Saturday, 30 October 2010

A comedy of schoolboy errors....

A year ago we went to see the comedian Frankie Boyle a the Manchester Apollo only to find the place in darkness and for a horrible moment I thought we had arrived a day late. On closer inspection of the tickets we discovered that in fact we were a year early. I regaled this story on my blog last year and posed the question, who sells tickets 18 months in advance? The answer of course was Frankie Boyle.

On Tuesday, we returned on the correct night to witness one of his last stand up gigs as he is retiring from the circuit to concentrate on TV. He is notoriously irreverential and to some people offensive. I belong to the school of thought that anything is fair game to laugh at even if it is in a dark and slightly uncomfortable way. On Tuesday night even my hardened sense of humor was tested as he had obviously chosen to use this last hurrah as an opportunity to push his jokes ever closer to the bone. Don't get me wrong, he was very funny but there were times where I winced and indeed at least a couple of people walked out mid-act.

At these kind of events I get as much enjoyment from watching other people than the act themselves and Tuesday was a great case in point. Two couples in front of us sat motionless and mute throughout the whole performance except for the woman on the end who spent the whole night taking photographs on a crap digital camera and showed each dreadful, blurry photograph to her friends which I find distinctly odd. Surely she knows that by typing 'Frankie Boyle' into Google Images it will come up with hundreds of photographs of him which are ALL better than the ones she took.

Her boyfriend spent the night playing a skateboarding game on his iPhone and his friend spent the night watching him play a skateboarding game on his iPhone. These people had spent £120 to not watch and not laugh at Frankie Boyle. Very weird and for me endlessly fascinating.

Tonight we are attending a Halloween party at my friends Paul and Sally's house. The kids are obviously going to be in scary fancy dress but the parents in the main share my utter loathng of any costume related event. In my case, this stems from a Cub Scouts fancy dress party when I was aged eight, where my parents dressed me up as Darth Vader. Well I say Darth Vader. I looked like he would if he had worn black tracksuit bottoms, a hideous papiere mache mask, his dads black coat and a light saber fashioned from a cardboard tube. I spent the entire evening explaining what it was I was supposed to be and have been allergic to fancy dress ever since.

However, one of my friends this week commited a very basic schoolboy error. He rang Paul the host of the party Paul to ask whether the parents would be wearing fancy dress. Of course, there is only one answer to this question and thanks to Paul's devilish sense of humour I look forward to seeing my friend Ian being the only adult in fancy dress tonight.

We will be turning up fashionably late as there are twenty seven children attending. Whilst I love Paul and Sally's kids (my godchildren) I subscribe to the adage that ' kids are like farts, you can just about stand your own' and so we will try and time our entrance just before the start of the kids exit and avoid any unnecessary hearing damage from wailing banshees and cackling witches.

I'll report back next week.......

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