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A brainy bad boy

I can’t help it: I cannot even watch Bill Burr walk onto a stage without beginning to chuckle beneath my breath. Burr is a guy’s comic, which explains nothing about why this writer (a woman) relates to, wants to personally know, and completely gets where Burr is continually coming from.

Burr hints at borderline sexism, ageism and a few other isms, though he’s way too brainy to be any of those things. He is a carrot-top redhead with (now) a receding hairline. He’s got an Irishman with an East Coaster’s sensibility and sense of humor. Think Frank McCourt without the tenderness, Colin Farrell without the hunky good looks, Craig Ferguson only not Scottish.

The Comedy Works hosts Burr February 23 through the 26th (www.comedyworks.com), and he’s worth seeing up close and personal. He’s delightfully uncomfortable in his own skin and isn’t afraid to show it. He knows he’s too old to be single, too D-List to be rich, too far from celebrity status to “relax,” and too confused about life, women, and male angst to ever be a superstar.

See him at the Comedy Works because (a) it’s a great, intimate venue; and (b) you can feel his roots, his vulnerability and his half-grinning, smart-ass brain clicking into gear as he saunters onto the tiny Comedy Works basement platform. Just try not to laugh as he takes a deep breath, grabs the mike and leans against the microphone stand.

He’s just young enough, just marginally good-looking enough, and just smart enough to know that he should be less chauvinistic and more politically correct — a nicer guy. But he can’t help himself, and you won’t want him to.

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