Friday, October 28, 2011

For Those Who Remember Laughter

The Missus and I spent a portion of her birthday evening at one of our favorite places, Vinnie Brand's Stress Factory in New Brunswick. Befitting an evening spent at a comedy club, what actually unfolded last night is in and of itself a pretty humorous yarn.

Margaret and I love the Stress Factory and have been there too many times to count - although given my limited math skills I realize that might not seem to be the best indicator. About six weeks ago we received one of their promotional cards in the mail, which advertised among other things that Richard Belzer was going to be there for one night only. The one night? Last night, of course. We bought tickets for the show.

About two weeks ago, Marissa from the Stress Factory telephoned me to let me know that due to scheduling issues, Richard Belzer had to cancel his appearance. But, in place of "the Belz" the club had booked Jim Breuer and if we wanted to see him instead the tickets we purchased for Belzer were good for Breuer. I told her we would do just that.

Then in the early afternoon on Wednesday (a/k/a "T Minus 1 to Margaret's Birthday") Marissa called me yet again. Due to scheduling issues with Jim Breuer - a movie commitment apparently - Breuer's October 27 show had been moved to November 2. I feared that the "let's have a few laughs" portion of Margaret's birthday celebration had taken a hit from which it could not recover. Marissa quickly quashed my concern (just for fun try and say that three times fast). She told me that her boss - the joint's proprietor and very funny stand-up comic - Mr. Brand was going to headline the October 27 lineup and that because we had purchased tickets to see (first) Richard Belzer and (second) Jim Breuer, our invitation to the 10/27 Version 3.0 gig was on the house.

I do not know if either of us laughed any longer or harder last evening sitting in our "comp" seats. I know that we had - as we always do - a very funny time while within the four walls of Mr. Brand's abode. As Mark Twain observed, "Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand." Of all the things by which one can be assaulted in this world, that is really not a bad way to go. Not at all.

And in New Brunswick at least, you can experience it without having to ascend a Stairway to Heaven. You simply have to descend a short flight of steps from street level on Church Street.

It is worth the trip.


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