Different Ingredients, Same Recipe

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Trust me, after eight years in comedy, I know what I am not.  What I am not, is popular.  Sure, my Facebook fan page is a shade over 240, while the other fan pages are just over 50 likes a piece.  About 50 followers on Instagram, a couple dozen on one Twitter handle, and over 80 followers on the Twitter account associated with this blog.

I just did the math, and that amounts to over 550 followers over the eight social media accounts I have (4 Facebook, 3 Twitter and 1 Instagram account).  You may think it’s quite good, but it’s not really that great.  Pretty much the same people follow everything.  I haven’t caught on to where people I don’t know pay attention to what I do.  That’s usually quite flattering when people I don’t know will follow me, though it seems like there are a ton of people in Africa and India that follow my Facebook comedy page, for reasons I cannot understand since I’m not that funny…… yet.

You can’t get anywhere in life without failing.  Those who haven’t failed and have had it relatively easy, usually are the ones who take what they have for granted.  It shows in the way they deal with others.  The flip side of that is, they do not know how to handle failure and aren’t equipped for it.  When it happens, and it will come, it will be quite the gong show because they have no firm foundation from which to go once the bottom falls out and you hit the floor.

Everybody wants the same things out of life, we all go about getting there different ways, which is because God has us running our own individual race.  The path you’ve been set upon isn’t the same as mine.  For you, that path could be much longer, much shorter, or the same distance as mine (though I would hazard a guess that most people I know have had a much shorter path than I).

When it comes to pursuing your goals at your job or in your business, it’s somewhat easy to identify when smooth sailing is up ahead.  With stand-up comedy it’s an entirely different story.  In the “what have you done for me lately” world of entertainment, you are only as good as your last appearance on stage.  The audience may be different from the previous night, therefore nobody would know about it.  That should give the comic confidence to get on stage with a clean slate and go, right?

not exactly

The crowd can be enthusiastic and ready with open arms to accept you, but you’re the one that remembers how bad it went the last time.  You are the one that remembers, how you felt getting off that stage.  The show may go well, but for those first few moments, replaying what happened before and hoping it doesn’t happen this time around, are there.  They won’t leave you until you get your act off to a decent start that night.

The more you fail as a comic, the more you could over-analyze what happened, which can leave you in a state of fear or discouragement and not wanting to get back on stage.

For the comedian, how much failure is enough?  When do they learn from the past and apply it to a successful future?  Is that even possible?

I’m 46 now, and have been single for probably 95% of my life.  With each passing day, as I get older I feel more lonely and alone.  The people who say I’m not ready for the responsibility of a relationship, while it’s good to be mentored like that, they don’t understand what it’s like be be alone for that long, not having the support of your family, let alone a normal family relationship, with nobody to really lean on, who will make themselves available to listen whenever you need.  This isn’t the greatest place to be in given the Christmas holidays are coming up.

I’m not one to give in to the commercialism and materialism that seems to dominate the Christmas holidays.  The holidays should be about looking forward to being with family and loved ones.  I can’t say that I look forward to it.  There is no joy in my parents household, no support, no love, no encouragement.  It would be nice to have somebody to shop for during the holiday season.  I wouldn’t get anything super expensive or a ton of gifts, because I now know what the true meaning of the holiday season is about, mostly because I have been without for so many years I see things for what they really are.  They are about family, love, and being there because tomorrow is not guaranteed for any of us.

Some of the things I used to have as my comedic calling card are things I don’t want to do anymore.  i want to evolve.  I want to be a part of the group and have fun.  But more often than not my situation gets turned against me.  Other comics seem to be of the opinion that you make your own breaks.  But comedy is like anything else in life.  You can’t rise higher all by yourself; you need help to get there.  Usually the ones who want to kick you when you’re down are among the first ones that won’t be there to help you when you need it.

I mean, I want to write new material and get things lined up for a return to the stage.  However, it’s tough to do when nobody helps you along and when they do (once every several years), it doesn’t go the way you want.

I just don’t know what to do.  I have all these great ideas to write about on subjects that nobody else in comedy is talking about.  But I don’t have the motivation to do it.  Nobody wants to see me on stage.

It’s a dangerous place to be, knowing you are just as good as the others, if not better than some, but everything around you tells you not to try.  I can’t be that funny if nobody wants me around.

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