Tue, Apr 19
The Comedians of Comedy 2005 Spring Tour:
@ 12:00 AM
Three Weeks Of Fabulous Hotel Rooms
I left home on March 31st, and I don't get home until Sunday, April 24th. And I don't even have to drop a ring into a fucking volcano. What am I thinking?
What happened was, a bunch of really cool stuff got dropped in my lap right on top of one another. A groovy benefit show in S.F. on the 1st, a lucrative Vegas one-nighter on the 2nd, a fun week at Caroline's in New York April 7th through the 10th, and then the 3rd Comedians of Comedy tour April 15th through the 23rd.
I can't say no to any of that shit.
I was going to keep one of those daily tour diaries, but it's hard to write lucidly (or even get the fuel to st-st-st-START in the first place) when you've had Hotel Sleep. Hotel Sleep is like sleep leached of the depth, flavor and function of sleep. If sleep had a taste, and you could replace that taste with the taste you get when you bite town on tin foil, that'd be Hotel Sleep.
So, I'm writing this in Tallahassee, after one of the best shows of my career—all of us scorched the earth—and instead of being at Waterworks and getting free drinks and spittle-flecked conversation about comic books from fans, I thought I'd update you, my electronic brothers and sisters.
Also, I'm saving up to drink hard in Gainesville tomorrow night.
First, let's go through all the random-thoughts shit from April 1st through the 16th:
THE MAGNOLIA AWARD FOR MOST BAFFLING FILM I'VE EVER SHOT: A five-minute unbroken shot of me distorting my face for a McSweeney's video, which I've been assured "fits into the narrative".
HIPPEST GREEN ROOM AWARD Backstage at the Everett Middle School on April 1st, with an actual raw ginger root for shredding into hot tea, as well as an organic tea sampler.
MOST ENCOURAGING FOR MIDDLE SCHOOLERS/LEAST ENCOURAGING TO 36 YEAR-OLDS BULLETIN BOARD Again, backstage at the Everett Middle School: "Are You Strong Enough To Do What You Want To Do?"
HOPE FOR VEGAS AWARD "Maggie's Farm" on The Palms Casino sound system.
THE ONGOING COME HERE/GO AWAY MANHATTAN AWARD To Manhattan, which offered me these paradoxes:
Bob Saget coming in for a "guest set" on my sold-out Saturday late show at Caroline's, cursing for five minutes, and then disappearing while the happy tourists applauded, getting ready to be disappointed by me.
Tea and Sympathy in The Village giving me food poisoning.
The "whatever/whenever" department at The W on Lex refusing to bring me Pedialyte from the Duane Reade down the street when I was puking my soul out, but offering to send up Green Day's new CD.
The audience at Carson Daly applauding wildly when I compared Bush to Hitler, then cheering even louder when they hear Toby Keith's going to be on the show next week.
Being interviewed by the Bravo network about superheros while visibly drunk.
BEST NEW RESTAURANT IN PATTON OSWALT'S UNIVERSE AWARD: Veritas on 20th, which let me in wearing a T-shirt and jeans, and treated me like a big shot.
That pretty much wraps up S.F., Vegas, and New York, leading up to the early early morning of Friday the 15th. Five radio interviews before I leave for the airport, culminating in a New Orleans deejay who angrily slams the phone in my ear when I refuse to recite my bits. Bad portents.
BLUE HIPSTERS IN RED STATES I always feel weird when I travel through the so-called "flyover" states with my supposedly "hip" friends, 'cuz we all become such a living cliché—oo, look at the goofy T-shirt, Holy crap, look at the size of those crosses! Listen to these monkeys on the radio! But I think it comes out of fear. All of us on the tour—Zach, Brian, Dave and especially me—came very close to being trapped in a small town, married too young, never traveling and scamming the world into letting us sleep until noon.
Houston is a good reminder to anyone—and I'm talking to you, Darfur refugees!—that there's always a crappier place than where you're living. You hear me, Brazilian street children? I mean, there's always a level below yours. Okay, maggots living inside the festering bunghole of a dead crack whore?
Okay, it's not that bad. A crack whore's bunghole doesn't have a Starbucks, for starters. Houston was the first night of the tour—Friday, April 15th. Mary Jane's Fat Cat, which I think is two drug references, an archaic slang term for oral sex, and probably three trucker euphemisms for getting a rim job after a bacon and cheese taquito.
The place was packed. It reminded me of the theater in ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK. People peed outside, drunks yelled heckles that didn't even come within spitting distance of rationality. One heckler said something that sounded like "jappacunt" but leave in only the vowels.
It was great. My clothes still smell like cigarettes. Now, old bowling players want to fuck me.
We ended up at a place called Late Night Pies with a great jukebox, cheap beer and really yummy pizza. A girl said I reminded her of someone, someone who was a "really nice guy". I thanked her and then, twenty seconds later, she was back in my face, screaming at me, saying, "You knew you were on TV the whole goddamn time and didn't tell me! I'm going out and then coming back to kick your dick in!" She peeled off with a friend in a pickup truck, and I was worried until someone pointed out at me that she was one of those grind-the-clutch blackout drunks, who are sugar 'n' spice on one side of the coin, and piss 'n' punching on the other. "She never comes back" they said, setting our delicious pizza down.
On the trip to New Orleans we stopped at my personal shrine, the Waffle House. The waitress wore a button that said, "I'm Number 2!" We asked who Number One was. "My customers!" she chirped. We all hung our heads a little, realizing that without true, uncomplaining, idealistic labor like hers, this entire country would burn to the ground, leaving only cockroaches and coyotes, all of who speak Japanese. We bitch when the right kind of Doritos aren't in the green room. We were all super-nice to her and staff, and left big big tips. You think George Bush wears an "I'm Number 2" button? Fuck no. Well, he does, but it's a picture of Jesus saying it while looking in awe at George.
Saturday the 16th was New Orleans—a show so sold out they had to move us to a bigger room and it was still packed. Goddamn, that was fun. People bought me powerful, all-business drinks, and then I stumbled up to the Foundation Room.
Here's where the whole "hipsters deigning to hang with the common folk" lie imploded. We'd all of us—me, Brian, Zach and Dave—just done scorching, airtight sets about the coming Dark Age, the lack of integrity and hope and how we're the only ones who see it. Plus, you're welcome.
Now we're in a room that looks like a pimp's dick exploded, and we all make a beeline to the dirty/naked statues, snapping picks that make it look like we're blowing the dude's dick, and hey, look at that pretty lady's boobies! Wheeee! Idiots.
After the Foundation Room we ended up at—holy shit, there's a d.b.a. in New Orleans! Our goddess of a bartender poured us all a round of Johnny Walker green, and everyone was happy and pickled. Then it was down to the vampire quarter for spaghetti and watching THE RULES OF THE GAME projected on the wall. At one point a cute black girl in a skimpy fairy costume came in, and then got into a street rumble with a bunch of vampires. Vampires hate fairies—especially when the fairies are toned and in shape. That just reminds the vampires that when they get home later that morning their mom's going to yell at them for eating all the Chocodiles. The fairy skipped off down the street after yelling a very un-fairy, "Fuck you faggot motherfuckers!" "Crackers and jam, what a saucy mouth", I blushed before I fainted.
Four dehydrated and squirt-shitting comedians loaded themselves into the van the next day for the loooooooong drive to Tallahassee. We saw churches so big they'd make Jesus Christ say, "Jesus fucking Christ!", a strip club called Scuttlebutts, and the mighty Mississippi. We were crossing it going east, and could feel our cholesterol double as we did so. Also, the urinals could spray your choice of knock-off cologne, and there was NO BEER ON SUNDAY. Brian cried.
Tallahassee had good bar-b-q and uncomfortable beds, but a really great college station on the campus. WVFS ("v98") was a lot of fun for me and Zach, but I forgot to take pictures. Not that I would have—The Club Downunder in Tallahassee was, so far, the best night of the tour. What a stunning, fun and smart crowd. We're pulling out for Gainesville tomorrow, wondering how the other nights are going to top this.