I remember gigging in Liverpool a few years back. Walking back to my car afterwards which I had parked in a nearby side street, I was perplexed to find that it wasn’t there. Had it been stolen or had I not remembered properly where I had parked it? I checked the adjacent streets and a feeling of dread started to fill the pit of my stomach. Thirty minutes into my frantic search and on the verge of reporting my car stolen, my fellow comic the very lovely Brendan Riley joined the search. We drove around the streets surrounding the venue for nearly an hour. Exasperated, I rang home explaining what was happening only to be told that my car was still on the drive, it finally dawned on me that i had taken her car. Thankfully, Brendan saw the funny side.
There are so many instances of my memory and organisation skills letting me down. I have turned up in the wrong towns on the wrong night several times throughout my career. I got a phone call from all round top bloke and comedy promoter ‘Toby Jones’ one night whilst driving to one of his gigs in Hull. He asked if I was nearby as the gig was due to start shortly, i told him not to worry, I was just going past the Humber Bridge, “you’re meant to be in Halifax tonight” was the panicked reply which was over 70 miles away.
I turned up in Worcester one Wednesday night for a gig only to discover it was band practice night and the comedy night was on the Friday.
Whilst performing with Pierre Hollins in Birmingham, he told me he was heading to Egypt for a gig the following day. Confused, I said I was also doing the same gig but flying on the Monday. Only when I checked the itinerary on my emails did I realise I was flying the following day and if it wasn’t for this stroke of luck of being with the act who I was going with, I’d have missed the flight.
My partner has pointed out that if it were not for knowing it was due to ADHD she would think it was the onset of dementia such is the impact it has on our lives. Things like leaving the stove on and then going out, only to return with the smoke alarm going off and tea ruined. I lose and misplace things all the time. Forgetting appointments…I must have contributed significantly to the steel on the Runcorn Bridge such is the amount of times I’ve forgot to pay the toll before the deadline.
Yet, on the stage my brain works like a Ferrari. I remember so much material, and interaction from the audience only sparks more on the spot creativity alongside that. I am so in the moment that I have a reputation for overrunning on my stage time where I lose track of time. This has understandibly been mistaken by others as over indulgence and selfishness. This results in feelings of embarrassment and guilty from impacting negatively on others.
Whilst my impulsiveness can often backfire in everyday life, on stage it has often given me an edge. Such as jumping into the audience at the V Festival and orchestrating a huge game of British Bulldog amongst hundreds of people. Only when the audience swelled into four figures and security were getting anxious did I decide to get back onto the stage.
One positive outcome from my impulsiveness was from a couple at a gig in Scunthorpe who approached me before the show. The lady explained that 18 months previously when I last gigged at the venue, they were sat in different areas of the audience. I had made fun of them individually and upon establishing that they were both single, with encouragement from the audience, got them both sitting together. They went on to become an item and had since moved in together.
It’s why I love performing…I come alive, it’s the one time I feel in control and filled with self worth. The ADHD non-linear way of thinking serves me perfectly. There’s a cracking link here which explains that aspect much better: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=y0hY5TYVv_s&feature=emb_title
Anyway, I’ve rambled on enough. When I start these blogs I do have a point in mind but quite fittingly, I genuinely can’t remember it haha. Thanks for reading.