Thursday, May 29, 2014

Penis Envy.....LOL

A Diesel Dyke is a woman who is of lesbian orientation. Most often butch identified, she works on big rigs. Okay, I am not butch identified and do not work on big rigs. What my sexuality is, I will let you come to your own conclusion about. Okay, I am bad with cars. I am a terrible driver. However, I could probably assist and fix in the middle of no where if I needed to. I am very good at being self-sufficient and figuring things out on my own.

Still, I find I personify Amazon Feminism. More often than not, I find myself in a male identified role. I am the sole occupant of my space, therefore when something is fixed I do it. For the last several years I have installed my own air conditioning. I am getting better and better with a screw driver. I carry heavy suitcases to and from my apartment. Not to mention I can lift heavy things on my own. Are my installations and repairs the best? Not always. However they get the job done.

I always find I get along best with the guys actually. Some dudes will say I am a Feminazi when I speak about gender roles and start throwing out the term feminism. Others will call me a Guy's Girl. But all discussion stop when we begin to speak about things like history. I click with guys on that level because I am a history buff. I know my wars, generals, presidents, and dictators. When you turn on the War Channel, I am glued. Football, I am glued. I can talk sports with most guys, and enjoy the conversations. Many times,when my dude friends get tickets to sporting events they take me along because not only will I enjoy it, but I'll know what's going on.

Then there are times when dudes don't like this side of me. Some men don't enjoy being bested by a woman. No Sir, you don't know all your dictators and Big Battles. And then when it comes to sports, there are guys eager to remind me about how much of a woman I am. I was doing a sports thingy recently, and one dude kind of took himself serious. I could tell he didn't like me off the bat. Aside from the fact I am extremely opinionated and can stir shit, I could tell he didn't think I belonged there. I can just feel it at this point in my life.

I don't take it personally. As a woman who is beginning to headline in the male dominated realm of standup, I am used to being reminded I am a woman. There are such polarizing views in the great rape joke debate. I just want to be funny. When I say I am a ventriloquist, people follow up with, "You don't see many women who do that."

I then inform them my sister Skipper is both a doctor and champion marksman. Women aren't plentiful in medicine and there is always a push for them. Women don't typically like guns. She likes both. So lets label comedy, ventriloquism, war knowledge, sports trivia knowledge, science, medicine, and marksmanship male things. Yes, it is offensive because it punishes people who are gender nonconforming in any way, shape, or form.

I enjoy friendships with most dudes. They are low drama and more loyal than women. I have several male friends who are like brothers to me. I would never get involved. It's not about preserving the friendship, but just the fact it would be like friend incest. I can't do it. However, they are there for me if I need anything from computer help, to joke writing help and everything in between. They don't take themselves too seriously, and nothing is off limits. This goes for my gay and straight male friends.

We run around and we have run. One of my friends Pachul is sort of a ring master for out of control people, and recently started dating a girl seriously who surprisingly does not shed clothing for a living. Another is Vinnie, who had a brief career as a pimp before he discovered women were a pain in the ass to employ. Mixed in there are the alpha males from the corner store who I discuss sports and exchange dirty jokes with. I am one of the guys in a way, if you want to gender identify me in that manner. Oh and sometimes when one gets a broken heart I even take them to the strip club. Yes, I put a dollar in her G-string, girl is working like a boss, yo.

I don't get offended by rape jokes. They are told my men who probably don't get laid anyway. I don't get offended by the c word. If a dude drops it constantly like bitch he isn't getting much and we all know it. Not to mention if a guy who doesn't ordinarily use it uses it, sometimes someone is just being a giant Ganghus Cunt. And only Cunty McCunt Cunts get offended if you drop the c bomb. Any woman who throws a hissy fit over that is probably some liberal pretender who cries racism when she has no black friends. Duhski.

Maybe this is why relationships are so hard for me. It's not that I can't get a dude, I am just wired too much like one. And there can't be two of us belching, cheering, and falling asleep after a big meal.Both of us can't know about the Odyssey and like action films. Both of us can't be buffs about sports and war. And not to mention I can take care of myself, pay for myself, and don't need his male ego in my affairs, I have a male ego of my own trapped in a petite blonde frame. So in the end there can't be two masculine forces in a relationship. Men want a lady to dote on that depends on them and constantly tells them that they are right, not an Annie Oakley who misplaced her rifle. So in the end we either become the best of friends who refuse to date again or the most bitter of enemies.

Ideally the woman I personify most if Calypso the Cave Witch. A minor deity, she imprisoned Odysseus because she could. It wasnt about love, it was an ego thing. I think she is my soul sister, unlike the game player Helen of Troy. Jesus Christ, Mr. Tietz is having a gas in the after life. Of course Calypso would share the same annoyance I have with my gender, and that is why I can't be friends with women sometimes. We want equality, but when the dude makes us split the bill on a date we scream. We want respect and equal pay, but then we use our periods and wonder why male employers don't take us seriously. We crucify women who don't chose husband and family but elect to become career women, yet we would never say that about a man who makes the same choice.

Basically this is me and this is where I am. If you don't like it don't support my career. You can go get hit by a car thus leaving my planet.

Until that time, I will be a hitchhiking survivalist who likes sports and war. Does it make me a lesbian? Does it make me have penis envy? Am I secretly a man in a woman's body? You decide.


Come see me at the Soluna Theatre, May 30-31 Happague, Long Island
Buy my book I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Check out my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous coming soon

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Carving My Own Path

My name is April Brucker. I will admit I idolize Mae West. We are kind of built alike and have the same look, although I could only dream of being as awesome. I still remember the first time I saw her on my screen. I was ten years old and my family didn't have cable. Instead we had three channels and PBS. To live on Foxtail Lane you were a thinker. We were not television watchers by any means. Instead, we read. I was in fourth grade and had a high school reading level. It's not that I was smart. I was simply anti-social.

However, we were decorating our Easter Bonnets on the rare occasion we were allowed television. Sometimes my home could be like a POW camp. TV was a reward for a week's work. You could lose your reward through bad grades, bad behavior, and even worse, a run in with the guard aka my parents. Gluing the flowers on my bonnet, I remember a beautiful woman graced my screen. Talking through the side of her mouth she said, "Come up and see me sometime, any old time."

My dad explained that was Mae West. He said she was a comedian and actress well known in her day. The film was in black and white. This was different than the noisy, color television and cartoons we were sentenced to as modern beings. I was sucked in. My dad asked if we knew how old she was. We guessed her 20s. My Pops said she was in her 40s. Wowsa she was hot.

My favorite Mae West pic of all time

Fast forward to high school. I still remember having pictures of my idols, specifically Mae West, plastered all over my mirrors and walls. Sometimes they were even on my ceiling. I read about her, and did lots of reports whenever I could on her. What I liked is that the world was closed to people like us. People like her because she didn't look like a flapper at a time it called for that. People like me for the same reason. I knew that if I were to go anywhere, it would be my own way. I had puppets and I had dreams. Call me crazy but hey, it worked for Jeff Dunham.

Years later, fast forward, I moved to New York City. Things seemed to come together and fall apart all at once. It was shortly before I turned 26. Chacho and I had a falling out, and shortly thereafter he died a brutal drug related death. My roommate Nikki had a nervous breakdown over a man and moved back in with her mother. And I was set to do a show in Woodside, Queens at Neirs Tavern. It was a stormy night, and a tornado had come through that borough. Going to and from the gig was going to be quite difficult. However, my life sucked. I had to go. Getting onstage always made everything better.

When I got there I remember being the only comedian who showed up. May Wilson and I did a set. They asked me if May was named for Mae West and they said no. Then I was informed once upon a time before she became who she was, Mae West had performed there. My mouth dropped open. When I was 17 the cards were down and I was cast as the Witch in The Wizard of Oz, a musical containing a twister. My hero had been Mae West. Could this be another turning point?

Two weeks later I got a call. My puppet children and I had been chosen to be on TLC.

From there we did a press tour, I worked at an online television station, and I wrote my book. I also covered a song that was number one on internet radio.

Now I am at another turning point. I have dreamed of playing theatres since forever. A year and a half ago, shortly before the release of my book, I was ready to quit standup forever. I could do music and would make my videos. I could write. Then another comedian suggested that I do theatres, and told me that's where I belonged. Immediately I remembered dreaming about that since forever too. But how would that happen?

Pic inspired by the one above

Recently, it has been happening. I filmed a DVD and am doing my first big theatre gig on Long Island this weekend. The idea of being under the lights and having adoring fans is every performer's dream. But what if they hated my guts? This is a real fear in my line of work. Walking down the street, I had a panic attack and lost my ability to speak. Tears began to fall down my cheeks. I felt like the awkorkable ugly duckling from Foxtail Lane again.

Then I remember what we fear most never happens. Another dream I had since my brother Wendell played high school football was working in sports broadcasting. This was cemented in my mind when I attended the Heisman's with my sister Skipper. Recently, this door has opened through Ranter. I feared the male talking heads would regard me as an inferior. That hasn't happened yet. Every once in a while I make a joke and mix things up in my mind cause I think fast. But I haven't been dropped yet, and am starting to fit in quite well.

When I got home I looked at my bathroom door and saw a familiar figure, gleaming smile and black hat. She was giving me her blessing to take the next step. Yeah, I have always been a big mouthed woman in a man's world. I have always been the only one like me, which sometimes works to my favor but sometimes has been a detriment because people don't know how to peg me. Yeah, I have always been an oddball. Yeah, I have had some rough shit happen in my life, too. However, I lived through all of it and came out still slugging. I was always a fighter, and will always be.

I didn't let fear of failure stop me from moving to New York and chasing my star.

Mae West didn't let hederosexism and the myth of youthful supremacy stop her. Hell, she didn't even let jail get in her way. And we both like to cause trouble on a national scale. Watch my Rachael Ray clip.

As she smiled my way, I knew I was going to be alright. I knew I wasn't being taken this far in order to be dropped. I am going to the next level baby!

Now for the love of God, God don't drop me!!


Come see me at the Soluna Theatre, May 30-31 Happague, Long Island
Buy my book I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Check out my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous coming soon

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Slam Team is a Slam Dunk

When one thinks of poetry based theatre pieces, they can either be performance triumphs or utter disasters. When I heard Slam Team was such a piece, I will admit I was a tad nervous. Written by poet and playwright Gina Inzunza and directed by Marcus Yi, this was a risk. As a critic, performer, and theatergoer, I knew the experience beforehand left me with mixed emotions. However, I would soon be proven wrong. Slam Team turned out to be a slam dunk.

A well crafted tale, Slam Team is the story of four high school kids at Manhattan High School For The Arts that start an after school poetry club. All four are lovable mixtures of philosopher, out of the box thinker, and rebel without a hall pass in a blender. The characters are Lorna the founder of the club. Played believably and skillfully by Nicola McEldowney, she frequently butts heads with her father who wants her to be a violinist, but her true desire is to be in a rock band. Then there is Jonathan, the gay friend and sometimes moderate, calm foil to those around him. Portrayed with a likable vulnerability by Nick Imperato, Jonathan also battles with familial acceptance of his homosexuality as well as an absentee father who often tries to buy his son’s affection with money. Of course there is Lulu, a gifted artist who often butts heads with her strict parents. Given a quirky charm by actress Thanh Ta, she is often the comic relief who struggles with promiscuity and has shoplifted, traps some young women fall into. Lastly, to round out the group is Dario, a student from the Dominican Republic who is an illegal immigrant. Luis Restrepo gives Dario a youthful energy and a sort of freshness and is brilliantly juxtaposed with the fact the young man works and has lived well beyond his years.

During this period other themes are explored. Lulu has an obvious crush on Dario. When she sees her would be beau with his arm around another girl, her heart falls. Despite her fast pace when it comes to men, she has a soft heart and truly wants to be loved and accepted. Jonathan later finds out the girl was Dario’s cousin, a freshmen who is being made fun of because of her accent. It is later revealed both Dario and his cousin are able to attend the school because of their uncle’s work as a janitor. This is also a highlight on the racist elitism that can exist within some of the top schools still. The two begin a budding romance. Instantly, the audience is drawn to this high school love story, and through empathy, experience, and a pure wish for a happy outcome we are rooting for them.

Dario proves to be a good perspective boyfriend, and does not judge Lulu for her past with men and shoplifting. Rather, he appreciates her talent as a visual artist. With his help, Lulu moves in a positive direction and builds a website for her art.

Meanwhile, Jonathan pours his heart out revealing he had a crush that lived next door to him. He says Neighbor Boy doesn’t come around but doesn’t say why. Later it is revealed that Neighbor Boy was killed after wearing a rainbow tie. It is implied it was a gay bashing. While heavy and heart wrenching, the theme is also relevant to the struggle for LGBTQ Rights, and the unfortunate bigotry many gay teens are still subject to. Rather than anger, Jonathan turns it into art.

Lorna, meanwhile, fights to keep Dario in the US by enlisting the help of her father’s friend who is an immigration lawyer. The gang teams together, and decides to enter the talent show. They decide to do a well composed piece on freedom. However, the night of the talent show Dario is a no show. It is revealed that he has jumped a turn style because he did not have money to buy a Metro Card. Due to the fact he had no ID and was illegal, he is being detained and possibly deported.

Dario is then shown in jail orange, as he does a spoken word peace about his struggles for freedom. It is unclear whether or not he was deported, and this is never revealed. In the wake of this crisis, the Slam Team goes onstage without their lynch pin, and are at first heckled. However, Lorna then silences the heckler and begins the peace. The show ends not only in a spectacular fashion, but there is also not a dry eye in the house.

While the acting was excellent, much of the credit belongs to the creative pairing of Yi and Inzunza. The casting choices and direction were perfect, making the story believable. The tale was masterfully written with dialogue that had a nice mixture of stark realism and innocent humor. These teenagers were true embodiments of young dreamers, and as an audience we were cheering for them every step of the way. Additionally, the poetry was well written, thought provoking, high energy, and at times fun. Not many poets are also gifted playwrights. Inzunza has the rare gift of being both.

Slam Team shows this generation of writers, thinkers, and dreamers is far from being doomed. Energy for creativity and change is alive and well as it has always been. The message is, always keep an open heart, an open mind, and above all things, leave room for poetry. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Old Days (Chicago)

Not too long ago I was walking down the street and saw a friend from my past. Let's just call him Zeke. To give you an idea, Zeke met me at a time in my life that wasn't so hot. I have written about this time before. Yeah, the ex who was psycho, getting the different mailing address, being scared for my safety. Before that having been forced to give up my beloved puppet children because he didn't approve. Zeke met me as I was coming out of that rough time and trying to find my own.

We had spent a lot of time that summer at the diner. In those days Zeke was smoking. He still wears the painted on jeans and has the metrosexual wardrobe. We would sit outside as a host of characters went in and out. There was Chester, who had eight children and was always finding out about more of his new creations. There was Willie, a former sax player turned former heroin addict who had declared 95 dependents on his tax return. Oh of course there was Ricky, who worked as a stage hand and every damn thing tied back to his stage handing job. Lenox of course was a black queen who would talk about how he used to smoke crack, and how he got busted once for having a blow torch on a plane. Julianna was a high drama artist who thought she was Madonna, and in between getting kicked out of living locations she liked to draw. Deidre was once a groupie for the Grateful Dead, became a mom, cheated on her husband, and then a divorcee. Yasmine was a lesbian activist similar to Maureen in Rent.

Those were the days, kind of. It was wild. It was crazy. It was visceral. I really talked a lot about how all I had wanted to do was comedy. Those were my dreams then. On my way home of course I passed Joe Franklin's Comedy Club, or what it used to be. So many nights I did shows in that back room tourist trap. So many nights I did spots for audiences that couldn't speak English. Afterwards, so many times I got drunk and stumbled my way home through the night. Sometimes the punchlines hit, sometimes they missed. My mom and sister came to see me there, and my sister and some friends came once, too. I was young and ambitious. I had all these goals. The goals had sent me to New York, and the fear was that they wouldn't come true.

I still remembered the comedian characters from those days. There was Barry Lawrence, an older brother type who was destined to be a star but became an even uglier drunk and destroyed a promising comedy career. Last update, had two baby mamas that hated him. Not to forget Shira Katsburg, who had show business ties that she claimed and wore a fur coat no matter what the weather. Donny Lamell hosted a radio show, and showed natural talent onstage but also had a knack for pissing off people that mattered. Mikey Goldman was funny looking and that could get a laugh, but never wrote new jokes so you could say so much for that. Sheila Simmons was sleeping her way through every headliner until one got a restraining order against her when she showed up to his home in a drunken rage. So many people came and went. It was like a revolving door.

The thing that kept me going aside from my dreams was seeing the lights of Times Square only several feet away. I knew someday it was going to happen for me. No one was going to simply hand it my way. In show business, there is entitlement running like the Mississippi through the center of Middle America. The sight of the lights kept me working. Over the years faces from my life came and went and all I could do was keep moving.

Last night I was watching RPaul's Drag Race. Bianca Del Rio won. I remembered Chacho who first introduced me to drag culture. He knew every drag queen there was, and the gossip surrounding them. I found myself missing him and how he would dished on every queen walking. The pain of losing a friend of addiction never goes away. Yeah, it hurts less but there is something about it that always stings. I still remember how one of his runs landed him in the hospital and he told me he was telling people there that he had "a famous friend on TV." Then I realized Chacho meant me.

I also found myself more than ever wondering what happened to the cohorts from the diner. My old comedian chums who had disappeared. I longed for a yesteryear where I could go back and laugh with them about the bullshit. Before I was so wrapped up in myself, and had a cinderblock on my shoulder about who I constantly think I am. I also longed to let them know about all the things I had been up to.

In my journey before the drag race I found myself arranging a venue for an NYC signing of my book. During my meeting with the booker, we spoke about another character we knew, Rick Ocean, a promising comedian who struggled with bipolar. Rick fell off the radar and was homeless the last time anyone heard. He was also seen clad in a tiara and prom dress, don't ask. Anyway, the lights flickered on and off. The booker, a flamboyant man named Brooks Goldberg, explained the ghosts were friendly.

At that moment, it occurred to me my friends from the past might not be physically with me because life tore us apart, they moved on, or they died. However, they didn't leave me. I am sure the characters from the diner follow me wherever they are. Zeke had been eager as ever to get an update on my comedy. Some of my chums from Joe Franklin's back in the day keep in touch, and I know they would keep up with me. And of course, Chacho is keeping track in between the havoc he is wreaking wherever he is.

My visit with Zeke was also significant because it is a marker of how far I have come. After all the work, crying, and continual showing up, my dreams are starting to come true. Some have yet to happen, but it's not a question of if but when. One thing is for sure though, I got out of a relationship with an abusive partner and would never let anyone hit me today. I would never compromise things that were important to me, puppet children included. Sometimes you have to walk through hell to get to the other side, and the gift of a rock bottom is it forces you to take action. However, the only way out of that hell is to take action and to keep going.

I am doing a book signing at a MAC award winning venue it looks like, releasing a DVD, work as a talking head for a sports app, and am getting ready to do a theatre in two weekends. What does April of the past think of that? Eh, she still can't believe it. First she has to take care of her mascara.


Come see me at the Soluna Theatre, May 30-31 Happague, Long Island
Buy my book I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Check out my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous coming soon

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Dance to the Music (Sly and the Family Stone)

Once when we were kids, we were driving back from a Pirates game downtown. That was the 90s and the team was decent. The song “Dance To The Music” came on the radio. My dad told us he saw Sly and The Family Stone live as they were getting to be big. He was about six feet away from them and Sly was coked out as shit. Yeah, coked out. Then again, that whole generation of musician did drugs, right? My dad mentioned Sly was just dancing and the whole place was on fire. I believe the whole band was actually related.
It was the late 60s, early 70s. Aside from the Family Stone there was The Manson Family. Yes, I am talking Sharon Tate. That whole horror movie. Every member of that family has tried to get paroled but none have succeeded. But it was a weird time, a time of change. It was Civil Rights, and there were people who opposed them. Now there are people who oppose Gay Rights. It was Vietnam. My parents both knew people who were killed. Now we have the whole debacle in The Middle East. I have a high school classmate who drove his jeep over a landmine and was mortally wounded. People opposed both wars, and the only thing that was different was there was no draft in my generation. Otherwise people would be helluva pissed.
So some things change, some things stay the same.
Over the past year there has been a lot of change in my family. Not all of it has been for the better. Both my Nunni and Pop Pop, my mom’s parents, passed away. Nunni was a trendsetter and feminist before the word even became coined. She worked as a nurse during the war, went back to school in her 60s, and traveled the world after raising six kids. My mom then discovered words on scraps of paper, and Nunni confessed she had been writing poetry. So my mother implored her to publish. Nunni did, and akin to Grandma Moses began a writing career that spanned from her 70s to her 80s. Also, she acted as the grandmother in the local Nutcracker until her last year on the planet. Age wasn’t a number.
Pop Pop was also pretty progressive before the word became colloquial. He served in the Navy during World War II, and I believe even achieved the rank of First Lieutenant. In college, he had also majored in engineering and had boxed. When my mom was a kid, he installed a chin up bar and made his kids do chin up when they entered and exited a room. This was before people knew anything about fitness and the importance it played in their children’s lives. Pop Pop also supported Civil Rights. His belief was blacks should have the same rights as whites, and someone of a different color was welcome to be his neighbor as long as they caused no trouble. Pop Pop also supported gay rights too. His belief was they were people, and if they chose to live peacefully he had no issue with what they did behind closed doors.
Both were funny, both loved to tell a good joke. Both died within months of each other after being married sixty something odd years.
There have also been some changes for the better. This past week I was away with my family at the beach. My sister Skipper brought her beau Boomer. The two met when Skipper was completing medical school, and Boomer was the brother of one of her friends. Lately things have been heating up with this relationship. When Skipper got a job in Nashville, Boomer interviewed and once he was hired moved down to be with her. I saw them together and they were attached at the hip. Like the characters in Commedia Del Arte and the Tarot archetype, their love is pure and without the wear and tear of baggage. Thus I have nicknamed them The Lovers.
The Lovers proved to be ready and able vacation companions. I have to say although I don’t always agree with his Ron Paul friendly anti-government political leanings, I do like Boomer. He was telling me he met my sister and she kept blowing him off. Boomer’s sister Lena had organized these dinner parties in order to get Skipper to come and socialize with him. Out of the three, Skipper showed up once. Boomer was discouraged until his mother told him she and his dad had been engaged twice, and his dad didn’t give up. Well neither did Boomer. Eventually Skipper gave in.
Well the plot thickens. Boomer had hinted that he wanted to propose to Skipper, and they had been looking at rings. Skipper had received a bridal magazine in the Easter Basket my mother sent her. Boomer mentioned he was going to ask my dad for my sister’s hand in marriage. I told him I didn’t know people did that. He mentioned his brother in law Jimmy had spoken to his father. Needless to say, when it was Boomer and my dad by the pool, they had the talk. Boomer went for it. He told my dad things had been getting kind of serious. And then he asked my dad for my sister’s hand in marriage.
Well my dad’s best friends The Reveres came to vacay with us. Dr. Revere is an academic, and his wife Martha is pretty neat. Both met on Anyway, while we were taking a pic on the beach my dad announced Boomer had asked him for Skipper’s hand in marriage. It was fun, it was joyous, it was a change for the better.
 Mother’s Day occurred during that trip and my mom, who took the passing of my grandparents quite hard, said that now there was no one to call when good news happened for any of us. I told her this simply wasn’t true. Our family structure was not diminishing but rather changing. Now when Skipper was called to get familial news, good or bad, Boomer would be attached to that announcement. There would still be people to get the good news, it is just that those people had changed. The network was evolving, not disappearing. Boomer would be a good brother-in-law and son-in-law. He understands family, and would have an idea on how to play his role. It wasn’t a bad thing. It was a good thing. It’s just that it was different.
There has been some change in my work life as well. I got passed over for a huge opportunity this winter, and was rejected completely for a job involving my writing. Both killed my self-worth. Additionally, I am still waiting to hear on another thing and Lord only knows what is going on there. The winter involved a lot of darkness. The things that were going on were very bad on one end, and very good on another. There was a lot of uncertainty. Uncertainty is worse than death in some ways. With death you know what happens, uncertainty, not so much. The killer was, I came close to both. When I say close, I was touching the top of the mountain and fell.
However, there have also been some opportunities revealing themselves that have been beyond words. I have started a new job for Ranter, a phone app where I work as a talking head. It is for sports nuts and sports fans everywhere. I don’t know what will happen or where that door will lead, but I have wanted to do something with sports broadcasting forever. This is a door I have wanted since I was a teenager, and now it has appeared. Also, I am doing a theatre show at Soluna Theatre May 30-31. I have wanted to do theatres forever too. Now it is happening. Additionally, I am also taking a graduate level class with a former editor of a big publishing house in regards to my writing. And a few weeks ago, I taped a DVD, a dream I have had for years. So some of the change is good.
On the other hand, the change is scary. As a woman working in sports broadcasting, I am well aware of the sexism I will face from my male counterparts. While that word is getting better, it still has a long way to go. The theatre show is a go, but anything could happen and I am well aware. Also, there is the fear that now that I am a headliner, will I be able to cut the mustard? And I know I can write but I have never been a Grammar Nazi or school person, will I be able to hack it? As for my DVD, how to get it sold and how to market? Also, will I be able to watch myself, since I do talk like a red neck chipmunk on crystal meth. I love my puppet children but damn, they creep me out too.
Then I remember another archetype in Tarot, and that is the Moon. The night Boomer asked for Skipper’s hand in marriage there was a big, brilliant full moon. We had gotten back from dinner, and we were on the patio. Boomer mentioned walking to the water, and Skipper mentioned she feared snakes. After some chiding, Boomer got her to go. The three of us journeyed to the beach. The bright lines from the moon illuminated as we stood at the ocean’s edge, the cool water kissing our feet.
At that moment, it occurred to me that the future was not just unknown to me, but to everyone. Yes, my path currently is single career woman who eats, sleeps, and drinks her work. I don’t know what is next, but the only thing I can do is trust that I am doing what I have been called to do, and to know I have not been taken this far in order to be dropped. Additionally, Skipper and Boomer don’t know their future. Yes, the Lovers are young and optimistic, but their journey will have bumpy roads. No one’s path is smooth all the time. However, they trust that they have been brought together, and are walking into the future as a unit. So yes, in Tarot The Moon is the card of uncertainty, but however, it is also the card of faith and knowing the choice is right.
Today was street fair day and I heard the song “Dance to the Music.” I ended up dancing with a woman missing some teeth in the front. But as we danced, it occurred to me that while change could be scary, life wasn’t that serious. Jobs come and go. Careers ebb and flow. Lovers disappoint, disappear, and are replaced with better lovers if the one you have doesn’t work out. The only thing you can do is have gratitude for what is good because that too shall pass, and know that anything that is bad shall pass as well. In the end you only have yourself, and you have to be able to handle a curve ball or home run and anything in between.

“I Say ‘Ride Sally, Ride.”


Come see me at the Soluna Theatre, May 30-31 Happague, Long Island
Buy my book I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Check out my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous coming soon

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Everyone's Gone to the Moon (Jonathan King)

My parents were kids of the 1960s. It was when space exploration began. It was when Neil Armstrong first set foot on the moon. Years later, in his work as a lawyer my father would meet John Glenn. Actually, it was Senator Glenn. Like everyone else in the whole world it seemed he was friends with my Uncle Mack. Well, he wasn't really my uncle but he was a near and dear friend of my dad's we called Uncle Mack.

 Uncle Mack lived with his common law wife Felicia, who invented earrings. The earrings she invented were designs that covered one's whole ears. Ballroom dancers and women of that variety typically sported my aunt's creations. Felicia had a son who was gay. Her explanation for this was that when he was sixteen years old, he was abducted by aliens. It had all begun in a supermarket parking lot. He had gone to return the cart to it's rightful place and disappeared. Her son Donny turned up six months later. Apparently Donny was wandering the street with his head shaved speaking in tongues. The once proud cassanova was now after men. He came out to his parents and they were shocked. The father disowned him. Felicia shrugged and blamed it on the UFOs.

Donny and Felicia became notorious on the party circuit. Felicia would tell the story about the UFO abduction, and Donny would show off the scars in the back of his head where he claimed they put on brain plugs. Felicia would say this was the exact moment Donny became gay. Donny would talk about how a huge alien came up to him and this is where it happened. Conversion Therapy was a constant course of action but always failing. My father's theory was that Donny wasn't abducted by aliens. Instead he was just doing a lot of drugs as a result of being raised by his mother. This is why he went along with the alien story so willingly.

When my dad would talk about Felicia, he would grimace. He put up with her because he loved my Uncle Mack like the surrogate father he never had. Uncle Mack would respond by changing the subject to an exciting story about his days as a Teamster, like the time he dodged a car bomb Jimmy Hoffa planted in his car. Everyone would be entranced and the conversation would not be so strange.

Once my sister Skipper made the mistake of asking what planet the aliens were from. She was seven and didn't realize Felicia was cukoo for coca puffs. My brother Wendell elbowed her and that was the end of that. It was an excellent question, so excellent that I think it's better even to this day that the answer remains a mystery.

Felicia went so far as to take this theory to my Pop Pop. Yes, my dearly departed grandfather. He was a Navy Vet from World War II that served in the Pacific Theatre. After the war, he married my Nunni and served as a swim coach for his six children and meet ref. A mild mannered guy who loved to laugh, my grandfather was generally easy going and accepted everyone. Felicia found herself speaking to my Pop Pop. She got to the place in the story where her son got abducted by aliens and turned gay. My Pop Pop had enough and walked away. He said to my mother, "What is wrong with that woman? On second thought I don't want to know. Keep her away from me."

"Oh you mean Felicia. She's crazy." My mom replied apologetically. She and my Pop Pop were quite close.

My Pop Pop just took a breath and said to my mom, "Annie, she says her son got abducted by aliens."

"I know." My mom said.

Pop Pop then told her, "She says that's why he's gay."

"I know Dad. I know." My mom repeated. She had heard the story a million times like we all had. It got more bizarre every time.

"You know, her kid's gay. He isn't hurting anyone. Why can't she just deal with her gay son and stop making up some stupid story? It makes the kid's life worse and it makes her sound like an idiot." My grandfather observed. He was right.

Felicia's son might or might not have been abducted by aliens, but accepting that he was gay was difficult for her. This was still the 90s, the age of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. My grandfather despite his advanced age had more insight than anyone at the party. He could cut through the crazy story to see the truth, and wouldn't stick around to hear any of the bullshit.

This week my grandparents would have been married for sixty something odd years had they both lived. For the record, I have a cousin who has been struck by lightening three times and survived. So we are good at knowing which crazies are real and which aren't.

RIP Pop Pop.

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Pre-order my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous @

Monday, May 5, 2014


It seems everyone I went to high school with is married and is having a kid. Yeah, it is totally surreal. Yesterday we were just kids. Yes, we were skipping and hopping down the street on our way to school. Then we were either gossiping in the hall, AOL chatting about MTV or whining about homework. We were kids. It's what we did. Our teachers and our parents were friend or foe depending on the second of the day. And then what happened? We became adults...

Well at least some of us did, right? It's crazy to see my old classmates getting married. Someone friends me online with a different name and I am like, "Who the hell is this?" Oh Emily Smith is now Emily Howzer. Yeah, you went to Somewhere U and now work in advertising. You married some dude who looks like he sells used cars and he does. Wow, what a cute baby you have. Say, I remember you now. Yeah, you took a childcare class. You had the battery powered baby and were annoyed every time it cried. So you went and popped those batteries out. You failed the assignment I think. Glad to see you kinda got your life together. Glad to see you didn't leave this one in the girl's locker room. Should I ask if you are aware the kid doesn't have batteries? I think you already know.

I had a friend back in the day when we were still kids obsessed with having a kid. When we were in 8th grade she lied and said she had been AWOL all summer because she had a baby. She said her mother was passing her kid off as her brother. Meanwhile another friend of mine said this was a lie, and that this was in fact her baby brother. It was. This particular friend with mommy hunger would fake a pregnancy a few more times before actually getting knocked up junior year. I remember as seniors she was giving me a ride home. She pointed out she needed a new car, but couldn't get one because now she had a kid. She also complained to my mom about how much money her kid cost between clothes and the doctors. My mom looked at her dead on. Sick of her antics my mom replied, "Well Kay, real kids cost money you know." Now she has four real ones. She's married. Maybe she's an adult.

A girl who was real mean to me in 9th grade and tried to get her friends to jump me now has kids. At first I was terrified that her kids would be future bullies seeing that she was constantly in front of the magistrate. Shortly after trying to start with me, she was kicked out of school. Later, she met her match when she stole the cellphone of a girl from a redneck town over, and got her ass beat in the Eat 'n' Park parking lot. It seemed someone had too much catfighting, and she got on track after that as far as I know. She married some military dude and now lives in Germany. Apparently one of her kids has Autism which is crazy, and she is a vocal advocate. I would never wish a special needs child on anyone, the kids are lovely but it is a hard road to walk for the whole family. However, she doesn't take any crap and fights hard for her kid. I learned long after high school she also had a home life akin to a horror show. Maybe she has found peace and happiness, maybe she became an adult so her kid has a chance.

It's weird because there is no way in hell I am anywhere close to having a kid. If I had children with some of the idiots I dated, it would be a disaster. Yes, the pregnancy test complete with tears and the search for the nearest coathanger. Also, where would I keep the kid? I think my place is small but it could go in a drawer. It would be surrounded by a bunch of puppets which means it would totally be traumatized. Oh and the fact I can't send it into the wild when I get sick of it means that perhaps I am not ready to be a parent.

Dating dudes with kids is weird though. I have done it. One dude I liked him, and his lady had a real heroin issue so he had custody. I liked him I really did, but it didn't work out. Our get togethers were restricted because he had that whole parent thing going on. Then another time the dude was nice but baby mama was a total psycho who wasn't over the breakup. Thanks but no thanks. And another time, the dudes kid saw me on TV and thought I had all this money. So he made a wish list of all the things he wanted me to get him. I don't know what's funnier. The fact he thought I had money or the fact he made the wish list in the first place. Kids are so cute.

I was hanging out with friends of mine the other night doing a gig. One of my friends is in her 40s but was dating a 25 year old an headed to a club. The whole thing was not destined to be forever. Another one of my friends has a girl he sleeps with, spends all of his time with, but claims she's not a girlfriend. Note he isn't sleeping with anyone else and we all know it is going there but we don't want to scare him. Some of my friends smoke weed, are sometimes homeless, and live on government assistance. I don't think they had us in mind when they wrote Peter Pan, but there we are, a bunch of Peter Pans.

As for me, I know I am a kid. I chase a pipe dream. Yeah, some of my hard work is continuing to pay off. Still, the only time I eat well is when my mom cooks for me. Of course I can't walk in my house. My dad sometimes asks me if I clean my apartment, which is funny. Oh, and my parents have stopped asking me when I am going to get married because it is not happening in the distant future. I get paid to dress in costumes, play with dolls, and write. My imagination gets me places. Until recently I didn't have health insurance. Despite doing one grown up thing why go there?

Still, kids are kind of funny. The other day I was over my friends house and her little grandson handed me a juice box to share. He made a racket during the Oscars. We laughed that at age 2 he is already a straight man. And then a little girl on my block was dressed as Wonder Woman and was running up and down the street. I was having a long day and I nearly fell over it was so hysterical. So yeah, kids are cute and kids are funny. So what they are a lot of work.

Maybe I might have some someday.

But first I have to grow up myself.

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Pre-order my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous @

Friday, May 2, 2014

She Walks Over Me (Hole)

I was at a gallery opening last night with friends. It had been a long day, and I decided to go. Plus it was free. The place contained a cast of characters. One was a man with a Tropic appearance, accent from no where, and a claim to an important UN position. Another was an Asian woman who had a British accent making strangers swear pinkie promises. Then there was the man Robert, with the slicked back hair speaking to every woman in the place as if she were a party favor. He reminded me of Cotton Weaver from the Scream trilogy.

The two who stole the show were these female space aliens. Speaking some language that I have never heard, it sounded like a series of screeches and squawks. It is probably Russian or some Eastern Euro thing, but they were speaking really loudly like angry birds. They had all of Robert's attention, because they were just as bizarre as he was. Anyway, the one had a lot of makeup on her face. It was a bizarre, gold bronze. Her eyes had pounds and pounds of dark makeup, and the heavy lashes were so big her eyelids must have had superhuman strength. Easily six feet tall as was, she wore these bizarre clear sparking space boots and stood in them. Weighing sixty pounds, a gold dress, probably from Saturn where she was Queen, hung off of her body. She had a companion with her, more Earthly looking but equally as odd. We questioned whether the woman had human skin underneath the makeup because it was so heavy. Then I figured nah, it had long since rotted off and this was all that remained.

I wouldn't have minded this bizarre creature but she kept giving me this eye as if she was better of me. Yes, me, woman of human weight was somehow inferior to her cosmetic abortion. It felt like junior high all over again. I talked to some men, and they talked to me. It was a fun exchange, especially after the disappointing spring fling I had with Mr. Idiot.

Then I began talking to this one woman. She either had really perky boobs or had some serious work done up top. And it looked like she had thigh implants, too. She seemed nice, but you can always tell a surgically enhanced body. We began to talk about ourselves and what we did. I mentioned my puppets, my writing, ad my DVD. I really hate to talk about my work with strangers unless they know me.

I handed the woman my post card and this is how the exchange went:

Woman: I know that puppet. She's been on TV. She's really funny.

Me: Thanks. She's more successful than I am.

Woman: Yes she is. You should be nice to her. Wow, I knew that puppet looked familiar.

I didn't know what was worse, the fact that May Wilson is a slut that sleeps her way to the top, is an ungrateful bitch that always insults me, or that she gets all the credit. Worst part, it was her birthday and she was celebrating. Yeah, she forgot her underwear again. Oh, and it's crazy how she's the thing people remember and not me. But yeah, May Wilson.

As this was happening, the alien woman with too much makeup looked my way. They no longer felt like the most beautiful, self-important people in the room. With a slight, blank stare I could tell I stole their thunder. Yeah, I didn't have a metal dress stolen from the closet of some Star Wars sexpot. Sure, I had a moderate amount of makeup on. Still, they took all this time and effort to doll themselves up and I still came up better and more important. And then I got out my puppet sidekick Sonny Jones and he began entertaining people. Sonny made their facebook page, too. And we got a photo of ourselves as a duo while everyone else posed in groups. The alien women weren't so lucky.

At the end of the night we made fun of the alien women as they walked behind us, retreating to their spaceship.

Then I realized my feet hurt so much and I had a giant blister and would be unable to walk. My friend gave me her flats. Then I realized getting blisters, wearing flats, and having friends meant I was a human being. For better or for worse,  whether my slut puppet steals my thunder or I have a stare down with aliens from another planet it is what it is.

Maybe someday the strange creatures with too much makeup might get to be so lucky.

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Pre-order my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous @

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Getting Fired

Have you ever been fired?

It is like a bad breakup. Basically, you want out of the relationship but your partner dumps you first. You're not so much pissed that you got dumped. It's that they did it first that irks you.

I was twenty one and working at a women's clothing store in Pittsburgh. It was right after the finish of my junior year in college. Academically, I was successful. Personally, I was a mess. A drug addict roommate had stolen my ID and brought a cellphone, and I was engaged to a psychopath. I was performing ventriloquism and chasing the comedy rainbow for now, but it was more a pipe dream than a reality. I knew it was where I belonged, but the yellow brick road alluded me.

The job was torture. The only reason I looked forward to going was it was a reason to get out of my parent's house. When I would get there, I would sell to women who would buy the same size they wore in 1960. From there they would bring them home, try them on, and return to the store wanting a refund. Bitch, it was the size you wore in 1960. Multiply it by three, look at the number and cry here. Save me a headache and yourself the money. Seriously!

I remember there was one woman out for blood. Her name was Darrilynne. She had just had her husband up and disappear one day, and he had been cheating with a woman who looked like me. She always accused me of wrecking her displays. I was always getting in trouble, and the wrench didn't even work in my department. Of course she always was angry, and her hair was blood red and looked like it was cut by a weedwhacker. Probably from killing her husband and his lover. Anyway, one day she pissed me off so much I just shoved it. I think it was actually an improvement on the design. Yeah, it was mean and nasty but I was tired of being bullied. They could fire me. I was ready to quit. Hell, I didn't even care.

I still remember getting fired. They had just taken me off the schedule. This woman named Diane who probably has lung cancer by now because all I ever saw her do was smoke called me in. She sat me down and said, "It was too many things, April."

Basically, she said, "You don't get along with your coworkers." Oh, you mean my manager Dee Dee who's wardrobe looks like it hasn't seen the Civil Rights Movement? Or Margot, the fat bitch who says she hates gay people and I point out no man who works in this store is straight? Or better yet, Jenny on stock, who said she was thirty minutes late for work because she was scarfing down cookie dough after being dumped. Yeah, I laughed because I thought she was kidding. Then she started crying because she was serious. I told her how stupid she was, and how she should have just lied and said she had car trouble like everyone else does. Yeah, not liking them so much either.

Then Diane told me there was an incident where some woman claimed she spoke to me looking for a sweater at our store. We had three in our system. This woman drove three hours and was upset to find none. Diane told me I should have checked. I told Diane she should have checked her computer, it said she had three. Diane claimed the customer was upset. I told Diane that if this idiot had three hours to drive to buy a sweater she deserved to be upset.

And then she said I was suspected of messing up the display. That I did but didn't want to cop to it. So I took the blame for the sweater instead.

Diane then said I could use them as a reference, and it wouldn't go on my record. I told her it was okay. I wouldn't be telling anyone I ever worked there. I was happy to get fired, especially since doing the math I made more money on unemployment anyway. Oh, and I got another job that day where I made nearly twice as much and actually cared about what I did.

My parents were the only ones that were upset about it. They were "worried." I had been gainfully employed since age fourteen. If this was the first time I was fired, I was doing pretty good.

Two days later, I got an offer to do a feature gig in Omaha, Nebraska. My path was being shown to me. Yeah, I might have made more money had I advanced in the chain. But the thing was, this is what I was meant to be doing. The job rejected me because I didn't belong there and never would. I had gotten fired, and more than anything in the world I wasn't concerned about a backup plan. I wasn't afraid. It was do or die.

I moved to New York and after graduating became serious about comedy. I took a job delivering singing telegrams. Not only did it give me an opportunity to expand myself, but I got a boss and coworkers I respect and adore. Most importantly, hell or high water, this is where I belong. I also got out of the relationship with the psychopath who denied me of my puppet children, and began to chase those dreams.

I have appeared on national television, headlined, and just recorded a DVD. I have worked with some of my heroes, made a song that was an internet hit, write for the Huffington Post sometimes and even wrote a book.

Am I where I want to be yet? No But had things worked out at the clothing store I would have kept my job and again, become a manager. I wouldn't have any of my dreams come true, and they would just be clouds in my coffee.

So yeah, getting fired was the best thing that ever happened to me. It got me to get off my ass and to go for it. Also, it got me to not be scared of what might happen next, and led to me where I always knew I belonged.

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
Pre-order my DVD Broke and Semi-Famous @