I’ve managed to perform at least once every month this year; it’s not been much, but it’s been enough to make me feel I still have a toehold in comedy. However, what with attending to our newborn and a comedy night being cancelled, I worried that July might be the month that broke me. My unbroken run was saved, by a spot at the Talk Cock open mike at Blu Jazz.
It’s an interesting venue, because in the room above there’s a jazz night, and downstairs there’s a restaurant full of people eating noisily, so you don’t always feel exactly the centre of attention. The jazz noodling from upstairs never progressed much beyond 100 Great Minor Scale Exercises For Bass Guitar; if only once in a while they’d played the theme music from Benny Hill it might have been less distracting, instead of the slow pollution that crept through the ceiling. Unwanted jazz, the carbon monoxide of a comedy night.
I had hoped to rehearse more, but after a stressful day of trivialities (spurious reports of non-existent bedbugs, questions about the reciprocal of a USD:IDR exchange rate and a whole litany of meaningless, confusing or upsetting emails) I didn’t have quite the mental energy I’d hoped for. Still, I dredged up some old material and something new, then set off in hope.
I think it went well. (I haven’t played back the video yet.) I did forget the punch line to my final joke just as I started, but luckily it has a long enough set up for me to remember it before I reached the end. And my two friends who came along didn’t look at me afterwards in pity or disgust, so I think I must have done ok.
It’s always hard though. A Wednesday evening, when most people are wary of partying too hard, can be a tough sell. The trouble is that if you advertise the visiting professionals that will be along in a few weeks’ time, you plant the idea in the audience that the locals aren’t as good. And they probably aren’t (that’s why they aren’t professionals) but you don’t need to draw attention to this. I’d do it differently, but then I’m not the guy who has to host. I’m just grateful the night is there; you have to accept what you think would be the right way to do it may be different to how it’s done.
So. Back. Back again in August, I hope.