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  1. Better Late Than Never! By Rhonda Hansome

    Thursday, January 30, 2014

    And so we begin.
    I'm use to my landline not ringing.

    Most friends and business associates call me on my cell. I lie, they actually text, which drives me up the wall because I don't like reading 11 page text messages or getting 7 texts to know you'll meet me at 2 PM, when a quick call or an old fashioned email would do, but I digress...

    I'm use to my landline not ringing, but if I have no incoming service on that line, how would I know? After "Are you ok?" or "What's with your phone?" texts from the 2 people who ONLY call my landline and NEVER text me or anyone else, I thought maybe there's a problem.

    So I did an empirical test. I stood directly in front of my landline phone and dialed that number on my cell. The landline shuddered with a faint meh, but never rang. On my cell I heard a rant in Croatian or Portuguese and deduced immediately, it was not MY landline voicemail greeting.

    I use my landline mostly for calls that might run really, really long, like to technical support, for the myriad devices and utilities that serve my every (corporate created) need. I called Verizon from my landline because it would probably be a long call.

    Yes Dear Readers, all three of you may have noticed this week that even my blog did not escape unscathed in a week fraught with technical difficulties*. I wanted to post on time last week. I was excited about last week's blog. I tried multiple times but could only write blog titles, including at least one in which I misspelled my own name. Why? Google chrome refused to interface properly with blogger on my laptop**. I suspect they never liked each other and just collaborated to make their discordant message loud and clear. 

    Message sent and received. As of this writing blogger and Internet Explorer are cooperating. But who knows for how long?

    The text message above says ticket # NYBQ0206XA will be resolved on 01/28 by 8 PM. NOT!

    My landline had no incoming service and after days of long calls, emails and wait for it - text messages from Verizon, I had NO OUTGOING SERVICE EITHER.

    Call me.

    *Like the T-Mobile email that informs me erroneously I've opted out of auto renewal monthly.

    **Did I mention my desk top computer died months ago?

    Rhonda Hansome is an actress and director. Go see her do stand-up comedy live and in color.

  2. Updates, Lust, and an 'Unboxed Voice'

    Tuesday, January 28, 2014

    My new business cards came, and I'm very pleased with them. 

    The six-hour on-camera acting class I took went very well.  I was proud of my work in the class, and I felt very recognized and appreciated.  I was feeling vulnerable that day, and one of the co-teachers really hit the spot.  He saw my pain as a well of material.  I left feeling reached, understood, massaged, liked, unsettled by it all but in a good way.  I guess that won't make sense to everyone.  Some things need unsettling/shaking up.  Definitely a good experience.

    Though I am pleased with both the new business cards and having taken the class, I am financially fucked now.  Mailed off January's rent and paid the landline phone, cable, and internet bill (just the very overdue part so I won't get shut down), but can't manage the cell phone, gas and electric, and various personal loans, aside from food and carfare, etc.  If you or someone you know needs to hire a proofreader, an artist's model, or a photography model (photography within limits), please think of me and pass along my info.  If a financially blessed person is reading this and cares to help, I'd say thank you very much.

    I was part of a poetry reading in Brooklyn celebrating the Brownstone Poets 2013 Anthology where we were to read the poem we have in the anthology.    It was a trip from the Bronx to my sister borough, Brooklyn, and it was snowing and the wind blowing, but I'm glad I went.  I enjoyed hearing the others, and I definitely enjoyed reading my poem.  I got more done on the train than I would have at home.  Almost finished a proofreading job, and on the way home, I napped.  In response to a woman's interest at the reading, I reached into my pocket to give her one of my new cards and though I had put a bunch in my pocket, they weren't there.  As it turned out, I had put them in the pocket of a jacket that was under my coat on the back of my chair at home.  These are the moments I question how much I stand in my own way.

    That same night, I won 2 tickets to the play My Mother Has 4 Noses.  For me, that is a nice prize as the regular price for the tickets is way out of my league.

    In the course of my weeks, I met a man who excited me just by being himself.  It's not that I like everything about him, but I like some things about him.  He is insightful, intelligent, firm, and gentle.  He knows how to listen and appreciates my ability to as well.  He's able to stand up to other tough men in constructive ways.   He was very taken by me and wasn't afraid to express it.  That was a big turn-on.  When he felt passionate about something, he said he loved it.  In a quick second, when my eyes were running over his muscular arms, I do believe he checked himself for an erection and pulled his shirt down.  It felt like he couldn't believe this could be happening, like it isn't what normally happens to him anymore.  When I saw a line of perspiration run down his neck, I smiled and felt him as so alive.  When there is already a connection, every little physical thing becomes so charged.  He's five years older than me.  That tends to come with less hair but also a chance of emotional maturity.  He is successful career-wise.  When he put his warm hand on my back, it felt so fucking good.  When I heard him speak of his adult children, I wanted him to be my father.  Other moments, I wanted him to be my sometimes lover.  I know it is all too, too much.  And to save us all, he is not available.  But it felt good to know my lust is still happening, and I will try to remember that it comes when the emotional conditions feel right.  If his arms were not already committed, I'd really want to be in them.  

    And on another note, I'm going to be performing comedy in the Unboxed Voices Variety Show on March 8th, which is also International Women's Day.  The variety show is, in part, a birthday celebration for a woman who once cast and directed me in a play.  I'm pretty excited and will aim to do a superb job.  It means a lot to me.  I should include something on the current political scene.  I think the last time I did, it was about Weiner's weiner habit.  And I had something on the panic over gay marriage.  But with that stuff, unlike my other material, it gets dated.  I can make the gay marriage one last longer with a small edit.  But I'm not the kind of comic who can instantly come up with something.  I'm not a joke machine.  Things have to process, and some might result in comedy, some in poetry, some in sad prose, some in shit that sits on my heart until I can do something better with it.  I've seen comics who can be quick on their feet.  If thrown a topic, they can come up with something.  I don't seem to be able to do that with comedy.  Not consistently; not yet. 

    And now back to thinking about that unavailable man.  Maybe I'll write some erotica...

  3. an excerpt from a longer (not funny) story

    Tuesday, January 21, 2014

    "One of the most frightening moments during the marriage was when the Peterson/Lacy case was going on.  I hoped so much that the pregnant Lacy wasn't murdered by her husband.  At this point he was a suspect or maybe already arrested but not yet tried.  I had my baby who kept me busy most of each night during the first year at least.  We were watching a news report that said they found that after Lacy went missing, her husband ordered porn on pay-per-view.  It sounded awful, and I was still trying to suspend judgment.  I thought we all grieve and panic differently.  I really wanted to believe he didn't do it.  Suddenly my husband said, 'He did it.'  I looked at him shocked at how sure he sounded.  'Why would he? They were having a baby that was planned and they prepared a nursery for the baby and were married and had parents who were excited about the baby.  Why are you so sure?'  This is the creepy part.  He said that the guy realized the baby would ruin his sex life."
    Marilyn was so ashamed of having stayed with such a person, but made herself look up at her friend's face.  Sara's mouth hung open as Marilyn's had when he had said that.

    "So there I was feeling terribly trapped with a new baby and a horrible husband who understood the motives of wife-and-almost-baby-fetus-killer Scott Peterson.  I didn't know if that was his way of making me feel I better have sex with him or what, but I was stunned.  Then I thought I should bring him to Earth.  I said that there is such a thing as divorce.  He shook his head no but didn't articulate what stood in the way of that choice.  'Well then,' I told him, 'he can have a sex life with Bubba,' and he knew that Bubba was the generic name for the huge mother fucker in jail who also doesn't want anything interfering with his sex life."

    "Wow."  Friends from high school now sitting across from each other, many decades later.  Marilyn worried how Sara saw her because this wasn't a proud part of Marilyn's life.  "Why all the hatefulness?" Sara asked.

    "I'm not sure.  Sometimes it felt like he wanted to be a woman.  He'd act like I had unfair advantages or something."

    "Like what?"

    "Well once I told him I'd gotten on the bus and then found out my Metrocard didn't have enough on it, and just as I was ready to get off, the driver told me to go have a seat.  My husband seemed resentful and said it was because I was a pretty woman."

    Sara screwed her eyebrows.  "Instead of 'how nice that the driver took care of my family.'" 

    Marilyn looked at Sara, a proud dyke since before they had met, and thought Sara was more 'man' in her 5'4" self than Marilyn's ex had been.

    "Yeah.  That always felt so weird when he acted that way.  Growing up, his family was middle class and he had way more advantage that way.  But my mother was a nicer person than his family."
    They ate quietly for a minute, and then Marilyn continued.

    "I have even wondered if he was really an angry gay man under all that dominating crap.  His father used to accuse him of being gay because he crossed his legs like a woman might.  Maybe because of his ability to draw also.  That's not very fair.  Plus I think he resented his mother for not protecting him from his father.  His father was abusive when it wasn't called abuse in his part of the world."

    "A woman was not to go against her husband when disciplining the children, ever."  Sara spoke with authority on this subject.

    "Well here, it makes the mom an accomplice to abuse and worse."
    "That's now!"

    "Wow.  I really should not have been with him.  I remember him saying something so weird to me when the baby was less than a year.  He presented it as a compliment, but I heard it as a statement about what was in store for me.  He said he knew I really loved the baby because I even stood up to him when it came to the baby.  And I stood there and wondered why we weren't on the same side of wanting our baby to be treated well.  I wasn't even healed yet and instead of a partner, I had someone I had to fight while taking care of a newborn who was not big on sleeping.  With no parents to help me, I really didn't know that I'd survive."
    "So when did the sexual violation happen?" Sara asked with no doubt in her voice.


    "When did the sexual violation happen?" she repeated.
    "You mean to him?"

    "Yes, to your ex."

    "You sound so sure.  I never thought of that."

    "I am sure," she said, "but, I warn you, he is the kind of Latino who would rather kill himself than admit it."

  4. News From New Jersey By Rhonda Hansome

    Thursday, January 16, 2014

    Two years ago was the last time I had the honor of speaking with poet Amiri Baraka.

    It was after his play The Toilet, produced by Woodie King Jr.'s New Federal Theater in a park off NY's FDR Drive. We spoke sitting next to each other on a lower east side bus. 

    I shared time and space with a man and a universe whose molten lava core remains forever a firebrand. R.I.P.        

    Wake: Fri. Jan. 17th Metropolitan Baptist Church 4-9 PM, 149 Springfield Ave. Newark, NJ 07103

    Funeral: Sat. Jan. 18th Newark Symphony Hall 
    10 AM, 1030 Broad St. Newark, NJ 07102

    Rhonda Hansome is an actress, writer, director. See her do stand-up here.

  5. Rare Diamond

    Tuesday, January 14, 2014

    I ordered new business cards and spent a bit more on them than the cheapest kind which were my previous ones.  I decided to make that investment.  The card will have some texture and shine too. 

    I splurged and even decided to have something on the back.
    I can wait the eight days and go with the free shipping.  I waited years for my unsuitable ex-husband to get the fuck out of my apartment, so I can certainly wait eight days enjoying anticipating my cards.

    I don't know if I'm being suckered, but I think I'm going to get myself the Ab Rocket Twister.     I really want to feel good about the things I have some control over.  It is hard to change every bad habit, but sometimes one good thing motivates the next good thing.  This item folds compact and doesn't require lots of space.  I want a firmer and more finely shaped middle like I once had.  I believe it is possible and not such a long road.  The difficulty is getting on the road. 

    So much challenging weather.  I enjoyed spending my Saturday night with me and a bottle of wine, my internet connection and Chris Rock on tv.  And, a mouse that had me feeling very tense got caught in one of the traps that my best friend set up for me before he left for the weekend.  No after-sounds or anything, so I didn't have to feel like there was torture involved.  Just a clean death.  I was able to enjoy being home again.  I'm grateful when I don't have to be anywhere and can be at home just growing back my hymen. 

    Then on Sunday night, my buddy was back and came over to get rid of the mouse corpse for me.  Surprise, surprise.  There was no mouse.  Part of the cheese was gone, and the mouse must've escaped.  Like the woman on the Swiffer commercial says, "I've been living in a fool's paradise."
    On a hopeful note, next Saturday, 1/18/14, I will be in a class all day (6 hours) that focuses on booking day player roles (9 lines or less).  It will also be a chance to work with someone in the industry.  A free spot in the class was being raffled and though I didn't win that, I won a runner-up spot which was a discounted fee for the class.  I hope it helps move me along. 
    As much as I do enjoy working with my students, I feel readier than ever for show business to take me into a much more comfortable lifestyle.  It's all relative, but it could be nice to pay someone to do the laundry, it would be different to be able to buy clothes regularly, to always have all 3 paper products (toilet paper, towel paper, and tissues) at the same time, to live in a well kept building (as mine once was and is not the worst now but could be much better), to not have to teach full time but only an occasional class if I so desire, to have a doctor who remembers me and where it doesn't feel like a clinic, to be able to buy a good bed, to clear my debt, to actually go somewhere when on vacation, that sort of thing.  Those diamonds on the business card do not represent my lifestyle (and given the story behind diamonds,  I probably wouldn't buy any even if I could afford them) but I do love that they tend to be associated with beauty and rarity. 

    And I certainly wouldn't mind every casting director I meet thinking, she's a rare diamond.

  6. I Walk The Line by Rhonda Hansome

    Thursday, January 9, 2014

    I began looking for a new place to live on August 1, 2013.  After months of trips and falls I believe I've finally made some headway.     

    Stand-up, finding an apartment, it's all a tightrope!

    Rhonda Hansome does stand up when not walking a fine line or coordinating traffic studies on the George Washington Bridge.

  7. Everybody Is A Star

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

    Well readers, I had promised I'd share with you what Leah Yerpe created from the photos she took of me.  She is having a show which opens on January 9, 2014.  I am supposed to be at my evening job on that evening.  :-(  I am contemplating calling in, but we just had a month off (unpaid of course).  Grrrr.  Enjoy this 2-minute fun video of Leah in action.


    If you are interested in attending the opening on Thursday, January 9th, here is all the info from Leah's website:

    Stellify at Dillon Gallery

    Date: Exhibition: January 9 - February 11
    Reception: January 9th 6 - 8pm
    Dillon Gallery, 555 West 25th St, New York, NY
    Dillon Gallery is pleased to present Stellify, a solo exhibition by artist Leah Yerpe.  This exhibition will feature several new drawings, including three large pieces never previously exhibited.

    Stellify at Dillon Gallery | brooklyn artist | figurative painter | new york artist | up and coming artists | young artists

    Phoenicis | 72×103 | charcoal on paper | 2013
    Stellify means to change or be changed into a star.  Creation myths of nearly every ancient civilization include stories of humans transformed into constellations.  Some of these transformations were acts of mercy, some of honor, and others of terrible punishment.  The drawings in this exhibition are inspired by the persistent relevance of these ancient myths; they span time to express our collective values and experience. 
    The figures in my work are multiplied in different poses, twisting, floating and falling in a space purged of contextualizing marks. I never pose my models; they have free reign to move in an immediate, improvised dance. This fluidity contrasts with a fastidious drawing process, where every tiny gesture and wrinkle take on great significance.  The bodies carry a sense of contradiction between harmony and discord as they push and pull each other, forming constellations on the paper’s surface.
    In his ancient poem Metamorphosis, Ovid writes about the creation: “When all the other animals, downcast looked upon the earth, he gave a face raised on high to man, and commanded him to see the sky and raise his high eyes to the stars.”  Recently, the Voyager spacecraft became the first man-made object to leave our solar-system. Thousands of years of human progress reaching toward the heavens.


    Please share this with someone who you think would like to know about such an exhibition.  Thank you.  Here's to 2014.   

  8. Only One Trip by Rhonda Hansome

    Thursday, January 2, 2014

    Well Dear Readers, 

    All three of you, listen up! 

    I'm looking for a hungry 5 year old to intern as my social media manager  

                                       and technical guru.
                                       I'm willing to pay in 



    hormone-free milk 

     and unending love and gratitude

    Did I revel in peaks and wallow in valleys of 2013?

                                     Oh Yes!
    Many a peak and wallow was chronicled here.

                                      Oh No!!
    At this writing, I'm STILL not sure about my new apartment situation, in process since Aug. 1, 2013.                                          

    Come what may, I thank each 1 and ALL for extending a supportive thought, word or DEED! May this odyssey soon end in my favor.

    This week I laughed, cried, danced and decided, if even only for a moment on New Year's EVE...  
                          I am content to be me.                                       

           Oh Excuse Me!

     Here comes another Rhondaful dream, click and enjoy...

    Rhonda Hansome is an actress (mostly in her mirror), a writer (Thursdays on this site) an award winning director of talented actors and a social media butterfly. Where to see her doing live stand-up comedy? Click here!