Friday, May 18, 2007

Serendipity, yet again?

So I attended School Night at UCB theatre. It's a place for comedians, mainly improv acts to debut their work. It's a fairly solid show, for it to begin at 11pm. But it's FREE, so no complaints. I was disappointed to see no standup comedians, but perhaps once I get my act down, I'll try out the UCB audience.

Well let's get to the Serendipity, shall we?

I was restless before, during, and after the show. Simply put, I was ready to go home after a pseudo-comedy run (I say pseudo because I attended a hot, sweaty, and humid party called SHINDIG. Oh, by the way? Did I tell you there was a real live nudist there, enjoying the party in his all hairy glory? It was funny to see him casually walk around the party as if he was not naked. While the party was packed and everyone was squeezed in to listen to the band, the nudist could glide through the room easily because of the 3 ft radius that developed around him. (Who wants to touch a naked, hairy, sweaty 40 yr old by accident at a party?) He sauntered around and it was like watching the proverbial parting of the Indie Rocker Red Sea all over again.)

Okay I digress, back to the UCB theatre show- School Night:

Before I take my seat, I usually pull my cell phone out of my pocket and place it nearby, within my peripheral vision because a) I don't want to sit on it uncomfortably b) it won't scare the bejesus out of me when it buzzes c) I can see it flickering and flashing within that brief distance, glance at the number, and decide whether or not it's worth answering, all the while never interrupting fellow audience members.

Now I always set it on vibrate, after experimenting with several other standard ringtones (There's no way you'll ever catch me purchasing a ringtone for my phone... unless of course it's either New Order or Soft Cell 'Tainted Love.' I don't even like 'Tainted Love' that much, but a friend of mine had it as his ringtone.. and I thought it was this coolest thing since fresh soy milk.)

Back to the show:

So remember I'm restless, and as soon as School Night is over. I'm out the door like a bat out of hell (to quote my dad.) Anyway, I got about 1 block and a 1/2 away from the theatre missing the lumpy feeling in my pocket. DAMMIT! So I hot foot it back to the theatre!

I walk in and there are about 20-30 people MORE in the theatre. There was a minimal turnout for School Night, so this seems a bit ridiculous. I shuffle about and then head for where the cell phone was last seen. Naturally curious, I asked the couple that had replaced me in my seat if they had seen my phone.

"Here ya go!" She smiles and hands me the phone, happily. I, happily, accept.

"So what's going tonight?" I ask.

It was then that I learned about 3 pilots that were handed-picked from regular UCB theatre acts and they were debuting all the pilots tonight. SWEET!

[Clearly Network and Cable TV is heading the way of improv and examples are Human Giant (MTV)]

Here were the pilots:

  • "Improv Everywhere" - creator Charlie Todd (NBC)

  • "Fat Guy Stuck in the Internet" - creators John Gemberling and
    Curtis Gwinn](Adult Swim)

  • "We Used to Go Out" - creators Jessica St. Clair and Jason Mantzoukas](HBO)

  • I used to have a dire hatred of improv and sketch comedy. But perhaps, improv isn't so bad afterall...

    food for thought!

    I got a chance to speak briefly with Improv Everywhere's Charlie Todd. But it was too short to comment on here. I hope to run into him later on. I really respect his website/idea.


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