Last night, the 17th of the first month of 2103, I performed stand-up comedy for the first time at Nehru Auditorium. An event where 7 of the top college comedians in Bombay took part and competed for a two month contract to work with East India Comedy. So, if I were to understate it, the first time I did stand-up comedy, I opened for Aditi Mittal, José Covaco, Kunal Rao and Sorabh Pant. And now I’ll stop bragging.
Here’s a photo from that day
In all seriousness though (and I learnt pretty quickly that comedy is very serious business), I’d call the night a bust. Not because I bombed or stammered on stage or because some of my friends were stuck in traffic and couldn’t make it on time for my act (okay maybe that was a bit of a bummer) but no, it wasn’t any of that. I made some friends that I’ll probably never talk to again but if I’ve learnt anything from listening to hours of WTF with Marc Maron, it’s a pretty small world where everyone knows each other since the days when they started off. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that while it was a night that will always be unforgettable for me, much like my first gig with my band, it was a forgettable night. The reason I say this is because whoever I met after the show said to me “Not bad for your first time!” with a stupid grin and two thumbs up (that I felt like jamming up their shitholes). Who does that? I open heartedly congratulated fellow comedians that I didn’t even think were all that funny. And I’m sorry, but “Not bad for your first time!” is not a complement and I’m beginning to suspect that this was your intention all along. You never really meant to complement me.
Each time someone gave me that stupid underhanded complement, I was reminded of the time I lost my virginity. My girlfriend said the exact same thing after my two minutes that night…”Umm, not bad for your first time!” I don’t do two minute sets so good. In fact, I heard Vir Das say once that if you wanna be a hit, the audience must like you in the first two minutes. Which was kinda true for me. If the audience didn’t like me in the first two minutes, then I can say with astronomical certainty that they probably didn’t like me.
And then in a moment of vain chivalry, I passed up on the official after party to hang out with my friends instead. A sound plan till it suddenly turned into a Chandigarh nightclub. Yoyo Honey Singh can really make a man feel completely emasculated even if he’s sitting sandwiched between 5 better than average looking girls in a car. I mean, Yoyo, if you’re okay with me calling you that, I don’t blame you for all the rapes because rapes have been happening long before you came along and probably will continue to long after you’re gone but I don’t want to imagine, for one second what could possibly have inspired you to write lyrics like that. As Sorabh Pant put it earlier that night, Choot is offensive to men, women AND dhabas.
I finally got home, ate the largest dinner I’ve had in weeks and went to sleep just before dawn. I had college the next morning.
I’m gonna attach the video of my performance so you can judge for yourself. Whatever you do, don’t say that I wasn’t bad for my first time. I’ll dig your grave right beside the aforementioned girlfriend and let the lye do the rest. Dark comedy alert.