Originally not aired on 23/12/22
This year has been the worst year since years began. The Queen died, everyone is poor, and Jamelia hasn’t been in the charts for over 15 years.
I’ve thought to myself many times these past 12 months, How do I go on? How do I find the energy to create when energy is so expensive nowadays? How do I bring the heat when the heating’s off?
I go through phases where I think comedy is dumb. The world is massively messed up so what is me writing about my erectile dysfunction gonna do? I should be out there doing something about it – my erections and the world. The only thing limper than my penis has been my efforts to actually do something worthwhile. I could be doing so many better things with my time -- volunteering at a foodbank, raising money for charity, forming a militia to protect me in the event of societal breakdown.
But then, what can I do alone? I may be impotent but so are our leaders. The problems we face are systemic, and I only learned what systemic meant during lockdown. This is a job for someone bigger than me.
Maybe sticking to your skillset isn’t such a bad thing. Sometimes making people laugh, or mildly smirk, is the best antidote you can offer.
That’s why I’ve decided to do another festive series of my unrecorded podcast “Comedians Outside Edinburgh Getting Eggnog Lattes”. With all the talk of a looming recession and ongoing strikes across the public sector, it’s easy to forget the true meaning of Christmas: content.
One person who is no stranger to tragedy – whether it be personal trauma or the Bee Gees’ song later covered by Steps – is my first guest this year, Sarah Roberts.
Sarah is a London-based comedian known for her deadpan delivery and razor-sharp razors.
“How many razors do you own?” I asked her, as we sat down with our lattes.
“Loads,” she replied.
Recently going Viral on TikTok and reaching the final of the Leicester Square New Comedian of the Year competition, Sarah’s clearly destined for big things. When you see, hear, taste, smell and touch her material, it’s not surprising she’s doing so well. One-night stands, unemployment, vaping – this girl can write a joke about anything.
“Where do you get your ideas from?” I asked.
“They spontaneously emerge from complex neurological processes,” she replied.
“But I guess on a less scientific level,” she said, “I get my ideas from my everyday life.”
“Well, I vape, I don’t like working, and I, you know…”
“Have sex?” I replied.
“Sometimes I think you can’t win whatever you talk about,” she said. “A lot of my material is about sex, and then you get criticised for only talking about that, while at the same time being constantly sexualised just because you’re a woman.”
She’s right. In comedy, as in our wider culture, misogyny is rife, and arguably women are its biggest victims.
As a society, we often put women into boxes; we tell them what they can or can’t do; what they can and can’t talk about; maybe not directly, but subtly, through expectations and taboos. If you can’t handle a strong independent woman talking about sex, then you Sir, are a prude.
This is a show Sarah feels she needs to get off her chest. Even if that chest is incredibly ample, that shouldn’t be our focus.
Yes, she has a big chest, but, if you stare at them for long enough, you realise that behind those huge magumbos she has an even bigger heart.
Maybe that, rather than content, is the real message of Christmas.
See you next time! X