Crackin’ Up

Are open mic’ers standup comedians? Less realistic than mollifying; an age-old issue of aristocratic succession. There are risks involved in carving up fiefdoms, no matter the talent.

Think of established comedians as the scene’s board of directors, lined up in our favor automatically. Swing votes. If this scenario came to pass, we retain top talent if monopolized.

A testament to their personal style & veteran values. Cadres of bookers, whom double as hosts, adorn with marquee punchlines.

We feel using notes as core insight as opposed to “looking backwards.” Reading off phones — a move some feel as a stunt. An audience of one (man or woman) as the deciding factor – a barnstorm – has now fallen under the rubric of “Audience Development.”

One possible path to avert a rupture would be to divide standup comedy & open mic’ers. Such a plan would play to our respective strengths. And it would bind us ever tighter to the scene during an era when investing in public-spirit requires a long-term view.

The 3,853-year-old culture trying to “figure out the Internet,” bogged down by outmoded processes, beset by baroque turf battles, & ultimately in danger of falling behind nimbler competitors like improv, pranks, & caption contests. Digital algorithms a la the dot-com bubble run much, much deeper than the leadership suspect in tempting fate. Herein calling for a revolution; none more extreme than ending the division between the open mic’er & paid comic; sanctions that had been all but a religion to an earlier generation.

Let’s bring the contenders closer together. Foster better relations. A gravitational pull. In order to prevent history from repeating itself, a behind-the-scenes campaign to make sure there is competition, not a coronation.

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