Thursday, July 11, 2013

Range

I'm a pretty big idiot.  You know this if you read here often.

Take, for example, my new embrace of stand up comedy.  I've always been interested in standup, but I couldn't have gone about it more idiotically.  I grew up and spent most of my college years in Lawrence, Kansas, as arty of a town as you could find.  I did comedy there a total of once.  I opened for a popular local band at their reunion show.  I ran a 15 minute set that I put together in two days in front of around 200 people, and I killed.  It would be over a decade until I went up again.

I lived in Chicago for four years.  Unquestionably one of the three or four best standup towns in the world.  The only other cities in the conversation would be New York, Los Angeles, and Toronto.  I went to a total of one open mic night in my years there, and I didn't go up.

I lived in Seoul for around 5 years all told.  Seoul is the peerless creative hub in Korea for music, art, and yes, comedy.  My last year in Seoul, I was living in the center, a short distance away from all the open mics.  My second-last year, I was living farther away in Nowon but I was making a ton of money (by ESL standards) so cabs were no problem.  I went up a total of once, 4 days before I left town.

Now I live in Cheonan, and I go up as often as I can.  Problem is, Cheonan is no place to do comedy.  I've done a few open mics here, but it's not a comedy scene.  Cheonan is a nice enough town, easily the best in Chungnam Province, but it's a comedy backwater.  Going to comedy shows in Seoul is no problem in theory, but they pretty much all happen on weekdays and I work in the morning, so that doesn't work so well.

Bah.

I'm still down.  Today, I ate at McDonald's and I didn't even enjoy it.  I didn't finish my fries.  I had just walked 20 km or so, I thought I'd be hungrier.

Maybe talking about past awesomeness will pick me up.

I've been a popular kid, a nerd, a football player, a stoner, a punk rocker, a failed novelist, a radio DJ, a crooked convenience store cashier, a good student, a bad student, a TV cameraman, a Hollywood intern, a beach bum, a fake producer, a desperate gambler winning with my last dollar, a Eurotrash intellectual, a failed artist, a drunk, a permanent resident of my car, a hustler, a pyramid scam participant, a corporate whore, a Chicago Democratic Party operative, a failed screenwriter, an unemployed video game junkie, an honest fireworks salesman, a broke and unemployed dude living abroad, a teacher, a celibate, a lady's man, a magazine writer, a backpacker, a lover, a fighter, a fair to middling blogger, and a standup comedian.  I have literally slept in 5 star hotels and the gutter, both of which I paid for.

I've got range.

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