In a nation so obsessed with the word “sorry,” it’s astonishing how difficult it can be to utter the nicety “thank you.” Mandy and I will be the first to admit our self-deprecating neuroses and have happily showcased this in some of our scenes, such as “Blind Date,” which includes a number of references to our thinking we are pieces of garbage. Taking compliments makes us feel awkward, which is fine because usually people just tell us they dislike the pitch of our voices and move on. Things changed, however, in the last couple of weeks during our Toronto Fringe run.
Mandy and I put a hell of a lot of work into Two Weird Ladies Bomb The Fringe. During the process, we often scrunched up our ever-furrowed brows, tensed our overly stressed shoulders and asked our crew, in voices whinier and pitchy-er than ever, “Guuuuyyyyysss – is our show even funny?” Despite two out of three of them answering “yes,” we doubted ourselves to the very end. When we started our writing process, we came to realize that our shared personal mantra was: “Mediocrity is failure, success is mediocrity and perfection is merely success.” A messed-up form of logic, perhaps, not unlike the new small-less Tim Hortons cup sizes, but to control freak perfectionists like ourselves we knew it would take a lot to make us happy with our final product.
We’re still too self-doubt-y to totally get it, but over the last couple of weeks so many wonderful friends and strangers have been approaching us with earnest looks and telling us how much they enjoyed our show. And having done many shows in our lives, we know the difference between a genuine compliment and an awkward “the costumes were unique. I have to go – bye!” Realizing the compliments we were getting – many from the press – were genuine usually left us uncomfortably twitching, a common side effect of Piece of Garbage Disorder, from which we both suffer. But we’re quite certain part of the discomfort we felt was just the sensation of our hearts (not our egos) growing three sizes a la Grinch. If we could hold hands with all of you and sing kindly songs around a tree to demonstrate our happiness, we would. Well, Mandy would. I fear the human touch.
We feel so honoured that so many people in Toronto spent their time and money supporting our show and that they made the effort to pass on kind words in person and online. We sort of do this comedy thing to avoid ever having to be sincere, but now seems like a good time to try that “real human emotion” thing most normal people do. So thank you. Thank you all SO MUCH for making two neurotic, paranoid ladies feel like perhaps we maybe did a sort of okay job at something.
I’m publishing this now while I’m feeling good. There’s still times for people to boo us off the stage in Hamilton.