Back to Basics

October 31, 2006

I haven’t really been working on my comedy very much lately.  I don’t know what it is, but it’s just that I feel like I have some sort of block in my head when it comes to thinking up funny stuff all the time.  I have come up with a few jokes, but they haven’t been that spectacular, but I thought one of them was pretty good, I guess:  “Whenever someone sees a baby, they like to talk to it with some crazy high pitched voice, ‘Oh, did you have a good nap?’  I’m not like that.  I just talk to it.  ‘When are you gonna get a job?'”  I guess it’s a little misleading, but whatever.  I’m not here to impress anyone, just to get all these thoughts out.  I also came up with another joke yesterday, but I’m sure it won’t strike a chord with many audiences, as most people don’t know what an astral projection is.  But here it goes anyway:  “I used to have a job on the astral plane.  It was a bitch to get there.  The traffic…” 

These are jokes in their rawest form.  I actually thought of a joke in a dream.  I don’t know if i wrote about it yet, as I don’t even read my own blog.  No, I haven’t, I’m pretty sure.  It goes something like this.  “I had a dream that I thought of a really funny joke.  Here’s how it went.  ‘Sometimes I like to wander around aimlessly for days, even months.  One time I ended up in Montana and I didn’t know how to get home.  So I called 911.  She asked me ‘Where are you?’  I said, ‘I don’t know.”  Well, it was funny in my dream.”  It went something to that effect.  But I’m working on another joke of some sort about work and how when it’s check day, you have like this feeling that if you don’t get your check that moment that it’s suddenly going to disappear into thin air.  It’s like you walk into work and you ask if you can have your check and they say, “Wait a minute.”  So you do, but while you’re waiting, you’re thinking, “This is taking too long.  I need my check now.”  And you keep waiting, but you start getting more nervous.  And then they finally start looking for it, but they can’t seem to find it right away, so youget more and more nervous.  “Maybe it’s not in there.  Maybe those bastards forgot to mail my check.”  And eventually they find it and everything’s okay.  Except your state of mind.

Maybe something like that, but I can’t be sure.  I write all of these ideas on scraps of paper while I either work or just sit around.  I catalogue them in my word processor in a category called New Jokes Excellent.  Then I color code them for how good I think they are, but I feel like whenever I come up with a new joke, I usually think that it’s really good right away, but then my liking for it fades over time.  I have trouble organizing them or making a set list.  I don’t know what it is, but I feel like organization is not one of my strong points, but that’s kind of good for the ADD age.  People will forget what you were talking about a minute ago anyway, so what’s the point in going into any type of story?  I like to create jokes that exist in time and space and expand, like the universe.  I don’t tell long jokes because I feel like they kind of have too many filler words and filler jokes to get to the last joke.  Besides, I’m not that good at act-outs.  I’m better at explaining things through my descriptive nature.  Although detail isn’t wnat people always want, I feel like I can use words and gestures to completely explain my state of being.

But I feel like I am in the minority when it comes to fear of public speaking.  It doesn’t really trouble me too much.  I know there is no real danger, especially if I’m in a crowd of people I’ve never met before.  They’re not going to ever see me again, for the most part, so if I totally piss them off, no big deal ,right?  But coming up with a logical sequence of jokes has been a real challenge for me.  The problem is that if I have some sort of sequence where joeks that follow one another are like each other, I can sort of remember them better.  but if I just have these absract thoughts coming one after another, it becomes increasing harder to remember which jokes goes where, which will ultimately add to significantly more rehearsal time.

People have compared me to Steven Wright and Jerry Seinfeld, but I don’t really think I fall into those categories.  I certainly think a lot like Wright and have some other thoughts sort of  like Jerry, but I am my own unique entity.  I have separate and distinct thought patterns from them.  I don’t really think on the same wavelength as them, but my styles are similar in some way. 

The biggest thing I want to preach in comedy is honesty.  I will only tell jokes that I honestly think are funny to both me and a supposed audience.  Sure, the audience in my imagination is usually much more open than the one I will naturally come in contact with.  They also tend to alugh a bit more, but there’s no denying their existence, eventually.  I really wish I could do stand-up in the morning though because I feel I’m at my best for on-the-fly jokes, as I can naturally bring a progression of thoughts much better.  I just don’t know any comedy club that would have a sufficient audience at that hour.

Comedy is really an exercise is self-exploration.  All the jokes I tell come from deep inside of me.  I don’t know where they come from exactly, but the factory that makes them can sometimes be defective, but I have ways to rectify the problem.  But the neurons in my brain that work so hard to connect seemingly unrelated objects into pure hilarity sure deserve some credit.  The rest of the credit is due to external things and just general observations.  I’ve been working really hard at what I do and performing, even to a small group of ten to fifteen people is a joy.  I sometimes even perform for my family. 

I know I’m funny.  All my friends in college would tell other people my jokes when i wasn’t around, and they’d tell me about it.  And I’m pretty protective of my jokes, so I asked them, “Did you use a works cited page linked to me?”  I would have friends who would use my catchphrases and other things.  One of the saying I would often use is, “This is why we can’t have nice things.”  Another one was “deliciously” describing things like “deliciously evil, decliciously absurd, etc.”  But it was the spirit of everything.  I always had something to say and for the most part it was funny.  I would often make up things on the spot, as I pretty much felt that it was my duty to do so. 

But now I feel like it’s too limited just to be funny.  I also want to be intelligent.  I’ve decided to go back to college on a semi-regular basis.  Possibly three to four classes and working towards a degree.  I probably think the degree with be in mathematics, but it doesn’t really matter to me.  As long as I have a degree, I guess.  Then I may go for a masters in communication.  I don’t know.  It all depends what happens with this whole comedy thing.  I will always love comedy and I will always write comedy, not to mention, I will always write, period.  So no matter what I end up doing, be it comedy or writing, or some crazy math job, I’m always going to work on my passion, whether or not it generates income for me.  Generating income from my passion would be nice, as I will be in total control of my life, unlike working for an evil bovine master.  So with all respect, it would ba amazing to be able to leverage my ability to make people laught, but I’m not all about that.  Part of me is that.  But the rest of me wants to stimulate the mind and I do that in my comedy, but I feel like I have more to give as well, so bear withme if this blog isn’t always funny or always making you laugh because I feel that just making people laugh will make you become one of those one-dimensional people.  Until next time, peace.


Memory In Comedy

October 15, 2006

I am amazed at all the news storeis that pass on a typical day.  I’ma also amazed at all the experiences I have and how many of them aren’t remembered.  Sure, a select few are remembered as the “significant” ones, but for the most part, many of my experiences are not remembered.  I can remember some of my most cherished memories with the most accurate detail you could imagine, but some things that just don’t seem to matter, like when my friends ask me, “What did you do today?”  I usually can’t remember that.  I think the problem is that my short term memory is very lousy, but my long-term memory is pretty awesome.  So if you were to ask me what I did yesterday five years from now, I would be able to tell you in great detail what I did yesterday.

So how does memory relate to comedy?  Sure, there area obvious things, like remembering your lines or omitting certain words, but there is so much more memory applied to comedy.  Memory is a very important part of comedy.  You have to be able to visualize what you are talking about.  Once you do that, you have to remember what kind of mood you were in when you first thought of the joke.  And you have to apply it. You have to really think the way you tell the joke.  You can’t tell a joke and be thinking about if you left your stove running.  You have to remember the creative process that led to that joke, which will make it seem more spontaneous than if you just rehearse a bunch of words.  Sure, you still get the gist of it that way, but it’s not as authentic to the way you first came up with it.

 For example, I did a joke once about how I had a dream that I worked at my job and I went to my boss and said, “I worked nine hours last night in my dream.  Don’t you think I should get paid for that?”  And he was like, “No, unless you want to be paid in dream dollars.”  And I was pissed off.  “You’ve taken my life, my freedom, and now you want to take my dreams too?  For no pay?  Fuck this, I quit.”  I remember when thnking up that joke, I put a lot of emotion into it.  I was really mad about how I had a dream about working.  I want my dreams to be pleasureable, not about work. 

The only real reason I’m working at a supermarket is because I want to do research of a script I’m working on about working in supermarkets and how irritating that can be.  Like I want to get the real feel of the place.  So I’m carrying around this little notebook that fits in my pocket.  Every time something funny or something that kind of pissed me off happens, I write it down and i later look back on it and see if it strikes an emotional chord with me.  It can either be funny, frustrating, or just plain awful.  But if it does strike that kind of chord with me, it has a good chance of striking the same chord with the audience.

Emotion is a key component to memory.  If something makes you really mad or really happy, you’ll be sure to remember those incidents more than the things that mkae you indifferent or mundane.  If something makes you laugh really hard or makes you so mad you can’t think straight, you’ll tend to put that in the emotional part of your brain, which make you remember it more.

Another way I try to remember jokes is through intense visualization.  Like if I have a joke about, say juicers, which I do, I visualize this scene in which I’m frustrated as hell because every apple I put intot he juicer either gets stuck or only produces a small amount of juice.  Then there’s the pulp flying everywhere and the machine is so loud I feel like I’m at a concert near the speaker.  And then I finally put fifty apples in the damn juicer to get five ounces and it tastes terrible.  That’s the whole visualization, and it only takes about five seconds to go through all that, but it helps me with the order of the sentences of the joke and the ideas flowing correctly.  And finally, it leads to the findal conclusion.  All that work and it tastes awful.

Lsstly, I’m sure we’re all familliar with mnemonics.  These are basic memory aids, such as PEMDAS for order of operations, or the “Please excuse my dear aunt Sally.”  Whatever.  I’m sure some conedians have a long list of words or letters to help them memorize their jokes, but I find if you do it that way, you may come off as amateurish because it’s jsut kind of disorganized or too organized, whatever it is. 

If you’re that afraid you’ll forget the lines, put a piece of paper in your pocket.  Write some emergency jokes on it, or just put some emergency jokes in the back of your mind.  Jokes that you know will kill.  Jokes that you know are great.  Jokes that you wouldn’t normally use in that environment.  The audience loves surprise.  And if you ever find yourself where you can’t remember things, just pull the paper out and do some stuff from there.  That’s what I’ve done sometimes and it worked out pretty good. 

I never go up there with a set list, though.  Here’s why.  If I ever forget material, there will be this awkward pause.  And during that awkward pause, I’ve got to go in my pocket, then look down a list to figure out where I left off and that takes even more time.  Just a couple of jokes handy could allow for a great turnaround.  But affter that, it should get you back on track.  If not, just get off the stage.  You’ve told a couple of your best jokes already. 

The Punchline and Laugther

October 6, 2006

The most important part of a joke is the punchline.  We all know that, but you have to realize that more than 95 percent of what you’re saying aren’t punchlines.  The rest is basically setups and just standing there waiting for the audience to stop laughing or crying, depending on how well you’re doing.  But it’s not how many punchlines you have as to where you put them.  Where you put punchlines can be the difference between big laughs and no laughs.  Here’s a formula I tend to use regularly:

I go through all my jokes and look at where the punch word is.  That’s the word that gives surprise.  The word that makes the audience go, “Ha, ha, ha.”  And I take it out of the joke and move it to the last possible word without disrupting the thought of the joke.  For example, here’s a joke I had and performed five or six times one way:

I don’t do drugs because I’m high on life…that cereal is amazing. 

Notice the bold word cereal.  That’s where the joke takes its turn.  The only problem is that there are two words after the punchline.  So what I did was this.  I changed the second sentence to “I love that cereal,” so that cereal is the last word and it allows for maximum laugh potential.  But you may be asking, “Why do this?”  I’ll tell you.  If you tell a joke and the audience laughs and you continue to talk while they’re laughing, they’ll stop.  And if you continue to do this, eventually you’ll condition the audience to stop laughing and then even if what you say is really funny, they’ll be too afraid to laugh.  Why?  Because they don’t want to miss your next joke.  It’s part word placement and part timing.

People often ask what to do while the audience is laughing.  “Do you just stand there?”  No, you don’t just stand there.  Body language is very important in comedy.  Have the same body language you had while telling the joke and you can even tag the emotion by mumbling to yourself or shaking your head.  It’s all a process.  You don’t want to just stand there.  That’s the worst thing you can do.  You’ll start your next joke with no momentum and it will be like every joke you tell is the first one you tell onstage, which means you’ll have to tell e

Knowing When to Hold Back

September 28, 2006

I remember that a couple of times I told a joke that was questionalbe in its offensiveness and it’s funniness.  I decided to tell them anyway, no matter what the response will be.  Sometimes things like that can be funny, but sometimes they can be deadly.  This is why you have to consider who or what the joke is victimizing before you decide to tell it.  My advice to you is to avoid victimizing the following groups unless you are one of them:

  1. Mentally Retarded People
  2. Black People
  3. Jewish People
  4. Handicapped People
  5. People Who Have Recently Died

The reason is that most people will think you’re just mean if you tell a joke about how handicapped people don’t know how to park.  Because they feel tha handicapped people have enough trials in their life, why victimize them again.  And don’t joke about the Jews unless you are one because they’ve certainly been through enough.  With respect to people who have died, if they were loved and national celebrities, don’t joke about them for at least ten years.  And if the person is John F. Kennedy, wait about seventy years.  Try not to seem mean unless it’s really funny.

How can you tell if it’s really funny?  Well, do a reality test.  Tell five to ten people the joke, but don’t tell them it’s a joke, just weave it into the conversation.  If they say, “That’s awful!” you can decide not to do it.  But if at least 75% laugh and they’re not all part of the KKK or in jail, thn you culd definitely give it a try.  But sometimes a particular audience doesn’t cater that kind of joke.  Like if you were performing at a Catholic church, I wouldn’t recommend talking about birth control and abortion.  And don’t say anything that will get the congregation chanting, “You’re going to hell!” 

But it’s all about what kind of spin you put on the joke.  You can joke about things that would seem bad if you put a positive spin on it.  For example, if you want to talk about homeless people, point out the advantages of it.  Don’t let a great premise become dead because of social conditioned values.  I’ve done a joke about Alzheimer’s.  It’s funny because the joke has good intentions and it’s funny at the end.  It’s bad in one way, but it’s good in another way. 

Slavery isn’t funny either.  Don’t joke about slavery unless your ancestors were slaves themselves.  And don’t talk about people who are lower in status than you and make fun of them for having no money.  Only joke about them if you are one of them.  It’s common sense.  Also,, don’t use the N word unless you’re a minority.  Unless you want the cast of Showtime at the Apollo chasing you off the stage, you’d better not tell anything to do with that.

These are some of the unwritten rules of comedy.  And I did you all a favor by writing them down.  It’s about time.  I’m surprised no one did this sooner because I’m sure it will help people decide what kind of jokes to tell and what to tell.  But always try them out on people you trust and know before going out with an offensive joke and losing the entire crowd to an angry mob that is about to attack you.  I sure hope this helped.

Don’t Lie for a Laugh

September 26, 2006

Don’t lie for a laugh because it will not get as big a laugh.  The whole basic concept in comedy has to come from some enthusiasm that what you are saying is something you actually believe.  Now, I’m not talking about the act-out, punchline, or the mix.  I’m talking about the basic premise for the joke.  Don’t sacrifice your credibility for a laugh.  For example, you could joke about having a child when you don’t but that’s just stupid because it won’t sound the same coming from a non-parent.  This is probably because you’re putting on a fake front.  It’s much harder to manufacture enthusiasm about a joke if you’re not feeling the way you tell it.  It’s easier to joke about something you’re genuinely enthusiastic about than just pull something about of the air.  I mean, the punchline can be crazy and hit has to be surprising to some extent, but don’t make it something you can’t really believe.  For example, Judy Carter wrote about one of her students saying she lived alone her whole life on stage and the material was really funny, but it didn’t get any laughs.  So after the show, Judy talked to her and found out that she’s happily married with three kids.  I finally understand the whole analogy that comedy is therapy.  You have to pull out from your personal experiences and observations. 

Comedy is, in a nutshell, just noticing things that other people don’t ususally notice.  Things like when someone tells you “You can’t have your cake and eat it too,” you question that fact.  If you have cake, why wouldn’t you eat it?  It’s there.  It’s not going anywhere.  It’s things like that and other trivialities that you notice and become aware of that make you a genuine comic.  Do you remember when you were a child and when all your friends were doing something that you wanted to do, but your parents said no.  And you begged and they said, “If all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you?”  And I said, “Yes, I would.  I don’t want to be some loser with no friends.”  And it’s just another way of looking at things.

But you need to cultivate that genuine enthrusiasm.  You shouldn’t try to be someone you’re not.  I’ve seen comedians joke about how they do nothing whatsoever and it’s brilliantly funny.  Norm MacDonald jokes about how he isn’t that funny and it’s hilarious.  I remember his half-hour special on Comedy Central.  He dies and goes up to heaven and his uncle and grandmother say, “You have to go back. You have to do a comedy special.”  And he’s like, “But I’m not that funny.”  “We know.”  And it was great.  That’s why you have to remain true to yourself. 

Another thing is when you’re doing bad onstage, don’t deny that fact.  Be honest with the audience.  Let them know that you are aware of it.  Because if you don’t, they’re going to think you’re insane.  Now, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, but don’t let your ego get in the way of admitting how your performance is going.  And if something isn’t working, do something else.  Anything else.  I remember one time I just started talking like one of the characters I made up and it got a bunch of laughs that I otherwise wouldn’t have gotten.  You can do some improv.  The best way I do improv is going in with a blank slate and just rolling with it.  I love the fact that when I do that, I don’t know what the next word will be.  I just say it and usually it’s funny.  I really don’t even think about it.

Be who you are up there on stage.  Convey attitudes that are you, not someone else.  You can create characters, but make sure they know it’s a character.  Don’t just act like it for the hell of it because it will confuse the audience.  Do what feels right to you.  Don’t sacrifice your ethics and credibility for a laugh.  You will have this immense passion for telling what you actually feel.  Just tell it the way you know it best and you will eventually get laughs.  If not, then you’re just not that funny.  But we all know.  Peace.

Joke Structure

September 14, 2006

Jokes have to have a certain structure. In order to ensure laughs, the audience has to believe what you’re talking about before you introduce the laugh. That is one of the most challenging parts of comedy. You’re going to want to have honest set-ups and honest but exaggerated punchlines. You see, a joke starts out so logical, with a comedian saying something that we all know, but then can turn it into something so different that it allows for a laugh. Let me go over the five parts of a joke here and explain their integral part in the whole joke schema.

The Set-Up: This is the beginning of the joke. This is where you gain the audience’s trust. You’ll start with something like, “I went to the pound and bought a dog…” or something similar. It’s just something that the punchline has to breathe off of. You couldn’t just walk onstage and say punchlines. The audience would think you were crazy. For some people, the least number of words you can get in your set-up, the better. If you can take your set-up and whittle it down by three words and still get the same or better response, you should do it. Sure, it means the joke will take up less time, but it will also allow for a quicker route to the punchline, which will set up a quicker response. The whole problem is that people, if the set-up is too long, may forget what you’re talking about before you get to the punchline. And that’s not good for comedy. However, the set-up is definitely relevant and it needs to be there for every joke.

The Punchline: This is a very critical aspect of the joke. It’s what initially makes the audience laugh. If it wasn’t for this, there would be no comedians. There are specific proven ways to get to the punchline, and the ones I personally use go something like this: Try and put the punch-word as far to the back of your joke as possible without adding more words. I’ll give you an example from Jim Gaffigan: “Isn’t it funny that when you’re single, all you see are couples, and then when you’re part of a couple, all you see are hookers?” Notice how the last word in the joke was the punchline. Every other word in the joke is a setup for a surprise at the end. Notice how after the punchline, there were no words. There is a reason for this. If you have the audience laughing and you begin to talk again, they’ll stop laughing to hear what you have to say. It’s called stepping on your laughs. It’s something you should never do because it will condition the audience not to laugh. Sure, they may still be enjoying your show, but you really won’t be able to tell. It also leaves the surprise to the very end so that you have the audience anticipating the jokes, waiting for it, tension is building up, and the one to three words really turns it into a laughfest. And this is something that is definitely useful to know if considering stand-up comedy.

Act-Outs: Act outs are when a comedian will say what he said, use the voice of someone he knows to act out what they said, do some physical stuff onstage, or any ohter miscellaneous actions. It’s when the comedian lets loose from the confines of the joke. It’s the more physical aspect of comedy. Hand gestures, reinactments, it’s all in this category. It takes a lot of mastery to get the act-outs perfect. But it’s your choice how you want to do them. People like Robin Williams and less notably Dane Cook are famous for their antics onstage where they jump around and do crazy stuff. That’s what an act-out is all about.

The Mix: The mix is something in comedy that has to do with “what if?” Like Pablo Francisco did this whole thing about the movie theater previews guy. The guy with the raspy voice? And he was like, “Imagine this guy having sex. ‘Oh, the desire, oh yes, coming to a theatre near you.'” It’s all about putting people in different situations that wouldn’t be normal for them. And it makes it another punchline. Act-outs can be punchlines in their own respect, and a mix can not only make another one, it can have the whole audience in stitches. Just think what if?

Callbacks: Callbacks are one of the best things to watch if you’ve ever seen them. A comedian will tell a joke with a specific punchline and then, later in the show, tell a different joke with the same punchline. This is usually a great hit. This is because it creates this intimacy with the audience that many comedians really need. The only rule of this is the first joke you tell with the punchline has to be amazing. The second joke can be of lower quality, mostly because the attention will be drawn to the punchline again. I really don’t have any jokes off the top of my head for this as an example, but if you understand what I’m talking about, you’ve probably seen it before. I’ve never done it personally, but believe me, I’ve tried to. It just isn’t as easy as it looks. But it’s definitely possible. So don’t let it get away from you.

Honorable Mention-Storytelling: Storytelling can work only if it is done in the following fashion. The story has to have jokes in it. I know many of you Blue Collar Comedy fans have seen Ron White’s Tater Salad story that won the hearts of many. But it wasn’t just a story, it had setup-punch, setup-punch, setup-punch. It wasn’t just a story, it was a barrage of jokes put into a story. Many people don’t realize that when they see the comedian perform, but it’s so well-disguised.

I love to analyze comedians. It’s one of the most rewarding things to do. Just to see how they word their jokes in accordance with other comedians really lets me into their minds and allows me to figure out how to make audiences laugh. There are some political comedians, like Lewis Black, who once went on the Conan O’Brien show after the Dick Cheney shooting incident and opened with two words, “Dick Cheney. That’s all I have to say. Everyone gets the joke. I don’t have to say, ‘Dick Cheney, the vice president who shot his best friend while going quail hunting.'” So there are other ways to go about writing jokes. For beginners, however, I recommend you start by doing it the way I suggested. Just make sure the joke also has attitude. Attitude is also key. Put some emotion into your jokes. Visualize what you’re talking about. Okay, well, I’ve got some jokes to write, later.

How I Write Jokes

September 2, 2006

People will often ask me, “Andrew, how do you come up with this stuff?”  It’s not an easy thing to explain.  You have to really be me to know how the inner workings come up with such prepostorous stuff.  I never know when it will strike me, but I make sure I always have something to write on when it does.  It’s not even really making the effort either.  I mean, sometimes I’ll try to think up some jokes and maybe I’ll get one or two good ones out of five that I feel I had to “force.”  But it’s better for me to think of jokes while in a conversation or while thinking about something else.  I think of more observational stuff when I’m just talking and hanging out.  It’s more or less the equivalent of a joke writing opiphany.  Or however you spell that word.  Sometimes I’ll just write stuff and shit will just come out.  It’s like one of my jokes was “in the closet” waiting to burst out and tell the world it exists.  I don’t know.  It just happens. 

Sometimes, when I watch comedians, I develop ideas about different things.  That is why I love to watch different comedians and see how my ideas are similar to them.  But many of my ideas are different than theirs as well.  But one comedian, named Jim Gaffigan, did this joke that just spoke so true to me, it was amazing:  “You ever had one thing to do all day, but you just didn’t do it?  You’re like, ‘I gotta go to the bank, but that means I’d have to put on pants.  I’ll have to do that next week.'”  That just reminds me of how I think.  Relatable material.  In some respect, that’s what sells.  One thing that really resonates with me is getting all motivated to do something and then just “not.”  It’s like you get all geared up to do something and then ya don’t.  It’s like, “I’m gonna start my own business, yeah!  Let’s do it!”  Then the next day, I’m like, “What the hell was I thinking?  Starting my own business?  How gay is that?”

One thing I like about developing jokes is putting a set list together.  I like to surprise people.  For example, mixing up jokes is one of my specialties. Many comedians you know like to transition their material, but not me.  I do it like I just thought of each joke as it comes to me. It’s more real, at least to me.  Like I may do a joke about volunteering at an old folk’s home, then go to Native Americans trying to get a reservation at the Olive Garden.  It’s all up here.

One tool that really works well for developing original premises is journaling.  Just either when you wake up, or right before you go to bed, just write stuff down.  Write whatever comes off your hand to the pen.  Whatever is in the back of your mind, push it to the front and let it loose.  Jerry Seinfeld used to write for one hour every day and used a timer, supposedly.  That’s a little too structured for me. 

A lot of comedians like to tell stories.  I find that really boring, unless there’s jokes peppered throughout the whole thing.  If there isn’t, it’s like watching a slide show of my aunt’s trip to the barren landscape of Arizona.  I mean, come on.  Make me laugh, don’t make me sleep.  People like stories, though.  I don’t know why.  Maybe it’s because they feel they can relate to it.  Like a story about a breakup.  But if you’re going to do that, at least have a few punchlines in there.  Not only one because it’s going to take too long to get where you need to go, which will make the audience forget what you were talking about.

One-liners are jokes that often get a big response, but they often don’t have much substance to them.  But they can be very funny.  Steven Wright, Rodney Dangerfield, Mitch Hedberg.  They’re all somewhat household names among comedy fans.  Among non-comedy fans, I’m sure no one knows who they are, but that’s not important.  They’re not the people who will be able to carry on long conversations about the dilvery of Carrot Top

I really want to call Comedy Cabana and see if I can open for someone soon.  It’s mostly going to be after I get my driver’s license (I’m 20).  Once I can go down there and hang out with the comedians and eventually headline there, I’ll be awesome.  It’s just the transportation problem right now.  Eventually, I’m hoping to go somewhere that I have at least six or seven comedy clubs to oscillate between, which will give me optimal stage time.  Also, open mic nights are key.  I’ve done my share of those.  All I gotta say is I have the material.  If you were to look at all my jokes, (100s of pages), you’d know I could wow quite a bit of audiences, so I need to start performing more and getting more laughs.   But I believe I’ve got the material down.  On to performing!  Peace out.  (I have performed over ten times. I just need to do it more frequently.)