THAT'S WHEN I REACH FOR MY REVOLVER
On Thursday night I again partied like it was 1987.
This time the performance artist was Paula Killen, who moved to LA several years ago and came back to do a three-woman show called Sweet Ride with local partners-in-crime Karol Kent and Susan Messing.
It was at the new Annoyance Theatre space in Uptown, which is AWESOME and nearly erased the awful memories of the improv class Munkin and I took at their old Clark Street space over a decade ago (we ran out after the first class, and never came back to get our $50 deposits).
The Annoyance is like the anti-Second City. The first show I ever saw there was Manson: The Musical, in, like, 1990; I wrote about it for a satirical 'zine called The Planet. But the Annoyance is most famous for The Real Live Brady Bunch.
I was once in a variety (?) show with Paula. Sort of. Hosted by it-girl performance artist Cheryl Trykv, it was called Luck Be a Lady and took place at the old HotHouse on Milwaukee Avenue (now home to The Note, where my nephew's band Sequoia played last week). Ira Glass was also somehow in the lineup, despite being a guy. He mixed some radio thing, live. I can't remember what I read but I am quite certain that I sucked. I think Cheryl invited me to perform because her current boyfriend was my ex-boyfriend, and he kept saying things like you two have so much in common, and she took pity on me. His family was in the audience. I remember being flabbergasted (in a good way) afterwards, when Cheryl handed me a $20 payment for my "work."
Paula's new show, Sweet Ride, dealt with things like being a fortysomething single, the loneliness that arises when your best friends live in other cities, online dating, ageing, and being a cougar (ie; a woman who goes for younger guys, a la Demi). It was quite funny despite the subject matter and the fact that Paula rubbed her breasts into the backs of half the audience members.
There was one exhange that reminded me of the sit-com pilot I wrote with Gridlife (soon to be a major motion picture... any day now), in which Paula tells Karol she should date younger guys.
Karol protests. "I don't want to have to explain Watergate!"
On Friday I enjoyed dinner out with a man eight years my junior. Over patatas bravas and sangria at the tony Del Toro we talked about yoga and design and vegetariansim and shoes.
At one point, though, I had to ask.
"Do you know what Watergate is?"
He answered in the affirmative.
Then he walked me to the chocolate bar (yes, Wicker Park is now home to a chocolate bar!).
After drinking bowlsful of the most thick and satisfying hot chocolate you could imagine, we passed by the Double Door.
YOUNG GENTLEMAN: I've always wanted to go to the Double Door.
CACA: I think Mission is Burma is there tonight! I used to play them on my radio show (when you were in middle school).
We went in. It was sold out.
But it didn't matter.
We could see and hear them from the vestibule.
And they were in the middle of their best song.
Yesterday the editor and I went to Toys R Us to pick up some gifts. The second we walked in we were assaulted by the awful smell. It was thick, overpowering and headache-inducing.
My olefactory recepters went into overdrive as they tried to analyze the source.
It was not the smell of turds.
It was not the scent of vomit.
It wasn't even cologne.
It was the awful aroma of some newfangled pungent poison plastic out of which they are making children's toys.
It was far stronger and scarier than the Best Buy smell.
When we finally left our poor nose-cilia were throbbing, and took a long time to recover.
They were back to normal when we had dinner at Handlebar, which has a vegan-friendly menu plus a full bar -- and is bike-friendly to boot.
It features artful barstools made of bike parts by an ex, Andy Gregg.
I'd almost forgotten about the place.
It was full of hip young people with cool haircuts and neck tattoos.
They let us in anyway.
Mark your calendars: I am doing a reading with some other writers on Saturday, February 3 at 8PM at the lovely Uptown Writer's Space. It won't suck. Really. And I may even use props. Just don't tell the Astanga Police.