It was one of April Macie’s favorite jokes.
She doesn’t feel qualified for any job other than acting. On stage, she would say with self-mockery, “I mean, what else would I do?
When the pandemic took the veteran comedian off the road, that question became more real.
“Forties made me realize that I really don’t have any other skills,” Macie said.
Instead of a career change, she spent a lot of time with her husband doing puzzles and baking banana bread at home in California.
And she spent time missing the stage.
Macie is happy to be back on tour, which includes four sets this weekend at 3E’s Comedy Club in Colorado Springs.
That’s what she’s been doing for 20 years, since she started trying open mic parties at the Comedy Store in Los Angeles in 2001. She remembers coming home thinking, “J ‘have a goal for the first time in my life, ”she said. . “This is my calling, and I never knew it.”
Macie knew she was funny long before. Growing up as she grew up she said she had to be funny.
As she recounts in her TEDx 2019 talk, her childhood was defined by tragedy.
Her parents married when they were teenagers and were very poor. They moved in with Macie’s grandparents and aunt, who was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and killed herself when Macie was 10 years old.
Her grandfather contracted AIDS from a blood transfusion during heart surgery and passed the disease on to his grandmother. They died when Macie was young.
“It was just one thing after another,” she said. “That pile of sadness.”
To get by, she told jokes. She did everything to make her mother and father laugh.
“It was like a release for everything we were going through,” she said. “If you can make someone laugh, you can take their pain away. You see power in it.
She saw it with her own eyes during her concerts.
Like the husband and wife who attended Macie’s annual show in Tampa for 12 years. At Macie’s last show there, the woman was alone. She brought her husband’s ashes because, as she told Macie, “It’s something we did together and it made us happy.”
“Everyone tries to laugh when things are sad,” she said. “It’s a break in life.”
Macie has proven to be good at it. She was a finalist on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing”, appeared on Sirius and XM Radio, Access Hollywood, and was voted America’s “Funniest, Hottest” Comedian on “The Howard Stern Show.”
Along the way, she talked about how people say she “doesn’t look funny” just because she’s a woman.
“You assume that women have no challenges or have nothing of interest to discuss,” she said. “That does not make sense.”
She remembers looking at a comedy club calendar and seeing only two female names in a 72 week period.
“And one of them was a (psychic) medium,” she said. “So it’s like you’re a woman, you have to be able to talk to the dead to get on stage.”
In her headliners across the world, Macie is speaking out against this inequality and proving, just by being herself, that she belongs – and that she shouldn’t be doing any other work.
“I’m just saying support female comics,” she said. “We are just as damaged and funny as the men.”