After falling prey to the imaginative pranksters at the motel, I drove at a good pace to Lethbridge and felt that I needed to relax with my friend, the cigar smoking owner of the local Cadillac dealership and maybe meet him for lunch and have a martini or 2 before talking him into booking off early so we could catch up over a game of snooker on his beautiful vintage 12X6 table in his rumpus room. The last time I was there I gave him a wonderful box set of Dizzy Gillespie CD’s and I, once again, wanted to hear them on his McIntosh stereo.
As I was pulling into town I got him on his cel phone and I could sense that something wasn’t right because of the sound of his voice. He usually has a loud boisterous tone which tells you, right away, he is the alpha dog at his business, the guy in charge, the guy that runs the show….. but……. something was very wrong. He had this terrified sound to his voice which told me that I better get over to his office as soon as I could and maybe drag him out of there to some bar where I could ply him with alcohol and find out what was up… I pulled into his car lot and walked into his office only to find him sitting at his desk behind a stack of papers that he was reading, re-reading and making notes. After a quick hello and ordering a couple of coffees from his secretary I find out that this stack of papers are jokes. Jokes?? these are jokes that he has written and is now studying to prepare himself for his debut as a comedian at the brand new local comedy club where he’ll performing for the very first time. What????? This guy is the picture of success, he has everything a guy could want, a great home, great family, bright future and a tax bracket that most of us can only dream about and he’s telling me that he wants to give it all up to go into a life of show business. Problem though is that …….. The guy isn’t funny!
After sitting through a bit of a rehearsal at his office with a very small audience.. me…. I find out that I had to try my best to look amused as I sat through his routine but I felt that this was going to be a disaster and I had ring-side seats to his Waterloo. After meeting up with him at his home after work for a quick bite, we drove to the comedy club and I went with him to his dressing room and heard him run through a few more terrible jokes before I left him to go out into the club and try to find a seat… Maybe in the back… Way in the back beside a dimly lit exit. As it turns out, there aren’t a lot of people in the room and I find out that almost all of the people in the audience are people that work in his car dealership.
The lights go dim, an emcee comes out and introduces my friend and the crowd erupts into a very enthusiastic welcome as he stumbles on to the stage. His jokes start out, like they did in his office earlier on in the day, with not a bang, not a pop or snap or sizzle….. They sort of just sag and wilt like a salad that has spent the last 6 hours under a heat lamp but my old buddy is feeling very encouraged because all his employees are laughing, howling, cheering and clapping like crazed maniacs who know that their future employment is at stake. I had to sneak out for a smoke.
I sat on the front steps of the club and lit a Cohiba Setretos Maduro 5 . This dark little mareva starts out with the Cohiba black pepper, woody taste which becomes a bit muskier as it burns along. The perfect Cohiba construction allows an easy draw to the end, very reminiscent of the Genios I love, and I believe The bringing them on this little road trip of mine will certainly help me through any trying moment I may experience on this adventure.
I sneak back into the club as my friend was getting a standing ovation and met him backstage in his dressing room. When I finally saw him I didn’t know what to say so…., I told him that he was great as he pumped my hand furiously and thanked me profusely. I told him that something had come up….. My canary was dying and I had to rush back home and take care of the funeral arrangements. He was sad for my loss and told me as much but suggested that I just let go and instead of throwing any good money away, simply flush the thing down the toilet. I couldn’t stay a minute longer…. I left town and made tracks for my next stop, Calgary! This trip has GOT to improve!!!!!!