Live from 50 First Jokes

Some club owners rely on "bringer" shows, requiring comedians to bring paying audience members with them to ensure a decent turnout. Here’s another way: Book 50 comedians for your show and they’ll fill the room themselves. Heck, why not make it 70?! That’s not quite what was in the mindset for comedians John F. O’Donnell, Claudia Cogan and Jiwon Lee when they came up with "50 First Jokes" night Saturday at The Creek and the Cave in Long Island City. They just wanted to invite a bunch of their friends and fellow comedians for a raucous night of rapid-fire new jokes to kick off the new year.

They brought comedians up in groups of 20 and, one by one, had them deliver their first jokes of 2008.

Everyone quickly got into the spirit (except for the restaurant’s waitress, who yelled at the comics for essentially taking over and cramping the entire joint) and more than a few comedians said then and there that this was one of the best shows. Not because the jokes were all brilliant, mind you. I think the camaraderie and bonding among comedians showed that even in the big, bad New York City, we can all get along and so on and so forth. Although I can say that by the end, I wondered if every single person in the bar and restaurant was going to get up and try out a bit before we could bring the night to a close.

Here is glimpse of what it looked and sounded like (note: profanity abounds):

Sparkly, eh? I’ll eventually get a handle on this newfangled camera of mine. If you want to venture out to Long Island City and experience some of this comedy magic yourself, tonight would be such a night, because O’Donnell and Timmy Williams will be hosting their Kingdom of Heaven comedy show with special guest John Mulaney. Info and directions for The Creek and the Cave here.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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