Friday, January 13, 2012

A Little Thank-You Note

When I began this blog, I thought it would be a good way to shamelessly promote myself as I began to inch my way back into the comedy world I had left eleven years ago. I felt that if I could combine some humor with the challenges I was facing as a transgendered woman and a rusty old comic, that maybe I could effect some small, positive changes in the way the world reacts to us. That plan hasn’t quite worked out. You see, the one thing I never counted on was that people would actually read this thing on a regular basis. Oddly enough, that is happening now, and to be honest, I’m not quite sure what to make of it.

On the one hand I’m thrilled, of course. It’s a joyous thing for the soul to know that the words that I find so meaningful touch some of you as well. Words are powerful things, after all. They paint pictures in the mind, cause you to laugh and cry, and if I’m lucky enough, maybe stimulate you enough to think just a little harder about a subject that you might have just tossed aside after finishing your morning coffee. Yesterday’s post, Let My People Pee! seemed to have had that desired effect, because the number of ‘reads’ was more than double what I normally see here on any given day.

 I’m guessing that the title had something to do with it, of course, but I think there was something more to it than just that.

This morning, a friend mentioned to me that the blog has increasingly moved away from its purported mission statement of “chronicling the long journey back” in that the stories of late have had ostensibly little to do with my comedy comeback. While that is true, I have to tell you that honestly, my life both on and off the stage is amazingly dull. The business of booking oneself and writing material is a tedious drudge, full of daily frustration. It is like being assigned a summer book report that is due when classes resume in September. I will find every conceivable excuse not to do it until about a day before the show.

To be honest, I could have told you everything you needed to know about my ‘comeback’ in three posts. Yes, there are some things coming together right now that I’m particularly excited about, and when it is time I will certainly share them with you. But if you’ll indulge me on this post, I’d like to explore the phrase “chronicling the long journey back” a bit more. It will give you some insight into my life and mind, while at the same time offering me some personal clarification and acceptance of where this is all going.

I believe that all creative endeavors are organic, and by that I mean that no matter what the project is, it begins with an idea that if nurtured, will grow in its own way. This goes for painting, acting, standup and writing, really anything that originates with just an idea. Such was the case with this blog. Initially, I saw it as a whetstone on which I could sharpen my rusted comedy writing skills. But a funny thing happened along the way; the more I wrote, the freer I got, and I began to see outside my own little world that there were stories to be told, and issues to be discussed. Not only could I write about them, but I could do it using humor!

Much of what I’ve chosen as subject matter has to do with being transgendered and the issues that we face. Sometimes I feel as though I devote too much space to them, but then I remember that these things are not only part of the “long journey back”, but of everyday life for us. There is no shortage of straight, gay or lesbian humorists who can entertain and inform their audiences. But my community is always, ALWAYS sorely neglected, and while I write for everyone, I have felt compelled to focus on the things that matter to us, with the hope that in a tiny, tiny way the mystery and the fear about who WE are will begin to dissipate in some minds.

All of us are taking our own individual journey, really. What binds any group though, is the commonality that they share. If you are straight, gay or lesbian, you belong to a social order with which you can bond through a collective consciousness and appreciate those things that you’ve all experienced individually. That is the reason comedians can make an entire audience of strangers laugh. Transgendered folk really don’t have that network yet. Many of us live ‘stealth’, trying to blend in, which is why you folks don’t see us much out. But we are out there.

I wanted to keep this short and so to wrap it up, I just want to say that going forward I guess I will be expanding the content more and more to include issues that affect us all. Sometimes they will be silly, and others not so silly. But I will continue to post my personal appearances on the blog and I hope that if I am appearing close enough to you, you’ll come out and say hi. Transgender, straight, lesbian or gay, everyone is welcome at my shows. If there is a comedy club or venue where you would like to see me, call them and ask. If they get enough requests, they’ll get the hint.

Finally, I want to thank you all for supporting this blog. You’ve made the first month lots of fun for me. I look forward to many more. And as always, I love to hear from you, so comment, okay?

That’s it. I’m done bitching. Everybody hug, everybody eat! Abbondanza!          

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