On Sunday night I performed at Jazz on the Park, a twice weekly show run by the nicest, if not least influential booker in NYC, Randy Epley. To give you a visualization he looks like a slightly sickly Gary Oldman. He is generous with the spots and I will always remember his hostel show as the last place I did a warm up set for my appearance on The Late Late Show 43 years ago. Now the show, which takes place at the aforementioned location is on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. It is actually a good place to work out material for broad audiences, because the crowds are usually foreign, but English speaking, so they get jokes, but not necessarily inside-America/NYC jokes. Now the show can be hit and miss with crowds, but last night was practically a full house and very receptive to the comedians. I went up third and had a very strong set, with the exception of a new joke at the end that I am still “working out.” The premise of the joke is basically how some women will reassure you that they never slept (intercourse) with a douche bag, which only makes a reasonable guy assume that she gave him a bj, which to many men is far worse. The joke got some laughs, but ended poorly (that is why we work on them and why it is a silver lining that I am not famous and having my open mic work recorded for Upworthy or Jezebel). After the set I headed upstairs to talk with a comic who was nice enough to recently purchase my albums as a way of helping support Breaking Obamacare, my (hopefully) new sketch video. As we were talking with another comedian, Corey, a young woman came upstairs and complimented Corey and me on our sets.
Full disclosure, the young woman was fairly attractive, but I had remembered her sitting next to an older woman who seemed to dislike my material (folded arms and shaking head are good signs of comedy displeasure). The young woman said “That was my Aunt. I think you were very funny, but some of it might be generational.” She began to talk to the three of us about comedy and of course she was a Louis CK fan. But she seemed to be fairly comedy literate and engaging in a comedy discussion. We told her to check out my CK video and Corey handed her a piece of paper with our twitter handles on it. She said she didn’t have Twitter. It was all going well and then her Aunt showed up. I turned to the Aunt and said “Hey, I hope you at least liked some of my jokes.” She then looked at me, pointed to her niece and quietly mouthed the words:
“She’s only 17, so you know…”
If there was a record of the formerly iritating theme song to Louie playing in my head based on the conversation we had ben having, it would have screeched to a stop.
First off, why are you only telling me? Was my erection poking through my jeans? Secondly, what does “so you know mean?” First 17 is legal in NY. Second, no I don’t know! She came up to me. I have a monogrammed LL Bean backpack on and am walking out the door with two other comedians. Why do I look like a threat? Other than my jokes about oral sex and my 6’7″ frame and terrorism-inspired eybrows?
I have never been at a loss for words after a show before, but I just had no idea what to say. To be fair I would have guess the young woman’s age to be 20, but I didn’t realize that I should be introducing myself to neighbors as a sex offender according to her aunt. I think I would have preferred the woman’s father punch me in the face for talking to his daughter than her aunt come in with the “Keep the dick in your pants; she’s a child you filthy pervert” attitude. And let’s be honest, what kind of attractive, confident 17 year old walks up to three grown men in a hostel to compliment them on their comedy? I know this might be wrong to say, but she was asking for a conversation! She was practically begging for a chat about comedy! There I said it. Sorry if that is out of line with today’s culture, but in my book, when a young woman strikes up a conversation with older men at a comedy show, she is there for one reason and one reason only. To get blasted with chit chat.
If you want to see me perform this week and talk the ear off of some 45 year old housewives I will be headlining the Joke Joint in St Paul, MN Thursday through Saturday.