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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Laughter is the best medicine ... for your love life

Posted By on Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 10:16 AM

When I first heard about Over the Counter (OTC) Improv’s “I’m SINGLE in Charlotte” show, it piqued my interest. Comedy and matchmaking ... hmmm, how does that work?

I’m happily married, so there’s no reason for me to go. But I was inspired by Jordan’s attempts to find Brittney a date on Match.com. This comedy in match-making dating service left me thinking I could be a sneaky intern, too. Brittney laughs for a living, literally. I'd love to find her someone to laugh with her even when she's off the clock. Plus, I owe her one for coming to my wedding — so I set off on a mission.

I called up the OTC founder Paul Marks and he informed me that 140 people attended the last improv orgy. That is quite the selection of singles for Brittney to play with. And by play, I am referring to improv games. Marks said a game the group uses a lot is the Greeting Game. Groups are given a scenario like "a one night stand” or "bad breath," and everyone has to react to the situation. The idea is to get singles interacting with each other and it works. First dates can be awkward, and what better way to ease the awkwardness than by laughing at it?

Marks also mentions the possibility of starting a new game based on the way hedgehogs mate:
“Did you know the hedgehog's way of attracting a mate involves walking round and round the female hedgehog; sometimes for hours on end until she decides she is ready to mate? Although awkward, we may introduce this ritual as an ice breaker game!”

Talk about doing it like they do on the Discovery Channel.

After breaking the ice, the improv artists put on a show. While the performance focuses on the single life, if the viewers want the actors to get married or work through a divorce, they will. The dimensions of the onstage relationship are in the hands of its audience — if only relationships could be that easy in real life!

The idea of a matchmaking comedy show was new to me, so I had to confirm its success rate. “You can tell people are nervous when they first show up, but by the end of the show, they’re comfortable because they’ve gotten to know each other,” Marks says. And improv is all about working with a partner anyway.

As it turns out, laughter is not only the best medicine, but it can get you a date, too. So I might temporarily hang up my halo as Saint Sarah and do a little devious matchmaking of my own. Do you think she’d notice if I slipped it onto her calendar?

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a date and you need a good laugh, the next show is Oct. 15 at the Hampton Inn of Matthews.

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