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Actress Sarah Silverman at the Intercontinental Hotel in Toronto on Sept. 10, 2011. (Fernando Morales/The Globe and Mail)
Actress Sarah Silverman at the Intercontinental Hotel in Toronto on Sept. 10, 2011. (Fernando Morales/The Globe and Mail)

The one thing you can’t make fun of Sarah Silverman for Add to ...

Say anything you want about Sarah Silverman. Just don’t call her old.

The famously acid-tongued comedian appeared on the cable show Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell a few nights ago to discuss all manner of topics, but mainly her recent participation on the Comedy Central Roast of James Franco.

In reflection, Silverman described the event as “fun” and seemed fine with the accepted tradition of each celebrity roaster getting roasted themselves before taking the stage – except when it was her turn and they started making nasty cracks about her age.

Silverman said she was deeply rattled by the ageist jokes – she’s 42! – made at her expense.

In her words: “Me being old, first of all, at the roast? Completely took me by surprise. … Because it’s personal, that is just so woman-based. I wasn’t even the oldest one on that dais.”

And once she got going, Silverman ran with the topic: “I feel like it’s a part of, as soon as a woman gets to an age where she has opinions and she’s vital and she’s strong, she’s systematically shamed into hiding under a rock. And this is by progressive pop-culture people!”

In fact, said Silverman, she was actually surprised how hurt she was by the jokes and needed a few days to decompress after the event.

“It’s really odd! I feel bad that it cut me,” she said.

“Because I should be like this about it [brushing her hand off her shoulder]. I feel like your joke is that I’m still alive. My crime is not dying.”

A few days postroast, Silverman took to Twitter to post the comment: “Oh my gosh I’m embarrassed. I just found out I’m a woman AND I’m 42. I am so sorry.”

Although Silverman was complaining about the treatment she received at the roast, she was adamant that stand-up comedians should never be subject to the censor. “I’m hurt all the time,” she said, “but I would die defending people’s rights to say anything.”

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