A very late start, and the day kicked off with running around Arthur’s Seat – clockwise this time, and it was for some reason more difficult. Hopefully by the end of the month I’ll be sprinting around with abandon, but this morning every step felt like a bad idea. It being later, there was more traffic, and more tourists who did the classic thing of looking up, seeing me running towards them, and then pretending I didn’t exist and spreading needlessly out blocking the pavement. It’s just like London, where it only takes two hipsters having a particularly animated conversation to cause pedestrian gridlock.
I had a hankering for chicken; after all the running, a bit of unashamed protein was in order, so I bought some thighs, put them in the fridge, and immediately went into one of my periodic spasms of anti-hunger. This is superficially very convenient, because I become completely uninterested in food and get a lot of things done, until I suddenly become completely ravenous and have to stop for the closest thing to hand – which in Scotland can sometimes be a bit grim. I’ve never fallen for the deep fried mars bar, but after yesterday’s pie unpleasantness, I’m carrying a plain bagel around with me for just such an emergency.
Two shows today: the first, a showcase at Belushi’s for my flatmate Danny Worthington. Small but friendly crowd, and who should be in the bar but Bobby Mair, and Tim (I’ve never seen his second name anywhere), who I dread being on the same bill with because he’s a very tough act to follow.
A very strong line up, but special mention goes to Sir Reginald Tweedy-Duffer who is on at The Beehive at 12.10pm. Usually character stand up makes my heart sink, but I’m happy to report that Sir Reg proved me very wrong. Looking like Iain Duncan Smith’s younger brother, he did a pitch-perfect trendy politician (lower in the hierarchy, I think, than trendy vicars) with vowels so authentically public school, when I heard his real voice afterwards, I was completely taken aback. I did my ‘worst gig in the world’ bit, a slow burner, which either shows bravery on my part, or contempt for the very principles of entertainment.
Raph and I prepared for a quiet show in the evening: very rainy, very quiet, generally a feeling that we’d be lucky to get any sort of audience at all. At 10.05, one person walked in. We thought about making excuses. Then a couple poked their noses around the door… Then two parents and their grown-up daughter… Until the place was nearly full. In deference to the family unit, I decided not to do a routine I’ve written that goes by the name of ‘celebrity anus’ (and I will say no more) – but maybe tomorrow, if not at the Purple show, then at the lunchtime panel show Crunch The News, which I booked myself into this afternoon, if only because there is an MSP on the bill.
Raph and I walked home together after a very warm, loose show that if the collection bucket is anything to go by (and I think it is) people liked. A couple of people hung around in the bar to say hello afterwards, which was flattering, and we both felt that this could start to get a bit of buzz about it: there were locals and students, both groups with networks across which word of mouth might mean something. It’s delightful to feel part of a show we can both be proud of, the flyering seems easier that last time I did it, and there is a sense that people buy into us as people before they come through the front door.
Which with an ego like mine, reader, is gratifying.
Everything is Purple
52 West Port
August 4-25 (except 14, 21) at 22.10