A big corporation asks me to do a live performance since the one I gave in real life went well. This time I do not feel engaged enough to do a good job. I’ve brought along some index cards but can’t find them in my purse and every time I stop to dig for them I lose my thread and audience so I plod on. Everything and everybody is twitching. The crowd and I are standing in a big drafty old factory floor that’s not quite been transformed into something else. It’s the kind of building that used to abound in the West 30s and 40s when I first moved to New York. I am rambling while worrying idly that I’m not worrying when the roof begins to crumble and then bursts into flames. Again, I think, since the roof of Chelsea Market burst into flames earlier this month as I was getting fired. Everyone runs out but me and a tall woman with beautiful arms and copper skin and eyes. She and I are detached, watching the drama unfold. Then we turn to each other and Continue Reading →
I am the descendent of Pogrom and Holocaust survivors, Jews who came to this country as refugees from a Europe torn up by xenophobic dictators. When people on my father’s side arrived at Ellis Island, the United States was their safe space, their beacon, their golden land of opportunities. Until this week, I’d never shed their optimism no matter how much others legitimately complained about America. I knew that many people of color and indigent people never had that glow about this nation. I knew their ancestors did not arrive here with the same triumph. They were dragged here in chains, or already had been here, only to be robbed, tortured, serially murdered. My mother’s people said Sioux Nation members in our line had experienced such horrors. I knew all too well that this country was as founded on blood as it was on hope. Continue Reading →
“Two tears in a bucket… motherfuck it.” Isn’t it the way that Lady Chablis, the true star of one of the few un-loathsome Eastwood films–one I watched again and again just for her–died on a day when many of my colleagues and I tore the director a new arsehole. You just know she would’ve appreciated the irony. Heck, she probably engineered it. She was 59, which is not bad for a transwoman who lived through AIDS, but still far too young. (Here’s to the day when transgendered people of color regularly live to a ripe old age.) Rest in power and pretty peace, you doll, you grand empress, you hip-shaking, sooth-saying, stone-cold fox.