Monday, December 29, 2008

Bastard child-care

Given a bit of time to look after a young child with a play kitchen, there seemed no better game to play than "Sylvia Plath"!

jack_oven

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Bastard vs the Tom Tom

I'm in a large unfamiliar city, but I should be fine because I have the greatest GPS/mapping device known to man, the Tom Tom. It has a friendly soothing voice, kind of like a chain-smoking call center operator on her third shift in a row.

I wanted to go to NASA because I like hearing heroic music. So Tom Tom will take me there because it's got all sorts of interesting destinations pre-programmed.

But not NASA

Enter in the address - OK, it knows the street. Should be able to get there... I check a map and we do seem to agree as to the location of NASA. Get on an interstate, go along the interstate, turn off on a helpfully-named street called NASA road.

First thing Tom-Tom does is tell me to turn the wrong way, away from the interstate. I ignore it and head the way I know towards the interstate, while Tom Tom screams even more urgently that I need to turn right. Its authority cannot be denied! Until I can see the on-ramp dead ahead and Tom Tom decide that it knew that all along and suddenly there's a new route in front of me.

On the interstate, Tom Tom tells me to keep in the left lane or keep in the right lane. Not sure if this is linked to how slow I'm driving (you're doing 15 miles under the speed limit, get in the left lane immediately). I have some even more helpful back-seat drivers informing me how long it is going to take to get there.

Nearing the exit, there's big signs to get off at an earlier exit for NASA. Tom Tom is insistent that there's still two miles to go before exitville, as are the back seat drivers who are siding with Tom Tom. Fine... we get there to find the exit is closed. At the next exit, we get off and I rebel against Tom Tom turning back around to get on to the interstate and head back the way I was coming.

I believe that Tom Tom is biased against left hand turns, preferring drivers to make a series of 34 right hand turns to avoid making one left-hand turn at a set of traffic lights where there is a left turn arrow.

Now (no thanks to Tom Tom), I'm on NASA road, and it's next turn NASA. Tom Tom is screaming at me to make a right hand turn. I' on NASA road (Tom Tom is showing the route going off to the right). So I turn, and Tom Tom next tells me to turn into what turns out to be a church parking lot.

Tom Tom wants me to find religion because I have problems following directions?

I find an actual road again, and Tom Tom tells me to make a left turn. This is the first left turn it's permitted me to make, so what the hell - let's do it. This takes me to an intersection with... mircale of miracles, NASA Road! I think straight across the road is NASA, but Tom Tom wants me to turn left. I am overruled by the Tom Tom worshippers and make the left, sailing right past the entrance to NASA. There's nowhere to turn back around! I go back along the road (at this point Tom Tom has, in a satisfied smug tone, told me that I've reached my destination and now isn't even showing that I'm on a road at all.

A probably illegal U-turn later and I'm back on NASA road, and at my destination.

Tom Tom is unplugged. I like maps.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

No Shame last night

Had a great time at No Shame, it was the last one of the year and there was a lot of holiday-themed stuff, and some really interesting pieces.

I'd wanted to write a "found art" piece for a long time, and finally got to do it for this. Most likely it will never be performed again - I copied every headline from Asheville Craigslist over the last 48 hours to a file (it was about 61 pages double-spaced), and selected only lines from it to make a script - including the title. This is what I came up with (I've linked a few of the odder lines)

Helping Out Those that Help Others

By George (“the” Bastard) Heard

A scene comprising entirely lines from Asheville Craigslist postings from the last 48 hours up until 3pm December 21, 2008

Maria and Chris are sitting talking to themselves, their frustrated boss Gerald is pacing up and down

Gerald

OK, this is the deal (Maria and Chris ignore him, he continues with his speech)

Over the mountains day after Christmas

Wonderful cats need new loving home (he notices that Maria and Chris are ignoring him and taps Maria on the shoulder)

Female bunny, Free

Maria

420

Gerald (disgusted)

Play time!!!!

Local ghost hunting group needs help

Chris

420 n head?

Maria

Do u need a third?

Gerald

Come on

Think about how great it would be to earn your paycheck from your home

Chris

Don’t bitch no more

Maria

Just looking for some fun

Chris

420 then hot and naughty

Gerald

Help please

Ladies and Gentlemen

Maria (taunting)

Whip it out

Chris (cupping his eyes and staring at Gerald)

Looking for bones

Gerald

Where have all the good girls gone?

I will never be able to go through the carwash again

I have three things to offer you

Beta fish w/complete habitat

KID-FIT classes

Access to world satellite TV for small one-time fee

Chris

I want to buy your DVDs

Maria

I am in love with a girl from Candler


Gerald

FOCUS GROUP NETWORK

(pointing at Chris)

Take the psychic training course FREE

(pointing at Maria)

Load of logs

Mental health counselor available

Later tonight

The best pillow you can buy

Maria

If Justin Timberlake was gay you would fuck me… right?

Chris

White men can’t make me cum

Maria

Free love seat

Chris

Take me in my nasty ass, please

Gerald (who has had enough)

TOOOOO Cheap!

Tools (he storms away from them to make a phone call)

Wanted

Sales

Project manager

Independent coordinator

Full time with benefits

(we return to Maria and Chris)

Chris

Where are you?

Maria

Need to get over him

Chris

I MISS YOU! And it is not going away

Maria

Rent a hubby

Chris

We suck

(Back to Gerald… Alan has entered and is talking to him)

Alan

I am affordable

Gerald

You want lower energy bills, don’t you

Alan

Please help a young soldier

Trying something for the first time

Gerald

I will book your shows and handle your promotions


Make unlimited income

(they shake hands… Gerald leaves, Alan approaches Maria and Chris)

Alan

Hay ladies. Holler at me

Chris

I don’t want any games or nonsense, just lay me already

Alan

Where are all the real ladies at?

Maria (showing him a handful of pictures)

Check out my artwork, Angels and more! Fun and funky too

I am the brunette in the pictures

Alan (looking at the pictures)

Wedding gown – very classy

Maria

Plz help me find my friend

Chris

New to Asheville and need a tourguide

Alan

Wanna play a little?

Maria

Hunting for cougars

Chris

Just relax let me do all the work you just enjoy

Alan (feeling pretty smug)

Will supply what you want

Maria

Looking for some

Chris

So?

Alan

Come get some

Maria (returning to psycho status)

Like new lawn tractor tires

Chris

Goat & sheep maintenance

Maria

Free coal!

Chris

Looking for bunk beds for two little boys

Alan (panicking and fleeing)

Best moves

Looking for urban land to farm next year (he runs off)

Chris (looking glum)

Cancelled garage sale

Maria

Interested in forming group for piano students? (they nod enthusiastically and leave)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Bernstein Brothers at NC Stage

Another absence from blogging, things will be more active after the new year. I'm doing a few trips and working in a performance here and there, but at the moment most Bastard activities are on ice until mid-January.

However, I made it to the NC Stage production of The Bernstein Brothers Christmas Spectacular, and it was an evening well spent. There's some good laughs in this show, the long sketch that makes up most of the second half is particularly strong. There's still tickets left for the last few performances, so if you're looking for a good laugh to finish out your week, check this show out. John Crutchfield is hilarious and I hope to see him in many more shows.

An added bonus is that I think I picked the night that most people associated with theatre in Asheville decided to go. It was good to see Graham Livengood, Jenny Bunn and Julian Vorus there, and also Chall standing at the entrance like a carnival barker ringing people in.

I'm putting the finishing touches on a piece for the last No Shame of the year which is going to be this Saturday, and then I'm going to be gone for most of the next three weeks (there may be some blog updates if I find a connection or anything to write about).

Monday, November 24, 2008

Recent bastardries

I have been slack in updating the blog - non comedy projects have taken over lately and I haven't had much time to attempt to be funny. The world is the victor in all of this.

I was in Charlotte over the weekend and checked out Charlotte Comedy Theatre's improv group. They do long-form improv on Saturday nights which is definitely worth seeing, though I think they maybe had one or two members too many. They have an interesting performance space in a hallway behind a smoky bar - you can buy drinks from the bar and bring them in. Robot Johnson do shows there sometimes too and there's an open-mic night (next time I'll hand out for open mic and give them a taste of the Bastard).

I was back in Asheville on Sunday and went to see Danielson at the Grey Eagle. This was my second time seeing Danielson and they've had a few major lineup changes, but they were pretty tight and put on a really fun show. I had seen some clips online of the openers, Cryptacize online and they didn't disappoint (and their members bolstered up Danielson). There were no Cryptacize CDs left, so no additions to the You Suck set. Small crowd, but it was a weird night to have a show.

Things are quiet on the Bastard and Feral Chihuahuas front at the moment, as we're busy editing the shows from summer for some highlight shows to go out on URTV. We're targeting an Inauguration show as the next special performance, watch this space for details.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Simpsons made me laugh out loud

I'm still a loyal watcher, but it's not often lately that the Simpsons has seriously cracked me out, but the end of the Homer killing celebrities had me cracking up.

Homer: Is your wife up here?
Abraham Lincoln: We have an arrangement.

Abraham Lincoln puts his hand on Homer's butt.

Whoever wrote that, mega kudos - I noticed Bob Odenkirk on the writers list...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The greatest unibrow in history is now history...

An old friend sent me this video about a guy I used to hang out with in college. It appeared that some time in the 90s he started trimming his beard. And we used to hang out in day-glo t-shirts to deliberately piss people off. This is also some degree of proof that TV in Australia is no better than TV in the US.



Good news - I found a recent clip of Steven, and although it looks like he's cutting his hair regularly again, the unibrow is making itself seen again

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

And after the Hellelection, the Halloween

Satan Claus & the Psycho

I was Satan Claus for Halloween and went to a pretty fun party at a friend's place, drank a lot and got into loud conversations with someone I had no right to be talking to in the first place, good times.

Not sure exactly what to make of the photo, though.

Wyman tells me that Autoerotic Asphyxiation is now the most-viewed Feral Chihuahuas clip on YouTube. This apparently has a lot to do with it being linked by two Japanese porn sites - warning, link not safe for work. What would we do without Japanese porn?

Won't be able to use this one again...

Rather a number of things have happened in the last few days, so much so fast.

The Hellelection show was great - I was in the audience (I read one line for one sketch) and had a ball. Took me back to my early days with the Feral Chihuahuas where I was a writer, I did my stand-up, then sat back in the audience while Tommy, Liz, Jay, Travis and sometimes Karl did the sketches. You really get a vibe in the audience, it's not something I could do with stand-up, but finding out what moves an audience really helps.

The performances were terrific, and Katie and Sarah in the opening segment are going to stick in my mind's eye for a long time. That's one way to guarantee our sponsors will come back (I hope).

The show closer was a piece close to my heart, it was the first song that Tommy and I worked on together - I had an idea for a song and some lyrics, and Tommy got the guitar out and we worked out the music, then worked back over the lyrics to get everything together. We first performed it in the shed a few years ago where it brought the house down (and the Woodfin cops around). Time has run out on it, so here's it is...

"One More Term" by the Clean Skies Act
music and lyrics by Tommy Calloway and George "the" Bastard.

My mortgage foreclosed
Lost the house of my dreams
You bailed out all the banks
But not New Orleans
My bus is out of gas
I've nowhere to park my tush
I've got one question
For President Bush...

(chorus)

Why won't they let you have just one more term
The constitution on that point is firm
You've done so much in eight years yourself
I've got one question
Why can't it be twelve... or fourteen

You took on Iraq
And Afghanistan
Didn't help out Georgia much
But sized up Iran
Extended tours and
I'm sure you will find
That when you go to war
No child's left behind

(chorus)

Gas price has tripled
We line at the pump
You're drilling offshore and
The beach is a dump
Don't believe climate change
You're not a science fan
Just go on smiling with that
Hot Texas tan

(chorus)

There's no gay marriage
And we get to keep our guns (keep our fuckin' guns!)
No abortions
We've all got young'uns
Love the patriot act
And all pray in school
Vote for Barack Obama?
Hey man! That ain't cool.

Why won't they let you have just one more term
The constitution on that point is firm
You've done so much in eight years yourself
I've got one question
Why can't it be twelve... or fourteen

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Hallelection is Tonight!

It's time! The week is here! The Feral Chihuahuas present HALLELECTION! All the frightening horror of politics and the half-truths and circular logic concerning Halloween. We will see some regular folk try to dethrone Joe SixPack in a sketch called Average Joes. You'll know who has the best candy and where in Halloween Stategery. Faux News is resurrected for a special election edition. We will see some some hauntingly hip and funny Halloween Slam Poetry. Candidates Douglas Munson and Terry Doyle make last minute pleas for your votes. We see costume popularity put to the test in Everyone's a Joker. And we give a salute and homage to exiting president George W. Bush with some music from The Clean Skies Act. So that is this Thursday October 30th at 35 Below Theater. (35 E. Walnut St - Underneath Asheville Community Theater) Showtimes are 8:00 and 9:30 PM. Tickets cost $10 and are available at Wink Heads and Threads (18 Brook St in Biltmore Village) at Adorn Salon and Boutique (82-B N. Lexington Ave) and at the door. There are some tickets still available so get them fast, they are selling quickly! Show up in Costume! For Ticket Info respond call (828)-280-0107.

Peace, Love and Teeny Piles of Poop,

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Hallelection is coming!



The show you've all been waiting for - all the spookiness and scares of an election combined with all the muckraking and debating you associate with Halloween. All new sketches and film pieces, musical guests and much more.

I've done some writing for this show, but due to other committments, I won't be performing in it - so you can guarantee the acting is going to be better than in the usual Feral Chihuahuas show!

More Live Chihuahuas on the Youtubes



Mr Tibbles British Invasion - this was the opening sketch from the season finale. Watch it through to the end, there's a rare bit of George the Bastard doing some acting as a policeman at the end.

Back to a blog delusge

The last two weeks have been so busy with other projects that I've been neglecting the blog. So here come a bunch of updates - I'm taking a break right now from filming segments for the upcoming Hallelection show. This morning we were filming a trick-or-treating sketch, and South Asheville was treated to the sight of Chihuahuas in costume roaming around. I had to grab a picture of Drew in his racecar gear...

halloween_pic_1

And Tommy and Drew trick-or-treating as a tag team

halloween_pic_2

Wouldn't you just want to give them candy?

I've been having a few McCain/Palin moments - I completely misread the time and thought that Nathan Adams' play reading was going to be last night at 7, so I missed it (there's another reading today, but I have to get back to filming). This means I'll also miss the zombie walk (I was working on a costume to go as a Zmobie.

Friday, October 10, 2008

And more YouTubey goodness



"Bro Hugs" from the season finale - written by John Moore, performed by Andrew McCammon and Tommy Calloway.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Feral Chihuahuas live on the YouTubes



The first of the live videos from the 2008 Summer season - "Autoerotic Asphyxiation", written by George "the" Bastard and performed by Sarah Erickson (as the Mom), Tommy Calloway (Officer Robinson), Drew McDermott (Jason) and featuring John Moore as the unfortunate victim.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

GWAR!

My ears are still ringing from last night's show (earplugs are for those who care about their hearing).

Amusing start to the evening, I had a craving for some Mo Daddy's chicken, so I headed downtown to get something to eat and wait for Dickie "Ricardo" Davis. I fell foul of the "Closed on Monday" syndrome that hits a lot of bars, and all that was in front of Mo Daddys was some tool trying to impress some kids that he knew GWAR. Classy.

Ed Boudreaux was the back-up stop (love their red beans and rice), so a food-and-wedge-brewing-beer pitstop later, we're ready to hit the show. Looked like there was still ahuge line to get in about 15 minutes after showtime, but that wasn't the case, they'd just excommunicated smokers to Biltmore Ave, and woebetide any cars that were thinking of making a right-hand turn onto Hilliard.

I missed the first opener, but the second one, Kingdom of Sorrow were hysterical on many levels. They are apparently members of Hatebreed/Crowbar/Puddle of Mud who weren't feeling satisfied with the amount of posturing and sludge guitar playing they could get in their own bands. They were loud, and really did sound like three guys doing their own thing kind of with the drummer. The frontman, who I think had stolen Fred Durst's bandana and was wearing it like a talisman, was encouraging the crowd to circle dance and make fist signs. They weren't that bad, but I wouldn't want to see them as a headliner.

GWAR were pretty amazing. I wished I'd seen them while Slymenstra Hymen was still there, but the return of Sleazy P Martini is a good thing. How Flattus Maximus manages to stay upright for the whole show and climb up on stage is a mystery. They stuck largely to the grind/sludge stuff, and hardly did any of the more theatrical numbers, but the stage acts were awesome. Plenty of public figures got destroyed (the end of Hillary Clinton was my favorite), and blood of several colors gave the audience a good soaking. I took a turn in the mosh pit to get a good blood coating - moshing now is more a surge and swell deal - moshing went on during the theatrical bits, so it wasn't as much fun, I sneaked back to the bar (occasionally a few moshes broke out at the bar - not cool, bar for drinking, pit for moshing).

As to be expected, absolutlely nothing from "We Kill Everything" (am I the only one who likes that CD)? But all the classics - "We've got the Bomb", "War is all we Know", "Reaganator", "Gor Gor" and many more. The blood has a slightly sweet smell, and made my bath towel look pretty cool when I got home.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Are you ready for some Chihuahuas?

The Hallolection Spectacular is coming to 35 Below on Thursday, October 30. We went through the scripts last night and there's going to be a lot of exciting new Halloween and Election material, a musical guest and some crazy moments.

Tickets will be on sale soon - we won't be selling through the ACT box office this time, so check back here (or look at the posters that will be dotting town soon) for ticket details.

There will be no George "the" Bastard in the show, but I've written some material for it - those of you who caught my "Zombie Stand Up" at LAAFF last year may recognize one of the themes.

I am planning on being at No Shame Theatre on Saturday with some material to work on - if your life's ambition is to play a part in a Bastard piece, show up at 10pm.

I'm also excited about GWAR tonight - if you're going, wear something disposable!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

More Feral Fotos



Another album of photos - this time from the sold-out season finale of the Feral Chihuahuas.

October 30 - the Feral Chihuahuas Halloween/Election special - one night only.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Relive the Feral Chihuahuas season in camera-captured moments



Tommy has posted some awesome pictures from the 35 Below run this summer

Next Feral Chihuahuas show is going to be on October 30th - and for those of you who don't like me, I won't be performing in this one, but I'll be doing some writing for it.

Monday, September 29, 2008

What's funny in Asheville? Psycho Beach Party!




Looking for a laugh this week - Theatre UNCA are presenting Psycho Beach Party featuring Sarah Erickson of the Feral Chihuahuas. Shows are from Wednesday until Sunday, and it's only $10.

Theatre UNCA Box office can be reached at 828-232-2291 and tickets can be bought online

Whattalottabloggathingathon

I had a great time, but I think anyone who talked to me knew that.

Gordon asked me if I'd do a short set at the BlogAsheville party (and I said yes before I knew it was the same weekend as Charlotte Beerfest), so I thought I'd give the greater Asheville Blog community the full-on Bastard experience and suited up.

Although I've done shows in Asheville in the pink suit, this is the first time I've not had to haul other costumes around or travel as a part of the show, so I walked from Casa del Bastard downtown in the pink pimp suit. There's a feeling of empowerment you get from the crazy things people on the street say as you saunter by. I stopped by Bruisin' Ales to pick up Julie (my "date" for the night, and her husband will be pleased to know I left her alone with many men during the evening) and we negotiated Asheville's alleys and underbelly to get there. A very enthusiastic gentleman outside Mellow Mushroom wanted to change clothes with me, I think it was to escape the creepy-crawlies that had permeated his short trousers.

We were among the first there. The setup was excellent - three foamy kegs, hidden bathrooms, and a convenient secluded courtyard where fine dining was offered at a convenient height to fart down on. I lost track of the number of people I chatted with and the ones I met for the first time. Random flying observations...

  • Jennifer Saylor kept touching my arm. If she has good luck from this, I could be the next Blarney Stone
  • Xty called me attractive and charming, so she must have been completely wasted
  • Gordon at one point put a traffic cone on his head and wouldn't take it off - maybe there are auditions for "Pirates of Penzance" somewhere
  • Reverend Johnny had to leave to go play a show with his band, but he didn't know when or where. I hope they just set up somewhere random and played until they were thrown out
  • I bumped into a guy named Clay (who works at the recording studio where I took my "Davinci Teabag") photo at different parties on Friday and Saturday. Weird.
  • Sorry to everyone I drunk dialled... especially those I drunk-dialled more than once
  • Julie had to leave way too early, but had some great stories of how single girls react at the last stop of the Brews Cruise, which makes me want to go on one
  • I think I killed any possibility of original George "the" Bastard material ever being published by Mountain Xpress, though I did see Ashevegas in the flesh, really I did
  • In my next life I will be Short Street Cakes fork-boy
  • If I do a double act, it will be George "the" Bastard and Carlos "the" Mexican
  • Matt Howard goes into a robotic trance if you ask him when his show is on and reels off a promo. He will then go straight back into interviewer mode
  • I don't know if Edgy Mama was trying to get in to or out of that t-shirt, but she succeeded

The time I was going to perform changed a bunch of times, and I was completely taken by surprise when I heard my name announced - I was filling a beer at the time! I was pleased with the set, got some really good laughs from those close in - I was told afterwards that if you were at the back you couldn't hear me clearly at all - you are the lucky ones.

This is no longer an award-winning blog. I donated a prize since I won an award last year, and I'm happy it went to someone who is going to like it (and who I had a wonderful drunk conversation with).

Good work on putting things together, BlogAsheville crew and other volunteers and sponsors.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Just in time for floozapalogathon

The first three video pieces from this year's Feral Chihuahuas comedy season are up...



"Super Sweeper" - featuring more of Tommy's hair-metal goodness



"The Interrodation" - Monsieur Shinyhead's finest performance



"The Perfect Chair" - the first Feral Chihuahuas video to feature George "the" Bastard.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Bastardmobile vs the Great Asheville Gas Crisis

The Bastardmobile (a 2002 Honda) has done it again - I last filled up with gas on September 5. When the Great Asheville Gas Crisis hit, and I heard of not avoiding panic buying, I was a notch under half full and thinking "I'll be fine, let these idiots do their thing and I'll be fine". During week one I wasn't too fussed - I did have to go to Hendersonville twice, but I don't have to drive to work every day, so I'll just nudge along bit by bit.

By the weekend I was looking OK - had to do some running around on Sunday, around 1/8 of a tank left, no cause for alarm.

I had to drive on Tuesday, we're nearing empty, but not quite crisis mode yet. I saw massive lines and angry mobs waiting for gas. I didn't want to join them.

I had to drive today, I passed many closed gas stations, but I read a few heartening things in the paper. Maybe these line people only come out during the day, maybe I'll be safe at night. I need a new printer cartridge, it's 9:30 pm. It can't be that bad, can it?

Enmark on Merrimon avenue. Gas is $3.75. There is a short line of cars, but not too bad, not quite to where Gourmet Perks used to be. There are people funnelling the cars in to orderly lines at the gas station. People are keeping their cool - 11 minutes later I have a tank of gas, and I am out of there.

Thank you bastardmobile! Your reliability and stingy gas consumption make a Bastard happy.

Bastard weekend in reverse, part 1: Brewgrass

The 12th annual Brewgrass Festival and the 9th Annual Brewgrass festival of the Bastard took place on Saturday. Of all the venues for Brewgrass that I've been to (City County Plaza, Pack Place, McCormick Field, The Block, MLK Field), MLK field is by far my favorite. It's a great size, lots of room to put chairs and blankets (which Dick and I remembered to bring this time), and it is only a few minutes walk from Casa Del Bastard.

Dicky Ricardo Davis (the official Light and Sound guy of the Feral Chihuahuas) and I went for breakfast at Moose Cafe, figuring that ballast would be a good thing. You've got to admire a restaurant that charges less for their "all you can eat" breakfast than it costs to order from the menu. The stagger back from Casa Del Bastard to the park made sure there was just enough stomach room left for many many pints of beer.

Got to MLK park at about 12:15, and there was a long, snaking line that went from the entrance, up to the corner and back. The line ride! At least there weren't two lines fighting to get in like last year, and it was less than 30 minutes in the line until we were inside, chairs staked out, and ready to go. I did end up missing the Biscuit Burners who were the band I most wanted to hear, but that's OK, there's beer drinking to be had.

The rest of the afternoon was a predictable alternation of drinking, lazing in the chair with a beer, and lining up for a porta-potty. Random observations...

  • My favorite "new" brewery was Big Boss Brewing. I had tried Helles Belle before at a Bruisin' Ales tasting night and loved it. The rest of their beers were similarly excellent.
  • It's always a good day when you run into Julie and Jason!
  • I lost my sheet early on - one of the breweries close to the stage had a really terrific altbier. Anyone remember who it was?
  • I missed Highland Clawhammer. I was hoping they'd have Schenk's cream Ale there. I did try the Imperial Mocha Stout, which was good, but I think the high point of their imperials was Imperial Kashmir from last year.
  • This was the first year I remember that I didn't have the same beer twice. There must have been more brewers or more variety. I did manage at least one from each brewer.
  • If you need to change your bra, inviting your boyfriend (I presume) into a scalding hot porta-potty to assist leads to amusing noises that can be heard through the walls of the next porta-potty.

See you there next year!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bastard Weekend in reverse, part 2: No Shame Theatre

In a state where I probably shouldn't have even been vertical, I worked on a script that had been rejected by the Feral Chihuhuas but I desperately wanted to see make light of day. It was about the rise and fall of the Alliteranation, there were three people plotting a secret society, and every line of it consisted of only words that started with a certain letter of the alphabet. The first line was only words starting with "A", the second only words starting with "B" and so on...

The idea tickled my fancy, but I think I used a lot of really obscure words so it didn't read well when we did it at Feral Chihuahuas. I took out the really out there words, added a few to lines so that there was really a plot to the thing, printed out four copies and staggered towards NC Stage Company.

I don't know if it was the weekend, that there's no gas, or that this was the first one of the season, but there weren't that many people there. I put my piece in, asked for three actors and was thrilled to get Karen Stobbe as one of the cast members, I liked her improv show over summer, and I thought she'd deliver this script the way it was meant to be. Since they were short on scripts, I was going to try out a bit of my proposed piece for Fringe, but I didn't have the backing tape (and there was already an act that was really similar, so I'll hold back on that one).

Our piece ended up being the closer of the show, I think it might have worked better earlier on, but it got a few laughs and some people liked the cleverness of it. That could be the first and only performance of "The Rise and Fall of the Alliternation". The rest of the night was odd... Asheville was there with a funny rap that could have done with either another verse or shortening. There were some excerpts from NC Stage shows. I may have passed out in my chair once, I was still pretty obliterated. A few people I usually like did stuff I didn't like. An Oxymoron did a sketch (I've seen that before, but it was an interesting surprise, and I laughed a few times at it).

It was a hungry, drunk, desperate stagger home, but I was glad I went. Next No Shame comes up pretty quickly (Oct 11, I think). See you there!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Bastard weekend in reverse, part 3: David Byrne at Thomas Wolfe

Still tired, still hung-over, my weekend ended with staggering back into town to see the David Byrne show. I had been looking forward to this forever, I liked a lot of both David Byrne's solo stuff and of course, Talking Heads. Having seen Tom Tom Club in Asheville and now David Byrne's show, can I say that I've seen Talking Heads in Asheville?

Anyone concerned that there would be no Talking Heads in the show breathed a sigh of relief when the gang on stage launched into a brilliant version of "I Zimbra", and the show alternated through recent David Byrne tracks, a smattering of tracks from his solo albums and Talking Heads classics. There were six dancers/singers/musicians who choreographed each song and all the David Byrne trademarks were there: crazy suit, goofy dancing, turning around on stage.

Highlights: "Heaven"!!!! (still happy that they played my favorite song, if only once), "Life During Wartime", "The Gates of Paradise" (flirting with country, sounding a bit like Cracker).

Lowlights: Lack of material from "David Byrne" or "Rei Momo" - maybe because the concert was to highlight the Byrne/Eno collaboration? Long shots, but I would have loved to have heard "Independence Day" or "Drugs" live.

In any case, this was 90 minutes of an art-rock legend blazing his way through the Thomas Wolfe auditorium - the first ovation was deafening. Thanks for stopping by, Mr. Byrne!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Busy Bastard weekend

Asheville is the place to be this weekend, and I'm having a big bastard weekend!

On Friday the Feral Chihuahuas are getting together to plot our next big shows and hopefully shiny purchaseable objects. We're sorting through the footage from this summer season and planning a few more pieces of film to put together for upcoming projects.

If I can make it in time, I'm going to check out some Australians who were inexplicably let in to the country - The Land of the Lightning Brothers. You can lead a Bastard to culture but you can't make him drink...

Until Saturday that is, when it's Brewgrass and a chance to add another tasting glass to the trophy shelf. The first few Brewgrasses, with the plastic sampling cups, they are long gone...

glasses_after

After 7 hours of solid drinking, No Shame sounds appropriate. I'll either sing, submit one of my scripts in progress ("Canada, Utterly No Talent", "How To Choose a Vice President", or "The Adventures of Abstinence and Sobriety") or come up with something dire on the day.

Sunday is the David Byrne show at Thomas Wolfe. Dickie 'Ricardo' Davis thinks that Brian Eno is going to be on stage as well, I'm not sure if that's happening, but if it does, it'll be awesome.

Vote for this blog at the blogasheville unpronounceable awards, I'll be there, pink suited.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Are you smarter than a bastard?



Nina Pell, pictured above with the two-tone head, just won the London Times sudoku championship. She finished four difficult sudoku puzzles in 18 minutes.

I thought I'd have a bash at them, my times were 8 minutes for the first, 5 minutes for the second, 7 minutes for the third, and then I made a mess of the last one and took 16 minutes for a grand total of 36 minutes. My head was swimming near the end.

Try them if you dare - let me know how you fared.

Upcoming bastardry

No Shame Theatre is this Saturday at 10. I should probably be sleeping off Brewgrass at that point and making sure I'm in some condition to watch David Byrne the next day, but it's very tempting to either write something truly drunk-inspired and turn it in for other people to act out, or sing a song from my one-man Fringe show in the making, or just do some barely conscious stand-up. The piece I'd really like to do from the Fringe show would take longer than five minutes.

YouTubey goodness soon...

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The upside of gas gouging

I took the bastard bike out for a spin yesterday, I don't think I've seen so little traffic around downtown Asheville on a Saturday afternoon. Nice day for cycling, I don't think I was the only one out there rehabbing the old non-fossil-fuel burning modes of transport.

Listened to local radio lately? You may recognize the dulcet tones of a Feral Chihuahua breaking into the world of advertising jingles - thankfully for your ears it's not me!

Feral Chihuauas meeting today, and things are on the roll for our next big all-new show - it's going to be two nights of Hallowlection - combining the creepiness of an election with the politics of trick-or-treating. Stay tuned for many more details coming soon.

We also decided on what is going to be the next set of videos to go up on the Feral Chihuahaus YouTube channel. I'll go for whatever pisses off Monsieur Shinyshirt the most.

While I'm on the topic of old chemistry...

OK, so I've been asked to give a light-hearted talk on history of Science. In browsing through some old science textbooks, I came across this gem, from "A System of Theoretical and Practical Chemistry" by Friedrich Accum, published in 1803

Text not available
A System of Theoretical and Practical Chemistry By Friedrich Christian Accum

Friday, September 12, 2008

Take the advice of the Bastard

My friend Matt was concerned that he didn't have anything to sell at his parents yard sale. I suggested he wear the following sign...

matt_homeless

Anyone else need a personalized sign? Ask the Bastard!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Au Revoir, friend of the Bastard


Just read an obituary for Neil Bartlett. I didn't know Neil that well, but I knew a lot of his close friends, and went to a few of his lectures. Amazing guy, even though he lived in Canada and the US for 50-odd years he maintained this very crisp British accent. I distinctly remember him giving a lecture in Honolulu on gold fluorides on a very nice summers day and there was nobody there - it was well into the beach/drinking/sightseeing time of the afternoon. Still, there he was racing through a talk on complex chemistry for a room that had about five people in it (one was a fellow noble-gas chemist who was completely asleep).

Neil Bartlett, taking the noble out of noble gases by making Xe[PtF6], XeF2, XeF4 and XeF6 - 1932-2008

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Bastard movie review: Hamlet II

Mountain X had Justin Souther go see this one, pity, because I'd be intrigued to see what Ken Hanke thinks of it.

I've been a big fan of Steve Coogan since being introduced to him by a friend's husband - his Alan Partridge character is the stuff of genius. Also helps that he can get away with saying "shit" on TV over in England. He's not playing Alan Partridge in this film, but all the elements are there - self-absorbed, given to flashy phrases, completely convinced that he is right. And that "Hamlet" would be a better play if everyone lived happily ever after, and Jesus gave Hamlet the opportunity to reconcile with his uncle. By playing this totally deadpan, the film is a magnificent bit of anti-comedy. It's the feelgood story of misfits overcoming the odds to stage a completely stupid play.

George "the" Bastard rates this one buy at least two airplane bottles on your way to the theatre and enjoy the ride.

Since no categories really define this blog, nominate me for anything you feel like at the BlogAsheville Awards. Last year I won "Least likely to make money by blogging". I don't see "Worst Blog", "Best Reason to revert to the stone age", or "Most likely to go to the Republican National Convention wearing a t-shirt that says "Bristol Palin's Baby Daddy"", so nominate me for anything.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Wear old clothes...

GWAR is coming to the Orange Peel on October 6!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Enjoying the rain? Thank the Bastard!

I brought the rain yesterday (and today, by association). Since I've had Feral Chihuahuas rehearsal almost every night over the last three months, I haven't been using the bastard bike to get around town.

So on Sunday evening I inflated the tires, checked out the chain, worked on the gears and got everything ready to be back on the bastard bike come Monday morning.

I made it half a block from Casa Del Bastard before it started raining.

You're welcome.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Summer Season is Over!

With last night's two mega-shows, the Feral Chihuahuas are taking a little break now - next on the Chihuahua horizon is to edit the shows together for a package for URTV and to try to get into a few more festivals. Next on the Bastard front is to put together some home-grown stand-up shows - watch this space for more details soon.

I was really happy with both shows - stand-up went over well before the start of each show, though those were jokes I hadn't really tried on anyone and wasn't sure if they would get laughs.

It was an odd show for me personally, since I was out of town for most of the week I had limited appearances in sketches (if you were keeping count, I played cops in three sketches and waiters in two sketches), and didn't do much interacting with the other characters. Took me back to when I first started with Feral Chihuahuas where I was mostly a writer and did very little acting.

Thanks to the audiences who got plenty of action for their ten bucks and were loud and into the action for both shows. Thanks also to the staff at ACT who let us go a little long (oops).

Before the show, Tommy made up some pretty nice cards for us all with a color version of the graphic from the playbill last night (the picture of me from the barbershop quartet is particularly disturbing). I'll get the graphic up on here soon.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Back in Asheville

atlanta_1

I love that sign - it's in Terminal E at the Atlanta airport. I'm back in town and went straight to rehearsal for the show-ending extravaganza coming up on Saturday. New stand-up, selections of our greatest sketches and film pieces from the season, and to end, the debut of the first ever Feral Chihuahuas Broadway Musical - "Past Present Time Cop from the Future". It's an action-packed show - relive two of the Calloway/Bastard productions "Cougar" and "Infectious Larry" that brought the house down the first time.

Get your tickets online from Asheville Community Theatre

Monday, August 18, 2008

Flight the fighty skies

I'm out of town this week, so probably won't be updating (see the last and greatest Feral Chihuahuas show this Saturday). But I had to mention that on my 6:30am flight out of Charlotte on Saturday, we were delayed for an hour because two flight attendants got in a catfight. I was waiting to board when the flight crew dragged them back from the aircraft and through the gate area. All the passengers who had already checked in had to go back to the gate area and wait until volunteer flight attendants could be found.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

No time to procrastinate

But don't let that stop me...

We started rehearsing show #8 yesterday, an odd (but not new) experience of being there working on a show that I'm not going to be in. I was dumped from the cast of a revue that I co-wrote while I was in college because I couldn't sing and couldn't act (a peek at the Old Nick website points out that the Uni Revue is turning 60 this year - way to go guys!).

The Bastard presence will still be felt in a few sketches and film pieces, so make sure you check it out.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Two more sell-out shows!

Last night was a hell of a night.

I was starting to get worried, yet more technical problems stalled the beginning of the first show, but once we got started, it was a great crowd. We had more long sketches than we usually have (and one pretty long film piece), so it was a long show, but the audience stayed with it and there were some great laughs.

I was particularly pleased that my stand-up went over well (after last week working on jokes that I thought were funny that ended up bombing). There's not much of a shelf life for my favorite joke from last night, but I think it would be a great idea if people give Senator John Edwards a copy of this book for Christmas.

Sketches went well, the reaction was great to the Cherdonna song. I hope everyone who was there had a good time, and if you weren't there, you've got two more chances!

I'm not going to be in this upcoming weekend's show, but there'll be some film pieces I was involved in and I've written a few sketches for it, so get your tickets now for Show #8, and stay tuned for the Show Endingest Show ever. Show #9stravaganzaza.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

See the Feral Chihuahuas tonight or face eternal damnation!

bullfinch_graphic_2

It's on tonight at 35 Below - first show at 8:00pm, second show at 9:30pm. Come find out what surprises await the Reverend Cyrus Bullfinch.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Asheville continues to make you laugh

Beat the heat with laughter! This weekend you can see LYLAS, with a new cast doing their thing at 35 Below from Wednesday-Friday night, and the Feral Chihuahuas on Saturday. Shows are at 8pm (with a second show for the Feral Chihuahuas at 9:30pm) and are just $10 each. Tickets available at Asheville Community Theatre.

Show #7... what a doozy

Sometimes things go right, sometimes things go wrong. Show 7 was a tale of two shows - for the first show, everything went wrong, for the second show, everything went right. Technical difficulties, awkward moments, jokes that I found a lot funnier than the audience did, that's what happened.

The audience that waited patiently for the second show had a great time - everything that went wrong in the first show went right in the second show. Even some of the jokes that died - either they were really funny or the second audience had the advantage of a few extra hours drinking or a bit of both.

There's only three shows left!!! And each one of them is going to be special in it's own way.

This Saturday is going to be a wild show. Where else can you get all this for $10

  • New stand-up comedy from George "The" Bastard - never before heard jokes (and maybe never to be heard again)
  • Three brand new film pieces, including the return of Monsieur Shinyhead
  • A guest appearance from a former Rebelle
  • The latest song from Calloway and Bastard Productions, performed live by the diva to end all divas, Cherdonna
  • A tweaked up version of a script that went down well at No Shame Theatre last year
  • The second great debate between Terry Doyle and Douglas Munson - are you voting Republicrat or Plebitarian?
  • An Esperanto exchange student?
... and many more live sketches by the Feral Chihuahuas. Get your tickets now!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Why you need to see the Feral Chihuahuas on Saturday night

The top 10 reasons to get a ticket to see the Feral Chihuahuas at 35 Below on Saturday (two shows, 8:00pm and 9:30pm)

  1. I will do a death scene on stage. Live out all your fantasies of the demise of George "the" Bastard by watching his very first death scene
  2. For only $10 you will be getting eight brand new never-before performed sketches, and three exclusive film pieces. Laugh five times at each of them and you're paying less than a quarter a laugh!
  3. New stand-up from George "the" Bastard before the show
  4. A musical guest that is really going to leave a lasting impression on you
  5. George "the" Bastard sings again!
  6. I get shoved to the ground in one sketch - live out all your fantasies of physical harm being done to the Bastard by seeing physical harm done to the Bastard.
  7. You can buy wine and beer at the show, and learn about local businesses who sponsor us
  8. Someone will say "vying"
  9. Sitting in the near darkness with 40 people you don't know is holistic and satisfying
  10. This is your only chance to see this show - every show is different.
See you there!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Comedy this weekend!

Asheville's going to be a funny place to be again this weekend!

From Wednesday until Friday Karen & Mondy will be doing their thing at 35 Below (I'm hoping to make it to the Friday show). They're great improvvers, I've seen a few of their pieces and this is going to be something different and very funny. Shows are at 8pm and are $10.

Then on Saturday we're back! The Feral Chihuahuas show #6 for the summer season, and it's going to be another week of out-there sketch comedy, and another musical contribution from the songwriting house of Calloway and Bastard. All this and three epic film pieces. Shows are just $10 and are at 8:00pm and 9:30pm - get your tickets online at the Asheville Theater Company's website. There's a new Feral Chihuahuas show every Saturday in August, and these will be the last Asheville shows for a while.

Monday, July 28, 2008

BlogAsheville get-together

It was good to see a bunch of people on Friday night at the Wedgie brewery. What hit me the most was the number of people who were just there hanging out, not necessarily blog people. That made for a bit of confusion - Gordon from Scrutiny Hooligans and I got there at about the same time, and Gordon's idea of having the two of us wear nametags and seeing who we could go up to and convince them that they were a blogger worked.

Wedge brewing have the Bastard seal of approval. I'd had their Iron Rail IPA before, and it was tasty, hoppy but not a mouthful of hops (if you want to try a mouthful of hops have a suck on a Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.), and I'd had their porter (at the Bruisin' Ales tasting at the tourists game). I had not tried their Pale Ale, which tasted almost exactly the same as Asheville Brewings Pisgaish Pale. There was a high-gravity beer that I don't recall being blown away by, but it wasn't too sweet. Their wheat beer, however is a stand-out! Awesome color, very easy to drink, highly recommended.

In the time-honored tradition, blogging about bloggers...
  • Jodi from My Life in Cake is a scream, and her cupcakes were delicious, even if they were vegan. I had to console myself that at least the coffee component in them was a raping of the earth. More ox blood!
  • Zen had a particularly stylish entrance, until he left his bike's light on
  • Arratik was wearing a hysterical t-shirt, and I think we need to bring back wearing t-shirts from dead websites.
  • The guys from Asheville Now (looking like the Woodfin Mafia) were there looking slick and pattery. I might have pissed them off, since there's no listing for the Feral Chihuahuas show this Saturday (8pm and 9:30pm, buy tickets now) on their site.
  • AM from My Weaverville is good for a laugh. I hope she branches out and starts the sites My Forks of Ivy and Their Reynolds Mountain
  • I can't remember the name of the person I bullied who runs a Carl Mumpower site, but I hope you're recovering from our conversation
  • It was good to see other random people I haven't caught up with in a while - Rev Johnny, Felicity, and the Freeborn chap.
If you weren't there, you didn't spend money on beer.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Bastard of the Day

The first of a probably never-starting series, let's see who today's Bastard of the Day is...

John C Wilson, step on down.

I have got to start writing letters to the Asheville Citizen-Times. It appears the most inane goes up on the website, presumably to drive advertising revenue from the message board. And Johnny C, if he is lucky enough to own one of them new-fangled computer thingys with the identitythefternet, is smiling in his porridge - you're a star of the tubes.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Weekend of bastardry

Caught the OxyMorons show on Friday night, another strong outing with a lively audience.

Saturday was a trip - filming downtown for the next Feral Chihuahuas show with Wyman and Andrew. When you're filming ridiculous stuff on the street people stop and watch. For one scene we were skipping down the street arm-in-arm, and got challenged by some guys to a skipping arm-in-arm race. We only did one take, so I hope it was a good one.

I'm working on a sci-fi epic "Future Present Time Cop from the Past" (based on a random idea you might have seen in a film piece at the last show), and based on reactions we got downtown, it is going to have to be filmed in downtown Asheville on a weekend in crowded places. Hmmm, maybe I will go to Bele Chere (look for Monsieur Shinyhead and I to battle against Future Present Time Cop from the Past).

Friday, July 18, 2008

Happy trails, Tim

Looks like Tim Rawal is checking out of the Citizen-Times (or at least writing his columns for Take 5).

Best wishes on whatever you're doing next, Tim - if you're staying in Asheville, let me know and I'll buy you a beer sometime. I really wanted to get Tim on to the writing team at the Feral Chihuahuas but things never quite worked out. Tim's writing was sarcastic, self-deprecating and glorious to read, and the way he brought the anger of readers brought tears to a Bastard's eyes.

Bonus points for getting Jason Bugg in a dander!

Writing a monologue

I've been trying to write monologues lately. It's not my forte, I like to work a lot of jokes or puns into sketches, and if you have two characters this is easy, but with one character, set-up followed by punchline comes off as contrived. It's amazing how much more difficult this is to write than stand-up, since straight-out jokes are expected when you're doing stand-up.

The world lost one of the great deliverers of monologues recently in Ronnie Barker. He had this great delivery of monologues, and I believe most of them were written by him and Barry Cryer. I'm trying to write a Ronnie Barkeresque monologue for a later Feral Chihuahuas show, here's a taste of what he could do.

Late birthday

Sorry, lack of life, I forgot to acknowledge that you turned 1 yesterday. You're just an unreadable blog, you don't have feelings.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Things to be excited about

Having two weeks off means I can do stuff and see stuff. I try to get to as much as I can, but rehearsals have been cramping the old style. Asheville has a lot to do, sometimes it takes some gumshoeing. Let's see what's on the Bastard agenda.

Friday night the OxyMorons are back at 35 Below. Their shows are always funny, and energy-laden. They ask the audience at the start if they want a clean show or a more racy show, so if you're there on Friday, join with me in asking for the true OxyMorons experience.

Saturday I'm going to make a second attempt to see Henry VIII at Montford park. Every time I try to head down there it rains.

Sunday is Summer Cooler Beer Fest at the Garage on Biltmore. It's a fundraiser for a pretty decent nonprofit - Clean Water for North Carolina. I haven't seen a lot of advertising for this, I hope they get a decent crowd.

Bele Chere is next weekend... and for the first time I'm not that excited about Bele Chere. Moving the ticketed shows to Memorial stadium means I won't be able to hear them from casa del Bastard. The only act there that I'm really interested in seeing is Nikki Talley. I might head to the BlogAsheville get together on Friday and then skip town.

Back to the pile of half-written scripts - the last four Feral Chihuahuas shows for the season are going to kick ass!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Feral Chihuahuas take an all-star break

Show #5 is in the books!

This week was the week of awesome audiences. The two people who kept laughing while I picked on them in my stand-up, you were terrific! I need to work more audience participation into the Bastard stand-up.

As for the shows themselves - Katie Baker is really coming along as a strong writer. She wrote the camp counselor monologue that Andrew sweated his way through to some great laughs, and also wrote "DVD", where audiences got to see a lot more Bastard than they ever wanted to. Andrew's magnum opus of the disintegrating family got us to end the show with an "awwwww" and you got another Calloway/Bastard musical production. The shows are getting better, tighter and more terrific, and we're going to take a two-week break to rest up and prepare for the last four shows.

It was nice to see some Oxymorons at the second show (hope you guys had fun).

Our next show is August 2 - 8pm and 9:30pm. Make plans!

Bastard movie review: Wall-E

There's some utter awesomeness in Wall-E.

Good ideas:

  • Make a movie and have Fred Willard be the only person in it. He appears to be either President or CEO of earth in this movie, and I would feel much better knowing that Fred Willard is in charge of my life.
  • Restrict the big-name voice actors to saying the one line over and over "Hey, Sigourney, can you say "Wall-E" with three different inflections, and we're good to go", and have the main speaking role be done by Jeff Garlin.
  • Have a robot love story, therefore leading to oily, gear-grinding robot sex
Bad ideas:
  • No robot sex
  • Repetitive beeping noises. Couldn't you afford Einst├╝rzende Neubauten for the soundtrack?
  • Floating somewhere between an uber-preachy ecosploitation movie and a sexless robot love story
Overall it was OK. The short film before it was worth seeing, and I liked the air conditioning.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Feral Chihuahuas on Saturday - season mid-finale

Get your tickets for this weeks shows - they're going to be wild and dangerous! After Saturday we're taking two weeks off to breathe before coming back with four more new shows in July and August.

I got caught in the huge rainstorm early yesterday afternoon - I'd walked downtown, and had to get back to casa del bastard. It looked like there was going to be a short break in the rain, so I went for it, but about 5 minutes later it was torrential downpour time and I was soaked. Figured I wasn't going to get any wetter, my clothes were drenched and I'd plod on. You get some really interesting looks from motorists when you're walking outside in driving rain looking happy. I was disappointed in the anti-abortion protestors outside Femcare, they had retreated to their SUVs. Saw two accidents (I don't think I caused any) on the way home - the cop directing traffic around one didn't seem to pleased when I told him that it was a nice day for a walk.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Show #4 wrapup - we're nearly halfway there

Thanks to Rapid River for the write-up in the July edition.

Saturday's shows were quite the trip. I had to bolt back from a wedding in order to make the first show, and we were scrambling, but things came together at the end.

Petulant came to the first show and had a good time. I was pleased with my writing getting a share of laughs and groans, and a chance to try out those clogging lessons I took a few years ago.

The second show was intriguing - where in the first show the biggest laughs seemed to come from the last sketch (the stripping teddy bears), the crowd at the second show really got into Briyan and his graduation ceremony. We wave farewell to Briyan, two sketches is enough for you, old friend - back into your room to work on that Masters.

This week is the official half-way point of the season, and after this show we're going to take a few weeks break. So get your tickets for the mid-season extravaganza - shows are on this Saturday at 8pm and 9:30pm and tickets can be bought in advance at the Asheville Community Theatre site.

This week we've got 9 brand-spanking new live sketches, a musical guest, stand-up from George "the" Bastard and more filmed goodness.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Discount sushi

Sleep does not come easy to a bastard. The night is there for drinking and plotting evil schemes. Unfortunately some activity is occasionally being required of me in mornings, so I've been trying to get some sleep.

With absolutely no success.

Last night it was suggested that I try taking a herbal supplement to get to sleep. It's like drugs, but not drugs, and you can buy them at stores that have "Green", "Earth", "Whole" or "Maaaan" in their names. I got out of Feral Chihuahuas a few minutes before Greenlife closed, so I figured I'd give it a go.

At Greenlife, at 9:30pm, they mark down all the unsold sushi.

Herbal sleep pills + discount sushi = guaranteed all-night insomniac delusion.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Show #3 wrap-up

Where does the time go? Week #3 was the show I was dreading the most, having to try to hold a tune (or at least a harmony), and some long acting parts that I was having a tough time in remembering.

I have this thing against conventional sketches (though I write enough of them), where there's either a set-up person and a funny person, or there's one character that is the focus of the piece, or the "general" of the piece so that everyone else works off them. I get more enjoyment out of writing pieces that change direction, and have different characters lading the action at different times.

This makes anything I wrote a pain in the ass to memorise.

But everything came off well, and both shows were much better than I expected. If you weren't there (shame on you), you missed the writing debut of Drew McDermott, who you'll be seeing a lot more of (and probably more in unitards), a fascinating flight into scatology by Kevin Anderson the writing machine, another of Katie's insights into why men are the inferior race (next week, look for me in one of Katie's bizarrest offerings yet), and another George "the" Bastard/Tommy Calloway musical production. Forget John and Taupin, the next generation of rock superstardom is going to be Calloway and Bastard!

I'm enjoying immensely the "cringe" reaction from people in the front row to my stand-up, particularly the set-up lines. Come for the hysterical sketch comedy, stay for your chance to be made to feel uncomfortable.

More guerrilla filming on the weekend. It's a lot of fun to sneak into buildings and alleys, set up a camera, grab a few shots and leave, particularly in outrageous costumes and wigs.

This week's show is going to feature a little something for everyone, and a new one for me - most of the time I write a self-contained sketch and leave it at that, but by popular demand, I've penned my first sequel to a sketch. So if you liked the Holistic Omniversal Learning Experience sketch from last year (a home-schooled boy's visit to an alternative learning academy), make sure you get a ticket this week to see the further adventures of Briyan.