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Comedy & Tragedy

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If you've never heard Memphis drummer John Argroves tell the story about one very tired and hungry man's quest to obtain a Hot Pocket while adrift in a strange and unfamiliar place, do yourself a favor and listen to it. "Hot Pocket" has been preserved alongside several other great stories at spillitmemphis.org. It's an example of how a rambling yarn about a mundane thing can quickly turn into a tight, slightly dark screwball comedy about this American life.

Spillit Memphis, which returns this week with a pre-Valentine's Day event called "Love Hurts," is devoted to live, unscripted storytelling, with an effective emphasis on the unscripted part. This time around, the stories will focus on that special place where warm and fuzzy becomes itchy and scratchy.

Speaking of busted Valentines, the annual Break-Up Show is back this week for one more one-night stand. The Break Up-Show is sketch comedy for the modern lovelorn, showcasing the talents of regulars like Savannah Bearden and Bruce Bui, with musical guests Dragoon. Videos and break-up texts performed live are always a highlight.

This year's Break-Up Show is being presented in conjunction with the Memphis Comedy Festival (MCF). The MCF has grown into three days of stand up, improv, short films, and "even more terrible things." There are 25 comics from around the country in the stand-up showcase alone.

Spillit Memphis "Love Hurts" at Crosstown Arts, Friday, February 7th, 7 p.m. $10. spillitmemphis.org

The Memphis Comedy Festival's "The Break-Up Show" at TheatreWorks, Friday, February 7th, 7 p.m. For more information on the Memphis Comedy Festival, go to memphisroastclub.com.

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