So said a patron at the bar last night where I do my Sunday night show. The strangest thing about his outburst was that it occurred a half hour before the show started. And it was odd not only because it was the first time I can recall a show getting heckled well before it even began, but because it wasn’t generally directed at anyone. He didn’t say “you suck” or “this show sucks,” he said “comedy sucks.”
The context was this: I got there early to set up and the happy hour regulars were still lingering when I was talking with Claire, the evening bartender. She asked me about setting up the room for the show and the regular, a 40ish man with a few drinks under his belt, upon hearing that a comedy show was to take place at some point in the night simply said to the room, “comedy sucks.”
Claire, who’s been wonderfully supportive of the show since we started there at Sin Sin, made light of the situation by awkwardly stage whispering, “the comedian’s right there.” I simply said, “it doesn’t bother me, I’m not the one who’s dead inside.”
And I was only slightly joking, because how miserable do you have to be to declare hatred for an entire genre? And he didn’t even say “stand up sucks” he said “comedy sucks,” which apparently means any form of communication or art in which the goal is to make others laugh sucks.
I actually kind of feel sorry for the guy. By making sweeping, declarative statements such as “comedy sucks” as opposed to simply stating a preference like “I don’t like stand up” he leaves the listener two choices: ignore him or argue with him. Either way he can’t be happy interacting with people like that.
I bet he could really use a laugh.