Another night, another town, another average reaction from the crowd. I'm wondering if this is still worth it.
I don't have many gags, and I often find myself jibber-jabering away, without a solution to what I'm saying, but then there's this guy.
He's wearing glasses on stage, those aviator types, not seeing ones, and he kinda stumps himself out when he says a joke. You could hear his breathing when he doesn't say anything. I can see his hand twitching because it doesn't know what to do, while the other one hangs on for dear life grasping the mic stand. Oh, yeah, and he doesn't doesn't take the mic out. I'm sure it's fear of being completely in the audience's eye.
I haven't had many conversations with him, but now I'm curious as to why he's like this. He's alone at the bar, looking into the distance; no people around as it's past closing hours.
"Hey, mate," I say when I approach him.
"I've never asked you this before, so could you tell me what keeps you going?"
"Well, I know you don't get that many laughs, and it makes you distressed on stage. I was wondering what keeps you going. Why not pack it in and stop?"
"I honestly love this fuckin' thing. Sure, I'm distressed, and sometimes I forget what I want to say, but I enjoy the shit out of this. I feel like I'm alive. That's why people do various things in arts or in sports. They feel alive. I may suck at this now, but so did a bunch of other comedians. Give me more time and I'll kick ass. You're doing pretty well for yourself. I like what you do. Keep on doing it."
All I could do was smile.