I have done stand-up, and I will do stand-up again.
Between 2012 and 2013, I performed at maybe three or four open-mics for stand-up comedy, and it was a thrill. Not all of the jokes I told landed, but it was still fun and amazing to have done that. Bucket list item checked off. Only recently, with my writing finding an audience and realizing that the creative in me is dying for more and more outlets, have I come to the conclusion that I will go back to stand-up again.
But when I do, it will be better. For several reasons.
For starters: I am a better writer now, I am happier now, and I am a father…which lends itself to endless comedy.
Looking back at this video of me performing original stand-up in 2013, I realize that I love it now. For a few years there, I felt embarrassed sharing or watching this video. But now, I want to share it for anyone to enjoy. Why?
- Because I was in a state of deep mourning when I performed this routine. My father died on New Year’s Day 2013, and this performance was composed and performed within a month and a half of his death. I had just started working trauma ICU at a level-1 trauma center, and I was working a day/night rotating shift. I still remember how I felt during the time of this video…I was lost, heartbroken, and angry. I had gained weight from depression. It was an enormously difficult time in my life…yet…I wanted to get out on stage and make strangers laugh. It felt important to me. For this alone, I am proud of this performance.
- It’s not my best performance. But, I still did it. And there are plenty of funny parts. And even though I forgot where I was going and leaned against the wall halfway through, I recovered and finished strong. I was funny, and that’s all you need from a stand-up comic. I remember leaving the stage and feeling happy.
- Who cares why I’m embarrassed about the video? It’s a video of me, fat and depressed, successfully making people laugh on stage for free. I should be proud of that. And maybe, if by sharing this instead of hiding it, I can convince someone else to get up there and make people happy, then the purpose is served.
So, all blathering aside, please enjoy my decent 5-minute stand-up comedy performance. I know I finally do. And perhaps there is more to come in the not-so-distant future…