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Lilac Bush Beer Me or TMT Walks into a Bar

Brewed specifically for the TMT Spring Gala

Brewed specifically for the TMT Spring Gala

A musing by Ann Marie Dorr & Moe Yousuf

–A bar joke is a very common and basic type of joke. A man walks into a bar and…

–Something happens.

–The initial perception of the joke is that a man is walking into a bar to have a drink. But this only lasts a few seconds followed by any number of different punchlines.

–Why the short face?

–I’ll have a Jack and Diane.

–Lady, I was talking to the duck.

–Fact: there is no thesis statement in a “man walks into a bar” joke.

–What is the attraction to this structure of humor?

–Why are there so many jokes about men walking into bars?

–Part of the attraction may be its possibilities: most anything can happen in a bar, especially if this bar is contained within the wild and woolly world of verbal jest. Here is an example.

–Notice the conversational style of the prose.

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A man walks into a bar with a small dog under his arm and sits down at the counter, placing the dog on the stool next to him. The bartender says, “Sorry, pal. No dogs allowed.” The man says, “But this is a special dog — he talks!” “Yeah, right,” says the bartender. “Now get out of here before I throw you out.” “No, wait,” says the man. “I’ll prove it.” He turns to the dog and asks, “What do you normally find on top of a house?”

“Roof!”

Says the dog, wagging his tail.

“Listen, pal…” says the bartender. “Wait,” says the man, “I’ll ask another question.” He turns to the dog again and asks, “What’s the opposite of soft?”

“Ruff!”

Exclaims the dog. “Quit wasting my time and get out of here,” says the bartender. “One more chance,” pleads the man. Turning to the dog again, he asks, “Who was the greatest baseball player that ever lived?”

“Ruth!”

Barked the dog. “Okay, that’s it!” says the bartender, and physically throws both man and dog out the door and onto the street. Turning to the man, the dogs shrugs and says…

Maybe I should have said Joe Dimaggio?

********

–And on and on. The types of variations are endless.

–Replace the man with a woman or a famous person or people of various occupations, animals, or inanimate objects.

–An atheist, a vegan, a cross fitter, an Irish man.

–Even Target Margin Theater can walk into a bar.

–And did in our recent holiday card.

–But sometimes, just sometimes, the unexpected happens.

–A man simply just walks into a bar.

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–Back in the fall Ann Marie and I began brewing beer.

–Kind of because we both have a love for beer.

–Kind of because we both dig fermentation.

–Kind of because theater stresses us out (sometimes).

–Kind of because why the hell not?

–We brewed. We experimented. We laughed. We cried.

–I didn’t cry.

–We created something. And we realized something.

–Something about how both home brewing and how we make theater with TMT is fueled by creative and careful (in the loving sense of the word and definitely not in the cautious sense of that word) resourcefulness.

–Making theater with TMT demands / encourages us (and everyone around us) to be present and think, design, act, create, be, experience, watch, listen in a room together to make something that gets to be a bit intoxicating.

–I feel like when we brew we make time for it. And it’s about us being present. Bringing presence to the room/moment we are in to make a beer.

–But really it’s all about being drunk.

–Drunken with what?

–Lilac Bush Beer.

–A special stout we brewed out of love.

–A 12 oz. token of our affection for all those at our Spring Gala.

–After all, David Herskovits says time and time again…

–The only reason to do a show is to have drinks afterward.

–But thanks to Lilac Bush Beer, you dont have to walk into a bar.

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Ann Marie Dorr is a theater maker and production manager. Recent projects include tiger, tiger (on the nature of violence) by Jess Almasy (Dixon Place), Heartbreak by Ariel Stess (The Bushwick Starr), Grimly Handsome by Julia Jarcho (JACK). Past productions with TMT include Reread Another (The Brick and The Bushwick Starr), The Gertrude Stein Labs (The Bushwick Starr & The Connelly Theater) and Uriel Acosta: I Want That Man! (The Chocolate Factory). Associated Artist of Target Margin Theater.

Moe Yousuf is Co-Artistic Producer of Target Margin Theater. He makes things. Sometimes.

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