Thursday, May 22, 2008

Look at me, so tall and lifeless

"Some days you're the pigeon, some days you're the statue."- David Brent (The Office UK)

That's a pretty good summation of the week I've spent thus far. Nutshell version: the project I was hired for "went live" this Monday.
Unfortunately, it did it T.S. Eliot style, "not with a bang, but a whimper".
Lots of reasons, and lots of blame to spread around for everybody. The best part was we turned it on and told nobody in order to test it to . . . wait for it . . . CATCH THE FUCKING ISSUES BEFORE WE TOLD THE WORLD!
Which we did but the expectations were set that it would be perfect and shiny on Monday.
Guess who set those? Not me.

I approach every roll-out into a production system as a disaster to be averted; I don't want access to production systems, I don't want the responsibility that comes with that geekery, and I certainly don't want weekend access for my security badge. (I've failed all of these goals)

So I've been sweating bullets every day this week, working late, busting ass. Meanwhile, outside of my day job I've been performing stand-up on a nightly basis.
It strikes me at how different the two activities are. Both from the surface level -

  1. I get to drink alcohol when performing
  2. I get paid for the day job (and how!)

And on the deeper level of job satisfaction and desire. I love performing stand-up. Even when I eat it I love it.
And Jesus have I been eating it a lot. It's been mostly intentional - I'm trying to craft a lot of new material and experimenting a lot. Everything from delivery, wording, sobriety levels, trying to write on stage, the whole 9.
You fail a lot that way. It's ok to die.
What's not ok is the fact that I'm not getting booked for showcases because a lot of these comedians haven't seen me do a "real" set where I'm actually being professional and doing proven material.
Tuesday night I asked a guy who runs a room for a slot in his showcase.
"[some excuse on why he won't book me without actually saying No you suck]. Keep doing the open mics!"
Gee, thanks coach.

There's part of me that bristled in resentment. How dare he! I was doing comedy for years prior to him even taking to the stage! What gives him the right?!
What gives him the right is that he's fucking running a room.
And I really need to channel the resentment there into proving I can "hang with the big boys" and Bring It.

So, this Sunday I'm hitting up Schuba's and doing an "established" set. No risk taking, just do comedy the way comedy is supposed to be done.
Boring as shit. No thrill of the hunt. No "will they sleep with me?" challenge of new material.

Hollow conquest.
But it might get me stage time.

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