Cavalcade of Comedy Carnage


(To see a much big version of these cartoons, click them why don’t you?)

Bizarro is brought to you today by Where Have I Been?

Good gravy, Jazz Pickles, it has been a long time since I posted on my blog. I’ve been running around the Non-East Coast on a small comedy tour and that stuff is time-consuming, brain-eating, and deadline-threatening. But I’m almost caught up on life so I’m back to posting. Here now are a jilliondyfive cartoons to get you caught up on everything that has published since I last posted. Whew!

If you care, the shows went well and it was most gratifying to commune in person with so many of you. All three of my California shows were sold out, which is what performers hope for. Not being sold out means that there are empty seats in the room from which it is virtually impossible to solicit a laugh. As a performer, my self esteem is integrally tied to my ability to gain the approval of strangers. When they laugh, I feel noticeably less suicidal instantly. When they don’t, I begin nervously fingering the cyanide buttons on my shirt. Thanks for keeping me alive, kids!

My live comedy shows are a combination of visuals projected on a big screen behind me (cartoons, photos, etc.), songs that I play and sing live, some stand-up comedy, and a little interaction with the audience. But most of the laughs in every show come from my comments on the images projected behind me. I mention this because at my show in Mill Valley, a big theater that seats around 300-or-so, the projector stopped getting along with my laptop computer about 10 minutes into a 90-minute show. Whoops. I’ve always known this would happen one day and it turns out that day was April 27th, 2012.

The first impression I had when the tech guy told me from the booth that it was hopeless was how similar the situation was to that recurring nightmare so many people have where they are onstage in their underwear or can’t remember their lines. I wasn’t wearing underwear, so I did what any performer would do, I panicked. Then I cried. Then I pooped my pants a little bit (wish I’d been wearing underwear), then I ad libbed the rest of the evening.

As it happens, I was better at this than I thought I’d be and the evening was saved. In fact, it might have been one of my funniest shows ever. If people weren’t expecting to see cartoons at my shows, I’d be tempted to leave the computer at home and do them all this way. I routinely made a joke out of how poorly the technical aspects were going and it went over so well that many audience members asked me after the show if it was intentional. Perhaps that’s an angle I should pursue in the future; a show that intentionally looks as though the computer is failing and I have to cope. People seem to enjoy watching others struggle on stage.

Overall, a very enjoyable tour and one that gave me more confidence for the future. If I can make people laugh without my cartoons behind me, I won’t sweat the technical aspects anymore. I’ll just roll with the punches as they come and mop up the blood later.

My fondest dream is to be doing this show more in the near future and I hope to see plenty of you Jazz Pickles there.


Please “like” my Facebook page and see stuff there.


34 thoughts on “Cavalcade of Comedy Carnage

  1. Pingback: Cavalcade of Comedy Carnage « Humor

        • Yeah, my editor caught it and changed it on the “official” version that went out to clients. She either didn’t tell me of the mistake or I missed it in my emails, so I posted the original version with the typo.

  2. Pingback: Math for Dummies | Series divergentes

  3. I had my sophomores write their research papers on the various doomsday predictions for 2012, and your “Mayan at the bar” cartoon appeared the same day their final drafts were due. Synchronicity!

  4. Dan, it was great having you in SF, and fun to see the show. Look forward to hanging with you in San Diego for Comic-Con!

    -yer publisher

  5. In the beginning when you mentioned Jazz Pickles you would link to a dictionary definition of what a Jazz Pickle was. Rather droll for a cartoonist not to use a drawing. As the ages passed I became curious as to what a Jazz Pickle actually looked like and I requested you draw one. You ignored my impassioned pleas. Finally in desperate need I turned to Ruben Bolling of Tom the Dancing Bug fame. I requested a picture of a Jazz Pickle that I could scan, post on the internet and have tattooed on my forehead so all other Jazz Pickles could recognize me for what I am. In exchange for a pile of money reaching his navel Ruben produced a picture of a Jazz Pickle.

    I think all true Jazz Pickles, and tattoo artists everywhere owe Ruben a vote of thanks.

    • Ha ha! Did you tell him it was for Bizarro? He’s a friend of mine but I haven’t talked to him in a while. He lives in NYC and we used to hang out occasionally when I lived there. He’s not at all what you might expect, by the way. :o) Brilliant cartoonist –– one of my faves.
      Okay, one day soon I’ll draw a Bizarro Jazz Pickle so it will be official. Promise.

  6. My estimation of Bob Hope’s comedic talent fell quite a few notches many years ago when I saw him doing a monolog at a USO event at an airbase. He was interrupted, for about 15 seconds (a lifetime on stage) by the loud sound of a jet on the runway, forcing him to totally stop speaking. When the noise stopped, instead of making some funny quip about the interruption, he just continued with the monolog where he had left off. To be fair, I suppose, improv comedy became more in vogue after Bob Hope’s time, but it was a telling incident nonetheless. I’m glad to hear that your ability to think on your feet was even better than you had imagine. I’m in awe of talented improv comics.

  7. Wow, awesome operating room scene, Piraro.

    I assume that like most cartoonists, you maintain an extensive photographic “morgue” for just such an occasion — or, if you’re a slack-assed cartoonist like myself, you just spend about fifteen minutes rummaging around on Google Images.

    ‘Ere, mate, that’s ‘is liver!

  8. The Mayan & the Bartender is the ABSOLUTE BEST cartoon, ever! It enjoys a prominent and hopefully permanent place on our dining table. At least until the end of the -year?- time?

    Thanks for being so f-ing brilliant!! You have an open dinner invitation anytime you find yourself near Point Roberts, WA. We are close to Vancouver, BC, where we are doing a huge veggie growing operation – you’d love it. see via FB: Point Roberts Homegrown Co-op. All the best!

  9. “That’s his liver?” Wait…. never mind. Never mind? Such a funny phrase. Never mind. Never – at no time past, present, or future. Mind – element of a person to be aware. Nevermind – Do not ever be aware of the past, present, future. Well that sucks.

  10. Any chance “Mayan at the bar” could end up on some merch? It’d be great on a pint glass (and a perfect compliment to my Maya calendar cartoon coffee mug, it’s lonely…).


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *