How long does rush hour actually last for now? Its not merely an hour, and I think the name now poses some sort of false hope that within 60 minutes you will be freely racing around the city as though you were the only car in the world. In fact, what happens when the initial rush hour period finishes is that another one appears to start almost immediately, blending into the first. This then concurrently happens over the next 12 hours until at about 9 o’clock at night you can finally get out of first gear. Unless you are on the M25 in which case you will be stuck in timeless traffic for eternity. Its just taken me 3 hours to drop my brother at Heathrow airport and come home. I was doing the lovely brotherly gesture so he could get on his way to his holiday in the US, while I selflessly drive home to a slightly cloudy Finsbury Park. I actually don’t mind and I’m often pleased to drop people off on holiday. Its picking them up when they come back that I hate. ‘I’m so tired’ they always say, even though they’ve been on holiday and have no tiredness rights whatsoever. They should be rested and full of energy. I am the one who is tired, after having been busy and then taking time out to drive to the airport and pick you up, all tanned and happy. Wow this has made me angrier than I thought. No wonder airport cabbies are always angry and/or racist. Think maybe I need a holiday of some sort. Then someone else can pick me up and get miserable.
Last night’s Fat Tuesday on a Wednesday was great. Well nearly great. The room was full of lovely people and general excitement due to our guest appearance from Al Murray. Tom Craine went on first and had a great preview. Its a great debut hour and just means there is some other funny bastard I have to compete with in the Edinburgh mayhem. I’ll spike his squash ball next time we play out of vengeance. I’m not sure how you spike a squash ball. Maybe just actually put spikes in it. This could be a little much perhaps. Then in the second half Al went on, recreating his 1996 show for his run of classic shows at this year’s Fringe. I think Al’s ace and so sharp its ridiculous, and most of the crowd thought so too. Except for a couple at the front. Out of 80 people, two right at the front, were miserable. Not only were they miserable, but they were heckly with the miserable, by questioning several things Al said. Things like his comment on how we ‘conquered Germany in World War II’. They felt it necessary to point out that we didn’t ‘conquer’ them, completely missing the fact that Al is a character comedian and makes all these comments ‘in character’, They eventually got rather annoyed at Al’s gags and left, at which point the rest of the audience felt relieved and really enjoyed the rest of the show. It made me realise how odd it is when people don’t get the idea of a character comic. Or in fact any comedian. I’ve seen it happen where a crowd has got upset at what an act is saying without really listening to the act, the tone they are saying it in, or waiting for the punchline to follow that actually sets the opinion of the piece. When Richard Herring did FT a few weeks ago and did his new stuff about the BNP (which is hilarious), there was a large part of the crowd laughing with him, knowing he was taking the piss. But then there were a few people who totally didn’t get the joke and thought he was being fascistic. It makes me wonder if people should be intelligence checked before they buy their tickets. Or on second thoughts, after they buy their tickets. If they are unable to discern reality from comments made for the purposes of comedy then perhaps they should stay at home and watch video footage of CCTV cameras staring at a wall.
I’m not gigging tonight. Instead I’m going to have some drinks and grub with my three best mates, Mat, Stefan and Sam. The four of us have collectively been mates for about 11 years now, with me knowing Mat for 13 years and Sam and Stefan knowing each other for so long if past lives existed they probably hung out as samurais, or snails. We met after getting cast in a musical at Edmonton theatre that no one likes to mention anymore. As I said, I won’t mention it. We’ve all been best mates ever since but time constraints mean that we rarely get to meet up all at once. Sam does computery things and acting stuff, which is pretty much day and nighttime taken up; Stef does filming and writing stuff which takes away all his sociable hours; I have my unsociable job and Mat pretends to turn up to work every now and then and plays a lot of Xbox. So to rectify this, we have booked a day in the diary (ie today) where we are going to sit in Mat’s garden and have some beer and play Guitar Hero until someone makes us stop. Probably our respective girlfriends. I’m seriously looking forward to general chat about lives, what a dick Michael Bay is, and how much we can all insult Mat over an evening. Its been a while but I reckon quite a lot.