Not a lot of people know what comedy is. This does not bode well for many comedians who have chosen a half-known, misunderstood profession to make a living with.
The amount of times satirists or storytellers have told relatives they do comedy — only to hear “so you do impressions?” or “you mean like skits?”– is too high a number to repeat here. (26,678,456)
The fact that bachelor and lady bachelor parties attend comedy clubs shows a failure on comedy’s part to explain what we do. Who shows up with cockhats, blinking necklaces, and shirts that say “put it in this hole” with an arrow pointing up, to sit quietly for a two hour show? What Best Man brings his mates out to a club, where you are supposed to sit and contemplate, while making sure that your cell phone is silenced?
The reason that these hordes of animals come to a comedy club is because they think the night will be all about them. When I was in Minneapolis, a bachelor party showed up. One of the dudes was wearing a huge crown, and another was wearing an over-sized pretend mustache.You do not wear that unless you want someone to say something. No one is getting ready to hit the streets, maybe chat up a lady or two, and then says “WAIT! Where is my giant pretend Mustache?! I’m not going anywhere until I look like a child fiddler or cast member of There Will Be Blood.”
They assumed they would wear it, the comedian would say something, and then the show would be theirs!
What I thought was so great was none of the comics said a word to them. No attention was paid to the man in the crown or the dude wearing the mustache. When you hope for attention by wearing that, and no one says anything, it’s suddenly not funny. It’s really sad. A sad man, in the corner of a dark comedy club, wearing a pretend mustache.
I think the reason these people come is because many of the best comics don’t get on TV much.
No one sees Doug Stanhope or Daniel Kitson and thinks: “Gather the girls and the dildo hats! I know what I’m doing before I get married!” They see boring, bland, hacky, dogshit comedy and think, “You know what’s almost as funny as that dude on TV? A dildo hat!” And they are right.
So how do we stop these awful sub-humans from ending up front row, covered in glitter and sadness? Destroy them.