Under the Rock – #8

This series brings me joy in that the people that I write about bring me joy through laughter, music or film. Sometimes all three. Sometimes a fool can luck his way into being at the right place at the right time in history and will find his/herself surrounded and/or knowing a lot of awesome people. That fool is me. I am an aware fool, though. That makes a difference. I am aware enough to know the luck I have had and the good fortune I seemingly continue to stumble upon.

The more I sit and reflect, the more I realize that most everything that is of import in my life has come to my attention through comedy. Save for my family and friends before I started. Someway, somehow, directly or indirectly all the things I surround my ear hole devices and and eye capturing mechanisms with have come from comedy. For example, I now know someone with a Chaucer tattoo. You read that correctly and I defy you to not want to drop everything and be that person’s best friend for life. Go ahead, I will wait as you try to resist that urge.

This next group of talented artists come to us from the city of Cincinnati. They are to the best of my knowledge not from here originally, but all have convened upon the Queen City for school at Xavier University. They are The Beards of Industry.

The Beards consist of Andrew Short, Reid Faylor and LaMar Ford (if you see him in public you should just yell at the top of your lungs dramatically, “Reggie! Reggie!”). They are technically three people, but one super group of awesome film-making badass-ness. Here is the link to their youtube page.  You can lose yourself on this page and successfully procrastinate from doing tons of work by watching the ridiculousness they birth into this world that needs so much more it. These young and brilliant bastards will be making enjoyable and hilarious things for many years if we’re lucky. I’m sure you’ll hear of them soon enough!

I could list their credits, like winner of the best short film award at the Rooftop Comedy Festival in Aspen this past year from submissions from college students all across the country, a finalist again for the 2010 Festival, and the ability to use a green screen.  The last one is more of a skill, but shit, I do not have any idea of how to even begin to do that – so its impressive to me!  Here are some more of their videos and there is also standup clips online of Reid Faylor and Andrew Short.  Some of my favorites:

Cat Forum

My Roomate

This Year’s “Dear Santa” Letter

I am going to write a Christmas Wish List this year and put in the mail.  I am not kidding.  Why not?  Do I actually believe this will reach the North Pole and get into some mystical, jolly old man’s hands, so he can get to work on fulfilling my deepest wishes?  In short, maybe.  What if Santa is the universe?  I do know one thing for certain, if I do not ask for them, they will certainly never be given to me.  I have never claimed to be the smartest man or even the most clever, but if I can pull this coup off I certainly will be regretting not asking for more important things.  Baby steps.  There are a couple things I could put on this list, but they are too damned personal to post here.  It may seem strange and I may someday add them to the list, but for now let us just pretend that there are some things I need to keep to myself.

I keep these things to myself for the betterment of all of us.  I do not have a problem letting anyone who comes to this website know everything about me, but when other people may be involved, luckily, I know to show a little discretion.  In the hand-written letter I send off the North Pole, I will add some specifics.  The spirit of this whole experiment is to see if in fact, in a world so revolutionized by the internet and spam-bots and money, if I can tap into a place long forgotten in my own mind that contains a little thing called “hope.”  I really hope I get this shit.  I really hope I get some other things, too, that are way to specific too post here and that is what I was trying to write before it all got jumbled up in me trying to be “smart-looking.”  I hate that I use quotes so much.  I will add that to the list:  stop using quotes.

Side note:  Is it inappropriate to ask for a person?  I just read my list and although it is a nondescript and nameless sexy woman, is that wrong?  Anything that starts off general, always ends specific.  I gots me some specifics in mind.

If you would like to join in on the magical spirit of the season, feel free to put your wish list in the comments down below.  Here’s mine:

Dear Santa,

I know it has been awhile since I have written to you.  First of all, my apologies.  I would say that I have been really busy, but we both know that being 33 years old and still sleeping on a futon does not exactly constitute the type of “go-getter” work ethic that would usurp all of my time.  I hope all is well up north with you and Mrs. Claus.  I know you’re probably really looking forward to getting out of the house in a few weeks for your one day of freedom!  Haha!  I kid, I kid.  See?  I’m still like a kid, that’s good, right?

Even though I have gotten a lot older since our last correspondence, my wishes still remain mostly the same.  Things that will make me happy.  I have chosen not to censor myself as we are both adults now. Here is my list in no particular order:

1.  Money

2.  A sexy woman (I said I was older, not wiser or more mature)

3.  A bed

4.  Baseball cards

5.  Posters of my favorite movies

6.  Money

7.  A moped (one that goes at least 45 mph)

8.  Another sexy woman (too much of a good thing?)

That’s pretty much my list.  Pretty shallow and self-serving, right?  Yeah, well it is my wish list.  I could have put “true love” or something along those lines on my list, but I am not sure that I could handle that right now.  I mean, a moped would be enough responsibility, let alone true love.  I should clarify that with the sexy women and the moped entries, mileage is not so important as much as that they still work.  Ok.  Maybe I should add “knowledge” or “maturity” to my list?  Then I would not be able to make a list next year.

I’ve been not so bad this year, Santa.  Please bring me these things.

Love always,

Ryan Jeffrey Jacob Singer – Age 33

Compilation of Christmas Lists

After I finished hanging up the Christmas lights in my room (yes, I am 33 years old and single), I went rummaging through some old boxes of “forget-me-not’s” and childhood memories.  I was astonished at what I found.  My parents had given me a box of some things from my past that I had never actually looked through.  This was quite quite surprising considering what an ego-maniac and self-loving fool I am.

“How could there be things from my past that I had not poured over a hundred times already?  I am so excited to see what I used to think like, look like and be like!” – inner monologue

So, you can imagine the abject joy I felt when I came across a small shoebox with all of my old “Dear Santa Wish Lists.”  I found them to be charming, funny and at times very socially poignant.  It is amazing how over time our wants and wishes can change.  But, the one thing I found after reading through them was that at the end of it all, I am just the same little boy deep down inside that I have always been.  Maybe nature does have the upper hand?

Here are the wish lists I found (some years/ages are missing probably due to them being misplaced by my parents who clearly underestimated my impending importance as future national figure.  They must not have realized that at some point, there will be a Ryan Singer Museum where fans from across the globe and maybe even by the time of my death, Universe will come to see everything about me that they can.  Much like Elvis, but only less drugged and fat at my future death.  Here’s the lists:

Age 5 (1981) – Dear Santa,

I have been good this year and would like GI Joes and race cars.  I love you, Santa.

Age 6 – Dear Santa,

This year I have been really good and want more GI Joes, more than the one you gave me last year please.  Also, a baseball glove.  You’re the best, Santa.

Age 7 – Dear Santa,

Baseball cards, a bike and transformers.  How do you get in our house?  We don’t have a chimney.  I hope you like peanut butter cookies!

Age 9 – Dear Santa,

A puppy, baseball cards, a boombox, and games for the Atari.  Please don’t let me down.  I’ve been so good except for that time I threw my little sister down the stairs, but she asked for it.

Age 10 – Dear Santa,

I think the crayon I wrote last year’s list must have smudged or it got lost in the mail because none of the things I asked you for did you get for me.  I don’t want to sound like a bad kid, but you couldn’t get one?  So here again, a puppy, a boombox and games for the Atari.  You can ask my sister, it was an accident.

Age 11 – Dear Santa,

Is there something you want to tell me?  I guess I shouldn’t be too hard on you as I did get a Walkman, but no boombox.  How am I supposed to tape record myself when I call in to the radio when I don’t have a boombox?  You see my dilemma, right?  I know you’re busy, but according to the old man that lives next door, there aren’t any good kids left so there should be a surplus of puppies going around.  Still waiting on that one.  My friend Doug’s parents got divorced and now he gets like twice as many presents, so could you make my parents get divorced, too?  That would be so cool!

Age 12 – Dear Santa,

I really underestimated you, big guy!  My parents hate each other!  Well done.  I forgive you for the puppy thing from the past few years.  I realize now that I have been really under-cutting the things on my wish list.  No more toys and the like, we’ve got bigger things to tackle now.  I just recently figured out my thingy works and I’m having so much fun with it.  Can you make Carrie Rasor play with it for me?  I really want her to touch it and all day long it is longing to be touched.  I want her to put her mouth on it, too.

Age 13 – Dear Santa,

Is it because I figured out that my thingy works?  No offense, but playing with it is so much more fun than the Atari or staging fake battles in the backyard with GI Joe and Transformers.  And to be honest, at least I know I can count on it.  It is reliable, every morning I know it will be there.  More than I can say about you lately.  Maybe a less noisy mattress would be good to ask for this year?  I’ve really worn this one out, at least in the middle.  I’m not sure you even exist anymore if it makes you feel any better.  Still waiting on that puppy and if you could convince Carrie Rasor to let me know touch her boobs, too that would be great.

Age 14 – Dear Santa,

It is 99% sure you are a sham.  I will admit you getting my parents divorced was quite impressive, but in hindsight, it seems it wasn’t so great.  I never did get the extra presents that my friend Doug got.  My dad said, “There ain’t no Santa and there sure as shit ain’t no god that would let that devil bitch take Christmas away from my kids!”  I’m not sure who exactly the “devil bitch” is, but there has been a lot of talk on the news of some lady named Madonna that is evil.  See if you can’t do something about here or that guy “Reagan” as I hear my dad yelling about him, too, late at night as he cries himself to sleep.

Age 15 – Dear Santa,

Just when I thought you were bullshit, you almost take Reagan out.  I’m impressed with your commitment, not so much your execution though.  Maybe you could help me get laid this year?  All of my friends have by now and I’m the only one still wearing the big “v” on his chest.  And just so you know, the stray dog living in our garage this past summer doesn’t count as the puppy I’ve been asking for all these years.

Age 18 – Dear Santa,

Please get me laid.  This is ridiculous.  Also, as an aside, last year I wrote take away my hurt and pain, not my favorite musician.  I should really pay more attention to my cursive, I guess?  But, the laid thing is really important.

Age 25 – Dear Santa,

I know over the years I haven’t been all the thankful to you, but you can be a real dick.  I ask to get laid and you give me a guy with fake boobs.  Do I really have to be that specific?  I hope that doesn’t automatically put me on the bad list for this year.   Let’s try that again, but this time with a woman.  Thanks.

Age 32 – Dear Santa,

I’ll take whatever I can get, seriously…whatever…whoever.  Love, Ryan.

***Breaking News Update***

My debut album entitled, “How to Get High Without Drugs,” will available on iTunes, rooftopcomedy.com and other digitally enhanced marketplaces starting Dec. 15th’ish.  I will have actual physical copies available for your purchase through this website around the 22nd or 23rd of December.  If you would like to pre-order your own copy and have me sign it a very personal manner to you, please send me an email through the contact form.

Joke Workshop – “Stranger – Phase #1”

This is Phase #1 of this joke/story, meaning it is the beginning of me committing to working it into the act. With the exception of some very random times over the years, this story has not been in my regular stand up routine. It in my opinion has always been “too much” for me to handle. Now, over 8 solid years into doing this, I think it is time for the act to truly reflect the events that have made me who I am today. Over the last 8 years, I have developed a very rudimentary skill set of joke telling and am now ready to take on the challenge of making this work. So, here we begin the journey of working the “Stranger” into the act.

this video contains very adult natured things, please do not watch if you are related to me, think you may be attracted to me in a romantic way or just think you may like me as a person.  There, I warned you.  This is the first video in an online/interactive experiment I am going to embark upon called “Joke Workshop.”

During this series I will be showing you video evidence of a joke that does not work so great when first told and we shall see together if there is any hope of this ever making it into my act.  The challenge here is that I will only be showcasing jokes or stories that are very adult and sordid in nature in an attempt to tell true stories of my life and see if the mainstream audiences can ever hear them without becoming very uncomfortable.  Maybe I am overestimating the limits of what normal people want to hear at a club and this will all seem very tame to you.  If that be the case, hooray!  Because I plan on doing more of them in the future.  Enjoy.  But, remember that I warned you in advance.

Please bear in mind that the video is over 9 minutes long and all of it is true.  This new series will be more up the alley of people who enjoy watching a process of things.  If you only like finished product comedy, this won’t be for you.  And before you judge me, just remember that this kind of thing could happen to any of us.

Feel free to leave comments about what parts you didn’t think or did think were funny so I can have a team of joke writers without having to actually pay anyone.

Co-headlining Go Bananas Christmas Weekend!

I know this is coming out late, but my website shit the bed on me and I have been trying to rebuild it slowly but surely.  In case we are not friends on facebook and you have not been harassed by me on there, I am co-headlining at Go Bananas Comedy Club this weekend with my good friend, Dave Waite.  He is hilarious and the show is hosted by the very funny Nickey Winkelman.

We had a blast on Wednesday night and look to have even more fun on Saturday (2 shows: 8 and 1030) and Sunday night.  Our buddy Tom Bolton made this kickass flyer for the show:

If you bring a canned good and make a reservation, you get half price tickets for Saturday night.  It is a food drive, not for me.  If you do that on Sunday night, you get in for FREE!  What is better than helping people and laughing for free?  Nothing.

As a special added incentive for the Sunday night show, if we sell out the show, I will give everyone a free copy of my new cd entitled, “How To Get High Without Drugs.” By sold out, I mean that the number of free seats available will be no more than I can count on my two hands.  It would be an awesome way to end an awesome weekend.  No pressure.  There just may be an extra special surprise on Sunday night’s show as well.  Hint, hint.

If you came to my cd recording show last month, come on out to get your free copy of the cd that I owe you.  Or email me your address so I can send it to you as a late Christmas present.

Suburban Housewife Rap Video

I directed and played a role as one of the “man posse” members for Sally Brooks aka Suzy Jenkins in this super-rad rap video.  Sally did all the work on this song and I was just fortunate enough to be friends with her and let her let me direct and edit this video for her awesome song that has become and internet sensation amongst people who like funny shit and a ton of housewives all over the world.  Check out here new songs and videos coming direct to us from overseas as she hangs out in Hungary for a few more months.  Special thanks to all the man posse members:  Mike Cody, Ryan Fhol, Alex Stone, Dave Waite, Reid Faylor, and Mike Kurtz.

Here’s the one I helped out with…

Studebaker Pie – the entire series

What is Studebaker Pie? No one can know for sure, but people have their allegiances to it and against it. Some claim it is evil, while others claim it is an agent of love. One thing is for certain, it keeps the people in the town of Bedroomia on their toes. Written, Directed and Edited by Ryan Singer.

Pilot Episode

Episode #2 – “Answers”

Episode #3 – “Clarity”

Episode #4 – “Reckoning”

Episode #5 – “Night”

Series Finale – “My Child”

Under the Rock – #6

Living under the rock does not mean that there is not the pinnacle of perfection that can be achieved, the ultimate of the art form.  In fact, some people or artists may argue that only under the rock, out of popular culture’s not so discerning eye and away from the corporate machines that peddle and push what is “cool” or “hot” can one achieve such a state.  I am not here to argue whether or not “pop comedy” is a good or bad thing, but only to try and shed some light on artists that bring me joy and even take me to a level of bliss that is so intoxicating I forget I am even there, in a club, totally unaware of my own reactions.  My body is flailing and my laugh is without the restrictions that as a child I would have considered embarrassing.

I can gush all I want here because I know the people I am writing about this week most likely will not read this and even if they did, it is something I would or already have told them to their faces.  They cause that inner turmoil any performer feels when they see something done so damned well that they are inspired to become greater themselves and also to question their own merit, “What am I even doing this for?  I cannot do it any better than they already are!”  And so we have the next two creatures that not only live under the rock, they just might be its inhabitants’ leaders.

Robert Hawkins –  Robert is everything and more that most comedians strive to be…incredibly funny, all the time.  One of my best friends in comedy and former “Under the Rock” comedians said it best about him, “Is he ever not funny?  He is the one guy that is consistently funny all the time, no matter what is going on.”  And he was never more right.  If you do not navigate within the circles of comedy you may not know who Robert Hawkins is and that is not only a shame, it is huge comedy crime.  If you are a young comedian and you are reading this and do not know who he is…stop reading and click this link now!  Think of it like this, if you like pizza, beer, candy and ice cream, Hawkins will make you a comedy pizza made of beer, candy and ice cream.  And you will be hungry for me after it is over.  Seeing him live is the only way to truly appreciate the frenzy of his words and you will not pick up on all the funny until you see him over and over and over again.  I have never asked for your trust before, but you can trust me on this one.  Oh, and his latest cd is free for download on his website.

Henry Phillips –  If you like music and do not even try to tell me you do not or you are a robot.  You will have to see Henry live and in action.  There are comedians out there who say that, “guitar comics are hacky!” or “guitar comics aren’t comics!” blah blah blah blah.  These are guys or gals who have no idea of which they are speaking first of all and secondly, have never seen Henry Phillips live.  Just as in any art form there a good examples and bad examples of how it is done.  Henry is the ultimate example of how to do it great.  There is nothing but originality that spews from his guitar and his mouth for that matter.  Imagine you were watching VH1’s Storytellers and it was hilarious.  That is the best way I can think of to sum up his show.  He much like Robert Hawkins lives under the rock with such a sterling reputation and held in high admiration by any and all who occupy this dimension of comedy.  You find me someone who does not like Henry Phillips’ comedy and/or him as a person and I will show you someone I would never hang out with or be around without a loaded pistol held to my head.  He is king and ruler of original guitar style stand up comedy.  I’m not saying he invented it, but I am saying he is the best in the business today and that is saying something considering there are other great ones out there.

Why I Do Not Go to Laundromats

Many single people who live in an apartment or condo go to the laundromat to do their laundry.  Hell, there are even comedy shows at some in some of the bigger cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco.  I used to be one of those people, but no longer.  In fact, I am quite afraid of doing so.

When I was still in college at Wright State University and living alone in a studio apartment in Dayton, OH, I frequented a laundromat down the street.  This was an interesting time in my life, the year was 2002.  I had begun doing stand up comedy again after a three year, crazy religious melt-down, studying social work, going to hell because I was so selfish hiatus.  After I came out of the haze of over zealousness, I took to the stage again via an improv group I had almost accidentally joined in town.  After our first show at Wiley’s Comedy Club in downtown Dayton, I realized I did not like sharing the stage with other people that much and the original dream of being a stand up comedian that I had buried under post apocalyptic end times fears had been rekindled.

I would like to say that I am completely over this ultra-whacked out phase and have moved on from feeling like Jesus is coming back at the softest breeze ruffling through the leaves of trees in an eery way on a dark pre-storm afternoon, but I would be lying.  If mother nature catches me walking outside, alone or even at the darkest of night and pieces of trash blow by me in a sneaky way, my first reaction is to go to the Our Father prayer in case this really is the moment where all hell literally breaks loose.

Funny thing about being raised Catholic and having a grandmother that fills your head with premonitions of the great battle of good versus evil that will DEFINITELY take place during her lifetime (she will not tell her age to this day, even to her children, but suffice to say mid 80’s is accurate) is that you live the rest of your life walking on egg shells.  Not just ordinary egg shells, either.  These are egg shells comprised of every single sin, big or small, mortal or venial I have ever committed in my lifetime.  Not even ballet shoes made of love and forgiveness can dance around those.

I remember for a time I could not even leave the bedroom in my house for fear of sinning.  I just knew that if I left the house I would sin and that is when Jesus would decide to come back, right at that moment and catch me mid-sin and then I would burn for eternity.  If this sounds crazy, it is because it is.  Only problem was that at the time it was more real than anything I could see or touch.  And I was doing a lot of touching, which only made it worse.

One time in particular stands out to me as the darkest moment of my enlightenment period.  I was lying in bed, Bible by my side and as I stared at the ceiling a car was driving down the road.  The headlights of the car shone through the trees in my front yard and cast a moving shadow across my dark rooms walls.  I was so deep into my own mind of being a sinner and having spent so much time attempting to be famous and selfish that I did not see the shadow of leaves and branches on my bedroom wall,  I saw the demons from the movie “Ghost” coming to take my soul to hell.  I was paralyzed in fear and could feel my soul being sucked down from my body into the depths of hell at that very moment.  I could not scream as I was out of breath.  I knew at that very moment that I would spend an eternity paying for horrible sins.  This lasted for about thirty seconds before it passed.

Once it did pass, I wiped the tears from my face and grasped the Bible laying next to me with what most people would consider to be a death grip, but I am not so strong or tough as most, so it was more like a grasp of a four year old child tugging at your pant leg to try and show you something in the next room.  I took the Bible and hurled it against the wall.  I had reached by breaking point.  The purpose of religion in people’s lives is like a puppy or cat, to add enjoyment.  It had become a burden, religion paralyzed me from living.  I would not go to the grocery store to buy food because I thought that I would see a beautiful married woman and want to fuck her in my mind, mortal sin.  I was taught growing up that to think of committing a sin was just as bad as committing it.

We all have our breaking points with things and thankfully, I had reached mine with religion.  I turned on the lights in my room and splashed some water on my face in the bathroom.  I immediately called an old high school friend and went to a bar for some drinks.  It was the most awkward night out I have ever had, which is saying something.  I had forgotten how to talk to people, be around people in general.  I was a complete weirdo.  But, I was committed to getting some kind of normalcy in my life back, so I continued to go out and try to leave behind this fear of being alive and thinking that Jesus was just one turn of the corner away from standing in front of me with a sad and disapointed look on his face.

I should note also that as a very young child I was at the very least delusional due to all the things “Grandma Jesus” had told me.  I believed I was the next chosen leader of God.  In my six year old mind it went Moses – Jesus – Ryan Singer, from Dayton, Ohio.  So, as you can imagine the reverse indoctrination process was a long one and still continues to this day.  This is what I was dealing with and doing before I got back into stand up comedy.

Back to the point, I was headed out on another seemingly bland night to do laundry at my local spot.  I was taking Kung Fu lessons at the time, working full time as a waiter and going to school full time as well.  I gathered up my dirty things and my backpack with homework and headed out, it was about 10:30 at night.  I always like to do anything in public places at night, less people.  As I had hoped, I was the only one there at this small little joint.  I put my clothes in the washers and got to reading by text book on 18th century British Literature.  Time passed somewhat quickly as it always does when reading such a mind-grabbing book.

I put my clothes in one dryer to try to save on quarters.  I sat back down.  Then he walked in.  The laundromat was very small, about the size of a school classroom.  It was on the corner of two not so busy streets and I was sitting in a chair up against the far wall that gave me a view of the intersection outside.  There was a view because the front of the building as comprised almost entirely of windows, like one of those television walls you see in the Sports Bet sections of a casino in Vegas.  It was more than easy to see almost everything happening inside if you were driving by, even though few cars would be at Tuesday night at 11 pm.

The guy who came in seemed about my age, mid-twenties and proceeded to walk up to the washers and dryers directly adjacent to the ones I had and was using.  I know there is not a book about laundromat ettiquete, but if there was it would say on the first page, “when entering a laundromat with only one other person there, use the machines as far away as possible from that person as to not cause uncomfortable situations.”  There were a row of washers and dryers stacked atop of one another that ran down the middle of the room, effectively halving off the space.  He did not read the ettiquete book.

I paid little attention to him as I was engrossed in reading about Heidegger and the likes.  It should also be noted that when I sit in a chair, I sit the most comfortable way possible, with my top crossing leg snuggly over my resting leg.  Many men consider this to be “feminine” or argue that “my balls are too big to be comfortable like that.”  I politely disagree with you, Mr. Big Balls.  So, this may have sent out the wrong impression to the guy who came inside.  That is when I heard it.

“Ooops!  Not again!” He exclaimed.  “What am I going to do?”

I will admit that this piqued my curiosity, but I marched on with my reading not lifting my eyes even the slightest bit.  You know how you have peripheral vision on the sides of your eyes?  Well, you also have it up and down, too.  So, even as I was reading I could see the basic image of him standing in front and slightly to left of me – about six feet away.  Now, the tension and anxiety I am feeling is being raised exponentially.  What the hell is talking about, oops?  Then he begins to mutter some things that kind of sounded like this:

“I guess I’ll just do this.  I’m going to have to.”

After he mutters these words, I cannot believe, will not allow myself to believe what it is I think I am peripherally seeing.  It would appear and kind of sound like he is disrobing.  Taking his clothes off.  I refuse to let myself believe it.  Why would he do that?  The whole wall is windows and anyone driving by could see.  I think there is no way he could be doing that.  But, just in case, I pretend to keep reading but in my mind I am going over my first three Kung Fu moves that I will use on him in case he tries to nakedly beat me up and/or rape me.  What seems like twenty minutes passes, but I am sure it was probably not even a minute and he is still fidgeting around and what was once a peripherally dark image has become very pale.  This was my second hint that he probably had taken his clothes off.

I still have not been able to make myself look at this point.  No person in their right mind would get naked at a laundromat.  My anxiety is translating into shaky hands and and increased heart rate.  “I am going to have beat the shit out of this naked guy,” is what I keep thinking.  I have never been in a fight before, let alone with a naked guy.  Then he takes a couple steps toward me.  This can’t be happening.  “Stand up, throat jab, knee to the head, elbow to the back,” those are my three moves locked in the chamber and ready to fire.  And then he speaks:

“What you reading there?”

What kind of fucking question is that?  First of all, don’t talk to me when you’re clothed let alone naked.  Secondly, it was a huge text book with the title written in huge letters on the cover, it is obvious!  I try to play it cool:

“Just something for school.”

I thought this might be enough to get him away from me as I said it my best dickhead voice, short, stern and deep.  You know, to let him know that I am a man that could kill him if I needed to.  It did not work.

“You got anything I could read?”  He asks.

This is when I look up.  All of my fears realized.  He is COMPLETELY naked.  Aboslutely nothing to cover his everything.  Sidenote:  he was in desperate need to invest in some clippers.  After the initial shock wears off, which luckily only took about a second or two, I realized I needed to go big or go home.  I spread my peacock (bad choice of words) feathers and puffed my chest out and lowered my voice as deep as it would go:

“What the hell are you doing?!  You’re naked!  You’re at a laundromat in public!”

“I…I’m…I spilled on my clothes and had to put them in the wash-”

“I don’t give a fuck what you did!  I don’t know who you think you are or who you think I am, but I will fucking destroy you!”  (I’m really hoping he will buy my bluff at his point so I do not get sexually assaulted)

“Wha?  I…uh…I…”

“I don’t think you heard me!  Get the fuck out of my face or I will fucking destroy you!!!”

At this last threat of destroying him, he becomes very scared and makes a quick move to turn and run away.  As he runs by the table where people fold clothes and place their detergent, he grabs a box of Tide and uses it to cover his ass as he runs outside.  Two things:  first of all, why are you covering your ass when you just put your junk within three feet of my face?  And secondly, if you spill dry detergent on yourself, you can just wipe it off!  His whole premise was flawed in needing to get naked in the first place.  I do not go home and change when I drop the candy Nerds on my shirt and/or pants or get naked.

I immediately stood up, shaking almost uncontrollably.  I grabbed my still wet clothes out of the dryer and stuffed them into my laundry bag and packed up my books as quickly as possible, like I was trying to get as much money out of the vault before the cops showed up.  I braced myself for the walk outside and jogged to my car and sped off like that one guy from that one classic rock song that gets a flat tire down south and has to go into some bar where they do not like hippies with long hair or gay dudes.  When I saw he was naked, that was the moment my hat came off and the racist rednecks saw my long hair, luckily for both of us the bluffs we used worked.

I got home and still could not believe what had happened.  For a moment, just a moment I felt kind of bad for the guy.  Maybe this was his “coming out” party and did not know he could just go to a gay bar and get laid by just being there?  He had spent months working up the courage to come out and the only way he could think of diving into the world of gay sex was to expose himself to a stranger in a public place and hope it worked.  We’ve all been there, right?  But, then I thought that it might not have been his first time doing this.  Maybe it has worked for him before?  I have heard, like we all have the truck stops are havens for gay sex, but I have never heard of the laundromat being one.  Fill in your litany of predictable jokes here.

I felt so strange when I got home.  I actually felt like I had been assaulted sexually.  I know I was not really, but it still felt that way, so I called the non-emergency police line.  This is exactly how the conversation went, I will never forget it:

“Dayton Police Department”

“Hi, I would like to report a man exposing himself in public.”

“Your name, please?”

<I will spare you the boring details part here>

“So, I was doing laundry alone at the laundromat and this guy came in and just got naked in front of me.  He asked to borrow a book and I yelled at him and ran out.”

“When did this happen, sir?”

“Within the last 10 minutes.  He is sitting in his car naked as we speak probably because his clothes are still in the washer.”
“Can you describe the man?”

“Yeah, he’s the only guy at the laundromat without ANY CLOTHES ON!”

“Sir, can you describe him please?”

“He’s naked!  He’s a naked white guy with brown hair.  Brown hair all over!”

“Okay, sir.  We’ll look into it.”


That is why I will not go to laundromats anymore and still hesitate to leave the house.  Even when I try to live a clean life, clothes or otherwise, it always ends up dirty.

Under the Rock – #5

Here are some more hilarious freaks with awesomeness to digest.  At least one of this week’s comedians is by a lot of standards, pretty successful already.  Nonetheless, I would argue that he is NOT mainstream and well known by the masses even though his hilarity is boundless.

One of the joys, if not the biggest joy of this job is getting to hang out with some of my heroes and idols.  The performane aspect is what I strive to get right, but the sense of being a part of the comedy community is the real payoff, at least for me.  Each weekend I am out working somewhere, I try to have at least one moment where I am completely aware of just how lucky I am to be doing this.  Sometimes that moment is a lot easier to come by than others.  It is extremely easy to have thousands of those moments when I am working with someone who absolutely hilarious and live under the rock.  The first guy is just one of those guys…

Eddie Gossling –  here is a guy that will make you laugh your ass off every show, all weekend long.  I do not care if you are one of the most jaded comedy fans under the sun, I dare you to try not to laugh at Eddie.  He is currently working on the Comedy Central show Tosh.0 and so far, so great.  Here’s his website that has all kinds of goodness on it.  He’s got a bunch of clips up at rooftopcomedy.com.  I have had the pleasure of working with Eddie and the one of the many things you can gleem from his act is that no show, no audience is below getting some damned great comedy.  It is only a matter of time before he has a place in the mainstream eye and I am convinced that his already substantial career has only gotten started.

Mike MacRae –  is the pre-eminent impressionist of our time, my time I think anyways.  There are a few other people out there doing impressions, but my generation has one guy who has been doing unique impressions long before other people jump on certain character bandwagons and its Mike.  He ranges all the way from the most unique interactions between Ozzy Osbourne and Peter O’Toole ordering a pizza to a magical journey of Fox News characters.  Trust me when I say that nobody is doing this kind of stuff.  Throw on top of all this that he is a hell of a guy and damned good joke writer even when impressions are not involved.  He has the best Roe v. Wade joke you will ever hear…period.  The cherry on the sundae is that I locked us out of a condo after midnight with no shoes, no cell phones and no wallets and he did not lose his mind.  Check him out now, fools!