Thursday, 20 October 2011

I didn't so much wake up and smell the roses, as the rosé

I'll try and be brief about last weekend because I want to get to Monday. Thursday saw me begin the monthly three day event called "my comedy gigs" at The Ashcroft Arms in Luton and it was, of course, messy. Landlord, bon viveur and general good egg Steve had amassed a large audience who laughed at pretty much everything myself and the other two acts (Martin Beaumont and Rudi Lickwood) said. No idea why, but I think the huge amounts of booze consumed by all had something to do with it. His latest barmaid acquisition is a girl called Riannon. I haven't seen her for eleven years. She is now twenty six years old and was formerly (aged fifteen) a kitchen hand in a pub he used to run around the corner. At that age she was ripe for me taking the mickey out of her and generally making her life a misery by pursuing her around the bar with various glasses of fluid threatening to throw them over her. She is now an exceptionally beautiful young woman. The mistake I made was to bring this up at the gig (approximately half way through the show) by saying "This is Rhiannon - I haven't chased her round a pub since she was a teenager".

Rudi Lickwood - Luton loves you!

Friday witnessed a packed house in Hitchin at my oldest (and frankly best) comedy show at Woodside Hall. Martin and Rudi were again brilliant and I suggested to the audience (in customary fashion) a drinking hole for us to attend afterwards. We picked on Bar 85. We were the only ones in there. We had one drink and made our way to The Vic. It was only open for another half hour after our arrival so we went to The Kings Arms. That only offered us forty minutes before it too shut. As it did I got a text from my friend Lizzie to say that she was in the newly refurbished Remix nightclub (now called something else). I didn't read it properly and took my remaining (small) gang to Bliss nightclub instead. We attempted to climb the stairs to it as the fight that had already occurred within it spilled past us. The door staff told everyone to leave. That was that then. needless to say, when we got in, I forgot I had put a pizza in the oven and only alerted myself to it when I said to Martin "Do you smell burning?". he said "Yes - it's the pizza you were cooking". I said "What pizza". he said "Exactly".

Martin Beaumont - An excellent comedian but a little too relaxed  around the smell of burning to suggest he would make much of a fireman

Saturday night brought us down to Letchworth Arts Centre for the conclusion of the trilogy. It was again busy (but not packed) and the audience were once again delighted by the show. Everyone really outdid themselves. The boys who had potentially been trouble the month before returned with more friends and were a delight - don't judge a book by its cover. We headed over to The Arena Tavern and stayed there with a good percentage of the audience until Sue the landlady had enough of all of us and called it a night. Martin left on Sunday before I got up. Well he'd have had to if he wanted to get where he was going before it got dark.

...And then Monday happened. Monday October 17th. Remember the date, because it marks the beginning of what may prove to be the best thing I've ever promoted but most likely will prove to be the most ridiculous waste of time of money I have ever got myself in to. Basically I've started promoting a gig in London, Highbury Corner to be precise, at a venue called "The (Relentless) Garage". Sponsorship from the Red Bull derivative does not however extend to my comedy show, which came out of my own pocket.

The Mini Bar. Sorry this stock photo is the only one I've got but I of course had forgotten my camera on the night

This was a shame as we only amassed three paying customers for the first night. The rest of the audience was made up of friends. other acts, hangers-on, dates and general London types who all blagged their way in for nothing somehow or other. I didn't care nearly enough after the weekend I'd just had. I put first act Craig Murray on and the most noticeable thing he did was alienate a woman he already knew by not recognising her and asking her questions about her other half. This was particularly odd as he also knew her other half. The interval came and went and she was placated with a pint of cider. The middle section featured three acts doing short sets. The first had tried to drop out at 5pm that day. I should have let him. The second was a brand new act I met in Edinburgh and had accused of being American all night despite her being Swiss-German. She went on stage in a very fetching white dress, did thirty seconds with it on, whipped it over her head and stood there in her pants and bra. Everyone's attention gained, she then sat on a stool, put her right foot behind her ear and spoke to the frankly nonplussed audience about why Vikram yoga was evil. She's probably going to be very famous very quickly. The last act went on and confused as much as he incited guffaws. it was supposed to be a competition with the winner getting twenty quid. I called it a draw and gave them a tenner each. After the second interval Rick Right came on and said "Look I can't really be bothered to do my act but I know every song ever written so just shout them out and I'll play them". The audience did. He did as well. It was very impressive. Everyone should have gone home happy at that point but we didn't. It being a Monday, we all stayed and got absolutely legless. The bar shut long after the tube system had and we were left to get taxis back. I got mine to Battersea with my friend Harriet, it being only exactly the wrong direction to Letchworth. We picked up a bottle of Rosé wine on the way home and sat on her back patio and drank it as the rain fell around us (We were under partial cover). She suggested I attend the sex addiction clinic she had been going to, despite not being in the least bit addicted to sex. My suggestion that I hadn't pulled in a while so it was probably a great idea as if you couldn't get casual sex there, where could you? did not get all the laughs I was expecting.

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