Tuesday, October 09, 2012


I've been struggling. After the competition my brain was all worn out; I should have noticed on my run this morning when I couldn't think hard enough to make myself run quickly. I should have noticed when I spent the day incompetently clicking on icons on my computer, unable to do anything productive. I should have noticed when I didn't notice it was Tuesday today.

Still, I stumbled on. I had a spot at Comedy Masala tonight and, pressed for time, made some toast for dinner. When the toast popped up, it did so overenthusiastically and part of the metal frame of the toaster popped out too, inspired by the progress of the heated bread product.

Well, that would never do. I can't have a self-destructing toaster. I reached out to push the metal frame back in place, forgetting about the capacity of metal to absorb and transfer heat, and yelped as it burned a welt on my fingertip.

Well, I say 'welt' when I mean a tiny dot of disproportionate pain. Things hurt more when you're tired: it's God's way of telling you to go to bed and not get in any more trouble. I was already suffering fro a giant spot on my forehead that seemed to be the size of my brain, so to have an injured finger was almost enough to tip me over the edge.

I ran it under the cold tap. I realised that the water from our cold tap is basically tepid. I put it in a bag of ice instead, and felt vaguely idiotic when my wife asked me to explain myself. I continued trying to figure out where I'd left my brain, then, suffering bursts of irrational rage at the world, lumbered off to comedy to try some new material in front of a docile crowd.

The problem with a big performance like the weekend's is that the next show is often a comedown. After operating at such a high pitch, you're tired and your timing may be a bit off. You've got a smaller audience and instead of a feeling of momentum, the laughter doesn't carry you between jokes. You scramble your punchlines and then you get off, and your finger still hurts from your toaster mishap.

Basically, I'm telling any aspiring comedians that after a competition, they should try to scald or burn themselves with an electrical device as soon as possible. It's what we pros do.


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