Al Jackson has been doing stand-up comedy for about six years, and he’s played some tough rooms. None were tougher than the classroom where he taught seventh graders in Miami. “You think you’re the funny teacher,” he says, “but when you’re 26 and they are 12-year-olds, they think you’re old and washed up. They don’t think you’re funny at all and they do a lot to undermine your confidence. They’re like, ‘Whatever old man!’” Despite the response from his students, Jackson started looking into open mics, but not to satisfy some artistic need. He was simply looking for something to do at night. “I had never told a joke before, never written a joke,” he says. “I went out to the open mic, people laughed a little bit, came back the next week, people laughed some more and some more, next thing you know I’m headed to Cincinnati for the weekend.” Obviously he has enjoyed the career move. “I came up really fast. I was headlining clubs after two and half years. The business has been great to me so far. Not many people can say that about show business.” Al Jackson performs at The Funny Bone on the Levee Thursday-Sunday. $12-$14. Get showtimes, tickets and find nearby bars and restaurants here.