Gadgets have been good to Jackie "The Joke Man" Martling, Howard Stern's one-time head writer. Jackie's Joke Machine, a push-button toy, sold 50,000 units. History may well repeat itself with the Jackie Button, an iPhone app that fans will be able to download later this month. The one catch? No dirty jokes. "Apple hasn't loosened up," says Martling, who splits his time between Bayville and Manhattan. (He grew up in East Norwich.) Morality constraints won't be a problem Saturday, when Martling returns to the Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts.
"Jackie's Joke Hunt" is in its third year on satellite radio. How are you keeping it fresh?
Last night my guest was Joe Franklin and he read a dirty joke. It just couldn't have been better. We all went out to eat after, and people were walking by going, "Is that Joe Franklin? Is that Jackie the Joke Man? What are they doing at the same table?"
You show off your knowledge of punchlines with the "Stump the Jokeman" routine. Do you recall the last time you actually were stumped?
There's one classic story about a girl who got up on stage with me at Rascals. . . . The joke was, "Why do they bury Jewish men standing up?" I said to her, "I can't believe I didn't know the joke." And she says, "I can't, either, because two years ago I stumped you with the very same joke on the same stage." Sometimes, stuff just falls through the cracks.
How're things with Howard these days?
He e-mailed me a month or so ago to say he was sorry he missed my birthday. I wrote back, "The world would -- if they knew we were a couple of old sentimental bastards."
There are videos of you smoking marijuana on YouTube. What's the story there?
If you listen to (the 2007 album) "Happy Endings," the second song is called "And I'm Thinkin' About You" . . . it's about smoking pot. I wrote that song and shot a little piece of video of me smoking a joint, and it's been up there for years.
Yeah, but aren't you courting trouble?
There's no reason on God's green Earth - no pun intended - for pot to be illegal. For farmers in the late 1700s, hemp was the major crop. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew hemp. The Declaration of Independence was written on hemp. Google it.
WHO Jackie Martling
WHEN | WHERE Saturday, April 4, 8 p.m., The Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, 71 E. Main St., Patchogue
INFO $25-$35, 631-207-1313