A hiding to nothing

Carl Donnelly on what comics get up to when not on stage

For anyone out there who has pondered the question ‘I wonder what comedians are like off-stage, in the comfort of their own home?’, the following story should hopefully give you an insight.

On the day of my first show at this year’s Fringe, me and my fellow comedian flatmates (Chris Martin and Benny Boot) decided a good way to take our minds of the stress and worry would be to have a nice game of hide and seek in our enormous three-level Edinburgh house.

The game started on a high with Benny discovering a cupboard above a wardrobe that no one in their right mind would pick as a hiding place. So much so that I looked around the room for ten minutes before even noticing it. The next best hiding place was picked by yours truly when I stumbled across a tiny uncomfortable cupboard under our oven. It was not only unbearably small but also highly dangerous seeing as our other flatmate John Robins (who acting like the only adult in the house, opted out of joining the game) was cooking his dinner in it at the time.

Had I not been discovered when I was, there is a good chance I could have won the award for ‘least rock and roll death of all time’.

Just when it looked like the game was coming to its natural conclusion, Benny spotted a hatch that looked to lead into a loft space. Had he got into it, there is no doubt he would have found the best hiding place of the day. However, Benny’s plan was somewhat thwarted when, as he entered the hatch, the burglar alarm for our house and the house next door was activated.

Needless to say, me and Chris did not struggle to find Benny as, rather than hiding, he was simply standing under the hatch with a guilty look on his face.

The following hour was not only annoying but also very embarrassing as we had to explain to the landlord, the very angry neighbours and even worse the alarm company that the reason the alarm was set off was because myself (27 years old), Chris, 23, and Benny, 29, were ‘having a little game of hide and seek’.

The irony is that there is a section of my show this year dedicated to these sort of events, but little did I know I would be part of one so early in the Fringe.rn

Published: 10 Aug 2009

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