Comedy is one of the few crafts where you have no choice but to fail — often miserably, cringe-inducingly — in front of an audience while you practice. For most sports, there are training camps to make you strong and exercises completed in solitude that enhance your skill. God only knows we don’t show our first drafts to our friends. And even acting can be experimented with in the safety of a class or private coaching session. But comedy? The only real way to sharpen your tool is in front of actual people on a random week night in some random club under a spotlight with nothing but scribbles on a notepad you fervently edited while you waited your turn. The first time, the second time, the third time, and so on... Is this thing on?Read More
fail·uren. 1. The condition or fact of not achieving the desired end or ends: the failure of an experiment. 2. One that fails: a failure at one's career. 3. The condition or fact of being insufficient or falling short: a crop failure. 4. A cessation of proper functioning or performance: a power failure. 5. Nonperformance of what is requested or expected; omission: failure to report a change of address. 6. The act or fact of failing to pass a course, test, or assignment. 7. A decline in strength or effectiveness. 8. The act or fact of becoming bankrupt or insolvent.
Ah yes, failure. My dear friend. I didn't know I would see you so soon. But why wouldn't I? You have been with me during so many important moments in my life. When I've ignored you, you've sat by me quietly. When I've been angry with you, you patiently waited for me to come to my senses. Even during my successes, I have spotted you in the back row, reminding me to be humble. You have taught me so many things. Without you, I wouldn't know how to ride a back or tie my shoe. I wouldn't have compassion for the new kid at school. And I definitely wouldn't feel the depth of excitement when I finally got the part. All in all, you've been a loyal friend and I owe you for my success as much as my... ahem... failures.
So, as you may have noticed, I've already not achieved my goal of posting once a week. Rather than justifying, I've decided to write a post every day for a week starting today. I hope it will help train me to write more and, more importantly, share more.
By the way, thank you all for the wonderful comments. I was so inspired by the thoughtful replies to my previous post. Please know that I read them and appreciate them very much!
I thought this inspiring video would be apropos considering the theme of this post. It's a speech given by JK Rowling at the Annual Meeting of the Harvard Alumni Association. Her wise words resonate on both intellectual and spiritual levels. I hope you enjoy!