Well I have been up for hours before Joe gets up. He senses I am about to go for breakfast and rises from the dead. We hit the Hampton Inn breakfast buffet. Worst Hampton Inn breakfast ever. I get a plate of egg crumbles. The eggs are so cold I use one of the egg crumbles as an ice cube to cool off my coffee. Joe eats enough sausage and eggs to wipe out a farm. He later explains to me that he was in survival mode. Huh? He says he doesn’t know when we will eat again. We’re taking a 40 minute car ride to the next gig not hiking in Antarctica. I guess he doesn’t want to go broke on the McDonald’s value menu.
We get back to the room and we write a song together that Joe will record in the near future for the show. It is the first time I have ever written with a musician or collaborated with Joe on something. It was pretty cool. This will be the final productive thing Joe will do today.
Pack it up and move it out. On to a downgrade in hotels. Truth be told I am happy to have a hotel because about a week and a half ago we almost lost this gig. It has been a very slow summer for the venue and the town it is in. I agree to half pay to keep the gig and the hotel. It is a move I am not thrilled with but it is better then no income and paying for a hotel. Joe is not scheduled to be on this show. A feature is flying in from San Francisco.
In the car within a span of 10 minutes my cell phone blows up with activity. CJ Hummels calls for a date for Side Splitting Productions. Filomena’s calls for a date for Side Splitting Productions. I get a call from somebody I have not spoken to in years. The lady who use to book me to do comedy shows at the JCC for the singles groups. She tells me the singles group is no more. I ask if they all got married. Joe is losing his shit next to me making all sorts of faces and pretending to slash his wrists due to the yenta voice this lady has. I would love to yell shut up stupid but I need to focus on the call and not driving us into the corn field in front of the nuclear plant. She would like me to be a speaker for their lecture series that they are having at the JCC. I have never been a speaker for anything like this but I am intrigued. Public speakers can make good money. She then asks me for my credentials. Currie is going ape shit. I think he wants to say really? Or burst out into laughing. I don’t know for sure but sitting quietly is not on the top of his list. I tell her my credentials are I have booked comics for bad paying JCC Singles groups. You called me…you should know my damn credentials. She tells me they spoke to Ivy League Comedy and the name Side Splitting Productions does not sound as impressive as the name Ivy League comedy. Well the JCC doesn’t sound as impressive as the Borgata in Atlantic City but here we are. She then asks if I can bring my wife since most of the attendees are male. Yes I will turn my lecture into J Date. I swear to God I deal with insanity for a living. Currie is getting a small look into what my day consists of. I think he is a bit happier to be selling plumbing equipment. She then tells me that as I know they don’t have a lot of money. I say you have some Chutzpah asking me about credentials for a lecture for bad money. It’s like running your credit before you buy a Happy Meal. I booked the gig. I want to challenge myself so I think giving a lecture will be good. Joe would tell you every show I do is a lecture.
We arrive at the hotel in a town by the lake. This town is dead. We check into the hotel and I go to work. I have a lot to do. Joe goes to sleep. In his defense he had been up for 4 straight hours. I get us an appearance on local radio to promote our Sunday show and Davin’s Den. I continue to work and Joe wakes and goes to look at the water in the lake. I encourage him to jump in with some ankle weights. He does not. He never listens.
Joe comes back and it appears that the farm that Joe ate earlier has come back from the dead and is trying to get out of Joe’s stomach through is ass. Joe will spend a lot of time pretending to read the local newspaper. Knowing Joe he has highlighted the whole thing and will attempt to stammer through it on the next Davin’s Den.
After several attempts Joe’s stomach cooperates enough for us to get to the gig. The venue appears to be a huge warehouse with little air conditioning decorated like Magnum PI’s garage sale. I look at the pink flamingo on the wall and it whispers to me to kill the parrot and use the palm tree as a weapon and make a run for it. The only question is do I leave Joe behind in my attempt to escape or take him with me.
I ask Joe if he wants to be on the show. He has a tummy ache and declines. Pussy. We meet the bartender who will be the MC. He tells us he has been hosting all summer. He does announcements and then does some material. Sounds good.
I meet the owner and he is a very nice guy. I am not pleased that I am doing this for less then I am suppose to but I am pleased that he allowed us to do the show as last week was suppose to be the last show. He really loves having the comedy but the numbers are not what he would like. Happens a lot.
This is the biggest crowd they have had all summer. The host goes up there and does announcements and then I think an act. I am not really listening very closely to be honest because a fan is blowing in my ear. No not a hot girl who thinks I am very funny. A fan that moves air. Everybody who sees me proceeds to tell me how unsuccessful this hosting attempt is going. I suddenly wish Joe would have manned up and taken a spot on the show. As much shit as I give Joe (not nearly as much shit as he gave the toilet earlier) I know he is a fighter and a pro on stage. Joe tells me he wishes he would have gone on as well.
The feature goes on and does better then the host but this room is too big, the ceilings are too high, the air is too hot, and the flamingos are too pink. People proceed to tell me how the host killed the show and how pissed they are at him since he is not suppose to try material. Apparently last week was his first attempt. Most new people who try comedy only do a few minutes. Not this guy. Not our theater major. I don’t care it is the feature’s problem right now. The feature had some moments where he got some good laughs but I don’t think he was prepared to dig out of this situation. Too much going against him.
As for me, well apparently I have just been introduced. I couldn’t even tell. Little phases me at this point in my career. Sunday I was phased & I will talk about that on the next Davin’s Den but this is just another day at the office. A few people are paying attention so I direct my material to them. The strategy works and the night builds. I start with straight material (the type Chick-fil-A would approve of) and then as their interest is piqued I will play a bit more. I have succeeded in getting the room but it was not easy. I tell them that the only difference between me and the famous comics is that they have more zeroes on their pay check and I will not apologize for the horrible things I say. I am about 5 minutes from being finished and a group of 4 gets up to leave. I tell them I am almost finished. They tell me they have to go because a bug flew into the man’s ear. Joe later confirms that this indeed did happen. I tell the audience I wish a bullet would fly into my head. They like that. Too much. My career has now gotten to the lofty position that I can now be upstaged by a mayfly followed by tweezers & a Q-tip.
The show ends and everybody is pleased. I am exhausted again. Crowd loved it. More importantly Joe liked it so I put off for at least a day of hearing Joe tell me how much my act stinks. We drink with the manager. It is amazing how Joe’s tummy heals for the consumption of booze. I bought Joe dinner, he didn’t go on tonight, and he got free shots. Joe had the most successful evening out of all of us.