Mike Green is the host of Stand Up at the Standard Tavern.
The passion and energy that got Marty into trouble his whole life is exactly the same that propelled me to get into stand up in the first place.
—Mike Green, comedian
Does anyone have "normal" parents? As children and teenagers we think our parents are "weird" because of how skewed our priorities are.
Then we grow up and realize they're strange for an entirely different set of reasons. Parents will always seem set in their ways in a fashion that mildly embarrasses us. As we grow up we become more accepting of their idiosyncrasies, and what once merited a cringe will only induce an eye-roll. That being said, I can say with some confidence my dad is less normal than normal.
You'd have to be a little strange to be so passionate about math that you produce and star in a public access TV show about it. That's how most people are familiar with my father, as Math with Marty from the days of Videon.
Every teacher I had through school was in for two surprises, the first when they realized the relation and the second when they figured out I had no mathematical aptitude myself. If extra pressure in school was the only grievance I had I'd say I got off easy, but Math with Marty was by far some of his most mild antics.
Suffice it to say, at best Marty will be remembered as eccentric, and more likely his legacy will be something closer to "that guy who got himself banned from both universities".
The question is do I wish Marty had been less reckless in his exploits so that it wouldn't be awkward to get asked "what Math with Marty is up to these days" all my life? And the answer, despite having what I feel is a surplus of that parental embarrassment I mentioned at the start, is somehow still "no".
His antics have always informed my comedy. Sometimes directly, such as when I wrung material out of an incident when I was 11 and Marty had me electrocute him in a bathtub to prove it was a Hollywood myth.
But mostly indirectly, because the passion and energy that got Marty into trouble his whole life is exactly the same that propelled me to get into stand up in the first place.
It'd be crazy to resent him because of how many facets of our personalities I know we share. The ultimate irony being that some 20 years after he was on the air for Math with Marty I found myself on Public Access TV for a no-budget comedy show.
I could never write him off or hope he'd change because at the very least, he's liable to provide material for a few more bits over the years.