december 13, 1980

 

Here’s a warts-and-all snippet from December 13, 1980 at d.w. eye.  This is the seventh show I ever did.  I had just turned 17 exactly one month earlier.  This act comes immediately after I returned from my NY trip with my father.  (Chapter 20 – Home)  The eye was recording an album that night which was never released, but I understand the tapes are still floating out there somewhere…

The material here is pretty bad, but it’s amazing how responsive the audience is – laughing and applauding – considering such mediocre material.  No wonder I was so obsessed with it all.  The one thing I think you do hear is the absolute camaraderie the comics had for one another.  You can clearly hear Rico and Mike laughing generously and loudly throughout the act.  Even Roger’s intro is warm and friendly.  Wow.

More mp3s in the next few weeks…

a plrknib mini-tour

So, we’ve got our first dates lined up for 2017!  All appearances include signings (and occasionally free copies!) of Plrknib.

Sunday, February 19 at 7p – I’ll be appearing at Scotty’s Comedy Cove in Springfield, NJ.  This is our first big Plrknib show of the year, and we’ll have free signed copies of the book!  Click here to make your reservations early!

Saturday, February 25 at 8p – I’m hosting the Comedy Night fundraiser at Temple Sholom in Scotch Plains, NJ.  We’ll have signed copies of the book for sale at this event with all profits donated to the temple.  Click here for more information and to make reservations.

Both shows will be great and include a ton of brilliant comics from the NY/NJ area.  Come join us!

irresistibly absorbing

dog-on-couch(I got a little tired of re-posting the cover of the book; so here’s the dog again from Chapter 31)

Yes, Plrknib now has something in common with toilet paper!

Hey – we got a super lovely review over at New Pop Lit!

Yeah, I know I’m not supposed to post references to a lot of reviews – because then I should be posting the bad ones, too, right?  (Not too many of those, yet, tho. Give it time!)  But this one is super-lovely, so…

Here’s a little excerpt…

….Like a comedian’s joke, Plrknib is the kind of narrative you fight against when you start reading it, but it pulls you along despite yourself. Like most of Bernstein’s writing, it’s irresistibly absorbing. Where is this book heading, you ask? What does “plrknib” mean? You’re skeptical, but you continue reading.

You can read the whole thing here.

And of course you can get the book here

a plrknib update!

16-final_102216h_med

Well, it’s been an interesting month-and-a-half to say the least!  Support for Plrknib has been extremely positive.  Thanks so much to all of you who have been buying copies and leaving reviews.  It is much appreciated!

Plrknib has gotten some very lovely initial reviews at both Amazon and Goodreads. We’ve also been doing Goodreads Giveaways.  The latest one is for five signed copies of the paperback.  More information is here.

Plrknib now has two different Facebook pages.  One for the book itself here. And this one dedicated to d.w. eye, the club that’s referenced throughout the book. Please like both pages to get updates on the book and the comics!

We’ve added a Press Section, where you can see some of the recent coverage that the book has been getting.  You can expect to see more in the coming weeks.

Plrknib has also been featured on Publisher’s Weekly’s indie site Booklife for the past week.

Also, since the book is about stand-up, some folks have asked if I’m still performing – and if so, where.  Yes, there are a bunch of dates coming up in 2017, and we’ll be posting those here.  And chances are good that we’ll be giving away signed copies of the book at some of these performances…

PLRKNIB LAUNCHES ON AMAZON

16-final_102216h_med
I’m extremely excited to announce that Plrknib is now available at Amazon.

Plrknib – which has been serialized right here over the past year is about my experience doing stand-up comedy during my senior year of high school in 1980.  The published version includes several chapters not featured on the website, including the extremely long – 30 Years Later section – and Bits & Pieces – which features an approximate version of my act 35 years ago. (Except it’s much funnier and better written.)

Early reviews have been great.  Including:

“Hysterical, edge-of-your-seat drama.”

“The Power of Jokes permeates this book…in a way rarely seen in fiction.”

“I felt as though I was on stage with him 30 years ago.”

Plrknib retails for $1.99 (ebook) and $6.99 (paperback).

And! – for this week only – if you’d like a free review copy, contact me at alexb0917@gmail.com and we’ll set you up!

 

coming soon

16_comingsoon1

Some early reviews are now coming in…

“Hilarious and Personal Memoir of What It’s Like to Follow Your Dream of Being A Stand-Up Comic.”

“In this gonzo, coming-of-age memoir set in the early 80’s, Alex Bernstein takes a situation most people might consider trivial – a teenager stealing a professional comedian’s joke – and turns it into high, hysterical, edge-of-your-seat drama.”

“I felt as though I was on stage with him 30 years ago.”

“Halfway thru this book I started telling everyone I knew that they needed to read it.”

“Wow. I Liked a Book About Stand-Up Comedy!”

saturday night

16_092916f-3

The show, of course, was a complete disaster.  Worse than anything I could have imagined.  And not just because – with one exception – every joke I told died; every word that issued from my mouth bleated like some garbled alien language that no one could comprehend.

And not just because I was mentally and physically exhausted, and experiencing the cataclysmic self-doubt of a death row prisoner who’s chance for a reprieve had long since slipped irrefutably away.  

It wasn’t simply a disaster because of the shame – the palpable shame – one feels as they watch themselves fumbling the game-winning touchdown right at the buzzer; the shame that I was to the audience, the club, the other comics, Don, my family, Cincinnati, God, myself, and, most of all, Roger.  How much damage was I doing to him?  Screwing up one of his vaunted Saturday nights and all the Cincinnati-Magazine-driven goodwill?  Would he ever let me perform again?    

For all those reasons, it was a miserable show.  But it was an unimpeachable disaster because it was slow.   Continue reading