Gladys' Comedy Room, NYC

By Geraldine Salvatorelli

Copyright 2007 Geraldine Salvatorelli


The only way to perfect stand up is to get up on stage in front of people. But it's very hard for women to get stage time since men control a majority of the rooms. So I was grateful to Gladys for giving me a place to work out in a room disposed to women. Still, I had to weigh the pros and cons: Was it wise to be out three and four times a week trolling from room to room until wee hours of the morning waiting around hoping to get on, knowing there were any number of people out there funnier or who were performing longer than me.

I had already spent many nights crying my head off in phone booths all over Second Avenue because I almost got to go on but didn't.

Many off stage moments were as memorable as the ones on stage -- like one night in the back room of Coldwaters when Jim Gaffigan pulls out his dick begins slapping it on the stainless steel sink. Now, we had the lines to our bits running around in our heads commingled with images of Jim beating his meat on the table.

On another night, in a closed workshop, I got to see a performance that showed a serious side of Ray Romano as his demeanor darkened as he told us how his kids cowered when his father entered the room.
Once a bunch of comics squeezed into the backseat of a cab on our way to perform in a hotel lobby and Darryl Hammond kissed me on the lips. I thought it may have meant the start of something when he kissed me again on another night, in a club, but backed down. Soon after, I met him with his wife on the corner of 97th and Columbus, and was glad to see they were together.