Four days off stage and I feel like I’m going through withdrawal. This week in comedy;
On Monday (after not taking the LSAT all morning) I went to my Improv 101 class at DSI, Dirty South Improv. And I tried to write. Right now, I have a hard time writing in a consciously funny way. Most of my jokes are accidents of phrasing, that I just keep playing with on stage until they “hit.” A criticism I’ve been getting from a lot of places is that I need to make bolder choices with my punch lines. Kermet Apio (a great comic, and wonderful person) told me “punch lines have to have a movement. Many of your punch lines don’t twist far enough to truly make the premise out loud laughers.” A visual artist I worked with in Charleston, SC sent me the following after watching some clips on youtube “Your material sounds very authentic, very real life. What might be missing for me, is a sense of heightened importance.” I need to start pushing myself as a writer.
On Tuesday I skipped out on my own open mic (after dutifully putting it in the hands of the very capable Eric Megert) and went to Taboo Tuesday’s in Charlotte, NC with James Hodge and Anthony Crawford. Johnny Millwater was hosting. After the show, James, Anthony and I went to the Waffle House with Johnny. The best revelation of the evening was discovering that we all suffered from the same vague and irrational suspicion that life is a party to which we weren’t invited. It’s as if I always expect the cool kids to catch on that I’ve been faking being a member of my own generation this whole time. Or at any moment someone will say “I’m sorry, you have to go, this isn’t for you.” As a result, I always need to be reassured that I’m included in group plans.
Wednesday I went to Goodnight’s for their open mic. Brad Reeder scheduled me to go up and I got 4 minutes. I had a good set, but I panicked when I saw the light and wrapped up early rather than risk being a second over time. Goodnights feels like the “rules” room in Raleigh, and I can’t help but feel uncomfortable most of the time. It doesn’t feel like my home club. Jodi White headlined, I saw her once before at LOL in Clayton, and I think she’s amazing. After the show I went down to hang out with some of the open mic comics and she came down. Predictably I tried too hard to impress her and only succeeded in being awkward. Go team!
And that was it. I didn’t get on stage Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Sunday. And now I feel like a crazy person.