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January 15, 2013 > 'When You Die at the Palace; You DIE at the Palace'

'When You Die at the Palace; You DIE at the Palace'

By Shirley Gilbert

That was a Mel Brooks line in the movie History of the World Part I. It was about performing in the "main room" of Caesar's Palace and it was also about the terrors of stand-up comedy.

Well, stand up holds no terror for comedian Karinda Dobbins. She's been performing in the Bay Area for seven years at clubs like The Punchline, Cobbs and The Purple Onion. She loves it and the audience loves her.

On Tuesday, January 22nd she'll take her stand-up routine to the Fremont Main Library as part of AAUW Fremont Branch's One Book, One Community year of laughter. The theme for January centers around an exploration of the world of the gutsy stand-up comic.

Karinda, who was born and raised in Detroit, got into comedy when a friend asked if she would dare perform if she found an open mic opportunity for her. "I said yes only because I thought she would never follow through," says Karinda. "When she found one, I was obligated to perform. However, it went well and that's how I got started."

Many stand-up comics were bitten by the bug as a youngster by making their families laugh and Karinda is no exception. Except, she says, there are lots of funny people in her family all trying to make each other double over with laughter.

Karinda admits that the scariest part of doing stand up is being all alone on stage. "It's sink or swim," she says. "The best part is being able to impart my world view to the audience and talk about things I think are important and try to make them funny."

Appearing with Karinda is the Bay Area's Molly Sokhom. She grew up in the Tri-Cities, attended Logan High School, Ohlone and Chabot Community Colleges and has a graphic arts degree from San Jose State.

Molly initially wanted to be an actress and got into stand-up comedy when she discovered the joy of making people laugh. She admits it's a tough profession with lots of competition. "You really have to have a good-paying job to pursue stand up -- and I have two jobs. It's also not easy to get gigs and you need courage to stick with it. You have to pursue your dream and I'm determined to do so."

Both women have agreed to discuss what life is like as stand-up artists after their acts at the Lots of Laughter get-together.

Along with Karinda and Molly's performances there will be a review of the book "I Hate Everyone... Starting With Me" by 79-year-old Joan Rivers. The seasoned comedian has paved the way to success for many young women comics of today. In this hilarious book, Joan steals and changes a line from Elizabeth Browning: "How do I hate thee? How much time do you have?"

Karinda Dobbins and Molly Sokhom
Tuesday, Jan 22
7 p.m.
Stand up comic: One Book Community One year of laughter
Fremont Main Library
2400 Stevenson Blvd., Fremont

Next AAUW Lots of Laughter event: An Evening with Mark Twain, American Humorist, Tuesday, February 26th, 2013, Fremont Main Library, 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

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