Western junior placed second in local stand-up comedy competition, draws from personal experience and society
A crowd of 70 people sat staring at the thin young man standing on stage as Western junior Paul McEnaney began to talk. He spoke of things like church and politics and all the things you are not supposed to talk about in a mixed crowd, and as he did this, the roar of laughter spread across the house.
When it was over and the 32 contestants were waiting to hear the results of the comedy competition, no one was more surprised and enthused than McEnaney, who took second place.
â€œWhat I had expected is that it was contest for people who had never been on stage before or maybe had been once or twice,â€ McEnaney said. â€œWhat I found was it was me and three other guys who had this as a first time. The other 28 had all been doing this over a year or so. They had stage experience. The guy who won first made me a little bitter because he ripped off Dmitri Martin; he didnâ€™t steal his jokes, but he stole his act.â€
He is going to do it again this Tuesday night. If you go take heed, though, McEnaney should come with a sign that says, â€œWARNING…Entering Politically Incorrect Zone.â€
McEnaneyâ€™s comedy style runs all the basis of basic controversy, as he mixes personal experience with sociological dysfunction.
â€œI am a recovering conservative, which is to say that I am partly to blame for Bushâ€™s re-election. While I didnâ€™t vote for him, I didnâ€™t kill him either,â€ McEnaney said. â€œI consider it a lost opportunity. Just kidding government types, who are more than likely reading this infringing on my freedom of speech by telling me itâ€™s a federal offense to say that Iâ€™d like to see George Bush found face down dead in a back alley in Washington DC, strung out on coke with his hands down Donald Rumsfeldâ€™s pants.â€
It becomes very clear that McEnaney is not one to pull his punches when it comes to reaching the punch line, which he delivers like Mike Tyson warming up his date for the night.
McEnaney has great ambition as he dreams up a tagline that he would like to have associated with his act, as he becomes a better-known comedian: Paul McEnaney, The worst thing to happen to the church since science.
Organized religion is a central theme to his jokes, and with unabashed daring, he invokes his jokes making the audiences feel like going to confession.
Paul is a very private person, who isnâ€™t a very big fan of confession himself. Paul is a communications major, with an emphasis in public relations.
â€œI went with public relations,â€ McEnaney said. â€œThe idea was so that I could spin my own media coverage.â€
A simple man who lives with is dog, Paul is engaged to his special girl and merely wants to live his life in his own way.
â€œI feel like I donâ€™t want to have the American Dream after I have stepped outside the box,â€ McEnaney said. â€œI got a dog, I got a girl and I got a kid, as far as I am concerned, I meet 2007 standards for the new nuclear family.â€
He does not long for all the flash and dazzle of show business.
â€œI would rather just stick to the local scene. I donâ€™t really want to be famous. I want to be rich, but I donâ€™t want to be famous because I am not the type of person who can deal with having a camera in my face 24 hours a day,â€ McEnaney said.
Paul has hobbies outside of comedy just like any 20-something American male.
â€œI like baseball, stand-up comedy, music that doesnâ€™t suck, movies….I love movies, sluts, Las Vegas, lasagna, trashy sluts, guitar,â€ McEnaney said.
He also gives the casual observer a bit of wit and warning.
â€œAnything I say, take with a grain of salt, and a gram of speed.â€ McEnaney said.
Good advice for dealing with his high-strung manic nature. Paul has the energy, timing and innate ability to entertain the masses.
With another chance to climb into the spotlight and stand toe-to-toe with other comedians, Paul is alive with new inspiration for his show.
So if you donâ€™t have anything to do tonight, there will be another open mic competition at Stanford and Sons Comedy Club on Floyd Street in Overland Park, Kan. Tickets are $3, and you must be 18 years old.