Anna Phillips Comedy

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Those Who Can, Do...

Posted by annadreambig on July 11, 2012 at 2:25 AM

I'm beginning to think in comedy that those who can, do and those who can't, don't do it. No, please, I am begging you, don't do it! It's painful to watch. I'm not trying to be a smartass. Really I am not even sure what category I fall into yet. But this thought usually comes up when I hear the countless rape, abortion, racist, feces, etc. jokes that just don't seem funny at all.

Everyone has their own tastes and judging a form of art can be tricky. That's why I hate competitions for something as subjective as stand up comedy. And that's pretty much what this post is about.

There are a few comedy contests going on and yes I'm partaking in at least one of them. Why? I don't know really. I have absolutely no chance of winning the one I chose to enter. For one thing, it's in another city 1.5 hours away from mine. For another thing, there are over 100 other comics competing and at least 20 of them are really, really good, polished, ready to go pro. And more importantly I am not the competitive type.

I spoke to a few comics who didn't make it and they took the loss in various ways. Some people got really upset and questioned the universe and their existence (practically), while some shrugged their shoulders and moved on.

I am not afraid to compete, I just don't care about winning. I think if I was able to do the contest in the city I actually live in I could get pretty far since bringing a large audience to support and vote for you does have an impact on your standing in the competition. I could probably get people to come out, but maybe it wouldn't feel right. I'd probably always question a win by votes from my friends.

I love going up in front of audiences I have never met before in my life. I did it twice in Boston earlier this year and it was oh so nice. Terrifying, but nice.

The reason I'm entering a contest is because I get to see comedians I like from all over the area, that I've met over the past two years. I love seeing people feel good when they move on into the next round. I also want to do better than I did last year in the same competition. I moved on to the second round and had to drop out for the gig of a lifetime, a golden opportunity, I should say. (I wouldn't have won anyway.) But I'm not talking about getting further in the competiton; I'm talking about having a better set than I did last year. Because if not, if I haven't made any progress in a year, what's the point?

In the first round I'm competing in on Sunday I've decided to do old jokes that I've worked on through repetition and rewriting on stage. I'm not sure who the judges will be and if they've heard my stuff before and think I should do newer material but I really have to perform for me. Much like I'm writing this blog for myself, since no one else will read it and because I'm bored at work.


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