Steve Day Videos
Steve Day: Run, Deaf Boy, Run!
Running a marathon is not the most immediately promising of subjects for a stand-up show. All those training hours spent pounding the streets alone is hardly conducive to the funnies, and blisters, dehydration and aching muscles are not exactly high on the list of comedy illnesses.
So it’s testament to Steve Day’s warmth and good humour that Run Deaf Boy Run is such a hugely entertaining, cheerfully uplifting treat of a show.
Day is profoundly deaf, not that that’s a huge obstacle to running, sweaty hearing aids aside. More of a problem was that he was an out-of-shape 47-year-old who lived on late-night Ginsters and was a total stranger to exercise. He only decided to do the race because of a misplace macho over-reaction to his doctor telling him to do a bit of mild exertion now and again.
But gradually he built up the distances, from a breathless few hundred metres until he was nearly race-ready… and that’s when he injured himself. It’s almost as if he realised any good story is going to need a second-act setback.
The running, though, is only part of the story. Day also confesses to human weaknesses both universal – getting into inexorable situations because of procrastination and fear of embarrassment – and unique to him – cheating at a sign language exam. Some of these emerge naturally from the narrative, but even those not directly related to the marathon are woven in seamlessly.
Day’s superb at letting the story unfold, with no fuss, just engaging likeability, occasionally flashing a price turn of phrase, such as his description of an overnight National Express coach trip to get to the marathon in time.
‘What a nice man,’ one punter was heard saying on leaving the show, and that’s perfectly true. The show probably doesn’t bear much more analysis than that, but it is nonetheless a thoroughly absorbing, feelgood hour.
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