Comedy: Q&A with Donnell Rawlings

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From the October 24, 2013 edition

Donnell Rawlings had a breakout on “The Chappelle Show” with his character Ashy Larry, and who can forget “I’m rich biatch!” But Rawlings has been working hard as a standup comedian for years and released his first concert special “Ashy to Classy” in 2010.

Currently Rawling is on the road and working on material for a new special he plans to film next year. Besides the special, Rawlings also has another new project coming up with “Guy Court,” which made his mom very proud.

How’s life on the road?

I live out of a suitcase, but every once in a while I stop in Los Angeles just to wash my clothes, say hello to the puppies and show my girlfriend some love. But for the most part, I’m living out of a suitcase.

That’s the life of a comedian, right?

A working comedian. So I’m not complaining about s---.

Besides constantly touring, what else have you been working on?

I’m a part of the [MTV2] franchise “Guy Code.” It had a spin-off, “Girl Code,” that’s been successful. Now “Guy Code” is being spun-off into “Guy Court,” where if you know someone who’s violated one of the guy codes that we’ve established then we go to court.

I preside over it and find you guilty or not guilty. If you’re found guilty I exercise some type of ridiculous punishment. That’s going to be a lot of fun.

Are you nervous about being a judge?

No, I’ve been judging people on life forever. Now they give me a robe. But the real funny part is I have a brother who went to Georgetown Law and Brown University. He’s a lawyer practicing in D.C. But I’m going to be the one in the family known as Judge Donnell. Talk about taking a shortcut on making your mother proud.

What topics are you talking about on stage right now?

The things that have been heavy in the news like Paula Deen’s termination and how I disagree with it. I want to come up with some “Free Paula” T-shirts.

Why’s that?

A lot of my black friends are upset that I won’t protest or boycott Paula Deen. But the question I ask them is if they’ve ever had Paula Deen’s homemade pot roast? Have you ever had her shrimp and grits or her biscuits? Until you’ve had that I got to go with Paula because she can cook.

This will be your second time in Columbus, right?

I’m excited to come back. I always have a good time. And I’m supposed to say “O-H,” right? I didn’t understand Buckeye fans until I came. I’m … seeing all this red and I’ve been living in L.A. for the last three years, so I’m like, “Oh my God I’m going to be getting f---ed up.” I thought it was some gang stuff going on. I’d never seen this many white Bloods in my entire life. Those Buckeyes are scarier than any Bloods or Crips I hear about.