MY FABULOUS FRIDAY
What was the last thing I regret spending money on? I’m a professional comedian in the UAE. What is this ‘money’ you speak of ? Whatever you do, don’t heckle the Al Ain-based stand-up comic or expect him to tell you a joke – unless you’re at one of his sh
DJ and stand-up comic Simeon Gibson likes the quiet life of Al Ain, but heckle him and be prepared to be roasted.
ROAST TILL WELL DONE
This is how I deal with hecklers: Berate them and belittle them and make them never want to speak in public again. You dig into them so bad that the rest of the audience cringes. Then you buy them a drink after the show.
There’s a strip in Al Ain, by the Oryx gazelle roundabout, where they have a Dh10 BBQ chicken. If my shows let out in time I stop there before I go home and buy three chickens. Sometimes, I get an extra chicken for the security guy in my building. Whenever we have guests, we go to Solidaire restaurant in Hili mall, also in Al Ain. It’s Lebanese food, which is probably my favourite Arabic food, but I would never admit that to my Lebanese friends. My wife does the majority of the cooking at home; I prefer her cooking to restaurant food and she prefers her cooking to mine. My kids love my grilled cheese sandwiches and pancakes.
MONEY IS A MYTH GO FOR A NEW YORK SONG
Ugh, what a loaded question. Frank Sinatra’s New York, New York is a classic. Empire State of Mind by Jay-Z and Alicia Keys; New York by Ja Rule and Fat Joe; Walk in New York by Onyx. There are songs that are super New York that aren’t necessarily about New York, like All About the Benjamins or Ante Up by MOP. I can’t pick just one. For a concert, you always go with The Roots – [they have the] best possible live show.
HEY MR DJ
On Fridays, I DJ at the Marriott Hotel Downtown Abu Dhabi’s brunch. So I get up at 7, get dressed, jump on the bus and get there by 11.30am or so. I play some songs until about 6 (maybe a little later if the party’s jumping), get back on the bus and I’m usually home by 9.30pm. Then the kids jump on me and tell me all about their day. The concept of a weekend is very arbitrary to a performer or entertainer – some weeks I have shows every day, then there are stretches with nothing going on. Until recently, I was hosting a show at Frankie’s every Saturday. Now that that’s over, I hope to resume taking improv classes with the Dubomedy team.
THE THINGS I DO
I enjoy lifting weights and swimming when I’m not writing jokes and DJing. I am not an outdoor person, but as a New Yorker I don’t mind taking walks. I like to watch battle rap on YouTube. Outside of that, I’m usually just hunting for music or inspiration for jokes. I’m not a very interesting person to be honest. I’ve just got a cool job.
Here’s what you can look forward to from me on the new season of
Comedy Central Presents – hilarity and some awesome tailored suits that I can never wear again because they’ve been on TV.
FROM NEW YORK CITY TO THE GARDEN CITY
My family and I moved here [from Brooklyn] because my wife was presented with the opportunity to work as a teacher. My children are very young, so Al Ain is a great place for us – there’s the zoo, a few malls, and no traffic. The thing about New York is there’s no place comparable, so it’s good that we were placed someplace so different that we can experience something new. Season 2 of Comedy Central Presents: Comedy 3alwagef (with performers in English and Arabic) premieres on January 14, 2018 on Comedy Central (Channel 207) on OSN.