It felt very illicit to be walking through the Just For Laughs festival with a bag of pies. Luckily I had an artist pass so I didn’t have to explain to the nice volunteer at the entrance why I was bringing three fruit pies and a roll of paper towels into the festival. Although I guess she wouldn’t have questioned it, I imagine they’re looking more for pointy-glassy-hurty things.
It is a testament to how weird the JFL festival is that nobody looked twice at Mike’s ultimate warrior face-paint as we made our way through the crowd to the outdoor stage. The show is called 8 Smiles, it’s a comedy-battle (as opposed to rap-battle) contest where comedians compete with jokes for the right to wear the championship belt for about fifteen minutes, and then give it back – they only bought one belt.
Mike Paterson is no stranger to championship belts, as a rabid wrestling fan with a lifetime of involvement in the independent wrestling scene in Montreal Mike is used to coveting the belt. In fact I’m starting to think it may have been ill-advised to throw Mike into a competition that involved a championship belt. It might have caused a bit of testosterone-fueled mania in the self-proclaimed most electrifying entertainer of his generation. The proof is walking right next to me in full wrestling regalia, boots, tights, mesh shirt, and face paint.