The latest from the Magical Orangutan Laboratories…
Tonight, I dip my toe in Open Mic comedy. Five minutes of material that’ll hopefully lead to fame or free drinks. I’m good with either. So long as I’m not tarred, feathered, and tossed into the Ohio river, I’ll be good.
I’ve always been naturally funny, someone who could riff off one-liners “in the moment”, but I always had trouble writing a stand up bit. This is one of the reasons it’s taken me so long to even venture on stage to tell jokes. Writing comedy is a lot harder than regular writing because not only must you come up with ideas, you need to come up with funny ideas. Thankfully, there are many resources, like books and websites, that help you play around with structure, formulas, and the like to produce material. Also, writing stand differs from regular writing because you’re writing what is basically dialogue for yourself. It’s a different form of narrative than you would find in your basic third-person narrative writing. It helps to write dialogue like Faulkner, I suppose.
One joke less. One joke less.
Tonight’s open mic is happening in my home town of Cheviot, OH. I had a joke at one point that went like this:
This is a bit of a homecoming for me. I’m from here — not the bar, but Cheviot. Cheviot was my home, Cheviot was where I grew up, and, judging by your response so far, it looks like I’m going to die in Cheviot.
In the end, I took it out. However, if I’m not getting the laughs I hope I do from the rest of my material, I might slide it back in.
Cheviot can probably be considered a Conservative neighborhood, and since I’m pretty leftie, my act is steering clear of politics. Hopefully, what I’ve written is funny, it’s definitely me, and with the help of a note card, I won’t blank on stage.
Will report back tomorrow.