One of my favorite people, Eddie Izzard, says that in order to get good at stand-up, you just have to do it a thousand times. I finally put my mike where my mouth was last night at the Boiler Room. Here’s that file:
When I first walked in, I assumed that roughly every third person was there to do a five minute set, but it was clear by midnight that every single person in attendance wanted mike time. Straw fedoras and “wacky” t-shirts abounded. The night was such a sausage party that I sailed into the ladies’ room past three anxiously waiting dudes, which never happens. As new meat, I was bounced 21 times and finally went on at a quarter of midnight. I was pleased that everything got some kind of laugh, and was winding up for my finish when a cute but very inebriated metrosexual (it turned out to be Bobby Hacker) got up and started taking his clothes off, which was okay, but then he started taking my clothes off and putting a flashlight down my shirt. So I took off abruptly, in the midst of the Emcee yelling “You’re gonna get kicked out again, Bobby!” All in all, I am fairly happy with how it went – I got a good reception from the few remaining patrons and comedians.
For a brief, shining moment that many consider the “golden age” of Comcast Portland public access, his talk show was broadcast on Sunday nights. Now Famous appearances are few and far between, the show at Holocene last Wednesday was ominously plugged as “final”.
Guests were strictly single-named, and included human beatbox (and so much more) Fogatron, Shoehorn, who tap danced and played saxophone simultaneously and took hits off a glass bottle of Wild Irish Rose in between, and KUFO radio DJ Marconi. However, there is no writing about this show. Impromptu moon-boot sand dance with Pixie sticks and jumping on a desk to do a re-enactment of Famous’ favorite film, Sweet Sal, lays flat on the page. In person, however, it rocks like an avalanche. Or a hurricane. Or some kind of natural disaster that kills people.
It’s a group effort, and could not soar without the help of German-speaking emcee Cutter, handsome wingman John Schmitt, security chief Denny, Intern Kris, producer J.D. Fischer, and Joanie loves Chachi the Tiger. However, Famous is the star. He lives up to his name and more- this show is much funnier than anything on network television. So I guess this is just a bottled letter cast adrift on the stormy seas of the interweb- I need more !
POSTSCRIPT: Finally, someone has come to my aid on Youtube and posted a scant minute of Famous’ craft, a bit ingeniously entitled Candied Bird Dick.
Bulldog Versus Roomba: Here is a brief film documenting the challenges our Frenchie had with the floor cleaning robot, Roomba.
Eventually, Hazel killed that Roomba by jumping on it until the battery wiring broke. Broken robot was replaced by a functioning robot that Hazel and Chico hammered out an uneasy peace with.
Update: this is STILL my top video on Youtube. 50K people watching an old grainy recording from our first digital camera, which I bought on Overstock.com, of a now-dead dog barking at a now-dead Roomba, which I bought on woot.com. Life is weird.
The spouse and I have just returned from a trip to NYC, celebrating the occasion of our fourth wedding anniversary. It’s not so impressive that we have been married four years so much that it’s been consecutive. I celebrated a lot of it by following him from record store to record store to record store.
A high point of the trip for me was seeing Alan Cumming, Cyndi Lauper, and Nellie McKay in the Threepenny Opera. Alan played Mack the Knife as if he were a bisexual hustler. Nellie was fantastic as Lucy, and Cyndi looked mighty foxy in her Pirate Jenny hooker-wear. Costume design by Isaac Mizrahi, who is a hack. I could put rubber pants and a priest’s collar on a chorus member as well as anyone!
We had a great time attending a party for the Ron and Fez XM radio show, and we sat in on the show the following Tuesday. I really enjoyed it, and if I had not looked at the message boards afterwards I never would have realized that I am am unfunny hole.
Our only celebrity sighting this trip was Russell Simmons, enjoying a vegan brunch with an attractive young lady the day before his break with Kimora broke in the New York Post.
Beloved Spouse thinks he saw Karlheinz Stockhausen in Central Park, but it could have been Stockhausen syndrome.
Another feature of the trip was seeing the Munch exhibit at MOMA, which included a painting that was just discovered in 2004.
We enjoyed hanging out with our gracious hosts, and we got to see Stephin Merritt at his DJ night at the Beauty Bar, where we were showered with candy and girl-group hits, so it was really a nice time all around.