Sometimes I think that if this whole writing thing doesn’t work out, I should try standup comedy. No, really.
I’ve thought about it a lot actually. What would be my angle? My opener? I’ve decided I would definitely be one of those self-deprecating* comics. Most of my act would involve making fun of myself: my gangly-ness, my klutziness, my knack for getting myself into extremely awkward situations. Like the time I thought it would be awesome to take up power lifting. (More on that later.) Or the time I thought it was a great idea to take in the stray cat I’d found that had cajones the size of tennis balls. Or the time I helped a visually- and hearing-impaired man complete a marathon—while he took a smoke break every two miles.
So that would be my angle. And I’d have to make fun of my appearance too, of course. Every great comedian has done that: Farley, Belushi, Candy. But since I don’t exactly have the “funny fat guy” thing going for me, I would probably riff on my tiny golf ball head or my bony knees. But I think my main shtick would be, "Attractive, but not attractive enough." Here's how it works. I'd get on stage and say:
“I'm attractive enough that guys hit on me in bars, but not attractive enough that the losers still think they have a shot. Like, someone will buy me a drink—yeah!—but he's got a leering expression and he’s a little cross-eyed. And he’s creepy enough that I have excuse myself to the restroom just to pour out the drink—because I'm 90% sure there's roofies in it.”
Are you rolling on the floor yet? No? Well, then I’d have a hilarious (true!) story to back this up:
“This one time, I was out with some girlfriends in Chicago. And I hadn't seen one of the girls in years, so I was really excited to catch up with her. But this random guy—I don't remember what he looked like, probably pretty average in every way—kept trying to talk to me. And I was blowing him off, because I was more interested in talking with my friend. So eventually he gets the hint, looks me up and down, and goes, ‘You're not that good looking.’”
Zing! Get it? Like, I was attractive enough for him to hit on, but ugly enough that I should have been grateful for his attention…I swear, if I told it on stage it would sound funny and not totally pathetic and sad.
Okay, the material’s a little rough, but there’s something there! Either way, I think I’ll stick to the writing thing, at least for now.
*I’ve also thought of a comedy bit about a self-deprecating rapper. This joke hasn’t gotten past the idea stage, but I think there’s a lot to be mined here: someone who raps about having no money, aluminum fillings, scuffed sneakers from Payless, and how he can only hook up with girls with bony asses. Hilarious.