SXSW Comedy Time

Just so you know, in Austin, Texas, there's a standup comedian who now includes a "bit" about me in his repertoire. Apparently I am to be mocked nationwide.

It all began innocently enough. After landing in Austin last Wednesday for SXSW, I puttered around until Visqueen made the first of their many appearances at the festival. As usual, they sounded bright, but I had to groan at the fact that even in Texas Visqueen gets stuck with the oldies. There--I said it! Does no one notice that two members of the band are barely 30, and that sticking them on a bill with the goddamn Rosenbergs is not the most obvious choice? ANYWAY, disgusted and chagrined, I walked out midset and headed over to Emo's to catch the last of ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead. I am now officially bored to sighs with that band. Seen it, heard it, too deaf to care about it anymore.

Lazily, I flagged down a taxi, and the driver didn't make fun of me for taking a cab two blocks, even though I gave him permission to. That's how I ended up being a "bit." See, because I was hopped up on Ativan, I forgot about the cabbie telling me he was a standup comedian. He gave me his cell phone number so I could use him as my own personal driver for the next few days--and when I found myself standing in a tattoo parlor with Corey Murchy from Minus the Bear and my old pal Sean Haskins, one of us had the good sense to call it a night, and I pulled out my cell and called my personal driver, who was there in an instant.

Occasionally I have this thing where I sleep for 24 hours straight, and when I got back to the hotel I swallowed two Tylenol PMs, put on my sleeping shades, and woke up on Friday morning. Dang--I'd really wanted to see Hella, too.

Friday, Kim and I saw nothing but Euro bands, which was a compromise because no one would go see sad rock bands with me. Brighton's Coin-Op were fucking brilliant; the Darkness were the best operatic metal band in the history of the world. Reykjavik's Singapore Sling did nothing but sling attitude, so I pulled out my cell phone and tried to hook up with former Breakroom booker Diane Perini. A man answered, and I barked, "Who is this?!" Some back-and-forth revealed that I had accidentally dialed up Trey, my personal driver--and I would accidentally do it again and again over the next 24 hours.

Long story short: Saturday night was spent waiting around for the "secret after-hours show" that had everyone wrongly anticipating a Spinal Tap reunion. I bailed and called Old Faithful for a ride home. I told him that at least he wouldn't have me accidentally calling him anymore. He laughed and said that he and his friends laughed about it every time the phone rang. He had my voice down to a T. I wasn't leaving town until Monday, so I asked if he'd be available Sunday night if I needed to go anywhere. Yes, he answered, but not until 10:00 p.m., because he had to perform at a comedy club. "I LOVE COMEDY CLUBS!" I exclaimed, and stupidly asked if I could go. It wasn't until I was lying in bed that I realized he'd been very squirmy about my request, but he said he'd pick me up at 7:00. I wasn't surprised when he didn't, and I hope Austin gets a big kick out of this jackass for many Sunday nights to come.