Thursday, April 30, 2009


There is a dog a few gardens away from ours that spends all day howling. Not just a bit of howling but really howling, like a werewolf would as it was about to eat your face. It both irritates and worries me. I'm quite a sucker for feeling sad about an animal in distress and I keep contemplating calling the RSPCA. Thing is, I have no idea which garden the dog is in and so they would have to spend hours knocking on houses looking for it. Then what if they were to turn up to the house where the dog is and discover it just likes howling like a little whiney attention seeking mutt? Or perhaps sitting there looking smug while it plays a howling noise on a stereo or from its laptop? Then I'd be made to look like a dick and a liar. The boy who howled howling dog. So I have refrained from calling the animal police yet. Which means that until I give in, or someone else does, or the dog dies of neglect, I have to sit in my living room trying to work while all I can hear is a stupid dog howling. After an hour or so any empathy towards the dog has gone and I just consider leaping over the garden fences myself till I find it and put sellotape over its gob. Although if I did that then people would call the RSPCA and they'd come and hit me with sticks and the dog would be given a medal by Esther Ranzten or someone.

It wasn't as if I didn't have enough distractions yesterday either. I had set aside the day to do further work on my Edinburgh show, but instead other things got in the way like gig bookings, sorting my taxes and getting my card frauded by people in the fucking Philippines. I hadn't put the last one on my little list of things to do, but there it popped up anyway just to ruin 30 minutes of my day talking on the phone to some idiot in a call centre going through each and every payment on my card. 'Yes I did buy a coffee in Starbucks, yes I did use the cash machine right near my house, no I didn't fly all the way to Philippines inbetween buying the coffee and using the cash machine just to draw out £200.' You'd think that when cash withdrawals go against all possibilities of time and distance that it would be obvious I hadnt done it. But no, the stuffy headed twats at Barclays had to check just incase I had some sort of super jet and a willingness to fly halfway around the globe to draw some dosh out rather than walk down Seven Sisters Road again. I mean Seven Sisters Road isn't nice, but its not that bad. Even if it was my laziness overrides my snobbiness. And you'd think that if I did have the ability to do such incredible journeying in such short amounts of time that my missing £200 would be the last thing to be concerned about. There would be other questions about how I obtained such alien technology, the plans for such a machine and why I didn't tell my bank I was about to travel.

I haven't yet found out what the £200+ was spent on either. I hope they frauded my card for good reasons. I've had my card frauded several times before and previously it has been to buy boring things like car parts by some arsehole in Winchmore Hill, a phone call from America to Japan by some American and then internet purchases by some Ukrainians. I don't know what those internet purchases are but I bet they'll be for something crap like books on Amazon about card fraud or self help. I would like to think that if someone has spent the time stealing my card details they would at least use them for crack or whores or crack whores. Or to build a dangerous missile or something what they do in fillums. Surely fraudsters would realise by now that my account is not a clever place to be thieving from? I have nothing in it, except debt. I'm not sure what use anyone around the world has for high interest charges and overdraft fees. I'd like to know where they took the details from too. I tried explaining to Barclays that Layla had had her card frauded by someone in the Philippines just a few weeks before, but they shrugged it off like it wasn't important. I will endeavor to search our house for any Filipino's hiding in the cupboards or under the sink who might be stealing our cards and sending the details abroad. Failing that I will now just be suspicious of all people from that part of the world and will use actual metal medieval shields to cover my pin if there are any of them around. I may come across racist for a while but that's what happens when people mess with my dough. I cut up my card and then spent ages trying to put it back together again as a jigsaw. It was harder than I thought and considering I already knew what the picture was I gave up after ten minutes.

Off to Bristol in a bit for another gig in cinema. Word on the street is LOOK LEFT. The other word on the street is that this gig is rather tough as its actual cinema seating and the audience are bastards. Lets hope they are not bastards with pig flu. I've had quite enough of that this week. I might take a face mask and my medieval shield just in case.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Swines, Ducks, Spidermen and Zombies

This swine flu is causing all sorts of hullabaloo at the moment. I am as yet unfazed but such matters. Bird Flu and SARS didn't seem to cause as much damage as they said they would and pigs are far less mobile than birds or, er SARS, whatever they are. I bet they're pretty mobile though. Sadly there is no evidence of any pigs as yet having swine flu and the flu itself appears to only contain strains of bird and human flu. I'm not a master of genetics but if you combine a bird and a human you get a giant scary human bird not a pig. A giant scary human bird would be far more terrifying than a sick pig. Especially as it could fly and do human shits from the sky, and if you got one of those on your jacket I'd like to see you try and convince someone it's good luck. So pigs have unfairly been tarnished again. In Cuba pork isn't considered a meat, which is just degrading to all swine. I'm not sure what they class it as instead but as a veggie I ordered a cheese sandwich in Havana. The only other sandwich of choice due to the lack of culinary wonder in the Cubans diet was cheese and ham. I, obviously, did not want the ham and so choosing the sandwich lacking in ham seemed wise. Until my sandwich arrived, at which point I realised it had ham in it. Upon asking the waiter, he said it was the cheese sandwich as the ham and cheese sandwich had twice as much ham in it. So ultimately pigs need some better respect. I suggest next time a cure for something good is invented we call it the 'Ham Cure'. Of course people wont believe it works due to the inappropriate title so it may all backfire.

A lady in the front row of the gig last night was sneezing a lot. I made a comment about her having swine flu and all her friends pointed out that she had recently come back from Mexico. There was some general panic at this. I tried to alleviate the situation by telling her to only sneeze in the wine bucket she had in front of her as some sort of elongated face mask. Sure it was still filled with ice water but that's the price she would pay if she made me sick. I tried sending her to the back of the room but the people at the back of the room complained about this. I almost suggested that we just shoot her and cover her in quicklime thereby getting rid of any trace of the disease, but I thought this was perhaps harsh, especially as she was about to turn into a pig or whatever the flu does to you. I wish I had chosen the latter as she ended up being one of the most rude audience members I had ever met. She was a psychiatrist and looked down her (soon to be) snout at every act that was on, either giving them horrible bored looks or openly texting on her phone. She was not the only mad one in the crowd. It was a little gig in Ayelsbury in a cafe that from first appearances looked like it would be horrible. The stage was halfway into the room with the left hand side of the room being the crowd and the right hand side anyone who wanted to come to the bar for free and just chat. There is a flaw there, I wonder if you can spot it as quickly as I could.

The few crowd seemed nice but very odd. There was a woman who did nothing all day except watch TV and eat crisps. I was immensely jealous of her. That's pretty much my lifestyle except that I have to gig as well. One day I'll achieve the dream and get rid of the gigging and just eat crisps. Another member of the crowd seemed to insist that Aylesbury was famous for ducks. Now I have since been explained via @bopeepsheep (via Twitter) that the Aylesbury ducks are bred specifically in the area. This may be true but other areas are famous for inventing things, or building incredible structures, curing diseases or something wonderful like that. I can't help but feel that having to breed ducks Aylesbury is copping out a bit. 'Cant be arsed to invent anything, lets just claim the existance of an entire breed of bird is ours. No wait, lets breed it with a different coloured one to make it an Aylesbury duck.' Meanwhile they're pissing about with ducks they could have been inventing flying cars or a cure to swine flu. Do we need more breeds of duck? As far I as was concerned we had quite a few what with normal ducks, er, daffys and donalds. I don't really know about ducks. Just that they like bread but oddly not toasted cheese sandwiches which I think is fickle, although could be to do with a bad ham experience. Surely breeding something specifically isn't something to be that proud of either? Essentially you are messing with nature. I think the Aylesbury duck started global warming. Lets make this rumour grow until someone blows up Aylesbury to protect the planet.

The gig went really mental right towards the end with the psychiatrist texting away and sneezing, an Irish woman shouting at the Australian headline act saying she knew more about the Australian economy than he did and then some man called Neil just turning up and shouting a lot. It was a shame to end the day like that, especially after awesome earlier times as a zombie which had all gone very well. I looked very undead yesterday and then after it was all done I peeled my face and arms off which made me feel not dead but very very bruised. It turns out liquid latex is pretty dangerous. Having put it all round my eyes and nose I felt a little bit high on glue smells for the rest of the day which may explain why zombies always have rolled back eyes. Suze has an impressive fancy dress box at her house and so after zombie pics we took a series of mental pics of her in various hats/disguises with me as a zombie. Among the many costumes Suze has, is a full length Spiderman outfit. I was extremely jealous of this. I used to have one when I was four that I insisted on wearing despite the mask being too big for my head. After running eye first into a door knob at a friends fancy dress party that outfit was discarded and I have missed it since. I would willingly smash my eyes into doorknobs to get that costume back. I suppose I could just buy one which would be less painful. Suze's costume was a proper one too with none of those fake padded muscles on it, to ensure that whoever wears it just looks a bit weedy or tubby as I would. Suze decided we needed some Spiderman fighting a zombie shots for no one reason other than it was a genius idea. During said shots the doorbell rang and after some seconds debating over it, Suze went and answered the door in full Spidey outfit. Her neighbour was both amused and baffled. It was a glorious moment and I applaud Suze's avoidance of shame. I think more people should answer the door dressed as Spiderman if only to cheer up postmen. I thought opening it as a zombie may be a bad idea though. People don't know what swine flu does to you yet and it could well cause a panic.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Day of The Dead

Cant type for long today as I have to go away and be a zombie. Luckily this doesn't involve being killed and then reanimated, or being bitten by another zombie or any sort of voodoo charms. If it did then although the poster would look great, lives would be jeopardized and my Edinburgh show, more importantly, would be really rubbish. It would just involve me slowly staggering around and making a low zombie groan noise. I can't even think of a gag with that noise as a punchline, so I'm sure it would only be a 2 star show at most. Unless I fell over a bit. Everyone likes some falling over. Anyway, today's zombification is a lot easier that any of those and it just involves me covering my self in liquid latex to look all undead. I made a special trip to a theatrical make-up shop to but things yesterday which I got very excited about. The shop itself was rather deceiving as, on first entry there is wall to wall blusher and other womanly make-up type things. I was worried I was in the wrong place. Then sitting on the counter was a pretend (I hope) severed head with blood dripping off it and a zombie hand. They seemed completely out of place, until I asked the woman at the counter what I needed to be a zombie and she became all excited and handed me many goods. Yesterday afternoon was then spent applying a little bit of said 'stuff' to my arm to see how zombie it looked. It looked zombie indeed. There was a while when I was a bit scared of my own arm. I am a little terrified to see myself in a mirror later as I might get one glance and run away out of fear. That would make the whole photoshoot very awkward.

What terrifies me more is that the woman told me that taking the latex off my self wouldn't be easy and gave me some special remover. I thought nothing of this until later when I coated my arm in the special alcohol concoction and then tried to peel the zombie effects away. They came off ok, but so did all the hair on my forearm. To say it didn't hurt would be a massive understatement. It hurt like fuckery. Still on the plus side by the end of today I should be a lot more aerodynamic than I was before.

After toying with the undead - a term I use lightly as it could also be used for playing football with vampires, something I would never do. Mostly because their fangs could puncture the ball - I drove to Brighton for a lovely lovely gig run by the equally as lovely Angela. The gig is held in a really small and intimate room above a pub and is the perfect venue for trying out material and generally having a really ace gig. Sadly, just as I got into Brighton, Angela called me to say only 5 tickets had been sold and so the gig was cancelled. This was a little bit rubbish but also what happens in comedy so not a lot you can do. I headed to the gig anyway and stayed to have a drink with Angela and several other comics before everyone drove home. I picked up Rob Heeney and we raced all the way back to Old Rope to catch the last ten minutes of Stephen Merchant's headline set. While it was all pleasant and nice to see Rob, Angela and the others it was definitely the longest way I have ever driven for a drink. Essentially a lot of gigs are just driving long distance to do 20 minutes and then leave again, but you usually combine a little bit of sitting, maybe eating and basically not driving in there just to break it up. Without those bits you just become a driver which is whole lot less fun, unless you spend everyday pretending you are Knight Rider in which case driving anywhere is good. As me and Layla share a little VW Polo, the Knight Rider dream only ever lasts about 10 minutes.

It was a good insight into why lorry drivers are usually such miserable bastards. Maybe if they gigged at every stop they might enjoy it all a bit more. Guaranteed the jokes would be racist and mother-in-law-y though so perhaps its better they just stay lonely and depressed.

Right going to go zombify. Will post pics tomorrow if I can.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Speed Demon

Where the bloody hell has the sunshine gone? The sun is a bit like a wanton father or husband. Its not there for ages and you give up on it, thinking it'll never come back. Just when you've forgotten it exists, it strolls right back in pretending it can just rule the roost again, no questions asked. Then you are finally suckered into thinking 'Hey maybe it'll stick around this time, maybe its changed'. No such bloody luck as its gone off cavorting with clouds and rain right in front of us. The sun is a selfish dick. I'm saddened by the lack of sun. I'm going to Brighton later and I thought that maybe I should head to Brighton early and enjoy the sunshine and Brighton boho-ness. Sadly this plan has been entirely ruined. I don't enjoy a beach made of stones in the first place but wet, slippy rocks are even worse. And knowing me I'd be tempted to walk on them just because, and then I would die and get found on the coast of France all washed up. Which would be a bit rock and roll. But then I'd also have to go to Calais without the ability to buy cheap booze. It doesn't work out for the best.

My preview yesterday didn't work out for the best either. I had spent a lot of last week tweaking and changing bits, which ultimately meant that by the time I got it to the Hen and Chickens last night, I didn't remember any of the structure or jokes or words or anything. I like being organised and in control of my comedy stuff, so if I don't know whats happening I get all a bit panicky. As it was I raced through the entire show at superhuman speed. The show had a large amount of new material in it but was a full 3 minutes shorter than the last time I previewed it, which is a massively bad sign. To top it off I forgot to record the show despite having the dictaphone in my pocket which is probably for the best. Last time I recorded it I accidentally set it to record at 1.5x the speed so I sounded like an excitable chipmunk. I think if I had done the same last night the whole thing would've sounded like putting a record on the wrong speed. For younger readers just imagine if your i-pod went wrong.

I've always had a problem with speaking too fast when nervous. I remember my first ever gig outside of uni at the Laughing Horse in Greenwich. I went onstage such a bag of nerves that I was almost talking in tongues. When I came of stage Sion James said to me that the jokes were good but I needed to say them not at 110mph. He said it was almost like machine gun fire. It was lucky the gig was in Greenwich and not Hackney or people might have ducked for cover. Over the years since then I've managed to slow myself down somewhat. Not loads because I naturally talk fast. Why say things slow when you can say them quick and add more stuff at the end? Its worked for Busta Rhymes. Sadly Busta Rhymes doesn't do stand-up. Although if he did no one would understand what he said, it would probably be mental and shouty and rhyming things isn't funny. After having our attempts to buy a milkshake snubbed by Hamburger Union, I went back to my friends Sam and Ali's house where we discussed what my show is actually all about. This was incredibly useful and I think I know what I need to do for the next one. Apart from slowing down which is obvious. I'm worried that I will over compensate for that and speak so slowly that the show lasts for two hours. At least people would get their money's worth. And a nap too, probably.

I've got to go by things to make myself look like a zombie now. I'm excited about this and will be practicing with it all afternoon before the photoshoot tomorrow. The stuff I need is liquid latex which will make my skin look all cracked, and fake blood which will look, er, like blood. Must remember to remove it before I go to Brighton or I could scare a lot of people. Still I'd definitely get a seat on the train.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

O Karen O

Sometimes I am envious of music gigs. There are certain things you can do to kick of a show when you are a band that you just can't do as a solo stand-up. You can try, but its never the same. My friend Mat started his final university stand-up show by walking through a smoke filled door frame to the tune of Queen's 'Princes of the Universe', which was pretty good. But that's the closest you can probably get, without being the Boosh or Brand or someone like that. I mean you could definitely try but I can't help feeling that if I walked onto the stage at the Glee in the same way the Yeah Yeah Yeahs started last night, I'd lose the audience from the top. Their first thought as they saw the giant inflatable eyeball on the backdrop and then my luminous spirally headgear would be what a pretentious cock. Then as all the glitter cannons started to fire I would suspect several of the stag-dos would just walk out, with the glitter entertaining all the hens until I started telling jokes at which point the anti-climax would make them leave too, but not before one of them shouted a bit, accidentally ate some glitter and vommed all over the table.

The audience last night had no such thoughts about Karen O's entrance last night. Karen has the aura of a rock goddess. The eyeball staring at the crowd, I had 10 seconds of nearly guffawing at the glow in the dark mask, which I thought, would be very useful for cyclists at night. Then she started singing their new track 'Heads Will Roll', and suddenly it didn't matter that she was wearing what appeared to be giant multi-coloured spaghetti hoops on her back or that she danced as though she was doing odd yoga stretches. She didn't care, so neither did anyone else. The show was absolutely awesome. They sang all the songs I hoped they would, and I had to really restrain myself from belting out 'Gold Lion' along with them. It was only last night that listening to the lyrics I really have no clue what they mean, but Karen O is clearly a nutjob (in a great way) and so when she sings 'Gold Lion gonna tell me where the light is', I can only assume she has a large pet gold lion that shows her where her light switches are around the house. I would like that. I'd like a pet lion to begin with. I'm sure it would get along great with my cats. I'd call him Lional Richie or Mane-ual. Or Mufasa. Or Derrick. Or Ra-Ra-Rasputin. And then when I came home drunk late and night and fumbled for the light switch he could just growl 'Its over there.' That would be great.

Thanks to my friend Ryan I had a freebie to last night's show. It wasn't just a usual freebie, it was the sort that meant I could go in via the stage door which is always exciting. This also meant I could use the VIP bar and sit in a chair where I could see everything. This solved two of my main gripes about gigs in that I got served easily everytime and I could see everything without some tall twat standing directly in front of me. There was a little part of me that felt I was missing out by not standing near the front, jumping around like a loon. There was a smaller part of me that thought, 'hey where is the generic tall guy that ruins everything?' like perhaps it wasn't the same without him. However, the biggest part of me thought, 'Hooray I'm sitting down, my legs don't hurt, I can see everything and Richard Ayoade is sitting behind me!' That was all very rock. More rock infact that Stonehenge. Which is suppose is stone and not rock and so therefore its fairly easy to be more rock than that. More rock than the rock of Gibraltar is perhaps better. That's a pretty big rock. I like comparing bands to geographical locations or sights. It gives you a great idea of just how good or bad they are. Lady Gaga for example is less rock than Swindon town centre. Oddly Swindon Town centre has a great poker face.

Its an important event today. That's right, my preview. Oh and the marathon. As I have written in a previous post, I have utmost respect for everyone running the marathon today, although I am still consistently glad I'm not doing it. Every year I entertain the thought that maybe I could do it, but really really don't want to. There are lots of things in this category. I could bungee jump, but I really really don't want to. I could cut parts of my arm off, but I really really don't want to. This list can go on for quite some time. Anyway I wouldn't have had time to run it today because I am working on my show for tonight's preview, which is more important than raising money for extremely brilliant charities who help dying people. Or not. I have worked quite a bit on it since the last time I did it, but I'm not sure if it'll be better or just more of a mess. I am still yet to find an ending for the show which is a bit of a problem as it needs one. Unlike a cool track I can't just fade the end out which would be helpful. I was wondering if I such take a performance arty route and halfway through a sentence, very unexpectedly, maybe I could just stop and walk off. It would be original to say the least. And when I say original, I mean shit. Maybe I'll just do 50 minutes of the show and then for 5 minutes at the end I will don a luminous mask, fire some glitter cannons and sing 'Gold Lion'.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Star Treatment

No gigs today and for a very good reason too. Well its not a very good reason, its because no one would give me a gig. But I've turned that frown upside down (as I typed that I felt sick at myself. Sorry) because I'm going to see the Yeah Yeah Yeahs at Shepherds Bush Empire. I have never seen the YYY's live before and I can't wait. I can only assume that they are so good you feel the need to reply three times when people ask you if they were good. I wonder if when they started out they were called the ' Alright Alright Alright's' or the 'Ok but one really good song ok but one really good song ok but one really good song's'. I wish I'd copied and pasted that last bit, but instead I did it old school. Tedious, but a hark back to times when copy and pasting did not exist. Those were the days typists really worked hard, and men were men and women were women. Pretty much the same as nowadays really, except for ladyboys who are a bit of both.

I'm scared as to how I'll fit in at a YYY's gig. I'm a big fan of them, but I don't look like a big fan of them. I noticed this yesterday when hosting the Crawl. Despite adourning one of my favourite Mr Scruff t-shirts and my oh so trendy black cardie, I felt a tad out of place among the skinny jeaned, checked shirt wearing faux indie kids. I can't do skinny jeans. I tried them on once and it looked as though my clothes were trying to suffocate my legs. I nearly fell over in the changing room due to movement restriction. I did feel yesterday though that I was dressing how I wanted to and by doing so showed my ability to be independent and not dictated by a fashion scheme. Lots of the kids in the audience just thought I was uncool. The whole event was a lot more fun than I thought it would be. I had assumed that it would be like a festival gig with lots of people walking in and out and really not giving a crap about watching or listening to any gags. It started off very very quiet and ended up packed, but all the while, even though there were a few non-carers, there were a large amount of people that wanted to be there. Lots of fun audience members including a man in a hat who was on acid, a roofer and two kitchen fitters who we turned into a band called 'The Meerkats', two women who work in Gatwick, a man called John who is going to photocopy the Mighty Boosh, and three men who said they would shout historical heckles at me but instead bought me a beer. I prefer beers to historical heckles. Fact. There was lots of running on and running off stage for me, and my brain felt a little drained having to think of ways to keep things going inbetween acts, but this was helped by all the acts being ace and often doing over-time. Special mention goes to Marcus Birdman, who went on during a busy influx of crowd and dealt with the thankless task like a soldier who needed no thanks to complete his mission. Also to Tiff Stevenson who jumped in last minute and did an off the cuff 25-30 minute set because of a massively overlooked 30 minute gap between acts, that I was shitting myself about.

There is something that will always be exciting about being give a wristband and artists pass to any festival type event. It feels a little like you are a celebrity of sorts. I thought there might be perks to the Crawl Artists Sticker, Artists Wristband and Free Food Wristband I was given. I was very wrong. Firstly the rider didn't contain any booze. I didn't want much booze as I had to drive to my later gig but a beer or two would have been nice. I bet Madness, the YYY's and Echo and the Bunnymen had booze. I bet maybe they had our booze. I am going to make Karen O buy me a beer later. You'll see. Secondly, the free food was appalling. I'd assume that as it catered for all the bands, the canteen at Lock 17 was going to be pretty plush. As I arrived I saw two measly plated of salad, some not very nice pesto pasta and chips that were doing the backcrawl in vast levels of grease. I asked if there was a veggie option to the burgers they were handing out and I was told there were a few falafals but they'd all gone, so why not just have a burger. I explained that being veggie means I can't just 'have a burger' because its made from animals and they looked at me like I had just told them I'd punched their mum in the face and put her upside down in a dustbin. After giving me that expression I was keen to take such action. Its not really star treatment is it? I assume that's why so many rock stars are skinny, because they barely eat anything due to the poor quality of grub presented to them.

I then had to catch a bus home so I could drive to Bedford. All the way back on the 253 a rudeboy was giving me really odd looks. It took me a while to figure it out but by holding the bus pole only part of my 'Gaymers' sponsored wristband was showing. I gave him a camp smile just before I jumped off and he looked terrified. The later gig at the Bedford Corn Exchange was brilliant too, which is odd, as having done that gig a few times before, its normally fairly tough. I had assumed that after the brilliant buzz of the Crawl, Bedford would be like heading to a library. It seemed like it would be with very few pre-sold tickets, but then last minute the place filled up. The whole show was also helped by a man called Keith who had a voice as deep as Barry White and laughed, as Alan Francis put it, like one of those joke laughing bags. It was wonderfully infectious and he set the precedent for the room. It was all going well until towards the end of Alan's set he was laughing so hard he started choking. Luckily he didn't die as that might have made things sour again.

There was a measly selection of nachos and cakes backstage, and we weren't allowed free drinks from the bar. Comedy is so unrock and roll. Either things need to change so we comedians get more freebies, or rock stars need to start getting the same treatment as us. I want to see Kasabian having to buy their own pints and being greeted only with some salad that looks like its been pulled out of a bin.

Going to write for a bit, and then must make myself as punky as possible. Think I was smear some marmite on my face and leave all my clothes by the toilet. Then I should probably pierce something. Maybe one of the cats. All the kids will think I'm one of them. Or that I'm mental. Either way it means I won't get barged like usual so it's a plan.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Crawling and Begging

Just a quick blog today. Have to race off and host the Camden Crawl this afternoon before then heading to Bedford for a gig there. It shall be a busy day and one that contains a rather mental afternoon. I'm really not sure what to expect. I can only assume its called the Camden Crawl because its the only mode of transport the punters have after severe amounts of booze. Its certainly the only way Winehouse, Doherty and other Camden residents move from place to place. In fact thinking about it Camden should just have a series of travelators all over its pavements to allow movement in the area rather than static crawling. Of course were some of its individuals to crawl on the travelators all manner of piercings would get stuck in it and there would be all sorts of hell. I think I should probably not suggest this later.

This afternoon's venture goes on for four hours with me compereing inbetween each act. I'm fairly sure I will get tired and run out of things to talk about just 30 mins in. If it all goes wrong I will link the crowd by their piercings and chain them to the bar before running away. I might do that anyway, it sounds like a lot of fun.

Didn't do an awful lot yesterday. Any free time I get is used pretending to work on my Edinburgh show. I have a preview this Sunday and I've changed some things since the last time I did it, but I don't remember the changed bits and not all of them are funny. What I'm saying is, Sunday might be shit. Its a work in progress which means its allowed to be a bit shit, but people are paying to come along so it can't be that bad or I'll feel guilty. May have to do what I did last time and just tell some old jokes at the end to give them their moneys worth. Either that or I will chain them all to the bar by their piercings and run away. I'm liking this as a solution to most things.

My shameless begging for money towards Edinburgh has so far gained me £77.11 which is lovely. You can always depend on the kindness of strangers. I say strangers, but I know them all which sort of renders the saying useless. I feel terrible asking people for dosh because I've chosen to go to Edinburgh. To rectify this I gave two marathon runners donations towards Sunday even though its their choice to run. Its a similar thing to mine except they give their money to charity and do something healthy, whereas I will drink for a month and do a show to boost my own career. God I'm a selfish prick. Its nice people help me to be a selfish prick. If they didn't I honestly don't know how I could go this year. Even with £77.11 I still need a further £4k. Anyone have that lying around?

I will stop going on about this for a week or so, but for now here are the links to the donations page and the facebook group:

Right, proper blog tomorrow where you will be able to read about what happened at the Camden Crawl. That's if i survive after attempting to chain up all the audience's piercings. I'm slighty scared my watch will get caught and I will be trapped there as well. If no blogs happens tomorrow can someone meet me at the Oxford Arms on Jamestown Road with a large pair of metal cutters? Thanks.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Its A Long Way To Glastonbury, Its a Long Way To Go

I appear to have a slight mental block for remembering just how far away certain places are. I have driven to Glastonbury before and it took ages. I mean, really ages. Think of a long time. Its longer than that. So oddly when I was rung up to do a gig there again run by and booked by nice people I said yes without hesitation. It was a month or so ago and so I didn't even begin to work out to just how far away a journey it would be. It was like past me had some secret desire to screw up future me but not thinking things through. I'm like a really shitty Doctor Who. They would make terrible episodes if it just involved him leaving a banana skin on the floor so eight episodes later he could slip up on it whilst running away from the Cybermen. Saying that it would still be better than the shitty Easter special. Maybe I should be Doctor Who.

You have to weigh up how good a gig is compared to the distance travelled/time spent travelling for an overall enjoyment ratio. The journey there yesterday was horrible. Not because of the company, Andrew Bird and Dan Antopolski who used stellar chat and combined travel intellect to help us get there as quickly as possible, but because it took over 4 hours of solid driving. I don't like driving for that long without a decent break. I remember complaining about it once to Craig Campbell who then proceeded to tell me about the time he drove for 24 hours straight across Canada then got out of the car and did a gig. I felt my right to complain that day had been made redundant. Due to broken tube lines (which was no one's fault but we blamed Dan anyway), and lots of traffic we ended being behind schedule. We needed to be there for before 8.30 and the satnav said the ETA was 9.10. We saw this as a challenge. I have been moulded in this way by living with my friend Jamie throughout university. He spent everyday seeing most things as a challenge that had to be beaten. Everytime we eat food he would eat it quickly and then shout at the plate saying it had been defeated. We worked in the same restaurant and he did kitchen portering because they wouldn't let him been seen by the customers. Jamie would clean up stacks off plates in one go by shouting at them and treating each lot at a race against plates and dirt. While clearly a sign of mental damage, it has rubbed off and helps in times of emergency. Jamie is now a secondary school teacher and I can only fear for his kids, racing to finish work in time to avoid getting shouted at. Oddly I'll bet that works.

I drove faster than I ever have before, hitting the M4 at an exceedingly dangerous 110mph. Weaving in and out of cars like a comedy Vin Diesel with more hair, less muscles and the ability to act, we knocked the satnav eta down to 8.35pm. There was a quick pitstop for diabetic refuelling ( a Dairy Milk double choc - a creation of genius) and then we made it to the gig merely 5 minutes after the show was meant to start. We felt like champions, masters of the motorway. We had seen the rush hour and discarded it like I would discard the film of the same name back into the bargain retail bin it came from.

Then after such heroic efforts we arrived at the gig only to find it was the quietest one they'd had in ages and the first 4 rows remained unfilled. Full of groggy carhead (an official condition) I walked onstage and pleaded with the crowd to move forward on account of my lack of scariness. Only 6 people moved and in those six there contained a very miserable carpenter, his not too happy wife, a man called Zig, his minion Chris, an insurance salesman and a fruit machine repair man who decided to heckle me. Now none of those are people you really want to move forward, but it was a start. Heckles too meant at least I was getting some engagement from them, but when the whole rest of the crowd is deadly silent and the fruit machine repair man heckles you by putting his hand up first just as you are about to bring the first act on stage, it really doesn't help.

The night was ok. All the acts were ace, with Andrew, Dan and Stephen Carlin all doing great sets. I hadn't worked with any of them for ages so it was nice to hear all their new stuff. By the time I went on in the second half the few people at the front had swapped with other people just to confuse me and I was now confronted by a teacher who when I asked what she taught she told me she 'didn't teach food and nutrition'. Blood from a stone. I plodded through adequately. The organisers were nice and they provided us with free food and drink. Much of the crowd came up to us afterwards and said they had a great time. It wasn't at all bad. It just wasn't amazing. And for an overall 7 and half hours of driving it needed to be. Gigs that are far away should really step it up a bit. Next time I drive that far out of London I expect to be greeted with a fanfare, an audience full of people who are laughing even as we enter the room and a banquet of gold leaves and caviar. I wont eat the caviar because I'm a veggie but I would still demand its there. If I do gigs abroad this must be increased ten fold with a personal onstage introduction by the President of the country. I'd also just be happy if after a 4 hour drive the audience were awake and didn't contain idiots.

On the way home we hit a lull where Andrew had fallen asleep and conversation between myself and Dan had become void due to the melting of brains through tiredness. We stopped at Membury services, the first time I had ever been there. The woman in the shop made a real effort to take her time walking to the till to serve us. She had an expression on her face that I can only describe as the sort of face you would pull if someone directly pissed into your eyes against your will. I did see a car rapidly leave as we arrived so perhaps that had happened. Either way I shan't be gracing Membury with my presence again.

My begging for Edinburgh has begun. Its petty but I need a lot of dosh by August the 1st and I don't really know how I will get it. So far using this shameless begging I have earned £27.10 which is enough for about 12 posters and 4 flyers. If it keeps escalating like this I may even be able to afford 20 posters, 15 flyers and a pasty. If you would like to help my cause please follow the speech bubble link or if you know anyone who may want to donate or sponsor me please forward it on. Thanks you T-Fans you're my only hope:

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Empty Spaces

There was a guy at my school called Little Marlon. He was mostly called this because his name was Marlon and there was a bigger Marlon, and also a more medium height Marlon at the school too. Little Marlon was a fairly cool bloke and had one phrase in particular that I still hold as an important way to judge a party to this day. If a party was busy you wouldn't hear a single complaint uttered, but if it was empty he would stroll in and just say 'there are spaces on the dancefloor' before strolling straight off again. Simple as that. Obviously everywhere needs to fill up so he would never enter at the beginning of a night, but if by a few hours in this was still the case, Marlon would say that and everyone would know the event was a fail.

I don't really go to parties or clubs anymore because of my sad existance, but that does not make the theory redundant. Last night at Southampton Uni, there were spaces in the seats. Saying that golden phrase, the managers told us that the gig was usually packed every other week, as though we were some sort of comedy curse. It's not their fault to be fair, it was because there was a big football match on and football ruins everything. Living only ten minutes away from the Emirates stadium I can say for sure that it really screws a lot of stuff up. When Arsenal play it takes 40 minutes to escape my road by car and I can't even think about getting a tube or bus because 22 men in shorts are kicking a ball around. Then when they stop kicking it around, all the punters walk down our road throwing litter and pissing. At least with the cost of the tickets going up the litter has gone from pie wrappers to cappuccino cups so I feel its dirt of a classier nature. Last night it was Liverpool vs Arsenal so even when I am away from home, Arsenal's mission still ruins my nights. One day I will break Arsenal for all the hell they've indirectly given me. Maybe I'll put a dog poo on the pitch or something like that. They'll see.

I had driven myself and Nish Kumar up from London and we had discussed on the way, what could be the worst outcome possible for the gig. The conclusion had been that if Southampton was on fire and full of zombies we would just turn around and come back because fire zombies are pretty bad. However fire zombies would have been a tad more responsive than the crowd at the gig if only because they would be shouting 'brains' every 30 seconds and the noise of the flames and fire alarms would be better than the sheer silence we encountered instead. Because of the gaps in people - and by that I mean seats without people in, not people with large gaps in their bodies, that'd be odd - the gig was wonderfully devoid of atmosphere. The first few rows were empty until I coaxed people to move into them. Then when they did move they were tentative to reply to anything I said. They were interesting students though. Southampton appears to be a very intellectual university, which is odd, because that's very opposite to the entire rest of Southampton. Its also a very green, with trees and a small river running through it so it all looks very nice, again the very opposite to the rest of Southampton. Its a wonder the rest of Southampton hasn't found out about it and just moved in leaving the city desolate. I had been there once before, when I visited a friend there at uni. I had successfully challenged him at drinking and after a bottle of aftershock several beers and two bottles of wine I won. He then started drinking water and I headed to the double Southern Comfort and Lemonades for £1, quickly collapsing on the union floor and being carried out before midnight. I made an incredibly quick transition from winner to loser.

Several of them were studying to be doctors, with one student having the surname 'Where'. I'd like to think that somewhere there is a Doctor Who spin off called 'Doctor Where' where people are just constantly curious of his whereabouts. They could be joined by Doctor's When and Why and complete the set. Other students were studying English and philosophy, with a small group at the back studying 'ship science'. I was fairly sure that ships were all sorted now. Being that we are working out ways to travel to the moon, I cant help but worry how quickly those students will be made redundant. One student called Max, had a mohican and studied politics. I thought that perhaps he was the sort of anarchist punk who would have some decent views on what was wrong with the world. Turns out he's a Tory. This is terrifying, it means the Tories have finally worked out how to infiltrate the normal people using clever disguises. I wanted to out him like an alien in V. I will now start searching for other normal people that may in fact be undercover Tories.

We all just ploughed through the gig. Everyone had a good set that was only adequately received by the crowd, and it was one of those evenings where it was just a job. Right towards the end while Cole Parker was closing the show, myself and Nish were sitting at the back of the room. As we did, a very tall man just decided to walk up, avoid all the chairs in the audience and sit uncomfortably close to Nish, with his leg brushing up against Nish's chair. I looked at him and he whispered 'Don't laugh at me'. He was clearly a psycho and so to respond appropriately I got up and left Nish there by himself. I thought at least one of us should survive if he goes all nuts and attacks or rapes. Or both. Cole finished his set and by the time I went to pick up my bag, Nish looked genuinely terrified and the man was still sitting there completely still. We escaped as quickly as possible looking behind us incase he was following us to the car. At least we would hear fire zombies following us from a distance. And we would be able to outrun them easily too.

Long long trip to Glastonbury today with a car full of comics. Should be fun, unless I crash and wipe out a good percentage of the comedy circuit.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Local Loon Congregation

There are a number of local weirdos near where I live. Normally they have different peaks times for appearances. My favourite, the woman who sings and dances to her 80's Walkman with a variety of costumes that change daily is there from lunchtime to late afternoon. The men who look suspiciously like The Greek and his right hand man from the Wire stand looking shady in full leather jackets and flat caps regardless of the weather outside the butcher's shop usually from late morning through to lunchtime. The fat man who always looks a bit depressed with the world and so spends it watching everyone else go past is there from early evening outside the mini-cab office, but to my knowledge does not work there or in fact do anything. All the people who stand around with scary dogs shouting at each other and people that pass by are there at different times depending on their appointment at the Job Centre. Today, they are all out at the same time. I'm not sure if its the sunshine that has lured them out or if there is some sort of local Finsbury Park Loonies convention. I would like to believe the latter. Perhaps past hours, they all congregate and discuss where they need to be and what they need to be doing on a daily basis. The woman with the headphones is perhaps listening to careful instructions of how to look completely mental, but content while dressed as Mrs Santa. The Greek Mafia are probably like the security should anyone spot the ruse. And the shouty people are probably just shouty people outside the Job Centre. I've walked past them many a time. I really don't think they are capable of being spies. Although I suppose that means they could be really really good spies. I wonder if they all watch me going past and say 'there's that weird starey short bloke that always walks past here around 1pm'.

Just returned from a casting that every comedian ever seems to be going for, for Three Mobile idents. The brief was to write several quick gags about the internet or mobile internet which I found rather hard. I managed to write about 15, only 4 of which were possibly good, with all the rest being massively poor and the opposite of funny (which was confirmed as being Coventry on Twitter last night). I got the casting studio with poor jokes in hand and made a huge error before even entering the door. There was a big sign saying 'Door is open, please DO NOT press the doorbell', so I did what anyone who wasn't paying much attention would do, and pressed the doorbell. A rather tired Shoreditch twat lookalike told me in a disappointed sigh just to open the door and as I did I was greeted with the most horrible bell ring I have ever heard. It was not dissimilar to the beepy sounds of those singing birthday cards you might get someone you hate, except it went on for at least 40 seconds. The receptionist looked at me as though I'd just walked in and kicked a puppy at her. If they know that bell makes them so annoyed they could just change it for one that didn't sound so ridiculous. Maybe the receptionist looks like that all the time and so by putting the sign up she has made others feel guilty for her constant anger.

In the waiting room already was a rather over confident young skinny actor, and Milton Jones. If there was ever a comic you didn't want to follow at a one-liner audition it would be Milton. It could only have got worse if Tim Vine had been on after me. Luckily Charlie Baker appeared instead and we argued about who had to go on after Milton. All the while no one spoke to the actor. It was as though he was that person at the party no one invited and didn't know why he was there. Sod's law says that despite his lack of comedy writing ability he will get it because he is skinny and has curly hair. We know how TV works. Milton went in after actor man and there were many laughs from the room. This was disconcerting. Not least because Shoreditch twat man came out afterwards and told us they probably wouldn't laugh because they are too busy analysing you. Both Charlie and myself were discussing just leaving and then I had to go in. It was all very sterile as it usually is, just walking in, saying my name, reading 5 jokes out, then leaving again. They actually laughed at my jokes which was surprising and knocked me back a bit. So much so I probably rushed the whole thing and escaped as quickly as I could. As I got to the tube station Milton had managed to get his travel card stuck in the ticket barrier and now no one could get through. The ticket office closed at 11, and so everyone was doing that wonderfully British thing of standing around awkwardly kicking their feet hoping something might happen. I spent the time telling Milton he had ruined everything for me today and though that by doing this I might help the situation. Eventually a TFL man walked out of the closed office, from which he had probably just been sitting. He looked so annoyed that someone had created a problem outside of the specified times. If you are ever at Latimer Road tube station do make sure that if you are to have a problem, an injury, a terrorist crisis or anything of similar issue, just do it before 11am or after 3pm. I was pleased that no matter how amazing Milton is at writing one liners, he cant use public transport. Milton 1 Me 1.

The aim for me at my gig last night at Rose Bruford, was to try all the jokes for today's casting. I didn't end up trying any of them as the crowd were too nice to try new material on. Its an odd dynamic that works for trying out new material. While you want the crowd to be nice, if they are too nice, you won't really know if it works or not. What you need is a room of good cops and bad cops. The good cops will laugh when its funny and the bad cops will hit you with truncheons if you are trying to walk past a police barricade during a protest. A whole room of over excited drama students was too nice and it felt too much like a walk in the park if you weren't walking but being carried. Its not to say I didn't enjoy it. Before I went I was feeling really sick. I'd had two naps yesterday afternoon which is extremely unlike me. I don't do napping especially when I have things to do. After both naps instead of feeling better I had a worse headache and was shivering too. Layla took my temperature but it came back with no reading at all, which meant it was either broken or I am beyond temperature. I like to think its the latter. I managed to pluck myself up a bit and trek to the gig which did me a world of good. There's nothing like adrenaline from a gig and cheering drama students to get you through. Its not that drama students cheer anymore than normal people but I think its that they project the cheering better. From the diaphragm or something. So sad to know that all those happy faces will be unemployed in just a few years time, whether there is a credit crunch or not. Oddly telling them that was the only time they didn't laugh. Tiernan Douieb - Professional People depressor.

Monday, April 20, 2009

To Sleep Perchance To Sleep A Bit More

I don't understand why, when you oversleep, you feel more tired than you did before. Surely, using the idea of potential energy, I should be able to wake up with full liveliness and now stay awake for extra long. Using the same theory I could sleep through most of May and then stay awake all through Edinburgh in August. Isn't that what animals do when they hibernate? I thought they just slept for ages and then come spring they wake up and don't sleep again till next Winter. I've never seen a bear sleeping. Saying that, I've never really seen a bear except on TV and once in a cruel zoo in the US where they still kept bears. I agree its mean to keep bears, but at the same time its odd that keeping bears is cruel but penning elephants in a tiny enclosure is alright. Whereas keeping spiders in small boxes is definitely fine. In fact all spiders should be kept in small boxes and all elephants should be allowed to run around as they please all over Regent's Park.

I overslept far too much and have woken up with a headache, tiredness and a resilience to doing lots of writing I need to do for tomorrow morning. Conveniently we are out of any kind of painkiller, not least those special ones that kill pain and have caffeine in so you wake and up feel immune to pain which means you can run at lampposts very fast, among other things. Its probably all my fault for staying up far too late again. I did feel tired but got stuck in Omegle again. The first person I chatted to was an extremely right-wing capitalist. I decided that due to the anonymity of it all I would see how long I could cope with chatting to them. I broke at 4.33 when they mentioned they hated Obama and mentioned 'Indians who stank of curry'. Thank god for the disconnect button. I wish I had had the foresight to type 'RACIST' in big letters before I had done, but I opted to jump quickly from a sinking sink instead. The second chat was with a kid whose first question to me was 'Are you a paedophile?' I thought this was extremely clever of the kid to be vetting people like this as its guaranteed to catch out any paedos that may be lurking online. Its a shame its unlikely that they would just say 'yep, I am' otherwise they would be a lot easier to catch.

The 13 year old was into guns which is a tad scary. I associate kids with guns as being generally quite dangerous and a threat to the future. Then he explained he was into grunge which means he'll only kill himself or a school and then himself which is all ok. I was in that awful dilemma of wanting to tell him guns are bad and wrong, but then he sent me links to pictures of the guns and the boy in me went 'that's damn cool'. Sometimes the boy in me lets me down quite badly. I always fear I would be terrible at breaking up fights because child me would take over and just cheer someone on. That and my height means I could only really successfully break up a fight between smurfs.

I hosted a competition heat last night, my least favourite type of all gigs. 24 acts all doing 1.30-2 mins of material in a room with no mic and only 3 members of audience, with the rest of the audience being made up of acts crapping themselves because they were about to go on. I was expecting the worst. Oddly it was ok. Out of 24 acts there weren't that many promising ones, with only a few showing a couple of good gags or good stage presence. What was odd is how many of them resembled current stand-ups. I remember when I started out the hordes of Izzard, Bailey and Ross Noble impersonators. But the new breed all resemble Brand, McIntyre and various incarnations of Mock The Week acts. I found this all strangely refreshing, but probably only because I am selfish and liked not feeling remotely threatened. I did very little MCing due to the large amount of acts and walked away having been decently paid and much earlier than I thought I would. This all seemed a little strange until I checked my Twitter account to see that 'Team Tiernan' (@misswiz @h2osarah @nwoolhouseuk @karenbirch and new member @angryfeet) had been doing cheerleading motions for me online. I had never expected such lovely online support but I praise their efforts and feel as though the brevity of the gig is down to them. Go Team Tiernan! I am now trying to persuade them to accompany me to every gig especially ones in Coventry. It can only be for the best. As long as Tommy Tiernan doesn't try and steal them for himself....

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Return to Cov

I had a small celebration at about 10.20ish last night as we pulled away from my gig in Coventry, and that was that I wouldn't have to be returning to Coventry for quite some time. I almost did a dance in the car, although it would have meant I'd have crashed into the central reservation damaging the car, and then leaving myself stranded in Coventry for longer than necessary. So I drove with extreme caution and then sped a bit along the motorway just to make sure I got away as quickly as possible. I need to stop doing this. I am generally a very safe driver but occasionally I get overexcited about escaping from a gig. I'd love to say its my eagerness to get home, but its not. The only ever speeding ticket I've received was trying to escape Hull as quickly as possible. I almost felt like the DVLA should have let me off that one. I bet a lot of people get points for that.

It wasn't the people at last night's gig. Well not most of the people. There were a couple of idiots, including one woman who I gave a put down line to that I will be proud of for about a week. I rarely boast of these things but it was the sort of retort that made the crowd laugh and the woman shut up all at once, so I felt like a deserved a small medal or a scout badge or something. Apart from her though and one or two chatty people, the crowd were very nice. Oddly there was a woman there who was having a birthday and had been at my gig on Wednesday. She seemed alive today, but only just, and she was extremely orange. I wanted to look at her to work out where she was sitting on Wednesday, but everytime I glanced sideways my eyes felt like they were burning and I had to look away. I bet she is constantly annoyed by moths. She was with a large group of women out for her birthday and they were so nice, that when one of them got too drunk, they all left as they didn't want to embarrass themselves. I mean, if that occurrence was a steak it would be rare. So that's the kind of people they were. Nice people. People that probably didn't have a choice at living in the least cultural city in the UK, but by coming to comedy they were trying.

The problem was the venue. Unlike many comedy events which are set in purpose built clubs, pub function rooms, theatres or venues of similar description, this gig was in a cinema. Well, you might say, the venue is already purpose built for a type of entertainment, what could go wrong. Boringly, the first bad thing is the acoustics. The walls are built so you can hear the screen and were the screen able to, it could not hear you. One day in the future screens will hopefully be able to hear people and after several viewings might have the ability to choose never to show a Zac Effron film again. While that type of sound is all good for cinema screens, for comics its a nightmare. Even when the crowd laugh, the laughs get sucked up into the walls and the high ceiling and from the stage it feels like you are trying to get an iota of blood from a stone that have never even seen or heard of blood in its life, and once when its cousin, a pebble, saw blood, it feinted. It wasn't that tough, but it felt like it was. So every act, who from offstage seemed to be storming it, would walk off stage feeling deflated and shit. Try as I might, by the third time I had to walk on stage I really didn't care. I felt like I was being unfair to the people, but like the house in The Shining the building was bad. Oddly enough had blood started pouring down the walls it might have made the sound a little better. I may suggest this next time.

Luckily Rex Boyd was a true gent and said he would close the show for us allowing myself and Juliet Myers to escape at the earliest opportunity. Before I did I took three beers from the fridge backstage and put them in my bag. Some might call that petty theft. I say it was fair. The arse of a cinema manager refused to give me a bottle of water for free, grumbled about having to get me a diet Pepsi when there was fat Pepsi in the fridge, and then wouldn't give me a free popcorn. I can't be in a cinema without having popcorn. I've tried to create reason for this such as pretending its some sort of talisman against bad films, but its doesn't seem to work. Instead I just succumb to the fact that I just like popcorn. I often wish more food would pop in a similar way. Popcheese, popchoc and popratatoullie can't be far away. I thought of all the times I might be able to get free popcorn, it would be today. But no, I had to buy my own and when I got it, they handed it over to me in a paper bag. A PAPER BAG? What? Am I not to be trusted with a cardboard carton? I could see them there, just sitting there mocking me. I wondered if there had been some sort of incident in Coventry before where some dickhead had got his head stuck in one, or accidentally fallen off a cliff and onto a cardboard carton just so they were now banned. To be fair they were right not to give me one. Had they done, I would have really fucked stuff up like a mentalist. Or more likely, I would have been able to hold my popcorn in a convenient and easy manner, the bastards. So I think those beers were mine.

I have several other long journeys this week with Southampton and Glastonbury, and then a busy day at the Camden Crawl and Bedford on Friday, but all of these are nice places. I'll be amazed if any of those gigs have members of the audience who fall asleep in the front row, or require being called a slag. I will return to Cov at some point, but I will be prepared and bring a crate of red bulls and some books with art in and pictures of places that aren't made of concrete.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Crocodiles, Cowboys, and Pilots

I had agreed to help out with the Comedy 4 Kids workshop this morning at the Soho Theatre, which meant an earlier start than usual. I used to be great at mornings, back in them days of old where I pretended to do a proper job and everything. Back then I would wake up at 7am, make a cup of tea and be skipping along the way to my place of employment feeling like I had seen the beginning of the day. Admittedly once I had reached my dull day job all the energy would be sucked out me immediately and I would become a lifeless wreck who spent more time on facebook than anything important. The latter aspect has not changed one bit. Sadly the ability to cope with mornings has. This is partly to do with having a time table that means I don't finish working till 11 at night and then don't end up home till the wee hours (those are the early hours, not the hours I wee in). Its also party to do with not having to get up. If I don't have to, then I am very happy to stay in bed, one of my favourite places to be. Beds are underrated. You can do a lot in a bed. You can eat in it, sleep in it, shag in it, jump on it, watch TV from it, read in it and create a den with it. If you know of any more uses for a bed, please let me know. I might write one of those shit posters that says '10 Ways Why a Bed is Better than a...' and will fill in the blanks with various 'hilarious' items such as 'women', 'men', 'bears' and 'cellos'. Then students will buy them at the thousands to put up in their dorm rooms until they get old enough to realise it doesn't make them individual and instead just makes them a loser with no sense of humour.

So feeling a tad groggy I walked into the workshop today to be greeted by the sight of 15-20 kids all shouting at each other. One was dressed as a cowboy, one as a pilot, one waving a giant inflatable crocodile and several others swinging random items such as a furry puppet and fishing net. It hurt my brain. I took a deep breath and walked straight out again, got a cup of water and braced myself before heading back in. The kids that do stand-up workshops are tiny versions of adult stand-ups. By that I mean they have massive egos and seem to be a bit socially incompetent. In a nice way. One of them, who was a bit of a genius, looked scarily like Warwick Davies. I tried to think of a way I could get them to re-enact Willow but I though the parents might get suspicious if one child goes home telling them the teacher wanted him to be 'Val Kilmer'. The Warwick boy's name was Oscar and I asked him if he got handed out at film awards ceremonies, but this just confused him.

The workshop was good. I learnt the hard way that if you get a group of three kids to improvise a situation that has been given them by the audience, they will completely ignore the situation and run around how they please. After that, there were no more impro games. I also learnt that by getting them to talk about what's in the room, without explaining you need to make it funny, they will just point out exactly what's there. We didn't play any more 'point out what's in the room' games after that. I then worked with the three boys who would be doing sets at the show. I went through all their sets with them and told them which bits were strong and which bits could be expanded. They went on stage at the show and just did what they liked. After that I decided I am not very good at doing workshops for kids.

The show itself was really fun. All three kids did really well, as did Richard Sandling with his mind-tricks for kids, and Brendan Dempsey's awesome dinosaur impressions. I did make one further mistake of the day when I asked the audience who had unusual pets and a little girl said she had a snail. I asked her if she actually had it as a pet or it was in the garden. She replied with garden so I told her it wasn't a pet, it just lived in the garden. It was only then I found out that she had named it Gerald and made it a box. I felt a bit like I had crushed her hope of having pets. I told her it was in fact a pet, which then stupidly lead to loads of other kids telling me they had flies and bees and millipedes. I will never learn.

Heading back to lovely (sic) Coventry tonight, to do a gig in a cinema. I've done it before and its an odd experience due to the acoustics and the fact its IN A CINEMA. I'm still weighing up whether or not to start with some trailers and if I should get some popcorn to throw at the crowd. This is what happens when you do Comedy 4 Kids before you have to do an adult gig.

'Hey!' you might say, 'Don't leave it there! What about last night's gig? If we recall it was at a football club in the home counties, there must be something to write about?' Well no, there isn't. Despite all possibilities that it was going to be hell in a Buckinghamshire based sports shack it was truly delightful. I wouldn't ever use a term like that but little else could describe it. They were an incredibly nice audience. So nice and comedy savvy in fact that when Mike Belgrave, who was MCing asked them if Chesham was a chavvy area they said a collective 'Yes'. He said 'But it doesn't seem chavvy?' and they all seemed confused, at which point Mike said 'I live in Peckham'. There was the best collective knowing 'ah' I have ever heard. They also cottoned on to some classical music gags from Mike and Helen Arney, including someone in the crowd shouting 'Orff' as a heckle. Amazing. I had a really really nice set and got home in 45 minutes. Dull isn't it? Such a shame for you readers when it all goes a bit lovely. I liked it, but I know that's selfish so I will try my best to have a miserable time this evening to indulge your schadenfreude. Which incidentally isn't when the famous psychiatrist steps out of the sunshine. Boom, I made a funny. With gags like that its highly likely tonight will be terrible.

Friday, April 17, 2009


Loads and loads of stuff to do today. None of it is remotely fun. With the best intentions I stayed up really late last night thinking maybe I could get some of it done then, but instead felt too tired, chatted to people on Facebook and consequently stayed up even later in a semi-awake state chatting about Greek gods that don't really exist. Now I have been up for three hours and feel so exhausted from staying up late I still haven't got anything useful done either. Which means I am now wasting away time chatting to people on Facebook again. Its a vicious cycle, all created by internet socialising sites. Yes they might bringing the world together but I think that if it wasn't for sites like that I would have six hour shows by now, and would have written three best selling novels and one crap one no one liked that would have taught me not write a detective story about badgers with hats ever again. Although more likely than this, I would have just found something else to distract me with. I wonder how people procrastinated in medieval times? No internet, xbox or daytime TV. I can't imagine a monk beginning to scribe an important text before suddenly deciding he'd better do some ploughing first. Maybe that was why they used to get stuff done. Whatever you tried to procrastinate with was always just as tedious and dull as what you were doing in the first place.

I would like to think that if the internet had been invented many many years ago that lots of other things wouldn't have been invented. Of course I suppose that would make the internet much more dull than it is now as you wouldn't be able to buy half as much if it wasn't there and then ultimately people would get bored of surfing the net and invent stuff as a means of something else to do. I always wonder if the inventor of the internet knew that while creating something truly amazing he was ultimately destroying so many possible great things. I can blame a lot on him. It would be easy to say that I wouldn't have done all those amazing things had the internet not existed but it does so I will blame him. Its like all those fat people that tried to sue McDonalds. If McDonalds hadn't been there in the first place those people would probably still be fat. Or starving and bizarrely as malnutritioned as they would be had they only been eating McDonalds.

The things I have to do today are:

1) My frikkin' Edinburgh show. I have a preview next week and really really need to work on it so its not exactly the same as it was last time and will now include my telephone gag. However, I know its a week away and so I have conned myself into not worrying about it. Now, instead, I am worrying about not worrying about it. I think I have serious issues.

2) Sponsorship. I still don't have any and to make it worse I received three emails in my inbox this morning from companies telling me they don't sponsor comedy or individual tours. I can't work out why not. Comedy is a brilliant thing to sponsor. Especially when the comedian spends the first five minutes criticising all the logos on their posters and how they hate whatever drink it is that sponsors them and how the company kills babies. Why wouldn't you want to promote that? Oh wait....

3) Something I can't tell you about. But I will. So just wait. You're so bloody impatient.

4) I'm helping with the Comedy 4 Kids workshop tomorrow. I have to invent a few games for them to play. I'm wondering if 'knife juggling' and 'putting your head in a fire while the teacher has a snooze' are allowed.

5) An actual gig. I have to be in Chesham tonight. I should probably do some jokes while I'm there. Of course I could not do any jokes which would lower the bar for all the other acts and then they will have a great gig. I'm very unselfish like that.

6) The washing up. I have been holding it off for several days but there is now a smell emanating from the sink that if I don't deal with it soon will require a hazmet team to come and take it away. I'm genuinely scared something has died in there.

Right must get on with all this stuff. Although someone new has just followed me on Twitter and then I'd better Tweet that I have blogged and then should probably check Facebook too. I'm so not getting anything done today.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Night of the Dead Living

God its horrible when it rains isn't it? Its not so bad, when its rains for a few months. Then you get used to the backs of your jeans getting soaking and your jacket smelling a bit like you've put a wash on and not hung it out for 7 years. Then when rains for longer than a few months it gets really depressing, much like last year when it seemed to rain all 365 days and people started to build arcs. If then in continues past that people get less depressed again as we all start to evolve to grow gills and do well at swimming in the Olympics. Then we all remember how shit Waterworld was and get depressed again. But most depressing of all is when it was NICE AND SUNNY AND HOT YESTERDAY and then the weather decides that was our summer and gets all rainy again. It's almost as though the climate has shown us there is some hope we won't all get rickets and then at the last minute has realised we don't deserve it for spraying all the CO2's at it and so we get more rain. I don't like it. Not one bit. Although I did just walk to the bank during 'lunch hour' and it was empty so maybe its not that bad.

Last night was even more depressing than the rain. It was my first of two trips to Coventry this week. I'm not sure what I've done to deserve this, but I've obviously annoyed someone somewhere along the line. The gig last night was a gig I had done before about a year and half ago and had fond memories of it being nice. Conveniently, Tiffany Stevenson was doing a gig 15 minutes away so we could share the lift which was a bonus and we had a top journey up where we complained about all the wrong things in the comedy world. It turns out there are many of them, or at least enough to last a journey there and back. We worked out several solutions to things and it all involves all other comedy people dying and then me and her getting all the work. I'm not sure how likely this is to happen, but there's no harm in trying. Oh wait, there is. I dropped her off at her nice gig in a little pub in Nuneaton run by Jim Smallman, and where Russell Howard was making a surprise appearance, then I drove off to my gig, which I assumed would nice in its own, less nice, Coventry based, way.

Saying it wasn't nice is an understatement. Its also an overstatement. It wasn't really anything. I'm not sure if it was post Easter weekend, or just because they live in Coventry, but the entire audience seemed dead inside. Now before I blame it entirely on them, which I will, I'll be honest and say I felt a tad rusty. Again rusty is probably an understatement. It was more like some sort of metallic fungal disease that had rotted away my entire comedy mind. I'd only had 6 nights off, but those nights off had included some sleeping, boozing and reading strange messages from French people, and my brain had relaxed a little too much. So when I stepped onto the stage to whip the audience into a frenzy, I was probably a bit more lacklustre than usual. However this was not helped by the zombies' inability to respond to any queries with anything more than a grunt or at best a one-word answer. They refused to partake in banter, they refused to whoop and cheer for the acts and everything was responded to with a quiet and tentative applause as though they were watching something as tedious as a bowls tournament. The tragedy was that most of them had very interesting jobs, where there would have been a lot of fun to be had, had they wanted to have any fun ever. One was a lecturer in Animal Care, who had a pet skunk, one was a juvenile rehabilitator, one man sold classic Jags but did not own a jag himself, one lady lived in Turkey and got angry when I criticised Coventry canal, and one guy was a gas man. That there would normally be a comedy goldmine, but it wasn't last night. All responses would have been the same whatever anyone did, they were dead inside. I was starting to think they, like Ulyssess 31's family and friends, had been suspended and frozen in time as a punishment by the gods.

But just when all hope had been lost, a couple in the front started talking too much. The man decided he wanted to partake in the show and decided to respond to every question I had for him with lecture like answers and blab away thinking he was funny, but failing miserably. Meanwhile his wife got drunk on two glasses of wine and piped up loads as well. A whole room of people that didn't want to talk, and then right at the front two people that talked too much and irritated the hell out of me. If there had been a way to blend them all together, using the couple as the few drops of Tabasco in a vegetable juice, I would have done it. In fact, I think I'd just like to have put them all in a blender. Screw the gig, lets blend idiots.

All the acts trundled through as best as they could and the crowd eventually started to wake up a bit. Oddly as the dead people arose, the couple at the front got quieter and quieter until the drunk wife actually fell asleep. In the front row. There is nothing to make you feel quite as unwanted as a women who cares and enjoys the gig so little that she passes out. Her husband, rather than take her home, left her asleep on his lap and stayed at the front. Every comic commented on it, everyone else in the already miserable crowd frowned upon it, and the husband didn't care a bit. I love people. Such considerate lovely creatures we all are. The final act was meant to finish on a musical number but gave up, called the sleeping woman's husband a c*nt, and walked off. I gave him the biggest round of applause for the evening.

I picked up Tiff from her lovely, fun and enjoyable gig with a fully awake crowd and we drove back complaining about sleeping idiots and who should be killed first. I haven't got a gig tonight, normally this would annoy me, but after last night I'm quite happy to leave it another day. Hopefully this will give the public slightly more opportunity to wake up. If not, I am going to start to take adrenaline shots to gigs and stab the front row with them just before I walk on stage. If nothing else, watching them spasm will make it fun for me.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Can't Speak French

I made what I believe to be an unfortunate decision when I was in Year 8 of secondary school. I had weighed up the odds: Choose French and deal with scary but slighty sexy Madame Law, or choose German and get the very nice teacher Miss Gibson. Scary overrode sexy when it came to Madame Law. The knee high boots, short skirts and French accent were only so much of a incentive when it was counteracted by the shouting, the detentions and lack of tolerance for slowness to learn French. And so I chose German, a language that is shouty and has brilliantly hilarious words such as pferd and kunst. Both of these were funny all the way through to GCSE. However after making my choice, within 6 months our lovely German teacher had left the school for maternity leave and so had scary Madame Law. Instead us German learners got a pale shade of Miss Gibson who liked shouting at everyone for no real reason and whenever someone did something wrong ie throw a large ball of paper at her stupid shouty head, she would turn around point her finger at whoever she thought was the guilty party and say very dramatically 'The Finger of Suspicion Points At You!'. She was a dick. Meanwhile Madame law's replacement was a lovely, cheery teacher that everyone liked and spent the next few years enjoying learning one of the sexiest languages in the world. I however spent that time hating my choice while still sniggering at the word kunst.

For me, not choosing French was doubly stupid as I have a whole load of family in France. Loads of them. There are a vast number of Douieb's in Paris as well as other areas of Northern France and North Africa. And I haven't met any of them. Well thats not true. I've met one, called Gilbert, who has hands the size of my face. He was a huge gent, with a kindly nature. Well at least I think he had a kindly nature, I couldn't actually understand anything he said. Translated he might have been calling me a sniveling little cockface, but if he was he said it with a nice big smile and friendly gestures. I'd love to be able to chat to them all and not just so I have somewhere free to stay in France or could get sent nice cheese, but also because they seem fascinating. One of them is a doctor and a Krav Maga expert, one does comedy in France which is ace, and two are Scientologists, so I could tell them what utter fucking idiots they are and disown them using the right masculine or feminine nouns.

One of them just tried to get in contact with me on Facebook. I'm not sure if he's a direct relative or in anyway related, but he's a Douieb and seems excitingly eccentric. He looks a bit like a bear and wears a hat so I'm sure he is related. So far he has sent me one long message in French which I didn't understand, and so he has made some attempts to write to me in English all of which have provided brilliant sentences that make little sense. For example:


I have no idea what that means. Is it to do with his incredibly high judgement of the rhythm of horse? Perhaps he is criticising this horse because he once knew a horse that did sound like Bach? If only I spoke French we could actually chat and understand what he really means. Here's another brilliant one:


Just no idea. No idea what that means at all. If I knew French I would either be able to work it out or at least know if he is just a mentallist. I will respond later and maybe put in some phrases that don't make sense to see what happens. Things like 'A tortoise dances, but if you watch his dancing he will never be Michael Flately.' See how he deals with that. Of course I could just learn French but then it might stop being fun. Also I am very good at pointing and shouting at things when I go there just to make them all sigh and think I am an English pig.

Back to gigging tonight in lovely (sic) Coventry. I have to be in Coventry tonight and then again on Saturday, but not Coventry in-between. This means two separate trips to Coventry within a few days of each other. Thats at least 100 unnecessary miles of driving when I could be watching the Wire. I love my life.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Painting the town red (or rather, room white)

We have to give the bedroom a new coat of white paint today. 'Have to' you might think is too strong a term for something like painting a room. Really you never 'have to' paint a room, unless you are being held hostage by a psycho Lawrence Llewyln Bowen who says he will kill your family unless you change all the rooms for him. One day he will snap and that will happen. Other than that though, there is little urgency to these things. Unless like us we had set this date in stone to repaint the bedroom and that means that when it rolled around Layla's need to redecorate and do home improvements means that we do 'have to' paint the bedroom. It does need a repaint. At the moment the walls are white with a tiny tint of blue. That tint of blue makes things a little darker and more depressing than they should be. Its a rare day I feel unhappy but when I step into our bedroom I may have a little sigh of 'oh dear' just because of the blue walls. Its because of this I said we should paint the room global hyper colours as people who wear those always seem happy no matter how unfortunate they are. And if they wear global hyper colours then they are pretty unfortunate. As a far more sensible plan though, we are just painting the walls white. So instead of being sightly depressing it will just seem like we live in a mental institute, or a doctor's waiting room. Both of which I think will really improve our moods at all times.

I did very little with my day yesterday, even though I really have loads to do. I wanted to do work towards my Edinburgh show, which really really needs work, and an old fashioned telephone. That's all it needs. I also wanted to try and sort myself out a few more gigs for the month so I can eat, but instead of either of these things I watched a Wire marathon of 5 episodes, with a Stewart Lee interlude to make sure I don't dream only in Baltimore slang. Oddly enough I started to doze off, when I eventually went to bed, with images of Lee busting mid-level players on the corners of Western Baltimore. I often worry I get far too influenced by TV. I decided to stay up late and try and get some work done after all the lazy TV slobbery but instead I ended up on Omegle again, wasting my life away talking to strangers.

I love the fact that I've always been told never to talk to strangers but the more and more I go on Omegle expecting to meet idiots, I am consistently surprised at the kindness of strangers. Last night I indulged in a chat with an American women who had very sensible political views, wasn't religious, liked Eddie Izzard and knew where England was. I was so shocked and at the same time very pleased. I always knew there were Americans like that and have infact met quite a few before, but I didn't expect to meet anyone remotely sensible on a networking site based on anonymity. It was one of those few moments that gave me hope in the world, that made me think perhaps humankind is ok and lovely. Then I started another chat and the person straight away type 'YOU FUCKING DICKBAG' and I disconnected, all illusions shattered.

Back to gigging tomorrow so I should enjoy this laziness while I can. Tomorrow I will start once again to work on material in my newly white bedroom where hopefully the blankness of the walls will provoke some thinking. If that doesn't work the smell of paint will knock me out which should at least stop me feeling guilty about it for a few hours.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Essential Waitrose

I've just taken a once in a blue moon trip to Waitrose. Occasionally Layla and myself think that rather than just go to our local shop or one of the more regular supermarkets, we think it would be nice to treat ourselves and go to Waitrose. The Waitrose on Holloway Road is one of the more deceiving branches. Situated across from an ASDA and next to shop that sell second hand things from people that didn't want them to people that still don't want them but can't afford to buy stuff they do want, the Waitrose pretends its available for the Holloway Road market. Its not, and what happens is the Holloway Road market, people such as myself, get suckered in by the illusion that we can be upper-middle class for a day and then end up spending our life saving on two potatoes from a Fairtrade farm in Columbia and some oatcakes that were made by a farmer who grows all his oats in a pair of British boots in his British shed in Swindon. I always get far too excited and have walked away broke but with some really nice coffee, fresh bread and some lettuce that has already been cut up even though for 60p less I could have gone home and cut it with a knife that I already own and now feels neglected.

My favourite new section is 'Waitrose Essentials'. The slogan they use for these branded items is 'introducing everyday essentials with the quality you'd expect with prices you wouldn't'. I'll be honest, I didn't expect those prices for that quality. Mainly because I can get a Tesco value tin of chopped toms without having to remortgage. One of the essential items they were selling was 'Fresh Custard'. No wonder England is fat. Custard has never been an 'essential' item unless you are a clown and get through hordes of the stuff throwing it at other clowns. Some might say that's not essential, but to clowns it is. Its a natural survival instinct. Small runt clowns and dairy intolerant clowns who are unable to throw custard often get left behind when the circus moves to a different town and they are forced to fend for themselves amongst pikeys and weird drunk tramps who shout in the park. I saw a whole David Attenborough program on it once.

Despite not being essential, the custard among many other things in Waitrose is Fairtrade which I like buying because it makes me feel less guilty. I know that buying non-fair trade goods means some small child is plucking coffee beans in a field for overly long work hours and less than minimum wage. At least when I buy fairtrade that child still works in the fields for overly long hours but gets £3.53 as they are under 18. I still hope that one day I will be able to implement my idea of FunFairTrade which is exactly the same as Fairtrade but the kids get to go on the waltzers at the end of the day. This also provides further work for funfair pikeys who will then have less time to attack clowns. I'm a bloody saviour I am.

I only got round to watching the Doctor Who special last night and I'm wondering more and more whether Russell T Davies is using 'special' as in 'special needs'. Poor script, poor acting and Michelle Ryan being annoying. It should have been an indicator that it had two huge fly people in it. Flies are only attracted to shit, and the Easter Special was no exception. I was really sad Tenant was leaving when I first heard, but now I can't wait only because Davies leaves with him. Hopefully Davies will only ever get work on kids television, making programs where patronising dialogue seems appropriate.

I am doing some work today then having a Wire season 4 marathon. I will watch it while drinking Columbian fresh coffee and croutons from Waitrose. Not together, that'd be weird. Although my Grandad used to dip his croissant in coffee, but he was French which seemed to be his excuse for most things that seemed unacceptably weird. Like when he told me at the age of six about killing his commander in cold blood in World War Two. The French get away with a lot of stuff, using their nationality as an excuse. Look at French clowns. They don't even use custard or anything. And if they did they would probably just dip croissants in it.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Second Rising

I've just had an afternoon nap for two hours. Its Easter Sunday and I've dozed off for a whole two hours. I feel proud of how bank holiday that behaviour is. Its what bank holidays were invented for, snoozing. Its what Jesus would have wanted to do after all that dying and coming back, which I think is one big metaphor for having a bit of a snooze anyway. I felt a bit like death this morning and now I'm back up after my nap, which is pretty much the same as Jesus I think. Although Jesus didn't drink anywhere near as much as I did yesterday which makes me the winner. I feel like its done me some damage though and I've got a sty in my eye which is just irritating. Its irritating because it doesn't feel very nice and also because a sty is where pigs live and I don't want tiny pigs in my eye. I'm sure they'll move in if it stays there too long.

The wedding yesterday was great. All of it. The venue was a very posh golf club just outside of London where celebrities and the very rich go to play golf. I was told by one of the other guests that my idea of hiding behind the bushes on the golf green and shouting 'BOO' as people were about to put would definitely land me in a lot of trouble, so I decided against it. They were beautiful grounds and it was so posh that out on the balcony area of the bar there was a big sign saying 'No Spikes Allowed'. Less posh clubs have people carrying spikes and more than one person called Spike but this place wouldn't allow either of those things. The ceremony itself was brilliant and I found myself afterwards drinking fizzy pink wine and saying comments like 'didn't the bride look stunning' and 'weren't the readings so lovely?' I think the booze must've had some sort of hormone drugs in it to turn me into a big girl. The whole rest of the day induced further gushing girly comments as all the speeches were really good and the food was all very tasty. The promise of not caring about the weight watchers diet was upheld and as the desert, a chocolatey cake thing with cream and cherries and sugar and more chocolate and more sugar, was brought to the table, there was almost a blinding light from how lit up our eyes went. Helen, Terry, Layla and myself barely said a word as we eat our way as slowly as possible through chocolate genius. I already miss it and think I will preserve its memory next time I am eating something massively unhealthy and unsatisfying. It will be the culinary equivalent of the 'wank bank'.

I realised a certain way in just how pivotal it was that these were the first of our friends getting married and it suddenly clicked how long ago we were at university. Its only a matter of time before someone has kids, or worse still, gets into gardening. The only way to cope with this was to party like we were all still in our early 20's, in tribute to those times.
Wine mixed with beer mixed with spirits does not feel great the next day but at the time it seemed like a brilliant mix of stuff. The boozing continued way into the night with some unadvised further drinking at the hotel bar on return. This was a very good idea at the time but when I was woken up at 8.45am this morning still completely steaming with booze to go and join the post wedding breakfast it became blindingly clear how unable I am to cope with the consequences of lots of drink. There was a large sea of wedding guests sitting at the tables with heads in hands, looking like they weren't coping all that well. It was as though all the fun of the previous day had somehow turned into sheer sadness due to self damage.

I wanted to type a lot more today but I'll be honest I've hit a wall. Its a wall created entirely by hangover. Its hurting me to look at the screen and try and type so I am going to cut this blog short and go for some possible further napping infront of the TV. Its what Jesus would do.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Racey Times

I'm sitting in the most uncomfortable hotel room I've ever been in. Considering how much it costs and its 4 star rating, there is no reason why our room should stink of smoke, have a bed with a mattress that seems to be made entirely of wood and have the constant drone of super bikes outside. To be fair the super bikes aren't the hotel's fault, although they did build the hotel by Brands Hatch so it kind of is. The lobby is constantly filled with people in Suzuki and Yamaha outfits strutting around in full bike gear without ever seeming to actually go away and get on a bike. I think that none of them are capable of riding a bike, but are hoping that if they wander round long enough someone will ask them if they are racing. They all sit in the bar, the bar with the super bikes awkwardly balanced in the middle of it, waiting and hoping that will happen. And if it ever does they will get 30 seconds of happiness before they have to admit they aren't allowed on the bikes and had caught the bus. Super bikes aren't even that super. They just look like normal bikes and don't even have a cape on or anything. Rubbish.

We are in the hotel for our good friend's wedding. Its going to be pretty awesome and I'm really pleased for them both. They are our first friends from uni to get married which is all a little bit freaky. I've had two other friends get married but one was from school and the other didn't marry someone else from uni, so this one is the first official proper one. Sort of. Its really nice but also a little bit weird, almost as though after today they will become old and grown up properly. even though they won't and I'll still shoot Rob on Xbox live as often as possible. There is a small group of about 6 of us who are dealing with this by spending today getting plastered. That's drunk, not covered in plaster. We actually arrived yesterday afternoon and started drinking. I had originally planned to try and get a gig last night, but instead an audition popped up yesterday morning so I decided that that would be enough work for the day. I don't like to overachieve on a bank holiday. It just seems like I'm disgracing the idea of Easter. To be fair I am probably disgracing the idea of Easter by not being at all religious and thinking that its highly unlikely that Jesus came back to life after properly dying. Only John Locke in Lost can do that.

I drove to my audition, thinking that as it was a bank holiday parking near the Television Centre would be easy. Amazingly not. Hammersmith and City council have decided that they too will disgrace the idea of Easter by saying that if Jesus wasn't a fictional character and did come back alive over Easter what he really would have wanted was for people to pay £1.80 an hour to park down a side street. There was a sign saying 'charges on all bank holidays except Easter Sunday and Christmas'. I don't know why they've bothered to exclude those two days considering how little care they have for any of the others. All of nothing I say. The audition was good fun. I always get excited going to Television Centre. Even on a Bank Holiday when the only people there are a security guard who needed to go to the loo every two minutes and a receptionist who hated everyone and everything. I asked her if the screen test I was going for was what was keeping her there, and she responded with 'no, there's bloody loads of stuff, its rubbish.' People at the Beeb shouldn't use the word 'bloody' before 9pm. I might complain. That's where our tax money is going to. Maybe if I write 10,000 letters to The Mail she'll get charged £150,000 for her misery.

My audition was for a possible kids show that may or may not happen. It should happen because its a great idea and I got to spend 45 minutes making jokes about beedogs and pretending to be a dad on a skateboard and throwing myself on the floor. Those are the sort of jobs I was made for. I like throwing myself on the floor. Not from great heights, just reasonable ones. And beedogs are brilliant. If you don't believe me look here:

See? They are amazing. I wrote a lot of bee and dog based jokes that I was fairly pleased with, including my groan inducing new word 'Bee-larious'. I rule geek school.

Then straight from the audition I picked up our two good friends Helen and Terry, both of whom are seasoned drinkers and like me and Layla have been doing a weight watchers type diet. We have all vowed to not care this weekend and yesterday already consumed a fair bit of booze and food. While the rest of us ate proper stodgy dins, Helen backed out and ate a salad. This is not the rules. We have all made a pact to stuff out faces and if she tries to back out today I will make it my mission to throw an entire bag of Kripsy Kreme donuts at her until she breaks. Today will get messy though. I have already offered Terry money if he gets so drunk he upsets someone. Its bound to happen at some point and I am keen to provoke it for my own amusement. There are always those few people at weddings that are prone to abuse. Its either the couple that have the big argument in front of everyone, the old people that dance, or the single person that gets really drunk and cries a lot. There are no kids allowed at this wedding so there won't be any child mayhem, which is a shame purely because I have lots of beedogs jokes they might have liked. I will have to get drunk and shout them at super bikers.

Off to get suited up in my suit that did fit perfectly but since then I've had a pizza and beer. There may be some discomfort.