You Must Be Stoking

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Last Wednesday someone at work told me about a comedy stand up night on at The Stoke that evening.

I needed to return Frog his bell, which he left in my car from the last Den of Voice night at the Boileroom. So, I texted Frog to ask if he wanted his bell back, and if he wanted to see the comedy event at The Stoke that evening with me. Frog agreed to come out.

After work I did an induction at my local gym, ate my teatime meal at home, and then I drove to Frog’s cottage in Guildford.

When I arrived at Frog’s cottage, he had a full house, as Mark and his girlfriend Becca, and Emily, had all moved into the cottage since Julia had left there to move to London.

Emily was in her pyjamas, and Frog had just come out of the shower. Frog always seems to be in the shower when I arrive there, I half expect him to open his front door with a towel round him and then seeing his towel ‘accidently’ drop to the floor.

Frog got ready to join me, and Emily decided to change out of her pyjamas to come along too, which was great. Frog also told me that two of his workmates would be at The Stoke as well, which was Sharon who I had met a few times before to sketch, and at the Boileroom, plus another girl who I had not met before.

I drove myself, Frog and Emily towards The Stoke. Emily told me that there would be parking near the venue, so I parked beside the place, down a little side road.

We first went inside the pub area of The Stoke and there was nothing going on in there. I asked a girl behind the bar where the comedians were, and she told me it was inside the function room at the back.

We walked back outside to get inside the function room building behind the pub.

Inside the function room there was a stage, some seats, a bar, and some people.

We walked straight towards the bar, as we thought it was a free event, like the Den of Voice at the Boileroom.

A lady sitting behind a table called out to us, it was not free. We had to pay £9 each to her, to see the show. If we had arrived there earlier, it would have been cheaper at £7. I guess the cost is not too bad though.

I found out the comedy night was called ‘You Must Be Stoking’ which is a good name, due to the name of the pub being called The Stoke. The website for their events can be found by clicking here.

We walked back to the bar to buy some drinks. I bought a big bag of smelly crisps for us all to share.

Then we looked for a place to sit. Emily wanted to sit by the wall, so we re-arranged some chairs, and dragged a table over to us, for ourselves, and the others to sit. We lit a candle on our table.

The others arrived not long after we sat down, which was Frogs friend Sharon, and her friend, whose name I have sadly forgotten.

I spotted the guy from my new firm, walking towards the bar, who told me about the event earlier that day. I walked over to him to thank him for telling me about the event. He was sitting in a different spot to us, as he was with his friend from his climbing group, so he could not sadly join us.

As I sat back down the show began.

The resident MC Paul Kerensa came on stage to introduce the acts for the evening. Paul Kerensa is also a comedian, and I have included a video of him below.


Paul Kerensa

The MC told an unfortunate story about what happened at the last stand-up night at The Stoke. Famous comedian Lee Hurst was on stage, when he spotted a man using his mobile in the audience. Lee Hurst went a bit mental with stage rage and grabbed the mans mobile smashing it to pieces before storming off. I have included the newspaper article below.


Lee Hurst's outburst in The Stoke as reported in The Independant

The first comedian of the night was Stan Stanley.


Stan Stanley

Stan was very funny, and he made jokes about allsorts of things, like his mother and even his large Adams Apple inside his neck. I have included a video of him below.


Stan Stanley

The second comedian was a Jew called Ivor Dembina. He had a London accent and told jokes about himself and being Jewish. He was very amusing, a bit like Woody Allen in some ways. He seemed a little depressed, but I think that was part of his act.


Ivor Dembina

Ronnie Golden the last comedian of the night was my favourite. He sang Bob Dylan songs, scat, and some of his own songs, using a guitar and mouth organ. One of his songs about the shoe bomber was amusing, as it went ‘Shoe Bomb, Shoe Bomb, Shoe Bomb, etc’


Ronnie Golden

There was a man in the audience who had a funny laugh, as he always laughed about 10 seconds after the joke was said for ages, in a bizarre sort of way, like this 'Heh...heh...heh...heh...heh...heh' The funny man in the audience had the rest of the crowd in stiches, and even the comedians, because of his very odd laughing.

After the event had finished, I drove Frog, Emily, and Sharon’s friend, back to where they lived.

I got home again sometime after 11pm.

It was a fun evening. I will definitely go again to The Stoke for more 'You Must Be Stoking' comedy nights.

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