Chili, Sci-Fi, and Modern Dance: How I Spend My Time Offstage

District 9 is one of the best movies I've seen in a long while.  It's solid CG effects and griping plot line work in harmony with an urging for greater social justice in our world.  And was filmed in South Africa, home country of my very awesome girlfriend.  And it stars some cool aliens.  It's exactly the type of movie I'd like to see. 

Some comics definitely keep up with blockbuster comedies by a Mr. Apatow or similar.  Not me.  If you want to have a Dumb and Dumber quotefest, I'm your gal, but since deciding to really focus in on standup full-time, I prefer spending non-comedy time away from comedy.  I'm a bit of an obsessive personality and need to balance career aspirations else I become a real snooze.  In hopes of non-snooziness, here are some ways I balance my time off stage:

1. Cooking
There is something about chopping vegetables into tiny bits that really helps me to clear my mind (and occassionally prune my fingertips).  I've never been one to follow recipes, so I rely on intuition and devotion to the Food Network to streamline the process.  I'm especially fond of asking those consuming the final product to guess the secret ingredient in my chili.  Hint: the secret ingredient is usually chocolate.

2. Watching Sci-Fi Action Movies
Termintor Salvation and D9 were the two most highly anticipated events of my summer, though Terminator really dropped the ball on that one.  There is just something about watching pure action and adventure, and folks who put their money (read: fists) where their mouths are that appeals to me.  Perhaps it's because my job relies so heavily upon wordplay, witticisms and connecting with folks through speech that sci-fi is my prefered genre; hard-hitting and visually spendid sci-fi films and tv shows offer the opposite experience of standup comedy.  After all, you can't get much less verbal than Kara "Starbuck" Thrace

3. Staying Connected to Chicago's Modern Dance Scene
Wait, what?  Yeah, that one might have thrown you for a loop.  But my girlfriend is a dancer, my sister is a dancer, and, therefore, a ton of my close friends are dancers.  The emphasis modern dance puts on connecting with your body, listening to what feels right, and working to get stronger and healthier is a nice reminder for a standup comic.  I keep weird hours, spend a lot of my evenings in bars, and almost never listen to my body.  I imagine that I would completely dissolve into a heap were it not for the amount of dance I see and the constant reminder it provides to get it together physically.  And the only downside is that I have to watch beautiful people move their beautiful bodies beautifully.  What a bore!



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