Road Comedy Recap: A Tale of Two St Pete’s

This weekend I was on the road in St Pete’s Beach at the Sunshine Comedy Club. The gig involved two 25 hour train rides, a lot of walking and two shows that would both surprise me.  Let’s just get to it!

The Ride Down

I hopped on the SIlver Star (NY-Miami Amtrak) on Thursday at 11:30am. I was happy to see that I was in the newer of the two sleeper cars.  The east coast long distance trains often have one old sleeper car and one new sleeper car. What is the difference you ask?  The new sleeper cars slightly nicer rooms, mainly because each room is missing an individual toilet.  In the older car, each room has its own toilet, which is great if you don’t mind 14 separate rooms smelling like obese and/or elderly feces. No judgement, but I do mind that so I was happy to be in the newer car where the toilets all reside at the end of the car, and on the Silver Star, thankfully, that end was not my end.

I spent my next day reading and watching shows on my tablet and after a night of not the worst sleep I arrived in Tampa, from where I took an Amtrak shuttle bus to St Petersburg, from where I then took a Lyft to arrive at the club.  Exhausted I checked in to the club’s air bnb and then went for a leisurely walk near the beach. I passed several people who said hello, which made me realize the blue state-red state tradeoff. Sure some of these people may love a racist dictator and want to control women’s bodies, but I got more hellos and eye contact from strangers in St Pete’s Beach in an hour than I have from my neighbors in New Jersey in 4 years.  Obviously I will still take my state where the majority does not support racist dictators, but the everyday feelings of courtesy and warm sunshine (in the Winter) makes it a closer race than it should be.

Friday Show

When I arrived to the club on Friday I caught up with the owner, Kenny, a successful comedian and all around solid guy. I noticed very quickly his term “good for you” is a nice way of saying “I think you have mental issues” because no one has ever said to me “good for you” after I just told them I spent 26 hours on a train to get to central Florida, besides Kenny.

As I watched the crowd come in, it was a little bit of what I expected demographically (white, no young people), but it was not until close to showtime that I saw what I really wanted: a super jacked dude in a wife beater, who would independently be referred to by me and the feature act as “Goldberg” (the famed wrestler) and his girlfriend or wife who appeared to have, apparently keeping with the WWE branding, an HHH bra.  They had a decidedly Trump vibe (conservative bearing with hedonistic undertones), so I prepared myself for anything ranging from heckling to them treating me like the Capitol in a sequel to January 6th.

And what happened?  A great show!  The emcee, Bart, turned out to be a longtime admirer of mine (pre-Trump stuff) because he discovered me as a fellow lawyer-comedian (the same way Greg Giraldo inspired me to hope for great things, I think I comforted Bart by showing him that one could be a lawyer, a good comedian and deeply unsuccessful and it was not the end of the world). The feature, Jay Legend (which really is tough to follow as merely J-L(sans egend), did great and then I had a blast.  I did not shy away from politics, but as I have learned through trial and error – when MAGA people feel they are in control of a room, they are happy with me as irreverent lib-cuck-beta-bitch court jester. However, in a divided crowd (I am talking to you 2023 Governors in Levittown) they get much more snowflakey about jokes concerning their golden idol.  The show was fun and I got a great, much needed night of sleep afterward.  Here is an extended clip from Friday’s show:


On Saturday I woke up at 630am (rise n whine bro) and walked to the nearby Starbucks to read and write (I skipped arithmetic). I then went for a 3 mile walk on the beach and then went back to the Starbucks for a lunchtime Frappuccino.  I then went for a 1.5 mile walk (3 miles round trip) to St John’s Catholic Church for the 4pm vigil Mass.  I expected it to be Mary Magdalene Church – the patron saint of Only Fans, but perhaps that is only in Miami and Tampa.  I must confess that I often like going to places that I dislike politically.  I like people saying hello to neighbors and strangers and I like going into a Church that is full, even if I arrived beige and sweaty like either a giant Jesus or a giant terrorist. And one other thing – on my walk I saw a truck with a Co-exist bumper sticker, but all the letters comprised of different types of guns, instead of religious symbols. Now perhaps the truck owner is a gun owning psycho, but at the same time I thought it was absolutely hilarious.  But J-L, why didn’t you take a picture of it? Because I left my cell phone in the air bnb so I can be at one with nature and the women on the beach who have augmented nature. Namaste.

Some people have fun in the sun… I have regret in the sunset

After Mass I walked back to Chick Fil A for dinner (that’s double the power of the Lord before the show) and not to quote Christ on the Cross (not to be confused with Christopher Cross) but by the end of the Saturday show I was asking “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”

St John’s – the official Catholic Church of St Pete’s comedian visitors

Saturday Shows Show

When I got to the club Saturday I was told I had not sold enough tickets to justify a third show. I understood (no one is more familiar with my fans than me and it was really on brand on the way home from St Pete’s that one of these so-called fans told me on X/Twitter, “Oh I would have gone if I had known.”  If only there were 6 social media sites, my Twitter NAME which said “St Pete’s 2/9-2/10 for almost to months, or a monthly newsletter I put out that could better inform my fans…).

When I saw the crowd I immediately thought looking at them, “Man if I won over that WWE porn parody and MAGA orgy crowd last night, these people will be eating out of my hand!”  This was the show where fans of mine (or more accurately, mostly fans of The Black Guy Who Tips Podcast and Stand Up With Pete Dominick who like me as a side character) came to the show, along with people who did not look like wrestlers and retired porn stars.  Well folks, I think you know where this is going, but this was a crowd that did a lot of smiling, several “huh?”s and only a decent amount of laughing.  Friday’s crowd was definitely better, which I informed the Saturday crowd of multiple times (to laughs, in case you think I was just blaming them without humor).  After the show people kept saying to me “why did you think it was bad?” and I realized it may have been one of those shows where the crowd did not meet my expectations, but most of them still enjoyed the show.  Maybe.

After the show I had a very enlightening conversation with Kenny, during which he informed me (after hoping I would not take offense) that I am someone he uses as an example to comics of how hard the comedy business is.  I said I cannot take offense, when that is basically my mantra (hard work + talent + prolific production + good manners = miserable frustration). I then went to sleep.


I woke up at 6am on Sunday and decided to go for a 3 mile walk (younger me would have gone for a run, but I am old me) and rewarded myself for my geriatric workout with 7am IHOP. Bart (the aforementioned emcee) picked me up and drove me to shopping mall where the bus would pick me up to take me to Orlando to catch the Silver Meteor (the Silver Star’s much more pessimistic cousin).  And to complete the pessimism, I was in the old sleeper car so all the rooms in my car had a toilet and only 45 minutes into the trip my neighbor wrecked shop (seriously, how do you leave your own toilet without shitting and then as soon as you are on an Amtrak, you feel relaxed enough to take an abusive dump – I left the car for the lounge for 2 hours because I felt like I was choking).  But J-L, do you ever go #2 on these long train rides you take?  No and to to quote DeNiro in Heat, “that’s the discipline.”

In the old sleeper cars, your toilet and head are very close

I then read, watched shows and read tweets about the Super Bowl before falling asleep. I woke up Monday morning in Washington DC and was home by 1130 am. Cookie greeted me in her usual whimpering, enthusiastic way, but I am starting to think she likes the smell of Amtrak funk almost as much as she likes me.