The Only Thing America Does Better Than Any Other Country
It’s tough to pinpoint what exactly Americans can take pride in these days. All of our tech innovations have been appropriated by the surveillance state, and every celebrity we fall in love with turns out to be a pervert or a Canadian. We still have the Costco hot dog, and Henry Winkler has yet to disappoint, but after that, we’re truly scraping the bottom of the barrel.
But at last month’s Cracked Live event in Brooklyn, comedian Kath Barbadoro identified a bedrock component of our national pride: “The thing that America does better than any other country on Earth is air conditioning.”
Watch her set below — and if you’re in the New York City area, make sure to get your tickets to our next show: September 20th at The Cutting Room, with headliner Kyle Kinane.
As for that quite literally cool merger between American exceptionalism and air conditioning, stepping into a frigid room in the middle of an East Coast heatwave is one of the few things that can jolt a U.S. resident with the same wattage of patriotism that a bumper sticker of Calvin whizzing on Bin Laden’s head did circa 2004. “Americans love air conditioning so much,” Barbadoro says, “that when we feel air conditioning, we feel a sense of authority. Someone is in charge when it’s cold in a room.”
Furthermore, she explains, “I know that whoever is in charge has put my personal comfort above everything, including the continued existence of this planet.” Sure, air conditioning uses a staggering amount of increasingly precious energy. And sure, cosplaying winter is blinding us to the climate catastrophes that are barreling toward us at an ever-quickening rate. But good god, does it feel refreshing to get goosebumps in July.
America feels irreparably divided sometimes, but Barbadoro says this is one of the few remaining issues that can unite folks from every corner of the Overton window: “I’m pretty far left. I want a socialist in charge of things. But I would like a fascist at the thermostat.” Hell, the appeal of a midsummer’s Arctic blast transcends politics and culture wars entirely: “The less I agree with your political views, the more I want to be in your house in July.”
Check out her full set here, where she tackles the state of masculinity at Planet Fitness, Salman Rushdie’s sexting typos and what it takes to make it in New York. And get your tickets to the next Cracked Live on September 20th at The Cutting Room right here.