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Pelican, Torrey Pines © Robert Sommers 2022

Monday, March 28, 2022

Dan the Man

Leslie and I went to the comedy night event in Fallbrook on Saturday. It was very sparsely attended and perhaps poorly promoted, there was nothing even on the marquee suggesting that it was occurring. 

I was a little embarrassed that my town could not have had a better turn out when I saw how much effort had been made to put on a fine show by everyone. Oh well, Leslie and I tried. 

As I mentioned we had a somewhat distant or cross connected relative performing, Jay Shore. By the way, the Mission Theater is really beautiful now, Roy did an incredible job renovating it. Definitely want to come back and check out an old movie.

I enjoyed myself mostly, even though stand up comedy is not really my bag. I think most of these comics would be better served strapped to a gurney in a deep therapy session. But I get how important and intense it can be for them on a good night when they are connecting and that it makes it all worthwhile.

The need for emotional response they seem to crave in these settings is just weird to me, would make B.F. Skinner blanche.

I have been to maybe five stand up gigs in my life, if is is your thing, god bless you, it just doesn't really float my boat. I don't do crowds, I like very small groups, not too far from a couple or a few. Mind you, I believe that I am almost funny on a rare occasion and am not above telling a ribald joke or two, just missing that entertainer gene.

Having said that, everybody was working hard, giving it their best and I take my hat off to all of them. With my neurosis, I couldn't do it, I am enough of an emotional basket case as it is. Maybe I don't like or respect people enough to want their feedback or response anyway.

The cousin was really good, the main headliner Adam was great, in a very manic way, but I still found myself wanting the whole thing to end as soon as possible. The event wore on me. Because stand up comedy is just not my deal.

But there was honestly one really cool and incredible performer that night, Dan Naylor, a man that I will probably be thinking about for a long time.

Dan Naylor, known as Dan the man, is one of the most inspirational people you will ever meet.

Hit by a car at a young age, with cerebral palsy, if anyone had ever wanted to give up and feel sorry for himself, it would be Dan.

But he didn't. He works three jobs, one of them keeping Grape Day Park clean in Escondido. And he decided to do stand up and totally expose himself.

Guy drew a line in the sand and moved forward with his life, shedding the most unfortunate of circumstances.

Possessed with a crushing hand shake, you really could not meet a more wonderful person.

No wonder he is so beloved in Escondido and beyond. I am a big fan.

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