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Second Shift: 'Entertainment saved my life'

In this week's Second Shift feature, meet a New Yorker who works full-time as an overnight security guard, but moonlights as an MC.

Our Second Shift series features people who work more than one job or have creative ways of making money. This week, meet a security guard who has moonlighted as an MC for 25 years. Want to be featured? Email emily.laurence@metro.us.

To book Curtis Sterling, email curtisbsterling329@yahoo.com. Credit: Provided To book Curtis Sterling, email curtisbsterling329@yahoo.com.
Credit: Provided

Name: Curtis Sterling
Age:52
Residency: Queens
Lives: Alone
Number of jobs: 3

You are a very busy man. What is your work schedule like?

Monday through Friday from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., I work as an overnight security guard in Rockaway, Queens. On the weekends I'm a MC for weddings, sweet sixteens and special events. My business is called Express Entertainment. I've been doing this for 25 years, so I've done baby showers for kids who weren't even born yet and then done their sweet sixteens. And for some people I've MCed their sweet sixteen, I've MCed their wedding! I've had people rearrange their wedding date so I can be their MC.

What makes you so good?

I just love people. Being an MC allows me to meet all sorts of different people from different cultures and I love that. I used to work with Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz and I know [politician]Leroy Comrie. My kids get a kick out of it when politicians say hi to me. I also think that because I'm a stand-up comedian that helps. That's my third job. I perform twice a month at Greenwich Village Comedy Club.

How did you get into being an MC?

I have six kids from my previous marriage and I needed a way to pay child support. This was a way to make ends meet and I couldn't ask for a better way to do it. Now my kids are grown, but I'm still doing it. The child support is over, but I was like, what do I do now? Not care for you all? You're still going to ask me for money! I would do anything for my kids and two grandchildren. ... Entertainment saved my life. It really did. It kept me above water. You don't get involved in heavy drinking or anything stupid because you always have to be on point to entertain. ... A lot of people have two jobs and [don't like them], but I can't wait until the weekend to MC.

Curtis Sterling will be performing atGreenwich Village Comedy Club October 16. Click here for more information and tickets.

Follow Emily on Twitter: @EmLaurence

 

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