Firstly, I didn't need to rush away from the office. I got to leave at a normal, even slightly later time than usual.
Then I got to drive along listening to I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue which was, quite simply, face-achingly funny. I hooted and nearly cried with laughter. As they were announcing the teams I prayed for Rob Brydon, and my prayers were answer. Thank Dawkins.
A quick chat with a friend on the handsfree, and I was nearer the gig.
Oh, what's this on my mp3 player? More I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue? Oh, ok. I'll listen to that, then. Ross Noble? Ah, you talked me into liking it.
My car had a tankful of BP's Ultimate Unleaded - the slightly more expensive one - and the placebo-effect of this alone was making it seem like it was going faster. It might even have been truly burning road. I don't know.
After a late start for the journey, I still managed to arrive at the gig early, and I got to chill out with the other acts, many of whom I know. In fact, there was one guy I'd not seen in ages and whom I rate very highly among the comedians in the country. I also managed to hook up, face to face, with the two people who conducted such an effective wind-up-phone-call on me a few weeks ago. I bought the drinks I promised them. There will be further drinks bought, I'm sure.
Then the gig started. It was somewhat chaotic and random. One of the parts of the show involved someone eating some meat. That was all. It was fun.
The acts (myself excluded from this "review") were very good and I laughed a lot.
My own stuff was met with either bemusement or amusement. That's fine. That's what I need to know. If the answer is "huh?" then you go - "ah.. not so good". If the answer is "hahaha" then you go "that's a keeper". It's quite simple. In this gig, the audience knew they were getting newer stuff and tryout material. So they knew not to get all picky if something didn't amuse them. I didn't get laughs in all the places I'd hoped to, but there were moments where I just let go of the restraints of the script and made funny out of the moment, and that's what comedians need to do. Without the guitar I feel naked, but I also feel free and able to do more. So, it's not a negative experience, even though it does make me feel like I've just stepped about 3 years back in time to when I was a much less accomplished comedian.
That's new material.
The night ended on a high with an Edinburgh preview of sorts and I was highly amused.
The headliner even put in a Bernard Manning gag. That's a gag about Bernard Manning. It's a sort of a tribute... but not necessarily the way Bernard might have wanted it.
The long drive home was accompanied by the radio and me musing about how good the music is on late night radio 2. I also got a collection of low fat foods from a garage and took them into my body by the oral route on the homeward route. I got a bit carried away at the garage and also bought a camping chair and a blanket. Glastonbury beckons.
That's my last gig before Glasto now. So, any "mental muscle memory" (the three m's) I may have developed will become spongey before my next gig on 29th/30th. I might be able to sneak on a bill in about a week's time, but it's unlikely. Shame. Perhaps Glastonbury will inspire me to write some new material. Or maybe I'll find an open-mic comedy spot in Glasto... that would be freaky.
So, I drove like a mental, did material that made me look like a mental, but made and had some good laughs. That's not a bad way to conduct an evening.