04/10/2013 05:57 pm ET Updated Jun 10, 2013

Why the World Needs Bridgetown

Less than two weeks away, I'm really excited for Bridgetown Comedy Festival in Portland, Oregon. I'm obviously a little nervous about performing on shows with really good artists and also about being in huge claustrophobic crowds. But any anxiety is completely overshadowed by my joy and excitement that in the very imminent future hundreds of the best comedians I've ever seen will be performing on the same block, on good shows, to smart audiences. Bridgetown Comedy Festival is an amazing event that nurtures stand up comedy as an art form.

This is the sixth year of the Bridgetown Comedy Festival, a bundle of the best stand up comedy shows you've ever seen, mostly compiled along Southeast Hawthorne. It's the brainchild of very funny comedians Andy Wood, Matt Braunger and awesome comedy fan Kim Brady.

A lot of comedians love comedy festivals because it feels like summer camp to see old friends from across the country. I love it for that reason but also because it is such a beautiful showcase of comedians doing something special and unique to the best of their abilities. I think the concentration of such strong, artistic talent in one place in one weekend really inspires me to be better and makes me fall in love with stand up all over again.

Bridgetown does a really good job of showcasing the growing, unique hotbed of young, clever comics in Portland. The Northwest has a wonderful group of comedians that are doing something really interesting that makes me want to work harder and be a better writer and performer. I love watching the comedians here, and I'm so excited that the audiences get to see these great people too. I'm really excited to see local comics like Ian Karmel, Anthony Lopez, Alex Falcone, Sean Jordan, Shane Torres, Stephanie Purtle, Curtis Cook, and so many more. I love Bridgetown because it makes local performance art look really good.

The first year I did Bridgetown I counted and realized I watched over 20 hours of comedy. Good comedy makes me happier than anything in the world. I'm so excited to see hilarious people I look up to, who make me want to be better, and remind me that stand up is the most beautiful thing in the world and it can help people. I'm really looking forward to seeing Bryan Cook, Rylee Newton, Dave Ross, Emily Heller, Kate Berlant, Heather Thomson, Caitlin Gill, and so many more.

Comedy is the best thing in the world. It's an art form that can take the darkest parts of the human condition and make them everything seem less lonely and intimidating. The scariest parts of life seem more surmountable when you realize other people feel the same way and you can laugh about it together. Laughing is like therapy for me. Comedy makes life better, and good comedy makes comedy better, and Bridgetown Comedy Festival is a sloppy mess of amazing stand up comedy. So, you should go to it!