Being too social

First off sorry about the lack of blogging, there are now over 5000 (closer to 10,000 including all the other places this goes) of you and it’s ridiculous for me to leave it months without updating. I will be rectifying that. Thank you to everyone that’s hung on though, I’ll make sure it’s worth it.

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(worth it, right?)

Secondly a confession. I am a social media whore. I have a hole inside me that can only be filled by sharing my whole world with friends, family and complete strangers. What this has done is severely reduced my productivity (NO WAY! SPENDING TIME NOT WORKING IS REDUCING YOUR PRODUCTIVITY!? WHAT IN THE HELL?!). I’m not the only one, people the world over waste time on the countless forms of social media just clicking through the same 3 pages hoping for notifications to pop up of people interacting with their cat photos and undereducated semi political messages

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(#jesuislettuce)

There have been countless studies on it, many of them funded by the platforms themselves in order to find out how to keep people on those very sites, and they all come to the same conclusion: we are lonely.

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(nothing good happened in this picture, everything about this photo tells me the story ends with a phonecall and crying)

We want to reach out and find people who like the same things as us, people who can define us as individuals as well as providing us with the comfort of a herd. It’s hard to know who you really are in a vacuum (MAINLY DUE TO THE NOISE, AM I RIGHT?! *HIGH FIVES*) so to have a large group of people constantly able to tell you that yes you are right dirty foreigners should go home to their own country or no you shouldn’t have to work for a living, everything should be right there on a plate for you means that you can say “That’s who I am! I am a lazy, entitled, racist!” it’s not great but at least you know. No one likes uncertainty

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(well some people do, some people use it to cement their position but then I’m using the term people loosely)

and that’s the main problem with social media, it can be a great tool for communication and spreading the word or getting behind a cause but mostly it’s a catalyst for narcissism and rampant paranoia.  Even this post is a massive display of arrogance and self importance, what do you care about a fat guy who’s trying to distance himself from social media? You don’t! Or rather you shouldn’t because really all we’re doing is creating little groups of people all thinking they’re right then being completely surprised that there’s other people with different ideas. We’re isolating ourselves.

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(and we all know how that turns out, Pauly Shore cries himself to sleep every night)

and that isolation is a terrible thing. Just days ago was the 2 year anniversary of Robin Williams suicide, as I’ve said on here before Robin is the reason I do comedy and it hit me hard. Whenever anyone takes their own life it’s a terrible thing, it means that person can see no other future ahead except pain and they don’t want it. I tried it once, spoiler alert: I failed, and only by talking about it did I get over it. Talking is a great tool for getting over depression so here’s a video of me talking about it so other people can feel like it’s ok to talk about it Talking about suicide but with jokes

But it can go the other way, people reach out and no one reaches back or even worse people think it’s ok to abuse other people because it makes them feel better, this in turn isolates the person being bullied further. Again this has become the majority of interaction over and above supportive messages on social media which just goes to prove that if you leave humans with any kind of wonderous new discovery they’ll find a way to be an asshole with it.

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(hey guys I’ve got this thing that makes the food taste better and means we don’t get poisoned by it, it makes it hot, what are you doing guys? GUYS?!)

Really what I’m saying is I’m pulling out of most of social media unless it’s to interact with people who want to come to a show. That does mean I’ll have more time to make shit and update this so hurray to anyone who cares. It’s easy to get lost in the great echo chamber and as Jean-Paul Sartre gets famously misquoted on “Hell is other people”

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(proof)

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Brexit and other tasty breakfast treats

Brexit, the stupid name given to a decision we shouldn’t have to make. I know a lot of people will disagree with me and suggest that this is a great example of democracy and to those people I say “WE AS A COUNTRY CAN NOT BE TRUSTED! WE VOTED IN THE TORIES!”. I’m not saying we’re all stupid and don’t know what’s best for us, I’m saying there is solid evidence that we’re stupid and don’t know what’s best for us.

I’ve said this all before on a video so rather than reading words on a page watch and listen to them fall out of my mouth like cake crumbs at an 11 year old’s birthday party I managed to sneak in to:

Essentially I’m saying vote Remain but only because we don’t want to give any more power to people who have proven that the only thing they do with it is make their friends richer and the vulnerable deader.

Also to lighten the mood here’s some jokes I wrote to offer as a sacrifice to you guys for all the posts I haven’t made in the last year, this is being rectified and you can expect to see a regular blog here again.

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(Thanks to Richard Wood for taking those great photos of me at Cardiff Glee)

SOLO SHOW NEWS!!

After a sell out run of work in progress shows at Dave’s Leicester Comedy Festival I’m now performing my solo show “Distant” for real at the Lichfield Garrick Theatre on Saturday March 5th. I’m so damn excited about it because this is a show about things I believe in, it’s counter culturalism at it’s best and I fully intend to change some minds. As I said we had a run of sell out dates in Leicester so would love to fill the theatre on March 5th.

I wrote this show as a reaction to where I was a year ago and how far I felt that was from where I wanted to be. Now I’m closer to that, saying things that I feel matter instead of just empty distractions. If you like intelligent comedy, sticking it to the man, the word “fuck” or just a fat guy who’s passionate about change then you should come.

Grab tickets here – Ticket link

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The Adult life deficit

Today I woke up and just felt like absolute hell. My head was pounding, my throat hurt and my body felt like I’d just gone 10 rounds with Mike Tyson.

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(emotionally not physically)

There’s no reason for it. I got enough sleep, I ate well yesterday, did some exercise, didn’t get drunk and definitely didn’t get my ear bitten off. It’s happened on and off for a couple of years now but more and more it’s becoming a frequent occurrence, like I’ve got the worst hangover of my life but with none of the fun the night before.

Today I realised why. It’s the teen to adult deficit. When I was a teenager I’d stay up all night playing video games and eating junk then go out with my friends the next day riding bikes or making lip synced rap videos and never feel any negative side effects (aside from those videos playing constantly in my head every night as an example of how uncool I am). I thought I was invincible, in fact I didn’t even think about what affect any of it was having on my body because I couldn’t feel any of it at all. I just assumed my body could deal with everything I was throwing at it. How wrong I was.

What was actually happening was my body was forming a book of grudges, a list of grievances it had against me, and gradually it was getting angrier until one day around my 30th birthday it decided enough was enough and started to unleash it’s now unstoppable ire.

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(Pictured: Ire)

“Remember that time you ate an entire bakewell tart for breakfast and washed it down with two pints of banana milkshake? Well guess what HERE’S THE NAUSEA AND MIGRAINE!”

“Remember going out clubbing with a group of friends and tequila was buy one get one free and they threw you out of the bar for taking your top off then woke up the next morning in time for an 8am lecture on statistical analysis? FEEL THE PAIN!”

“Now we’re going to be sick for no apparent reason, don’t worry it’s just from when you ate sausages you’d left on the side for 3 days and used sambuca to take the weird aftertaste away. I know it’s been 12 years but it’s time to pay the piper”

Now I’ve worked this out I am terrified of what’s coming. There’s definitely a couple of birthdays I shouldn’t have walked away from.

The show must go on….

I run a show at the lovely Lichfield Garrick theatre. The show is called Comedy 42 and we pride ourselves on it being one of the best shows in the country. We have a fantastic regular audience and sell out every show. We pay our acts well. We are proud of what we’ve accomplished and last night we became even prouder.

During the second act of the evening, the marvelous Ben Van Der Velde, there was an announcement that the theatre needed to be evacuated. Comedy 42 occupies the Studio which has 150 seats but in the main theatre Pam Ayres was hosting a sold out 40 year anniversary show so that was another 500 people. As soon as the voice came over the tanoy saying we needed to evacuate everyone filtered out into the street. 650 people all outside a theatre and there was us, 3 comedians. All we need to perform is a willing audience. So we did what any good comedians would do, we continued the show. Ben stood up on a bollard outside the car park behind the theatre and just started his set all over again:

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(Pictured: Heroics)

We were concerned that everyone was going to be worried about why we’d been evacuated and also that a lot of people were milling around in the road so Ben turned up his big boy voice and soon the crowd were laughing along with his anecdotes and forgetting about any potential peril.

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(Pictured: Hilarity)

While this was going on a fire engine showed up alerted by the ongoing alarm in the theatre. A quick check over from the firemen showed that it wasn’t anything too dramatic and after 10-15 minutes we were all allowed back into our respective rooms. The audience for Comedy 42 filtering into our Studio and Pam Ayres’ going into the main auditorium.

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Or did they? It turned out that some of Pam’s audience had seen Ben outside and come with us back into the Studio! Turns out Pam wasn’t bitter about it though, that’s how charming Ben is.

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Once we were all back in Ben carried his set on to the delight of every audience member!

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(Pictured: Audience delight)

Before Ben we’d already had the incredible Scott Bennett  who managed to avoid the whole fire alarm kerfuffle. But once Ben had finished his set (to raucous applause of course) we had the amazing Matt Richardson  do an extended set to make sure everyone went home happy.

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A good comedy show isn’t a venue, it’s not a single comedian, it’s not a host or a promoter. A good comedy show is the sum of it’s parts. It’s an audience wanting to be entertained, it’s a venue wanting the night to be a success, it’s a host who makes the show run smoothly and it’s acts who will do anything to make people laugh. My show isn’t just my show it’s every comedian’s show who performs on it, it’s every audience member’s who buys a ticket and it’s every member of the theatre who take tickets and promote the nights.

No matter what happens we’ll put on an amazing show, everyone will have a wonderful time and for a moment, no matter what happens, the world will be a brighter place.

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(Pictured: LEGENDS!)

The Comedy Store in Manchester OR THE BEST SHOW OF MY LIFE!

It’s been a while since I blogged and I apologise for that but I’ve been saving something amazing for you. Here it is. This is me having a wonderful time at the Comedy Store in Manchester –

I was on just before Sarah Millican and had an absolutely lovely show, wish I could have stayed on longer.  Again this was the big one for me, The Comedy Store is where all comedians want to be in their careers and for me this was another dream come true. Say stuff like this is a big faux pas for comedians but screw it I loved it, I’ve been working towards it and I had an awesome show with some awesome people.