It’s all down to tonight…

An important night lies ahead for me – perhaps the most important gig of my year – which I had expected to be my TED talk until I began speaking in a half empty room.

Tonight is not a TV comeback gig or even a very well paid and welcome corporate gig – but a one man show, no less.

In my career, I have done hundreds of such shows and so why such a significance this evening?

Because it is the first gig to stem from this very website – by using the button, BOOK A SHOW NEAR YOU.

For comedians like me, it is most unfortunate that venues like arts centres and the smaller theatres that I used to fill base their booking schedules on comedians forthcoming Television appearances – and if said comedian doesn’t have such a thing, then you aint getting booked – which means a glut of very funny comedians without a stage to ply their trade.

Hence my idea and my defiance (I use stronger and more pejorative terms also than defiance) to seek out venues like Goring-on- Thames – where tonight taking to the stage is the one and only…

And the prospects are good.

The gig has sold out and in fact, sold out so quickly, that the good people of Goring came to me suggesting that we might put on a second show this forthcoming Friday also.

And do you know what… this gig has sold out too – with a waiting list I am told. Just imagine… people can’t get in. There might be ticket touts…

These are definitely unchartered waters for me – in the twilight of my chequered career, finally being able to use terms such as…  SOLD OUT, RUN EXTENDED, EXTRA DATE DUE TO PHENOMENAL PUBLIC DEMAND and BACK BY PUBLIC DEMAND.

Slightly misleading perhaps, since this is a village hall albeit a big one I am told – 180 seats no less…

Anyway, I am grateful to them for their faith. I am good and ready and so too is my car…

On Monday night, returning to London on the A1 from a gig, I confidently over-took a police car, well within the speed limit and in the full knowledge that I was alcohol free. Just a law abiding, tax paying citizen on his way home from work with a modest portion of bacon for his waiting family.

And my confidence wasn’t dented when the blue lights lit up my mirrors. Really, I thought as I turned off my radio, indicated left and brought my car to a safe and sensible stop on the hard shoulder of the motorway. My insurance is fine. I am within the speed limit. What the hell do these guys want with me? Aren’t there actual criminals – you might wish to apprehend?

Invited to join them in the back of their police car, it was explained to me that my car’s mandatory MOT had expired. And there it was in black and white – on their dashboard monitor – my registration and my expired MOT (vehicle safety check). Bang to rights. Turns out I am a criminal after all and I didn’t try to mitigate… four kids, a dog, a not-so-busy-diary…

The lady officer explained the gravity of my offence and my forthcoming fine of £100 – which halved my nights income – so only half a rasher for breakfast for the Holland family. Thank goodness Tom and Harry are away – and why gigs like Goring are essential for me going forward.

Over the two nights, I hope that word can spread and places like Goring up and down the UK (but not too far) might find me on-line.

The first hurdle is tonight’s gig which I need to clear easily. Because I suspect that Friday’s gig is contingent on tonights and the following phrase…


…is a phrase that no comedian can ever recover from.

Stay tuned…



43 thoughts on “It’s all down to tonight…

    • Lucy says:

      I was there tonight at Goring and it was absolutely brilliant! Loved that Dominic came to our illustrious Hall and such a great venue! Haven’t laughed so much in ages and as for the one about women and tape- measures, well. .. that will keep me going for weeks!!! Thanks Dominic!

  1. Vicki G says:

    Oh Dom, that’s such a shame on the fine! Massive congrats on two sell out shows, even if only a village hall, it’s all business.

    Maybe one day my local art centre or town hall will put on a show of yours, shame I live a couple hours from London though!

  2. Pamela says:

    Best of luck on your upcoming shows! The least the officer could have done was give you a warning and send you on your way!

  3. Paul says:

    Good luck indeed! I thoroughly enjoy reading your exploits. Being a Yank from ‘across the pond’, I do admit needing Google for terms like ‘Tout, MOT, and Rasher’ – a true learning exercise. And even a geography lesson from time-to-time: Goring-on-Thames. It seems to me that almost every town is ‘on-Thames’ which makes finding them easier. Just follow the water. Again, good luck tonight, tomorrow night, and all future nights.

  4. Ricki says:

    Congrats on the sold out nights. I am sure there will be many more to come as others discover your blog, read your books, etc. Good on you!

  5. Amy says:

    Kudos to you Dom! And thank you for taking us along on your adventures. I love seeing your “picture story” alerting us to a new blog. Those mornings always start off with a good chuckle. Good luck!

  6. Lorraine says:

    Congratulations on the sell out nights Dom. Hope all goes well enough to cover any fines you incur it was unfortunate what happened the other night. Hopefully rashers all round for the Holland family this weekend. Break a leg, looking forward to the update.

  7. Rach says:

    You should come to Frome!! It’s in Somerset and we have an amazing arts community. Look it up, we’d LOVE you here!!

  8. Amanda W says:

    What an enjoyable evening! Thank you so much for coming to Goring – we had a brilliant laugh (particularly the total destruction of the hip-replacement-heckler!). Good luck for the next show!

    • Dom says:

      What an odd guy – I might have been a little hard – because I sense he’s the sort of alpha male who is not used to be so undermined – albeit he thoroughly deserved it.

  9. Amanda W says:

    What an enjoyable evening! Thank you so much for coming to Goring – we had a brilliant laugh (particularly the total destruction of the hip-replacement-heckler!). Good luck for the next show!

  10. Phil says:

    Thought I’d beat you to it Dominic, having just been in the Goring audience, thank you for a really good laugh. And not a word about Brexit, even better. And I’m so glad I didn’t heckle. Wow.

  11. Scott says:

    Great night in Goring, thank you. A 5’6″ giant of comedy. Doubt there were any commissioning editors in the hall, but I for one hope to see more of you!

  12. Crystal says:

    Great blog as always and congrats on the show’s success.
    BTW did anyone else get a security warning on this site. It’s never happened before.
    Maybe it’s because Dom talks about being a ‘criminal’ in this blog 🙂

  13. Cerys says:

    Bloomin’ funny. Am sure those in London would have heard us Goring folk proper laughing. So glad you returned for the second, sell-out show.

  14. Sue says:

    Crazy rumour about a kid with a buzz cut wandering around a certain Comic-Con near Chicago. Was going to get him to sign the book you signed for me (all read and thoroughly dog eared and mangled). Eclipsed turned out to be a page turner (who knew?). Anyway bought a nice drawing a guy did of Tom so will have that signed instead. Besides, far less cold and flu germs on it. Poor Tom, beware the snot filled old woman from Canada. Hope the Ted talk went well.
    I’ll be giving your book a review on your gmail and I might just try out one of your novels (I usually prefer biographies, I read them and I write them so I know what it’s like).

    • Andrew says:

      A million thanks for the two fantastic shows in South Oxon this week. If there is any justice there will be loads more bookings to come.
      There are literally hundreds of people round here who would recommend you.

  15. Tracey says:

    We were there for Wednesday night’s show in Goring- absolutely brilliant! I laughed so much and enjoyed your handling of “hip man”!!
    I’ve also got two of your books on my tbr list now.

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