Thursday, April 14, 2011

There is no off position on the Genius Switch

 Mr. Hackett: inventor of the Genius Switch.

I'm no genius, but I've got a Genius Switch.

And so do you!

In stand-up comedy there's a name for the Genius Switch: your "monitor" - the degree to which you are engaged in "the moment" while you're onstage.

Invented by "hilarious" comedian Buddy Hackett, a monitor score of 10 means that you're living completely in the moment, at one with your brain and audience.

A score of zero means your mouth is moving and words are coming out, but you're thinking about all of your personal problems, and no one is engaged in what you're saying, least of all you. Like when I teach!

I, me, mine, monitor

I once had the distinct honor to perform stand-up at the U of M in front of a group of drunk and disinterested students - my favorite kind!

As I neared what was surely going to be a hilarious punchline, a chunk of the audience stood up and headed to the door, knocking over chairs on their way.

I felt my ears get hot, and suddenly my mouth blurted out - with no participation from my brain whatsoever - "F--- you!"

Monitor score: 10

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