Thursday, February 21, 2008

How to save America discovred at an Open Mic

I did an Open Mic last night.
Five minuets of furry!
I miss doing open Mics. It wasn’t so much about the performance end of things that I miss, it was the hanging out with friends and trading ideas, Punch Lines and information on all things comedy. We were a little tribe of people that moved like nomads from stage to stage. We thought nothing of driving an hour to Sacramento or San Jose for the chance at 7 minuets on stage somewhere in the corner of a dark bar in front of a handful of down on their luck drunks.
Those car rides with friends were some of the best times in my life. Hanging outside an open mic and dissecting jokes on a summer night in San Francisco was as good as anything could be. It didn’t seem that way at the time, but it really was a great time in my life. Not just because everything was still new and we didn’t have a clue about what we were up against, but because we all had the same thing in common.
There is not that many pure open mics around anymore. Now days, a lot of what is called an open mic is really more of a showcase where some people are pre-booked and a few known people will show up and get squeezed on. A true open mic is a great place to see a lot of undiagnosed mental illness, bad jokes from people with low self-esteem and the occasional cry for help with Punch Lines.
We wanted to try out jokes, but we also wanted to have fun with each other too. That’s what made the whole crazy process worth it. Messing with a friend on stage was cool. A lot of great jokes came out of those situations.
That’s what I was reminded of last night.
A friend went up. She was wearing what I am told is a very hip outfit. But to most of us, it looked like she had put her shirt on backwards. All the buttons were on the back. She went up on stage and anticipating a confused look from the small crowd, she opened on telling us, “My shirt is not on backwards. This is fashion. The gays dressed me.”
Well, I looked at the host who seemed up for fun and asked him to zip up my hooded jacket backwards. Of course, as I walked to the stage people started to laugh. I stood there a moment and said, “I’m not wearing my sweat shirt on backwards. She dressed me.”
This is the true spirit of open mics. Having fun with the people your going through the experience with. No ones feeling were hurt and the crowd quickly understood the whole idea of, this is all experimental and we get to have fun watching. Cool!
I tried out some stuff, got some laughs, talked politics with a friend and went home with a smile on my face. What could be better than that?
While I was on stage with my jacket on backwards, it suddenly occurred to me that this way of wearing it should catch on in America any day now. With the hood right bellow my chin, its like having a feed bag right in front of your face. Now, my hands are free and I can eat as I point at others that are different from me. I am truly surprised the idea has not caught on yet! Can you imagine people walking around malls with a feedbag in front of their fat faces filled with Cinabuns and hot dogs on a stick? Corporate America would love this idea! With your hands free, you can hold two bags instead of one bag of useless shit at 20% interest on a card you probably shouldn’t have! In fact, I think this is the way to stimulate our lagging economy.
I think I have stumbled onto the way to save America. All I had to do was get back to my comedy roots.

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