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Monday, August 21, 2006

FALL COMEDY CALENDAR

Come check me out at one of these reputable establishments.

Mandy's Calendar

Sept 30 6:00P
Gotham Comedy Club, 23rd + 8th in NYC

Oct 7 7:00P
Comedy Central Showcase
The Laugh Lounge, 151 Essex St. @ Stanton, NYC

Oct 14 8:00P
The Comedy Studio @ Harvard Sq, Cambridge

Oct 15 8:00P
The Comedy Studio @ Harvard Sq. Cambridge

Oct 27 8:00P
The Comedy Studio @ Harvard Sq. Cambridge

Oct 30 8:00P
The Comedy Connection @ Faneuil Hall Boston, MA

Nov 16 8:00P
The Comedy Studio @ Harvard Sq. Cambridge

Nov 18 8:00P
Mt. Holyoke College

Nov. 26 7:00P
The Comedy Connection @ Faneuil Hall Boston, MA

Nov. 29 8:00P
The Comedy Studio @ Harvard Sq. Cambridge

Friday, August 18, 2006

My Dream Gig

I’m behind the curtain of a very tiny stage at the First Baptist Church in Medford, Massachusetts, about to perform stand-up comedy at a church fundraiser / variety show. And If I ever felt like a star, I’m a long way from that feeling right now.

“Variety show” is a kind word for this hodgepodge of theater, music and excruciatingly awkward pauses. I am the opening act, followed by Debbie Dooley — a rhythmically-challenged, 12-year old tap dancer; the Pacemakers — four 80-year old jazz musicians who are all off synch, probably because they’re following the beat of they’re own pacemakers, and Mrs. O'Reilly — the Pastor’s wife, who can play “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” by blowing across the tops of partially-filled bottles.

And that’s just the top 3. The other performances I can’t explain without diagrams.

A woman I barely know asked me to perform and since I have a speech impediment that makes it impossible to utter the word no, I said yes. I did not realize that I would be performing with the cast of Waiting For Guffman, complete with an all-cast sign along of Give My Regards to Broadway (which I haven’t sung since 6th grade music class and my performance has clearly suffered over time.)

So here I am. Hanging out behind the curtain with Dot. Dot’s job is walk out on stage, holding up signs that say “Cheer and Clap”, “Quiet Please”, and “Sigh.” I tell her to get the “Laugh” sign ready in case this senior citizen crowd doesn’t get my jokes about Internet dating or how I secretly think my boyfriend may be gay. Dot laughs and says, “I’ve never been to a comedy show, but my daughter has once.” I wonder if I’ve entered an alternate universe.

I’m only ten miles from Harvard Square but feel like I must have taken a wrong turn at Mass. Ave. and wound up stumbling down a wormhole, transcending time and space to land at a similar church variety show, but in Davenport, Iowa, 1952. I look down at my notes and cross of the gay boyfriend joke.

When Fred, Dot’s husband, introduces me as a “lovely lady from Sum-ah-vull” his Cliff Clavin accent jolts me back to the suburbs of Beantown, 2003. I realize I haven’t slipped down a wormhole, only my career has.

I decide I’m going to be as professional as possible, despite the girl with braces tap dancing in the back hallway, despite the Pacemakers inability to play as a group, and despite Dot smiling at me, ready with her cheesy signs.

I walk out onto the stage, pretending I’m in front of a packed house at Carnegie Hall…no Madison Square Garden! And I realize: It’s Saturday night, these people probably haven’t been out of the house since the big liquidation sale at BJ’s, and they actually believe I’m a professional comedian. And you know what? These God-fearing, Christian shut-ins deserve a good show! And by golly, I am proud and honored to do my very best to give it to them!

And if anybody asks what I did Saturday night, I was at the movies.

Laugh Lounge 9/1

New Yorkers: Come check me out at the Laugh Lounge. You'll snarf your two drink minimum.

September 1, 7pm
Laugh Lounge NYC
151 Essex St, New York, NY 10002
$12 after 6:45, $10 if you show up early
For Reservations call 212-614-2500

Mr. Lee

Mr. Lee is my downstairs neighbor. He's weird. Not in any clinical, diagnosable way, just your general weird.

At least once a month, at about 11:30pm, my roommates and I can hear him moving furniture around downstairs. It sounds like he's pushing dressers and barcaloungers across the room to see where they look best, and then pushing everything back to its original position, for no reason whatsoever.

Sometimes he's out in the yard with a leaf blower, ferreting out errant leaves from his garden. I realize the desire to beautify one's lawn is not strange behavior in and of itself. However, Mr. Lee is usually struck with the hankering to do yard work at midnight on a Tuesday. And it doesnt even matter whether or not it's fall. We've heard him out there in late May, blowing petals off flowers. Why? Who the hell knows?

See? Weird.

Mr. Lee has a Korean accent so strong we can hardly understand a thing he says. Usually we just say, Hi, Mr. Lee, and rush into the house.

He's about 52, plump, and bald. Oddly, he likes to ride motorcycles.

The other morning he started up his hog at 8:15 am. It was Sunday. I love Sunday mornings, reading the paper, lazily drinking coffee, not showering. I dont like being woken up by the sound of the little Lee-man in his skin-tight leather jumpsuit revving up his Harley Davidson Road King for a nice long ride.

In fact, I dont even want to picture it.

I discovered Mr. Lee had a drinking problem one summer night when I was meandering up the walkway to our shared duplex and heard a bottle roll off the porch and smash onto the ground. As I got to the top of the steps I saw him sprawled on a beach chair wearing only a pair of shorts. It might have been acceptable if it was the middle of the day and the sun was out, or if he had a nice bod. But it was midnight, and ew.

Plus, he was singing. Slurry, sloppy lyrics, but I could make them out. "You got to know when to hor em, know when to for em." The Gambler. Oh no. You killed Kenny.

Clearly, you got to know when to walk away and know when to run.

As I hurried into the house, I knew things from then on would be different between us. He would likely be embarrassed that I'd seen him drunk, half-dressed, and way off-key. Plus, the vision of his round, hairless torso had been involuntarily hard-wired into my cerebral cortex, and I glimpsed a great deal of dry heaving in my future.

That night I had a nightmare. A complete music video. Mr. Lee, topless, slow-dancing in our front yard air humping his leaf blower and singing the Gambler. Then he jumps on his Harley and tears off down our street. But first, he winks at me. Ew.

Which brings me to the ultimate purpose of this missive. Great one bedroom apartment available in Davis Square. Rent negotiable. Please call Mandy. As soon as possible. 617-616-8792.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Random joke

Okay, I think this is really funny, but it just doesn't fit into my act. Comments?

I bet if Thomas Edison knew that everyone thought sliced bread was the best invention ever, he’d be like: “This is bullshit!” Try slicing bread in the dark, assholes!!!