Tuesday, May 01, 2007


Hey there 'Redheads... Welcome to the first day of the last 2/3rds of this year. I've often found that time seems to pick up the pace when you have something to look forward to. If that's true, May should be done in a couple days. I've got at least one show every weekend this month, and the capper is a big one. May also begins what I call The Gauntlet...a series of birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays that conspire to turn me into a stock tip for Hallmark investors over the next three months. It starts with Mother's Day, and I've already complicated things by signing up for one of the many things in May I'm looking forward to on that Sunday...I'm going hang gliding. And, yes, I'll be the prick wearing the Superman shirt...don't judge me. Anyway, more on that as it gets closer. I had 3 shows over the weekend that when the audience reunion is held next year, it could be held in an overhead storage compartment.

The first show was the sophomore outing for the new Taglines enterprise, run by my comedy compadres Mike Shader and Sean Joxe. It's a cool little room inside the Fire Rock Grill in Columbia, MD. If you're up that way, go check 'em out on a Thursday night. The first show they had was packed...this night suffered from a small sophomore slump. The crowd was about 12 people...until four of them, for some reason, got up and left. A general comedic rule of thumb, when it comes to crowd size, is that numbers are easily compensated for by exuberance. I'll take a fun 20 over a disinterested 150 any day of the week. Those that stuck around were there to have a good time and they more than made up for softball team-like attendance. They were like the Spartans of laughter. The press came out to cover the show for a local Columbia paper, so hopefully word will spread and they can get a regular following.

The show on Friday was a fun gig opening for local sketch group DCUP and the Bostonian Late Night Players at the Arlington Drafthouse (please click on at least one of those...I'm slave over a hot keyboard for you people...). DCUP put on a show called the Boneless Chicken Cabaret, consisting of three guys in giant chicken suits who cluck through each of their sketches, while random audience members are plucked from the crowd to become part of the act. Easily, the most bizarre thing I've seen in a week (top 5, at least). Frank Perdue on peyote buttons...that'd be the best way to describe it. After they got done, the Players took the stage and put on their own bit of inspired lunacy. Afterward, the lot of us went next door for Thai food.

Yep...pretty sketchy.

I'd never had Thai food before, and I was mesmerized by the exotic sounding names of the dishes. I asked about the crispy squid and it sounded delicious, so I ordered it. I ate the crispy squid and it was delicious (my kingdom to whoever got that very very very obscure musical reference). Anyway, so yeah...the crispy squid was damn good...and spicy. The Thai like their squid HOT. Great going down, the opposite of great coming out. It felt like somebody lit Sigmund the Sea Monster on fire, then he hopped on the Great Space Coaster out of my ass. Turd flambe.

For those of you who weren't toddlers in the 70's

Enough poo talk. Besides being very cool guys, the Players hipped me to a cool sonic treasure trove where they get their scene change music from. They use mash-ups. Add that to my list of "Things I Wish I Could Do", right under last month's entry: lightsaber videos. I found some kick ass tunes that've been frankensteined together by DJ's worldwide. Here are four of my favorite to tickle your tympanic membranes:
Call Me Phantom
Whole Lotta Sabbath
Champ in Black
Madonna's Carcass
Put that in your iPod and smoke it. You're welcome.

The last show of the weekend was at Ned Devine's Irish Epcot Village over in Sterling, VA. Herbie Gill, the two Tylers, Sonnichsen and Richardson, young Jermaine Fowler, and I took the stage for a show that so few people saw that it might just be a myth. When we got there, there was a family of four sitting dead center...mom, dad, and the two kids...they lasted about 5 minutes. That left three couples. One sat in front, just to the right of the stage, and the other two held down the back of the room on either side. It created a Bermuda Triangle where laughter was lost, never to be heard from again. Actually, that's not true. The six that stuck it out up through my feature set were attentive, responsive, and laughed audibly. Then, the back two tables up and left...and one of the two sitting up front went to the bathroom, leaving one person in the crowd for Herbie's set. 'Redheads, I'm here to tell you that Herbie Gill is a fuckin' pro. He took the mic, sat down at the table with the one person, and did a casual, intimate, and hilarious show. A few more tables filled up during his set, and they were enthralled and entertained. And Herbie did this with a stomach flu that had him sipping iced gatorade because that's all he could keep down. It was a clinic.

That's all for now.

To be continued...

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