As the aftermath of the election of Donald Trump is still being sorted out, a common theme keeps cropping up from all sides: “Democrats failed to understand white, working-class, fly-over America.” Trump supporters are saying this. Progressive pundits are saying this. Talking heads across all forms of the media are saying this. Even some Democratic leaders are saying this. It doesn’t matter how many people say it, it is complete bullshit. It is an intellectual/linguistic sleight of hand meant to throw attention away from the real problem. The real problem isn’t east coast elites who don’t understand or care about rural America. The real problem is rural America doesn’t understand the causes of their own situations and fears and they have shown no interest in finding out. They don’t want to know why they feel the way they do or why they are struggling because they don’t want to admit it is in large part because of choices they’ve made and horrible things they’ve allowed themselves to believe.
For this post, I had intended to briefly mention the 10-year anniversary of the Two Spoonsworld premiere in St. Petersburg, Florida, include a couple of pictures from the production, then hit publish. But as I continued writing, it became clear I had more to say, some demons to exorcise. And then the stream of consciousness, or subconsciousness, made me think about some of my experiences as a writer and producer. Below is the result.
Ten years ago, the first production of my play, Two Spoons, was produced by Gypsy Productions at the Suncoast Theatre in St. Petersburg, Florida. I had originally submitted a different play, Andrew Reaches the Other Side, to Gypsy a year earlier. Since Gypsy produced gay-themed plays, and the lead character in Andrew was a gay Buccaneers fan, I thought the play would go over well in the Tampa/St. Pete area. Continue reading “Two Spoons, Three Ways, in Three Years”
It happened on a Sunday in early 1997. Because of Bergen County’s blue laws that kept most stores closed, I had driven down to Wayne, NJ, to shop for some new music. I’d been going to Willowbrook Mall and the other area shops around Wayne for as long as I could remember. As a kid, my neighbor’s mom would take her two sons, my brother, Matt, and I—with our pockets full of quarters—to the video game arcade at the mall. Years later, while I attended nearby Montclair State College, I would often go with friends to eat, shop, hangout, or sing karaoke in a basement bar of one of the restaurants (Casey O’Tooles?).
But that Sunday in 1997, I had gone by myself to The Wiz (an electronics and music store near Willowbrook, but not in the mall) to search the rows of CDs for something new. At the end of one of those rows was a special display, a rack of CDs featuring local artists. And that’s when Fountains of Wayne’s self-titled debut album caught my eye.
Just about numero 12,987,664, 325 on my “Wish List of Things to Do” is “give Milo Yanwhateverthefuckhisnameis attention.”
I consider Milo Yanwhateverthefuckhisnameis (from now on, I will refer to him as Y-Mi?”) the female equivalent of Ann Coulter.
Both are rapacious media-whores, whose utter lack of argument or opinion based on any grounds other than an embarrassingly infantile “Oooh! Did s/he really say that!” is so shockingly and stupendously shallow that Republican shill Scott Baio’s grunts as Chachi do seem like Lincoln logs of gravitas in comparison. Continue reading “When They Go Mi-LO, I Go Mi-LOWER”
A particular, perverse and peculiar appendage of the great voting body in 2016 was the “Hillary and Trump are equal evils” limb sprouting from the communal liberal heart cavity.
Even as a passionate Sanders supporter in the early days, I had no problem turning my allegiance to Clinton after she became the candidate of note. It was crystal clear to me that there was no comparison between the two chosen ones. It was like contrasting Lord Voldemort with Albus Dumbledore. Any third grader could see that.
The 59th Annual Grammys Awards are this weekend. Twenty-five years ago, I worked at the 34th Annual Grammys at Radio City Musical Hall. My friend, Christine, a fellow Montclair State alum, asked me, along with a bunch of other recent Communication Studies graduates, to volunteer as a talent escort and seat filler.
On February 25, 1992, we met at Radio City early, received an orientation, a tour of the hall, and our escort assignments. Some of us would escort performers. Some would escort presenters. Performers got dressing rooms. Presenters did not. I didn’t know if my nerves could manage a performer, which that year included Aretha Franklin, Paul Simon, Mariah Carey, Luther Vandross, Bonnie Raitt, LL Cool J, Seal, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and Johnny Mathis. Continue reading “Grace and Gross at the Grammys”
For the last forty years, I’ve been asked why and how I’m a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan, especially being from New Jersey. I usually say the first football game I went to as a kid was a Giants/Buccaneers game. But I think I was already a fan by the time I went to that game. Truth is, the Bucs caught my eye the minute they entered the NFL in 1976, an expansion team along with the Seattle Seahawks–another team I root for.
I was eight years old when the Buccaneers completed their inaugural season with zero wins and fourteen losses. It’s when I must have developed a thing for losers and underdogs—I’m also a Mets fan. In 1977, the Bucs kept me engaged by losing the first twelve games of their second season. With twenty-six losses in a row, my devotion to them was cemented. Continue reading “A Bucs Fan For Life”