Day 31: …Please Stand By….

Friday, July 19th, 2013

Open mics are just that. OPEN. Open to failure, open to technical difficulties, open to damaging the sound system and set pieces, open to drunken ‘nunchucking’.

The first lessons I learned about being on stage, was: 1) Project. Your own voice is enough.  2) Cover mistakes and move on.  Unless you’re life is threatened on stage, plow through.  Shit happens, the show goes on.  If you make the mistake the focus, the mistake becomes the show. I’m a theater school kid. Ergo, I have this itchy respect for the stage, and when I see someone up there who doesn’t really know there way around, I want to snobbily yet douchily show them the ropes.  I’m hoping that my unsolicited thespian mentorship will go fully unappreciated.

Show 26: Wednesday, July 17th, 2013, H.O.T

What a lively and well attended mic!  I was tired, hungry and draggin’ ass.  I invited Kerry to come with me just to help get me through it.  House Of Tacos, is a five minute walk, and we/I eat there once a week.  The minute we walk in, Kerry (being instantly recognized as the only audience member) was put on the spot by a comic about wanting to sleep with her.  She wanted me to beat the guy up.  Not really.  The mic was running long, because that’s just what they do.  It wasn’t going to move any faster, because the microphone itself was giving out.  Garrick, the host spent a solid 2 minutes in silence trying to get that mic to work, until he decided we should push through.  It was kinda sad, because you could feel the panic of comics yet to come up, realizing that their security blanket is gone.  NO MIC? WHAT AM I GONNA DO? The next guy had some real issues without the mic.  He had some real issues in general, and projecting was one of them. What are you gonna do?  Be prepared for whatever.  You could also tell who the pros were too.  I set the mic aside and delivered my bits like a TED Talk.  Why wrestle with uncertainty, right!?

Show 27: Thursday, July 18th, 2013, Hollywood Hotel, The Bomb Shelter

Comedian/Co-Host of The Bomb Shelter, John Silver, was a drunken dangerous mess.  Dangerous to himself, but sweet to his guests.  Ryan Pfeiffer, works the sound system as, John’s ‘Voice of Reason’, keeping the wheels on the wagon as long as possible. Ryan and I have Chicago theater connections from back in the day.  We know we met each other, but we both were probably to drunk to recall.  Great news though!  This open mic was just voted one of the Best Open Mics in LA!

I had the unique opportunity to be “The Headliner” or last to go.  We had two real audience members who stayed to see us. They were more than generous of their time!  It’s easy to feel vulnerable when you’re beat up, worn out, and you discover that your favorite niece just fucked up her entire life.  It’s a small vein of anger and disappointment that makes every sad thing falling out of my face sound quite funny.  But the show wasn’t over.  A stumbling, staggering John Silver closed with some comedy, at least I think he did.  I switched places with John and his NUNCHUCKS. He was set to exhibit his weaponry skills, until he tripped, stumbled into the speaker system. He tumbled off stage out a small doorway, and one of the speakers followed him.  I thought he was crushed by it.  I and the others who were left, dashed to his rescue.  The speaker laid to his side, missing him.  He laid slightly passed out. Gus grabbed the speaker.  John laid on floor laugh-crying.  Show’s over folks!  Not for John.  He got back up and yelled “It’s part of the bit!”

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