Jerry Seinfeld to Brian Williams: "I Think I'm on the Autism Spectrum"
"Basic social engagement is really a struggle"
NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams recently caught up with Jerry Seinfeld to talk about the business of comedy and Seinfeld's popular web series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. Seinfeld opened up to Williams about why he still does late-night stand-up routines and how he sees himself on the autism spectrum.
"What are you still doing in Louie's Comedy Club on a Wednesday at midnight?" Williams asked Seinfeld after an evening onstage. "People outside the comedy business will never understand that about you."
For Seinfeld, the answer was simple: "I know that that's the healthiest thing I can do."
At age 60, Seinfeld is still figuring out who he is, Williams said. For example, Seinfeld recently learned about autism spectrum disorder, a mild form of autism Seinfeld believes he has.
When Williams asked what markers for autism Seinfeld believes he has, the comedian made it clear he sees his unofficial diagnosis as a mindset and not a dysfunction: "You know, never paying attention to the right things. Basic social engagement is really a struggle. I'm very literal. When people talk to me and they use expressions, sometimes I don't know what they're saying. But I don't see it as dysfunctional. I just think of it as an alternate mindset."
Watch Williams interview Seinfeld for NBC Nightly News, below.