AT THE MIC – Mike Delamont

You’ve got (hate) mail

It’s New Year’s resolution time folks!

That’s what we do this time of the year. We look back at the year past and then make changes for the better! We eat healthy, we go to the gym and we finally finish that book we have been meaning to finish. And we stick to those changes! Until around January 7. I have been meaning to finish the Time Traveller’s Wife since May and I refuse to read another book until I’m done. Maybe I should just put it in the bathroom and read it two pages a day like every other man does.

I’m not sure how many people read this column, but it’s nice to be back. I am always happy and surprised when somebody stops me on the street to tell me how much they like what I write. With every compliment though, there is the chance of the opposite, and I am happy to say that since starting this column I have only received one angry letter. To be fair, the letter wasn’t “angry” per say, just a concerned reader who wrote (by hand and in cursive … so you know he means business) to tell me that my constant stories about alcohol were not funny to anybody.

I assume of course, by “all of my stories,” he means my one story about my bachelor party, but I don’t want to be petty about numbers.

As somebody who grew up in a house with alcoholic parents, talking about booze has never been taboo, and I have always tried to see the funny side of it. In fact, in my one man show God Is A Scottish Drag Queen, God is an alcoholic. I think it helps to explain most of the old testament, wouldn’t you agree?

I’m in the middle of writing my new one man show called Mama’s Boy which is my story of being raised by a single mother battling addiction. Alcohol has always been a theme in my work, but as a comedian I need to ask, ‘how do we tell a heavy story with a light hearted spin?’ I guess we just be honest and hope for the best.

My career has never been without its critics, and while one man felt that he had had enough of my attempted booze humour, there have been others who have been just straight up mean. It’s interesting that folks will spend so much time writing a piece of hate mail when they could have put out less effort and just changed the channel or turned the page. When I see something I don’t like or agree with on Facebook I just scroll away.

Right now my wife and I are away from home caring for an elderly family member battling dementia, and while my wife gets to see me work all the time, I rarely get to see her at her nursing best. I tried once, but hospitals are so picky about people just hanging out. To be fair, I probably shouldn’t have dressed like a doctor.

It is so wonderful to watch a woman who is so patient and kind hearted be so good at what she does. When watching a person go through dementia, you have a moment where you realize how little time we have on this planet. And for some, we don’t even know that the end has come. For some, the brain just switches to autopilot and sends the body tumbling aimlessly through time and space.

So maybe this new year we don’t make a grand gesture. We don’t commit to dropping the turkey weight, or eating less fast food. In a world of Facebook where we are inundated by other peoples pointless garbage, maybe we just tune it out.

On a flight the other day I saw the most beautiful sunrise I have ever seen, and even now, just thinking about it makes me smile. So maybe that’s my resolution. Find more things that make me smile. Ya never know how many sunrises you have left.

I’m still gonna finish that stupid book though.

 

 

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