Archive | January, 2016

Fairness isn’t Life.

27 Jan

I’ve spent a good portion of my life working on comedy.  Trying to make things funny.  Having fun onstage. Performing, writing, collaborating, promoting etc.  It is what I enjoy doing.

With that being said it hasn’t always been easy.  There are no rules to comedy.  There are really no instruction manuals for it.  And in today’s day and age there are numerous ways to get what you want from it.  Webseries, sketch comedy, improv, podcasts, social media are all ways you can do comedy without doing standup which is what I prefer.

The other day I compared standup to trying to walk out of an MC Escher painting.

escher01.jpg

That there was no rhyme or reason to it.  I’ve seen in comedy comics headlining who shouldn’t be featuring.  Guys headlining for one booker and not another.  Hacks working and creative people who are struggling.  People tell me to focus on my own act etc and not worry about other’s.  I do stay focused on my own act.  I don’t control what others do.  I just control what I do.  And when I think I have it all figured out… BAM! I don’t.

Part of comedy is being original with your act.  Not doing material that is easily thought of by others.  The issue lately has been that Amy Schumer has been ‘stealing’ material from others in her standup and sketch show.  While evidence suggests that material is very similar you can’t 100% say that things were stolen.  You CAN say that the material in question is easy.  You CAN say that the premises could be thought of by more than one person.  You CAN say that maybe someone who probably has the biggest comedy career in the moment should be a little more aware of things.  I mean c’mon.  How many magician sex jokes can you really make?! If you haven’t seen the videos Google it.

So does people who came up with the jokes and sketch ideas before her get fucked?  Yeah, probably.  The reason being the general public does NOT care about theft.  They do NOT care about who wrote what first.  They care about being entertained.  So what does that do for the entertainers who want to perform?  I guess it means write well, write creatively and then once you get to the top you can coast.  Fairness isn’t life and life isn’t fair.

 

 

 

Death in 2016!

12 Jan

This past weekend I was admitted to the hospital.  My right calf had swollen up pretty good.  To the point it just couldn’t have gotten any bigger.  On Sat night I had asked my buddy Gerrit to feel my legs.  I had him feel the left calf and then the right.  While feeling the right he asked ‘Are you flexing?’ because it was so tight.  I guess you could say my right calf looked like it was the world’s shortest anaconda that had just swallowed a pig.

Snake

The swelling had been going on for a few days but I just assumed it would go away.  I figured I had pulled a muscle or something.  The weird part was there was no bruising, no wound of any kind to suggest an infection.

So I message a doctor friend of mine about it and he suggested I get it checked out as he thought it could be Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) or a blood clot.  So reluctantly I went in.

I say reluctantly because I have Obamacare.  I haven’t had a real job with benefits in years.  When I did have insurance I did see my doctor once a year for checkups and would go in if something was wrong.  But then I had no insurance.  I did get Obamacare but my doctor did not accept the type of insurance it was.  I was pretty frustrated that a doctor I had used for years wasn’t going to see me anymore.  I know it is just business but it is a shitty business.  In the end I never got myself a new primary care physician.  I just didn’t care.

So I am at the ER explaining the problem and just making light of the situation.  I explained I never skipped leg day at the gym.  At least with the right leg.  They rushed me in the back and the doctor talked with me some more.  After hearing I had some shortness of breath, which I attributed to being a bum about hitting the gym and the cold weather, they felt I probably had some blood clots.  We went and did a CT scan to make sure.  All I am thinking is ‘This shit is gonna cost a lot.’

When the results came back it was discovered that I did indeed have a clot in my leg and both lungs.  The doc said I would need to be admitted for several days. (Who is gonna pay for this shit?!)

He made it seem like death could have happened.  It made me realize that I was ok with it.  I was more ok with death happening than about the cost of the hospital stay.  I could handle death.  We are at risk of death the moment we are born.  It is the only thing that is a certainty in our life.  We can die by getting hit by a bus, a shark attack, falling out of a hot air balloon, slipping on some ice, and a blood clot to the brain.

grim_reaper_by_acid_drinker-d4bs9yd

It was pretty freeing to hear this.  To hear that I could have died in really a pretty weird way.  It frees me from being afraid.  From being afraid of not being around.

Anyway, they admit me and I get sent to a room.  Initially they tell me that they are going to label me a ‘fall risk’ because I had hobbled from the gurney to my bed.  I asked her what that meant.  The nurse informed me that I would need to call for assistance if I had to use the bathroom.  The bathroom was 6 feet away.  I informed her that I was probably not going to do that.  So she said that she was going to turn the bed alarm on.  That meant that if I got out of bed the alarm would go off.  Needless to say I wasn’t happy about that either.  I finally was able to convince her that I could walk around with out assistance easy enough.  I could pee on my own!!! Hurray!

bed pan

If you are not comfortable with needles and blood pray you are never admitted to a hospital.  I had IVs in both arms.  One was a blood thinner and the other was a saline solution to make sure I peed a LOT. (Thank God I didn’t need assistance to get to the bathroom.)  They also checked my vitals and took blood from me every couple of hours.  This isn’t a bad thing and I was glad to accommodate but this happened around the clock! No sleep for me! It was hard to sleep with IVs in both arms but then they kept poking me throughout the night.  What ya gonna do?!

I spoke with a lot of people on social media, text, calls etc that day.  My mother was one and she informed me that their is a family history of Factor 5 Leiden on my father’s side.  Apparently having this makes you more susceptible to getting blood clots.  My uncle and cousin have it.  My father died of an accidental blood clot when he broke his arm back in 2000. Good times.

The doctor informed me the next morning that I probably would be discharged that day.  I looked at it 2 ways. 1- This is great! I’m just getting meds and I will be ok. and 2- If I had real insurance would I be getting discharged today?’  Having worked in the social work field I know how much insurance plays in to the care you get.  Hell, I know that just because my primary doc wouldn’t have me back because of the change in insurance.  Again, it is just business.

So I am out.  I am on some sort of pill blood thinner which is good.  They also have ones that come in shots.  That you put in your STOMACH! I’ll pass on that.  My leg is still swollen but not as bad as it was.  I cancelled gigs I had this weekend in South Dakota.  The doctor said that driving long distances can aggravate things like this.  That’s just swell what with all the driving I do for comedy.  It appears as though adjustments will need to be made in my life.

Thanks to all that sent me positive vibes on social media and people who came to visit.  That was a good feeling.  And all will be right with this.  As I mentioned it was freeing in a sense.  It freed me from having to worry about silly things.  I’m taking the positive from that and will make it work to my advantage.

2016 in Front of Me

6 Jan

Every year people make resolutions to better themselves.  Whether is it to lose weight, read more, connect with people, travel more etc…  Those are all fine and good but here is what I would like to do in 2016-

1- Rape (Doesn’t matter who or what.)

2- Drink a case of beer a day.

3- Tell at least 5 people a day to eat a bag of dicks.

4- Eat 2 cheesecakes for breakfast.

5- Troll the shit out of people on Reddit.

I made these resolutions because if I don’t do them I won’t feel so bad.

 

Ok, enough with the silly. I do have plans for 2016.  I am going to keep them to myself though.  I do this only because I don’t think making them public helps.  It just puts added pressure on you.  Hell, resolutions shouldn’t be pressure. They should be goals.

One that is already out there is the acting class.  I am taking an intro character class because I need to diversify myself. I need to be more than just a comic.  So I will do my best to become a thespian.  And I will act the shit out of some shit.  You have already seen my commercial for Erbelli’s pizza place in Kalamazoo I assume?

Anyway, good luck to you in 2016.  Make it fun, learn some things and no one cares if you eat that extra slice of pizza.  Blame it on my commercial being that good.

Pizza

 

So Long 2015!

1 Jan

Star Date- Jan 1st, 2016.

NYE 2011

It is just another day.  Just like any other day.  We give the date significance because of a completion of the rotation around the sun.  Good job Earth.  Glad ya did it.  But other than that, it is just another day.  Take away the calendar and we would have no idea it was so special.

With that being said 2015 was a good year for me professionally.  I headlined some rooms, worked some new rooms, was a finalist in a fest, recorded a cd, did a tv commercial, didn’t have a day job etc etc…  I set goals for myself.  I accomplished some, didn’t on others and completely forgot about some.

I have things I want to accomplish in 2016.  Things are in motion already which is part of my planning process.  I’m going to keep my plan close to the vest.  No need to share things here (or anywhere really).

We all need to remember this while working towards our goals- Life has a tendency to get in the way.  Things change. Hiccups happen.  Adjust accordingly.  Be good, be safe and for the love of God just try to be happy. (I’m talking to myself here.)