I started stand up comedy as a way to express myself. I started in my forties with the hope of a twenty year old. I believe stand up is truly one of the last bastions of free speech. This is why I do it. Plus it's a thrill to help people laugh. I'll be at it again once the pandemic has quelled. Here's a musing I wrote about stand up comedy.
Why stand up? It's painful, you won't meet your soul mate and there's no 401k. Trying to elicit a laugh, some reaction that I am alive. I lay out my heart for an audience, who are drinking beer and eating nachos. I must be a masochist.
I observe the world all day long. Taking notes in my head, jotting them on a brown Starbuck's napkin or an old DWP bill. I fold them in my bra, near my heart, for luck. Waiting in the green room for my chance to speak. What will I say? Will I remember my jokes?
The audience just stares...waiting to be entertained.
A dance between me and “the beast”. Will I tame them? I hope they don't see too much of me? The bad parts.
Taking the stage I look at my shoes. Why do I do this to myself? This torture. My stomach sickens. Flop sweats. Dry mouth. I must be dying. No laughs. No applause. No love.
On stage, alone with the mic. My skin is gone.
The anticipated thrill of a free fall.
Will the parachute open, just in time, before I hit the ground?
Then I hear it, the long awaited safety net…my first laugh.