Saturday, January 30, 2010

No Subject..that I can think of

Last night somewhat under the influence, I wrote, "I've found my voice onstage. It's taken me a few years to evolve/devolve in my comedy, but it's turned into a somewhat tired disdain for society and every day life. Irritable yet amused...that's where I find myself."

This came from having a decent set at open mic at the Velveeta Room, the same club and comedy night where I started over 12 years ago. My 6 minute set wasn't spectacular, nor did anything stand out about it that I can recall. What it was that really clicked with me was how I felt onstage and how I delivered what I wanted to say (which essentially was my strong distaste for bums).

"The only thing that separates me from a bum is a mailing address and 401k."

I spent the last year doing less comedy than I have in the past twelve years since I started in Austin. This was due to a number of reasons, mainly laying low after a felony DWI conviction with 5 years probation. It was also due to staying at home with Audrey vs going out all the time, and another reason would be the drugs.

I consider this time in my life to be one of my moments where I look at myself and ask, "Well, asshole, what do we do now?"

The only answer I have is to just keep being me. It's an interesting feeling to not particularly care for yourself that much and at the same time be glad that you're you and not anybody else because you think everyone else sucks.

"I may be an asshole but at least I'm not you." - The name of my first book.

I have a feeling this time in my life will be a defining moment. We all have these moments that shape our lives forever, where years from now we look back and point at it and say, "THAT'S the moment when everything changed for me" or "And that's when I gave up hooking" or whatever.

My biggest defining moment was the summer of 1995 when I worked at Glorieta Baptist Conference Center. I'm going to post a blog soon about that summer because I went there a nice religious college kid and came back 2 1/2 months later an agnostic, chain-smoking drunk with tattoos, blond hair, foul mouth and a chip on my shoulder.

Another defining moment would be when I finally divorced my ex-wife after two years of wanting to leave. The divorce itself was not the moment. No, what I turned into with the freedom from the divorce is the moment in this case. Oh boy did I turn into something.

And we have the me of today...bouncing back and forth from being a shut-in to being social again, from writing lots of material and blogs to writer's block, from no alcohol to immersing myself into an unhealthy alternative.

Regardless, I can't help but feel like right now is the beginning...I'm taking off from here and we're just going nowhere but up from here. We may not go much higher...we might plateau after a few few, but goddammit, we're not going down, that's all I know. Up, I tell you, up.

The purpose of this was to expand on those few words I wrote 24 hours try and explain what I was trying to say yesterday. I think instead I've made less sense and rambled like a drug-addled monkey on a typewriter trying to spell out what he wants ("banana") but instead typing "cigarettes", "cocaine" and "coffee".

"Poor Fucking Monkey" - The name of my first album.

Anyway, I've got some shows I'll be lining up over the next few months that I do plan on getting recorded and dumped onto the web. Hope to see all of your smiling and puzzled faces at one or more of them.

Ask Uncle Cranky is starting to take off, too. In a perfect world, people would start paying me to give them advice without sugar-coating it and then I can stop working in a fucking cloth-covered box 40+ hours a day assisting gamer nerds with their passwords...but until then, follow my ass on Twitter. Or here.

Do Not Mix Up "Rabon" with "Raven", or Vice Versa

I was dicking around with my phone, trying out Google Voice Search. (Yeah, I was that bored.) I tried to google myself and I pulled up John Raven, Comedy Hypnotist from Allentown PA.

Ah shit. That's what I need...someone with a similar name as mine in the comedy industry.

"John Raven is a certified hypnotherapist and certified stage hypnotist."

How do you become certified as a hypnotist? Well, I googled it and there appears to be the IHA...the International Hypnosis Association. I bet those fuckers know how to party.

"He is the inventor of the iPhone sensation Pocket Hypnosis and has appeared in various newspapers and radio stations up and down the east coast."

Hey, iPhone owners, have you heard of the Pocket Hypnosis app? Is it a sensation?

"He also teaches hypnosis at Lehigh County Community College and Northampton County Community College, so you know you are getting a quality show from a true professional."

You know, teaching informal classes at a community college doesn't really put you in the upper echelon of instructors and teaching professionals. People teach heirloom sewing and curling, for the love of shit.

"I specialize in clean, fun entertainment, but at your request, I can dial-up the edginess to whatever level your audience is comfortable with. You're in control."

Oh I bet. Instead of acting like a chicken, that overweight lady onstage would be an inappropriate stripper. HI-larious! And predictable! And dull!

I'm sure if this knob read my bio, he'd think I was a joke too. "Ugh, look at this alcoholic jerk. I bet he uses the f-word as and adjective as well as a verb. Heh, I bet he couldn't do a corporate gig to save his life. What a loser!"

And that's fine by me. We would not have the same fans, he and I. John Raven is Bizarro World John Rabon.

You are getting sleepy...and bored...

Friday, January 22, 2010

Excessive Coffee Machine

Here is the Flavia coffee machine that makes cappuccinos,mochaccinos, lattes and other drinks that you wouldn't find in a normal office.

How does it work?


You push the button on the machine and choose your drink. It then tells you which packet to grab.


You then stick the packet into the slot and close.


The digital readout tells you it's processing/making your mochaccino.


It tells you to enjoy it when it's done. Luckily, it also informed me that the drink was hot, so I refrained from sticking my hand in it or pouring it down my crotch...which was my intention until I read the helpful message.


Here's me forcing enjoyment of the mochaccino. I'm coming off more disturbed than happy.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Not the First and Certainly Not the Last To Say This...

Fuck Jay Leno.

"Welcome to NBC..where our new slogan is, No Longer Just Screwing Up Primetime." -- Conan O'Brien tonight.

In case you didn't hear, Jay Leno's show is being canceled. Big shocker there, huh? A watered down, half-assed Tonight Show every night at 9pm didn't do well against award-winning dramas, news specials and...well...ANYTHING that was on ABC, CBS or Fox? No shit.

Well, hooray! That's the end of the Jay Leno show, and we can get back to business as usual, right? Right?

No. NBC execs want to move Jay Leno to the 11:35 (10:35 CST) spot with a half hour show and bump Conan and the Tonight Show to 12:05. The Tonight Show has been there for over 50 years...and they want to fuck it up with the worst comedy hour on TV today. "Hey, let's cut to a half hour...because that's why it sucked. It was too long."

So I say again, fuck Jay Leno. Ever since NBC chose that corporate douche over Letterman to replace Carson, he's been bringing us mediocrity on a nightly basis. Bill Hicks was one of the first to just rip into that commercial whore. And here we are 17 years later, and he just won't get the fuck off my TV.

If you think Leno is funny and prefer him over Conan as the Tonight Show host, go ahead and check yourself into a nursing home now instead of waiting until you're the right age for it. Your sense of humor is already 70 years old. Go eat your pudding and look for "that guy with the puppet" you like so much while you're at it. That's all Leno is good for...putting old people to bed after the news is over.

The bottom line is this...when the funniest part of your show is news headlines, advertisements and articles sent in by viewers, you fucking suck.

The great thing is that Conan is not letting himself get pushed around. If they put Leno at 11:35, Conan is quitting. Go Conan. Wherever you go, I'm right there with you, Red.