I never learn my lesson about venues!


Out in San Francisco right now, the night after a Laughing Liberally show / Drinking Liberally party part of the Young Dems Convention out here. We did the "show" at a bar with no lights, no stage and a weak mic. When will I learn???

The gathering was mostly a party. A beefed up Drinking Liberally that brought together people from around the country who were in town for the Young Democrats of America's annual convention.

The plan was to have me and comic Katie Halper do some time in the middle of the party. It was a good plan. And the venue was beautiful... for drinking. Not necessarily for doing comedy. Yet, as one of my role models oft repeats: "You don't go to a gig with the venue you want; you go with the venue you have." But sometimes, you really just need the body armor.

I'd estimate somewhere between 50 and 80 folks there, which is a good sized crowd, but we had three big problems.

1) bad sound. At least we had sound, actually. But it was a tiny, tiny amp which couldn't compete with the background music and noise of other conversations at the bar from down on the first floor (sound travels up!)

2) no lights. This is especially a problem for us darker-hued types. I was basically unintentionally camoflauged

3) no stage. Being at the same level as your audience is a no no. As a comic, I deserve to feel superior to them. Physically looking down on them allows me to morally look down on them as well. This was impossible last night

All these elements, when in place, say "hey, look at me. listen to me. I'm important." Without them, you're just another person talking at a bar with a slightly louder voice.

Props to Katie Halper who took the bullet like a trooper and drop-in comic Chris Brannon from Tacoma, Wash.

For the folks in the crowd who could hear and enjoy the show, thanks. And be sure to tell your friends in the back the funny bits on the way home.

peace