New York State of Mind

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Last year I went to New York for a comedy festival and told myself it was probably the last time I was going to do standup. I was ready to be done. Simply put, the lifestyle isn't for me. Too many late nights, too many nights at a bar, too much time away from my couch, too much grind. I'll just be honest here, I'm not tough enough for it.

So I decided to quit.

And yet one year later here I am. Heading back to that same festival in New York in just two short weeks. Standup, why can't I quit you?

I'm no longer pursuing standup, I'm just enjoying it. And for now that works for me because when I'm willing to admit it, I really love standup. Making strangers laugh at stuff I've written is a high unlike anything I've ever known. So why would I stop doing something that makes me happy?

Why? Maybe because it's still one of the weirdest things I've done and writing new shit every week is hard and sometimes my stuff flops and sometimes I want to run off stage and sometimes I want to silence that voice in my head that appears at least once a day that says you'll never write something funny again because you're horrible and not funny so just stop now.  Yea that. That's why I still want to quit every once in a while. I think that voice is also called fear.

But whatever, I'm going to New York to tell some jokes and I'm excited as hell. Fear can shut the hell up for the next two weeks for all I care.

I'll be at Broadway Comedy Club again on Wednesday and Thursday, October 21 & 22, at 8:00 if any of my New Yorker pals want to come say hello! Send me a message and I'll tell you how to get free tickets. And if you do come just realize I filter myself on this blog... I don't in standup. So if you're offended easily maybe let's just meet up after? (insert smiley face emoji.)

The bangs won't be coming back, but hopefully my left hand will.

More importantly, will you give me some ideas of what to do in NY? I'm going with my favorite travel partners (MY PARENTS!) and my dad has never been before. But his favorite thing to do on vacation is drink in random bars, so if you've got a favorite hole-in-the-wall please let me know.

Also someone please tell me where to:

Get brunch.
Get a bloody (preferably Midwest style.)
See a Vizsla.
See a Taylor Swift.
Perhaps a good tour?
Eat a good meal (where the locals eat)
But most importantly where to drink- (nothing with white walls, white booths, or white floors. The grungier the better.)
What shows to see at UCB.
Anything else I have to do while in New York for a few days.

And now I'm going to end with this photo of me hailing a cab on my first trip to NYC many many years ago.

It's important for three reasons.
1. That blazer style jean jacket! Seriously, I would wear it now.
2. During this trip I wrote in my travel diary (separate from my normal diary, because all cool kids kept travel diaries) "I think I might want to be a comedian some day. I like to tell jokes and stuff and act funny."
3. And then I wrote one of my first jokes. It goes like this: "Why does pizza have to be on a bagel to be eaten any time?"

I murdered at recess with that one.

That's it. Follow your dreams. Don't give up. Drink more coffee. I've HAD SO MUCH COFFEE today.


  1. I can't believe you're coming to New York City! That's awesome! I just sent you an email about your shows. WOO HOO! They ALL COME BACK. They ALWAYS come back!

    - Rabid New Yorker

  2. Oh, New york, new york. It's one of my favorites. There's just no other smell like the streets of Times Square. The last time I went, we walked across the Brooklyn Bridge, it was amazing and worth the walk! Plus, there are two tiny pizza joints on the Brooklyn side right when you get off the bridge that are the best ever. There's also a little Irish pub near Times Square called the Playwright that is awesome! They were holes in the walls that weren't busy and we felt right at home!

  3. My favorite brunch place is called Spoon - on 21st Street between 5th and 6th Avenue. Go for the shitake hash browns, stay for the mason jar bloody mary.

  4. brunch at westville.
    coffee at the elk.
    saturday bites at smorgasburg.
    dinner at freeman's.
    escape the city in jersey city. it's like brooklyn before it was hipster haven and it's closer to manhattan.

    1. freeman's is so good it's ridiculous.

  5. I hope you have an amazing time! No NYC advice, but just love it!

  6. I'm going to get my tickets and send you an email with info, but don't get your hopes up - THERE ARE NO GOOD BLOODIES IN NEW YORK CITY. There are decent ones, but nothing comes with a snit (or chaser) of beer or decoration. Stay tuned for my list of bars that we frequent because we are cut from a similar cloth. See you in a few weeks.

  7. Have a great time! It's hard to go wrong with brunch anywhere in the city, but you MUST go to Serendipity for frozen hot chocolate. MUST.

  8. You're going to rock it, girlfriend! Have fun!

  9. Taylor Swift lives in TriBeca. I have a blog post about when stalked *ahem* visited her.
    If I may,

    As for brunch- I love Libation on the Lower East Side (Ludlow Street). I don't know about thier bloody Mary's but the drinks flow unlimitedly for four hours. Afterwards, stumble down the block to Maurizio at Taverna di Bacco. He may take pity on you and give you some fried pumpkin and riceballs and let you and your friends sit at the bar even though he's technically not open for another hour but you're drunk and he wouldn't want his daughter swaying through the streets of Manhattan without some fried food in her stomach. Not that I've done that before.

    If you're looking for lunch, go to The Taco Shop. It's on West 4th Street (bet Jones and Camelia Streets). It's pretty close to the Comedy Cellar too! Look down because it's below street level. Monday-Friday Happy Hour (3-7pm) - $12 for 3 tacos and a margarita. The barbacoa taco is delicious.

  10. Omg you KNOW I would so be there !!!! I personally think you are hilarious (and please send me more uncensored clips of you on stage!) and like I've said before, you are my comic ballsy hero. You are FUNNY and I still thousand percent think I'll see you on SNL in the future...

  11. How exciting. I've never been but have always wanted to go.

  12. I love that you're doing this. i think your outlook is spot on. You are still one of the funniest people I've ever read and I think that means something. kick ass.

  13. good for you- I'm too chicken to try.

    But I do know how to eat. The best burger in NY is JG Melon. Even Bobby Flay says so. And for dinner, Freeman's is stupid good. It's low key and not fussy and has the best Mac and cheese I have ever experienced. Break a leg!

  14. this is awesome and i'm so excited for you! i am sad i live on the opposite side of the country from NYC otherwise i would totally want to see the unfiltered taylor! yeeeees! have fun!

  15. So exciting! Good luck & have a blasty!

    I believe that next weekend, I'll be coming to your lil part of the world aka Chicago. So, if there are any places that must be visited, please let me know. I love me a good martini bar if you got one. :)

  16. hey but for real would you wear that denim blazer now?? I sweartogod have had one in my closet since high school and cant throw it away because I blew all my lifeguarding money on it. scored it from a Banana Republic factory store (I had sophisticated taste what can I say?) I keep hoping it will come back in style. just say the word and its back...


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