“I was playing chess with my friend and he said, ‘Let’s make this interesting.’ So we stopped playing chess.”
That well-written joke is from stand-up comedian Matt Kirshen, but, more recently it’s been featured in a series of commercials for Old Jamaica Ginger Beer, which have been running on Comedy Central in the UK. The commercials feature members of the public telling their favorite jokes; one of them sounds an awful lot like Kirshen’s.
Kirshen tweeted: “Hey, @old_jamaica ginger beer. Thanks for stealing my joke for your @ComedyCentralUK ad campaign Where you have people telling their favourite gags.”
The owner of the Old Jamaican beer brand is Cott Beverages, who have sunk £2 million into the advertising campaign. Kirshen believes (and it seems absolutely legit) that Cott was certainly aware of the joke. Kirshen says, “It was featured heavily in the press last year since it was on Dave’s jokes of the fest round-up, complete with widespread press release. Then the [UK newspaper] Telegraph listed it in its jokes of the year, and finally it was nominated for best joke in the Loaded Laftas.” You can see the joke, as it appears in the commercial, below.
We’ve emailed and called Cott yesterday for a response, but they haven’t responded. However, about six hours ago, the beer company’s Twitter account tweeted at Kirshen, asking, “Do you have an email address we can contact you on?” Kirshen suggested they start following him so that he can send a direct message. I guess we’ll see what happens next.