We're back in Vancouver after a very eventful couple of weeks. I can't say enough good things about London. Wonderful sights, amazing shopping great food. Ian was so inspired that he's trying to convince his improv colleagues to put together a show there sometime in the future and if that goes ahead I am so tagging along.
On Friday we cut our trip short to hightail it back to Canada, ironically to London, Ontario to attend the Canadian Comedy Awards where Ian was nominated for a few Beavers. With the eastern bias of these awards it was a dead certainty that he, and the rest of his western compatriots, would walk away empty handed (which they did) but it was good networking nonetheless. From London to London we flew, the latter city being so un-London as to be laughable were it not so sad. So much about this town seemed faltering, from the Galleria largely populated by empty storefronts and bargain outlets to the main drags showing signs of decline in the mostly unoccupied condo towers and large groups of homeless.
It was clear that a comedy festival was a desperate attempt to turn things around, or at the very least, lighten the mood of despair. Naturally the Comedy Network would help out by televising the awards show right? Nope. And the Trailer Park Boys cancelled their Yuks Yuks show, the one flaunted on the front pages of all the local papers. The guy who was supposed to take their place with his stand up act looked pretty good for someone nobody at this festival wanted to be just then what with 600 pre sold ticket holders coming in from all around to see Bubbles and crew do that inexplicably, apparently funny, thing they do. I don't know, maybe it was a brave face brought up to cover inevitable doom, or maybe it was the pretty girls in the elevator looking awestruck at him, saying "Wow, you must be soooo nervous!"
I would have paid good money to watch that show go down in flames, but instead I was stuck at the untelevised awards show watching a talking dog from Puppets Who Kill trade off "ascerbic" banter with people I didn't particularly care about. The seats were too small and my butt fell asleep pretty quickly. Ian and Drew did a nice job presenting onstage with a subtle jab at the eastern bias thrown in for good measure, it woke me up after the previous, interminable presentation of a lifetime achievement award.
Some sketch troupes came on here and there, two insisting on lots of nudity. Oh look, a bouncing penis! That made the haus fraus giggle. Snore.
Canadian comedy folks, it's come a long way hasn't it? But then, maybe this stuff is best viewed without the grinding jet lag.
Sunday arrived and another ten or so hours of travelling before we saw the welcoming pillows of our own bed complete with cats bearing stunned looks very similar those of children learning their father did not in fact die in the war but is here on Christmas mornining bearing a big fat goose for the dinner feast. After some disbelieving sniffs Charlie settled in my lap fully prepared to spend the next month there.
Home is good.