Jon Stewart, in his own words


Story highlights

After 16 years, Jon Stewart hosted his last "Daily Show" episode August 16

Here's a look at some of Stewart's more colorful or memorable quotes

CNN —  

When Jon Stewart signed off August 6 after 16 years of hosting “The Daily Show,” he left a gaping void in the world of political satire.

He also left a vast legacy: Thousands of jokes. Hundreds of public figures skewered for their hypocrisy. Countless reaction shots of Stewart’s face grimacing in mock (or real) outrage.

Of course, Comedy Central’s flagship show will return on September 28 with Trevor Noah as host. And it may be great. But it won’t be the same.

CNNMoney: Jon Stewart looks back at his ‘Daily Show’ tenure

America’s favorite fake-news personality isn’t saying exactly what he’ll do next. Thanks to YouTube, though, we can long relive Stewart’s best ‘Daily Show’ moments. Some of them also are recounted in Lisa Rogak’s book, “Angry Optimist: The Life and Times of Jon Stewart,” which was just published in paperback.

Here’s a sampling, culled from the book, of Stewart’s wit, wisdom, gags and grievances.

On his persona:

“I think of myself as a comedian who has the pleasure of writing jokes about things that I actually care about, and that’s really it. I have great respect for people who are in the front lines and the trenches of trying to enact social change, but I am far lazier than that. I am a tiny, neurotic man, standing in the back of the room throwing tomatoes at the chalkboard.”

On how he and his ‘Daily Show’ writers work:

“When we come to work in the morning we say, ‘Did you see that thing last night?’ And then we spend the next eight or nine hours trying to take that thing and turn it into something funny.”

On his hermit-like lifestyle:

“I have two speeds in my life – pedaling a hundred miles per hour uphill to try and stay up, or sitting at home on my couch with a glazed doughnut on my lap staring at a Knicks game. I need downtime to refill the reservoir. I don’t have much of a life outside (of work). It is all-consuming.”

On the herd mentality of the news media:

“The news now is like a children’s soccer game. Whatever the main focus of the day is where they go; it’s not about territory and positioning. When one kid has the ball, everyone runs over there. And then he kicks it and everyone goes over there.”

On religion:

“I tend to need logic in my life; I’m very poor with faith. While I do believe in God, I just don’t think he’s still looking out for us. I mean, if you think about it, he created the world in six days – five billion years ago! Don’t you think by now he’s moved on to another project? Maybe we’re just something he threw together for his third-grade science fair.”

On his political leanings:

“I have a tendency to lean toward the underdog, which I assume is the liberal perspective. But as I’ve gotten older, I find I’ve developed my own ideology. I don’t really fit into anything.”

On life in New York after 9/11:

“The view from my apartment was the World Trade Center. Now it’s gone. They attacked it. This symbol of American ingenuity and strength and labor and imagination and comm