This takes us to an open mic I did a couple of months ago at Beauty Bar in New York City. It's a weird little bar, converted from a former beauty parlor, and you can still get your nails done there. Consequently, it's kind of a younger, hipper, less penis-based crowd than some other rooms. I was prepping for a gig, so I did five minutes of my set mostly about the silly things women do on social media in order to make themselves look attractive. (A lot of this material was also in a Cracked column I wrote around the same time.) I made fun of profile pics that just show one eye, or big pouty lips, or sexy shoes, and explained that those were all bad ideas for attracting men.
Well, on Cracked, the column did pretty well. Yes, some women were pissed at me, because they felt that as a man I was objectifying women under a deluded belief that they worry about their profile pics for the sake of men. Online, I didn't care about those complaints. First, I have a 10-year published body of work, and I couldn't be exhausted enough to explain why my words should not be interpreted in the most offensive way possible when my jokes were not really specific to gender. I also don't believe that people aren't interested in making others think they're attractive. Male, female, straight, gay, whatever. Everyone does it. And I'd freely admit (as I did in the column) that I'm the absolute worst offender of such needy, wanton narcissism.
For example, here's a picture of me with my Twitter link included for no good reason.
But you can't have that discussion on stage. On stage, people laugh or they don't. And the people in that audience didn't know me or my body of writing, just what they heard right there. And to them some aging male fuck was talking down to them about how silly, ugly girls are tricking the world into thinking they're hot. And it did not get laughs. I should have been more sensitive to the audience -- probably avoiding the material altogether -- but at the very least tweaking it. And in my next performance, I did tweak it before going on stage at a different club, and it did much better.