SASSY WAITRESS

Chapter One
It was day two of a two week run in Indiana and I was standing in the back of the room waiting to go up. The night before, while on stage, I’d gotten into it with an open mic guy who was sitting in the front row taking notes during my set. Which means he was stealing my jokes.

Yep, front row. At least sit in the back where I can’t see your dumb ass.

Also, I had to break up a fight between audience members because no one who worked at the club seemed at all interested in doing it. So, I said, to two big-ole hammered farm boys, “You, aren’t going anywhere. And, you, are not kicking anybody’s ass. Both of you sit down right now.”

And you know what they said? Nothing. They just sat down.

I have found that if you speak to an intoxicated man the way his mother would, he will immediately behave. I don’t recommend this if it’s someone you feel romantic about because it kinda sets a disturbing tone. However, if that’s your thing, then have at it.

So, as I stood watching the opening act being verbally pummeled by the audience, I decided that my life as a full-time road comic was finally approaching its end.

Never saw that coming.

But, after way too many years of slugging it out on the road, I was over it. Not stand-up, but definitely the lifestyle.

I’d grown weary of living out of a suitcase, driving all night to get to the next gig, sleeping in my car or some disgusting comedy condo and staying in shitty, scary motels. I no longer wanted to deal with drunks, rowdy audiences or idiots who only wanted to hear dick jokes and thought it perfectly civilized to yell, “Show us your tits!”

Who raised these people?

I was physically and emotionally worn out but didn’t realize, or maybe just didn’t want to acknowledge, how much until that very moment.

Plus, I was always broke.

Always.

Fuck!

I was so sick and tired of never having any money, fighting with my boyfriend because of it and worrying about how to pay my bills. And also, getting to choose between eating or putting gas in my car.

In case you were wondering, the whole “starving artist” thing is way more romantic when you’re talking about it over a big, fat, juicy steak as opposed to a pack of stale peanut butter crackers. Hence the F-word, followed by an exclamation point a few sentences ago. For the record, I don’t exclamation point lightly. But then again what lady does really?

The older I got, louder became the siren’s call of having a pot to piss in or two nickels to rub together.

Perhaps someday I’d even own my very own Frigidaire. “What must that be like?” I’d ponder yet dare not say aloud.

At twenty-two, I gave up any chance of normal by pledging my undying love for stand-up. I made my mom cry, burned the boats, plus all the other stuff you do to prove you ain’t fuckin around, and then headed off in my Canary yellow 1974 Ford Pinto to make the world laugh one comedy club, hotel lounge, and one-niter hell gig at a time.

Oh, and also to assuage some unspoken ache.

I am too good enough, you’ll see!

They never see.

In a nutshell: After several years of roaming around the country and not living anywhere, I moved to Los Angeles in my late twenty’s. Met my ex-boyfriend. We lived (out of wedlock, much to my mother’s chagrin) in a great apartment at the beach for about a year. He got a job offer in San Francisco. I dramatically refused to go.

I went.

We moved into an apartment in Tiburon. That’s in Marin County across the Golden Gate Bridge. We had an amazing view of the city and Alcatraz. Alcatraz sits in the middle of the Bay. There’s a light on top of the prison that goes around every six seconds warning ships that it’s there and so please don’t smash into it.

My boyfriend would sit on the couch and time the light as it went around. He’d say, visibly agitated, “It goes every 6 seconds. It’s making me crazy.”  I would respond, “Let’s not blame the light, shall we? How about you just go sit in that chair instead?” His job ended five years later and we returned to Southern California. Eight years later our relationship would follow suit.

Greetings Inhabitants Of Planet Earth

Hey all-

Just a quick note regarding a policy change taking effect immediately.

I will continue to say “Hello” or “Good morning” when we make eye contact, even if you don’t acknowledge me.

I’ll still hold doors, the elevator, say “Please” & “Thank You” & “Pardon me” and offer to help carry something when your hands are full, even if you don’t extend the same courtesy.

However from this moment forward: When walking towards each other on the street, in a hallway, in the mall or anywhere one would walk towards another human being, I will no longer be the only person who steps aside so that we don’t smash into each other. I’m 6 feet tall and weigh 150lbs — I’m willing to take the hit.

Everyone was issued regulation manners and kindness when we were assigned to this post. If you can’t find yours—check in your ass. That’s usually where mine are when I forget that I’m not the only person on the planet.

Best,

Your fellow earthling

So This Boring Guy Walks Into A Bar…

Yesterday I got a text from a friend who’d just heard a comic talk shit about her on a podcast. Apparently they were naming “angry” woman comics. I agree, pretty innovative stuff.

Ironically this didn’t make her “angry” at all; instead, we just found it terribly silly and amusing. Wonder if the host actually wrote that down on his list of topics for the show? Maybe “angry women comics” was #3 after “How things change once you get married.” Good work. Way to push the envelope, dude.

However, I was thinking perhaps it might be more interesting and creative to try and name a comic who isn’t angry. (FYI— most people don’t get into stand-up because “Sunshine” is their middle name. ) Yeah, not a lot of ex- captain’s of the football team or chicks who had great skin in high school signing up for open mics.

I’ve been accused of being angry and it doesn’t bother me. Because sometimes I am and there’s nothing wrong it. Obviously I don’t feel that way all of the time. I’m not walking around saying, “And as for you, adorable chubby baby, stop your chortling and lighting up the room, you selfish little prick.”

Anger wears a lot of different hats—-

Sometimes it’s just feeling passionate about something, speaking your truth, or standing up for yourself or for someone who can’t. And sometimes it’s just a joke that certain people don’t like because they think its mean. Girls aren’t supposed to be mean, you know.

Doesn’t matter what race, religion or country you’re from, women are raised to be nice. Be nice! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD ALWAYS BE NICE!

On behalf of every woman on this planet may I just say, “ Fuck nice.”

And as for the boring “women aren’t funny” stereotype, I will just say this, it’s true, some woman are not funny. Some men aren’t funny. Some white folks can’t dance and some Asian people may not be the best drivers. I’m also sure that there are Jewish people who are quite frugal and perhaps some African American men have larger gentlemen parts than men of other ethnic backgrounds. So it doesn’t bother me at all if someone thinks, “women aren’t funny.” Because those people usually aren’t funny or very bright.

Dear Jerry Lewis,

Why not take the focus off of us and instead focus on writing a joke that’s relevant to this century or even the last 43 years, and then let’s meet for coffee and have this discussion.

Love, Becky

There’s nothing wrong with anger. Embrace it. Let it be a catalyst for positive change or a good joke, and not a just a tired topic on a tired podcast.

The British Zombies Are Coming! The British Zombies Are Coming!

Happy does not equal funny.

Funny does not equal happy.

Although you can feel happy when you’re being funny, I think it’s hard to be funny if you’re happy.

Not the kind that counts anyway. I’m not talking about “Why is it that you can put two socks in the dryer but only one sock comes out? Where’s the other sock, everybody?” I don’t mean that crap.

I mean real comedy. The kind that comes from the deep, dark pain that eats away at your esophagus.

It won’t let you sleep at night. It makes you break down in tears for no reason and spend seven nights a week in the bottom of a bottle of vodka. That’s the funny I’m talking about.

Some of the best comics I know are the most miserable people on the planet. Because they aren’t happy, and they aren’t afraid to admit it. They’re also the smartest.

Smart people are rarely happy. You know why? Because they’re surrounded by people who aren’t very smart.

I know this first hand. Does that sound arrogant? I don’t care. I can say that because I’m going to sat this: I’m not educated. I’m not well-read. I didn’t go to an Ivy League college. I didn’t even graduate from college. As a matter of fact, I actually spelled “college” with an a  in the first draft of writing this. Yea spell-check!

But I’m still smarter than most people. You know why? Because I have common sense.

Plus I have street smarts. I’m not really even sure what that means, but I played on the streets a lot when I was a kid, so I felt like I should throw that in there.

And I said all that just to say this: if zombies invaded a comedy club, the comics would probably be killed first.

Depending on the line up.

If you don’t get that, listen here: Zombies eat brains… So congratulations, you’re safe.

The Honeycomb Hideout

I once spent thirteen and a half months hiding out in a gay bar. Now, despite my six-foot frame and the fact that I bought myself “The Perfect Push-Up” for my birthday, I am straight. Sorry ladies, but it took me forty years to figure out how my vagina works, I don’t have time to be messing with yours.

Okay, why would a hetero woman spend over a year of her life in a bar for homosexuals? Well, if you think it’s because that community is accepting and there’s no judgment there, then apparently you’ve never hung out with gay men. There’s nothing but. That’s why it’s so fun. A gay man doesn’t need to know at whom or why you’re mad. They just need to know you are, and then, let the good times roll.

I’m not exactly sure what I was hiding from really, but there I’d sit night after night, a dirty martini in one hand, invisible cigarette in the other, taking to the transvestite next to me. “I’ll tell you the problem with comedy,” I’d say, followed by, “The people who book The Tonight Show can kiss my ass.” Then I’d blow fake cigarette smoke in her overly made-up, pre-op face.

“Fuck ’em, honey,” she’d say politely before grabbing her pony of Budweiser and heading for the men’s room.

Exactly. Fuck them.

I felt like a woman scorned. As if I’d put stand-up through medical school and it had left me  for some open-mic chick.

I’ve spent my life busting my hump on the road. I’ve given up everything for comedy. I’ve never owned a refrigerator or had a kid. And who knows how many times I could have been married.

I don’t know, perhaps the bald young lady with the skull and crossbones tattooed on her forehead was right. Maybe I just need up lighten up a little.

Looking back, I realize that my time spent in that bar wasn’t a total waste. Because with each passing day, the transvestite I was talking about, began to look and dress more and more like me until she was my doppelganger. The lesson I learned is this…when a man who is becoming a woman chooses to emulate you, it makes you remember that you are truly fabulous.

Oh Silly Rabbit

If asked to describe my intellect, I’d have to say that it lies somewhere between a rocket scientist and Lennie from Of Mice and Men.

Believe me, nobody’s putting me in charge of sending a Cosmonaut to Mercury. But on the flip side, I do know to stop hugging the baby before he turns cornflower blue.

I don’t pretend to understand E=mc2, nor can I fathom how people with no job seem to always have beer and cigarette money.

And also a dog.

But I knows what I know.

For example, I’m aware you gotta pay your bills on time, and, more importantly, I’m pretty sure I understand what’s funny. Admittedly it’s usually not funny to everybody, but I do know what is hilarious to people of a like, fucked-up mind.

It’s for these folks that I write my silly stories and jokes. There’s no judgment. They just laugh because they get it. They understand that I wouldn’t really hug a baby to death.

Even if I wanted to.

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