Tuesday, February 08, 2011

#251: The Morning After

It was a party night; it wasn’t the end of school though. A Monday night, and it was the first time. I’ve been told for years that I should be on stage, sprouting shit at people and trying to make them laugh, so with that in my ears I found myself entered into a local comedy competition. Come the night, cometh the man. I wandered up, wound up and found out that I had one of the worst slots possible – second to last. That’s not the best time to go on; you really want to be on either straight up, or in the second bracket. By the time I went on most people were drunk, sleepy or both but mainly they just wanted to get the fuck out of dodge as fast as possible. In fact the room, which had been packed to overflowing for the first two sets, was a little less full by the time I went on.

Before getting up there the people closest to me were advising me: no dick jokes. No fart jokes. No wog jokes. They’re all in bad taste and wouldn’t go over that well. And certainly not Hitler jokes, which left my Gary Numan and pizza oven jokes on the floor. We sat back and waited. Then the first person got up. (As an aside, to the three people who stood in front of us all night – here’s a hint: if people are sitting at a table and other people are standing around talking to them, embracing them and the like, well they all probably know each other. Especially if they’re elbowing you in the back and hissing at you to fuck off out of it. But, by all means, just keep standing there, utterly oblivious to everyone other than yourselves…but it's alright, I know you're doing a set on Thursday night, so I might pop in and throw a bottle at your head, you wankstain)

A lovely girl, over exuberant but certainly over the top, fitting, considering that she trains people to be over the top professional public speakers for a day job, went on first.  Her five minute routine consisted of one thing – how gutted she was that she wasn’t born with a penis. That’s right, a five minute dick joke. I lost count of the amount of times she said the word ‘penis’, but she must surely have set a record. I looked at my chums who were shaking their heads and then it was downhill from there. Out of eleven people (myself included) everyone, but one (me) did a combination of dick jokes. At least two people did fart jokes. One person did a not so funny joke about Hitler sounded like Yoda. And one person picked on wogs and the Irish. I thought I’d stumbled into a Twilight Zone of sorts. The material I’d been told not to do, was being done. One guy sang a four minute song about the joys of rubbing Dencorub onto his cock and his girlfriend’s tits. Charming. He did try to get everyone to join him in a sing-a-long, but that feel flat a bit. I felt like I was surrounded by the ghosts of Ugly Dave Gray and Maurie Fields. Some of the dick jokes were so bad that Benny Hill would have blushed and walked out but I think I saw Richard Stubbs and Lehmo busily taking notes for their next routines (mind you, you’d think Lehmo has enough material with the homeless in the parklands...).

I then took my position and waited. I was fairly well lubricated by the time I got up there (but still well in control - for once I'd paced myself), but I had to follow an unfortunate man who got halfway through his routine, froze, shit himself, apologised and ran out the door. Even better. Now everyone was tired, drunk or both and were now talking about the clown before me in hushed tones. I couldn’t win. If I’d ripped my wang out and waved it about whilst farting into the microphone screaming "Hitler hates Wogs!!" I’d still have gotten no reaction. I got up, did my routine (set list, of sorts, was E-Harmony, Bad Dates and My Brother Ronald, Part I), wandered around the stage, changed my voice, interacted with the audience and was animated. Ultimately I wandered off to the sound of eight naked people sitting down in plastic chairs in the heat of the day; such was the level of applause. I didn’t win. I didn’t even come close.

The winners were a guy who did most of his routine around not so funny pictures of people smoking (but who had stacked the crowd beforehand) and a guy who’d seen one too many Eliot Goblet videos, but who was actually funny and responsible for the best joke of the night – as he wandered up Bronze John’s wife, Sarah, who works for a drug and alcohol outreach service took a good look at him and stated, “He looks like one of my patients.” That caused a lot of us to laugh before he opened his mouth, not that he knew what had happened. Still, as I wandered off two people grabbed me and told me how much they enjoyed it, which was nice, and one of the judges buttonholed me on the stairs on the way out and said that I’d done a great routine - welcome and highly appreciated indeed. Nothing like praise from the peers I guess, but the best endorsement of the night came from Bronze John himself, who called me over and told me that I still surprise him. That’s good to know.

It was a good night though, with excellent people and a lot of fun both off and on the stage. I did have a lot of support from my pals, and that meant a lot (so take a bow guys and gals – you know who you is, you’re the real winners). It also made me feel a lot more at ease. Now, on to the next gig, and this one is a benefit gig for those affected by the Queensland floods. This time I’m taking no advice and fully intend to talk about how people should be singing more appropriate songs at such events (titled Floods, Cyclones and Fires), along with More Bad Dates and My Brother Ronald, Part II…wait and see. And, fuck it; there’ll be so many mentions of dicks you’ll think you’re in a gay bar. And I might fart into the microphone. And do an entire routine about Hitler, pizza ovens and Gary Numan (yes, I can play Connect Three with those). And then do a G.G. Allin and shit on the stage.

"I'm Wally Walpalmuer, now fuck off!"
Well, maybe not the last bit…but then again, if that’s what it takes, recycling stale old routines that we’ve all heard a million times before, then so be it. I’m sure that someone I know has access to Buddy Hackett cracking fart jokes somewhere, and Don Rickles likes the odd dick joke, so I’ll be set. Bring back Benny Hill!!! I’ll drag a Jackie Wright look-a-like on stage and just slap his head for three minutes – that should do the trick!

Viva La Revolution!!!


Anonymous said...

Any chance of the gig details for those of us who don't use Facebook?


Your Own Personal Jesus said...

But would you come along? Nah, just kidding, I'll take your advice and will post details of any live performance I do.