March Madness 1 – Laughs Open Mic

So I’m going to be doing something new for my blog this month. I’m going to blog after each one of my performances this month. EVERY one, no matter how tired or cranky or amazing I feel, I will put some words down here. I know there are some people that actually read this and will be fun to let you know what I’m working on, especially those that don’t live in Seattle. Part of this is also just an attempt to get me to write here more. If anything it will be a nice, month-in-the-life snapshot of my comedy experiences that I can look back on and say, “hey, remember when I was doing all that?”

So for tonight, to start off the month, I hit up the open mic at Laughs Comedy Spot in Kirkland. This is definitely what most people would consider my “home club.” I work the weekends there pretty regularly, as a host and feature, and am at their open mic basically every week. Their open mic has been drawing around 40-50 audience members (non comics) a week, which is awesome. Sometimes you get people at the shows that have seen me a couple times and are able to offer some good feedback on the new jokes they liked, which can be fun depending on how they offer it up to you.

I didn’t know what I was going to go do on stage tonight. I’m tired after being awake 18 hours yesterday and a full day’s worth of work today. I would say my energy was about 50% going into this performance. Good combo, tired and unprepared. I took a look at my little black notebook and there were some notes in there about some improvements to a joke that I’ve already told a dozen times, about how I bought myself a Star Wars jacket for myself for Christmas. The new tags were drummed up the week before at the Columbia Winery over in Woodinville, where I did a gig with a great local comedian, Drew Barth. The note said 3 different ideas one of which was “one jacket was a Boba Fett costume with a zip up hood that covered your entire face with a Boba Fett mask, but you have to draw the line somewhere.” So this is where I tried to take the joke. More storyish and more about the honest reactions I was having while buying this jacket.

I didn’t like the results too much, although I haven’t watched the tape yet so it could have been better than it felt. I just felt like I was taking a perfectly good joke with good punches and muddying it up a bit. But it’s the direction that I want explore more (honest stories), as I feel it lets the character that I’m cultivating on stage to come out. It also sounds way more conversational/performing then straight “setup-punch” style comedy, which I also like. I think it’s definitely something I want to try a lot more, each time trying to tease out more story. I just need to make sure that there are still jokes in there and the big punches still hit just as hard.

Before leaving the club, I got a letter of recommendation from the owner, Dave, to try and get my foot in the door of some clubs in Arizona before this year is over. I’ll be making some copies and drafting some letters to send out over the next few weeks to try and set something up in Scottsdale or Tucson, both places where I have free lodgings :). It also looks like I’ll be featuring on Saturday at Laughs too, filling in for a comic. So that is some paid weekend work and I get to work with Whitney Cummings for the night.

Now I’ll try to catch up on some sleep and debate whether I’ll hit up the open mic at Giggles on Thursday or just go eat Puerto Rican food. And no, I can’t do both…

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