Comedy is not pretty, or so the saying goes. In many cases, it's not very clean either: Attend even one or two shows on the comedy club circuit and it becomes apparent that X-rated jokes, like the ability to exploit an amusing set of neuroses, are practically required equipment.
But Monday night at the L.A. Cabaret in Encino, a comedy club that has seen its share of bleepable humor, most of the jokes will be rated PG. There will still be plenty of jokes about love, jokes about dates, jokes about parents, coming of age and the general stupid behavior of inept politicians and salesclerks-- all the turf that comics love to grouse about.
But Monday night's show is for charity: Proceeds will benefit the programs and services provided by the Los Angeles and Ventura County office of United Cerebral Palsy in Van Nuys. "It gets weird if you let comics do their real funky material during a charity event," said R. J. Johnson, the show's co-producer. "I don't want anyone who's come to support a family cause feeling uncomfortable."
The show is also a comedy contest. Now in its third year, Stand-Up Comics Take a Stand! is limited to 80 working professional comics who reach the semifinal round (to be held at the California Mart in downtown Los Angeles on June 16) by winning a runoff competition at area clubs. Ten comics will compete in Monday's L.A. Cabaret show, which is the sixth of nine runoff rounds. The Icehouse in Pasadena will be the host for the seventh runoff May 22.