Zanies Comedian Party


Dr. D. warming up for his comedy debut.

I never actually performed at Zanies Comedy Club, but I did see a few shows there. My favorite night there was quite a surprise that I was even there in the first place. I remember I was at The Clout Club and one of the other comedians told us that Zanies was having a party the next Tuesday for all the Chicago-area comedians. All comedians were invited. I met a lot of people that night at Zanies that I had seen perform in other comedy clubs. There were also some famous and many more not so famous people there whom I don’t remember now.

My sister wanted to go, so I told her to just say that she was a comedian, too. Before she actually showed up, I met Richard Kind who went through Second City and had done some TV commercials. However, I didn’t know who he was at the time because he wasn’t actually famous yet. Richard was very surprised that I didn’t know him. I felt embarrassed not knowing who he was. Finally, he asked me, “You didn’t see my bank commercial where I’m climbing outside the window with suction cups?” I was extremely embarrassed when I told him that I had never seen his commercial because I didn’t watch much television.

When my sister finally showed up, I told her about my encounter with Richard, who was now mingling with everyone at the party. She laughed at me even though she didn’t know who Richard Kind was either. Eventually, Richard made his way back to my sister and me. “Do you know who I am?” he asked her. “Of course, I do!” she said. “You’re Richard Kind. You did the bank commercial. You’re the guy with suction cups on the window.” “Finally!” Richard said. “Someone who knows my work!” And he was genuinely pleased that he had found someone who had seen his commercial.

My comedy debut


Dr. D.’s debut at Sally’s Stage, Chicago, Illinois

Let tell you about my comedy debut. NOT! I stalled, I postponed, and I dreaded performing. Well, I actually wrote some jokes, I actually polished them, and I actually rehearsed them. However, I was not meant to perform at Open Mic night at Riddles Comedy Club this week. I honestly tried, but as fate would have it, Riddles changed their format on Thursday night to accommodate some comedians from out of town.

Last week when I went to Riddles for Open Mic, I sat in the back so I could observe. As preparation for my forthcoming comedy debut, I sat all the way up front near the stage. Just to get a feel for the stage. As you may have guessed, most of the comedians picked on me. I didn’t mind at all. Not that I usually like being the focus of attention, but this time, I actually did like being the focus of attention.

I think what I have always liked best about doing standup comedy was watching all the other comedians. You see, I love to laugh. So tonight was not a total waste of time because I got to observe again and learn. And I actually thought of some new jokes while watching the other comedians. On the other hand, I’m having second thoughts about actually going on stage and performing. Maybe I should focus more on my writing at this point. Some of the jokes that I wrote might actually come off better as something to read on the Internet.

As I was sitting in the front row during tonight’s show getting skewered by the comedians, I remembered back to a first date some twenty-something years ago. I met a certain Emily and we seemed to take a liking to each other. I really wanted to ask her out. At first, I didn’t think she would go out with me, well, because she was Irish and from Kentucky, and I was Mexican.

I finally asked her out and she said yes. Our first date was dinner followed by seeing a show at Zanies Comedy Club in Chicago. She loved comedy clubs and comedians. I asked her if she wouldn’t mind sitting in the front row with me. I told her, “I will never ask you for anything else again.” She agreed to sit in the front, and of course, we were picked on by all the comedians. I thought it was a lot of fun and Emily seemed to be enjoying the show, too.

I remember asking Emily at dinner if she knew any Rodriguezes. She said her grandmother’s last name was Rodriguez. Emily, it turns out was part Mexican, one-fourth Mexican to be exact. After the show, I took her home. And I never saw her again! I guess I never learned well about planning good first dates. But I did learn a lot about comedy and life that night.

That’s what I love about standup comedy. I learn so much about life!