Vomity host Sam Miller is so dedicated to the weekly comedy open mic that he’s given it his left leg.
A mere six months after Vomity began, Miller had one of his thighs tattooed with a graphic of a vomiting man under the word Vomity. Under the illustration are the details: “Every Wednesday Voyeur 9 p.m.”
“I just wanted people to know how serious I was about the show, and I thought it would be a good way to generate support,” said Miller, whose career has progressed to the point that he competed in this year’s Seattle International Comedy Competition. “No matter what, the show means a lot to me.”
He’s a walking flier — except that most of the time, the tattoo isn’t visible.
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“It’s pretty high up,” he said. “I have to wear pretty revealing clothes for people to see it. If I were wearing sheer leggings, you’d be able to see it.”
What he’s celebrating is an open mic that welcomes fledgling and established comedians, including one or two featured comedians each week who are paid. Wednesday’s features are Los Angeles comedian Heather Thomson and Olympia’s Nate Wolf.
Vomity is welcoming in another way as well. There’s an emphasis on avoiding misogyny, homophobia, racism and transphobia — common themes in comedy.
“That comedy is boring,” Miller said. “I’ve heard those jokes before.”
Acceptance of diversity is important to him personally, he said, and it’s also part of the culture at Le Voyeur.
“It’s a synergistic effect,” he said. “People do stuff sometimes that’s misogynistic or homophobic, but it doesn’t go well.
“I remember somebody did a Caitlyn Jenner joke, and there was just crickets. Nobody wanted to hear it.”
The result is comedy that’s quite different than what you might hear at a typical comedy club.
“Folks take risks constantly,” Miller said. “There’s a lot of amazing stuff going on. It’s different than mainstream comedy. I’m not saying mainstream comedy is bad, but this is a different thing.”
It’s also drawing a crowd, enough to fill the back room at Le Voyeur.
“It’s pretty packed usually,” he said. “We get as many people in there as can fit. We have people sit on the stage.”
If it has become something special, Vomity started quite simply. Miller, who was new to standup when he and John Manini started the open mic in October 2014, needed practice performing.
“It was kind of a selfish thing,” Miller said. “I wanted to be on stage more, and there just wasn’t a lot going on in Olympia.”
These days, he still tries out new material at the show, which he hosts nearly every week, and there are plenty of other opportunities for South Sound’s growing comedy community.
Little General hosts Olympia Friends United Comedy on Thursdays, and the 4th Avenue Tavern is home to Breaking Sad on the first Friday of each month.
In January, Miller will launch the Olympia Comedy Competition at Rhythm & Rye, with the first round set for Jan. 19 and subsequent rounds the third Thursdays of February and March. Beginning in April, he expects to put some other comedy creation into that slot.
Comedians from farther afield are taking notice. Vomity has hosted the likes of Emmett Montgomery, who appeared on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing,” and Ty Barnett, who’s been on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”
“There’s something magical happening in Olympia,” Montgomery told the Olympian earlier this year. “There’s an amazing comedy scene down there.”
What: Sam Miller’s weekly comedy open mic welcomes new and experienced comedians of all races, genders and orientations.
When: 9 p.m. Wednesdays.
Where: Le Voyeur, 404 Fourth Ave. E, Olympia.
Tickets: Free, donations accepted.