A Fifty Mile Radius

Saturday January 21st, 2012 – Elkhorn, WI

I think my ‘closer to home’ theory is finally starting to pay off. Tonight I did a show at a country club in Elkhorn, WI and my round trip total was 72 miles. What a delightful night of ‘work’ it was to be able to leave my house at 7:30 for an 8:30 show, and be back by 11.

This is exactly what I had in mind when I came up with this plan, and now that I’m able to see results it makes me want to dig in and do it more. Who needs grueling twelve hour  drives each way on a weekly basis to prove I’m in show biz? I prefer it this way, thanks.

There were a lot more positives with this gig than being out there aimlessly wandering the earth like Kwai Chang Caine in Kung Fu. It was easy, low pressure and I had a chance to earn my weekly nut in less than four hours. If I could do that every week, life is sweet.

I didn’t make great money, but it wasn’t horrible either. Considering how much actual effort I had to put out to get it, I’ll shut my mouth and say thanks. I might have been able to score more gross pay for a weekend or week long booking, but after expenses I’d be at right around what I ended up taking home. Not having the long drive was like a vacation.

This particular place is being booked by another comedian who is kind enough to think of me whenever these kinds of random shows come up. I wouldn’t consider going behind his back to try and book things myself, even though not everyone else operates that way.

I’m very respectful of territorial rights when it comes to situations like this, and he ends up calling me more often than not anyway so we all win. He charged a small but very fair commission for recommending me, and I gladly paid it. The show went well as I was sure it would, and the guy in charge said I’d be back. I was paid and in my car without issue.

How many other places like this are there within a 50 mile radius of my house? I would think there are enough to keep me working at least a couple of times each month were I to want to do that. Last week I was in Wauconda, IL which is even closer. Again, the money wasn’t stellar, but it didn’t totally suck canal water either. The closeness makes up for it.

I know I may be getting spoiled these last two weeks, but I believe I deserve it. Way too often I’ve had to drive hundreds of hard lonely miles to stand in front of far less people or far less friendly or sober people. Nobody was drunk tonight, and they were good laughers.

There are all kinds of people within a fifty mile radius of where I am. Zanies in Chicago is just about fifty miles exactly from door to door, and downtown Milwaukee is a little bit less. Rockford is maybe a little farther, as is Madison. Still, there are a lot of people living in that circle who would love what I do and I’m bound and determined to find all of them.

Even if I expanded it to an even 100 miles, that’s still a lot of potential. I bet if I worked only that specific territory boundary alone, I could earn a respectable living and still sleep in my own bed every night. Next week I’ve got three gigs close to home. I’m loving this.

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