Green Gravel is an alternative comedy fest happening in Toledo, Iowa from March 28-30, 2014.
My friend Lee is putting this together with some amazing comics! Check out the Green Gravel comedy festival with Marc Maron, Todd Glass, Brody Stevens, Jackie Kashian, James Urbaniak, Jon Lovitz, etc etc. Hooray!
I. I am waiting for a letter to arrive in the mail. It will be short, no more than one page, and will be covered in black ink, with the occasional flourish of institutional logo. The signature at the bottom will belong to a high-ranking officer at my Midwestern college of 12,000 students, and the words that preface it will briefly explain the method and, more importantly, the verdict, of an almost three-week long investigation, in which students, faculty, and staff were questioned by the schoolâs legal staff as to if, in fact, I had committed acts constituting an official case of racial harassment.
When I attended Emerson College in Boston from 2006 to 2009, there was a huge problem with the way black, and other minority, academics were treated at the school. (I covered the stories, documented here.) Although I loved working for the newspaper dearly, I can only see a mirror of the way minorities — both students and faculty — were treated at Emerson in this woman’s article. Emerson, a hugely accepting LGBTQ community, still struggles to make, specifically, black students feel like they belong at the college. Nothing gets accomplished when the people in power are refusing to even acknowledge the problem, and a bunch of white teenagers and early 20-somethings are bitching about “racial discrimination” to a black PROFESSOR. This is a problem within the whole university system, and it makes me sick.
I make the new people watch the movies you liked. In a way, I turn them into you for just a couple hours. Into someone who knows what you know, and enjoys what you enjoy.
I become you, sharing this with them, the way you shared it with me. I am you. I teach them what you taught me. I re-stage the moments we had, the ones that were important to me. I do them twice — once as me, and once as you.
Round one with Andres Dubouchet, Emily Maya Mills, Gaby Dunn, Josh Androsky, Mike Bridenstein, and Mike O’Connell. Recorded October 15, 2013 at the NerdMelt Showroom. See Competitive Erotic Fan Fiction LIVE every third Tuesday at the NerdMelt Showroom in…
This was fun! I was on Nerdist’s Competitive Erotic FanFiction Podcast and it was great. Listen here if you want to know way too much about me.
Twelve years ago, I had just moved to New York City. I came here with a friend from my college sketch group. Her name was Alana and we had big dreams. She got a job walking dogs for a member of the SNL cast, which of course meant that within six months, we’d both be cast members too. Obviously, we quickly realized that it was going to take way longer than six months. It was going to take seven months. We got to work immediately: we took Improv Level 1 at Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, went to all kinds of comedy and weird performance art open mics, and observed the scene a bit. Having done that for a month or two, we pretty much figured we knew the deal. You write some material, perform it a few times, get noticed, and bam, you’re discovered. So, we started writing sketches together - stuff we could perform as a duo at open mics. Having had so much success in our college sketch group, we knew that our material was going to blow people’s minds.
The first thing we wrote was a sketch about a robot. I honestly can’t tell you what the hell the sketch was about, but I do remember that I played some kind of crazy German woman who owned a robot, played by Alana. It included lots of references to various robots in pop culture - Johnny 5, Small Wonder, and the like. Really edgy stuff. Now, we knew that if we were gonna impress the industry, we needed to fully commit to the premise. And that meant we needed a top-of-the-line robot costume. For weeks, we made trips to Home Depot, and constructed a robot costume from scratch. This thing looked amazing, but its construction was such that Alana could barely move while in it. No matter; we were fucking serious about comedy.
Finally, we were ready to debut the sketch. We chose an open mic located on Varick Street. It was in some weird venue with a multi-colored stage that lit up. There were lots of colors on the walls too. Thinking back, it may have been a gay night club. Alana insisted on wearing half the costume on the way to the venue, because it was so difficult to put on, and she didn’t want to mess with it too much once we arrived. After spending most of our money on the costume, we opted to ride the subway. She looked like a robot centaur. Human up top, robot down below. I didn’t look much better; I had slicked back my pixie hair cut with greasy gel, and was wearing a black turtleneck and tight black pants. The look was definitely inspired by (and let’s be honest, fully plagiarizing) the SNL “Sprocket” costume. Because that is what German women with robot-money look like. (Duh.) Meanwhile, I was responsible for transporting the robot body and head, also very heavy, in two giant trash bags. I wasn’t strong enough to lift them, so I dragged them. What I’m trying to say is that we looked cool as fuck.
Earlier today, George Watsky did a dumb thing (stage diving off a very high rigging) at the Warped Tour and injured some people including himself. When I first heard about it I pretty much couldn’t breathe because no one knew if he was OK and not only is he a great friend of mine, but he’s like a genuine national treasure.
So I freaked out, Katherine freaked out, all we knew was that he didn’t get up after the jump and was taken away on a stretcher. We called in some YouTube connections and learned that he was at the hospital but conscious and OK.
I didn’t want to say anything about it until I saw how George handled the situation, which, of course, he faced in head on and talked about how he was an irresponsible dumbass.
If you’ve ever been an irresponsible dumbass and are wondering how to properly handle the situation, take a cue from George.
“Sure, there is a mix,” Dunn says when I ask her about the range of topics in women’s magazines. “There could be a story about lipstick, and then a great story about Afghani women…It’s not just women’s magazines, either. Have you ever opened a GQ or an Esquire?” Dunn points out. If I go to Esquire’s site, I immediately see the following stories: ‘International Sexy Women’, ‘Everything You Need to Know About Stephen King Movies’, and ‘Wear This Sport Coat, Drink This Scotch’.
“But for some reason men’s interests, like sports, or whatever, are seen as these noble, very serious topics…whereas ‘women’s interests’, that are makeup or boy bands, or whatever, are seen as stupid,” says Dunn. “Why? They’re the same level of stupid…how is (that) any more shallow than the obsession with the Super Bowl?”
Dearborn Heights — Police sent a request to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday asking for charges to be filed against a resident accused in the fatal shooting of a 19-year-old Detroit woman Saturday in a case of suspected self-defense gone bad.
Renisha McBride, a 19-year-old Detroit woman, was shot in the head with a shotgun by a resident of a home in the 16000 block of Outer Drive near Warren Avenue early Saturday morning after she is believed to have sought help at the home.
The family of McBride said she went for help after a car accident around 2:30 a.m. Saturday. Her cellphone battery had died, her family said.
McBride’s maternal aunt, Bernita Spinks, said the shooting was not justified even if the resident believed her niece was an intruder looking to break into the home.
“He shot her in the head … for what? For knocking on his door,” said Spinks on Tuesday. “If he felt scared or threatened, he should have called 911.”
Spinks praised the latest police’s decision to seek charges against the resident in the shooting of her niece saying “Thank you Jesus! I’m very happy there is progress (on the case).”
Spinks said the family met with officials from the Prosecutor’s Office on Tuesday. Spinks said she believes her niece was the victim of racial profiling.
“You see a young black lady on your porch and you shoot?” Spinks said. “He killed my niece and he needs to pay for it. He needs to be in jail.
“There was no window broken. My niece didn’t bother anyone. She went looking for help and now she’s dead.”
Preliminary autopsy information from the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office indicates Renisha McBride was shot in the head with a shotgun. Spinks said the young woman was shot in the back of the head as she turned to walk off the porch of the home where she sought assistance.
A vigil for the young woman, who recently started a job for Ford Motor Co., is scheduled today for 4:45 p.m. in front of the home where she was shot to death.
Services for McBride will be 11 a.m. Friday at House of Prayer and Praise, 16520 Wyoming in Detroit.
Men are always telling me to not look at my phone when I walk around because I should be “taking in the trees and the sky and ~appreciating life around me~” and because I shouldn’t be so “shallow” and “a superficial phone obsessed girl” but they don’t get that I’m looking at my phone because I don’t want to accidentally make eye contact with some psycho and then have them follow me down the street because I was the unlucky woman who got their attention that day and that is why I’m looking at my phone when I walk, to be safe and to make it seem like I’m talking to someone who would notice me missing and to avoid walking through a hallway of dudes on the street making kissy faces and calling me “dumb bitch,” and looking at my phone while I walk down the street gives me that barrier.
Today I interviewed Gaby Dunn for The Annual. I’ve been a fan of Dunn since 100 Interviews and now she’s living in LA and pursuing comedy and writing a pilot, and oh my word, she is so great. We also like lots of the same TV shows. She really likes Sleepy Hollow.