Last Thursday I returned to Pub on the Park, the home of Bear Jokes for many years before I upped sticks to The Leyton Star on account of it being more local to me. It's a wonderful pub with fantastic staff (including this evening Johnny from Folked Up) and a comfortable and genuinely nice upstairs room.
Since my departure the space has been given yet another overhaul and now completely justifies Benji Waterstone's choice of name for the evening. There are gold painted fireplaces, a huge round mirror, several chest of drawers and a vintage style spotlight. The great and the good of Stoke Newington would give their souls for their living room to look like this.
One thing that hasn't changed though is the variability of the night's turnout. Whilst we were joined by real audience around the midpoint, the start was very much a workshop with each act running through new material and taking feedback. Where comedy treads the line between entertainment and therapy becomes more distinct in these scenarios as the raw basis for material usually comes from personal experience; often initially difficult, awkward or dark. From this starting point to something that makes you laugh is a process that verges on pure alchemy. I look forward to seeing where what I heard this evening leads to in the polished final form in 3-6 months time.
As for me, I debuted the newly remixed intro track for our 2018 show and then ran through Meal Deal. Reaction was positive in as much as any reaction can be judged from eight comedians sitting in a room. In terms of the big festival push this year it looks increasingly likely my two-and-a-bit minute tale of inconvenient convenience food will be the lead track for promo. Maybe even a video if I can find some actual time to do it.