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Comedy Review: The Comedy Connection

By Annie S. Choi
photo editor

The Comedy Connection

Faneuil Hall

Boston

(617) 248-9700

Tickets:$8 during the week, weekends vary according to act

18+

If you think your grades are the only thing amusing these days, the Comedy Connection in downtown Boston can illicit a couple more laughs. Nestled on the second floor of Quincy Market at Faneuil Hall, the Connection presents colorful local and national headlining comedians. You can catch jokes from Saturday Night Live runaway Chris Rock, actor David Alan Grier, American Comedy Award-winning Wendy Liebman, as well as local funnyman Gary Gellman and Frank Santos, the resident R-rated hypnotist (appearing Thursday nights). The Amazing Jonathan awes guests with grotesque feats of magic- you can watch him eat a box of razor blades and tie them in a chain with his bloody tongue. A word from the wise: tickets for major acts go quickly, so plan ahead. On the weekends, camera-clad tourists fresh off the Freedom Trail and outnumbered native Bostonians quickly fill tables. Shows during the week are considerably less crowded (and less expensive); weekday shows have an audience of about thirty. Amateur Showcase on Monday nights are hit or miss, as comedians try out new material on a very small audience.

Headlining last Tuesday, Paul Nadrizzi entertained guests with his enlightening perspective on favorite fast food establishments. He informed the audience that the floors of Kentucky Fried Chicken have not been mopped since the Colonel died and walking through the maze of wooden partitions to reach Burger King cashiers is like taking a field sobriety test. Another complaint: the scan and seek buttons on the stereo. One finds a terrible song and stays there, while the other finds a great song and then takes off. Yet another complaint: shoveling snow for the elderly with a bamboo stick tied to a cookie sheet and not being allowed to stop until striking lava. The audience welcomed his dry sense of humor, although his timing was slowed due to what appeared to be temporary amnesia, or maybe too many beers. Still, his material is creative and shows his promising talent. Host and local comedian John Keating whined about his grandparents and their Craftmatic Adjustable Bed and presented somewhat banal material, including a segment about acting as bellhop to carry the emotional baggage of women. To maintain a pulse from the audience he resorted to singling out tourists from Kentucky. Playing host is thankless and he handled it well, especially with such a small crowd. Local comic Tony V's New Year's resolution was to not smell like fried food and to deal with his anger properly- by punching people in the trachea. Another 1999 goal was to get back into shape, but instead of losing pounds, he lost height. Apparently he lost the two inches of fat on the bottom of his feet. His act went over so well with the audience that he kept pushing his time limit. You can catch his act when he appears on the Conan O'Brian Show this weekend. Lemont Price, currently touring local colleges, struck incriminating poses to model in his new black fashion magazine called GQ Ghetto Quarterly. He also did an impression of Sean Shaken, not stirred Connery and fantasized about a black 007. His clich themes were hard to swallow. Or maybe it was just the overpriced appetizers and drinks. One of the more humorous comics was paraplegic Matt Malley who shocked guests with his outrageously crude humor and heart-wrenching Christopher Reeves comments. He started his set by discussing how "chicks with dicks" aren't really chicks, but rather men with breasts.

Sitting in tables nearest to the stage is a great way of falling victim to public humiliation, as is any activity which draws attention, such as ordering food, smoking, or just being there. Smoking was a major theme among the comedians and lung cancer jokes were popular maybe a little too popular. Definitely worth a couple of laughs, the Comedy Connection can help ease the burn of a few problem sets.