couple, as Mohr delivered it to me:
“We were in New York. She said, ‘The room service guy will be here shortly, do you think you can make it quick?’ As if there was any other speed I’ve ever had.
“I’m like, ‘Whoa, where’s the romance? What’s going on?’ She’s just on the bed waving at me, going, ‘Let’s go, let’s go!’ ”
Mohr and Cox raise two kids, ages 11 and 3. They dig parenthood.
“I think I’m starting to get good at it, but now I want more. I think the more children you have, the calmer you get,” he said.
“The first kid, you practically wrap them in bubble tape.
“My 3-year-old, we went to the park. There’s this huge hill, and he’s got this little bike. I just let him go down the hill. I never even thought, ‘Helmet, shoulder pads.’ ”
Mohr is an unusual comedian in a few ways.
First, he loves playing to Las Vegas crowds.
“Especially at South Point,” he says. “A lot of locals love to see comedy there. And your entire audience is from all over the country, so you’re playing to people it would take you two years to reach otherwise.”
I have never seen him bomb, not even at private gigs.
“I love corporates,” he said, a rare thing for a comic to proclaim.
And as host of radio’s “Jay Mohr Sports,” his goal isn’t to replace sports hosts on TV.
“Jerry Garcia from the Grateful Dead had a great quote that I really try to live by: ‘Don’t be the best at what you do; be the only one doing what you do,’ ” he said. “There’s no sports talk radio shows that mix comedy with sports like we do on ‘Jay Mohr Sports.’ I’m really proud of it.”
He’s a happy comedian. Mohr thinks he has happy DNA and the huge environmental factor of family life.
“I met the love of my life. I realized there’s nothing worth complaining about. If that’s a shmaltzy answer, I don’t care,” he said.
“I pick my son up at preschool every day at 12:30, and that’s success. There’s not a movie or TV sitcom that could go to syndication in the world that would be as successful as getting a 3-year-old running toward you every day at 12:30.”
Doug Elfman’s column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He blogs at reviewjournal.com/elfman.