“Legit” star Jim Jeffries headlines The Vic with two shows Saturday
Since he moved to the United States from his native Australia roughly four years ago, the caustic bad-boy comic Jim Jefferies has played a variety of Chicago venues, including the Park West and the former Lakeshore Theatre. Come Saturday, he adds another to his list: the Vic Theatre in Lake View.
But you might be surprised and/or disappointed to learn that this new father and star of FX’s “Legit” has significantly toned down his hard-partying ways — for now, anyhow.
In advance of his two shows, Jefferies, 36, talked about his recent maturation.
Q. You know Chicago a bit from having played here several times before. You must know where the good bars are by now.
A. The best bars are the bars that are near the comedy clubs. That was when I was single. And now I’m a dad and I’ve got a girlfriend, so I try to stay away from the bars.
Q. So after your show, we won’t see you out gallivanting and cavorting like the Jefferies of old?
A. No, I’m off the drink at the moment. I’m not saying forever. I’m not teetotal. But I’m trying to live clean for a while. I’ve got a little boy and I’m trying to be a better person than I was.
Q. People might think that’s funny coming from you, after hearing your bits about how teetotalers are all boring [blanks].
A. I hope I’m not a boring [blank] now. I probably am. But just because someone’s a boring [blank] doesn’t mean they’re a bad person. I’m not giving it up forever. I’m just focusing on being a dad. Also, the TV show’s going on and all the media. There’s just a lot for me to [blank] up at the moment. Before, I used to [blank] things up with little to no consequence, and now there seem to be a lot of consequences.
Q. So Jim Jefferies has grown up?
A. Well, I’m not in my 20s anymore. Me getting wasted isn’t as cute as it used to be. And when it stops being cute, there’s a problem.
Q. You have so many fans who probably want to party with you.
A. They only want to party with me for one night. I have to go from town to town to town. For them it’s one big night and they get wasted and try to recover and then they’re all right a week later. I’m off to the next town on a plane the next day. And also, I physically used to be able to handle it really well. And now I can’t. My body just doesn’t repair like it used to. I had liver problems a couple of years ago [laughs]. It took its toll. You can’t live like that forever.
Q. Has fatherhood been rewarding or taxing or both?
A. I think both. Of course it’s rewarding. And it’s all exciting and nerve-racking at the same time. It’s that weird thing, where people say you have someone to worry about more than yourself, which obviously is true when you have a baby. But also it’s like a new hobby that’s being thrown to you. I don’t think it’s as hard as people say. People go on about the lack of sleep and all that type of stuff. It’s way easier than a coke habit.