I should have written in this blog more. But, here I am only a few days from going home and this is only the second post.
It’s not like I haven’t had time. I’ve had pretty much nothing but time. I’m all alone halfway across the country from most of my friends and loved ones.
Of course, I didn’t anticipate being as alone as I’ve been. And, that’s been part of the problem.
I have several friends in the Southern California area. And, through four shows, two have them have attended. One of those friends, I think it’s safe to say, is actually living in Northern California. But, James drove all the way down to see my show and spend the evening with me. He ever brought some great beer from the Firestone Walker Brewery.
The other friend who has come to a show, Leah, I actually haven’t even known that long. We’ve really only met once before. And yet, she came to the show, and she brought friends. It was really great.
But, outside of those two bright blips, the trip has been lonely.
The actual Fringe Festival hasn’t provided much solace either.
The first day I was in Hollywood, I showed up for my tech rehearsal. That went great. My tech director, Rebecca, is awesome. I really can’t say enough nice things about her. Everyone else, though…
It seemed like everywhere I went people looked at me like I was an alien. Here’s the square looking middle-America guy wandering around trying to talk to people.
I get it. To them, I looked like some buttoned up guy. Wearing my white button down, khaki pants, and blue blazer. Of course, I wear these clothes in a kind of ironic way. It’s how people like me are supposed to dress, so I do. People at home recognize it for the shabby parody it is, but the beautiful, stylish people out here haven’t reacted so well. I even threw off the comics at The Comedy Store (blog post coming) for looking so put together and square. As Iliza Shlesinger told me, “You look like your parents had money.”
Those of you that know me know that I’m actually pretty introverted. Outside of my comfort zone of friends or family, I’m pretty kept to myself. So, it’s already really difficult for me to have to go up to people and try to talk up my show. And for them to look at me all sideways makes it even harder.
Thus, I haven’t done a lot of on the ground marketing. It’s something I’ll have to get better at.
However, there are significant problems with this Festival that are not my fault, and I’ll write another post about that once it’s over and I’m safely out of town.
So, I’ve had four of my five shows. Here are the attendance figures for each show: 7, 1, 4, 4.
Sixteen people have seen me perform.
It’s cool, though. I’ve met a few really cool people. And, I’ve used the small audiences as an excuse to work on things in the show. Try stuff out. For instance, I’ve been able to get the runtime down to 56 minutes…until last night. It went so well last night, all four people were constantly laughing, that I ended up going about 10 minutes over. Oops.
So, there are spurts of excitement. But, the rest of the time has been incredibly lonely.
I long for home. I long to see my family, and friends, to go hang out at the cigar shop, to cuddle up with Katelyn on the couch. I miss home, which is something I never anticipated.
I know now why celebrities have entourages. This would be so much more fun with someone here with me.
Last night was kind of the climax of all this. I’d just finished my fourth performance. Only four people showed up, but they were the most receptive audience I’ve had yet, which was awesome… Unfortunately, it all caused me to go way over time. So, that was a bummer. These things work on strict schedules so it’s a big taboo to use more than your allotted time. Also, for the first time, I had several no-shows from my reservation and Facebook event invite lists.
I was still feeling good, though, so I went over to the Fringe Central bar for a drink and to hopefully meet some more people. It was like I wasn’t there. Everyone already had their little groups set up, and I’m not one to go randomly barge in. So, I had one drink and left. I rolled through a drive-thru so I could have at least one hot meal that day, then went back to the apartment I’m staying in and sat in front of the computer watching Netflix until I fell asleep.
Now that the shows are almost over, that feeling of wanting to go home is increasing exponentially everyday. Especially as we go into a weekend where normally I’d get to spend it with my girlfriend.
Admittedly, I shed a few tears. It’s been hard.
The upside is that the show is really coming along and I’m getting better and more confident in my performances. But, the traveling alone kind of sucks.
Oh well, I’ll be home in a few days. It’s almost over. I have one more show tomorrow night, and I know that at least a couple of my friends are coming to that one.
I’ll write more about this in the coming week or so. There are lots of observations about fringe that I’m picking up.
Until then, 4 down and 1 to go.