Posts Tagged ‘the great room’

That’s No Reason to Throw Things

31,January, 2008

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Today I am wearing National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children socks. When you buy a pair of these from The Sock Shop they will donate 25% to the charity. Nadene gave them to me and they are nice socks but I don’t like the NSPCC. Now before you think I hate children as well as cats I want to stress that I am sure the NSPCC does sterling and necessary work and despite what my son might tell you, I am not in favor of being cruel to children. I dislike this group because they were host to one of the worst deaths I have ever had on stage.

The Grovner House Hotel on Park Lane is one of London’s finest hotels. The largest ballroom there was once an exhibition ice skating rink. It now can seat up to 2000 guests around tables. It’s a blip hanger of a room and every comedian I know has died there at least once.

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Before I was asked to do the free show for the NSPCC, I was the only comedian I knew that had always done well in the Great Room. The secret was that I always made sure that the sound, the staging and the lighting were perfect. When the woman from the NSPCC asked me to perform at the event she assured me that her production team was top notch – she lied.

I should have just left when I saw the unlit, six inch high stage and I definitely should have walked away when the microphone made my voice sound like a train announcer with a kazoo but being a prima donna is not one of my skills.

If NCPCC audience had just ignored me then that would have been fine and I would probably be happy to wear their socks but at this event something else happened. On all of the tables were free gifts for the guests: pen’s, disposable cameras, key-chains and – foam stress balls. Now, I know audiences don’t like to be shouted at by a performer that they can’t see or understand but that’s no reason to throw things. One yob threw his stress ball and clocked me square in the forehead. This seemed to the rest of the eight hundred people in the room to be a fun thing to do.

I tell this to you so you can enjoy the mental picture of me slowly walking off a stage, with my head held high, while being pelted with hundreds of pink foam balls. Everyone who has heard the tale thinks it is very funny, so I tell it for you – enjoy. As for me, even though it happened over five years ago, I still don’t see the humour in it. It makes me want to go to a playground and hit small children with sticks. I ‘m glad I don’t have to wear my NSPCC socks again.

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