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Monday 22nd May 2023


Last of my six spots at the Bill Murray tonight and we were recording some stuff for the Can I Have My Ball Back? podcast (more eps out soon), but first I tried to whisk through the highlights of the early part of the show. It was impressive how much I remembered (as I hadn’t even looked back on it today) but it also whisked along and got lots of laughs. The second half of the story was read out, to make sure it was good for the podcast, so didn’t have quite the same energy, but lots of laughs in that too. I wasn’t sure with these shows if I was just dipping my toe back into stand up or actively working up a new show. With the book and the podcast  and the fourth series of Relativity already out I worried that I had done enough on this subject, but weirdly it feels OK to do it all in another medium. There will be people familiar with the other incarnations, but not many of them seemed to be in the audience tonight. There’s still a long way to go and as I am probably touring RHLSTP in the autumn/spring, I won’t be able to do a full on Ball tour til 2024. But I’d say it’s more likely than not.
Right Bollock also made a haphazard appearance. I was deliberately clumsy and unrehearsed at getting my special jacket on and delighted that my false hand kept falling off - also Right Bollock’s stick on eye came off, but I stuck it back on again. I have usually been too self-conscious to enter full on ventriloquism mode with an audience. Doing it over the internet I can usually forget how embarrassing it is and the puppets feel free to express themselves in a (sometimes) amusing way, but with a live audience the patheticness of it all can hit us and the puppets then aren’t as witty and free-flowing as they are on our own. But tonight I partially overcame that and Right Bollock started to come out of his shell (fittingly) and we got some half decent stuff. I think he will be a part of the tour show for sure and think he will get more confident and more offensive towards me as time goes on. I am his Moby Dick and he is my Moby Ball. There is much to explore, not least the importance of cutting toxic influences out of your life. Especially if they want to kill you.
So that’s all a little bit exciting and I’ve really enjoyed being back in front of a crowd and doing stand up. As I say in the show the cancer and threat of death made me really want to stay alive and spend time with my family and not be out on the road, but you know, three years of that is enough, so it’ll be good to get back to my proper job again!

More RHLSTP guests announced. Ben Willbond and Larry Rickard from off of Ghosts will be joining me on 3rd July at the Leicester Sq Theatre. It’s selling fast so book now to take advantage of cheaper tickets. More guests announced this week I hope, but worth booking now to get cheapest tickets.

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Can I Have My Ball Back? The book Buy here
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