Gilbert Gottfried did one of my favorite jokes at Side Splitters Comedy Club last night. It’s the same joke I use when I do an impression of Gottfried: “I was having dinner with Charles Manson and he turns to me and says, ‘Is it hot in here or am I crazy?'” Gottfried continued the bit with a very funny riff on Manson’s choice of “Helter Skelter” as inspiration for his 1969 crime spree instead of a more popular Beatles tune.

Speaking of 1969, I also loved his material about the first and second men to walk on the moon. I hadn’t heard it before. One of the references that resonated with me as a native New Yorker was Gottfried imagining NASA asking the astronauts if they saw Jackie Gleason’s face on the moon. In terms of popularity and longevity, “The Honeymooners” is to New York as “The Andy Griffith Show” is to Knoxville.

Gilbert opened and closed the main part of his set with references to the Japanese tsunami. His tweets about the disaster cost him his job as the voice of the Aflac duck. Just as he was wrapping up the main part of his act, I was thinking that his material was not as dirty as I expected. That’s when he launched into a chunk of outrageous material from his “Dirty Jokes” DVD.

After the show, Gilbert sold books and DVDs in the lounge. I had him sign my copy of “The Aristocrats” and I mentioned that I loved the Manson joke and another old bit from the ’80s about the land of the three-named people. He said he still does that bit on occasion.

Gilbert Gottfried signs "The Aristocrats" DVD for Frank Murphy at Side Splitters Comedy Club - 1/11/13 Gilbert Gottfried and Frank Murphy at Side Splitters Comedy Club - 1/11/13

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