Credit where credit’s due, I went into Shepherd’s Bush Post Office this lunchtime to post a box of programmes to Manchester for my upcoming annual gig at the Frog and Bucket and I was first in the queue for the first time in my life and called to the counter before I’d even had a chance to get the box from the bottom of the pram (having a baby has the unexpected benefit of giving you a great way of getting heavy objects around - though you could just not have a baby and buy a pram - you’d look weird, but you’d have much more room to put your heavy items in if you dispensed with the sexcrement and associated paraphanalia). Last time I went in I was maybe third in the queue and was getting served before I’d even really had a chance to tweet. The new manager seems to have turned this place around, which is good news for the everyday folk of Shepherd’s Bush, but bad news for fans of the #postofficequeue hashtag and also for me as 90% of my Metro columns have been about queuing in Shepherd’s Bush Post Office and the assorted weird Bush wildlife I have encountered there. I like to think that my negative PR has helped this process in some way, but I think it’s just down to the determination of the manager and her staff (who are the biggest fans of my column, despite the negativity - I have never criticised them though and can’t see that I ever would - they do a very demanding job and remain polite and fried
I spoke to the manager after my transaction and warned her that through her own efficiency she might put herself out of work, but of course, then things would go back to the old ways and they’d need her back. I really admire her. She has worked hard and turned a very difficult situation around, though she did admit with the Christmas rush on the horizon that things might not be quite so quiet in the future. But look, if I am going to take the piss when stuff goes wrong, I have to hand out congrats when things improve, as much as it wrecks my comedy.
We had some friends around tonight because socialising in our own house is the easiest way to do things now. Our friend Christina was round first. Phoebe goes nuts whenever she is around. She thinks she is the funniest person on the planet, which actually she might be (she used to do brilliant stand-up and still contributes funny stuff to Viz and does all manner of life-wasting, but brilliant tumblrs). Obviously it galls me that my daughter doesn’t consider me the funniest person alive (I am not even the funniest person in our small family), especially after I’d looked after her most of the day and got some smiles and chortles (and a long period of sullen boredom when we were at the shops where she wouldn’t even catch my eye), but nothing like this. The other month Phoebe saw Christina in the distance, across the road and even though she doesn’t see her very much, recognised her and went ballistic. Perhaps my daughter is like a metal detector of truly funny people and I love to see her happy, but I wonder what it is about Christina that has so tickled my baby. And I say all this not as a father talking about his baby as if she was in anyway interesting, but as a comedian, trying to work out where humour comes from in the first place and why we find some people funny and others not. My theory is that Christina just looks like a giant baby or magic elf or friendly demon or enchanted but morally dubious toy of some kind. She doesn’t really, but this is the only way I can claw back some pride.
I ate and drank too much, but at least this week, with no work and some decent sleep behind me I have managed to do some exercise. So hopefully I can regain the fitness I had before a tiny human bowled into my life and fucked everything up, like a dick would.
Another date added to the Happy Now? tour. I will be in Belfast on May 8th. Not sure when tickets will be available, but it’s a smallish room and I usually do well out there, so book soon. A few more dates might get added and you can find out if I am already coming somewhere near you here. I am sure a Cheddar gig will be added, but we’re still waiting for confirmation of the date. But don’t ask me if I am coming to your town, encourage your local theatre to book me - that’s how it works. And I am mainly playing towns I do pretty well in, so it might be worth booking in advance (I don’t sell the tickets so if the gigs are not yet up on the websites then contact the theatre to ask when they will be).