To the comedians


I really admire them. It must be hard to get heckled and yelled at and come up with good material that isn’t insulting or boring. I can tell ya, I don’t have the kind of courage that the four guys I saw stand up at open mic night in my local coffee shop had.

I almost wanted to tell the 19 year old comedians not to give up, just get new material. I guess however, material is all a comedian has. That and stage presence.

The first comedian was not 19, he was probably in his 40’s and his funniest jokes were about being poor. His saddest jokes included relationships…Following that were his drug jokes.

It seems to me, with all the wisdom I’ve accrued from my whole 21 years of life, that the funniest stuff comes from the realest life experiences. It’s only funny when it’s true. So that makes me feel like the first comedian actually knew something about being poor (I cheered for him when he said he was one of seven kids) and didn’t actually have much experience with women or drugs….or maybe he had too much experience with the latter.

I liked the three 19 year old comedians. Mainly because they seemed terrified and thus reminded me of myself.

When the second comedian went on, he began with politics. As he went on it became apparent that it wasn’t going to be good for the republicans. Interestingly enough, nobody really laughed at his jokes, and he got into an small argument with a heckler who had called one of his jokes tasteless, which probably had something to do with the fact that he was insulting people based on their personal lives and stereotypes. I really felt bad for him, the comedian, because he really did have a great comeback for the heckler, telling them that heckling wasn’t nice and asking if they were coming up on stage so that he could heckle them back. I pondered why it was okay for him to make fun of politicians and their personal beliefs on stage, but not for an audience member to critique one of his jokes…

But then the young comedian went on to make jokes about how he was too lazy to commit suicide and how he was saved by the fact that, after swallowing Flinstones vitamins instead of drugs, he had fallen asleep and awoken with a new perspective on life. Or I think that was the jist of his joke, because I was busy trying to applaud for every semblance of a non-offensive joke I could hear to encourage him in his hobby and show him that good jokes don’t have to be offensive. Plus to show him that his life was important in case he was at all being serious, because the suicide joke was kinda scary…Comedians do just make their stuff up, right?

The third comedian pulled on my heartstrings and made me identify with him entirely. For starters, from the second he got to the stage, to the second he left, he avoided all eye-contact with the audience. I recognized that terror, that desire to be unseen from your childhood when you hid from monsters by closing your eyes and you firmly believed that if you couldn’t see them, they couldn’t see you. He also shook nervously the entire time and looked like he was about to fall over. It made me begin to shake, it even made my heart beat faster, I felt like I was onstage in front of a scary audience instead of him. Then he told his jokes…about Pandas….and about being a horrible comedian…It’s hard to applaud for someone who’s funniest jokes are about how bad they are. I tried to restrain myself and not laugh at the self-depreciating jokes that every single one of the comedians made…But it was rather difficult because, the stuff that’s closest to real life and is true is what’s funny, and their jokes about how the audience didn’t like them really were true and thus…funny. I did however get a chance to clap loudly and hoot in my distinctive “I am the only person here who got that joke or thought it was funny” way when he made a funny joke about how you can’t trust girls who are already lying to you as soon as they introduce themselves, and then he made pun like name jokes…I laughed at puns. Yeah.

The final comedian was the best…he made more puns. Puns are just funny. I mean, funnier than…insults to yourself and others. Plus he acted the least afraid that the audience was going to burn him at the stake. Which could also go hand in hand with the fact that he did seem to be the funniest.

Overall, when I wasn’t offended by the jokes a couple of the comedians made, I was busily admiring them and their courage for attempting to make jokes in front of an audience whose senses of humor unfortunately seemed to be very different from their own. Plus I am sure a lot of things seem funnier when you write them down rather than when you say them to room full of people. But practice makes perfect, so go young comedians, go!



About writingcatherine

This started as a documentation of my adventures in Europe...but hey, life's an adventure in itself.
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