Sunday, February 13, 2011

Reflections on My First Stand Up Comedy Experience

Or "How to Forget a Lot of Jokes That You Spent a Lot of Time Writing and Practicing"

First, I'd like to point out that although the topic of this post happened earlier in the week, I could not blog about it due to the absence of an Internet connection.  Our modem died and Aliant had to come give us a new one last night.  So that's better now.

Second, I'd like to point out that this post is technically not late, since I am writing it before my deadline of Sunday morning.  So there.

My first experience doing stand up comedy was a good one - or as good as you could hope for in a first time (it was awkward, hurt a little, but in the end I was happy though still a little confused about the experience).  I have to give a big thanks to everyone that came out to see me.  Not only did I have the largest audience there, I had also cleverly placed them in two different sections to give the illusion that I am incredibly funny and popular.  In this fashion, I was much like the glorious monarch butterfly flaring my eye spots to word off predators.  Also, like the life cycle of the monarch butterfly, my act was short and felt like it was going nowhere as it floated on the currents of laughter and stalled in baffling silences.

I think I may be a better writer than performer.  Which may not be saying much in any case.

Truthfully,  I had a great time.  I was the last act of the twelve acts, and despite all my bought and paid for fancy theatre schoolin', I was a bundle of nerves.  But I got up and did it and I have no regrets.  Except, as mentioned earlier, forgetting most of my act.  I have no idea how long I was on stage, but it was some time between 30 seconds and infinity.  That's right, I might still be up there and the last four days has been a weird Jacob's Ladder effect.

You have to give me some respect for pulling a Jacob's Ladder reference out like that after twenty years.

Although I didn't win that night, all the comedians that did were deserving of the awards (which I believe were tickets to other comedy shows and a hubcap).  There are some very funny people in the Maritimes.  As for the acts that didn't win... I'm not saying anything bad about anyone.  Yes, there were acts that were...not as funny as other acts... but that includes my own, so there you go.  And allow me to say, of all the performing that I've done in my life, this was by far the most hair raising experience, so a tip of my metaphorical hat to all the performers that were brave enough to get up there.  Whether the courage was your own or from a beverage, you did it and you can brag about that for years to come.  Or hide the shame.  I'm not pointing any fingers, but shame hiding may be a viable option.

Will I do it again?  Absolutely.  It turns out that another bar started a stand-up night on the weekends here, so I may polish - and practice - my act a little more and give it another try there.  Or I may just wait until next year's festival.  Depends on how funny I decide to believe I am.

But my stand up experience isn't even the biggest news this week.  That honor goes out to my mother, who on her birthday has moved further into the future by getting a new television (in the bedroom no less!) AND a laptop!  I don't have either of these things!  I want them.  It feels like the time that my parents saw Forrest Gump before I had; and in a theatre no less!  It's wrong somehow, but I'm proud of her.

Happy birthday Mom!

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