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Letter To Edinburgh: Nat Luurtsema

By | Published on Tuesday 12 August 2014

Nat Luurtsema is taking a year off the Edinburgh Fringe.

Nat Luurtsema

So she sent everyone else this letter…

Hi guys!! I’m hearing a great buzz about your show and that review definitely read like a four.

I am not at the Fringe this year. Festival PR being the exhilaratingly pointless arms-race it is, I doubt any of you have noticed. But it is true, The Luurts is not with you. She is at home experimenting with giving herself new nicknames. But let’s spread a more exciting rumour that I’m in a movie or something… use your imagination but keep it realistic: “Nat’s going to be the new Wolverine, unpaid, just travel expenses, but good exposure” type of thing. Thanks.

This is my first August away from the Fringe in a decade. (A decade. I am so terribly terribly old, how am I still alive?) It wasn’t an easy decision but I reasoned that if I missed Edinburgh, I had a souvenir to console myself, my debt from 2011 onwards. Sweet memories. Though last year I did my stand-up show on the Free Fringe and actually made profit. So like a ruined gambler who’s miraculously won, I am stepping away from the blackjack table. I beat the house! Sort of.

But enough about me, how are you? How’s your show? Uh huh uh huh. Good stuff. They’re all bastards except us. Etc. Are your legs weirdly muscly from constantly walking uphill, while your upper half hangs limp and malnourished? Do you get that thing where your back hurts and it feels suspiciously like a kidney is leaking ethanol? I’ve had it too, I’m sure it’s fine. Don’t Google it.

I always felt that Edinburgh was so tough that I should deny myself nothing all month. This is a good system but the consequences are dramatic. Every day I would look less and less like the nice photo on my poster, until by Week Two I could flyer for myself in peaceful anonymity (“I hear she’s amazing, no I’ve never got to meet her”). This is not an option by Week Three, as the damage is so severe I look like an aged relative of myself.

I would try to halt the physical destruction of myself, keeping my haggis intake to every other day, but you can’t live a life strangled by rules, so be kind to yourself on that front. You’re over a week in, so I assume the vegetables you bought at the beginning, declaring that this is the way it’s going to be this month, have rotted. Sad for them, but consider it a necessary loss. You don’t need to pretend any more, with that courgette judging you, now go to Mother India.

I’m coming up in a week’s time to do Beth O’Brien’s latest spectacular feat of a gig, Sketch Transfer Deadline, in aid of Cancer Research UK, where sketch groups all trade members for one night, promising to wash them and return them promptly. Which brings me to the purpose of this letter: feel free to chuck any gigs my way 19-21 August, plus if you’ve got a spare room (or… just some spare room) I probably need to sleep somewhere, at some point between four and nine am.

Just remember, you’re doing really well. This is all character-building, and your victories and humiliations are entirely your business because everyone is too busy worrying about themselves. How liberating is that?

LINKS: www.natluurtsema.com