Get Up, Stand Up

Last night, we walked down to Zanies to see a little live comedy.   But let me back up about 28 years.

Back in my day, getting into a comedy club required you to be 21, so that you could buy alcohol, which is where comedy clubs made their money.

At the age of 20, I found a loophole, and that loophole was a ticket to Montreal.  

I took a trip there to go to the Just for Laughs comedy festival.  There, I saw a lot of comedy.  Live, as was meant to be.  Big shows, tiny shows - I went to the festival grounds and saw comedy troupes walking around, paid a dollar at the Boite D'Insultes (Insult Booth) to get insulted in Canadian French.

During the day, when I wasn't at shows, I also did the Biodome, museums, shops... ate poutine, nearly had "coffee" with Roy - until I realized he meant coffee at his apartment and probably not actually coffee at all, and I made a quick and graceless retreat. 

I went to see Muriel's Wedding the first night I was in town because I was so overwhelmed - but even that was funny.

Anyway, even before I saw stand-up live, I loved comedy.

Now that I'm old enough to buy alcohol, I can go see it any time I want.  And now, most of the clubs are 18 and up, and they sell shitty food to cover the cost.

So last night, we went to see Eddie Pepitone.  We first learned about him when we were Pandemic Hermits.  He's from NY, lives in LA, and his nickname is The Bitter Buddha.  He's topical, angry, and deeply funny.  Last night, a local guy opened for him, and he was excellent.  Then his traveling opener did a set, also excellent.  

Eddie killed it as well.  He's not for everyone.  He's edgy, and ragey.  He swears, and he pushes the boundaries of taste a little.  But he also says things that make you think, and make you laugh, and make you cough from laughing so hard.

Sometimes, I wish I could do stand-up.  But then I remember I like having health insurance, and a 401K, and sleeping in my own bed.  

Maybe I could just do it as a hobby.  

What I do know is that I need to go see live comedy more often.  It's just fun.  Granted, I think seeing it on TV is pretty decent - but that shared experience is the best.

So, that was our Tuesday night out.




Christopher said…
That sounds like a great night out and I'd love to see Pepitone sometime. Or to just go to Zanies. Lived here my whole life and I've never been there, if you can believe that.
When I was in college, in another state, some friends went to Zanies one night. They were computer geeks before that was cool. I have no idea who the comedian was but one of his jokes was, "I went to a computer dating service. Got a virus."
My friends were the only ones who laughed so they started a back-and-forth with the comic who was a good guy.
Also the Montreal festival, broadcast live on HBO in 1986, was my introduction to Craig Ferguson. Back then his stage name was "Bing Hitler", which he thought was a name that would get him attention. He went back to his real name because he didn't like the attention his stage name got.A few years later, in college, a friend gave me a tape of Ferguson doing standup. I thought, "This guy sounds so familiar." It took a while before I realized why.