Two of the VERY BEST things about Bumbershoot is finding new performing artists (whether it be music, comedy, literary folks, theatre, or otherwise) you wouldn't have normally stumbled upon due to the mixture of the arts being presented, and sometimes the weird interactions of crowd from various populations mixing it up.
The very comfortable and cool Vera kicked off the Bumbershoot Comedy Stage West performances yesterday with Canadian comics "It's Good To Know People," a parody of "Up With People" style uber-positivism that lured a lot of family-friendly civilians into the subversive wit-blast. Christopher Westin and Beverley PoCock were relentlessly affirming and terrifying edifying as they mocked all manner of religious and secular feeling-goodism, broken up briefly by a somewhat shambolic but extremely funny and well-received set by hoosier mate Sean Devlin.
Though the satire was worked out to the point of madness and may have been a tad overlong (the full cover of "Wonderwalls" was a bit too much, although very perfectly slaughtered), every detail about helping out the elderly, cheering up the acutely interactive kids from the front rows of the somewhat puzzled muchly-suburban audience, and playing the most maudlin touchy-feely songwriterly pabulum on a lone acoustic with handclaps anthems was spot on. I was suitably creeped out and fearful the whole time I was going to be hugged, which was threatened to us all often. After this, checking out Saul Williams' insouciant, raving, incorrigible spoken word set nearby at the Boeing Performing Arts Center was just the antidote I needed.