[Editor's Note: Following the 2013 RFT Standup Throwdown, judges Jeremy Essig and Chris Ward went drinking for the first time together. Hungover on a plane to San Francisco the next day, Essig created a game show that combined their common interests in music, video games, and comic books, and Loser. - A Live Action Shame Show was born. The crew will return to St. Louis Monday, June 23, for their one-year anniversary show at Heavy Anchor...that is, if they survive their first ever seven-day, seven-city tour with technical director Evan Rowe "DJ DVDA" Rowe and tour manager Kelsey McClure. The Loser crew is sending tour-diary dispatches from the road.]
Days of Wine and Rosie - St. Louis - Cincinnati, Ohio - Bloomington, Indiana
Monday 1 p.m. - Have you ever had Rosie O'Donnell tweet at you? We have! Or, at least did until our friends began to annoy her. Accompanying us on this sojourn are two mascots: a Rosie O'Donnell doll and a tiny Kelly Ripa doll known as 'Lil Kelly Rippa. While Kelsey was driving through Illinois yesterday, Chris tweeted, "Our Dashboard @Rosie will keep us safe on tour." Amazingly, the League of Their Own star (or, alternately, Riding the Bus with My Sister) wrote back "I will do my best boys!!" As no good deed can go un-shat upon in our modern media culture, friends of ours felt the need to inform Rosie that Kelsey is a woman. Rosie apologized, probably got annoyed and we'll likely never hear from her again. (It should be noted Kelsey's name is not listed in our twitter profile.) This is why we can't have nice things.
Monday 2-3 p.m. - Passing through southern Illinois and Indiana, we reached our first incident as we arrived in Louisville, Kentucky. With traffic at an almost standstill and a van that doesn't really have a cooling system, Chris decided the most logical move was to get out and sit in the middle of Interstate 64. Once traffic started moving and Chris was safely back in the car, we stopped at a gas station in PeWee Valley, Kentucky, where we encountered a large number of the unwashed masses returning from Bonnaroo. We all hope they enjoyed their weekend of rebelling against the man.
Monday 8 p.m. - Mayday Northside in Cincinnati was perfect -- huge stage and a moveable '70s-style bar that Jeremy was able to use instead of his normal podium. They had us as part of their "Bombs Away" comedy series, produced by Chandler Glenn and SLU alumnus Wayne Memmot. In another St. Louis connection, we ran into former Bunnygrunt bassist Jen Wolfe, who was behind the bar when we arrived.
Monday 9 p.m. - This may have been our most lyrically challenged group of contestants, but the show went off quite well, especially considering two of our contestants were no-shows and Jeremy had to run through the bar looking for replacements. For the chugging contest we gave away a $3.84 check Laclede Gas sent Jeremy four months after moving to New York. The winner, a gentleman by the name of James, said he planned on framing the check when Jeremy offered to sign it over to him.
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Monday 10 p.m. - Chris disappeared (this may become a common theme) to have Cincinnati-style chili with a friend he's known since childhood. At Pleasant Ridge Chili, they serve a variation that mixes gravy in with the usual Cincinnati mix of cinnamon and cocoa powder. While eating, Chris felt his heart exploding like an old truck tire, and, quite honestly, none of us are real excited to be sharing an unairconditioned van with him today.
Tuesday 1 a.m. - Jeremy, Evan and Kelsey decided on a (somewhat?) safer food route and went to Steak 'n Shake, where Jeremy climbed the giant lit sign out front -- much to the disinterest of the employee on duty, who caught him doing so and shrugged his shoulders in a manner that suggested we could steal the sign for all he cared. Evan, continuing his fine diet of beef jerky, Lunchables and Pringles, opted for a birthday-cake-flavored milkshake as his dinner option. We're hoping he doesn't require open-heart surgery before we return.
Tuesday ? a.m. - At Jeremy's friend Mike's apartment, we reconvened. Chris described the apartment as nice but also the kind of place where someone has definitely woken up with "balls" written on their forehead.
Tuesday 10 a.m. - Target, where we shopped for decorations and towels -- a travel essential that at least two of us forgot. After a quick skateboarding session with carts in the parking lot and yet another traffic snafu, we're on our way to Bloomington, currently following a piece of farm equipment that's going about five miles per hour.
Tuesday 11:30 a.m. - Greetings from somewhere in Indiana! We're en route to Bloomington after a wonderful night in Cincinnati. It's a bit of backtracking (as our next show is in Pittsburgh), but the venue, the Comedy Attic, is one of the most famous comedy clubs in the country, and the city itself is a fun little college town, so we figured, why not?
Will we make it? Where will we lose Chris next? Will Lori Petty follow Rosie O'Donnell's example and also tweet at us? Stay tuned!
This blog is a collaboration between Jeremy Essig, Chris Ward, Evan Rowe and Kelsey McClure.
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