‘If At Birth You Don’t Succeed,’ Make People Laugh Instead

Comedian Zach Anner talks about internet stardom, his new book and how he turned being horrible at things into a career.

By Joy DiazMarch 10, 2016 11:13 am|

Some of the Stamdard’s latest go-to exercise videos are from Zach Anner.

Anner, who went to the University of Texas, scored his own show on Oprah’s OWN network in 2010. In 2013, Anner started recording weekly workout videos, which have amassed 300,000 subscribers on YouTube. He recently came out with his first book, “If At Birth You Don’t Succeed.”

“I was born with cerebral palsy, so I sort of botched my own birth,” Anner says about the book’s title.

Anner gained widespread attention when he pitched a show via YouTube video for Oprah’s OWN network, when the channel was just getting off the ground.

“I wanted to do a travel show but that wasn’t a designated option, so I put up an audition video where the first half of the video is just me explaining why I would be horrible at all the proposed categories,” Anner says. “And I sort of defined myself as having cerebral palsy, which I called the sexiest of the palsies, and that really took off.”

The show had a short run, but Anner continued making videos and posting them online, where he’s become something of a viral star. He says that while some people may feel conflicted or uncertain about laughing at someone with a disability, he hopes he can help change some minds.

“The problem is that (people with disabilities are) not in the mainstream enough,” he says. “That’s just my goal … to maybe change a few people’s perspectives and make people laugh.”

Listen to the full interview in the audio player above.