Two Buck Yuks: Get on the micWritten by Keith Bergman | | firstname.lastname@example.org
After some of the harrowing tales of long drives, bad crowds, shady bookers and weird adventures I’ve related in this column, the last thing you might expect me to say to the non-comics out there is this:
Go try comedy.
Let me be clear. I am not in any way encouraging anyone to pursue stand-up as a job. That’s what a crazy person does. I should know.
But writing some original material, getting on a stage and delivering it? That’s a self-esteem boost that will help you in any aspect of life.
Afraid of public speaking? Nothing will rip that Band-Aid off like telling strangers jokes you wrote. Can’t see a task through to the end? Writing a five-minute set is a hard, but attainable goal. Need to break the ice with a group of disparate co-workers? Inviting them all out to open mic night is one way to throw everyone in the deep end of the pool, as social situations go.
There’s no need to take it beyond the hobby level. Not everything has to be monetized or turned into a dogged quest for world domination in a field. You can play a pickup game of basketball without quitting your job and going into training for the NBA draft. Why not put those dormant class-clown skills to work, think up some stuff and go wing it on stage some week? See if you can do it?
Tell you what. If anyone reads this, gets the itch to try it, and follows through with an actual set of material, contact me at email@example.com. I will put you on one of our Two Buck Yuks shows this winter or early spring. I’m only gonna do this for one or two people, so get in touch sooner than later.
Once you’ve stepped on that stage, done your time and dazzled your friends and family, we can talk about the experience in a future column. Don’t expect it to lead to a gig at Madison Square Garden — but don’t be surprised if you learn a little about yourself in the process.
Speaking of Two Buck Yuks, we wrapped up the 2013 season this week with a great show featuring New York comic and storyteller Mark Riccadonna. He’s auditioned for David Letterman, toured Iraq with the USO and we had him in an intimate setting in Downtown Toledo, next to a fake Christmas tree, entertaining the hell out of a small but enthusiastic crowd.
We’ll be back starting Jan. 8 and we’ll be doing shows Wednesday nights at The Blarney Event Center every week until baseball season starts. I encourage you to follow @HashtagRustbelt on Twitter. That’s our new clearinghouse, not just for information about Two Buck Yuks, but about any comedy shows happening in Northwest Ohio. You’ll be amazed at the amount, and quality, of great entertainment just under the radar in your own backyard. Stop out, because the funny person on stage might be your neighbor, your co-worker, or hell, maybe even you.