So while most people this time of year are getting ready for a holiday party or doing some shopping, I am doing show number 9 of 25 for the month. Just a typical Saturday night for me. The show was great. The crowd was fun and the comics were plentiful. The audience was for the most part one big party, literally one group of people who all came together. It goes against club policy to have a group larger than 10 so they had a few people buy different amounts of tickets…tricky. A large group like that can ruin a show, but I thought these folks were great. They were out for a good time and that’s what they had. My new joke worked enough for me to continue working it and my new new joke beginning worked as I knew it would and the ending failed which I also knew it would. I tried it anyway. I’m not sure if that means I am getting braver or more apathetic.
It was a good night and I added an item to the ever growing list. It was not actually something for me to work on so much as something to be mindful of. When an audience is getting out of hand by heckling, chatting amongst themselves or just being a general distraction to other audience members, some comics try to rein them in. I’ve seen it done well and in a good spirit which keeps the tone positive and I’ve seen it done poorly where people become defensive, the show momentum is lost or a negative charge fills the air. That happened Saturday night and it was unfortunate to watch. I am all for reining them in but it’s tricky and hard to do. I don’t do it well and try it only when absolutely necessary. It’s yet another skill that a great comic should have. It’s not something easy to work on since it is somewhat rare to need. I learn from watching it done well and watching it done poorly and learn from both and just hope I don’t have to do it.
I also got to see some of my favorite people like Shawn Bedgood, Brian Longwell, Gary Peterson and Andrea Henry. I work with Shawn pretty often it seems but rarely see Andrea who is so funny and interesting. I like interesting. She recently coauthored children’s joke book called Real Kids’ Jokes by Real Stand-Up Comics which you can buy on Amazon. Gary had some insight that I appreciated and left for the night feeling good about it all.