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Along these lines: Larry the Cable Guy

You can often tell a comedian by the style and delivery of the jokes. George Burns often kidded about his age: "When I was a boy the Dead Sea was only sick." Bob Newhart is known for his stammering delivery in such classic routines as "Defusing a Bomb" (you've got to see it for yourself!)

Some are the masters of irony. These include deadpan Steve Wright, "I've been making wine at home. I make it out of raisins so it will be aged automatically." And Emo Phillips' garden path humor, "I hate being divorced, I'd much rather be a widower." And, of course, the brilliant Woody Allen, "Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening at once."

Rodney Dangerfield was always self-deprecating, "I looked up my family tree and found out I was the sap." And Phyllis Diller focused on her imaginary family life, "Housework can't kill you, but why take a chance?"

Then there's Larry the Cable Guy.

Recently, I had the chance to talk to Larry about his career. While his sense of humor isn't to everyone's taste, he is one of the top comedians in the country today. According to Forbes Magazine, he pocketed a cool $18 million in 2011-2012.

"Now that's funny right there," Larry might have characteristically chuckled two decades ago had someone then predicted his successful future. At the time, Larry - whose real name is Dan Whitney - was just an occasional call-in guest on a Tampa radio morning show.

"When I started doing this, it was just for fun. I never intended it for a career," said Larry from his home in Nebraska. He moved to Florida as a teenager and quickly adopted the regional way of life, including a Southern twang, which he began exaggerating in his act.

Larry is a master of the one-liner, writes his own material, and can be brilliantly witty: "I've got a buddy of mine who called me up all upset because he slept with his third cousin. I'm like, good Lord, if it upsets you that much, quit countin' them."

He can also be rather corny, "I'm on that diet where you eat vegetables and drink wine. That's a good diet. I lost 10 pounds and my driver's license."

Or down right crude and politically incorrect. But you'll rarely hear him use offensive four-letter words.

"I'm one of those acts you either really like or you don't," he said. He believes a lot of his critics' disapproval is "political." And that makes him "madder than a mosquito in a mannequin factory."

"There are comedians that I personally can't stand, but if they're funny, I can still appreciate why they have a fan following," he said. "They work hard just like me and I'm not going to rail on them just because of what they believe. There are all different styles of comedians and comedy out there - something for everyone."

A clue to which side of the political fence Larry hangs is his daughter, named after his favorite president: Reagan.

"He wasn't perfect, but he brought pride back to our country," said Larry. "And he had a great sense of humor."

As he continues to share his humor across America, Larry also shares his success. He once wrote a check for $5 million to a hospital, and continues to donate millions to various charities including his Git-R-Done Foundation.

Thomas' features and columns have appeared in more than 300 magazines and newspapers. He can be reached at http://getnickt.blogspot.com