Entertainers never tire of compliments. Sure, many are are generic or perfunctory, typically “Good show.” But in the main, compliments, rote or otherwise, are sincere expressions of appreciation.
But from time to time I receive a compliment that really brings home the good I do not only as a comedian but as a man. The compliment goes like this: “I really needed to laugh tonight.”
There’s a moral dimension to comedy. People have problems and many people have serious problems. And many of those people are in the audience. I find it useful to remind myself that doing a good show means I’m doing good.
It’s easy to get bogged down in the details of doing the best show possible: reading the audience, adapting the show, not to mention flights, logistics and technical challenges. These and many more details go into making people laugh. Delivering the bang for your clients’ buck is, after all, what pays the bills.
But as a comedian I find it a useful reminder that people don’t just want to laugh – they *need* to laugh.
Amen, David! We need to “have fun”, and you obviously enjoy “making it fun”. Keep on keeping on, my friend.
Thank you, Nancy.
They say laughter is the best medicine, but I wouldn’t rely on it in emergency situations…but seriously folks. We are doing good when we join a random sampling of strangers in laughter or unite a corporate audience or church congregation through comedy. It’s an intimate experience to laugh as a crowd. It’s like sharing a meal; the strangers now all have one thing in common. Humans need to laugh, and we need commonality to unite. Keep it up.
Thank you for your comments, Stephen, and I agree one hundred percent.