May 2nd — Sequim, WA — Pre Show
A grizzled old comic once told me, “Whatever your weakness is, comedy will exploit it. If you like drugs, people will come up to you after shows and offer you drugs. If you’re an alcoholic, you’ll get free drinks while you work. If you like cheating on your wife, you’re going to love the waitresses you meet in every city.” My weakness is the soft serve machine in the buffet, and tonight I plan to get shitfaced on the vanilla/chocolate mix the machine is kind enough to provide automatically using some amazing middle-lever technology.
Sequim is pronounced squim, not see-quim, which is bad because [a] things should be pronounced as they look and [b] squim sounds an awful lot like quim, the British word for vagina. “Is there somewhere I can go for a walk before the show?” “Yeah, out those doors there’s a trail by Sequim Creek. The bushes around it are overgrown, and the water level has been pretty low the last few years, but it’s pretty.” Apparently Sequim is an Indian word for Creek That Makes Alex Giggle.
May 2nd — Sequim, Wa — Post Show
Frequently, small town comedy shows are fun because it’s the only thing to do so everybody comes out. Apparently something else is happening in Sequim tonight because there are 15 people in a club that could seat 300. I’m not even the most interesting thing in the showroom because somebody is having a birthday party and her friends aren’t even facing the stage. There’s also a massive dance floor that doesn’t have tables in it, creating a comedy moat that I have to yell over. On the bright side, there are screens on either side of the stage, so if I glance over my shoulder, I can pretend I’m on TV and that’s why I don’t hear the audience laughing.
Performing to a small crowd in a big room is a surreal experience. Laughter is contagious in a confined space, but here a good guffaw quickly dies of loneliness and soon people are just smiling to themselves when they’re amused. After the show, everybody tells me they loved the show, but while I’m on stage it feels like I’m telling jokes to the Grand Canyon and the canyon is playing hard to get.
Since I’m not important enough to merit a free hotel room, I’m making the 4 hour drive back to Portland right after the show. Doing comedy on the road is kinda lonely. It’s only two hours into my drive when I noticed that my speedometer/RPMs look like boobs. Not good boobs, but after a couple days away from my girlfriend, it’ll become any boob in a storm.
Next I’ve got two shows in Medford, OR. It’s nice to do two shows in the same place because there’s less driving, but that also means time away from Mrs. Dashboard. Rrawrr.