Shipping Out

Saturday July 31st, 2010 – Lake Villa, IL

When it rains, it pours. I heard back from the cruise ship booker today and they want to book me back for an additional six weeks. It’s very flattering to be wanted, but that’s a lot of time on a boat away from civilization. It’s going to change my life one way or another.

The good thing is it will be steady money, and I can save almost all of it. No, not really. I won’t be saving it, I’ll be throwing it at my flaming pile of overdue bills that need to be put out before I’m really in trouble. The money I make should help me almost clear it up.

Another good thing will be I’ll be able to work on my cruise ship presentation, which is not quite the same as clubs from what I’ve seen. I’ll get some practice working that crowd and that’s the only way to improve. It will be a marketable skill I can use to keep booking myself should I choose to. I’m not complaining at all, I’m grateful for this opportunity.

If I’m smart, I’ll be able to work like crazy on projects I’ve wanted to finish, and have a nice chunk of work to bring back in the fall. I can work on comedy classes, essays for the ‘Schlitz Happened’ show, anything I want. I guess I could do that here too, but not earn a living while I’m doing it. The money combined with free time is just too good to pass up.

There is a downside too. One, I’ll probably stop doing the Mothership Connection radio show almost immediately. I’m supposed to be leaving August 10th and not back until after Labor Day. I’d love to keep it running but there’s no way to do that and still accept this.

This is really going to be a test of a lot of things. Am I strong enough to endure the ship life for six straight weeks? I had all I could handle with five days. This is a lot more of an all out commitment. I know I can do it, but will it scorch me for future runs? We’ll see.

Road life was like that. I remember the first time I got out there and how fun it was for a kid in his twenties to see America. Not only that, I was doing exactly what I wanted in my life and it all came together. Then, one day I woke up and was just sick of the travel part.

That can get old very quickly. I would be out maybe two or three weeks, and then return home to work there for a while. I can’t do that here. There are no cruise lines out of Gary, IN or Waukegan to my knowledge. If there are, I doubt if they’d be booking comedians.

This situation is a lot like the club scene of the ‘80s. That was new and exciting then for a kid like me, and there were a lot of us out there doing the same thing. Now, I’m the new generation of cruise ship entertainers, and in a very similar position. I don’t want to get all burned out from overwork and not want to come back again. I have to be careful about it.

Now I’ve got a deadline to meet to be ready to go by August 10th. I have to make a plan of attack and be smart about spending the time out there. I need goals of exactly what I’m hoping to accomplish and then just DO it without making excuses. It’ll be a chance to get caught up and hopefully start all over again. It’s all about the money, and I can earn some.

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