Saturday, February 28, 2009

Leeds Part 2: Angry Fight Lady Leeds

I discovered last night that I have a new favourite event to watch. Its not something I would have thought would be in my top 5 alongside good martial arts and animals attacking stuff (that clip with the Great White in Planet Earth is one of the best ever), but yesterday I was amazed to find that it had worked its way there. That event, ladeez and gents, is watching a feisty, angry, shouty obnoxious lady being thrown out of the door of a club by an unhappy bouncer. It was a bit like an episode of 24. If Jack Bauer dealt with chavvy girls. Which I'm not sure he'd be up to. This lady put up the sort of fight Jack would have cried about afterwards in a moment of self-reflection. 

It was a nice night to begin with but several of the 50-60 people audience were chatty from the start with little intention of quietening down. They were told at the beginning of the night and I told them too but this did not deter the rabble of NHS staff at the back of the room. I had some lovely banter with a man in the front who very sadly had been made redundant that day but didn't seem to mind. Its such dangerous ground asking people what they do in this current climate, but he was nice enough to let us roll with the conversation. There was also a man called Troy who insisted he wasn't made of wood with several tiny men inside. All during this fun start the babble of drunk women continued. Then Carey Marx went on. Carey had already told me he was going be nasty tonight. He opened with two new Jade Goody jokes which were very nasty, very funny and immediately got their attention. I have heard several Jade Goody jokes lately and its nice to know that the majority of the public thinks she is as undeserving of all the attention the press is giving as I do. I think its sad when people get cancer and are dying but I think its less sad if those people are talentless racists. Its not like Enoch Powell got a spread in OK when he died. Although to be fair at least he was a decent orator. 

Carey told one of his jokes that happened to end with an Albino punchline and like a firework a women at the back just went off. And as though that firework had fizzled out before exploding in a child's hand, she went off badly. She started shouting that her brother was an albino and how wrong that joke was, despite having laughed earlier at Jade jokes and a man being made redundant. I have seen people get offended by many things in a comedy club, and the thought always occurs that you shouldn't be in a COMEDY club if you can't be prepared to laugh at everything. Someone is always going to be offended by something, and as Carey often says he has told his albino jokes to a few albino audience members who have found it funny and the joke is a play on the social view of people who are afflicted with such a condition. Of course the angry lady probably didn't understand this concept and even if she did she was too much of a drunken twat to not get shouty. 

Then Steve the bouncer stepped in. Steve is nice man who has been at the HiFi several of the times I have done it and appears to be the sort of man who wouldn't harm a fly, even if the fly had a gun and was aiming it at his family. He carefully approached the women and tried to calm her down at which point she snapped and lashed out at him. Horrible and violent she started kicking and punching away and he carefully picked her up in the legal bouncery way and tried to take her outside. This resulted in a smack in the face for Steve and a fire exit that got quite badly kicked in. One of the girls friends left with her and the rest of the party stayed as they were still finding Carey hilarious, because he is. Nice to have friends like that who don't back you then again, maybe they just knew how much of a twat she was. 

Oddly, as soon as the women was gone and the fire exit door closed, the whole room united as one and the gig became lovely. It was amazing. Her unnecessary anger made everyone else realise that they weren't as awful as her and brought them together in their enjoyment of the night. The rest of Carey's set was ace and then the second half with myself and Stanley McCale also was a dream. I jokingly said that I should find that women and pay to return tonight when Carey is back on. I joked but there is part of me that thinks she should be at every gig, getting kicked out and bringing peace to the world. Obama and Brown should take her to war zones where opposing sides can agree in unison that neither of them are as obnoxious as her and therefore fighting should be stopped. 

Back at the HiFi tonight after attempting to set up Layla's sister-in-law's mum's BT broadband. I don't there is an easier term to describe someone who is connected to you in such a way so deal with it. I am worried about setting it up as after a year and a half of being a mac user I am now incompatible with PC's. Only yesterday I broke Layla's nephew's laptop by just using it. The power came on but the screen didn't which meant even the magical control-alt-delete didn't work. This was a tad frightening, as a blank screen is a computer's way of telling it either can't be arsed, or its dead, very very dead. After a quick wifi search on my phone (the wonders of now) it turns out the trick is to blow on the hard drive area with hot air. That was it. And it worked. Even with all our technological advances a computer can still be fixed by me breathing on it. Next time an air traffic control unit collapses or an entire government mainframe system goes down I will make sure I have a cup of tea and head straight over for some breathy miracle making. 

Friday, February 27, 2009

You Say Wrexham, I say Glyndwyr

I am sitting in someone else's house, drinking tea and using their computer while they are not here. I'm allowed to do this because the someone(s) in question are my girlfriend's sister-in-law and her nephew. Last night I got back from the gig so late though that I haven't seen either of them and instead a key was left for me under a planter, by a drain pipe near a side door. It all seemed very much like an early spy movie trap, which I enjoyed. When I arrived I spent some time doing spy like moves when I was looking for it, staying flat against walls, doing overly comical creeping, but then I realised were anyone to walk past I might have actually looked like a criminal. Also I let myself down by not knowing what a planter was which meant I just fumbled around for ages then nearly got panicky and just called their house phone at 1am which would have annoyed them and made me look like an idiot. To be fair I have no reason to know what a planter is as interest in anything remotely garden like shouldn't occur until the age of 45+. Fact.

I had a rather long drive to Wrexham yesterday, which felt surprisingly fast due to the large amount of podcasts I had stacked up and ready to listen to. The list reads like a rather strange drugs order but I got through two Collins and Herring, one Adam and Joe, and three Mark Thomas all of which were very good. In fact it meant the journey was almost better than the gig itself. I say almost, but it actually was better. Glyndwyr University is in Wrexham but isn't allowed to be called Wrexham University as it used to be an institute. No one really understands how that works, but as I usually associate the word 'institute' with 'psychiatric' I didn't ask. When I arrived at the Students' Union, Matt Reed greeted me with an expression that read 'oh dear its all so dead here with no one around and a persistancy to still do the show'. His expression really did say that. And he was right. The room was dead. All the students were watching a midget with a hoover on his cock at Circus of Horrors across campus. Never let it be said the student population is dumbing down.

Reed dealt with this by drinking several vodkas which I was very jealous of. Having to drive later I coped with two coffees hoping the caffeine would mess me up, but the cold sobering situation of performing to so few people meant it never would. Eventually we started with a crowd of about 20. This may seem a reasonable amount but in the cavernous hallway it was in, those 20 seemed like the equivalent of a fly on the edge of Chris Moyles gaping cavernous shit speaking mouth. My introduction to the stage was the techie shouting ' Turn the TV's off will ya' to his mate then giving me a thumbs up. I really hope that's how McIntyre starts his O2 shows in a few months, for that is truly the rock way to walk on.

Once again I was proved wrong and I don't think we could have asked for a nicer 20 people in the room. They moved to the front when we asked them, they engaged in banter when asked and didn't when didn't and both Matt and myself had a nice gig. In the second section loads of disappointed Circus of Horrors punters turned up which meant it got even better for my next bit and Sean Percival. I like being surprised by that. All of the students did the sort of courses I have judged before on this blog as being done by idiots, but they were all sharp and nice people. Well except one guy who said he drank petrol but there's always an exception. There was a really ace bloke in a wheelchair who told us that before uni he was a disabled athlete and competed in an event called the Standing Long Jump which he, to this day, couldn't understand how he was meant to do it, or compete in it without the use of his legs. While this was funny there is part of me that wonders if the Para-Olympics was created out of farce. How else could you explain such ridiculously titled events? I wonder if there is also the visual relay for the blind and a race for the deaf that involves going when you hear the gun shot. Mean bastards.

I drove Matt back to Manchester on the way and he introduced me to Sigur Ros. I had it on my i-pod already but hadn't listened to them much. Matt said he listened to them in the Alps last year and it was the perfect music for it. Its brilliant and incredibly atmospheric but didn't seem to work as well on the M57. I will try again somewhere more scenic.

Back to the HiFi Club tonight and tomorrow for more japery. I am hoping that the arseholes that were harsh last week wont be there, but either way they were nice to me, so selfishly I don't care. Although I can't remember what jokes I said last week so it could go wrong if they are.
Some new vids up of my interviewing Minchin at There is a lovely awkward bit at the start where I didn't know the camera was on and am standing a bit like someone who has been stunned by bright lights. Hopefully one day I will get the hang of this presenting lark. Rest of its ace though so do check it out and enjoy.

NB: Anyone around Monday lunchtime? There will be a demo outside the Treasury and FCo organised by Mark Thomas to demand that Prince Phillip never meets Obama. Should be fun. 12.15ish. Come along!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Street Fighting Man

I am pleased to say I am not hungover today and so very much owe you all a proper blog.  The problem here is that spending a day hungover you tend not to do very much at all. Normally the day is spent feeling very sorry for yourself while smelling like the night before and eating food that contains 99% fat in the hope it will soak up any remaining toxins. I like to think I bucked that trend. At about 1pm my friend Mat told me about how good the new Streetfighter 4 game was meant to be. For some reason there and then I decided I was going to buy it despite not having any money and not wanting to leave the house. The former is a problem I have encountered before and not dealt with very well. See the blog from a few days ago about having no willpower. I don't have enough money to pay my credit card bill on time, but using some sneaky measures scraped just enough together for the purchase. Prioritising is important. Debt collectors coming round is fine but I have to have beaten Akuma before they do. 

I donned my outdoor gear (ie a coat) and raced towards Blockbusters with a determination that was unknown 30 minutes previous. Blockbusters didn't have it because they are useless and I look forward to the inevitable day when everyone downloads all their TV and the place has to close. Yeah I said it Blockbusters! To be fair I should've expected it, as our local dvd renting chain store looks a bit like if someone at the job centre shelf-stacked some of the dodgy dvd's they had been selling at the pub. Its such a decrepit centre of broken dreams and terrible low budget sequels that it is falls close to Argos in the retail pathos stakes. Things have obviously hit an all time low though as when I went in one of the staff was getting his 3 year old son to hoover the shop floor. Now the child seemed to be enjoying it, and I would assume he was the son of the staff member on account of the contact between them. There was a part of me that was very scared I had stumbled into a sweat shop paedo ring. While I wanted to be concerned, they didn't have Streetfighter so I left them to it. Child concern could happen later, now I needed to punch things on a machine. 

My mission then involved a brief check in Argos, where I discovered the missing link. It was behind a till and unable to operate said till due to its webbed hands and fish like monkey brain. I was going to ask them if they had it in stock but was scared they would try and eat me. So eventually beyond all reason I took a 30 minute bus ride to a GAME where I knew they wouldn't let me down. They didn't, but they did insult my intelligence by asking if I wanted to buy a game guide for SF4. Of all the games you would need a guide for, surely one that is based on hitting the fuck out of someone does not need a strategy? I guffawed at her stupid question and went on to quip how I have been playing these games since the 90's and as I have not grown up mentally since then should still be as good. Tragically I'm not and upon returning with my prize spent the afternoon swearing at the telly and wondering when I got so shit at hitting people virtually. It seems that as the technology in the gaming world has got better I have got much much worse and would probably have been better off throwing sticks at the missing link in Argos. 

Once I had prized myself away from the Xbox, last night was spent going to see Keith Farnan's show Cruel and Unusual at the BAC. I hadn't had a chance to see it in Edinburgh and Keith's ace so I sad I would head along. The show had some great reviews and both me and Layla really enjoyed it. What we didn't enjoy however was the techie of the show being the rudest person in the crowd. Firstly, despite (as Keith told us post show) having a two hour tech rehearsal, all the projections and tech stuff screwed up 20 minutes in. This happened again and again with the tech man running to the stage and back several times and never really being able to fix anything. This delayed Keith's show by about 30 mins which was a shame but didn't ruin it. What did distract more than that, was that inbetween pretending to fix things, he would sit at the back of the audience and talk all the way through! Surely to work in a theatre you must know some theatre etiquette. It would appear that this man was only a few evolutionary steps along the line from the Argos fish-beast in terms of manners. If you get a chance to go and see the show, do because its great, and if that techie talks through it, do what I should have and wire him up to the circuit board and hit him with a leatherman. 

I'm off to Wrexham today then Leeds again Friday and Saturday. I'm staying with Layla's brother, sister-in-law and nephew. Her nephew has an Xbox and while I pretend in my head that I might get some writing done away from home I think we all know I will instead be getting pixellated bruises from a 16 year old. Better than the real bruises and stab wounds you would get from the 16 year olds in our area. 

Lastly as I owe you from yesterday - Chortle Awards Breakdown: Roy Walker spoke to me (he asked where someone else was but it still counts); Frank Skinner was the best host they've had in ages; Greg McHugh knows about modern art; Tim Arthur is a Casanova amongst men; I shouldn't accept gigs when drunk; at least two people say they still liked my preview in Feb which is nice; Claire Nightingale works in all the jobs; everyone does know everyone via six degrees as proved by Emma; I now know 3 more people's faces in realness that I only knew virtually before; finally, if you refuse to leave a kebab shop as its closing, they will give in and serve you. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


This blog will be brief. Lots of things happened yesterday but typing about them is overridden by my immense desire to crawl back under my duvet and hide from everything bright, loud and smelling remotely like booze. Let's just say yesterday was a lot of fun, there was free booze and I achieved my intended target of getting battered. As a result, looking at my laptop screen makes me want to vomit, so just be intent in the knowledge that I had fun. 

When I recover I am going to watch Keith Farnan's show at the BAC tonight. So should you. It should be good. 

Right that is really all I can manage today. I have my duvet and Ulysses 31 waiting for me and despite the wonderful powers of Anadin, my head is spinning more than hamster having an epileptic fit in a wheel. 

Proper blog tomorrow when I am not dying. 

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

3rd The One With The Hairy Chest

Remember that lack of willpower I wrote about yesterday? Well it danced into play once again and consequently I feel a bit crap today. Part of it is my inability to say no to being bought a drink and the other part is my liver, which seems to have completely given up on dealing with booze anymore. I don't drink very often anymore due to driving to gigs so you would think that my liver would start to heal and allow my hangover's to reside somewhat. Instead after a relatively sober four pints I feel a bit wrong. Not a lot wrong, but just enough wrong that my body is saying 'you know this isn't how you should feel don't you?' The problem here is that tonight is the Chortle Awards which is an annual excuse to drink lots. Inevitably I will feel a lot worse tomorrow, but sometimes these things have to be done and anyway, as it is more and more evident, its not likely I will have the willpower to stay sober even if I wanted to. I don't want to, but that's not the point. 

I let myself down last night. All my gigs lately have been really lovely and last night was the first one I didn't really do my best. It looked like it was going to be a strange little gig with far more comics than there were audience. This is never a good ratio unless it is for some sort of audience vs comedian battle. I felt rather pleased, when discussing this possibility earlier that I had come up with the idea of hitting one of them with a chair whilst shouting 'take a seat fool'. My days as an action hero aren't up yet people! The reason for a small crowd is that the promoters rightly assumed that for a competition acts would bring some friends to support and vote for them. Strangely no one did. It was nice that everyone was honest enough to hope that they could perform to a normal crowd, but sadly it backfired when no one appeared and we all wished our friends were there. 

Luckily the crowd improved thanks to the hard workings of those involved and promoter and compere Alan Anderson MC'd them up into a small but lovely frenzy. For such a small crowd the audience contained some of the characters I wished would be at a gig I am MCing. Two of them, for example, were men whose job is to ignite people's waste or 'shit burners' as they called it, which is instant comedy gold. Some of us more experienced, and by experienced I mean bitter comics sat at the back of the room discussing why on Earth we were doing a competition anyway, but as each comic stepped up it became evident that it was a competition of a certain caliber and out of 13 comics every one of them was pretty good, which was to be expected when the range of comics had from 9 years of experience on the circuit to just 6 months. I had the pleasure/discomfort of following Luke McQueen. I have never seen McQueen before but he absolutely ripped it, with full energy and some very strong gags. Thinking that to follow that I should bring the energy down a level so not to be in the audience's face, I walked on quite relaxed. Too relaxed though and then I felt tired, didn't do any of the material I planned, ad-libbed unnecessarily and generally felt a bit like I really should have prepared for it. After having a cracking weekend of gigs where I honestly felt I had done the best I could, I let myself down with this rather mediocre ramble of a 7 min set. 

Undeservedly I came third which means I will go through to the next heat in April sometime. 1st went to the very funny Matthew Osbourne which was well deserved and 2nd went (also deservedly) to Luke McQueen. I felt all a bit crap for being in there too but have realised that I will have to step it up for the next level. Then afterwards I unwittingly got persuaded to carry on drinking with Martyne, Paul and Alan. I say unwittingly but they said 'fancy a drink' and without hesitation I said yes. I am so weak. The Old Rope lot joined us and I spent some time talking about vegan beers with Andrew O Neill. Its amazing how your evening can start with visions of smashing a shit burner with a chair and finish with a discussion about filtering beer through fish scales with a man with lipstick on. 

Not that I haven't shamelessly promoted this already, but got some new vids up on my website. Two stand-up clips from my gig at the Comedy Bunker which I blogged about some weeks ago, and my first interview for with Jason Cook. Considering the latter was 25 minutes of me and Jason making fish puns and generally mucking about, they have edited it into a very nice sensible four minutes. The only downside is that I have realised I laugh like a goon and I seem to laugh consistently through these four minutes. Its horrible having the epiphany that your laugh sounds like a drunk goblin. I like laughing but am wary now that it must not happen when interviewing. Lets hope that the next ones that go online I look like a stoney faced taxman. All these new vids are at: 

Please leave comments and all that. Unless you hate them, then don't. I shall now go and line my stomach for further liver destruction. 

Monday, February 23, 2009

Will Powerless

I had some fairly good intentions to go jogging this morning. I spent most of last week and the weekend deciding that today would be the day that I threw my currently unhealthy lifestyle in the bin of history and went for a well paced jog. Then I spent all of last night fighting with my computer and woke up this morning feeling tired and shit like everyday. Its terrible how weak my willpower is. Its something I wish I had more of. In the past that lack of willpower has got me trying to sleep in a skip because someone had said 'come on, just one more drink' and instead of saying no I caved in. Its that lack of willpower in my last few weeks of my first year at uni I spent my remaining money on the Indiana Jones box set instead of food and eat only beans for a week and a half. Now, that lack of willpower is not letting me be healthy. I'd quite like to do something about it, but I have a feeling my lack of willpower won't let me. 

Another lack of willpower has lead me to enter the English Comedian of the Year competition. I hate competitions, and I haven't been in one for at least 3 years now. I got talked into it by a couple of other comics who told me the caliber of acts that have entered and to be fair, it seems like it will be of a much higher standard than a new act comp. This does not stop it being a competition though and I hate that for several reasons. I don't like stand-up as a competition. My favourite thing is being part of a night where every act is different and the crowd can enjoy each act for their own merit. How can you compare Tim Vine with Glenn Wool for example? Two very different comics and both great at what they do. Setting acts against each other is never nice. I also don't like it because I have to do a 7 minute set tonight. I haven't done that brief a set in yonks. I like to waffle away on tangents and 7 minutes doesn't really allow for that, which is probably why I haven't got anywhere in competitions before. Or it could be that everyone else was better than me. Either way, its not great. At least all the organisers are nice, hopefully there will be other nice acts there to have a pint with and tonight's heat is only a 20 minute journey from my house. 40 if I jogged, but I wont. 

Layla came back yesterday all tired and hungover from her weekend. We eat a big curry and then she fell asleep on the sofa which was probably for the best as I spent about 4 hours fighting with imovie. Now ever since buying a mac I have been an advocator of its easiness and brilliance. Never before has anything mac made my life difficult, until this weekend. For some reason it didn't seem to want to copy my dvd, of me, onto my computer, then allow me to edit me. I downloaded four different programs, tried about 11 different tactics as found by google and only at about 3am did I finally work out a way. This is not the future. I hope that in 10 years time Hal will just do it all for me. In reality Hal will probably just say 'There has been a problem importing your clips'. And then the engines will fail and the coolant system will collapse because of lack of memory and the whole spaceship will crash thanks to imovie. 

I finally managed to do it and clip one is here (clip two and maybe three should be up later): http//

They will also be up on the website soonish, which has now had a nice amount of visitors. One of them has visited my website from South Korea which I find very exciting. Its probably an accident but I like to think that either its someone traveling who just needs to see my gig list out of love for my funnies, or that someone in Korea has stumbled on my site and slowly slowly I will take South Korea by storm until I am elected as their king and I have to fight Kim Jong Il with pugil sticks for control of the North. As I said though, it was probably by accident. 

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Leeds 1 of 3

Layla gets back today. I should probably do stuff like clean up and things. I don't like that this is what's meant to happen. She has been away on a fun weekend while I have been working, yet I am still expected to clean up. If she hadn't gone away we probably wouldn't have cleaned stuff, so it thats weird 'make the house nice for their return' ideal that seems to come into play. I hate that. I also hate it when you pick people up from the airport after they come back from a long holiday and they say 'oh I'm so tired'. Are you? Really? After two weeks of relaxing holidays? Well I've been working loads and then drove all the way to pick you up, so you can take that tired and eat it. 

I am going to make the place nice and will meet Layla at the station, I am also just feeling a tad tired and ratty myself today. Last night was a very long journey for just one gig. I'm quite pleased I did it as it was a brilliant night. Well, nearly brilliant, apart from one odd hiccup towards the end. I thought it was all going to go wrong at the top, when I walked in and said I was MCing that night. They were expecting Dan Nightingale and when they realised he wasn't coming said to me 'Oh shit, what a shame! He goes down really well here'. There was an apology afterwards but it was a nice way to make you feel unwanted. I only hope that wherever Dan was that night someone said 'oh shit. Tiernan goes down really well here.' Even if he wasn't gigging and was just at home. I go down very well on people's sofas. I have an array of light chat and ability to watch TV and snack all at once. Have that Dan, you might be lord of the HiFi Club, but I am king of sitting on my arse. 

Despite being a busy, chatty Saturday night crowd it all started very very nicely. Some top banter with a man who makes pork pies for a living, a man who pretended to be a pigeon carrier, some people with a polite version of tourettes and a lady who got a kite for her birthday. Generally all things that can lead to some mirth and they did. Bringing Alun Cochrane on, he had to make concessions for the fact some of the lights weren't working and the only way the crowd could see his face was if he was sitting down. I, being merely tiny in height in comparison, had not had this problem. Despite sitting, Cochrance ripped up the room. I hadn't had the chance to watch him when we were in Bristol together so was pleased to see his newer material. 

Then during the interval it started to go wrong. We had discovered that the headliner had now changed again and that the lovely and very funny Steve Best was now closing. Unfortunately he had to race over from Jongleurs and the interval went from being 15 minutes to 25-30 minutes before he made it and we went back on. By the time I walked on stage the crowd were a lot chattier and a lot more pissed than before. Still after quieting them down, it felt like they were back on side and I had a nice ten mins before bringing on Steve. Then they turned. Steve managed about 10 minutes of his set before one arsehole in the crowd shouted 'Get off!'. The majority of the crowd were really loving his set, but this one man decided he verbally needed to tell everyone that he didn't like it. Steve started to deal with him only for all the man's friends to start heckling rather viciously too. They eventually quietened down after the rest of the crowd cheered for Steve to go on, then there was a rather awkward and very tense ten further minutes before Steve just decided to leave it. It was really sad to see these few people ruin it for the rest. I went on after Steve and said that it was unfair to do that and that the best thing about the HiFi Club was the variety of comics you get to see. Then as we were leaving the arsehole man was at the exit and decided to shout 'don't come back', which was unnecessarily harsh. 

Steve really didn't care (especially as he was heading to his third gig of the night), but it made me really angry that people can be so shitty just because they don't like something. 99% of the audience were having a really good time, but as it wasn't a large room, one person being crap ruined it for everyone. I'm all for freedom of speech, but if you are the sort of person who will ruin things because you don't like them, then you should really shut up. Unless of course its date rape, in which case you should definitely make noise and get help. Apart from that exception then you shouldn't ruin things. It was a sad end to a good night. 

On my journey home I had to go in 4 service stations. This is a really excessive amount of stops, but it was partly the fault of inadequate services and partly the fault of my bladder. It started with a Costa Coffee being closed at the services outside Leeds. Why would you close the coffee shop at a time when people really need coffee? Do they realise that in these credit crunch times of need they are missing out on vital business? There were two other drivers there that felt the same disappointment as me and we all drove in coffee fueled tandem to Woodall services for some dirty Primo coffee which tasted not dissimilar to soil in some hot water. This soil water then lead to a wee stop only half an hour later. My bladder has obviously become weak, as not long ago I would have coped for a much further distance. Saying that, it is not often I drink hot soil so it could have had an effect. While having a wee stop, I decided to get some coffee from a Costa that was open because it wasn't shit. This, while satisfactory, lead to a further wee stop only 40 minutes later. I was in a java piss cycle of doom. 4th stop I decided not to have any more coffee as I needed to get home and now I had caffeine shakes. The soil was obviously stronger than I thought. No wonder moles and worms always seem a bit mental. 

There are two places I always pass on the M1 if driving as far as Leeds. One is Gulliver's Kingdom and the other is Gulliver's Land. I never have time to go to either of these places but I really want to make the effort one day. I really really hope one just has very small things in it and the other has very big things. If you have been please let me know and if it's not like that please lie. I couldn't cope with the idea that Gulliver's magical journey only involved some gypsies and going on a waltzer. 

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Following Leeds

I am finding being home alone not at all dissimilar to the film of the same name, only sans burglars, Joe Pesci, a old pigeon lady and that wanker Macaulay Culkin. In fact its nothing like that film, except for actually being home alone. I haven't even shaved. Even though I should because my face has reached the stage of itchyness that makes me feel like it will just drop off after a while. So far I have relished my freedom by staying up last night playing a stupid ninja game on the computer not shaving and eating crisps. This is not that dissimilar to what I would have done if Layla was here. What I should have done to truly enjoy this free flat was have crack whores, drugs and crisps, but Sainsbury's only sold the latter at 11.30 at night. In fact the only extra Sainsbury's do seem to have at that time of night on a Friday is some of the most tragic people buying food by themselves. I felt honored to able to sneak in amongst them and pretend I was as lonely and sad as all of them when I bought my crisps and smoothies. There was a lady who's permanent facial expression was that of a battered and angry pug. I understand why she only comes out for food at night. There was also a man who didn't seem to be buying anything and just wondered aimlessly from aisle to aisle. As I was buying my stuff I noticed him walk all the way back to start and just leave. Maybe he just needed reassurance that everything was still there. Or also, highly possible, he actually worked there. Its a whole different world of sadness. I highly recommend a visit as it really makes you feel better about your life. Until, of course, you realise you are in their shopping as well. 

I arrived at the gig last night two and a half hours too early for the show. The call sheet said the show started at 7.30 which was a massive lie and a fib. I understand that some comics may turn up late for shows, but I always have a habit of turning up excessively early due to my over-developed sense of urgency. Avoiding the friday rush hour, I got there too early. After drinking a cup of tea and eating the provided sandwiches (oh yeah they provided sandwiches! This is showbiz!) I realised I had spent too much time by myself when I started looking through the cupboards in the green room for something to cause mischief with. I managed to find 11 walkie talkies and was very much debating what to do with them all for a while. My friend Manisha put on Twitter that I ' set them to the same channel, place them at strategic points around the venue, and then, at an opportune moment, scream into one of them'. This is why if I was stuck in an A-Team like situation in a theatre where I am about to be killed by fifty techies, I would want Manisha there. She is clearly an urban soldier of the McGuyver/A-Team mould. I got as far as picking up two of the walkie talkies when the second act arrived and I had to quickly put them back and do a circular walk around the green room only looking massively suspicious. The tech man gave me a rather suspicious look and I wasn't offered another cup of tea. 

The show, when it finally got there, was brilliant. Very relaxed and I wittered on for about 35 minutes about random things, and I was able to use my few Colchester gags, which everyone should have. The highlight was when I told the audience about my itchy beard face and asked if anyone ever suffered from the same problem, at which point a very attractive young girl at the front of the room shouted 'yes'! I am still not sure quite what she meant, whether it was facial beard or, er, other beard but it created a pretty large laugh so it was all good. After the set I stuck around to watch the next act, Danny Ward, as he is very new but has been thrown into decent gigs very quick as someone saw him do very well on his fourth ever gig. Normally a cynic for hype, I was very pleasantly surprised as he really is very very good. And a lovely chap too. In fact, once again I wondered if I should've killed him last night and stopped him before he gets all too big. Thats famous big, not giant big. Although the latter would be amazing. I will suggest it to him as it would definitely be a gimmick. 

After his excellent set, some of the audience asked if I wanted to stay with them and have a drink which was very nice, but instead of staying in a social buzz of a place with nice lovely people, I decided to go home by myself to a lonely house. I like to call this Jon Richardson syndrome. A similar thing will be happening tonight when I drive all the way to Leeds and back. I think by that point I will have had too much of myself and so to prepare I have 6 podcasts to listen too and the remainder of the crisps. If all else fails the cats had better have some conversation for when I get back or it could all go wrong. Still Layla's back tomorrow. Lets hope she doesn't find me shivering in a corner, covered in crisps, arguing with myself.   

Friday, February 20, 2009

Limited Freedom

Layla goes away on her friend's hen weekend today. She will be in Amsterdam until Sunday leaving me on my lonesome for two whole days. This of course opens up a realm of possibilities as to what I can do over the weekend. Mad partying across the capital? Severe mayhem with friends? Watching all of my Ulysses 31 box set that Layla calls a mere cartoon, in one go? Its like a whole new world of fun. And instead of embrace that fun and treat it like a new buddy that I am probably man-hugging too soon, I am gigging tonight and tomorrow. Tonight was booked in ages ago, but tomorrow is a last minute booking that requires me driving all the way to Leeds and back despite being there next weekend. I am doing this for several reasons. 1) I really like the gig, its a bloody lovely gig. 2) I really need the dosh. 3) I am hoping that by visiting Leeds that many times in one week they will accept me as one of their own and give me a key to the city allowing me to unlock all of its secrets and a golden scroll. 4) Because if I don't gig, chances of me doing anything fun are actually slim and I will just sit at home playing on Twitter in my pants for 48 hours. Its for my own good health and sanity that I have to do things. 

I had my second unusual gig of the week yesterday. I knew it was coming as I had pre-arranged it with an old friend of mine, Kelly. We used to work together in the call centre of a housing association in the worst job I have ever had. It basically involved scary tenants shouting at us because something in the flat had broken, exploded, leaked or generally screwed up. We would then call builders to repair it who would then shout at us because they had no time to do it. We would then get called back a week later by the tenant and shouted at because the builders had done a shit job and it had all gone wrong again. It was 8 hours a day of getting an ear bashing. I escaped, fearing that if I stayed there I would either kill all the tenants and builders or have a breakdown. Or both. Kelly however is of a stronger mind set and has stayed with the company but now she works for a housing association dealing with clients who suffer from depression, schitzophrenia and other mental health disorders. Every 6 months they hold a meeting for these clients with food, drink and other stuff going on and this year they decided it might be nice to have some stand-up, so Kelly emailed me. 

I never see the warning signs when I respond to such things. Clearly staring at me were all of them. Big obvious glaring signs. Its for people with mental health problems, its in a church, its in the afternoon, they will have free biscuits which will damage me. Ignoring all this, I asked Andrew O'Neill if he would do the other set and he stupidly said yes. Then yesterday got here and I suddenly realised how scary it all was. Especially after being heckled by a violent 8 year old the day before, I started to wonder what being heckled by someone with multiple personalities would be like? Would they heckle me several times at once? Would they tell themselves to shush or just shout as though three people were shouting at once? 

Unsurprisingly, it was quite nice in the end. The church aspect meant we had to erase all swear words which was taxing for about  2 mins (I accidentally said 'nob' and think that I will now definitely be condemned to hell. Which doesn't exist, so nob nob nob). Other than that, most of the crowd hadn't seen live comedy ever before and started off bemused, but gradually got more and more into it. There were certain bits they liked more than others and in the end seemed to appreciate us being there. I'm not sure how their other personalities felt, but the ones that were present were very nice. So I survived and now feel like I have some nice points for doing work for the community. This means I can now go and punch that kid from Wednesday and it should cancel it out leaving me back where I was before. 

That gig was in the afternoon which meant I was able to get home early and decide never to watch the steaming pile of turd that is Heroes again. It had all started out ok, but by series two and three I feel I have seen enough of each character becoming good then bad then good then bad and having powers then losing powers then having powers again. Oddly with all the abilities that each character has, the super power of believable acting and credible writing is completely absent from the show. Perhaps they lost that power and will get it again and then will lose it again but I don't have the patience to find out. Hayden Panitierre is no longer enough to hold my attention for an hour. I'm all for saving the cheerleader, but I'm starting to think the only way to do that is to cancel the show thereby allowing her some other career options before everyone realises that there is no healing work that is clearly written by a 3 year old. 'And then he saved the lady then the lady was bad and then the lady was good and then he died but then came back to life, the end.' 

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Comedy 4 Devil Kids

I didn't realise until the other day that more people read this blog than I thought. While that's really nice on one level (ie my ego), the downside of it is that I am slowly running out of conversations with some of the readers as they already know everything I'm going to say. This has already happened to me twice this week where the person I was speaking to finished off both my stories and I was reduced to only chatting about the very uninteresting aspects of my life such as what socks I was wearing and different ways to say 'moussaka'. As my life is so full of highlights I found this excessively difficult and ultimately they became bored of my chat after about 2 minutes which is a whole 3 minutes less than normal. So I need to find a solution either I put only some of the day's highlights in this blog, or (my preferred option) I will never speak to anyone I know ever again just in case. I have already cut the phone line in two. 

I would have liked not to speak to anyone at yesterday's Comedy 4 Kids gig, but sadly as the job requires, it wasn't to be. The West End Centre in Aldershot is a great venue with staff who are brilliantly lovely and hospitable, and previous C4K gigs there have always been great. It was a packed room of about 120 kids and their parents and there was a nice buzz around the room giving us all the feeling it would be a nice show. What none of us accounted for was the Omen child sitting at the back of the room. I didn't think it that possible that you would want to punch an 8 year old repeatedly in the face, but this child proved me wrong. He started off with a few simple heckles while Adrian Poynton was MCing. Adrian had whisked up a lovely atmosphere with the audience but every now and then we would hear this shout from the back of a kid who insisted on saying the subject Adrian was talking about, then adding 'revolution' to it. There was only one or two of these, starting with 'dog revolution' and then 'plane revolution', all in this slightly too old voice. Most of the other kids were a bit chatty, but in a nice way, and so it didnt seem too odd. There was a boy called Jasper who was far too well spoken for a 6 year old and a little girl called Lucy who told us all she had 3 pet pigs. Nothing seemed too off kilter yet, and the show carried on. 

During Paul Kerensa's set, the devil child started doing the same again. Adrian and I were trying to work out if he was special needs, a teenager at the back or just a little shit. Its a difficult thing at a C4K gig because you can't just heckle a child till they cry and you especially can't do that if he suffers from behavioral problems or mental health issues, even if you really want to. We decided that he might have problems and that we could deal with it so all would be ok. Finally I went on stage, and this is where it all went wrong. Firstly there was a girl in the front who told us her teacher was scared of bananas. I riffed some on this while wanker boy insisted on shouting 'banana revolution', then 'monkey revolution'. I stupidly spoke to him about revolutions and he just shouted 'revolution revolution'. Then after what had been a rather fun 10 minutes, the other children got excited by mini-Che and started shouting revolution after everything I said. Eventually there was this wall of unbearable shouting noise that had it gone on for any longer would probably have resulted in the building being surrounded by riot police. Then, no matter what I did, I could not defeat the sound of children who have been roused into a sugar fuelled shout fest, and so I cut my set short and gave in. I know thats extremely defeatist, but apart from sacrificing all the actors from High School Musical on the stage (which, trust me, I would happily do, kids or no kids) there was nothing I could do. 

On exit several parents and kids said how much they enjoyed it and, in nicer words, what a dickhead that child was. Turns out he wasn't special needs at all, and had just turned up with no parents and a desire for disruption. Of course everyone that knew this hadn't tried to silence him during the show, but it was nice they could tell us all how annoyed they were after. They struck me as the sort of people that would watch someone being kicked to death, but instead of calling the ambulance or helping would just tell everyone how wrong and appalling it was the next day. Adrian contemplated telling the kid off, but it appeared 3 or 4 parents had already done it. We vowed on the way home that if he ever appeared at a C4K gig again we would just turn on him and make him cry. 

The evening was spent shouting at the Brit Awards. Horne and Corden really need to stop being on TV ever again. Their presenting just made them look like even bigger cocks than they already are. Luckily Kylie was there looking all small and Australian and lovely which helped, but every time fatty and the Butlins rep said a quip it made me want to hit my head with a sharpened paper weight. A wonderful combination of shit writing and the delivery ability of a paralysed UPS man. I later heard about 5 stories from different people recalling how nasty Corden actually is. I like hearing these things. Not only is he unfunny, but he's also an arsehole. Amazing how those qualities land you lots of Beeb work. I'm going to scrap all my punchlines and then go and find that child and punch him. Within no time I should be big. Or in jail. 

Got another afternoon gig today, at a Come and Go day for clients of a certain sheltered housing association. I'm not really sure to expect. It could be far more crazy than yesterday or far less. Either way, if any of them shout 'revolution' I will throw a chair at them. Fact. Although I could just not speak to any of them at all. You never know, they might all read this blog. 

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Problem Children

I've got Comedy 4 Kids to do today. I finally reached a point with Comedy 4 Kids gigs a year ago when they no longer phased me. I had my full repertoire of 'bum', 'wee' and 'fart' gags all ready to make small people laugh. But, and this is a big but (thats not a joke for later btw) I haven't done a kids gig in about 3 months and none of my normal material will work. This could go all horribly wrong today. I don't think I'll swear. Its quite hard to look a child in the eyes and called them a 'fuckhead', although I often see scary mums swear at their kids in the supermarket, so it must be possible. Working on that basis, we should definitely be allowed to swear at Comedy 4 Kids as they probably know it all already. Maybe at the gigs with slightly older ones we can do sex gags now too, with 13 year olds becoming dads. Maybe that is my calling to revolutionise kids comedy by swearing, and talking about drugs, and sex and possibly occasionally punching them. Or perhaps I will just do my old gags and not get arrested. 

Fat Tuesday went well last night despite the lack of tickets sold up front. We went to internet bookings to soothe one aspect of my gig running paranoia, but while that has mostly worked, occasionally it doesn't work at all and I get all stressed. We only had a handful of bookings yesterday, but then rather a lot of door sales. While I usually abhor lazy stroll ups, last night changed my mind and I welcomed them all with praise and a room that was far too hot for people to laugh in for about 15 minutes. Once we had made the audience overly hot, then freezing cold again laughter resumed to full levels and all was lovely. Funny how people aren't comfortable enough to laugh if they feel like their faces are melting. Must've been why those Nazis at the end of Indiana Jones and the witch in Wizard of Oz didn't laugh much. 

While I would love to give you a run down of each act and how awesome they all were I have to run away and write some kids jokes. Thats jokes for kids, not jokes about kids. Oddly enough I have some of the latter and I can't tell them as the former. None of this is fair. 

Oh and we got a new sofa by the way. We haven't told the cats yet incase they will get sad we are chucking out their current scratch post. We will need to take them to this before the next one arrives:

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sofa So Good

I have to go to DFS in a minute and so might take ages over this blog just to delay inevitable arguments about sofas. There is something so mind-numbingly dull about selecting home furnishings that attacks my brain and makes me miserable about doing it. Worse still, we have to go to the DFS in Brent Cross, which is the most soulless shopping centre on the planet (although I have yet to go to Westfield which I hear is worse). I am not fan of shopping centre's that don't have windows into the outside world aiming to convince you that you are wandering around Planet Shop, where the ecosystem is based on morons visiting Clinton Cards and throwing KFC at each other in the Food Hall. I'm not sure we need a new sofa. Yes ours is covered in cat prints, looks grey and grubby and is rather worn, but it also has my arse shape perfectly in it for seating comfort purposes which I like. It will take a while to do that to a new sofa. We'll have to get to know each other first and there will be those awkward first moments where I am not sure where to sit and have to shuffle around making us both feel odd and on edge. Its not that dissimilar to a first date that gets too gropey too soon. Still perhaps it will be love at first sight and we'll just fit together perfectly and eating crisps and watching The Wire will become a whole new level of comfort. We will have to see. 

The University of East Anglia is a grim looking concrete prison like base that is currently under going massive building works that help it look reasonably like a war zone. This was not helped by the random few squaddies walking around when myself and the beardy Mr Tom Craine arrived. What appeared to be a grim indication of a bad gig was brightened up by being able to see my cousin who is in her final year at the uni. Its lovely when a gig works out so that you can visit people you want to see but rarely get the chance. I would quite like to send family and friends to live all over the UK so that I could always have someone to look forward to seeing at each venue. This would be bad for two reasons though. One being that some people I know would probably have to live in some not nice places and would also have to revolve their entire lives and work around my gigging schedule. Also I suppose that I would run out of people I actually like fairly quickly and no doubt would get to Derby and have to stay with that long lost relative who insists on taking me through all their holiday slides till my eyes bleed. 

The gig itself looked like it was going to be horribly empty and painful, and Tom and I had already decided that there was no fun to be had. Tom started to fall asleep on the sofa and I looked around for someone, anyone, who could say if there was a minimum audience amount. Then, just 5 minutes before we were meant to start, the room filled up with eager, lovely students who very much wanted to see a great night of comedy. I often forget that if people live 3 minutes away from a show, they will not leave their estate agent's lies of a room (spacious dorm room, with bathroom attached. Reality: If you take a dump your 3 square inches of a room will smell for four days) until they really have to. The only problem now was that we both felt lethargic and as though sleep would be a preferred option to gigging. Luckily one orange juice later (the powers of diabetes!) and I had a lot of fun bantering with the crowd and manage to come up with some new material about MRI machines, which unfortunately will probably never come up again. Or if it does it will probably inappropriate next time. The man I was speaking to designed MRI machines. I can't imagine the next person I speak to that's had an MRI experience will be on the technical side. After me, Tom then stormed it too and even got away with trying some new stuff which was all ace. 

Then the perfect thing happened, which was that the very nice Duncan Oakley said he would close the gig for us and we were able to get on the road early and head home. Well we would've done if either of us had been able to work out how to escape the car park. I drove around the vast airfield like area looking for the payment machines for nearly 20 minutes and there were provisional plans made incase we were grounded in Norwich forever. There was also the possibility of driving through the barriers movie style, but we are just about to renew the insurance so I was favouring the 'never leaving' option to having to make a claim. Luckily we eventually made it, and drove home listening, again, to the highlights of the Sean Lock album. 

Just goes to show you can never just a gig by its cover (thats my version of it anyway). However we are now about to judge a sofa by its cover and not how it will feel in 6 months after due sitting has taken place. I could be in for the most uncomfortable next few years of my life if we get this wrong. Wish me luck. 

Monday, February 16, 2009

Leicester Comedy Festival part 2.

Its odd how gigs can be so different in audience and quality despite being only 45 minutes apart. Yesterday I had one solo preview to 15 lovely people in Leicester above an Indian restaurant, then one set supporting Tony Lee again to 300 massively stupid dick heads at Uni College Birmingham, a venue where 'they just don't really get comedy'. There was only 50 miles between those gigs, but somehow those 50 miles span a whole cycle of evolution in a way that would both astound and shock Darwin all at once. 

Gig number one, the solo gig, was again, much better than I thought it would be. This has now happened twice with my solo show, and while I don't want to jinx the next one, I may have to stop panicking quite as much now. Layla accompanied me for my day of shows and so she kindly drove up allowing me to fret and read through my notes 50 times on the way up, making myself car sick by reading at the same time. The car sickness only panicked me more and by the time we arrived I was a small ball of Tazmanian Devil like stress. Only with less spinning, as I was car sick. The venue itself looked a bit wrong too. I'd been there before in previous years and remembered it as a serene comfortable room, however as I popped my head round the door, it seemed all a bit odd and noisy. My panic was then only increased when I was told that my show had to have an interval in it. I hadn't planned for an interval. If anything I had only planned to build on the shows natural energy allowing the ending not to plummet horrendously into a lifeless and structureless mess. Mulling over where a break would take place, Layla and I went for a coffee. This was a terrible idea and the caffeine made me only more fidgety. I realised at this point that there was very little I could do to calm my nerves besides a tranq gun to the face. 

Then when I returned to the room, there were 15 lovely people eagerly awaiting my show. The room had somehow settled since I had been there before, and I instantly calmed down. The first half of the show then proceeded to go very well, and I stuck in an interval where I thought it worked. It did work there, but sadly it also dropped my energy levels a tad and while the second half went well too, I felt it hadn't gone as well as the first, so added a few old gags at the end to make it better for everyone. All in all though, I was fairly pleased and to celebrate we went downstairs and stuffed our faces with curry. Curry as a reward is up there with gold and medals. In fact I have once tried to bite a medal and I can honestly say that in that field curry is better. 

Two hours after nice LCF gig, Layla and I found ourselves driving in circles around Birmingham looking for the venue, called Bar One, where I was meant to be gigging with Tony. The satnav kept taking us to the postcode which looked just like a residential area. Assuming it couldn't just be in someone's house, we asked a bunch of students who directed us miles away near their campus. At this campus there was a Bar One, but it was having a quiz on that night and no evidence of hypnotism anticipation whatsoever. After a 5th call to Tony we ended up back at the residential area looking for some large black gates. We spent 10 minutes waiting at the wrong large black gates and then finally were led through the correct ones into an area that looked not dissimilar to Holloway Women's Prison. In this prison was another Bar One. Why anyone would put two bars with the same name in two different campuses of two different universities within 5 miles of each other is beyond me. Then in closer inspection we realised this was not a Bar One but a BarOne. The lack of ability to use a space bar indicated that we had stumbled on a bunch of fuck wits. 

I was not incorrect. The audience consisted of people doing courses that will no doubt leave them unemployed and fighting for crack. Subjects such as Sports Therapy and Culinary Skills. The phrase too many cooks sprung to mind, especially when none of them could recall anything they had learnt one their course so far. I suddenly realised where Wetherspoon's and McDonalds acquire their staff from. After a false start due to the microphone not working (always a bonus) I managed to do 20 minutes to a bunch of mindless drooling idiots. They only laughed when I mocked them and as soon as I did any jokes about anything else in the world they shut down quicker than a PC with Vista trying to do anything ever. When I had finished I asked the venue manager if they had comedy there regularly, and he said they used to. They had previously had some really top acts, but he said the problem was 'they just don't get comedy' so he stopped it. Who doesn't 'get comedy'? To laugh is a natural human reaction! The only way these people could not get comedy is if they are barely human. Although after looking at some of them post-gig, this was entirely possible. 

This blog took me far too long to write today due to many phone calls and random stuff. I'm spending today looking at finances and Edinburgh possibilities. There is nothing fun about realising that whatever you do, you will lose a crap load of money. Part of me wonders if instead this year I should not do a show at all and just burn two grand in cash for a similar result. 

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Two Shows Douieb

This blog will be a bit brief today. Not because I have nothing to say but because I have my solo show at the Leicester Comedy Festival this afternoon and I haven't really changed anything to it since last week. Better late than never as they say, and clearly those that say that are people like me who leave things until the last minute. After hacking out today's blog I am going to sit in a quiet corner and think show thoughts until its good enough to perform to the 3 people that have bought tickets. Yes, its still just 3. I'm hoping this will increase, but if it doesn't, 3, as they say, is the magic number. It will be magic in the way that they will all want to disappear, however I am doing my show whatever, so they will have to sit through their hour of awkward. 

Those people that say the 'late than never' phrase are often also those irritating people who say things like ' you can lead a horse to water, but it wont make him dance' and ' never put all your eggs in your mouth and make someone punch you in the face. The only one of those sayings I like is 'you learn something new everyday'. I think this is true and yesterday I learnt that kids are brilliant, but only if you can give them back at the end of the day. After spending two hours in the Science Museum with a 4 year old and a 6 year old I felt as thought I had run a marathon. In a sense I had after running around each exhibit with Angus (the 4 year old) only looking at everything for 30 seconds. Kirsty (the 6 year old) was brilliant and actually took an interest in several things, but for Angus the museum was just a rather large obstacle course in which he could spend ages making me and Layla worried about his whereabouts. To be fair it wasn't that traumatic, but I was annoyed that I didn't get to spend more than 2 minutes and anything I wanted to play on and I have vowed to head back there when its not half term so I can get a go on the bubble machine. 

While both the children enjoyed the Science Museum, the highlight of the day was that we took them to McDonalds. Its amazing how when young how the lure of a happy meal works. It suggests that you could stuff a bag with turds and put a toy in the top and children would demand it. I had my first McD's grub in well over a year and I can't say I enjoyed it. The veggie wrap they now do is akin to sucking the flavour out of a quorn burger (some might say there is no flavour to suck, but I challenge you to eat a McD's wrap and you'll be proved wrong) and replacing it with salt and card. Oh and mayonnaise. The worst thing about being there was not the food, but the lack of tables and the large amount of fat tourists not understanding how to queue barging past us to get a table first. I would have thought having two small children would be a queue jumper, much like being disabled, old, pregnant or so mental and covered in blood. Those are normally qualities people understand and allow for speedy table acquiring. Turns out that fat tourists are so desperate for their processed cow that they are willing to push a 4 year old so that they can eat it first. 

One thing that always baffles me is why tourists would choose a McD's to eat it. Especially the American ones, who, I would assume have them all over their home area. Why not choose something unfamiliar and interesting? Or was leaving the country enough of a challenge that they can only survive with home comforts afterwards and a need to stay as fat as possible? When I worked in Timberland as a student, 50% of our customers were American tourists. They would exclaim that while they could get the boots in the States, they wanted to buy a pair to take home and show their families that we sell them here too. I would often tell them that one day I hope to travel round American searching for tea bags and mild disappointment in order to tell my parents about the UK/US similarities but they would never get it. 

Hmm this blog has ended up longer than I thought. It must end now, if only so I can go and pretend to write a show and pray that I can just read out from Twitter for an hour and survive. 

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Love Is...

As much as I hate the Valentine's Day frenzy of crappy cards and pressure to spread love on the 14th February, being woken up this morning with a nice breakfast and a card was pretty lovely. I'm in a very good mood because of it, and the only worry is that I may be grumpy every other morning now that my morning expectation has been raised. This may be where I bring in the 'but I love you every day of the year' comments that I usually use to explain why Valentine's Day is crap, instead to get a nice breakfast always. 

I did my bit too. I got Layla a big bunch of flowers and a card. I'm so glad florists exist for this sort of thing. I never really understand about flowers. I tend to work on the basis that as long as they are nice colours its probably ok, but florists have some whole other skill that allows them to put flowers together in a way that my girlfriend loves. I can't see any difference myself, but having tested whether or not I could do it my way a few years ago, I will never forget the look of slight disappointment on Layla's face as she said thanks then quietly re-arranged them all. I always wonder why flowers are a symbol of romance. I mean, for something that is supposed to be about 'everlasting love' they all die in about a week. Surely that's the wrong message? ' I mean well, but it will all die very soon. Also if you are one of those people who studies flowers (a Titchmarshian?) then apparently blue is the romantic colour of flowers and not red. Red is the flower colour of Or something as bad. Probably. 

There was love in the air at my gig last night. Well, not so much love, but audience warmth which was good because a) it was Bournemouth, and I hate Bournemouth. Its my least favourite part of the Bourne trilogy. And b) it had taken me four hours to get there because other cars are arseholes. I remembered from the last time I had done this gig, that while they all looked like thugs and slags they weren't, and the two men who sit right in the front and look like the Mitchell Brothers are actually lovely. This relaxed me from the beginning and nearly all of them went with me on a 35 minute comedy ramble about many things. One person who didn't was an odd man in a tracksuit who kept running back and forth into the front row during my set. He said he was a baker but it looked like the only sort of cakes he would make were cocaine ones. After talking to him and getting nowhere (we discovered despite tracksuit he wasn't doing any sports at the time, so I started suggesting his outfits when he did do sports. Loafers and slacks for footie etc. I enjoyed doing that, he didn't) I left him alone and the rest of the gig went smoothly. Sometimes you just have to let an odd chav man run back and forth across your front row for things to work. That was my Confucius saying for today. 

When I got home I discovered I have some new Twitter followers which was very exciting. Apparently on asking them (for I am a nosey fella) they have all joined my bandwagon because they saw me messaging Tim Minchin about interviewing him. I did not realise it was as easy as that. I am now going to spend night and day pursuing an interview with Stephen Fry. I'm sure if that happened my followings would go up tenfold. Of course being only concerned with followers would be a tad shallow, but I am so sod off. 

No gigs tonight which is all good. Instead our day of romance will be spent taking Layla's niece and nephew to the Science Museum. I am very excited about this and I am a little bit worried that I will neglect the children completely in order to press all the buttons and go on the machines first. If it comes down to it, they are very easy to push out of the way. There is little love in the world of science. 

Friday, February 13, 2009

Leicester Comedy Festival Part 1

Its Friday the 13th today. So far nothing particularly unlucky has happened to me today unless you count not having had enough sleep on account of Rosie (one of my cats) mieowing in my face repeatedly until I got up. She didn't even want feeding, she was just being evil. I managed to get 30 minutes more dozing before she did it again for no reason. Now I am awake, she has decided to go to sleep. I am considering shouting in her face every 10 minutes as payback. Bella, the black cat, should be doing full Friday the 13th duties, and crossing lots of paths, but she is a lazy cow/cat and has been sleeping on top of our boiler all morning. I wish I could sleep on top of our boiler. It looks warm. I once slept on the luggage holding bits above the seats of a train but I think that is the closest I will get. I am not quite short enough for boiler naps. 

Yesterday was a long but awesome day. I put aside usual stand-up duties to do some presenting and interviewing for the lovely people at Comedy Demon. Jude, who was in charge of things, had only had one hour sleep due to house moving duties and so as she couldn't really focus on bits of paper I got to write some of the questions. Writing questions is a lot more fun than you might think. Especially if you get as carried away as I did and insisted on as many puns as possible and asking things to Tim Minchin such as 'If you were a lady would you be called Min Timchin?' and 'Do you have a minchin, medchin or maxchin?' Sadly those two didn't get asked due to time restraints but there are many others that are just as terrible. I also didn't get to ask Minchin for my crepe back. He still owes me for last Edinburgh when, drunk and hungry, I was about to tuck in to a cheese and mushroom wonder. Minchin then grabbed it eat half and ran away. Despite all his musical talent, he still has to scrounge for food like a pauper and steal from hobbits. Its just not right. 

I wasn't quite sure what to expect when interviewing people. I had met all three people we were talking to several times before but I didn't know if I would be static with them and just plough through questions or be able to chatter away. Luckily it was all a very relaxed fun affair with much nattering to Jason Cook, Milton Jones and the Minchin with hopefully some lovely stuff for the edit. 

After interviews we watched half of Minchin's show which was excellent, and then raced to Jason's show which was also brilliant despite the weird Liverpudlian man in the front. He was an old chap who decided he should keep talking all through the beginning of the show despite no one wanting him too. Less aggressive, more mental. Jason dealt with it superbly though and I was pleased I got to see his show as I was too busy being rained on and crying about my shows in Edinburgh last year. As well as all this I met two people (Lee and Hannah) in the face that I had only previously had interweb and phone contact with which was ace. Its odd how in this day and age you feel like you know people despite only ever having typed at them and had only the limited use of smileys for expression. Luckily neither of them were mental and instead were lovely so it was all ok. They were also the same ages they said they were and not a child/paedo granddad which was all good. 

The only error all day was my leather jacket. I was bought a leather jacket by Layla for my birthday this year. Despite being a veggie and opposing eating animals I love my leather jacket. I also don't eat it, so as far as I am concerned my morals are shallow enough to make that ok. My leather jacket is very good at being a bit cool and making me feel a bit cool, but what it is not good at is tackling the snow. There was no expectation of snow yesterday and so despite continuing with interviews and tackling the adverse weather by jumping in lots of cabs, I got stupidly cold. This was then not helped by filming the final cut of the feature in the snow outside Demontford Hall. Lots of people walking past looking at me with pity while I stood still for 15 takes wondering whether I would get frostbite or not. Once again, there was little to no chance of that happening, and as I defrosted I imagined Ranulph Fiennes waving his fingers stubs at me and calling me a 'pussy'. You may have your dignity Ranulph, but I have full fingers so there. Sad to say that yesterday was probably a point to snow. It now equals Snow 1 - Me 1. When will the next battle take place? Lets hope its not Bournemouth. If I get stuck there tonight it really will be the worst Friday 13th ever. 

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Mission Updates, Sore Throats and Compliments

Lets reveal all on Tuesday's mission right now. Firstly this is what we were up to:

I took lots of pictures too, but Jess is a proper photographer and so its best you just look at hers instead of mine which look a bit like they've been taken by someone with big thumbs and Parkinson's. That would be a terrible affliction having such great grip but the shakes. I feel a bit sad thinking about it. 

Anyway, so you know, the reason I was frozen and hated blu-tack was because I spent the afternoon sticking up those cards in phoneboxes around Westminster with my friend Louis. Its all part of a bigger project that Mark has spoken about in a Guardian podcast that will be out this week (will send the link when I get it), and will soon be on this website here:

I still have a sore throat. This is surely not at all normal. How rubbish must my throat be to not have got better in a week? Now I suppose I could argue that because I've been gigging everyday and talking far too much during the day times that I am not resting it. Despite the absolute logic of that, I am still determined to treat it like a sprained ankle and keep using it till it gets better or I develop a sexy Sean Connery type voice. That sort of voice probably wouldn't be great for comedy, but it wouldn't matter as it would have the power to melt ladies and sing jazz. Once you have those powers there is very little that can stop you. I mean look at Louis Armstrong. He was only stopped by a heart attack, and I bet it was a jazzy one. 

The gig at the Comedy Bunker probably didn't help yesterday. Not because it wasn't lovely but because I did a 35 minute set which by the end had me rasping on the mic like a beardy version of Macy Gray. Normally I think my voice (which I hate listening too) sounds a bit like Shawn of the Dead director Edgar Wright, but with added rasp, Joel (who runs the lovely Comedy Bunker) said I sounded like Nick Hancock. Somehow, even though it should add sexiness and jazziness, it has in fact demoted my comedy voice-a-like status. If my throat was to get any worse I would suspect I would sound a bit like Paul O'Grady and then with no voice at all Jim Davidson. I will start eating packs of Soothers asap to avoid that horrible conclusion. 

I've had some compliments at my gigs lately which is very nice. However I have never ever understood what you are meant to say when someone gives you one. Its not as if I've grown up in a family of neglect but I just get all a bit embarrassed and mutter 'thanks' hoping they will go away and be replaced by someone who calls me a 'fuckwit' which I can handle. It's a very odd disposition. There is a small part of me that everytime I get a compliment would like to see their reaction if I said 'YES! AREN'T I BLOODY WONDERFUL AREN'T I!' or just bursting into tears and giving a thank you speech like Winslet where I forget one of the acts who has been on that night and generally make myself look like a massive idiot who no-one will ever respect again. I think that sort of behavior will stop these people from saying nice things to anyone ever again. I will never do that though and instead will just get a bit shy and rubbish. If you see this happening to me, please come over and insult my family or something along those lines to help me out. 

I'm going to Leicester today. Not for gigging but to interview some people for the ace We are chatting to Tim Minchin, Rhod Gilbert, Mark Thomas, Milton Jones and Jason Cook among others which should be fun. I have written some questions myself which I hope to slip into the chat to make it more interesting. Either that or I will look like Richard Bacon in his annoying Big Breakfast days when people where disappointed to see him on their doorsteps at 8am. It used to put me right off my breakfast. Its a risk I'm willing to take for the sake of comedy so fingers crossed. Will post the vids when they happen. Now to get chomping on those Soothers before I sound like neither Richard Bacon or a great interviewer and instead like Paul Ross. 

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


When I'm not gigging I like to complain about how I don't have enough gigs and how broke I am etc. When I am gigging loads I seem to like to complain about lots of other factors, like lack of days off, and the fact that I'm somehow still broke. Ultimately it comes down to me being a moany bastard and terrible with cash. This month I have found a new gripe, insomnia. Its not proper insomnia as I do sleep, so really its not insomnia at all. What it is though is that the adrenaline rush I get from gigs prevents me from sleeping till 3am, which in turn means I get up later and waste my day away. Now I wouldn't mind this much if it wasn't for the fact that I'm fairly sure I'll need that adrenaline later in life for an inevitable heart attack or perhaps a lack of excitement about something. I'm worried that I will go on a rollercoaster in a few years time and just feel bored, or win an amazing prize and express apathy about it all. I'd hate to think that I will have used up all my life's quantity of adrenaline on sitting on facebook till the wee hours sending inane links to people. 

Lovely lovely gig last night at Buckinghamshire University. Although once again the students gave me a slight need to worry when a girl answered her phone during a gig, and when I started telling her to hang up, another student shouted 'rape her!'. Now, I'm not sure what kind of university it is, but any place where answering your phone illicits that sort of response is a bit scary. Luckily everyone laughed about it. Apart from the girl who looked scared for the rest of the night and me who didn't answer my phone once till I left. You can't be too sure. Apart from that, it was just great. Nice bunch of students who did that lovely ego inflating thing of insisting on talking to you afterwards and assuming you have some sort of celebrity status. I quite like feeling like a champion of the student world, until of course they talk for too long and start telling you why they thought it was funny to shout 'rape her'. At that point its home time. 

The other acts that were on were Adam Bloom and Sally Anne Hayward, both of whom had ace sets. There is a system in the comedy world that seems to mean that you gig with some people loads and others not very often or at all. I gigged with Adam last week and am gigging with him again tonight. Sally-Anne on the other hand I hadn't gigged with since last spring and she reminded me of the traumatic horrible gig that we were last at together in the souless pit of Weston Supermare. The gig itself wasn't too bad, as it was so quiet that the few people that were there were very nice. The horror happened afterwards when I had to stay over in the provided accommodation above the gig. Not only was I the only one staying there which was a bit scary as it is, I then had to try and sleep through the awful shit music they played downstairs until morning, for the disco with two drunk people in it. I have horrible memories of walking around Weston the next day praying for something interesting to do so I wouldn't have to go back to the flat of fear. Unfortunately Weston Supermare is the sort of town that you would only find interesting if you had been repeatedly hit in the face with an axe. Everything about Weston screams of crap. I eventually went to the cinema to watch Iron Man, only to discover that I was the only person in the cinema which is as terrifying as being the only person in a scary flat and I spent the whole film thinking about the scene in Scream 2. Luckily that gig no longer exists anymore, which is one of those small facts that makes the world feel like its not all bad. 

At the Comedy Bunker in Ruislip tonight which should be fun. They've said I can do as long as I want. I'm not sure yet if it would piss them off more if I did 3 minutes or 45 minutes. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Secret and Not So Secret Missions

Very late blogging today, which is mostly because since this morning I have been on a mission for Mark Thomas. Can't really say much about it yet, but lets just say it involved phoneboxes, lude cards, Westminster and the recent 'Peer for Hire' scandal. I am now very cold and never want to touch blu-tack again. However when Mark reveals all I will post up on here with pics too. I love doing stuff like that. Ever since I made Mark sign my copy of his arms trade book a couple of years ago I have somehow wormed my way onto his list of people he randomly emails with vague instructions for some sort of fun and politically motivated plot. I am a rubbish political activist and often feel this is the closest I will get ever to starting a revolution and overthrowing the government so I very much enjoy it. 

What I don't enjoy is driving all the way to Portsmouth in heavy rain, only to find out the gig has been cancelled and then drive all the way home again. Its a shame I don't enjoy that, because thats what I had to do yesterday. Portsmouth is one of those places that on a map doesn't look all that far away, but somehow they hired an alcoholic to design the roads so that it would take far longer than you think. Go on think about it. Longer than that. Really. 

Then after all that you get to Portsmouth and realise your journey was really not worth it. Especially last night when due to flooding, and general disinterest from the student population, Tony Lee's show only had 4 in attendance. It was a shame really as the venue was brilliant and if it had sold out like all the other gigs on the tour it would have been a great show. The disinterest may have come from the lack of advertising around campus.  Instead of the usual massive posters saying 'XXX Hypnotist' they usually put up, they just had tiny A4 size posters with a snake on it saying 'Hypnotic Comedy'. 'Hypnotic Comedy' sounds rubbish. Sometimes when I see a comedian die on stage I often get hypnotised into not remembering anything they said. Also sometimes excessively fat comedians can have hypnotic wobbling as they walk up and down. I can only assume that students think the same way I do and didn't want to see fat, crap comics for two hours. Strangely had the poster explained they would be massively humiliated by Tony and made to lick cream off people's arses and other terrible things, I'm sure the room would've been packed out. Students are strange like that. 

I was persuaded to stay for a drink with Tony, his lady who's name I never remember and awkwardly have to avoid addressing for said reason, and two of Tony's friends. Tony then regaled us with stories of Canadian's who hit people and real snow. He also insisted I try Sahara nuts. I have never eaten Sahara nuts in a bar because they are kept in containers that look like they have never been washed and contain more insect body parts than nut bits. On trying one, I realised I was right, but those insect bits are more addictive than you think. 

I still get paid for the gig which is good but essentially it feels like I have driven a long way to pick up cash and have one beer. It feels like that, because that is exactly what I did. Still nice to know that if comedy ever packs in, I have a great career ahead of me as a drugs runner. Got to have a dream. Mine is to make crackheads family's cry thanks to my awesome driving ability. 

Bucks Uni High Wycombe campus tonight. Not as far as Portsmouth and it has proper roads so fingers crossed a) it happens, b) I remember everyone's name to avoid awkwardness and c) they have Sahara nuts as I now need a fix. 

Monday, February 9, 2009


If there was a way to type in childish song then I would repeatedly type 'I've done a full show' lots on this blog. It all went much better than I thought it would and people said nice things, including some people who had turned up of their own accord and hadn't been harassed on facebook or anything. I didn't think that was possible anymore, for people to turn up of their own accord, but these few were obviously the adventurous sort. Personally I know I spoke far too fast, and the show needs loads of changes, especially the end, but I think it should be good enough for Leicester at the moment. Well those three people that are coming to see it anyway.

I asked people for alternative names for the show as 'Live and Let Diabetes' doesn't really work anymore. So far the responses I've had are:
Keep it as 'Live and Let Diabetes' - not what I said, please listen next time
The 28 Club - A few people liked this, mebbe I did too. 
Quarter Life Crisis - Someone I don't know suggested that, so I'm fairly impressed
Tiernan's Mega Super Funk Bitch Slam Down Hour - no one went for that, I'm not sure why

Afterwards I had a few bevvies with the lovely people that attended before Layla drove my adrenaline fueled self home. I have always had problems sleeping after a gig thanks to adrenaline. Its worse when a gig goes well, and last night I couldn't sleep till about 3 but also didnt have the brain power to do anything useful with my time. Instead I annoyed people on FB and Twitter and drove myself into a youtube spiral. The only thing that stopped it was this:

That video scared me so much that I had to stop using the interweb and at the same time was unable to sleep for longer as everytime I did, the egg man messed with my head. Truly one of the scariest things ever. Who on Earth was the ad man who thought that by telling kids a giant egg man shat out tiny kinder eggs with toys in would be a great marketing device? I hope he was fired. Out of a cannon. Into something uncomfortable. Like a row between a couple in a noisy pub. 

My throat is very sore which is useful as I obviously don't use it or anything for any work that I do. The plan today is to not talk to anyone till Portsmouth Uni tonight where I will tell four dick gags then go home. I only have one dick gag so I will have to say that one four times and slowly. Hopefully that will work. 

Sunday, February 8, 2009

My 1st Show by Tiernan

Its my first showing of my first show tonight. There has to be a first for everything apparently and I'm looking to tonight's show with excitement and absolute fear. I think I cracked what its all about yesterday and have written so many new bits for it this week that I'm proud of so hopefully it'll resemble some sort of decent hour. Either that or it will definitely resemble a bumbling idiot reading things of a pad while people just about appreciate that at least the venue is warm. I really have no concept of how much I've written either. I could have 45 mins of material or an hour and a half. I hope the audience bring provisions...

My mental clock is normally pretty spot on for gigging. By mental clock I mean my ability to tell how long I've been on stage and not the clock in my living room that has the ability to warp reality on the hour every hour. I don't have one of those, but I wish I did. Normally I can tell if I'm doing a 10 or 20 minute set pretty easily, but last night, for the first time in well over a year, I under ran. I'm not sure how that happened. The gig was so lovely and I couldn't have been enjoying my time on stage more, but realising I was only meant to be doing 15 minutes, I lost track of when I started, panicked and only did a mere 12 minutes. 12 minutes? 12 minutes? Last week I was accidentally doing 35 minute sets instead of 25, and now I'm in capable of hitting past comedy puberty. 

It was a great gig though. Our second night at the Comedybox was even lovelier than the first, with the sort of audience you wish were at every gig. Some nice MCing by the very ill John Robins, and then a top response for my set, followed by Juliet storming it too. Just what you want really. Although what I really wanted was to do 3 minutes more material. 

My tickley throat didn't prove to be a problem last night, but then managed to make me wake up three times by forcing me to cough in my sleep. Two of those times made our cat Rosie, who was very comfortably asleep, stroll over to my face and look at me like I had ruined everything. Its amazing how sometimes our cats can give me such a look of hate that I feel more sorry waking them up than waking up Layla. Hopefully I wont cough all the way through tonight and fingers crossed my cats aren't in the audience if I do. 

Sorry for an all over the place blog. Tomorrow will either be a blog of sheer joy and relief or a mess worse than this due to 40 people throwing things at me in a confined space in North London. 

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Snow Is A Loser

You how that snow keeps going on about how its ruining everything and how its the big snow on campus and all that? Well last night snow took it in the face as I drove myself and Juliet Myers all the way from London into the snowy depths of Bristol and back and we didn't die or skid or anything. There was even a bit on the way back where we had to drive at 30mph past a lorry that had skidded across two of the lanes and got mashed up, but we just drove on past like the Fonz when he drives past something. 

The drive there was one of the loveliest drives ever. There was a point past Swindon when all of a sudden everything was snowy and it was a bit like entering Narnia. Well if they built a highway through the cupboard. Then as we got nearer Bristol there was an amazing red sunset over snowy hills. We arrived in Bristol feeling all happy. Which was good because the gig we went too was all rather lovely too. Normally I wouldnt drive to Bristol for less than a substantial amount (I have standards you know. Those standards are 50p and a pie or I don't leave the flat), but last night (and tonight too) I agreed to do a paid half spot at the Comedybox Bristol because I hear its a lovely club and I have never gigged for Steve (he who what runs it) before. It was indeed a lovely club. There was a scary 20 mins about an hour before the show, where there was a hen-do of 29 downstairs and all of us feared their shouty, drunken prescence at the gig. Luckily they were only downstairs because their flight to Newcastle had been cancelled. Part of me wonders if Newcastle had missed having 3% of its usual weekend slag intake or if in fact as a city it felt strangely sober and cleansed and didnt know why. 

Instead the crowd at the gig were great. Stuart Goldsmith MC'd like a pro. When I say pro I mean prostitute, but a very funny, good MCing prostitute. I went on feeling all good about it when suddenly my throat decided to die and I became all croaky and snotty on stage. I had made several precautions against this earlier involving nose blowing and sudafed, but in the lights these had no effect and I stumbled my way through 15 mins of things quite adequately but sounding a bit like the Godfather. I managed to screw up one of my lines by focusing more on needing liquid to stop my throat feeling like a desert, but other than that it all seemed good. Juliet had a top set too and then we scampered back to Londinium to avoid lorries before Alun Cochrane no doubt rocked it. 

Today is all about writing tomorrow's show. I'm feeling a lot better about it than I was before, but still feel like it hasn't got much of a point to it. I'm going to have to give in and say that as long as its competent enough for tomorrow and the LCF then I have several months before Edinburgh to make it hella good. I will have to make sure I don't get to the week before my first preview without writing anything like the lazy arse I am. 

Off to Bristol again tonight for much merriment and road trickery once again. Anyone want to borrow my cold until later? 

Friday, February 6, 2009

Caring Folk

I'm not sure what goes through the minds of University Ents officers when they book in a comedy night, but using last night's gig as an example it seems as though their thoughts were 'lets waste some comedians time, and not give a shit'. This doesn't generally seem to be the mind set of a lot of uni gigs but at Middlesex Uni it was a whole new level of not caring. It was as though they had specifically made a point of deciding not to care, then not caring about that fact and all the while taking a dump on the idea of a comedy night. A big dump of no care. 

When I arrived there was no one there who had any kind of managerial skills around. One man made himself to be some sort of union chieftain by hanging around the lighting box. I approached him and for 1 minute he completely ignored me despite me being right next to him.He looked unnervingly like a mini version of one of the blokes in Hollyoaks, although I'm not sure which one, but he was acting just as badly.  It probably unnerves me more to know what characters are in Hollyoaks.  When he did turn around he opened with, 'You know how to use all this right?' This threw me a bit and when I said no, he told me that it was all very easy and that he would show me and proceed to tell me what button is for the cd and what's for the mic. I explained to him that I have no idea of sound desks (I am an idiot in that field) and I have to be on stage so can't do it. He just kept saying how easy it was, even though it obviously wasn't easy enough for him to stay there and do it himself. 

I went to find some sort of manager and finally when one appeared he also ignored me and Kevin Dewsbury, before sending his cohort, a women who looked lobotomised, around the room to hold a tin for money but not ask anyone for any money. She did this for 5 minutes then gave up and had to have a sit down because her brain was melting. Perhaps it was just a way to charge the car battery that was keeping her going. The manager then tells us it was a big night on campus the previous night and that they probably should've cancelled the gig. He then did a shrug that translated into 'I'm a massive fuckwit', and then he went home. Leaving us, mini-Hollyoak and a crowd who were mostly not caring about comedy and standing at the bar talking away. After working out the sound levels for the mic, we started and the 20 or so people who wanted to watch the comedy were very nice, but couldn't really hear the show due to the 40 or so people talking lots. I did the usual thing of trying to make them shut up, then getting the crowd to make them shut up, and they did the very polite thing of not paying any attention to us whatsoever. Something made them leave by the time Kevin went on and the gig became just about bearable, if only in comparison to the torrid unbearable mess it was before. 

I'm off to Bristol today. It is snowing there again apparently. It seems as though I am following the snow around the UK like a weak version of one of those hurricane followers. I'm less likely to see a cow whisked up in a tornado as an old man shivering a bit in the park. Still thats more the sort of role Bill Paxton would play nowadays isn't it? Less Twister finder, more shivery old man. As I type this, This Morning is showing an article with some gimp from Coronation Street going to the Maldives. This is visual punishment. It feels like its a personal attack by Eamon Holmes on us less gross people. Its like he's spitting in my eye with his horrible fat man spit. My feet are cold and I'm going to have to drive in the snow while some arse parades around in 31 degree heat and on a paradise beach. I hope that at least as she tried to land at Heathrow her plane had to circle for 4 hours due to snow on the runway.