Oct 3, 2010

#30before30: Stand-Up Comedy

This article was originally published on Brisbane Times. If you're enjoying the #30before30 challenge, why not consider donating a few dollars via the secure PayPal link in my sidebar? All donations will be split 50/50 between the Australian Red Cross and Brisbane Arts Theatre. Thank you!

I have a love/hate relationship with stand-up comedy. I've always wanted to try it, but have always shied away with the certain dreaded knowledge that I will be fundamentally awful. But one of the catalysts for the #30before30 project was a niggling voice in my head repeating ad nauseum “You're gonna regret not at least trying it in your 20s…” - so OK.

I've got 10 years of experience in improvised comedy behind me, and I've done a fair bit of MC and presenting work, as well as writing comedy for plays - but it's not the same. Where I run into difficulty is the actual “joke-writing” bit. How do you know if you have a funny set-up? How do you write a punchline? It's a very different beast.

And “beastly” might be a good adjective to describe the room I played to, at a pub venue on Brisbane's northside. If I could compare it to anything, it would be the Vietnam War – bloody, brutal, endless and pointless.

For starters, it wasn't really a “room”. It was half of the front bar, divided by a small stage and decorative standee. Very kindly, the wall of TV screens beaming the races TAB odds and Keno were left ON during the show. Ah, there's nothing like the sound of trots to accompany a pithy observation about the differences between men and women.

Another problem was the lack of an audience. The few people who were there seemed wholly surprised by the sudden appearance of an open-mic night, and resolved to continue drinking heavily and chatting in that loud obnoxious way that only the truly sloshed can do. The MC for the show, a charming bloke named Chris, struggled to draw their attention, foregoing his own material in favour of just riffing with anyone who'd talk.

I was down as third for the night; but after the second bloke didn't turn up onstage, I was called up early. I had a little notebook with some scrawled ideas written down; the rest I was going to just going to bullshit my way through. I was less nervous than I thought I was going to be; but enough that I missed some good “beats” and got into a habit of trailing off when bits weren't working, like a frightened bunny. Still, I didn't throw up.

According to the two friends I'd reluctantly invited along to witness the carnage, my funniest line was during my “jellybean apartheid” gag. I said something along the lines of black jellybeans needing to rise up against being segregated in separate bags at the chemist, and needing a “Nelson Mandellybean” for a leader.

You know what? That was COMPLETELY MADE UP ON THE SPOT. That was just my brain creating a stupid portmanteau and shooting it out of my mouth.
I'll let you be the judge of the rest of my material: you can watch the video yourself. I'm not wearing any kind of rose-coloured glasses here: I was mostly terrible.


But I was pleased that I managed to avoid the absolute lowest common denominator. I really didn't want to talk about drugs, bogans, genitals, bodily fluids, beastiality, and all manner of other stuff that is the traditional domain of the rookie stand-up.

And a good thing too, because boy, the other comedians present (all blokes except for one other girl) really took that ball and ran with it.

Some of them were so relentlessly awful that I felt like taking them aside and just asking what was so wrong in their life that they felt the need to torture themselves like this. I wish I could repeat some of the jokes, but you might be eating as you read this.

Others who jumped up were at least watchable; some even delivered some genuinely clever lines, or worked up a good rapport with the few audience members willing to put down their pints for two seconds and pay attention.

And it's hard – pub patrons don't tend to really want a clever deconstruction of Masterchef or a philosophical inquiry into the nature of relationships – particularly not patrons at this venue. They want dick jokes.

I give them all kudos though – stand-up is not easy, and in this exponentially terrible room, virtually impossible. It takes a certain kind of self-flaggelating narcissistic masochist with something to prove to actually get up there in the first place.

And hey – now I can proudly say I'm one of them.


  1. Y'all should have told me what you were planning. I'd have happily written you something. I've not done a whole lotta standup, but I've had to write stuff for people who had to be funny...

  2. PS: Niiiice monkey impression!

  3. Nat. That was A1. Having made it over now for a whole 2 BAT productions, really, Really! hoping to catch you in even a minor role in the next one :)
    No way I could front up to an audience like that, your confidence, poise, sheer awesomeness, and yes, Talent, so obvious. Nice work.

  4. And, I forgot to add - funny as f*ck!

  5. i think you are ignorant. they, the audience don't want dick jokes, they want what will make them laugh, which there are more possible ways to them laugh then stars in the universe, just because a bunch of amateurs fail to do that doesn't mean the only way to make them laugh is dick jokes, never blame the audience.

    don't think that you are smarter then any of the other beginners because you weren't doing "dick jokes", improv comedy never has interesting subject matter, if someone uses sexual themes to get a humorous point of view across in a nightmare of gig it is better then something that is clean, whimsical, meaningless and humorless.

    the MC wasn't nice he did no material and payed out on the open mics, those that were doing it for free, he was getting paid.

    is it wrong for me to think its stupid for you after doing one gig to review other open mic comedians, i would say that your act was "relentlessly awful" but that would be hypocritical.

  6. How many amnesia patients does it take to change a lightbulb?... To get to the other side!

  7. I went along to watch and that venue was AWFUL. I've performed in a number of places in Brisbane doing everything from Stand up to Pop music and that was the most unpleasant venue I've ever seen. I'd rather have performed in the car park.

    I think the MC did a better job of making himself look cool than of buoying up the comics. I didn't think he did a great job but it did seem to be a painful situation.

    The problem with this venue is that there was no sense of friendliness. Everyone who stepped up on stage either looked (understandably) frightened or hostile. Charming, friendly and whimsical jokes would get lost in the noise and only the shocking assertive ones would survive.

    This meant that everyone started to do their nasty stuff and the whole feel of the evening became quite overwhelming and left me with a really bad taste in my mouth.

    I liked Natalie's act. It tickled my fancy. I won't sugar coat it. She needs to tighten it up like all get out and figure out how to hit those punchlines for maximum effort but for a first time I thought she was brilliant and she'll only get better from this point on.

    P.S. Christ, I hate it when people don't capitalise.

  8. I think it's a bit harsh to do one gig at one bad room and comment so negatively on what the others were doing. I know it's a hard thing to do. I have done it. And your holier than thou attitude about not doing dick jokes doesn't carry much weight, if your material isn't funny. I am glad you gave it a go, but try not to put down others for doing the same.

  9. Pfft, Nat commented negatively on what she was doing, so I don't see why she has to comment positively on the others if they were awful. Also, she said some had clever lines and good rapport but were working in a tough situation, and she gave kudos to all for actually doing it. If I'd been watching comedy that consisted mainly of jokes about drugs, bogans, genitals, bodily fluids, and beastiality I'd have a lot harsher things to say, and I don't even try it myself. Strangely enough I'm allowed to say I don't like things without being a veteran of doing them. I pretty much know that dick jokes are not the height of comedy without any training at all.

  10. Shayne and Anonocoward: people it is you are are looking like dicks here. Is Nat not entitled to her opinion and lets be honest there is a lot of dross out there in planet standup.

    Your comments show a much more prissy, judgemental position than the writer of this Blog.

    Dirk I've told you many times, stop admitting to that speech writing work you did for the white house between 2001-2005!!

  11. I used to judge the Triple J Raw Comedy Awards in the 90s at the Harold Park in Sydney. Generally, unless a fix was in as occurred one night in 97 or 98, it's pretty easy to tell who's won and lost during the heats and state finals. Dare I say it, I invented a scoring system which was based as much on audience response as it was on material & delivery.

    As long as the punters enjoyed it & some beer was sold who really gives a fuck? Some people should be banned from stage. And some people are so awful on stage they just fucken belong there. Love, Simon Bedak x

  12. "When in doubt, go for the dick joke."
    ~ Robin Williams

  13. I was there at the gig and I can say that it is one of the toughest rooms to do. I will not judge anyone, as it is not my place to do so. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. If criticism is constructive, I have no problem listening to it, and then deciding if I agree or not. I think it's hard to take this mini snapshot of stand up at this particular venue and judge it at all. I use it to try out new stuff to work on my own timing and see what I think feels right and wrong.

    As a wiser man than me once said, I'm not sure what art is, but I know what I like and it's not this.

  14. Well, it certainly looks like I've upset a fair few people with my article! If I'd have thought ahead, I would've realised that, but as Shayne says, I am ignorant.

    First, I'd like to thank the comedians for coming onto the site and expressing their opinions. I'm really pleased that you've let me know what you think of me - it's good to know that if I do attempt stand-up again, I'll more than likely be heckled, probably by the comedians!

    In regards to "blue" material (aka dick jokes), I don't think I should apologise for trying to avoid that on my first go. I suspected (and I was right), that there would be enough comedians there doing that sort of humour, so I wanted to try something different.

    I do apologise if this came across as "holier than thou" - it wasn't intended as such. I'm happy to do blue material if I thought I could pull it off (ha-di-har), but the point was I didn't think I could.

    Shayne describes my material as clean, whimsical, meaningless and humourless. That's absolutely fair enough. But I will say Eddie Izzard and Ross Noble are two great examples whose sets are build on odd ideas and characterisations, much of which is nonsensical and has no point.

    I would rather try and fail at material that I personally found entertaining (hence the whimsy), than try the blue stuff that I KNEW I wouldn't be able to do justice to.

    To Pete Rosky - thanks for your considered opinions. Neither my comedy nor my writing fits into any definition of "art", so no worries there. ;)

    It was a very tough room, and I did give credit at the end of my stories to all the comedians for doing it.

    The other thing is that I guess every comic who reads this and was there is going to assume that I am referring to them by my comment "relentlessly awful".

    In truth, I thought 2, perhaps 3, fell into that category. But if I had said, two or three, then I would feel worse about being so specific. I didn't want to identify names or jokes, so no one would feel like they'd been singled out. Obviously that's backfired and now everyone things they were singled out! For that, I apologise, but in hindsight, I was probably going to offend either way.

    Also, my reflections on people's comedy is my taste, and I believe I DO have the right to say that I thought something was terrible. I have acted, directed and performed for over 15 years, and have lost count of the number of times people have hated my stuff (starting with strangers, right up to my own family!).

    At the end of the day, I am humble about the criticisms this blog has attracted, because I guess if I want to be a stand-up, I'm going to have to get used to criticism.

    Thanks again everyone for contributing.

  15. Gotta start somewhere. You weren't funny, but you had the balls to get up and do it, so well done. You didn't kill...but just as importantly, you didn't die. Keep working it.

    People don't just want dick jokes, but it's harder to work clean, so a lot of comedians realise that going for the cheap laugh is just one of those easy fallbacks. As a theatre person you should be aware that there is a tradition of 'off-colour material' as catharsis that goes back to the Greeks. For every 50 shitty blue comedians who hack along like fools, there's one great one (like a Hicks or Carlin) who do know. Your 'colleagues' obviously don't know enough about comedy to even scratch that deeply.

    But if you want to be a comic, you should. Bury yourself in the greats. Understand that you are working in an environment where the technique of the greats is still revered and mined, from music hall/vaudeville entertainers to TV/movie actors, the physical ones, the showmen, the satirists, the social critics, the 'comedians as confidence men'. Study them as you'd study anything else you love: with passion, keen eyes and reverence. If you gfo up with the intention of trying to string together a few bits in order to get a laugh, you'll end up as nothing more than a joke blower. But if you plan, rehearse, work and work and work...you may get there.

  16. An afterthought: it's okay to slag off people for whom you have no respect. But it's probably best to wait until you can back it with at least a few killer sets.

  17. ... and conveniently anonymous. Big surprise. Stick your name up there so I can find your stuff, Mr Expert Funny Man ... arsehole.

  18. Nelson Mandellybean!

    Nat, I thought you'd have some good material that could definitely be developed, along with the delivery. Which is to be expected, on your very first attempt at it. You also had some bits, that I'm sure would have gotten much bigger laughs in a different venue.

    And I know you are a sweetheart, Nat. The job of a comedian is to have opinions, you shouldn't be apologising for having them.

  19. Wow Nat! Which room was tougher? That one or this one? Well done on having a crack (kinda dick joke).

  20. Natalie, you were great and don't let these people get you down.

    Especially people who don't have the balls to leave a criticism under their own name.

  21. wow Natalie this blog is ironically so 'relentlessly awful'...
    for a first timer you overstayed the 5 minute time you were allocated to start with...a big Open Mic no no...and your criticism of the venue and organisers shows an open lack of respect or common courtesy..
    true your set was purely 'improv'... i.e. with the exception of a talented few.. mostly failed actor wannabes or 'alternative lifestyle' types that couldnt score an extras role in a dogfood commercial...
    for you to make a judgement call on amateur standup comedians and their 'blue' content you should perhaps put down the chardonnay glass go along and see what the majority of 'comedy club' going audience members pay to watch and laugh at.. most of these guys you saw on Thursday do get in front of larger paying crowds and get laughter...where you wouldnt..
    So true that a rendition of 'boring but clean' painfully excruciating overacted theatrical observations would mostly entertain the cheeseeating variety of 'Audi wanting...but cant afford' pretentious circle you clearly occupy... eagerly entertaining a limited few by being whimsical or cosmic ...fantastic..
    Most people who were present on the night have already read this blog of yours and consider you to be an imposter or parasite as you were warmly received and treated with respect by everyone (even those you describe the 'terrible' ones)...nice of you to take the time to acknowledge the MC...but thats what pandering social climbers do right ??
    Also most people were unaware you were going to record them without permission to publicly humiliate in a public forum...
    so here's another suggestion for your '30before30'...just keep being clumsy... JUMP IN FRONT OF A MOVING BUS !!!

  22. That's the challenge of stand-up sweetheart.
    You have to be able to perform in all rooms for all types of people.
    I performed on that Thursday night and enjoyed the challenge and will be there again this week too.
    Bet you won't!
    But I expect nothing less from a drama geek who thinks she is the smartest person in the room.

  23. I love it when people criticise certain types of jokes (drugs, bogans, genitals, bodily fluids, beastiality)as being 'the domain of a rookie'. Here's the deal sweetheart...a joke is funny if the audience laughs. That's it! There's no need to comment on whether one particular topic of joke is funnier than another because that's not the point. Did it get laughs on the night? Did that particular audience enjoy the joke? One of the skills in stand-up is adapting your set to suit the audience, so if that means pulling out a dick joke to get a laugh so be it.

  24. Eddie Izzard and Ross Noble are great comics. They don't read out the news, they don't do observational humour and they don't call Paris Hilton a slut.

  25. That last gag is as lazy and cheap as any dick joke.

  26. Wow. Amateur stand up comedians are really insecure.

  27. Yep. These "comedians" have the worst sense of humor ever. No wonder they have to stick to dick jokes.
    Class before arse any day.

  28. Come on guys - I think debate is healthy, but to attack someone with the blind rage of the internet scorned is a tad excessive - lives aren't lost or saved in the world of stand up comedy - it's not really worth getting this excited over.

  29. My goodness the flames are getting high in here and there's a lot of finger pointing and miscommunication. Girlclumsy and I enjoyed a number of comics on the night. I especially was impressed with Sam's job of dealing with the bouncer heckler. It looked like a really tough gig. GC understands that and you'll seen that reflected in her comments.

    That's the difference between Impro and Standup. In impro the rookies have the most supportive and friendly environment we can muster, while in Stand-up it's a real trial by fire. Having 'killed' and 'died (more often)' in the past at Stand-up I can only regard your courage and dedication with a sense of awe.

    But I defy you to defend the show that night. As it was GC's goal to document her experience I don't see how she could do that without reflecting how bad it was. The MC was making jokes at the expense of how flat the jokes were and how painful the night was. Two comics walked off halfway through their acts. When asked if they'd had a good night at the end, the audience was silent.

    They were silent!

    Read the article and the apology again with the mindset that she isn't talking about you. She doesn't say she doesn't like a well turned dick joke. (She does) She says she didn't think she'd be good at them. Some of you were and don't think we weren't tickled by some of them.

    The truth of the matter is that GC didn't do this maliciously and even states how much respect she has for the people who do it so let's keep the wishes for her gruesome demise to a minimum eh?

    Also, those viciously defending GC. A little empathy. These guys had a shit night and have had inadvertently had the coals raked though. Nobody is the winner here, except maybe Brisbane Times. If we could all pretend that each post is done so, from the back of a high backed chair swilling a balloon of Brandy.

  30. From some of these comments it's no wonder that comedians are supoosed to be sad, lonely people

  31. Ok this has just resorted to mud slinging and name calling. There is nothing constructive goin on here. Enough already.

  32. Hey gang - I would apologise again for insensitive writiing, but I fear it may be too late for that.

    If I can just re-state that I appreciate you all taking the time to come and comment, and I am happy to hear all your complaints.

    I will simply re-state that I wasn't very impressed with my own set, so your judgements on my "jokes" can't be any worse than what I think of them. As for "reading out the news", I said at the very start of the set that I am a journalist by trade and so I thought I would start with some things that were in the news.

    Other comics on the night made reference to topical subjects so I am not sure why I'm being hassled for doing the same (albeit not well).

    I didn't get a chance to chat to many comics on the night as I wanted to do the right thing and watch the show, and when it was over many of the comics had left, or took off quickly.

    I am more than happy to arrange a time to meet with some of you - preferably NOT in front of a moving bus - and take your criticism in person.

    I WOULD like to do another stand-up set, and am fully prepared to be booed and heckled by other open mics. That's completely fair enough. It will probably have to be in a few weeks' time after the current #30before30 project is over.

    I'm not sure what else I can say except I wrote honestly about my opinions of some comics, and have accepted I could have done so more sensitively.

    Thanks again all.

  33. Start removing the anonymous ones. Just trolling.

  34. Having been in the audience that night, and having read the reaction to GC's piece, it strikes me that Brisbane comedians are not used to being reviewed or written about.

    As a radio presenter for two decades, the last 17 years with the ABC, I know what it's like to be criticised. And I've learned to deal with it. Heck, I'm a former Des Houghton Irritant of the Week and am still here to tell the tale!

    Here's what I know. Everyone wants to offer you advice. Heed the advice of those you respect. Listen to, but don't jump at, the advice of those you don't.

    All those who had the guts to perform on this now controversial Thursday night should be congratulated. It was a difficult setting for stand-up comedy. I thoroughly enjoyed myself and I wish all the comedians every success.

    They should read GC's commentary but not jump down her throat about it. They should believe in themselves and stick with what they know to be their best material.

    If only we had more published reviews about local comedians, everyone would benefit.

  35. Can't we all just calm down, find a common meeting point, and accept a few common truths:

    *women/asians can't drive
    *white guys can't dance
    *Black women all have big booty's

  36. Who the hell is Dan Beeston, talking yourself up as a comedian, you need to snap out of it. I've been working in the comedy industry for 7 years now and have seen some of the best acts Australia has and definately some of the worst.

    OK Nat it was your first time, but unfortunately you did die on stage, the only two people that forced laughter out were the pretentious nerdy proclaimers (obviously Dan was one of them)you were sitting with.

    Your material was well how can i put it... dumb. one word says it all.. dumb. It will not work and never will (unless you're performing it in front of your 2 nerdy friends, naked) then there may be some laughs.

    Yes i agree that it is a tough room, but if what your saying is interesting quick witted and funny you will get laughs from the 2 to 10 people in the audience.

    I did say to you come again, but please don't. I would rather rest my balls on a bull ants nest than listen to your dribble again. oh look a dick joke.. actually it's not a joke..

    go on your merry way you pretentious useless maggot. thanks for trying but u failed.

    as for u Dan come on down to any open mic night, i would enjoy watching u take it in the arse just like your friend Nat

  37. I liked it. Beat my first attempt.


  38. And as for your genius "made up on the spot .. Nelson Mandellybean" again just dumb.

    Maybe you should do us all a favour and go and date mathew newton...


  39. Yeah, like now fri'nstance. This guy is just a cock. Fucken coward bag of shit.

  40. Holy crap, it's true. Stand up comedians are all mentally ill.

  41. OK, so I trolled. Sue me.

    Funny thing is, no joke intended, Ms Clumsy was hardest on herself. Most of the critical content of this piece is focused on her own performance. She was generous in her praise for the MC, explained the dynamics of a difficult room for anyone who wasn't there, and reflected that the comics were a bit of a mixed bunch. Some did good. Some, not so much. All of them, she points out, deserve kudos for just turning up and doing one of the hardest things in show biz. Making people laugh.

    It seems like a very honest review of the night. And since nobody was actually named as being one of the awful stand ups, sure we can all agree it must have been that other guy.

  42. What a bunch of prissy little prima donnas you've unearthed here GC. Jesus fucking Christ on a pony. So if she's not funny, and you've progressed no fucking farther than her, what the fuck does that make you, lads?

  43. wow look at those comments, this is why i hate blogs, people just sit back in there arm chairs and write and comment.

    I agree with clumsy it was a shit room and dick jokes are usually shit, and most of the comedians were horrible and noobish (including myself), i guess you can gain in insight into standup from those hateful comments, when people invest so much for such little reward for so long and see someone come and pass judgment without any experience it is very frustrating, you say you have performed before in improv and acting etc, but how many times have you walked off the stage feeling suicidal after that? how many times have you sat there in the corner and have people avoid eye contact with you the whole night and over ear people talking about how embarrassing you were?

    its natural for some to react like that because you from such a position of comfit commented on a scene you know nothing of, all other experience you have in performing are irrelevant. i'm sorry i posted my first comment on this blog and i am sorry other people in the brisbane comedy scene have gotten hostile. I hope if stand up comedy is something that interest you, you continue doing it and that you shouldn't feel uncomfortable due to the hostility this blog has received as the vast majority of people involved in the scene are very warm and open.

  44. Wow, proof that hypocrites really are the biggest jokes. Grow up! Take the feedback, go home, improve, and then come back a better performer. If you actually read the article you'd find that this girl not only pointed out the good and the crap parts of the night, but also leveled the first criticisms at herself.

    Agreed, Spencer. It's abundantly clear that the handful of negative comments seem to be coming from a couple of Brisbane comedians that aren't used to getting reviews. I would hate to see what Marco Polio (oh, more one-dimensional comedy gold!) says to the guys who tell him that he hasn't gotten to the finals in Raw this year. Or ever. He'd probably just threaten them with his bare-knuckle boxing experience. A sign of a man with the sharpest of wit.

    Wait, I thought he knew what 'funny' was. I thought he'd been in the industry for 7 big years (more than what you can count on one hand!). Surely he's graduated past his precious 5 minute Sit Down sets, let alone posting his dog as a profile photo and colouring his arms in with black texta. Surely.

  45. All I can say is that this is proof, yet again, that comedy is a very serious thing, and no laughing matter.

    I have deeply contemplated the nature and structure of the "joke" and, through a double-blind study, identify the interplay of passive and dominant "particles" that result in a broad spectrum "glee factor" that is can be plotted on three axes, with the optimal glee effect manifesting as the point where the three axes intersect, if at all. But, on the eve of publishing a paper describing my results I suddenly realized that, like the Quantum Paradox, observing the event took all the fun out of it. I mean, glee factors? Multiple axes? Passive and dominant particles? What the fuck was I doing? I had no idea, so I withdrew from arcane intellectual pursuits and returned to spending time making fun of the handicapped, which improved my disposition quite a lot.

    So I guess what I am saying, GC, is that, instead of struggling to think of "jokes" I recommend that you ridicule those less fortunate than you, such as minorities, crippled people and short women. It may not get a laugh, but it just feels right. You'll see.

  46. Encore, Jim.
    I think, if you're ever going to be nasty, it's just childish and cowardly to do so over the internet. It's almost concidered a crime to speak such fowlness for a fellow comedian, or even fellow Human Being. GC did a tremendous job - I'd never have the guts to do that.

    We must also remember the spirit of why she did that - to face up to your fears and challenge herself because she can, and she did. There are going to be ups and downs, and although some of the replies to this challenge were highly negative, it's great to bring that in, take it away and learn from it. No one's going to be pants-wettingly funny on their first go, it's just human nature. Some people are histerical, some are not, and GC proved that she has got the stuff (I thought it was really entertaining) and she did such a great job for her first go!

    Hiding behind a computer and just writing pure nastiness (Marco Polio) it's cowardly and bad-sportsmanship and highly rediculous - I think you'd find you get no allies out of that response you wrote.

    And just for the record, Marco Polio, Dan Beeston is an amazing man - Improvisor, Actor, comedian - and no doubt WAY more funnier than the likes of such a fowl-mouthed man such as yourself. If you think you have such great skills in that area- prove it. I'd love to see you get up there and have the guts to do what GC did - she was amazing and a great role-model for all.

    I would like to kindly ask you to not bad-mouth such talented friends of mine, for I have seen them act and improvise in many many shows, and they never ever cease to amaze me. They're brilliantly brilliant, to say the least.

  47. Hoo boy. This pack of shenanigans makes me think of a few lines from Mr Shakespeare's Macbeth - 'It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.'

    You can make up own mind who the idiot or idiots may be, in this sad and overwrought situation.

    Huzzah for free speech and the ability to voice your opinions.

  48. Wow, there is nothing like the internet's wrath and fury.
    I think when comments get ad hominem it might be time to close comments. I've written a post in the past where I was admittedly over the line, and met the scorned side of the internet blogging world. Regrettably, we all (bloggers) do it and when you meet such criticism - it feels awful.
    And as much as I understand the human's love for feeling offended - I love feeling offended, I'll seek offence where ever I can - I think this dialogue has met an impasse. The personal blog is not going to destroy anyone's stand up career, the business of an open mic venue or more specifically deconstruct this debate any more than it has.

    On a lighter note, I like that we didn't avoid the irony of calling one another cocks in a dick joke debate.

  49. And here I thought stand ups had thick skins. Seems that some have not only no skin at all but are finding fault where there is none. A good fair piece GC. Ignore the idiots who only want to tear down and not build up.

  50. What a bunch of sad fuckers...threatened by someone who just wanted to have a bit of fun before her 30th birthday...
    Grow a pair and come back when you got something good.
    I wonder if Marco Polio uses a lot of dick jokes to overcompensate?

  51. Well done Nat.

    For a first time on the mic I thought it was pretty good. If I were you I'm be pretty damned pleased with myself.

  52. "...cocks in a dick joke debate." I am intrigued.

  53. OMG! I just remembered that, as an undergrad, I was captain of the dick joke debating team. How could I forget that? Good times. Ah, youth...

  54. Dick-based comedy is a Phallusy!

    Thank-you thank-you, I'm here all week. Don't forget to tip your waitress.

  55. Ahhh. What a controversy you've whipped up Nat. I must admit your article did bring back (bad) memories of the only time I have seen a stand up gig live (at the same venue I think).

    It was painful, filled with little more than polite/embarrassed titters at the mountains of dick, poo, and drug jokes.

    I salute (and thank) you for trying to get through without going there.

  56. The Wah said...Dick-based comedy is a Phallusy!

    Nonsense Sir - that's why they call it Stand Up. Good on you Natalie for doing something I'd never have the guts to do and commenting honestly. Shame about the venom & vitriol but hey, it's been an educational experience for me and a reminder of why I never go to stand-up comedy. If it gets you down, imagine trudging home in the evening after a hard day's work, to be greeted by Marco's or Mark Mead's happy face? So much hate!

  57. From your background as a journalist your pieces were well researched, and fit into an interesting pub discussion niche.

    I would say, work on your delivery and don't judge yourself while you are up there, it gives audience even more cause to light matches. If you do this again think about the pauses between your lines and the tone of your voice. Move it from discussion piece to a hint of a joke and the audience will be more appreciative.

    It's shocking that some comics can't offer advice, but just take it as a trial by fire. We all get blisters when we wear new shoes.


    BTW bravo for achieving this goal.

  58. I'm intrigued at the result of mixing winnie reds and VB though.

  59. Scoff. To the die hard hypersensitive children of the amateur stand-up scene in Brisbane, grow a pair, man up, learn to take criticism. Stiffly attacking a personal review makes your insecurities stand out like dog's balls.

    *Dick joke count: 4



    Additionally, capital letters are a great way to indicate the beginning of a new sentence, while simultaneously showing the world you're not retarded.


  60. What a bunch of stand-up guys. Classy.

    Give the girl a break, she did a good job and you've just got your tiny balls in a twist because she did better than your first time.

  61. It really takes a lot of guts just to take the bravest step on stage. I've thought about doing stand-up for a long time, but have always hidden behind the comfortable skirt of a playwright. One day, maybe. You've provided a little inspiration.


  62. Bravo Clumsy.

    I think artists of many kinds, especially but not at all limited to amateurs, and certainly not all amateurs, misunderstand reviews. They think a review is some sort of act of judgement enacted by a gatekeeper to critical and/or success. Whereas the experience of being reviewed ought to be rather like that of a flea, being held down with tweezers and poked with a pin entirely for the amusement of whoever is looking through the microscope... or for the reviewer's own audience, as the case may be. Versatile performers will recognise that their representation in a review is simply another persona they can either play up or play down. Reviewers have no solemn duty, other perhaps than to amuse their own audience. But that's secondary - if the review is a paying proposition, then your first duty is to get paid.

    That's perhaps overly flippant. The first question any reviewer should really be asking is - was reading your book, viewing your art, watching your performance a worthwhile use of my time? All else procedes from that.

  63. JESUS EFFING WEPT, talk about a collection of real life fkn muppets in here GC, half the arse holes need significantly more than a smack in the head I am afraid!.

    As for my two bobs worth on the GIG!...OUCH!, but, I have no idea on doing comedy and would rather partake in a fking lot of other scary, intestine churning activities than that one. Don't take this the wrong way, BUT YOU HAVE A BRASS PAIR SITTING ON THE FKN MANTLE PIECE somewhere, big fkn props for getting up.

    As for your post, I thought it was rather balanced. Tell any of the detractors here to simple get fkd, they are oxygen fkn thieves.

  64. Miss Clumsy, why is it that to favourably compare the volume & hairyness of a man's testes to a coconut is to comment on his valour, yet to sugest a ladies ovaries are similar would be completely misunderstood?
    If such a comment could be taken in the manner it is intended, Damn girl you've got a pair!

    The porn challenge looked like a bit of a soft warm up, but stand up is pretty fkn impressive.
    Well done.

  65. GC - I know this was supposed to be a one time thing, a goal to get past, but I think you have to do this one more time.

  66. Girlclumsy

    I'd like to apologize on behalf of that portion of the human race who chose to critise rather than create. I'd like to but I won't, I'd rather just flush them from the gene pool.

    I find reading comments by such folk improved by the addition of a widget that adds to end of every youtube comment 'but I'm a moron".

    CG I think you are brilliant and brave.

  67. Just be glad your blogging audience wasn't present when you were on stage.

    Oh, wait. They would have been more polite then, they wouldn't be hiding behind pseudonyms. Throwing physical rotten vegetables requires being responsible for your actions.

    Glad you had a chance to try stand-up. You're a braver man (sic) than I am, Gunga Din.

  68. For someone with looks like yours, I'm surprised your sense of humour isn't better.

  69. For someone with a personality like yours, I'm surprised someone hasn't slapped your mum.

  70. WHOA.

    Get some fucking balls, Anonymous. I bet you sit in a dark room with an explosion of zits on your face just wishing you were a fraction as attractive as Girl Clumsy.

    You can't hurl an insult without hiding. Man the fuck up.

    Don't listen to this guy, GC. Don't even give him one second of your time.

  71. Why do you presume that Anonymous is male? My analysis of Anonymous' language use reveals a 93.8% probability that Anonymous is a woman who is jealous of GC's apparent popularity and social ease - or a very feminine guy with the same complaints. The same analytical tools show a 97.5% probability that Anonymous still lives with his/her parents, which he/she resents but can do nothing about because of his/her chronic difficulty staying employed, due primarily to his/her incessant babbling about Star Trek. More telling yet, there is a 99.8% probability that Anonymous has never been kissed, has only been hugged once, and that was by accident, and is chronically constipated.

    Overall, I think we should have some sympathy for Anonymous. But not a bit of empathy. I mean, Anonymous is clearly an unloved loser who is probably morbidly obese. I certainly can't empathize with that.

  72. Did I also mention that Anonymous probably smells a bit due to poor personal hygiene? I think that is worth mentioning, if for no other reason than to remove all mystery associated with cowards who comment from the shadows of anonymity.

  73. Gees, when did this turn into a Roast?

    Wow. When I first read this post, it really didn't occur to me at all that anybody would get hurt by it, namely because - and forgive me guys if this seems insensitive - it really just seemed like an apt description of many open mic rooms I've done before!

    Now taking a second look at it in light of the fire this whole thing has ignited, I can see how comics could take objections to it.

    BUT...guys, come on.

    There's no need to be so damn nasty about it. GC was simply recording her experience AS A FIRST TIMER. AT AN OPEN MIC ROOM. And from the sounds, a tough one at that.

    Everybody struggles at the beginning. EVERYBODY. Even Bill Cosby didn't get laughs at the start. So therefore:

    - I cannot see any justification for pulling apart Nat's routine so viciously. It doesn't even make you look smart, it just makes you look bitter, mean and unfair. Comics - would you be willing to put YOUR first gig online for public scrutiny? Really? I sure as heck wouldn't!

    - ironically, if Nat was more experienced with the comedy scene, (aside from the fact this post wouldn't exist!) she would know that:

    a) everybody struggles at first, just because somebody sucks when they're starting out is not necessarily indicative of their potential, and thus maybe she would have written about the other comics with a bit more sensitivity (however she has already apologised on here for that!!!!) ; and

    b) open mic rooms are what they are. It was a surprise to her because she was a newbie. Not all of them are shockers, but some of them are.

    In my mind, she was simply doing what her job here was to do - try something new and record her experience of it.

    Whether or not you agree is totally subjective. Just like comedy. Funny that.

    But what the heck is the point in taking it so personally that you're attacking each other?

  74. I thought you were very brave.

    At least this controversy will give your site a lot of traffic :)

  75. This proves the fact to me that all artistic types are insane. There's this chick taking part in an exhibit in Melbourne, I believe. Pretty art of flowers, and butterflies. But guess what she uses as her material?. SHIT. HER OWN SHIT. SHE SHITS AND SCULPTS SHIT, OUT OF SHIT. How about these people who suffer head injuries and come out of a coma being able to paint like fucking Michaelangelo, or this one dude is missing half his fucking head and can carve native american SCULPTURES. HE'S NOT AMERICAN. You know what would happen if I suffered a head injury like that. I'd be PAINTING THE WALLS IN SHIT.

    [motion your hand going near your arse. Bring it up to your nose and sniff one finger and say in a small retarded voice]


    Thank you, thank you, I'm here all week. Try the veal.

  76. You know the ridiculous thing, is that the big problem here seems to be people wanting to justify their use of blue material. If you're doing jokes about rape, ejaculating on hookers and other assorted forms of shock material then you're going to have to accept that some people are not only going to not find the material funny (like GC and I), but have a physically negative response to you as a human being.

    By its very definition 'Shock comedy' is going to make some people upset. Us not finding it funny at all is the least of your problems.

  77. Take it from me, there is nothing more hilarious than a joke that incorporates the venerable comedic themes of rape and ejaculating on a hooker. I think that Bill Cosby got his start telling jokes that included both.

  78. Seriously though... Ugly and unfunny. Go back to reading the news, amateur.

  79. OFFS Anonymous.

    You write some good poetry though.

  80. Not even a funny troll. You suck man. And you suck, man.

  81. Now THIS is funny! A guy (with a strong feminine side) who lives in his parents basement who also gets a cheap thrill insulting women. I'll bet you he's nude right now, sitting in the dark typing. You poor schmuck.

  82. Paul, you've written what amounts to a short novel in this comments thread. I really do hope it gets you what you want in the end - though I doubt this one has dudes lining up for a crack at her, so you might be in with a chance.

  83. Seriously Mr Funny, show us some of your gear. Cough up, or shut the fuck up.

  84. Time to ignore/delete the troll, or have Blarkon sniff out his real world ID.

  85. Wow, you've just tried to go everywhere, Haven't you Anon. You mind if I call you Anon? I mean, we're just all good buddies here now, aren't we? Not anyone would just up and say that GC here has a face for Radio, the hilarity of a rock, and acting like a Corner Girl during a dry spout.

    Surely just going on and on under an invisible guise gives us the inkling that you're just too scared to come out of the basement Paul so affectionately mentioned. We want to see that you're really into Irish Wife Saturday, to show that true love really does come out in Bruises and Welts the size of your head. You're not gay. You're not sad. You're happy and enjoying all the attention you're getting from this rather attractive girl who, as you did say, had the cajoles to get up on stage in front of a rather piss poor crowd and belt her guts out with some of her own kind of funny.

    For what it's worth, GC, I liked it. I thought it was fun.

  86. Oh yeah, and this all reminded me of this: http://gucomics.com/comic/?cdate=20100326

  87. HI GUYS!!
    MARCO POLIO here...
    I would like to know anyone who has seen as much comedy as myself over the past 10 years. I am the lovely gentleman u will find behind the sound desk at most open mic rooms. I did give her encouragement on the night but for her to trash the nights we present makes me quite angry. these nights are what u make of them. By the way come and visit me and have a go to my face u gutless maggots who dare slang me. Newmarket Monday nights, Hamilton Thurs nights , Moko Monster Yuppie and Jim come along anytime would love a chat.

    There are only very few improv stars with actual talent in Australia and none of u make that list...

  88. Anon - You know what I want? World peace. No kidding.

    But I digress. I am sensing that you are gay - not that there is anything wrong with that. Really. If you are a guy and you are into guys, then who am I to judge? It would certainly explain your hostility towards women and your need to inflict emotional pain. Not that all gay guys are hostile towards women and need to inflict emotional pain. That is not what I mean to imply or say directly. Rather, it is your repressed homosexuality that is attempting to find solace in misogyny. You clearly blame your mother for a great many things. And your father never truly loved you. Life isn't what you thought it would be, is it?

    But I digress. The point I am trying to make is that you are clearly not a happy person. Happy people don't spend their time doing what you are doing here. Only really unhappy, sad people enjoy reaching out from the shadows in an attempt to hurt someone., as you have attempted here. It doesn't matter whether you succeed. The attempt alone gives you a strange kind of comfort. If you weren't so afraid - of women, of the world - you could be one of the dangerous ones, one of those who are not content to troll the internet and instead seek out the innocent and helpless. But the good news is that you are too afraid - and, frankly, too lazy - to go the extra mile your inner sadist desires. So I guess the glass is really half full. Your spending time here insulting someone who has what you do not - love, companionship, passion and acceptance - is protecting our children - especially the little boys - from you. So I say please continue to lash out from the safety of anonymity on the internet. You need to feel important and powerful because you fear you are neither.

    It won't get better, you know. Deep inside you know this to be true. But the World Wide Web is vast. You will find other places where you can try to ease your pain by hurting others. But it will never ease. It will always be this way. You will always be this way.

  89. Who dare slang me....


    Now threats. Go fuck yourself.

  90. Marco Polio So the nights and people are perfect then? Bullshit. There is obviously a problem but it's easier to blame some one for pointing it out than actually attempt to fix it.

  91. Hi Marco Polio,

    Of all this, it is your remarks that have made me the saddest.

    I really did appreciate you coming to chat to me. I am sorry you feel so attacked by my comments, when obviously none were aimed at you personally.

    I have seen you before at the Newmarket Hotel. But I daresay you have never seen me improvise, so you cannot judge me on that. I have twice been invited to play in the National Theatresports Championships at the Enmore Theatre in Sydney, a 2000-seat venue. I'm not trying to big note myself, simply to say that I have a fairly decent record as far as impro comedy goes.

    Regarding the nights themselves - I do understand why my piece offended you. You work hard under often difficult circumstances trying to put on a show. I do the same myself, obviously different genres, but the intention (to provide entertainment) is the same. I have apologised already for writing insensitively, but I don't think you want to hear that. And that's fair enough, if saying I should "go and date Matthew Newton" makes you feel better, then hey, who am I to object.

    At the end of the day though - you are putting on a public show and some criticism is bound to come your way. I work in the media, and hobby in theatre and impro comedy - and I have had all sorts of things said about my various creative endeavours. It was a difficult room, the comedians WERE under a great strain, but in my opinion some of them were not fun to watch, and I didn't enjoy their material.

    (I count myself as one of those, by the way).

    I would say that threats are not the answer - if you wish, I would be happy to meet you at some point. At the end of the day, I have not restricted comments here because I believe you have a right to your opinion, just as I have expressed mine. But a more calm, considered approach couldn't hurt any of us.

  92. Greatest. Blog. Ever. In. The. History. Of. Blog. Entries.

  93. Hi Marco.

    I'm pleased you stepped out from behind the pseudonym. These things always go much better when we're closer to seeing each other as human beings rather than text. You seem really angry and betrayed and I can understand that.

    You mention that you've seen a lot of comedy in Brisbane over the years. What were your impressions of the evening when you went home that Thursday night? What are your impressions of the Hamilton venue compared to Lutwiche or Albion or the Paddo or Dockside or Stones Corner?

  94. Wow...what a comment marathon. Personally, how anyone could get offended when no one was directly named amazes me...You must think you were one of the bad ones...which probably means its time for some healthy self analysis.

    Kudos Nat for finally doing it. My theory has always been people tend to go kind-of-good on the first time...Fall down in flames on the second, and if you can survive to do the third, thats really where you're comedy career starts.

    Ultimately it doesnt matter what the other comedians, blog commenters, your mother or your parole officer thinks. Only the audience matters. Stop wasting your time here and start writing some material douchebags. Maybe then you wont "think" you are one of the bad ones.

  95. Dan Beeston: I heard your improv sucked and people just want you and your group of melodramatic dipshits to shut the fuck up. go and practice on your internet punctuation and spelling you pretentious pussy. As for GC, your retarded 'failed drama teacher' antics are almost as deplorable as your lack of writing ability. By the way, I find your lack of a sense of humour and whimsical bullshit both shocking and offensive.

  96. An old man once said to me "The world may run out of oil, fresh water & arable land, but there will always be enough F'ktards."

    I can understand and empathise with Anon, it must be terrible to know that the pressing feelings of inadequacy and consequent crushing loneliness will never ease as the source of the problem is permenantly attached to his / her / it's shoulders.
    It still suprises me that he / she /it seems to loathe the lucious(& if you'll excuse the impertinance) ravishing Misss Clumsy (Sorry Wah) for having a go at the very endeavour that seems to give Anon the tattered remnant shred of self worth, IE amateur Stand Up Comedy.

    Oh and Mr Polio (subtle dude real fkn subtle making fun of the handicapped what's next a cerebral palsy joke?)just because you can open & close two faders on a 8 channel powered desk hardly makes you an audio engineer. I'd hazard a guess that the 64 channel Broadcast panels that the divine Miss Clumsy uses routinely @ work would make yours appear about as technically challenging as an walkman.

    It must be a sad little exsistance where flaming someone for having the balls to take a shot, then writing (very freaking well) about it is the highpoint. I guess I understand where all those bitter old men come from.

  97. Anon - You've missed the whole point. It doesn't matter how good or bad anyone is at Stand Up, GC stood up and gave it a go, because she could and wanted to challebge herself by experiancing something different.

    I'm pretty sure insulting such people as Dan and GC is NOT going to help this situation, and as I have stated previously, will NOT gain you any allies. Hiding under an Anonymous mask is just proving you're cowardly to show who you really are and is, frankly, childinsh and highly insulting to anyone who thought she did a great job for getting up there and having the guts to do so. So I say, Part, you fool, put up your sword for I, and others, are here to keep the peace and keep the spirit of the 30before30 alive and well, and it will be extremely hard for anyone like yourself, or people such as Marco Poli, or any other pretentious Anonymous to crush that spirit. Heed these words and I think you'd be doing everyone a favour to leave it at that and think about the harsh comments you have so viciously posted. Thank you.

  98. Dang Rose, here I was proposing that a response in kind would be fire-bombing their next open mike. So I shan't.

    Anon there is a bus with you're name on it, don't miss it.

  99. Never actually seen "adult" males lash out with their nails like seven year old girls before. I blame winnie reds and VB.

    ...and Ford.

  100. ...and vegans. Fucken vegans.

    Oh, and Marco. Your missus would say hi, but she's got a mouthful of ballsack. She said your dinner's in the microwave.

  101. I was going to say that Boylan wins, until I read Moko's last entry.

  102. OO! OO! It's my turn for abuse, anonymous! Do me!

    *awaits trollish tongue lashing with glee*

  103. Love your work, GC. Keep doin' what your doin'. Never mind these brainless naysayers. They're just frustrated that their daddy didn't love them.

  104. HA. Amateurs, indeed.

  105. How dare you trolls use my reputable name for such vitriol and slander! Posting this comment has eaten up a good five seconds of my evening leisure time, which could have been used for polishing a monocle.

    Consider this legal service of notice. I shall see you all in court. Yes - everyone everywhere. You too. Yes, you.

    Yours sincerely,

    Andrew Nonymous QC

    P.S. Make no mistake, I AM quite reputable and distinguished, I assure you. I studied at Oxford and my family owns shares in Lego. I was once ejaculated upon by a famous European monarch - male or female I dare not say for I am a gentleman. It got on my favourite monocle, which has never been successfully polished off.


    (1)we have no material to learn or write

    (2)can do nothing FUNNY at all to be improvising

    (3)we perform to small rooms of other nerds

    (4)we are all normal like Catholic Priests

    (5)nobody pays to watch Impro (no pressure)

    (6)we only find each other entertaining

    (7)Humphrey Bear is an Impro great

    (8)fat ugly chicks and skinny geeks feel at home

    (9)no chance of getting paid or laid

    (10)if you can't act or do Standup there's IMPRO

  107. hey moko, meet me anytime buddy i need a new punching bag, and your bikie head looks primed for a beating...

    You are so so tough little moko man...

    And nowhere bob u can come and back little pussy moko up.. well u can run when i finish little moko in seconds..

    None of you know who you're dealing with..

    Oh and Moko checked out your GOLD on you tube .. a link my mate sent me.. why do u wear sunglasses.. to cover your little moko down syndrome eyes....

    And to u little Beeston boy, how does hammo compare to albion and paddo u ask... OPEN MIC night means just that.. Albion and Paddo proffesional shows.. you were talking yourself up as a comedian.. hahaha gold.

    None of u have any idea.. the people that have an idea are the guys that slug these rooms out week in week out, some good some shit, but they keep trying.

    I think u will find i have the respect of 99.9% of all open mic comedians i give advice and encouragement, and also laugh at their failures, but still we all have a good time. If i am wrong correct me open mic guys.

    Moko if u want practice comebacks u can stay at home and jerk off into a fan.. u probably already doing that.

    Moko Moko Moko what a douche.. see u at the hammo if u have balls as smooth as that head of yours

    Only the weak disappear..

  108. Does anyone else here get the feeling that we have multiple people claiming to be Anonymous? Andrew, that was really funny. You are clearly not the Anonymous who we have identified as the sad individual masturbating in front of their computer, afraid their mother might interrupt ("What are you doing in there all alone all the time??") getting a very cheap thrill from insulting people who are happier than he is.

    I disagree with Bangar (whom I have never trusted). Both Andrew and the wanker should be welcomed here. Andrew, it is a pleasure to laugh with you. ("I studied at Oxford and my family owns shares in Lego. I was once ejaculated upon by a famous European monarch - male or female I dare not say for I am a gentleman." Brilliant!) Wanker, it is almost a greater pleasure to laugh at you.

    JB - In my heart I know I am funnier than Moko.

    Finally, I cannot help but wonder why there is all this interest in Stand Up comedy. I much prefer Sit Down and Grunt comedy. Scatological, perhaps, but personally very satisfying.

  109. Marco (whom I secretly suspect is Savo) posted while I was writing. I am deeply unhappy that I wasn't included in his diatribe. Why the fuck does Moko get all the attention?? He puts bbq sauce on eggs! I have proof! And he is a terrible social host - for the exact same reason ("Hey, mate, try some of these eggs...). It is SO unfair.

  110. Threats on the internet. BWAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA

    It took a mate of yours for you to find videos of me ... that are all over my blog?. Least we know who the brains are in that relationship. Like making physical threats in writing; GENIUS.

    Why do I wear sunnies, in the sun?. Maybe ask your smarter half. You know what I'm picturing now.


    Dude, seriously, get over yourself. Take a teaspoon of quick dry and harden the fuck up. Love dishing it, can't take it. Big. Fucken. Surprise.

    You want me to take a night off work, so you can beat me up?. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Bet your mum is proud. This is your best material.

    Paul, don't knock the eggs mate!. Or I'll invite you over so I can beat you up!. And no, I AIN'T paying for your fuel....

  111. Perhaps he can beat you up on a weekend. I certainly think you should give him every opportunity to try.

  112. Does anybody wanna have cybersex or at least have a bourbon? :-)

  113. Paul. Instead, for risk of being called silly, but maybe he could meet up for a beer and laugh at George Carlin jokes. Guy's a FKN genius .. well, was. Sounds like MUCH more fun to me.

    Kayleen. Best offer I've had all morning. lol

  114. Sorry Marco.

    I know that is a lot of anger being flung around in here but I'm not being sarcastic or elitist nor am I trying to trap you or something. I'm sincerely interested in your opinions.

    I really didn't intent to talk myself up as a comic. I thought that 'killed' was stand-up speak for 'did a really good set where everyone laughed all the way through and cheered at the end'. I'm pleased to say that in the four months I did stand up it happened three times. (The rest of the time I died a horrible, horrible death)

    My point in that comment was not that I know everything about comedy but that with such a brief experience of both the highs and (more importantly) the lows I have a really empathy for just how hard it is to do and how impressive the people who make it work are.

    I only mention Albion and Paddo because those are the venues I'm familiar with. I really am sincerely interested in your opinion of 'the Hammo' in comparison. I've performed in my share of dodgy venues but the set up down there seemed really in-conducive to a good show.

    I mean, it's a great venue to learn how to deal with a tricky performance environment. A real trial by fire. But my goodness, The high ceilings, the noisy TVs. On a quiet night you end up having to perform to a couple in the front row then a dozen people along the back wall.

    I've talked to other open micers who won't touch it with a barge pole but you obviously have a strong connection to the venue. I was curious whether you do indeed have preferred venues and what you thought of this one.

    And Trolls. If you want to get me angry you're not going to have much luck going after the 'no audiences, no pay' angle.

    Also, I don't mind being associated with Humphrey. What's the first thing everyone always says about the guy? That he's a funny old fellow, and that can't be a bad thing. In fact we could all benefit from being more like Humphrey. I, for instance, am currently not wearing pants and you could benefit from shutting the fuck up.

  115. "None of you know who you're dealing with.." - Marco.

    OMFG. Comedy gold.

  116. I truly don't understand the logic in trying to placate people who've threatened people with violence. You do not need to be liked by this guy, you shouldn't try to reason and console this individual. Let this story end.

  117. Ladies and gentlemen,

    Thank you very much for your comments. My general policy is to always leave comments open, and while I must admit to enjoying the repartee between combatants here, it's probably time to respectfully draw this round to an end.

    I will do this in the classic internet way: by invoking Godwin's Law:

    "I admit, that in the eyes of Brisbane's open-mic stand-up community, that I am indeed worse than Hitler."

    Now that we have officially reached the end point, I would like to thank everybody for their comments.

    To the stand-ups, I wish you all the best in what is no doubt a tough career. I hope that if I do turn up again that you won't glass me.

    To my friends, fellow bloggers, tweeps, Burgers and all those who've followed this whole saga - thank you so much for your support, kind words, rallying warcries and everything else. While this episode could be said as displaying much of the worst side of the internet, you have shown me far and away the very best. I am honoured and humbled.

    I suspect there may be more to come on this story though, so do keep an eye on me. :)