Monday, July 11, 2005

As Well As I Coulda Hoped For...

I assume those that couldn't make it haven't been sleeping in eager anticipation of hearing how my stand-up debut (and finale?) went so here goes...

Since I wanted to check out the room and all before the big night, Bronwen and I went on Friday night. A few comments...

1. The stage was much smaller than I recalled...Since I paced over a much larger swath when rehearsing, I was afraid I might actually fall off the stage if I spaced out trying to remember my routine.

2. The room fit about 150 people...there were 20 in attendance - super

3. The third comic up was, literally! Okay, actually he gad cerebral palsy (one of first jokes was "People used to look at me like I was wearing a helmet at all times...then I realized, I was!" - that was my fave joke of the night) - His voice kept going in and out as he only ha use of one arm to hold the mic, and it constantly swayed back and forth...He brought back fond memories of The Facts of Life.

4. The seventh comic (or eighth..or ninth..whatever) was introduced as "The Best Triangle Player in New York" - and yes, he spent seven minutes playing his triangle - he did half of Kiss's "I Wanna Rock and Roll All Night" and 1/2 the way though "Light My Fire," he actually pulled a kazoo out of his arm (musta been taped there) with his mouth, and finished it playing the kazoo and the triangle - he wasn't bad actually - I liked watching the crowd's bemusement

All in all, it made me slightly less nervous (for a minute).

Then it was Saturday.

I awoke at about 6:45. As soon as my eyes were half opened, that was it. No more sleep for me.

My day was spent...ahhh, screw it....

Notes from The Show

The "comics" were herded downstairs. One of the Gotham employees explained to us that they'll come up with the lineup AFTER THE SHOW STARTED.

Say what?

I assume they were waiting for others to show, but I REALLY woulda liked to have known when I was going on, ya know? Anyway, she tells us that at the six minute mark, a red light goes on in the back - that means ya got one minute to finish seven minutes, the light will flash...that means "Get off IMMEDIATELY" - she was quite stern about it and even mentioned that the MC will come out and embarrass you. Naturally, I panicked and cut out a few jokes right there...which only made me more nervous because I had to remember not to do them.

After she went upstairs there were about seven of us there (there were about 12 comics on the card)...all silent. If they were like me, they were trying to remember the first line of their act. After a few minutes, I spoke up.
"Anyone know any good jokes?"

I talked to a few guys...i was the only first timer going - btw - they also had all taken stand-up classes. ack!

When the show started, I went upstairs to see when I was going on....seventh. They had a few tables in the back, for us comedians to watch from - I sat for a second (about 50 people there...of which 25 were for me) but couldn't sit still, and walked out to pace some more by the bar.

After his third or fourth time out. the MC came back and complained , "Man, this crowd is brutal." He actually sounded pretty pee'ed off. I expected everyone to look at me (It was common knowledge that everyone was there to see me (succeed or fail miserably).

I was introduced thusly..."Now we have a special treat for you...making his FIRST EVER stand-up appearance, let's give a warm welcome for HARRIS BLOOM!"

walking up on stage, I fainted

just kiddin' - I did alright - other comics said that if they didn't know it was my first time ever, they wouldn't have known. I can't say that I remember anything while onstage, since it's all a blur. I was never comfortable, but I also dont think I was panic stricken either. While I sweated profusely, I was never even close to vomiting (or passing out).

Of course, after I was finished I couldn't get the mic on the stand and ended up having to just hand it to the MC...I also forgot to take my water that I brought up (which stayed there for two more comics).

I got me an Amstel Light (performers get a free drink) and watched the rest of the show (seated). My fave part was one comic who used a slang for rooster and the male organ (I dont want this e-mail to get stopped) at least 10 times in a 30 second span. My mom was sitting with my bro, his wife and our friend Vic. While the joke wasn't that funny, but watching my mom shake her head with disapproval was. Sherry, Rich and Vic were doubled over.

Backstage, I asked one of the organizers how many of these I have to do before getting a sitcom - without missing a beat, she replied, "Three."

At the Afterparty, my mom, aka, Ms. You Can Do Anything You Can Put Your Mind To, confessed that a couple of people from her office wanted to come but she didn't want them to, "in case I bombed."

Thanks to Mom, Rich, Sherry, Bronwen, Vic, Rob, Jennifer, Jennifer's friend, Deeanna, Deeanna's friend, Ann, Stone, Stone's niece, Matty (Wooo!), Matty's girlfriend, Kim, Amanda, Shirley, Luis, Patty, Gary, Ed, Ed's friend, Mike, and Stacey for all coming.

Next show will be in a month or so if anyone cares - 1/2 new material - and I dont care if you didn't like the homeless joke, it's staying!

Thanks everybody...You've been great!

Rock On,


Friday, July 8, 2005

Counting Down to Standing Up - Part 5

First of all, since I woke up on Thursday, my palms have been sweaty and I've been shaking like an autumn leaf. Either I'm in panic mode...or I've got pneumonia. In fact, I'm writing this final "progress" report on Thursday because I'm afraid that I'll be catatonic by today...and only able to press

(writing this Friday - my "rehearsal" last night went so poorly, I may take a half day today to do it aloud more - it's a totally different ballgame than repeating it to myself))

A few thoughts...

After hearing how many of y'all are attending, I have come up with an idea....instead of doing my lil act at Gotham, maybe I can do it in the "Party Room" at my apartment building - Instead of spending the probably $30 bucks (cover + two drinks) per person that will only go the club, I'll charge you each $20 bucks, and I'll supply all the Diet Coke you can drink - its a win/win for all

When the person in charge called me to confirm my appearance, she told me to bring a VHS tape so they can record it for me - like it isn't bad enough that I'm not getting paid to bring in all you people, but I have to pay for my own recording...rats!

If anyone knows a bar near Gotham we can hang out at and laugh at how I totally spaced for an excruciatingly long ten seconds lemmee know - or think about it

Finally, I'm asking you guys for a few favors as it pertains to the show...

If I happen to make a joke about my mom not being there, don't yell, "What do you mean,,,she's right here!"
If I happen to mention that I recently got a dog, don't yell, "Stewie!"
If you get hit with sweat, saliva, or vomit during my act, please don't make a big deal about it - I'll reimburse you for your dry-cleaning after
In fact, if I happen to say or do ANYTHING don't respond at all (besides with unbridled laughter and applause) since it'll throw me off my carefully memorized script.
This is mainly for my mom (even though she doesn't have Internet access) - If other people are talking during my set, don't angrily "shhh" them and start an argument. (Also for my mom) And don't call over the waitress to complain. (Ditto) And don't tell the unhelpful waitress that you want to speak to management.

Until Manana (gulp),


Tuesday, July 5, 2005

Counting Down to Standing Up - Part 4

In the old daze, whenever I saw someone talking to themselves in the street, I thought they were crazy...then, a few years ago, they invented those hands-free cell phones, so I assumed they were talking to someone else. Now, I assume they may be practicing for their first-ever standup routine - or maybe that's just me

So I made reservations to attend Gotham's New Talent Night as a spectator on Friday night -Though I'd been there before, I wanna re-check out the "lay of the land" so I can judge the best possible places to put my props when I'm on - you know, the watermelons, the monkeys, the guitar, the unicycle and the bread maker

btw - it's THIS SATURDAY NIGHT, so if ya haven't made resies, do so now (212-367-9000) - make sure ya tell 'em you're there for me

by the way, if you're planning on gettting there early to sit in the first few rows, you may wanna bring a pancho - my guess is you're bound to be hit with some combination of watermelon, sweat, and vomit.

Rock On,