Tuesday, June 27, 2017
1. Talented cast
2. Awesome costumes and sets
3. People calling each other wankers
4. Epic power anthems
5. Tear-away pants
6. Time steps
7. New mustache
8. Did I mention wankers?
9. Wankers wankers wankers!
10. Cool selfies after the show under the color-changing uplighting on the Iowa Theatre Building's Corinthian pilasters
Then there are the staggeringly ignorant, lazily belligerent, contemptuously grotesque oversimplifications of Republican economic agendas that permanently disqualify you from every conversation on every topic ever even if you whisper them only to a dead elephant.
Grover Norquist -- a Harvard Business School MBA who founded something he calls Americans for Tax Reform -- is apparently that dumb.
But my dark-mysterious-stranger mustache and I can't stop you from swooning at a respectable distance. We know you can't help yourselves.
Monday, June 26, 2017
Sunday, June 25, 2017
We’re proud because despite relentless persecution everywhere we turn—when organized religion viciously attacks and censures and vilifies us in the name of selective morality, when our families disown us, when our elected officials bargain away our equality for hate votes, when entire states codify our families into second-class citizenship, when our employers fire us, when our landlords evict us, when our police harass us, when our neighbors and colleagues and fellow citizens openly insult and condemn and mock and berate and even beat and kill us—we continue to survive.
We’re proud because pride is the opposite of shame—and despite what systemic bigotry and the ugliest sides of organized religion work so hard to make the world believe, there is nothing shameful about being gay.
We’re proud because—thanks to the incredible bravery shown by gay people who lived their lives openly sometimes to the point of being defiantly in the decades before us—we can live our lives more and more openly at home, at work, with our families, on social media … and even on national television.
We're proud because we've worked tirelessly to achieve legal equality in marriage, adoption, parental rights and many other ways that make our families recognized as Families in our states and across our country. And though we have more to accomplish—and though bigotry disguised as morality and religion and the supposed mandates of constituents works and sometimes succeeds at eroding our newfound equalities—we have the momentum and intelligence and drive and humanity and ability to keep driving back the hate as we continue to drive forward with both our newfound and future equalities.
We’re proud because through our tireless work and the prevailing powers of common sense and compassion, Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and Proposition Hate and the so-called Defense of Marriage Act have collapsed in on their illogical, immoral, meritless foundations—and new legislative attempts to dehumanize us gain little to no traction or visibility and soon die on the trash heap as well.
We’re proud because we are smart enough to overcome the self-loathing that our venomous, mindlessly theocratic society forces on us, and we have the power to stop its destructive cycle by fighting back and by making intelligent choices involving sex and drugs and money and relationships and the way we live our lives -- and by using our lives as examples of success and humanity and love that other gay people can respect and emulate and achieve more and more easily.
We’re proud because after all we’ve been through, the world increasingly continues to notice and respect us and enthusiastically appropriate the often fabulous culture we’ve assembled from the common struggles and glorious diversity of our disparate lives.
We’re proud because especially this month and always all year we’re celebrating with parties and street fairs and parades overflowing with drag queens, leather queens, muscle queens, dad-bod queens, glitter queens, you’d-never-even-know-they-were queens queens and even straight-but honorary-queens-for-a-day queens, and together we can see beyond the pride in the parades of our lives and together celebrate the underlying Pride in the parades of our lives.
Quite simply, we’re proud that we have so incredibly much to be proud of.
Saturday, June 24, 2017
Friday, June 23, 2017
Thursday, June 22, 2017
Anyway, we open in a week. Here in this gorgeous historic theater. With a cast of people I positively cherish. And a combined level of talent that will blow you away.
Come see our little show. You won't regret it. Get your tickets here.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
Speaking of, I'd grabbed the first spot I saw when I got downtown tonight, which ended up being about six blocks from the theater in Kingston Square, a long-neglected neighborhood that's making a slow but gorgeous recovery after drowning in almost 10 feet of water in the 2008 flood. There is a layered boxiness that visually links the architecture in the area, from the 1911 People's Bank Building designed by Louis Sullivan in his fortressy "jewel box" style to the post-war brutalist commercial spaces clad in corrugated concrete to the new mixed-use residential construction profiled with broad crenellations and proud cornices. There is a relentless horizontalness to the neighborhood's rooflines and setbacks, and someone somewhere in the neighborhood's recent revitalization decided to trace all that horizontal geometry with simple, bright white lights. And the effect at night is at once austere, majestic and stunning. So stunning, in fact, that I go out of my way to drive through the neighborhood every time I'm in the area at night. I've stopped and parked and wandered around with my camera a couple times to try and capture the magic, but I could never find the right spot to capture the full expanse of everything I find so beautiful. When I got to my car tonight, though, I discovered I was in an ideal location to capture most of it, which -- since I've finally accepted that all that grand horizontalness is just too horizontal to squeeze into one picture -- is still perfectly breathtaking.
So here, after almost a year of attempts to find the perfect angle, is why I always reroute my nighttime trips through downtown Cedar Rapids to make sure I approach the area of 1st Street and 3rd Avenue SW from every angle:
I have rehearsal directly across the street from the man-boy rally. There are children in our show and we're all on high alert to protect them from the belligerent trash that is already littering our streets. A friend of mine was assaulted by a group of these rock dwellers as they started to coagulate downtown just hours ago. THE MINDSET OF IGNORANCE AND THE CULTURE OF PROVOCATION THIS HUMAN FILTH FOSTERS HAS ALREADY RESULTED IN THE ASSAULT OF A FRIEND OF MINE WHO WAS JUST WALKING TO HIS CAR FROM WORK.
Fair warning, trump trash: I am bigger than you, I am smarter than you, I loathe you and everything you breathe for, and if you start ANYTHING with any of my friends, show personnel, show kids or anyone else who actually matters tonight, I will finish it for you. I am not a violent person and I will contain the fury you fire up in me tonight unless you even try to start something. Then there are no rules.
You do NOT want to find out how serious I am about this.
The trumpfant terrible is clearly on his way.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Monday, June 19, 2017
Sunday, June 18, 2017
Happy Father's Day/Sister's Anniversary/Delicious Mystery-Flavored Brown Bread Impaled On A Freakishly Fat Knife Day!
Sigh. Dating is so hard.
It was an exceptionally dreary example of early 20th century prefabricated architecture that was probably seen as austerely noble in its day and was unfortunately built to last well past its visual expiration date a decade later as the architectural world rediscovered the soul-nourishing properties of ornamentation.
So you can imagine how the city aesthetes rejoiced with great jubilation when the building started to be torn down in the 1990s, and then we waited with surprised but hopeful trepidation when we realized that what had brought devastating visual and emotional blight to the city for over half a century was not disappearing entirely but was instead being partially repurposed into delightfully contextual architecture: Ghosts of chipped-away pillars, arcs of corrugated metal and jagged geometries of pre-war brick suddenly stood with beauty, grace and a touch of fun as part of the endlessly clever new Cedar Rapids History Center building. And I quickly learned to stop sighing and looking away every time I drove past it. The new concept was quirky and invigorating and created a meaningful architectural dialogue between antiquated visual efficiencies and modern plays on scale, material and embellishment.
Last year, the Cedar Rapids History Center began its move to Cedar Rapids' historic 1896 Douglas Mansion -- whose adjacent carriage house at 5 Turner Alley was transformed in the 1920s into an apartment and studio by "American Gothic" painter Grant Wood -- and the History Center building was slightly renovated to become the new Cedar Rapids Day School. I'm kinda sad that the History Center abandoned its delightfully contextual hybrid-architecture home, but I still rejoice with great jubilation every time I drive by it.
Saturday, June 17, 2017
I'm afraid to go upstairs right now.
The trans-embracing left does nothing on that level of cruelty but expects a reciprocal level of compassion and human decency from you. Making opportunistic partisan jokes about attempted murder -- especially as a woman who has killed another human being -- shows there is no bottom to the absence of compassion and human decency that rots your entitled, self-important lack of a soul.
I am done defending everything about you over this statement. I stand up to and try to educate anyone who makes cruel or simply insensitive comments about trans people. You to date have generated the overwhelming majority of these conversations. And until this, I defended you despite our idealogical differences. But you are less than human to me now too. You are no better than the party you cling to who works so hard to loathe you. You deserve each other.
2. Go to the gym
3. Troll pants-wetting cretins who don't know the difference between the Salem witch trials and The Crucible
Friday, June 16, 2017
Thursday, June 15, 2017
Anyway! My trainer just put me through a brutal back workout and I'm all but oozing sweat through my paint-spattered shirt from my college newspaper so I took a selfie in front of my gym's breaker box because that totally completed the uncanny Wolverine resemblance I'd achieved. But as I said, I've never seen a Wolverine movie so for all I know he didn't work at his college paper, didn't sloppily paint his sister's house or didn't go to a gym painted the color of microwaved mangoes. Nevertheless, you still have my full permission to tell me I look like Wolverine.
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Really sick. Very sad.
I lost a friend in a violent terrorist attack. I lost a friend in a violent assault. I am haunted by the violent mass murders at Sandy Hook Elementary School and Pulse nightclub and countless other terrifying, preventable massacres. I don't wish violence and murder even on people for whom I have a visceral loathing. And I have a visceral loathing for you. For repeatedly -- proudly -- placing more importance on your party's interpretation of the Second Amendment and on the gun lobby and on allowing increasingly unrestricted access to assault weapons than on the safety and the very lives of our citizens. For recklessly inciting people through your position of influence and privilege to "shoot at the government." For having the gall to be shocked and appalled when the time bomb you helped build all but literally exploded in your hands this morning when an obviously disturbed man with obviously easy access to an assault weapon followed your charge and shot at the government. At you. At all of us.
Really sick. Very sad.
Measurably preventable. Immeasurably infuriating.