Paul Savage

Comedian, host, cartoonist, astronaut, occasional liar

Round up of Liverpool’s Season 2014-2015

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The complete roundup of Liverpool Football Club’s season by a fan who saw zero games in person, and “watched” a disproportionate amount on live scrolling text screens on trains, and who enjoyed roughly a quarter of it.

The “hopefully won’t backfire when I name my first born son after him” award for player of the season

By a landslide, with a cool 100% of the vote, our only actually competent player, Phillipe Coutinho. With his cherubic face, his quiff that’s better than mine, and his ability to create a goal out of nowhere, or as close to nowhere as a mis-hit Joe Allen pass can be (pretty damn close, FYI), Coutinho was a delight who will grow into a Liverpool legend at this rate. Also, his wife looks delightful, like they’d be a really fun couple to have round to drink cocktails and barbecue with. Also, Coutinho Savage has a ring to it, no?

The Luis Suarez memorial “yes, but he’s OUR cunt” award for player who requires most defending to fans of other clubs

A debut award for Raheem Sterling, whose wage demands (and his agent angling for a transfer request) off the back of a lacklustre season caused many people to ask why he thinks he can waltz into Real’s first team when he can’t even waltz past Hull’s defence.

Runner up: Mario Balotelli, for about 3 weeks at the start of the season when it looked like he could turn off his attitude problem and turn on the style. That sadly failed to happen.

The “stupid thing that tragically came true” award

Brendan Rodgers: “Hull isn’t an easy place to go to”. At that point Hull were all but relegated with the worst defensive record in the league. We of course then lost. In fairness to Brendan, perhaps he just meant the Hull isn’t a particularly easy place to go to as a concept.

The “waste of aviation fuel” award for bellendry through the medium of planes

A joint award for flying a plane with a banner reading “Rodgers Out” during a game we won, and flying a plane reading “in Rodgers we trust” during the next game, which we lost. When did skywriting become the medium of protest anyway? See next years campaign for lower ticket prices with my cutting edge smoke signals.

The stupid fact I accidentally learnt this season that will never leave my brain (except in case of head injury or degenerative disease)

Steven Gerrard’s 38 seconds on the pitch against Man Utd makes him the first player to ever have their entire match captured on the Match Of The Day highlights.

The most physically painful moment of the season

Ignore the spankings by rivals. Ignore spankings by clubs that aren’t even rivals. Ignore the ignominious cup exits. Ignore the social media blunders after ignominious cup exits. The actual most painful display this season was a 3-2 win in extra time over QPR, a feat which should have felt happy but actually felt like going to a terrible nightclub, watching helplessly as your girlfriend grinds up on another man for 94 minutes and then decides she’s coming home with you.

Runner up: Everton equalising in the derby out of nowhere.

The “We hate Nottingham Forest” award for club I have recently started taking extra pleasure in when we beat them.

I don’t know if it’s because we’ve handed them some drubbings in recent years, if it’s because I now have a bunch more friends who support them, or just because I don’t like their owner, but I’ve begun to hate Spurs. I suggest you all join me, and lets create a confusing non local derby like Crystal Palace and Brighton. Just in case you think I am being biased, I have also begun to hate Arsenal, possibly because a chap I play 5 a side with turns up in the full arsenal kit despite being over 8 and not mentally incapacitated.

The “thanks, we’d not noticed that” award for most overrused piece of analysis

With Luis Suarez leaving over the summer, and Daniel Sturridge crocked for much of the season, we certainly missed their goals. What we didn’t miss was the repeated analysis that with Luis Suarez leaving over the summer, and Daniel Sturridge crocked for much of the season, we were certainly missing their goals. Of course, we’d brought in Lallana and Balotelli and Lambert over the summer, but they’d failed to gel like last season and Luis Suarez leaving over the summer, and Daniel Sturridge crocked for much of the season, we certainly missed their goals…

The involuntary thing I most annoyed my housemates with 

Watching games on my laptop in the corner whilst sighing “oh, for fucks sake” in social scenarios.

Runner up: Saying “Adam Lallana” in the same cadence as the cockney ” ‘ave a banana”. This also works for Hatem Ben Arfa

The ” ‘It’s not the despair, Laura. I can take the despair. It’s the hope I can’t stand” Award for getting my hopes up and cruelly dashing them.

Basically, from late December to the end of March, when we played attractive attacking football, seemed to have the 3 at the back working as a unit, when Mignolet was pulling off brilliant saves on a week by week basis and we somehow rose to 4th in the table with the best form. Then we shat the bed. Then pissed the bed. Then the smell of that made us do a sick on the bed, all mixed with the shit and piss. Then we tried to get rid of the smell by setting fire to the sheets. Then we lost 6-1 to Stoke.

The “you couldn’t write it” award for unlikely contrivance that you’d groan at if you saw it in a sitcom

On the occasion of Steven Gerrard’s last home game, Liverpool played Crystal Palace, going 1-0 up at Anfield as I left my sister’s house in London on my way to Crystal Palace’s stadium for a gig that evening. By the time I got off the underground it was 1-1, and by the time I got off the train we were 3-1 down and I spent the evening being reminded of that, as there was literally a giant fucking eagle painted onto everything. You try and be funny in that situation. (Don’t worry, I was. Game faces, darling)

The “that’s the last time Steven Gerrard will ever get subbed off against Swansea” award for services to premature unnecessary nostalgia

Steven Gerrard has been a fine captain, a true servant of the club and I hope to see him back soon if he decides coaching or management is for him. But, because he was leaving at the end of the season, from about halfway through, everything he did was the last time he did it. It all added to the effect of a man at a houseparty saying goodbye to everyone and then realising that his lift wasn’t ready, starting a conversation, and then saying goodbye again.

Worst New Addition

There’s a fair bit of competition from players brought in over the summer, but the award goes to someone who came through in house. With the American owners came the idea that kids are important and the best way to make them love football is to add things to get in the way of the football. After being behind the scenes at kids parties for 2 years, 2014 saw the match day pitchside appearance of Mighty Red, a 5 foot liver bird mostrosity. It’s everything wrong with modern football that’s not an unrepentant convicted rapist, or trying to sign a convicted unrepentant rapist.  (Seriously Ched, be a good boy and fuck off). Liver birds are of course fictional, and I am hoping post 2015 that this one becomes so too.

 

mighty red

The “shit banter by shit fans” award for shittest banter by opposing fans

During a game last year, captain Steven Gerrard slipped. Just slipped on the grass.  This was apparently so hilarious to Chelsea fans that they had “slippery when wet” signs modified, professionally printed and laminated. Fucking laminated. Loads of them. I know we all thought Tim Lovejoy on Soccer AM was a nadir for “banter” and then it somehow got worse without him, but this is incredible. I sincerely someone got a bollocking for wasting company money and resources of the office colour printer and laminator on such a piss poor piece of badinage.

Runner up: Man Utd unveiling a new flag mocking Gerrard at a Man Utd vs Arsenal game. “I know how to piss them off. Let’s hurt their feeling at a game they aren’t watching. And let’s do it through the medium of embroidery!”. This is basically like going on a first date and only talking about your ex. Through the medium of embroidery.

The “best bit of the season” award

There were several great games, some brilliant goals, and some points where it wasn’t a physical torture to put myself through this all over again.

Best bit for me was Nick Pettigrew’s hilarious twitter commentary on Liverpool’s defensive failings, through vivid similes, such as:

  • Liverpool defence playing with all the confidence of a man about to fart after a phaal & 8 pints of Guinness.
  • Liverpool still defending like five blokes pretending not to know each other after doing an armed robbery, there.
  • Liverpool still defending like five Weebles in an earthquake
  • Liverpool defending like five crabs having ballbearings fired at them, there
  • And once again, Liverpool defend like five blokes trying to catch an invisible greased pig during a hailstorm
  • Liverpool still defend like five blokes with peanut allergies being chased by a giant Snickers bar.
  • Liverpool still defend like five Chuckle brothers trying to find a contact lens in an earthquake.

He’s worth following for non football stuff too:. https://twitter.com/Nick_Pettigrew

“Sign of the Season” award for crystallising exactly what was going on

On the 21st december, our joint 4th top scorer was “defender with a head injury in extra time”

Runner up: The amount of Match Of the Day I had to stay up for/ fast forward through to see the Liverpool game. You seriously telling me we’re after Hull vs QPR?

Thing I am most looking forward to about next season. 

Winning the league. It’s our year! With a bit of shoring up, some new kids coming through, some good signings, it’s our year! I look forward to this feeling lasting til roughly November, as is traditional.

Runner up: Our kit will be made by New Balance, giving us a hipster cred/ ruining lots of hipster’s cred.

 

 

 

 

Top 5 Sitcom Finales

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Sitcom finales are big business, and can be hugely successful. In the UK, the 4th most watched programme ever was the finale to Only Fools And Horses (the first finale of 4 finales. Bringing a whole new meaning to the meaning of ‘finale’). Excluding sporting events, the top 4 most watched programmes in US history are the last episodes of Mash, Cheers, Seinfeld and Friends. So, I’ve decided to take a look at some of the best sitcom finales of all time.

Everybody Loves Raymond

The family realises not only do they love Raymond, but they are in love with Raymond. They form a cult around him, turn the house into a compound, where Raymond starts preaching the End Times. The ATF burn it down, and the Barone family die in a hail of gunfire.

The Phil Silvers Show/ Sgt Bilko

In its last episode, during a scam on fake horse races, the rascally but lovable sergeant is hit on the head, and has a horrible dream sequence that his life will one day be remade as a lackluster Steve Martin vehicle. Weirdly, this was used separately as the end of the Inspector Clouseau movies.

The Big Bang Theory

In the hilarious series finale, Leonard rebels and sits in Sheldon’s space on the sofa! What larks! Sheldon (who somehow works in a university department full of scientists and yet no one has diagnosed him with severe Apsperger’s Syndrome) bites Leonard and refuses to let go until he gets down to the bone, because he never learnt to use his words properly to express rage. Sheldon is sectioned, and then the most pathetic character GOES INTO SPACE WITH HIS HOT WIFE BECAUSE THEY MADE HIM AN ACTUAL LITERAL ASTRONAUT.

My Hero

In the final episode, everyday superhero Thermoman gets given a new head, despite being played by a different actor in a completely different manner for the last of its 6 seasons. Shockingly, I am not making any of this up

King Of Queens

Some final episodes stretch out their running times from half an hour to an hour. In the final episode of King Of Queens, we see King Doug die, and a brutal war of succession rage throughout Queens. To show this, the finale was 40 hours long and spans 10 years of alliances, betrayals and assassinations.

How I Met Your Mother

The finale they broadcast was complete bullshit, after spending 3 seasons setting up a load of stuff and then knocking it away in 10 minutes. The original scripted finale was better, where it is revealed Barney is a Patrick Bateman style serial killer, and that Future Ted was not only telling this story to his kids, but also down the phone to a hostage negotiator who was stalling for time.

Excerpt from the final script:

INT: Robin’s Apartment. 5 Dogs yapping

ROBIN: You ever try to play that thing?

TED PRESSES LIPS TO IT. PUCKERS UP. WEIRD STRANGULATED NOISES COME FROM FRENCH BLUE HORN

ROBIN: Huh, guess not

TED: There’s something in the end. HE REACHES INSIDE WITH A GOOFY SMILE

AND PULLS OUT A GUN

ROBIN: “Wait! Ted! Don’t do this!”

TED: “Come on Robin. This is how it ends. Our stories. this is how they were always going to end. The Universe was always going to end it like this”

NARRATOR: One neighbour called the cops after the first gunshot. Several others rang 911 when the shots reached seven. Cops reckoned he’d put one in each of the dogs, made her watch, crying. Put one right between her eyes. Then he’d reloaded, opened a bottle of scotch, and put the gun under his chin. Painted the ceiling with his brains. Cops never did work out what the blue horn was for.

NEW SHOW: PAUL SAVAGE FINDS EVERY JOKE IN THE BIBLE

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I’m currently writing a new show for Edinburgh 2014. It is, optimistically, called “Paul Savage finds all the jokes in the bible”. It’s a completely different way of writing shows than I have previously, and I’m having to be much more disciplined in grinding out hours of work, rather than my usual writing technique of being a hideous embarrasment to everyone and then telling people that.

I’m looking for previews to run it out. Unlike last time I prepared, where I was able to drop little bits into my sets, this is harder when I can’t just go “here’s a bunch of stuff about wizard battles in Exodus”. If you’re running previews, please hit me up at comedysavage@gmail.com

I did a bitching photos session with Duncan Oakley, who was gratifyingly nice about me getting down to my skimpies in front of his pregnant girlfriend.




Look at it. Isn’t it gorgeous?

My favourite jokes on the simpsons about universities

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For no reason, a list of my favourite jokes on the Simpsons referencing American universities

 

  • Hey egghead! Sing fair harvard for me.

“Fair Harrvarrrr” *thwack*

“You, sir, have the boorish manners of a Yalie”

  • (The school is on strike, and Lisa feels her learning capacity is waning) “At this rate, I won’t even be able to get into Vassar”

“I’ve had just about enough of your Vassar bashing young lady”

Sideshow Bob and his brother Cecil are arguing

  • “You wanted to be Krusty’s sidekick since you were five. What about the buffoon lessons? the four years at clown college?”
    I’ll thank you not to refer to Princeton that way”
  • “Brown? Hell of a school. Otto went there” (sunning himself on the school bus bonnet)

“yup, almost get tenure too”

“Brown, brown, brown, brown”

“Lisa, are you ok? Only you’re saying Brown an awful lot”

Not every story needs to be told a thousand times

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My mate Tony is clever and funny and a wonderful writer, and good fun to get drunk with. He is also wrong. At a cellular level, he is factually, objectively wrong.

For Tony believes that not only could Indiana Jones be rebooted with a new actor, that it would be a good thing.

Now, the Indiana Jones trilogy is almost perfect (Temple of Doom really isn’t that much cop). And it definitely is a trilogy. They thought about making a fourth one, but that was considered a bad idea by all, and it never happened. Nothing can be gained by adding to it. Only taken away.

“ah” a specific set of douchebag cries “The original thing still exists. They aren’t changing that”. So why then when I hear Dick Dale’s Miserlou am i no longer reminded of Pulp Fiction, but instead involuntarily made to mentally shout ‘Pump it! Louder!’. Beause the Black Eyed Peas suck, but their hooks are insiduous.

I got into a discussion with someone the other day about Alan Moore. Now Alan Moore is crazy as hell (he claims to have met the fictional character John Constantine in real life. A fictional character he created. And met him after he created him. Met him. In real life. Twice), but he does have some brilliant work in the comic book/ graphic novel medium, and some of it has not translated well to screen. Alan Moore has refused millions of pounds for his numerous works to be adapted into films (when such adaptations produced the Johnny Depp film From Hell and the lamentable League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, you certainly see where he’s coming from. Both of those books are ace, by the way).

Anyway, whoever I was discussing it with was telling Alan Moore to stop being a baby and take the money because no adaptation would be perfect. Alan Moore has said he doesn’t want adaptations because he wrote them in one format, the format they were best suited for. This, essentially, is my problem. I don’t know why we have to have all stories in all formats.

For example, take the 2010 film inception, in which Leonardo Di Caprio plays Cobb, a man who can navigate other people’s dream worlds. The movie ends with him reunited with his kids (or does it? ahhh)

Then see what happens afterwards, in this spin off TV series, which sees Cobb (now played by Leonardo DiCaprio’s non-union Canadian version: The guy from Arrow) and his kids solving mysteries around the world.

But how did he get together with his wife? See the tie in graphic novel where they go to school together. She hates him at first, they aren’t going to get together! (until they do)

What does Ellen Page’s character do with her new found power? She opens up a dream based detective agency in picturesque Cedar Falls, Ohio, and learns some life lessons from the charming cast of small town folks in this quirky sitcom

But what if you just loved the movie? Then you’ll love the stage based musical “Together in Electric Dreams”, where the film you love is told again by amateur singers through the back catalogue of The Human League! See Marion Cotilliard’s character sing “Don’t you want me baby” as she shoots Cobb in a snow covered chase. Why does Cobb “keep feeling fascination” with her? See Michael Caine’s character do something with a 4th Human League song I can’t be bothered to google. Coming to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, 2015

 

8 inexplicable rap, pop, or rock records by Football players

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Football players aren’t like you and me. They’re young, rich, famous, generally uneducated and spend maybe two hours a day training at most. How are you going to fill those long afternoons? By recording your own records, obviously.

1: Hoddle and Waddle

Glenn Hoddle and Chris Waddle were players at Tottenham Hotspur, very possibly the only sports team in the world named after a minor Shakespeare character, because football is occasionally classy as shit.

They were also playing together for the English national side, who at that time had a reputation for prodigious drinking and hellraising, which is strange as they then made this record, with them dressed as Chandler in a flashback episode of Friends. This performance is on “Top of The Pops”, which had allowed acts to mime to a backing track. You can clearly see at several points where Chris Waddle is so ashamed he forgets to mime along.

After this, Glenn Hoddle went on to manage England, where he was fired for saying disabled people had done something in a past life to deserve it, even though his daughter ran a disabled charity. If he’s right, what is he going to come back as for this monstrosity?

2: Waddle and Boli

Chris Waddle might have looked as embarrassed as a man caught getting a hand job from a cousin at a family reunion, but that wasn’t the end of his assault on the pop charts. He transferred over to top French side Olympique Marseille. During his time at Marseille, Chris Waddle was known to French fans as “Magic Chris” because of his habit of watching a single Paul Daniels magic VHS to counteract homesickness.

Perhaps homesickness would be better than this hopeless mess with Basile Boli. Basile Boli is mostly remembered for headbutting Stuart Pearce, which considering he is called “Psycho” and looks like this: 

is about as sensible as teabagging a sentient nuclear missile.

As for the song, it’s like the video editor just clicked the button marked “add all of the 90s special effects” and called it a day. Random cartoon squiggles flying in from all over the place, some ropey greenscreening and spandex clad back up dancers all dancing to different songs. Oh, and at 1:57, some nightmarish puppets which look like what would happen if the plant from Little Shop of Horrors had sperm with faces.

3: George Weah (and chums)

Call me ill educated, or blame it on how little news some countries get, but Liberia means literally one thing to me: George Weah. Weah was a blindingly talented footballer, and somehow simultaneous winner of World Footballer of the Year, European Footballer of the Year and African Footballer of the Year, which is impressive as it means he was from two separate continents.

George Weah is Liberian football, too. He not only played for them, on retirement he coached, then managed, and at lots of points single-handedly funded the national side.
Oh, and in case that wasn’t badass enough, he ran for president and only narrowly lost amid allegations of corruption from his opponents, including vote tampering and intimidation.

Just in case you’re not quite getting that, it’s like Michael Jordan being cheated out of the 2000 US election, instead of Al Gore.

George Weah once won a Fair Play Award from FIFA after he was banned for 6 matches for breaking the nose of an opponent so hard it required facial reconstruction surgery.

He also made this record with several other African footballers, including Taribo West. We can see it here inexplicably being sung live on an Italian youth program, and features a heavyset white woman who is pretty definitely not an African footballer.

The song starts at 3:41. The most surprising thing is that heavyset white woman has got moves

4: Andrew Cole

Andy Cole is the second highest scorer of all time in the English Premier League, one of the few players to win every single possible honour in the English game, and was at one point the most expensive transfer in English Football.

Despite being an astonishingly talented multimillionaire athlete, Andy Cole is so colossally dull that there are no fun facts about him. In fact, he’s so dull he asked the media to stop calling him Andy and start calling him Andrew.

He also made this, a cover of The Gap Band’s “Outstanding”. Props have to go to the woman who actually sings this song, and to the poor lass who for some reason flashes her bra at 3:00. This song failed to hit the top 40.

The best bit is at 1:17 where he rhymes “hard” with “hard”

5: Alexi Lalas

Even countries newer to the football firmament wanted to get in on the terrible singles game. Here’s the poster boy for America’s 1994 World Cup, Alexi Lalas, with his cover of The Primitives “Crash”

In this video, we see a nice Italian lady and her tuxedoed sugar-daddy co-host repeatedly talk over each other whilst introducing Lalas, supported by a backing band of mugging barbershop singers. Then three 40 year old punks turn up. And some men in flat caps and suspenders. And two retired civil servants. And they dance around till 1:04, when a punk gets a guy wearing one of those American high school sports jackets on the floor, and proceeds to frottage the fuck out of him. From my limited experience, all European TV programming follow this basic pattern.

It was scenes like this that led to them supporting perennial punchline (and somehow 16 times platinum artists) Hootie and The Blowfish on tour.

6: Jurgen Klinsmann

Whilst we’re on the subject of American “soccer”, you may not know who the coach of their national side is. It is Jürgen Klinsmann, one of the greats of football, a man who scored at 6 consecutive major national tournaments, who was instrumental in winning the 1990 world cup and the 1996 European cup, and has boasted of his ability to swear at referees in 5 different languages.

On the flip side, he also made this: It’s World Cup 1994. It’s being hosted by America. And what could be more exciting than singing with the biggest American band of all time… The Village People? Especially getting them a mere 14 years after their last hit of any sort,  “Can’t Stop the Music: (theme from the motion picture)”! (The song and film both won Razzie awards that year.)

Part of the brilliance of the video is that it has 25 tracksuited Germans singing in a language a lot of them clearly don’t speak, doing dance moves they clearly don’t know, while being backing singers for a band that includes a man dressed entirely in leather. Oh, and as they only successfully hit the refrain “Let’s go!” from the chorus on the third time around, it may have been shot in a single take, but also seems to have been the first time they heard the song.

7: Anfield Rap

It has long been, for reasons lost in time, a tradition for teams in the English FA cup to record a song. At one point they were male voice choirs, but at some point… nope. We have no idea how that ended up as this. Somehow, Craig Johnston, (a white South African when it was still under Apartheid) thought it would be funny if they all ripped off black hip-hop culture, and everyone was fine with that. The story, because every football rap needs a narrative, is about the two players actually from Liverpool, trying to teach the rest of the team to speak in the local scouse dialect. It also contains (at 1:37) them rapping into a furry microphone…

…that turns out to be the hair of John Barnes, the only black player.

8: Gazza

Paul Gascoigne, or Gazza, as he was almost always known, was the most exciting footballer in the world at one point. He also was an idiot.

As a youth player, in protest about being singled out for misbehaviour, he drove the groundsman’s tractor through the dressing club wall.

Upon signing with Italian club Lazio, he greeted thousands of fans whilst wearing fake breasts:

He got the entire England team banned for life from Cathay Pacific airways by putting a sleeping Dennis Wise into an overhead locker and then kicking all the TVs in first class to pieces.

He once, when asked by a scandinavian journalist if he had a message for his Norwegian fans, replied “Yes, fuck off, Norway”

He was pictured the night before a huge tournament having liquor poured straight from bottles into his mouth in the “dentist’s chair”

When double murderer (and cop killer) Raoul Moat was on the run and surrounded by police armed with machine guns, Gazza attempting to break the siege by turning up with a fishing rod, 4 cans of lager and a bucket of fried chicken. We are not making any of this up, here he is explaining it to the media on the scene:

He added: “He is willing to give in now. I just want to give him some therapy and say ‘come on Moaty, it’s Gazza.’

“He is alright – simple as that and I am willing to help him. I have come all the way from Newcastle to Rothbury to find him, have a chat with him.

“I guarantee, Moaty, he won’t shoot me. I am good friends with him.”

And at some point he made this:

What follows is a video that involves a man repeatedly taking off and putting on a shell suit jacket and exposing his naked chest, supported by two backing dancers dressed as homeless people. The other half of the video involves him being driven round Newcastle city centre whilst yelling the words to the song, which he’s not always sure of, at passers-by.

Whilst that song didn’t chart, this one with formerly respected folk band Lindisfarne reached number 2 on the British singles chart.

Just to put that into context; Jimi Hendrix had to die before the British record buying public would give him more than a number 3 single.

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(This was an article I wrote for Cracked, the humour website. They decided it was too niche to do an article about the world’s most popular sport, and yet still let Gladstone fart out his terrible observations. It took ages because they have really strict editorial standards. Seriously. You have no idea of the pains I went through to find articles from pre-everything being on the internet days, especially when they won’t allow several sports websites, wikipedia or several tabloid newspapers as sources, and every sentence that is factual has to be sourced. It’s an article in itself. It’s also a ball-ache.)

My favourite words in my own routines

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I am a bit of a word nerd. I am fascinated where words come from. I also like some words just because of the way they sound. Pernicious. Peripaticular. Bevelled. Rotisserie. Macular. Bon nuit. Partisan. Crimea. Predatory. Biff. Furnicular.

In light of this, here is a short list of words I like in my stand up routines (The bit it’s from in brackets)

  1. Idiosyncracies (comparing women to cars)
  2. Arbitrary (Cheese truck)
  3. Rhombus (Cheese truck)
  4. Vorbesc- Romanian for “I speak” (Speaking Romanian)
  5. Munitions (Youth Slang)
  6. Anomaly (Drinking)
  7. Ovaries (Drinking)
  8. Motorboated (Music Festivals)
  9. Tepid (Barbecues)
  10. Recalcitrant (G-Spot)

Things I learnt whilst researching a quiz

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College american football star, first athlete on a box of Wheaties and the man who saved the NFL, Red Grange, was in a 12 part radio serial called Harry Potter. In 1945

Eunice Huthart, who won Gladiators, went on to become Angelina Jolie’s regular stunt double.

Comic Book artist Laura Molina made a website full of paintings of her ex boyfriend Dave Stevens, who created the Rocketeer, which he sued her over for using his likeness. It’s called nakeddave .com, and is pretty weird.

Westward Ho! is the only British place name with an exclamation point

If you took a continuous line with a HB pencil, it would be 35 miles long

The poet and jazz flutist Gil Scott Heron, most famous for The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, was the son of the first black man to play for Celtic

The cake Parkin is a diminutive form of the name Peter

The first recorded use of the word “starkers” is 1905

the leftover bits from wine or cider making is called pomace

Canada has a 1 dollar coin called the Loonie, as it has a picture of a loon ( a seabird) on the reverse. They introduced a two dollar coin called the Toonie, but one of the suggestions was Dubloonie (double loonie, also dubloons), which is infinitely better

When opera singer Elisabeth Schwarzkopf appeared on Desert Island Discs in 1958, 7 of her 8 records were her singing. The 8th was one she’d been in, but not sang on.

Jaguar changed it’s name from the Swallow Sidecar company in 1945 because the SS initials had taken on bad connotations.

The NFL team Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost their first 26 games in existence, or 1 whole season and 85% of the following one.

There is a genre of comic books in Australia devoted to surfing stories.

The wikipedia page for Hideo Kajima, creator of Metal Gear Solid, claims he is is one of the best writers in video games, which is laughable in the extreme. Pacman has a better plot and more believeable dialogue

Atomic Kitten’s Number one single Whole Again was written by OMD’s Andy McCluskey

The Victorian sex academic Havelock Ellis, the first man to do a study of homosexuality without calling it a disease or madness, thought himself asexual until he was 60 years old. He then witnessed a woman urinating and then became all about that. His wife was fine with it because she’d been openly a lesbian for 30 years and he found a french woman to do it for him.

Goals for Edinburgh Fringe 2013: Update

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Before going up this year to the Fringe, I made a semi-serious list of goals. Let’s have a look at them and see how many I managed

1: Try and make every show a good one

  • Every Cheerful Shambles I tried to make good. By 3 days in, trying to get up every day at 10am to flyer for 2 hours for the Free Tea Show wasn’t going to happen, especially with how many drunken late nights I had, and how hard it was to get people in. We had some great ones and some stinkers.

2:   Do as many gigs as possible in trying to make myself the best comic I can be

  • I did a bunch in the first two weeks, averaging 4 a day. Some were brilliant, some were rubbish. I’m not sure I made myself the best comedian I can by getting booed at Jay Handley’s late gig for my impassioned defence of modern paedophile’s work ethic. I basically thought the audience were dicks and tried to sabotage my own ending.

3: Eat at least one piece of fruit at least once a week

  • If we’re not counting orange juice, I magnificently failed at this. I had some veg though.

4: Keep it loose and experimental. Play around onstage more. People always say that’s the best bit

  • I tended to play around more at Free Tea, mostly because I got bored of my material. I tended to play around less with the solo show as I realised after two performances that the show was much too dark for it’s 4:20pm slot. Cue a rewrite, and jettisoning of a load of material I couldn’t use, so I felt I needed to stick to the script. Some of the bits I enjoyed most were me and Aaron dimming the house lights and bringing up the stage lights from opposite ends of the room at Free tea and doing it wrong, then making that part of the show. People thought it was deliberate. It wasn’t.

5: Don’t go to Brooke’s bar

  • Brooke’s bar, for the unaware, is the industry-only private bar at the Pleasance, and is quite often a hive of bellends. I managed to avoid this throughout the run (by not being invited). After missing my train on the sunday, my flatmate (and wonderful human) Abi invited me along for her production company’s goodbye drinks. It was alright.

6: If I do, don’t look over everyone’s shoulders cos someone from a sitcom is playing darts.

  • I didn’t. I had a nice chat with Johnny and the Baptists about kids comedy and with one of the Beta Males about comic books. I saw no proper celebrities that I haven’t met before.

7: Have a bareknuckle fight with Liam Pickford, shirtless, on cowgate at 3AM in the last week. It will be cathartic for all

  • Liam Pickford went home halfway through as he had worn his stomach lining through by existing on lard and working class bitterness alone. Instead, Paul Duncan McGarrity found me being slightly introspective at our kitchen table (following a disappointing dinner with a girl), so he had a wrestling match with me in the hall. He eventually won via an armbar, but complained for 4 days afterwards that I’d knackered his spine throwing him at the skirting board, so I guess i won the war, or the moral victory, or something.

8: Try not to get infuriated by how much everything costs. A mediocre burger is £8 and we all have to deal with that

  • I was charged, on seperate occasions, £1:90 and £3:00 for a pint of lime and soda, something I had previously thought was a cheap option. I also had a tremendously disappointing dinner at Elephant Cafe (where JK Rowling wrote Harry Potter), which included waiting 20 minutes for a table and then having Haggis Neeps and Tatties where the tatties were dry and gritty. So, fail on that one.

9: On my day off, actually get out of the city

  • Instead I watched 3 shows that clashed with mine (or prime flyering hours): Nat Luurtsema, Gein’s Family Giftshop and Phil Ellis. I then bought a hammer, nails and a blackout curtain and went back to my flat to make sure I could get some sleep (how the usual resident copes with a thin rattan blind that doesn’t reach the edges is beyond me). I then had 1 beer and fell asleep in front of the football for 15 straight hours.

10: Try not to let anyone doing clowning, physical theatre, improv or cabaret know how little you think of their much lesser artforms.

  • I changed one of the jokes I do at student gigs about wacky students to be about improv kids and did it every day, so… nope. I also mocked Paul Duncan McGarrity and Aaron Twitchen for doing it, because it is so massively easy.

11: See at least 2 plays. Sad ones, where teenage girls die on a backstreet abortionist’s table in 1930′s warsaw or where starving russian jews sing sad songs in a cellar before the mensheviks kill them. It’ll be good for you

  • Closest thing I saw to a play was a 3 minute improvised bit Red Redmond did onstage about a friend called Babs going to computer college when she could be a farmer. At the same gig, Red ended up in his pants and Richard Massarra got completely naked. I really can’t remember why.
  •  I was going to see one because a woman gave me a transfer (fake tattoo) on my bicep to advertise her play, but then I hid it with my sleeve and didn’t go to her play. I did mean to. I also wanted to go see a play that was being done by some pretty girls I kept flirting with whilst flyering everyday, until I found out it was about the London underground. Screw that.

12: If I am attracted to an Australian barmaid, ask her out early in the festival rather than on the last night at 3 am when she has to work til 5 am, as she will move back to Australia and you will never see her again, apart from occasional photos of her in a bikini on facebook and that honestly makes it worse (Stupid cowardly 2011 me).

  • Happily, it never came up. I did have a rubbish time with chatting up women, but frankly that is nothing out of the ordinary. One of the women who watched my show promised to find me a wife. Weirdly, she did this on the street in front of many of her friends, without context, whilst poking me gently in the stomach with her balled up fist.

13: Don’t  read any reviews

  • I read loads. Just not many of them were mine. I read instead 2 star reviews of my friends’ shows, because you can set a watch by my schadenfreude. I also enjoyed a 1 star clinical takedown of an act I don’t like.

14: Don’t get angry that there are no reviews for you to avoid because you’re not “London-based”

  • I had one 4 star review for Cheerful Shambles, which I got a week before the fringe and the website still hasn’t published (the writer sent it to me to fact check). I also got a 5 star review for Free Tea from a lovely man from a local radio station. When we checked, he had given 4 other shows he saw that day 5 stars. Clearly he was just glad to be out of the house. I also had a reveiwer in on the day my Ex, who I wrote half the show about, was in the audience. She insisted on telling people who she was on the way out, and which bits were true.

15: Try not to blame London for everything that’s wrong with comedy, even though it is.

  • Why lie? It is.

16: Don’t drink every day (even though that is the best bit)

  • I did 2 days on drinking, one day off for the first 6 days, then noticed my donations buckets were markedly lower (33% on average) on days I didn’t drink. Which was amazing as it was my first pint of the day and I had maybe 4 sips over the course of an hour. Must be psychological. So I decided to drink every day and the donations went all over the place, so there was no correlation, but I like getting smashed. It’s fun. On our last free Tea Show the barmaid gave me and Aaron rum in our tea as we were both still hammered from the night before.

Overall, I had a blast. I was very happy with 90% of the solo shows and we had some great Free Tea ones. I saw some kick ass shows by other people. I especially liked drinking with friends I don’t get to see very often and with people I’d not met before such as Jack Campbell and Robbie Ormrod (although I had walked out of Jack Campbell’s two hander the year before whilst hungover as it was “observational comedy about a place that wasn’t that place”. It was very pleasant to see how much he’d improved). I will be back next year, and I’m currently working on ideas for the show (either the Bible, alcohol or bad thoughts, or maybe something that hasn’t yet happened).

Now, book me for some gigs. I forgot to book up september properly.

My Goals for Edinburgh Fringe 2013

no comment
  1. Try and make every show a good one
  2. Do as many gigs as possible in trying to make myself the best comic I can be
  3. Eat at least one piece of fruit at least once a week
  4. Keep it loose and experimental. Play around onstage more. People always say that’s the best bit
  5. Don’t go to Brooke’s bar
  6. If I do, don’t look over everyone’s shoulders cos someone from a sitcom is playing darts.
  7. Have a bareknuckle fight with Liam Pickford, shirtless, on cowgate at 3AM in the last week. It will be cathartic for all
  8. Try not to get infuriated by how much everything costs. A mediocre burger is £8 and we all have to deal with that
  9. On my day off, actually get out of the city
  10. Try not to let anyone doing clowning, physical theatre, improv or cabaret know how little you think of their much lesser artforms.
  11. See at least 2 plays. Sad ones, where teenage girls die on a backstreet abortionist’s table in 1930’s warsaw or where starving russian jews sing sad songs in a cellar before the mensheviks kill them. It’ll be good for you
  12. If I am attracted to an Australian barmaid, ask her out early in the festival rather than on the last night at 3 am when she has to work til 5 am, as she will move back to Australia and you will never see her again, apart from occasional photos of her in a bikini on facebook and that honestly makes it worse (Stupid cowardly 2011 me).
  13. Don’t  read any reviews
  14. Don’t get angry that there are no reviews for you to avoid because you’re not “London-based”
  15. Try not to blame London for everything that’s wrong with comedy, even though it is.
  16. Don’t drink every day (even though that is the best bit)

Paul Savage: Cheerful Shambles is on daily 2-25th August (not 14th) at 4:20pm at Dragonfly bar.

I am also appearing daily in Free Tea and Biscuits 2-25th August (not 14th) at 12:05pm in Voodoo Rooms Speakeasy, with Aaron Twitchen and a host of guest headliners

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