Monday, 9 December 2013

[O&AM] I think I have a phobia of stand-up comedy



I'm not a stand-up fan, for the most part. There are very rare exceptions, for e.g. I will happily watch Jim Carrey, almost as happily watch Chris Rock, and will gasp at the outrageousness of Tim Minchin (but he does music so he's a different matter entirely). But for the most part I really can't stand stand-up. And it's not just a matter of dislike, either - it's almost like I have a fear of it. If I switch the TV channel and land on a stand-up show, I will stab at the remote with a desperation I can't really explain until I've got myself safely to a new channel.

There have been shows that I've found painful to watch because they're so cringeworthy - like the UK version of The Office. Don't get me wrong, I think that show is brilliant, but I actually physically cannot watch it. Stand-up is different - it's cringeworthy but for all the wrong reasons. I get this almost claustrophobic feeling while watching most stand-up, like the walls are closing in and I just want to run screaming. I'm fully aware that it makes no sense to be almost scared of stand-up, but I'm also fully aware that it's real.

Most people I know like a bit of stand-up, and there are comedians they'd drop everything in their lives to go and see. But for my part, I'd almost rather get up in front of a huge crowd of people and have their eyes all on me (one of my biggest fears is public speaking) than have to sit through a stand-up routine. I just find stand-up so incredibly awkward and I can think of very little more boring than spending an evening watching DVDs of stand-up.

So there you go - you learned something new about me. :)

16 comments:

  1. OMG I had just posted a whole thing and then hit the sign out button instead of publish. I am so done with this new redesign. UGH.

    I can't even remember my whole point anymore because now the Ambien has kicked it and I've already forgotten my name!!!

    Maybe it'll come back to me tomorrow.... So sorry...

    But I can remember, that I totally agreed with you and I understood why you felt that way.

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    1. Hello meen, I've been following your blog for almost 6 months now without leaving any comment so I decided to quickly say hi today, just so you know you've got a fan somewhere. LOL. Your blog makes sense to me just like http://danieluyi.com, another similarly interesting blog that I'm also a fan of.

      Keep it up.

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  2. Everyone likes, dislikes or fears something. I don't watch a lot of stand up comedy but I do like it.

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  3. Sorry stand up comedy does that to you. I admit, I really like it, and enjoy going to shows.

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  4. I don't watch much stand-up because so much of it seems to filled with obscenity, like the comedian is trying to gross me out. Can't they be funny without using the f*** word in every sentence? Give me George Carlin or Gallagher any day.

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  5. haha wow there is an original phobia

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  6. This makes me wonder if you've ever seen anybody really embarrass themself at stand-up, which might be way. If I were a fan, what I'd fear is being picked on my the comedian. That can be painful to watch.

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  7. I find it hard to watch the UK version of The Office too. Stand-up is great, but I do tend to find women comedians harder to watch - most of them just aren't that funny, but act as though they are.

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  8. Well, that's interesting. I'm a big fan of stand up, but I also get your feelings too. That icky feeling you get in the pit of your stomach when you just feel like something is really wrong. I got that vibe from the UK version of the office too. There a several comedies that do that to me, most of them involve Rick Gervais in some way too. Go figure.

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  9. I don't like anything that is embarrassing either. Now, when something is truly funny, I love to laugh. But awkward funny isn't for me either.

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  10. Some stand up comedy is not really comedy. There's far too much poking fun at people that wouldn't be acceptable in 'real' life. I mean the type of racist slurs etc some so-called comedians think is cool. Not to mention the sexism and downright filth. The extent of the stand up i like is Seinfeld.

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  11. When George Carlin was still alive I went and seen him perform. He was pretty funny. I also love Eddie Murphy.

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  12. The most absolute brilliant stand-up comedian is Jerry Seinfeld, IMO. He is hilarious.

    Stand-up is cringeworthy when the comedian is bad. For me, that's when they usually resort to toilet humor. That's when I start to feel sorry for the performer and start looking for the exit door.

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  13. I can take it or leave it for the most part. Though, I will admit, I haven't seen a whole lot. But I find with a few drinks and some good friends, like stand-up can be fun :)

    Have a great weekend!

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  14. I got here by Googling 'phobia stand up comedy' - I'm so glad I'm not alone!

    I'm supposed to go to a comedy club as part of my friend's hen's night (bachelorette party) this Saturday, and it's just not going to happen. I feel a borderline choking sensation at the very idea! I generally don't like the unknown aspect of what's coming at me, plus the 'live' element which turns the awkwardness potential in the whole room up to a galactic level. I must admit, this is partly due to being present at some *appalling* stand-up gigs in the past, against my volition.

    Occasionally I'll watch "Live at the Apollo" on TV with my boyfriend, as a kind of exposure therapy, but this is on the strict understanding that we change it immediately if it gets cringey. However, the standard on that show is generally very high; it's going to take years before I can bring this kind of approach to a live environment.

    Sorry if I am totally enabling an irrational and undesired fear response. :) I can recommend the 'Live at the Apollo' treatment if you want to change the status quo!

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    1. I wouldn't say it's "enabling" per se - does make me glad I'm not the only one who feels this way, though! LOL. I seem to be the only one who does in my own life, except my mum. Maybe I learned this behaviour from her??

      Thanks for the tip re: Live @ the Apollo - maybe if I stumble across it sometime, I'll give it a go. Though more than likely I'd judge it by its format instantly and switch channels. But if I remember the name, maybe I'll have better luck than that. :D

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Thanks for your words, me hearties! and don't forget to leave a link to your blog somewhere I can find it!