Monday, May 23, 2011
A couple of months ago I was enjoying a rare adventure out into the world of nightlife to catch some live entertainment when my friend Dan approached me for a chat. He plays in Straightjacket Nation, Total Control, The UV Race and possibly three-dozen other bands, as well as producing Distort fanzine (check the link on the sidebar there), working part-time music retail, studying philosophy and, so far as I know, is probably currently in the process of finding a cure for cancer. A nice fellow, he's passionate and intense, a decade younger than me and somewhat reminds me of myself before the weight of the world crushed my spirit. At one point our mutual friend Amanda joined the conversation, and she proceeded to thank Dan for lending her some comedy DVDs. Dan then turned to me w/ this whopper: Hey Dave, you're a family man, have you heard of Louis C.K.? Ouch! Boy, that hurt. Looks like my wildest days are way behind me. I know that no offence was meant, but really, is that all I'm considered these days? I told him I hadn't. For the next 5 minutes I was bombarded w/ praise regarding the man, a "comedian" I was told who had a few standup DVDs I should watch. Not only that, but I was also told that, given my "situation", I would find him most amusing, as he, too, is the father of two young children and most of his comedic routines revolved around his chaotic family life. I know that most people reading this blog probably get as excited about me discussing fatherhood as they do when I mention "jazz", but your children, especially in the first few years of their life, a period when you can't even go to the toilet or get a glass of water without having your every move shadowed by your offspring, dominate your life to such an extent that you have few minutes in the day, no matter where you are and what you're doing, when they're not on your mind... Are you still reading this? So I borrowed the DVDs. Both Amanda and Dan, neither of whom have children, told me before viewing the DVDs in question, that having young kids is not a prerequisite for enjoying his comedy, so I'm going to post some of it here. I'm not usually into the field of entertainment known as standup comedy; other than some old clips by the likes of Richard Pryor, Steve Martin and Steve Wright, it tends to leave me cold, but Louis C.K. (who, despite my ignorance, is apparently hugely successful and has his own cable show in the US) nails it here. By halfway through his Shameless performance, I was lying in a fetal position on the couch, hysterically laughing w/ tears running down my cheeks. I was mostly laughing because what he was saying was incredibly funny, but also because I was happy to know that I wasn't the only one who was brought to the point of near-insanity on a daily basis by the pressures of family life. I like to think of it as therapeutic comedy. There's plenty more clips by the guy on Youtube: if you like this, use it as a springboard to explore more of his routines. Dan: I gotta give you your DVDs back; everyone else, don't fret, I'll get back to discussing punk rock music some time in the near future.