Friday, March 25, 2011

Shows #52 & #53: The Comedy Spot and RFD

I did two sets last night. My first set, which was about seven minutes, happened at The Comedy Spot in Arlington, Virgina. I used this time to work on brand new jokes and try out new premises. I'm starting to write more this way. Instead of coming up with an idea for a joke and then writing it... I will sometimes come up with a premise and try to talk it out on stage (in hopes of finding the joke or the punchline). I usually do this with one joke per set. With last night's small crowd, I tried out three brand new premises and the complete gutting and reworking of an old/new joke. I predict that two of these are going to turn into a great bit...

My biggest laugh came when I went after someone who kept going after comedians. Someone in the audience interrupted multiple times and mocked the comics on stage. I got a big laugh going after him (telling him to buy a car and drive it into an “aids tree”). The guy actually came up to me afterwards and apologized for interrupting me during my set. Talking to him only made me more frustrated because he turned out to be another comic. As I've stated before, I don't tolerate hecklers or people who interrupt comedy shows but I understand it (somewhat) if it is a regular bar patron or audience member. A person going to a comedy show is not always going to understand it (though they should) and he/she might not know how inappropriate their disruptions are. If you are a fellow comedian, you really need to know better. I expressed this fact pretty harshly to him...

My second set of the night came at RFD in Washington, DC. This was a great six minute set. I was the last comedian of the night and despite half of the crowd being gone before my stage time, I got big laughs. They were a tired audience that had been there for almost three hours and twenty comedians. I still killed and got big pops with new jokes. One of the new premises I tried at Comedy Spot ended up being a more polished bit by the time I got off stage at RFD.

I'd be remised if I didn't give a shout out and thanks to the very funny Nate Johnson, Ralph Cooper and Brad Ryan for running two very good rooms. I also have to mention the very funny Mike Way as well. Mike (who hosted the first open mic I ever did) is a very talented D.C. comic who is competing in the Laughing Skull Festival in Atlanta next week. He did mostly new jokes last night and completely destroyed the room. Mike is a great performer and his writing is constantly getting sharper and sharper. On top of that, he is one of the more genuinely nice people you'll ever meet and very cool to young/new comics (like myself).

I once did a show with Mike and he brought a female friend with him.  During the show, Mr. Way got up for a minute (presumably for bathroom purposes) and left his date by herself.  While he was gone, another woman (who was a friend of his) went up to Mike's new lady friend and said "If Mike Way was a cereal... I'd buy him in bulk."  Can a guy really get a better endorsement than that?  And yes... I know I was eavesdropping. 

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