Aidan Jones is a comedian based in Brunswick. After telling jokes from his driveway during lockdown, he’s back with his new show, PAP. We asked him a few questions to learn more about him, his career, his go-to place in Brunswick during lockdown and how comedy helps him process tragedy.
Get tickets to his show here, and keep reading to learn more about Aidan.
- When and why did you start your comedian career?
My first time ever doing stand up was August 15, 2011 at the old Rhino Room on Frome Rd in Adelaide. I was 20 years old and had watched a documentary about the late, great Bill Hicks on a recommendation from a friend. I remember seeing the story about how he used to sneak out of his parents’ house when he was 14 and have his friend drive them down to the comedy club in Houston, Texas to do comedy, and thinking, “if a 14 year old can do comedy, surely I can do comedy!” I signed up for the Rhino Room open mic a few weeks later.
- Tacos, Arepas or Meat Pies?
I used to hate tacos when my Mum would make them as a kid because we’d get the Old El Paso hard-shell tacos and they’d always shatter the first time you took a bite! I’m a bit of a creep when it comes to getting food on my hands, and it always infuriated me. Since learning that tacos can be soft shell as well, I’m much more on board. Arepas are a close second. Meat pies a distant third – I’ve always been more of a sausage roll kinda bloke.
- During the Soccer World Cup who do you cheer for? Colombia or Australia?
Australia of course! I’ve never been to Colombia… but I bet if they made a habit of getting into the later rounds I’d change my tune hahaha… when I was 7 I fell in love with football watching the France ’98 World Cup and I remember loving the Brazilians. Everyone loved the Brazilians of course, but I remember being especially excited about the fact that they all had the same colour skin as me hahaha
- How close is comedy from tragedy?
Comedy doesn’t NECESSARILY come from tragedy, but something I’m talking about a lot in my new show is how comedy can be a really handy way to process tragedy – or to use a less dramatic term, let’s say Difficult Situations. When faced with a difficult situation I often find myself wanting to either ignore the problem and pretend everything’s fine, or acknowledge the problem, but then fixate on it obsessively. Neither of these are particularly helpful, and I find laughing at something that hurts, or is difficult, is a good way to acknowledge it, so you’re not ignoring the problem, but then also to laugh at it, and in doing so, allow yourself to accept it, let it go and move on.
- How did lockdown influence your new comedy show, PAP?
Like everyone else I spent a lot of time in lockdown reflecting, asking myself questions about my life and where I’m headed, and trying to recreate the feelings I was missing as the world shut down. I’ve been emailing my grandpa (the eponymous ‘Pap’) on and off for the best part of a decade, but these emails became much more important to me during the times when I felt shut off from my old life and the rest of the world. There’s something very reassuring in hearing stories from old people about the past, learning about their lives, and understanding that as bad as things feel like they are, nothing ever really changes, and we are all just people trying to live our lives with the people we love and be happy.
- What was the last job you were fired from?
Man I got fired from a gardening job in January 2021, it’s actually the first story in the show, so I won’t give too much away, but I got fired for making fun of one of our wealthy clients on my podcast. I’ve been fired so many times, and most of them didn’t come as much of a surprise (I’m a dickhead), but this one hurt particularly bad because I liked the work and the guys I worked with, including my boss, and I really was trying to make a good go of it. It’s like that scene in the Simpsons when Bart fails the history test even after studying all night, and breaks down crying, “You don’t understand I really tried this time!!!”… except Bart Simpson is 8, and I’m 31. Sigh.
- Which was your go-to place in Brunswick during lockdown?
Wild Life Bakery baby!! In the depths of the first winter lockdown in 2020 the thing I looked forward to more than anything else was walking down there in the cold morning and lining up to buy a coffee and a loaf of sourdough. On Saturdays they have brioche treats if you get in early enough, and the oval across the road is a beautiful spot to sit in the sun while your breath turns to steam.