Sunday, December 6, 2009

Squeezing Everything In

Saturday December 5th, 2009 - Lake Villa, IL

I rarely enjoy having a Saturday night with no show but tonight was an exception. Once in a while it’s nice to just hang out and do absolutely nothing, so that’s what I did. I could have done a lot of things I suppose, but I chose to hang out and let the batteries recharge a little. I’ve been hitting it pretty hard lately and a night without anywhere to be felt great.

Actually, I didn’t do absolutely nothing. I looked over all my projects and thought about how I can get the most out of them in the coming year. I have a lot of half baked things on my plate that need to be either finished or given up on, and I tried to put them all in order.

The first thing on my list was my one man show about Milwaukee. That project has big potential in my opinion and it seems to be the perfect time to do it. Times are tough and it will take people back to a happier place in their heads. What’s funny is that growing up in Milwaukee was anything but happy for me, but I did and all that inside info is part of me.

I hadn’t looked at my notes in a while but I was immediately recharged as soon as I did. I have a winner of an idea here and I spent an hour or so tweaking the notes and trying to come up with a running order of the play. I have more than enough material to pull it off, now I want to do it in the best way possible. I want this show to really blow people away.

I’m taking a risk by doing this, but I think it’s a smart one. Working on local material is a good way to alienate the majority of people who aren’t from a particular place, but it’s a numbers game. Are there enough people who will get what I’m doing to make it pay off?

That’s my gamble, and I say yes or I wouldn’t even try it. I’m betting that there will be a large enough number of people who grew up or at least lived in Milwaukee between 1960 and 1990 and would enjoy my show. How big is that number? I don’t know exactly, but it doesn’t have to be astronomical. If I can attract only 1% of one million I’ll be doing great.

I think I can do better though. This is the kind of thing that will go beyond just comedy. It’ll touch people where they live. Literally. I’ve seen the reactions of people in the past at local shows when I bring up these references. If I do it right I’ll develop a cult following.

I do still want to keep doing ‘regular’ comedy though, and that’s another challenge. The times are a changing, right as I am at my peak as a performer. Clubs aren’t what they used to be, but there are still some good ones I’d like to work regularly. That’s on my list also.

Teaching classes is another project. As much as I enjoy doing it, it’s a lot of work to get classes organized. Time management remains an issue. The smart thing there would be to get a form of the class online but there will still be a lot of work involved to get that done.

Then there’s the Uranus project. I still dream of having a mail order business that makes money and is fun to do but with everything else going, it won’t be easy. What about radio projects? The Mothership and Jerry’s Kidders are both fun too. I’ve got too much to do.

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