So who here’s on Facebook?
Yeah, yeah? I’m on Facebook. If you’re a comedian nowadays, you’ve gotta be on Facebook.
It’s very competitive, Facebook, isn’t it? Have any of you noticed that? How many friends you have? How many people LIKE you? It’s a bit like being back in the playground, praying you’re not going to be the last pick for the football team.
I was reluctant to join. Before gigs people check out your Facebook pages. Maybe some of you have. Check if I’m funny or not.
And so why exactly ARE you all here?
But seriously, it is competitive. I was doing a show last year at the Edinburgh Fringe. I was on every day immediately after this guy called Nathan Dart. Me and Nathan used to catch up every day after our sets, got to know each other. Nathan’s a comic too. We started chatting about Facebook. Nathan checked out my page. He wasn’t on Facebook, asked me if he should be. I told him you kind of had to be. So that night he goes home and sets up his account.
The next day he comes up to me. Guess what, he says, I set up my Facebook account and already 257 people like me.
I looked at him. That’s good, I said.
So how many people like you?, he asks.
I thought of lying, but there’s really no point as its so easy to check. 348, I said.
OK. That’s good. He said. We both knew it wasn’t. I had had my page for almost 2 years.
I’ve got an idea, he said. Lets have a competition. Me and you. See who can get the most likes by the end of the Festival.
OK, well, I’m up for the challenge.
He mentioned his Facebook page 5 times in his set that day.
I managed 7.
The next day he came in. 329, he said.
I had 351.
He mentioned his Facebook page 8 times in his set that day.
I squeezed in 10 mentions.
The next day he came in. 374, he said.
I had 358.
He mentioned his Facebook page 10 times, AND he squeezed in a 5 minute routine all about his Facebook page.
I mentioned it 13 times, and I handed out a flyer at the end with my upcoming gigs and my Facebook details.
The next day he comes up to me. I knew it was bad by the look on his face. 441, he said.
That’s really good, I said, through gritted teeth. I now had 371.
He kind of sucked in his breath. That’s… good, he said.
He mentioned his Facebook page 12 times in his set. He started and ended with a Facebook gag.
My WHOLE set was about Facebook, they should have paid me money for advertising the fucking thing. The audience stopped laughing about 4 minutes in but I just kept right on going.
That night I went home and trawled through all kinds of old contacts, sent emails to people I never imagined I’d talk to again. I didn’t even sleep, spent the whole night on the computer, And no, I know what you’re thinking, I didn’t even do that!
The next day Nathan came up to me. He had that look. You know that look? When someone is feeling really cocky about themselves but pretending to hide it so as to spare your feelings? That look.
552, he said.
Fuck, 552. How was he doing it?
I had checked my Facebook page an hour before. 369 people now liked me. I had LOST 2 friends. 2 more people in the world presumably now disliked me.
Tough break!, he said. Then he couldn’t help himself, ‘What was the prize again?’
It wasn’t a big deal. We had agreed the loser would buy the winner a meal. A meal I now knew I couldn’t bear to go through. I knew I would sit there, willing him to choke on it.
Tomorrow’s the last day, I said, Let’s see how it looks then.
Sure, he said, Sure.
He mentioned his Facebook page only 9 times that day. He only did one Facebook gag. He knew he had it in the bag.
I mentioned my Facebook page 6 times. I could hardly bear to look at the audience as I did. I didn’t do any jokes because there was nothing funny to me at all about fucking Facebook.
But I wasn’t beat.
I went home that night and opened up a new Facebook account.
Name – Jesus Christ.
Occupation – Saviour.
I posted up a picture of Russell Brand – I figured that was close enough.
Next Appearance – To Be Confirmed, but highly anticipated.
I pressed the button, ‘Search for Friends’.
I logged on to my account the next morning. 1.6 BILLION friends…
Who’s laughing now, Nathan Dart? What do you think about that, Lady Gaga?
So have you heard the one about the 5 loaves and 2 small fishes…?