Guest spots are joke training camp.
For those of you who don't know, a guest spot is when a comedian makes a brief five to seven minute appearance early on a show. For me a guest spot is the best time to work new material since it's a) a short set and b) early in the show so there's little chance of derailing the whole night if you bomb.
If I do a five to seven minute spot and I'm NOT doing working on fresh material, I feel I'm cheating myself and I'm cheating those jokes.
Sadly, just like in training camp, sometimes I'm forced to make cuts. Sometimes it's obvious which jokes aren't ready for the big leagues. Other times, a joke shows flashes of brilliance, but just isn't consistent.
In such cases, the decision is a lot tougher? Does it just need more stage time to grow? Or is this as good as it will ever get?
It's tough to cut some of those jokes. Many are hard workers, show a lot of heart, and the raw potential is there. They just aren't getting it done. Maybe it's a chemistry thing. Maybe the joke just needs a little work on its fundamentals before it's ready for another shot.
The toughest part though, is sometimes I feel the fault is mine. Maybe I didn't perform the joke well enough. Maybe I didn't put it in a position to succeed. Maybe I'm a bad joke coach/GM.
Such is life.
Thanks for coming out jokes. Those of you that made the roster, you'll see your name on the list posted outside the dressing room door. The rest of you...
...well, like I said, thanks for coming out. Wish there was room for all of you, but you know how it is. Cap space and all that. You've got a lot of grit, kid.
Better luck next year.