Janelle James is a New York-based comedian and writer. She can be seen on Night Train with Wyatt Cenac, @midnight, and Uproarious. She was included in Just For Laughs Montreal’s New Faces category for 2016 and named one of the 50 Most Funny People in Brooklyn for 2016. This week James talked to me about three of her favorite tweets, plus how word count affects her voice on Twitter, and talking to inanimate objects.
One thing me and Katt Williams have in common is I’ll fight a kid no problem.— Janelle James (@janellejcomic) May 25, 2016
James: OK, I’m dying laughing just reading this one again. I am obsessed with the idea of fighting a kid. Not beating a kid, straight fisticuffs. It’s just hilarious to me. I wrote this after Katt Williams was caught on video getting beat up by a guy people were saying was a 15 year old. Turns out it was an adult. I wish I never found that out.
When you read old tweets of yours can you usually remember where you were or how you felt?
Nah, my tweets are more like brain farts. I just tweet as I think it.
How similar is your voice on Twitter to your voice IRL? Are there specific components of your persona that are missing online?
Very similar. I try to type how I speak. The only thing missing might be more curse words due to word count.
Hello 911? There’s a bunch of 70 year old white dudes tryna tell me what to do even though they’ll all be dead soon. — Janelle James (@janellejcomic) November 20, 2016
Speaks for itself no?
Do you have favorite formats for tweets?
I like to quote my thoughts as though I’m speaking to inanimate objects. For example: “Do what you want, what you want to my body!” <– me talking to a pie. This makes me ridiculously happy for some reason.
How do you approach tweeting about politics? Is it different from how you approach more evergreen/apolitical jokes?
I don’t think of politics as some different subject I have to approach cautiously. My “act” is me and my thoughts and my Twitter is just more of the same.
White people made me so upset today I deleted a Father John Misty album from my Spotify.— Janelle James (@janellejcomic) July 10, 2016
This combines two of my favorite things—being mad at White people, and Father John Misty, who is my boyfriend. (I’m a conundrum.) We’re on one of those “breaks” where he doesn’t know I’m his girlfriend. It’s chill.
If you could only tweet about three things what would they be?
Me, myself, hot dudes.
Jenny Nelson lives and writes in Brooklyn.