Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Well the past week flew for me. I have been dealing with health issues. I have also been trying to stop smoking cigarettes. I am not as successful as I am supposed to be. My doctors are going to be pissed. This is so fucking hard.
One of the men in the neighborhood told me to put something in my mouth. Then he laughed.
Why do men think dick is a substitute for cigarettes? One fits in your mouth comfortably and you inhale. One barely fits in your mouth and you get lockjaw. How is that the same? If it were, why would any straight woman or gay man who is sexually active spend so much money on cigarettes when dick is free?
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
On Friday, after my day job in the Bronx, hitting the open mic at Broadway Comedy Club, and returning to the Bronx, I went out with a comedy friend to check out a regular comedy show in the area. We shared comments about the room, the comics, the audience, we applauded patrons’ birthdays, we may have been perceived as a couple, we applauded what we liked even if it meant we were the only ones applauding (which happened at least once), we spoke with the producer, and we met Barry Ribs who recognized the comic I was with. Then toward the end of the show, the host came over and asked the comic I shared this experience with if he may announce that she is in the building. I was sitting with a star! He confirmed that she had opened for the Pointer Sisters. And then he announced that Rhonda Hansome was in the house!
Came home to discover three people were not going to be able to make an industry show I was to be in the next night where I was required to bring a certain number of guests. I don’t do this often, but I had been counting on being in this one for over a month. So many people who normally like to come to shows I’m in just couldn’t this time for a variety of reasons. I wondered if I should just surrender and cancel.
Instead, I made a Facebook event page putting it out there and even offering to cover the cover charge if that was an obstacle.
I was sweating it. I went out to get food and hoped when I returned, there’d be good news. Well, when I returned, I stuck my apartment key in the lobby door, which I’d never done before, and it would not come out. I was holding my food and the door, so people could get in. They wouldn’t be able to use their key since mine was stuck in there. I couldn’t leave it because I needed that key to get back in my house.
Neighbors tried to help, and it wouldn’t budge. Some said they’d call the super for me. I stood there thinking either the universe was telling me to cancel (I even wondered if I’d get murdered in Manhattan that night), or I was sabotaging myself. I didn’t know which interpretation was right.
Then my most macho neighbor (who I have very mixed feelings toward) put down his packages and got my key out with no oil or tools, just manpower. He didn't break or bend the key. He was my fucking hero.
I checked the event page. The responses warmed me. People from all over my life came forth to help in whatever way they could. Some were able to come. Some spread the word. Some invited their people to my event page. Many truly wished me well. The energy and spirit were there. Two high school friends came to the show! A former student, who never saw me perform before, attended the show. It felt so special to see her there. A woman who I know from a job of about twelve years ago (also an actress) came with a friend. Her feedback is so meaningful to me because she is a talented performer. Two current co-workers, who are very supportive, came. A man I once co-starred in a play with, who is mainly a songwriter and musician, came, and a man from the poetry workshop I attend came with his partner. Ultimately, I had more than I needed. But the journey getting there was a stressful marathon of sorts.
I was exhausted and overflowing with gratitude.
My set went very well. I was proud because I could say I did my current best. I hate when I screw up on something I know better than to screw up on.
I received a tape of my set. And I didn’t cringe once when watching it. (Just a tiny bit at the belly, but that’s not what I’m being judged on.)
The last part was speaking with the booker who couldn’t be at the show due to an emergency but would watch the tapes and provide feedback. I spoke to him a little while ago, and we got disconnected in the first minute. I got concerned, but we reconnected, and I was given a development spot on a pro show! Yes, I am happy about that.
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
I think I need 3 more guests to attend the early show this Saturday. Will 3 of you do this so I can perform in front of industry people? Call 212 252-4260 to make reservations by Friday, so you can get the discount.
Thursday, September 17, 2015
Yes Dear Reader, when it comes to charities I am all these things.
In 2015 the wealthy are richer than ever and increase their riches every minute.
"Money can't buy happiness.", you say.
And that is so true, in some alternate universe.
Truth be told
Money and its accompanying access to power, authority and resourcescan definitely impact the quality of your unhappiness.
But when it comes to charity...
The rapidly becoming poorer give to this, that and the other cause. Where does their money go?Frequently to the Red Cross.And that gets my goat! That is, if I actually had a real goat in my 4th floor apartment.Just what the heck is up with the shenanigans of long established "charitable" institutions?Let's look at the tip of the iceberg next week when this is continued...
I'm #NotYourGrandmasComic but #YourCrazyAuntLovesMeBTW on Tumblr I'm "rhondafull". Soon I'll figure out how to post THAT link.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015I want to thank all of you who read last week's blog and watched the video of that play, "I Am Tricky Nicky" by Adam Samtur where I had the honor of portraying Nicky. (In case you want to but didn't yet, http://www.shesofunny.org/2015/09/unexpected-gifts-of-survival-in.html.) I appreciated all the comments, whether on the blog page or in my inbox. Bad shit replays in my mind without any effort on my part, so I have to deliberately replay good shit.And speaking of good shit, I will be seen performing my stand-up by a couple of bookers at this industry show in a couple of Saturdays from now. I do need a certain amount of guests in order for that to happen. I hope you can consider this an investment besides a fun and early night out. Please do call 212 252-4260 to make reservations and to get your discount! The actual purchase will be in person on the evening of the show, September 26th, when you arrive at 5:30 for the 6pm show.I know it will be fun to one day say, "I knew her back when she needed to get seen by industry, held two jobs, and still couldn't afford much. Now look! And she didn't forget us. That's why we're in a limo tonight, drinking champagne."Hope to see you there and hear you laughing.It would help me to know if you reserved your seats, so Ican know if I have the required amount of folks coming.Please leave me a comment here or on Facebook or in anemail. Thanks!
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
When I was finally first physically separated in 2008, I was meeting the worst, lowest, most immoral parts of the man I had spent so many years with, cared about, and created a person with. I had begged for the separation for years, but it wasn't going to happen without major problems. It was such an emotionally violent blast of things. Add to that not having enough money to survive, fearing the loss of health care, trying to give up cigarettes with Chantix (which turned out to be close to full disaster for me – that medicine is NOT for everyone), and the worst was what was happening for and to my then-teenager who was burdened with what wasn’t his war. I had wrongly attributed more basic human decency to his other parent. It was the beginning of a horrendous time.
During all of this, I still received casting notices and sometimes looked at them. I was torn because on one hand, I needed to find more paid work. On the other hand, when you belong in the acting world, holding all kinds of other jobs can feel deadening. And I needed to be alive. I responded to a casting notice. It was for the title role in an off-off Broadway play.
I was called in for an audition. On my way, I needed to cry. I stuck my face in what serves as a phone booth these days, and I bawled. Then I used the reflection of the metal parts of the phone as a mirror and fixed my make-up a bit. And I continued on to the theatre space. Sides (pages from the script) were available, so I had a good half hour to get familiar with the part I’d be asked to do at the audition. I found the character so interesting, intelligent, psychic, and maybe psychotic or maybe just perceived that way because she saw what others couldn't. And what stood out to me was she didn’t seem to think she was crazy at all. I thought, I could do this. I could really do this.
When it was almost my turn, I was right outside the room where the auditions were going on. I heard the woman before me yelling the lines. I believed that wasn’t a good choice and secretly felt grateful that she made it easier for me.
The writer and director and a third man were there. A woman was there to read lines with those auditioning. As it turned out, the three men were friends and formed Just ASK Productions. Each wrote a one-act play. Each would direct one of the other plays. The title of the evening was to be: Anyone for a Threesome? – A night of very different short plays.
I felt the character at the audition. I was able to just be her while being me. It didn’t feel difficult once I decided that she didn’t consider herself crazy. And she was so much more than symptoms. I heard the men laugh as I portrayed the character. I later thought that is good since they’ve been hearing reading after reading, so if I made them laugh, it must’ve sounded fresh and different from what they’d been hearing. When it was over, they made me feel very comfortable. I was being very forthright about my crazy work schedule, and the director chimed right in saying he was going to be directing it and the cast was small so we’d work with everyone’s schedule. They made me feel wanted. It felt deeply medicinal at that time. The writer rushed to say as I was leaving that they were making decisions that night. I knew then that I got it unless someone was going to be seen after me who was even more convincing as this character.
The “high” I get from that kind of experience helped me at least not cry on my travels back home to the Bronx. This was not a paid gig, but it felt like a gift from God, the universe, angels, my loved ones who have passed. While I was still being put down for not making more money and for pursuing “dreams” (said as if they were hallucinations), this opportunity felt like someone/something/some force was saving me.
That night I got the email. I would be Nicky in “I Am Tricky Nicky.”The role gave me a place to be "crazy" in a way. And who couldn't use a metaphorical rubber room every now and then?
If you have the time and desire, you can see the video of the play here. It’s a little under a half hour. I appreciate the script now more than then. I don’t have to learn lines now. I am able to just watch and enjoy.
The Just ASK trio had amazing energy besides being smart and creative. They had very supportive families and networks. We never lacked audience and our run was extended. We were even reviewed twice. My performance was highlighted positively in the reviews. This was a large dose of medicine that was going to help me face each day during a very dark period. If I had been at a more normal place, this could have been more skyrocketing. I was at an extremely low place, so this was helping to bring me up to functioning. At the cast party (I unfortunately got too drunk, fell asleep, and missed much of it), the trio were full of lovely surprises including a gift card for each of us. When I realized I could use the card in the supermarket, I got excited. I was in real need at the time, and this was another unexpected gift of survival. One of the guys looked at me in disbelief that I needed it for the supermarket. We were born into very different circumstances. I realized they just might not understand how enormous this whole experience was to me, but it doesn’t lessen how much appreciation I had and have for them.
Thursday, September 3, 2015
Thank You!Thank You!!Thank You!!!ForReading my blogTravel SouvenirsLaughing at my jokesHeartfelt hugsComing to my showsGiving me spotsLoving meI Really Appreciate Your Giving MeA Wonderful SonI Know You Don't Have ToFollow, Share, Like & Retweet MeBut You Do - So Thanks For The ClicksThanks For GenerouslyGetting Me CoffeeHosting Me In Your CountryOffering To Make Calls To Get Me Paying WorkHelping Me Organize A Jumbled LifeThank You For Being One Of The ManyWho Asked Me To Direct A ProjectAnd Paid Me ForServices RenderedThank You For Always Making Me FamilyEven After The DivorceYesterday, during a visit with a childhood friend I had an experience to note.The glass is not just half full, it is oftenoverflowing.I am an actor, director, coach and stand-up comic.I thank you for clicking HERE to see where I'm performing.I'm #NotYourGrandmasComic but #YourCrazyAuntLovesMe