My friend Mike - star of stage, screen and IT helpdesk - is now 34. This is worth celebrating. Seriously, it is. I knew him back in the day when his driving style owed quite a bit to Mario Andretti crossed with Ray Charles. Now he's mellowed, we look back on those "let's-get-eight-people-into-a-Ford-Escort" days with a mixture of affection and horror.
It would seem to be the easiest thing in the world to gather up a whole bunch of people to join in these celebrations, get them plied with booze and see what happens. So that, essentially, is what we did, via Jongleurs Comedy Club in Birmingham.
So what do the events of last night have to tell us?
We could have eaten at the club. However, Jongleurs is to fine dining what Hogarths is to comedy, so we instead met up at the Figure of Eight pub on Broad Street. Right in the middle of the critical Wales v France rugby Six Nations Championship decider.
Apparently there are quite a few Welsh people in Birmingham. That must be the city's famed Lace Embroidered Hat Quarter, then.
Suitably replete, we walked the rainy streets to the club:
Live comedy is always a thrill for me. And in smaller venues like this, it's even more fun. Maybe it's the knife-edge nature of the comedy. Perhaps it's down to the intimacy of the proceedings. Or is it just the concern that the comic will pick on those of you at the front of the audience.
Guess where we were sitting?
Anyway. It's fair to say that this featured quite heavily in the evening's proceedings:
And so it goes.
There's always one pillock who'll do the whole "look at me, pretending I'm drinking straight from the pitcher" routine, isn't there?
It is a tradition. The Catalogue Pose shall be struck.
Oh God. The carnage. Don't you just know that at some point, someone's going to say "I lurve you, you're my besht pal..."
And here, gentle reader, we get to see the three stages of inebriation on display. From left to right; hysteria, middle-distance staring, barely-waking coma.
Today, it's fair to say, has been one of quiet reflection.