The comedy store is full of characters. One of the looming oddities has to be Mister Don Barris. I don't want to research him because that might make things less interesting, but I just want to relay my experiences. He apparently closes out the show in the OR most nights. That means he goes up at arpund 1:30pm in the morning to a crowd of 10 people or less. Mostly less. He does all crowdwork. He does this thing where he'll pretend that he has a past with someone in the audience. But the person is someone he kinda knows. Generally a newer comedian. He'll yell something like "You bitch, I knew you'd come back". One time he bantered with this woman for about 10 minutes about how he was in love with her, but she didn't want him, but oh how she could take a punch like a champ. Weird stuff. To people who haven't seen him before it seems to be organic. However, after watching him multiple times I realized that this was his schtick. It makes me realize that every comedian has an act, no matter how improvised it looks. At one point while bantering with the girl he started singing the lyrics to Third Eye Blind's "Semi Charmed Life". It seemed improvised and kinda silly and interesting. Then I was at the store two weeks later watching Don in the Belly Room for his Ding Dong Show and he busted into the same lyrics! So he must be doing that all the time. Sometimes a moment seems only slightly interesting because maybe it's really happening right then. And then you realize that even that mediocrity was planned. And you really lose faith in humanity. Or if you're me, you gain faith in your ability to do what you want because the bar is so low. The Ding Dong Show is ridiculous. It's very exploitative. At one point he made an old man in the audience take his shirt off, say the words "I am Millard Fillmore, the 13th president of the United States" (the old man bore a resemblance) and then start dancing for two women. He did it and it was weird and kinda interesting and I felt a little bad.

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