Chris Teicheira uses his time behind the controls of a tractor to think.
While lining up crop rows and making sure that he stays straight, the 39-year-old Manteca comic has become a master of multitasking racking his brain to come up with new bits that he can incorporate into open mic appearances and stand up performances.
Being funny might be something that comes naturally, but staying funny takes work. It takes writing – jotting down random notes when they suddenly come to him like somebody rehashing their dreams when their feet first hit the floor.
Much to the chagrin of his family, most of those notes end up scribbled all over the very timecards that he’s supposed to fill out and turn back in. Sometimes it’s the membership cards from the MRPS Hall that serve as his artistic easel. And sometimes it’s raiding stash of his outdated wedding announcements. It is whatever allows for the free flow of ideas.
Because when he slides into his office chair, puts on his headphones and joins roommate and fellow comic Anthony Krayenhagen behind the microphone for the duo’s twice-weekly podcast “Pretending to Care” he wants to make sure that the production is topical while still maintaining the back-and-forth banter that has made it a hit with fans of their no-holds-barred approach to comedy.
“It’s a show where we both wanted to create something that was funny but not something that was just a bunch of bits,” Teicheira said. “We’ll have other comics come in and they’ll want us to set them up so they can go into one of their bits. That’s not what this is about.
“We want to travel stories and what you think about what’s going on. We want to hear people be themselves. That’s the way we approach it and I think people like that.”
The idea of the two partnering up on a production was something that they had thrown around but never really fully committed to.
The way that Teicheira tells the story, Krayenhagen had already moved in and brought up the idea one night when he was half-asleep watching television on the couch. He pulled out his wallet, tossed it to him and didn’t think anything of it until boxes started showing up.
What sounded good in theory was now real. And they didn’t waste any time jumping in.
The table in the kitchen, within a week, had become a makeshift studio and served as ground zero for the first of several podcasts that they recorded.
Pulling the trigger and clearing the basement was the next step. Since then they’ve transformed the dingy space into their comedy haven.
Plans on how to spice up the show are still rolling out. The rural location forces them to rely on Clearwire for internet access and add a dedicated phone line to allow for callers to the show has proved to be difficult as more and more fans flock to the site that Krayenhagen set-up to host the hilarious happenings.
Next month they’ll be taking the podcast to the people.
What is being dubbed “Cinco de Pubcasto,” the duo will host their first every satellite podcast at The Pub and Lounge for Cinco de Mayo. They’ll incorporate eating contests and live interviews and general bar revelry to add something different to the mix.
And they want to give bar patrons that think they have the chops to take a crack at comedy the chance to do so.
“We’re planning on having a microphone up on a stage where people can go up there and do two minutes to see what its like,” Krayenhagen said. “A lot of people think that they can go up there and do it, but when you’re bombing two minutes can feel like half-an-hour.
“It should be something that people can listen to later as well as come out and be a part of.”
Making a go of a career
Teicheira made his first leap of faith into the comedy world back in 1999 when he packed up and moved down to Los Angeles to pursue his career.
The only problem was he didn’t know anybody din LA and ended up just managing a Roger Dunn Golf Shop before moving back to more familiar surroundings.
But that doesn’t mean he plans on giving up on the dream of making a splash in the world of Southern California comedy – the West Coast Mecca for the funny.
Both he and Krayenhagen plan on making the trek together now that they’ve made big splashes in the Central Valley comedy scene. Through contacts with other up-and-comers and more established working comedians. Krayenhagen will spend two-weeks down in LA this month with San Francisco open mic champion Sammy Obeid. They hope to make inroads into what the public perceives is one big club.
A few laughs with his core audience, however, is always something that Teicheira is up for.
On Saturday, April 14, he’ll be hosting a comedy night at the MRPS Hall to benefit the organization. He is going out and handpicking some of his funniest friends from throughout the area to perform for Manteca residents.
It’ll also give him the chance as the host to throw on his coveralls and pull a few Portuguese jokes out of the bag – a special quiver he says is tucked away except for shows in “Gustine, Hilmar and Turlock.”
An all-you-can-eat rib dinner and show is $25 with the dinner kicking off at 7 p.m. Those only wishing to take in the show can pay the $10 cover charge at 8:30 p.m.
He’ll spend the previous night at The Impala Lounge in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood.
“I need to live within like walking distance to 10 comedy clubs. That would be perfect,” said Teicheira. “I’m getting to play bigger places now, and while it’s cool to share the stage with more famous comics, what really gets me is being in the green room before the show and seeing the candids on the wall of the famous comedians where standing in that very room.
“The spots that I want to be are in those back rooms, and I’ll know that I made it if I’m standing there again.”
To listen to Pretending to Care visit www.pretendingtocare.podbean.com.