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Last Comic Standing

I went to the auditions for the TV show Last Comic Standing on Thursday. Here’s the highlights.

Getting up at 5am so I could be at CapCity by 6am. I rarely get up at 5am and I certainly don’t put on make-up and do my hair and faff around trying to decide what to wear. In the end, jeans, pumas, black t-shirt and the green jacket I just bought from Gap. Radical.

Finding parking at CapCity because there were only 40 people ahead of me in the line, instead of the predicted 500 or so. Thank god I hadn’t camped out. My fabulous friend Donna went to McDonalds and bought me the only things a vegetarian could eat – coffee, a biscuit and a hash brown. But I’m sure they’d all been licked by a cow.

Avoiding Ant, the annoying gay comedian from last season’s show. He was interviewing people standing in line for his new show ‘US of Ant’. He was very short and looked orange and spent a lot of time interviewing Fred Bothwell. Fred played his part by removing his shirt and scratching himself.

Being allowed to pee in the CapCity loo. Shortly after I went they stopped letting people in. I don’t think I was totally responsible. My second trip was to the small Mexican store a few minutes walk away where I bought things I didn’t really need in order to justify using their (rather nasty) bathroom.

Socialising with other comics in the line. Somehow it’s different when you’re all sober. Especially enjoyed hanging out with Kristen Key one of my favorite comics I’ve worked with. Hadn’t seen her in ages. She’s brilliant and was one of the 4 people selected to move onto the next round. I’m such a suck-up.

Not giving a toss when I finally got onstage in front of the judges, Bob and Ross. I was nervous beforehand but I’ve done enough acting cattle calls and new business pitches to know how it feels to perform in front of people who act indifferent or cut you off mid-sentence. Plus they were seated up on a platform and I thought they looked more exposed than me and slightly ridiculous.

Arguing with Bob when he told me I looked young. He asked if he could call me Haggy. I asked if I could call him a twat. Actually I didn’t. But we bantered for a bit and then they had their little debate over whether I should move forward or not. Apparently it would be fun to have a Brit from Texas. Oh and I’m also funny. Thanks Ross.

Filling out the 40 page form that included 10 pages of background check information requiring past addresses, jobs, dogs, boyfriends from the last 20 years. The fun part was making up complete nonsense under the section ‘Ideas for a sitcom’. My answer – A haughty Brit becomes a coach to the Norwegian national polevaulting team. It wasn’t my only idea, but it was the best.

Sleeping for an hour when I got home at 2.30 before fretting over what to wear for the show that night. I went for jeans, pumas, a black t-shirt and a red jacket.

Being briefed by the production guy before the show started on how it would all work. He was a Brit so I knew I’d go all the way. Not with him, just with the contest. We chatted after. After the show, not after full sex as I’ve already clarified that. I rarely talk to other Brits but he used the words twat and bollocks in general conversation and I felt homesick.

Walking onstage that night to the loudest cheers and applause I’ve ever had. I know the audience was told to do that for everyone but who cares. When they laughed hard it seemed to last for ages. So long in fact that they made me go over my 3 minutes and I had my mic cut. Bastard audience.

Drinking Grand Marnier when I got offstage. Damn Chandy, the manager, for getting me hooked on the stuff. I went on early, number 6 out of 23, so I had plenty of time to relax and chat with the other comics and drink more Grand Marnier. I could have done another interview and I probably should have to increase my chances of airtime. As Erik pointed out, if I’d been my client when I was in PR I’d have been mad at such a wasted opportunity. But not really because I’d never have paid the outrageous monthly fees to have me as my not very good PR manager.

Putting my glass down just before we were all called back onstage for the final results. It could have been an embarrassing photo as I was standing in the front row. We were told to line up in height order. Doug Mellard beat me by a hair. Not literally, because my hair was far bigger than his. Maybe by a whisker, given that mine are shorter than his.

Being genuinely happy for the winners. I mean genuinely, not in a comic ‘well done, I hate you’ kind of way. Doug Mellard, David Huntsberger, Brendon Walsh, Kristen Key: I hope you all make it to the finals. I loved the fact that the winners were given special envelopes and told they contained all the information they’d need for the next round. The sheets were blank.

Coming home and telling my incredibly supportive husband Erik how much I’d enjoyed the day and how proud I was of myself. For nearly 2 hours straight. That’s when he knew I’d been drinking.