Welcome to Stand Up Class- Part One which is my journey through a New York City stand-up class.
In the wise words of a modern philosopher:
“Palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy-There’s vomit on the sweater already, mom’s spaghetti-
He’s nervous, but on the surface, he looks calm and ready to drop bombs.”
-Marshall Mathers (Street name Eminem)
As a bucket list item and in a relentless endeavor to conquer all my fears, I’m taking a stand-up class. The owner of Manhattan Comedy School, Andy Engel, offered me the course, telling me it’s a great experience for anyone. Whatever happens, it’s going to be good material for the blog, he tells me. So for the next seven weeks, I’m turning up to the off-Broadway studio to learn the craft that has evaded so many before me.
For Stand Up Class- Part One, we were asked to come up with two minutes of material and jump right in.
First, off the class is filled with some pretty large characters; a hardcore comedy nerd, the next Judah Friedlander, a hilarious lady who dreads the summer due to the constant sight of men’s ball sacks. And the sweetest guy who thought he was being hit on, but it turned out the girl thought he was trans… I don’t want to ruin any more punch lines but needless to say, there is a lot more.
So when it came time for my 2 minutes I got up to the mic and let go of every sphincter muscle in my body including urethra. Just in a puddle of my own filth. It was a blood bath, but ever the consolatory group they informed me that bombing is not only necessary, but it’s also essential to the ‘craft.’
It’s one thing to be mildly funny at a dinner party, or ‘bitchy-funny’ when writing about fashion, but it’s quite another to do stand up. After the terror of the class dissipated, I started to understand the rush. The situation is so mega supportive; even an A-bomb caliber performance is met with kind smiles.
In any event- I have weeks to work on my bit before I go to the gallows, also known as the graduation show where I’ll do five full minutes in front of a room full of strangers and ask them, “Am I funny yet?”
Owner: Andy Engel of the Manhattan Comedy School
Teacher: is the VERY funny: Karen Bergreen
And if you think you’ve got what it takes to tell a good joke, give Andy a shout, you could be the next Chris Farley, Robin Williams, John Candy, or John Belushi. –212-362-6647 stay tuned for more Stand Up Class- Part One and two and three etc….