It’s Alive! …no, wait it’s downloading.

14 Jan

FrankenComputer

Behold, my Frankencomputer!

I received it as hand-me-down from a friend of a friend a couple Christmases ago. The touch pad immediately stopped working, so I bought a trackball. The trackball just gave out last month, and it was a nice one, so I downgraded and bought an inexpensive wireless mouse.

The battery stopped holding a charge a few months ago, so I replaced that right quick. It still wouldn’t charge up, though, so I also had to get a new power adapter. That lasted about a week, because it was a cheap rip-off brand. I splurged on a new power adapter kit from MicroCenter, and it works like a charm (also has a spare USB port on it so I can charge up my phone without using an extra outlet!).

Finally, the keyboard started to get…mushy? Sticky? Unresponsive? I had to type really slow like someone who’s never seen a keyboard before, basically. Last night a friend gifted me a spare keyboard, and I have attached it with Velcro strips. That way, I can remove it when I’m done and close the laptop.

In short, I cannot WAIT to get to LA, find some real work, and save up for a nice, new computer!

David Says Yes

1 Jan

DavidSaysYesThere’s an old superstition amongst showbiz folks that if you perform on New Year’s Eve, you’ll perform all year. I learned this from my producer about three years ago, when I performed with The Improv Trick at a First Night show at the Grandel Theatre in St. Louis. It was one of the best shows I was ever in, and that year proved to be one of the best creatively I’d ever had, ending with me directing my first graduating Intro to Improv class to a packed house at our annual Christmas Jam.

When the St. Louis branch of The Trick closed its doors, I dropped out of the scene and went back to more solitary, introverted forms of creativity. Then, even that dropped off. Now, after a long, boring year of serving coffee for a living, I’m packing it up and moving to L.A.

I figure if I’m going to be broke and working at Starbucks, I might as well do it in a town that has more opportunities for someone like me.

Last night, I rang in the New Year with The Improv Shop. After closing up the coffee place, I hurried down the street just in time to join in the end of the short form jam. I haven’t been on stage in…gosh, I can’t even think how long…but I remembered my producer’s words to me at that New Year’s show, and I wanted to get up there. The last game was a joke round, as per tradition, so anyone can join who wants to.

The mantra of improv is, “Yes, and…” Accepting whatever suggestion you get without judgment or reservation and then adding to it to see where it takes you, is the basic idea behind even the most advanced and complex improv scene. I crowded up on stage with about two dozen other people, and after a few suggestions from the audience, I was still drawing blanks. I got one idea, hesitated, then heard someone else use it. The next idea I had I went with and hopped out front to center stage.

I told a couple jokes, and one even got a laugh. And that was enough. David the Barista became David the Comedian and stepped out there like he’d never even left.

Our best moment came when we started a running gag of interrupting one of our improvisors who was on crutches and took too long to get up front. It was one of those beautiful moments where the joke you thought you were going to do gets abandoned in favor of something completely different and much, much funnier. Everyone joined in on the game, and even though I didn’t know most of the people on stage that night, the simple task of “Yes-anding” the gag was enough to help turn a simple gag into a grand finale.

It felt right, like slipping back into an old job after a long vacation and realizing you still remember exactly how everything goes.

A handful of my old pals from my Improv Trick days were there, and I toasted with them and snapped a picture for old times’ sake. The Trick is still carrying the torch in L.A., and I’ll be hitting them up when I get there. Less than a month now.

Yes, and…indeed.