Big Head

The Big Head

My initial connection with the term “The Big Head” came in those wonderful, eye-opening, high school band days. Whenever a band member was complimented on their playing, then took that to mean their shit don’t stink, they had this dreaded malady. The other band members went on a mission to provide a reality check. This usually came in the form of a verbal beat-down starting from the best of the players, which grew to the entire band taking shots at everything from their instrument―raggedy, second hand, always out of tune―to disparaging remarks about close family members.

Nothing was off limits until the offending head shrunk back to size. I’m sure I was cocky in those days, but for the most part, I stayed level headed. By the time I graduated, there was no way I’d get caught with my dome tripled in size. Recently, I was reminded of this concept, recognized the early signs, and put myself in check.

After a show at the Comedy Cellar, a fan asked me to pose for a picture. I remember cheesing pretty hard, showing how glad I was somebody wanted a picture of me. (Hoping some single woman would ask to be next.) Turned out that would be the only pic request of the night. It’s not uncommon to get zero pics as most people take photos of the Comedy Cellar lights as seen on the Louie show.

More than a few get a shot of the lineup of the performance they just saw. It’s not a bad experience unless they are out of control drunk and hanging on you while they present their drunk breath all up in your face.

The next day, I got a friend request from the guy―a regular looking, youngish Joe. I accepted not knowing who he was, but he seemed harmless enough. I went to his page to see what he was about. I saw he posted the pic we took describing me as being from Louie and the host of the Comedy Cellar show.

A couple hours later, I notice there were comments coming in from his friends. My first thought was man…I hope those people don’t hate me! Then it was…did they recognize me? Did they see me on the season four premiere? I was curious to read the comments so I did. They weren’t even about me!

“Hey man, you look great! I can’t even tell who the star is!”
“I didn’t know you were going to NY, next time let me know cause I am way overdue for a road trip dude!”
The comment that brought it home for me was from the guy I took the pic with…
“Tomorrow I’m going to see a good friend in his first NY play! REALLY excited about that.”

Perhaps one day I will thank him for the wake up call. I answered it, and if fame ever finds me, hopefully, I won’t be all big headed about it.

William Stephenson

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