Monday, June 9, 2014

Half a Person (The Smiths)

I have always been super, duper shy in a way when it comes to dudes. There were the kids who were pretty kids. I wasn't one of them. You see, I struggled with my weight and no matter how hard I tried I couldn't look like the pretty popular girls. I had cystic acne, and had medication that made my face peel and lips bleed. Oh and then there were the braces with rubber bands that would have food caught in them. My mother also picked out my clothing, which made me super trendy.....NOT! On top of that, really wasn't allowed to date which was translated to April Brucker can't talk to boys which was translated to April Brucker munches rug. And this was outside of Pittsburgh, not New York. To say it was a tad homophobic would have been the understatement of the year.

Never really have been much of a dater. For the first part of high school I struggled with my weight. While I shed a few pounds for the second half, I was too busy. In between being at the cable access station, performing ventriloquism for senior, writing for the youth section of the local paper, the high school musical and literary magazine my schedule was packed. Then there were my Saturday acting and dance classes downtown, and bagging groceries at the supermarket when I wasn't there. Busy.

Plus I was more or less friends with guys. My brother Wendell played football, so I knew all those guys and their families. As a result, I was kind of grandfathered into a circle I would not ordinarily have been a part of, aka The Football Family as they call it. Not to mention I am wired more like a guy. So I would end up talking history and sports with these dudes, and then they would end up going to the dance with someone else. It didn't matter to me actually. I hated the idea of formals, wasting money on a stupid gown you were only going to wear once. I hated how everyone yelled, screamed, and cried over not having a date. Or then there was the drama with one dude was dating one girl and asked someone else. Actually, I was happy not to go.

When prom time came around, I didn't have a date. By that time, I knew I was going to New York and that's all I cared about. My mother on the other hand was a big dater back in the day. She went to an All girl's Catholic high school, and my uncle went to the all boys brother school. When it came to dances they would go with each others friends, etc. Before she met my dad, my mom also dated a lot of guys as well. So when I didn't have a prom date, my mother was losing her mind. It was my mom crying and freaking out as the encroaching deadline approached. Some kids had folders and had been planning prom since Christmas. I didn't care. The more I heard about it the less I wanted to go.

My mother, however, every time she met a random guy who seemed somewhat nice would say, "What do you think of Bob? Wouldn't he make a wonderful escort to the prom?" And then I would tell my mother I wasn't going. Fights would erupt, which hurt because my mom is a wonderful woman and we have always been very close.

Then my mom would say, "I am not going to be sitting at home when all those limos go by."

I told my mom I could go in a group of friends. To which my mom replied, "That's what fat girls do!"

I pointed out I was fat throughout middle and the first part of high school. "You aren't fat now!" My mom wailed. Still, it was one area where we didn't see eye to eye let alone relate.

I ended up getting a date at the last second. He was a friend of mine, and he ended up taking another friend of mine as well. We went in a group, it was fun. It wasn't anything to slit your wrists or cry about not going to though. So I did it, my mom was happy. We could be friends again. Plus my sister Skipper had a lot of guys asking her to formals. She and my mom could go dress shopping and giggle about that stuff.

Well as an adult I made up for lost time. Getting to college, well there were guys who weren't aware of my dork status. However it was a strange road map. I thought when one dude invited me to his room to watch TV that's what he really wanted, big mistake. Then there were some others I hung out with, but it never went anywhere. A part of me got a little depressed, but then a part of me was relieved. Of course, there was the trust fund dude who had a nice apartment who didn't want to be my boyfriend. But he got pissed when I talked to other dudes. I don't miss him. I miss his apartment, complete with wine bar and all. Plus he always had Groucho Marx cigars. Then I was allowed to drink, and alcohol allowed the shyness to melt away.

But then there was blacking out which always left me feeling like I took a ride in the Delorean and had to piece together the past and the future as I fumbled through the present. Jack Daniels also made me kiss a lot of trolls, and then I wondered how the hell I got under the draw bridge. And then when I met the former fiance, I thought I had arrived. Instead, it was a year long nightmare where at the end of it I got a different mailing address so he couldn't find me. He has reached out to make amends several times, but I have no desire to make contact. I forgive him, and played a role in making the relationship bad. But we will never be good for each other, and any contact we have is unhealthy.

Afterwards, my mom put his name and address on the refrigerator in case I disappeared. I should have pointed out he told me he wished he could have taken me to the prom, but I didn't. Instead I embarked on a series of mini-romances that included trust fund idiots, millionaires with drinking problems, ex cons, junkies, and any other degenerate under the sun. When each ended, my mom was more than thrilled. I was dating, right? Whenever I got a decent dude, he would run like he saw Godzilla. Most aren't into being shot by a stalker ex. Others saw I couldn't be nice, so they didn't bother. Or I just cheated on them and treated them badly.

What changed everything was the drug related death of my friend Chacho. Very gay and very out of his mind, Chacho and I both loved bad boys. Once, Chacho had acquired a prison pen pal, and sent the man his underwear. I believe the gentlemen was convicted of murder, and his panties were red. Anyway, Chacho and I had both managed to snag a boyfriend who was in some stage of married. We would giggle about our dysfunctional beaus and check out men. And then my friend died. Yeah, it was after having sex. It's the way we all want to go. He couldn't stop doing drugs and partied himself out of this world. I always wanted to tell him at least it wasn't on the toilet.

After his passing, something snapped in me. I am not sure if it was all together good or bad, but something shifted. Those disgusting guys ceased to lure me in. While the bad boys didn't kill my friend, they were one of the many factors that put the shovel in Chacho's hand as he dug his own grave. I didn't want whatever they had near me. Suddenly I was more driven than I ever was. Out of no where, I was gifted with a series of TV appearances with my puppet children. I always say that was Chaco's parting gift as he left the world. He was proud of me, plus he was obsessed with celebrity culture.

So for the last few years, it has been all about the career. I have worked tirelessly. I won't tell you all I have done because it will bore you. Things are starting to go well in a major way because of all my hard work though. There hasn't been anyone in years except for Holden for a brief time, and I ended that mistake. I have friends, I am a very good friend. In a lot of ways these past few years, I have felt more whole than I think I ever did.

Several weeks ago, my sister Skipper's boyfriend Boomer asked our father's permission to seek her hand in marriage. Now my mother's energies are spent planning this upcoming wedding which is at least two years away. Now once again, she is trying to get me to sign up for EHarmony. I think she is more upset about me being single than I am. Now each day she asks me if I have signed up for EHarmony. Recently, I booked a sweet gig. I called her to tell her.

My mom asked afterwards, "When are you going to sign up for EHarmony? I don't want you to waste that part of your life."

This reminded me of prom all over again. I was excited about NYU, and my mom couldn't stop reminding me that while it was true prom was coming up.

And then the shyness creeps back in. Yeah, I get a lot of fan letters from guys. Answering fan mail is different than talking to them face to face though. Plus some of the fan mail I get would honestly piss a boyfriend or husband off. Had one dude try to make me give up my career, never again. Or the idea of being someone's girlfriend comes into my head as I talk to a dude. At first I can entertain it, but then I just can't. I am back to being that junior high dork. I always think he's going to tell me it's a joke. Or we just end up as friends.

A few weeks back I did a show at a venue where there was another woman comic. When I come in off the streets, I always look like a waif and change afterwards to glam up. I hate looking good when I travel because then idiot dudes talk to me and no thanks, no likey creepos. I got to the venue, and I was the main event that evening. This woman gave me a weird up and down as I came in looking like I should have been begging for change outside. Actually, she kind of threw shade my way. It was like junior high again.

But then I transformed into my show gear, and she changed towards me completely. I think because she realized who I was. And then she offered me food. It was like 7th grade in a way. I was willing to let her start again though, and I was glad I did. We actually ended up hitting it off.

The point being, we all grow up I suppose. So maybe it's time to leave the awkward 13 year old in the past where she belongs. I don't want to ever forget her because she helped make me the woman I am. Maybe it's time to let go of that 21 year old mess who had the psychotic fiance who tormented and stalked her after the breakup, yeah there are good dudes out there. It's just that the good dudes don't want me. And maybe it's time to leave my Stephen King version of the dating game there too. But depending on the day, I feel like a shy teenager or a piece of trash who uses I have a career that is beginning to take off, and fans who love me. I don't need a dude, right?

I have puppets.

Part of me does want human things though like a romantic companion from time to time. So that is when the awkward, MTV watching 13 year old gets a piece of paper. On it she writes: Will you go out with me? Check yes, no, or maybe.

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl

Purchase my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous

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