You Want Me To Be Honest With You, Don’t You?

Guy comes up to the bar, I know him, haven’t seen him in awhile. We say our hellos, he orders a Peroni, I go get it for him. Then he says, I watched your vlog recently. I say, oh yeah? Yeah, he says. I didn’t like it.

Oh that’s hilarious.

Ok, I say. What did you not like about it? Well, you’re standing in front of a white wall. You’re telling bar stories, why not be in a bar? Do it in here! I say, ok. What else? Well, you were wearing that hat. It was really distracting. That’s all I could look at. Your hat. I say, ok. Then he says, and it felt too scripted. Too rehearsed. Did you have cue cards?

Oh that’s a good one.

Let me explain a few things to you. All valid points you bring up, and I appreciate your opinion.

No, I don’t really. I just said that to be nice.

Let me tell you how I write my stories for one. I have an idea, I sit down, write the story, that’s it. No edit. No change of words. No change of a period, question mark, or comma. I am obsessed with doing it this way because I want it to be honest, truthful, spontaneous, and real.

He says, yeah, I love your writing. That’s what I like about it. It’s real.

Now, with the vlogs, I have taken that work ethic, and imitated it, as much as possible, with the way I write. I haphazardly copy and paste some stories together. I don’t really read them through. I just remember the gist of them when I wrote them. I go to the copy store, get a copy of it, one page, front and back. I go home, set up my camera, read through the stories one time, have a general idea what I’m going to say first, I hit record, step in front of the camera, open my mouth, and say words. So you saying it’s scripted and rehearsed is insane to me. I mean, as you know, I read the stories, but everything else is off the cuff.

He says, the way you say it, it’s too perfect. Like when you were talking about your son. It felt rehearsed and memorized. I don’t know, it’s just my opinion. Maybe it’s because you’re an actor.

Maybe so.

As an aside, about six years ago, a guy comes into the bar, with a handful of fliers. What are they advertising? He says, I’m doing an open mic stand-up show. Anybody can do it. I ask, how long does the routine need to be? He says, five minutes. I say, sign me up.

A couple of months after that, a close friend of mine, who saw me do the stand-up, said I was embarrassing. Oh wow that was a blow to my ego. Embarrassing. Can you imagine someone telling you that? But you know what the worst part of it was?

I listened to him.

End of night, guy who doesn’t like my vlog, comes up for his tab. We’re talking, I say, yeah, really appreciate your unsolicited advice. Thanks for that. He says, dude. You want me to be honest, don’t you?

I love when people say that. You want me to be honest. How the hell do you know that? No I really don’t. I want to stay in my never-never land delusional reality, thanks much.

I say, you working on any creative projects lately? He says, no. That’s not really my thing. I say, when you do, give me a head’s up, so I can diarrhea all over it.

He says, hey, what do you want me to do? Jack you off?

I say, yeah. While I’m diarrheaing on your face.

-Clint Curtis

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