Friday, September 4, 2015

Year One: Genesis

Year One: The Beginning

A little over a year ago I left my corporate manufacturing job to pursue comedy full time. What follows could be considered one or more of a few different types of narrative. It could be a cautionary tale where the reader could learn from the author’s mistakes, an autobiography of a dream come true, story of triumph against all odds where I (your hero) did the unthinkable, a tragicomedy that leaves you laughing and crying yet wanting more, or more than likely (hopefully anyway) it is simply another chapter in a long story that ends in world domination. I changed no names because no one is truly innocent. What follows is true to the best of my knowledge, and I doubt any of you could prove otherwise.
I was working as a Manager at Boeing, but I knew I was meant for more. I knew that my true calling was to entertain people! Actually, I was just really irritable due to waking up every morning at 4:30am to go to work after performing at shows the night before until 10:30pm. I needed some rest, so I had two options. I could cut back on standup, or I could quit my job. Fuck you bank account! I’m going to Hollywood!
            Only I didn't go straight to Hollywood. I went on the road. I scheduled a tour for myself that spanned 11 states over the course of 3 months. Yeah, that’s one fifth of the nation in one quarter of a year. My friend Monica Nevi joined me for the last three cities. We kayaked with dolphins, swam with rays, and ate at more Hooters restaurants than I thought actually existed. We also went to an equal amount of strip clubs that we discovered through (what is now my homepage)  Somewhere in there I went to Chicago, IL to record a TV set for the Fox Show Laughs. If you've ever seen a “behind the tour” video where the band or comedian travels around in a tour bus, partying all the time, and staying in hotels to rest their weary bones, I want you to know that it was nothing like that. It was a shit ton of driving, it was a butt load of gas (and I drive a Prius), and it was a scant amount of pay. I don't know how many couches, air mattresses, and tents I slept in and on, but it was way more than hotels. I do know that number, however, it was two. Two is the amount of hotels I stayed in on the “tour”. As far as the money is concerned, it was probably a negative amount of pay when looking at it from an economic standpoint. Which is how I think you are always supposed to look at pay.
Money is my only concern these days. You see, I am a middle. I am a feature performer. I'm the guy that’s funny enough to work in the clubs, but not famous enough to draw in the fans. I make about $500 a week. Not every week, mind you, but the good ones, when I’m lucky. I once tweeted, “Featuring – when you earn enough to barely survive, but no one cares if you do.” That might sound a bit ominous, but it’s true. When you are featuring, you can't really afford to fly out to gigs, so the best strategy is to line up a series of shows that keep you on the road for several weeks/months at a time. It allows you to profit just a bit, but it makes you wonder, “Why the fuck am I renting an apartment that I never live in.”

We'll find out next week…