Day 46: 1/3 of the shows in 1/2 the time

Saturday, August 3rd, 2013

I had a meltdown.  Simple terms.  I did a new open mic in Koreatown in the another fabulous, huge back room, two Sundays ago.  I sucked tremendous ass.  The next morning I got interesting news about a comedy event I’m attending That made me spin out of control to the point that I shut the whole operation down for 7-10 days.  No shows.  Just work and home, mixed with feelings of abandonment, not being good enough, friendlessness.  All things I got over (to an extent) because I gained perspective (a fraction).  I recommitted and made a decision to get back out there.  The break was needed.


Show 28: Sunday, July 21st, 2013 Some El Salvadorian Restaurant on Beverly Blvd, East of Western

I keep on seeing the same folks at these things as you would when you’re approaching 30 shows.  I guess what I find odd about my personality is that I want to introduce myself but there is something that says “No, don’t do it.” I was reading something about introverts that I related to.  Am I now a self-diagnosed introvert? Probably.  I mentioned earlier that I was shy.  But I’m also 41 and I have been in a myriad of social situations to know that reaching out your hand and introducing yourself to a few of these folks is in no way a bad idea.  It might even get a few to stick around and watch my bits and make more friends.  Sometimes I feel like I’m more politician than comedian, attempting to win hearts and minds.  This show has three hosts, and I was bound to introduce myself to all of them at some course of the evening.  I did. But I BOMBED along with it.  Again, there was a mic issue.  It had a sensitive switch.  Every comic until me had an issue with keeping the mic on and off and generally rolled with it.  I had no mic issue, so you could hear my death loud and clear for four an one-half minutes.  I was at the bottom of the lottery anyway, so there weren’t many witnesses.

Show 29: Tuesday, July 30th, 2013, Mouthypants Open Mic

It was “Sober Tuesday” at Mouthypants.  Host-Friends Whitney and Kym were not imbibing.  Sad, because my first instinct upon entering the Other Door was to buy them a round, something I had not done in the past, as a way of showing my appreciation over the months.  Sober days usually come after some, black out, no memory, lost weekend, where you you have to park the drinking for a few days.  I understand.  I can barely finish a beer, or two, or three, in one sitting…these days. I had a slot at the bottom of the roster. I hadn’t done a show in 9 days. Even after sitting there for a couple hours watching a bevy of comics I was in certain attack mode. Only scrawling a few notes I had a perfect in with a bit on hugging Hitler, because no one can stop talking about Hitler.  A premise here and a premise there I was floating on a pretty decent set.  Abbey was there, with her beautiful singing voice, making up songs based on letters of the alphabet. “Yell out a letter!”  I took a ride home from Abbey, throwing my bike in the trunk. I love my friends.

Show 30: Wednesday, July 31st, 2013 The Workout Room or JPL’s apartment

Friend and very dear loved one, Megan Rice, invited me to a mic that she runs with two other wildly funny people, Simon Gibson and Jeff Sewing.  The place is an unmarked building in the slums of Silverlake. The inside looks like every storefront theater space in Chicago, with seats in rows, and a small platform stage, also with some lighting, however it is also the residence of comic Joseph P. Larkin.  It’s my dream palace! I don’t know what Joseph does for his day job, but I too would love to rent the first floor of similar space, where I could sleep and work! Larkin, you have killer digs.  This mic was set up for putting up new material. I have like 20 pages of stuff that hasn’t even seen the light of day, and some of it should remain in the dark.  There is free food and drink, and this is done weekly!  It is invite only.  You get 10 minutes to rifle through your stuff.  The unlikely theme was anal sex.  It had been mentioned so much that everyone was encouraged to share their experience.  I shared my moments where I ‘administered’ anal two separate times in my life.  Both instances were when I was in relationships, so I had that going for me.  I portrayed them as sad moments, when in fact they were rather wild and hot.

Show 31: Thursday, August 1st, 2013, The Bomb Shelter at the Hollywood Hotel

This is easily becoming one of my favorite mics to do.  John Silver and Ryan Pfeiffer are great hosts and a good team.  John, becomes unravelled when speaking of his failed relationships, while Ryan stands at the sound booth muttering under his breath “oh shit, here we go again.”  John asks Ryan; “Hey, can I do my nunchuck bit?” “Make it quick!” Ryan answers. “Okay, cue up the music!”  John giddily leads into the bit by tying it into a story about how his ex-wife is Japanese (has nothing to do with the bit).  He then begins flailing the nunchucks around at uncomfortable speed to some speed metal, Pixies song.  No one was injured, everyone was entertained.  I guess Maria Bamford stopped by and kicked the night off, but I didn’t make it in time to see her.  Always nice when an established comic comes out to an open mic.  That’s where it starts and it doesn’t end.  It’s a good, free, way to hear something out loud before doing it for a paid audience.  Just because you build muscles, doesn’t mean you stop going to the gym. I had a good set.  I liked my jokes and I liked how I landed everything….then I accidentally erased the recording of the set. boo. I helped out with sound cues while Ryan was absent.  I like helping, especially when I know what I’m doing! Daniel, a comic who I’ve mentioned in the blog before, said it was nice to get a shout out, and that he kinda felt like a celebrity. That was good to hear.  I was almost gonna trash the blog idea. I have one reader.  Why would I trash it now?!

Show 32: August 2nd, 2013, Sabora y Cultura

Ray Anderson and Josh Mullins host this open mic in a very large coffee house.  This little mic and astroturf platform sit in a pretty large room with great sight-lines.  Two ladies sitting behind the performers were taking the brunt of teasing and ‘crowd-work’ as we call it, for the night. They laughed at some stuff, cringed at other stuff, but for the most part were really good sports.  At one point, Ray handed the mic to one of the ladies. In her Costa Rican accent she went off on how we (men mostly) were talking about women, and dating and relationships.  She had something to say, you bet. So much that she went on so long, that she ‘got the light’ from Josh signaling that she should ‘wrap it up’.  This is the third time I did this mic and I get better and more comfortable there.  Trouble with me and my nightly work schedule is that I get there late, and I’m always the last or second to last to go.  All the regular group has moved out and on to the next mic.  I’m finding it exceedingly difficult to catch up or do more than ‘one-mic-a-night’ combining that with a bicycle.  I’m grateful that so many mics are such short distances from home, but man, it would be nice to rip into three shows a night. On a bike, not happening.  On a scooter or motorcycle….maybe…just maybe.



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