It’s a rainy February day in LA, Day 417, and I’m booked on the hottest show in Hollywood tonight, Comedy Juice at the Improv on Melrose. The show starts at 10 sharp, and there’s a line of people out the door who got free tickets so they could see star comedians pop in. I’m 5th on the lineup, and they have me down for 10 minutes. I’m going to massacre it. I’m so excited!
The 4th comedian is on stage and I’m getting ready to blow this place up with my middle eastern looking comedy. Then in through the door steps Bob Saget. They tell me that he is going to go on. I’m like cool. He goes up and does great. Who doesn’t like Danny Tanner? As he’s finishing up and I’m getting ready to destroy this Full House, in walks Jeff Ross. They tell me he’s going up. I’m like fine. Jeff Ross goes up and does about 35 minutes. He’s killing in the beginning, and taking his time thereafter. A girl is brought on stage, there’s laughter, but people are getting tired. I’m ready to set this place in flames…flames I tell you!
As I approach the stage waiting for Ross to get off, in walks Daniel Tosh. Oh shit. Let me guess, he’s going up..yes, yes he is. Tosh goes up, and the manager says to me, ‘but don’t worry he keeps it tight, only 10-12 minutes.’ I’m thinking, yea because it’s the hottest 10-12 on the planet. Tosh goes up and the room explodes. There goes my whole terrorism plan. You can’t blow up a place that’s already been blown up. Then the manager comes to me and says, ‘by the way we have to cut your time down to 5 minutes, thanks for understanding’. Nice. So now I have to follow Saget’s 15 + Ross’s 35 + Tosh’s annihilating 12 with my 5. Is that even enough time for them to realize I’m on stage after what just happened? Meanwhile Tosh is on stage, just obliterating, with his newest best bits. The crowd is in shambles. He closes with a 911 joke, ironically, about the towers coming down, and people are eating it up, a joke that I could never ever ever on earth get away with.
Tosh gets off stage and people are getting up in groups heading to piss out all that funny they just saw. The host, with no hesitation, brings on ‘this next guy plays all over, Sammy Obeid!’ Nice. I go on stage, and if you can sum up the look of the 300 eyes staring at me, it’s uhoh, this guy’s gonna eat sh*t’. I’ve never seen an audience so scared for my failure. I start by acknowledging that I’m nobody, and some people relax, then I go straight into my Montreal audition set that I’m working on, so they get the best and only the best. I open with my math joke, it get some laughs, and it’s original, so at least they know I’m not an amateur. Then I do my bear joke, because why wait, and then they realize, oh shit, maybe this guy is actually funny. I get the full applause on the bear joke, but they aren’t super laughy after Tosh. Then I go into Indian puns, and they start to really like me. Then my yalmulke joke for some fun. Now I do my bit about the 101 freeway getting killed by LA, and I get a huge applause, but the laughs still aren’t strong. At this point, it’s agreed that they respect me as a comedian, and know I’m good, but I’m not someone they know from TV so they are incapable of loving me in that way. It was like ‘we support you fully Sammy, but we are in love with someone else and we can’t help it…but please, anything for you, you want us to clap? sure, we will clap!’. And clap they did. I closed on my horny joke and got another smashing applause, and then walked off stage with their respect. Even though I was no Tosh, they all got to know that Sammy Obeid wasn’t about to tank it on night 417.
The next morning, I get a call from a classmate in my acting class, who tells me there’s an announcement on the casting boards, looking for Sammy Obeid. Apparently Sammy Obeid put himself on the map that night by showing everyone that he wasn’t about to tank it on night 417. They call me in for an audition for ABC’s Baby Daddy pilot, where I go in and definitely, definitely tank it. Because the skills of Day 417 of comedy are not the same as Day 1 of auditioning.