This PC Isn’t For Gamers

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Greetings from the unstable comedy landscape that is known as The Stand-Up Diaries!  Here’s hoping your summer is going well and that you had a chance to take in the Great Plains Comedy Festival that recently wrapped up.

I know that I covered the subject of comics possibly offending the audience in an earlier post from months ago, but I would like to revisit the topic, this time looking at it from the PC angle, or being politically correct.  Jerry Seinfeld did an interview recently where he talked about how colleges in the USA are becoming too PC.

I don’t worry about being politically correct.  I worry on most nights whether or not I’m liked.  Most of the materials punchlines are focused on me, so it makes it less likely that I would offend somebody.

I think in all the jokes I have told in the past 3 1/2 years I’ve only offended somebody that I knew of only once. It was a joke about POF (Plenty Of Fish).  I wrote this particular joke a couple of weeks before this person saw the show, and they thought I was purposely picking on them.

As I found out more about this person, and the fact they weren’t mature enough to have an adult conversation about the joke (the person just pouted like a two year old and left) it helped me learn a great lesson about people in general.

If somebody takes offense, it’s not about you.  It’s about them.

When I first heard that saying, I thought it was just a bunch of fluff to make me feel better.  But as you get older, and supposedly wiser, you begin to see how true that is.  I have made comments before that offend someone to where they stick out their chest and feel the need to retaliate to protect their ego or reputation, or because they believe their feelings were hurt.

At the end of the day, we all choose how we react to what he hear on a daily basis.  Hurt people hurt people, and what I’ve learned is the people I know who take offense the easiest are themselves wounded on the inside.

One of the things I tried to be very careful of was to not offend anybody when I started comedy. because I wanted to be liked and to do well.  It’s hard to get laughs when everyone around you is offended or pissed off by what you said.  That is why I made the conscious decision early on to focus a lot of my material on myself, because if you focus on yourself most of the time how can somebody get offended when you are making fun of yourself?

When I started dating the lady I am currently seeing, all of a sudden I had a flood of material coming my way because I could now see things clearly from both sides of the dating world.  I don’t run my material by her, or her family before I hit the stage.  I use this to my advantage on stage because this way she has to pay attention and really focus on the material instead of just staring at me on stage.  Thankfully every bit that I have done whether it’s about her or her family are always met with a positive response.  I am very lucky to be able to perform for such important people who are open minded and mature enough to appreciate what I am trying to do.  If this was my family I”m doing material on and they were in the audience……well, I don’t know what would happen, because I can’t see it happening.  Ever.

As I have mentioned before, I am currently taking this month off to review and change the approach of my comedy.  It will be more story-based and more factual, while allowing myself to be more authentic and true on stage.  I have several new topics I am writing about and am in the process of purging and tightening up the material.  Next month I look forward to taking the wraps off this new material and seeing how it goes.

Again, thank you for taking the time to follow my postings.  Enjoy the summer and talk with you soon.

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