by John Stoehr
Billy Anderson. He won last night's cage match between the best and brightest amateur stand-up comics in the city at the Charleston Comedy Festival kick off. It was stiff competition for the most part. Comic styles range of cutesy understatement to dirty and raunchy to just plain strange.
There were comics who preferred the set-up one-liners complete with drums and rim shot, situational humor love and sex (on the beach, "they don't tell you sand is like teeth," said dirty old comic Martin H), political ranting, comedy with gags (like swallowing a microphone) — and then there was the guy who did little more than twaddle about something, but you can't remember what he said because while he was saying it he was taking off his clothes to reveal a lizard-green Speedo and — huh? — a back brace.
The best line of the night has to go to host Kenny Z, the former radio jock for the former 96 Wave, who responded to Speedo Man by saying, "You never give another man olives."
That's the kind of night it was and there's more where that came from tonight, Friday, and Saturday. For everything you want to know about the festival, check out this link. And remember: Laughing good for you, just hold the olives. More on winner Billy Anderson later today — J.S.