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For the Love of the Craft

It's important not to let status, notoriety, or fame cloud your reasons for doing something.

In a comedy club setting, a typical night includes a lineup of three comedians; the host, the feature act, and the headliner. Last year (pre-COVID19), I performed with Dave, a 78-year-old comedian who, sadly, had recently lost his wife of over 50 years. He hosted the show that night and killed it. He really did. I had performed with him a few times over the years, and as I sat in the green room waiting to go on next, I was impressed with the roar of laughter I heard coming from the showroom. I felt a mix of excitement, for the great crowd, and a tinge of "I better keep these great laughs going" pressure.

After I got offstage that night, Dave and I exchanged small talk while the headliner performed. Dave mentioned that he was recently asked to do comedy for his upcoming 60th high school reunion. It made me smile because just a few months prior I performed at my 20th high school reunion. I immediately started wondering if I'd still be doing comedy in another 40 years? It was both an exciting and daunting thought to ponder.

I love the story of Dave. He's been doing stand up for 30 years and still enjoys performing. He might not be headlining, although he probably could, but he loves the craft of stand up comedy. I heard a famous comedian once poke fun at a "forty-year-old-feature" as being too old to still be the feature act. But the thing is, is you're going to be 40, 50 or 78 anyways (hopefully), why not be doing something that you love and enjoy?

Whatever your craft is - don't let things that may or may not be within your control: status, notoriety or fame cloud your reasons for doing it.

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