Last night was spent rehearsing with my new “yet to be named” improv team at The Second City before we caught The Inner City Kid(z) show at 10:30.
After the show we hopped over to Old Town Ale House for a few pitchers. If you’re ever in Chicago, and aren’t easily offended, you have to stop by this place at least for a drink or two. It’s a tiny hole-in-the-wall right across the street from Second City with the most absurd political drawings you will ever see.
And if you are offended, lighten up, it’s just “art.”
I like to go to this place just because it makes me feel like I’m a part of “the scene.” I’m not sure what scene that is exactly, and I probably just completely excluded myself from it by saying that, but there’s just always a really cool group of eclectic people that hang out here. Comedians, actors, improvisers- there’s always someone in here I recognize from seeing on stage somewhere. And it doesn’t hurt that I’ve heard Chris Farley used to frequent this place.
As I get deeper and deeper into this whole improv scene I continue to meet more people who studied theater and stage in college and were able to expedite their classes at Second City and complete what took me a year, in just a couple of months. And I’ve found myself occasionally regretting the fact I didn’t study theater in school… Except for the fact I didn’t even consider it. I took one acting class in college and was way too cool for it. The only way I would fully participate in the weird acting games we played was if I happened to still be a little drunk from the night before (it was an 8:00 a.m. class on a Friday.) Otherwise I was too-cool-for-school-Taylor. Same goes for high school. I didn’t participate in anything theater-ish until my senior year when I had a small role in “Annie.” And let me tell you, I was the best “Sandy” that production has ever seen.
If we jumped back in time and told sixteen-year-old me the kind of outlandish stuff I would be involved in today, and actually enjoy doing, I think I would be pretty shocked. But also deep down a little excited. It’s weird how teenagers get so annoying for a while and care so much about what others think of them.
I know what you’re thinking, no way was this cool she-jock too scared to do anything.
In one of the many self-help books I’ve been reading there is an exercise where you visualize your life ten years from now. Where are you living, what are you doing, who are you surrounded by- you visualize every last detail of it. And let me tell ya, my life in ten years is such an absolute thrill I’m too bashful to even share what I have envisioned. But when it all works out, you all will be invited over to pop some bubbly with me. And now the second part of this exercise is going back ten years previous, and explaining to your former self how your life currently is. And if there isn’t something you like, why not change it now? While my life is nowhere close to perfect (I’ll let this sink in for those of you that may have been mislead by some of my more glamourous posts…) I like to think that if ten years ago someone told me I’d someday be taking classes at Second City and IO while doing stand-up around the city of Chicago, I think I’d be pretty excited by the thought of it. Then again who knows, sixteen-year-old me was kind of a little asshole. She might scoff at it and be more interested in how many Abercrombie & Fitch jeans I own, or Von Dutch trucker hats. And do I have that awesome yellow Jeep Wrangler yet?! If not, just like stop talking to me now.
Anyway, it’s just an interesting concept for me to think about. Especially because I am always kicking myself for not starting this whole comedy thing just a little sooner. Why didn’t I start the moment I moved to Chicago? Why didn’t I move to Chicago sooner? Why didn’t I do more theater in school? I could ask myself these questions for the days. But the fact of the matter is timing is everything. And perhaps it just wasn’t my time three years ago. I guess better late than never.