Every now and then I put on an album by the late Bill Hicks. He’s the only comedian I know of whose material can still be considered current a decade after his death. There’s something to be said about historical predelictions for tragedy and farce, but nevertheless, Hicks was some kind of genius.
Anyway, do you ever laugh on the subway? I mean, just you, on your own? I never do. And it’s a hell of a thing when I first do it, too; people stare at you as if you’re batshit insane. It’s great! Depending on the performance I’m listening to, it’s a smile, then a snicker, then another smile…a muted laugh and maybe a belly laugh, if I can’t help it – often cut short, as I’m pretty embarrassed to be laughing on the subway like this. And since I don’t look particularly crazy, people seem extra worried, as if I’m one of those pissed-off postal employees one always reads about. Or a terrorist. And you know, the subway still doesn’t have a metal detector. Add to that the fact that I’m always being stopped “randomly” at airports (well, in the US), I must assume I look sufficiently swarthy enough with my wispy beard to resemble such a gentleman as went to the London subway with half a ton of Semtex strapped to his ass. Laughing on the subway, man.