Posts Tagged ‘Miley Cyrus’

A man like Annie Lennox

February 10, 2011

Andrew Hicks

EDITOR’S NOTE: Andrew wrote about half of the following post yesterday afternoon, intending to come back and finish it when he had a break from the babies. It never happened.

On the standup comedy front, last night was my first trip to another Central Illinois club, Mason City Limits, in Mason City. From what I was able to ascertain, Mason City consists of about four blocks, three bars and a Dollar General. I’m a little jealous. Where I’m from, we have a Subway and a Christian youth center that looks like a bar from the outside.

I rode up from Springfield in the passenger seat of local C-list celebrity Buddah Eskew*, and immediately, we were arguing about car music. Buddah was like, “We’re listening to Justin Bieber,” and I was like, “Screw that. Justin Bieber sucks. Justin Bieber’s not real music. We’re listening to Miley Cyrus.” Back and forth it went: Bieber, Cyrus, Bieber, Cyrus.

We finally turned on the radio and found shared solace in the song “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This).” Hearing that song only further cements my feeling that Annie Lennox is one of the great underappreciated male vocalists of our time.

In the back seat were Saad Ahmed, a razor-sharp comedian with an inimitable dry delivery and timing, and Rich Mansfield, the one guy in our peer group that really seems to have the stage performance aspect down and isn’t mostly just up there reciting jokes. Mansfield wanted to talk about comedians the entire time. He told us about a Marc Maron podcast interview with Gallagher that went awry, and he name-checked just about every famous ’80s comedian who was given a sitcom after making it big on “The Tonight Show,” along with other comedians who were no doubt just given a crappy pilot that never got picked up by a network.

The open mic is normally on the first Wednesday of the month at Mason City, but last week’s diabolical snowstorm postponed the event to this Wednesday. I want to blame scheduling changes for the lack of turnout, but there was still a foot of snow on the ground, and the temperature was hovering around 4 degrees Fahrenheit, so that also may have had something to do with everyone’s decision to stay home.

With the exception one of the comics’ mother and girlfriend (two separate people, FYI), the audience was made up entirely of open-mic comedians. Meaning, like fifteen people total, including the club owner and bartender. In a situation like this, you should have a pretty good stockpile of bits you want to try out just in front of your peers. You should just get up there, be conversational, leave out most of your tried-and-true set list and have fun with it.

I didn’t have a lot of fun with it, unfortunately. I had to go up first, which meant no time to relax and laugh a little and try to get together a few shared reference points to call back from earlier in the show. I got some good scattered laughs, but mood-wise, I wasn’t feeling social, I wasn’t feeling bold, I wasn’t really feeling “on.” An Andrew with a different mindset would’ve welcomed the opportunity to have a looser, more friendly structure onstage, to chat up a new club owner, to banter with the other comics. This Andrew mostly kept quiet.

I have another open mic at my home club this Wednesday. Five days to get myself back into Showoff Smartass Mode.

* Buddah writes regularly for our humor site, We’re Not Funny, and is a very friendly, amusing dude. I like editing his stuff because the end result is always a good blend of lines that are funny written as is, other lines I can make funnier with a little judicious tweaking and still other lines I completely rewrite based on his premises.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

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iCane

October 20, 2010

Andrew Hicks

Today we have what a hack television detective would excitedly refer to as “a break in the case.” Obviously, in the 38 days (yes, I am counting) since my ankle popped through my skin, I’ve been hesitant to use phrases with the word “break” in them. But this is a game-changer.

I can walk with a cane now. No more crutches! My mobility status has been upgraded from Invalid to Old-Ass Man. I’m only weeks away from being back where I started, as Sweaty, Outta-Breath Fat Guy You Don’t Want On Your Softball Team. I can’t wait to just be out of shape again.

What I will miss least about crutch transportation is not easily being able to carry anything from point A to point B. If it didn’t fit in my pocket or hang in a plastic bag, the only way to move, say, a dinner plate was to take one step at a time and switch the carried plate from one hand to the other with each step. It was a slow process and, I might add, hilarious for second and third parties to watch.

Sadly, the Neck Basket does not actually exist.

It’s too bad the Neck Basket is a hoax and not an actual infomercial-shilled product. It looks like the shower caddy I used in my college dorm days, only suspended from a neck chain. Just like the Medic Alert bracelet I mentioned yesterday, the Neck Basket is a product I would have considered utterly useless until Ankle Break 2010 made it utterly useful.

Plus, I could wear that thing out in public, attach a placard with a simple, hand-written, all-caps sob story underneath, and accept crumpled cash donations in it. Thing would pay for itself in no time.

The crutches are behind me — like the hospital stay, the leg cast and the walker — and I look forward to seeing what kind of odd search engine terms lead people to my blog now that the cane-walking era is upon us. WordPress, my blog host, has a complete list of the typed-in phrases that have led readers to this corner of cyberspace. These are the:

TOP TEN CRAZIEST ACTUAL SEARCH TERMS THIS BLOG MATCHES

10. fiberglass leg cast kid
9. diaper stories catalogued
8. beard growing blog itchy
7. tosh.0 one legged salsa dancer
6. body clock diary
5. amputee fantasy crutching
4. leg brace and crutch erotica
3. miley cyrus air ankle leg cast
2. tinky winky purple gay teletubbie
1. she put nine diapers on me stories

We’ve come a long way since the days of the public library card catalog. If I remember my Dewey Decimal System correctly, “She Put Nine Diapers On Me Stories” is 812.45 in the stacks. I did a research paper one time, long story…

Search engines should install the opposite of an adult sites blocker. If people who want porn sites are searching nasty terms and end up on my PG-rated blog, obviously that’s a waste of their time and it makes me look bad. I don’t want the “There goes the neighborhood!” effect to lower my blogosphere property value. So why can’t there be a content filter that eliminates straightforward comedy writing from matching pervy Google queries? I just want to go back to writing innocent posts about poop, pee, puke and rubbing bars of soap in my ass crack for a wholesome, God-fearing audience that’s into that sort of thing.

BABY PICTURE OF THE DAY

Sarah and Silas, ready for travel.