A Night at the Comedy Bar
SPOT.ph blogger Lourd de Veyra takes in a show. WARNING: Explicit language
(SPOT.ph) The lady at the gate informs me of the 9:30 showtime. I pay P300 and find a seat. A video of a live performance by Toto plays on a white screen. Aside from mine, there are only four or five occupied tables. To pair with my beer, the waiter suggests their chicharon bulaklak.
Then it begins.
Two guys-one is a cross-dresser-bounce onto the stage singing "Poker Face." After the song, warm greetings. But here they have a different concept of warmth.
They walk to the table nearest the stage and say, "Oy, ha, kanina pa kayo hindi umoorder. Umorder naman kayo para hindi kayo nakakahiya."
"Wala kayong pera, 'no?"
"Oo, baka walang pera 'yang mga 'yan. Mukha naman eh."
One of the comedians takes notice of an unusually skinny guest. "'Yan, o! Mukhang walang kinakain." A little later, a comedian carries him to the stage like a slab of meat. They bombard him with questions. They force him to sing a song. Then they spot a fat guy. They pull him to the stage. They also make him sing a song. He picks "Laklak." Afterwards, more fat jokes.
One comedian quips, "Meron na tayong patpat, meron na tayong uling," he points to a dark-skinned guest. "At may baboy na. Kumpleto na."
"Puwede na tayong mag-lechon!"
One comedian-who sounds like Willie Revillame-turns his attention to another table. He says to the guests seated, "Oy, dapat ikaw mataba ka, sa gitna ka umupo. 'Pag sa dulo ka kasi, para kayong barbecue-nasa dulo ang taba!"
The crowd roars. From out of the speakers, fake snare-drum rolls.
A little later, they pull to the stage three teenage boys. They are, as expected, barraged with insults drawn from every possible aspect of their appearances. There are also hints of sexual solicitation. "O sige, ganito na lang," said one comedian. "Pahalik na lang sa utong."
The boys' father, by the way, was in the audience.
Welcome to the world of the comedy bar, where the humor essentially depends on a sadistic miasma of insults that involve sex organs, skin color, body weight, racial stereotypes, necrophilia, the entire assortment of bodily fluids and diseases, penetration of various orifices, physical abnormalities, and imagined pornographic scenarios about celebrities. And that's just the first hour.
And I thought I was mean and rude.
But at least I wasn't masochistic, like those guests who choose to sit right in front of the stage. That's like buying a ticket to the zoo so you can walk straight into the tiger's cage.
After a barrage of insults, one of them approaches a table and borrows a bag. The other one gets a bag from another table. They both open and examine the contents.
"Ito, mukhang mayaman ito. Burberry!"
"Ito mahirap. Mukhang payong ang bag."
"Ito, mayaman, kasi may cell phone bill. Ibig sabihin hindi nagpapa-load sa tindahan."
"Ito mahirap. Kasi nagbabaon ng ketchup ng Chow King. At.... ano ito? May paminta pa! Ano ito mag-aadobo?! At, putangina: may dahon pa ng laurel. Ate, magluluto ka ba ng adobo?"
The crowd goes nuts.
"Hoy, huwag kang magmumura-baka may mga religious dito."
"Bakit, religious din naman ako, ah!"
"Wala nang mas religious pa kesa sa bakla."
"Kasi nakaluhod gabi-gabi-at pagkatapos, bigay ng donasyon." The comedian gestures like he's giving a blowjob. Fake snare rolls.
Breathlessly they launch into the next gag: A Miss Universe routine.
Out comes a bald gay guy who looks like a Hare Krishna guru: he's wrapped in a long, flowing white scarf. Over pumped-up house music, he sashays exaggeratedly to the mic. A voiceover supplies the names of countries.
"Presenting.... Miss India!"
The bald comic raises an armpit and pretends to fan an imaginary blast of odor reeking from it. He screams, and after a hyperbolically sunny smile, "Nagpapautang din ng payong!"
"Give it up for Miss Vietnam!"
"Puking maligamgam pero malinamnam! Ukininam...Vietnam!"
Miss Mongolia giggles a lot, has crazy eyes. His fingers contort, crab-like. "Ako Budoy!" Miss Mongolia, it turns, out, is a 'mongoloid.'
The crowd screams.
Miss Japan. The name of Voltes V is invoked. "Gusto ko maliit ang titi. Kasi maliliit ang titi ng mga Hapon."
Then our very own. "Ako si Miss Philippines. I believe in the saying, "Ang puking maluwag...punumpuno ng kabag."
Another song number. They spot a white guy in the crowd. "Sir, are you American?"
The white guy answers in the affirmative. "Have you tried being kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf? You should visit Nepa Q-Mart. Payatas. Dakak. You know, Dakak...I suck!"
Somewhere during the routine, the name of Mike Enriquez pops up. "Ay... basta huwag lang close up. Baka makita ang blackheads."
"Ano nga ba 'yung ine-endorse niya? Emperador? Dapat Tanduay!"
"Kasi lapad...ang ilong!"
"Eh, mas malala si Mark Logan!"
"Bakit? Kasi habang tinitira ka sa puwet, tumutula pa, putanginang 'yan!"
After I decide that I've had too much beer and chicharon bulaklak, I call it a night. It is around 12:30 and the place is packed. It is, after all, a Friday.
I step out. I remember one comedian's friendly disclaimer: "Hoy kayo ha, mga putangina niyo- walang mapipikon, ha. Pumasok kayo dito at alam niyo naman kung ano'ng nangyayari dito, 'di ba? Nagbayad pa nga kayo, 'di ba? So ibig sabihin alam niyo-kaya mga putangina niyo, walang pikon-pikon dito, mga putangina niyo."
I'm outside. I can still hear them. I think about the 300 hundred pesos I paid at the door. Another song number. "Call Me Maybe." The crowd goes nuts.