I met with girl drinkers Marla, Melissa and my sis Tracy for a night of comedy and cheesy appetizers. And drinks. Of course there were drinks. We were all geared up to see the partly-cloudy comic with a side of soapbox, David Cross. Unfortunately, we had no idea what time we'd actually get to see him.
The Lakewood Theater's Web site said 7 p.m. with an opener. Tickets said 7 p.m. And usually, the ticket time denotes the first act's stage time, with anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour prior for doors, depending on the venue. But with the Lakewood, it's always been an hour. At 6, there were people outside but not inside. No matter, though. We were meeting at the neighboring Matt's Rancho Martinez for margaritas and Bob dip.
I went with a regular old 'rita on the rocks, but I was feeling daring so I got salt. Mine was somehow smaller than Marla's but I didn't quibble. Melissa opted for a top shelf version and she and Marla discussed the merits of Grand Marnier with, I assume, Melissa taking the win since she had no squinched face after taking a sip of her drink like Marls did. I tend to prefer the regular for cost prohibitive reasons, though I'll drink a top shelf if someone hands it to me. A well-made marg is my friend indeed. I think I need to revisit for the frozen variety now.
Tracy, well I honestly don't know what she ordered, but she told our waiter Alex we'd take care of him if he checked back on the level of our drinks often and, sure enough, he brought her a new mystery drink without so much as a hopeful gaze in his direction. He was quick on the drink refills but unfortunately, the kitchen wasn't so quick on the food orders...which seemed strange since we just ordered dip, nachos and a taco. But it was Texas/OU weekend so the Tex-Mex requests were at an all-time high, as was the ratio of douche wearing a team jersey on the wrong day to regularly clad person. I was a Longhorn, too folks, albeit for a brief time, but GAME DAY ONLY, people. They just aren't flattering enough for daily wear.
[Special note to our awesome waiter: I hope we tipped you well enough, Alex, because you had a lot of shit to deal with and that one dude who couldn't seem to master the longhorn handsign after many drinks was probably top of the list of less-than-stellar patrons.]
But anyway, the margaritas. They were not too sweet and not too strong. In other words, perfect for sitting out on a patio waiting for something to happen and dishing about stuff that already did...like say, city council members riding bikes to City Hall with a throng of cyclists. Or, when we'd previously seen David Cross and would he be as surly as anticipated or as easy-going as before. Or, possible Halloween costumes.
We'd been keeping an eye on the front area of the theater when Jason and Dana joined us for a wee bite and drink and then we headed over at about 8 p.m. Opener Todd Glass had yet to go on..which was both cool and sort of confusing. I guess the doors opened at 7 after all, which totally makes sense since I've never seen a comedian perform before 9 p.m. on a night when he's only working the room once, we just weren't thinking. But I digress. And as we wanted to be ready for the funny, Melissa, Marla and I went to check out the status of our lipstick and um, read upcoming show fliers while Tracy bought us a round of drinks for the show.
Man were they strong. I'm wanting to say that the Lakewood Theater policy is to pour doubles so people don't have to get out of their seats as often--and it works since I sort of ended up cemented to mine after one V&T. Marla, steadfast in her soda love went V&S and Melissa ordered up a Rose Water...which I don't even want to discuss because it's so delicious I want to dedicate a column to it at a later date.
So after about 5 sips I felt buzzed and giggly. Good work, Lakewood. And I'll definitely give the assist to Matt's. I was suddenly in the perfect mood for a comedy show. I wasn't going to need anymore to drink and this last cocktail would be perfect for maintaining. After two or three margaritas, I figured that one out all by myself, so here's the thing that gets me about slamming drinks at a one-man performance: People somehow still treated the place like a bar--throwing bottles in the trash instead of just dropping them in, getting up several times instead of just ordering a couple of drinks to save the knees and patience of rowmates. And the talking. I know everyone who's ever been on a stage has prolly gotten heckled but shouting out obscure references to Mr. Show sketches from fourteen years ago is most definitely something a sober person doesn't think is a logical act from a balcony, in a velvet seat you paid $35 for. The super fan in the front row--I'll give him that. But the sweatered dude in the back row who just had an epiphany and remembered GloboChem, probably (I admit I'm not certain) wouldn't have shouted it out without all those drinks. I know one audience member agreed with me because he bought Cross a beer after an especially bad run of career-reference shouts. Ah, beer. The culprit and the consolation...
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See folks, not only does this Girl Drink Drunk go out and try girl drinks on for size but she takes in the drinking and drunking culture, too. And I just don't get someone who pays to go see and hear someone make them laugh and then shouts over them. I've been all-out wasted at a rock show before, sure, but for the most part that doesn't impair my ability to "get" the music or the band's ability to play it (except that one time with the dancing. I'm very sorry my ring flew off and hit you in the face, unknown guitarist.) At a comedy show, though, if you're getting to that shouty/chatty point, down some water and focus.
At one point, Cross called upon a heckler after she yelled at him and called him Bob...as in Bob Odenkirk, co-star of Mr. Show. She then started air scribbling on something and he asked her to come to the stage because she'd explained she wanted his autograph. He crossed out his name, addressed it to Drunk Lady and signed it "Bob Odenkirk" before asking for his cell phone from his dressing room and calling Bob for a recap of the whole thing. Some folks think that, because Cross had another actor pretend to be doing other annoying things like live-blogging the show, ol' Donna Jo was an actor, too.
It's possible. But either way it was hysterically funny. And it was an effective way to make the point that drunk hecklers totally derail a comedian's train of thought. (I mean, c'mon, we never got to hear the rest of the "time mug" bit!) And Lakewood Theater doesn't even have a two-drink (or two "item") minimum like most comedy clubs, so I'm not real sure what motivated our seat neighbor to get so blitzed he repeated the last four words of every sentence Cross said. (Totally not kidding. His girlfriend was horrified. I'm so tempted to expose our seat numbers because dude needs to learn about it, but then I'm sure I've been annoying before and people were nice enough to let it go.)
But, hecklers, drunks and live-blogging aside, Cross, of course, held his own and, just like his audience, downed more than a couple drinks during his performance. I just wonder how many were because Dallas wouldn't STFU.