the cut on tuesdays

When Your Phone Calls Home Are Comedy Gold

Photo-Illustration: by Stevie Remsberg; Photo: Getty

The Cut on Tuesdays

A weekly podcast from the Cut and Gimlet Media, with host Molly Fischer.

On this week’s show, we’re talking about calling (and not calling) our moms. And one of the women we talked to has practically made a job out of mom conversations: Alyssa Limperis is a comedian and actor, and she makes YouTube videos where she impersonates her mom.

Six months ago, Alyssa moved to L.A. — across the country from her mom — and they’ve been spending a lot of time on the phone with each other.

Molly: How does your mom answer the phone usually?

Alyssa: We know so much about what’s going on, that she can just kind of be like, “So, how’d the brownies come out?” It’s like, very down to the detail.

Molly: Very resumptive — very much like, you just got off the phone when you’re getting back on the phone almost.

Alyssa: That’s exactly it. No time has passed. Yes.

Molly: And is there a particular way she usually signs off, or gets off the phone with you?

Alyssa: When my mom and I start saying good-bye, we’re still ten minutes to touchdown. All right, well, let’s talk soon … well, when’s the next time, what you got going on for the rest of the day … Well, maybe we can link up. Well, I got Greek class tonight. We’re not done yet once the good-bye begins. That’s kind of like the third act.

At the end of our conversation with Alyssa, we called up her mom. And probably not every mom would be okay with becoming an internet character … with her daughter making public jokes about her laundry and her lentils.

Molly: What has it been like to watch your daughter play a version of you now, for a much bigger audience?

Linda: I absolutely love it. I love it. So many people say, “Oh, did you know she was doing that?” I said, “I’m filming it.” And I think they’re really surprised.

Linda helps Alyssa make the videos — she’s the one behind the camera.

Alyssa: If just had to hire someone to film it, they would really not be the same at all.

Linda: I agree.

Alyssa: Having you there, and us having fun, even in the moment, and you giving me ideas and you being like, “No, that doesn’t sound quite right,” or “This sounds more right,” or “Wouldn’t this be funny?”…

Linda: Or try this or whatever — you’re right.

Alyssa: The one I’m editing now, it’s mom shopping. Mom, do you remember, you saw like, a copper tea kettle, and you were like, “Oh, copper’s really in this year”?

Linda: Oh, yeah.

Alyssa: Right, so then I just have this runner now of three times me being like, “See. Copper. What’d I tell you?” That’s my favorite thing of this video.

Linda: When the videos come out, you know all the comments, I spend so much reading them, and it just warms my heart.

To hear the rest of our conversation with Alyssa and Linda — and a lot of other moms and daughters — click above, and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.

When Your Phone Calls Home Are Comedy Gold