Welcome to the Club

Posted on Aug 31, 2014

by Alex Forstenhausler--

It’s October 18, 2011, at the Friars Club. I’m seated inside the Frank Sinatra Dining Room for my induction ceremony. I’m nervous, excited, honored and hot; I’m very hot. Why I am so hot? Maybe it’s because my jacket is made of wool. That was probably a mistake.

Fast-forward sixteen months to the Roast of Ricky Schroder; I’m freaking out. Someone didn’t show up, and I’m the alternate roaster. The other comedians make fun of me as I scramble to get my material in order. As I step up to the podium, I feel myself shaking all over. I tell a few jokes and start to calm down. I have fun. The audience has fun with me. After the roast, Gilbert Gottfried and Alan Zweibel tell me I was funny, and for a brief moment anything seems possible.

Fast-forward a month and a half; I’m wearing a wedding dress at the Dennis Rodman Roast. The producers let me on the red carpet because of my creative attire. Dennis grabs my face like he’s about to kiss me, and suddenly I have a picture that will follow me for the rest of my life.

Fast-forward two more months; I take my dad with me to the Roast of Jack Black. A soldier from the Wounded Warriors Foundation asks for a picture with me. He tells us he attended the Ricky Schroder Roast and thought I was hilarious. I feel like a big shot in front of my dad. I’m unable to find the words to thank this man for giving me a moment I’ll cherish forever.

Back to 2011; I finish my dinner and admire the pictures around the club: Milton Berle, Jack Benny, Jerry Lewis. Everyone has an opportunity to make his or her mark on the Friars Club. I sit back and think to myself, One day I’ll make my mark by writing for a blog on their website.

Alex Forstenhausler is a writer/director based in NYC. He has been a member of the Friars Club since 2011.