Well, kids, it’s time for another Blogger Idol post. And I’m just as lubed up as a pair of lard-lovin’ lips at a ‘Leg of Lamb Lick-Off’ about writing this post, so let’s get right to the action, shall we?
(That’s blogging action, folks, not leg o’ lamb licking action.
And no, I don’t really even know how ‘lardy’ leg of lamb is — look, it’s really just there for the alliteration, all right? Don’t overthink this shit, people. When you get right down to it, it’s all smoke and mirrors around here. Oh, and dick jokes. Yep, smoke, mirrors, and dicks — sounds like a weekend with Creed, doesn’t it?
Thank you, thank you — I’ll be here all week. But for now, let’s do this Blogger Idol thing, for chrissakes. I don’t have all night here.)
(Click to see all Week Three posts)
Week Three Topic: ‘A Day in the Life of…’
As many of you know, I’m an aspiring standup comedian. (And we all know that when you ‘aspire’, you’re only making an ‘ass’ out of… um, ‘I’ and… uh, ‘re’. And ‘p’. Hmmm. Maybe that wasn’t the word I was thinking of. Damn.)
In any case, for the past couple of months, I’ve been hanging out in bars, often on weekdays, and making an ass of myself in front of a roomful of strangers.
(Which may sound a little bit daunting, but remember — this is me we’re talking about. If not for the microphone and the memorized comedy bits, I just described the way I’ve spent the last twelve years. Actually, having an excuse to make an ass out of myself is way better — and tends to cut down on the calls to the cops, as well. ‘Tends‘, anyway.)
But the point is, I think that one day, it’d be fun to do standup comedy full-time.
(Well, standup and blogging, of course. I could never leave you folks. We’re meant to be together. C’mon, step up to the monitor and give me a big hug, right now. Come on, don’t be shy. You know I love you. That’s it… ahhhhh. That felt good.
In, um, an entirely non-sexual, platonic, friendly way. Really. Er, yes. Ahem.
What? Oh. Uh, no. That was probably my cell phone antenna you felt. Or, um, something. Moving on!)
But would I really enjoy the life of a standup comedian, were I fortunate enough to find a way to make it my job? Well, let’s see — let’s take a look at ‘A Day in the Life of… a Standup Comedian’. Maybe we’ll see just how compatible this dream job of mine and I really are.
A Day in the Life of a Standup Comedian (As Imagined By Me)
12:01am: Stumble into house, exhausted from a night of performing, schmoozing, and yapping like a hopped-up terrier about it on the drive home with my wife.
12:04am: Kiss wife good night. She gets into bed with a book, saying she’ll read for a while to ‘wind down’.
12:05am: Walk into bedroom to blather about some other minute, uninteresting detail about the evening. Find her slumped sideways, drooling on her alarm clock, with the book splayed open on her chest. Ease her back onto her pillow, close the book, and tuck her in.
2:14am: Finally ‘wind down’ and go to bed myself after watching and rewatching the tape of the show (and uploading it here, of course), obsessing about whether the folks at the Elk Lodge really liked that bit about the Shriners or whether they were just being polite, and dropping my bar tab receipts into the ‘Business Expenses’ shoebox.
2:38am: Wake from a dream about performing at Carnegie Hall. With no pants on. And bombing. Completely.
Suddenly have fantastic inspiration for brilliant new joke involving Uma Thurman, the Catholic Church, and Kentucky Fried Chicken. Curse that I forgot to leave paper on the bedside table. Again. Consider trudging to the next room to write down idea. Decide to stay in bed, convinced that, ‘I’ll remember it in the morning.’
5:02am: Wake from another dream, this time about being kidnapped and whisked away to a large room full of peoplewhere I’m told I must make them laugh to gain my freedom, or die. Soon after, I realize that the room is Carnegie Hall. And that I have no pants on. This all seems vaguely familiar somehow. The dream ends just as the angry, humorless mob descends on me with switchblades and eggbeaters.
(No, no — the little machines you use to beat eggs, not the Eggbeaters brand fake eggs. I mean, the first onw doesn’t make much sense, but to be killed by hundreds of people pouring Eggbeaters down your throat? That’s just silly.
Come to think of it… that’s actually far more terrifying. Damn. Now I’m gonna have nightmares about that, too. Bitches!)
7:51am: Wake to find myself being shaken and nudged by my wife, who’s leaving for work. Remember that I was having another dream, but can’t remember what it was about… except that I wasn’t wearing any pants.
Kiss wife goodbye; she asks whether I’m getting up now. Tell her, ‘Of course, it’s almost eight!‘ Wait for the front door to close behind her, turn over, and go back to sleep.
9:44am: Wake up again to find that I have not yet reached the double-digit hour portion of the day. Snort derisively, roll over, and go back to sleep.
11:42am: Wake up and get out of bed. Immediately run to my desk in the office to write down joke from earlier. Forget it completely, and spend ten minutes cursing my half-awake middle-of-the-night self for not writing it down when I thought of it. Dissapointedly write something about ‘thirteen Umas and spices‘, hoping it will help me remember. Instead, I just get hungry. And a little horny. (‘Mmmmm… fried Uma… *nnngggghhhhh*‘)
12:15pm: Pad downstairs to have lunch consisting of leftover takeout fried rice, two slices of cold pizza, and the last of the orange juice. And they say fish is ‘brain food‘ — pshaw!
12:34pm: Soak in the shower, trying to wake up and think of new material for next show. Concoct spectacular new joke about how tuna fish and astronauts are hilariously similar. Discover that I have no pen or paper in the shower — again! — and resume soaking my head. Decide that I’ll remember the joke when I’m done with the shower; only a moron would forget something like this in the space of ten minutes.
12:43pm: Run dripping and naked to my desk, repeating the joke over and over in my mind. Snatch up the pen, and… it’s gone. Nothing. Congratulations, I’m a moron. And I’m getting my desk chair all wet. Fantabulous.
Trying to salvage something from the idea, write ‘John Glenn is a sturgeon?‘ below the Uma KFC thing. Look around the desk and notice at least forty other pieces of paper with two or three unintelligible phrases written on them. The closest one says,
Paris Hilton in a blender
Paris Hilton is a blender?
Mars rover on a weenie roast!
None of these ‘reminders’ mean a damned thing to me; they might as well be written in Esperanto. Again, I’m irked and disgusted. And a little bit hungry. And kind of horny, again. (‘Mmmmm… Paris Hilton at a weenie roast… *ggggglllllnnnggg*‘)
1:15pm: Finally dressed and ready to begin the day. Sit down to write new material for next show. Clear my mind of all distractions, and wait patiently for inspiration to strike.
1:48pm: Waiting patiently.
2:24pm: Still waiting over here.
2:39pm: Waiting, dammit.
2:42pm: Decide to get a beer to help ‘inspiration’ get off its ass and do its damned job. I don’t have all day for this shit.
3:01pm: Apparently, my idea didn’t help. Sometimes inspiration requires two beers, I suppose.
3:16pm: Three’s a charm?
3:23pm: Did someone say four?
3:41pm: Aw, fuck it — I’ll just bring the rest of the twelve-pack up.
5:03pm: After twelve beers and a bag of chips, come up with several new jokes. The best of the bunch is:
‘Shhhhrrrrigit! Hoo… hoo — Hoooly hrelll. Bahhrruu goomah! Fuushizzle!‘
Decide that it may need a bit more work in the setup. Reeling backwards, my eyes focus long enough to read the paper with the Uma Thurman reminder. The entire joke comes rushing back to me at one, word for word, like a miracle. I say it, out loud to no one in particular. Then I say it again.
It’s not funny. Poopstain.
That’s the last thought in my head as I pass out on the floor.
7:04pm: Wake up on the floor with drool on my chin. Not entirely sure whether it’s my drool or the dog’s. It smells vaguely like stale meat and fresh farts, which unfortunately doesn’t help me make a conclusive decision. I wipe my chin on my shirt and take a quick inventory of the situation.
And of course, that’s when the thought comes, yet again, ‘Wow. I really am a standup comedian. Woot!‘
(‘Cause let’s face it, folks, Robin Williams went through that same list — or worse — every day for thirty years. Denis Leary still lives that way. Chris Rock’s autobiography is going to be titled, ‘Whose Motherfucking Drool is This, Anyway?‘ I am so in the club.)
7:53pm: Clean up my mess and gargle enough Listerine to choke a hippopotamus. Get the house in some semblance of order just as my wife walks in the front door. Chat about her day for a while, tell her that I’ve gotten so much work done this afternoon, and grab some dinner together.
Play dumb when she says she wants a beer with dinner, and ‘didn’t we have plenty just yesterday‘? Wonder aloud whether she might have a ‘drinking problem’ if she can’t remember whether there’s beer left in the fridge or not. Pray that she doesn’t find the bag of empty bottles hidden in the laundry basket.
8:48pm: Arrive at the venue for the night’s performance. Commence the schmoozing with the other comics and the host / emcee / bar owner / Moose Lodge Grand Poobah / HoJo’s night manager. (Basically, whoever’s writing the check.)
Spend thirty seconds scribbling down key words of old jokes on a napkin to build a set list, and hope that it’s within six minutes or so of what the place wants me to do. Order six beers that I really don’t want, to show the bartender that I’m not one of those ‘cheap’ comics who won’t spend money during a show.
10:45pm: After watching nearly two hours of the show from the back of the room, take a quick look at the napkin and go on stage. Forget the order within the first three jokes, and deliver twenty minutes of random-access, stream of consciousness bits in whatever order they come to me. Take sips of beer in lieu of segues. Check occasionally to make sure I’m wearing pants.
11:05pm: Leave stage to confused, polite applause, and possibly a barrage of rotten fruit. Wonder whether anyone really got the ‘John Glenn is a sturgeon’ line. Meet up with wife, resume schmoozing with comics, collect paycheck.
11:35pm: Begin drive home, with wonderful, beautiful, supportive wife at wheel. Chatter to her about every minute detail of the night (all of which she was already there for, of course) until I fall asleep halfway home.
12:01am: Arrive home, ready to do it all over again. Lather, rinse, and repeat until famous.
So that’s it, folks. A look at the life of a full-time veteran standup, the way a part-time beginning standup imagines it might be. (Except for the travel away from home, and the hotel food, and the thousands upon thousands of women throwing their panties to me onstage, of course. That comes later.)
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed it — I know I’m certainly looking forward to it, some day. Sounds like a blast, and beats the hell out of sitting in a cubicle all day, wondering whether I just Alt-Shift-ed or Alt-Ctrl-ed, and where the hell did that status report I was writing just go? Yeah, gimme booze and bars and Moose Lodge Poobahs over that any day. Standup comedy forever!Permalink | 5 Comments