As I prepare for my forthcoming stand up gig on Monday I'm facing a few dilemmas. Firstly I'm going to read out a letter I wrote to my local newspaper about Jamie Oliver, the full version of which I once sent in to Viz Magazine. It goes like this:
I notice that Jamie Oliver has started using members of his own family in some of those adverts he does for Sainsburys. What I want to know is this: are those actors or actual members of his family. If they're actors I think it's pretty bad form him diddling memebers of his own kith and kin out of a bit of easy money. If they're actual family members, that's a bit rich isn't it, stealing jobs off hardworking poorly paid thespians. Either way I think it's clear that he's a c#nt.
I thought it would be funnier to pull out a letter and read out the following:
It has come to my attention recently that Jamie Oliver is a c#nt.
Now though, I'm wondering if I should do the longer version as it'll use up more stage time. The idea of the forthcoming gig is that you need to do 5 minutes and then you have "Beat The Frog". I think I've got a good solid five minutes but whenever I read it to myself it's coming short by about a minute. Also, I've left my weakest material until the end. Here's where I come to dilemma number two.
I've got two jokes, both of them pretty weak. One of them isn't really a joke, it's a concept:
I think I've worked out why modern art is good.
All good art comes from a place deep inside you.
That's why modern art is sh#t.
Sh#t comes from deep inside you.
So, the best possible work of modern art would be a big steaming sh#t.
Now, you may do that and then think, "ah that's not very good".
Then you might try and tart it up with a little pair of glasses and a nice little shirt.
Then you'd go "there, that looks better, a little poo poo person".
But you'd be wrong.
It'd be a bit good and that would compromise the sh#te's artistic asthetic.
You'd have sold out.
It'd need to be a pure poo, uncontaminated by your stupid whims.
That will take me up to five minutes. But it's a bit odd and proabably wouldn't go down to well in one of the toughest gong nights in the North of England. That said, my other piece of material which I might do instead is the piece which got me booed off stage at Sheffield's Lescar Comedy Club. It's the infamous "Knock Knock Joke". The idea is that you kick off by berrating the audience after explaining you're going to do a "knock knock joke" for them.
Now don't f#ck up and get this wrong right?
There's no chance I can get this wrong.
I've been practicing it all night.
If anyone's going to f#ck this up it'll be you lot by not laughing in the right place...
Right, so, it's a "knock knock joke", you do know how they work don't you?
I'll go "knock knock" and then you all go ...
(...usually after a delay...) "WHO'S THERE?"
Good, bit slow.
I know you're all going to f#ck this up.
I don't even know why I'm doing it for you.
Right! Knock knock.
Oh f#ck. (look confused) Erm..
Now, to me, that's the funniest f#cking joke in the world. When I did it at The Lescar I delivered it so badly that my flatmate of about 5 years actually said to me: "Mate, you realise you DID get that joke wrong don't you?". He wasn't joking. He actually thought I'd f#cked it up. No wonder the audience booed me. Still, I'm torn as to which bit I should do.
a) The extra Oliver bit, it lack obvious laugh points but doing it so early on in my set will extend the time I get onstage and mean I don't have to do the more risky stuff later on.
b) The little poo person bit, that's a bit of a sloppy bit which also suffers from a lack of obvious punchlines.
c) "The Knock Knock Joke", which actually worked once in London years ago but went incredibly badly last time I tried it.
Post a suggestion in the comments bit underneath. Or, if you've not got overzealous ad blocking software on your browser you can vote here:
That way I can blame or praise you when it goes either badly or well.