How to be the best by Joseph Palumbo

Just ran across an amazing post on Quora

What are the best ways to become the best at whatever you do? 

  1. Write down your goals twice every day. You cannot get the things you don't remember you wanted in the first place. 
  2. Do something for the goals every single day. Success and excellence only come from what we do behind the scenes every day. 
  3. Work harder than everyone else. To be the best you must work like the best. Period. 
  4. Get over yourself. Get over the fact that you can do this all while staying comfortable and do the things you do not like to do and that scares you. 
  5. Believe you are the best before you are. If you do not believe it, why should anyone else. 
  6. Focus all your energy on improving. You are not the best yet, so you must grow into the best by improving everything you can as much as you can. 
  7. Invest in yourself. Spend the time, energy and money required for you to become the best. 
  8. Do not give up. This will take longer than you think it will and will be harder than anyone told you, but if you give up you will never be able to reach it. 

 

Why are blogs meant to be forgotten? by Joseph Palumbo

Real Life vs. Virtual

Every blog is conceived with the best intentions, but all too easily they fall by the wayside. It's too easy to live passively as a consumer rather than live actively as a producer. 

But even then, it's such a challenge in this new world of social media to be both present and active in the real world while stopping to update the virtual one. Tonight at dinner, at Schilos, I kept stopping to tweet and take pictures of what was going on around me because that's what I see so many people doing, but it kept me from being engaged with my family in the present. 

Always kind of a tough one, to figure out the balance. 

 

I'm frustrating my wife by Joseph Palumbo

I've been married to Elizabeth for over 12 years now, though we've been together for over 20 years. She's my writing parter. While I'm good at writing basic joke structure, setup + punch, she's the master at adding short, zippy tags. 

Tonight we went for a walk. I was going over my 15 minute set with her, telling her about some new jokes I wrote and how I streamlined others. As always, She added a few strong tags to the mix. She proposed changing the order of the jokes. She explained that by swapping jokes (putting one in front of the other) it would be a better build up to the now second joke. 

We worked through this and at the end of the day it required too many words to segue between the two in the new order. She explained that despite the words, it was still a stronger order. I told her she was probably right, but my experience over the last month writing and delivering shorter, setup + punch jokes on stage has proved to me that one of the immutable laws of comedy is e as ruthless as possible when eliminating the words between setup and punch, and between punchlines in sequential jokes. 

She pleaded her case again. And once again I explained that the proof was there. Even though the build up was good, I feel more comfortable saying fewer words on stage. 

Why post this one my blog? Because I've been a writer all my life. Up to now I've had the luxury of writing things and then sending them out into the world with little to no repercussion if it wasn't good. Now, when I write something bad or poorly structured, I'm forced to say it in front of a room full of people that will determine in a second or two if it is funny. A much different situation, to say the least. 

Really, the purpose of this post is to tel my wife, Liz, and her sick sense of humor for helping me with my act.