Monica Nevi

Comedian

Tag: Comedian

I Have Been Doing Comedy For 7 Years

Hey.

So this is it, the seventh year of stand up is when you find your voice, when you know what you are doing. I agree with that as I seem to have found another voice in my head. So look out… I’m here to ruin that theory for everyone. I would like this year of my career to be about finding my mind, I seem to have lost.

How It Started

People ask me this question all the time, which I actually don’t mind. I have an answer for this and I can show my work:

I loved watching stand up as a youth —–> Started writing jokes for fun during my freshman and sophomore years in college —–> Couldn’t play basketball anymore ——> Watched one open mic at Laughs in Kirkland —–> The next week I do my first open mic —–> 7 years later I write this blog.

The Stories

I figure you don’t want to hear all the crap about what I am proud of and the people I enjoy working with and all the good stuff, as that is not what comedy is about. Comedy is about complaining. Well too bad, I’m going to tell you some good stuff anyway and you’re going to like it. Here are the nominees for best story in each of these categories I have arbitrarily made up:

The Best Thing That Has Happened

  • I have traveled all over the country, almost every part of it, doing comedy and getting paid to do it. For the most part I have broken even and that’s pretty good for traveling.
  • Comedy has allowed me to meet people I never would have otherwise, develop relationships I couldn’t have imagined and even hang out with Canadians.
  • Stand up has given me opportunities to branch out into other amazing forms of comedy and create my own projects, podcasts and other stupid things I am deeply proud of. Huglifepodcast.com
  • I have had the wonderful honor to work with people I have watched on TV for years and for the most part decide that they are pretty nice and hard-working people, just like the rest of us.

The Worst Thing That Has Happened

  • I once asked if two people sitting at a table were mother and son and of course they were married. Then I spent the rest of the set making excuses for why that wasn’t as offensive as it definitely was.
  • I have performed and even hung out in a number of moose, eagles and elks lodges. The drinks are very cheap but so are the inappropriate comments.
  • I have slept everywhere imaginable, from cars to couches to tile floors and deflating air mattresses. Sometimes with cute dogs or cats to cuddle with.
  • I once used someone else’s dirty towel for an entire week because that was my only option.
  • A very small cowboy decided to put his hand in between my legs at a bar thus unleashing a beast inside of me that got me carried out of said bar by security, almost started a fight and honestly quite nearly got that mini cowboy killed. I have the poorly healed part of a tattoo to prove it.

The Craziest Thing That Has Happened

  • While closing out a very fun show in the Northwest a gentleman seemed to be answering his phone in the front row and talking to someone. The third time it happened I asked to see his phone, like a teacher asking for your attention would. He quickly pulled away trying to hide his phone behind himself only to reveal it was a child’s water-maze play toy that he had been answering the whole time.
  • A woman in Deer Lodge, Montana invited us back to her house to go in her bathtub, which she had pictures of on her phone. It was a lovely tub but we did decline… mostly because she had pictures of it on her phone which eluded to this not being her first time and I like to feel special.
  • I have since vowed not to drive during the winter time but in October of this year we nearly died in the snow, in a Prius, in Southern Utah… Which seems to be the saddest of all potential obituaries.
  • I once ended up after a show at a castle next to a state capitol building with the oldest man in history. He may have haunted said castle. Then we woke up in a different larger home on the water. A part of my soul may still be walking around those places.

Overall the last 7 years have been super easy, stress-free and full of love and functional relationships.

No, they have been full of sarcasm. I have loved mostly every moment of what I do, I feel lucky everyday that I get to do comedy for a living. I am excited to continue this journey and see the changes this year brings. Year 7 is the one when you start edging toward not compromising what you want for what you CAN do just because you can. Also, I am writing this blog from an apartment I share with two grown men, one of which is loudly having sex in the room next to me… so things HAVE to change.

Feel free to let me know which of the nominees in each category YOU think get the award!

 

[Life]Vomit

I have spent 27 years consciously walking this planet, hunting and gathering information and experiences that might help me do a better job. Nothing seems to resonate with me more than the experiences I have when I throw up. Life lessons and profound moments have come to me while vomiting. I vividly remember why I shouldn’t eat chocolate cake or tequila (especially together).

Tuesday, in the middle of the night, I found myself leaned over with my hands on my knees in a park I used to play in as a child, vomiting onto the ground behind the bathroom building. Would it be cooler to tell you that I had been partying with some wild strangers on a weeknight and got a little too crazy? Probably. You know what isn’t cool? Lying.

What Happened

I was alone and sober on a Tuesday night after I did two pretty mediocre shows, watched karaoke, started to cry in a bar and decided I should go home. Not cool, but honest. Why was I throwing up then? I had one drink but in the last two weeks I have had a very difficult time eating pretty much anything. Feeling confident and distracted hanging out with Cameron we went to Dick’s burgers and I had two regular cheeseburgers. I could get them down on my way to a bar where a friend was working to watch karaoke instead of going home and being alone. All of this seemed like a good plan.

In the middle of a song I get this rush of all the anxiety and stress I had been dealing with, maybe triggered by a man with a beautiful voice singing Sara Bareilles, maybe not. I start to get choked up in this public place and quickly head to the bathroom to pull myself together. I cry for a little bit in the bathroom stall but am able to shove it back down. As I’m standing there, getting it together, I get this horrible knotted feeling in my stomach, like there is a big brick that needs to come out. Not in the ‘GET OUT OF THE WAY I’M GOING TO BLOW’ type of sense but in the ‘this thing is coming out if I have to do it myself’ kind of way. Maybe going home isn’t such a bad idea. I pack my things up and start walking up the hill to my car.

On the way back to the car I am actively looking for a place to secretly release this beast in my stomach. Trash cans are too public, there are other people using the area behind most buildings for various things, the park near by has a fountain but I peed in that once during college so I already felt like I had marked my territory. I’m just going to start driving back to my parents’ house and find something on the way. Obviously, I wasn’t super keen on the idea of coming home to my parents in the middle of the night and drawing all the attention with my vomiting. Knowing the Renton area as well as I do, I knew this particular park wasn’t too far off the freeway, was very dark and in the middle of some houses, not on a main road. Target acquired.

As I pull up to the park, I leave the car in front of the locked gate to the parking lot. I think I turn off the lights but I do not. I get out step over the gate and walk to this covered corner on the back side of the bathroom building that I know is there because we used to play kick-the-can at this park at night all the time. There I am, bent over like a linebacker, with my boots spread far enough apart to stay out of the splash zone and my hood is rigged up to play the part of someone holding my hair back. Ejection has commenced.

After cheeseburger #1 has made its way to the ground, I thought to myself “of course this is happening.” I didn’t realize what I meant at the time. While facing my insides on the ground of a park my uncle used to take me and my cousin to, I thought I had hit that wall of stress and anxiety, frustration and sadness where you can’t do anything but laugh and you seem to have accepted that you aren’t good enough and bad things just happen to you. As cheeseburger #2 was exiting the same place I use to try and convince people I am good enough I just had a flurry of all the work I had been trying to do for things that could potentially fall flat on their face. But not me, I couldn’t fall flat on my face because I would land in my own vomit.

This hiding spot is still solid and even though I left the headlights on, no one finds me.

How Does This End

At this point, I feel like everything has gotten out but I stay in the position, staring at the blended insides of my body, feeling empty in most ways possible. Looking down, hoping the Universe has spelled something out for me here. I find nothing and walk away, wiping my finger on a fence post I used to challenge my friends to jump over, and get back in the car. I make it home, very confused and disoriented. I wash my hands, brush my teeth and go to bed. I stare at the ceiling wondering if because I am what I am, am I destined to be tortured for my whole life or if I should just not eat Dick’s anymore.

I wake up at 5 am and get sick again, almost passing out and then again at 11 am. Maybe I am just sick and I have read too far into this… just adding more questions of inadequacy over how I am approaching all of this mentally. I’m not sure if it was when I was in the park or on the bathroom floor in a modified yoga pose hoping not to pass out but I finally had the thought ‘I think I should make some changes to the way I am thinking about things.’ I would say there was clarity in those moments but I was teetering between knowing I wasn’t having any positivity with myself at all and feeling resentment toward those who have a privileged enough life to have never cried onto their own vomit in the middle of the night. Wracking my brain for all the things I had used before to value myself during tough times of stress while also wondering if I just Will Byers style flushed a demogorgon into the world.

Why Does This Matter

“Monica, what the fuck are you talking about?”

Stress is poison and I have been literally poisoning myself with my thoughts on and off for years. You probably have too. I fight all the time to stay positive but when you get sucked down the other way you don’t realize it. So when I thought to myself “of course this is happening to me” it wasn’t because I deserve to be in pain, it was because I thought myself into that situation. Of course I’m vomiting up all the poison I have been putting my body through in this park where I once coached a summer camp. Of course this is happening because my attempts to ‘take care of myself’ were only going through the motions so I didn’t look as sad to other people. I let my mind bring me all the way down when I know exactly what I am supposed to be doing and I am confidently positive about all the things I am doing. I totally forgot! I have always had a hard time letting myself feel good about anything, even though I know how to do that.

After the burger and/or pain purge I felt a little bit renewed. Every once in awhile you have to remind yourself that you are good, great and wonderful. People know that about you and your hard work in life and on yourself is worth it. Also, trust yourself. I think that is the biggest source of anguish for me, I let these negative feelings pull me away from what I know is true and good and what I believe in. All of which have been tested time and time again and I am always right.

I read an entire book the next day. I have never done that. It was only 70 pages but clearly some changes have been made. I have spent years knowing what I should be doing for myself and how I should be utilizing those tool but just not doing it. It’s only been two days but maybe sometimes it just takes throwing up in a park in the middle of the night to shake it out of you. Or maybe… just maybe… you shouldn’t eat cheeseburgers from a 1,000 year old stand on a 2 day empty stomach. Give it whatever meaning you want.

I also updated my calendar. 🙂

Make (Tweet) Your Own Happiness.

I greatly enjoy tweeting celebrities and companies as if we are personally friends… or maybe more ;). I always tweet my boo, Alaska Airlines, every time I fly. Which is what I fly because I am painfully loyal to all Northwest based companies. They are safe and give me a free checked bag, so I don’t want to hear it. Also, they always tweet me back, we have a special bond. Nothing has ever really moved forward with Alaska though. I have been friend-zoned by Alaska Airlines. They might be a little out of my league.

I have had a similar relationship with a good place to eat in the neighborhood, Applebee’s. Happlebee’s if you’re glass is half full. We have always had a casual relationship, whenever I was hungry and usually single I would hit them up. But I finally reached a step further and slowly I feel them reciprocating. It has a been a long time since I have felt like this but here is the whole story.

It took a bit but they finally got back to me the next morning.

At first it was just nice to have the attention so I felt I needed to show my appreciation for them.

Then a little small talk, you know how that is.

AND THEN THEY STARTED TALKING ABOUT OUR FUTURE.

I was so excited, it’s been a long time since I have seen a future with anyone, I may have moved a little quickly.

But… It’s not a no.

I was into it and there is definitely a future…

Then I just needed to clear up my insecurities before we continue to move forward.

We are looking good. So to everyone who has been so worried for all these years about my relationship status, worry no more. Obviously things are moving forward and I am totally emotionally supported by Applebee’s.

However, if Alaska does come around, I will reconsider.

Follw me on Twitter @MonicaNevi for all the updates.

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