This tour is whooshing by, tonight was a welcome return to the Ropetackle in Shoreham-by-Sea, another venue run by familiar faces and which had sold out well in advance. We got there in good time, which gave me an opportunity to catch up on some podcasts and start editing together bits and bobs for the next Lord of the Dance Settee podcast. I almost forgot to look up some Shoreham facts in all the excitement and had to delay the start of the show as I checked wikipedia.
The venue was unusual in that the man operating the lights was blind. He told me not to try and make any jokes as he’d heard them all, but I had a go anyway and compared him to Tommy of pinballing fame. I think he’d heard it before. Perhaps not being distracted by the lights would make him operate them better. The guy doing the sound who disappointingly could hear perfectly well said that he’d tried to come up with a joke himself, but had failed, but admitted he went for the obvious every time. He’d already asked Luca if he lived on the second floor. I confessed that I had had to work very hard to stop myself doing this and Luca looked like he may have heard the joke a few times before. But at least that tension was out of the way. I did catch myself absent-mindedly humming the song on the way home, so who knows how many times I’ve done that already. I may not have masked my comedic intentions as well as I thought.
I mocked the town for using “by” in its name rather than “on”, even though technically they have got it right. Southend isn’t on the sea (though it’s long pier perhaps is), it is by it. And having the by in the name helps you know if you’re in the right place. If you’re not by the sea then you’re not in Shoreham.
I had lost my hair souffle somewhere along the road this week, so my hair was more fluffy and getting in my eyes more than usual. You always lose a few things on any tour and a pot of hair product is not as much as a disaster as the suit trousers, or indeed the sat nav that I dropped on to the kitchen floor earlier in the week, cracking the screen and making it unusable. It was entirely down to exhaustion: I had also nearly dropped a big glass jar from a cupboard a few seconds earlier, but managed to catch that. I think in hindsight that I would have preferred to have smashed the practically empty jar to the sat nav. But you don’t get to choose. This tour could still end up costing me money if I keep sacrificing my high end items.
My hair annoys me a bit even when it is more controlled, but tonight it was really getting in my face and I had to move it out of my eyes a lot to the annoyance of myself and at least one audience member, who made a point of telling me that he had loved the show, but that I had to drop the joke about John Donne and get my hair cut. He was vociferous about these points. I tried to explain that the John Donne joke is one that is designed to fail, as it’s actually about me reacting to the groan that I will inevitably get from one audience member every night, but this guy wasn’t listening. He was quite perturbed by my hair and my John Donne joke. I also tried to tell him about my souffle being missing, but he wasn’t having it. Only cutting off my hair would suffice. It was a fun chat.
Shoreham-by-Sea is my kind of place. The sort of town where you have people upset by a man touching his hair too much and a blind lighting man. But the kind of town where people want to come and see me do my stuff. So Shoreham-by-Sea is Allright-by-me.
I put together next month’s newsletter on the journey to the gig. I thought that I was taking it pretty easy on the work front (and compared to last year I suppose that I am) but there’s an awful lot going on. You can read all about it here.