Mom, I talk about Hugh Jackman in this one!!!

Unrelated, but right now I'm eating pudding for breakfast.

Unrelated, but right now I’m eating pudding for breakfast.

WARNING: This post is all about my last stand up routine. It may be boring to some readers, and offensive to others.

I preformed one more gig since my last post on the subject. I was pleased with my first performance, but not all that happy with it. After this most recent performance, however, I was ecstatic. So this post is not about me failing, but actually about my success as I am proud of my performance, and am definitely inspired to continue stand up comedy when I get back to DC.

The whole premise of the joke was inspired by Colin Lloyd. Just before leaving for Australia I was ranting about how beautiful all the Australian women would be and how they would love my American freedom loving antics, but Colin was quick to inform me that Australia was actually the fattest country in the world, and while this would make the women of Australia easier to locate and chase down, it would unfortunately make them less please’n for the look’n at. It turned out Colin does not have “a big mouth on a fat face on a whales body,” as I originally explained to every non-Colin I knew, but is actually reasonably proportioned and literate. With a simple google search, Colin managed to shatter my dreams. He found a 2008 report titled “Australia’s future fat bomb,” which states that Australia has in fact surpassed America as the worlds #1 fattest country.

Long story short (all involving my sophisticated comedic process that you all not in ‘the biz’ could never understand) I ended up rewriting a joke about Australia being fatter than the US about 12 hours before the show, while riding the train to pick up Rachel from the airport (she got in the morning of the show). I purposely left areas where I needed to improv on stage, because I thought that would liven up my act, and in the end most of it needed to be improved because I had hardly memorized what I had written by the time of my performance (I was busy with Rachel arriving in Sydney, and my best buddy Chris leaving).

For whatever reason, several of the acts that were on before me were American, so I felt the need to talk about that. I honestly have almost no memory of what happened from the time the MC called my name to the time I sat back down in my seat, but much of it has been retold to me by others in attendance.

I ended up improving the first minute or so talking about how all the comedians doing stand up there that night were American and how there must be no room for comedy in the US and how we have to export all of our comedians. I went off about how Virginia’s 3 biggest exports are now ham, tobacco, and comedy, and then talked about the homemade Star Wars t-shirt I was wearing (thanks Julia). Finally I got into the joke I had written which largely involved angry ranting about how I was tricked into coming to Australia, and how they had no idea what it took to be fat and how America would soon be number one again.

One top moment was my impersonation of an Australian challenging me to a “eat-off” in which “Me and the yank would head on down to me flat in Wallamaloo and have the misses set out a coupl’a knifies and forkies, and we’ll just see who’s still standing after all of the fried dingo with tozl-toozl sauce we can handle.” (imagine an over the top, insultingly Australian voice).

Another crowd pleaser was my impersonation of myself as a freedom loving frat-star excited to travel to Sydney (before learning from Colin that Australia was all too literally the land of milk and honey). Thank you Sigma Pi for suppling the inspiration for this character. I spent more time than you would expect just shouting into the microphone (as I pretend to pack for Sydney), “WOOOOOO… going to SYDNEY! The big Syd… The big S.Y.D….. syd, SYDNEY! WOOOOT WOOOOT… the ladies are gona love this Americana… gona dig this Americana anaconda, WOOOOT WOOOOT!” etc, etc.

My finishing line was partially inspired by my mother and her timeless love for Hugh Jackman. I said that the only way to settle who was fatter, the US or the OZ, was to turn to celebrities for guidance, as we should do at all times. I explained how the US not only has fat celebrities, but we take sexy celebrities and turn them fat. I talked about Marlon Brando, and Elvis Presley (Saying “Elvis” at some point in the act was a requirement for the competition). I then said “now look at your Australian celebrities. Do you think Hugh Jackman is going to let his figure slide? The guy did all of his own singing and dancing in the movie production of ‘Oklahoma’ for christ sake (thanks for that nugget mom). He is going to be doing ‘Wolverine’ sequels into his 70’s. What about Heath Ledger? Do you think he is going to let himself go? Ohhhhhhhhhh.” I then put the mic down and walked off without another word. After stunned silence (in case you’ve been living under a rock Heath Ledger recently died) everyone started laughing and I snapped back into consciousness.

It was one of the best feelings of my life and I now plan on continuing it as a hobby when I get home. Several strangers and comedians complimented me on my act, and seemed genuenly surprised to hear it was only my second try at stand up. I was also told that I said the ‘F’ word about 50 times including once when I just said it out of the blue and then apologized for a while for my unnecessary profanity. I’ll try to tone it down in the future.

-James

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