To the best of my recollection, this was Thanksgiving 1993.
I was 21 and living in Chicago. I'd moved there a few months earlier, under the promise of a job at the Second City, a famed comedy club, that evaporated before I'd ever set foot in the door. Being young and refusing to give up, I stayed for the adventure. My apartment was incredibly cheap, and I was performing a lot more than I had been in LA. I thought I'd make this my new home.
My two roommates had left town to visit family. Greg, a fellow improvisational comedian who'd suffered the same retracted job offer as I, was off to Massachusetts. Marko, a 6'6" pre-frontally lobotomized hoarder who suffered from homophobia, anti-semitism, and only experienced joy while performing as a children's party clown, was someplace I did not care.
Over the many years, I have come to recognize that homophobic, anti-semitic, hoarder, children's party clown roommates come with an increased incidence of violent death. The rent was really cheap.
My friend Kevin came into town from Los Angeles, we didn't even think about dinner. Mostly, we liked to drink. We were 21 and it was cold.
It was Thursday, everything was closed and we were hungry. We realized it was Thanksgiving. I am absolutely certain this very-good-idea-were-we-not-broke-as-fuck was Kevin's and not mine: we would go to the Chicago Ritz-Carlton and join their Thanksgiving dinner.
We decided that appearances would matter and that we should look nice if we intended to have dinner with rich and fancy people at a rich and fancy place. Read the rest