Tag Archives: famous

Lewis Schaffer to charge £10 on Sundays.

6 Feb

12 Noon Wednesday 6 February 2013 Nunhead Heights

I will be doing a season of shows at Martin Witts’ Leicester Square Theatre on Sundays starting 3rd March 2013 ending 21 April 2013. All shows will start at 6PM except 7th April which starts at 5PM and are scheduled to last for 90 minutes. The lovely theatre will be charging £10.

See him at the Leicester Square Theatre

See him at the Leicester Square Theatre

I anticipate continuing with my free shows at the Source Below every Tuesday and Wednesday.

FLASH: Surely you must have seen Jonathan Schwab’s short film about comedy, man, and me? Click here as soon as you finish reading this. Limited time. www.vimeo.com/56954666

You are thinking: How can Lewis Schaffer charge you ten quid on Sunday when you can see him for free on a Tuesday (or a Wednesday)?

In the coming days I will answer that question in this blog. Or perhaps you can provide an answer yourself in the comment box below? Best answer wins free admission to one of my Free until Famous shows.

Lewis Schaffer’s American Guide to England

The New York comic teaches the English about England*.
Lewis Schaffer isn’t a tourist. He isn’t here on business. He’s a hostage.
*England, includes Scotland, Wales and possibly Ireland.

‘His total indifference to all things British is brilliant.’ (The Scotsman)
‘An hour of nationalistic all-American rhetoric… hilarious.’ (Chortle)
‘He can insult you and love you in the same sentence.’ (Time Out, New York)
‘Controversial…unpredictable…recommended.'(Time Out, London)
‘The new King of Soho’. (londonisfunny.com)

Leicester Square Theatre
6 Leicester Place
London WC2H 7BX
Booking: 08448 733433
Buy here: www.leicestersquaretheatre.com

Other Stuff…

@lewisschaffer – twitter feed 

Listen to Lewis Schaffer on the Radio Nunhead American Radio with Lewis Schaffer every Monday evening at 10:30PM on www.resonancefm.com and 104.4fm London. Or listen to the show’s podcasts at bit.ly/NunheadAmericanRadio 

See Lewis Schaffer live every Tuesday and Wednesday: Lewis Schaffer is Free until Famous, The Source Below, 11 Lower John Street, London W1F 9TY. Come on down. Free admission. Or reserve at bit.ly/londonfreeshow 

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The surprising cause of both asthma and compulsive hoarding.

9 May

11:59pm Wednesday 9 May 2012 Nunhead Heights

My dead mother, Harriet G Schaffer, once had a Letter to the Editor published in the august New York Times entitled “In Praise of Clutter”. The one letter is probably the sole public documentation of my mother’s life except for maybe references in the Brooklyn Eagle when she graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Brooklyn College or married my father.

I was thinking of her while watching the bravely presented TV program: BBC One’s – Britain’s Biggest Hoarders. 

I don’t think my mother was a hoarder – well, not like the three people on the program. She didn’t save unused food or its packaging. She didn’t keep old newspapers. You could walk in her house. But then again, she did have a two-car garage, an attic, two extra bedrooms when my sister and I moved out, and a finished basement. She still had room for stuff.

But she did save hats, and scarves, and books and old Vogues and Ladies Home Journal. If she hadn’t been ripped out of her home by divorce when she was 66 – yes, 66-years-old – it could have ended very, very cluttered.

When my mother was moving we found in the basement a show poster signed by movie star/comic/actress Divine. That was before everyone and their mother was a dog-poo-eating drag queen starring in John Waters’ movies.

This was like 20 years ago and even then I thought the poster had some monetary value. We were offered a few dollars for it at the house sale. I think I asked for five or ten dollars. The potential buyer wouldn’t go for it and it wound up getting left behind. She didn’t take it and neither did I. The new family in the house probably thought it was rubbish and tossed it out.

I’m a hoarder, too, but I don’t have physical stuff – at least not that much stuff.  Not that I would know. I have stuff in my brain. 

I spend all day thinking. Thinking about the destruction of Southwark Forest in Nunhead, about parking restrictions killing off small shops; I think about the twelve years of Federal Income tax and six years of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs I need to file. I obsess about ways to promote my shows at the Source Below but do the barest minimum; of getting new venues to do my road show; of making my radio show amazing and letting everyone know it; of writing brilliant blog posts – well crafted gems and not pieces like this, tossed off in an hour. And in the end, I do precious little. 

John Fleming, my personal blogger, once said that “rubbish freed is better than genius hoarded.”  Well, I have hoarded my talent  in the same way others have hoarded broken flower pots and stained tea towels.

The compulsive hoarder is someone who feels they don’t have enough and can’t risk giving any of it away. They need their possessions just-in-case. That is my theory. It’s like people with asthma: afraid to breathe out for fear they won’t be able to breathe in. That is also my theory.

There was a year when I really struggled to breath – when I was 23 – and I would be gasping. It my first time away from home or university and on my own. That reason sounds reasonable to me. Recently, I was told I stop breathing when I’m asleep. That’s sleep apnea, isn’t it? I’m self-diagnosing here. I think I hold my breath while I’m awake, too. Funny how you can have something your entire life and not notice it.

Sometimes you benefit from holding onto stuff. The value of the Divine poster my mother  kept must be worth a lot on ebay. Probably a good portion of the stuff in a hoarder’s home is valuable: 40-year-old games and magazines and crockery – there must be some collector out there who would pay top dollar for that stuff. In another forty years the rubbish would be proper antiques and he’d have done a service to society by preserving rare objects.

But holding onto too many things and ideas eventually suffocates us. We need to clear the decks so we can breathe again. I need to breathe again. 

@lewisschaffer – twitter feed

Listen to Lewis Schaffer on the Radio Nunhead American Radio with Lewis Schaffer every Monday evening at 10:30PM on http://www.resonancefm.com and 104.4fm London. Or listen to the show’s podcasts at bit.ly/NunheadAmericanRadio

See Lewis Schaffer test the news items at the Hungry Miller Comedy Club at The Miller by Borough High Street this Monday at 8PM. Fantastic night of comedy with Britain’s top comics and me, briefly. Only £4!

See Lewis Schaffer live every Tuesday and Wednesday: Lewis Schaffer is Free until Famous, The Source Below, 11 Lower John Street, London W1F 9TY. Come on down. Free admission. Or reserve at bit.ly/londonfreeshow

Notes on a train out of Cambridge, England

27 Apr

23:26 Friday 27 April 2012 On Train From Cambridge

I’ve heard that Mark Watson, the Bristolian comic, posts something everyday, even if it’s a paragraph written coming home from a gig.

Well, I’m on the train from Cambridge where I’ve had a wonderful evening doing Lewis Schaffer is Free until Famous, my “solo” show. There were moments of sheer joy – like when I let Rachel, a punter, come on stage and tell a joke. (There, I am being like the lovely Sarah Millican pointing out the highlights of a show.) That is all most people want – to get a bit of attention. At least that is what I want! If you can’t be entertained be entertainment. I thought of that when I was at Bard College.That’s a Quotable Quote as they say. But aren’t all quotes “quotable”? There are no “unsayable” quotes – then it wouldn’t be a quote, would it.

Glasgow Jimmy paid me and my show a visit at the Junction. 140 punters to see me and legendary streer performer Jimmy. Luckily the show went well cause otherwise I’d feel very guilty. More than normal. No performer crashes as fast after a show as I do. You know, the depression that comes after the party? No? Well I get all down even before the show is over. I’m sad that my limelight is being turned off.

Lewis Schaffer Free Until Famous Tour http://t.co/Hfym0C17

Yesterday’s post was all serious and informative about the Australians. No one loved it except me. I’m the only one who likes my serious side.

20120428-004916.jpg

Above is King’s Cross train station in London. The new, beautiful bit. The best bit of new architecture I have seen in years and years. Stunning.

@lewisschaffer

Listen to Lewis Schaffer on the Radio Nunhead American Radio with Lewis Schaffer every Monday evening at 10:30PM on www.resonancefm.com and 104.4fm London. Or listen to the show’s podcasts atbit.ly/NunheadAmericanRadio

See Lewis Schaffer live every Tuesday and Wednesday at the Source Below. Free admission. Reserve at bit.ly/londonfreeshow

See Lewis Schaffer in Edinburgh. Lewis Schaffer is Free until Famous: No, YOU Shut Up! The Three Sisters at 8:15PM and at the Hive at 4:45pm.

Why the BBC is bad for democracy and the weather is rarely horrible in London

25 Apr

5 PM Wednesday 25th April 2012 Nunhead Heights.

There is a saying that one “should never judge the day by the weather”. If you do you would be miserable a lot of the time in Nunhead. And you can find love or win the lottery or have a great show at the Source Below, tonight, on a rainy day.

“Miserable” in Nunhead is being rainy and dull. Actually, there are more rainy days per month, on average, in New York than in London. It rains twice as many inches in New York than in London, and Nunhead is in London for those who don’t know. And according to Wikipedia, London has 18 days of snow a year and New York averages just 11. Did you know all that?

Nunhead does have lots of clouds, or “cloud” as the British call clouds. They call math “maths” and sports “sport”. The Brits speak a weird dialect of American.

Nunhead is on the wrong side of the Atlantic so the prevailing winds and all that mash up the clouds into bits of cloud. Nunhead rarely has clear blue skies but it rarely has all cloudy skies. But it also rarely has atrocious winds, ice storms or temperature extremes.

Right now is raining proper New York rain. “Proper” meaning “real” – as in solid rain for an hour.

Rainwater is dripping into my flat and I’m not sure if the Council should fix it or I’ll need to. I am expecting my Somali neighbour from downstairs to come up and accuse me of flooding her place on purpose.

When I first moved in she believed the previous occupant was trying to drive the Somalis out by rattling the pipes. I am sure it was just the washing machine banging on the communal pipes. At the time I blamed it on cultural differences and found the interaction very scary.

Now I believe it something any woman could concoct. In a few more years I may ascribe it to something that all humans could get up to. If she shows up too often I may start rattling the pipes, myself.

The rain stopped. Oh, no it started again.

You know I am in a mood when I write about the weather.

Rupert Murdoch is being grilled at the Leveson Inquiry to find out what, actually, I am not sure what. The British love to have one judge decide these kinds of things. Not a committee, like the Warren Commission who looked into assassination of President Kennedy, but one dude. Maybe other judges are involved but if there are I haven’t heard them mentioned.

This system is very different from the USA. The British place their faith in the One Dude – maybe that is why they still have a Queen. She is One Dude. Then again, if the result of the inquiry isn’t to one’s liking they can say that the One Dude was wrong. I mean, what does he know?

I think it can be fairly said that Rupert Murdoch controlled British governments. We can all agree it wasn’t good thing. I know how he did it.

Britain is amazingly centralized and concentrated. Five supermarket chains have 75% of the grocery business. London’s residential property is worth the same as the next 40 biggest cities and towns in Britain combined. I read that in The Guardian 31st March 2012. It is as if New York were worth as much as LA, Boston, Indianapolis, Atlanta, San Fran, Seattle, Pittsburgh, Austin, Houston, Denver, and thirty other cities combined. Minneapolis. Chicago. Detroit. New Orleans, Memphis. You name it. Isn’t that incredible? Richmond. Philadelphia. Buffalo, Portland, San Diego.

The government-owned broadcaster in the UK controls more than 50% of the airwaves. They own two of the five big channels and have something to do with Channels Four and Five, too, and the biggest radio stations and local ones in every town. The BBC is impartial, unbiased, and not self-serving.

In order to control the government you only need to get maybe a third or half of the remaining 50% to get out your partial, biased and self-serving message out . That is maybe 25% of the media and you’re in a very powerful position. That is what Murdoch did by owning Sky, The Times, The News of the World, and the The Sun.

The BBC does a lot of good but that much neutral power is bad for democracy.

Tell me otherwise. It has stopped raining. No, its started again.

@lewisschaffer

Listen to Lewis Schaffer on the Radio Nunhead American Radio with Lewis Schaffer every Monday evening at 10:30PM on http://www.resonancefm.com and 104.4fm London. Or listen to the show’s podcasts at bit.ly/NunheadAmericanRadio

See Lewis Schaffer live every Tuesday and Wednesday at the Source Below. Free admission. The Source Below, 11 Lower John Street at Brewer, Soho. W1F 9TY. Reserve at bit.ly/londonfreeshow

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comedian

SO IT GOES - John Fleming's blog

John Fleming’s blog: human interest, humour, humor, comedy blog featuring eccentricity, performance, movies and occasionally a few tears

Nunhead Nags

A blog about Nunhead regeneration

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comic

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comedian

SO IT GOES - John Fleming's blog

John Fleming’s blog: human interest, humour, humor, comedy blog featuring eccentricity, performance, movies and occasionally a few tears

Nunhead Nags

A blog about Nunhead regeneration

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comic