Port Alberni comic Paul Alexander hosts 15 Minutes of Infamy on Feb. 19. (Photo courtesy Lisa Northrop Duncan)

Nanaimo’s 15 Minutes of Infamy spoken word showcase returns for 2020 season

Port Alberni comic Paul Alexander to host upcoming season opener

After making his 15 Minutes of Infamy debut in November, Port Alberni comedian Paul Alexander is back to host the local spoken word series’ 2020 season opener.

The event takes place at the Green Olive on Feb. 19. Performing that night are Port Alberni poet Chelsea C, Gabriola spoken word performer Altogetherlisa, Nanoose poet Susan Pederson and Yellowpoint spoken word performer Ian Cognito.

Alexander, who hails from Toronto, has lived in Port Alberni for the past 10 years after spending a decade in Los Angeles. He said he’ll be covering “local stuff” in his comedy.

“I remember I did Hecklers in Victoria once and I told the host to bring me up as ‘a guy that moved from Los Angeles to Port Alberni’ and when he was just bringing me up with that the audience was already laughing for some reason,” he said. “And I was like, ‘What the hell is it with Port Alberni? Why is it such a weird, funny place?’”

He added that it’s “unbelievable” how many jokes he’s written about living in Port Alberni.

“It’s funny, we were in Hollywood for years but you come to a little town in the middle of an island in Canada and you meet people who are way funnier and stranger than anyone I met in Hollywood,” he said.

Aside from performing his comedy, Alexander said he’ll also touch on his memoir about parenthood, Our Baby was Born Premature (The Same Way he was Conceived). Alexander said the book, released last year, was written in “stand-up” style.

“Although it tells a narrative, all it is is ‘set-up, punchline’ for the first five years of my kid’s life,” he said.

Alexander said he left L.A. because he was “burned out” from 10 years of working 12-hour days in the film industry. He decided on settling in B.C. because he used to visit family on the Lower Mainland and would get sad when it was time to head back south.

“I was looking for some place to be totally different than Hollywood and when I came over to Vancouver Island, particularly when I drove through the middle of the Island, it was everything that I wished for,” He said. “Everything’s bigger here. The trees are bigger, the mountains are bigger and the mortgages are bigger.”

WHAT’S ON … WordStorm Society of the Arts presents 15 Minutes of Infamy at the Green Olive, 150 Skinner St., on Wednesday, Feb. 19 at 7 p.m.


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