Friday, July 30, 2010


Warning. This blog may be a tad steamy and hard to cope with for some readers. For a start, throughout the duration of typing this, I'm wearing my new shorts, and exposing all leg from the knee downwards. Phew. Is it hot in here or what? What? Oh. What. Oh. Well the next sentence is even more sexytime....I just had my last proper shower for the next three days. Wowzers. Showers? Filth? Someone call Jilly Cooper and tell her to back the fuck up! In fact, can someone do that anyway? She's a proper tool. The reason for all this action is because in about T-Minus one hour I am heading to Camp Bestival. I really wish everytime I said 'T-Minus 1 hour' I would get an hour younger. Maybe if everyone did it I'd get reduce in age? Don't all say it just incase I end up 3 years old again and whilst I had some pretty fun times in my red cap and wellies, I don't wanna go back all that way. Yeah, so back on track, Camp Bestival. Three days of fun in Somerset where as well as doing a comedy set for them grown up types, I'm also doing kids comedy on Sunday and reading bedtime stories to kids on Sunday night. Not randomly. Its in a tent. A big tent. I'm not just barging in on family bedtime and demanding little Billy hears 'Where The Wild Things Are'. Which incidentally I'm not reading as it would only take 10 mins to do. So instead I'm aiming for some of Spike Milligan's children's books which are awesome. I'm stupidly excited. It shall be a bit like Jackanory. Only not on telly. And with me instead of someone good.

I'm actually excited about this festival. I very much aim to spend some time chilling on a grassy knoll looking over Edinburgh notes and soaking up more sun than a solar powered calculator with megalomaniac tendancies. I don't really understand that last sentence. It sounded good in my head. Imagining the calculator saying 'I will have all the sun', but its not really very good at all is it? Why not just rewrite that bit yourself. These next few days are going to be the only breather I get before the Edinburgh festival and even then I still have to work of course. Yesterday was my official day off, but rather than have a day off I spent it doing a number of things. I bought camping equipment. Oh yep. Because I'm a real man. Yep yep. A lady helped me find what I needed, but that doesn't invalidate anything. Much. Then Nat came round and we went through the trials of performing our Edinburgh shows to each other one on one, while we took extensive notes. I did this last year with Tom and it proved to be very useful. Not only does doing it one on one mean the person watching notices little things that a bigger audience may not pick up on, but also if you can perform it to one person in a living room, you can perform it to two people in a cave in Edinburgh and it'll seem busy. Last year Tom bottled it and didn't perform his to me, but Nat is of tougher ilk and so we spent about three hours of severe gruelling show examination.

Then I spent the rest of the evening in, trying to relax but instead flitting about between writing lists of things I need for Edinburgh, looking over my notes, finding my Spike Milligan kids books and pulling a muscle in my right arm while doing so, and watching a bit of Skins repeats and Celebrity Masterchef. The latter of which I decided would be much better if it was Celebrity Master Chief and several celebs had to see who was the best at being the leas character in Halo and shoot aliens or die. Then I lay in bed wide awake stressing about the entire world and ultimately failed to relax on the only night I could relax till September. Mega fail. For my next trick I'm going to go on holiday and spend the whole time carrying rocks up hills. Again, that sounded funnier in my brain. Stupid tired brain.

So this'll probably be my last blog till late Sunday night when I'll do an UBER BLOG. Yes, that's right. If this blog hadn't been exciting enough until now, wilt in the anticipation of the UBER BLOG, where I shall tell you all things Camp Bestival, unless I have been clobbered to death by parents who didn't think American Psycho was suitable reading for their kids. Have a lovely weekend ya'll. Now all calm down, and relax. And think of me in my sexy shorts. Stop. Calm. SHORTS. Calm. Phew.

And before you go, please read this and act accordingly. Ta:


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Shooting The Weeds


One of my duties while my parents are away, aside from making sure the cat doesn't die - which I've only sort of managed so far. It has miaowed and scraped at the window like someone in a film where the chamber is filling with gas - is watering their garden. I gawped at the thought. I hate gardening. I like gardens. Sitting in them, drinking in them. Sitting and drinking in them. But to tend to them? Yawnsville. Flowers take ages to grow, lets just get some decking and be done with it. Actually I lie a tad, I like it when gardens look all nice and full of vegetation and floral niceties, but knowing I have to get on my hand and knees and trowel some soil to do it just makes me think of all the benefits of concrete. My parents have a nice garden though and as I've been living here scot-free (my parents are racist against Scottish people. They hate it when I go to Edinburgh) (That was a joke. I thought I should clarify this just incase) the least I can do is water the garden, even if I'd have more eating bits of card whilst reading the Financial Times.

But then....but then.....I saw the hose they have. Oh lord, what a hose. It has a bit on the end that's shaped like a gun, and when you turn the nozzle you can shoot water out in a variety of different ways. There is the general spray, the refined powerful single shot stream, the mist, the waterfall. So many ways to water things. Suddenly I am no longer tending to plants, I am a soldier battling against the evil greenies and only I can tackle them using my incredible knowledge of what water methods can destroy each one. You might be shaking your head at my childishness right now, but you get behind the hose-k47 and you'll see what happens. I scared our neighbour yesterday with cries of 'BLAP' and 'TAKE THAT YOU LEAFY TWAT' as I took things down water stylee.

All I'm saying is that perhaps more boring things should have the equivalent weapon like attachment. I would iron the shit out of my clothes if I could blast the creases using a steam bazooka. Get on the case boffins. War, what is it good for? The answer: Menial household tasks.


I haven't slept enough. I could blame this on staying up till 3am with Tom Craine as we supped port - oh yeah, port. We are gentlemen of a distinguished kind. That and the offy was closed and we were out of beer - and watched South Park. However, I blame this more on my body clock, who despite knowing the hour at which I dozed, decided that at 8am this morning I needed to be awake. I didn't. It was so wrong. There was nothing for me to do at 8. Except feed the cat before it wears down its paws into smooth rounded stumps from sliding itself down the garden door in need of food. But aside from that, nothing. Now the rest of today is confined to me walking around in a stupor till I can find coffee, and then walking round in a coffee induced stupor. Stupid stupor. Stupid body clock.

Today is my last day off before madness and I'm slightly worried that I'll be on 5 hours sleep till September. I hope this isn't the case as last year's show was about zombies, not this years. I hope lots of kindly people will see my stumbling round Edinburgh in one of my many varieties of stupor and just prop me up on their shoulder for a snooze.


It was the last FT of the season last night and we had two more excellent previews from Pete Johansson and Richard Herring. Do go see them both. We've had a pretty awesome run with preview season and while I'm pleased I don't have to run anymore for a couple of months, I will miss the enjoyment of putting on a good night, all the banter and post gig drinking. Hopefully when we return in Sept we'll be back on as good form as ever.

I will actually be back there on Monday for mine and Tom's last preview, but I'm pretending that's different.



For anyone who pays attention to my tumblr feed on (what none of you? Oh) you'll see that thanks to boredom, I've joined formspring. I'm not sure why. It looks shit and I assume I'll get very bored of people asking me questions, only for someone to ask something slightly too personal or creepy and for me to shut the whole thing down. Till then though, ask what you like. My username, very unimaginatively is TiernanDouieb. I know the answers to most things. FACT.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Poo Eyed Man


Traffic on a hot day is up there with the most worstest things everest. I have just driven my brother to the airport because I am the best brother in the whole widest worldest, and much of the journey consisted of us sitting in traffic, slowly boiling until we could probably have been served up with some vegetable and a pie as a Sunday lunch alternative. Not only is traffic bad, but when its hot, the people in traffic get angry and beep and shout. As soon as the traffic bit stops, those angry people drive like maniacs desperate to escape to somewhere cooler. I accidentally became one of those people this morning. A combination of tiredness, possibly still being a bit alcohol influenced from last night, heat rage, and the fact I was listening to the Wu-Tang (note to self: never listen to Wu-Tang when driving. You should know this by now) meant I nearly killed a man on a motorbike. When I say 'nearly killed', I totally was nowhere near killing him. However, had I continued to drive into him as he wove his way around my car, I would have at least bashed his knees off. It was a teensy bit his fault for his motorbike weaving skills, but it was mostly mine for not seeing him at all till he was nearly bouncing off my bonnet. He gave me such a dirty look. It couldn't have been dirtier if he had poo in his eyes. That sort of dirtiness. I said sorry. He carried on looking. There was little I could do then. I was tempted to playfully nudge his bike with my car, but decided against it and drove off changing lanes to avoid his eyes of poo. Bad bad times. As a reward to myself I'm off to the park after this blog to sit somewhere other than in a car. Then I'll drive to Fat Tuesday (on a Wednesday - don't ask) later just to get angry again.


My parents are away and that means I am in the house by myself for several days. I haven't been in this house without my parents in it probably since the night after my A Levels 11 years ago when I invited all my friends round and I passed out through drinking JD before most of them even arrived and they all had a great party while I lay upstairs in bed unconscious. I woke up the next day to find a lot of mess and some lovely notes thanking me for an awesome time. I won't be doing that this time, but I am tempted. I'm also tempted to fill the house with traps to stop burglars and then go and use my dad's aftershave and burn my face with it while screaming. Then I might jump on the beds a bit, and paint things on the walls with my fingers. Or more likely, I'll just keep forgetting to feed the cat and apart from a dead cat my parents will return to find everything pretty much as it was. This mostly because I am now just a dull, slightly incompetent grown up. I wish I could still have a party. Though Tom Craine is staying round tonight and he is fully capable of making a party load of mess all by himself. I might just get drunk and fall asleep while he's round. He won't have a party load of other people to keep him entertained though so I doubt it'll be as fun.


After some discussion with Rosie and Peter at FT last night (yes that is their real names. Yes, saying it like that sounds like a kids show) I've decided I'd like to try and get back into breakdancing again. I've wiffled and waffled about it shedloads on this blog, but as a recap, I did used to do it about 7 years ago, and now am too unhealthy to hold my own body weight up. This is partly due to the lack of muscles in my arms and partly due to the excess weight to now lift. If I had fat arms and no gut I'd be laughing. Well actually, I'd probably be crying at my hugely disfigured form. But in terms of busting a freeze, then I'd be all over it like a rash. Thing is, I used to do a class, because even though you are meant to learn it on the streets, I went round knocking on everyone's doors on my street and no one knew a thing. So now I'd need to find another class and they are all at night. When I gig. So I may just have to teach myself and that will equal injury. Definite injury. At least it will be 'breakin' in one sense of the word I guess. Maybe I won't do it. Hmm.


Two top previews from Stephen K Amos and Elis James last night. Go see their shows in Edinburgh. Go on. Do it. Hurry up. Tonight we have Pete Johansson and Richard Herring. You can't come cos it's sold out. Hardehar.

I'm going to the park. Take that Wednesday.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


A small boring bullet point blog today as I have to go and argue over what's mine that's still in my old flat. I say argue, but it'll probably be fairly amicable as I find reasons as to why I need a television more than my ex does. So far I'm practicing the argument that at the moment my blu-ray player and Xbox are feeling neglected as my parents don't have a HD tv to use them with. I know, I know. Who doesn't have an HD TV nowadays? Well my parents. That's the answer. The digital age is rapidly flying past them as they choose to not see every blemish on Sian William's face during the news. Actually, now I put it like that, it seems sensible. But until I can connect my beloved machines to something that does them justice with image and sound, then I won't be using them as I would worry it was demeaning. Good argument? I have a feeling I won't be getting the telly. Anyway, here's a round up of some things before I try and conjure up excuses for my needs to have a rice cooker:

- Shappi Khorsandi's and Greg Davies Edinburgh previews were superb last night. Really really superb. Go book them both in Edinburgh now. Do it right now. What are you doing? If its not booking tickets for them, then you're a chump face.

- I forget every year how horrible going to the West End of London during the school holidays is. I had forgotten it was the school holidays at first and did spend some time just assuming people were shrinking. Once I'd remembered, it was too late and I was having to push kids in their faces just to walk along Oxford Street at any sort of crippled snail's pace. I will now remember not to head back until all tourists, kids and slow people leave again. By that time it'll be Christmas and I'll stumble into getting people rage again.

- During milkshakes yesterday afternoon, Laura (of the Lexx variety) decided using a chain of thought I can't comprehend, that cows must have discovered mint. I can't see how this works and for a while I made a point of protesting against such theories. Then when I got home last night I wiki'd 'mint' and it doesn't say how it was discovered, so I have no choice but to believe this:


- Fat Tuesday was too hot last night. Far far too hot. The air con only comes out of one air vent and the window appears to deny all breeze. As a result it was a tad like a Swedish sauna with less Swedish naked people and more hot audience. Despite that, the crowd were so brilliant. I love our crowd. They are better than your crowd. Same again tonight and tomorrow. I'm tempted to turn up in just my pants for maximum cooling effect.

- I bought sunglasses in Primark for £2 yesterday. Primark is a terrible place to be at any time of year, but yesterday it looked like a picture from Dante's Inferno. Clothes and people strewn across the floor like the end of a material based war. People barging and shoving their way to buying trainer socks for a pound. I put calming music on my iPod and said I wouldn't get sucked in to being like all the other angry stupid shoppers, but after two minutes of unbearable heat and being barged by a woman whose face was so wrinkly I wanted to grab the back of her head and pull it tight to see if it would sort her out, I went nuts. I became Prim-evil and knocked straight into the shoulder of someone before almost entirely pushing over a stupid looking man who was confused about the existence of hats. They all deserved it. As a result I got my £2 sunglasses which after queuing for ever and all the people hate, did not really seem worth it after all. I was walked out semi-pleased but know that at some point my eyes will be so burned with UV damage I won't even be able to cry about how pointless it all was.

- Topman seem to only supply summer clothes for gay sailors. FACT.

- I went for lunch with Mat yesterday and he decided we should go a Mexican place off Goodge Street that does a pretty decent burrito. I went against the grain and got a quesadilla. This is partly because I hate grain, and mostly because I'm a big fan of J-Dilla (RIP) and like to think eating a quesadilla is a tribute. It also sounds like a Mexican food dinosaur. Essentially, why would you eat anything else? Mat did. Mat ate a burrito. He got nachos with his. I didn't get nachos with mine. I think I should never get a quesadilla again.

- My card got declined in Topman, despite me putting money in my bank yesterday morning. There is nothing more degrading than a 14 year old girl (that's how old she looked) sneering at you like you're a poverty stricken scumbag as she hands back your card and take your gay sailor tshirt away from you. I did the walk of shame and hurriedly left before I saw anyone else in tight jeans and stripy top/checked shirt to scowl at.

- Since when did the weak moustache become a fashion statement? Loads of indie types in central London had weak moustaches yesterday and it made them all look like slightly ill versions of Victorian villains. I don't think it impresses anyone that you are not able to grow serious facial hair.

That's all for now. I definitely eat rice a lot. That's what I'm going with. Call me Tiernan 'Rice face' Douieb. Call me Uncle Ben. Call me Captain Rice-A-Lot.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Holmes Under The Hammer

I'd probably call myself a purist when it comes to tampering with classic tales and legends. Nothing captures my imagination more than a good story and it really bothers me when someone decides that tale that's been around for years and years and most certainly ain't broke, needs fixing. Its happened time and time again in our current era of 'oh I can't be arsed to invent something new, why not just set the Mabinogon in the future? Or let's set Star Trek in medieval times. I'd be curious to sit at these board meetings and see what happens when the question 'why?' is asked, and if there is much response other than some floundering and someone saying they need to go before racing out of the door. Despite not being set in a different time periods to the original stories, I was hugely annoyed by BBC's Merlin and Robin Hood, just because they spoke in current colloquial language. Sir Lancelot would never have called someone 'mate', for fucks sake! Sure we might not understand it if it was all olde English, but at least make an effort to get well spoken actors and well written text so we can pretend everything was spoken with as much grandeur and gravitas as we imagine? Slowly it appears that media, particularly television, has decided we can't possibly put our beliefs and enjoyment into a show unless it has an obvious connection with our current time period. How will children ever understand the stories of Sherlock Holmes unless it involves text messaging?

Now here's where I surprised myself. I watched Sherlock last night, and I liked it. I didn't think I would. I hated the concept. Why oh why would you change the setting when it perfectly fitted already incredible stories? Why, if you want to write about a slightly autistic mentalist detective in the 21st century, don't you just write about a new one. Worried that no one would watch it if they didn't recognise the name? But, and here's the big but, Stephen Moffat and Mark Gatiss fully served my words on a plate, handed me some nice cutlery and made me tuck in. Interesting, clever and funny all at once, it was a wonderfully dark and exciting hour of television. Cumberbatch was great as Holmes, but I was mostly impressed with Martin Freeman as Watson, who was superb. Great story, lovely work by Gatiss as Mycroft and Moffat delivered his usual brilliant way of adding a subplot about Moriaty that will now no doubt run throughout the series.

But enough niceties, I have some issues. Of course I do, otherwise this blog would be a dull suckfest of arse kissing of the Moffat man, and after what he did with Doctor Who, it would be easy for me to do that. First thing I hated: WHY DID ALL THE TEXT MESSAGES POP UP INTO THE SKY AS LITTLE WORDS? Dear god that was stupid. They could have just heard the beep and we see the phones, there is no need to make it into half a cartoon. If you're going to do that why no go the full Disney hog and have dancing penguins and other crap wandering around, and replace Holmes with a wide eyed hare, then other suitable animals for everyone else. Like - deer, Watson. Sorry that gag was so heavily crowbarred in there, I could get done for vandalism. But my point still stands. It was nicely adult in almost all respects except for the stupid floaty texts that I almost wondered would culminate with a ad for the Carphone Warehouse or something. Then the other major bit was that everyone delivered everything in a nicely tongue in cheek manner, but there was no need for the buddy movie shots of Sherlock and Watson walking next to each other giving wry smiles as the camera freezes and the credits roll. If in the next show they are wearing suit jackets with the sleeves rolled up and jumping over the bonnets of cars (yes Sherlock did that already) I will be slightly sick.

So yeah, well done all them, and I will be watching next week. Although whatever they do, it'll never replace Jeremy Brett's Holmes who was the ultimate Sherlock. But even though I did like it, I hope this doesn't cause a string of similar 'old stories made new'. If people really can't come up with any fresh ideas then let's at least take some current ideas and send them back in time for some exciting history stuff. Who wants to see the Spooks taking part in the downfall of Oliver Cromwell for example? I do. I really really do.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Jerseyhouse 5

I always get to airports early. It's part of what my friend Mat has coined as an 'over developed sense of urgency'. It means that something in the back of my head panics that if I don't get to the airport at least an hour or two before I need to, there is a chance that everyone else will have decided to fly earlier and I'll get there to watch a pilot giving with the middle finger whilst speeding off down the runway way before he's meant to. Ultimately this would mean he'd collide with another plane and I'd be glad I wasn't onboard after all, but these thoughts only occur after the initial paranoid 'missing my plane' panic ones. There is little to do at an aiport when you're there early. I used to enjoy watching people. Airports are great for people watching. You get expressions you don't get anywhere else, such as huffing as their plane is delayed. That is huffing of a sadness and misery at life that occurs nowhere else. The one chance they've had to escape this godforsaken place and go on holiday for a finite amount of time, and some twat at an airline who's probably just making sure the wings don't fall off or something as reasonable, has made that finite amount of tiny even finitier. Yes, I've decided that's a word as of now. Yesterday I also said the word 'smasual' as I was dressed smart casual. Let's get these both in the dictionary. Go team! As well as the huffing there is also the amazing panics of people wondering where their passports are, only to realise seconds later they were holding them all along, and then the vacant stares of people looking at eau de toilette that they would have never considered otherwise, but the need to waste time and the surreal windowless atmosphere encourages them that smelling nicer is the way forward. I made the mistake of browsing the duty free and was subsequently launched at by a woman with a new Hugo Boss spray of some sort and she rapidly coated my arm with such things, like a well fragranced cat marking her territory. I wanted to mind, but my arm smelt a lot nicer than it had done before and so I couldn't really complain. I wondered about kicking up a fuss stating that I had wanted a smellier arm, but I can't imagine that many other people in the airport would have backed weird shouty smelly armed man over orange nice smelling lady.

Anyway, I found myself perusing the book shop, which I haven't done for some time, and made my way to a book which was recommended by Paul Byrne a while back - Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut. I've never read anything by him before, but new I had some time to kill and it wasn't an overly big book so why not? To cut a long story short, I picked that book up, read half of it on the flight there and finished it on the flight back today, because it was a pretty tough thing to put down. I won't go on about it too much as many of you have probably read it and I would recommend you do if you haven't, but it's partly about a man who travels back and forth through time against his will. I read this, and then got on a flight to Jersey and somehow went back to the 1950's. It all felt rather poignant. I say flight. It sort of went up in the air and then immediately descended. Not in a crashing type way or divebombing, but nearly. The major downside of this is you can't listen to or use anything electronic whilst the plane is ascending or landing and that meant no electronic things for the duration. Others looked panicked by this realisation. Having learnt from THIS I held by book smugly and imagined that I was giving an iPad a slightly aggressive knowing nudge as if to tip my hat to the old world of ink and paper.

The book, both in terms of its old school ways and written content was good prep for stepping off the plane into the self-contained world of Jersey. Most people seemed very friendly and relaxed but the first thing I saw as I walked out of the arrivals area was a coach driver shouting at an old woman to run for the coach, not helping her with her bags or anything and telling her its her fault he's blocking the road. It appeared hospitality was not the main concern of the Jersey folk. Luckily I grabbed a cab and the cab driver, formerly from Aberdeen, regaled me such interesting facts as the best way round the ring road and why it infuriates him that there are more vehicles registered to Jersey than there are people to drive them. He then shouted at a 'woman driver' for going too slow before telling me about how over the years the 'island has grown'. I started to wonder if was in an episode of Lost, but he explained its merely that they have expanded the coast of Jersey through building works and the shape of the coastline has changed. The island has got bigger. I didn't know this was possible to do? Why aren't we doing this everywhere? The sea is terrifying. Lets just make England a bit bigger round all the edges until we creep into Europe and can just walk over?

Everyone else I met - bar the snotty hotel staff who served me the most miserable looking poached eggs I'd ever seen this morning and tea but no milk. It looked like someone had brewed hate in a cup and two eyeballs on a plate - was lovely. The Jersey Arts Centre is a beautiful venue run by brilliant people and the night I had to host last night was something different to my usual gigs. It involved hosting four brand new one act plays that had been written by local writers and the performances were constructed, directed and rehearsed in a week. They were all very very good. In particular the third (A Weakness In Me by Hannah Patterson)and fourth (Happy Otter/Sad Otter by Ben Evans) plays, although not in detriment to the first and second but more because I was a tad more relaxed by then and could enjoy them better. All were about very dark and serious subject matter from political injustice and suicide to a boy who wanted to be a bird (not like that) and someone paying to have their leg amputated. So to inject comedy in between felt like it might be tough. It was not helped by the fact that everyone involved had been working so hard for a week, and I watched as they did drama warm-ups and pranced around remembering lines. Meanwhile I rocked up on the day, sat in a corner, looked at some notes, sniggered when people made silly voice warm-up noises and then had a beer. I realised I am definitely not a drama student anymore. Years of working by myself and not a team have beaten all that out of me and instead I am now just a miserable lonesome comedian. Which I much prefer. I can only imagine doing warm-ups would make tendons in my leg snap.

Luckily, me breaking the fourth wall like a clumsy demolition expert seemed to work quite well and it was a refreshing change to entertaining drunk loons on a Saturday. More of that please.

Quite a lot more to type, but have to go. So I will just leave you with the knowledge that I am still messed up by Inception. I fell asleep on the flight home and when the plane landed I woke up and yelped because I thought it was a 'kick'. Such a loser. Now thanks to Kurt Vonnegut I'll also be confused as to what section of my life is when and shall generally be living in a semi-conscious state for some time.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Chocks Away!

Before last night my image of the RAF was very much men wearing leather hats and goggles, with slightly curled moustaches saying phrases like 'Chocks Away!', 'Toodle Pip' and talking about rogering things a lot. "Roger that'. I assumed a lot of stuff got rogered. Then I thought there would be a few of them who talked about how much they loved their wives and families and they'd all be the ones that didn't return. And at least one of them would have a wooden leg like Douglas Barder. But it turns out its not like that at all. In fact it appears they've got all futuristic and less twee, which I suppose in terms of war and things is a good thing. I can't imagine Spitfires are quite the top class of plane they used to be. I mean for a start its an ale. You can't fly an ale. Although if you drink enough ale you can probably believe you can fly, which is close. Anyway, much like a brook, I'm babbling now. Essentially I found out what a real RAF base was like yesterday when once again the career path of stand-up allowed me to gain entrance to a place i would not normally be allowed anywhere near and if I tried I'd get shot in my face. Probably.

Actually, not probably, but definitely. As one of the organisers, who was a Flight Lieutenant officer type something something important and built like he could crush my head between his two smallest fingers, gave us directions he told us to go past a 'nasty man with a gun'. I gave him a look of sheer fear. He apologised and said he was just joking. He said that it was really a 'nice man with a gun.' I explained to him that it was neither the 'nice' or 'nasty' bit that bothered me, but far more the 'gun' bit. I assume the man's nature of emotional tendencies would affect whether or not the gun was used irrationally, but the fact it was there at all was really not that reassuring. The Flight Lieutenant offered to cycle alongside us to the Mess where the gig was, and said we'd get there way before him. Instead he cycled like the wind, constantly overtaking our car, to the point where Rob Broderick stated that it was a bit like the T-1000. We would constantly think we'd lost him to find him cycling right by the car again. We were half tempted to knock him down to watch him melt into the floor and come back with a knife for an arm. We were handed passes that said 'unescorted' on them, which I guess means I could have roamed around all I liked, but out of fear for 'nasty men with guns' I decided it was best not to.

(My 'I look like such a criminal' pose. The bit I have blocked out is a barcode just incase posting it up lands me in military prison or something. I'm really not sure how these things work)

The mess where the gig was, wasn't a mess at all. In fact, it was really rather nice. I can only assume the RAF are fairly OCD and for them it might have been a mess compared to everywhere else, but I liked it. It was called the Daedalus Mess, which I pointed out was an odd name, as Daedalus was the father of Icarus, and Icarus was shit at flying. So for somewhere that trains pilots, it was a rather strange choice. Essentially they are saying they train people to get too close to the sun and die. Luckily they took this well and didn't make a nasty man with a gun attack me. In fact the whole gig was really lovely. With my general anti-war stance and left wing notions, I thought it might be a tough gig, but I was so hugely wrong. I forget I was on a training base and felt more like I was at a student's union. We were very well looked after and the audience were a pretty intelligent bunch of mostly post-uni officers in training. I made light of what they were in training for, using the word 'cockpit' only once as an insult, and said their overalls made me wonder if they worked for Kwik Fit and they didn't mind at all. I didn't tell them I wanted them all to say 'chocks away' and that they'd let me down as I thought that'd be too far. Instead we gave them the best a show we could and Abandoman rocked the hell out of the second section. I'd never thought I'd see a group of trainee pilots wave their pens in the air to a hip hop beat, like Snoop Dogg meets the Great Escape (well not at all. I know there are only a couple of pilots in the Great Escape. Shh), but it was brilliant. We then spent a while speaking to people whose jobs it is to plan flight strategies and fix planes and all sorts of jobs I'd be crap at. Hopefully they'll do more as they've promised me I can go in a plane next time and see round the college which would make me a tad too excited and I'd probably get asked to leave by a nasty man with a gun when found running around the runway with my arms out like wings and making gun noises.

There's loads more to tell but I must rush to catch a plane of my own to sunny Jersey. Another unusual gig tonight, this time hosting a series of new plays. I'm still not 100% sure how I'll do, but I'm sure it won't be more drama than it already is. Arf.

Friday, July 23, 2010

They Say I'm A Dreamer

Last night in my dream I had to eat popcorn that never seemed to end and all the while I did it, a man in a Hawaiian shirt kept humming the calypso theme. Then there was a bit where somebody kept running up behind me, stroking my arms and running away and the only other bit I remember was something about parading penguins. An odd way to start today's blog, so let me explain and start afresh. I went to see Inception last night. If you haven't been, you probably should go. I say probably, because if like me you already have a damaged psyche, it will do nothing to help you sleep ever again. I am going to try my goddamn best not to put any spoilers in this blog, but like an Essex boy with money to spend and a Ford Fiesta, spoilers will happen at some point. So if you haven't seen it, proceed with caution. If you have seen it, expect my blog not to help you make sense of it all anyway or for me to even try and explain the film in anyway. Someone asked me last night what the plot was and I said I couldn't tell them. This is partly because you shouldn't know when seeing it and partly because I am still piecing it together. To say it didn't make sense would be a lie, but to say it made sense would also be a lie. You can see why I didn't sleep till the wee hours last night, thanks to, ironically, a film sort of about sleep.

Overall, and I should point this out first, it is bloody brilliant and there is nothing I could actually take umbrage with anything about it. But, and this is only a small but, and in no way a booty, there are some very small things I could complain about. These small things are weeny small, non-important, would have ruined the film if they were there and are almost entirely being typed out now for the purposes of this blog. First useless point, was that my dreams don't contain men with guns, freight trains appearing out of nowhere and heists. My dreams are nearly always properly bonkers. Now a film where Di Caprio has to dodge flying giraffes and keeps noticing his hands turning into cornflakes would have been a very different film and probably directed by Terry Gilliam. People do have those sorts of dreams though don't they? I know the team in Inception have been trained to control the subconscious, but they must have had to come across someone who inexplicably was having a nightmare about a zombie infestation, which would make cracking the code to their inner mind's safe a tad more difficult while the undead are snapping at their necks? Then again, I suppose they are mostly dealing with business types and they may have a much lower creativity level then others. I want to see a sequel where all the crew involved eat cheese then go for it. Inception 2: I Just Camembert It. Or something.

Actually Inception 2, which they should never make, should have the tagline of 'I'm a dreamer' or 'Dreams can come true' if only to revive the long dead careers of Gabrielle and whoever sang the other one. Yeah I could google it. I'm not going to though. I just don't care enough. Deal with it. Not that either of them needs a career revival, but sometimes I like to entertain the idea of a sequel so bad it gets disowned by the film studios and I believe that sort of title track is needed for such a thing. So, er, I only really had one point then, and it wasn't very good. I blame this to not sleeping very well. Unless of course I am still sleeping? Which is the other question that's been plaguing my mind seeing the film. If I am still sleeping then I really should berate my own mind for being quite so dull as this dream was mostly about me deciding not to bother to go running this morning then feeling tired. Its like all those times I've dreampt of being asleep. Sometimes I'm concerned my brain just isn't even trying anymore. Look, just go see the film and we'll take about it all after. If the film exists, and I wasn't just dreaming it that is. Arrrrrgggghhhhhhhhhhh!

I have to do a gig for the RAF this evening. I can't imagine I'll be let anywhere near the airbase with or without ID, if they find me smacking my own head and shouting 'wake up' at myself as I drive in.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Tents, Booze and Fear


I've just bought a tent. I've never bought a tent before. I've borrowed tents, often to return them in a state of muddied ruin, with tent pegs bent all out of shape and the whole package shoved back into its tiny bag with seemingly high disregard so that it looks to be experiencing a discomfort not dissimilar to a python that's swallowed a cow whole. I once hired a tent off the excellent Tangerine Fields people, who put it all up for me, replete with air beds and other such comforts to make it seem like camping in luxury. None of the effort, all of the perks. Except that they had pitched all the tents so close to each other that I could hear all my neighbours breathing let alone any of the other noises they were making and spent three comfy but sleepless nights hating my own ears. So finally, I've bought a tent. I've never had to do that before and so I feel amateurish in my knowledge of what to get. I knew what I didn't want from a tent. I didn't want it to absorb all the rain and transform into a paddling pool should the weather turn. I didn't want it to be see through. I didn't want it not to stand-up ok. I didn't want it full of bees. So I went online, and I found a waterproof, blue, pop-up tent that seemed to have no bees in it. Its being delivered tomorrow and I will spend some time popping it up to work out how on earth to pop it back down again with going through the rigmarole of an ACME cartoon device whereby it continually snaps back in my face until Road Runner laughs at me. Camp Bestival next week will either be like a buddy film with me and my new tent having some good times, or all the bands will be drowned out by the sound of a small man screaming words no one should ever hear, and louds 'pops' as my tent refuses to co-operate.


Its Friday the 13th in a few weeks and whilst that doesn't normally cause me to believe or disbelieve anything outside of my usual assumption that the world is out to get me, I met a man last night who's made the concept of tomorrow more interesting. After a rather superb Fat Wednesday last night with excellent previews from Carl Donnelly (brilliant and very funny show. Go see) and Jon Richardson (also brilliant and very funny, yet at the same time, like watching a man breakdown live on stage. Its a funny breakdown though. Go see), with a nice guest appearance from Alan Carr, I headed over the the excellent Comedy Gold night on Essex Road to see Shappi Khorsandi and Alex Zane. It was there I briefly met a friend of Shappi's called Bruce Hood. Bruce is a professor in neuroscience and a throughly nice bloke. I am by no means an expert on any of these sorts of things, but managed to hold a conversation about views on Richard Dawkins and superstitions. Anyway, today Bruce is doing lots of radio interviews because Alton Towers have announced that they are closing their ride '13' on Friday 13th due to paranoia. Bruce is going on the radio to say what a pile of balls that is. I fully agree. It is a pile of balls, and part of me is sure Alton Towers is doing it mostly for publicity and little else. I have no idea how well Alton Towers does generally, as I'm too small to go on most of the rides (probably) so haven't been in years. Either way, surely the sort of people that like being scared feckless on rollercoasters would only get more of a buzz out of doing it on a day that's meant to be unlucky? If anything, they should embrace this and cellotape black cats to the carriages and put ladders up all over the place whilst someone kicks in some mirrors.

Bruce's blog is here and its mighty interesting:

Bloody love people.


I saw a tiny bit of This Morning this morning, and I haven't seen it in ages so was looking forward to some Schofe action and witty banter but sadly it was Eamon Holmes and that other woman who looks sad even when she's happy. I put this down to being married to Eamon Holmes. It would make me have that face too. One of the things they were harping on about this morning was that the new government are getting rid of 24 hour drinking laws as Britain has become a nightmare binge booze town, or some crap. It is crap too as the last job I had before going full time in comedy was as part of the Alcohol Licensing team in Camden. Now things may have changed, but when I was there, only one premises, out of hundreds and hundreds, was granted 24 hour drinking and that has since closed down. Everywhere else was reduced in its booze hours or kept the same, with very few places being allowed to open later. Instead, what did happen, was everywhere that already had a licence, had to pay a hefty fee to get a new licence, even though very little had changed. What will happen now is that that the Tories (and let's face it, its them, not the Lib Dems as they aren't allowed to have a say in anything) will renew all the procedures, it will appear as though they've saved Britain from drowning in alcohol as the general public can't be arsed to note that people will get drunk however long pubs are open for and more so now they are all unemployed, and instead pubs and bars that are struggling anyway will have to pay another hefty fee. Well done Liberal Cons for stealing money off another section of society.

Oh and as a last note, I've had some comments on my blogs which is always nice. However the best one recently has been from Lea in response to my blog about flying ants the other day. Have a read. Bloody good work Lea. I can never claim ignorance about such things again. (I totally will though):

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Drunk Ness

I'll be honest. I'm still a bit drunk. This blog could go all over the shop if its any indication of how I feel. I feel all over the shop. If I was in a shop right now, I would be all over it like a rash. Big department stores would be a challenge but I reckon with enough effort I could definitely be all over some of it, then move around every ten minutes till I was sure I covered all of it by the end of the day. I know I'm drunk because I'm fairly sure that the things that are happening are to do with last night's booze intake. Otherwise I should be very paranoid at the way the walls of my room are wobbling, my legs appear to be made of jelly and a tiny man is hitting me from inside my own head. If I'm not drunk, then I really wish the tiny man would stop as I have no idea what I've done to infuriate him so, and I really could do with some ice cream to go with my legs.

See? This is what I was worried about. Mad drunk chat like that. Right, this blog is gonna get brief, like a pair of pants. I haven't said that in ages. High fives to myself. Hmm, that's just a clap. Still, self applause is comforting when drunk. Although the loud noises are making the man angrier. I will stop.

I had booze yesterday because I had to do my preview at Fat Tuesday. I find this the most terrifying of all the previews because people see me compereing there all year round and it means I feel I really have to do something to raise their expectations of me, rather than indulge them in more of me asking people what they do for a living. Which by the way (and here is my mini rant of today) is the most obvious question to ask, and its often criticised at how boring a compere question it is, but, and here's the rub, people don't respond when you ask them more complicated stuff. If you ask them what they do, they'll give you a quick answer that you can roll with as its at the top of their mind. If you ask them whether they prefer the flight of the Amazonian swallow or the Canadian goose, it'll just confuse them and create a long awkward pause. Rant over.

Anyway, so I felt I had to prove I had a show too rather than just being the shouty man who brings on other funny people. Lots of the crowd were there just for Stewart Lee, who was closing last night, and they were all pretty hot and bothered before we'd even started. I thought the whole thing would just work against me, and went with some trepidation about how it'd all go down. Sunday's preview had been so good, that I knew I'd have to crash and burn fairly soon. Its the laws of comedy. Luckily, I didn't do that yesterday. It went fairly well I think, and sadly this means I'll have to crash and burn in Edinburgh instead which is not ideal.

Stew's show was excellent too. I probably didn't need to tell you that, but if you haven't booked to see him, you really really really really should. I meant to write really that many times. Its not the drunkness. Drunkness is a lake next to Loch Ness. That was the drunkness. Sorry. I spoke to Stew about his rant against Foster's 'Comedy God' competition. I fully agree with his opinion and it was great he spoke up against it, even if, as he admitted, it may have had something to do with hitting 'reply all' instead of just 'reply'. I'm sure you've heard it all, but if you haven't, the article is here:!

The best outcome of all of this is that now 80's Japanese performance punk band Frank Chickens are number 4 in the list. I think it can't be that hard to get them to number 1 can it? How amazing would that be? Get voting people and the Comedy God may end up being someone who won't play the corporate game with Fosters, which would be hilarious.

This blog has gone all over the shop. Sorry again. I'll stop being drunk tomorrow. I hope. I mean, what if, despite no booze, I was still drunk tomorrow? And the day after and the day after? What if I've hit some sort of drunk switch by accident and will now continually end up at home with no knowledge of how that happened? I'm going to go drink a lot of water right frikkin' now. And then I might pop to Debenhams and start in the kitchen section.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Flight Attend-Ants


Yesterday was supposedly that day where all the flying ants appear. I should probably research it and find out why that it, but I like to think shedloads of ants wake up with wings, get all happy and over excited and race around like the red antrrows (see what I did?) then wake up the next day, try and jump off a building and die. I like to assume its nature's cruel trick. Or God's if you believe in that. Here you go ants, you with your hard lives of carrying stuff and constantly going back and forth with bits of leaf, have some wings and enjoy life. Only for 24 hours though. Psyche! Yes I said psyche. Sorry. Imagine if people got wings for a day? It'd be mayhem. I'd totally do loads of cool wing stuff like fly and that. And piss on a bird from above as some sort of revenge. And I'd look at things from high up and pretend I was googlemaps.

Anyway, I only saw three ants with wings and none of them were flying. I think they send all their failures who don't make the flight squadron to Finsbury Park. Or maybe they were just flight attend-ants. Arf. Sorry.


I watched Toy Story 3 with my friend Ali yesterday. I won't put any spoilers, but its bloody brilliant. Especially the hedgehog who made me laugh out loud an awful lot. Oh and I didn't cry. I was a proper man. A proper man that really nearly cried but held it in. If I wasn't wearing 3D specs people may have noticed some slightly damp eyes. I wonder if thats what the specs were actually for as the film would be just as good in 2D, but you wouldn't be able to hide the man-crying. I think, my friends, I have uncovered a ruse.


I am trying to choose intro and outro music for my Edinburgh show and its harder than I thought. I've got some tracks but can't seem to find the exact thing to walk in on and walk out to. My main choice is Hoppipolla by Sigur Ros as an opener but I worry about this for many reasons. Reason 1: I've been listening to loads of Sigur Ros and enjoying it, but after a month of hearing that track everyday I may not like them any more. Reason 2: Its a pretty dramatic piece of music that's been used for Planet Earth and loads of other things. I'm not sure I'll live up to that as I walk on. People may leave having enjoyed the show but commenting on how the intro music was too self-aggrandising and at no point did I replicate the feelings gained by watching a polar bear and her new cub sliding down an iceberg. Reason 3: Over the last year, Iceland's had some pretty bad luck. I worry its music will not bode well for my show and halfway through the run a volcano will erupt underneath the building. Or I'll become bankrupt. Or both. Actually the latter's far more likely.

The only way I will use that track is if I come on straight after it and criticise it for all of those reasons. I may well do that.


I'm doing a preview tonight and Stewart Lee is on after me. I am nothing if not a tad scared and nervous.


Yesterday I bumped into two different Toms I know. Tom Deacon and Tom Mison. They were both at different stages of my walk from Islington to Old Rope in central London. What are the chances of not only bumping into two people you know, but also both of them being called Tom? Quite low I would presume. I now call yesterday the 'Day of Tomfoolery'.


If you are a Londoner, then I am doing my final Edinburgh preview the night before I head to Scotchland at the Compass where we have Fat Tuesday. Tom Craine is also doing his final preview there too. Please come along. Relevant links and that are on my fancy new Tumblr feed at that I will keep going on and on about till I get bored of it.

Monday, July 19, 2010


This is a mini blog. Hence the name blig. Things become instantly smaller sounding if you replace their vowels for 'i's. There used to be a barmaid at the Sir Thomas A Becket pub in Canterbury who looked exactly like Anna Kornikova if she was a bit squished. Therefore we renamed the barmaid Ini Kinikivi. It works. See? Gotta a lotta stuff to do today so I'll just blurt some things at you, interspersed with some pictures from the hour before my show last night when myself and Sir Thomas A Craine were bored. Let's rock it peoples. GO BLIG:


We'll start with admin. Sorry. But my website front page now has a rolling Tumblr newsfeed. Its already got two new things updated on there so do have a looksie. I have no real idea how Tumblr works and its worth you keeping a keen eye on the front page just for when it all goes wrong and there is just scrolling panic screams.

Here's the linkery:

MY IMPRESSION OF MICKEY MOUSE - Idea by Tom Craine, impression by Tiernan Douieb


Last night me and Tom drove to Cardiff to the extremely delightful Cardiff Arts Institute. A lovely tiny venue, or vinue if you like, filled with lovely people. Tom's show has come a long way and rocked it and I had the best preview yet. I am now officially excited about Edinburgh. If there was a box somewhere saying 'Officially excited about the fringe?' I would put a big tick in the yes box. That's a tick as opposed to a cross, not tick like the insect. That would help no one.

Me and Tom are doing one final preview on August 2nd at the Compass before we head up. Details on this tomorrow. After that its all just Edinburgh baby, so hope you've booked your tix already.



I did a routine spot check this morning and it appears I have a big one right on my face. I'm not sure why, at the age of 29, this still happens. If it means I am still going through puberty, then at least let me grow a bit taller with it to. Otherwise, they need to go. Some people don't appear to have ever got any spots ever and I feel its only fair I stop getting them now and they have some of mine. I worry that its all because at the beginning of my comedy career I did too many open spots. Arf.



I'm going to see Toy Story 3 today with my friend Ali. Ali knows she is mainly there to give me support when I cry my eyes out.

That's it. Not much amazing insight, but it was a blig, so now you know. If bligs happen again you'll be fully prepped. Or should I say pripped? More tomorrow amigos!

Sunday, July 18, 2010


There were a lot of elements of yesterday that should have deemed it a bad day. The sort of bad day where without self restrain I could have happily run around causing minor nuisance by kicking over bins and pushing over pedestrians. That level of rage where if you were to contain your fury there is a small chance the top of your head would shoot off in a volcanic eruption and your brain bubble out like mental lava. This anger would have been put down to two main things. The first was traffic. Now I deal with traffic a lot. I know it well. We hang out. I would say we're like good buddies except that I hate it and its like the friend you've been asked to hang around with at school because your mum's are mates, but he picks his nose and eats it and keeps trying to punch you. Yesterday, as they often do, the peoples in charge of road stuffs decided to close the Blackwall Tunnel. For those readers that don't know the Blackwall Tunnel, it is a large stretch of, well, tunnel, that links North East London to South East London by winding under the Thames. Being that it is underground and traversing beneath lots of water, if such a thing is closed, you are trapped into undertaking a mighty diversion around the Thames and to the nearest bridge. Its not easy. Its especially not easy when all the other cars are doing exactly the same. Its even more difficult when one of the other roads you need to take on this diversion is closed for roadworks. And it is nigh on impossible when whatever you press on your satnav it seems to want to take you back to the closed Blackwall Tunnel meaning you drive in traffic filled circles of Hades for 45 minutes. This was made ten billion times worse by the fact it wasn't the route I would have taken anyway, but I decided to trust the satnav this once. Stupid stupid stupid. This is where it starts. Wrong directions, slowing down the humans. Next thing, the robots will rule. If it wasn't so expensive and useful at other times I'd punch my satnav in its directional face. So having left to do an hour's journey at 6.45pm, I finally arrived at my gig at 9.30pm. I, at this point, had used up all my energy conjuring up interesting swears to shout from the confines of my vehicle - last night's favourite was 'shitzu fuck tornadoes' - and duly decided never to go on a road ever again. I had completely overlooked that I would need to be driving home which ruined that decision somewhat. I should really think these things through. Luckily I'm not a stubborn man or I'd still be walking back from Caterham now.

Thing number two that nearly induced Hulk like rage upon thee earth was a man at the gig. It was a preview at a very nice arts centre in Caterham, Surrey. Dave Gibson had been on before me, and I would've seen his show if it wasn't for the traffic apocalypse I'd been embroiled in. He warned me that the audience of 30 were very chatty, that there was a birthday party in, and that they all answered to the name of John because they thought it'd be funny. This rang warning bells. My show is very much about being nice and its not an easy show to perform to a rawkus bunch. This is something that slightly worries me in Edinburgh. Should I ever get a day with drunken twats in, I'm going to really have to struggle with dealing with them in the nicest way possible. Such heckle responses as 'where'd you learn to whisper? At a high class private whispering school?'. And 'the point of heckling is to make me look stupid. Well done you've managed it, what a nice chap you are.' I can't see that working somehow. I walked onstage anticipating the worst and luckily, it wasn't the worst. There was one man who insisted on interrupting certain gags to tell me how wrong I am about them, but that was ok. I humoured him and moved on. The main culprit of despair creation was a man in the front row whose phone went off twenty minutes in. I warned him not to take it or to go outside. Instead he smugly answered it the front row and talked away. I stopped. I didn't know what to do and I was so flabbergasted (yes, that word) that he would be so rude, that I didn't really know what to do. I couldn't be nasty as I'd been talking about being nice. He spoke for about two minutes to his granddaughter. Not an important call. Were he a doctor or Jack Bauer type agent it'd have been at least forgivable. But no. Something far less urgent and therefore just downright spiteful. I let him finish while pulling certain facial expressions at the rest of the audience to indicate I thought he was a despicable prick. When he finished I used him as an example of when people aren't nice. It wasn't quite enough revenge but it was all I could do at the time. I was fuming inside and wanted to release a barrage of abuse but I didn't. The rest of the show rolled on ok, until, one straw away from breaking the camel's back, the interrupting man spiked up during my attempt at being heartfelt and serious to tell me that 'you're a bit of a shit really aren't you?' Well done dickbag. Why don't you just take that atmosphere balloon and pop it with a sword? It reminded me, though to a far lesser extent of listening to a bootleg of Kitson's 'Its The Fireworks Talking' recently, where just as he builds into this amazing crescendo about his love for his parents, some arsehole in the room shouts 'gay'. Kitson, rightfully so, goes completely nuts and demands the man is removed from the room immediately. It takes a few minutes but after joking about it, he gets the room back and finishes it nearly as well as he would have done before. I'm not in any way as good as Kitson. I just humoured the man again, and went straight back into it. Sigh.

But despite all that it wasn't a bad day. After an enjoyable journey home with Dave, discussions about tattoos and a complete lack of traffic, I sat down and watched Heima. If you haven't seen it, its a film about the band Sigur Ros and their return home to Iceland to perform a series of free gigs for the people at home. These gigs take place in some of the most scenic and beautiful locations you can imagine. Sweeping landscapes of mountains, lakes, black sand and sea. The film is a visual and aural joy to watch. Every minute filled with Jonsi's incredible wails and the constantly cinematic music of the band. There are brief interviews with the band, giving great insights into their thoughts on the shows and how they work and compose. But the amazing bits are the shows themselves intercut with shots of Icelandic life at its best. It reminded me slightly of the Cinematic Orchestra's version of 'The Man With The Movie Camera', which is a 1929 silent film about the Stalin five year plan in Russia and merely showing to a filmic rhythm the everyday ins and outs of life in such a society. The Cinematic Orchestra released a DVD of the film with their soundtrack to it, and I was lucky enough to see it live at the Barbican. It is nothing short of breathtaking. Heima is similarly incredible and even after a day of true wrongness, it was hard not to sit in a chilled bliss of joy as Hoppípolla is played as people walk to the show at Starálfur. Amazing. I am going to see Jonsi play at Bestival this year and I just can't wait. I'm tempted to stub my own toe in the wall and drive in circles around the M25 for several hours first just so I can get maximum relaxed effect from it when I go. I fell asleep having forgotten all about phone twat and traffic mayhem, and instead envisioning walking through Iceland to the 'Takk..' album. Admittedly I'd be quite cold as I was only in my pjs, but again, I hadn't really thought it through.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Eye Lick What Eye Lick

On yesterday's journey to and back from a gig that did not turn out as expected, Paul Byrne brought the best journey chat I'd been company to in some time. Journey chat is very important as it a) keeps me awake and stops me from crashing and b) stops me sitting in awkward silence as there is nothing to say and therefore contemplate crashing of my own accord. Over the years I have been privy to some excellent passengers with good chat all of their own, but yesterday's was banter of the highest accord and so I thought with today's blog I would open up some discussion points based on the most important topics:


After deciding that I am now definitely a cyborg as I have a diabetic pump, we began to discuss just what bit you would get enhanced if you were to become part robot. We both went for a bionic arm. Just one, as that's all that'd be needed. That'd be the one arm that opened jars and lifted up cars while you got the £1 you dropped from underneath them. Or used for arm wrestles. All those important things. I said I'd like robot legs so I could run for ages and ages. Paul said what if the legs broke down, but I argued that I'd quite like to call the AA to come out and repair my legs. You could say phrases like 'I need a leg up' or 'help me, I'm legless'. I'm sure the humour would run out after waiting for four hours unable to move, but I don't think that far ahead. Having robot legs led to the discussion of where the line between robot and cyborg human lies and that perhaps it would be better to have just robot joints and keep your own legs. That's robot joints as in knees and things, not as in spliffs made of gasoline.

Paul opted for the eyes, which I found wrong. He liked the idea (or eyedea. Arf) that you could have eyes that zoom and analyse (or analeyes. Tee hee) just by looking at stuff. You could record, take photos and switch on night vision and heat sensing. In principle, this is pretty cool. However, the downside is that you would have to have your actual eyes removed and I don't like stuff to do with eyes being removed. Personally, if no one ever had to have their eyes removed, I think the world would be a better place. They are too squishy, look like lychees (the worst of all the cheeses) and you'd have to, even if unconscious, (with the only exception being blind people) see something coming towards your eye to remove it. That is the worst bit. Any other operation, you can just not look. Eye removal, you don't really have a choice. So I backed away from such things, hoping that they would just bring out contact lenses that do similar things. Or visors like in the movies. Paul was not having this and couldn't understand why I wouldn't want bionic eyes.

Conversation time = 27 minutes of chat


On the same theme, Paul asked if I'd ever had anyone lick my eyes or had I licked anyone's eyes. I responded with an exasperated 'no' as I'm sure many of you would. Later Paul would ask the same question to Tim Fitzhigham who would respond in exactly the same disgusted way as I did. Paul's reasoning was that its an excellent way to get grit out of your eye. I have never had a huge problem with grit in my eye before, and when it has occurred the last thing on my mind would be to get someone's tongue lunging into my eyeball. This combines two things I'm not a huge fan of: a) things going in my eye. Yes I can happily prod my eye, or rub it. But other things entering it is wholly wrong. And b) licking. While I'm not going to go into it, licking in certain places is more than fine. But other places, like when people think its fun to just lick your face I'm not a fan. Yes, that does happen to me more than I'd like it to. I console myself with the thought that I must have a very tasty face. But still this does not mean in any way I'd like to have tasty eyes. Paul again, could not understand this. He has licked several eyes and had his eyes licked. When questioned, it was not for any sexual reasons, but more training incase he was to get grit in his eye and needed to be prepared when someone had to lick it for practical purposes. I would argue that just wearing goggles all the time might be a better way to avoid eye grit. Paul offered to lick my eye to show me. I declined as, with all due respect, were it ever to happen, I wouldn't want him to be my first. I am now left with sheer fear at the thought and at the same time know I will be drink at some point and curious.

Conversation time = a staggering 35 minutes plus extra time later when it was brought up again and again


On the journey home, Paul excelled in sweet buying and got both types of Refreshers sweets, some love hearts and something else he didn't share because he's selfish. The conversation arose after I decided to test my diabetic pump to its limits and eat a lot of them, about how, when we were at school, you would specifically eat certain sweets to make your spit fizzy. This would be used as a boost in certain spit competitions such as 'best distance' or 'spitting things off walls'. Were spitting an Olympic competition athletes would probably be tested for such substances as Refreshers and banned for such performance enhancing substances. We then discussed how now, as adults you rarely spit, and when you do, its only really for necessity. Burping too, while still enjoyed amongst male company, is no longer practiced like it was in the playground, with the aim of spelling words or saying phrases. We discussed whether or not this was indicative of adult life being less fun or whether we were disgusting kids. The former won.

Conversation time = 22 minutes

The gig itself was at a small festival for 200 people called Hole In the Wall in Kidderminster. Take that Latitude goers, I knew where the party was at. Fo' sho'. Sadly, for the comedy, only 8 people turned up and that very very slowly grew to about 20 by the time we started. It was ok, mainly due to me asking a six year old boy what the rudest word he knew was and he shouted very loudly 'bugger'. That meant all further swears were replaced by 'bugger' which nearly worked till I commented that 'a groan is as good as a laugh unless of course you're shagging someone in which case a groan is preferable.' I stopped at 'of course' realising that replacing 'shagging' for 'bugger' would not really help that gag become any more child friendly. Tim Fitzhigham closed the show with some excellent banter and songs and as he did lots of campers in camouflage gear turned up to fill up the tent a bit. I could see them, but I'm a ninja, so not sure anyone else did so for Tim the tent probably looked the same.

Incidentally Tim's show in Edinburgh this year will include a story about fighting off wild dogs in the West Indies using a guitar and cricket strokes. If for no other reason, you should really really go and see his show for that.

I am previewing in Surrey tonight at the Arc in Caterham, and tomorrow I'm previewing in Cardiff at the Institute. Should you live near either of those, please come along. I promise I won't lick your eye.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Tickly Cough

I have a tickly cough. It is the worst sort of cough as its name suggests it might at the very least make you laugh. It doesn't. It instead that other type of tickling. That type that's done by someone who deems it appropriate to invade your personal space and try to tickle you despite the fact you wouldn't actually like them anywhere nearer than 500 yards away from you at all times. I'm not sure when that happened with tickling. There was definitely a point, as a kid, where tickling was brilliant. You laughed and no one had to write a joke or an Edinburgh show to make it happen. It was proper laughing too, like the type where you can't breath because you've laughed too much. Then, at some point, it just became creepy. Suddenly, as an adult, tickling is borderline harassment. Mr Tickle went from being a big gangly armed hilarity master to being a big gangly armed pervert. I'm not sure why. I mean, often on the tube, I see people looking so miserable that a tickle would probably be exactly what they needed. Not that I would do it. That's how you get arrested. Or worse, hands covered in other people's sweat. Essentially maybe this is why tickling becomes wrong. Its not so much other people's disgust at being tickled, its the ticklers disgust at touching other people. I say bring tickling back. Except for me. Don't touch me. Thanks.

So this cough is bad tickling. It seems to sit in my throat like a tiny Ken Dodd with a tickling stick, and it waits until I am about to eat something or am in the middle of a very interesting sentence (I do say those sometimes) at which point it waves its feather duster to the extremes and I splutter words and food in the most unsightly way. Thanks cough. The other term people might have for it is a 'frog in your throat'. I hope its not one of those. I'm a vegetarian. I don't want to eat frogs. Not only that, but why aren't I choking? Frogs are pretty big compared to my throat. So many questions, so little time. Actually there's ages, I'd just like this cough to go away now. I don't like being at all unwell. It just serves to cement in my head that I am now falling apart. I mean, its something I brought up in last year's Edinburgh show (which you can download here) but from the age of 11 onwards your body is deteriorating. This terrifies me and I've been thinking about it an awful lot. I mean, here I am, with a slight tickly cough. Add to that that I have a diabetic pump, insoles in my shows, have to take two different tablet things for diabetic stuff and this morning, when running, my right leg just gave up and hurt a lot. It was pretty embarrassing actually. Two thirds of the way round Finsbury Park, it just decided I'd put it through enough today and along with the cough, brought me to a standstill right near a drunk man on a park bench. Yes it was 10am. Yes he was already drunk. Yes he, despite his predicament, still managed to look at me with the sort of discern that said 'I can't believe you can't run all the way round the park, how weak and unhealthy are you?'

Last night I was discussing with my friend Ali that we are all turning 30 in the next 12-18 months and I remarked about how, right now, I feel pretty young. I'm doing a lot of going out, drinking and generally enjoying myself. The bit I didn't say however is, unlike ten years ago, all this going out has made me really tired and I'd really like two or three nights in now. Where does this stop? Legs hurting, feeling tired, am I going to wake up on my 30th birthday next January to find my limbs and hair have all fallen off and I can only see out of one eye? It is of course possible that I just have a bit of a cough and I'm being all hypochondriac about it. Yes that's what I'll tell myself. Then when it turns out to frogitis maximus or something as deadly I can at least console myself that I didn't see it coming. Then I would spend my last days on this earth wondering around the world, barefoot, and tickling everyone and making everyone laugh and then feel violated all at once, confusing them about what they really want from life. Or I might just have some cough syrup. Yes. Probably that one.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Busman's Holiday

I've done a lot of walking today. There is a chance that had I walked anymore that I'd have had to buy the rights off of the Proclaimers to their most famous hit, and sing it proudly as I marched back from Holloway. It would have involve some odd stares and possibly violence directed towards me, but thems the rules. The reason for walking? Well today has been a day of errands. I like to pronounce it 'err-ands' just to confuse others as to the meaning of my sentence. I suggest you do it too. Imagine how annoying my last sentence would have been if it'd read 'today has been a day of err-ands'. You would wonder why I'd left it unfinished, and more importantly, what on earth I was talking about. Anyway, errands involved heading back to the hospital for a check up on how I'm getting on with the pump. I will probably have to go back again next week too and if end up there even more often than that I'll be bloody inpatient. Arf. Anyway, most things pump wise are pretty good, aside from realising that when I take the (WARNING SLIGHTLY GRIM BIT) cannula out every three days, the plaster that its attached with hurts like fuckery. I asked what can be done about such things and the answer was 'not a lot', followed by suggestions that it may be to do with me being a rather hirsute chap. I'm not sure how I feel about combating that aspect of my physique for a small amount of pain every three days. I like being fluffy and I would fear that removing my tum of hair would make me less funny. Like a belly based Sampson. However, I will see how it goes at next plaster removal and if its too bad I may have to wax myself down and get like a slippery eel. This conversation was then followed with me telling the reception staff to change my address to that of my parents, only for them to inform me the only address they have is for one I was born at, and haven't lived at for 28 years. Its nice to know the NHS are on top of things. Despite the nurses and doctors being ace, there is a reason why its in my phone at the Shittington Hospital. Although I will have to change that as I keep forgetting and can never find it in my address book.

I have also had my hair cut which today entailed a conversation about reasons why I shouldn't go to Bulgaria and then I went and got all angry at my GP. So all in all, well done me. This productivity today counter acts me spending last night, my night off, at a comedy gig. If I'd spent today lolling around, then I worry that last night's venture would appear to be somewhat of a busman's holiday in that respect. Not that busmen actually go on holiday's that require them driving buses necessarily. In fact the chances are, thanks to insurance and other health and safety factors, that most busmen probably aren't allowed to drive buses on holiday. Nor, should I point out, that last night was in anyway a chore. No far from it. I had a very good reason to be there and that was because I went to watch fellow ex-Kent student, the lovely and funny Laura Lexx do a set. Considering she has only been going a very short amount of time she is ridiculously likable on stage and I urge other comics to join me in dissuading her from continuing for selfish purposes of us retaining more gigs. Its nice that she was good too as there is nothing more awkward than going for a drink with someone who has just bombed, so well done her for being considerate about the rest of my evening flowing by that tad bit easier.

Apart from Laura and one act called Rosie something who was ace, the other four acts I saw gave me shuddering memories of the open spot circuit I used to be part of only 4 or 5 years ago. It was oddly comforting in a way, knowing that I no longer have to gigs in the middle of pubs, where punters wonder in for free, talk all the way through you and then just as you maintain some sort of decorum, the next act comes on and says 'so...I'm single' and then proceeds to spout their life problems at all, because they couldn't afford to get a therapist. The night itself was called Comedy Bin, which I can't help but feel demeans all who were there. Comedy Bin? You are already stating the night will be rubbish. Why not just call it 'Evening of Shit', or 'Life You'll Never Get Back' cos that'd encourage the punters just as well. Its amazing the lack of care that goes into these sorts of events and then people are curious as to why they encourage acts who are already dead behind the eyes and talk about rape and masturbation as often as possible to ensure they have an outlet now and don't get arrested when they leave instead. The open mic scene is tough because no one seems to think it through before setting up a gig. One day I will endeavour to write some sort of rules about this sort of thing and hand out a manifesto like a comedic Jerry Maguire. Or more likely, I'll worry about competition for Fat Tuesday and not bother.

Ok to be fair, I felt hugely like a smug bastard sitting there and it wasn't nice. Watching act after act and thinking 'you could rewrite this like this and this like this' and accidentally sighing when someone was really bad. I hated myself more when I met a brand new act at the bar and he asked me if I was on and I said no, and I explained it was my one night off. He asked how long I'd been doing comedy and I told him and then he said he knew who I was. All the while I was saying words and hearing them come out of my mouth in the style of a big headed twat. I hope it didn't come across like that, but it probably did. I think its because I spent the first two years of my career solidly doing those sorts of gigs and never thinking I would escape. I hadn't really thought about it since, but being there yesterday gave me such a nice sense of satisfaction that my career definitely has moved on. Yes, I have gone from being a poor open spot, to a poorly paid act who now unnecessarily patronises open spots. This my friends, is Hollywood.

Luckily Laura was on early before I could do any more harm and we reconvened to elsewhere and discussed Santa's who played Paddington, bleeding elfs, (which you should all go to right now) and this:


Oh and if you get a minute, check out Laura's ace blog at:


I'm now going to spend today contemplating what I would look like hairless. I'm thinking, possibly a giant baby. I may just deal with the pain rather than risk being kidnapped by an angry mum outside Tesco's. Saying that, it'd be a pretty easy pick up method. Oh dear god. Being a smug bastard and now contemplating pulling by dressing up as a 2 year old. Something very wrong has happened. I blame the pump. (Only 2 more weeks and 2 days of this so I'm using it while I can).

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Not Very Novel

If I was an animal today, I'd be a busy bee. Not my ideal choice. Yellow and black is not this season. Having six limbs would make buying jumpers or trousers pretty hard - depending on which category you classed your extra two appendages as. Personally I'd have one extra of each. Therefore I could hold two pints whilst conducting an orchestra and I'd win all triple leg races. Actually that'd be ace. I also like the idea of sticky knees. Except when I forget I have stick knees, kneel down and can't get back up. That'd be shit. So yeah, not my ideal animal of choice. And yes pedants, its not necessarily an animal, its an insect. To you I say buzz off.

I've spent this morning finally getting all my books and CDs from my flat and its amazing what you discover you own. In terms of books, while I definitely own some classy literature that would make people stroke mustaches and do noises like 'hmm' and 'ooh', this is heavily counteracted by the amount of tiny shit books I have been given as presents and all the novelty crap people think I might like being a comedian. 'Oh he's a comedian, maybe he won't want interesting fiction, he'll probably just want to laugh. I know I'll buy him the Zen Of Farting book. Brilliant.' Actually its the opposite of brilliant. Its tnaillirb. Its that. I don't know how you say it and I don't care, but that's what it is. I do want interesting fiction. More than that, I won't ever laugh at someone who's applied Buddhist methodology to anal gas parpings. You know why? Not because farts aren't funny. They always will be, fact. But reading about them is the equivalent of watching an action film where everytime something gets blown up the screen goes dark and the words 'exploding stuff' appear on screen instead of you seeing it. Add this book to the other shit I own: The Camel Sutra - Karma Sutra with drawings of camels shagging; some crap guide to Spliff which no one who's smoking would ever be arsed to read and by having it on my shelf I may as well have the words 'wannabe student loser' stamped on my brain; and The Little Book Of Life - oddly doesn't just say in big letters 'Always Be Disappointed, It's For The Best' as it should. There are loads more and all of them, individually make me sad that someone has wasted trees on such toss. They shall be promptly delivered to charity shops by the end of the week so others can pass them on as presents to people they clearly hate. If I had more time I'd cut all the words out and set them free in a forest to hopefully become better books, but that would take ages.

I have a similar thing with CDs. Over the years people have, for comedy purposes, bought me things like a Boyzone CD, knowing full well I'd hate it. I, to play along with the gag, would keep it on the shelf till certain drunk moments where it would be played, everyone would boo at the person that got it for me, I'd insist on playing it as it was a present and there would be laughter followed by a quick race to turn it off before our ears bled. This Boyzone CD sat alongside other horrors of music including A1's version of Take On Me, which should be used in wars to make the enemy cry, Aqua's Barbie Girl, a Rick Astley album that doesn't even have 'Never Gonna Give You Up' on it. Then there are two Billie CDs which I bought for 50p each purely to play them very loud early in the morning when I was in my second year. This was because my friend Mat had the room next to me and would find no worse wake up call than me shouting out of tune 'Because we want to!' until he got up. That was comedy gold my friends. Bloody comedy gold. Sadly, now, student days all gone, they have festered in the corner of my CD racks for many years hoping once again to get played but knowing I'd sooner set fire to my eyes. But, and this is a big but, they are still there. Why? Well perhaps I assume that one day I may need them for a comedy thing, despite knowing that I could just get an mp3 if I really needed it. Perhaps its because I'm too afraid of the look from the people in the charity shop when I hand them over. I just don't know. Either way, I think I may just carve hate words into the back and use them as frisbees in the park tomorrow.

Last note: Both previews at Fat Tuesday were excellent last night. Carey Marx's show about beliefs and magic was just brilliant, as was Tom Craine's show. Go see both in Edinburgh. Really do. Go on. Hurry up. Do it now. See it now. Oh you can't. Well book now and wait. God, you're impatient. No I'm talking to you, not God. I don't believe in him. Or her. Or it. So there. No hurry up and by tickets.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Previews, Reviews and Cow Poos


I woke up this morning fully intending to go for a run and I didn't, which now means I'm suffering from that horrible affliction of self guilt. No one else is making me feel guilty about it, but my own head is spending every few minutes taunting me about laziness. I have a reasonable excuse - my blood sugars were very low when I woke up and going for a run would have caused a hypoglycemic attack. However my head is like the harshest of drill commanders and has decided this is not an excuse and I keep berating myself for not flipping out in the middle of the park in a pair of shorts and a tshirt. This even more harsh knowing full well that in Finsbury Park no one would notice and I'd be left there for some time. Again, whilst I worry this is some sort of severe self paranoia, I'm pretty sure my conscious has it in for me. This is possibly because I slept in and have been neglecting it. Yes I slept in and didn't go for a run. I may as well pick up my fat card and eat a cake.

This is all the pump's fault so far. I mean, I'm loving it, but it will take several days before all my blood sugars adjust to the fact a tiny robot is sorting them all out. My sugars have been up and down more often than a bipolar sufferer in a lift. The nurse said I've got to spend these next few days just getting to grips with it then they'll tweak all the important bits on Thursday. Tee hee, tweak the important bits. I went in at 9.30 yesterday morning and I was out by 12.30, despite that they normally say it takes about 6-7 hours training to learn. This makes me hella cool and intelligent. Just call me genius. Or you could call me 'man who didn't really listen, just nodded where appropriate and will no doubt be flipping out in a park in a day's time'.

Aside from that, I'm constantly flitting between showing the pump off to people and then feeling all a bit conscious about having something attached to me. I'm sure it'll become like second nature and I'll be strutting around in nothing but pants and a big red arrow drawn on my stomach to point at the pump. Or not. Actually, I really hope not.


Preview number 12 last night and the best one yet. Looked at my notes only twice and all the words seem to fall into place like a verbal Tetris. It seemed like it was going to all go wrong at first. The room was boiling hot and made worse by a problem with the drains outside so it smelt like someone was grilling cow pats on a barbie. I'm assuming it was the drains and not someone grilling cow pats on a barbie. Kingston doesn't seem the sort of area to condone such things. They can't charge me £6 for parking and then allow someone to cook poo. So it must have been drains. Then the show went on for ages and ages. Jon Richardson opened with his excellent preview. I think Jon is such an excellent stand-up, but I still enjoy watching his early previews purely because its the closest I'll ever get to seeing a man have a breakdown live on stage. Then in the second section, the first of the 'special guests' who shall go unnamed, overran stupid stupid amounts, followed by some ace stuff from Milton Jones and all in all, it was 10.05pm before the second interval happened, after which I had to apologetically tell people they still had another whole hour from me.

Luckily they sat, listened and the whole thing seemed to work. Goddamn I'm excited for Edinburgh now. Its still not finished but its so nice when something you've worked on feels like its actually coming together. Fingers crossed they weren't the exception to the rule and that my next few previews don't make me want to start back at square one again.


I'm going to regret typing this about 2 minutes after I post it up, but here it is anyway. I'm fully aware at how bitter and petty this looks, but I feel like I should put my side of this up. Before I harp on further like a drama queen, I was slightly miffed at the Chortle review of Lounge on the Farm from Sunday. Here it is:


Obviously, I'm not opposed to all of it. It's pretty correct on saying nice things about loads of the acts that were on, Keith and Carl in particular having top sets. Its obviously just the paragraph about me. Now to put this all into context, it was day two of the festival and several people had seen me in that tent the night before when I had done my solid 20 minute set which was much fun. So I thought, for the people, I'd do a different 20, which perhaps in the context of a festival, would not be as strong. I had been sitting in the sun for some time and assessed that the crowd were quite laid back so thought I'd start things pretty chilled. Bad move as they didn't respond too well straight away. But then the mic broke with an ominous like robot noise and so I upped the energy to keep things going and suddenly the crowd were with me which was great. I asked them if they wanted the same stuff as yesterday or things that may not go down as well and they cheered for the latter, which is omitted from the review. I had a pretty fun set and topped it off with some more solid stuff and left feeling fairly happy about it all.

So really, reading back what I've written, its not that different to the review. I think I'm just upset by the 'solid if unspectacular' line. Bastard. Sorry I'll stop sucking lemons now, and calm down. Must not care as much or Edinburgh will be brutal. I blame the pump for this sort of behaviour. I wonder how long I can get away with that excuse for anything slightly untoward? I'm reckoning on at least three weeks.

Monday, July 12, 2010


I'm about to go and have the training I need to start using my diabetic pump. I'm quite excited and a little bit anxious about it all. Excitement is mostly due to never having to inject five times a day ever again. Anxious because there is a lot to learn, and I'm tired and a bit sunburnt. I'm scared that I will only take a handful of things in before confining myself to just fiddle with it in the way I would a new phone and committing myself to several hypo attacks because I've tried to change the backdrop or some such. It doesn't have a backdrop. I should be ok. I'm also a tad worried that I'll get injection withdrawal symptoms. That may sound pretty odd, but I've been injecting myself with insulin since I was 7 years old and my parents did it for me from 4 to 7, so that's most of my life so far. Suddenly I'll never have to do it again, force of habit may mean I have to just stick a sewing needle in my arm every few hours till I can wean myself of it.

I'm also slightly worried about the fact that the pump is attached to you. I can take it off when I want, for an hour or so, and its not heavy or anything, but I'm just not great at that sort of stuff. Its the fact that being recently single makes me worry that that the discovery that I'm connected to a tiny pump may not be the whirlwind of sexiness most ladies want. I remember just before university when my dentist offered me a way to pull up the tooth on the right hand side of my jaw that has never grown. It sounded good till he said it would require a tiny chain brace pulley system for at least a year. The other alternative was that no one would ever really notice and nothing would happen. I couldn't help but feel, before embarking on the world of university mayhem, that what he was saying was the equivalent of 'I could punch you in the face, or not' or 'you could date women at university, or we could make you a metal mouthed monstrosity'. I opted to leave it be and now I have a handy place to put straws when drinking milkshakes.

The pump is different to that though. Firstly it will make a difference to my life, hugely so. Secondly, it looks pretty damn sleek and cool and comes with a blood test kit that bluetooths the results to the pump and then the pump injects me with what I need. Amazing. This is totally the future. I'm hoping that later installments will come with 3D glasses that can bluetooth to the blood test kit when I eat popcorn (not that this will really help) and a wii-mote. Either way, today, as GZA of the Wu-Tang says 'everything changes'.

A quick addendum before I go and become a cyber diabetic/cyberbetic: Lounge on the Farm was excellent yesterday. A truly truly brilliant festival that wasn't even marred by the fact I now have two very brown lower arms and a very brown face, but an extremely white everywhere else. I'm worried the only way to even this tan out would be to wear long gloves and a balaclava and little all else. Which I can only see as getting me kicked out of the park/swimming pool/anywhere.

Also I'm previewing at Outside Of The Box in Kingston tonight. Its a bloody lovely club and I'm on with the excellent Jon Richardson, so well worth heading along if you can. All details are at:

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Johnny Three Gigs

Just call me Johnny Three Gigs. Why? Well because you idiot, yesterday I did three gigs. Oh you were asking why you were calling me Johnny? Valid point. I have no valid reason to give. Now stop asking difficult questions. Yeah I did three whole gigs. How did they go? Well I feel I haven't done an amateurish just-type-how-gigs-went-till-you-all-get-bored-and-never-read-my-blog-again blog for ages, so why not have a little foray into the old school blog style as we find out about gigs 1 to 3. Then I'll tell you where I went on my summer holidays and what I did and when I ate ice cream.

GIG 1: Kids Comedy Show at the Cambridge Comedy Festival

This mostly involved being heckled by a 2 year old who would shout nothing but 'penguin' whilst handing out bourbons to other audience members. This was both a brilliant thing and a hugely irritating thing as it was pretty hard to ignore. You can't just slam down a 2 year old with abuse. Not because she'd get upset or anything, but more because she wouldn't understand and would carry on shouting 'penguin'. I'm not wasting my prime insults like that. It was a small crowd of people due to the badly timed huge free festival in the park nearby on the same day. Huge free festival are bastards like that. I hate them. Unless I'm at them. Then I love them. Its all relative. Like families.

The few kids that were there were grade A mental though which was what was needed with extra kudos to 7 year old Sebastian who said he was afraid of dreams and therefore has never ever slept and instead spends his time standing on his own head. Sometimes I wonder if we are needed for these shows at all or if we should just charge kids to stand in a room and shout at each other. Its far funnier than my material.

Helen Arney did some ace songs with a brilliant improvised penguin tune, and Alexis Dubus got the entire room to waddle which was brilliant. Much fun. But next time I'm heckled by a 2 year old, shit will go down.

GIG 2: Preview number 11 at the Cambridge Comedy Festival

Last Thursday, at preview number 10, I felt I'd found a real turning point with my show. I had suddenly felt a lot happier with it and it all seemed to have fallen into place. The only downside of Thursday is that I had spat words out like a gattling gun, charging through my set as though I was racing against time. I still managed to get in 51 minutes though and so I had thought that with a bit of pacing I'd easily hit my target 55 mins and we'd all be dancing in the street. Well not all of us. Just me. And people would think I was weird. So I'd stop pretty quickly. But those 30 seconds of dancing would be great. I'd probably do the cha-cha.

So yesterday I consciously thought I'd slow things down. And I did. For a bit. But somehow I gained pace and ended up finishing everything at 46 minutes. I had lost 5 minutes. I hadn't forgotten anything, I had just somehow gone so fast that I had bettered my last time, but for the worst. If I was an athlete I'd totally high five myself now. Which would be a clap and not so great. But I'm not, and I need those five minutes back. Plus another four. If you come to my preview on Monday, I may ask you to shout when I'm going to fast. Or I might need some sort of electric shock system: If this Tiernan goes over 100 words per minute he'll blow! Or suck more likely.

Still it was fun, the crowd were great and one man came up to me afterwards and said it was amazing. Which was very nice and not a compliment I usually receive. Unless its from the Eh? EH? NUDGE NUDGE? WINK WINK? EH? Sigh.

GIG 3: Lounge On The Farm

It took much longer to get to Lounge On The Farm than I'd thought, thanks to the M25 being a stretch of tarmac hatred. How can they have traffic on a Saturday evening? I sat for 35 minutes in a solid going nowhere jam in the heat. I'm fairly sure my right arm is now so cooked you could eat it. Don't eat it. I need it. When I finally got to the festival, it all seemed pretty chilled. Its a lovely site and its al very well laid out with three or four different areas segregating all the major stages so nowhere has any big noise clashes. The comedy stage was laid out with haystacks for people to sit on (brilliant, unless like me you have hayfever) and lots of cushions and blankets, ensuring people really would 'lounge'. As a result, the gig was really nice. The one heckle I had was a positive one telling me to go to a festival called 'Small World' which I already like the sound of, and I managed to stick some new Edinburgh show stuff into my set too. Right, that's all a tad boring isn't it? Sorry.

Unfortunately for you, the rest of the evening was all lovely too. I bumped into silly amounts of people I know. Being an old student of Kent Uni, it appears lots of alumni and current students head along to the festival for a bit of nostalgia. Which is odd as we didn't have any exams on a farm. Not even field studies. Arf. See it was worth waiting for that one no? No? Oh. So I saw some people that it was really nice to see again, met a few Twitterers and had to work out the awkwardness of whether to ask their username or real name first and spent time hanging with two old friends Louise and Kieran who I'm staying with. I haven't seen them since their wedding back in September so it was great to see them. They also have a brilliant cat who has spent the entire morning so far looking at me with sheer discern.

So that's it. I'm back at Lounge On The Farm today, so I'm slightly worried about doing the same material again. Of course, I could do different material, but that's not the point. I will ask the audience and hopefully when I'm on, at 3.30pm, they will be half asleep anyway and not really care. Little all matters today as tomorrow I get my diabetic pump and become the glucose intolerant version of the Six Million Dollar Man. Expect tomorrow's blog to be full of me typing 'waa waa nee nee waa waa nee nee' which is the noise of my bionic eye.