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Comic Christian Finnegan to appear in Ybor City

Christian Finnegan may need to keep his back to the wall during his run at the Tampa Improv this weekend after he hurls his trademark snark at the trendy club hoppers who live in the clothes designed by tattoo artist Ed Hardy.

"I'm going to be telling Ed Hardy jokes in Ybor City," he said in a phone interview from his home in New York City. "I'm going to get murdered."

What does it say about a person if he wears an Ed Hardy shirt, we asked the former Best Week Ever commentator.

"It says, 'I have or will date rape.' "

"It says 'I'm too much of a (wuss) to actually get a tattoo, so I'll wear one for a few hours.' "

Oh, wait, he's got another one:

"It says 'I'm wearing today's equivalent of a Members Only jacket' "

Thank you! He'll be here all week. Actually, he's here today through Sunday at the Improv in Centro Ybor, part of his tour that leads up to the May 9 release of his Comedy Central special and DVD, Au Contraire!

He's a fixture in the New York comedy clubs, and cable hosts such as Keith Olbermann love to bring him on to talk pop culture. He earned those stripes on VH1's Best Week Ever, where comics were called on to comment on the ridiculous news and trends of the week.

But that was before the show was overhauled this year, tossing out the talking comic heads to let Paul F. Tompkins take the lead in what fans have blasted as a silly and annoying series of skits instead of a show that used to deliver a regular diet of snark.

"I know VH1 was really frustrated with the attention that The Soup (on E!) gets, but it's one guy and he can go on talk shows and be the face of The Soup," Finnegan said. "So I understand why, and honestly, Paul would be the guy. He's one of my top five favorite comedians in the world. … When they came to us and said we're changing the show to do more bits and sketches, I took it as a good time for me to veer off."

"To be honest, it was becoming increasingly difficult for me to say anything new about Lindsay Lohan."

.If you go

Psst, don't wear Ed Hardy

Christian Finnegan opens at 8 p.m. today, with shows through Sunday at the Improv Comedy Theater, 1600 E Eighth Ave., Tampa. $12-$18. (813) 864-4000. tampaimprov.com.

Comic Christian Finnegan to appear in Ybor City 02/11/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 11, 2009 1:01pm]

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