Monday 14 July 2008

I've got love for you if you were born in the 80s

Against my better judgement and because that's the type of altruistic gentleman I am, I have agreed to perform at a charity event in the Garda club on Harrington Street.

I have done a number of charity gigs in the past and, without fail, all have been hellish in nature. The audience, there for a few drinks and to "do their bit" for an undoubtedly worthy cause, are rarely interested and the size and layout of the room is generally not conducive to stand-up comedy.

While my other charity gigs have been comedy-only affairs, this particular event consists of a salsa dance lesson, a "comedian", some belly dancers and a latin band. In addition to contending with the usual factors which doom these gigs, I will be forced to go on cold before an audience which has spent the last 45 minutes treading on its own toes.

Trying to launch into 20 minutes of pre-prepared but completely unrelated material under these conditions would be nothing short of lunacy. Complete suicide! This leaves me with 2 options - make jokes loosely related to (a) the charity or (b) the venue.

As rule number 1 of comedy is 'Try not to alienate 100% of your audience- or if you absolutely must do it, don't do it within the first minute', obviously option (a) is a non-runner.

Instead, I have written a small piece about the gardaí which I can loosely link both to the venue and, more importantly, a piece of material I perform regularly. It will end something similar to the following:

People living where I grew up were so familiar with the Gardaí they knew them all by name. Anto would be getting arrested for joy-riding and he'd say "Ahhh howrya Tom. Jayziz I haven't seen you in ages - working nights were ye? How's the young lad? Is his cough cleared up yet?"

In fact, we knew the Gardaí so well we used to play Garda Top-Trumps.
"Number of arrests?"
"241"
"Damn! Only 127. Who had you got?"
"PJ - you should have asked 'Ability to correctly pronounce the word Vehice' so"

Unfortunately, rule 2 of comedy (or maybe its 3, I always get them mixed up) is: No matter how good you think something is, if nobody gets the reference nobody will find it funny and I'm not sure enough people know what Top Trumps is to allow that material to work.

3 comments:

Baino said...

Ha ha, love it.

Child of the 80s here and I had a few decks of top trumps. They're enjoying a resurgence too - my nephews have them now.

I'd say the majority of people would be familiar with the idea of them.

Darren said...

I was never a huge Top Trumps fan, but I like these.

When's the gig?

The Bad Ambassador said...

October some time. 22nd maybe.