I’m sitting in the green room right now at the Denver Improv Festival as I write this. Well, actually the lighting is red so theoretically it would be the red room. Thankfully this isn’t a standup show or I probably would have opened with that doozy. I’m listening to a pre-show playlist I’ve created for myself. I’m overwhelmed. I’m excited. Grateful. Proud. You name it I’m feeling it right now. Rollercoaster of emotions. I want to cry but I can’t. I don’t want to be the weirdo in the red green room. “Switch committee is back there….they’re crying.” The people here at the Voodoo Comedy Playhouse are so nice and welcoming. It feels like yesterday Switch Committee was formed. 100+ shows later we’re literally across the country performing to a sold out crowd and teaching a sold out workshop. If this comes off as bragging it’s not. It’s a testament to gratitude and more importantly the power of hard work. The crowd just roared for the first group up. I’m so thankful. This is about to sound like a thanksgiving toast but bear with me. Yes. Bear with me.
Thankful for my supportive family who have made me into the man (child) I am today. I owe everything I have to them. They’ve taught me that anything is possible if you have the right mindset. A mindset that if you want something bad enough, nothing and no one in the world can stop you but yourself. Mental toughness. My mother as well as my stepfather have been known to throw out Rocky Balboa-esque motivational speeches from time to time that have gotten me out of the ‘oh whoa is me’ gutter and back on the right path. I’ll never forget the two of them reving me up before some of my wrestling matches when we went to the National tournament in Vegas. My grandparents. They’ve inspired me to never give up no matter what the odds are. Absolute confidence. Thankful for my friends in the improv community who have been supportive of me and the group. Thankful to the people who have come to our shows and promoted our shows via word of mouth or social media. Thankful to Poppy for driving me to the airport at 5:45am this morning. Thankful to Schwartzbaums Aunt Shari who met us at the airport with bagels. Thankful to Dave’s mom who has housed us for this trip to Denver. She made Mac n cheese. (I’m smiling). Thankful to Charna, who gave us a chance because she saw something in us. It was an opportunity that changed our lives. I went from not making a Harold team and thinking my world was over to being given one if the greatest opportunities in the world and performing weekly at one of the most prestigious comedy theaters in the world. I want to cry again. I’m thankful to the festivals who have welcomed us with open arms. Thank you Detroit. Thank you Big Little. Thank you Denver. And finally…I’m thankful for the boys of Switch. They are my best friends. We did this together. I love this journey we are on together. It’s exciting. It’s only the beginning.
Well, it looks like it’s almost that time. We gotta go fake kill each other before the show (that’s how we warm up). I feel like my whole life has flashed before my eyes just now sitting in this room. It’s good to take these moments to remember who has been there for you. To remember who you love. Thank you.
Queue ‘You make my dreams’ by Hall & Oates.