Wednesday, December 8, 2010

People Irritate the Shit Out Of Me

Number one: people in matching warm up suits, running.  This should be reserved for kids from Southie running numbers and Sopranos extras in New Jersey.  Not runners.  You’re an asshole.  Just put on sweats and go; nobody cares what you look like when you're NOT running.   You go to Macy’s and get jogging attire to be fashionable.  Get over yourself.  Adidas does not make you athletic.  Nobody cares that you’re trying to get in shape either - it’s only you, you narcissistic nine-to-fiver-lunch-expensing-trust-fund-wanna-be-Gap-dwelling-stock-broking-asswipe that votes Republican.  You clog up the consciousness of the planet.  Who thinks you’re more important than you ? You probably puke up your food to try and get even closer to perfection.  Driving an SUV, getting your mani + pedi and chattering about your fabulous summers down the Cape do not substantiate your existence. Or you could be righteous white-trash-Marlboro-smoking-coke-snorting-lower-back-tattoo-laden-project rat on a quest to land a guy and up your status to the haves.  Both groups go to upscale bars with olive oil and have drinks and obsess about why the guy won’t call… he won’t call you because you’re an asshole, which leads to my next one…

Chics who are ugly and think they’re hot.  You bother me.  You do get guys though, which is impressive and flabbergasting ….how ?  Your face looks like there’s a giant cork stuck in your asshole.  You get numerous beauty treatments and creams but you still look like a Boston Terrier.  You’re skinny because you pay a personal trainer, but he can’t do anything to fix the permanent facial expression of smelling shit.  Maybe you got this look by being given everything and still not being satisfied.  Or maybe your Daddy didn’t really love you.  Whatever it is, you wreak of insecurity the way you look at other chics and obsess over men.  You have all your ducks in a row; your condo in the city, your hair foiled, your ugg boots.. AND you have to match when you run.  All this plus martinis on Fridays after work and the mall on Saturday are not going to fill the void of emptiness you feel deep down at the atrocity that is your meaningless life.  A false sense of confidence ?  Is that how they have men in their life ?  I’ve heard guys say they like confidence, I guess because they think humility is weakness.  It isn’t.  These broads could use some.  It’s the alcohol.  And the fact that they will sleep with dudes easily.  I’m just pissed because I have ripped sweatpants and no boyfriend.  Even my Irish immigrant roommate gets play.  Well, now she doesn’t - she’s pregnant.  It’s not her fault, though, it is written in the Akashic records that Irish Catholics breed, but that’s another story. 

Here’s another group of brainless people that need to spontaneously combust.  (This is nothing new, but I live in Dorchester so it’s a phenomenon I have to bitch about):  If you have a ghetto blaster that is worth more than your car, you may need to familiarize yourself with Mirriam Webster and look up irony.  Yeah we get it, you like rap.  You have huge woofers in the back of your 1983 Subaru that is so low to the ground you’d mess up your struts rolling over a q-tip.  You sit out front waiting for your lady friend/hooker (I’m not being mean - there are hookers on my street) and just to you draw more attention to your ridiculousness, you turn it up.  Well you don’t have to worry, we understand your thugdom - it’s amazing.   PS:  Don’t bother with the car alarm, no one wants it.  These same people have epic arguments at 4AM out in front of their house - in my neighborhood - after going to the “club” to prove how gansta they are.  Who gives a shit.  Dummies.  I don’t want to hear your stupid drama while I’m trying to sleep.  Get a grip.  You’re a fool for spending $200 for table service and intoxicating yourself so that you wake up the entire neighborhood when you get home.  You should go on Maury Povich to get out your exhibitionist urges and then be thrown into a well. 

And, lastly, although there probably will be another list in a separate blog: Chics who don’t fuck their husbands.  What happened ?  You got the house, the cars, the wardrobe, the vacations and the 2.2 kids.  Now you don’t need him any more, you selfish twats ?  You’re too fat to fit into all those beautiful clothes he bought you so you reward him by withholding sex ?  You deluded yourself into thinking you would be fulfilled by getting a man to buy you a diamond.  You engage in a game to try and rope him in so that your feelings of inadequacy are squelched by closing the deal.  The delusion doesn’t surface until way after the honeymoon.  The game changes when he’s your husband so you emasculate him by putting on a power trip with your intimacy.  So now, you mess up the perception of the whole institution of marriage and deepen the grooves of fear of commitment for the single guys that the rest of us could have had a shot with.  Awesome.  You deserve to be shot out of a cannon towards Cuba… in your matching running suit.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

"So, what got you started in Standup ?"

It's strange but people always ask a comic "So, how'd you get started in standup comedy?"  Musicians don't get asked this nearly as much, if ever.  It isn't something that people find as unfathomable as getting up in front of a crowd, solo.  "What got you started in the trumpet?"  It's just not something you hear.  This has become the question that makes me cringe.  We comics get a lot of questions/comments that irritate us, that for the sake of being gracious, we just smile ...or twitch.  But the "how'd you get started" one - I can't deal with.  More than that, if I'm on a date, it's a deal-breaker.  This happened recently.  After the question was blurted out, I was seriously contemplating stabbing myself with a fork.  Artists don't get this question either.  I know because I am one.  People might just give a dismissive "oh" when they find out you're a painter.  Or they may say "what kind of painting do you do" out of lack of knowing what else to ask.  But never do they ask "what got you started in painting."  Which got me thinking of how I leapt so audaciously from painting to standup.  Well, since they've asked, maybe I should ponder the question.  Or write about it to curb the twitching.

The transition from one form of expression to the other was not succinct or overnight.  I had done a lot of journaling through college and onward.  I wrote humorous pieces about how I thought I was going through a mid-life crisis twenty-seven years early.  I also wrote about friends' dramas with guys and various other short stories and/or glorified stream of consciousness-getting-out-the-angst writing.  I believe this was just a natural way to deal with being in your early twenties.  I also wrote a couple of one-acts.  So standup really isn’t as much of a departure from art or who I was at the time, looking back.  Standup is all writing. 

Another major factor for my transition comes as a result of being surrounded by friends who were doing it.  I worked as a waitress at Nicks Comedy Stop in the theatre district of Boston.  It was a great job to work while earning a degree.  Two nights a week, Thursday and Saturday, multiple shows.  You had to hustle, but you went home with cash and it was fun.  After eight years, (a lot of clubs in towns in the US - you will find waitresses that have been there forever, ask a road comic) eventually I gave in and got on stage.  I did not however, get on through my own impetus.  This guy..(doesn't that always account for a lot... why you moved to that state or read The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand) - that I was dating told the emcee to introduce me at an open mike one night in a dingy basement in Boston called the Vault, downstairs at Remington's.  Burns was curious if I were to be his Gracie, and I willingly took the challenge.  Without having written anything or ever saying I wanted to be a comic, this just happened, so I went on.  I loved it.  I did three minutes, got a few laughs and got off stage.  Then I was interested.  This was the best possible scenario for your first time.  If you write something, then you have several days, weeks, or whatever to fret about it, until you go on.  Not being prepared is great because your performance is natural - even if it's a sucky natural..(most people's debuts aren't legendary).

Aside from going up a few times as a duo with the guy, (think Nichols and May) I didn't make it to the stage solo again until a year later.  That year's lag time I attribute to my ear, having worked the club for so many years, I would read back on what I wrote the next day and think "that's not funny."  Within that year, I married Burns - and moved to LA.  He was filming an independent that he co-wrote with his writing partner and I worked at a gallery.  We lived in Venice, California in a two-story apartment complex that faced a small courtyard, much like Melrose Place, without the pool and with Far Side characters in the place of hot twenty-somethings.  I was writing away with the notion that I'd be hitting an open mike somewhere.  Meanwhile, my comic husband was on the road working Vegas and other road gigs.  He was already a seasoned headliner and here I was writing silliness.  That silliness became five minutes of characters I felt confident enough to try.  I don't recall how, but I found an open mike at a sushi joint on Sunset.   

My girlfriend Trine (pronounced Trina) agreed to go.  She and I both rented space in a studio in Santa Monica that was fabulous, I must say.  Isn't everything in Santa Monica ?  She was the perfect non-judgmental audience/friend to bring.  She was definitely not of the sarcastic, ball-busting, East coast variety that is most of my friends.  So we went.  I didn't tell anyone but her, not even the husband.  I just did it.  That lead to my going to open mikes four plus nights a week where I embarked on a path to working as a comic.  I do plan to get back to painting more often.  I miss it.  But I love the stage.  So there it is.  Now when people say "how'd you get started in standup ?" I can pass on bludgeoning myself with a utensil and just direct them to this blog.