I know it’s cliché but words can’t describe the feelings that went through me as I got on stage that fateful night. I remember stepping out into the blaring lights momentarily disoriented and then immediately realizing that I had to start my set right away or this silence would get steadily awkward as I continued to utter nothing. After getting the initial laugh the butterflies settled down, time slowed to a surreal version of real-time and I was able to become more aware of the audience and when I should pause for laughs as I went on. As the laughs continued, I became progressively more comfortable and at ease. Within that 4-5 minute span, as I was entertaining the masses any nervous energy that I initially started with dissipated and I just embraced the cathartic moment. I wasn’t perfect by any means but I was able to ride the tide of mirth in the room and continue directing its ebb and flow.
Before I knew it, I ran out of material and time, the host came back and away to the Green Room I went. It was at that moment, when I was surrounded by my fellow classmates, cheering in uproarious applause, happy with my accomplishment, that the realization sank in. I did it. I got on stage and made people laugh. It wasn’t a reaction that I was accustomed to. If anything, the previous six classes I attended before the graduation showed me that I wasn’t funny at all. So it was quite a rush to garner this unexpected and pleasant reaction that I was trying to attain the previous 6 weeks.
I was imbued with a ridiculous amount of glee. In this euphoric zombie-like state, I gathered my belongings and shuffled out of the stage area and headed to the audience. I gave a quick greeting to my supporters in the crowd (my wife, my brother, his girlfriend and 3 old high school buddies) and went to sit with my teacher, Cory Kahaney to support the rest of my classmates. I was in disbelief that the deed was done. When the show ended I spent some time with my supporters, graciously thanked them and then went back in for the second show to support the rest of my classmates. Before I knew it, the night was over and I was waking up for another day of work.
A few days have gone by since that momentous event. It still hasn’t fully sunk in. I think I finally found something I want to pursue. I really enjoyed that night and I’m craving more. I’ve rekindled my love for going to comedy shows the past few months and now I’ve sparked a calling to actually do it as well. I will be taking another class soon to get a better understanding of the craft and of course I’ll get some reading material and definitely continue watching stand-up. I feel a close connection and kinship to the comedy scene and for once, my future doesn’t seem too unclear or without any purpose other than to just live in the moment.