It’s been three days already and my flu has refused to leave me. However, that hasn’t stopped me from living my semi-life. For those of you not in the loop, this includes reading my RSS feeds, cranking up some tunes, and discovering dark, damp corners of the fair city of Bangalore.
I’m currently reading the most recent title in the Adrian Mole series, which sees our inimitable protagonist in his 30s, living life like an awkward adolescent but never quite seeing the big picture. Sue Townsend is one of the great comic geniuses of our time, in my opinion. And speaking of comics, I’ve been watching a lot of great stand-up comedy lately. I really enjoy the specials on Comedy Central. If you’re looking to get in on the action, start with greats such as Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, Dave Chappelle and Chris Rock (notice a trend here, you racist?). You can then move on some more recent comics like Lewis Black, Gabriel Iglesias, Aron Kader, Maz Jobrani, Demetri Martin and Frank Caliendo. What I love about stand-up is the various elements that make up an act. There’s a nice article here that puts things in perspective.
A good comic will try and establish a consisent character, even if it’s himself being natural. Next, he/she runs through a set of jokes, and the stronger the connections between each the better. One of my favourite techniques in stand-up is the callback, where a comic refers to a joke he made earlier in his set later on in a different context. Murphy does a really good job of this.
You know what else is funny? Miss Teen South Carolina.
But that’s not half as killing as the animated explanation to her response to a question in the Miss Teen USA beauty pageant. America, we salute you.