Monday, 9 August 2010

a long time ago in a wait


I’m Adam, and welcome to my first ever blog. I’ve never blogged before and the reasons for that are…well...they aren’t numerous and are in fact - one fold. I’ve never had anything interesting to say. Let’s hope this changes.

So why am I starting now? Well, I’ve begun a strange journey. I’ve accepted Jesus Christ as my own, not really. I have in fact begun to dip my undersized toes into the murky (or more swampy, really) world of stand up comedy.

It’s true, I have spent many, many years watching comedy, everything from Mike Harding to Freddie Starr to Eddie Izzard to Ben Elton and pretty much everything in between. I wasn’t really very picky - if it made me laugh that was all I really wanted from these people.

I’ll get this out of the way straight away. I was never the class clown - in fact, if anything, I was the class loser. I was moved from school to school and never really got a chance to fit in anywhere, and so retreated into a world of made up stories and heroic deeds ( I’m writing a book too...well two, actually). While at my last school in Wales, and then again later at art college, I met up with a load of lesbian types. I really did mean to write thespian types there, but as both statements are true, I’ll leave them both in (hiya, Lupin and Shelly...are you both accountants now or something...radical rug munchers that you are...every college has them). Anyway, I digress. A few of them are famous now. It’s true. I won’t name drop, but "if you can hear this, you are the resistance" should give you a clue to one of them.

So, I’ve always been around arty people, you know, pillocks. Hemp-wearing, seal-hugging, tree-masturbating pillocks. And disturbingly, I discovered I was one of them. It sort of crept up on me, like a printing deadline or…erm…syphilis. But I’m so used to not fitting in it didn’t really matter to me. I did the whole Goth thing and then got into building bikes and cars and now my way of life has sort of settled on being an arty, engineering, biker type with comedic tendencies. There don’t seem to be many of us out there.

So why now? What spurred me on to give this thing a go? Well, I moved to Glasgow to live with my lovely girlfriend and for those of you who don’t know, Scotland has one of the best comedy scenes in the world. Not only do we have the Glasgow comedy festival, which is small but perfectly formed, but we also have the Edinburgh Fringe Festival which is three weeks of nonstop comedy, dance, drama and the like. With spurring from my comedy loving lassy, we’ve ended up going to the Fringe every year I’ve lived up here, which is a loooooooonnnnngggg time. And now I’ve seen, actually seen, some of the best comedians in the world - not DVDs of the comedians that the TV companies think you should see, but the one who are actually good! And I’ve had the honour of meeting and chatting with lots of them and now in some cases I’m able to count some of them as my friends (you know who you are, and I will continue to stalk you no matter what the courts say).

So I’ve been toying idly with the idea of giving it a go for maybe the last four years or so, but like all men I needed a kick up the arse to get me started. That kick came in the form of a chance encounter with a monopedic comedy hero of mine. Somewhere about this blog is probably a picture of me so if you’ve looked you’ll know that I sort of stick out in a crowd. I will explain what I mean in the following comedic equation:

looking like me + front row + comedian = let’s pick on the hippie

I get picked on at more or less every show I ever go to, and I don’t care. I never really enjoyed it, but accepted it as part and parcel of being me (heavy is the burden of being me).

So lots of you I’m sure know of Adam Hills. He is an Australian comedy god, a genius and a disturbingly nice man. I won’t tell you the details of what happened but I was dragged up on stage by Adam (the other one - confused??) at a small comedy venue in Edinburgh. I ended up telling a very long, involved and frankly disgusting story that, for a while, he continued to use as part of his show. The trouble was, that the story is totally made up off the top of my head. As sick as it was, it was also quite funny and got a lot of laughs. I, to my shame, lied to Adam, told him it was all true and like a total sucke…the honest man he is, he took my deranged ravings on face value. I didn’t know he was going to use it in his show (royalties?????) and I didn’t have the guts to tell him. It came down to another comedy god to tell him for me, you know in that way that you used to say “my friend fancies your friend”? Same thing. I was sitting after a show with (brace for name drop) Tim Minchin and regaled him with the story. Tim, to his credit, smiled but didn’t laugh at my inner sickness, and I expected to hear no more about it now that I had got it off my chest.

Fast forward six months or so to the Fringe and the Assembly Hall in Edinburgh - a huge, must be 800-seater venue that Adam Hills was packing out night after night. There I sat in the front row, with a small amount of dread in the pit of my stomach, as the man himself walked on. Everything went well until he spotted me and shouted "Adam! If that is your REAL name"...oh bum! Tim, being the man of honour I’m certainly not, had told Adam - Adam was not best pleased - and Adam (me now) was going to be destroyed on stage in front of 800 people. I say again...BUM! For some reason I still don’t understand, Adam Hills played along and I retold my whole sick and twisted story again to laughs and gagging and vomiting. I spoke to Adam after the show and we went our separate ways.

Here the story should end but, you see, because for all his love, all his skill, and all his genius, it seems deep down somewhere in his soul Adam Hills is a right C**T.

Fast forward again a few months. Adam is in Glasgow playing a venue called the Garage. Me and my other half go along to see the show. A quick reminder:

looking like me + front row + comedian = lets pick on the hippie

Once again I get dragged out of the audience and I tell my tale (as best as I could remember it - at this point, Adam knew it better than me as he had performed it all over the world). On conclusion of my story, to more laughs and more ga-vomiting (gagging and vomiting simultaneously), he said "And of course this is all true, isn’t it?" The jig was up. "No. I made it all up," I said, like a child caught lying to his teacher. He sends me back to my seat and slaps me with this line as I leave the stage: "We’ll be getting Adam back up on stage at the end of the show for SOMETHING SPECIAL". We’re way past the word BUM! now. We are in the region of HOLY RUSTED HOBBIT ROCKETS!!

I’m pretty sure his show was great. I can’t remember because I was having a f***ing embolism with the fear!

The time came...the lights heart stopped...

I climbed back up onto the stage to accept my punishment. Adam started talking...Adam (me again) began to cry (on the inside - I’m not special). The music came on (Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You" from the Bodyguard). This is it. I’m about to be publicly humiliated. Adam gathers me up into his arms (this has all got a bit homoerotic, hasn’t it?) and carries me off stage and up a flight of stairs, re-enacting the end of the aforementioned tedious film. Thankfully, no pictures exist of the events. There were camera phones everywhere and I saw what seemed like a hundred flashes go off, but there are NO pictures. Stop looking for them because there aren’t any. THERE ARE NO PICTURES, OK????

So thank you Adam. My love of comedy was brought to a head at that point and I just knew I had to try. I had to give it a go. What’s the worst thing that could happen? They could laugh at me, which is kinda the point.

not even slightly homoerotic