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So the Protests Went Well – a Stand-Up Special

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So the protests went well...

So the protests went well…

And everyone showed up to voice their opinion and let everyone understand why we were doing it. You can see the coverage of all the protests here.

Meanwhile, I did a stand-up comedy event where I voiced my opinion on the subject. Check it out.

Debunking the Public Perception – Sitting by a bar with a friend

in Life by

Let’s set the scene; I pick up my friend from a section of Voortrekker Road in Bellville and head up to Durbanville to the Meraki Bar.

We both enter, greet the door lady stating we’re comedians, then we head to the bar, order a few drinks, share a box of cigarettes and look over our notes.

“You think people will show up?” I ask.

“Are you kidding? It’s Meraki.” he retorts, before taking a drag, blow smoke up in the air and looks down at his notes.

The promoter ambles by. “Hey guys, we’re ready for tonight’s show?”

We look over into the venue and see the one table occupied by some “youths” cracking jokes in Afrikaans. “Yeah, we’re as ready as we’ll ever be.”

But the point of this story is not what you think. Keep Reading

Applying Business Practices to Stand-Up Comedy

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business of comedy

When approaching projects in my employment, I put forth a variety of business practices that ensure I manage them on time and to budget within cost agreed to with clients and get them the product they require. But when it comes to stand-up comedy, I’m as guilty as anybody of treating it like any other hobby; whenever I get to it.

As it turns out, professional stand-ups have to treat their work like any other work: just like a business.

So, without further ado, here’s the top ten practices I’ve learnt in business that I, as an aspiring stand-up comic, would apply: Keep Reading

VIDEO – #ThatsFunny at the All Star Theatre, Brackenfell, November 2014

in Comedy by
nelson comedy comedian
The following video is a 10 minute stand up comedy special performed live in front of an audience at the All star Theatre in Bracknefell in November 2014.
I hated that suit.

Saying Goodbye to Robin Williams…wish I had said hello first.

in Comedy by
robin williams
So, Robin Williams has passed away from an apparent suicide.

And we’re all sitting around on our phones, our computers and our tablets on our couches, by our desks, in the car while the mom’s driving you to school, or you’re experiencing a near-fading experience listening to your CEO droning on about the four C’s that’ll drive productivity forward, as we read the how’s and the why’s about Robin Williams.

And Robin Williams, the human being that brought us the best version of alien you could get in Mork and Mindy, an unforgettable Genie in Alladin, the uplifting voice of reason in Good Morning Vietnam, the aspiring teach in Dead Poets Society, the deadbeat in The Fisher King, or even the creepy guy in One Hour Photo, amongst all the numerous standup routines and countless other characters per minute he portrayed, is today and for all time not breathing.

I’m not here to over-analyse why Robin Williams did it, nor will I fawn over his many accomplishments; more versatile bloggers, news outlets and intellectuals will provide such wicked commentary for you.
Nor do I wish to label Robin Williams by anything other than his name; “boisterous”, “excentric” and “over-the-top” have been some of the many that everyone’s been clinging to stick to.

And I’m not going to sympathise over Robin William’s battle with alcohol and drugs; he battled depression, yes, so do many of us, including me. You don’t know my depression, I keep it quiet. Those closest to me see it and they don’t understand what I’m going through, fighting their own battles themselves. And the best excuse, I don’t think I’m important enough for anybody to worry about, so my depression I wage war on alone. And he did too or with family, it doesn’t matter.

Remember, it’s not a tragedy that Robin Williams couldn’t win against depression if you’re loaded and got time to visit a counselor 5 times a week.

I just want to say, I’m sorry Robin Williams. Like everyone else I drew inspiration from, you inspired me. I liked his portrayal in movies and his stand-up is insane (not was, we haven’t lost his art, we just lost more of what he wanted to say), and recently I listened to quite a few. How could you even follow his brain as it spewed it all out??

No, I’m sorry I didn’t pay enough attention to you, Robin Williams (and I know you’re reading this blog, Robin Williams, Steve Jobs handed out a free iPad 2000 the minute you stepped through the Pearly Gates), as I’m sure you would’ve really taken notice if people paid attention.

And you know what, Robin Williams, I’m sorry I didn’t work hard enough to finally meet you and say, “Hey Robin Williams…”

And you would’ve gone, “Hey buddy, what you doing there repeating my name Robin Williams in every paragraph on your blog, you getting ‘robinrepetitis?'”

And I would’ve replied, “You know what, Robin Williams, I guess so. How very Williamsesque. Na-nu, na-nu.”

Just then, a twinkle gets in your eye as your recognition for the prank-parlour trick comes into play. “You second guessed yourself,” you’d quip, and we’d laugh because the anti-punchline would be more inspiring that pandering to the belief of trying to make the other person love you instead of just showing people how you try to love yourself, and how difficult it is.

I’m not making sense on this blog entry today, but I’m quite sure that I’m gonna miss the chance to have said hello face to face to Robin Williams, like everyone else on earth wished they could.

Star Trek and the devalue of money

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star trek devalue of money

They had some amazing adventures on the television series, Star Trek, especially the part where they devalue money.

From battling alien menaces to witnessing supernovas, transforming into weird creatures at the cellular level and inadvertently giving precedent to the Civil Rights Movement by famously being the first television show in history to demonstrate how a man kisses a woman.

I know, I missed out the fact it was a white man kissing a black woman, but from personal experience it’s so good I had to make a point of it with its very own line break.

But the theoretical concept for them gallivanting through time and space like some rock band with their own sociological encyclopaedia of how “straight” to act, struck a phenomenal chord with me every episode due to one change in their broadened society that brings me both hope and a sense of killing myself as I’ll never see it in my own lifetime…

…those bastards don’t use money.

For those who don’t care about such flippant mumbo jumbo, or certainly for the ones that find it easy to be so appealing that money is less of an issue and that boy staring at you from across the room with Bieber-hive hair is your only stressful subject to talk about over Facebook with a dozen or so other self-absorbed social oligarchs, Star Trek is based on a society in the future where the human race phased out money.

Yes, they got no dosh.

Based on the ramblings of one man’s vision of the future, which in contrast is technically a more public contradiction to Tom Cruise’s fun Scientology religion, placing monetary value on goods and services offered by each other for each other “impeded” the natural evolution of the dominant species on the planet, creating so much war, disease and famine that we couldn’t progress. And after a devastating third world war and near self-annihilation, to stave off extinction and pave the way for us to evolve, they did away with monetary economy, banks and finacial institutions. They gave whatever they made for charity and received whatever they asked for.

Supposedly, without money, we’re all nice to each other.

My point though, is that with the freedom from such oppression, I’ve got a feeling that if I didn’t have to worry about money myself, about the future when I’m old and decrepit, sustaining not just myself when I’m a grown boy and taking care of family that need sustenance, I’m pretty sure I’ll enjoy some good adventures.

For now though, as a jobsworth and “workacomic” (amalgamating workaholic and comic like a peanut butter sandwich there, remember me coining this today and realise your eyeballs got pwned), I stare up at the glass ceiling of both success but financial freedom, knowing that I need to grit my teeth and continue on without the feeling of realistic depression bearing down on me.

To view the goal of feeling free to sit at home on my lawn writing notes, reading lovely books and feeling calm before heading to a club to entertain crowds, not as a pipe-dream but as a challenge to overcome.

“Men find single, beautiful women as challenges. Screw that, I find overweight mothers with three kids and a truck-driving husband as challenges. Not to see if they’ll sleep with me, but if I’ll sleep with them.” – Nelson de Gouveia

What I do/don’t want from Comedy

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want from comedy

I think about what I want or don’t want from comedy, and I find that I do this little thing and enjoy the standing up in front of a strange crowd, telling jokes about my past awkwardness and misadventures, while at the same time edge quietly towards being edgy as a host, but I’ve got the feeling my public persona doesn’t fit a profile that either hits the mainstream hard or swims in the obscurity of cult status.

So, to explain my motives, here are my ambitions and avoidances of Comedy:

  • DO: want to eventually be performing in front of big crowds. I feel at home with a lot of people warmed up to the idea of a stock comedian making them laugh.
  • DON’T: want to continue into my 70’s performing in front of tiny open-mic crowds.
  • DO: want to work with talented people I gel with, to brainstorm awesome ideas and create a semblance of community that serves the general public in many forms of entertainment.
  • DON’T: want to work with guys looking for a quick jump-start to short-term fame.
  • DO: want to develop television or radio schemes with others and be part of a creative group with resources to turn it around in a short space of time. I’ve already written a few, need to start pitching it to a talented guy I’ve recently met.
  • DON’T: want to agree to flimsy promises that never take fruit thanks to ignorance.
  • DO: want to write for a magazine, newspaper or website that accepts my unexplored views on everything from life, love to laundry.
  • DON’T: want to be limited only to this blog.
  • DO: want to make the people I love proud, to show that their support for my abilities aren’t unfounded and that they can share in the fruits of my efforts in hichever way they wish.
  • DON’T: want to be told I’ll never make something of myself because I’m white, single, foreign or never attained a degree/diploma (that one was based on funds).
  • DO: want to “stand before kings, and leave a name to be remembered.” – Benjamin Franklin
  • DON’T: want to be forgotten.

On a dark and stormy night… (a writing exercise)

in Life by
going online mastrubation
In most occasions, I tend to try and write specifically about a subject, but on this occasion I don’t have one…yet, as I just described to my sister-in-law, I do enjoy using the first line, “On a dark and stormy night…” to meander off into subsequent variations of the theme before reaching the point, in order to jump-start the creative process.

And here’s the result.

On a dark and stormy night…

…well, a slightly dark and stormy night, really. In July in the southern hemisphere. And but slightly, I really mean sort-of dusky with a small chance of drizzle.

And when I mean by stormy, really some drizzle with the possibility that your eyes will seem accustomed to the African sun after a few months of the blanket of clouds hanging overcast like a comfort pillow thrown over by an over-protective mother that still loves you despite yelling you a few hours before for leaving your bike out in the yard.

And when I mean drizzle at dusk, I really mean an occasional smattering of one or two droplets descending upon the earth like a few Spartans entering a battle…without their mates, resulting in totally defeat by the Persian horde, that sort of smattering.

And dusk is such a relative term. I would say about 9am, the sun easily penetrating the window like a geriatric peeping Tom with a pace-maker that ticks away like the timepiece in the crocodile that ate Captain Hook’s hand from Peter Pan, the old badger ruffling through the plants trying to find a good view up your nose as your bed faces feet first towards the window.

So anyway, on a slightly morning-ish time of the day with a slight smattering of droplets…I discovered you can get Jews on a train far more easily if you charged them half.

The End.

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