All 50 States Day 24:
Did you know there’s a Cleveland, Mississippi? It’s the only town in Mississippi I’ve been to, thanks to a show at Delta State University sometime in the late 90s. I don’t have any pictures from the show but I remember there were other acts on the bill, which makes it stand out from most of my college shows.
Usually at a college I’m the only performer and I perform an hour set. Every once in awhile a school will book two acts and have them each do a half hour or so to split a 60-75 minute show between them. On more than one occasion I’ve shown up at a school to find they’ve booked three acts, all headliners, and expected them to do 45 minutes to an hour each, which would result in a show that runs 2 1/2 to 3 hours, which is a terrible, terrible idea. It’s comedy, people, not a Wagner opera!
We performers always try to discourage these marathon shows, but as someone who’s signed a contract to perform for an hour it’s a tricky situation to demand to perform a shorter set. Usually we leave the final call to the student activities board with a strong suggestion to keep the show under 2 hours total.
Such was the case at the Delta State show, I think the other act was a magician or juggling duo, if memory serves. I also remember hitting a very small bar/hangout after the show because it was the only place in town that served food at that hour–fried fish sandwiches (which I think were just a couple of fish sticks on Wonder Bread).
For this post I even dug around for pictures of me near the Mississippi River, which I’ve seen in New Orleans, St. Louis, the Quad Cities, Dubuque, and as a tiny little stream near Brainerd, Minnesota, but couldn’t come up with anything, so enjoy a picture of Spinal Tap: