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Kiddie-Porn Humor 

"This generation is absolutely, [incredibly] boring," says comedian Doug Stanhope, whose cross-country tour brings him to town tonight for his first-ever Cleveland appearance. "That's my biggest bitch anymore — how dull and dumbed down, safe and sober, paranoid and insecure everything is. You don't hear stories about rock-and-roll bands chucking TVs out of hotel windows anymore. It's almost to the point that adrenaline is a controlled substance in this country."

To wind down, Stanhope amuses himself by pranking unsuspecting companies with weekly telephone tirades. "When I'm at home, I'll take one day a week and call all the 800 numbers off the labels of whatever products are in the cabinets or in the fridge and make some ridiculous complaint," says the 39-year-old Stanhope, a former co-host of Comedy Central's The Man Show. "Before you know it, I get a couple hundred dollars in coupons a week in the mail."

Stanhope also likes to sit at his computer, pretend he's a 13-year-old girl, and talk dirty. Then he sits back and waits for the pedophiles to respond. "That's when the fun begins," he says. "As ridiculous and juvenile as it may sound, it's probably the only stuff I have ever done that makes me laugh."

Still, he blasts investigative news teams for taking it a step further — by luring unsuspecting men with TV producers posing as teenage girls in chat rooms and then confronting the pervs on camera after bogus meetings are set up. "Those guys are all self-righteous," says Stanhope. "They act like they're serious watchdogs. This has nothing to do with being a serious watchdog. This is about fucking with people. I'd much prefer to have pedophiles sitting around online than hanging around on a bench by the schoolyard."
Sat., April 22, 8 p.m.

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