Birthday Strategy for Years To Come: Comedy Improv

Sign, at night, outside the ComedySportz Club in Fremont, Washington. Photo by Cecilia Kennedy

Bowling, my birthday activity last year, was a thrilling, rockin’, star-of-the-show experience that I wasn’t sure I could effectively re-create this year, so I didn’t even try.  Don’t get me wrong.  I love throwing down five-pounders and watching those gutters scream in terror because of the sheer force with which my aim veers off course, but this year, I wanted a different experience, so Nate took me and Alex to an improv comedy club.

The ComedySportz Club event that we attended in Seattle featured talented teams of improv comedy actors who battled against one another in various challenges.  I watched in awe as the actors threw themselves around senselessly in response to various audience suggestions, and I wondered: How might I make this hilarious moment last year-round, as a kind of New Year’s Resolution?  Amidst a hashtag Twitter challenge that involved a shoe store and the line “We’re back!” it hit me:  I will make my house a non-stop stronghold of mirth and spontaneity.  Here’s what I’ll do:

–I’ll start by making Mexican food every night.  Before the show, Nate took me and Alex to Fremont, Washington, which is a quaint, artsy town where we sampled chocolates, visited a truly unique glass arts studio, and tried some brandy at the local distillery.  After all of the sampling and a visit to see the troll under the bridge, Nate took us to El Camino, one of the best Mexican restaurants I’ve been to in a while.  The mole is to die for—and so is the tres leches cake.  So, I must find a way to recreate everything on their menu and serve those dishes night after night after night, but in order to not get into a rut, I’ll throw out random “challenges” on Facebook, like this one:  Things you would (or would never) put inside a burrito. Go!

–Place a box of ridiculous props by the front door, with a big sign that says, “You may not go any further into the house unless you take a selfie with one of the props and send it to my email with a ridiculous caption.” In that props box, I would put various out-of-the-box things like a new motor for the treadmill. Then, Alex or Nate could pose with this item and say something really humorous like, “I found the solution to the reason why the treadmill is not functioning properly, and I fixed it, even though I have absolutely no interest in the treadmill.”

–I’d scatter various challenges around the house that we would all have to complete on our way to each room. Here are some ideas:  Things you might find in the living room that actually belong in another room; Design a “missing socks alert” and post it all over Facebook; Name all of the plants that need watered; Stains in the carpet you are not willing to admit to (until now); What the weird marks on the wall might actually be; Songs you’d sing on the way to the doctor’s appointment you forgot about, until now; and funny ways to step over the cat.

–At the dinner table, we could be assigned “quirky people” roles and act them out.  Then, we’d have to guess who each person was. Here are some ideas: a person who believes that he or she is falling from the sky (any of you out there work with/live someone like that? Right. Who doesn’t?); the person who always seems to get a rickety chair at dinner; and someone who always shouts, “Welcome to the Hotel California!” at the wrong time.

Oh, the wacky wacky fun we’ll have! All. Year. Long.

Your Turn:  What are some of your attempts to make good memories last—or to preserve special moments from the past? OR: Feel free to take on any of the “challenges” listed in the post above and put your ideas in the comments.


33 thoughts on “Birthday Strategy for Years To Come: Comedy Improv

  1. Happy Birthday, my dear! Your creativity is inspiring to me. I don’t know about Mexican food every night, though… It is one of my favorites, but my stomach gets upset easily.

    For my 50th birthday, I spent a month, traveling solo, on the Big Island of Hawaii. It was absolutely amazing.

    I am now 52, and will most probably be paying off that birthday trip until I’m 60.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much! Hawaii is such a beautiful place, but it really is expensive. Nate, Alex, and I visited during spring break last year, but I don’t think we’ll be back any time soon. It does take a while to save for that kind of an experience.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy birthday, Cecelia! Sometimes it’s unexpected events that stick with us in our memories. One Christmas, my mom and dad came from out of state to visit me and my two daughters. We had a large candle lit, and when my younger daughter blew it out, melted wax splashed all over her face. We still laugh about that to this day. I’ll never forget how her face looked:)

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Happy Birthday to you! Or, I can congratulate you and all your friends and family in Dutch as that is their transition! That almost fits into one of the prop areas. Walk around the room and congratulate everyone who doesn’t have a birthday on the person who does! I would throw in a couple of orange hats just to make it festive.
    Have fun this next year with all this!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Happy birthday! Thank you for the chuckle. I hope that you do at least one of these suggested activities once just to see how your husband and son react to you setting it up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! No–I didn’t even volunteer–even when they said, “We will offer volunteer spots first to those who are celebrating something today.” Nate and Alex were kind enough to not volunteer me. But: Guess who DID volunteer? Alex! I was so proud of him! He did a great job. Of course, I’m his mom, but I thought he looked handsome, confident, and cool up there. Since he’s only 17, they just had him judge a hashtag Twitter contest between the two teams of actors. It was really fun.

      Liked by 1 person

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