Yo, guys. How’s it going? Hey, Martha. ‘Sup, Isaac. Glad you made it. Is this seat taken? Nice. See you got my text, Hamish. Good to see you.

I trust you all found Sidelines Bar & Grill without too much trouble.

Cool, cool.

Well, I guess I should get started telling you guys how funny I am.

Not to kick off with an excuse, but, as some of you already know, I usually have an advance person who does the evening briefing session.

What’s that, Isaac? Yeah, I’ll switch with you. No worries. So long as you can still see me over Martha’s onion ring tower. Okay? Good.

Anyway, the way my humor works is, someone always comes in and runs through my material ahead of time, just so you know that I’m funny. Otherwise, you won’t know. You won’t understand my jokes, or when to laugh—which is called “timing” and is really important. And you might end up thinking I’m NOT funny. There’s that risk.

But I am not not funny. I am, in fact, very funny. I’m probably your funniest friend.

Let me give you a quick example. I have this bit on urethral inscriptions. It’s hysterical. But you would have no idea that it was hysterical unless my SAAD did their job first.

Wait, what are you laughing at?

Oh, SAAD. That’s the acronym for Social Amusement Advance Director. That’s not funny.

It’s my SAAD’s job to explain the amusement. In this case, that every dude has a urethral inscription, or writing inside the tube that runs up the center of his penis. My SAAD would also explain that not all dudes can endure the pain required to read their urethral inscription. Quite jocular, really.

What, Hamish?

No, right, it’s completely absurd. That’s the . . . that’s the joke.

We can all see why it’ll be a very quiet table tonight without proper advance work.

Again, sorry, just wanted to explain the normal routine for the new people. Obviously, there is no SAAD tonight. They were supposed to meet me here, but, well, as you can see.

Anyway, with that urethral inscriptions material, my SAAD would also be in charge of prepping phase two, which would entail me mentioning that urethral inscriptions in gay men run in spirals and are usually Barbra Streisand lyrics. See how that works?

It’s hilarious because no one has a urethral inscription, gay or otherwise. They’re impossible to acquire.

It’s not racist. Gay isn’t a race. My SAAD would cover that up front.

Let’s not get hung up here. Just trust me that proper advance work makes me side-splitting.

I’m just going to call my SAAD again. I’ve already tried, like, six times.

No answer. Can’t even imagine what the excuse is going to be tomorrow.

Don’t worry, though. I’m still planning on being super-hilarious to you guys tonight. I’ll be my own SAAD.

Where are you going, Isaac?

I just prefer we wait for table service. You might walk off during a piece you’d find riotous if the proper advance work is done and you know the exact moment to correctly respond with your guffaws.

Fine, I’ll flag down our waitress.

Hamish? Headin’ out?

There’s really no smoking right out front, you have to be twenty-five feet from any door or window.

Well, do what you have to do, I guess. Someone here will just have to fill you in during the gaps in my delivery of witty gut-busters.

Can I get started with the advance briefing now?

Great. Okay, Joke 1, Part A—sorry, this just popped into my head. You know when I was giving you that urethral inscription case study? A really important part of that was what my inscription says. My SAAD would tell you how I would tell you that my own urethral inscription says: For a gallant spirit there can never be defeat. Which is funny because it’s so lofty for the central corridor of a penis. My SAAD would explain that part clearly.

Just thought that might help with what I was saying before.

You’re going up, Isaac? But the waitress . . .

Fine. Whatever.

I guess I’ll take a Bud Light.

No, I’ll continue when you get back. We’ll just have to plan on being behind tonight—because of you.

Look, the only way you’re going to know I’m funny when I tell you this stuff is if you’re around to hear me tell you I’m funny when I tell you this stuff.

That’s just how it works, my humor.