Quit yer’ whinin’!

Here’s something we’ve all been guilty of, especially me.  I’ll start by saying that I’ve had a handful of people read Don’t Wear Shorts on Stage and tell me that it helped them realize that comedy is not the right path for them.  That was actually one of my goals.  Our St. Louis open mic once had over 50 people at the sign-up meeting so I’m thinning the herd.

Sometimes comics like myself would get to gigs and instead of exchanging fun road stories (I don’t have that many because I’m lame), we just bitch about the bad things that have happened to us in the business.  For example, I can tell you about a three-day trip to Charleston where most of the shows were canceled on me which resulted in a net profit of $2; There was a time I was supposed to MC for someone fairly famous and had over a dozen people in the crowd when the manager called and told me I wasn’t needed on my drive to the show.  Or like two weeks ago when I drove 8 hours to Ohio to headline a very well-paying gig (for me) that got canceled because a tornado wiped the town out the day before.  These things happen.  Actually much much worse things happen.  These are mild.

What’s even worse is when you get screwed over by people you know and trust.  That happens a lot too, but it’s showbiz.  You have to expect it.  It’s like these NFL players who can’t believe they have long-term damage to their brains.  It’s part of the business.  Every profession has it.  Teachers, servers, whoever–there’s always going to be something unfair.  Showbiz just feels worse because of the emotion we put into it and a lot of us aren’t used to it.  It makes no sense.  It’s the most superficial industry on the planet.

Again, I’m still guilty of it.  So when things happen that don’t seem fair.  It’s okay to vent (please not on Facebook or on stage), but after a few days just accept it and move on to the next gig.  Sounds like a breakup huh?  Yeah, stop posting about those on Facebook too.  We all just laugh at you from afar.


About Rob Durham

With an English Degree, three years as a doorman at the Columbus Funnybone, over a decade of stand-up experience, and a recent certification in teaching high school English class, writing a book seemed like the next inevitable step for Rob Durham. The son of a coach, Rob has an excellent ability to teach and explain things in the easiest and most direct way possible. His (often labeled ridiculous) memory allows him to think of every possible situation that a new comic might face because at one point he was there too. Rob gives an inside look at comedy that doesn’t sugarcoat the challenges every performer faces. Without ego and the myth that “anyone can do it” Rob gives the reader a true feel of what living the so-called dream feels like, from preparing for that first open mic night to touring the country. View all posts by Rob Durham

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