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Craig Ferguson on Alcoholism

I’ve been in the non-drinking camp for six and a half years but never have I heard alcoholism described so eloquently and humorously. It’s a tough issue to make funny, but this guy’s Scottish timbre could charm the pants off a Mountain Troll. If you’re not a boozelord, it’s still entertaining, but if you are then I guarantee it will resonate your molecules.

I’ll say it again, but Ferguson and Kimmel are really emerging to be the creatively dominant voices in late night. Screw the 11:35 timeslot. I’m becoming far more interested in what’s happening after midnight.

via @martha_s


  1. brad says:

    Ummmm, michelle, were you drunk when you wrote that or are you such a drunk that you need to go off on a tangent as an attempt to convince yourself that you arent a drunk? Please tell us all what in the hell was the point of that, captain obvious? Now please, grab a wine cooler and play some cards by yourself!

  2. Irish Gent says:

    Never trust a man who doesn’t drink.
    It screams weakness. True Men know how to handle their drink. Feeble minded people abuse and abstain.

  3. Bill says:

    I had been thinking that I was an alcoholic for years… started drinking heavily at 21… started blacking out, by 30 I was a nightly drunk. As I was “considering” that I had a problem I saw this and two days later I told my wife that I was quitting and would start meetings… thanks chris

  4. jc says:

    wow, very real, and powerful message. not many folks in general much less hollywood would do what he did.

  5. Meli says:

    I’ve watched Craig from the beginning and what has always made him stand out from the other late night hosts is his willingness to share both the good and bad of himself. Just think of what we would’ve missed out on had the bartender not been sleeping behind the bar that night.

  6. Deltus says:

    That was almost painful in places to watch, it was so honest. Holy shit. I’m not even an addict (well, I am to food that’s terrible for me), but that was inspirational.

  7. sooz says:

    So I saw you last night at the Brea Improv and just wanted to comment on how lovely your sweater was. I hope you have a nice day.

  8. M_pony says:

    I love this guy.

    If at all possible, find Craig Ferguson’s old “Heroin screws you up” tirade, about anti-drug advertising. He performed this bit at the Just For Laughs festival a goodly long time ago (late 80’s? early 90s?) He was always genius at stand-up.

  9. Will says:

    Craig is my fave late might host. I have been watching him for about 2 years or so. The thing about him that I find most admirable is the no script no rehearsal policy. His monolouge for when his father died was so sad and from the heart. The one from when his mother died was the same. His ” no picking on Britney Spears because I have been there ” speech was great. His book is also quite good.

    The puppets rock too.

  10. Jim says:

    I’ve been on the sober team for a bit over seven years now. Its still not easy for me to fully express my story. Craig explained it very well though. Some people just cannot drink “normally”. I am one of those. I also appreciate when Craig spoke about the attitudes of a lot of celebrity rehabs. There would be no way I could have stayed sober for this long without some serious vigilance. It works if you work it. Thanks for posting.

  11. Joel says:

    Chris, I know my warped sense of humor and bizarre tweets and comments may not always show it but I respect you more and more the more I “get to know you” as any fan can get to know a celebrity.

    Keep up the good work. You are an inspiration and if I ever do get to meet you…. I’ll probably wet myself.

    Much love and admiration,

  12. Scott Murphy says:

    I’d heard you refer to not drinking before but thought it might have been one of your damn funny quick quips. Congrats!

    I’m totally with you about Craig Ferguson and Jimmy Kimmel, especially Craig. I’m reading his book now and the more I read and the more I watch, the more I appreciate that human.

    Thanks for posting this. I’ve seen it before but i love seeing it again.

    Also, congratulations on another run of Web Soup (if I hopefully heard the promos properly.) I love the show and your prime hosting chops. I wish I catch one of your gigs but am sadly trapped near Mobile, AL, due to a family obligation. If you ever get near there or Pensacola let me know and I’ll be there! Otherwise, it’ll just be TV for you and me, fella.

    Take care, man.

  13. Adam Export says:

    Give him all the credit in the world for telling a serious story that is charming enough to keep you invested in the whole thing AND gets the message across in the end.

    Congrats to him

  14. Colleen says:

    @jacqueshughes: Craig’s shows are posted regularly on YouTube. Lots of folks all over the world watch and comment. Just search on the YouTube homepage using his name and you’ll find the shows. Enjoy!

  15. JohnO says:

    I should add, I love this bit so much I really don’t care who gets credit.

  16. JohnO says:

    Hey! I post the link and Martha agrees with me and she gets the credit? Where’s my 15 minutes, man? *GRIN*

  17. Stephen says:

    That was awesome! I really loved that Kimmel one you posted as well. Reality TV should be replaced with more heartfelt content.

  18. jacqueshughes says:

    Thanks for that Chris. I agree with others’ sentiments here, some people just shouldn’t/can’t drink, and I’m one of them.

    Strange thing is, I’m a Brit old enough to remember Craig doing standup in the 80’s. I never thought he’s end up on TV in the US. But there you go. And he actually has a conscience too. I hope we get to see more of him this side of the pond (US daily shows seem blocked in anger at the BBC blocking non-UK folks from watching QI, who knew?)

    All the best from London (England)


  19. Andria says:

    I believe this is just brilliant.
    And now I want to hug you both.

  20. Steven B says:

    Chris- I have always admired ya. You’re intelligent, witty, funny, and you “get it”. Your ability to stay engaged and relevant in the entertainment and social media world is quite awesome, and for that you should be proud.

    To see you post this message today, I have respect for you. I have always enjoyed the humility and sincerity that Craig Ferguson brings to not only late night TV, but to society as well. Score two for the G4/12:35 PM folks!

  21. I can’t say I am on the non-drinking kick, but for myself, I don’t really drink at all. To give an example of how little I drink, in the past year, I have drank about a 12 pack of beer. So if that’s drinking, then I’m guilty, but honestly I like the taste and not the effects. As far as others drinking, well that’s up to them, just stay away from me if you’re smashed out of your mind.

    I really have latched onto Craig in the past couple of years. His show is always good and he doesn’t go by the book all the time, so it’s a little different each time. I also like how dark the set is, it’s like half the lights aren’t working or something. It gives you that after midnight feel. I’m also really liking Jimmy Fallon. I like to watch someone fumble over themselves and learn the ropes of late night, and it’s doesn’t get any better than Fallon right now.

    Holy cow that was a long comment, sorry about that, but I agree with what you said Chris, the monologue is light years ahead of anything that Leno or Conan have been doing and is hopefully the wave of the future. You mentioned Kimmel before and I agree with him also, but he’s got to keep it up, because most of the time his monologue is just a normal pre-cursor to his show. He’s fucking funny guy though, so I can forgive him. Great post though, something to think about.

    Cheer mate.


  22. Mary says:

    Craig is the master of making anything palatable. I think he should be the spokesperson for everything. :)

    Unrelated: I had no idea Mountain Trolls wore pants. But my neighborhood was mayhap a bit rough.

  23. Michelle says:

    It’s good to have someone speak clearly on an issue such as this, and also be able to incorporate at least subtle humor into the subject.
    I have been around many people with an addiction to alcohol, among other things. This includes my immediate family. However, I was lucky enough that I do not have an addictive personality. I never have. I am a social drinker, sometimes on holidays, but only if I am with someone I trust to drive. Otherwise, I do not drink, no matter how much alcohol is around me. I never get drunk to the ‘black -out’ stage. Pretty much, if I notice myself start dancing. I tab out. I know whatever I drank within the past 30 minutes will catch up to me. I stop. That’s the end of it. I never go out simply to drink, and a lot of people associate going out and having fun with drinking, like there is nothing else to do but that to have fun. I can see that to an extent depending on where you live.
    However, for me only, I do occasionally like to play solitary card games with a couple wine coolers.. Maybe once every three months.
    I also agree that there are just certain people that should not drink. Everyone handles alcohol differently. If your body doesn’t tell you when to stop, if you’ve had that much too drink and can’t tell.. don’t drink.
    All inhibition is lost when your intake overwhelms your body.
    From what I’ve witnessed: Some females get overly excited, and will take their clothes off just for the hell of it. Even if just the girls.. practice strip teases, strip poker. Or it suddenly becomes ‘hot’ in the winter somehow and a sweater has to come off. Guys.. get violent, stubborn, and/or selfish. Any rational thought completely evades their mind set.
    If you can stop in the middle of any activity and come back to reality without throwing up, an occasional outing or get-together should be okay.. occasionally. Just not when you have no idea what is going on.. at any point. When you can’t remember what you are doing when your drinking, any blacking out, waking up in pee.. I think it’s time to stop.
    Craig Ferguson is a very good speaker. I like him… and his accent that makes him even more uber spiffy 😉

  24. Lisa says:

    Amen. I never miss Craaaaaaeeeeeg, and this monologue is why. He can charm the pants off me anytime.

  25. Had to watch this 2x…I had forgotten about this brilliant Ferguson monologue (he’s so consistent, “I pulled a Ferguson” should be slang for excellence).

    I’ve been in the “camp” for a long time too and I would need multiple lifetimes to have his eloquence about boozing.

  26. Bill says:

    Hey Chris, good video. I remember this monologue from when it originally aired. I thought it was amazing then and still do. I watch Ferguson every night (after Letterman of course) and I would say he’s right up there as my favorite. I love this guy. Anyway, great share with all of us.