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  • Keith Rowe

The Upper Room: Night of 1,000 Comics Concert Recap Blog


On January 4th, 2020, The Upper Room presented the Night of 1,000 Comics (give or take a few).


Founder and host, Ron Strand, greeted the audience at 7:30 pm. He made some announcements and reminded those in attendance that The Upper Room is run on a donation basis (Support The Upper Room).


Ron welcomed comedian Robert G. Lee to the stage. Robert, who served as emcee for the evening, introduced comedian and actor Katsy Chappell. Katsy has opened for many well-known performers including Patti LaBelle.


Katsy started her routine by making several humorous remarks about today’s young people. She feels that 20 and 30-year-olds are too loud. Katsy said she enjoyed the “T” years, but now she’s in the “F” years.


Katsy drew attention to her earrings, which were a pair of Scrabble tiles. One earring had a “K” and the other had a “C” etched into the wood. Katsy finds it odd that many people, including some of her friends, have asked her what the “K” and “C” stand for.

Katsy laments how wasteful we’ve become as a society. She saves empty Capri Sun (which she calls kiddie crack) containers and makes coin purses out of them. She once made a rain jacket out of 56 Capri Sun pouches.


Next up was Mike Hughes, who grew up in Cleveland, OH. Mike said his neighbor’s kid got an emotional support dog. Sadly, the kid stressed out the pet and now the emotional support dog needs an emotional support dog.


Mike is fine with dogs, but dislikes cats. Unfortunately, there are five cats in his house. He said it’s like living with five mother-in-laws.


Mike has been married for 30 years. He and his wife do jail ministry together. Mike calls it “date night” because the guards take away his wife’s cell phone.


Jenna Perry is a school counselor by day. She was voted the funniest housewife in Orange County, CA. Jenna said she got into comedy to lose weight. She quoted a statistic that people can lose up to 120 calories per hour while laughing. One day it dawned on her that only the audience was benefitting from her comedy acts.


Every year, Jenna does well with her New Year’s resolutions until January 13th, when she gets a knock at the front door from girls wearing green vests. She noted how unfair it is to sell Girl Scout cookies during “the same month 75% of Americans vow to lose weight.”

Jenna revealed Victoria’s Secret: she never gave birth. Jenna has a 17-year-old daughter. Over the years, their relationship has gone from “Got Milk?” to “What’s In Your Wallet?”

Lisa Gilbertwas voted funniest person in San Diego, CA. Lisa got married for the first time at age 44. Soon after the honeymoon, Lisa discovered she was pregnant. Nine months later, she had triplets. Now, she’s 52 and has three second graders.


Lisa said the math doesn’t quite work out when you have to breastfeed three kids. She quipped that a lazy Susan would’ve aided in the process. Her comment, and accompanying gestures, drew one of the loudest and longest laughs of the evening.

Lisa confessed that birthday parties are expensive when you’re raising triplets. She also said that keeping up with three kids can be a challenge. When her kids clamor to go to the park, she tells them “The park is broken.”


Nick Arnette began his routine by pointing out how terrible freeway traffic is. He said sometimes the gridlock is so bad; you’ll actually get there faster if you put your car in neutral and wait for the world to rotate.


Nick, who is 61, remembers having deep shag carpet when he was a kid. He said you didn’t vacuum it, you raked it. You just had to make sure you didn’t rake yourself into a corner.


Nick shared that his mother used to have a beehive haircut. At night, she wrapped her hair in toilet paper. He said that came in handy when the family went camping.


Hailing from South Carolina, JJ Barrows is an artist and author. She’s also a middle child and P.K. (pastor’s kid). Her grandfather, Cliff Barrows, was the choir director for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.


JJ gave therapy a shot until her counselor asked, “At what point did you realize you were a middle child?” JJ also tried the online dating scene. She used a site that requires you to spend coffee beans in order to learn more about your bagel.


After enduring a few bad dates, JJ eventually found a man that had everything on her list…her everything bagel. She’s been happily married for seven months now. Before leaving the stage, JJ told the audience, “You are worthy, you are loved.”


Josh Novey is originally from Iowa. He served during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Josh once dated a woman from Los Angeles. After Josh mentioned that he had served in the military, she replied, “I’m a veteran too. I don’t eat meat.”


Experiences like that made Josh rethink his approach. He decided to try online dating. Josh said he soon grew tired of all the major sites: Match.com, eHarmony…Groupon.

Josh mentioned that he’s lost 50 pounds. He still enjoys eating though, and he likes women who like eating. He admitted, “I like a woman that keeps a brisket in her purse.”


Robert returned to the stage and opened up about his recent role reversal with his mother. He said his mom has turned into a teen: she won’t come out of her room and sneaks out at night. Robert really hopes he never has to give her “the talk.”


Robert noticed that his friends are getting older. Some of them invited him over on New Year’s Day to play canasta. Robert believes that canasta is the gateway drug to death. He said the unwritten rule of canasta is that you have to keep playing the game until someone breaks a hip.


Robert closed out the concert with a humorous retelling of the Bible. The seven minute routine included many well-known Bible stories and impressions of famous people like Clint Eastwood and Arnold Schwarzenegger.


Robert left the audience in stitches…the perfect punch line to the Night of 1,000 Comics at The Upper Room.

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