Saturday, March 30, 2013

Something for nothing

Comedy Central Asia were running a promotional event in a large white tent outside Plaza Singapura today. I spent all morning sweating and fiddling with computers, then went down to see what was going on.

Comedy events are best conducted in dark, slightly claustrophobic rooms where the laughter can't float away into the void. A tent with open sides, suffused with bleaching hot sunshine is not a very good environment. I stood on the periphery for a while, watching some of the acts, then realised that there was a competition on stage, where every participant would get $250 worth of prizes. I do like guaranteed prizes, so I signed up.

The rules were simple: everyone got a minute to try to be funny, with four judges looking on, trying to be as irascible as possible. I had to sign a release form, and it informed me that I couldn't swear, say anything racist or ridicule the Singaporean government. I'm not sure what they thought the acts on stage were going to do:
"Hey, _____ the PAP! They're a bunch of _______s, but then what do you expect? They're all ________!"

I made a note to exclude my rant about Merlions and interbreeding, and then sat in a tiny, very hot room with the other contestants until my shirt was wet through with sweat and it was time to go on stage. Then I blurted out a minute of material, and off I went again, to be presented with a bag of goodies (a laptop bag, a t-shirt, a portable loudspeaker and a voucher for some shoes).

So that was a profitable outing. I had worried that my subconsciousness would sabotage me, and I'd spend 60 seconds spewing a racist diatribe against the government "because it might be funny" but I'm not writing this from a jail cell, so assume my id was not in the driving seat.

I stuck around for an hour, but I was wilting: I'm not built for very hot weather, and Singapore has been embroiled in a stuffy, muggy cloud of wet air for the last week. I've been waiting all day for it to rain, but as yet nothing at all. It won't rain tonight either, which means tomorrow's race may be just a little bit utterly unpleasant. Luckily it's only 5k, and I've done more than that in training.

Unluckily, all my training has been in the last two days. Roll on Sunday...


Post a Comment