Asheville update? Here goes!
Yesterday was my first full day in Asheville, and it was pretty great. I spent the early morning eating a continental breakfast at the Super 8 and planning out my set. Then Ahmed headed into town to meet up with my parents for lunch and wandering around. Also, I forgot to mention that my parents are here, which is kind of a big deal because they rarely take vacations. We all had a great lunch (fish tacos, where have you been all my life?) and then walked through the town for a while. There were lots of places to buy locally made art and clothing, and much to my delight, much of it was not made of hemp! I bought a copy of Steve Martin’s “Wild and Crazy Guy” on vinyl, which I am excited to own in that format. I got it in a part of town that seemed to be primarily record stores, which is a very niche segment of the economy in 2010. Everything in this town is artsy. Even the graffiti has pictures of birds.
Afterwards I took a nap and got dressed for my show. It was called “Josh Gondelman and Friends,” which was exciting, because that’s -my- name and friends! In fact, by coincidence, most of the people on the show, I was friends with already. And the rest of them, I made friends with once I got to the theater. The Laugh Your Asheville Off producers and staff have been so nice, and one of them even brought me a copy of a magazine with my face in it! (Although there’s not my name, so I just look skeptical of the events they’re advertising.)
The Diana Wortham Theater is beautiful, and there were lots of people there to see the show, which was exciting. The Friends part of the show was great; it was so fun to watch everyone, both old friends and new Friends. The show was long, and everyone was having killer sets, and I was a little antsy that they would be tired by the time I got onstage. But everyone stuck with it. The audience was very laughy and clappy, and even though I’m pretty quiet, and the show had been going on for a while, they were attentive and delightful. I got to do some fun in-the-moment reactions to things. I mentioned that Lebron James signed with the Miami Heat (basketball player and basketball team for you non-sports people), and one guy cheered really loudly. And I very honestly asked: “Are you from Miami or just a dick?” Which got a big laugh. It was great to get to perform for such an enthusiastic and generous audience, and afterwards I met festival headliner Jake Johansen, who was super nice and said complimentary things, which made me feel pretty great. Also, I sold two t-shirts!
Then we stayed up late having beverages and talking with friends and Friends and strangers. Now for me all that’s left is hanging out and having fun and looking for a place to eat ribs. And as long as I don’t have to use my AK, it will be a good day.