Friday, July 31, 2009


On Tuesday, Jena and I performed at a "Pink Dinner" party (well, Jena performed, I got food poisoning or a 24 hour flu bug, not sure which). The audience wasn't paying much attention (all girls, all drunk) so we mostly just performed for each other and the camera, and took our goodie bags (with free vibrators) and skedaddled. Here is the evidence in a series of photos taken by comedian and host of the evening and our dashing and delightful new pal, Tom Webb.

On Wednesday, due to the mysterious infection I picked up which I begged Jesus wasn't swine flu, I fluctuated between vomiting, feeling like vomiting, and laying in bed going, "Ooooohhhhh" while fretfully dreaming of cheap health insurance. I stayed in bed all day until about 7 PM and finally pulled myself out only to see Reggie Watts's show at The Soho Theatre. I'm glad I went, he was terrific as ushe, and I've never seen him do a full hour show, so it was a rare treat.

Reggie at Soho Theatre

We went dancing afterwards at The Hideaway but I was so overcome with sickness that I couldn't keep up the charade any longer (or the sha-rod as they pronounce it here) so I had to go home and immediately to bed. My sweet dear friend Sarah put me in a cab and took me home and Reggie took my suitcase for me. I am so glad, and lucky to have such good friends here in the UK. I only hope that I'm not just good for a smart-assed comment that comes out of my mouth when one is needed, and that I am as good as a friend as mine are to me, when it comes down to it.

On Thursday, I woke up around 9 am by the screaming monkey children who were also staying in the home I was staying in, but it didn't matter because I had a renewed lease on life and a feeling of well-being like I've never felt. I was so glad to simply not be sick that feeling normal felt like a super power. (True fact.) I got up and read and wrote and had a productive morning, followed by Jena and I getting up and taking a day trip adventure into Islington. We walked down the street observing the beautiful little neighborhood and I remembered the few memories I have of Angel Islington were 1) a very famous London male comedian notorious for loving the ladies inviting me to his apartment in Angel late one night, even offering to send a taxi to get me and bring me to his house for late night fun times which I didn't take him up on only because I thought it would be a better story to have been able to say "I said no!", and 2) sleeping over at another male comedian's house there by choice because I really had no place else to go, in a fancy home that he was house sitting and going to bed around 3 am but hearing them stay up all night long, and when I woke at 11 am, they were in the same place I'd left them, doing the same thing I'd left them to do.

As Jena and I were walking down the street, a derelict man jumped out at us and made some kind of accusatory "Ha!" sound at us, to which Jena responded by stopping short and the two of our crazy-sensing antennae, identifying an "off the chart" specimen, sent us reeling around and in the opposite direction, squealing with schoolgirl giddyishness that you might hear if two teens saw a bug. We hid in a bakery until we thought the coast was clear and then as we watched him get on a bus headed in the opposite direction, peace filled our hearts.

Thursday night we walked to Hackney from Islington, a good 40 minute walk. Jena and I shared observations about the good London people as we walked. For example, they always use the word "Circus" for things that are neither circuses nor even remotely relating to fun. Not that I consider a circus a good time, but at least there could be an event of some kind, which there isn't. Not one horse, not one elephant, not one clown nor naked lady. A circus, in England, appears to be a building, or a street, with regular people doing regular things. They use it in such a hum drum fashion, I think that in England, circus, in fact, means "street" or "place".

Another observation is that Londoners don't seem to know the city very well. One in ten people we asked for directions (we had to ask that many to get to where we wanted to go) would stop, think for a good 2 minutes, make some "hmmm" noises, scratch their heads, tap their chins, look up at the sky, and then reply, "Nye...nye....don't think yeh can get thah from hair, got'a take-a toube." We don't mind walking, we'd insist. "Oh, but it'll take ya twent-ay mi-ites to woulk from hair." It's ok, we'd say. We can walk. The other 9 would do the first part with the hmmming and the scratching and then say, "Sorr-ayyy, eh deun't kneuw."

I don't mean to mock the English because in general I think they are bright, funny, friendly, fun people and I actually kind of love and slightly envy their accents. But it's fun to make fun of people who are different than you are, admit it. They make fun of us too, the way we pronounce words, our awful accents (imagine!) and how we don't know how to use our phones properly.

It's a tie. A battle of humanity. It's fun!

Not sure if it's accidental or purposeful, but it's a simple truth of life...

like, "cake is good" and "magic is real"...

the brits are inherently funny people.

We finally made it to Comedy at the Cat (Cat & Mutton) which is a show our wonderful new friend Tom runs upstairs (imagine -- comedy for once UPSTAIRS in an attic instead of DOWNSTAIRS in a basement) every Thursday night at 8. Evidence of that adventure HERE.

We had a great time at the show and Tom got us sufficiently drunk before luring us off to a shady burger joint around the corner and stuffing our faces full of bean veggie burgers and potato wedges. We landed at the Dolphin pub and strangers rallied around us to dance with us (all female). I made a joking v fingers to the eyes signal at some scary-ish looking guy across the room and he flashed me back a gang sign. We left shortly thereafter and jumped onto a bus, which took us to Walthamstow, the part of town we're staying in. Another thing about Londoners -- they all dis eachother's hoods. Where are you going? Hackney. Why would you want to go to Hackney? Where are you going? Walthamstow? Walthamstow? That's like the Bronx of London. What are you doing there? Where are you going? Brixton. Brixton? Why on earth would you be going to Brixton? That part of town is so shady! Etc. etc. Perhaps I named the three worst parts of London just then and that is why they're being disclaimed but I've enjoyed myself loads in all three spots, and if it is the Bronx, the Harlem and the Bedsty of London, well, perhaps I'm hanging out in the wrong neighborhoods in NYC.

Today is FRIDAY and it's a humdinger. I've got 3 shows tonight in Brixton (the Bedsty of London), Soho (the East Village-ish of London) and Leicester Square (the Times Square of London). One is at the world famous Comedy Store, so I'm excited about that one, the other two are going to be fun as well. Details are to the right column of this blog entry if you'd like to attend, but in general:

8 PM -- Soho Comedy Club
11 PM -- Brixton's Prince Albert's Pub
1 AM -- The Comedy Store

So perhaps I'll see ya there and if not I'll write about it here tomorrow or Sunday.

Saturday I'll be at Duckie in Vauxhall and then Sunday I'll be in Scotland. Recovering and then immediately getting ready for the next leg of this trip, which is a week longer than the London leg has been.

I miss my kitty.

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