second city

Author’s note: I am full aware that I am not Nick Hornby. My record collection is far less impressive, for one thing. But what is the point of blogging if you can’t play with narrative conventions, right? So today you can have a list.

Have signed up for sketch comedy writing class at Chicago’s Second City. Class has met twice thus far. They made me do improv, which I have not done since…oh, 8th grade, I think? It’s weirdly fun, kind of zen, insofar as it takes you out of yourself and clamps a damper on your constant internal monologue (just me, with that? doubtful). You have to listen. Not like talking with other people, where you’re just sitting there anxious for it to be your turn again, but truly attentive and in the present moment.* Terrifying, but weirdly exhilarating. Also all about fostering ‘hivemind.’

So I did that, met a bunch of children. Sort of shocked at how many of them had moved to Chicago for the sole purpose of  taking classes there. It felt like the first day of school, I had to amp myself up with horrible tunes. And then had drinks with delightful and funny anthropologists in my OWN AGE BRACKET the next day. Good times.

  • Notebooks purchased for writing class (2, pink, slightly pretentious)
  • Iced teas consumed before class (4 )
  • Times Miley Cyrus’ Party in the USA was played as incentive to walk into classroom (3)**
  • Times Rough Riders rap (Biggie, Eve, L’il Kim et all) was played (10+)
  • Times I remembered Second City’s “no refunds” policy (more than once?)
  • Number of people in sketch comedy writing class (14)
  • Number of girls in SCWC (4)
  • Number of girls in SCWC who went to Harvard (1, not counting my own horrible stint at summer school)
  • Times debated asking this girl whether I could call her “Toofer” (2)
  • Number of guys in class who claim “not to read” (5)
  • Number of guys who clearly want to be the next Andy Samberg (3)
  • Number of guys who actually look like Andy Samburg (0, and a DAMN SHAME IT IS)
  • Drinks consumed with semi-adults (4)
  • Plates of french fries eaten (3)
  • Excellent puns made (1)
  • Excellent puns heard (6, including the fabulous Ms. B’s title for a Marxian porn– “Come Oddity Fetish”)
  • Cigarettes smoked (0, +10000 points of awesome!)
  • Stabbing pains in calves (well over two dozen)
  • Bottles of vitamins purchased (2)

Single best thing about this clip? Animal reaction shots.

*Russell T. Davies has a great quote, which I will paraphrase here. Namely, that when two people are talking, it’s very rarely a conversation. It’s two monologues happening simultaneously. Which, whoa. But, true?

**I know it’s been autotuned to all hell and that it’s atrocious, but if Rivers Cuomo says it’s okay, it’s okay. (From Details: “Miley Cyrus’ ‘Party in the USA” kills me with jealousy.’ The melodies are out-of-control beautiful.” )



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