Oh, the Eagles Lodge. Next year, could Bridgetown organizers please put out a bulletin reminding performers to "BE NICE TO MARTIN"? Every year there's a moment of awkward interaction between a comedian and the Eagles Lodge's aging greeter/president (?) and every year it makes me want to die. This year's awkward interaction came courtesy Richard Bain, in an otherwise solid set that included a callback to last year; I hope to never in my life be approached by a stranger who tells me that he has a picture of my butthole on his phone, but that's exactly what happened to Bain last night. At last year's festival, Bain explained, "in a blackout," he... showed the crowd his butthole! And other things. "That's not not on the internet already," I wrote at the time. Apparently it was on some guy's iPhone, too.
Conan writer Andrés du Bouchet read a great mock-commercial for a steakhouse, riffing on the ubiquity of sponsorship banners. I was looking forward to seeing Jonah Ray, but he showed up drunk and meandered through a weirdly aggressive set that basically destroyed the room (in the bad way) for headliner Henry Phillips, a comedian-with-guitar with a deceptively bland demeanor and an even-keeled, likable delivery. I am naturally suspicious of comedians-with-guitars, but he only played one actual song, so that was okay.
I didn't get to see much last night—because I went to the opera first; has anyone else in Portland history ever gone straight from the Keller Auditorium to the Alhambra Lounge? I AM A PIONEER—so my comics-to-see bucket list is still really long: Jon Daly, Janine Brito, Hari Kondabolu, Nate Bargatze, Jesse Elias, Paul Provenza, Matt Braunger, Jamie Lee, Alice Wetterlund, Baron Vaughn... Tonight I'm in it to win this motherfucker.
We'll have more updates all weekend, and in the meantime, there's a new installment of Andie Main and Scott Losse's Brunch Time Friendship Bridgetown Blog, which gives a backstage glimpse of what it's like to work and perform at Bridgetown—this one features guest commentary from the endearingly weird Kyle Mizono.