Saturday, December 09, 2006

Defending My Pits: An Informal Rebuttal

Open Note to Scott C. Morgan, reviewer of UGLY BABY for the WINDY CITY TIMES:

Though you loved the play, praised Philip's witty and wonderful writing and handed out kudos to the cast and to our director Eric, you took me to task on one very small point...

So now, I have to lovingly bitch-slap you via cyberspace.

First off, I can tell from the review that you truly enjoyed the play. Your only complaint was that it left you wanting more - - which quite frankly is a GOOD THING... especially when you're talking about LATE NIGHT THEATRE and COMEDY. The old showbiz saying is "Leave 'em wanting more!" - - not "Give them more than they want so they'll be begging for you to shut the fuck up so they can take their tired asses home!"

So, I guess you wanted us to be like Cher's Farewell Concert Tour and just go on and on indefinitely or something. But even so, you really loved the show and loved me and said so in print:
"Rader is the biggest hoot doubling as both grooms’ incessantly complaining mothers with extreme accents." - Scott C. Morgan
Then, there's your last paragraph which reads:
" Rader’s one misstep (besides his wayward wig) is his still apparent armpit hair (something a Jewish socialite mother, let alone most drag queens, would never show)." - Scott C. Morgan
First of all, my wig is flawless and modeled after upcoming Grammy nominee Mary J. Blige. It is not wayward. It is firmly grounded. It is rock solid. It is the milkshake that brings all the boys to the yard, alright.

You wanna talk shit about my wig? I'm throwin' DOWN! (Fuck, that's a really drag-queeny thing to say, ain't it?)

Secondly, I thought about shaving my armpit hair before we opened the show, and Philip basically said, "No, don't. Its a genderfuck."

Wikipedia's definition of Genderfuck is:
A gender performance which "fucks with" or plays with traditional gender identities, gender roles, and gender presentation.

Examples of genderfuck in relation to physical performance or appearance include people prominently displaying secondary sex characteristics of different genders together, such as breasts and a beard.

Genderfuck is generally an intentional attempt to present a confusing gender identity which contributes to dismantling the perception of a gender binary.

A sub category of LabelFuck, a blanket term for all those making efforts to break down traditional roles and barriers for the sake of establishing a more fluid, creative and self made method of interpreting, presenting and interacting with the world. Genderfuck implies not only the instigation of confusion for the sake of breaking down the binary, but also leaving more fluid room to be self expressive and self explorative with less expectations of a norm and more room to play via being radically honest.

Notice the phrase "the instigation of confusion for the sake of breaking down the (gender) binary." You get that, Scottie?

Ok, I'm not sure I get all of that either, but since there's a blonde woman with a black wig and fake side burns on one side me and another woman in fat suit made from a hula-hoop sporting a drawn-on mustache doing a Marlon Brando impersonation on the other side of me, I think people realize that we're not doing Ibsen!!!

No Ibsen play ever ended with a musical number where everyone does the Hand Jive! (And if it did, I don't want to fucking hear about it.)

We're playing with stereotypes and race and sexuality and societal ideas about marriage and family and children and yes, GENDER! Not shaving my armpit hair isn't the "misstep," its the fucking THEME!

But if all of that doesn't convince you, then I offer you this picture:

If this Oscar-Winning actress can walk down a Red Carpet sporting these bushy pits, then every Jewish socialite mother and drag queen from Magda Gabor* to RuPaul can and WILL do it too!!

Of course, now you'll probably just say I'm a Julia Roberts-wannabe. You'll walk up to me at Sidetrack, look at the vodka and cranberry cocktail I have in my hand and say...

"Drink your juice, Shelby. Drink your juice."



*(Magda Gabor was the name listed in my Google search for Jewish socialite mother! Gotta love that!)

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