Tina Fey: “I like to crack jokes , but it’s only because I struggle with math.”

From The Writer’s Almanac:

It is the birthday of comedy writer Tina Fey, born in 1970. Her father, Donald, was a university grant proposal writer.

She was a high school honor student and she performed in a summer theater group. She enrolled at the University of Virginia where she studied playwriting and acting, and after graduation in 1992 she moved to Chicago where she took night classes at the improv training center The Second City while working at a YMCA during the day. In 1994 she began performing with The Second City, traveling around the country and doing eight shows a week for two years. Three years later she was hired as a sketch writer for Saturday Night Live and she quickly rose to head writer.

A while later producer Lorne Michaels approached Fey to appear on SNL’s Weekend Edition alongside comedian Jimmy Fallon. A longtime glasses-wearer, she had wanted to wear contacts on camera, but when someone commented on how great her glasses looked during a run-through, she wore them instead. They became part of her signature look — and, as it would happen, enhanced her resemblance to the Alaska governor Sarah Palin. She played Palin in a series of sketches during the run-up to the 2008 election….

Her memoir, Bossypants, was released in 2011 and quickly went to No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list. Her most recent work is the Pixar fantasy comedy film Soul, in which she voiced the co-lead role.

She said, “I like to crack jokes now and then, but it’s only because I struggle with math.”…

In response to people who claim that women are not funny, she said, “My hat goes off to them. It is an impressively arrogant move to conclude that because you don’t like something, it is empirically not good. I don’t like Chinese food, but I don’t write articles trying to prove it doesn’t exist.”

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