A lot of Philadelphia comedians got their start at the Wednesday-night open mic at the Laff House on South Street. For many a young Philly comic, The Legendary Wid — long-time emcee of the Wednesday mic — was the first face they saw.
Many continue on to “the grind” or “the trenches” where they run into Wid again, witnessing his manic yard-sale pun-a-thon at suburban clubs or fire-halls. He’s induced his fair share of groans, but if you give him a chance to make you laugh, he’ll always get you with something.
Here are some tidbits about Jersey native Michael Baldwin, aka The Legendary Wid, Philly’s prop-savant comedian extraordinaire…
- The Wid started out as an antique dealer in Princeton. He would entertain customers in his store by riffing on all the merchandise. He put together a two or three minutes of material for a local gong-show, and from there he was off to the races.
- He is an artist, an art collector and an art dealer. He was a featured artist at The American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore.
- In or about 1999, after a comedy show on South Street, Wid was attacked by skin-heads. They called him “Waldo” and he told them to fuck off. They chased him down and beat him, leaving him with a concussion which stalled his headlining career.
- Wid sings in a Star Trek themed band called The Roddenberries.
- He considers himself “somewhere between a picker and a hoarder”. He has several storage-lockers filled with trinkets and baubles galore (pictured)