On RIOT Live, Jessi Klein joked that she started trying to be funny in high school, when she realized it was easier than trying to be pretty.
"There was not an aha moment of 'I'm funny!' I noticed in high school that I wasn’t becoming particularly attractive," Klein said with a laugh. "And I was like 'Time to lean on something else.’ I tried being funny, and that seemed to go better than relying on the other parts."
Klein, an Emmy and Peabody award-winning writer, is good at being funny. Her recently published book, You'll Grow Out of It, is an entertaining read, full of her own life stories and funny observations and analogies on womanhood (are you a poodle or a wolf?).
During Riot's live show, Klein talked about how her comedy has changed since the birth of her son.
"I think I’m still figuring it out. I have a son who just turned one. He’s the bomb," she said. "I think you learn a lot about patience when you have a baby. It also doesn’t leave a lot of time. All that time I used to spend on the internet suddenly isn’t there as much because I want to spend time with my kid."
Klein and Vanessa Bayer — the SNL cast member moderating the Q&A — also had an engaging discussion about whether it really is better today for women in comedy?
“I think if you are a female comedian you’re like, eh I guess," Bayer said. "There’s still a thing where it feels like ‘if this female comedy goes well, then…’ and you’re like really? It feels like every time a female comedy comes out they’re like 'this is it for women!'"
Klein echoed that dissatisfaction, contrasting her experience in the industry to a man's: "Male comedy people are like pooping out another turd and people are like 'isn’t he amazing?'"