Amplified Idiots

Winnipeg Comedy Fest Interview: British stand-up comic Matt Kirshen

I had heard a lot about Matt Kirshen before talking to him, and I had always promised myself that I would eventually take the time to sit down and do more research on the fellow. The thing you need to know about me, though, is I like to pretend I'm a busy guy. Part of pretending you're a busy guy is you tend to spend a lot of time saying you're going to do something and then never actually doing it. He was name checked on a bunch of podcasts I listen to, comedian friends of mine spoke very highly of him, and the people whose opinions I trust on these matters all said that he was worth checking out. I would always say "Yeah, I'll Google him, I'll get right on that!", and would then go home, eat some Wheat Thins in the dark and pretend to be a mysterious rebel that did not have time for nice things.

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Winnipeg Comedy Fest Interview: Kevin McDonald (The 2012 Edition)

As a Canadian who at one point in his life owned a television, I have of course watched a lot of The Kids in the Hall. To be more accurate, I've watched all of The Kids in the Hall. All five seasons, the movie, and the miniseries. Multiple times. Front to back. More often than would probably be socially acceptable in the eyes of most people, if I'm being honest.

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The Hilarious Art of Ruining Your Life

Recently, I've considered getting myself back into the dating game. I'm a young guy, decent odor, relatively disease-free. It's not unrealistic to think I'd enjoy myself if I gave dating some serious effort. I quickly shot the idea down though, when I stepped back to analyze what I saw as The Big Picture; "Well, if I did have a girlfriend, it's not likely that would last for long. Most nights I'm already doing stand up, and the rest of the time is usually devoted to writing or working on other comedy-related stuff. I'd probably neglect a girlfriend, now that I think about it. Besides, I can't afford to sacrifice my comedy for the sake of…"

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J.D’s 24 Hour Pogues St. Patrick’s Day (Live Blog)

All day today, I will be listening to 'Streams of Whiskey' by The Pogues for 24 solid hours.

Yes, really.

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The Interrogative Comic

Have you ever read the book 'The Interrogative Mood' by Padgett Powell? Would you be interested to read it if I told you that the book's main claim to fame is that every single sentence in it is a question? Would you believe me if I told you that it is really quite good, so good in fact that I have decided to steal that poetic device for my article this week? Do you think that constitutes plagiarism or intellectual property theft? Do you think I care?

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How To Stop Enjoying Open Mic Comedy Before It’s Too Late

I mark every show I play on my calendar. The year is not yet over, but I counted this year's total the other day out of curiosity. Fear not though, loyal reader. I will not pester you with the details of my public displays of mediocrity. Saying the number here would only be masturbatory on my part. Not only that, but the worst kind of masturbatory. The kind of masturbatory where the thing I'm boasting about is not only told to you against your will, but is also not even really worth boasting about — like saying I beat a dog in a staring contest, or bragging about how many pennies I ate as a kid.

Suffice to say, I do alright. Three to four shows a week is average. Less than two is considered a failure. For a city with not a lot of opportunities to get stage time, I do pretty well. Some ups, some downs. Some I'm proud of, an uncomfortably large number of I'm not. All of them important. All of them vital. All of them done for reasons I can't really explain, and any attempt to do so would make both our heads hurt.

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Amplified Idiots

Hello, internet. My name is J.D. Renaud. I am a stand up comedian living in Winnipeg. There are a lot of other things wrong with me, too, but we will get to that later.

My first time doing stand up was at a contest held by a (re: the only) comedy club in Winnipeg. If you're curious as to how that went, I'll tell you. I bombed. Fantastically so. It was magnificent, I tell you. I never knew what audible silence sounded like before that night, but now I have the sound committed to memory. It was the same weird kind of quiet you hear in horror movies right before something jumps out of nowhere and decapitates a sorority girl. Once you can hear the sound of several hundred arms folding in contempt, it stays with you forever.

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