December 19th, 2005

kusanagi: puerile

A ride on the comedy minibus of fun.

Last night, my favorite reptile imyril and her boyfriend took us unsuspecting Americans to see a stand-up comedy show featuring a tall wild-haired and highly animated Northern man, Ross Noble. Being from the north of England is a bit like being from the South in the States.
RN: How many people are really getting into the Christmas spirit? Ready for the holidays?
Audience: *half-hearted cheering*
RN: And how many people are really hating Christmas? Wishing it was over already?
Audience: *much louder, more enthusiastic cheering*
RN: Ah, bless ye London, ye haven't let me doon. Ye miserable booncha bastards.
RN: *folds arms, adopts stroppy expression*
RN: "It's Christmas-time in London. It's rubbish."

He encouraged audience participation, by which I mean he selected some unlucky persons in the first three rows and the theatre boxes and picked on them. He embarrassed a girl in a Santa hat and a performing arts student before striking comedy gold. He found himself a life coach.

Life coaching, which involves telling someone such obvious things as "You need to spend more time relaxing" until they actually do, sounds like complete bollocks, and in many ways it is – until you meet a few corporate executives and realize that these people need a life coach. Of course, when you meet them, you can usually replace the words "life coach" with "muzzle" to produce an even simpler and more elegant solution.

Anyway, it took a lot of effort for Ross Noble to get the life coach to admit to his profession.
RN: And what exactly do you coach?
Life coach: People.
RN: Oh, no shit.
RN: *leans back, looks up towards the ceiling*
RN: Is there some kind of sign above me that I can't see? Some sort of big arrow pointing towards me? "Northern Man Talks!" Are you all just sitting there, saying to yourselves, "Oh, he's ever so clever. He's from the north, but he can form words!"

The life coach made the mistake of getting rather peeved with the comedian, which of course meant his remarks became the punch-lines of many of the jokes throughout the 2.5 hour show.
RN: So what's the most important thing you tell people?
Life coach: You have all the answers.
RN: *momentarily stunned into silence*
RN: Lazy bastard.

After a lengthy and cringe-making gag during which he pantomimed making love to a pensioner, he floated gently towards a more genteel topic: poo. He told us of his wife's fondness for the Lush line of body products. ("Ye throw them into the water and they explode, emitting wonderful lady things into the bath.") He wound up covered in glitter when he showered after one of her baths, and was, so he claimed, unable to remove the glitter for weeks. As an illustration of the glitter's pernicious powers, he told us that even his poo sparkled.
RN: I thought, I have a magic arse. You could have hung that sparkly poo in a disco.
RN: Of course, you wouldn't want to eat it.
Someone in the audience: *cheers*
RN: Oh, now see what you've done. Here we are, all riding happily along in the Comedy Minibus of Fun and you've gone and taken the wheel and detoured us into Wrongtown.

If you ask me, we were already in Wrongtown, we just took the occasional detour into Squicksville. In any case, we stayed there for the remainder of the show, which concluded with an amalgamation of the chimney-sweep dance and a pantomime of a new sport of his own invention, Muslim-hurdling. Its gracelessness nearly surpassed its lack of political correctness.

I need to get back to my own new favorite sport, World of Warcraft, which I'm enjoying very much at the moment because I'm sick. (Again, argh.) The pop psychologist in me finds MMORPGs fascinating because the medium forces everyone into the crudest expressions of their personalities. I always play female characters. I don't really know why I'm not comfortable using a male avatar in a virtual setting. It's a depth of my psyche I don't particularly feel like plumbing. I'm playing a healer character, because I love going around casting protective spells on people. Sometimes I'm such a goody two-shoes I even make myself barf. Anyway, some people react quite nicely, thanking me or bowing or casting something helpful in return.

And then there are the rest. Like the person who saw me randomly bestowing nice things on another player, and said, "Make yourself useful and come over here and help me." Gee, let me think about that. No. Or the person who whispered "How old are you?" and "Are you a real girl?" In the words of my beloved, "Piss off, and clearly you're not because you called yourself 'Fannyflaps.' Twat."