My wife said some words of wisdom to me before I left for yesterday's gig (and they weren't "Let it be").
I told her which material I was planning to do as I said goodbye and asked, " Will that be all right?", to which she said, "Tell them it's all right".
(I'm married to Yoda.)
That's stand-up in a nutshell. There shouldn't be doubt. I'm in control of my stories; I own them. So why apologise for what I tell?
It's amazing how easy it is to forget the essentials. I've spend a heck of a lot of my life on stage, as an actor, a musician and a comic. I've played nearly every major theatre in the country, and most of the minor ones too. I've even been in a West End musical, which considering my distaste for the idiom is frankly ridiculous - so why do I still frequently feel I shouldn't be there?
To be fair, it's usually only just before I go on. When I'm performing, it suddenly makes sense, and on a good day, I'm at ease; my 24/7 slapstick takes a quick lunch break. So why do I so often forget this?
(Enough of the questions, David.)
It doesn't help when there's a long day around it. Yesterday's gig was near Liverpool Street, which is very easy to get too. Today's was in Winchester, which was a bit of bit trek. The venue and the club were lovely, but when you've spent most of your day travelling alone (interspersed with endless admin), it's highly unlikely that your ten-minute spot will be comedy gold.
Still...yesterday I managed to take my wife's advice and it helped. I may make it my mantra, as long as I don't wind up looking conceited.