2014 September Gigs: 144 - 149

I stated in my last blog that things we're going to change moving forward.  It was time to shake things up a little and find new ways into work as my work was beginning to feel like a job.  That is the last thing I need after twenty years in this business.  I've managed to avoid it feeling like work and I don't really want that to change now.  If I wanted a real job I certainly wouldn't have stuck at this whole comedy thing especially considering it has a non existent dental plan. I snuck back in to Australia during the final week of August and laid low after a gruelling Edinburgh Fringe.  I had a great time there but the exhaustion that flooded my body and mind was palpable.  When I'm tired I only want one thing and that is to lay low surrounded by my stuff.  Sneaking back into the city without anyone knowing gave me a low rent Jason Bourne vibe and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing very few people over that first ten days after the visual and aural explosion of faces that is also known as the Edinburgh Fringe.

There were very few gigs in September as I needed time to myself.  The idea of seeing any comedy was a low priority and it was a good opportunity to do all the things I like that a festival stops you from doing:  reading, cooking (don't get too excited, I have a small repertoire but it chills me out nonetheless), going to the gym and snacks.  I caught a few films and TV shows and to be honest if I was super rich I'd take my second lot of long service leave so I could disappear for a substantial amount of time.  Unfortunately in this business long service leave translates to "I'm happy not to earn money until I get onstage again".  When a dude digs snacks this is not an option.  The last thing I need is a snack drought.


Edinburgh Festival - Assembly Festival


When I finally did hit the stage I performed at the following places with this material:


Gig 144:  4th of September:  Five Boroughs (Host)


1st Bracket


Kid at the movies

Can’t Drink Anymore

Young version vs old version

Why drink shots?

Tequila is not your friend.

Scotch is bad.

Approaching women

Like about me now

Never act on a crush


2nd Bracket


Plane flight story: What’s a bit of wrinkle?


Gig 145:  8th of September:  Spleen (Host)


1st Bracket


Can’t Drink Anymore

Approaching Women

“I Don’t Give a Hoot!”

Hushed Angry Conversation


2nd Bracket


Jim Beam Battle of the Bands

Plane Flight Story


Gig 146:  9th of September:  Imperial Hotel (Headline)


Kid at the Movies

Committing Suicide by Stencil

Invite to Parties

Can’t Drink Anymore

Stoned on my arms

Woman’s funeral story


Gig 147:  10th of September:  Public Bar (Headline)


Kid at the movies

Can’t drink anymore.

Fix Your Flaws

Approaching women

Girl at the theatre

Tripping and farting

Like about me now

The Dark Knight dealing with trauma

Little Boy Joke


Gig 148:  22nd of September:  The Local (Host)


1st Bracket 


Bundaberg Man


2nd Bracket


Can't Drink Anymore


Gig 149:  Essendon Debate


Technology Has Ruined AFL:  Negative






I found it really difficult to connect with the first few gigs after I returned.  I had a couple of new ideas but the idea of beginning to work on new material for next year was exhausting.  I normally love this time of year but I think I came back too early. With the reformatting of how this blog will work and my podcast "Can You Take This Photo Please?" reverting to a different time line (It will now come out when I have time rather than chasing down a new interview a week) I should have taken a much longer break in September.

Not to say the gigs weren't good.  The Five Boroughs show was electric with one of the best audiences I've seen in Melbourne.  Lawrence Mooney was the headliner and everything that night went down a treat.  I found Spleen to be a bit weird (compared to other nights it was great but for a Spleen audience they were off) and I had some of the regulars comment afterwards at how "slow" the audience seemed. The Imperial Hotel was a lot of fun as was the Public Bar with both shows full of people who were locked into the night.

Even though the shows were great I felt removed from the whole experience.  You know that scene with the photocopiers in Fight Club where Ed Norton felt everybody was standing too far away?  Well that was where I was at.  I was observing without being a part of it.  I had no emotional connection to the gigs or to anyone.  In hindsight I was tireder than I realised and as I floated around Fitzroy looking like Walter White in the final episode of Breaking Bad I started having fantasies of uprooting and getting out of Dodge City for a while.

It wasn't until I was performing at The Local that I felt a step back in the right direction. I was in the middle of telling a story that had a nice mix of new and old jokes when I found myself ad libbing at the ceiling.  For those of you who have seen me perform you know I love to yell a punchline up in the air and it was in the middle of hurling some invective at the lights that I felt the "fun" of performing return.

As for the Essendon debate gig there isn't much to report.  I was on the side of Sam Pang and Anne Edmonds while on the opposition were Dave Hughes, Kate McLennan and Michael Chamberlin with LEHMO! moderating.  To answer your questions:  no I didn't mention anything about drugs, no I didn't see James Hird's flowing locks, no it doesn't matter which side won but yes it was our team, our TEAM, in your face opposition, we crushed you...ahem.  It was a fun gig.

So now it is time to work on new material for a new show, a new season for Comedy at Crown (beginning on the 19th of October), gearing up for season 10 of The Shelf and a tour of the west with Wil Anderson.  I'm back in the game that I never really left.  Lock up your ceilings if they have bad self esteem, this idiot is getting ready to yell right at them.


Justin Hamilton

1st of October, 2014