“The Inches We Need Are EVERYWHERE Around Us…..”

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Watch this video below.  It’s from the movie “Any Given Sunday”.  I don’t know how movie writers always come up with the right things to say at the right time, but this is a classic speech, if there ever was one.

 

So, ladies and gentleman, what have we learned?  What I take away from that clip is that in any situation in life, whether it be a romantic one, a job, friendship, or in pursuing comedy, there will be a certain number of inches you can strive towards for success.  Who determines the inches and how you go about getting them will vary, as every situation is different.  However, make no mistake.  One thing remains the same.  We have the RIGHT to go after those inches.  

We should never feel entitled to go after those inches because entitlement leads to pride.  Once pride becomes involved the reasons you wanted those inches in the first place become cloudy.  Then arrogance gets in the way as it changes who you are and how you are perceived by others.

All throughout my life there have been people who have held those inches over my head like a starving man is teased with a glass of water in the middle of the desert.  They bullied me, teased me and repeatedly tried to bury my dreams in the sand because they somehow thought they knew better than me whether or not I should get any inches at all.

The inches we need, are everywhere around us.  Al Pacino was right in saying that.  Do we take full advantage of those inches around us?  Do we use them to the best of our ability?

Some people don’t.  They let pride get in the way and it completely changes the landscape into which they play.  A friend of mine commented on my last post that I stay true to who i am.  I’d have to agree with that.  While I may not take the best route in terms of dealing with problems or situations that arise, that’s a byproduct of wearing your heart on your sleeve.  The day that quality escapes me, I won’t be true to the people who know me best.  It will also mean that I’ve caved in and that the very essence of who I am has been stripped from me because I no longer have the ability within myself to keep moving forward.

When it comes to the comedy game in Saskatoon, I know there aren’t a lot of inches available for me right now.  Part of it is because I’m not as good as I should be, and the other part is because I made a serious error in judgement when it came to dealing with concerns I had.  But I am here to tell you that so long as I’m in the comedy game, there are inches to be had, and I’ll fight like hell to get my inch, even if it’s the only one I get.

When you get on stage, you realize that it’s hard work.  It’s not a game where you can half-assedly get up there and bullshit your way through things.  Dez has been doing this for almost 25 years.  The moments where I started to take it more seriously is when he started to laugh at my material, and let me tell ya, it took months to get a laugh out of Dez….months.

Although I haven’t been at the new location for weeks now, I get the sense from reading the postings on Facebook that there are some who aren’t as diligent as they should be in their preparation.  I mean, being on that stage with all those strangers watching you, waiting for you to be funny, that’s the key right there.  They wait.  You can’t go up there and expect the people will automatically laugh based on who you are.  The audience needs to have a reason to laugh, because  there are many other things they could be doing with their money, but they are at a bar, having drinks, and while they could be laughing just as much from bullshitting with their friends, they choose to come and watch actual comics make them laugh.  The audience has an expectation, and rightly so, that as a comic (even an amateur one), that you have a better idea than most on how to properly set up and time a joke to get laughs.  Once the audience gets a sense that you don’t have that ability, they won’t trust you.  Once the trust is gone, it makes it much harder to recover your act to get the laughs.

I may only get one inch from this comedy thing, regardless of who gives it to me.  But you can be sure I’ll fight like hell for that inch, even if I take a few steps backwards, I’m still going to be fighting for that inch.  When you have people who are in the business of giving you that inch or two, it helps a great deal if they play an active role to help make those inches easier to pursue.

Those types of people are called friends.  Thank God those people exist within the Saskatoon comedy scene.

 

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