Friday, August 21, 2009

New Yawk-ward State of Mind

So I got to spend the past chunk of days in the City That Never Sleeps (But Mostly Sleep Eats)! You know, the place that grows on everyone like a Chia Pe(s)t, and really gets into your nooks and crannies. What I mean to say is it was hot and humid, and so all elbows and belly buttons were sweating pretty much anywhere you went, but especially in the subway where everyone is a short fingernail's length away from you.

Speaking of which, the mom of this baby that I made eyes at on a train started cutting the moppet's finger- and toenails during the ride and just leaving them on the floor. Yay NYC! Always going out of its way to impress me.

But it was still an amazing time, because I'm not sure if anybody else in the world has noticed this, but New York City has some yumtastic food and supercoolicious things to do and see. Just me? Fine. But you guys should really check it out, Google it at the very least.

Anyhowser, I got to do some gee-whizbang shows, and recaps are draining these days what with the current shortages in jobs, water, sustainable resources, time, and breezes, depending on where you're standing. But still. For the people, here are some random nibbles culled from the sieve that is my reverse-gentrifying (*once a stodgy Whole Foods, now a ghetto fabulous farmer's market where you can pick n' choose your own questionable tomatoes*) memory:

**I got to perform in the 11th Annual Del Close Marathon, which is a sweaty, beery non-stop longform improv hullabaloo. It was similar to Washington's own Improvapalooza except that it went on into the wee hours of the morning and beyond to the point where people's eyeballs were fogging up from the sleep deprivation/dew point temperature (Don't DO THE DEW point!!!).

My group Jinx performed on Saturday afternoon and we had quite the good time despite a smallish afternooner crowd. We gave each other a lotto jackpot of fun. Here are some pictures of us standing outside the theater where we performed. Don't worry; I know I don't look cool in my sunglasses.

Present Jinx outside of theater.

Past and present Jinxies, and you can see the name of the theater. Alibi.
Photos courtesy of Christina Bailey and Facebook.

Jinx at dinner. I had ravioli!
Photo courtesy of Amanda Hirsch and Facebook.

A Sunday show that I subbed into was with a group of delightful ladies called The Shower. We even had a rehearsal on Saturday! No, our rehearsal was not in a shower, but hahah, 12-year-old boys who read this blog.

It was actually at a cool above-ground park called the High Line. If you guys haven't been to this flourishing NYC hotspot, then walk, don't run there immediately!

Downright gazable.

I'd walk here.

How quaint!

What's that? The panes of hued glass signify the different colors of water? How fascinating, pip pop!

Ooh, the columns frame the street view! What will they think of next?

The Shower poses.
Photo courtesy of Amanda Hirsch and Facebook.

The Shower onstage. You can see what theater we're at again, ali-by the way.

The Shower again. Double alibi!
Photos courtesy of Stephanie Svec and Facebook.

**I also got to do a bevy of stand up shows ranging from bars in Brooklyn to the basements of bars/restaurants/hookah lounges in the Lower East Side to Hell's Kitchen and back to bars in Brooklyn! Basically, anywhere with a stage and a microphone and people who poured in at the last minute. I met lots of people, of the funny and nice varieties, got free drink tickets, and even didn't get a coffee that I ordered twice. But it was in a busy restaurant where only one waitress was manning the bar and the floor.

**One of the absolute thrills of the trip was performing on this late-night Monday show at the Upright Citizen's Brigade Theater called Whiplash hosted by the esteemed timeless joke-spinner Leo Allen. I didn't even know this until right before the show but David Cross was also on the bill! *Twirl into an absolute faint that requires smelling salts AND peppers for revival* Not only that but I was right before him on the line-up! *GULP* The other performers were Sean Conroy (super accomplished improv AND stand up vet) and Ted Alexandro (just was on Letterman for the second time, not to mention a national headliner).

I was so nervous that I spent a good deal of time wandering around the everything-and-then-some supermarket called Gristedes that is exactly adjacent to the UCB Theater. I walked up and down the aisles muttering nurturing phrases and self-laffirmations to myself. During my visit, I found a noise maker that specialized in 6 types of farts as well as some giant Koosh balls. Proof positive reinforcements below.

Giant koosh balls!

The store calls them "Massive Googly Balls." I accept this revision as Gristedes is only "for New Yorkers who know best."

One Koosh Ball wandered away from the fold for a snack.

Here is a delightful story from before the show. When Ted Alexandro showed up, a bunch of us comedic citizens were sitting backstage on some couches. And when Ted came to say howdy-hello to each of us, I said "Hi! I'm Aparna!" (seeing as how we'd never met before) and then David Cross, who was next in turn to introduce himself, said "Hi! I'm Aparna's friend!" I definitely died for a few seconds.

The crowd for that show was super-pumped and packed and stacked. They were extremely nice and wonderful and photos from that prestigious affair, taken by the lurvely Mindy Tucker who documents all kinds of comedy shows, can be viewed here. In fact, everyone was so very awesome and dreamy, I am still facially twitching (in a good way) from that show.

Awwwdience!

Leo Allen!

Sean Conroy!

Aparna Something!

Something Nancherla!

David Cross!

Ted Alexandro!
Photos courtesy of Mindy Tucker.

**Lastly, I had so much good food including homemade blueberry pancakes (thanks SIS), three-course Thai food, and the luxurious delights of Brooklyn's The Chocolate Room. I was trying to save money to the best of my ability though so one day I had a beer for dinner, which sounds a lot better in theory than in execution.

Here is a chocolate cup full of fruit that I saw somewhere and below that, some Froot Loops treats! This is just proof that I ogle food and own a cell phone with a camera.


**I also learned to avoid cinema popcorn and soda. My friend Rashi and I got those two items in MEDIUM sizes and we felt like guinea pigs in some kind of a salt-sugar oversatiation laboratory experiment after watching The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard, which is incidentally a movie about a used car dealership. If that combo of thematic grease, sodium, and sucrose doesn't get your blood flow slowing, I don't know what will.

P.S. I ogled enough adorable dogs in the city (including my friend Sean's new pit bull puppy, swoooonz) that my eyes are taking a cute stuff sabbatical for one week...err, day...ahem, hour. And we're back!!!

5 comments:

Jimmy said...

Awesome news about the Allen/Cross/Alexandro show, bitching line up. Happy to hear about your continued success, keep up the good work!

Maria Ciampa said...

Holy awesome recap and pics!

Aparna said...

Thanks Jimmy and Maria!!! Y'all are surriously too kind!

Amanda said...

I love the image of you wandering the aisles at Gristedes reciting positive affirmations :) Made me laugh out loud...

Still KICKING MYSELF for missing the show! (Ow)

Aparna said...

Awww, stop kicking my friend, Amanda! She's got a lot of her plate right now!